Monday, June 23, 2014

World Blog Tour: Delia Latham

Delia Latham

When my critique partner and co-writer Tanya Stowe invited me to join the World Blog Tour, I was not excited. It sounded like just one more iron to add to those already jousting for space in my blazing fire of activities. But the more I learned about the Tour, the more I realized what a great opportunity it was—for me, and for readers to learn a little more about my writing process. Each writer’s process is different, after all, and readers are inquiring minds that “want to know.”

Tanya Stowe
First, a little about Tanya.

An exceptional woman and author, Tanya is my critique partner, whose input I value highly. I shudder to think of sending anything in to my publisher without passing it by her first. She’s sharp and articulate and sees all the things I miss. God did me a good deed when he brought her into my life.

Aside from what she is to me, though, Tanya is a Christian Fiction writer with an unexpected edge. This Pelican Book Group author fills her romances with the unusual…gifts of the spirit in Tender Touch and spiritual warfare in Haunted Hearts. In Never Ending Night she explores the horrors of a Civil War battle and unravels a mystery. Tender Trust treks to the Old West. Leap of Faith brushes wings with an angel and White Christmas wraps romance in the traditions of a small town holiday. No matter where Tanya goes…on a journey through the past or contemporary adventures in new lands…be prepared for the extraordinary.

Here’s a link to Tanya’s World Book Tour post, where she shares her writing process.

Moving right along…a little about me. 

I’ve authored over a dozen novels to date, all inspirational romance. But that’s what I do, not who I am. Who I am is a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend. I treasure above all my role as a princess daughter to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He is my reason for living, and the source of my joy and inspiration. I like to categorize my priorities as God first, family second, and career third. I love to write, but my written words can’t give me warm hugs or sweet kisses. I can’t lean on them when I’m weary, and they have no shoulder to cry on when my heart is broken. My heavenly Father and my family and friends fill those roles, and so many others.

That said, writing is very important to me. I consider it a ministry, in which I can share the Good News of Jesus Christ with readers, even as I entertain them with romantic tales of love and romance.

All participants in this Tour are answering the same four questions to share our individual writing processes. Here’s mine:

1) What am I working on? 

I’m rarely working on just one project at a time. Remember all those irons in the fire I mentioned earlier? Well…my writing projects make up several of them. Right now, I’m working on a novella for the next Heart’s Haven collection, Heart’s Haven Babies; a Christmas tale for one of Pelican Book Group’s new lines; a co-authored Christmas story with Tanya Stowe; and the first in a series of four books set in and around Cambria, California. So far, the series consists of a proposal that’s with my publisher now, awaiting approval or…ugh!...rejection—but in the meantime, I’m plowing ahead by faith.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? 

No two authors write exactly alike, and that’s a good thing. We each want to have our own, distinct voice. I hope I’m gaining ground in that area with each book I release. But I think my work differs from other inspirational romance authors in that God seems to place an angel in almost all of my novels. This wasn’t something I planned—never even had a passing thought about angels in my books. I’m a pantster—meaning I don’t sit down and plot out my storylines. Instead, I get the seed of an idea and sit down and start writing, allowing the story to take me wherever it will. Into that rather hare-brained process, several of God’s messengers have winged their way between the lines. It’s an adventure, and a blessing. I believe in angels, although I’ve never seen one myself—or at least, if I have, I wasn’t aware of it. Still, I’m honored that God would use my stories to make people aware that his angels are out there, watching over us every moment, every day of our lives.

3) Why do I write what I do?

I believe God has a special life partner planned for each of us from the moment we’re conceived. I believe in soulmates. I believe in love. And I believe God works behind the scenes of every situation in our lives to bring together what is meant to be. It doesn’t always happen easily—sometimes there are trials of faith to be conquered, mountains of forgiveness to climb, long miles of doubt and insecurity to travel, many moments of soul-searching and questioning and learning about ourselves to go through before God can bring us to that point of becoming one with the love of our life. I write about these things to glorify God, and to remind my readers that even through the darkest times, He is there, working things out for their good and His glory in every situation.

4) How does my writing process work?

I write something almost every day. Some days I might achieve a mere 250 words. Most days, I average about 2,000 words. On really, really awesome writing days, I grind out 6,000-8,000 words or more.

But every writing day starts the same way. With prayer. Because God is my inspiration. Without Him, I can’t string two words together, and I have nothing to write about. So, first stop—knees on the floor, heart raised toward Heaven, mind open to God’s leading.

