Please give a warm welcome to my fellow Astraea Press author Kristin Wallace! She’s here today for an interview to help celebrate the release of her debut novel, Marry Me.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I am a reader first. I almost always had a book in my hand as a kid. I was around 25 when I had the great epiphany that I was supposed to be a writer when I grew up. It took 17 years of starts and stops before I FINALLY sold my first book…this one. For my day job I work as a creative writer at an ad agency, coming up with copy for TV spots, radio, print, brochures, etc. It’s a totally different kind of writing from novels, but it’s taught me how to write killer blurbs and about the concepts of marketing and branding. I also sing in my church choir and worship team.
Please tell us about your latest release.
Marry Me is set in the fictional, Southern town of Covington Falls. My heroine is Julia Richardson a cynic who doesn’t believe in love who winds up having to run a wedding planning business. My guy is Seth Graham, the local widowed minister. He’s just starting to surface after losing his wife. I wrote this book several years ago. It started out its life as a 1st person book only from Julia’s POV. I later revised it to 3rd person and added Seth’s POV. It was quite a haul and I was scared at first that I wouldn’t be able to capture Seth’s voice, but he came through loud and clear from his very first appearance. I kind of adore him now.
Where can readers purchase a copy of your book?
What is your favorite part of writing?
Getting to know my characters. Those first few chapters. I guess it’s like a new relationship, all shiny and bright and full of promise. I usually will sit down and write the first chapters before I do any real plotting. It helps me fall in love with them, which helps me survive the epic struggle of plotting and writing and revising and revising and revising….
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
I would say join a writer’s group of some sort. I’m part of Romance Writers of America and I belong to a local chapter, Florida Romance Writers. Everything I’ve learned about the craft of writing and selling a novel has come from there. Plus, writing is a lonely business sometimes and it’s easy to get discouraged when you’re stuck or don’t think the book is going well. You need someone who’s been there to encourage you.
Also…my other advice is FINISH THE BOOK. I don’t know how many people I’ve come across who start a book and then never finish it. Just get to the end no matter what. It may be terrible (your first probably will be bad) and you may end up shoving the book in a closet. But finish it. The other thing I see is writers who “finish” their book, but then continually revise it death and never actually do anything with it. They never move on to anything else, either. So finish the book and then get rid of it. Send it out into the world and move on to another project.
Where can readers learn more about you and your books?
You can go to my website. http://KristinWallaceAuthor.com You can also sign up for my newsletter and get updates on new books.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I just sold the next TWO BOOKS in the Covington Falls series to Astraea Press: ACTING UP and IMAGINE THAT. Both books feature a different couple, but familiar characters show up. Julia and Seth from MARRY ME appear frequently. The first book should be out sometime in spring 2014.
Thank you for a lovely interview, Kristin, and congratulations on your series! Readers, check out the beautiful cover for Marry Me. Doesn’t it sound like a great book?
Julia Richardson is no fan of weddings. A lifetime of watching her parents treat relationships like the flavor of the month has taught her that love is for fools and faith is for naïve. She’s always put her faith in her career. Then her life is thrown into a tailspin. First, she loses her job. Then she gets a panicked call and learns her former stepsister is having a crisis with her pregnancy. The crisis has Julia returning to the small Southern town – and the family – she’s been avoiding for years. Before she knows it, Julia’s been pressed into service running her stepsister’s wedding planning business.
Julia doesn’t know a garter from a garden hose, but now she must navigate couples along the bumpy path down the aisle – despite wardrobe malfunctions, killer bees, and plenty of near disasters. In the midst of it all, Julia makes the most unexpected discovery of all…Love, with Seth Graham, the widowed local minister! Julia’s been running from love and everything spiritual for most of her life. It’s not until she finds the courage to stop running and learns to believe in the power of love, faith and family that she finds her own “I Do” moment.