Welcome, Virginia. Tell us about your salvation experience.
I was raised in a Christian home, so I’ve known the Lord as long as I can remember. But I accepted him when I was 12 years old, after seeing a movie at church called A Thief in the Night. There was a scene in that book where a girl realized she needed to make a personal decision to ask Jesus into her heart, apart from her parents’ belief. That night I came home and asked my mom to pray with me. We knelt beside the living room sofa and I accepted the Lord as my personal Lord and Savior.
You’re planning a writing retreat where you can only have four other authors. Who would they be and why?
Lori Copeland, because I know how awesome she is to work with after co-authoring 3 novels with her. Brandilyn Collins, because I admire the way she creates tension on every page of her novels. Deb Raney because I admire her skill at characterization. Allie Pleiter, because she’s such a livewire and so creative.
Do you have a speaking ministry? If so, tell us about that.
I’m a certified lay speaker for the
, so I do a bit of
speaking to fill in when a pastor is absent. I’ve been invited to speak at
ladies retreats around the country as well. Since I’m a fiction lover, my
favorite events have involved telling stories and then drawing spiritual
parallels. United Methodist
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you and how did you handle it?
I stood up to speak at a ladies’ retreat once and realized I couldn’t read my notes or my Bible. I’d been putting off getting reading glasses out of vanity, I suppose. But the lighting was pretty dim in that room, and I absolutely could not see. I made a joke about getting old and my vision fading, and someone from the audience gave me a pair of readers. I was able to get through the talk, and the next day I bought two things – a pair of reading glasses, and a giant print Bible!
People are always telling me that they’d like to write a book someday. I’m sure they do to you, too. What would you tell someone who came up to you and said that?
Yes, they do. All the time. I tell them to sit down and do it. There are thousands of people who have a great idea for a book, but they just talk about it. Once they start actually putting words on paper – even if they’re not skilled yet at the craft – they will either fall in love with the process, or they will give it up. Either way, they will never do more than talk about their idea if they don’t act on it!
Tell us about the featured book.
The Heart’s Frontier is my 17th novel. I co-authored the book with the amazing Lori Copeland, who has written westerns many times, but this is my first historical. I loved it! The research was so much fun! Here’s a blurb from the back cover:
A lot can happen on a week-long cattle drive. Kansas 1881 - Halfway through a six-day journey to visit relatives, Emma Switzer's Amish family is robbed of all their possessions, leaving them destitute and stranded on the prairie. Walking to the nearest trading settlement, they pray to the Lord for someone to help. When a dusty cowboy lands in the street at her feet, Emma looks down at him and thinks, “The Lord might have cleaned him up first.” ... Plain and rugged -- do the two mix? And what happens when a dedicated Amish woman and a stubborn trail boss prove to be each other's match?
Please give us the first page of the book.
Nearly the entire Amish district of Apple Grove had turned out to help this morning, all twenty families. Or perhaps they were here merely to wish Emma Switzer well as she set of for her new home in Troyer, fifty miles away.
From her vantage point on the porch of the house, Emma’s grandmother kept watch over the loading of the gigantic buffet hutch onto the specially reinforced wagon. Her sharp voice sliced through the peaceful morning air.
“Forty years I’ve had that hutch from my dearly departed husband and not a scratch on it. Jonas, see that you use care!”
If Maummi’s expression weren’t so fierce, Emma would have laughed at the long-suffering look Papa turned toward his mother. But the force with which Maummi’s fingers dug into the flesh on Emma’s arm warned that a chuckle would be most ill-suited at the moment.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
I’m at www.VirginiaSmith.org. Plus, Lori Copeland and I have a website together – www.CopelandandSmith.com.
That is funny, Ginny. Okay, readers, help her find a name.
Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
The Heart's Frontier (The Amish of Apple Grove) - paperback
The Heart's Frontier (The Amish of Apple Grove) - Kindle
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