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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Meet Tiffany A. White!


Tell Me Your Story Tuesday

WELCOME

I first met Tiffany at a NTRWA meeting. She is such a sweet person. 
She is with us today celebrating her debut release.



Aimee Freeman is looking forward to the start of her senior year. She knows her best friend Ella has been keeping secrets from her all summer long, but with football season right around the corner, the student trainer decides not to worry about it—they’ll have plenty of time to catch up on the field.

Then Ella goes missing, and Aimee realizes those secrets might be the key to finding her. As the case unfolds, Aimee discovers more than one person may have wanted to harm Ella. Was it Ella’s current boyfriend, a social outcast the entire city seems intent on blaming for her disappearance? Or her ex-boyfriend, the beloved star quarterback who has harassed Ella since their breakup? The list of potential suspects continues to grow after Aimee reads Ella’s journal, but she must first break her best friend’s secret code to reveal their identities.

Unbeknownst to Aimee, her investigation has not gone unnoticed. Ella’s abductor is watching and waiting. Will he decide Aimee needs to be silenced—making her the next target?


 
Let's get to know Tiffany! 


How did you get into writing?
Writing is something I have always loved.  I was “that” girl who would help my friends knock out all of their writing assignments.  In high school, I fell in love with classic literature and writing even more so, but it wasn’t until college that stories started circling around in my head.  I switched my major from Biology to English, but then got lost in the world of Corporate America.  After ten years of working as an Executive Assistant, I used my lay-off as my opportunity to do what I really wanted to do—write.  Luckily, I have a great man by my side who has given me the freedom to tackle my dreams.

Your debut release is Football Sweetheart, a YA mystery.  Tell us about how it came to be. Did you have any particular sources of inspiration?
Football Sweetheart stems from growing up in high school football obsessed West Texas.  From a very early age, I spent every Friday night under the lights.  Is everyone familiar with Friday Night Lights?  Well, I lived it—literally.  I worked as a student trainer my three years of high school, just like my protagonist, Aimee, and I remember people traveling in from all over the country to watch Midland Lee versus Odessa Permian.  One man drove all the way from Iowa just to watch a West Texas high school football game.  Seems insane, right?  But it’s normal out there…

For whatever reason, I’m addicted to real-life crime stories… Forensic Files, 48 Hours Mystery, Body of Evidence, Snapped, you name it.  When I read, I read mysteries.  When I watch television, which is a lot, I love a good two-hour-made-for-TV mystery.  Therefore, I knew that I would write mysteries.  The kidnapping in my story is also a fictionalized account loosely inspired by actual events.  Unfortunately the real-life case was never officially closed, and it took place years before the internet was what it is today, so I couldn’t find much about it.  But I took my memories, memories that haunted me as a little girl, twisted in a ton of fiction, and created my mystery.   

What has it been like self-publishing your book? What has been the biggest challenge? What has been the greatest reward?
Self-publishing is no joke.  I work longer hours now than I did working in a very high-paced corporate environment.  However, I am a bit of a control freak… a fact I am not afraid to admit.  And self-publishing gives me the control that I need and I honestly wouldn’t change a thing.
The biggest challenge for me, besides the time and the fact that you have no money coming in until you are published, was the e-book conversions.  We (my guy and I) ran into a few small snags while converting to the proper mobi file for Kindle, but that was nothing compared to the issues we had with the epub file for Nook.  I used a special collegiate font for my chapter and part headings that wouldn’t carry over, so after creating jpeg images for each one and it still not working properly, we had to embed the fonts into the text.  This is where having a computer programmer for a boyfriend really comes in handy because I would have thrown my laptop through the window.  We also had to reformat my tabs and spacing to make both formats work, but now we know...
The greatest reward has to be the fact that I have now accomplished my dream, and it’s all mine—I don’t have to share it with anyone, except the small percentages to the direct sale vendors (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.).  Best feeling ever.

