Friday, May 20, 2011

Interview & Book Giveaway with Author Delia Latham

A big welcome to today's guest, author Delia Latham!

Q:  Have you always wanted to be a writer?
A:  Always…or at least as far back as I can remember. I joke that I was born with a pen in my hand, and it’s not that far from the truth!

Q:  Where do you find your story ideas?
A:  Everywhere. Ideas are like chameleons—they’re there, but you need to be looking for them to spot them. I like Orson Scott Card’s quote: Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don't see any.

So I get some of my story ideas on a chameleon hunt…others are free gifts from God. :)

Q:  How does your faith impact your writing?
A:  My faith is my writing. It’s a ministry, one in which I try to reach readers who might never darken the door of a church house, but they will pick up a book for entertainment. If I can insert something into my fiction…a seed of truth, a grain of encouragement, a mustard seed of faith…then I’ve accomplished my goal.

Q:  How do you deal with writer’s block?
A:  Are you sure you want to know? :) I kick and scream and rant and rave and threaten to throw my computer out the window. When that doesn’t work (which is pretty much every time), I lay aside what I’m working on and concentrate on another project for awhile. Most of the time, I find that the block has crumbled when I return to the original project.

Once in awhile, nothing works except falling on my knees and asking God what it is I’m saying that shouldn’t be said, or what I’m leaving out that needs to be said. Once I’m back on track with His message, I can write again.

Q:  Do you plot out your story ahead of time, or do you think it up as you go?
A:  I am such a pantster. I get the grain of an idea and start mulling it over—meaning I think about it while making beds, doing dishes, dusting furniture and trying to get to sleep at night. Sometimes I pick up a notebook and do a little “free association.” Usually, by the time I actually sit down to write, I have a fairly good idea where my story is headed. At least, where I want it to head. My characters often take over and change the original plan, but that’s okay. They usually do a better job than I could have on my own. :)

Q:  What’s your favorite part of the writing business? What’s your least favorite?
A:  1. Writing. I love being “in the zone,” so wrapped up in my story that my characters are more real to me than what is real.
2. Marketing: In a perfect world, I could finish a book, then start immediately into another while someone else gets the word out. (((Sigh))) But God never promised a perfect world—not while I’m in this earthly body, anyway.

Q:  What’s the most important piece of advice you would give to a fledgling writer?
A:  Write, write, write! You can pore over a hundred different books on the subject, and attend just as many writing classes and conferences—but you’ll never be a writer until you apply your rear to your chair and your fingertips to your keyboard and write. You won’t get better at it until you get the worst out of the way through practice…lots of practice. Do read the books. Absolutely attend the conferences. Then fire up your computer and put what you learn to good use. Otherwise, you’ll be an avid reader with tremendous, non-working knowledge of writing. You’ll be a career conference attendee. But you won’t be a professional writer, because writers write.

Q:  What does your family think about your crazy career?
A:  They’re supportive, especially my husband, who puts up with my crazy obsession with tremendous patience and a touching confidence that someday I’ll be on those bestseller lists. :) Do they “get it”? Well, no. Do they think I’m a celebrity because I have books with my name on the front? Not in the least. And I like it that way. :)

Q:  Scenario: You’re about to be dropped off on a deserted island. You can take along one survival item, one book, and one person (living or dead… but they’ll be alive on the island). What and who do you take?
A:  Survival item: A case of Dr. Pepper (I’m pretty sure I need that more than bread and butter…)
Book: My Bible (In that one Book are all the stories I need for entertainment and encouragement.)
Person: Jesus Christ (Wow, what an opportunity! I’d be praying the rescue ship never showed up.)

Thanks for taking the time to hang out with us today, Delia. It was fun!

Born and raised in a place called Weedpatch, Delia Latham moved from California to Oklahoma in 2008, making her a self-proclaimed California Okie. She loves to read and write in her simple country home, and gets a kick out of watching her husband play Farmer John. The author enjoys multiple roles as Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend, but especially loves being a princess daughter to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. She loves to hear from her readers. You can contact her through her website or send an e-mail to delia AT delialatham DOT net.

