Thursday, May 07, 2009

Robin Jones Gunn - COMING ATTRACTIONS - Free Book

Welcome to my blog, Robin. Why do you write the kind of books you do?

It’s been a combination of reasons over the past 20 years. I started writing the YA books because the teens in our youth group challenged me to write books for them and they even helped me work on the Christy Miller books. After getting Christy through high school the publisher asked me to write about a new high school characters, so Sierra Jensen showed up. Then I wrote the College Years, because I wanted to find out what was happening with all the characters! I’m writing the continuation of the lives of those characters now in the Katie Weldon series so we can see what’s going on with Christy’s best friend, Katie, as well as check in on everyone else.

As the readers got older, they asked for more love stories. That’s why I started writing the eight Glenbrooke novels. We had just moved to Oregon and I loved the idea of connecting all these 20-something-plus characters to Glenbrooke, an imaginary small town in Oregon. How did these couples meet? How did they know they were in love? Those were the sorts of questions my readers were asking when I started that series. How to you meet a godly man? That was a delightful series to write.

Sisterchicks® sort of happened. I was actually writing a novel for The Women of Faith and it turned out to be its own sort of new beginning. That was Sisterchicks on the Loose! So, instead of that book going to The Women of Faith, I wrote Gardenias for Breakfast for them and launched the Sisterchicks stories into an eight-book series.

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

What a lovely question. I feel as if I’ve had so many happiest days. Our wedding day, of course, flies right to the top of the list. That was 33 years ago! Hard to believe! Other very happy days include my 50th birthday spent on Maui with my husband, the birth of both our children and our 25th anniversary spent in Italy. I feel so blessed.

Sounds wonderful. How has being published changed your life?

Since everything has happened one small step at a time, I don’t know that I feel my life has changed. This became my life almost 25 years ago when my first children’s books were published.

What are you reading right now?

I’m glad you asked this question. Every Christmas our children give me an interesting book. This year it was the Journals of Captain James Cook and C.S. Lewis’ Letters to Children. I’m reading both and loving every page.

What is your current work in progress?

I’m just finishing the final changes on the third Katie Weldon book, Coming Attractions. I’ve loved writing about these characters again and yes, I did cry when I finished the last page. We don’t have plans for more in the Katie collection yet, but you never know.

What would be your dream vacation?

Wow. Hard to say. I feel I’ve already had a dozen dream vacations while traveling around the world for speaking events and doing research for the Sisterchicks books. Lord willing, I’m going to Africa for the first time this fall for a writer’s conference. That’s been a dream for a long time. I loved Brazil and would love to go back there. Anytime I can put my toes into the sand on the Hawaiian islands I’m a happy mama.
Everywhere I get to travel feels like a dream to me.

How do you choose your settings for each book?

With the Sisterchicks books, the settings were partly chosen by me and partly suggested by the publisher. It worked out well because I’d been to some of the places, like Finland and Mexico and Hawaii. But they wanted stories about Australia and Venice and London, so they sent me there to do research. Pretty amazing, huh?

For the teen books and the Glenbrooke series, I just went with the old saying of “write what you know.” I grew up in southern California so it was easy to picture Christy in that location. When we moved to Oregon, I put Sierra in Portland.

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

Aside from my family and closest friends, I think I’d have to say Phyllis Tickle. I’ve only chatted with her a few times at publishing events but every time I wanted to sit down beside her and just soak up what she was saying.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?

Travel. You might have guessed that, right? I love long conversations over dinner at a variety of restaurants with a variety of people. Maybe my hobby is simply collecting stories, which is why I love to travel and take notes on all the experiences that happen to me. I love to listen to others tell their life stories, which is why long, leisurely dinners are my favorite.

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

After a car accident several decades ago I have a neck injury that bothers me pretty much any time I sit or type or travel or sleep or . . . you get the picture. 80% of the time it grieves me.

I do exercises. I go to a good chiropractor. I take joint improvement herbs. I have gone to physical therapists off and on. I just live with it.

My obstacles in crafting stories are not in finding time to write, coming up with ideas, working with publishers or any of the usual challenges. It’s just pain.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?

First, commit your work to the Lord and your plans will be established. (Proverbs 16:3) It was His idea to infuse your imagination as He did. How does He want to use this gift He gave you?

Second, learn how to discern between criticism and advice. Be open to both but know what to sift out and throw away and know which gems to pick up and hold on to.

Very good advice.

Please give us the first page of the book.

