Friday, April 22, 2011

Interview with Tiphanie Thomas

Hey Everyone!

I've been waiting to do this interview for a while now. I've pulled strings, I've bribed people and wore several desguises, but, here I finally am, with up and coming romance author Tiphanie Thomas.
She's teh Awesome

Stef: Awesome to finally have you here, Tiph. Grab a seat, a cup of whatever you like (really, we have it all)

Tiph: *Laughs* Thanks so much, Stefanie, for having me on your site. And I love that our names are so similar. I’m excited to be interviewed by you, and just to promote the book, now that it will finally be released today! It’s a dream come true.

Stef: Lol, yeah, I never noticed how similar our names are :D. Tell us a little something about yourself.

Tiph:  Well, I’m a former financial analyst from Michigan. I was laid off last year due to financial losses, and instantly I was so happy about it. I had to control my smile when I was getting canned by the Chief Financial Officer, because I didn’t love my job and knew that it would give me time to really finish my book, which I had been working on for years very slowly. I just got to do me, and it’s been a great journey of writing, editing, receiving great feedback, and finally, actually seeing the completed book in front of me.

Stef: I know what you mean. It's any author's dream come true to hold a copy of their book. So, when and why did you start writing?

Tiph: I always had my nose buried in a book, even in school. I would stay up all night to read really good books and most of them were romance or had relationships involved. I fell in love with the books and characters and thought as a teenager what a great gift to give to people. 

Stef: I know what you mean. Sounds familiar (especially the romance nut part).What is your book about?

Tiph: Heart Stealer is about love and relationships mainly between a movie star and a runaway-turned schoolteacher, but it also has a family and career element that I love very much. It’s an entertaining, touching tale of love, forgiveness, and acceptance. 
Stef:  Where did Heart Stealer come from? What was your inspiration for this book?

Tiph: That’s so hard to answer, because Heart Stealer comes from everything and nothing. It’s everything I loved, seen, heard, and read. It’s from my subconscious and conscious mind so I can’t explain my inspiration.  However, writing influences are Susan Elizabeth Philips, Johanna Lindsey, Toni Morrison, Jane Austen, and many others. 
Stef: Wow, I can never tell who my writing influences are. I believe you had many changes of heart regarding the title (yes, I stalk people - nothing new there). What made you rest on Heart Stealer?

Tiph: *Laughs* How right you are about the changes!  Titles are hard. One didn’t just pop out at me, and you always have to check to see who has the title you want on Amazon. 
Stef: Ugh! Tell me about it - The first book in my Jewels series is called Ruby, and everyone thought it was the name of a girl. Which of your characters did you enjoy writing more? Kayla or Randall? (Yes, in case you're wondering, I'm showing off that I read your book)

Tiph:  I’m a girl, so I definitely fell in love with Randall, though I do like Kayla very much. However, Randall is impossible and flawed, but so cute, chivalrous, and romantic. He’s the type of guy to make women swoon and beg for more. 
Stef: What a coincidence. I thought so too. What's your favorite scene in the book?

Tiph: I’m a romantic at heart, so the scene on the rooftop of the building with the violins playing had me grinning from ear from to ear. And all of the other moments like that because I didn’t make it easy for them. They worked for those special, heart-pounding moments. 
Stef: Awww. I liked that one too. Apart from the obvious entertainment value of your book, is there a message you wanted to get across?

Tiph: What I love about my book is that is totally entertaining and sexy, but also people can totally learn something from my book with the themes of self-acceptance, forgiveness, and redemption. We’re all striving to better our lives and so are my characters. 
Stef: Do you plan on further books?

Tiph: Definitely! My goal is to be a full-time writer, so I’m going to take a small break and recharge my batteries, then dream up the next story that will break my heart and fill it back up. 
Stef: Can't wait for your next book! But now, let's torture you with some stuff regarding you. What made you decide to self-publish?

