Saturday, October 13, 2007

An Interview with Lena Nelson Dooley

I always feel a little awkward when I do an interview of myself, but this interview is the first one in a series of books that are releasing in October, November, and December. The one in November was written by Lisa Harris, and the one in December was by Beth Goddard. I'll feature interviews with these two author friends in their months of release.

Why do you write the kind of books you do?

Because God is the author of romance. The Enemy of our Souls has stolen so much from us, and in society today, he has taken this God-given gift and perverted it so much. In my books, I want to show that a couple can have a real romance and the Lord will bless it.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?

There are several days that hold probably equal footing. The birth of my two daughters followed by the birth of each of my four grandchildren. To add to that, this year my first great grandson was born. These days show that God has a plan for tomorrow in our lives and families.

How has being published changed your life?

I could say that it has made me famous, but only in some circles. It has allowed me to enjoy doing what God created me to do—write and tell stories that touch people’s lives. Of course, it has also helped me get to know some of the most awesome people in the publishing world—other authors, agents, and editors. Some of my best friends now are in the writing world. The best thing is that they understand this need to express things in words, and they understand having people take up residence in my thoughts.

What are you reading right now?

I just finished Cindy Woodsmall’s second book When the Morning Comes—a wonderful book. Then yesterday I started Mary DeMuth’s Wishing on Dandelions. Since I loved her first book, I am glad to read the sequel. The last three before that were The Measure of a Lady by Deeanne Gist, Violette Between by Alison Strobel, and Frasier Island by Susan Page Davis. If you haven’t read any of these books, I highly recommend them. As I finish each book, I do a review on my Shoutlife page:

What is your current work in progress?

I’m working on a proposal for The Gift of a Son, a historical book set in Colorado in the early 1890s. I’m also trying to finish the manuscript for Beyond Redemption, a contemporary set in Texas. The first of November, I must start writing my contracted novella for Snowbound Colorado Christmas, a historical set in 1913.

What would be your dream vacation?

I love to go on cruises--all that getting waited on hand and foot. My husband and I have been on two in the Caribbean. My book Never Say Never came from those voyages. My husband and I want to go on the Alaska cruise some time. We’d also like to go to Hawaii. It’s very hard for me to choose just one.

How do you choose your settings for each book?

Usually, the stories determine the setting. I love to learn about places. Whenever I travel, I take pictures and notes and buy books about the area. That gives me lots of things to use in a book.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?

George W. Bush. I know a lot about him and his walk with the Lord. I’d love to have dinner with him, and I would hope that both my husband and Laura Bush would join us. I’d like to tell him how much I’ve prayed for him during his presidency and how much I admire him for the way he’s handled the difficult things the media has done to him. Being president of the United States opens a person up to all kind of critics. I'm thankful that he's continued to stand for his convictions no matter what critics say.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?

Can eating chocolate be a hobby? Spending time with family is high on my list. James and I like to go to movies, when we can find one worth viewing. I also knit things for the homeless ministry. And of course, there's the travel.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?

Probably distraction. Many creative people are easily distracted, and I’m one of them. The only way I can overcome this is to spend time with the Lord and let Him help me keep on task.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?

Don’t be a lone ranger. Connect with other people who write the kind of thing that you do, especially authors who have been published as well as other aspiring authors. If you’re into fiction, I highly recommend American Christian Fiction Writers as a good place to connect with other authors of all kinds of genres. Then don’t give up. Write. Write. Write. Learn. Learn. Learn. Submit. Submit. Submit.

Tell us about the featured book.

Who Am I? is the first book in a contemporary series set in Massachusetts. The other two books were written by Lisa Harris and Beth Goddard. Lisa’s book comes out in November and Beth’s in December. I’ll feature each of them on this blog. All of the books have mystery/suspense elements in them.

In Who Am I?, Leiann Hambrick finds out after her mother’s death that there are many things that have to do with her life that she didn’t know. There were lies that she believed to be truth. She goes to Massachusetts to meet a grandfather she never knew she had. After she gets there, dangerous things start happening to her. She wonders if someone is trying to kill her, and she doesn’t know who she can trust.

How can readers find you on the Internet?

I’m glad you’ve found me here. Check back octen. I also have a web site where you can read about all my books:

The website contains a monthly newsletter with a lot of interesting information about books, as well as reviews of books I’ve read that month.

I also have a site on Shoutlife, which I mentioned earlier. This is a Christian Internet Communtiy. Come over and meet lots of wonderful people.

If you'd like to win a free copy of Who Am I?, leave a comment on this interview. To be sure you don't miss any winner announcement or other author interviews, sign up in the right column for Feedblitz. The announcements will come straight to your Inbox.


Kristy Dykes said...

I'm not JUST commenting to win the free book, though that would be the icing on the cake. Just wanted to say I enjoyed your interview, Lena. Great! I learned even more about you. I enjoy your writing.

Crystal Laine Miller said...

I am taking notes on interviewing yourself. Well done! I might try that. I'd love to interview you (I'll email you) on my blog in my When I Was Just a Kid feature and I'll include your latest releases.

Now, what kind of animal would you be?? (smile)

Patricia said...

Hi Lena,
Loved your interview with yourself. Now I know what to do when I get distracted : )
Thanks for all the time your pour into others.

Abi Buening said...

loved the interview. I'd like to win the book.

Cherie J said...

Enjoyed your interview! Sounds like a wonderful book!

Sharlene MacLaren said...

Lena, this sounds like a great read! Question: while you were interviewing yourself, did you answer yourself at any time--or did you just type away? hahaha! Please throw my name in the hat for a chance to win your delightful book! God bless you, Lena!


tetewa said...

Enjoyed the interview, count me in for the draw!

Lisa Jordan said...

I've never seen an author interview herself, but you handled it with a humble spirit and grace. Nicely done!

Lena Nelson Dooley said...

Thank you for your wonderful comments.

Crystal, I'd love to be interviewed on your blog. By the way, earlier in the year, I did an interview of me and I answered the animal question on that blog.

Lena Nelson Dooley said...

By the way, I will choose more than one winner of this book.

Caroline said...

As always, interesting interview, Lena. Count me in on the book give-away, if I'm that fortunate!

Hannah said...

great interview! i'd love to enter to win the book especially since i'm from massachusetts!
hsmuda [at] gmail [dot] com

Emma said...

Enjoyed your interview!Please enter my name in the chance to win your delightful book! thank you.

Anonymous said...

Great interview! Sounds like a wonderful book. I would love to win a copy.

I blogged this giveaway on my Sunday Edition of Contests Galore

~~ Laura

P.S. My Mom's name is Lena.:)

AshleyR said...

Great interview! Sounds like a wonderful book. I would love to win a copy.

Andrea said...

Great interview! I've never interviewed myself before...but you did a good job! :) And the book looks wonderful as well!

Norma said...

Would love to read this!

Kathleen Morphy said...

Please, enter me for the contest. The little HP books are so perfect to stick in my purse for while I'm standing in line at the post office (ours never takes less than 20 minutes even if you get there before it opens for some reason) or sitting in the waiting room at the doctor's office. I don't remember seeing much suspense in the other books of yours I've read, Lena. This should be interesting.