Tami Kline is the author of 180 Stitches and the sequel 1000 Years. She is also about to publish her very first upcoming mystery suspense novel coming out this month! Prepare yourselves, it’s gonna be a good one!
The Fountain: What was your inspiration for the idea behind 180 Stitches?
Tami Kline: The inspiration behind 180 Stitches was love. A love of family, of friends, that special someone, the love of God.
Fountain: Did you plan to publish your novel traditionally or did you chose to self-publish from the beginning?
Kline: I know the two consist of completely different methods of going about publishing novels, and I think self-publishing is the less known of the two. I did NOT plan on self-publishing. In fact, I never planned on publishing any of my works. But my faithful friend and husband encouraged me to seek publication. Before I thought about submitting my work to an actual publishing house, I wanted to gain experience and understanding of this world first. This next work, The Forgotten Witness, will actually be the one the I begin to submit to different publishing houses. I will not be self-publishing any more. Self-publishing is actually becoming more acceptable in the world of writing. But traditional ways are still the preference. Some self-published authors do quite well for themselves if they have a large following and a fantastic marketing plan. So, it really depends upon the effort one is willing to put into marketing their work.
Fountain: In my own writing I find myself doing this without even recognizing it, and I was just wondering if it was the same for you. Did you bestow any of your own personal characteristics or qualities onto any of the characters from 180 Stitches – or any other character that comes to mind in the creative process?
Kline: Each of my works are different. My first two books have characters based off of people I know and love. But I made sure to get their permission before I created a character with their personality. My Uncle’s personality is true and nearly identical to the character, Uncle Lewis, in 180 Stitches. My best friend Shannon, gave me permission to use her name as one of my characters. Gommie and Papa’s names and characters are identical to the true person. That is why my book is dedicated to them.
Fountain: What about the plot? Was any of it inspired by your own personal experiences?
Kline: The plot of 180 Stitches is based on a true story. So, yes. This first book was inspired by my own personal experiences and loss. It is a love story between two young lovers Tessie and Trey. Tessie, a Christian and Trey…not even close. But against the odds these two loved each other, yet neither said a word. They lived their lives not knowing how the other felt…until one day.
Fountain: This book obviously has Christian overtones. Was it intended that people of the Christian faith would be the audience for this book?
Kline: I am a Christian Fiction Author, so all of my books will have a Christian flavor to them but I don’t desire to limit my work to just Christians therefore I don’t dose my work with God. I add a sprinkle here and there so as not to put a bad taste in the readers mouth. Everyone is curious about God at one time or another in their life, therefore, it doesn’t hurt to tickle the taste buds a bit to entice the reader to seek out his or her own opinions of who God is for them.
Fountain: I too happen to believe that prayer is a powerful thing. Religion itself, however, seems to be such a touchy topic these days. Were you concerned at all that perhaps readers whom were not religiously inclined would have a distaste for the story?
Kline: For 180 Stitches, yes. This book in particular does contain a lot more “God” in it than any of my other works. I did not have a choice in the matter. If I wanted my book published I had to adhere to a certain set of standards that, that publisher had for his company. He required me to insert more “God” into the text than I originally had. This publisher sadly, forced me to change my work in order to publish the book. I learned a valuable lesson in self-publishing with my first book. I no longer use that publisher therefore the rest of my books have just the proper amount of God without being too much.
Fountain: I imagine being a published author must be such a privilege and an amazing accomplishment. On your end, how has publishing 180 Stitches affected your day-to-day life? It must be heaven!
Kline: Publishing my first book has only affected my day to day life by giving me a deeper passion and zeal for writing. Believe it or not, I don’t have an office. All of my novels, (I have 10 written which are still waiting to be published) I write at my kitchen table. I use headphones when the television is too loud and I love the quiet when the kids are all at school. I live and breathe to type. I love it…it is my passion. That is what publishing 180 Stitches did for me and how it changed my day to day life.
Fountain: Most importantly, what do you hope readers will take away from your novel, and the sequel as well? Is there a possible trilogy in the works?
Kline: I hope that when people read my works, they will see the heart and love of the characters and the truth of God. Love is something we all long for, something we all desire. The love of family, the heart break of loss. The warmth of friendship and the joy of finding that one person who completes you as a man or woman. 180 Stitches and its sequel, 1,000 Years, is just a tiny example of how strong the bond of love can be and how beautiful it is once we accept it into our life.
Fountain: Can you tell us how The Forgotten Witness is coming a long? Any details you’re willing to divulge?
Kline: I am so proud of this novel. The Forgotten Witness took me hours upon hours of researching the law in order to make it accurate. I had to study the OJ Simpson case and many others just to make sure I understood the law. This is my first mystery suspense and I love it! I am already getting some great reviews and I can’t wait to submit it finally to the publishers for publication. The book is finished and is editing right now. Once I make the final edits it will then be sent to publishing and I am so excited! All I can say about this book is it has twists and turns that even I hadn’t expected. One would think that authors know how everything is going to fall out…that is not the case with me. Many times my fingers take off typing and I am reading along with anticipation wondering what is going to happen next. That is exactly how it was for me while writing this book. Crazy…I know. It was so much fun to write. I can’t wait to get it into the hands of my readers.
Thank you so much for this interview!