When you meet someone who has a passion for books and writing, what advice do you give them?
Don’t be discouraged, don’t give up, and do listen to good critiques. Sometimes as writers we are sure our writing is perfect, when in fact it needs work. A wonderful freelance editor spent time with me (at an OCW conference) teaching me exactly what was wrong with the first chapter of what would become my first published novel. Had I been unwilling to learn from him, I’d probably still be collecting rejection letters.
What were your favorite books as a child?
The Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder, and the L. Frank Baum Oz books were my favorites. I read them over and over. I read constantly, so it’s hard to pin down other favorites during my growing-up years. The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew, Pollyanna, Louisa May Alcott’s books, horse stories, dog stories, Nancy Drew, you name it. I didn’t care much for Alice in Wonderland, though. Too creepy, somehow.
Are there any other new projects on the horizon?
Currently, I’m writing When the Heart Heals, the second book in the Sisters at Heart series. I love doing series because I can create a town and its people, then revisit them in subsequent books. When the Heart Heals is the story of Faith’s friend and sister at heart, Rosemary Saxon.
What message would you like your readers to take from Where Wildflowers Bloom?
Be willing to listen to—and follow—the Lord’s leading. Too often we get an idea that seems good to us, but if the Lord isn’t in it, disaster may follow. I’m talking to myself here, as well as to my readers!
What is your greatest achievement?
A lasting, loving marriage and loving adult children that I’m so proud of! I know I ended that sentence with a preposition, but “children of whom I’m so proud” sounds a little regal to me.
What do you do to get away from it all?
If I’m at home, I take a walk with my dog or escape into a good book. When my husband and I are able to get away together, we enjoy spending time on the beautiful Oregon coast or exploring back roads in Oregon’s high desert country.