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On The Table Read, “the best book magazine in the UK“, author T.J. Velliquette talks about her writing career and the story of her new book, Isabel.

JJ Barnes editor of The Table Read online creativity, arts and entertainment magazine

Written by JJ Barnes

www.jjbarnes.co.uk

I interviewed T.J. Velliquette about her life and career, what inspired her to start writing, and the work that went into her new book, Isabel.

Tell me a bit about who you are.

T.J. Velliquette on The Table Read
T.J. Velliquette

I have read books from the time I could hold them in my hands. I grew up and still reside in Michigan where I live with my husband and twin teenagers.  My great grandparents were immigrants and I grew up listening to their experiences coming to the States.  Those experiences inspired me to write my first two books.

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When did you first WANT to write a book?

My desire to write started in grade school.  We were given an assignment to write and illustrate our own book.  Mine was called The Witch and the Princess.

When did you take a step to start writing?

I took the first step after a bad bout of depression in 2012. 

How long did it take you to complete your first book from the first idea to release?

My first book Kezia took me 9 years to release.

How long did it take you to complete your latest book from the first idea to release?

My latest book Isabel took approximately 8 months. 

Isabel by T.J. Velliquette on The Table Read
Isabel

Focusing on your latest release. What made you want to write Isabel?

I knew that I wanted to continue the world that I created in my first book Kezia.

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What were your biggest challenges with writing it?

My biggest challenges were keeping consistency and switching from first person to third person. 

Who or what inspired you when creating your Protagonist?

Kezia was inspired by a ghost story from a book that I could not finish.  Isabel was inspired by family stories that I heard growing up.

Who or what inspired you when creating your Antagonist?

Niedra and Marcos are inspired by family members, they are a mixture of the worst traits of some of them. 

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What is the inciting incident of Isabel?

The inciting incident of both books is the transfer of the power to communicate with the dead that is passed down from mother to daughter.

What is the main conflict of Isabel?

The main conflict is how family choices can damage innocent children.

Did you plot Isabel in advance, or fly by the seat of your pants and write freely?

I fly by the seat of my pants and go where my muse takes me.

Kezia by T.J. Velliquette on The Table Read
Kezia

Did you get support with editing, and how much editing did Isabel need?

My books are still rough around the edges.  I used software to edit them both but did not have the money to invest in an editor. 

What is the first piece of writing advice you would give to anyone inspired to write a story?

I would tell them to write what you know.  Our experiences fuel our writing. 

Can you give me a hint about any further books you’re planning to write?

I am using Vella to dabble in erotica under a pen name. 

And, finally, are your proud of your accomplishment? Was it worth the effort?

I am proud that I finished my books and self-published.  It was worth the effort because so many of us have stories floating around inside our heads that need to be told.  When you connect your stories to a reader who loves them, it is so gratifying.

Pop all your book, website and social media links here so the readers can find you:

http://mybook.to/Kezia

http://mybook.to/Isabel

https://www.instagram.com/tjvelliquette/

tiktok.com/@tj.velliquette

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