Saturday, November 22, 2014

IF YOU WERE ME AND WROTE BOOKS by Barbara Bettis

#Medieval #Phoenix #Knight #RWA #Heart #Research @Barbara Bettis

Let me introduce Author Barbara Bettis. Barbara says, " I love creating stories of other times and places, of heroines ‘to die for’ and heroes to live for. And, of course, happy endings." 


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THE HEART OF THE PHOENIX:                                                  SILVERHAWK: 

Barbara, thank you for being my guest today. Here are some questions that will help us get to know you better:

1. IF I WERE YOU AND WROTE BOOKS, What would be the name of my last book or upcoming release? What genre and length. Do I have a tagline for that book?

If you were me, you’d be doing the happy dance, as I am over my latest book, which is my second and another medieval. This one is set in the weeks after King Richard I (the Lionheart) dies. It’s called The Heart of the Phoenix. Here’s the tagline: Some call him a ruthless mercenary; she calls him the knight of her heart.

2. IF I WERE YOU AND WROTE BOOKS, Would I be doing lots of research?

As you can see by the era in which my books are set, you’d be doing a lot of research! But I love it, perhaps a little too much. It’s fascinating, and so easy to get wrapped up in reading about different eras, in searching out their customs, dress—oh, and the politics! Sometimes it’s disconcerting to learn how ruthless and conniving people in power (or wanting power) could be. I can get so immersed in the world I’m investigating, I have to make a concerted effort to stop researching and—write.

3. IF I WERE YOU AND WROTE BOOKS, Do I belong to any writing groups, if so, why?

You would belong to several online historical interest groups, an RWA chapter (four hours away), and your local writers group, a growing organization of talented authors writing in a variety of genres. You’d also belong to a small, weekly critique group that has been together for six years. We meet at one of the member’s homes and read the pages we’ve produced in the last days.

The group began with three people who were determined to finish a book by the end of the year. We did. Not long after, we added a fourth member. The four of us have remained the core, although a couple or three others have come and gone during the years. When anyone new is invited, it’s with the understanding that they are serious about writing and completing their stories. (From the outside, it appears we may be just a social group. We’re not.) We try to maintain the number at five—six upon occasion.

We call ourselves the Tuesday Writers and we’ve grown quite close, as you might imagine. Everyone has published at least one book or short story. Ironically, we all write in different genres, although two of us may be setting stories in the same era very soon. We’re looking forward to that.

4. IF I WERE YOU AND WROTE BOOKS, Would I get excited over seeing my book cover for the first time?

Yes. A simple answer to describe a complex reaction. Except, my real excitement came with seeing the actual book. When my first one was published last year, the Tuesday after the the paperback version was available, my critique group surprised me with copies. I arrived at the meeting a bit late, rushed from work. When I walked into her home, the hostess said, “Before we begin, Barb, here,” and handed me a copy of the book. I hadn’t even had time to receive my own—this was my first look at the hard copy. I truly was stunned. I held it and just looked at it, and tears came. (Allergies, you know! J ) It was such an incredible experience. Then they all made me autograph their copies. Wonderful support and friendship like this is priceless.

5. IF I WERE YOU AND WROTE BOOKS, Do I have a favorite writing spot inside/outside my home, such as a chair, corner, desk, patio area, etc.

You do have a spot, an alternate to the desk. But first, thanks for walking along my writing path with me today. Hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I have. Now let’s settle down in a favorite non-office writing spot here in the living room near the bay window. A warm fuzzy to cover your feet, a cup of hot tea at your elbow—happy writing.

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21 comments:

  1. Great interview! I really enjoyed learning more about Barb. She's one of the most supportive writers and always takes time to stop in and say hello to us online when we have something going on. I commend historical writers and their love for research. It's so not my thing! But I'm glad it's Barb's because that means I get to read her books!

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    1. Thank you, J.C. I appreciate the kind words--you're such a supportive colleague, yourself! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving--and stay warm!

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  2. You really seem to enjoy that medieval time period Barb! I trust those politics and the finagling don't carry over into your daily life! Good luck with the book.

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    1. Hmm. A politic answer is required here. LOL. I have managed to ease out of the political scene, both personally and in the work sphere. That doesn't mean I still don't have decided opinions, however. Thanks for being here! Happy Thanksgiving!

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  3. Yeah, critique groups are good. Used them for years. Good luck with your new release.

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    1. Thank you! I've been lucky enough to have more than one crit group and I've been blessed with them all. Hope you have a Wonderful Thanksgiving.

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  4. I enjoyed learning more about you Barb! Your writing group sound like wonderful women - I'm envious! (smiling) Best wishes with your new release.

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    1. They are a terrific group, for sure! Thanks for being here, Ashantay. I hope you can find a good group, too, if you haven't already. Hope your Thanksgiving is tops.

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  5. What a fun way to do an interview on a blog! I'm impressed. Agree with you pretty much across the board--yes, research is part of the fun, but sometimes it's hard to stay on subject when beguiled by an unrelated interesting fact. And another vote in favor of crit groups, and the longer you stay together the more valuable they become. They know your weak points and you know theirs and you can point them out without offending anybody.

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  6. I agree- research is fun, but I often get sidetracked by other interesting things I stumble across.

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  7. Yeah, I hear ya - research is fun but not only can it take you off on other tangents, sometimes it can be overwhelming (in my case- my latest wip is Civil War & I'm wrapped up in a year long seige!). Great interview!

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  8. Wonderful interview, Barb! I'm in love with your non-office hang out spot! I want one too. And I love research a little too much too!

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  9. Hi Barb! What a fun blog! I loved getting to know you better! I'm glad you like the research. That's why I like to read historicals, but don't write them. LOL! :)

    Congrats on your new release!!!

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  10. Wow, Barb. You're an inspiration. I don't know how you juggle everything. And I know just how time-consuming all that research can be. I understand the love of history, but it can absorb your whole life.
    I love the chair. I want one just like it.

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  11. I always enjoy hearing stories about writer's lives. Love the time period... and medievals in general.

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  12. Wonderful interview, Barb. Having a critique group is very important, and I love that yours has been together for so long. I'm so happy to meet a fellow researcher, too! It's fascinating the items we find and can weave into our stories. All the best!

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  13. That is the defining moment for your first book, Barb, I so agree with you. The first time you see it in print and handle it--it's a magic moment! I so related to what you said and that was so cool that your critique group did that for you!!! I had to find my first book on a lower shelf at B&N all by myself. Love what your critique group did, so supportive!

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  14. I'm reading Heart of the Phoenix right now, and it's really, really good. I haven't gotten too far into it, yet, but I'm totally hooked. I have to agree, the first time you hold your own book in your hands, it's magic, and the magic doesn't fizzle out with time. The research is half the fun! -- I'm fortunate that my local chapter of RWA is only half an hour away. They are truly wonderful group.

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  15. Very nice interview! I agree with Beppie - very fun way to do an interview on a blog. Medieval romances are my favorite, too.

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  16. Hi, Barbara. You're a hard person to keep up with, but I found you now. I agree in that critique groups are essential to producing a good novel or short story. No one can view his or her own work objectively.

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