ABOUT THE BOOK - Kylie's Kiss

On a dare, Kylie Matthews lands smack in the middle of Solomon’s Gate—Castle Creek’s new Christian dating agency—and she finds herself revealing exactly what she’s waiting for in a relationship: “The kiss that steals my breath away.”

What she doesn’t reveal is her lack of self-esteem or her irrational reaction to facial disfigurement. Neither is applicable to her quest to find the perfect match. But that seemingly superficial malady becomes all-important when her first agency-arranged date is Rick Dale—a man who is everything Kylie is searching for. He’s handsome, smart, fun. Rick has it all…including an angelic six-year-old daughter with severe scarring on one side of her face.

Hard at work founding a therapy camp for young female victims of deformity or disfigurement, Rick wants Kylie to be a part of those plans. She’d love to say yes…but how can she, when every contact with the facility’s guests—and Rick’s own daughter—will make her violently ill?

Kylie is ready to admit their relationship doesn’t stand a chance, but she’s forgotten that God makes a way where there seems no way.

If you’d like to be entered to win Kylie's Kiss, just leave a comment on this blog. I’ll pick a winner at random on Thursday, May 26. Please leave an email address so we can contact you if you're the winner. (To prevent spammers from trolling for your email, please use this format with the brackets--you [at] yourmail [dot] com--or something similar.) Since this is an e-book, you will receive an email from Delia with information about how to download your book. Good luck!


Delia Latham said...

Jennifer, I enjoyed our chat so much. Thank you for having me on your blog. It's a pleasure to be here!

Dora Hiers said...

Awesome interview, Jennifer and Delia. Love the comment that faith is your writing!

Delia, Kylie's Kiss is fabulous! LOVED it. Great job! Keep 'em rolling out, OK?

Please don't enter me in the drawing. Let someone else be blessed by Kylie's Kiss.

Delia Latham said...

Oh, I love it when readers love my books!

Anonymous said...

Awesome interview!!
I really liked the part where you were talking about how writing is your ministry,and some people who wouldn't darken the door of a church might pick up a book and be led to Jesus. You have an Amazing talent!!

Delia Latham said...

Thank you, Anonymous! I appreciate you stopping by. It is always my hope that my books play a part in bringing someone to Christ, or encouraging someone who's spiritually discouraged.

Delia Latham said...

An FYI for Jennifer AlLee: "Anonymous" contacted me on Facebook. She thought she'd "done something wrong" because her post showed up as "Anonymous." Just be aware that I know who this commenter is, and am able to contact her, so please do include "Becky Jo" when you do the drawing. :)

christa said...

Weedpatch? What a story-waiting-to-happen place! Thanks for sharing your passion.

Sheila said...

Sounds like a great read! Please include me in the drawing :)want [_]adventure[_]write[at]yahoo[.]com

Edwina said...

I would love to win Kylie's Kiss! This book sounds delightful!!

Delia Latham said...

Christa, I set my novel, Goldeneyes, partially in Weedpatch. Couldn't resist including it in at least one book, now could I? :) Sheila and Edwina, thanks so much for coming by. Good luck to all of you in the drawing!

Susan Hollaway said...

Loved the interview and your writing! Keep 'em comin', Delia!

Delia Latham said...

Thanks, Susan! As long as God keeps giving me the words and the ideas, I'll keep 'em coming. When He's through, "It is finished." :D

Jennifer AlLee said...

Wow, so great to see all you ladies here!

Delia, thanks for letting me know about Becky Jo. She'll definitely be included in the drawing.

Delia Latham said...

Hi, Jennifer! You throw a great blog party! :D Thanks for getting Becky Jo in there. I'd hate to see anyone excluded.

karenk said...

A wonderful posting/interview...would love to read delia's novel...thanks for the chance :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Delia Latham said...

Glad you enjoyed it, Karen! Good luck in the drawing.

Jennifer AlLee said...

The winner is... Edwina! Thanks to everyone who stopped by, and a big thank you to Delia :+}