Hi, and thanks for your willingness to appear on my blog! I’m looking forward to sharing your knowledge and advice with the rest of the world (at least with the small portion of it that follows my blog). Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! (waving) I’m a mother of five, I homeschool(ed) all five of my children and I’ve been married for 30 years to the same man. He’s a preacher (which makes me a preacher’s wife by default.) At this point, I have 16 books published and two more contracted. Oh, and one of my sons is in the Coast Guard so I’m a proud Coastie Mom. He’s after me to come research a fort that is located within view of his station.
Why did you start writing?
I don’t know why. Well, maybe I do. I was assigned a short story in fifth grade. At page 100 I was still going strong, but the teacher made me turn it in, but the writing bug had bitten. Hard.
How did you start writing?
How… by hand? Because that was before most normal people had computers. There was one at the university my dad taught at, but it was HUGE and took up a whole room. I was fascinated by it. Then I moved on to electric typewriters, and finally a second hand laptop my husband bought used for $50 from one of the pastors at the megachurch he worked at.
How did you select your genre?
Select my genre? It selects me. The story God gives me dictates. I am *mostly* published with Amish romance, which is the background I came from. I’m published in contemporary romance, chicklit, and I have a contracted historical romance.
What is your writing day like?
Ha. Well, I get up. I pump down at least one cup of iced coffee and run any errands that must be run. Make the bed. Start laundry. Get out school for the girls. Work with you youngest daughter will I do my marketing. Then I help my middle daughter with 9th grade English and Algebra I, and then, if we don’t have church or church related duties, I start editing. And writing. I aim for 500 words a day. Sometimes, I get more. Sometimes, less. But that is my goal.
How do you organize your writing (outlines/note cards/post-its)?
Organize my writing? I trust God to keep it straight. It’s His story. And so far He hasn’t failed me. No outlines, no note cards, no post-its. But there might be an occasional note at the bottom of my manuscript that I really really need to remember the details of.
What’s the most surprising thing a character has “told you?”
Well, God has surprised me with all the stories. I think the most recent surprise was when a character who’d been a very minor secondary character in four books decided to tell her story. And in the very first paragraph she tells me she wants to get out of town. Why? There have been other major surprises in my books, but they are usually near the end and I don’t want to tell you just in case someone out there hasn’t read the book. Lets just say, things are NOT as they appear.
Do you have a list of characters that you’re saving for future use? What kind of information do you keep on these characters?
Not really. Maybe some. I just have a blurb written. We’ll go from there when the time comes.
What does your work space/office look like?
I write in the living room, on my laptop, and I have books (mostly homeschool, some fiction, nonfiction) stacked up all around me. My family surrounds me. Except for my Coastie son. 🙁
What is your go-to snack when writing?
Um, I don’t eat while writing. I don’t want crumbs in my laptop. But sometimes I eat mixed nuts or peanut M&Ms or candy corn or jelly beans while helping the girls with school.
If you could only recommend one NOVEL, what would it be? Why?
Whose novel? Anyones? I don’ t know if I could answer this question. I have favorite writers in all genres and they all impact me in some way. Most recent favorite book I read was Susan May Warren, Burnin’ for You.
If you could only recommend one CRAFT book (writing, no crocheting), what would it be? Why?
Craft books don’t work so well for me. My mind isn’t wired like that. I learn from studying fiction books and seeing what works and what doesn’t.
Thanks for reading!
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