Monday, March 02, 2015

Interview with Tamara D. Taylor, author of 'Believers: Truth in Deception'



Tamara D. Taylor was born and raised in the East Bay of California until she moved to Omaha, Nebraska to attend Creighton University. Today, Tamara still resides in Nebraska where she and her husband, John, are raising their five young children.

A life long lover of all forms of the written word, Tamara is an avid reader, and has been writing short stories and poetry since elementary school. After watching her son struggle with succeeding in school, she decided to finally write the novel she had been thinking about for years in an effort to show her son that no dream is too big to achieve. 

Her latest book is the YA, Believers: Truth in Deception.

For More Information
About the Book:

Mary lives in a world of the future where an anti aging drug has torn society apart, creating an insurmountable divide between the wealthy and the poor. Her life is thrown sideways after she receives an unsolicited promotion at work, which leaves her as assistant to one of the most notorious
playboys of the wealthy elite.

Mary struggles to find solid footing in a world that drastically conflicts with her humble upbringing. Her moral compass is tested as she finds herself falling in love with a man she knows she should not trust, compromising her relationship with her childhood sweetheart.

After her life is threatened, she fears for her safety and that of her family. Will she be able to guard her own secrets to prevent even further danger? Will death be the consequence of falling in love with the wrong man?

“This is a great book. It contains a world that is dark and focused on the comforts of the select elite and a world of hope and love for those less fortunate... all coupled with action and anticipation. Great combinations in my opinion! I can't wait to read the next book!”
-- California Mom

For More Information

  • Believers: Truth in Deception is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

Being the mother of five kids it is easy to get caught up with trying to be the best mother to each of them. To simply focus on making their life perfect and enriched with crafting, sports and their education. It’s important to me that I mold my  little people into creative, sensitive outstanding and independent adults. I have shifted my life to make this happen and with time being limited,the first thing I had to give up was my own dreams.

I had been kicking around several ideas for a book in my head for months, the one thing that always stopped me was fear, fear of failing, fear of looking silly to others and the fear that I would not be able to follow through and finish what I started. It was time to stop limiting myself with possible failure and start believing in my own success and to show my children that obtaining dreams through hard work is possible.

Early adulthood is magical, there is heart pumping emotion and energy we all long for as we grow old. So I wondered, what would happen if someone invented a drug that would enable us to stay in our twenties forever? What would happen if only the wealthy could afford it? What would happen to society if the wealthy had an endless lifespan to create wealth while the poor still had to struggle with the reality of illness and death? These questions where the spring board for my book. After I had those questions in place it was easy to layer on other hardships such as, global warming and the loss of Religion which is often the only comfort that is afforded by the poor.

This new world swirled around in my mind a perfect storm of current social issues taken to a new extreme, one with intrigue, drama and forbidden love. My book was born, fictitious lives created, in this imaginary future I could make anything happen and my new obsession to write this book began.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers? 

Like many things in life often we are our own biggest obstacles in accomplishing our own dreams. It was important that I set aside the fear of failing and just start writing. A good friend of mine gave me a great piece of advice, “Don’t doubt yourself, don’t worry about making every word perfect. Focus on getting the words on paper there will be plenty of time at the end to go back and fix it.” 

So as I wrote I decided I wouldn’t look back, I would not torture myself with every word I typed, it was important to keep moving forward. If I had anguished over every scene as I wrote it I don’t think that I would have been able to finish. I knew I had a great story, I just had to believe that I could write it. There were many times I sat at my laptop as I wrote and reminded myself not only could I write a book, I was writing a book and I needed to find the joy in that to encourage myself to keep going.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

For the past ten years I have dedicated my life to my children, sure I went to collage, I had even started a career before I had been blessed with the opportunity to be a stay at home parent. My hiatus from the work world left my current resume short of any relevant accomplishments in the field. After all agents and publishers don’t consider one handed diaper changing in the dark while half asleep in under thirty-seconds a characteristic of an aspiring writer. 

Everything that you are to list on your queries seemed almost laughable to me,for example: How many people follow your bog? My answer was simple, zero (because when do I have time to write a blog)? How many twitter followers do you have? Twitter? Hmmm let me see.(Isn’t twitter for famous people, large corporations and teenagers?) The only thing in my life that I could possibly list was a young authors award I had won back in middle school. 

Still, I had to try right? So I scraped together my meager, sad query letter and I started to send them out. It took me a few months to realize that I was never going to get a response and that was ok. The only other option was to self publish, a great avenue for amateur writers to get their work out there. Once again I had to remind myself over and over again that I was not going to let anything get in my way of my dreams, so I pilled up my courage yet again and decided this was something I could do on my own and I wasn’t going to let a little snag like the lack of an agent or publisher stop me from making my dream come true.

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published? 

You would think that coming up with a story worthy of writing a book would be the hardest part. For me that is where I found the most joy, the creative side, letting the story sweep you up and take you for an unexpected ride. It wasn’t till I had finished the book and started to edit it that I realized the real work was in the details. Without a publisher all of the fine tuning is up to you and hopefully you are lucky enough to have a group of friends that are willing to roll up their own sleeves and help you trudge through it. 

The things that you have to worry can quickly become overwhelming,there are so many choices that you have to make from Cover to font style that can make you go prematurely grey. It’s enough to make any sane person want to give up and just throw in the towel. This is the point that it’s once again important to pick yourself up and keep going. The finishing stages right before publishing are a lot like the last hill climb at the end of a marathon, you have two choices. You can give up because you are tired and worn down, or you can remind yourself that all the hard work you have put in till this point will just be thrown away if you don’t will yourself up that final hill.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

Believers is the first book in what I hope to be a three part series. In the beginning of Believers: Truth in deception you are presented with the death of the creator of Xenvie,( anti aging medication afforded only by the wealthy). Through the first book you follow the characters on a journey to solve the mystery behind his death, the questions will slowly be answered throughout all three books however you will not find out who the killer is and why it happened till the end of the third and final book.

I am hoping to release the second book of the series in fall of 2015 followed by the final book in the fall of 2016.

Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online?

Inspiring blogs always have a way of catching my attention. I am a sucker for true underdog stories. Anything that can give me a good cry and make me feel inspired at the end of it has a way of capturing my attention.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

You never know what story a person is carrying around inside them. It is so easy to divide the world into black and white, the good and the bad and of course the winners and the losers. Often it’s just not that easy, most people live in a state of grey, navigating the world as best they can. There will always be exceptions in life, circumstances that force us to make tough decisions, unless you live in that persons skin, it is important to withhold judgement based off of appearance or social gossip. Everyone one has their own unique past experiences that builds their personality and contributes to their decision making process and creates their moral character. This is why we are all different but often can find common ground with the most unlikely of friends.
  
Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

In the famous words of a very famous fish and one of the most powerful life lessons that I have ever heard, no matter what “Just keep swimming”.

Thank you Disney and Pixar, for that gem of advice.