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CHRISTIANBOOK.com: Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I became a stepmom to two boys in September, 1996. Today, those boys are 21 and 17, and my biological son is 20 and a sophomore at Birmingham-Southern College. I worked as a newspaper reporter, columnist, public relations director and Boy Scouts of America program director before writing full time. Magazine credits include Writerís Digest, Petersenís Bowhunting, Whispers From Heaven, Womanís Day and several books.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: How did you become interested in writing?

Itís an interest thatís always been there, as long as I can remember. Writing has always been both a challenge and a release, something I wanted to do and something I had to do. I canít imagine not having a book to work on!

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: What compelled you to write a book on this subject?

I was hurting and sometimes didnít think I would survive my early years as a stepmom. Only through much prayer and the unlimited grace of God am I able to even try to help others today. I felt desperately alone and afraid, dealing with emotions and a role I never imagined. I realized that others must be struggling, too, and because God seems to have me live out everything in my books before I can write them (He has such a wry sense of humor), I wrote this one as God continued to work on my heart and in hopes that my words could help someone else, just like me.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: What is the main theme or point that you want readers to understand from reading your book? Are there any other themes present in the book?

I want the reader to know sheís not alone and that she can choose peace in her complicated life. I want her to know Godís not abandoned her and that her strength comes from Him. The book doesnít mask the hard parts of stepparenting, but it gives the reader hope and confidence in her ability to handle her role with Godís help.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: Are there some specific lessons you hope readers will learn and apply to their lives after reading your book?

Despite whateverís spiraling out of her control (and in stepfamilies, there is always much out of her control), the reader has choices. And through prayer and following Godís lead in her life, she can choose well in every situation and grow and become more than she ever imagined.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: Do you have a favorite part of the book or a favorite chapter?

My favorite part is the final part, Growing, because we all want to get past the hurting and on to the healing and see ourselves dealing better with a challenging role and breathing a little easier through the struggles.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: What makes your book different than any other books similar to yours that are in circulation today?

Iíve not really found books similar to this one, devoted exclusively to stepmoms and in a prayer/devotional format Ė that makes this title different from the other offerings. While there are some excellent Christian stepparenting books, they usually focus on both stepparents or the family in general and are more ďtaskĒ oriented.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: How does the book intertwine with Godís call on your life and how you are currently serving Him?

I find myself, after 10 years, still going through some of the issues I address in the book, because a stepfamily is a dynamic being that constantly changes and requires new skills. Through my role as stepmom, though, Iíve learned much to hopefully help others and spare them some of the mistakes I made. Iíve written a monthly online newsletter for stepparents since 1999, and Iíve written two other books for stepmoms.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: Do you have a favorite Scripture verse? What is it and why is it important to you?

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. [Proverbs 3:5-6]. That favorite verse may seem a bit trite, but I think itís one of the first I memorized and one I desperately need to hold onto daily, being the control freak that Iíve always been, and then especially wanting so much to direct my own paths (and everybody elseís in my stepfamily) when I needed to trust God and remember Heís always in control.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: Are there any authors that either influenced you personally or influenced your style of writing? Who are they and how did they influence you?

I donít really have an answer. I enjoy many authors, from Mark Twain to Dawna Markova.

CHRISTIANBOOK.com: When you are not writing, what do you like to do? Do you have any hobbies?

I enjoy hiking, sewing, reading and gardening.