It’s July 20th, so this means I’m hosting Tania L. Ramos’ blog tour for the day! This is to support her publication of ‘Be Still’. Here’s a little bit about the novel below, followed by an interview with Tania herself and a chance to win a copy of Be Still! I’ll be posting my own thoughts on this book in around a weeks time, so look out for my review!
|Be Still by Tania L. RamosWorld-renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Jack Silver has been through hell and back. After he and his wife, Shannon, lose their daughter when she is just three days old, their family is left shattered. The e ects of the tragedy are devastating. Shannon with-draws from the family while harboring a dark secret. Jack emotionally abandons his wife and surviving teenage son, Travis, and dives into his work. But years later, on the exact anniversary of her daughter’s death, Shannon is killed by a speeding motorist under peculiar circumstances. As he grieves next to his wife’s lifeless body, Jack makes the fateful decision to lock away his faith and hope forever.
In a futile attempt to preserve his wife’s memory, Jack hides the bleak facts of Shannon’s death from Travis. As more time passes, the already-strained relation-ship between father and son becomes estranged. Desperate to alleviate his loneliness, Jack befriends the young and witty Dr. Christina Amity-while hiding troubling symptoms that seem to increase by the day. But when Jack receives a shocking diagnosis from Dr. Amity, everything changes.
“Be Still” is the poignant tale of a son seeking truth and resolution from an absent father and of a father, trapped between life and death, who must mend relationships and confront his own demons-before time seals all wounds for an eternity.
Nerdy: What first inspired you to write?
Tania: My 9th grade teacher who saw what a wallflower I was thought I might be able to let loose a bit if I started writing. If nothing else it was an easy A, so I took a creative writing class and immediately discovered I had a talent for storytelling. I’ve been hooked since.
Nerdy: How long have you been writing for?
Tania: I’ve been writing since ninth grade. That never stopped. But I was always held back by my own fears of not being good enough. It wasn’t until last year that I took the plunge and published a book. I haven’t stopped since and don’t plan to.
Nerdy: What is your favourite novel of all time?
Tania: The Pearl by John Steinbeck. That is just a classic that I could read over and over again. It is so simple in the telling, yet so deep in the meaning. He is a great inspiration.
Nerdy: Do you have a particular place to sit and write or something you do
Tania: The Starbucks on Main and E in Hesperia, CA. Seriously. I think I wrote my entire first book and most of my second book sitting at the back booth, drinking a venti green tea (no sweetener) or an Izze and punching at the keyboard. If I wasn’t there then I was sitting on my bed (for lack of a desk) and writing in my pjs. There is a permanent butt indentation in the bed from where I sat for a year. I also listen to my Itunes “Slow songs” play list while I write. It creates a great mood for tear jerkers.
Nerdy: Do you find you have much time to read now that you’re a writer?
Tania: I have very little time to read, but I can’t blame it all on my writing; I work as a nurse in a recovery room on 12 hour shifts and pick up extra days in cardiac rehab. If I’m not working then I’m marketing or networking for, “Be Still” and that in itself is a full-time job. Since becoming a full-fledged writer I barely have any time to write let alone read. It’s quite ironic and sad.
Nerdy: What gave you the inspiration for ‘Be Still’?
Tania: There is a country song out there titled, “Almost Home.” I heard it years ago and each time I heard it this story came to mind. I could see the characters clear as day and knew the plot in an instant. When I finally got to writing this story it became larger than I expected and the characters took over. The song was truly my greatest inspiration and jumping off point, but it was the characters which woke me up every morning to write.
Nerdy: Do you find your real life reflect what you write?
Tania: I only partly feel that real life has reflected on my writing. I mean, I write about places I have been and things that I have seen and never venture to guess about places I don’t know. After taking a writing seminar I have realized one thing: I write about what I am passionate about: Family. I don’t write about my family, but I do write about things I have heard whether it be country music or a conversation I eavesdropped on and draw from their emotion and run from there. At the heart of it all is family.
Nerdy: Will you continue to be an indie author or do you hope to become
Tania: I’m very torn on that question. I love the freedom of being indie and writing what I feel and the story I want to tell. I have had my encounter with an editor who didn’t agree with some of my storyline and that wasn’t fun. In all honesty it would be great to be paid to write instead of paying out to write, but not at the expense of losing my voice. I have a few small projects in mind that I will indie publish, but may try a few queries on the next big book just to put some feelers out there. But I do have to say, the indie writing community is so tight knit that it would feel like losing a family if I ever went the traditional route.
Nerdy: Did ‘Be Still’ require a lot of research of was it more imagination?
Tania: I only had to research ALS (amyotropic lateral sclerosis) or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. I knew a lot about it already from being a nurse and working with ALS patients, but I wanted to get it perfect so I did tons of research. I could seriously write a college thesis on ALS with all the information I have gathered on it. As far as the coma research goes…well, I put out a question on Facebook that posed the question: What do you think happens to the mind and soul of a person in a coma? I received many answers and used many theories to write my coma scenes.
Nerdy: What’s your favourite film?
Tania: I’m a science fiction junkie. It if has the word “space, galaxy, stars, aliens,” or “zombie” in the title then I am rushing out to see it. If I had to pick a favourite movie it would be Star Wars, and if I had to pick a favourite tv program it would be the original Star Trek series. But my guilty pleasure is the SciFi channel’s B-flicks like Sharktopus and Mega
Shark. I can’t compete with Sharktopus so I write family based fiction.
Nerdy: Have you any future plans for writing more novels?
Tania: I have two novels in the works right now. One is putting my feet in science fiction for young adults and hitting the zombie and alien genre while it is still hot. The other book follows the line of, “Be Still,”and “When I Thought I Was Tough,” in that it revolves around family and a strong male character with serious tear jerking scenes. Stock up on tissue now. I am also keeping a journal of future novel plots ad can’t wait to start one based on the phrase, “I’ll die without you.” That story with be family oriented but dabble in the supernatural and scifi…kind
of like the Benjamin Button movie
Nerdy: Any tips for aspiring authors?
Tania: Make it a career and follow through. If you work full-time then make writing your second job. Stick to it! Create realistic work hours and work on your book during that time. The most important thing is to follow through on it. Follow your heart. And if you think this is junk then put your story away for a week then go back and read your very first chapter.
Odds are you will be amazed at how talented you really are.
This giveaway is open until the 31st July!
Thanks for stopping by! Let me know what you think.