|Do you have a favorite character? Why? |
I’m a little partial to Bugs, Jennifer’s five-year-old son. He says the cutest things . . . How much research did Doesn't She Look Natural take?
Quite a bit, and this is just the beginning of the series. In the second book, Jen goes to mortuary school, and by the third book she is actively operating the funeral home. So I’ve had to learn quite a bit about funeral homes, caskets, supplies, embalming, burial versus cremation, etc.
What are some of the challenges you face as an author?
I think all authors face the same challenges—the need to place ourselves in a chair and stay there until the work is done, the challenge of staying fresh in the face of many revisions, and the challenge of wearing entertaining stories and spiritual truths. People looking for the former aren’t always looking for the latter.
Are there any other new projects on the horizon?
Of course! I still have to write the third Fairlawn book, She’s in a Better Place, and I’m working on another thriller called The Face.
Who has influenced you the most with your writing?
It’s be impossible to name one single person—I had a sixth grade teacher who complimented my writing before I had any inkling that I might be any good at it, and Pastor Derric Johnson suggested that I switch from music to writing as a career. And at Tyndale House, it was Ken Peterson who suggested that I move from children’s books into adult fiction. You might say that God has frequently spoken to me through the voices of my friends.
What advice would you give to a person trying to become a novelist?
Read, read, read.
And then get to a good writer’s conference where you can learn from people who are actually doing the work.
What message would you like your readers to take away from Doesn't She Look Natural?
I would like readers to see that God is always leading us . . . even when we don’t like the direction in which we’re moving. And when God moves us, He supplies our needs . . . sometimes in the most unexpected ways.
What is your goal or mission as a writer?
My goal in life is simply to love and obey God. Right now I’m doing that by writing the stories He places on my heart.