Today is all about the brilliant author behind Love's Reckoning, Laura Frantz. I literally read this story in a matter of hours, and I'm confident you'll love it just as much!
Apart from being a skilled and hypnotizing writer, she is also kind and generous with her time. She sweetly agreed to let me pester her with very random, unrelated questions. (Seriously, you might get whiplash reading this interview!)
I'm always so curious about how other women, wives, mothers...do life...
This is what I wondered about Laura:
- When did you realize your passion was writing and what first steps did you take to pursue it? I actually knew at age 7, believe it or not. It was then I wrote my first story about ships and told my mom I wanted to be a writer. I wrote my first novella when I was 12 after visiting Old Sturbridge Village in Massachusetts. And I've turned out a historical every few years since, even the very terrible sequels to Dances With Wolves and Gone With the Wind. Stories only a mother could love. It wasn't until I had kids and had put my writing away for a few years that my brother (a pastor in Spain) encouraged me to make use of any gifts the Lord had given me.
- As a working mother, how do you find time to balance both work and family? Any tips for other moms out there that are trying to carve out some time for themselves? It's very hard to find balance and requires continual prayer in our house. I always ask the Lord to give me pockets of writing time - and He is always so faithful. I've learned to pretty much write through anything - the TV blaring, doctor's appointments, cooking supper, doing laundry, pregnancy and nursing, etc. I think the best thing is to pray for that time and then decide when you are at your creative best - early morning, during your kid's afternoon naps, or later at night when they're asleep. When I homeschooled for 8 years, this was a real challenge. But now that my boys are in public school I have more time to write.
- Using five words, how would your husband and kids describe you? Do you agree with their choices or would you choose different words? Oh, love this question! Five words? Quiet. Compassionate. Dedicated. Sensitive. Blonde. But my almost 16 year old son said in a fit of exasperation last year, "Mom, you're so driven and intense!" Then he wrote in a school paper not long ago that I'm the kindest person he knows. So go figure! I think the intensity part is true - I feel things very deeply and this comes across in my writing, or so readers say. I'm also passionate about God and the beauty of words and hope that comes across, too. I think I'm one of those tortured souls who are never really happy unless they're writing. My family is so understanding of that and I'm deeply grateful.
- How do you go about plotting your stories? Or are you a seat of the pants writer? Give us a peak into your routine. I used to be seat of the pants and just sit down and write without anything but a couple of character names, a pen and paper. I still write all my manuscripts in longhand first. I think better on paper. But since I've been published, I've had to become more of a plotter. In The Ballantyne Legacy which is a 4 book series, I had to develop a synopsis for each story. Very hard to do for a panster! I like the thrill of sitting down and not knowing where I'm going and letting my characters and scenes surprise me. Thankfully, my pub allows me quite a bit of freedom as my books don't always echo my synopsis.
- What is your favorite time of year and why? Summer, hands down. Being a Kentucky girl, I'm such a sun lover. But from the look of my Pinterest boards, you would think fall! My autumn board is bulging and I'm loving that it's almost here.
- Favorite beverage and dessert of choice? Perrier and cranberry juice with a twist of lime. Favorite dessert would be chocolate cream pie...
- Do you have a life verse or a favorite verse that encourages you? That varies depending on the season of life I'm in. Right now my favorite verse is Colossians 3:23: Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. This reminds me of the real reason I write and that God gives the gift of writing. It's all about Him, not me.
- Who are some of your favorite authors? Do you have any all-time favorite books? Oh, I do! I love The Blue Castle by LM Montgomery, a veritable classic, and Catherine Marshall's Christy. Within the CBA, I think immediately of Liz Curtis Higgs, especially her recent Scottish series, Here Burns My Candle and Mine is the Night. She writes beautifully and packs a powerful punch with her well-researched historical novels.
- What is your idea of the perfect day? The one I had today, in fact - answering reader mail in the morning and doing a little marketing and researching my next story, then after lunch writing that same story on deck in the sunshine. My kids come home about 2:30 so I like to have everything pretty much taken care of for the day work-wise. Then I can fix supper and catch up on laundry and things like that. I get up uber early - about 5 am. So my days are nice and long.
- How did you meet your husband? What is the best marital advice you ever received? I met Randy when I worked at a historic lodge in Washington state one summer. He was at the other historic inn across the lake. I've been thanking the Lord ever since! We celebrated our 18th anniversary in September. The best marital advice ever is found in 1 Corinthians 13, at least for us. Love is patient and kind...
Thank you Laura! These snippets give me such a clear picture of who you are and what you value! Just makes me want to give you a great big hug!! :)
Like Laura mentioned in her answers above, Love's Reckoning is 1 of 4 books headed our way. I can personally vouch for Silas and Eden's story! Wow, wow, wow! In fact, I plan to re-read it very soon!
Share with me: What is your idea of a perfect day?? Are you reading Love's Reckoning yet?? (You should be!) ;) Did anything about Laura's interview surprise you...or delight you?
***Next Thursday (the 25th) will be REVIEW DAY here on my blog! I'll be posting my review of Love's Reckoning and I invite you to participate by reading the book, (really you could start on the 24th and be done in time) and posting your thoughts/review in the comments on that same day! It'll be fun to see what everyone has to say about this particular story...and the twist! (There's always a twist, right?)***