Saturday, 6 April 2013

Author Spotlight - C.J. Baty - Mountain Inspiration

My Great Aunt Vergie lived on a small farm off a rural route in eastern Virginia. My parents would take us there on vacations and holidays, and it soon became apparent to me that this is where I belonged, in the mountains and away from big cities where people were always in a rush. I was never happier as a small child or teenager as I was when I was visiting there.

Nature itself has been an inspiration to me my whole life. Whenever the stresses of the everyday world—family, job, relationships—would become too much, that’s when I turned to nature. As I’ve aged that hasn’t changed. Those who know me know that when I start looking at cabins in the woods, it means I need to go there and soon.

It was there during those vacations when I would wander the hillsides and forests on my own that I realized what I wanted out of life. I wanted to tell stories and share them with other people. Then real life happened, I got married right out of high school and began working, and the dream of writing got left on the back burner for “some day.”

Great Aunt Vergie passed away when I was an adult with a husband and small son. The last time I visited her farm was the day of her funeral. I just assumed my dreams of writing were just that—dreams.

Flash forward twenty-one years to my now adult son telling me about this great website where people go to share stories about Twilight and the characters. I had no idea that such a thing as Fan Fiction existed. With his encouragement, I got involved in the family that is Fan Fiction.

It wasn’t long until I was itching to tell my own stories and when I found m/m romance stories, I knew I’d found a place for me to stick my toes in the pond so to speak. I jumped in with both feet. I found I hadn’t lost my desire or drive to write; it had just been buried. I also found I had a knack for telling a mystery along with the romance, which led to several murder/mystery/gay romance stories on Fan Fiction.

Today, I am proud to say that A New Dream, an original m/m romance, is my first published work and with any luck at all it won’t be my last. I am thrilled to be working with the lovely ladies at Bottom Drawer Publications. They encouraged and helped me along every step of the way. I wouldn’t be here without them.

As for the future, I have two stories presently in the works. One is a December/May romance/mystery where the woman is the older character. She thinks that since her husband’s death romance is just a thing of the past for her until she meets a handsome younger man who sweeps her off her feet.  The other story is an m/m murder mystery/romance. Someone is killing men on the beach close to a very old family hotel. The owner manager of the hotel starts to panic when he realizes that the men who keep showing up dead are some of his past lovers, though no one in the very bigoted city of Beaufort could possibly know he is gay. Or do they?
C.J. Baty

Thanks so much to Lauren at Live, Read & Breathe Blog who originally 
hosted this guest post as part of the Valentine's Collection blog tour.

We are proud to have published C.J.'s first work, A New Dream

About the Author

C. J. Baty lives in southwest Ohio with her very patient husband and two encouraging children. Her heart however, lives in the mountains of Tennessee where she hopes to retire some day. The mountains have always provided her with inspiration and a soothing balm to the stresses of everyday life.

The dream of writing her own stories started in high school but was left on the back burner of life until her son introduced her to fan fiction and encouraged her to give it a try. She found that her passion for telling a story was still there and writing them down to share with others was much more thrilling than she had ever expected.

One thing she has learned from life and she is often heard to say is: “You are never too old to follow your dream even if it takes you fifty years!”

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