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Christie Craig | Questions I Generally Get Asked

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1) Where do you get your ideas?

I sometimes tell people I go to the idea store and rummage through the clearance racks to find a jewel I can make my own. Something a little different. Maybe even a bit like Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree, something no one else would think about taking home. But I just know if I add the right elements to this discarded idea, I can make it sparkle.

Another way I answer this question is to explain that the idea fairy flew by and accidentally dropped something and I found the treasure stuck to the bottom of my tennis shoe like a piece of gum. You know that ABC gum that is so hard to get off? Well, sometimes it’s as if some fallen idea gets stuck in my head, and my first reaction is, “Oh, hell, no way! Get outta here. There’s a reason the idea fairy dropped your butt. You are a complete reject!” But the idea hangs on and on, until I begin to see the value in it.

Now, neither of those answers are lies. Because heaven knows that sometimes it feels just like that. But I suppose the answer closest to the truth would be that my ideas stem from a collage of experiences, events, and moments that make up my own life. Yes, my life really is that crazy.

2) Most writers will admit that while they write fiction there are some basic truths about themselves in each book. What part of your latest release, GOTCHA! is based on truth?

Well, I really did work at a pizza place. As a matter of fact I wrote about how one very bad day at the pizza place is probably the catalyst for my writing humorous romantic suspense. Let’s just say in one shift, I was accused of robbing the store, had about six Los Angeles police officers pointing weapons at me, had a crazy man pull out a knife large enough to skin Bambi and insist I return the credit card that he stole from someone else, and then had a mean- looking dude in a trench coat pull out another big gun and tell me to get behind the counter. You can read the whole story about that bad day at Dorchester.

3) Do you ever get writer’s block or have days when your muse isn’t with you?

You know, I’m a writer by trade. This is how I help keep the wolves off the front porch and keep that luxury called electricity flowing into our house. Growing up, my dad was a plumber. And in all my childhood, I never recall him saying, “I can’t go to work today because I have plumber’s block.” I know there were days he plumbed better than others. There are days I write better than others. His job at times involved a lot of crap (literally) and there are days I’m sure I write pretty crappy, but I seldom am a no-show at my computer. I know a thing called burnout really exist, and I try to avoid that by keeping a balance in my life, but I don’t allow myself the luxury of believing that just because I’m not feeling giddy with creativity that I can beg off of work. A writer is basically his/her own boss. And I’m sorry to report that mine is a real bitch. Of course it helps that I truly love this job.

4) All your heroes and heroines have crazy, over-the-top relatives, where do you draw these characters from?

If I could take you to a family holiday dinner, I wouldn’t have to answer that question. Seriously, I come from a quirky bloodline. My mama accidentally stole a car. My dad accidentally built a bomb. Once when my grandfather was late getting ready for a Christmas dinner, he ran into the house to bathe. When he went to plug the bathtub stopper in, he was bit by a scorpion that had been hiding in the drain. My grandfather forgot himself and went running bareass naked through the house of relatives. Merry Christmas!

Then not too long ago, I get a call from my mama that she lost her teeth. Now, she has false teeth, so it shouldn’t have been that big of an issue, especially if she’d lost them at home. But no, she lost them in mid-flight on Continental Airlines. My heart still bleeds for the steward who had to announce it over the intercom.

5) All your books have heroes that are either cops or in some kind of law enforcement. Have you ever been arrested?

Truth is, I’ve never even been arrested. Okay . . . there was that one time. I’ll admit I called the officer a friggin’ pig. Actually, I called him that a dozen or so times, trying to eliminate the southern drawl from my voice. I was told I said the word “pig” as if it had two syllables. But more importantly is that I was the one who threw the bottle at the patrol car and broke his windshield. Ahh, but there was still no arrest made. I won’t deny that the handcuffs came out, but before I was read my Miranda Rights, the director yelled, “Cut.”

Yup, I was an extra in the made-for-TV movie, Kent State, that was filmed in my hometown, Gadsden, Alabama. And my one and only speaking part, which I’m sure would have made me as big as Julia Roberts, was left on the cutting room floor because I couldn’t talk Yankee. Needless to say, the experience of playing that bad girl and going eye to eye with the . . . “Pig” (I’m still trying to say it in one syllable) it inspired me to think like a villain--a mixed-up southern villain, of course.

6) What are a few things in your life you’d change if you could have a do-over?

