Ruby Tuesday: Tina Beckett

Welcome to another edition of Ruby Tuesday, the day when we put one of our Rubies on the spot, force her to drink a truth serum, and meet the woman behind the ruby slippers.  Today our brave volunteer is contemporary and romantic suspense scribe Tina Beckett!  Take it away, Tina!


Name: Tina Beckett

2009 GH Category & Title: THE SURROGATE/ Romantic Suspense

What Happened to That Book: Published by Carina Press in 2012 and retitled IN HIS SIGHTS

What subgenre(s) do you write? I write contemporary romance and romantic suspense.

When did you start writing? (And why?) Okay, so my reason for writing is a bit unconventional. I was living in Portugal with my hubby and ran out of English reading material (before digital books were available). I decided to try my hand at writing my own book and loved the process so much that I kept on going. I’ve grown to love writing as much as I love reading!

How many books have you written? Oh my gosh, I think I’ve lost count. I wrote four entire manuscripts before I even knew it was possible to do something with them. I hit the contest circuit, won a few, and received requests from editors. That’s when it hit me that maybe I should actually start submitting my work to publishers.

What are you working on now? A medical duet with another writer. It’s a New Year’s Eve story set at a ski resort during a blizzard. Since we’ve had a ton of snow in Ohio this year, it seems rather fitting.

Tina’s March Brazilian Brothers Release

If you could grow up to be one writer, who would you want to be? Easy. Stephen King. I shivered under the covers with so many of his books. They’re all kinds of wonderful.

Where do you get your best ideas? From my kids and my hubby. They’re always doing something crazy. My husband’s diy wounds have found their way into several of my books.

What are your favorite subgenre(s) to read? Romantic Suspense, contemporary, YA and horror.

What was the first romance you ever read? It was a Harlequin by Violet Winspear. I snagged it from my mom’s stash of romances (without her knowledge).

What was the first job you ever had? Babysitter.

What is the worst job you’ve ever had? I can’t name one. I’ve learned something important from every job I’ve had!

Marital status?  Kids?  Grandkids?  Married with three kids, a dog and a grand-kitty.

Where are you from? Nowhere. Okay, so that’s not exactly true, but my dad was in the Navy, and we traveled all over, so I don’t really have a place I consider “home.”

If money were no object, where would you go on your dream vacation? Scotland. Wait…Australia. Or maybe Fiji. There are so many places I’d like to visit.

What is the most interesting place you’ve ever traveled to? Brazil. I lived there for almost ten years and loved it! The people are so kind.

The Other Half of Tina’s Brazilian Brothers Duet – This March!

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done? I took barrel-racing lessons…in Portuguese!

What three words would you use to describe yourself? Stubborn, stubborn…and stubborn.

What piece of random trivia would you use to entertain a new acquaintance at a cocktail party? I am definitely a wallflower at cocktail parties. I’d much rather hear about other people’s adventures.

What’s your astrological sign? Scorpio

What is your Myers-Briggs designation? ISFJ (The S and F characteristics are borderline, while the I and J are strongly embedded)

Which TV show are you most addicted to right now? Revolution and Elementary

What is your favorite movie of all time? When Harry Met Sally

What hobby takes up the most of your time? Remodeling our 100 year old home. I’m currently sanding down plank floors in our upstairs bedrooms.

What advice do you have for new writers just starting out? Never give up. I know it seems obvious, but it’s true. If you truly love writing, it won’t be a passing phase. It’ll be something you come back to over and over.

What is the best writing advice you ever received? Ha! The same advice I gave in the previous question: Never give up.

Great advice. Thank you, Tina!

