Friday, July 03, 2015

STAR OF WONDER - Tracy Higley - One Free Ebook

Welcome back, Tracy. God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
I have a couple of different projects in the works right now, and not all fiction! I’m working on something that would be geared toward Christian business women, helping them to find passion and balance within their productivity. I’m also working with a cowriter on an exciting new curriculum designed to help small groups in churches go deeper. And in between, I’m starting a new series of novels, which will take my main character to ancient Egypt.

Tell us a little about your family.
We are spread out through lots of phases of life right now! I have an older daughter who is 22 and out on her own who lives a thousand miles from me, a 20-year-old daughter who just got engaged, a fifteen-year-old son, and a twelve-year-old son. So we span from middle school to high school to college and beyond! Besides my writing, my husband and I run an internet retail business.

Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
It’s probably the other way around, at least at first. My voracious reading from a very young age created my writing habit (my kids still make fun of the fact that I would sit on the playground and read during recess). But these days, my reading is always to learn how to live and write better, or to inspire me with great stories that take me to another place.

What are you working on right now?
Of the three projects I mentioned above, my fiction project is the most fuzzy right now, just at the beginning stages. But I’m thinking… time travel!    

What outside interests do you have?
My biggest interest is probably world travel. I’ve been privileged to travel to many amazing places in researching my books, seeing places like Athens, Rome, Ephesus, Cairo, and Jerusalem. Besides travel, I love reading, especially in my hammock, getting outdoors, and watching movies.

How do you choose your settings for each book?
That’s hard to answer. There’s an intrinsic fascination I have for all of these ancient places, and I feel like they just call out to me, to have stories placed into them!   

If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Yikes, so many people to choose from! I can’t really pick a favorite, but I’ll say that one person I’d like to talk with is Caesar Augustus. He was an amazing ruler, and I’m fascinated by first century Rome.                      

What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
I wish I’d known that it’s better to follow your creativity and passion with your stories than to write what you think other people want to read.

What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
An ongoing but not-yet-learned lesson is to keep grounding my identity in Christ, not in who I am or what I achieve. When I do that, it gives me the freedom to love and serve others without concern for pleasing or impressing them to get what I need.          

What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
Write consistently, every day if at all possible
Read excessively, expanding your thought horizon
Laugh frequently, enjoying the process and not taking yourself too seriously

Tell us about the featured book.
Star of Wonder is the first of a trilogy of novellas, and part of The Incense Road. It’s an epic quest across the sands of Arabia, with a group of magi searching for a lost artifact of great power, at the same time they’re following a mysterious star that heralds the birth of a new world ruler.

Please give us the first page of the book.
From that first night nine months ago, a sickness had been growing in me, like some hideous creature wanting to be birthed. I knew its cause. That damnable, beautiful star.

Tonight on the palace roof I tried to look away, to stop my ears to the endless musings and sharp-tongued arguments of my fellow scholars. They bickered over the portent of that silver-white specter wandering the charred field of Sin, god of the night. But it was the night before my final examinations, and I could not afford distraction.

Only a few hours remained until dawn, and I must retrieve the one thing that would assure my place among them, that would give me an edge over Navid and all his advantages.

One chance. I had one chance to redeem last month’s disaster.

I glanced at Navid, his dark head bent to the shorter Zahir, who served as mentor to us both. Zahir’s finger traced a star chart, weighted with amulets and spread upon the roof’s ledge, as he explained some hidden knowledge to Navid. A stab of jealousy delayed me. Navid was born into the Kasdim, as I was, and would also face examinations tomorrow. But that was where the likeness ended.

Navid flicked a condescending glance at me, and in that glance was all the superiority he wielded like a club in his privileged hand.

“Shouldn’t you be practicing your presentation, Misha?” His nasal voice arched over the rooftop, loud enough to draw the attention of every studious mage. “Perhaps a good meal to strengthen you, eh?” He glanced left and right, ensuring he had an audience. “Ah, but I forgot, you are likely to present your last meal to the Kasdim along with your lessons.” He snorted. “Perhaps you should arrive hungry.”

The snickering response proved that no one had forgotten last month. My lifelong fear of speaking before a crowd had gotten the best of me, in front of every first- through fourth-level palace mage.

I shrugged one shoulder and smiled. “I have no worries, Navid. Even the contents of my stomach are more impressive than the contents of your mind.”

Interesting. How can readers find you on the Internet?
I’d love to have your readers visit me at, to see some of my travel journals and photographs, get a behind-the-scenes look at locations, and read excerpts. I can also be found on Facebook at /tracyhigley and Twitter @TLHigley. Come visit!

Thank you, Tracy, for sharing this book with us.

Readers, here’s a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
Star of Wonder: A Novella (The Incense Road Book 1)

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Deanna Stevens said...

Hello Tracy! dee from NE would love to read your book.. I think the cover is striking :)

Cathy said...

Would love to win this one. I love Tracy's books and enjoyed the interview. : )

Cathy from BC Canada

Caryl Kane said...

Wonderful interview with Tracy! I would love to read STAR OF WONDER. Thank you for the chance to do so.

Caryl in TEXAS

sm said...

I think that is the cover I voted for when you had the contest for covers. I like the historical Biblical fiction stories and would love to win this one. sm CA wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)com

Mary Preston said...

A great interview thank you. Time travel does fascinate.

Mary P


GrandaddyA said...

I recently read one of your other books and enjoyed it. This one sounds even more interesting. Great interview!
Edward Arrington, Martinsville, VA

Brenda Arrington said...

Book sounds intriguing. Great interview. I live in Martinsville, VA/

Brenda Arrington

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a fascinating book, and I liked the other book by Tracy that I read (Petra)!

-Melissa M. in TN