Sunday, March 13, 2011
I’m very happy writing for the super-duper folks at Harvest House. I hope I can continue writing fiction for them well into the future.
Tell us a little about your family.
Not much family to speak of. I’ve been married forever, and have an adopted dog and cat.
Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
Not really, I have always had varied and divergent reading tastes. I love literary fiction like Tracey Chevalier and cozy mysteries, and everything in between.
What are you working on right now?
I am working on the second in the Wayne County Ohio series featuring a romantic love-triangle (of a mild sort…)
Sounds interesting. I'd love to feature it on the blog, too. What outside interests do you have?
American history, swimming and snorkeling, wilderness/wildlife preservation, community/Christian service with the homeless, etc., and trying to lose weight without giving up candy, cake and cookies.
My husband and I have long been involved in ministry to the homeless. How do you choose your settings for each book?
I take many day-trips and weekend getaways to scout the counties I wish to feature in my books.
If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
I suppose it would Abe Lincoln. I would love to ask him what things he would do differently during the Civil War if he had to do it over.
What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
That every story is a work-in-progress until the moment it goes to the printers. I originally thought that once I committed an event/person/attitude to a story, it became set in stone. What a silly notion!
To step back and get out of His way. I have a tendency to worry, stress, and over-think upcoming events. If I simply allow Him to take the helm, things work out for the best. And I sleep better at night.
What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
Work on your writing every day, or at least six days a week, even if it’s a short while. Otherwise you lose your train-of-thought. Give your best writing time to writing, not to email, blogs, or loops. Be patient with yourself if the world isn’t ready to recognize your personal “genius” yet.
Tell us about the featured book.
Abigail’s New Hope is a dual story about a pair of sisters. Abby, an Amish midwife, gets put in jail when a delivery goes horribly wrong. When her sister comes to tend Abby’s children, she finds (and falls in love with) a deaf recluse living in the back cabin that everyone is their district had erroneously thought simple-minded.
Sounds intriguing. Please give us the first page of the book.
Abigail’s New Hope by Mary Ellis
“Come help us, mamm.” The excited voice of her six-year-old floated across the lawn. Abby grinned, watching her daughter and four-year-old son chase lightning bugs through the grass with open jelly jars in hand. Despite the kinners’ industrious efforts, the fireflies successfully evaded capture to blink and glow on another night.
“Why are you two off the porch? You both were already washed for bed.” Abby walked back from the barn with her palms perched on her hips.
She glanced up as a squeak from the screen door signaled the arrival of the final Graber family member, her ehemann of seven years. “I thought you were reading them a story,” she said with a sly smile.
Daniel slicked a hand through his thick hair, his hat nowhere in sight; then braced calloused palms against the porch rail. “Relax, wife. That grass looks pretty clean from where I’m standing. You won’t have to start from scratch. Didn’t it just rain the other day?” His smile deepened the lines around his eyes. With the setting sun glinting off his sun-burnished nose, he looked as mischievous as one of their children.
Abby watched the warm summer night unfold around her family with no desire to scold. The young ones would have the rest of their lives to have perfectly clean feet, but the summers of childhood were numbered. Besides, it was too nice an evening for anyone to go to bed on time. Walking up the porch steps, she stepped easily into Daniel’s strong arms and rested her head against his shoulder. Within his embrace, with her two healthy offspring darting like honeybees in spring clover, she savored the almost-longest day of the year.
I like it. How can readers find you on the Internet?
I can be found at http://www.maryeellis.wordpress.com/
Thank you, Mary, for spending this time with us.
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