And as a bonus today, here’s a little more about Tina’s upcoming Brazilian Brothers Duet:

Two brothers, ripped apart by fate…drawn together by a common thread.
TO PLAY WITH FIRE: Marcos Pinheiro shouldn’t be thinking about colleague Maggie Pfeiffer. But her innocent fire has him reliving their one wild, shameless night. Maggie’s heart has been buried for so long – only in Marcos’s arms has she ever felt free from her past demons. But is Marcos’s passion enough to banish the shadows for ever?
THE DANGERS OF DATING DR. CARVALHO: When Lucas Carvalho arrives at a hospital with gunshot wounds, Sophia Limeira recognizes him instantly. Lucas is now a drop-dead gorgeous plastic surgeon, but he still has the same dark, soulful eyes she remembers from their childhood orphanage. Sophia’s determined to keep her distance – Lucas is dangerous for any woman! But can she resist the lure of this bad-boy surgeon…?

25 responses to “Ruby Tuesday: Tina Beckett”

  1. Oh my gosh. We must have been separated at birth, sort of, Scorpio sister, except my dad was army and my roots are firmly planted. We’ll have to talk barrel racing. Love it. Of course that part of my life many years ago, but still fond memories.

    I always wondered how I could be a wallflower under the Scorpion stars. How does that work? I’ve met the nicest people standing on the sidelines. WINK

    • I know, Autumn! The sidelines is the kickingest place to be!

      I adored barrel racing. Looking at it from the sidelines, it looks terrifying, but once you’re up there, and you and your horse are moving in sync, it’s exhilarating! When we first started out, we would trot the pattern, then we would lope it, then we would go flat out. On that third run, the horses were as excited as we were, they could barely wait to get out there and run! Fun times. I do miss it. But I’m doing Western Pleasure at the moment and enjoying it.

      • I love trail riding. Many, many memories of cold beans and jerky under the stars on over-night rides. I miss my horses. Sigh.

        • I love trail riding as well, but have never camped out on the trail. My hubby is actually afraid of horses, so he wants no part of that aspect of my life–I have to rely on friends as company. Wish you were closer, we could hit the trails together! 🙂

  2. Sally Eggert says:

    Hi, Tina! I am so impressed that you took barrel-racing lessons, and in a second language!! I moved to France six months ago, and I’m still proud of myself if I can get through making an appointment over the phone in French without too much stammering. 😛

    I had forgotten about the difficulty of finding English-language books in other places! The last time I lived in a non-English-speaking place was before ebooks, too. We were lucky, though–there was one English-language bookstore across town from us.

    But writing the book you want to be reading is a perfect reason to start writing, and the best motivation to stick with it, I think. As much of a bummer as it must have been to run out of books, as a reader, I’m selfishly very glad that circumstances got you started writing. 😛 My circumstances were a little different, but I remember vividly how great it felt to have all those stories blooming inside my head out of what had started as a moment of silence.

    Thanks for sharing! Next time I see you, I’m going to ask you to teach me some Portuguese! 🙂

    • Hi Sally! Living in Paris must be dreamy. We lived in Portugal for seven years before moving to Brazil, and the thing I miss most about Europe are the sidewalk cafes that are around every corner. We would walk to a store for a few things and then stop for a coffee. Hubby would have a “bica” (what they called an espresso in Lisbon), and I would have a “garoto” which is a coffee with a ton of milk in it (garoto means kids, so it was what the children were allowed to drink).

      Did you already know French going in? It seriously took me six months before I could even really listen and understand what was being said. Before that, everything basically sounded like one long word. I couldn’t even make out the spaces between them. I truly love speaking two languages now, though.

      • Sally Eggert says:

        Ah, the cafes! And they even make them comfortable for sitting outside in winter!

        I had some French before we moved–some when I was little, then a few semesters in college–but I had never really used it until we started coming here for my husband’s last job. So I was building on it gradually, one visit at a time, but I’ve definitely had to work at it since we moved here. I think I’ve gotten better at listening instead of panicking the way I did at first, so I understand more now than I did fresh off the plane, but it’s definitely time for me to start some classes and get systematic about learning more.

