It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult. - Seneca

Monday, April 27, 2009

Interview with Author, Beth Trissel ...

Today I have the pleasure of sitting down with Author Beth Trissel.
Welcome Beth!
I have to tell you as I was doing the interview I was so intriqued by how you've found your inspiration. I love the story behind Daughter of the Wind, its so heartbreaking and touching! I can't wait to read the book.
So, the first question everyone wants to know now is, what inspired you to write Daughter of the Wind?

One account that I came across in my studies of the early Scots-Irish influenced my writing more than any other, the tragic story of a captive woman who fell in love with the son of a chief. As the result of a treaty, she was taken from her warrior husband and forced back to her white family where she gave birth to a baby girl and grieved herself to death. Heart wrenching, it haunts me to this day. Daughter of the Wind grew out of this account, as did my yet unpublished historical romance, Red Bird’s Song.
I love this! what an amazing story.

What do you think makes Daughter of the Wind different? What will draw readers to it?
Daughter of the Wind is very different from Somewhere My Love in that it’s set in the colonial frontier just after the Revolution where the war never really ended. Technically we’re not ‘colonial’ anymore in that time period but I use that term to differentiate from the western frontier. ‘Daughter’ also has strong Native American elements and is a very different blend of paranormal and historical than Somewhere My Love. The word mystical comes to mind.
Oh, Mystical, this just gets better and better!

How long have you been writing?
Are you a Plotter or a Pantser?
A Pantser making efforts to become more of a plotter. And not really succeeding.
I can definitely understand that, I am a Pantser myself, and plotting isn't an easy thing for me.
How would you describe your voice?
Innate. I’ve always had it.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?
When my research is done and I’m just writing. I like to see where the story takes me and am very in tune with the characters, which means I must know them well.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Research into my early American Scots-Irish/English forebears has been a great source of inspiration as is the rich heritage of Virginia history I am immersed in.
Your own genealogy can always be a great source of inspiration, I too have had many stories pop out of my own research!

How do you come up with your ideas/plots?
Sometimes from actual accounts I’ve come across in my genealogy and studies, often from dreams.
Oh wow, from your dreams, these stories really WANT to be told. How incredible!
Do you write in long periods or short stretches?
Whenever I can, so both.
Do you write in silence or listen to music?
I love music and often chose soundtracks from historical movies like The Last of the Mohicans and Braveheart, and many, many others. I also favor Celtic music with a sound that transports me.
I couldn't agree more with your choices! I find music can actually put me in a characters mood more than anything else, especially Celtic music, there's just something about it.

Do you research your story before you write it? Or as you go?
I do a lot of research before I begin and then more as I get into the story. Research is vital.
What have you learned through research that you will remember for the rest of your life?
I am practically an expert on various facets of Colonial America.
If you ever decide to give up writing you can always be a professor! But seriously, I don't think people realize how much authors actually know about the subjects they write about.
How do you decorate your writing space?
I don’t. But now that my husband has built me a sun space I love writing out there surrounded by the natural beauty of the valley and our farm, and my potted plants. Both dogs and the cats also sit with me. They love the sunbeams.
Sounds lovely!
Does all your writing take place on a computer or do you ever write using pen and paper? Always use my laptop now. Years ago I wrote by hand and my dear mother typed it all up. Poor woman.
What a nice mom!
Do you ever act your scenes?
Yes. But not in front of witnesses.
lol, why not?? :O)

How long do you wait once your story is finished to revise it?
I revise as I go (obsessively) and then go back over it all again within a few weeks, sometimes longer.

Do you ever second guess yourself and your writing?
All the time.
I don't think I've had an author yet that has said, NO. Its incredible how insecure us storytellers can be.
Do you allow family and friends to read your writing?

Do you feel a draw to the people and the time periods you write about?
I must be deeply drawn to a time period or I don’t write it.
I all ready knew the answer before I asked that question. Its apparent you're passionate about your stories!
Do you have a favorite character?
Rebecca in Through the Fire

What is one thing your readers would find interesting about you?
I’m an expert gardener, but allergies run a lot of interference. I love growing heirloom plants and herbs, do a lot with herbs in my stories.
Oh wow, that is awesome!

Do you ever stray from your genre? Your comfort zone?
I am right now in my latest WIP and it’s tough.

Do you find love scenes difficult to write?
Sometimes. You have to be in the right mood that’s for sure.
lol, I agree!
Is it necessary to have a critique/writing partner?
They are helpful.
Authors make writing look easy? Is it harder than most people imagine it to be?
It’s the hardest thing I can think of to do outside of brain surgery.
I'm with you there! Most people don't understand how hard it really is.
How long does it take you to finish a story?
Weeks, months, years….
I can relate to the years answer .. sigh*
Which authors are on your Must-Read list?
AAMilne. :O)

Has your writing journey been a smooth or bumpy ride?
A virtual roller coaster.

What advice would you give to a new/ aspiring writer?
Write what you love because you are going to be doing it for a very long time.
What is your favorite writing memory?
That first kiss I ever wrote, so sweet. I relived my own, with my hubby. He and I were our first dates and have been together ever since.
That is so sweet, I love it!
Do you have more than one book out now?
Yes, two, and very soon to have four.
That's incredible! Congratulations!! We will be showcasing your other releases soon!!

Whew. Thanks so much for having me on your lovely blog!
You are so welcome Beth, I enjoyed getting to know you better and wish you all the best in your future endevours!!!!!! And I can't wait to spotlight your other releases!!!!
To learn more about Beth Trissel please visit her website at:
or scroll down through my posts for the spotlights on her new release- "Daughter of the Wind"


Helen Hardt said...

Oh Beth, that story that inspired Daughter of the Wind is so tragic -- how sad. What a great interview. I enjoyed learning more about your writing life.


Pat McDermott said...

Wonderful interview, Beth and Andrea. American history is so multi-layered, and it's great to have a competent and dedicated storyteller bring it to life. Best of luck with your releses, Beth!

Hywela Lyn said...

Lovely interview, Bess and Andrea. What a tragic story that inspired 'Daughter Of The Wind.' Yet another for my tbr list I think, My pile grows ever higher!

Wishing you lots of success, Beth, although I think you already have it!

Marianne Evans said...

Hi, Ladies!! Wonderful blog -- and it's a delight getting to know Beth even better. :-) I can so relate to the inspiration that comes from dreams, and even from our own geneology. Great job!!!

Mary Ricksen said...

I agree with Helen about yours story.
And I can picture you in your garden, pulling off dead leaves, grabbing weeds from the ground. Sniffin' the sweet spring flowers, chasing bees, looking for hummingbirds, and reading under the trees in your ?? Hammock? Glider?
Great questions Andrea!

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Hey Beth,
The story that inspired Daughter of the Wind is just heartbreaking.

I can't believe you have THREE books coming out in May. You must be dizzy with excitement (or exhaustion). I'm so thrilled for all your success. Keep up the good work.


Margaret Tanner said...

Lovely interview Beth.
The story behind Daughter of the Wind, really tugs at my heart strings. How cruel life can be sometimes.

Anonymous said...

What a sad story that inspired your story.

Interesting interview.

Good luck with the book

Chicks of Characterization said...

I want to thank everyone who was nice enough to stop by and leave a comment! I truly enjoyed getting to know Beth Trissel better and cannot wait to get my copy of Daughter of the Wind! Thanks again!!


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