Welcome, Katy. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
My characters usually reflect some part of me, either through their beliefs or struggles or both. My latest character is a man and I wondered how I would relate to him, but I have had several men tell me that apart from my name (Katy) they would have assumed Jubilee was written by a man. I felt complimented by that. My other characters are easier to identify as mine. They are horse-loving girls.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I have very long hair. One of my favorite things to do at Christmas is to fashion my hair into a Christmas tree. I use a two-liter soda bottle, wrap my hair around it and fasten it at the top with a rubber band. Then I decorate the three-foot tower with lights, tiny ornaments, and tinsel. I love to make people laugh, and this does the trick.
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
When I was three years old, I wrote a little book about a turtle. The title was The Turtle. I still have that book. I don’t know if I wrote that thinking I would grow up and write books, but I have always loved words. My mother is a teacher and I learned to read at a very young age. I was one of those girls who could curl up with a book for a whole weekend.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I love to read anything that contains Truth. Fiction, theology, soul-care, if it illuminates Truth, I like it. As a counselor I often read books I want to share with my clients so I’m always on the lookout for a cover with meaty words in between.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I remember that Jesus is the only source of Life and when things get crazy (and they do) I can always choose Him. Sometimes I forget and then things get really crazy, but He even uses those times to draw me back into this Truth. I am in Him and He is in me. There is nothing that can occur that He has not already seen and made perfect provision for. This Truth is my only source of sanity.
Very well said. How do you choose your characters’ names?
That is a great question! I often choose names knowing I’ll change them later. Sometimes a character shows up in my heart with such a strong presence I know his or her name immediately. Clay Westin (from Jubilee) was one of those names. I like my names to carry significance.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
In my writing life, am most proud of finishing and publishing Jubilee The Love Story. This story haunted me, while I wrote it, and then for years afterwards as I searched for a publisher. The last four years have been very painful and to have God provide the avenue for publication that He did feels amazing. In my personal life, my proudest accomplishments are my two wonderful children. They are adults now and they inspire me every day. I just watch them, breathless with wonder.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
Oh, that’s easy. A horse. The horse is the most mentioned animal in the Bible. Even more than lamb or sheep or lion. I am convinced that God gave us horses as a magnificent metaphor for relationship. For me personally, I gravitate more toward horses than sheep, but the two creatures have many similarities. Eighty percent of girls identify the horse as their favorite animal. I don’t think that’s a coincidence. I think God created the horse to show us another aspect of His heart.
What is your favorite food?
Chocolate. In any form.
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
My greatest roadblock with writing, and with life in general, is other peoples’ opinions of me. I sometimes struggle with what others might say, think, or believe about me, based on my words, written or spoken. This creates fear that often paralyzes me. Jesus has really helped me see the level of influence I sometimes give others. He has also helped me connect the anxiety and pain that comes out of that choice. More and more, I am able to recognize the choice. Jesus as my influencer, or someone else. I choose Life.
Tell us about the featured book.
I wrote Jubilee in 2004, hardly able to keep up with the movie in my head and heart. It literally took my breath away. I struggled with some of the time frame aspects, I struggled with the real-life pain aspects, but I could not stop writing it. I pitched it to my editor, and he loved the concept but had trouble with some of the outside-the-box images. In 2011, I entered Jubilee in the Genesis Contest and it won the Contemporary Fiction category. I was over the moon, and someone from a large publishing house wanted it, but it never made it to his desk. The complicated series of events that prevented his receiving it seemed excruciating at the time, but I see God’s hand in it now. I would not want the publication of Jubilee to have happened any other way. It is miraculous.
Please give us the first page of the book.
June 4, 1993
June 4, 1993
Clay Westin’s eyes stung as the blood bay colt trotted past him in the round pen. Jubilee moved with bold extravagance, tail flagged, dark eyes alert, inside ear fixed on Clay awaiting the next step.
At three years old, Jubilee no longer looked coltish. His powerful mahogany neck glistened under a mass of black mane; his body rippled with masculinity.
Clay inhaled and stepped backward inviting the young stallion inward. Jubilee responded immediately, whirling toward him.
Clay moved lightly forward and exhaled, pointing his finger to the left. Jube pivoted in the same direction, tossing his head; full of play. Breathtaking.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
I have two websites, www.KatyPistole.com and www.BeautifulBrokenness.org. In 2010, I founded a ministry that incorporates rescued horses into the discipleship process. KatyPistole.com is primarily for the books (Jubilee is my seventh book) and BeautifulBrokenness.org is the ministry site.
Thank you, Katy, for sharing this book with my blog readers and me. I’m eager to read it.
Readers, here’s a link to the book.
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