I'm extra-excited about this. Barb is not only my critique buddy, but also my drinking buddy, workout buddy, coffee buddy, lunch buddy, gossip buddy...okay, she's a friend of mine! And she writes some damn sexy characters. So, of course, I was eager to sign up for the blog tour and throw some questions at her. Read on for the interview!
Stop. Who would cross the Bridge of Death must answer me these questions three, ere the other side he see.
- What is your name? Barbara
- What is your quest? I seek the golden fleece
- What is your favorite color? Uh, gold?
Just kidding, there are more than 3 questions.
Ha ha ha!
What was the famous #pitmad tweet that got you snagged?
You expect me to remember? Okay, here you go: #pitmad At 22 Kelsi lost her husband & maybe her mind. Is the dark haired man frm her dreams real? Y dz he look like her new neighbor?
Which orifice did you pull this story from (from whence did the inspiration come)?
Not the one you think. The basic premise was one I’ve spent a good deal of my life contemplating – (Warning: I am a physics nerd) – a universal law of physics is that energy is constant. With that thought in mind, what happens when we die? A certain amount of energy is expended in the natural decay of the body, but how can something as full of energy (and potential energy) exhaust itself in that way?
The second part of the premise is a bit more personal: I believe we never truly die. I believe our “soul,” for lack of a better term, transits to either another place, another form or another time. Thus, the notion that our “soul” is made of that small bit of energy unaccounted for by the laws of matter, and that energy is represented as emotion. Emotion in use and action, like energy, begets an equal and opposite force, and so Phasms were created.
What was the most difficult thing about writing Phasms?
The most difficult thing about writing Phasms was delving into my own life experiences and exposing the pain of losing a loved one, while making sure that element of the story was true to the character I had created. There were many, many times my editor had to remind me my character is NOT me.
What was something you learned while writing Phasms?
Wow – I learned so MUCH! I think, the biggest thing I learned was to trust my voice. We writers tend to be an insecure, needy bunch. We sort of shrivel up into our shells and second guess everything we've written, especially when waiting for a reply from an agent, editor or publisher. We have to remember that the story is OURS, the words and the rhythm and the pacing are all ours – and if we do that, then the words we hear in response will be reaffirming and encouraging.
What do you love the most about Phasms?
I love the symbolism I was able to incorporate: the beach and the waves, the beast and the stag. I loved the tension between Kelsi and Aiden, and the slow awakening Kelsi experienced as she overcame her grief. And I love that I got to include my dog, Charlie, as one of the characters!
What do you hate the most about Phasms?
Wow – that’s hard. I can’t say I hate any of it, but I worry (constantly) the reader won’t have those absolutely heart-stopping, nail biting moments I tried so hard to create. Building that depth of emotion; terror, sorrow, passion, exhilaration – I find it incredibly hard at times to find the words and I have to hope I managed at least a fraction of the “feels” I was shooting for.
Give us your favorite blurb from the story.
It would have to be Kelsi’s description of the first time she saw Jamie:
He stood on the pitcher’s mound, hat tucked under one arm and wiped the sweat off his face with the other. The sun caught his profile, outlined his body where the uniform hugged it and made a halo of his hair. I caught my breath. He was the most beautiful boy I’d ever seen.
He looked up, our eyes locked and time stood still. The umpire yelled at him twice to get him back in the game. He grinned, his little lopsided grin, stuck his hat back on his head and winked.
Later that night, after burgers and fries, he told me he was going to marry me. I told him he was right. Because he was.
What are your future plans as an author?
To finish books 2 and 3 of this series, obviously. I have two contemporary romance novels I’m polishing that I’d like to submit soon and a few other brands in the fire. I’m constantly jotting down notes for the next story – we’ll have to see which gets finished first!
Infinite Potential by Barbara Garren
February 24, 2014
Kelsi always Knows when bad things are coming, but even she never thought she’d lose her husband at only twenty-three. Since he died, she’s been living her worst nightmare.
Her nights are filled with dreams of a Dark Haired Man, but her days are full of guilt, because the Man fills her with longing and confusion, promising to give her all she needs, all she wants, all she feared she’d never have again.
If only the dreams would stay in her head where they belong.
Kelsi starts seeing the Dark Haired Man in her waking life, shadowing her wherever she goes. And when her mysterious new neighbor, Aiden Hardt, knows about the Man in her dreams, Kelsi worries she can’t trust her own mind.
"He’s not what he seems."
But even Aiden’s cryptic words don’t frighten her as much as the way she feels around him. Kelsi must sort through her emotions and figure out what’s real before she can ever hope to have a normal life again.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
She would be the first to tell you her husband, Henry, is the inspiration for all the romance, and the real Charlie - who is as cute as he sounds in her books - is a terrorist. When not working for the U.S. Navy, she can be found running, reading or writing. She firmly believes a well-rounded diet consists of coffee, scotch, chocolate, popcorn and Luna Bars. In that order.
She's a graduate of CUNY and Penn State - and manages to write a decent line here and there despite those burdens.
Social Media Links
And, last but not least, Barb is giving us a chance to win some goodies! Hurray for goodies!