How did you come up with the concept for the Shattered?
The inspiration behind Shattered was two-fold. The idea for the mystery came from a passing comment a friend of mine made about her son, but I can't go into detail about that without giving away too much :) The idea for the backdrop of the Midnight Sun Tournament was inspired by my love for Winter X Games. My family and I have followed X Games for the years. We particularly enjoy the Winter games as my daughter loves snowboarding. Our favorite athlete is Kelly Clark. A two-time Olympic medalist, Kelly has dominated X Games the past two years, taking home Gold. She's an amazing athlete, a Christian, and a philanthropist. I thought it would be fun and intriguing to write about two adventure athletes and show a glimpse into their adrenaline-filled world.
How much of the Shattered is factual?
Without giving too much of the story away, there are aspects that are factual, but I definitely let my imagination run wild with them.
How closely is Shattered based on your life experiences?
Only that my family and I really enjoy watching adventure competitions, and we enjoy winter sports like skiing and snowboarding.
How long did Shattered take you to complete?
About ten months.
Do you have a favorite character in the Alaskan Courage series? Why?
I’m asked this a lot and my answer usually varies. Right now, I’d say Bailey Craig simply because we share a similar past and we’ve both found freedom in Christ, thankfully.
How much research did Shattered take?
A lot. I found myself researching Alaska, Russian history, cave diving, adventure companies, search and rescue teams, and the list goes on. Fortunately, I absolutely love research. The hardest part for me is stopping so I can write the book.
What was the most interesting tidbit that you learned while writing Shattered?
There were so many fascinating things I learned while researching for Shattered—the amazing courage of dive rescue volunteers, the vast and beautiful landscape of Alaska, but I think what I found most interesting was Russia’s connection to Alaska. I had no idea how long Russia had a claim to Alaska, the depth of their involvement there and the amount of cultural heritage that is still present.
What are some of the challenges that you face as an author?
The biggest challenge I find is trying to balance everything--homeschooling my daughter, taking care of my family, maintaining close friendships, writing, researching and marketing. It’s definitely hard to juggle it all and my deepest prayer is for guidance on how to best balance everything God has so kindly entrusted me with.
What aspects of being a writer do you enjoy the most?
The writing. There’s nothing like sitting down and getting lost in a story.
What is your writing style? (Do you outline? Write “by-the-seat-of-your-pants? Or somewhere in-between?)