Tamrie Foxtail Trips Into Cemeteries
Tamrie Foxtail has lived on both the Pacific West Coast and the Gulf Coast before following her husband to Oklahoma. Ms. Foxtail attended Florida State University when she lived in Tallahassee. She’s been blessed with a mother who taught her to love reading and a husband who's a real life romance hero. Tamrie finds it difficult to sleep if there are not books close enough to touch.
Do you have a favorite object that is pertinent to your writing?
I’m not sure if you mean something I use when I write or something that seems to show up in my writing. I’m not really dependant on anything other than a computer when I write. I do like a little music in the background.
Now something that shows up in my writing…Cemeteries. No, I’m not a morbid person. I don’t like images of skulls, etc. For reasons I can’t explain, however, cemeteries pop up a lot in my writing. I’m working on a series of seven books and so far there’s been a cemetery in every one.
Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
A little of both. I start out knowing who my characters are and why they’re in the predicament they are. I usually learn about their personalities as I write. I can’t count the number of times I’ve tossed thirty or forty pages because I’ve come to realize my character wouldn’t act/react the way I’ve written.
How does your family feel about having a writer in the family? Do they read your books?
My husband is retired law enforcement so he enjoys helping me work out a scene that involves the police or a crime. He doesn’t like to read fiction, so other than going over the law enforcement scenes he doesn’t read my books. My mother reads them and proofreads for me as well.
Do you write full time? What did you do before you became a writer? Or still do?
I’d love to be able to write full time but it’s just not possible at this point. I work in a small town library. It’s a wonderful job. Because it’s a small town we know our patrons fairly well. I have a chance to talk to lots of people about what they like and don’t like when it comes to books.
Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing?
Not anymore. I have a child with serious medical problems so I’ve learned to write in hospitals when he’s been admitted. I take a notebook with me when he has physical therapy and I jot down scene ideas while the therapist works with him. I’ve learned to be very flexible when it comes to my writing routine.
Wherever I’m writing I skim over the last few paragraphs before I start.
What do you do on a typical writing day?
I’m the first one out of bed no matter what day of the week. If it’s a week day I get my husband up then do a little housework.
I get Isaiah ready for the day as soon as the alarm on his feeding pump starts beeping to let me know his nighttime feeding has finished. This means bringing his medical equipment into the living room. He’s four, but he can’t walk so I carry him out to the living room. (My husband has usually left for work by this time.)
Isaiah and I have a morning ritual. I take my phone and we listen to songs on YouTube. His favorite’s Little Red Riding Hood by Sam Sham and the Pharaohs. Once his nurse is there I grab a cup of coffee and go into my office to work for a few hours before heading off to the library. After work I try to get some outlining done while I’m holding Isaiah on my lap.
Can you please give us a sneak peek at any of your upcoming books?
I’ve recently signed a contract with The Wild Rose Press for a novella called Fading Rose. It’s part of their Scrimshaw Doll series and involves a woman dying of renal failure. Writing this one was more emotional than usual. Ten years ago my husband went through renal failure and I came far too close to losing him.
When you have writer’s block how do you break free?
I use a question and answer approach, literally writing down questions such as Q. Why doesn’t she have any faith in getting a kidney transplant? A. Because she’s already had a transplant and rejected it.
This helps me either figure out why my plot’s off track and why my characters aren’t following my outline.
Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven’t yet?
Back when Twilight was the favorite book among teens, the kids at work convinced me to read it. I didn’t like the young adult books that were out when I was a teen because they all felt like lectures. Twilight I enjoyed. I’ve since read the entire series, and many others, and developed of love of YA.
My best writing buddy, Anna Kittrell, is a published YA author, so I figure I have a ready source of advice. I have a vague idea for a story, even have a title. I’m fleshing out characters and working on plot ideas, and hope to start working on the story one of these days.
Is there anyone why really mentored or inspired you to keep writing until you were finally published?
My mother, of course. She believed in me from the time I scribbled down stories only a mother would see merit in.
My friend Michele, back in my home state of Florida, used to tell me “Stop talking about your stories and start writing them down.”
My husband always said “When you’re published…”
We moved here to Oklahoma nearly twenty years ago. I found a wonderful group called The OKRWA. We refer to ourselves as “The Outlaws.” They’ve been a huge source of help and inspiration. Within that group is a smaller one called “Wild Okies.” I couldn’t ask for a better group of writers, both published and unpublished, to hang out with once a month. They are some of the most upbeat people I’ve ever known.
You can find me lurking here:
Daira Gleeson gave her heart and her virginity to Rory Trent when they were in high
school. Twenty years later--reeling from
her mother's suicide and the death of her cheating fiancé—Daira finds herself
in possession of a cursed scrimshaw doll.
Now, Rory is back in town, wanting to pick up where they left off. But not only is Daira afraid he'll break her heart, the doll's curse has already caused harm to those close to her. If Rory leaves her again, he could pay with his life.
Someone is after the doll and willing to kill to possess it. Can the curse be broken in time to save those Daira loves...and to regain the true love she lost a lifetime ago?