Once I’ve invited God to use me as His transcriptionist, allowing me to write only the words He dictates into my heart, head and fingertips, I sit down and start writing. As I mentioned already, I’m a pantster. However, I’ve had to learn to come up with a tentative plotline so I can send the required synopsis to my publisher before I write a book. So, thanks to those few paragraphs of loose outline, I have a general idea of where the story is going, but I haven’t filled in all the little details that make a book speak to a reader. God fills them in as I write, which makes the story an adventure for me as well as for my readers, because I’m often blown away by where the characters take me before I get to type “the end” and call it done.

I’m fortunate to be able to dedicate most of my time to writing. Hubby and I are empty-nesters, and I’m beyond blessed that he loves to cook and has taken on that chore almost entirely. I still keep the house presentable and see that we have clean clothes in the closet, but seriously...with only two of us to worry about, those things don’t take a lot of time. (Certainly not like they did when we had four children in the house and I was doing the lion’s share of the cooking in addition to all the other housekeeping chores!) Physical ailments keep me from doing a lot of outside activities; I’m not a shopper; and I’m a bit shy around people I don’t know, so I’m far from a socialite. Which means most of my time is spent at home, dedicated to writing or marketing or any number of other writing-related activities.

I spend a few hours a day writing—usually late at night, when the rest of the world is sleeping, but some daytime hours are spent writing, as well. Most of the hours slotted for writing during the day are spent marketing my books, keeping up with social media, developing ideas for stories, and critiquing other writers’ chapters. But my favorite times are those hours when the story is flowing, I’m writing fast and furious and barely aware there’s a real world around me because I’m so lost in the one I’m creating in my head. It’s a natural high unlike any other, and I’m highly blessed and favored of God to be able to do what I do. That natural euphoria is topped only by the thrill of hearing a reader say my words touched her heart, lifted her spirit, helped her through a tough time in life, or simply made her heart smile. 

Life don’t get much better’n that! :)

My books are available publisher-direct, on Amazon, or through most other online booksellers.

Moving right along. I’ve invited several authors to participate in the World Blog Tour, but since we're coming along after the initial rush of tours, most everybody has already I have TWO follow-up authors. I think you’ll find each of their posts will bless your day—and hopefully introduce you to another author whose novels you reach for when you need a good read. 

They’ll be posting on July 1st, so be sure to look them up, using the links on their names below. And tell them Delia sent you… :)

LoRee Peery attempts to see God’s presence every day. Often that gift comes from nature, and she is most relaxed in the outdoors. The call of a cardinal draws her to look for the distinctive flash of crimson. A meadowlark’s melody always transports her to the farm where she grew up. A rainbow holds special significance, since one appeared the day of her father’s funeral and means to her the promise of the Lord’s presence in her life. (LoRee is participating in the World Blog Tour via her Facebook page.)

Paula Mowery is a pastor's wife and a formerhomeschool Mom. She’s also a Christian writer. Her articles
have appeared in Woman's World and in her ongoing column on Paula also writes Christian fiction. Her debut novella, THE BLESSING SEER released July 6, 2012 from Pelican Book Group. The sequel, BE THE BLESSING, released Sept. 13, 2013. She is also an author and acquisitions editor with Prism Book Group.

Note:  My first novel reached #1 Bestseller status on Amazon this past week. I am so excited and grateful - to God, and to the readers who made it happen! Goldeneyes is currently sitting at #5, so still well within the Top 100. I hope you'll take a moment to pop over and check it out!

Monday, June 16, 2014

World Blog Tour!

Hello! Welcome to the next version of the World Blog Tour! 

I’m Tanya Stowe, a Christian Fiction writer with an unexpected edge. I’m a Pelican Book Group author who likes to fill my romances with the unusual…gifts of the spirit in Tender Touch and spiritual warfare in Haunted Hearts.  In Never Ending Night I explore the horrors of a Civil War battle and unravels a mystery. Tender Trust treks to the Old West. Leap of Faith brushes wings with an angel and White Christmas wraps romance in the traditions of a small town holiday. No matter where I go…on a journey through the past or contemporary adventures in new lands…be prepared for the extraordinary.
Right now, I’m working on a romantic suspense set in Santa Fe, New Mexico. It’s called Santa Fe Sunrise and involves art, flamenco and pot-hunters. Of course, Santa Fe’s unique flavor runs through the entire story like a fine silver thread.

You probably noticed, I write in a wide variety of genres…historicals, romantic suspense and the ever popular contemporary Heart’s Haven Series you see on this blog. Why do I write so many different kinds of stories? I have to say my inspiration comes from curiosity, sparked by my travels. Wherever I go, my mind asks questions. What is it like to live in a small town like this? Would I like waking up every morning and looking at that peak? What did the first settlers see here?