Tiph: Truthfully, I’m sure I could have gotten an agent and went with a publishing house with more waiting. I sent queries to about twenty-five to thirty and got some bites. In fact, one agent last week just requested my full manuscript. The truth of the matter is I want to be an entrepreneur and my own boss. I want control over my book cover and my novel, and truthfully, with most publishing houses, you’re still an employee. That’s just not for me, especially when I’m doing all the hard work like writing the book and promoting it, and then they take so much of the sales and get rich off it. That’s just not for me, unless I can get a great contract, but for that, you need a good bargaining chip and fanbase like Amanda Hocking. 
Stef: Fair point. And more and more authors agree. So, What makes you instantly love a book?

Tiph: Relatable characters that are flawed, but also good people at heart. Unpredictable situations. And please, please, don’t be long-winded or talk about things I don’t care about. Stay on track. 
Stef: I hear you! (I'm trying to read LoTR). Random question time. If you could have a super-power, what would it be?

Tiph: Read people’s minds! I hate not knowing what people are really thinking 
Stef: Lol, fair enough. So, give us a sneak peak into your book.

Heart Stealer - Excerpt:  

Kayla stopped at the doorway, spotting Mama Rowe in front of the stove stirring a pot. “I'm here. What’s so . . .” Her head twisted to the right and words died in her throat.

Randall sat at the wooden table, a plate of spaghetti in front of him and a fork halfway to his mouth. He put it down, and a sexy smile spread across his face. Under the kitchen light, his teeth dazzled her with their whiteness against his warm chocolate skin, and his hooded emerald eyes glimmered.

Her heart pounded in her chest. She’d forgotten how electric his presence could be. He leaned back in the wooden chair as if in a Calvin Klein Ad. His high cheekbones, square jaw, and full mouth reminded her of an Adonis.

“Surprised to see me, Kay?”

“Of course,” she grumbled, clenching her fist as. Oh no, she wasn’t suppose to react this way. After his last trip home, she had known there could never be anything between them, but apparently, her body hadn’t gotten the memo.

The designer red t-shirt stretched over his broad shoulders and muscular chest must have cost more than her whole outfit alone, making her exceedingly aware of her frumpy sweats.

He stood and walked toward her. “Gimme a hug.” As he embraced her, her nostrils flared as she inhaled his expensive cologne. Her mouth dried, making breathing difficult. “I appreciate you looking after my mom since I’ve been gone,” he murmured in her ear, his warm breath sending tingles down her spine.

She jerked back. “Don’t thank me. How could I not when she took me in and gave me a home?”

His emerald eyes lost some of their warmth. “Well, I’m glad you’ve been here.”

Heat rose up her neck as she reminded herself the charming veneer was all an act, and she would not be fooled again.
Teh awesome cover

Stef: Well, Tiph, it was a pleasure having you here. Hope to have you again soon, when you get out there and publish your next book. I am going to instantly assume that you're happy about it.

Tiph: I am! You’re a great interviewer. Such good questions! I can’t believe it’s over. I could go on…  
   Stef: As do all writers. Now I'm gonna need a pin to pop my over-inflated head. Thanks for the compliment. So people, jump on board and grab yourself a piece of romance novel.

 Heart Stealer 
Heart Stealer (Kindle edition) 
Also, I'd like to wish Tiph a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY (since today is her B-day) and many sales.

Signing off.

Oh, wait... I'm going to be too busy to blog the following days, so HAPPY EASTER to all the peeps who celebrate it ;) (I know I am - lot's of cooking to do, the entire family coming over and all that ;))

Now I'm really signing off... 


  1. Hey Stef! (And Tiph!)

    Great interview. Congratz on the book. I didn't see a link to Tiph's website / blog / whatever. Did I miss it?

    Also, Stef, you spelled a word wrong in the caption under the picture...

    It's supposed to be 'teh awesumz'.



  2. Hi, J!
    Yeah, good idea... adding website now!

  3. Thanks and hi,J! Glad you liked it! Thanks again to Stef for doing it. I thought I posted before, but I don't see it now.

  4. Glad I am catching up today to read this interview! Great job both of you!

    Tiphanie, Looks like you had one of those experiences where life closed one door so another could open. I'm happy that you've found your niche and wish you much success!

    I have a Kindle now, so here's another book for it :) Yeah!


  5. Thanks so much, Mysti! I'm glad you enjoyed the interview (you're so right about doors) and have interest in my book. Awesome! It's been a great ride so far.


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