Friday, October 2, 2015

THE GAL'S 31 DAYS OF HORROR: AMONG THE STACKS: Trista Borgwardt


The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Hi, Trista.  Welcome to The Gal.  It's great having you here during my 31 Days of Horror.  Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Trista Borgwardt:
First and foremost, I am a mother of two wonderful boys.  One is in high school and one just started kindergarten.  I have a zoo of animals that I love to come home to after a long day at work!  I am an RN and work in Clinical Research, which is fascinating and fun.  I just began going back to school and am working on my Master's in Nursing.
            I love to read and write.  I have always wanted to be a writer and, after graduating from nursing school, I decided to pursue my dreams.  I have too many ideas and not enough  hours in the day!

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What are five things most people don't know about you?

Trista Borgwardt:
1. I really love reptiles!  Bearded dragons, chameleons, iguanas, turtles, adn even snakes!  We have a pet salamander and two bearded dragons.

2. I love to play Call of Duty and other 'shoot and kill' kind of video games.

3. I secretly want to be a race car driver...I love a manual transmission.

4. I have conversations with my cats and dogs...and I answer for them.

5. I want to learn to dance (and be good at it)!

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What is the first book you remember reading?

Trista Borgwardt:
Gone With the Wind.  I remember because I was in 6th grade and my teacher accused me of not being able to read that fast (we had to read every morning).  I was/am a bookworm, so once I am into a book, my nose is usually there until I am finished.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What are you reading now?

Trista Borgwardt:
Brave New Girls: Tales of Girls and Gadgets by several authors.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What made you decide you want to write?  When did you begin writing?

Trista Borgwardt:
I am not entirely sure what made me decide to write, I just remember always wanting to write.  When I was in Grade School/Middle School, I remember writing a book about vampires (something else that I love) and it filled two notebooks.  I am not sure where it ran off to, but that was my first work.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Do you have a special place you like to write?

Trista Borgwardt:
My couch is my special place, with my laptop in my lap adn a cat that I have to reach over to get to the keyboard.  Now, honestly, I could do without the cat; if he could just learn to sit beside me, it would increase my productivity.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Do you have any quirks or processes that you go through when you write?

Trista Borgwardt:
One process that I have is that I make a word file detailing the major events or important ideas I have regarding what I want to write.  Do I stick to it?  Usually not.  Things change so much, but it is a guide for me to refer back to no matter how much of a left turn the story takes.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?

Trista Borgwardt:
Finding enough time to write everything that I want to write is the most challenging thing.  Or when I am exhausted, it is difficult to get my brain to function enough to coherently put words on paper.
            And editing.  I think editing is probably every writer's nemesis.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What books have most inspired you?  Who are some authors that have inspired your wriitng style?

Trista Borgwardt:
Every book I read inspires me.  From the well-known authors to the first time writers.  You should be able to take something away from everyone.  I can't say for sure that any authors have inspired my writing style, but some have given me ideas of how I don't want my writing style to be.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What do you think makes a good story?

Trista Borgwardt:
A good story is engaging.  It makes the reader connect with the characters and get absorbed in the story line.  A good story makes you wish you were there, and keeps you wanting to read more about the character or story.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What does it take for you to love a character?  How do you utilize that when creating your characters?

Trista Borgwardt:
The character has to be unique and have their own personality.  They have to have 'character'.  If they are flat and boring, well chances are I won't get a good connection and then won't really care about what happens to them...or may even be hoping for their demise.
            I think about this as I am developing a character.  Are they interesting?  Do I like them?  If I don't like them, is it just because they are an evil monster or is it because they are lacking something?  I keep these questions in the back of my mind for all of my characters.  Some characters, I just don't like, and that's okay as long as they are developed enough that they give me a reason not to like them.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?

Trista Borgwardt:
I get asked this question quite a bit and I really don't know.  I would say many of my characters have some small parts of me in them.  If I had to pick one, I would pick my main character since it is her telling the story.

The Gal in the Blue Mask: 
Are you turned off by a bad cover?  To what degree were you involved in creating your book covers?

Trista Borgwardt:
Yes, a bad cover makes it so I don't even want to read the back cover.  I usually won't even take a serious or second look at a book with a bad cover.  My cover designer is my hubby...so I do have quite a bit of involvement.  I usually just give him a basic idea or the main point I want to highlight and he makes it into something amazing!

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What have you learned creating your books?

Trista Borgwardt:
I have learned how important reviews are to authors, as well as other products.  I have learned many things about Word, InDesign and photoshop.  I have learned how to manage my own website and create pages, etc.  I have learned that social media is important and very time consuming.  I have learned that it is still important that I write for me and no one else, and not to take the negativity to heart but learn from it.
            I  have learned to never delete a scene, a character or entire chapter should I need to start over.  They all go in the deleted folder and then I can start fresh.  You never know, though, when you want to come back to something that you have deleted.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What has been the hardest scene for you to write so far?

Trista Borgwardt: 
Sex scenes; how to write these scenes in a mature and sophisticated way without sounding too crude or scientific.  Also, I try to make sure that I don't use too much nursing lingo.  Sometimes I  have a habit of that and my beta readers will tell me!

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What makes your book different from others out there in this genre?

Trista Borgwardt: 
I have some special supernatural creatures that will be appearing in my books that I haven't run across in my readings of the supernatural genre.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
How important is the book title, how hard is it to choose the best one, and how did you choose yours (of course, with no spoilers)?