        Did you speak any Portuguese before you got there? Wow, with seven years in Portugal and ten years in Brazil, you must be fully bilingual now! I don’t know how long we’ll be here, but one of my goals is to get as close as I possibly can to full fluency before we move again. You can learn a lot of a new language in a year, but I think it can take a really long time to bridge the gap between proficiency and true fluency. At least for me I think it will. I grew up with Spanish around me and studied it in school and college, but I’m still not fully bilingual. Learning a foreign language is probably one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had so much fun working at. Right up there with writing a novel! 🙂

        • We had no Portuguese at all going in. It was recommended that we learn it on the ground once we got there as most courses use Brazilian Portuguese. I see why now, after living in both countries. The accents are very different, and words that we used every day in Portugal are considered pejorative in Brazil. The word for “girl” in Portugal, for example, (rapariga) means prostitute in Brazil. So we had to unlearn a whole lot of things once we switched countries.

          I still have a bit of an American accent when I speak, but I would consider us fluent at this point. When my hubby and I carry on conversations between us at home, we speak in English, but are forever throwing in random Portuguese words when they capture the meaning better than the English words. It’s fun! It has messed up my writing a bit, though. Because preposition usage is different. The Portuguese (or Brazilians) don’t dream *of* something or *about* something. They dream *with* something. So sometimes I have to stop and think about how I’m using certain words!

  3. Oh, Tina, you’re a woman after my own heart in so many ways. LOL Three kids. Military brat. Writes RS and contemporary. And, wow, I’d love to go to Scotland, Australia, and/or Fiji. We went to Bora Bora once, and if we ever get back to that area, I swore we’d try Fiji. It looks beautiful! So nice to get to know you better!

    • 🙂 Anne Marie, I think there are quite a few of us military brats roaming the earth! You *have* to keep writing RS–your Mindhunter series is chilling and wonderful. I loved reading them!

      Lying on a beach in Fiji would be divine. Even though I’d be the one slathered white with sunscreen and perched under a huge shady umbrella. I bet Bora Bora was gorgeous as well!

      Ruby Tuesdays are so much fun, aren’t they? I’ve loved learning more about everyone!

  4. Amanda Brice says:

    Great interview, Tina! I love Ruby Tuesdays!!!!

  5. Tamara Hogan says:

    My mom calls our cats “grandcats” as well. And she even pet-sits! 😉

    If there’s an empty chair up against the wall at the next party we both attend, count on me to join you!

    • I’ll reserve a chair for you, Tammy!! I’m fine one on one at a party, but put twenty people all together, and I start easing my way back to the side.

      And our grandkitty lives with us now. My daughter recently relocated to another state and left grandkitty in our care. Um, yeah…she may have to pry him away from me now. We’re writing buddies. He sits in my lap (where my laptop used to go), while I twist my body to the left and try to type on a keyboard that is how off to the side. 🙂

  6. Elizabeth says:

    I was almost a military brat. My dad left the USAF when I was a baby. Then he started working for IBM and, yes, I Been Moved. However, he did retire from the Air National Guard. I have all sorts of souvenirs from the Azores 🙂

    I love how you balance the medical-speak with the setting. (DR’S GUIDE!) And you have the best covers.

    • I love the IBM=I Been Moved. Too funny! I never made it to the Azores when we lived in Portugal, but I’ve heard they’re beautiful (and windy). The blue and white tiles in Portugal are gorgeous. As are the cobblestone sidewalks, which are works of art. I’m getting homesick just thinking about it!

      Thanks so much for the kind words about Dr’s Guide! It’s fun writing different settings!

  7. Tina, so nice to learn more about you!

  8. Laurie Kellogg says:

    Ha! Barrel racing. I love it! Love your interview, Tina!


    • I admit, I had a few second thoughts about barrel racing once my horse turned on the speed that first time (even though I’ve been around horses most of my life), but the second time around, the adrenaline kicked in and it was great!

  9. Vivi Andrews says:

    I’m late to the party, but I wanted to say how much I loved this interview, Tina. Starting to write because you ran out of books in Portugal is one of my favorite origin-of-the-writer stories ever. 🙂


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