I’m so happy to welcome Southern fiction author, Lindsey Brackett, to our blog. Lindsey is a general editor with Firefly Southern Fiction, an imprint of LPC Books. In addition, she writes a popular column for several North Georgia newspapers. So what’s she up to these days? Promoting her debut novel, Still Waters…
Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
Lindsey: I’m a former middle school teacher who always wanted to be a writer. When I started blogging in 2010, finally letting others read my words, the response was so encouraging, I left teaching to stay home and raise babies in 2011. This book had been in the back of my mind for a decade, little bits written here and there, but no doubt it wouldn’t be the book it is now if I hadn’t taken such a roundabout way to writing. I’ve been a MOPS coordinator, I direct and act in plays at the community theater (that’s my college background—theater), and I often volunteer at the local schools to talk about writing.. and wrangle the theater kids because I do love that stage.
What genre are your books? What draws you to this genre?
Lindsey: I keep myself as open as possible by calling it southern fiction—though Still Waters has hit many labels: women’s fiction, romance, even a little literary. Literary fiction is usually my genre of choice because I love language. I’m always much more concerned with the way the words fit together than what is actually happening in the story. Sometimes I think I should be a poet. But if a story is well-told with strong characters, an engaging plot, and beautiful language, I’m sold. I love southern fiction because it’s my background and I’m constantly trying to examine and understand both the South as I knew it twenty years ago, as my parents knew it fifty years ago, with the “New South” we are now. There are lovely, encouraging aspects about this region and its people—as well as the hardships and realities we like to ignore.
Do you work to an outline or prefer to see where an idea takes you?
Lindsey: Total pantser. I always just start writing with a loose plot outline in my head—as in, I know where this is going, I’m just not sure how we’re going to get there. Usually I can plot about a scene or two ahead. But the truth is, I write like I play chess. I know a few moves, but I don’t have a great overlying strategy formed. I have to get words on the page before I can go back and work on the big picture.
What is the hardest thing about writing?
Lindsey: Realizing scenes I love and worked so hard on will have to go. Recognizing that the plot line I thought was good is weak and needs more tension. Discovering that my characters need more depth than I’m allowing them to have, which means I need to change their circumstances. So, in short, revising, revising, revising. The perfectionist tendencies don’t help.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Lindsey: I’d love to be multi-published and reasonably well-known across the Christian and general fiction markets. But mostly, five years from now, I’d like to see myself not stressed about staring down two kids headed to college because I wrote some books and those books did well and I’m helping support my family with a job I love. Also (this is the ideal) I’d like to have a personal assistant and a housekeeper. Big dreams. #goals 🙂
I need to add assistant and housekeeper to my dreams also. 🙂 Thanks for dropping by, Lindsey!
Cora Anne Halloway has a history degree and a plan—avoid her own past despite being waitlisted for graduate school. Then her beloved grandmother requests—and her dispassionate mother insists—she spend the summer at Still Waters, the family cottage on Edisto Beach.
Despite its picturesque setting, Still Waters haunts her with loss. Here her grandfather died, her parents’ marriage disintegrated, and as a child, she caused a tragic drowning. But lingering among the oak canopies and gentle tides, this place also tempts her with forgiveness—especially since Nan hired Tennessee Watson to oversee cottage repairs. A local contractor, but dedicated to the Island’s preservation from development, Tennessee offers her friendship and more, if she can move beyond her guilt over his father’s death.
When the family reunion brings to light Nan’s failing health, Cora Anne discovers how far Tennessee will go to protect her—and Edisto—from more desolation. Now she must choose between a life driven by guilt, or one washed clean by the tides of grace.
Award-winning writer Lindsey P. Brackett once taught middle grades literature, but now she writes her own works in the midst of motherhood. A blogger since 2010, she has published articles and short stories in a variety of print and online publications including Thriving Family, Country Extra, HomeLife, Northeast Georgia Living, Splickety Magazine, Spark Magazine, and Southern Writers Magazine.
In both 2015 and 2017, she placed in the top ten for Southern Writers Magazine Best Short Fiction. Previously, Lindsey served as Editor of Web Content for the Splickety Publishing Group, and currently she is a general editor with Firefly Southern Fiction, an imprint of LPC Books. In addition, she writes a popular column for several North Georgia newspapers.
Still Waters, influenced by her family ties to the South Carolina Lowcountry, is her debut novel. A story about the power of family and forgiveness, it’s been called “a brilliant debut” with “exquisite writing.” A Georgia native, Lindsey makes her home—full of wet towels, lost library books, and strong coffee—at the foothills of Appalachia with her patient husband and their four rowdy children.