Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Interview: Tami Clayton

Each Wednesday is Wonderstruck Interview day. Hearing other people’s stories is a great way to see things from a different perspective and perhaps find something new to apply to our own lives.

This week our interviewee is Tami Clayton, a writer of young adult and middle grade novels and an avid traveler. 

What have you been wonderstruck by recently?

While there are things out in nature that always amaze me, I am constantly wonderstruck by the things people say to others and do for others. The generosity and kindness given so freely often brings tears to my eyes. Recently, a friend I've known since high school said the most touching thing to me over the phone. I, of course, cried. It totally made my evening. I've continued to reflect on it since and am so thankful for her friendship.

What part of your day are you grateful for?

It's difficult for me to pinpoint just one part for which I'm grateful. I love that first sip of coffee in the morning. I love seeing the sweet, innocent, sleeping faces of my kids just before I wake them for the day. I love seeing my awesome officemates/friends at work and getting the chance to "check in" with them. Coming home at the end of the day and seeing the friendly faces of my cats always warms my heart. I'm grateful for those times I'm in the kitchen cooking dinner, listening to some good music and sipping a glass of wine. And I love when the house is quiet in the evenings and I spend it writing, watching a favorite show, or reading.

What part of your day is tough? How do you move through it?

The hardest part of my day is getting up out of bed. Seriously. I have such erratic sleep anymore and am always running a sleep deficit that it's quite the challenge to drag myself out of bed most days.

What do you wish your were more conscious of?

I am working on being more conscious of how my silence affects others. I spend so much time in my head sorting through my thoughts and feelings as well as listening to the thoughts and feelings of others that I can sometimes be oblivious to how little I've said when I'm in a group of people.

How do you stay focused on what is truly important to you?

I believe the truly important stuff comes down to the people in your life and the connections you have with them. It is the core of our humanity. When I notice I'm too focused on things and outcomes and the trivial banality that I let take over my life, I have to remind myself to pause, get out of my head and reconnect with the wonderful people in my life.

About Tami Clayton:

I am a YA and Middle Grade writer with a passion for travel, all things dark chocolate and coffee, and reading everything I can get my hands on. I am a child and family therapist by day, writer by night, and a dreamer of far off lands where I can explore new cultures. I am currently working on my first novel.

You can find me at my blog: www.tamiclayton.wordpress.com
Or follow me on Twitter: @TamiClayton1
Or hang out with me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tami-Clayton/260685870667371

14 comments:

  1. This is such a great series!
    Tami, I love your answers. I can totally relate to the trouble getting out of bed part... but usually once I manage to haul myself out of bed, things get better from there. With coffee, of course. :)

    Loved reading this - livewonderstruck always gets my day off to a good start!

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  2. So it's young adult and middle grade. I'm sure it will be well received - they will love the understated humor!

    Thanks Sherri and Tami for an interesting interview.

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  3. Great stuff, Tami! It's a very good reminder not to let the task list drown out the important people in our lives :)

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  4. [...] you’ll find me hanging out with Sherri Martin-Hutchins at her blog, Live Wonderstruck (such a cool name, isn’t it?), where she interviewed me about the things that leave me [...]

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  5. Thanks so much for having me here today, Sherri! I love this series and getting the chance to know your interviewees through these thoughtful questions.

    Laird - Yes, coffee has become an essential part of waking up. Can you believe I used to only drink decaf? Italy ruined me forever on that... :)

    Suzanne - My snarky side gets a good workout when I'm writing my teen characters. Keeps me from using it too much in my 'real life'. ;)

    Alina - To-do lists can take over our lives if we don't keep a leash on 'em. ;)

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  6. Love that pic! These questions were thought-provoking and unusual. Very much enjoyed your answers, Tami (I have an erratic sleep pattern too, so can relate).

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  7. S.M., this Wednesday series is fascinating. Each person you interview offers such great insights to Being Wonderstruck.

    Tami, your answers were terrific, especially on the last question. "Trivial banality" I'm stealing that term!

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  8. This is simply the coolest series! I love having a look to see who is standing behind the curtain each week,and was especially jolly and gushing to find the ever-interesting, wise,and wonderful,Tami, here.

    I do particularly love learning that you, too, have the same predilection of silence in the midst of a roomful. I have to work on that one as well, but it requires conscientious attention to divert myself from all the noise of my interior thoughts long enough to contribute to the world at large.

    Great fun interview, Sherri & Tami!

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  9. I agree. This is a wonderful, inspiring series. I learn something new about each of my blogger friends. Tami, I can't wait to read your first novel. It will be great.

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  10. Oh, I so hear you about the struggle to get out of bed every day! I have periodic bouts of insomnia, and even on a good night it can take me up to an hour to fall asleep. My brain does not shut down easily. Mornings are such a challenge, especially in this early-riser-oriented world!

    Thank you for sharing, Tami.

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  11. Snap on a few things, Tami! Getting out of bed... first sip of coffee... sipping wine...

    Sherri - this is definitely a great series - and a great focus for a blog! I think we all need a little more wonder in our lives.

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  12. Debra - Thanks for the kind words. I think there's a whole club of us erratic sleepers out there. Sounds like I'm in good company that way.

    Judythe - Feel free to use trivial banality however you desire. :) It really summed up all of the "stuff" that gets in my way throughout the day and detracts from the important stuff.

    Barbara - It's good to know other people are working on getting out of their heads and into conversations. I've always been a better listener than talker but then no one gets to know me that way.

    Janice - Thanks for the vote of confidence on the novel. Now if I can just get it done... :)

    Rabia - I know what you mean about the mind not shutting off easily. It takes me a while to fall asleep, though reading gives my mind focus and helps quiet it. I've wished to be a morning person but I think it goes against my nature.

    Ellen - Sounds like we have some things in common. :)

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  13. I'm slow to the wonderstruck party, but me too, I love this blog. Tami, it's so nice to get to know you better. I wonder how many writers would agree with you that they often find themselves silent.
    Lots going on in the head.

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  14. Yes, Sharon - lots and lots going on in the head. Writing some of it down has always been a necessity and now that I've fully embraced the title of 'writer', organizing and then writing it down has become the necessity. I can't imagine NOT writing. :)

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