Tibby Armstrong

Read more about Tibby Armstrong.

Interview By: Tamazon

Date: August 30, 2010

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"Sheet Music" is a contemporary erotic romance published by Ellora's Cave. It is available as of August 4, 2010.

Please tell us your latest news!

In August 2010, my debut novel "Sheet Music" was released with Ellora's Cave!

Musician, David Tallis, despises the press--and with good reason. With more than a few skeletons in his closet, and a paparazzi fueled divorce behind him, it's no wonder nosy forays into his personal life by journalist Kyra Martin have him plotting revenge.

As David sets out to turn the tables on Kyra, he finds there's a lot more to the reporter than bylines and deadlines. When his duplicitous seduction goes awry, can the musician face the music? Or will he lose Kyra, along with another piece of himself?

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

Hm. I think I might have given some of the secondary characters a greater role to play. Gunter and Jenny, for instance. However, keeping them in the background focused a story that already had a lot to say, and has given me an idea for a sequel to "Sheet Music" that I think will be a lot of fun to write. *winks*

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

I have so many favorite authors, but right now I'm loving Kele Moon's menage, "Beyond Eden". It was a pre-read from Ellora's Cave, and it officially comes out on September 8, 2010.

The book is so honest in its portrayal of its characters' struggles to learn and grow as individuals and as partners. While it's stark and sometimes violent, I don't think I've ever read a more beautiful or honest book. From her writing, I learned so much about ways in which I can construct authentic character journeys.

Do you have a specific writing style?

My writing style changes slightly depending upon the story I am writing. Different novels have unique voices. For instance, I looked at words very much from a musical point of view when I was writing "Sheet Music", and I think that came across in the prose.

Overall? I like to paint a picture with words. Not just of the setting, but of the characters and emotions. I was an English major in college, so I think the way a sentence flow is as important to me as the words I choose. Come to think of it, I've always been something of a word fetishist. *laughs*

Do you see writing as a career?

Very much so. Currently, I devote more than forty hours a week to writing and promotion.

I used to watch these people who seem to eat, drink, sleep careers such as law, public relations, what-have you. I always wondered what it would be like to be paid for something I was that passionate about. Now I know! I have to tell you there's not much I wouldn't do to be able to write full time without a day job.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

I don't think there was one moment where I said, "I'm going to be a writer." I just always wrote. When I read a story in third grade that fell flat, I rewrote the scene that didn't work for me. When we had essay and short story assignments in Reading or English, I would stay after school so I could make them longer than the alloted class time allowed.

Writing is something that is part of me and always has been, just like reading. Fiction, books, words? They are my life. I don't think I've ever felt like it could or should be any other way.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Write! Even if you feel like what you are writing doesn't measure up to your personal standards, you are learning with every word you put down. The learning process continues after you are published. It never stops.

Second, submit your work for publication. Even if you think it will be rejected. With every query letter and synopsis you write, you will get better at the process, and you are giving professionals the opportunity to give you valuable feedback. If you are not submitting your stuff, then you are potentially depriving the world of embracing your story and your gift.

How does your family feel about having a writer in the family? Do they read your books?

My family loves books and idolizes writers, so I'm fortunate. While the older generation has not read my work, my younger cousins have. Sometimes it's tough to sit across the Thanksgiving dinner table from them and not blush!

What did you do before you became a writer? Do you write full time?

Career-wise I was in Information Technology for over a decade. Before that I put myself through college as an administrative assistant at an insurance company.

Currently I'm a full time student in a library science program, and let me tell you it is a serious 180 to switch between working on my thesis project and writing erotic romance!

What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both?

My writing process seems to morph with every book. I used to be a 100 percent pantser. With "Sheet Music" I wrote the first three chapters, found the story and characters, then wrote an outline that I adhered to pretty rigidly from there onward.

With my current work in progress, tentatively titled "No Apologies", I started with a full outline, wrote 25,000 words, and threw those words out after I discovered the characters had a different story to tell. I am now working without an outline, but have a definite idea of where the story is going. For the record, I think writing without an outline is much easier to do when a story is character driven, rather than mostly plot driven.

Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing? Example..get coffee, blanket, paper, pen and a comfy place

Give me a computer and a story to tell and I can write in the car, at a desk, in the doctor's office... I grew up in a house where there were anywhere from six to ten people living at a time, and I didn't have my own bedroom most of the time I was growing up. That meant I had to learn to focus and shut out the world.

The one thing I can't do is write on paper. I edit heavily as I write each sentence, changing and moving words. Doing that on paper? What a mess!

What main genre do you write in?

Erotica / Spicy Romance

Tibby Armstrong

"Lust is easy. Love is hard. Like is the most important." ~Carl Reiner