Wednesday, October 21, 2009

JOIN US AT SEEKERVILLE TOMORROW 10/22/09

I'll be discussing the topic of "Writing His Story Through Fiction" tomorrow at http://seekerville.blogspot.com. Please drop in and leave a comment to join the discussion. What exactly is Christian fiction? It is a question not easily answered. See you there :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A NAME IS A NAME IS A CHARACTER!


The unanimous winner of the contest to choose a name for the protagonist in Book Three, of the Darkness To Light Series, "When Hearts Are Free," is Brigitte. And Dina, I love the idea of her family nickname being "Gigi." Thanks every one for participating!

Friday, October 9, 2009

AMBER STOCKTON INTERVIEW




We welcome Amber Stockton to the blog. Her latest book, "Hearts and Harvest" was released last month. Leave a comment for a chance to win her book.


1. Tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, where you live, etc.

I am the second-born of four children with 3 brothers. I was born outside of Washington, D.C., spent most of my life on the East Coast and now live in Colorado with my husband and new baby girl, as well as our Border Collie, Roxie. My parents and brothers all still live back East, but if all goes as planned, my parents and youngest brother will be joining me out here in 3-4 years.

2. Tell us about your call to write in the Christian arena. When you are actually writing, do you have a real sense of God’s presence or is it more “nuts and bolts” writing for you? (I’m not sure either answer is right or wrong.)

I have grown up reading Christian fiction and love it for the inspirational message of faith, hope and encouragement it offers. In a world full of doubt and uncertainty, it’s awesome to pick up a book and know it will all work out…eventually. Since that’s a message I love to hear and convey to others, I know my calling to write in this arena is strong. I’d say when I write it’s more “nuts and bolts” but as I turn each manuscript over to the Lord before writing, I also know He is guiding my fingers as I type. I’d never finish without Him.

2. Do you consider yourself a Christian who writes good fiction or a writer who writes good Christian fiction?

A Christian who writes good fiction. My message isn’t always a slap in the face or a 2x4 over the head. It usually comes from the story and the characters. I don’t set out to include a theme or message in my stories. It happens, and readers pull from the story what they will, or what they need to hear.

4. I’m always interested in the everyday life of a writer. What is your schedule? And what are you usually wearing when you are writing?

Schedule? We’re supposed to have a schedule? I must’ve missed that memo. J Seriously, though, I try to write at least 250-500 words each day. When I’m on a deadline, though, it’s usually 1000 words a day. Writing is generally done during naptimes for my daughter or at night once she’s gone to bed. I’m usually at my most creative in the evenings, so there are times when my husband takes over baby duty. As for what I’m wearing, it all depends on if I have to go out that day and when I’m writing. Usually jeans or sweatpants and a t-shirt. Sometimes my PJs. J

5. Name five of your favorite things and five pet peeves.

Favorites: my daughter, mountains, cheese, ice cream, and Dr. Quinn
Pet Peeves: dishonest or superficial people, insincerity, drivers who aren’t aware of other people around them, dirty dishes left lying about, Windows Vista (winks)

6. When did you first realize that God was real? I’m not asking about your salvation experience, but when God first invaded your consciousness and you realized that He was more than just a religious concept.

While on a mission trip to Caracas, Venezuela when we saw a man healed of blindness, and saw over 500 people accept Christ.

That's an interesting answer to me as God became real to you after your salvation experience. I think as we mature and grow and see God at work around us, he becomes more and more real to us.

7. Now, tell us about when you came to Jesus and totally committed everything you knew about yourself to everything you knew about Him … where, when, how.

I was 7 years old and knew right then I wanted a friend closer than a brother. I’d moved often even by that young age and found it hard to make friends. From that point forward, I made it a point to pray first and allow Him to guide my steps. Over the years, my faith walk has evolved as I’ve matured. I find that a commitment is a daily thing and must be renewed often, so I try to make it a conscious effort.

8. What has been your toughest walk of faith?

Forgiving those who have betrayed or hurt me, especially when the reasons behind that betrayal aren’t valid or stem from their own insecurities they’re not willing to face.

9. What went into your decision to write in your particular genre/time period?

I grew up on Little House on the Prairie and have always been fascinated by history. With today’s society seeking to remove so much of our heritage from American culture, I find it a unique challenge to impart the wisdom and faith of those who have gone before us in the stories I write.

10. Do you read the reviews that are written about your book(s)? Do you believe and/or take to heart the reviews that are written about your book(s)?

Oh yes! Every one of them. Whether they are positive or negative, I take whatever nuggets from them I can to help me improve my writing. As long as the review isn’t mean-spirited in nature and honest, I can glean a lot from my readers, and love hearing from each and every one of them.

11. What is the message you hope people gain from reading your book(s)?

That God is always there, no matter what. You are never alone, even when it feels like everyone is against you. That He will never leave or forsake you, and that faith comes from actions as well as how you live your life.

12. What do you like to read? What is in your “stack to be read” right now?

Primarily historical fiction and romantic comedies. TBR is Annalisa Daughety’s debut novel, Love is a Battlefield, and Mary Connealy’s Montana Rose.

13. What do you like most about being an author? The least?

Being able to create stories and characters and living my life through them. The joy and challenge of taking a blank piece of paper (or computer screen) and watching a story unfold before my eyes. Hearing from readers when they’ve read a book and been touched in some way.
The least? The stress of being between contracts and only being as good as your next book, especially when I don’t have a book contracted at the moment.

14. What motivates your writing?

Usually a deadline. LOL! But also readers asking for my next book, the knowledge that I won’t get paid until the book is done. And, there are times when I get so caught up in the story or the characters, that I can’t wait to get back to them and continue writing their story.

15. Being an author brings opportunities to speak to different groups—book clubs, workshops, conferences. Do you enjoy public speaking or does it frighten you?

I love it. So far, I’ve only done local groups and settings, but I hope to expand that to regional and larger scale events too. I’ve submitted many requests to speak in recent years, but so far, nothing has come of it. All in God’s timing, I’m sure. Feedback from the places I have spoken has been fantastic and quite rewarding. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time.

16. If you could shout something to the heavens, and not care who heard you, what would you shout?

God loves me, even when the world rejects me!
This is a truth that’s hitting hard right now in my life. Maybe shouting it will cement it in my mind and heart.

Thanks so much, Golden, for having me here. I pray abundant blessings on your and your blog, as well as your own writing journey as an author.

Friday, October 2, 2009

A NAME IS A NAME IS A NAME

Okay, readers and fans of the Darkness to Light series. I am struggling with a name for the new female protagonist in the series. Book Three, "When Hearts Are Free," deals with the Clavell family arriving in the New World and settling in Pennsylvania. Philippe, the oldest son, is now 21, and it is his love interest for whom we need a name. She is an adopted daughter in an English Catholic family, but her birth mother was French.

She is 18 years old, a diminuitive feisty blonde, with gray-blue eyes. I am posting a picture of our granddaughter, Crysta, with her husband, Craig, because she was the prototype for this character. Perhaps this will help in your choice.

It would help me so much if you would weigh in on this and help me decide between Brigitte or Amanda. Please leave your comments and help me out!