Trista Borgwardt:
I think a book title is important.  I know when I am looking for something new to read, I look at the title and cover and if it doesn't grab my interest, I won't even read the back to find out what it is about.
            Rabbit's Feet...my first novel, you will have to read the book to see why it has that name.  I would spoil it if I tell you!  Polarity, my second book in the series, had the title booked out long before I even knew for sure what I wanted in the story.  So in a way, my title helped shape that story.  My third book, that I am currently working on, does already have a title and it just so happens that it fit with what my idea was.  Sometimes I think of these really great titles and then decide a story line based on that.  Otherwise, writing a story and trying to come up with a title later I think is more difficult...for me anyway.  Sometimes it just hits you, and you think, 'Perfect!' and other times, I really have to think.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What makes you feel more fulfilled: Writing a novel or writing a short story?

Trista Borgwardt:
I think they are both fulfilling in their own regard.  A short story is completed in a much quicker time frame, but you have to make sure that you get your story out without using too much detail for it to go on and on and turn into a novel.
            Novels are great for taking your time, building detailed characters and storylines and creaitng many different conflicts within one book.  Downside is that they can take a lot longer to write and are more work to edit!
            What I will do many times is, as I am working on my next novel, if I get writer's block...or just need a break, I will work on one of my short story ideas.  It is refreshing and you get a sense of satisfaction in being able to complete something much quicker than a whole novel.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Tell us a little bit about your books, your target audience, and what you would like readers to take away from your stories.

Trista Borgwardt:
My books, Rabbit's Feet and Polarity, are the first and second books in the Tempie Rosenthal Series.  Book three is in the works.  They are supernatural/horror novels.  Honestly, they are written for anyone who enjoys supernatural/horror.  There is graphic violence and detailed sex scenes so it is rated for a Mature audience.
            Rabbit's Feet starts by introducing the main character, Tempie, and seeing her through several tragedies and uprooting her life to move to South Dakota.  There, Tempie is stalked by an unseen monster, until a handsome stranger steps in to save her.  This is her introduction to the supernatural world.
            In Polarity, Tempie's character really begins to grow as she realizes and accepts that she is just as much a part of the supernatural world as witches and vampires.  Tempie must overcome many obstacles to find herself, and what she is truly capable of.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Can you tell us about some of the deleted scenes/stuff that got left out of your work?

Trista Borgwardt:
I can't without giving away some new introductions in book three.  I saved every scene/character that I deleted and a good amount of them will be appearing in book three.  As I realized that Polarity was full enough, and that adding one more supernatural creature and their storyline might be a little overwhelming for everyone, I decided to move them to the third installment.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What is in your 'trunk'?  (Everyone has a book or project, which doesn't necessarily have to be book related, that they have put aside for a 'rainy day' or for when they have extra time.  Do you have one?)

Trista Borgwardt:
Scanning in pictures.  One day I will get all of my picture prints scanned in so that I can have them all digitally and do something differnet with the enormous bag of pictures that I have.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
What can we expect from you in the future?

Trista Borgwardt:
There will be at least two more books in the Tempie Series and then I have several short stories that I want to put together in a collection.  I also have some Suspense/Thriller novels that I am excited to work on.  One project that I hope to begin soon, alongside my Tempie series, is a couple of different children's books.

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Where can we find you?  (You know, STaLKeR links.)

Trista Borgwardt:

The Gal in the Blue Mask:
Do you have any closing words for your fans or anything you'd like to say that we didn't get to cover in this interview?

Trista Borgwardt:
As an Indie author, I would just like to tell everyone how important book reviews are.  Even if you didn't really like the book, leave a review for the author and tell them what you did like or what you didn't like because anything and everything helps.
            I also do book reviews for Indie authors.  I have a book review submission form and the guideliens on my website, so check it out if you are an Indie author and would like me to read and reviw your work.  There are certain genres that I don't typically do, but you are always free to submit and, if it sounds like something I might be interested in, I will consider it.
            You can subscribe to my blog here


About the author:
I was born and raised in Rapid City, South Dakota, and am enjoying raising a family here myself.  I have a wonderful significant other and two amazing boys, a 16 year old and a 5 year old.  I live in a house full of boys, and that is just the way I want it as I am not a girly girl myself.  We have a black lab, two cats, and a recent addition, a German Shepherd/Corgi mix puppy.  We also have a guinea pig, a salamander and two bearded dragons.  I have one younger brother, who is a genius, and my parents and grandparents live near and area ll important in our lives.
            My whole life, or at least since I was able to read, I have been an avid reader.  I have read so many books, and am that person that will re-read a book 50 times and still enjoy it.  I read several different genres, but mainly horror, thriller, suspense, mystery, supernatural and psychological thrillers.  However, I have read several other books outside of these categories and have enjoyed them.  I try not to limit myself and try to keen an open mind because that is where the adventure begins.
            After high school, I decided to go to college.  I had always wanted to be a nurse from the time I was a little girl, and it was still an interesting career field for me. So, I did attend nursing school and graduated with a Bachelor's in Nursing and currently work as a Registered Nurse.  I have always wanted to help people, and no matter where I find myself, or what I am doing, I always want to be able to find a way to help people.  I am currently enrolled in a Master's Degree program for nursing so that I can further my education.
            I have always had a passion for writing, and remember filling a couple of notebooks with a vampire story I wrote in middle school.  The notebooks have long since gone missing, which is a bummer because I really would like to look back on it now and see in detail what that first was about.  I have also written several poems which I have compiled into a book titled The Darkest Light and it is also available on Amazon in Paperback and Kindle formats.
            My first novel, Rabbit's Feet was written right after I graduated from writing school.  It took several years of editing before I was finally satisfied with it enough to release it.  I immediately went to work on Polarity and now I am working on the third book in the supernatural/horror series, The Tempie Rosenthal Series.  All my books are currently found on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback format.

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