My first book was inspired by a motorhome trip through the California Gold country. I wanted to know why some of the boomtowns born in the gold rush survived while others disappeared. My search for answers led to the creation of my own gold town called Harperville and a book called Tender Touch. While researching Tender Touch, I read about Civil War battles in the West. I never knew battles were fought in the West, so off I went and Tender Trust was born.

While sitting in a movie theater, I heard a new type of flamenco music in the background. My mind didn’t rest until I discovered Nouveau Flamenco and found the perfect setting in Sedona, Arizona. Sedona Sunset came to life and Santa Fe Sunrise followed because, of course, I’d heard so much about the unique capital of New Mexico and had to see it for myself. Yes, curiosity is really my muse.

Imagine my concern however, when we moved to the Middle East and after six months, no story ideas came to me. I wondered if my career was over! But rest assured, it took a little longer, but Danger in Dhofar was created from pieces of information about Somalian pirates!

I think my characters rise out of my curiosity. Remember those questions I ask, like how would I like to wake up each morning and see that peak? I put myself in a setting, work out those questions and resolve the problems. That process has led to some very interesting characters like Stumpy McPherson, a 49’er trying to get by after the glory days of the rush, or willowy, wispy, Zoe Wyndham, the late-in-life love-child raised in communes.

For my characters to really work through their problems, I have to plot. When I first started writing, I had interesting characters but they jumped from one event to the next without any real purpose and never resolved anything! Plotting helped me to settle those bouncing motivations down and find not only a purpose, but a resolution to my character’s issues. With plotting, I can create multi-dimensional characters with real problems and God-inspired solutions. I love that process because it’s real life!

I’m not sure what sets me apart from other writers. I know I like lean, tight writing. I’m more interested in the stories, the people and the places than crafting words. That insatiable curiosity just won’t let me rest! It wants me to keep asking questions and moving forward…even while I’m on vacation.

I wonder whom I’ll meet and what they’ll teach me on my way to Mesa Verde. Hmmm…is that a story already in the making? I can’t wait to see!

I’ve enjoyed chatting with you on this World Tour Blog. I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little bit more about me. Also, please join us for the next leg of the tour. Next Monday, June 23, my friend Lynn Willis will post insights on her writing life.      

Lynn Chandler-Willis has worked in the corporate world (hated it!), the television news business (fun job) and the newspaper industry (not a fan of the word "apparently" and phrase "according to"). She keeps coming back to fiction because she likes making stuff up and you just can't do that in the newspaper or television news business.
She was born, raised, and continues to live in the heart of North Carolina within walking distance to her kids and their spouses and her nine grandchildren. She shares her home, and heart, with Sam the cocker spaniel.   You’ll find Lynn’s blog at:

Mary Manners is an award-winning author of inspirational romance who lives in the beautiful foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee with her husband and teen-aged daughter. She is a member of the Romance Writers of America and Smoky Mountain Romance Writers.

During the school year, she teaches middle-schoolers reading and Algebra. In her free time, she likes to garden, take long walks with her husband, and read romance novels in a hammock beneath century-old shade trees.
Mary will be posting here on the Heart’s Haven Blog. 

On Tuesday, June 24, Delia Latham will share her unique writing perspective right here on the Heart’s Haven Blog.  

Delia Latham is a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend, but especially treasures her role as princess daughter to the King of Kings. She has a "thing" for Dr. Pepper and LOVES hearing from her readers. Delia writes inspirational romance from her home in the California mountains.

Monday, June 9, 2014

World Blog Tour

Hello Heart's Haven Friends!

Tanya Stowe here, checking in with the HH Blog to tell you about a fun event. For the next few weeks those of us at Heart's Haven, Delia, Mary, Marianne and I will be participating in a World Blog Tour. What's a WBT you ask? It's an exchange of blog sites. A friend blogs and sends her readers to visit with us. We blog and send our readers to visit others. Hopefully, readers might even get to travel round the world on their blog visits!

Today, June 9, our friend Lily Maytree will be posting on her blog site. Here's the address:

She's running a little late because she sailing the Pacific Ocean towards Alaska. Yes, Lily is a true adventurer and she writes wonderful action/adventures with kooky heroines. Here's a little more about her.

Lilly Maytree is the author of GOLD TRAP and THE PANDORA BOX. Two books that sent her careening along on her “Mystery Tours” with her captain husband aboard the Glory B. She loves sharing these adventures with readers. It has even been said that she time-travels (but that’s probably just a rumor). You can get in touch with her through her web site at It might take a few days if she is adventuring far away... but she always comes back sooner, or later.

Hope you can visit Lily's site! Stay tuned! I'll be posting on June 16!