Interview with Trish Perry

Today, our dear friend and award-winning author Trish Perry is hanging out with us on Mind Chocolate. A fellow ACFW member, Trish is the first published author I ever met! Thanks for joining us, Trish.

Do you have a favorite chocolate indulgence?

Oh, the list is endless—very hard to choose a favorite. But every once in a while Costco will feature the Fudgie Wudgie company’s wares, and I actually stock up when they do. I was smack in the middle of a hard-core diet the last time around, and I bought a couple boxes anyway and froze them. They’re in there, in my freezer, like jewels of the Nile. My favorite flavor is Belgian Chocolate Walnut. Amazing stuff.

Give your own definition of chick lit.

Hmm. I actually shy away from that genre title these days, because of the shallow connotation it now carries. I tend to call my books romantic comedy or contemporary romance (and let the humor come as a bonus). I think many readers now think of “chick lit” as being about young women whose lives revolve around shopping, dating, and falling down. Even though I inject plenty of humor in my romances (I love to laugh), my gals tend to deal with more in their lives—family struggles and secrets, personal growth, coping with loss and other challenges, deepening friendships, and things like that. Of course, romance plays a huge role, and there’s always at least one hunky man in my heroine’s life. But I do hope readers think of my books as more substantive than a lot of books in the chick lit genre.

Do you have any chick lit-like moments from your own life that you could share?

Just like the chocolate question, there are so many to choose from . . . but here’s one for you. Even though I’m older than your standard chick lit heroine, this one is real. Nearly two winters ago, my teenaged son and I took several drives to check out colleges in our state. We tended to use an entire weekend when we made those drives, packing for an overnight stay so we could cover several schools in the same general area. We rushed on one of these trips, because he was formally scheduled for a morning interview and tour at a college three hours away from home. We got there in time to catch a shuttle bus to the campus, but when I got out of the car, I realized I had forgotten to bring shoes. I tended to make those long drives in my socks, just to be comfy. But I had forgotten to throw my shoes in the car, and I hadn’t packed a spare pair. I had to let my son take the shuttle to the interview while I got back in the car and drove all over the rural college town seeking any place where I might find some shoes to buy. The place was like a retail-free zone—plenty of tractor and feed stores, but little else—and I kept going into places in my socks, asking where I might buy some shoes. Someone at a consignment shop finally directed me to the K-Mart, one town over, where I bought the cheapest pair of sneakers I could find. I turned a few heads on that little journey.

Do you have any writing quirks?

I’ve noticed after the fact that many of my heroines have daddy issues. This truly is a quirk, because my own dad is a total gem and has never treated me with the neglect, conditional love, or ridiculous demands that my heroines’ fathers often do. Maybe it’s because I feel so confident in him that I’m comfortable putting my heroines through such grief.

If you were going to co-author a novel, who would you choose? Why?

What a good question. I’ve never co-authored a novel before, but I’ve discussed it with a couple of women I respect. Maybe we’ll end up working together at some point in the future. Miralee Ferrell is an amazing brainstormer, and I love her to death. So she’d be one person to consider. The other person I’ve chatted with along these lines is Debby Mayne. I think she and I would blend well. Both of those women think much the same as I do, and neither of them has the slightest bit of ego problem about them.
What are one or two of your favorite lit novels from the CBA?

I thought Kristin Billerbeck’s What a Girl Wants was excellent and far more on-the-money than some of the other Christian lits that came out around that time. She “gets” the voice for the genre. And, again, I’m not sure about the genre classification, but Sandra D. Bricker has written some especially fun ones. I really enjoyed The Big 5-0. although I imagine some readers would wonder about a lit heroine at that age. My advice? Read it. You’ll love it. Sandie’s hilarious.

Where would you go on your dream “research” trip, and would you take anyone with you? Who?

I’d love to tour Europe (and if we’re dreaming, I’m dreaming a huge budget for this trip—I want comfort). If I took someone with me, it would probably be my adult daughter or my sister, or one of the women I’ve mentioned above. I’d even be happy bringing my son—he’s a fun, terrific person—but he’d probably rather not make that trip with mom . . .

If you could live in a novel, which one would you choose?

I’m so content in my real life, that I’d have to choose one of my own books that are set right here in my general area. I wouldn’t want to live in a different time than now, because I’m spoiled rotten by modern conveniences. And I have so many friends and loved ones who mean so much to me, that I’d notice their absence if I lived in a book far away.

If you weren’t pursuing writing, is there another dream career you might be chasing?

I’d still have to do something artistic, or at least something that happens via the right hemisphere. Probably acting or reviewing. There’s something about fictional stories that simply fascinate me. I don’t even enjoy good nonfiction or memoir as I do fiction. That element of human creation pulls me in like nothing else. To some extent I think of God as the creator of nonfiction and memoir. Fiction is how His creations wish it could be or imagine it could be. If I weren’t creating those fantasies myself, I’d want to be involved, somehow, with how others create such things.
Finally, share two pieces of advice—one writing-related and one not.

Writing related: Begin every day by thanking God for your gift and turning everything about it over to His will. That way you’ll always know you’re writing what He wants you to write.

Non-writing related: Know where your shoes are at all times.

Ha ha. Good advice, Trish! :-)

To learn more about Trish and her writing, check out her website. She has also graciously offered to give away a copy of her recent release The Perfect Blend. You can get your name put into the hat up to four times. 1. Tweet this link and let us know. 2. Post this link on your facebook and let us know. 3. Follow our blog. 4. Comment below, telling us about any chick lit moments in your life. Or, well, just comment below. :-)


Making out like a bandit! said...

I follow your blog!

Making out like a bandit! said...

I have posted a link to this on facebook.

Making out like a bandit! said...

I really don't know if I have a "chic lit" moment but I love reading all of these types of novels. Keep them coming!

Making out like a bandit! said...

I tweeted this!

jenness said...

Trish, I LOVE the shoe story! :-) It makes me smile. :-)

Beth K. Vogt said...

I'm going to post this on my FB page.
I like to go barefoot too . . . but have never arrived somewhere without my shoes . . .net yet, anyway!

Anonymous said...

I absolutely love good novels!

Anonymous said...

I posted this on face book.

elizabeth said...

I'm a blog-follower, poster-person, chocolate-lover-extraordinaire, and I love Trish Perry's books! :) The first one I discovered was "The Guy I'm Not Dating," which I now proudly own. Write on, oh chick-lit/chocoholic! :)

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