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.”
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! :)
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 participated...so 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 christianonlinemagazine.com/. 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!