Thursday, June 19, 2014

TWICE A SLAVE - Sammy Tippit - One Free Book

Welcome, Sammy. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
There’s probably a little of myself in each of my characters. Because I’m viewing life through my own world perspective, a little of me comes out in each of the characters. However, as much as possible, I attempt to write life situations through the eyes of others.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I walked with six others across America, pushing a wheelbarrow filled with Bibles. We passed out the Bibles and held rallies on university campuses in 1970.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I returned from traveling in Romania in the mid 1980s and knew that what I had witnessed in the nation needed to be shared. I approached Moody Press with an idea about a book on what I had learned. They were open to the idea, and I wrote my first book, Fire in Your Heart. It did well, and I knew writing would be a part of my life and ministry.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
With nonfiction, I read a lot of the classic books on Christian living. I enjoy the depth of writers during the 1800s and early 1900s. I, also, enjoy Jerry B. Jenkins and Brandilyn Collins writings in Christian fiction and have read their latest books. I am, also, a big John Grisham fan.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I attempt to maintain a consistent time alone with God, reading His word and spending time in prayer each morning. I find that I am able to accomplish much more with less time if I’ve spent time with God.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
With my present novel, Twice a Slave, ninety percent of my characters were historical personalities. I had a pretty good handle on the times and the persons involved in the story. That made it fairly easy. I had a much more difficult time choosing names for the novel I’m presently writing. For it, I chose names that were uncommon but not completely unknown. I tried to find a name that fit the character’s personality.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Speaking at the first outdoor stadium evangelistic event in Romania after the Romanian Revolution.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A lamb. I like the gentle character of the lamb.

What is your favorite food?
Crawfish étouffée.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
In Twice a Slave, there were several historical circumstances and events that didn’t make sense. However, I checked with experts in those areas and found that even though those events were unusual, they were explainable. It took a lot of digging to find the right experts who knew the answers to those difficult questions.

Tell us about the featured book.
Twice a Slave is the story of a Cherokee slave, a forbidden romance, and tragedies that build faith. One man who is determined to find his purpose and discover his identity becomes a slave a second time and changes the course of history in Louisiana. Joseph Willis is one of the most fascinating, yet unknown personalities in Evangelical history. He was born into slavery before the American Revolution, the son of a Cherokee mother and an English father who faced incredible difficulties. His story is timeless and inspires the modern heart to overcome insecurities, conquer prejudice between believers and insurmountable obstacles that unsettle the faithful. Even though Joseph's life was threatened because of his race and faith, he became the first Protestant to preach the gospel west of the Mississippi River. This is a novel based on the life of an unknown slave filled with drama, suspense, love, defeat, and ultimately triumph, an epic all can cheer for.

Please give us the first page of the book.
October 1, 1852
Outside Blanche, Louisiana
Paw told me not to worry when he and Maw climbed into the family wagon before dawn to head for Blanche to buy supplies. They were leaving me to help Grandpa get ready to speak at the big meetin’. “He’ll be all right, Polk,” Paw said. “We’ll be home in a couple of hours.”

But he didn’t know. Didn’t know I’d get the fright of my life. Didn’t know what I’d be told.

Grandpa was real old, seriously old. Nobody knew exactly how old, because people like him didn’t know, but Paw said he was past ninety. It seemed like everybody expected Grandpa — church folks called him Father Willis — to die any minute. But Paw said they’d been saying that for twenty years. I just hoped it wouldn’t happen when it was only me at home.

A few minutes before Maw and Paw were s’posed to be back home, Rube, an old freed slave, rode up asking if Grandpa was ready to go to the meetin’.

I shook my head. “Paw told me he’d be awake before the rooster crowed, but he ain’t moved a muscle.”

Rube’s eyes grew wide. “Your Paw told me to git the other wagon ready so’s I could tote you and Father Willis to Evergreen behind them in the buckboard. You don’t think somethin’s a-happened to him?”

I shrugged.
“We gotta wake him! Right now. Your maw is gonna be mighty upset if he’s not ready to go when they get back.”

