Thursday, September 27, 2007

Kim Vogel Sawyer

I'm pleased to welcome back to this blog my good friend, Kim Vogel Sawyer. Since her first book came out, she's had a number of releases. I love her writing, and I think you will, too. If you'll remember, she is also part of the team that wrote Montana Mistletoe with me. Today, we're featuring her latest book release.

Kim, God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?

You know, I’m trying not to see the horizon. :o) In the past, I’ve gotten myself in trouble by looking miles down the road instead of just being obedient for the next step. So, at the risk of sounding like I have no plans, my plan is to heed His call and walk where He leads. I do know what my writing schedule will entail for the next two years (four more historical novels), but beyond that…? We’ll see what happens.

Tell us a little about your family.

I am wife to military-husband Don (who is currently serving in Baghdad), mother to three wonderful girls ages 18 to 25, and grandmother to four of the cutest little boys who ever graced the earth. After raising all girls, grandmothering boys is a new experience, but I’m lovin’ every minute of it.

I know what you mean, Kim. I only had girls, and my first two grandchildren were boys. Now I even have a great grandson. And the father of that great grandson is also in Iraq. Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?

I used to be a voracious reader, devouring two or three books a week. But now I’m lucky if I get one a month read. I just don’t have the free time I once had! Plus writing kind of spoils you for reading—it’s hard to turn off your inner-editor. If a book manages to do that for me, I know I’ve found a phenomenal author. (SIDE NOTE: Most recently, that was Jamie Langston Turner with Winter Birds.)

Wow, I may have to get a copy of that book. What are you working on right now?

Rewrites… *sigh* Admittedly, rewriting is usually my least favorite part of the process. But this time, because I like the characters so much, I’m actually kind of enjoying the opportunity to be with them a little longer.

What outside interests do you have?

Church is a major part of my life—I teach adult Sunday school, participate in both voice and bells choirs, and lead the drama team. Speaking of drama, whenever my schedule permits (which isn’t often!), I enjoy acting in community theatre. Quilting and calligraphy are also enjoyable diversions.

We have so much in common. I sang in the church choir for many years, even played in the bell choir. And I was a church Drama Director for over thirty years. How do you choose your settings for each book?

Most of my books are set in Kansas because it’s familiar territory for me. I’ve lived here all but one year of my life! But also Kansas fits the stories I write. You want the setting to be an integral part of the tale, and Kansas history/landscape has worked well for my stories.

If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?

Hm, that’s tough because I am a history nut. But if given the opportunity meet someone from the past, I would choose my paternal grandmother who died when my dad was ten years old. My whole life, I’ve been told I look like and act like my grandmother, and I would dearly love to sit and have a chat with her. I hope she’s part of my welcoming committee when I get to Heaven.

I'm sure she will. What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?

That publishing wheels move slowly—this is not an activity for the impatient. lol

Isn't that the truth? What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?

God has been stretching me, pulling me from my self-imposed comfort zones. I am an incredibly timid person, which means I’m easily intimidated, so He’s reminding me I can do all things through His strength if I will simply trust. Letting go…easy to say, harder to do.

That's the struggle I've had this whole year. God wants to move me out of my comfort zone in my writing. What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?

First, stay within God’s plan for your life—running ahead of Him will only bring you heartache. Second, persevere—all the talent in the world will get you nowhere if you quit! And finally, if God has called you to this task, then write. Even when it’s hard and it seems like you’re not going anywhere, write. Continue to grow in your craft, look to His leading, and write, write, write!

Tell us about the featured book.

Beginnings is Book 2 in the Sommerfeld Trilogy. It features Beth Quinn, a “worldly” transplant in the Mennonite community of Sommerfeld. Beth is starting over in everything—her place of residence, her choice of career, and in relationships. Two men vie for her attention—one Mennonite, one not—so her heart is tugged in two directions...but where does she belong?

How can readers find you on the Internet?

Feel free to stop by and leave a note in the guestbook! I love to have visitors. :o) Thanks for the chance to chat with you!

It has been a great pleasure for me, too, Kim. You've given us much food for thought.

Readers, leave a comment on this interview for a chance to win a copy of Beginnings. And leave comments on the other four interviews where the winners haven't been chosen. I'll be choosing some winners this weekend.

If you really like free books, come over to my web site and sign my guest book. I give a free copy of one of my books every month.

Have you missed some of the author interviews? Just sign up for Feedblitz in the right column under my picture. A copy of the interviews will be delivered to your inbox.


Cathy Elliott said...

