"A Candle Loses Nothing By Lighting Another Candle" - Father James Keller

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Kiki: What is your favorite genre to read in, and what is it about that genre that attracts you to it? If you like a specific mix of genres, please state that particular combination.

Tracey: I enjoy reading medical drama/mystery. I like books with characters who are emergency services personnel or military. When reading romance, I prefer a more sophisticated or mature hero/heroine. I guess it is no surprise I write what I do!

Kiki: What is your favorite author to read in that genre, and why? Also, please tell me a little about the best book by that author you have read.

Tracey: This is a tough one; I tend to read quite widely because I’m ‘researching’ or because I’m curious about other authors. CJ Lyons is a favorite (medical drama). Nicolas Sparks is a favorite because of the more mature characters.

Kiki: Do you have a Favorite Book of All Time? Of course, please tell us what about that book makes it your favorite.

Tracey: I do not have “a” favorite book. There are just too many, and I like different aspects of each.

Kiki: What are your reading habits like? For example, how many books do you read on average in a week, what format do you prefer to read in, what time of day do you read, and what setting is ideal for you to get lost in that book?

Tracey: With a family business to run and two young children with activities, I don’t read as much as I’d like. Often I find I’m forced to choose between reading and writing. I probably average 3-4 books/month, but there are some months I don’t get any reading done.

I recently got a Kindle and surprised myself by how much I love it. But there are still times I like to feel the weight of a good book in my hands. Any setting is ideal for a good book (at kids’ swim lessons, at the park, while waiting for a meeting…)!

Kiki: If pressed, could you choose a favorite from the books you have written? Why is it your favorite?

Tracey: I think I will always feel a special fondness for my first book, Last Chance Rescue, simply because it was the first (and it’s a good book, and Indie Award Finalist!). The day I held the first copy in my hands was an awe-filled day (“I can’t believe it, I’m an author!”).

True Surrender will hold a special place because it was the catalyst to my discovery of how much I enjoy fusing writing, music and visual imagery (see below for information about the companion music video).

But I think whatever book I’m deeply involved in at the moment will be my favorite (and that’s as it should be, I think).

Kiki: How do you become inspired to write?

Tracey: For me, it starts with one scene—often from a dream. Ideally, I have the luxury of some ‘daydreaming’ time to allow the character(s) to develop until I have the makings of a story or novel in my head.

My writing is heavily influenced by the time I spent in the military and by the medical training I received there. When I became a helicopter pilot, it opened new relationships with some amazing people—and Last Chance really came together after I did some ride-alongs with medevac and search-and-rescue.

My ‘writing time’ is from 9-11pm a couple times a week (after my kids are in bed) and a stolen hour at a cafĂ© or coffee shop when I can swing it. I do my best work when it’s quiet and I have NO interruptions, but sometimes a change of scenery can help my level of inspiration.

Kiki: What part of the story do you think is your strength to write?

Tracey: The scenes that tend to ‘flow’ are usually those with medical drama or trauma. I’ve been told I have a ‘signature’ scene in each book, which is a scene that contains sensual elements or the building of sensual tension in a medical or injury situation where you’d least expect it. In True Surrender it happens when Holly is helping Aaron with his physical therapy on a treadmill.

Kiki: Please share with ABA readers something I did not think to ask you about.

Tracey: I’d like to mention that True Surrender has a companion  music video!

"The Rose (Surrender Version)” is my own arrangement of Bette Midler's classic, but with a more upbeat rhythm and a bluesy feel. It contains scenes from True Surrender enacted by actors.

When the idea of a music video first occurred to me (after recording the song earlier this year), I wondered: how would my passion for singing, writing and the power of the visual come together?

I loved the whole process – how the different aspects dovetailed and intertwined; how dormant creativity was sparked (in large part by being around other creative people). I loved the collaborative nature of this project. And I’m in awe of how the right people came into my life and into the project.

The song should be available for download on CDBaby.com and iTunes the first week in December, and with some luck the video will be available via Amazon-on-Demand by the end of the year. You can watch  it on my YouTube channel: http://youtu.be/7Urqfs6Oqms

Author & Book Information:
Tracey Cramer-Kelly
Adventure and Military Romance

Author Bio:
Tracey’s work fuses writing, music and visual imagery whenever possible, and includes novels, short stories, essays and music videos. True Surrender is her second novel. Her first, Last Chance Rescue, is an Indie Award finalist. Her first full-length music video, The Rose (Surrender Version), includes scenes from True Surrender. Her writing draws from her experience as an Army Reserve paramedic and helicopter pilot. When not managing the family business, Leader Motorcycle Accessories, she enjoys motorcycling and outdoor activities with her husband and two young children.

Blurb from True Surrender:
When Major Aaron Bricewick is rescued from Afghanistan terrorists, he thinks the worst is over. But his personal journey is just beginning…

The first surprise is the amputation of one of his legs.

The second is the woman he left behind, now a widow with a 4-year-old son – and his new prosthetist (artificial limb maker).

He vows that losing his leg won’t derail his career. But maintaining his outward appearance as a got-it-together officer becomes increasingly difficult as he faces one personal demon after another – and sees his career aspirations slipping away. And though he has no intention of expanding his life to include a woman, his heart has other ideas – and he finds himself questioning the very foundation of his personal beliefs.

When violence – and unexpected redemption – touch his life again, Aaron must make a stand. 

Which will he choose: duty or love?

Buy it on amazon, smashwords or direct from author:


His bed was empty.
            Impossible, she thought.
            And then she saw him: motionless on the floor, a dark stain spreading underneath his body. A stain that she recognized instantly.
Oh my God, the terrorists found him!
This first irrational thought was immediately followed by a more trained response. She assessed the situation in the few moments it took her to cross the room. She hit the button on the intercom system, identified herself and requested help.
She dropped to her knees next to Aaron. She spoke as she ran her hands across the back of his neck. “Aaron! Can you hear me?” As soon as she was certain he had no neck or spinal injury, she shook him gently. “Aaron, it’s Holly. Talk to me, Aaron.”
His arms snapped up, flailing for a moment before his good hand clamped onto her wrist—hard. His eyes were wide open, and in them she saw terror…confusion… pain…
They engaged in a macabre tug-of war as Holly stated repeatedly, “Aaron, it’s me—Holly. You’re okay. Take it easy.”
After what seemed like a long time, she saw recognition seep into his eyes. But then he shut them tight, and his body went limp. He released her wrists and dropped his hands over his face. “Go away,” he whispered, his chest heaving.
            “I can’t do that, Aaron.”
            “You shouldn’t see me,” he said. “Not like this.”
            Unexpected tears stung her eyes.
            “This isn’t who I am,” he rasped.
            “You asked me to leave once already,” she said. “And I honored that request. Maybe I shouldn’t have. So please…”
            She locked her eyes onto his, which were open again. Surely he could see that she was close to tears, but she didn’t care. “Don’t ask me to walk away again.”


  1. Kiki, I want to thank you for taking the time to 'meet' with me for this interview.

    I invite your vistors to submit any questions they might have (about the book or the writing process), and I will do my best to respond!

    There is a book trailer as well as a full music video with scenes from the book at my web site: http://www.TraceyCramerKelly.com

    In honor of my first 'virtual' book tour, I'm giving away a t-shirt and 'Freedom Isn't Free' bracelets to randomly-drawn commentators during the tour.


In accordance with the new FTC Guidelines for blogging and endorsements, Kiki Howell of An Author's Musings, would like to advise that in addition to purchasing my own books to review, I also receive books, and/or promotional materials, free of charge in return for an honest review, as do any guest reviewers.