Wednesday, April 14, 2010
With every book I write, I hope to draw the reader closer to God. I don’t ever want to hit anyone on the back of a head with a 2x4 (metaphorically speaking, of course)…but I hope a reader finishes a book wanting to know more about this almighty God of ours.
Tell us about your family.
I am a wife to Steve, a corporate guy, and a mom to four kids—two boys and two girls. Add to that one son-in-law! I’m almost at the empty nest stage…my youngest is a senior in high school. And yes, I have mixed feelings about an empty nest! How did it happen so quickly?
It does rush upon us, doesn't it? What kinds of hobbies and leisure activities do you enjoy?
Gardening and cooking are two of my favorite hobbies…but the top of my list is raising puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. My youngest son talked me into this activity after we returned from Hong Kong—he wanted a dog and my husband is not a dog-guy. So my son found a compromise…a temporary dog with a noble purpose! Our first dog, Arbor, graduated and was partnered with Jon, a college student. We’re now on our seventh (!) puppy. It’s like eating a potato chip…you just can’t stop at one.
Have you written other nonfiction books?
Grit for the Oyster, winner of two literary awards and a great book for writers, and in August of 2010, Amish Proverbs: Words of Wisdom for a Simple Life (Revell) will release.
Why did you write Amish Peace?
We share the same agent. I just love Joyce. What do you want the reader to take away from the book?
Inner peace, rooted in the sovereignty of God. Most of us have a tendency to confuse peace with happiness, personal achievements or the accumulation of wealth. The Amish are good examples of those who find peace not in circumstances but in the Lord.
You also write Fiction.
I do! My first novel, Copper Star, a World War II love story based on true events, received three literary awards. Copper Fire, its sequel, received another award. For the Love of Dogs is a heartwarming story, set in the late 1960s, about a young woman who is losing her eyesight and struggling to trust in what, or Whom, she can’t see. That novel received a literary award, too.
Do you have any other books in the works right now?
Of course! Longevity is a good thing for authors. Amish Peace will be followed by three novels about the Amish, starting with The Choice on January 1, 2010, The Waiting on October 1, 2010, and the third in the series (written but not officially titled yet) will release in Spring 2011.
We really need to get you on my schedule with these other two novels. Tell us about The Choice.
Please give us the first page of the novel.
The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher excerpt
Carrie Weaver tucked a loose curl into her cap as she glanced up at the bell tower in Lancaster’s Central Market. The clock had struck two p.m. more than ten minutes ago, and an English couple was haggling with her stepsister, Emma, over the price of a crate of strawberries. After all, the man was saying, the market was closing for the weekend.
“Certainly, you Plain folks wouldn’t want this fruit to go to waste now, would you? Tomorrow being Sunday and all?” He rested his hands on his round belly and fixed his gaze on Emma, a satisfied look on his red face—as red and ripe as a late summer tomato—as he waited for her to buckle.
But this red-faced English man didn’t know Emma.
Carrie saw Emma purse her lips and hook her hands on her hips in that determined way and knew where this stand-off was headed. Emma wouldn’t drop the price of her strawberries to anyone, much less an Englisher whom, she was convinced, had a lost and corrupted soul. Her sister would plant her big feet and squabble over the price of strawberries until the sun set and the moon rose. Carrie picked up the crate and handed it to the man. “Abgschlagge!” Sold!
The man and his wife, surprised and delighted, hurried off with the strawberries as Emma spun to face Carrie. She lifted her hands, palms out. “Have you lost your mind? My strawberries are worth twice that price! What were you thinking?”
“I’m thinking that it’s past two and the market has closed and the van is waiting.” Carrie pushed the leftover crates of red ripe strawberries into the back of the van of the hired driver and slammed the door shut, pinching her thumbnail. Wincing from the pain, she knew she didn’t dare stop to get ice. There wasn’t a moment to waste.
“Dummel dich net!” Emma muttered as Carrie opened the passenger seat door for her. Don’t be in such a hurry! “You’ve been as jumpy as a jackrabbit all morning.”
Carrie reached out an arm to clasp her younger brother on the shoulder, pulling him back as he started to climb in the van behind Emma. “I need to run an errand and take the bus home later today. Andy’s coming with me.”
Andy’s eyes went round as shoe buttons, but he followed Carrie’s lead and hopped back out of the van.
Emma twisted around on the seat. “What errand?” she asked, eyes narrowed with suspicion. “You know your dad wants you home to visit with Daniel Miller.”
Carrie blew out a big sigh. Silent, solemn Daniel Miller. He and his father, Eli, were staying with the Jacob Weavers this summer. Eli Miller and Jacob Weaver made no secret of the fact that they had a hope for her and Daniel. Well, they could hope all they liked but Carrie’s heart was already spoken for. Spoken for and claimed, and the thought warmed her.
“Daniel’s mighty fine looking, Carrie,” Emma said. “Your dad is hoping you’ll think so too.”
“If you think Daniel is such a looker, why don’t you visit with him?” Carrie stepped back from the van to close the door. That had been mean, what she said to Emma, and she reached out to give her sister’s arm a gentle squeeze in apology before she swung the door closed and the driver pulled away. Dear Emma, nearly twenty-seven and terrified that she would end up an old maid. Carrie felt a smile pull at her mouth and fought it back, as an unbidden image of a large celery patch popped into her mind. Emma and her mother, Esther, grew celery in the family garden in hopes that this would be Emma’s year.
Carrie shook off her musing and grabbed Andy’s hand and hurried to the bus stop.
She wanted to reach the Lancaster Barnstormers’ stadium before Solomon Riehl would start pitching. Last night, Sol told her he might be a closing pitcher in today’s scrimmage, so she should be in the stands by the last few innings.
“What kind of errand?” Andy asked Carrie.
She shaded her eyes from the sun to watch for the bus. “It’s a surprise for your birthday.”
“I won’t turn nine ’til October.”
Carrie looked at him and tousled his hair. “Consider it an early birthday present.” She knew she wouldn’t be here on his birthday.
As Carrie and Andy climbed on the bus and sat amongst the English, she felt the happiness of her secret spill over her. She didn’t even mind the pain radiating from her throbbing thumb. She was entirely preoccupied with the conversations she had been having with Sol lately. Last week, he called her at midnight, as planned, from the phone shanty across the road from his father’s farm. During that call, he had talked to her about
leaving the community and trying to make a living as a baseball player. And he told her he wanted her by his side, as his wife.
Where on the Internet can the readers find you?
I can be reached on-line at http://www.suzannewoodsfisher.com/ , and on Facebook and Twitter. I love to hear from readers!
Thank you for hosting me today, Lena!
And thank you for sharing with us today.
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