I wouldn’t hang up on Tom Selleck. I was interviewing the heartthrob for a magazine article and we got to talking about everything from the NRA to his horses and when I realized we’d been talking for almost an hour and I was late for picking my son up from school, I told Tom I had to go. (Tom, give me one more shot, the kid was cute then, now he just eats a lot and leaves his dirty socks everywhere!)

The second thing was taking my step-grandmother to Chippendale’s. Seriously, I should have known better. I couldn’t get her to stop stuffing the dollar bills into the men’s underwear. And when she went through all of hers, she started going through my purse. And my mother just thought it was funny.

7) If you couldn’t be a writer, what would you be?

I would be a standup comic. I think the only thing I love more than laughing is making other people laugh. I think we all need more humor in this world. My quirky family instilled in me the motto that if you can laugh at it, you can live with it. I think this motto not only is the way of my life, but it spills over into the lives of my characters.

8) What’s next for you?

In late November Divorced, Desperate and Deceived will hit the stands. This is my third book in the Divorced & Desperate Series. In June of 2010 my sixth Dorchester book, Shut Up And Kiss Me will be released. And I’m excited to announce that I’ve sold a young adult series, Bone Creek Camp, to St. Martins. It’s a humorous, romantic paranormal series. We don’t have release dates yet, but check my website for updates soon. I’m also excited to announce that in December 2010, my humorous self-help relationship book, co-authored with Faye Hughes, Wild, Wicked And Wanton: 101 Ways to Love Like You’re In Romance Novel, will be out and offering women some good ol’ fashioned love advice with a lot of humor.

Christie Craig

 

 

Comments

38 comments posted.

Re: Christie Craig | Questions I Generally Get Asked

Your book sounds good,
Thanks for being here today,
Penney
(Penney Wilfort 1:21am July 21, 2009)

Great interview !!
Only read Divorced,Desperate and Delicious but I plan to read more soon !!
(Joeelle Jappissont 1:39am July 21, 2009)

Penney,

Thanks. I love Fresh Fiction and always happy to drop by.

CC
(Christie Craig 6:59am July 21, 2009)

Hi, Emmanuelle,

Thanks for reading DD&D, and thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 7:00am July 21, 2009)

Forgot to mention that, btw, I loved it. I braught in on vacation last year and I was the only one loughing out loud (litteraly) around the hotel pool...
(Joeelle Jappissont 7:18am July 21, 2009)

Emmanuelle,

Oh, thank you, girl, for saying that. You have totally made my day!

CC
(Christie Craig 7:22am July 21, 2009)

well it's not everyday we, readers, get to tell the authors how much we've loved their (hard) work. So now it's done !!LOL
(Joeelle Jappissont 7:29am July 21, 2009)

Good morning Christie,
I've emailed you before about how much I enjoy your books, but I'll say it again - I've read and loved them all. I have a friend who is extremely picky about the books she reads, and she loved Gotcha! Now, if I could only get it back from her...
Great interview. Needed a good laugh today. Can't wait for the next book.
(Kara Conrad 10:07am July 21, 2009)

I loved GOTCHA! Great to have another book of yours to look forward to. Your books and your blogs crack me up.
(Edie Ramer 10:08am July 21, 2009)

You made me laugh out loud reading your blog here today. I'm going to put your books on my 'buy' list.
(Kay Martinez 11:55am July 21, 2009)

Loved the interview. WILL BE ADDING YOUR BOOKS TO MY LIST!!!
(JoAnn White 12:25pm July 21, 2009)

That's a great motto--"If you can laugh at it, you can live with it"--and it's a great theme to impart into your books. What a great reminder to be given! Thank you, Christie!!!

And I love taking granny to the strip club! Hilarious!
(Fran Colley 12:36pm July 21, 2009)

Kara,

Trust me, I never grow tired of hearing people tell me how much they enjoy reading my books. We call that "sugah" in the south, and I can never get enough of it!

Thanks for sharing Gotcha! with your friend and good luck on getting it back. LOL.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 12:58pm July 21, 2009)

Edie,

I'm so glad you enjoyed Gotcha! and my blogs. I have to tell you that I had a lot of fun writing Kathy's story. I was sad to see it end.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:01pm July 21, 2009)

Kay,

Thank you, girl! I'm so glad you enjoyed the blog and I hope you enjoy one of my books just as much.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:02pm July 21, 2009)

Jo,

Thank you! I hope you enjoy my books as much as you did my interview.

And thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:06pm July 21, 2009)

Fran,

Well, that motto is one I came by honestly since I got it from my parents.

