By Tracee Garner
The Watts sisters have spent most of the lives focused on their careers-until big sister Geena launches her own design company, Watts Your Style. Not only does she find success, but she finds true love with her client Dr. Justin Webster, a recovering alcoholic. After getting married and giving birth to her son, Geena looks to her sisters to help run her company and hopes in the process they, too, will find true love.
At her older sibling's request, middle sister Vashton returns to Virginia from North Carolina where she has run to escape the demons of her past and finds herself falling head over heels for Romeyo Payton, her ex-best friend's brother-in-law who is raising his nephew.
At her sisters' urging, baby girl, Ellie, relocates her virtual job as a professional organizer to help out as well. When rude client Husten Montgomery comes in with his bratty daughter, Ellie is determined to ignore her attraction and stay as far away as possible from the handsome man to avoid reminders of the loss of her own daughter.
Despite their close bond and their drive, each sister comes to realize true love is the greatest gift of all.
Tracee Lydia Garner is a national best-selling author. Family Affairs was not the first story she wrote but it was the first successfully completed and the one she says started it all. FAMILY AFFAIRS appears in the All That & Then Some anthology with BET/Sepia Books. Family Affairs won the grand-prize award, receiving an advance, a book contract, a trip to New York to accept her award and most importantly having her work published by BET Books.
Her fourth release, Love Unchosen, is three books in one about the Watt women: three, entrepreneurial sisters on the brink of love.
Tracee maintains that she is a creative writer as well as a journalist that enjoys writing "how to" articles, and articles of personal experience, both tragic and inspirational on the disability, African-American and woman experience, not necessarily in that order.
Tracee maintains that as her writing career takes center stage, she will always be disabled, and thus she must and always will be committed to the advancement and removal of barriers for persons with disabilities.
Tell us why you jumped from romance to Christian fiction?
Even I as a human being have a set place to be. I use a wheelchair and I have, according to doctor’s (limited) knowledge, a “neuromuscular disease”. For other people, in layman’s terms, I’m a Jerry’s Kid and I have Muscular Dystrophy (MD), labels get on my nerves, but I had to pick some place to be simply so I can be placed on a shelf next to similar genres. I chose to write, what I feel is still a sensual story without depicting the consummation of the relationship. I still feel because I showed two people in bed together “naked” rethinking being in bed together (they feel a conviction come over them, too J ) that I still may be tossed out of the Christian fiction realm. I’m sure there are specific guidelines for each of these categories because I have read them, and I don’t know that I’ve adhered to ALL of them well enough.
In self publishing there’s no editor telling me to do a, b, and c, to make it fit. And yes, that was a looooonnngggg way of answering this question, the short answer is that it’s simply closest to where the general public, the booksellers will place me and it’s what I’ve been convicted to do.
What do you do to make time for yourself?
I love to shop, though I’ve been trying to curtail that. I am into cultural things and just this summer I saw The Color Purple in New York (with Fantasia) and it was awesome. I almost felt as if the spirit of playwriting came over me but we shall see. It’s coming to Baltimore, MD too, which is closer to where I live, and I enjoyed it so much, I’ll be front and center to see it again in 2008.
Let’s see, I try to write a list of the things I’m going to do every year. Sometimes it gets tossed out the window. I do manage a few things on it that includes museums, eateries, plays, movies, a new task or hobby and etc; things that I would like to see, learn and do. I also have a life list which has received a lot of talk about in the past; there are about 101 things to do on it and I hope to do each and every one of them. I’ve done quite a few things on the list and forgot about the list, so I really believe in the power of writing it down and even the subconscious knows, hey, you wrote to do this and you’re going to do it, whether you remember us or not!
I love making lists; it gets it out of my brain and just allows me to chill. I have tons and tons and just making time to write them, to write about my experience after doing something is “me time” to me.
Other than that, reading, writing, and chilling out. Oh my new thing, I’m addicted to watching old school on You Tube. What a great invention. Rene and Angela, Luther Vandross, and New Edition, I could spend hours on that site alone.
Come along with Tracee as she visit other stops on her tour. Each site will feature more of her interview.