All first pages are available online.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
On Face Book and My Space I’m listed as Robin Jones Gunn
On Twitter it’s Robin Gunn

I’d love to invite all your readers to go to and sign up to receive my Robin’s Nest e-newsletter. I offer drawings for free books each time a newsletter comes out so please sign up and enter the drawings!
Thank you, Robin, for spending this time with us.
Readers, if you can't wait to get your hands on Coming Attractions, here's a link where you can order it:
Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Your only notification will be the winner announcement post on this blog. Be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won.
If you're reading this on Facebook or Amazon, you must come to the blog to leave the comment:


Deborah said...

oh please enter me!! I LOVE Robin's books and i grew up with the christy miller, then the sierra books and now the katie books. i love how there's a world within a world where everyone is connected between all robin's books

ladystorm said...

I have read one of her sisterchick books and it was pretty fun, so I would love to check out her new book. Please enter me.


Sandee61 said...

I am a huge fan of Robin Jones Gunn, ever since reading "Gardenia's For Breakfast". I've read almost all of her books, and loved them. Please enter me in your giveaway for "Coming Attractions". Thank you!



Nicole O'Dell said...

Great interview! Thanks for sharing!!

smilinkyn said...

I love Robin Jones Gunn! Please enter my name in this drawing. Thanks & God Bless!

raspberrygirl said...

Please enter me in this drawing. While I generally don't like to start in the middle of a series (when I haven't been able to read the first two books), I like Robin's writing, and would love to read a Katie Weldon book.

Anonymous said...

I love robin's books! I read them as a younger girl, and now i've started my sister on the Christy series!

Helga Marie said...

love Robin's books and would love to be up for a new one.

QallieQ (At)gmail (dot) com

Sheila Deeth said...

Hurray for Oregon! I've heard of, but not yet read, sisterchicks and Christy miller. Now I have to add them to my list.

Abi said...

I've read Robin's books before and love them.
I'd love to win this one. Thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

hippmom said...

Thanks for the chance to win her book!

Ruth Mayfield said...

How I wish there were great books like these when I was a teen! Thank God I can pass these on to my grandkids. Thank you Robin!

Linda said...

I loved reading ever since I can remember. Wish I'd had these when I was young. Would have helped a lot in my perspective of life.

Please enter me in your contest. I have a niece who would definitely be interested. Thank you.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Emma said...

Great interview. Coming Attractions sound like a wonderful book.To all mothers Happy mother day.Have a great weekend.

Marla said...

I love the sisterchick series. My husband and I read them together. (yes, he loves them too) We love the added humor in the stories. We take turns reading at them at night before we go to bed. I don't know what we'll read once we've read all the books in the series. Any ideas? Thanks for a great interview and entry in the drawing.

lastnerve said...

I have never read any of the books and I would love to win! These books look so great. I think both my daughter and I would like the sisterchicks books!

Thanks so much

Carly Kendall said...

I love Robin Jones Gunn's books. Please enter my name in the drawing. Thank you.

Ausjenny said...

please dont enter me. I have to say I love the sisterchick books and reading having to travel to do research sure sounds hard work!
I really loved the Aussie one and it was so real. There were scenes in the story I was laughing at before I read much cos being Aussie I knew what would happen but what I love most is its from an American point of view not Robin writing as if shes from the country being visited.
I cant wait to read the latest one.

windycindy said...

I adore the writing style of Robin
Jones Gunn! Please enter me in your drawing for her delightful book.
Many thanks, Cindi

Anonymous said...

My Girls love Robin Gunn books, Please enter me.

donna said...

Oops, i didn't sign in with MY account!
The "rebornbutterfly" Comment directly above was left by me.

sugarandgrits said...

I absolutely LOVED the Christy Miller and Sierra Jensen series. They helped me get through 2 AWFUL weeks of the chicken pox when I was 17 yrs. old (over 10 yrs. ago)!!! If not for these books to occupy my time, I probably would have scratched all of my skin completely off! LOL

I haven't read any of the Katie Weldon books yet, but I plan to add them to my collection soon. Thank you Robin!

sharon54220 said...

I haven't had the opportunity to read any of Robin's books. Please enter me.
Thanks for another great review.

adrienne said...

I'd like to be entered for this contest. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Wow! That's amazing that you would give away a free book. Well, I live in Florida, and I LOVE your books! It really changed my whole life. My one friend tried to help me to believe in God, but it was pretty hard to make me convince. Then one day, I got mad at my mom because we didn't have any books to read. My mom put a Christy Miller book on the steps. I went to go get it, and fell in love with it! Yesterday, I finished Christy and Todd-The College Years. I really wish I could get the Katie Weldon, but it's pretty expensive. I thank you so much for making everything better!