Ten Random Things About Bru Baker
by Bru Baker
I’ll be attending GayRomLit as a supporting author this year, and I’m equal parts terrified and excited as the date draws nearer. I haven’t attended GRL before, but I’ve heard a lot of authors and readers rave about how awesome it is. I can’t wait to find out for myself!
I know these lists are usually more of the “Top Ten” or “Ten things you didn’t know…” variety, but that puts a lot of pressure on me to be interesting. Frankly, all of my interesting experiences have already made their way into my books. So we’ll just go with calling this random personal trivia, okay? That lowers expectations, and I get to keep a few quirks under my hat for future book inspiration.
This month marks the two-year anniversary of my first contract with Dreamspinner Press. Seems hard to believe, since I currently have nine titles published (including two shorts in anthologies) and three coming out later this year, but it’s true.
I met the love of my life on the first day of college, and we’ve been together ever since. My characters tend to be sarcastic but perfect for each other because for the most part, my whole understanding of romance is based on my own experience with the geeky computer genius I met when I was seventeen. I’ve been with him for half my life, and our relationship is built on humor, compassion, and a shared intellectual curiosity about everything. He gets me in a way no one else does, and I want my characters to love each other that way as well. Flowers and candlelit dinners are nice, but for me, sarcastic bantering and small gestures are the best kind of foreplay. (Which should be pretty obvious, since it’s the one common thread through all my books!)
I am absolutely terrible at remembering names. I called my neighbor the wrong name for five years. Five years. And worst of all, the poor guy responded to it every time. I’ve tried mnemonic devices. I’ve tried repeating names back in conversation, even though that often comes across as creepy. (“Hi, Hal. It’s nice to meet you, Hal. I can’t let you do that, Hal.”) Please don’t be offended if I get yours wrong–or eye up your name tag repeatedly–at GRL.
I’m 6′ of attitude packed into a 5’2” frame. Okay, not really. I like to think that I’m pretty BAMF, but most people who have met me describe me as sweet and cheerful. But my internal monologue is scathing, I promise. I’m also rounding generously to get to 5’2”. My second grader steals my socks because our feet are the same size.
I can’t function without Post-Its. I use them for everything, from plotting out novels to writing to-do lists to tucking cartoon sketches into my kids’ lunches. The wall above my desk is littered in Post-Its. There are so many that I have to color code them by topic. It’s pretty shameful, especially since I also set up Wikis (that are then never referred to again, see previous sentence about Wall ‘o Post-Its) to keep track of characters and plot arcs.
I have a guard cat. He plays fetch, too. His name is Pete, and he’s a rescue cat who must be part ninja, since he can open closed doors and child-locked cabinets. He also beats everyone to the door when we have visitors and tries his hardest to physically keep himself between the kids and any strangers who come over. When they were babies, he’d bring them stuffed animals when they cried. We’re pretty sure he thinks he’s actually a dog.
My house is always cleanest when I’m on deadline with a book. I am a world-class procrastinator. But I feel guilty doing something fun when I’m putting off work, so I make myself take care of tasks that fall to the bottom of my to-do list instead. The day before the manuscript for Playing House was due I steam cleaned all the carpets and put together a bookshelf that had been sitting in a box in my study for two months.
I was born in Hawaii but grew up in the Midwest. There’s a picture of me taken a few days after we moved, sitting in the snow just absolutely bawling. Our poor dog is standing next to me, up to his chest in a drift, looking just as upset as I am. And our reaction to snow and freezing temperatures never improved. We were meant for warmer climates, Bo and I.
I have been trying to finish the book Point Counter Point for eighteen years. I dig it out every year or two and start it with fresh eyes, but I’ve never been able to make it through more than a few chapters of the Aldous Huxley book. It annoys me, because it’s literally the only book I’ve ever started and not finished. Maybe this is finally the year.
Today is my birthday. I was at a Guster concert on my birthday four years ago, and the band sang an ode to 10/10/10 that was absolutely the best birthday serenade ever. Today I turn 35, which seems a bit unreal since I’m still waiting for some magical maturity to kick in so I actually feel like an adult. Maybe that’s at 36?
So to sum up, if you see me at GRL, don’t be offended if I blank on your name. If it’s below 70F I’ll probably be wearing at least one sweater and grumbling about not being fit to live at this latitude. I’ll have a polite smile on my face, but if we talk long enough I’ll eventually lose my filter and start sharing my internal snark monologue. And most importantly, I’ll still be in birthday celebration mode, so come have a drink with me!
Hit me up at GRL for some great swag. I’ll be carrying around book lights to give away!
About Bru Baker
Bru Baker is a freelance journalist who writes for newspapers and magazines. Fiction makes her happiest, whether it’s creating her own characters or getting caught up in someone else’s. She and her husband live in the Midwest with their two young children, whose antics make finding time to write difficult but never let life get boring.
As part of her GRL stop, Bru has offered up an eBook of winner’s choice from her backlist (excluding anthologies) to one lucky person! The giveaway starts now and ends October 16, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. To enter, just click the link below!
Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.