Rube and I hurried off to Grandpa’s bedroom and found him on his back, eyes closed, not moving, his face as gray and cold as the blade on Paw’s old knife. We tiptoed to Grandpa’s bed and bent over him, and Rube whispered, “Lord Jesus, have mercy.”

“You think he’s dead?”

“Yessuh, for shor.”

It took all the courage I could muster, but I leaned close to Grandpa’s face and lifted one of his eyelids with my trembling fingers. Fighting back tears, I said, “Yep, he’s dead.”

“What you doing, boy?” Grandpa bellowed, flinching at my touch.

I jumped so high I thought I would hit the ceiling. Rube screamed and fell on his back, and I landed on top of him, our arms and legs tangling as we just kept turnin’ over each other, slapping and kicking and hollering until Grandpa sat up and yelled, “Stop it!”

Old Rube finally gathered himself from the floor and bowed his head. “I’m sorry, Father Willis. We thought you was dead.”
How can readers find you on the Internet?
Thank you, Sammy, for sharing this new book with us. I know my readers well be as interested as I am in this story.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Twice a Slave -
Twice a Slave - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. 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.

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Anonymous said...

Sounds like a interesting book! I live in MS! Shelia Hall

Sammy Tippit said...

Sheila, the book contains much of Mississippi's history. Joseph Willis worked with Richard Curtis in Mississippi before going into Louisiana. It was the work in Mississippi that drew him to Louisiana. He had some interesting things happen there.

Mama Cat said...

Great interviews, Lena! I would love to win/ read this book - many thanks! Mama Cat in Arizona

Amy C said...

Thank you so much, Lena, for introducing Sammy! His book sounds amazing!
Amy C

Judy Cooper said...

A new author for me, but it is a real interesting subject to me T would be nice to win, but I will be looking it up. Thank you. Judy Cooper in Louisiana1608.

Holly I. said...

Wow! Sounds like a great book, can't wait to read!
~Holly, KY

Melanie Backus said...

Sammy is new to me. I am intrigued!

Melanie Backus, TX

Danielle Hull said...

So many books, so little time! In Indiana.

Danielle Hull said...

So many books, so little time! In Indiana.

Lisa Stifler said...

Thank you for sharing this interview. Sammy Tippit is a new author to me. This book sounds amazing. I loved the trailer it made me want to read it even more. Thank you for this chance to win a copy. ~ Blessings~ lisastifler(at)yahoo(dot)com

Sammy Tippit said...

Hello everyone! I guess I'm the new guy on the block.:-) I hope you will enjoy the book. I discovered Joseph Willis through a strange set of circumstances and knew the story needed to be told. This is my first novel to write, but I have written 13 other non-fiction books. I think you will find the story of this Cherokee slave fascinating. Happy reading to all!

Britney Adams said...

I love the book trailer and am excited to read this special story! Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of TWICE A SLAVE!

Britney Adams, TX

Mary Preston said...

What a fascinating story line.

Mary P


Jean said...

Sounds like a great read

Jean K
West Palm Beach, FL

Susan Johnson said...

This sounds like a book I would really like to read. I have Cherokee in my background (way back)and I am always interested in learning more about their history.
Susan in Texas

susanlulu said...

This is a new author for me, so I'd love to read this book. It sounds interesting. I love books like this!
Susan in NC

Sammy Tippit said...

susanlulu, much of the first part of the book takes place in North Carolina. You may already know the history of Lumberton, but the novel has some interesting information about its founder, John Willis, Joseph Willis' cousin and his important role in Joseph's life.

Renee Barker said...

I have read Twice A Slave and highly recommend it! It is a fascinating read that is very well written. Sammy Tippit does a great job of bringing you into the time and life of Joseph Willis. I learned a lot about history and was equally inspired by this book. Thanks for the wonderful interview Lena!

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me!!
Sharon Richmond Bryant

rubynreba said...

This looks like a very good book.
Beth from Iowa