Please tell us about yourself:
I started my writing career at an early age when I asked for a typewriter for Christmas. I pounded the keys writing poetry and short stories in grade school on an old black Royal manual. It wasn’t until my husband’s work took them to a southern town I wrote my first column, “Yankee Viewpoint’s,” for a local newspaper, covering hard news and feature stories in the area. Upon returning to our home-state of Michigan, I did stringer work, ancestral history, and donor appeal letters for non-profit organizations while doing my favorite job ever – being a stay-at-home mom.
I’m the author of Beach Walks and Carolina in the Morning. I was a columnist for a weekly magazine for four years, and my stories have appeared in a number of magazines and books. I’m the author of over three-hundred short stories. My newly-released book, On a Summer Night, is a story of suspense and romance. My hubby, Stephen, and I have been married for forty-one years and are the parents of three grown children and three grand-gals. I thank the Lord daily for my loving husband, three great kids, and for giving me the desires of her heart.
How did you select your genre?
That came out of interest to share stories from a contemporary time period in women’s Christian fiction; however, I really enjoy critiquing my partners work, and a couple are in historic fiction. I’m currently working on a book, based on a true story that starts out in 1908. I have to remember: was there electricity, what about cars (not everyone could afford one), etc. It makes research fun!
What is your writing day like?
Busy. I’m up by six and do a few hours on my WIP, break, and get back to more writing. I usually critique my partners work at night. It’s a relaxing time for me and I enjoy critique work. With a new book out I take time during the early afternoon to make contacts with area stores about purchasing my latest book and book-signings, as well as phone calls to newspaper columnist is the area.
How do you organize your writing (outlines/note cards/post-its)?
I take notes and then type them into a Writing Bio, which goes into WORD. Information on historic or contemporary dates, etc. is kept in WORD. I can easily go from my writing to the file to check out something. I don’t keep cards or post-its. Most everything is in a file.
What’s the most surprising thing a character has “told you?”
Ah….no surprises because I have control of what they say….but I’ve been surprised at some turns when I’m writing. Maybe that’s a God-nudge, since I pray and ask for His direction. Guess I shouldn’t be surprised at a fork in the road. It can be exciting as He leads.
Do you have a list of characters that you’re saving for future use? What kind of information do you keep on these characters?
No, I create as I write. I don’t pattern my characters after any one person. Otherwise it wouldn’t be my own thoughts or creativity. In On a Summer Night, by the time it was released I enjoyed writing about one character and her life so much that I had another book completed. This Side of Heaven, which I hope will be out this year, follows one character and her children as she flees under a witness protection program into rural Georgia.
What does your work space/office look like?
It’s comfortable for me. I use a portable key board and write sitting on a chaise lounge; because of a back injury, I can’t sit up to a desk. My computer screen is on a table next to me and my printer under it. I have files on the side and a small table with Kleenex, phone, and hand lotion next to me on the other side. My antique desk, which belonged to an older family member, is in front of me with photographs of our three grown children and grandchildren. Then, to my right, beyond the computer, is a window and view of the Gulf of Mexico from our fifth floor.
What is your go-to snack when writing?
Sinfully it’s chocolate! I like fudge best, but since that’s hard to get, I settle for Nutella. When I need a pick-me-up, I grab that jar, a spoon, and enjoy!
If you could only recommend one NOVEL, what would it be? Why?
Oh my goodness. I have so many favorites. I recall reading THE BURDEN IS LIGHT, by Eugenia Price. The story told her life and finally how God led her, at a critical time, to believe His Word. It opened a new world as she worked for a number of years bringing the radio show, “Unshackled” to homes. The Lord then led her to St. Simons Island, Georgia, where she started to write wonderful historic novels; The St. Simons Trilogy, The Savannah Quartet and The Florida Trilogy, are all good books that capture hearts and share Christ’s love.
I don’t read any one book on writing; I’ve read a number of good articles. I tend to read books by numerous writers and have learned a lot that way. Knowing the rules they suggest on Scribes, then reading some favorite authors and see how they use them. Reading what others write had helped me develop my craft. When I’m writing I do have a copy of The Chicago Manual of Style close by, too.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you, Karin, for the opportunity to share with your readers. It’s fun talking about mutual interest and nice to share with a fellow Michigander! May the Lord continue to guide you and yours.
Thank you so much for appearing on my blog! Have a blessed day!