Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Author Interview: T. I. Lowe

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I met T. I. Lowe through the American Christian Fiction Writiers Contemporary/Women’s Fiction Facebook group and I’m so grateful that I did! Her book Goodbye and Second Chances is a fabulous read. Check out her website—T. I. Lowe. Here’s my short mini review from last week’s post. 

A Christian story starring a rock star might be unlikely unless it's Goodbye and Second Chances--an uncommon love story I know all of you will enjoy.

And that’s an understatement! Check out the Amazon blurb.


From bestselling author of Lulu's Cafe.

Some mistakes create accidental blessings.
Jillian (Jewels) Whitman lives with her mistakes and tries to move past the biggest one of her life - Dillon Bleu - Rocker and once best friend. 

After saying goodbye to the lakeside trailer park of his youth, Dillon sets out to make something of himself only to discover all he needs is his Jewel. After hitting it big in the music industry, Dillon heads back to ask for a second chance. 

Only... Nothing is ever as easy as it seems... 

A southern tale of rags to riches where a man's worth is ultimately found in his heart.

ZM—Tell us a bit about where your stories come from? Do you have specific types of stories that you prefer?

T.L.— I love sharing stories that bring to light many life obstacles my readers my face or can at least relate to on some level. Lulu’s Café explores domestic abuse and the lead female escaping it. Goodbyes and Second Chances takes a look at self-worth and how we tend to let the world dictate our place in society, which is completely bogus. As my lead Rock Star Dillon Bleu would say, your worth is not found in your wallet. It’s found in your heart. And my upcoming book, Coming Home Again, sheds light on a woman’s struggle to overcome rape. Yes, the subjects are deep, but I like to think I address them in a readable fashion.

As to what type of stories I prefer? Well, I’m a sucker for a happy ending! I’m not saying my own stories will always deliver this, but I sure do hope so!

ZM—Unlikely characters always rivet my attention and I love the complex nature of your characters. They grow and change as the story develops. Do you have any specific exercises that you use to get to know your people? Do they develop as you write, or do they come to you as complete people from the start?

T.I.— Lots and lots of daydreaming. I spend a lot of time pondering my characters’ backgrounds. I like to get to know them before I tell their story. As with any relationship, the characters develop even more as we go along with them revealing themselves more and more. 

A good example of this is one of the side characters in Goodbyes and Second Chances. This character bugged me to no end until I shared more of him with the readers. And that someone is none other than Maverick King. I got right attached to him and his story definitely needed to be shared.

But characters evolve a good bit as a story develops also. My main character in Coming Home Again talked me right into changing her name to Savannah and as I got to know her more, she was absolutely right. Savannah suits her much better.

ZM—What’s your writing and publishing journey been? How do you get your stories out to readers?

T.I.— This has been an unexpected journey. One I never thought would go any further than keeping a promise to my mom. She passed away September 2013, but not before she made me promise to share Lulu’s Café. I wrote this novel as my creative outlet while she and I set out to go to do battle with lung and brain cancer that in the end claimed her life. So after a few months of mourning, I set out to fulfill my promise to her and published through Createspace. Never did I imagine there would be people falling in love with this story, much less READING it! But Lulu’s Café has made an impact that can only be described as a God Wink. It’s all Him. When I receive an email from a woman thanking me for giving her courage to seek a safer, better life, I know I’ve done something!

And of course, I had no clue about the editing and proofreading aspect. I’ve learned a lot since and have found an awesome editor, Carole Cudnik. She’s helped me tremendously in the last few months with finding my way.

And my readers are the reason why I keep writing. They are fiercely loyal to me and have happily helped spread the word about my books. They are why both books are bestsellers.
God has blessed it all tremendously and it can only be him as to why this country girl has found an audience in the vast sea of books.

ZM—Tell us what you’re working on now. Any word on a new book?

T.I.— I’m so excited about my book series Coming Home Again. I have three books complete and ready for editing. There may even be a fourth. One certain character from the last book keeps insisting he has more to say so we’ll just have to wait and see. I’m hoping to publish the first book in May.

ZM—Many craft books stress that writers must read and read a lot. Who is your favorite author, or what is your favorite genre? What draws you to a book you read for enjoyment?

T.I.— I’m an avid reader. I am truly passionate about reading. I’d like to share a little saying I shared on my blog. 

I'm not a book snob or a person snob.

All books, just as all people deserve a chance.

Some seem to weave into your life, while others may not be a perfect fit.
Some may be but brief encounters. While others seem to grasp hold of you and become a permanent part of you.

No matter...
They all deserve a chance.

I do lean towards books that inspire me. One of my favorite authors is Charles Martin. I’ve read all of his books and they always leave me inspired. I feel like our writing is on the same page, so to speak.  And that is the importance of a strong faith in God. I like how God is all of his books, but he doesn’t beat the reader over the head with it. I try to do the same.

ZM—Finally, what questions do you wish interviewers would ask, but they never do? And, please, don’t forget to answer them. ;-)

T.I.— Don’t you think I’ve jabbered enough! ;-)
Let’s see… What do you hope will be your gain from this career? A legacy that I can be proud of. I want to show my two children, Nathan and Lydia, that their dreams are attainable, if they are willing to step out on faith and put in the hard work. And more importantly never take someone telling them NO when it comes to their goals. 
I also never want to be ashamed to share my books with my children. My teenage son has read three of them so far and I feel good about that. I think it will open his eyes to how harsh the world can be and my desire is that he sees he has to stand up and be a shining light for God as my lead male characters have done. 

T.I. Lowe is a southern belle that resides on a small farm hidden in the boonies near coastal South Carolina. Most days you can easily find T.I. in her kitchen, whipping up homemade treats for her babies and neighbors or glued to her computer keyboard. She enjoys drifting away in the fictitious world of the latest novel while bathing in the warm southern sunshine with a glass of iced tea in hand.

"I am running with patience the race set before me, looking unto Jesus, my author and finisher of my faith."

T.I. has just released her second novel, Goodbyes and Second Chances.
She is currently working on the Coming Home Again Series.

Next Week: I'll see if I can scare up a snip for you. ;-)


  1. Thanks Zan Marie for the opportunity. Love the interview. Great fun!

  2. My pleasure, T. I.! I'm glad you enjoyed your time In the Shade.

  3. Great interview! I always love hearing about new to me authors :)

  4. Thanks, Lara! I love doing interviews.

  5. Lovely! Have a good blitz day, Zan!

  6. Great post! I love hearing about authors that are new to me as well!

  7. Thank you, Chero and Taylor Grace!
    Wow! A Blitz Day!!!! Wonderful!

  8. Hi Zan Marie - I know I've visited your blog a few times in the past, but I have a feeling it's been a while. :)

    I stopped by for the Blitz, but see a story about a rock star featured on your blog. It must be fate, 'cause I love rock star stories! :)

  9. ooh! It's a perfect fit! I've read another one too. I'll try to let you know what it is when I remember it! Thanks for the visit!

  10. Great interview! I can't help it, I'm adding this one to the ever-growing wishlist...


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