Tracy James Jones was raised between Dallas and Waxahachie, Texas, and considers both cities as “home.” At Navarro College Jones majored in Journalism / minor in Mass Communication. Before college, Jones worked as an actor with the local Community Theater, and as an extra/stand-in for feature films. As a freelance writer/novelist, Jones has written several college introductory letters, other contract writing projects, newspaper articles, and three published novels. Literary portfolio also includes a screenplay adaptation of an original fiction novel, “Searching For Eden.” Recent release, “Secrets & Lies”-2011, is a multicultural romantic drama which is also being formatted for film.
Greetings, everyone. My name is Tracy James Jones and I am an independent author, blogger, and book reviewer from Dallas and Waxahachie, Texas. My current portfolio includes four novels, two screenplay projects and a collection of short stories. It is my honor to share my journey into writing with you today.
For starters, as an only child, my first loves were music, movies, and books. Though I initially wanted to act and sing, reading was already an important part of my life. I actually got my first library card in the fifth grade and read every “Charlie Brown” and Dr. Seuss book I could get my hands on. By the time I was thirteen I anxiously started my first diary, which is basically something I still do to this day, and my love of writing continued right into high school, where I often wrote poetry about the pitfalls of being a misunderstood teenager of color. With the opportunity to hopefully write for my high school newspaper, I signed up for a journalism class, taught by one the most influential teachers I had ever met in my life. My dream of becoming a writer began the first day of her class. Though I never made it as a writer for the school paper, the dream of writing had already set in.
I was in college, majoring in journalism and mass communications, when I was offered my first writing project. It was the opportunity to write an article about the life story of a local boxer and his journey to success after having been hit by a car and partially paralyzed when he was kid. That story was published in the local newspaper and became the push I needed to get started writing my own short stories and novel ideas.
My first full-length novel was a three-hundred plus pages mess of an interracial romance. The story was there but the structure and editing were all wrong, so I put that work aside and went on with regular life until I had the time to read and learn more on how to do what I needed to do to make my writing work. Again, my local library came to the rescue with a whole section of books dedicated to writing. Thanks to all the books I read, and after a crazy spring-break trip to Las Vegas, I wasted no time diving into my next writing project.
“Searching For Eden,” which today would be described as a New Adult Male Adventure, is the story of a young guy who ran away from home in the middle of the night or he would have been dead by the light of day. That tagline set the pace of the whole story for the young central character, who grew into adulthood, basically running for his life from California, to Las Vegas, to the beaches of South Padre Island, Texas and his love, sex and life-threatening adventure with the people he met along the way. The outline for the story, based loosely on someone I met, became my very first published novel and screenplay. The first print edition led to a book signing tour to nineteen cities across Texas and Arizona, a high school speaking engagement, and an author appreciation event at my local library.
With the semi-success I had gained with my first published book, I made a connection with a national bookstore chain and had planned to continue the tour with them across the U.S. That dream was sidelined by real life situations and an unexpected illness that required open-heart surgery with a lengthy recovery period. During my recovery, I managed to write an outline for that first book to become a series, but ended up rewriting some of my early short stories and drafts for two other novel instead. Considering how much the world and the publishing/entertainment industry has changed since I first started to write, my last two novels are more focused on giving a platform and voice to the LGBT people of color who are rarely seen or heard and often misunderstood.
“Secrets & Lies,” one of the two releases, is a provocative, uncensored, character-driven, emotional journey into the private lives of four central characters in a small Texas town. At the heart of the story is a beautiful transgender woman of color who questions her personal worth as she fights to keep the life and love she has always wanted. Even the elements of true confessions get lost in translation as the details of who these people really are brings them together in a surprising, yet necessary finale that will change their lives forever…
In addition to my writing, I am also a reader for various novel award events that include The RONE` Awards (Romance Novel), The Rainbow Books Award (LGBT), and last year I read for the HuffPost50/AARP Memoir Awards. Also, I would like to add that one of my short stories, “The Crush,” is featured on the Huffington Post and has since been requested by the International Baccalaureate Organization to use in their world-wide, middle-years education program for language and literature teacher support material. My extended social media networks include my blog, Facebook, Pinterest & Twitter.
In closing, I would like to sincerely thank all of your for your time spent getting to know me, as well as the Hostess, Christina OW, for inviting me to share my writing journey with you. Be Happy. Be You. Happy reading!
~ Accidental Activist & Indie Author
Tracy James Jones
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