Name: T. Birmingham
Where are you from? All over. I’ve lived in California, Connecticut, Texas, Massachusetts.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
T: I’m working on a book with author Gen Ryan called My Soul to Keep, and I can’t wait for its release in September.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
T.: Honestly, I’ve been writing my whole life, although I started off in song writing and poetry. But I’ve been writing stories forever. I just love getting a story out there. I love the cathartic feeling that comes from sharing their struggle and having it be heard.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
T.: I had a poem published when I was a freshman in high school. I’m pretty sure that was when I was like, “Whoa! I love this!” I’ve written on school papers. I’ve written music. I’ve done so many different types of writing, and I have loved everything!
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
T.: I’ve had so many stories just sitting there on paper for years. Unfinished works. And then last spring, I went to visit family in California after packing my bags and boxes to move there. It was supposed to be a week of job searching and getting things ready to move there, and instead, it was a week of self-reflection and change. I’ll be honest. I always want to move, but this time, I was almost there. And when it ended up not being the place for me, I realized I needed to DO something. That ‘something’ was my book. I jumped back into it on that trip and in a month, I finished the last fifteen chapters and sent it off to my betas. The rest is history.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
T.: Hmmm… Like a pattern? Or a format? I write third person, past tense. I love past tense. And third person allows me to get into the character’s head, while also getting deeper into the overall situation. But if you’re talking writing pattern, I love to get in the character’s heads. What are they feeling? What are they smelling, tasting, touching, hearing? What past hurts – physical or emotional – are affecting them in this moment? That means, I need clam and peace and to get into that headspace, so I always start by listening to some music or meditating to get myself into that headspace and heartspace to work.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
T.: Currently, my titles are “devil” themed, which has a point. I promise. But the titles have to do with the lessons that are being learned in the story. Pride and overcoming our own doubts and ego – or not (The Devil’s Pride). Learning to dance in the rain and enjoy the music (Dancing with the Devil). The bone and soul deep anger that lives within so many that tears us apart when in reality, so much of that rage could be redirected and put to good use (Rage Against the Devil). I love titles!
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
T.: Hmmm… I almost mention it above. Each character, each couple, each story teaches us something. My characters are so very human – even if they are not truly human at all. And this is what I love getting across, that we are all of us an immeasurable gift of both light and dark and that we all have something to offer. We are not cookie-cutters personas. We are beautiful and strong. We just need to learn to embrace life and love and magic and beauty and dive in!
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
T.: Honestly, the characters we read in any book are feeling things many of us have felt, but just as with every real life individual’s story, a character’s story is ALWAYS unique.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
T.: Oh, wow. I have so many. When I was younger, I loved Charles Dickens and The Boxcar Children and The Babysitter’s Club and Trash and Jane Austen. So many… I’ve enjoyed reading strong female heroines in the Urban Fantasy and High Fantasy genres, and the screenwriter and director, Joss Whedon, is one of my favorites. And my mom as well. She was my homeschooling instructor in high school, and we spent hours on English and trying to understand where language came from. So, when I was in college, although I was premed, I gravitated toward English and ended up with a major in Literature when all was said and done. There are honestly too many influences and mentors to count.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest and who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
T.: Hmmm… I love so many interesting authors. There are probably too many to mention. In the Indie world, I’ve enjoyed the works of Hilary Storm, Lily St. Germain, TS Joyce, P. Jameson, and most recently Stephanie Kneese.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
T.: I have an amazing support system. I have friendships that are brand, spanking new but feel like a forever friendship of souls. I have older friendships built on trust and struggle and joys. I have business partners and mentors. Best support system ever!
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
T.: Every book is a process. Every book is different. And every book is exactly what it needs to be.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
T.: Story telling. I’ve always been a story-teller.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
T.: Oh, I’m working on Book Three – Devil May Care – for the Wild Beasts Series. And I’m so excited to give Danny the time he deserves. I’m also working on two other projects. One is a spinoff of the Wild Beasts Series that will include Nicky’s sister (Nicky from Rage Against the Devil). The other project with author, Gen Ryan, called My Soul to Keep – a standalone gothic/paranormal romance.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
T.: Everything! That’s the beauty of writing. It’s always different. It’s always a challenge. It’s my therapy. And yet, it’s also my safety. My serenity
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
T.: I’m very excited about signings, actually! My first is Wanderlust in Dallas on May 20. But I’ll also be at Kiss and Tell, Tempted and Tantalizing, Kellerman’s Retreat with Rebels, Mile High in Denver, and Rebels and Readers this year!
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
T.: The lovely Susan Garwood of Wicked Women Designs designed my covers!
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
T.: Finding a balance. As writers, we are easily consumed by worlds, and I need to work on grounding and centering myself and trying not to get too lost in the momentum.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
T.: Oh, I always learn something new when I publish. But I also learn from my characters. I learn about my strength and my weaknesses, I learn to accept the world a bit more, and I learn who I am with each chapter, with each edit, with each part of the writing and publishing process.
Fiona: If any of your books was made into a film who would you like to play the lead?
T.: Haha. No. That would be awesome, but my characters are their own people. I’d love a cameo though!
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
T.: Probably what everyone else gives as advice. Just write. And Bleed. Bleed onto the paper. Take the time. Find the right words for your story. And let it all go. Let your writing be a sanctuary where you seduce the reader.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
T.: True Hero by Susan Owensby – it’s an ARC.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
T.: Oh, goodness. No. But my favorite children’s book was “Are You My Mother?” by PD Eastman.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
The Devil’s Pride http://amzn.to/2naJCQE
Dancing with the Devil http://amzn.to/2oCJEC1
Rage Against the Devil http://amzn.to/2nXoPhN