T. Anne Adams has been writing for a number of years and has crafted stories in several genres. Her humorous romances, though, are her focus at the present, because, as she says, “I adore the bumbling mess that is romantic comedy. Nothing brings me more joy than to giggle at the trouble I throw at my main characters.”
T. Anne resides in sunny Los Angeles, California, just a stone’s throw from the ocean, mountains, and Disneyland. Her home is filled with her wonderful husband, three rambunctious boys, one lovely daughter, and two furry friends whose mission in life is to shed as much and as often as possible. After receiving a Bachelor’s of Science from the University of Southern California, she spent seven years working as a therapist on a locked psychiatric unit. Since her days working in the mental health field, she’s been homeschooling her four children.
T. Anne is happiest when she’s wearing a ponytail and yoga pants, which she does nearly everyday (sans the actual yoga). She dreads laundry but doesn’t hate it. Because she doesn’t iron unless it’s a wedding, funeral, or emergency, she says her husband is usually easy to spot, which is fine with her because, “Wrinkles repel women.” She survives on way too little sleep and blames that fact for everything that goes awry in her life. She read encyclopedias for fun as a child and is addicted to comma’s and enamored with ellipses . . . Outside of writing and books, she once logged some serious miles on her sewing machine. Other than that, she loves to be outdoors in the fresh air with her children.
Join me as we learn more about T. Anne and her journey to publication.
Before I shine the spotlight on T. Anne, I’m offering her visitors a selection of Belgian chocolate in her honor. I have it all—dark, milk, and white—so, take your pick. I know which kind she’ll choose. Once you’ve read her interview, you will too. Take a guess, and see if you’re right . . . (ellipsis for T. Anne’s benefit . . . :-))
T. Anne’s Journey Begins
•When did you begin writing?
I wrote my first book in second grade as a part of a class assignment. It was loosely based on The Three Bears. OK, it was mostly based on The Three Bears and bordered on plagiarism. After learning the finer points of fiction and the open avenues it could lead my imagination, I no longer relied on other people’s work to fill my story.
•So, your retelling of The Three Bears didn’t rocket you to the NYT Bestsellers list, huh? When did you begin writing with the goal of publication? What type of story was that first endeavor?
The first story I decided to query was general fiction taking place in war torn Bosnia entitled Weeds in the Field. I entered a partial in the manuscript market place and ended up with six full requests and two offers of representation.
•I saw on your website that you’ve completed a number of stories, among them two Young Adult, four General Fiction, and three Romantic Comedies. What is it you like about each genre?
I do like to dabble. I have to say Young Adult is a new one for me. I’m really drawn to the pace and voice of YA, plus it opens up a whole new area of storylines. General fiction was the first genre I took on. My general fiction always incorporates a romance with an HEA. I suppose the only difference being the storyline is slightly less focused on the overall romance. In fact, I may have misclassified a couple of those.
Now, romantic comedy is SO fun to write. In addition to the ones I have written, I have a few I’m working on in the wings. I’ve long since been drawn to how good I feel at the time I’m writing them. Not editing, but then that’s always a different story.
BTW, Maddie, the MC from my romantic comedy series Wedding for One is tickled pink to be the center of attention so close to Valentine’s Day. It brings a smile upon her author’s face as well. The second in the series is entitled Wedding for Two, and the third (still in WIP form) is Baby Makes Three. Maddie is one of the best imaginary friends a girl can have, and don’t tell her, but I have a tiny crush on her fiancé.
T. Anne’s Bright Spots
•You placed in two writing contests that led to some of your work being printed in several online sites. Please tell us about this experience and what it meant to you.
Two years ago I took second and third place respectively in two writing competitions in which myself and other participants collaborated with Steve Lopez, New York Times Best selling author of The Soloist. My articles we’re printed online through The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Federal Reserve (The Fed) News, Newsday, Redeye, and WGNTV.com. The highlight of the entire experience was being able to speak with Steve Lopez. What a thrill that was!
•You recently hired a writing coach. What led to this decision, and what benefits do you expect to receive from this collaboration?
Since it’s such a recent endeavor I don’t have much to commentary, but I will say she is a wonderful person with great insight into how I can better my work. It’s a great way to get a critique without having to return the favor.
•Blogging provides you with a great outlet. You’re doing LOTS well from what I can tell, having nearly 200 followers at White Platonic Dreams and having received—count-em—twenty-three awards from your blogging buds. What aspects of blogging bring you the most joy?
