A Note on the Humor Style of Thank God for Mississippi

The concept of Thank God for Mississippi was always ninety percent humor. The South is full of legends of comedy, and I came from a family that was always ready to enjoy that. Growing up, I remember my mom flipping to the back of Southern Living to get to the humor piece first. Comedy laced with self-deprecation and Southern-style outrage/annoyance was always in the midst. Family storytelling with an emphasis on humor was and is very much a part of our lives. 

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Southern Rain Anniversary Q&A

Today is the third anniversary of the publication of Southern Rain on Amazon KDP. The process has been rewarding, humbling, fun, and, on the beginning, terrifying. To celebrate, I decided to do a Q&A based off questions that I have received about the Torn Asunder Series from readers over the past three years. Obviously, there are some spoilers because this is a deep dive into details of the story. Because I would like to say thank you for all of those who have loved the series, I decided to record my responses to these questions. But please bear with me and excuse the many “um’s” and pauses because I recorded them off-the-cuff. I hope you enjoy it!

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Mississippi and Me: Country Music, Inspiration for Past and Present

When I decided to set Thank God for Mississippi in Tennessee, it seemed as natural as breathing to include a passion for the greats of country music in my eponymous character’s repertoire of traits. She loves Dolly Parton and gets affronted when the main male character says something she perceives to be a slight to the Queen of Country Music. She has sung June Carter Cash songs at the annual town fair for years. She has a T-shirt that says: “DOLLY AND LORETTA AND PATSY,” (which is how, the main male character says, he located her at the town fair). You get the picture.

I’ve only just begun to realize the impact country music has had on my life. It’s strange to have grown up in Tennessee, not too far distant from Nashville, and not realize how immersed you are in country music. My childhood home is roughly 65 miles from Nashville, but you could pick up about five of the Nashville country stations and the local ones as well. Dolly Parton, the fairy godmother of Tennessee, is something more than a legend at this point, and we’re basically bottle-fed on her songs. So obviously, there is a natural connection with country music in the area I grew up—and in the area where Thank God for Mississippi is set.

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What Genre Am I?

My first series was a time-slip contemporary/historical with romantic elements. My next novel was sort of a niche Southern fiction/small town/humor with romantic elements. I think some of my initial audience was drawn to the immersive Civil War themes of the Torn Asunder Series, with some happening to fall in love with the modern characters along the way.

There is no question that, for marketing purposes, it would have been great for my next project to sort of resemble my previous series in some tangible way, in order to build on the following in that direction. I was aware of that and actually made the conscious decision not to do that.

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Thank God for Mississippi – Official Playlist

Ahead of the release of TGFM, I am also sharing my Spotify playlist. This includes songs that went into the creative process somehow, songs that were mentioned in the book, and songs that just generally represented the book, all of which I listened to during the drafting stage. Hope you enjoy!

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Q&A: Thank God for Mississippi

Hi Readers! I am excited to share the official Q&A for Thank God for Mississippi with you! I always open these to readers and anyone with an interest. We have some great questions, and I categorized them by topic. Starting off, there are questions about the writer (moi!), followed by questions about TGFM itself, which lead into questions about small town and Southern life, Southern literature in general—and then we bring it back to the book. The questions were very wide-ranging this time, but I think they’re all pertinent and related. Enjoy!

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Release Date – Thank God for Mississippi

It’s official! The release date for Thank God for Mississippi is set for March 7, 2022. That means it will be in your hands in a little more than a month! You can go ahead and preorder the Kindle version by following the link below. If you do this, the book will appear in your Kindle on March 7. For paperbacks, you will be able to order the book on March 7 (or maybe a couple of days before, if you watch Amazon closely!).

At the start, my books are always just available at Amazon. Once expanded distribution kicks in, you should be able to find it available for online order at a variety of places. And as always, they are available at KU if you are a member.

Follow the link below! (Note: if the link doesn’t work just yet, go to Amazon, and type: “Thank God for Mississippi Tara Cowan,” and it should take you to it!