And I wish I had taken a video camera with me to Chippendale's so I could show you just how much fun my step-grandmother had. LOL.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:10pm July 21, 2009)

So, is the bad day at the pizza place in "Gotcha"? I hadn't seen any of your books before, I don't believe, but I will certainly be looking for them now. Just one burning question: Did anyone get a video of Grandad running through the house that Christmas?

Later,

Lynn
(Lynn Rettig 1:27pm July 21, 2009)

Lynn,

Nope. Nobody got a video of my grandfather. Probably just as well. Seeing it once was bad enough. LOL.

The bad day at the pizza place isn't in Gotcha! but I used that day as inspiration when I wrote the book.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:39pm July 21, 2009)

I'm gonna have to pick up your books! If your books are half as funny and entertaining as your interview, they'll be great!
(Kelli Jo Calvert 1:53pm July 21, 2009)

What a fun interview! Putting you on my TBR list - at the top!
(Karen Barnett 1:58pm July 21, 2009)

Kelli Jo,

Aww, girl, thanks so much for saying that. (We call that slopping sugah back home, and I love it!)

I hope you enjoy the books, and thanks again for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 2:06pm July 21, 2009)

Karen,

Thanks! That really does mean a lot to me to hear you say that.

Thanks so much for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 2:07pm July 21, 2009)

I just love laughter. So this is right up my alley.
(Cheryl English 2:43pm July 21, 2009)

Cheryl,

I'm so glad you enjoyed my interview. I feel the same way about laughter.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 4:25pm July 21, 2009)

I like the fairy flying by - helps you not have plumber's block - oh, yes, that was your father who didn't have pb :>)
(Karin Tillotson 4:54pm July 21, 2009)

Karin,

Yep. That was my dad who never had plumber's block.

Thanks for dropping by, girl.

CC
(Christie Craig 5:24pm July 21, 2009)

I love it! Someone else has days no
one really believes. As you well know,
some of this stuff you wouldn't make
up because people would accuse you
of going too far. We had a three day
run once that involved a bear
attacking our son in TN, us in CO
spending 1 1/2 hours on the phone
with officials in TN, getting into the
Knoxville, TN airport at midnight
about 20 minutes after the Florida
Gators beat UT. Not bad unless you
happen to be the only one on the
plane wearing a Gator shirt with
everyone else in UT orange. Then
there was the cow stuck on our porch
at 4 the next morning.
Your books sound like fun. Need to
keep one on hand for the next crisis.
(Patricia Barraclough 10:31pm July 21, 2009)

Patricia,

Okay...we must be twins or something. Because girl, I've had days no one believes. And I swear, I don't go looking for trouble, it just has my zip code tatooed on it's forehead and whenever it gets lost, it winds up at my door.

Thanks for posting. I hope you'll give my books a read.

CC
(Christie Craig 10:41pm July 21, 2009)

Thanks for the great post. Gotcha looks great.
(Donna Simmonds 1:32am July 22, 2009)

Do you ever get questions about your lovescenes? Once I was asked if there were "personal benefits" to my relationship with my DH because of my writing them!

Great post, Christie! Loved GOTCHA!
(Emily Bryan 7:12am July 22, 2009)

Donna,

I just tell them, "Yes, my husband loves it, but when I kill someone, or almost kill someone, he has to move out for a few months."

I think this kind of makes them remdmber that I write fiction.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC
(Christie Craig 7:36am July 22, 2009)

Hi Emily!

Thanks so much girl. It was great seeing you, too.

CC
(Christie Craig 7:37am July 22, 2009)

I laughed out loud at your comments and that started off my day with a bang. If your books are anything like this blog, thy must be a hoot
(Diane Sadler 9:02am July 22, 2009)

Hi,

Just finished your interview - WOW - hung up on Tom Selleck!
I love the cover of your new book - Divorced Desperate and Deceived. Happiest when reading!
(Debra Knotts 10:10am July 22, 2009)

Diane,

I've been called a hoot before. And I love it. It's a word I try to live up to.

Thanks so much for stopping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:14pm July 22, 2009)

Debra,

Yup, that was pretty stupid, huh? That's why it's my "Do-over" list. I'm tickled with my new cover, too. Thanks for stopping by.

CC
(Christie Craig 1:21pm July 22, 2009)

I haven't read you, I will now, after reading this! This is why I like Fresh Fiction...meeting new authors!!!
(Anne Harris 5:09pm August 1, 2009)

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