Welcome back, Rita. What are some of the spiritual themes you like to write about?
An excellent question. I strive to weave spiritual themes into the story by fleshing out the characters. I do not preach at the reader. Readers want don’t want a sermon, they want to journey with characters they can relate to. In real life, we all deal with spiritual issues whether we are a believer or not. Some of the spiritual themes in my newest release, After the Rain, are the care of widows and orphans, unplanned pregnancy, trusting in God for guidance, discernment, and living a godly life, just to name a few.
What other books of yours are coming out soon?
October has been a busy month. My Daughters of the
Potomac series came out in Audible alongside After
the Rain. I’ll have other books coming out in the next year. I’m
working on writing another Edwardian era novel, and my agent and I are
discussing the publication of a novel that is finished.
If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?
I wouldn’t mind having dinner with Dr. Dennis Slamin. He’s an oncologist and chief of the division of Hematology-Oncology at UCLA, known for his work in classifying the oncogene that is found in HER2 breast cancer, and the treatment of Herceptin. I received Herceptin IVs for a year during breast cancer treatment. It has saved so many women’s lives, including mine. He fought the pharmaceutical industry and the FDA to get the drug approved. So many of us BC survivors are very thankful. There is a movie called Proof of Life about him, and as I watched it, I could see how the Lord had his Hand in this.
You know my oldest daughter battled breast cancer this year, because you prayed for her and reached out to her. I so appreciated that. God had laid you on my heart through your battle. For a while there, I was praying for four different author friends who were also in the battle. I’m so thankful you and my daughter are on the other side of the battle. What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?
If it were another writer, undoubtedly I’d want to meet Mark Twain. If anyone has ever read his work, he’d be in the top ten of people to meet. Not only was he a brilliant writer, he was witty, and a very wise man. I can imagine sitting on his porch on a summer evening talking while he smokes a cigar. I’d do a lot more listening than speaking, but I’d have many questions about writing.
It would be fun to be there with the two of you. How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?
I’d encourage them by saying not to allow rejections to hold you back from doing what you love and fulfilling your calling as a Christian writer. All writers get rejections, and most of the time it has to do with the market. Publishing is a business, and publishers are in it to make money. That’s the bottom line. If you are called to write, no one can take that away from you. Only you can decide what to do with it. And we have the option of self-publishing with Amazon’s KDP program, which gives you all the rights, full control, and higher royalties. There is always hope, so let God lead you. Write and don’t fold.
Tell us about the featured book.
I loved writing After the Rain. It was a leap forward in time for me. My other books were Colonial era novels, so this one was exciting to delve into, especially with all the new research I had to do. Here’s the synopsis.
It's 1908, a year in the Edwardian Age, the year J.M. Barrie’s play What Every Woman Knows, premiered in
Atlantic City and the first Model T
rolled off the assembly line in Detroit.
It is a year when the world faced one of its worst disasters in history, when
the New Year would heal the wounds of loss.
Louisa Borden lives a privileged life in
Chase, Maryland, a new and
thriving community on the outskirts of , for the well-to-do. Against
the wishes of her domineering grandmother, she retreats from the prospects of a
loveless marriage and instead searches for what she hopes is her calling in
When her horse is spooked along Rock Creek, she is thrown from the saddle—an embarrassing situation for any affluent young lady. Soaking wet, bruised and humiliated, she is carried up the muddy bank to safety by Jackson O’Neil, a stranger to the city, who changes the course of everything, including the lives of all those around her.
Please give us the first page of the book.
Jackson O’Neil scanned the ridgeline. The clouds were low and misty, shades of blue and gray ash that stretched along the mountains as far as his eyes could see. Autumn had come early, and the dogwoods were turning crimson—the maples gold, the oaks deep brown.
A whisper of a breeze stirred the changing leaves and ruffled his dark hair. His quarter horse grazed in the field beyond the farmhouse his father had built so many years ago, before he was born, before his younger sister took her first breath.
He drew in the scent of apples fallen from the trees, listened to the hum of yellow jackets thirsty for the sweet overripe nectar of the rotting pulp. He heaped hay over the fence and whistled to his horse. Ransom raised his head and trotted over.
He understood loneliness, and wished for it at times so to forget some of the things he had seen in his life. He rubbed his horse’s ear and recalled the seasons when his father’s fields were dotted with mares and their foals, a stallion in the next meadow over. Would he ever bring those prosperous days back to Ballyshannon? Or had those years of plenty ended?
He’d been home more than a year now, since his father turned the land over to him, land that had been in his family for three generations, named for the place where his great grandfather had been born in Ireland.
to be home, regretful he had ever left.
An engine rumbled in the distance. It drew closer and a dust cloud flew up into the air. Choking exhaust mixed with rusty sand and dirt, held no comparison to the colossal billows of soot and concrete dust he remembered. He threw back the images and focused on Bill Shanks barreling toward him on the motorbike used for delivering the mail. Whipping around a bend, Shanks skidded to a halt, frightening Ransom away from the fence.
“I’ve a letter for you.” Shanks lifted his goggles and drew a brown envelope out of his leather satchel. “It’s from your pa.”
How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website is https://ritagerlach.wordpress.com/
They can find my author’s page on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/author.ritagerlach
My regular Facebook profile is at https://www.facebook.com/rita.gerlach.3
Thank you, Rita, for sharing this new book with my readers. I know they will be eager to read it.
Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.After the Rain - Christianbook.com
After the Rain - Amazon
After the Rain - Kindle
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