Tell us about this new series you’re involved in. I’m really excited about it.
Eight of Tamela Hancock Murray’s authors are in this quirk-filled series set in a fictional town called
Bloomfield. B&H editor Julie Gwinn caught
our vision, and she has contracted our stories in a variety of ways –
full-length novels, novellas for anthologies, and straight-to-digital shorts.
Here’s the premise of our series:
From the splash fountain in the middle of the town square to Lake Bliss Retirement Village on the outskirts of town, Bloomfield is made up of quirky and endearing folks that you’ll want to know better…and will never forget. If they’re not in the process of falling in love, they’re busy matchmaking.
Drop by for a visit and plan to stay awhile. Enjoy delectable treats at the bakery, a delightful rest at the bed and breakfast, or have a scrumptious meal at the restaurant (nicknamed the Fancy Schmantsy) on tree-lined Main Street. Even better, make Bloomfield your home and help the town reach their goal of 10,000 residents—only 22 people away, if no one else dies!
While nothing is perfect, the people in Bloomfield would argue that this is as close to heaven on earth as a person can get without passing through the Pearly Gates. And at the heart of it all…Bloomfield Garden Club. This group of lovable oddballs of all ages will stop at nothing to make everything beautiful. (And we do mean nothing!)
Sounds like a lot of fun. Tell us about your salvation experience.
I grew up in an Air Force family, and we moved around quite a bit. My parents didn’t go to church regularly, but my mother would occasionally take me to the base chapel. Each time we moved, I gravitated toward friends whose families were immersed in their faith, and I went to church with them. What I noticed was the joy those families had, even when times were tough. I can’t say I had a specific moment of salvation. It was more like a gradual understanding that the only hope we have is through faith in Jesus.
You’re planning a writing retreat where you can only have four other authors. Who would they be and why?
Lena, you know you’d
be one of the first I’d invite because we always have so much fun together. I’m
not sure I’d be able to narrow it down to four because there are so many
interesting people. Sandie Bricker is always good for a lively conversation and
lots of giggles. Julie Pollitt isn’t published yet, but I never run out of
things to talk about with her, and she’s a very good writer. Trish Perry and I
have become quite close over the past few years, and I absolutely love her
writing. My agent Tamela Hancock Murray is also a published author, and she
always has my back, so of course I’d want her to go along. If I could sneak in a
few more author friends, I’d include Paige Winship Dooly, Rhonda Gibson, Beth
Goddard, Lisa Ludwig, Gail Sattler, Martha Rogers, Kathi Macias, Jenness
Walker, Tracy Bowen, and… Um, I guess I need to stop now, right?
Most of those people are friends of mine, too, so we’d have a ball. I do have to remind Paige that her husband’s family didn’t know how to spell Dooley. Do you have a speaking ministry? If so, tell us about that.
Yes, I speak to a variety of groups – churches, libraries, civic organizations, writing organizations, and schools. Most of the time I can focus my talk on the interests of the group. I currently have a list of topics that include how I started writing, how I came to faith, how I develop my characters, and how to write about worldly topics from a Christian worldview.
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you and how did you handle it?
I’m not easily embarrassed, but I feel bad when I see that someone else is. I was doing a book signing when a woman ran up and plunked a book on the table in front of me. She gushed about how much she loved my writing and said she’d bought all my books. I was extremely flattered until I glanced down and saw that the book she had was by Debbie Macomber. The woman was extremely embarrassed that she’d gotten us mixed up, and my heart went out to her, so I gave her one of my books and said that I hope she liked my book at least half as much as she liked Debbie’s books. Oh, by the way, Debbie Macomber is also one of my favorite authors, and if I can squeeze one more person into the writing retreat, I’d love for her to be there too.
Yes, I finally met Debbie Macomber when she was the speaker at the last
conference. She’s one of my favorite
people, too. People are always telling me that they’d like to write a book
someday. I’m sure they do to you, too. What would you tell someone who came up
to you and said that? Denver
I always encourage people to give it a shot. You never know when you’re facing a future bestseller or world-changer. However, even though I advise them to do it, I also tell them how difficult my journey was in the beginning. Too many people think it’s an easy way to make a living.
If they’re going into it for the money, I’d try to discourage them. They should write because they can’t not write. Tell us about the featured book.
Waiting for a View is a straight-to-digital short that features Sherry, the local card shop manager and Brad, an engineer who has had feelings for Sherry since they were teenagers. My story is filled with matchmaking from the town matriarch Naomi, garden club president, Pamela, crusty fireman, Andy, and a squawking parrot named
Sherry has a hard time letting go of her past, and it takes some serious
nudging to get her out of her rut.
Sounds wonderful. Please give us the first page of the book.
Waiting for a View
As we grow older, God dims our vision so we can’t see the dust.
Sherry wiped her palms on the side of her shirt as she approached Brad Henderson who stood a couple of feet from a row of cards in the shop she managed. The two-day-old stubble on his face and slightly tousled but short medium brown hair gave him a rugged look.
“Need help?” she asked.
“More than you can imagine.” He turned and pulled out one of the cards before putting it back, shaking his head and making a face. “We’re throwing a little one-year anniversary party for our receptionist this afternoon, and I have no idea what kind of card would be appropriate.” He cast a helpless look in her direction. “I’m sort of lost when it comes to this type of thing.”
“We have cards for practically every occasion.” She motioned for him to follow her around to the next row as the door chime rang. “Why don’t you browse a bit while I see if I can help the next customer?”
He winked, and her heart pounded so hard it felt like it might jump out of her chest. The last few times she’d been around Brad, he’d had the strangest effect on her.
“Naomi, hi.” Sherry glanced at the birdcage in Naomi’s hand. “What are you doing with Andy’s bird?”
“Can you keep an eye on him for a couple of days?”
“Yes, of course.” When Naomi didn’t move, suspicion rose. “What else is on your mind?”
“I’m glad you asked.” Naomi McCord plunked the birdcage on the floor beside the register and gently placed her crepe-skinned hand on Sherry Butler’s arm. The book Sherry had been reading between customers fell to the floor. “I think it’s time you face reality.”
“You’re not getting any younger, and it’s time to let go of some of your…” She offered an apologetic look, and Sherry braced herself for the inevitable bomb. “…hang-ups. Oh, by the way, thanks for agreeing to watch Murray. Andy, silly man that he is, took advantage of my bleedin’ heart for all animals with a face. The fellas at the fire hall said Murray is only allowed there when Andy’s on duty, so he brought him to me. Problem is, my apartment is small, and I can’t sleep with him ruffling his feathers all night.”
Way to leave us hanging. I can hardly wait for my copy to come. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website: http://debbymayne.com
Waiting for a View can currently be found in the following places:
It should be available in other places soon.
Thank you, Debby, for introducing us to the new series and giving us a peek into your life.
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