I’ve met many authors via comments they left on my blog. That is how Britt and I connected. Of course, then I discovered we had friends in common, so I’m thrilled to showcase her and her work.
She was a lot of fun to interview and I’m sure you will enjoy reading more about her. Please welcome Britt Skrabanek to Eden’s Exchange.
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Britt, so great to meet you and have you here at last! Tell my readers if you have any great extravagances.
International travel is my vice. I love the rush that begins with entering another country, from the sound of the stamp as it pounds my American passport to the unfamiliar language drifting into my ears. Traveling abroad opens our minds to other cultures and helps us grow into more tolerant human beings. Each time I come back home, I feel like a better version of myself.
Agree 100%! I think travel is the best way to learn about people. It’s one of my favorite things too. What are some of your favorite curse words?
I’m not the most ladylike person, so cursing is a regular part of my verbal repertoire. Besides the usual, a few novelties are “Scheisse”, “Oh, Balls”, and the occasional “Shit on a Stick”.
Good ones! Do you have a motto you live by?
Stand up for the good, but do it with class.
Yes, class is a must. What makes you laugh, and I mean, REALLY laugh?
Though most of life amuses me endlessly, the secret language my husband and I share, which is filled with inside jokes and inappropriate shenanigans, always makes me laugh my ass off. Also, we have silly song and dance numbers we perform on the fly in our apartment. It’s kind of a competitive thing to see who the biggest ass is. We usually tie.
How sweet 😉 Let’s learn more about you as the writer. Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Everything. As I answer this I’m looking outside of a window on my lunch break from an enclosed skywalk which hovers above a bustling downtown street. Bundled up adults in work attire are rushing back from lunch, speed-walking and narrowly avoiding a man picking up dog pooh on the snowy sidewalk. The park on the corner is stuck between the death rattle of winter and the spirited promise of spring, and a combination of snow, ice, and brown grass duke it out to dominate the scene. Yellow taxis break up the grey feel of the streets, buildings, and skies like spunky canaries soaring through the town. Again…it’s everything.
How do you market yourself?
By cultivating organic relationships with other humans. I loathe guerrilla warfare book marketing tactics. You know the ones…read my book, read my book, read my book, seriously read my book. I believe in establishing real connections through blogging and social media with stellar conversation, off-kilter humor, and steady positivity.
I think that’s the only way to do it. No one likes the hard sell for anything. How would you define your style of writing?
I suppose I’m a bit of a rule breaker. I have a yen for oddball adjectives and I often make up hyphenated words for shits and giggles. Although I love to play around with history, culture, and fashion, my purpose is to provide a snapshot of life with all of its awe-inspiring awesomeness, and above all to make people feel deeply.
What part of writing a novel do you enjoy the most? The least?
To create another world and become fully immersed in it is like living a dream. When I write I can be a lounge singing spy or traipse off to Prague on a whim. It’s my adult version of make-believe. The downside for me is the time I spend on it, as writing so intensely tears me away from my husband during the sparse moments we share together.
Tell us about the book you’re working on now.
My third book, The Bra Game, is a throwback American romp which takes place in Chicago during 1954. I love buying vintage fashion and made an incredible discovery after purchasing a handbag here in Milwaukee a couple of years ago. Hidden in the folds of the interior were two baseball tickets from 1954 and a voting receipt with a shopping list on the back that read: chocolate, fly swatter, shoes, film, loan. For a history lover like myself, this was comparable to opening a treasure chest. My imagination went into overdrive, picturing three distinct women who might have owned the handbag during that time. Because of the baseball tickets, I decided these women would have played in the All American Girls Baseball League during WWII and the story would follow their lives after the league disintegrated, when the boys came home and the women were expected to return to making pies and babies. Call this one a deeper, sexier A League of Their Own. (Shameless plug…The Bra Game releases Summer 2014.)
Your book has a terrific concept. And for the record, book plugs are NEVER shameless when you’re doing an author interview. It’s your time to shine.
