T.A. Henry – friend, fellow writer and a fantastic fictional fabricator – kindly invited me to be a part of her virtual book tour. I had a chance to sit down with her for a brief chat about her upcoming book.
T.A. Henry is a Pacific Northwest transplant who loves it here. I am a stay at home mom who home schools her only kiddo. I hike, crochet, and yoga with all my spare time. LOL. I like to think I am funny. I hear I am a good friend. I think the secret to that is I have very little judgement.
How long were you a writer before you wrote a novel…before you published…how many manuscripts have you written?
I started writing as a child. I think I entered my first competition when I was in third grade. Of course over the years all the commentary from people who insisted I would never “make it” as a writer took their toll and I gave up on my writing for a number of years. It was not until my son was 3 and I needed something of my own that I discovered Nanowrimo and started writing again. I have one completed manuscript, Scripting the Truth, and 70% of a spy novel done. I also wrote a screen play that is currently gathering dust.
How much time do you devote to writing per week or month? How do you fit it in around work, family etc.?
I don’t usually have a plan, except during NaNo. Certain times just naturally lend themselves to writing work. My son is in a coop on Mondays, I work on my writing there. Then I go to write ins twice a week for a few hours.
Is writing your career? If not, do you wish it was, and do you have any plan to make that happen?
(Laughing) I have so many careers it’s not even funny. Yes, I do consider writing my work and I look forward to the day where it is my only work. I have about 13 years to go.
Do you have special education for writing? Did you get a college degree? What level, and do you think en the it’s necessary and/or helpful to have higher education for writing? If you don’t, do you wish you did, and why?
I don’t have any special education. I took one creative writing class in my life. It was useful in that it made me write all the time but I don’t feel like learned anything from it. I do have a bachelors in history. That taught me to research which is super useful in a writing career. LOL. I think the only way to become a writer is to write. ALOT.
What inspired you to write a novel and how did you know you could do it? Was it as hard as you thought it would be?
I touched on this a little already; a desperate need for a space and activity that was my own. Something to define myself by other than mommy. Writing is both excruciating and the simplest thing ever. Who was it who said just sit down at the typewriter and open a vein?
The next evening found me venturing out in the London fog to meet Lila O’Rourke, an old true friend from Stonecroft, my boarding school, at a Chelsea coffee bar. She conveyed her thrill to see me with a squeal the moment I walked in. I smiled and tried to avoid her effusive hug as I shrugged off my coat and peeled off my gloves.
“Darling, where have you been moldering?” Dramatic as ever, Lila still spoke as though she were in West End before an audience of hundreds.
“Here and there.”
“How long since you were, released or whatever they call it. Released makes it sound like you were in gaol.” Lila said with a laugh.
I couldn’t help but chuckle a little at this. “It’s called being demobbed, Lila.” At her puzzled face I continued. “Short for demobilized.”
Comprehension finally dawned. “Yes, that.”
“A few months. I had finished my five years and stayed on just a bit to oblige.”
“Wasn’t it just dreary over there?”
I shrugged, hoping to talk of something else. “Glad to see the Blitz didn’t dampen your spirits.”
“It would take a good deal more than a few huns to break me. We can take it.” She gave a bright smile as she mimicked the posters that used to hang on every flat surface in London by swinging a fist upward toward her opposite shoulder.
I smiled at the catch phrase which had been so thrown about during the war. “What are you doing now?”
“Oh darling, it’s dreadful. I simply go from party to party trying not to be married off by my mother and yet desperately heart broken when the bachelor of the day doesn’t seem interested in little old me.” She fluttered her eyelashes and placed one hand on her chest.
Laughter burst out of me. “I find myself in a similar situation, minus the parties and the heartbreak.”
“Don’t you want to get married?” Lila queried, as though I was a new species she had not encountered before and wanted desperately to figure out.
“Not particularly. But I have got to find something to do.”
“The old man didn’t lose all his money in the war did he?” Her eyebrows nearly rose into her victory curl at this outrageous thought.
“No, the Duke is still well and happily rolling in it but he thinks I need to settle down.”
“Ah. Fathers.” Lila shook her head and paused while I gave the waitress my order. She suggested a few nibbles, to which I nodded my acquiescence so she would go away.
“Lila, this is serious. My father is threatening to make me work on his raceway design plan if I don’t find something to do in the next week.”
“How ghastly. Doesn’t he have a proper architect?”
“He does. And I think said architect has a bit of a crush which makes the whole thing so much more…”
We both sighed and sipped our coffee. With her free hand Lila tapped out a littleEtude on Table Top.