Wednesday, July 01, 2020

Garden Interview with Gabbi Grey

Hello Gabbi

Tell us about you and your books.

Do you plot or let the story unfold as you write?
I write romances, so I have a beginning, a happy ending, and two main characters. (Two men or two women for my gay romances, a man and a woman for the rest). I also usually know what the dark moment will be. Beyond that, it’s pantsing all the way. I’ve tried plotting, but the results never looked anything like the plan. I feel most comfortable letting my characters guide me to tell their story. For me, it’s all about the characterization.

When did you first, without hesitation, call yourself a writer?
I’m not sure I do yet, despite the fact my second novella is now published. I’ve also had three short stories published, and my first full-length novel is coming out later this year. Still, I hesitate to say I’m a writer. That being said, I’m happy to say that I write. I prefer the active verb. I’m hopeful the day will come when I’m comfortable calling myself a writer.

Have you ever cried while writing a book?
Several times. I wrote a book several years ago when I had to kill a dog. I know—gasp, you never kill an animal. In this case, the dog was old and suffering, and I needed a way for the hero and heroine to meet and connect. She’s a veterinarian, he’s a recluse. It worked. We’ll see how readers take the tragedy. Hopefully they’ll understand. More recently, on my current project, I wound up sobbing. I was crying so hard I had to touch type the scene. The scene is critical to understanding the hero, so I persevered through it. The few people I’ve shared the scene with have also cried, so I feel that’s a success. I can’t wait to put the story, and the scene, in front of readers.

Do you have trouble saying goodbye to characters?
I do, I truly do. Whenever possible, I try to write other books in the same world. For instance, my first book was with the Deerbourne Inn series. I’m now writing a second book and, of course, the couple from my first story have to make a cameo. The same applies to my BDSM series. The couple from the first book are strong secondary characters in the two subsequent books. At some point I’ll have to let go of these characters, but I’m not there yet.

Do you write under a pen name?
I do use a pen name. Several, in fact. I work for the federal government by day, and although I have support from my direct supervisor, I can’t say the higher-ups would be happy with what I write. Under the pen name Gabbi Grey I write gay and lesbian romances. Under the pen name Gabbi Black I write dark erotic BDSM books and, finally, under Gabbi Powell I write medium-heat, medium-angst contemporary romances. As I’m slowly developing my connection to readers, I don’t want them to come across a book that doesn’t fit the type of book I write as a certain persona. Of course I’m hoping to find readers who enjoy all three types of books, but I’m happy if a reader finds one of my books and makes a connection to it.

and for a little fun...

What makes you cry?
Great question. I love to read romances and am easily pulled in and cry, even though I know I’ll get a happy ending. I’m also sappy when it comes to certain commercials. These days, anything that shows unity, solidarity, and people coming together is likely to bring a tear to my eye. Finally, my cat. She’s sixteen years old and I know I won’t have her forever and that thought makes me sad. Then I remember to enjoy the time left I have with her.

What makes you laugh?
Honestly, my dog. I rescued her four years ago and she’s brought nothing but joy into my life—okay, and panic. One day we were driving home, and when I arrived, my back seat was empty. Total panic set in because I had seen her in the rearview mirror in the back seat about halfway home. I live in a rural area, and the grass is tall along the side of the road. That, and I was driving about thirty-five miles an hour, and had no idea how or when she’d left the car. I drove back to where I’d last seen her and began a search. After about an hour, a lady stopped and asked what I was doing. When I told her I was looking for a little dog, she let me know she’d seen one earlier, and when she stopped, the dog had run onto a property. I followed her car with mine until we arrived at the place she’d last seen the little white dog. I went to the top of the property line, and sure as the summer day is long, my little white pup was down near the back of the property.
At first, she was hesitant to come (my sobbing probably didn’t help) but then my sister, who had come to help with the search, shook a bag of treats, and within moments I had a dog in my arms. We left, and I checked her over and she was completely fine. Not a scratch or a pulled muscle or anything. That night my sister helped me install the restraint system I’d bought a year prior but had been too lazy to put in. It clips to my dog’s Therapy Dog vest perfectly and, needless to say, we don’t go anywhere without her strapped in.
Lesson learned.

What is your favorite time of year and why?
Winter is my favorite time of year. The quiet as I take my dog for a walk. The deadened silence after a huge snowfall. The sense of solidtude – voluntary, of course. All that being said—I hate slush, ice is dangerous, and when it snows so much that I get snowed in and can’t get out, I get cranky. No Starbucks, and my stash of Diet Coke running out? Not good…

Has the dog ever eaten your manuscript?
Not my dog. I lucked out with my dog, and she never went through a chewing phase. Now, I used to breed Himalayan cats and my male sprayed. More than one manuscript wound up being ‘christened’. You’d think I would learn after the first three times…

Do you ever go around in a corset, high heels, and a whip to get you in the mood to write something naughty?
As Gabbi Black, I write BDSM dark erotic romances. I went one step further than dressing up – I joined the kink community. I love my new friends, and after five years, I’m no longer the newbie. I also discovered I’m a bit of a masochist, so that’s led to many adventures. I’m also innately curious, always asking questions. All that knowledge has been poured into my Into Their Eyes series.

Where can we find you online?

Download Catch a Tiger by the Tail on Amazon and other online retailers


Anna Taylor Sweringen said...

It's nice to know I'm not the only rose in the garden with three pen names. : ) So glad you found your dog. My dog left my parked car. I swear I only left the window open a crack for air, but she pawed it down. Luckily she'd just gone exploring, got bored and came back a minute later, but it was the worst minute of my life. Good luck with Catch A Tiger by the Tail.

D. V. STONE said...

Love the picture of your pupper. Congratulations and best wishes for continuing success. D. V.🦉

Donna said...

It's obvious where all the heart that is so abundant in Catch a Tiger by the Tail comes from. I cry at TV commercials... and I feel better knowing you do, too. 😘

Jana Richards said...

Love your dog, Gabbi! So glad you were reunited. Best of luck with Catch a Tiger by the Tail.

CB Clark said...

A very honest interview, Gabbi. Your dog is adorable. Best of luck with all your writing projects. said...

You ARE a writer, Gabbi. Congrats and continued success.