Question number one, do you own a scale? Does it show weight in grams and does it do 1/10, or 1/100 readings?
If not then you need to stick to a recipe like pop's:
If you own a scale then you can do what's mentioned above you can do a dry rub cure successfully.
I prefer to use cure #1. It is readily available online at many places including Amazon.
I really prefer the dry cure method, and cold smoking over several days. I also like to age the bacon after curing prior to smoking and after smoking prior to packing.
A good point you made is your wife wants plain bacon. I would do just as you plan. Try one plain season the other. Keep a log of all the exact ingredients. Then adjust the next batch as needed.
Since your are using TQ, make sure and do a fry test after the curing time. TQ can be overly salty and you may need to soak the bacon in cold water to remove the salt. Fry a small piece and taste. If too salty soak in ice cold water. Change water every 30min-1hour. A halved potato in the water will help remove salt faster. At each water change fry another chunk until it's to your liking.
For seasoning, I prefer to dry rub after the cure, but before firming the pellicle. My current favorite is a light dusting of white pepper and garlic. Simple is sometimes the best.
Choose your wood wisely. A good mild wood is a great place to start. Cherry, peach, pecan, Apple, cob are all good woods to start with.
As mentioned I cold smoke. I do 6-8 hours a day. Rest in fridge overnight and repeat until I like the color. Usually this occurs in 18-24 hours. Keep in mind this is thin blue smoke.
Also I mentioned aging. Currently I cure for 7-14 days. Rinse the meat after curing. Then air dry in the fridge uncovered for 5 days. Then smoke. Then age for another 5 days in fridge uncovered. Then I cut into rashers and pack for freezing.
Hoe this helps it's my process and what works best for me. Once you have cold smoked bacon you'll never hot smoke a batch again.