I hear you are slightly obsessed with TV.  What is your current "can't miss" show?
I believe slightly obsessed might be an understatement.  I watch almost everything on television.  The DVR may be the best invention ever.  And I’m lucky; my DVR records four shows at the same time, and I make it work every night to earn its keep.  Hahaha.
Making me choose just one “can’t miss” show is difficult, but I’ll try.  It’s summer time and there’s not the usual abundance of new programs between the hours of 7pm and 10pm, but there are some great television series airing right now.  So just one? 
Um…. Pretty Little Liars.  

This doesn’t mean that I don’t love True Blood, The Closer, Rizzoli & Isles, Burn Notice, and Suits just as much, but you did imply only one show…
Now in the fall… wait, you didn’t ask about the fall.  

If you were going to dinner with any TV character, who would you chose and why?
Ooo, what a question!!  My mind immediately jumped to two of the hottest men on TV today for the obvious reason—I love them:  Damon Salvatore and Neal Caffrey.  See, again I can’t choose!  Damon and Neal both sweep me off my feet on a weekly basis.  Both have unbelievably gorgeous eyes and wicked smiles.  We might not say much at dinner, but I’d be a happy, happy girl.
If I was looking for a conversation, I’d probably invite Emily Thorne.  Some may know her as Amanda Clarke.  I’d want to pick her brain… her life experiences make for some great fiction.  Revenge always tastes sweet, right?  





What does your writing process look like? Are you a super-plotter or see-what-happens pantser?
I am definitely a plotter.  I wouldn’t say super-plotter, but plotter none-the-less.  This dates back to my days in high school.  I always outlined, including Roman Numerals, before writing any paper.  Last year at DFWcon, I attended a great workshop on plotting, and I’ve thrown my outlining out the door and now use a story arch.  I open up my notebook to two clean pages, draw an arch from the bottom left corner to the right, and insert all of my major and minor plot points.  Now, that’s not to say I don’t change the story a bit as I go, we all know our characters sometimes take over, but I always reference back to my arch.  

What has been the best advice you've heard along this journey?
The best advice I’ve heard along this journey is to never give up.  I’ve really never been a quitter, but sometimes hearing that others have struggled with the exact same things throughout their journey helps someone like me push through.  Perhaps my favorite line, and one that I use often, comes from Kristen Lamb’s social media guide and the online group known as Wana – We Are Not Alone.  We’re not alone.  Someone out there has battled the very same issues we face.  And finding a community of writers to share their experiences is the best therapy session for any of us.  I’ve been absolutely blessed to have the online and real-life relationships that I do. 

What's next for you? 
 Writing…  I’m currently writing book two in The Football Sweetheart series.  The novella picks up thirty days after Football Sweetheart ends, and we catch up with Aimee and her friends during Halloween week.  Oh, and of course there’s a new mystery…

Want to get to know Tiffany better? You can find her at her Blog, Facebook, Twitter,  or leave her a comment or question below.

24 comments:

Teri Anne Stanley said...

Wow, I totally have to read this book! I suspect we might be living slightly parallel lives, but not really.
I was also a student trainer in high school (the first female trainer at my school, back before dirt was born)...and then I went to college where I started out as an English major but changed to Biology!

tiffanyawhite said...

Dawn, thank you so much for having me. You are always so nice and made me feel welcome the first time I met you. I hope that one day I can return this favor and be one of the first to celebrate you!!

@Teri Anne - Hello!! It's so nice to meet you! I think we may have lived slightly parallel lives... how funny!

Ginger Calem said...

How fun! You combine many of my 'loves'. YA. Mystery. High school sports. Woo!

Congrats on your release. Looking forward to reading it.

Claudia Lefeve said...

Great post and interview! Growing up in Texas (with my uncle as head coach of our football dept), I am totally looking forward to reading Football Sweetheart!! YAY!

tiffanyawhite said...

@Ginger - Thank you!! It seems we "love" the same things. :)

@Claudia - Hi, Miss Claudia!! Thank you so much for the support!! Us Texas girls need to stick together. ComicCon2013!!

Tameri Etherton said...