I love, love, love to blog. The best part being, the wonderful people I’ve met. I consider every one of them friends. I usually post on Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Friday’s, with the occasional exception’s of Tuesday’s, Thursday’s, Saturday’s, and Sunday’s.
T. Anne’s Challenges
•Several years ago, you learned a tough lesson about accepting representation from a literary agent before doing the homework we hear is so important. What advice do you have to offer so others can avoid such an unpleasant experience?
Twelve years ago I had two offers of representation. I chose the most enthusiastic woman I had ever spoken to. This was before I had heard of P&E (not even sure they existed then). The agent I chose only spoke with me that one time. After two years of ignoring my email and phone calls, she dumped me with a form letter. Today she is listed as not recommended on Predators & Editors (not of my doing). The other agent I now wish I had gone with is a reputable agent at a wonderful literary agency. Both are still agenting today.
SO remember, when you query widely, you might also want to query wisely and research those agents before submitting. P&E is a good place to go as well as the ‘absolute write water cooler’.
•If you began submitting twelve years ago, you’ve been at this a long time. No doubt, you’ve suffered some rejections. What have you found to be the best ways to deal with this unpleasant side of the publishing world?
After my initial burn, I hit the pause button on my query status not resuming again until a year and a half ago. Since then I’ve grown a thick skin and even come to appreciate a personalized rejection letter. Can you believe how strange that sounds? If I’m not going to get representation, a personal rejection is the next best thing.
T. Anne’s Writing Process
•With four children, I can’t help but wonder how you find time to write. Do you hide in the bathroom with a laptop, leave dad in charge and head for the local coffee house, or make use of time spent waiting for your kids at their various activities?
With a busy life and full household, some days it feels like I write to survive. Lately I’ve come to organize my writing time a little better than before, allowing for both morning and evening hours which I use to the max. The bulk of my work gets done in the evenings after dinner. I sort of let the world disappear and get lost in my mind for a few hours.
•Do you find that you’re most creative early in the morning before the kids wake and the fun begins, or do you come to life late at night after they’ve headed for bed and the house is finally quiet again?
For whatever reason I’m unable to write scenes in the early morning hours. Blogs I can handle, writing, no. I spend this time going over plots, strengthening storylines and trying desperately to rouse myself and my muse! It functions more as the business end of the day. I prefer to play with my characters under the cover of darkness.
•How do you stay motivated? Do you set word/page goals, report your progress to a writing partner, or promise yourself a reward when you complete chapters or entire stories?
I do love to keep track of my word count and challenge myself to go a little further each day. I live for challenges like that!
T. Anne’s Journey Continues
•What are you working on at this time?
Right now I’m in the process of heavily editing a few of my older novels. I’m also working on a new young adult novel, but as usual another story has intoxicated my senses and is begging me to get to it quickly. I’m not sure I can handle the pressure so I might succumb and start it soon. It’s a romance, and already it has my heart torn in pieces. Thank God I already know there will be an HEA. I couldn’t live with the pain if there wasn’t.
Five Ways T. Anne Fuels Her Creativity
~ Chocolate. Not just any chocolate. Fine dark chocolate from Belgium. (I threw that last part in just in case my husband reads this).
~ Books. I read and read and read and read. I’m older and wiser now, so I no longer consider plagiarism a viable option.
~ Prayer. I refuse to go it alone. Besides if this whole thing doesn’t work out, I love that I can always fall back on the fact it was God’s will. Not that I’m pointing a finger, I just like the feeling none of my failures are really my fault.
~ Hope. I just have way too much of it. On some level I’m sure it’s not healthy.
~ Fun. Doing something fun inspires me. Plus, I love to laugh.
Five Verses That Are Special to T. Anne
~ Proverbs 10:24 What the wicked dreads will overtake him; what the righteous desires WILL be granted. (Caps are mine. Just driving home a point).
~ Proverbs 16:3 Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.
~ Romans 8:32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up foe us all- how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
~ Psalm 37:3-4 Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
~ 2 Corinthians 1:20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.
T. Anne’s Question for You
•I’ve enjoyed having you as my guest, T. Anne. You gave great answers to my questions. Now it’s time to see what your guests have to say, so go for it.
When I set out to become a writer the last thing I imagined was meeting all of the wonderful people I’ve met along the way. What surprises you most about this journey? And, where are you on this journey? Do tell.
Learn More About T. Anne
Visit her website ~ http://tanneadams.com
Visit her blog ~ White Platonic Dreams, where all dreamers are welcome
Friend Her on Facebook ~ T Anne Adams
Follow Her on Twitter ~ TAnneAdams