readers. Today’s guest is novelist Christine
Potter. We’re chatting about her newest YA paranormal romance novel with a
dash of time travel, Gracie’s Time.
awarding a $30 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a
lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form
below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit
her other tour stops and enter there, too!
Potter lives in a very old, haunted house, not far from Sleepy Hollow. She’s
the author of the time-traveling Bean Books series, on Evernight Teen: Time
Runs Away With Her, In Her Own Time, What Time Is It There?
and Gracie’s Time. She’s also a poet, with several books in print (the
most recent is called Unforgetting). Christine loves all kinds of music,
DJ’s, and plays dulcimer and guitar.
Christine. Please share a little bit about your current release.
Gracie’s Time is Bean Four, the
fourth book in the Bean series. Gracie Ingraham is a high school sophomore during
the Cuban Missile Crisis and her parents believe the world is on the edge of
nuclear war. Fortunately, they have something planned to keep their daughter
safe. The Ingrahams are Travelers—time travelers–and Gracie shares their gift.
So they decide to send Grace to the 1890s and a wealthy uncle in Victorian-era
Manhattan. Problem is, she’s never traveled in time before. She goes forward
instead of back—and lands in 2018. Gracie has gone from transistor radios to
iPhones, from duck-and-cover drills to active shooter drills. Because this is
indeed a Bean book, characters from the original series have good-sized
roles—but maybe not how you’d think. Gracie’s
Time makes a perfectly good stand-alone read, by the way, but I bet you’ll
want to read the first three books when you’ve finished this one!
What inspired you to write this book?
was originally thinking of a story separate from the Bean characters, maybe one
that would be short story length for an anthology. I wanted to write it in
first person, from Gracie’s point of view. And then, not so many words into my
first draft, the Parkland shooting happened. I already had Gracie in 2018 by
then. I knew I had to deal with the threat of gun violence in schools. So I
Excerpt from Gracie’s Time:
a moment I thought about how terrible it would be if a nuclear war started
right that minute, before I could escape to the past. Then I thought about Mom
and Dad. I hoped they’d come get me from the 1890s if there weren’t a war. I
didn’t want them to die. I didn’t want anyone to die. I really wanted there to
be a future.
platform. He looked over his shoulder to be sure no one was around. “Are you ready?” He took
my hands, squeezed them, and then he let go. “It’s the right time and place! Go
on back, Gracie!”
It was morning—and certainly not the 1890s. Nobody named Augustus introduced
himself to me.
if you get confused when you Travel, you should always look at what kind of
lights there are in buildings and what clothing people have on to help place yourself.
But what I saw only confused me more.
jacket. People in puffy grey and brown overcoats stood in clumps, staring at
what I first thought were really tiny transistor radios. I learned that same
day those things are called smart phones. I’d missed the 1890s by over a hundred years—and
in the wrong direction.
everyone got on it but me. Bingo, the future! I’d just broken one of the biggest Rules
What exciting story are you working on next?
also write poetry, and I’ve been busy submitting a lot of new work. I’m trying
to decide what’s next for Gracie. There’s a real ending on this story, but
there are plenty of places my new (and old) characters could go next.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
can’t remember a time in my life when I couldn’t read—I taught myself before
kindergarten—and so I can’t really remember a time when I wasn’t making up
stories and poems. I actually wrote some (bad) time travel stories and ghost
stories when I was in junior high. I think I started calling myself a writer
confidently when the first book in the Bean series came out a few years ago,
even though I had published a whole lot of poetry by then. Somehow or other
having a novel in print gave me the right to own the word.
Do you write full-time? If so, what’s your work day like? If not, what do
you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
a retired high school English teacher. I guess that’s why I never had fiction
in print until I got out of the classroom: not enough hours in the day. I write
every day now, either poetry or fiction. I get up, read the news, update my
social media, and head for my office. I take an exercise break midday and then
go back to writing until my musician husband gets home from practicing. He’s a
church organist, so he does an awful lot of that outside the house. He has a
practice organ at home that is NOT a friend of my writing!
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
love both pop and classical music. All of my books have a lot of music in
them—and characters who are musicians and DJs. Bean Four, Gracie’s Time, has everything from “Over the Rainbow” to
the soundtrack to Hamilton.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
wanted to be a writer pretty early on. I had a brief flirtation with wanting to
be an archeologist, but then I realized I’d probably be excavating graves and
that freaked me out.
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
am the world’s oldest young adult. As a retired teacher, I believe you become
the age of the kids you teach. I taught high schoolers. A large part of me has
been sixteen years old—for decades!
Thank you for being a guest on my blog!