I’ve enjoyed storytelling for as long as I can remember. My first published piece appeared in a grammar school newspaper a friend and I put out. However, I hadn’t considered writing seriously until I enrolled in the first creative writing class at the small college I attended. Even though my heart’s desire was to write fiction, in the class I discovered other options, such as working for a newspaper, magazine or radio station. I was hooked and have worked as an editor, copywriter and freelance article writer.
It sounds like you've had an interest in story for a while. How did that develop?
I grew up in a family that loves literature and storytelling. My Irish father and uncle, who lived nearby, would weave a yarn at the blink of an eye. Before I could read, my mother read to me. When I was ill with the measles and the mumps, my father read Aesop’s Fables to me. To make sure I understood the importance of reading, my grandmother, who lived in California, sent a subscription to a young people’s book club.
So you had encouragement from many in your life. :) Tell us about your new book.
Barely above Water tells the story of Suzie Morris, a young woman who’s suddenly stricken with a mysterious illness. Her boyfriend dumps her. She has no living family, and her physician can’t diagnose the malady. She turns to a renowned alternative doctor in Destin, Florida, and takes a job coaching a county-sponsored summer league swim team. She’s determined to turn the fun, sometimes comical, rag-tag bunch into winners. Her handsome boss renews her belief in love, but learns of her affliction and abruptly cuts romantic ties. Later he has regrets, but must overcome his fear of losing someone close then regain Suzie’s trust. She relies on her Christian faith as she faces the uncertainty of the disease, financial burdens without permanent employment and heartbreak in this contemporary romance. In the back of the book two experts answer questions about this mysterious malady.
Sounds intriguing. How does faith play a part in your writing?
People are motivated by what they believe, so at least one, sometimes more, of my characters are driven by or rely heavily on their faith. As in real life someone in the book might have doubts, or not have faith. However, to me faith is such an important, integral part of life, leaving it out would be like omitting something that sustains us, such as water or food.
Amen. What do you want readers to come away with after reading your books?
I’d like them to come away satisfied because they’ve read a good book that entertained and inspired them. In the case of Barely above Water, I hope readers will also learn the facts about Chronic Lyme Disease, including the symptoms and where to find help.
Thank you for stopping by today, Gail.