Great interview, Kim. You certainly are a person of many "interesting" interests. No doubt that makes your books even richer to read. Though I haven't read any of your works so far, I am definitely intrigued after this interview. :-) Congratulations on your success!

Best, Cathy Elliott
Kregel Publications/April 2006

Jenny said...

I love your books, Kim, and am looking forward to the new books you have coming out.

I'm a Kansas native and enjoy reading about familiar places. One sidenote concerning your Sommerfeld series - Quinn is my great grandmother's maiden name. I love finding family surnames in the books I read. :)

Cherie J said...

Great interview! Please enter me in the drawing.

Sharon Lavy said...

I was privileged to meet Kim at the conference. My friend and I both purchased "Bygones". And we both chose that book to read on the flight home.

I enjoyed reading the interview.

Emma said...

Great interview! Please enter me in the drawing.Congratulations on your success!

Alexis Jacobs said...

I read the first book in the series and loved it. I am excited the next book is out. I'd love to win it!

ForstRose said...

I struggle with the trust and letting go issues from time to time and of course when I think I might finally get to relax and have life be "normal" He finds new tests for me.

Sounds like a great book. I love Amish and Mennonite settings as it gives a glimpse of a different community life than modern day America in general.

Please enter me in the drawing.

Joyce said...

Oh this sounds so good! I loved the interview! I just love to read and I , too have a soldier in Iraq, or at least she will be really soon! My daughter will be going on her third tour of Iraq soon. I am not allowed to say when for safety's sake but I do pray for all of our soldiers over there! I would like to be put in for the drawing of the book, "Beginnings" It would be an honor to own the book!
God Bless!

:-)Ronie said...

Lena, Thank you for hosting Kim on your site. This woman is such an incredible person, so tender and humble. I am so glad I got to talk with her at conference. Thank you for the opportunity to enter this drawing. I'd love to read this book!

Anonymous said...

Lena, thanks again for the opportunity to be a "guest" on your blog. And how fun to see some familiar faces in the comment section--waving at Sharon and Ronie. :o) Cathy, thanks for the sweet congrats--God has truly blessed me. Jenny, how neat about your grandmother's name! Alexis, I'm so glad you enjoyed Bygones--I hope Beginnings will be as enjoyable for you. Frostrose, that "letting go" thing is a continual process, isn't it? Yet how strengthening the experience of leaping into His arms... Joyce, praying for your daughter's safety! And Cherie and Emma, good luck in the drawing. :o)

Take care, all, and God bless!

Abi Buening said...

I have been hooked on Beverly Lewis' and Wanda Brunstetter's Amish and Mennonite books. I have seen Kim's books and they are on my want list. I'd love to win this book of course if I won book 2 I'd have to speed up the process of buying book 1 so I could read the story in proper order, but that is ok by me would be more of an incentive to get book 1. I'd love to win this book.

lilo's mom said...

I'm fascinated with the Amish and Mennonite cultures, and I can't wait to read this book. Please sign me up for the drawing. I'm running out to get the first book in the series this afternoon.

likes_to_stamp (at)

ChristyJan said...

I enjoyed the interview. Please enter me in the contest.

Carolynn W. said...

I absolutely LOVED 'Bygones' and i can't wait to read this one! Please enter me too, thanks!
carolynnwald at hotmail dot com

tetewa said...

I also have Bygones and would love to be entered for this one!

Dawn said...

Kim, I loved "Waiting for Summer's Return" and look forward to reading more of your books.

You're such a kind and humble person. It's been fun to watch God bless your writing since I first met you at an ACFW conference three years ago.

Norma said...

Sounds like an interesting read - would love to win it!

Janna said...

Looks like a great series - if I win this one, I'll have to buy the first one :-)


Stacey said...

I'm encouraged by Kim regarding how slowly the "publishing wheels" turn.

Diane said...

Oooh...this is too good to pass up. Count me in!!

mirth-quake said...

Sounds like a series to look forward to! Would like to take chance to grab a copy.

SarahA said...

I am so happy to learn about Kim. Amish and Mennonite books are of real interest to me. Series books have me hooked too. Now I know that I will have to start reading her books. Thanks for helping me find out about Kim.

Sarah : )

have been hooked on Beverly Lewis' and Wanda Brunstetter's Amish and Mennonite books. I have seen Kim's books and they are on my want list. I'd love to win this book of course if I won book 2 I'd have to speed up the process of buying book 1 so I could read the story in proper order, but that is ok by me would be more of an incentive to get book 1. I'd love to win this book.

8:34 AM

windycindy said...

Hi, Please enter me in your contest for this book. It sounds like I would truly enjoy reading it. The author is fascinating, herself! Thanks, Cindi