Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Tammy Lowe, The Acadian Secret, plus #giveaway

AUTHOR: Tammy Lowe
BOOK TITLE: The Acadian Secret
PUBLISHER: Museitup Publishing
BUY LINK: www.tammylowe will lead you wherever you’d like to go to purchase a copy.
GIVEAWAY: I’ll give away a free copy to a random commenter!  Be sure to leave contact information in your comment.

Please tell me how long you've been writing, and why you decided to become a writer.

I’ve been writing all my life, but for myself. I never set out to be a published author. I ended up with a book I was really proud of and felt it was worth sharing.  

Are you a full-time writer or a part-time writer, and how do you organize your writing time?

I don’t work in the summers so I get to be a full-time writer for two months. The rest of the year it’s part-time and I write in the evenings and on weekends.

What influences your writing?

I travel a lot to wonderful and exotic places and that is the biggest influence on my writing. There is so much inspiration waiting around each corner.

Is this your first published work?  
Yes, this is my debut novel.  *happy dance*

Why did you choose to write a children's story?
I’ve worked with kids my entire adult life so my “voice” suits a children’s story. However, The Acadian Secret is a fun read for all ages.

What was the process of creating this book from the first idea to the final published book?

As a kid, I loved to read books and watch shows like Little House on the Prairie and Anne of Green Gables.  I loved anything set in the “olden days”. 

When I was about ten years old, I began to wonder about time travel.  My biggest wish was that I’d end up back in the pioneer era.  I wanted to go and hang out with spoiled Nellie Olsen.  I don’t remember why I wished for Nellie over Laura Ingalls, but I think it had something to do with the fact that her parents owned the candy shop.

I had it all figured out.  I didn’t want to live in the 18th or 19th century; I’d miss my family too much. And I can’t live without modern comforts.  I wanted the freedom to travel back and forth through time.

My wish to time travel was so strong; I even dressed the part, as much as I could, without raising anyone’s suspicions.  I wore dresses to school every day, when all my friends wore jeans and t-shirts. I had to be prepared just in case it worked and I was whisked through time. That summer, I even begged my mom to buy me a bonnet. She did. I wore that white bonnet everywhere. If I ended up in Walnut Grove or Avonlea, I was prepared.  

By the sixth grade I was old enough to realize that time travel probably wasn’t going to be a reality for me, so I decided when I grew up, I’d write a story about a girl who could travel back and forth through time.  

That’s how the idea was born.  After years of travel and research, I felt confident enough to write about the 17th century Scottish Highlands. 

What are your thoughts about children's writers needing an agent or not needing one?

I was at a really great seminar listening to a best-selling author speak about kindness to hundreds of people. (Isn’t that a great topic?)  He happened to mention that he does not have an agent. Over the next few days I heard another two well-known authors mention the fact they didn’t have an agent. I had a finished manuscript and decided to follow their lead. I sent it in to a publisher and it was accepted. 

Where can people find out more about you and your writing?

You can find me at

Do you have any tips for writers who are new to children's literature?

Don’t be “bored” with any of your scenes. If you’re bored writing it, your reader will be bored reading it. Make sure you’ve created enough tension on every single page.

Please give us a brief synopsis or excerpt from your current book and when and where it will be available.
The Acadian secret is the story of a time travelling twelve year old who lands in trouble while visiting the 17th century Scottish Highlands. Add to that the true tale of the longest running, the most expensive and the deadliest treasure hunt in history and it becomes an action adventure both girls and boys can enjoy.  It’s available wherever e-books are sold.

In this scene, Elisabeth finds herself in the 17th century Scottish Highlands.

As the afternoon sun began to travel behind the mountains, it cast an emerald glow across the glen. The valley was littered with boulders, while a small river twisted its way toward a distant forest. 

Malcolm Craig was stalking his prey. He was a tall, strong man with piercing blue-green eyes, a short beard, and wild black hair that gave him a crazed look. He smelled the boar before he saw it. Talbot, his hunting dog, lunged into the brambles after the wild pig which began to grunt in anger. That was when something to the right caught his eye. A young girl lay motionless in the heather. 

"What the devil?" Malcolm said as he jumped down from his horse. While still keeping his hearing attuned to Talbot and the boar, he walked over and bent to peer at her. He breathed a sigh of relief to find she was fast asleep. Malcolm scooped the sleeping girl into his arms. “You’re lucky I found you, lassie, before that beast did.”

With a sigh, she rested her head against his chest and put her arms around his neck. “Daddy…” she said in her sleep.

Malcolm laughed. “Daddy? I’m nae your daddy. No daughter of mine would be dressed like this, wandering around barefoot in the middle of…”

Elisabeth’s eyes popped open and she let out an ear-piercing scream. She bit Malcolm’s shoulder and he dropped her.

“Och, child!  You bit me!”

The silence in the valley broke as Talbot howled, the boar squealed and Elisabeth jumped to her feet and wailed in horror. 

"Dinnae move, lass!" Malcolm yelled to be heard over the pandemonium. He reached for his dagger. It was almost time for the kill.

The enraged boar deserted his hiding spot in the brambles and charged toward the dog, its lethal tusks ready to kill. Talbot was well-trained so, instead of turning tail and running, he danced backward, facing the pig, luring it away from his master. With the boar now in pursuit of the dog, Malcolm did what was natural to any man born and bred in the Highlands: he ran at the beast as if he were a wild animal himself. Jumping on the boar from behind, he grabbed its ear, yanked its head up and slashed its throat.

Elisabeth continued to scream. Malcolm jumped off the boar as it fell limp at his feet and cleaned the blade on the carcass before putting it away. He walked toward Elisabeth, his bloody hands held in front of him. 

“Enough, lass.  It's all right now.”  

Her wide eyes fixed on the enormous man dressed in a skirt. “You’ve got a knife!” 

“Aye. And a sword.” He smirked as he pointed to it. 

“You’re armed!”

“I’m nae going to harm you, though. I was hunting.”

“Hunting what?  Little girls?  Where am I?”

Not waiting for an answer, she ran from Malcolm and toward the forest, her bare feet slowing her great escape.

“That lass is completely mad,” Malcolm grumbled while rubbing the shoulder she had bitten. 

Malcolm mounted his horse; he couldn’t leave the terrified girl alone out here. It wasn’t safe and would soon be dark. She would be easy enough for a blind man to find again because she hadn’t stopped screaming. For some reason, he hadn’t stopped smiling.

His black warhorse was as large and intimidating as Malcolm was, and the animal’s powerful legs kicked up tall grass and thistles as it barreled along. The sound of its hooves seemed amplified as it raced toward Elisabeth. Malcolm caught up to her. Without needing to slow his horse, he reached down, scooped her up into his arms, and placed her in the saddle in front of him.

“There. Now be a good lass. I promise, I’m nae going to hurt you.”

And with that, Elisabeth fainted.

“Well now, that certainly makes things easier,” Malcolm muttered under his breath as he wrapped her in his plaid and nudged his horse on.

Thank you so much for hosting me, Penny.  

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