Today, I'd like to welcome our own local "Books To Write By" Blogger, Janet K. Brown. Her young adult novel, Victoria and the Ghost, debuts this month on Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, and 4RVpublishing.com.
Wow! Sounds like an interesting book. I can't wait to read it!
So, can you tell a little about yourself?
My husband and I live in Wichita Falls, Texas. We love to travel with our RV. He is my sweetheart and my best friend. I have three beautiful grown daughters, two great sons-in-law and three perfect grandchildren. I sing God's praises for the emotional healing He gave me nineteen years ago. I enjoy reading, traveling, line dancing, Bible studies, and lunch with my friends.
Can you share with us a little bit about your writing journey?
Writing has always been a big part of my life, but when I retired from my medical secretary's job six years ago, God led me to see it as a ministry. I first sold short stories for both teens and adults. Though I've completed seven books to date, Victoria and the Ghost is the first to be published. I praise Him for allowing me to do something I love that also, I hope, brings glory to Him.
Seven completed novels? Wow! Sounds like you really persevered as you grew in your writing. Did you ever feel like giving up?
Three years ago, I was obsessed with being published. Since I'm older, I saw my time running out for the opportunity. Rejections came faster than I could file them away. I fell into a pity party with only one guest.
Well, I think we can all relate to that feeling. How did you press through?
God set me down and told me, "I don't want you to write anymore, at all." I obeyed, though my heart broke. I spent three months with no writing, no editing, nothing. During this time, God walked with me. He became more dear—far greater than any by-line that I envisioned on a book.
God spoke to my heart one day of a story He wanted me to write. I started writing again, but the obsession had lifted. God showed me when I put Him first, He gives me the desires of my heart.
Ahh… words we could all live by… So, is that where the idea for this story came, or did God bring to mind an earlier idea?
I moved to Wichita Falls from Dallas where I was born and raised. A few years after we moved, my husband and I came upon the ghost town of Clara, Texas, just northwest of town. We walked among the tombstones. The area captured my interest. I read a lot about it, including the legend of Colonel Specht's ghost.
When my granddaughter, Victoria, (her real name), reached the rebellious teen stage, and her single mom couldn't seem to do anything right, God brought the story to my mind of a girl that really faces rejection and isolation in her teens. What would happen if this poor unhappy teen met a ghost who lived on with a sad heart?
The story floated in and out of my mind for years, but my demanding job gave me little time to get it on paper. I finally did now years later, and it became the first one to sell.
How do you feel this book will encourage young adults /adults, or did you have something in mind like this when you wrote it?
I don't know that I had it in mind when I started the story, but somewhere along the way, I saw the struggles of teenagers around me to make sense of things that happen in their lives. Divorce is a normal factor for many of them. Often, they process that as rejection. Especially in big cities like Dallas, teens fight the superficial aspects of name brand tennis shoes and the latest fad. I wanted to tell them there are more important things.
Thanks so much, Janet, for being with us today. We wish you great success with your book. If anyone would like to connect with Janet Brown below you will find links to her online.
Contact: website http://www.janetkbrown.com
Here is the link where the book can be preordered right now:
By July 25, you can find Victoria and the Ghost on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and through book stores.