Welcome back, Nancy. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I love mystery and suspense. Being able to combine them together excites me. I believe writers should write what they love. I’m blessed to work with a publisher that allows and encourages me to do this.
Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
Easy. The birth of my son. I still remember the words, “It’s a boy!” I knew it would be though. I felt as if I already knew him even before he was born. He is the joy of my life. And now, he’s made me a grandmother. My grandson’s name is Aidan Jackson Mehl. His birth was the second best day of my life.
How has being published changed your life?
It’s helped me to discover my identity – my calling. I think finding the thing God has created you to do changes you. Makes you realize that your life isn’t insignificant.
What are you reading right now?
What is your current work in progress?
Perfect segue. LOL! I’m working on the first book in a new series, tentatively titled, the Sanctuary Series. I’m excited about it. It’s the story of Wynter Evans, a young woman obsessed with her job at a television station in
While researching unusual towns in the state for a special report, she runs
across a photo of a boy living in a Mennonite town called Sanctuary. He bears
an uncanny resemblance to her missing brother, Ryan, who disappeared ten years
earlier. Telling her boss that she’s going to Sanctuary to research it for
possible inclusion in her story, she takes off for the small town to see if
this young man could actually be Ryan. What she discovers will blow the lid off
the town and turn her life inside out.
Wow! I can hardly wait. Sounds like something I’d love to read. What would be your dream vacation?
I have several answers in mind. Right now? A week at a cabin on a lake where I could fish and relax. Sounds heavenly. I’m also determined to take an Alaskan cruise someday. I want to see the Northern Lights and watch whales swim past the ship. And one day, when he’s old enough, I want to take Aidan, along with his mommy and daddy, to Disney World. My husband and I would love to do this!
How do you choose your settings for each book?
Until now, all my books have been set in
Kansas. Writing cozies and Mennonite-themed
suspense meant they had to be in small towns. So, my settings were already
chosen for me.
In my new series, I’m shifting the stories to
Missouri since I’ll be
moving there soon myself. I like writing about an area of the country that I can
research in person rather than just online. It helps to add realism to my stories.
I enjoy driving through the region I’m writing about so I can get a feel for
it. Find out what it’s really like.
If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
Joyce Meyer. Her ministry has changed my life. I’d love to share my story with her, and thank her.
My husband and I really enjoy watching her teaching. We have been in the studio audience when she was on TV with James and Betty Robison. What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Not too many right now, I’m afraid. I love to watch TV, especially shows with mystery and suspense. When the weather’s nice, my husband and I enjoy going to a nearby park and walking. I really love fishing, but it’s been years since I’ve had time to do it.
What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Rewrites. Hate ’em. But I’m realizing that they are actually my best friend. I have great editors and once I get through the rewrites, I know I have a much better story. Pulling up my big girl panties gets me through that initial letter with rewrite suggestions. I’m actually getting better at receiving them. Leaving more hair on my head and not screaming quite as loudly. The neighbors appreciate that! LOL!
What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Learn your craft. Too many writers are slapping together unsellable manuscripts. Writing is an art. You have to learn it, and then you have to learn some more. Truth be told, we never stop learning. Perfecting any craft takes hard work and commitment. If you’re not willing to do it, get a job wrestling crocodiles. It will be less frustrating.
Research the publishers you want to target. I didn’t listen to this advice when I started, and I probably set my career back several years. Find a publisher that specializes in what you want to write. Read their books. Study their lists. Write what they’re looking for. Too many writers ignore this, claiming that they are going to “Write what I want! I won’t sell out for anyone!” The truth is, you just won’t sell. Period. To be honest, I had no intention of writing Mennonite-themed books. A certain publisher eased me into it, but today I’m very grateful I found this niche. To my surprise I really enjoy it. Win, win!
Tell us about the featured book.
UNBREAKABLE is the story of Hope Kauffman, a shy, quiet girl who lives in the Mennonite town of
churches and people of faith are attacked in the county, the residents of
Kingdom have to decide how to protect themselves. The core belief of the
Mennonite faith is nonviolence, but will sticking to this doctrine put them in
danger? Hope is engaged to a man who refuses to take up a weapon to defend
himself – or anyone else. But another man Hope is drawn to makes a different
choice. Hope’s heart is as divided as her hometown. Before the end of UNBREAKABLE Hope’s faith will be
tested as her life hangs in the balance.
Please give us the first page of the book.
“All I know, Hope, is that you folks in Kingdom need to be careful.” Flo neatly folded the piece of fabric I’d just purchased, running her thin fingers along the edge to create a sharp crease.
“Two nights ago a church near Haddam burned to the ground. Someone is targeting houses of worship in this part of
Kansas, and they don’t care about the
denomination. They just hate Christians.”
“But Kingdom is so remote. Besides, when anyone new comes around, we know it. There’s only one road into town.” My words sounded reassuring, but the rash of recent attacks left me feeling troubled. Was our small Mennonite town in danger? The idea that someone was harming people because of their love for God was hard for me to understand.
“Just yesterday someone tried to run a car off the road outside of town,” Flo said. “Folks had a Christian bumper sticker. That was all it took to get them into trouble.”
“Was anyone hurt?”
She shrugged. “No, I think they were just being hassled, but the car was forced off the road. Something like that could do a lot of damage to anyone in a buggy.”
This book is at the top of my to-be-read list. Hopefully, tomorrow I can start reading it. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website is: www.nancymehl.com. I’m also a part of a great blog called the Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com. And I’m very active on Facebook.
One fortunate winner will receive:
- A Kindle Fire
- Books one and two in Nancy's Road to Kingdom series (Inescapable and Unbreakable)
Grab your copy of Unbreakable and join Nancy on the evening of the March 5th for a chance to connect with Nancy and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)
Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP today. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 5th!
Thank you, Nancy for sharing your new book and contest with us. I loved book one in the series.
Readers, here is a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.Unbreakable (Road to Kingdom)
Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book on this blog. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)
Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.
The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.
If you’re reading this on Google +, Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.