Thank you so much for willing to be interviewed!
1. What would you say inspired Mercy’s Fight?
Matt started as a secondary character in Splintered Oak (the third book in my Winsor series). When I told his story, I felt this deep longing that he needed his own happy ending. Matt still is my favorite hero I’ve ever written. So, as soon as I finished that book, I immediately started writing Mercy’s Fight. His character was so vivid in my mind that it was easy to find the right heroine and story for him.
2. Of all the books you have written, do you have a favorite? Or one that challenged you the most as a writer?
Each book I’ve written has things I love about it. Shattered Rose was my first book and very truthful to my own struggles, so that one will always hold a special place in my heart. Mercy’s Fight is my favorite storyline in that I really loved all the characters and the uniqueness of the plot. As for the most challenging, I would say my new YA novel that is currently unpublished. It took me the longest of any book to write and I had such a time of writing growth during that book that I can truly say I found my voice as a author. I hope to get that book out to all of you soon!
3. When writing NA fiction, what about the genre, would you say, makes it different from others?
NA is a beautiful period in a person’s life. He/She is often away from their parents for the first time and they truly discover who they are. There are new people and temptations and usually many mistakes are made. My own college experience shaped who I ended up becoming. But the very thing I love about this genre is what makes it flawed. So often the answer portrayed in these books is that a woman finds herself through sex or obsession with a man. I cannot express what a lie that is. Self-worth/value can only come from within and personally, I believe it only can come from God. So, I try to write stories that show the struggles of that season of life, but also expose the truth.
4. What authors would you say have influenced your writing?
My dear friend, Nicole Deese, has been a total inspiration to me. I wrote my first couple of books in a vacuum, and once I met her, she really challenged me to take my writing to a new level—to make every word matter and every sentence count. She also writes NA from a Christian worldview and has been a constant encouragement to stay true to our quest to bring honesty and truth to that genre.
5. Can you tell us what you’re working on next?
I have lots of projects going on right now! My next release will be a summer novella romance series that I’m writing with three other fabulous authors. It will release June 10th, so mark your calendars! I will also be starting a new 10 episode Kindle serial in August. Every month, a new episode will be released. I super excited about this project because I have centered the serial around five friends who have grown apart, but are challenged to mend those relationships with each other. And of course, there will be lots of romance!
Things are happening all the time, so be sure to sign up for my newsletter at tlgray.com or check out my page on Facebook.com/tlgraybooks. I’m also on twitter @tlgraybooks. Can’t wait to meet all of you!
Be sure and check out my review here. This book is only one of my favorites…ever…