Great interview, Tiffany! I loved getting to know you a bit more. Football Sweetheart is on my TBR list. Sounds like a fab read ~ it needs to get moved to the top. ;)

Congrats again on getting it out there to your adoring public.

If you're at Comic-Con 2013, we have to get together! That, and I'll be at DFW Con next year, too. Can't wait to meet you.

lauralynnelliott.com said...

Great interview! It's nice to see you here, Tiffany, and learn even more about you. I'm currently reading Football Sweetheart, and just when I think I've figured out "whodunit", something makes me wonder if it's someone else. :)

tiffanyawhite said...

@Tameri - Thank you!!

You're coming to DFWco next year? Yay!! You can hopefully meet Dawn too. :)

@Lauralynn - Yay!! I'm so excited you're already reading Football Sweetheart. That means the world to me. I hope you keep bouncing back and forth with the "whodunit" until the very end... :)

emmameade.com said...

Great interview. Is it wrong that I'm a little jealous you got to live Friday Night Lights?

ellieannsoderstrom said...

I love Tiffany! Besides being an incredibly talented writer, she's the sweetest, funniest lady on the block! I love her blog.
Thanks for this awesome interview.

ellieannsoderstrom said...

I love Tiffany! Besides being an incredibly talented writer, she's the sweetest, funniest lady on the block! I love her blog.
Thanks for this awesome interview.

ellieannsoderstrom said...

I love Tiffany! Besides being an incredibly talented writer, she's the sweetest, funniest lady on the block! I love her blog.
Thanks for this awesome interview.

davidnwalker.com said...

Great interview, Tiffany. I've started FS, and now I'm sorta wishing I didn't know how it comes out from WWBC meetings.

tiffanyawhite said...

@Emma - LOL... Thanks, girl. I have to admit, I do feel pretty lucky having grown up with West Texas high school football. There's nothing quite like it!

@Ellie - Ellie, as always you bring a smile to my face. Thank you so much for the kind words. XXX

@David - Thanks so much. I'll be sure and give less away about the next few at our writing group... :)

Stacy said...

Loved the interview! Tiffany's always positive and fun, and I'm know her book is going to do well:)

Stacy (stacgreenauthor.com)

Dawn Alexander said...

Thank you to everyone who stopped by to support Tiffany. She is great and I enjoyed having her with us. Also, I am a DFWCon loyal attendee, so I hope to get to meet some of you next year!

nataliehartford.com said...

Wonderful interview! I loved reading about your writing process and how you plot.
The story sounds fantastic and I love how it's built around so much of your own personal experience and knowledge!!
Congrats and here's to your insane SUCCESS!!!

tiffanyawhite said...

@Stacy and @Natalie - Thank you both so much!!

jennyhansenauthor said...

WOW, great interview, Tiffany! I'm a tech gal and I worry about eBook formatting so you've not set my mind at ease on that one.

Still, I'm so excited about your book and I can't wait to watch this "name in lights" career you're going to have! :-)

K.B. Owen said...

Hi, Tiffany! *waves*

I am SOOOO impressed by what you have done...and no waffling about self-pub vs. trad. pub! Your book sounds so fun and really cool, I can't wait to read it. Good luck with the sequel!

tiffanyawhite said...

@Jenny - Thank you! And you your tech skills have nothing to worry about with e-book formatting. If I can do it, you can too!!

Oh, and I can only hope for the "name in lights" kinda of success. :)

@Kathy - Thanks you, Kathy! And I'm definitely "that" kind of girl too - no waffling. Once I make up my mind, I run with it. For better or worse.

Thanks for stopping by!

tiffanyawhite said...

@Jenny - Thank you! And you your tech skills have nothing to worry about with e-book formatting. If I can do it, you can too!!

Oh, and I can only hope for the "name in lights" kinda of success. :)

@Kathy - Thanks you, Kathy! And I'm definitely "that" kind of girl too - no waffling. Once I make up my mind, I run with it. For better or worse.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sonia G Medeiros said...

I just started Football Sweetheart and am so excited for Tiffany!

tiffanyawhite said...

@Sonia Yay!! Thank you so much for reading!! :)