We interrupt our regularly scheduled discussions on abstinence and renewed abstinence for a blog tour. I’ve never participated in a blog tour, but why not? My awesome writing partner, Lisa Godfrees, tagged me to answer some questions on how, what, and why I write. You can find out all about why she writes on her blog where she covers all kinds of cool things from book reviews and author interviews to theological questions.
So… here goes!
What am I working on? That’s an easy one. While I’m shopping for a publisher for the first book (Pieces of a Life) in a YA series, (no series name—I’m awful at titles!) I’m immersed in writing book two (so far I’m calling it SEQUEL—lame, I know) of the three book series. The novels follow Preston and Maggie, high school juniors at Madison High School, as they navigate the choppy waters of abstinence for HER and renewed abstinence for HIM. Along with their friends, they wade through the highs and lows, the joys and the heartaches of being seventeen and eighteen-year-olds making decisions that will impact them for a lifetime.
Then, of course, the blog series here on saving sex for marriage. I’m passionate about both abstinence and renewed abstinence and believe strongly in accountability and mentoring as crucial tools to success in saving sex for marriage. I hope to shine a strong and steady light on the choice most of the world will tell you isn’t worth the hassle. Because waiting is worth it. YOU are worth waiting for.
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How does my work differ from others of its genre? Great question. Both Preston and Maggie are Christians which makes this series young adult Christian fiction. But if you’re expecting sugar-coating or beating around the bush or sanitized situations, you won’t find it here. The issues, the emotions, the reactions are true-to-life and honest. The subject matter alone is edgier than many Christian authors and publishers will take on, and I don’t pull any punches while exploring this important topic. I’d give it a PG-13 rating.
Why do I write what I do? Even better question! My tagline is: “The Unflinching Realities” which I hope conveys that my goal is to tell it like it is. There are two reasons I write realistic contemporary Christian fiction for young adults. 1). Christian teenagers aren’t equipped with temptation insulation—they face temptation the same as every other teenager. They need reading options, both fiction and non-fiction, that address the unflinching realities of life from a Christian world view. 2). One mistake, even a hundred bad choices, doesn’t have to ruin a life. It’s never too late to STOP, turn around, and head in a better direction. Sins can be forgiven. Lives can be transformed. The future can be bright and promising regardless of the past.
How does your writing process work? I wrote book one in scenes then stitched the story together. The first scene I wrote ended up about 1/3 of the way into the story. I even wrote the ending before settling on the beginning. Sounds weird, but it worked quite well actually. I was very surprised, and happy, at how smoothly it all fit together. I’ve gotten better at writing sequentially but still hop around if I get stuck.
In the beginning, I used to worry a lot that I’d forget where the story was going or get out of my characters’ heads if I had to skip a day of writing. While writing every day is a great habit to develop, I now worry a lot less about “losing” my characters or plot. Both are ingrained in my heart. They aren’t going anywhere.
Don’t let anyone tell you there’s one way and one way only to write a book. Not true. It takes time to figure out what really works for any given author—plotting versus letting the story tell itself, edit-as-you-go versus writing a first draft straight through, whatever—but it’s worth the effort to find out what works for you.
That’s it! And now you know a bit more about me. Stay tuned for more of the HOW of saving sex for marriage very soon!
You’ll want to stop by author Kayleen Reusser’s blog in the next week as she answers these same questions. Author of ten non-fiction books for children and an avid interviewer of World War II veterans, Kayleen also leads several writers’ groups where she shares her experiences and is quick to offer words of encouragement.
Thanks for dropping by. Please come back soon and invite your friends, too. Have a thought or question about saving sex for marriage? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org