To kick off my 2023 Author Spotlight series I’m joined by the wonderful BA Tortuga. We talked about writing cosy western romances, never wanting to do anything other than write, and what she considers to be the near perfect book.
Take it away BA…
First things first, please introduce yourself!
Hey y’all! I’m BA, and I’m happily married to my wife in the New Mexico mountains with our hound dogs, our fabric and yarn stash, and a huge collection of books.
Tell us a little bit about your writing style.
I write cowboys, mostly gay ones with lots of families and small towns, although I’ve written some spanking in my day. I guarantee good food, a laugh or two, and a happy ending.
Describe your books in only three words.
Heart-warming western romances
What are you working on right now?
Right now I’m in edits for a novel titled Back in the Saddle, which is the story of a single dad with a pair of twin daughters. He just needs a second or two of private time. Good thing his neighbor’s son has just moved back to town and is starting a private daycare.
Out of all your books, which one are you most proud of?
Oh, lord. That’s like asking me what my favorite letter is. I don’t have one. They’re all special in their own ways, and I wouldn’t give for any of them.
What or who (or both) has influenced you most as a writer?
My wife is the person that encouraged me to start writing gay romance. She’s my muse and my constant inspiration.
What inspired you to start writing?
I’ve never wanted to do anything else. I never once said I would grow up to do anything else, and I published my first piece in 1976 and never looked back. I love stories.
What’s your writing process like? Do you have a typical “writing day”?
I write Monday-Friday, and I write about 3000 words a day. Some days I’m done by noon. Some days I’m not done until midnight. I am the turtle, though. Slow and steady.
What comes first for you – the plot or the characters?
Always the characters. The plot comes far after. I’m really most fascinated by the characters and how they interact. 😀
What’s a book that you wish you’d written?
Oh, I would love to have written The Shining. I think that’s close to a perfect book.
If you could only write one trope for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
Second chances. No question. It’s my favorite to write and read, and it never bores me.
What would be your three desert island books?
The Stand and IT by Stephen King, and Jumping, Landing, Taking by my wife, Julia Talbot.
If one of your books could be made into a movie/TV series, which would you choose and who would you cast?
Oh, lord have mercy — I’d love to see Trial by Fire done, but I was last cool in 1983, so I don’t know any modern actors…
What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Do you have a secret passion or hobby that we don’t know about?
I make things — quilting, knitting, crocheting, rug making, punch needle, puzzles, embroidery, cooking, baking. I love them all.
Finally, what’s your favourite dinosaur?
Velicoraptor, of course. 😉
Western to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA TORTUGA spends her days with her hounds and her beloved wife, having mother-daughter dates, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting, and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. Following their own personal joys, BA and Julia heard the call of the high desert and they now live in the New Mexico mountains. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, her best friends, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.
Having written everything from fist-fighting cowboys to rural single dads to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which is committed to giving everyone their happily ever after. With books ranging from heart-warming stories of found families, to rodeo cowboys that are fighting to make a mark, to fiery passionate love affairs, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.