Monday, 21 July 2008

Getting to know Tamera Alexander

I am very selective when it comes to reading historicals these days but Tamera Alexander's books always make the cut! Tamera has recently taken home a Christy Award for her novel, Remembered ~ congratulations, Tamera!

Tamera's latest novel, From A Distance has already garnered rave reviews. Hope you all enjoy this interview!

If you could have chosen your own name, what would it be?

I’ve always loved the name McKenna. And I’ve always wanted to have dark hair and olive skin. Alas, I do not… So I gave my most recent heroine (McKenna Atchison in The Inheritance) those attributes and lived vicariously through her.

What’s your pet’s name?

Jack! And here’s a picture of him. He’s a silky terrier, and his full name is Jack Brennan Alexander (named after the hero in Remembered).

Your best friend’s name in primary (elementary) school?

Janet Meets. And Janet, if you’re out there, I’d love to reconnect with you! We attended Idlewood Elementary School in Tucker, Georgia together. Many years ago… And whenever I eat Cool Whip, I think of her. She introduced me to Cool Whip with chocolate ice cream. Yum!

If you were stranded on a deserted island what one object would you want with you? (Besides your Bible of course)

A GPS phone so I could call home and get rescued. After a few days of quiet and sun, of course.

What's your favourite ice cream flavour?

Coffee with caramel and roasted almonds. I want that on the deserted island too. ;)

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A teacher. I used to line up my dolls and animals on the edge of my bed and lecture to them. I also indexed all my books according to the Dewey Decimal System. I had much more time on my hands then…

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I’d travel the castles of Europe. That’s a dream!

What's your favourite book?

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. It’s Francine at her best and God’s unconditional love in all its splendor.

What's your favourite movie?

I have many…but Dances with Wolves is at the top of that list. Then Sommersby. And Sense and Sensibility. And Sound of Music…

What's your most fervent prayer?

That, once I leave here, I will have made a difference in this world. An eternal difference in lives. That’s all that matters.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?

Have children. It’s the hardest job in the world. The most heartbreaking, and the most rewarding.

What gift have you received that you will always treasure?

The gift of friendship. When someone offers you their friendship, they offer their heart, and that’s a precious, priceless gift.

What is your favourite Bible verse (or "one" of your favourites) and what does it mean to you?

Hebrews 12:1,2

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

I read this often and am reminded that I’m to run my own race. Not someone else’s. I’m to run the race God set before me, and I’m to run with perseverance because it’s going to be hard. I’m to keep my eyes on Jesus who’s already run this path so He knows the pitfalls and the blind curves. There’s not always joy in each step of the journey, and when there’s not, joy most certainly awaits!

What was your most embarrassing moment in High School?

Oh gracious, there were so many. One that comes to mind is in the 8th grade (in Atlanta—in those years anyway—our high schools went from 8th – 12th grade) when I was the last person chosen for basketball. Then…to make matters worse, I was so thrilled when I finally made a basket, only to realize that I’d made it for the opposing team. It was not pretty, and my meager contribution was not appreciated. LOL! And btw, I still can’t play basketball very well.

Ask your children one thing they think is special about you and share it with us, please!

My son isn’t home right now but I just asked my daughter (age 21) and she says… “I like how my mom has the ability to relate to everyone and make them feel better after having been with her.”

Tamera here again: Wow, that’s nice! I love that girl! Now to run pay her.

BTW, a fun tidbit on From a Distance! We used my daughter’s hair on the cover. Bethany House “photoshopped” it in. See any resemblance?

From A Distance

I love that you don’t follow the historical romance formula despite writing historical romance novels! Elizabeth is 32 and pursuing an interesting and unusual career for a woman of the 1870s. How did Elizabeth come to be?

Thanks for those kind words! The idea for From a Distance came from a question I’d been asking myself. “What happens when the dream you’ve asked God for isn’t what you imagined it would be?” I read a lot and had been reading a book on the history of photography. That one particular question intertwined with the interest in photography, and the idea for From a Distance was born.

You have brought a current hot topic (environmentalism for want of a better word) as Daniel seeks to protect the Colorado wilderness from developers. Tell us how that came about, please.

That grew completely from his character. I didn’t approach FAD with that subtle theme in mind. Daniel came west, hurting and disillusioned, and the land helped “heal” him, in a sense. So when he sees the territory being destroyed, he takes a personal interest in seeing that it’s preserved for future generations.

You have introduced readers to some strong minor characters, including Rachel Boyd, Sheriff James McPherson and Dr Rand Brookston. Will we read their stories in the next Timber Ridge Reflections stories?

Oh yes! I’m writing Beyond This Moment now and you’ll see all of these characters again in May 2009. And in the third book in the series that releases in fall 2009.

What are you working on at the moment? A sneak peek, please.

I’m currently taking a few days out from writing Beyond This Moment, Book 2 in Timber Ridge Reflections, to focus on substantive edits for The Inheritance. The Inheritance is for Women of Faith Fiction (Thomas Nelson) and is a stand alone novel set in Colorado 1877. It releases in March 2009! They’re working on cover art right now, and I’ll be sure and put it up on my website and blog as soon as it’s ready!

Thanks for hosting me!



Rel: It has been a pleasure, Tamera :) Many thanks!

Relz Reviewz Extras

Reviews of From A Distance, Revealed and Remembered

Visit Tamera's website and blog

Buy Tamera's books at Amazon or Koorong


Ausjenny said...

I enjoyed the interview. when I go to canada I am going to have to sample some of the strange flavours of Ice cream.
I really loved From a Distance and loved the whole concept. thanks for sharing.

Tracy said...

Thanks for a fab interview. It's always funny seeing behind the book to the one who wrote it!

Smilingsal said...

Interesting interview. A Christian author writes green, huh?

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