What is your best advice for new authors?
Do it for the love. If you’re writing for anything else, you’re missing it.
I agree. You have to love writing. Tell us about the genre of your current book, Beneath the Satin Gloves. I love the title, very mysterious.
Because Beneath the Satin Gloves is a serious genre bender, I’ll quote a recent reviewer who said it’s “a little bit romance, thriller, time travel, and historical fiction”. Hey, I’m Indie. Why not span an absurd amount of genres for the hell of it?
What inspired you to write the book?
I’ve been a WWII junkie since I was a little girl. As I had unintentionally completed lifelong research, it was an ideal setting for me to give historical fiction a go. WWII was a turning point in history, when the world became a much smaller place, when atrocities and destruction almost overshadowed our existence. The stories of bravery and unity during this time continue to astound me. And on a lighter note, 1940s music and fashion are exquisite in my eyes. Powerful dreams were another driving force behind Beneath the Satin Gloves, exploring the possibilities of past lives unearthed by the unconscious mind.
Excellent, and I’d like to share the video you made for the book. It’s very well put together.
How did you celebrate when you finished your book?
Sadly, my husband was out of town on business. I poured myself a glass of wine, toasted my laptop and my two cats, then cried like a little girl. I just couldn’t believe I had written an entire freaking book!
I know the feeling well, Britt. I’m on the verge of tears thinking of you toasting your laptop! What has surprised you the most about writing the book?
That I would be batshit crazy enough to write another, and another. Turns out I’m a writer after all.
You most certainly are. And I’d like to provide readers with your buy links below.
Beneath the Satin Gloves A modern day woman, torn by her illusive dreams, awakens to a strange life in 1943, hurdled against the throes of destruction in wartime Berlin. Following a haphazard trail of clues, she discovers her new identity as Alina Feuer, code-named Sparrow, a famous entertainer, seducing a high-ranking SS officer to gather vital information for the Allies. But, Alina is an amateur in these incessant spy games, relying solely on her wit and instinct to make her next move while frantically hiding her erratic behavior from the watchful eyes of her suspicious liaison/love interest and her pestering socialite gal pal along the way. A reluctant heroine, she must use charismatic glamour as her weapon of choice to fulfill her deadly mission before the week is through.
Let’s finish with a fun lightning round!
Aside from people/pets, what is the ONE item you would save if your house was on fire? Since my work is always backed up a hundred different ways and my laptop is replaceable, hands down I would save my oversized stuffed animal, Ken Follett the cow. We go way back.
Favorite place you’ve traveled to or would like to travel to? I’m obsessed with the world, so I’ll just list some places I’m currently drooling over: Barcelona, Buenos Aires, and Bali. (So many B’s!)
Salty or sweet? Sweet tooth…right here!
Favorite style of music? Eclectic taste is an understatement for me, but world music, classic rock, and sultry jazz—think Billie Holiday or Anita O’Day—are my jams.
The best gift you’ve ever received? For my thirtieth birthday my husband gave me the gift of time to focus on writing. I quit my full-time job for a year and kicked some major creative ass.
Your most guilty pleasure. Aromatherapy massages. They’re beyond yummy.
Favorite season. Fall. It’s damn magical.
Something you cannot go a day without. My husband. He is my everything.
Beautiful answers, Britt. Like me, I think you’re somewhat of an old soul. Thank you for being here, and I wish you every success with your current books, as well as your summer launch of The Bra Game. Readers, please connect to Britt at all her homes on the web.
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Connect To Britt
Britt Skrabanek is the spirited indie author of Beneath the Satin Gloves and Everything’s Not Bigger. Her blog, a physical perspective, is a whimsical snapshot of life, musings, and the glory of the written word. She is blissfully married, has two delightfully incorrigible cats and loves to experience the world—all of its quirky beauty inspires her endlessly. When Britt’s not writing, she’s a bike riding Yogi who loves to dance. She is currently plugging away at her third novel, The Bra Game, with love, humor, and relentlessness.
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