Welcome, Becky. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Quite a bit! They may not look like me (especially the heroes) but they have the same wry viewpoint that I do and they have my heart... my joys, worries, loves, insecurities.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I lived in the
for three years. Just a few months after we were married, my husband agreed to
work as the tennis pro at Cap Juluca Resort on the .
island of Anguilla Anguilla is tiny! Just 35 square miles. We
lived in a little house on a hill overlooking turquoise water and the
neighboring . No
dishwasher. No washing machine. And maybe hardest for us Texans to believe - no
air conditioning. But it turned out to be an idyllic time in our lives. We
enjoyed the slow pace, the lack of stress, the natural beauty of the place, the
people. We still go back for one week of every year to help with a tennis camp
for the local kids. island
of St. Martin
This is us, back when we were young and perky, on the beach just a short walk down the road from our Anguillan home.
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
While living on
wasn't allowed to hold a job there, because they were so protective of the jobs
for their local people. So I volunteered, took up tennis and cross-stitching, watched
“Days of our Lives.” On one fateful day, I set aside a romance novel and
thought, I think I could do this better.
Back then, of course, I didn't know how much I didn't know. I had NO inkling of
how incredibly difficult it would be to write a novel and even more - to write
a saleable novel. I didn't have a clue, but I did have a computer, an
imagination, and time. So I simply sat down and began. I wrote an extremely
long historical romance for the ABA set in Norway. (I can
hear you all snickering.) Not surprisingly, no agent wanted to represent the
book and no publisher wanted to buy it. But I loved it. And it was my great
love for the work that led me to the realization that I was a writer. It took the
publishing industry, of course, far, far longer to agree.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
Romance novels are my absolute favorite kind of book and have been ever since I discovered them as a teenager. I really adore the old 1980's historical romances. Remember them, ladies? They were long, rambling, flowery, dramatic. To this very day, when I'm in the mood for one my longsuffering library will track it down and have it transferred in. I try to read the women's fiction books that all my friends talk about like The Help and Guernsey Literary And Potato Peel Society. I enjoy a mystery now and then. And I like paranormal fiction about such things as vampires and people who can shape shift into dragons.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
What sanity? In addition to my work as a writer, I'm the mother of an 11, 8, and 3 year old. So between trying (and failing) to keep on top of my housekeeping, driving my kids from place to place, cooking (not my fave), writing (my fave), chasing/hoisting/wrestling my toddler all day long, and doing homework with my big kids at night, I hold onto my sanity by a very thin and frayed thread. Ironically, I'm someone who recharges via solitude and quiet. Ha! Bubble baths after the kids go to sleep help me greatly. As do TV time and movies with my husband. Playing tennis twice a week. Gym workouts (only possible for me because of the onsite childcare). Occasional pedicures.
How do you choose your characters’ names?
Back when I first started writing I christened my characters with elaborate names like Natalia, Rennick, and Cassiopeia. (Yep, that's right, Cassiopeia.) Later I comprehended that these names were difficult for my reader to relate to, and also unwieldy to the eye. Nowadays, it's important to me that my character's names suit the person's personality, age, place of birth, and upbringing. I give her characters names we're all familiar and comfortable with. Typically the first names of my hero and heroine jump into my head when I'm just beginning to imagine the character. Last names and names of minor characters take more effort. I use the Social Security Administration website to investigate which names were popular in my character's birth year. I also flip through directories (for my neighborhood, my kid's school, church, etc.) to get ideas for last names.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Mothering my three kids. It's been the hardest and the best thing I've ever done.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I'd be my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Sam. Sam rides along on carpool, snuggles with my kids, sits in my writing chair, attends kid's sporting events, goes for walks in my neighborhood, plays in the backyard. In fact, Sam does many of the things I do - except without any of the worries or responsibilities and with a LOT more naps.
What is your favorite food?
Chocolate. I'm a shocking chocoholic. It's terrible! My sweet tooth demands dessert after both lunch and dinner. And, okay, sometimes first thing in the morning, too. At the moment, I'm loving Lindt dark chocolate bars with sea salt. But my all time, most adored chocolate is See's.
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
After publishing three historical romance novels for the
ABA (in '99, '00, '01) I
had my first baby and, at nearly the same time, submitted a proposal for a new
book to my publisher. My ABA
publisher decided not to offer me a new contract. I was crushed. I heard my publisher's decision as a "no" from
God to the secular novels I'd been writing. Also, I felt Him calling me in that
season to concentrate fully on raising my baby. I didn't write a word for seven
years. And in fact, I grew fairly certain that I'd never write novels again. But
God, in His way, in His time, rekindled within me a desire to write, this time
for Him and His glory. As we all know, He can redeem anything, even the
broken-down and abandoned careers of authors. I rolled up my sleeves and
started writing My Stubborn Heart for the CBA. I kept telling God that I'd fail
unless He was in it. And He kept telling me that he was in it and that my job
was to write it and then He'd handle the rest. To my awe, He did just that.
Tell us about the featured book.
My Stubborn Heart is the emotional, humorous, and contemporary love story of Kate (a determined Christian single girl) and Matt (a gorgeous, ex-pro hockey player with a broken heart). Both Kate and Matt are committed to renovate the same old house. But when Kate meet Matt, she realizes that the guy needs a lot more help than the house, and sets her sights on bringing him out of the darkness and back into the light.
Please give us the first page of the book.
There once was a girl who'd been praying for a husband since the fourth grade. Over the years she'd prayed for his health, his happiness, his protection, and -- okay -- sometimes for his good looks. She'd prayed that she would meet him when she was meant to.
Except that she hadn't.
She'd been avidly expecting and watching for him all this time, from the fourth grade straight up to the age of thirty-one. And though she tried hard to be positive, the truth was that she'd grown tired of waiting. Tired of dating. Tired of breaking off just two bananas from the bunch at the grocery store. Tired of the singles group at church. Tired of living alone.
Worse, she was beginning to doubt that her nameless, faceless husband existed at all. Maybe, late at night in her kid bed, her college bed, her adult single woman bed, she'd been praying for someone who wasn't coming. Ever.
Perhaps her husband had run in front of a bus as a child. What did God do in that situation? Swap in an understudy? Or maybe she'd missed her husband during the bustle of her college years, never knowing that the shy guy from physics class was the one. Or perhaps, right from the start, God had never intended for her to marry.
How can readers find you on the Internet?My website (which I almost drove myself crazy creating and launching myself) is at: www.beckywade.com I post a few times a week via facebook (search for Becky Wade Author) and I check in at Goodreads often. I'd love to connect with readers through any of those vehicles!
Thank you, Becky, for this peek into your life and book.
Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
My Stubborn Heart - paperback
My Stubborn Heart - Kindle
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