Tracy Wolff: “When things aren’t great in our own lives, it’s always more fun to escape into a world/life of a character that doesn’t look all that much like our own.”

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[Note from Frolic: Our resident YA expert Aurora got the opportunity to interview author Tracy Wolff and ask her five(ish) questions. Tracy’s new book, Crush, is out now!]

Aurora: What was your inspiration behind your most recent novel? 

Tracy Wolff: Vampires! I love vampires and have from the time I was little. Dracula, Ann Rice, Twilight, Black Dagger Brotherhood, Morganvilel Vampires, Hotel Translyvania (lol), it doesn’t matter. I’m a vampire girl at heart! I’ve always wanted to write a vampire series, but so many incredible writers have written them before me that I nervous to try. I wanted to make sure I had an idea that I felt hadn’t been done before, but that I felt I could do justice to. But when my publisher told me that she wanted to bring vampires back, I jumped in with both feet, and the paranormal world of my Crave series was born. 

What character in this novel do you most relate to and why?

I actually think there’s a little bit of me in every single one of the main characters in this book. The way Flint (my dragon shifter) always puts on a happy face, even when bad things are happening. Macy’s always look on the bright side attitude. Jaxon’s feeling of responsibility. Hudson’s sarcasm. But the character I relate to most is Grace. Of all the books and all the characters I’ve written in the last fourteen years, her voice really is the closest to my own.

Why do you feel novels with powerful and unique characters are so popular and have such a voice right now? 

We’re living in a time when so many of us feel very little control– climate change, Covid, the unemployment rate, systemic racism, mass shootings, a looming and uncertain election, just to name a few. I think that reading about powerful characters who can control not only their own lives but the world in which they live is very enticing. Plus, when things aren’t great in our own lives, it’s always more fun to escape into a world/life of a character that doesn’t look all that much like our own.

Please describe the content of your latest read and what can readers expect from it. 

Crush is the second book in my Crave Vampire series, set in a modern-day gothic castle near Denali in Alaska. I had so much fun with this book—there are a million twists and turns that (I hope) will keep readers on their toes as they explore this new paranormal world with Grace, my main character. In Crave, I introduced readers to the world, but in Crush, we get to really delve into the rules, monsters and experiences that exist at Katmere Academy and in the world beyond the school’s boundaries. I had a ridiculous amount of fun creating all the different places, as well as the new characters I am introducing into the series, and I can’t wait to hear what the readers think.

What’s next for you in the bookish world? 

I’m currently working on the third book of the Crave series. It comes out in March 2021, and I’m super excited to be writing it right now since the end of Crush left me with a bunch of questions, I’m dying to answer for myself and my fans

Who is your current favorite writer? Why? 

This is such a hard question because I read across so many genres and I have a favorite writer in them all. In paranormal romance, I’m a HUGE Christine Feehan, LA Banks and JR Ward fan. For horror, it’s Joe Hill all the way. For rom-coms and women’s fiction, I love Farrah Rochon and for suspense I ADORE Nalini Singh’s first novel in the genre. For literary fiction, I’m a huge Sandra Cisneros fan girl. And for YA … Rachel Caine, Sherry Thomas and Jandi Nelson.

Any writing advice for aspiring writers?  

My advice is pretty simple, actually. Read everything you can get your hands on in the genre you want to write in, and—whatever genre you write—read poetry, so you can feel the beauty of words and descriptions and the pictures they paint. Also, write, write, write. I’m not one who says you need to write every day, but get in the habit of writing. Get in the habit of creating sentences in your head and playing with them until you have arranged the words into the order that sounds most perfect to you. Observe the world you live in and try to describe some small part of it every day—again, if not on paper, then in your head as you go about your day. The more you do it, the easier it gets to put those descriptions, etc. into your writing.

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