-- World of Writing Interview --
Tracy Krauss is a high school teacher by profession, and a prolific author, artist, playwright and director by choice. She received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Saskatchewan and has gone on to teach Art, Drama and English – all the things she is passionate about. After raising four children, she and her husband now reside in beautiful Tumbler Ridge, BC where she continues to pursue all of her creative interests. She has several romantic suspense novels and stage plays in print. For more information visit her website at http://www.tracykrauss.com
Q: Where are you from?
I grew up in a small prairie town in Western Canada. The minimalist landscape and wide expanse of sky definitely had an impact on me, especially as a writer. Even though I no longer live there, I can still conjure up the vivid sensations that a prairie wind or a turbulent thunderstorm brings. I tried to bring a sense of this struggle between man and his environment into my most recent novel: Wind Over Marshdale.
Q: When did you consider yourself a writer?
I’ve always been a storyteller and had some early success and encouragement through my school years. However, I think I finally considered myself a writer somewhere in my thirties. I had been relentlessly banging away at the typewriter for years with nothing to show for it but stacks of loose-leaf pages. It took many more years and countless rejections for this closet writer to finally come out into the open.
Q: Do you use more than one voice in your writing?
I have never written anything in first person. I do often use multiple points of view, but I’m not sure I’m ready to venture out of my ‘third person comfort zone’ yet. I’d rather experience the story vicariously, so to speak, than have to take on the actual persona of the character.
Q: What is your profession and educational background?
I have a Bachelors degree in Education with majors in Fine Art and minors in History and English. I currently teach secondary school English, Drama and Art. Since our school is fairly small, I get to wear multiple hats, but I enjoy every aspect of my job. It meshes well with my compulsion to write, my hobbies of painting and drawing, and the volunteer work I do as a director and playwright.
Q: What’s the best advice you were given about writing?
Beyond the technical aspects of writing, probably the best advice I’ve ever been given is to write with passion. I’m not talking about writing romance. What I do mean is that you have to love the story you are trying to tell, otherwise it’ll come across as mechanical. Don’t worry about trends; just write from the heart.
Q: What do you consider to be your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
I’m pretty good at juggling multiple projects. This has been helpful when trying to edit a manuscript, write fresh material, produce a play, promote a new release, and somehow keep my job and family intact. The down side of this same attribute is that I tend to say ‘yes’ sometimes when I should say ‘no’. I try to do too many things at once, or I take on projects that don’t really serve my purposes.
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