First off, tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a happily married mother of three young children. My days overflow with housework, teaching my oldest son, and potty training my almost- two-year-old twins. My writing squeezes into naptime and after bedtime. Still, my latest project is rarely far from my thoughts. Even my hobbies--reading, book cover design, and book trailer creating--are connected to writing.
What was the funniest thing that happened to you as a homeschooling kid?
One of my fondest memories of homeschooling was keeping my fellow homeschoolers eager for more of my stories. Our homeschool group met once a week. I wrote mostly play-style bantering romps that showed off my latest vocabulary words. I incorporated my own odd sense of humor and featured personas of myself and some of my friends. Very little description was incorporated with the dialogue. I thoroughly enjoyed keeping everyone eager for the next installment. I frequently stopped writing mid scene or mid-sentence, insisting they wait until the next week to find out what happened.
How did being homeschooled affect your writing?
Learning at home taught me self-discipline, initiative, and the confidence to be different. If I don’t understand something, I seek out resources. No one stood over me saying that I could not learn what I want to learn or accomplish what I set out to do. I have no perception of “you can’t do that because it isn’t something (fill in the blank) do.” Although I care about others’ opinions as much as the next person, I tend to not let them hold me back from what I believe is important.
What inspired you to start writing?
I have always been a huge reader. As a young fairytale lover, I developed a taste for happily ever after endings. As my reading experience expanded into other genres and grew in new directions, I became dissatisfied with some aspects of the storylines. I began rewriting the books in my head, taking characters in new directions and exploring ideas the author chose to ignore. The progression to writing my own stories happened naturally.
What is The Crown of Anavrea about?
The first book of my four book series following the Theodoric family, The Crown of Anavrea focuses on the relationship of a man with a complicated past and the slave woman who gives him hope. Their story is set in a fantasy world I created while still a teen. The focus is on their decision to love and the difficult decisions that follow. I originally wrote it while a newlywed myself. The novel was published years ago, but I recently re-obtained the rights. The current version is a reworking of the original story, polished and expanded slightly.
Who do you recommend it for?
It is a sweet romance and appropriate for teens. However, the book has quite an adult following as well. As a novella, it doesn’t explore all of the themes in great depth. There is a mild thread of faith, but I don’t develop it extensively in this book.
Where can people buy it?
The Crown of Anavrea is available in print through Amazon or Lulu. The ebook is available through most ebook retailers including Amazon, Barnes& Noble, and Smashwords.
What is the best piece of writing advice you ever received?
Write. Like any skill, writing improves with practice. So, write, edit, seek feedback, and write some more.
Do you have any final thoughts?
I am a wholehearted believer in the power of words. As a writer, I hope to change people with my stories. I know might sounds strange coming from an author of clean romantic fiction, but I believe even romantic fiction has a place in transforming people for the better. Marriage is a picture of the relationship of Christ and the church (Ephesians 5). By exploring the motivations, choices, emotions, and other nuances of love and marriage, I hope to show a bit of the Christ’s love for his bride, the church. That might be why I tend toward the theme of choosing to love in many of my stories.