Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Introducing Author Lindi Peterson!

I am an author of contemporary Christian romance novels focusing on the amazing love of Jesus Christ and how His love influences our ability to love one another. I live north of Atlanta, Georgia with my hubby. We are empty nesters as far as children go, but we do support, feed and care for a dog, 2 cats and 2 birds. (Who are at often time way louder than the kids used to be!) I've wanted to be a writer ever since I can remember. So about 12 years ago I started witing novels. Writing for publication is an amazing, crazy journey, but I wouldn't trade it in at all!

How did you come up with this story? Was there a specific 'what if' moment?

My ideas for stories start with the ‘what if’ moment. In this case it was what if there were three friends and two of them started dating, how would the third person feel?

Did anything strange or funny happen while researching or writing your book?

There is the story of the heroine’s name, Allison. My father wanted to name me Allison, but my mother said no. She won. My dad wanted us kids, if we had a girl, to name her Allison. He has three granddaughters-Brenna, Laken and Meryl. No Allison. So I thought “I’ll name my next heroine Allison. Then my father will have his Allison.” Well, my step daughters didn’t know this story and they didn’t know I was working on a novel with a heroine named Allison. My step daughter Melanie was pregnant and we knew the baby was a girl, but we didn’t know the name. I started writing my book at the end of June—Melanie’s baby was due at the beginning of August. I wrote the first draft of Her Best Catch in 74 days. I was living, breathing everything Allison. When Melanie went into labor we were all at the hospital and when we were all gathered together in her room before she gave birth she said, “Since everyone’s here we’ll tell you the name now. Her name is Allison.” I said “Allison?” At first she thought I didn’t like the name, but then when I told her the story we all thought it was very cool. Very God. The dedication in my book reveals this story in a few words.

Every novelist has a journey. How long was your road to publication? How did you find out and what went through your mind?

My journey was about 12 years from that first book idea to publication. When I wrote ‘The End’ after that first book, you know the one that will never see the light of a published page, I found I loved writing ‘The End.’ The only way to write those words is to finish a book. At some point during those 12 years there was a period of about a year and a half where I didn’t write. I read the Bible all the way through. I had never done that and that’s how I spent my mornings instead of writing. I think it was a good time of reflection for me.

Do you ever bang your head against the wall from writer's block? If so, how do you overcome it?

I think I used to more than I do now. Now, if I can’t think of anything to write, I just start writing something. A lot of time the something gets erased, but a lot of times it gets me unstuck.

Do you consider yourself a visual writer? If so, what visuals do you use? I do think

I’m a visual writer. I have photos of my hero and heroine on my bulletin board. In the book I’m working on now I have a computer file saved with pictures of the huge house I wanted my heroine to live in. So if I’m writing a scene in her bedroom I pull up the photo. Sometimes there’s nothing about the description of the room in my scene, but it anchors me as the writer to where she is and what she might be feeling.

Novelists sometimes dig themselves into a hole over implausible plots, flat characters or a host of other problems. What's the most difficult part of writing for you?

Ha—writing anything other than dialogue! Seriously, I love writing dialogue and then scratch my head at having to layer in emotions, setting. I’m working really hard though on my current wip to at least think about emotions as I write. I figure if I learn one step at a time, maybe the next wip I will can add more in as I write that first draft.

How do you overcome it?

Oh, answer above!

Where do you write: In a cave, a coffeehouse, or a cozy attic nook?

I have an office that I share with my hubby. We each have our own desks. Well, I’d like to think I have my own desk. I think it’s my cat’s desk and they let me use it now and then. When I write I have at least one if not both cats laying on my desk and/or sitting in my lap.

What does a typical day look like for you?

Up early, devotional, check email, work on current wip---go to work, come home. At night I find it hard to create. I can revise, judge contests entries, do internet networking or blogging.

Some authors report writing 5-10 thousand words a day. Do scenes flow freely from your veins or do you have to tweeze each word out?

When it flows, it flows. I rarely have a significant block of time to work. I have the occasional Saturday where I can work for long periods of time. I’ve had to learn to write in 20-30-60 minute blocks. But I will say, if I have that Saturday and I get going, I can really put some words to the page. I LOVE being in that mode. (But then of course there’s usually a LOT of dialogue and I have a LOT of revising to do!)

What’s the best writing advice you’ve heard?

There are actually two. From Nora Roberts—sit your behind (Nora used a different word here!) in the chair and write. The other one is to not give up.

Do you have any parting words of advice?

Basically what I stated above. If you can’t get those crazy or not so crazy characters out of your head you have to get them on paper. You have to sit in the chair and write. Also, no matter how long the journey is, stick to it. Keep learning, keep networking. Keep creating.

Her Best Catch
Allison Doll’s mother is rebelliously turning fifty, her two best friends have started dating and a gorgeous injured relief pitcher has joined her Sunday school class rocking her world into confusion, heartache and temptation, places she hasn’t visited in a long time, much less all at once.

But with the help of family, old friends she really hasn’t lost, a new friend she really can count on, and God, she finds herself no longer a girl waiting for life to happen, but a girl who’s ready to commit to her best catch!


Patty Smith Hall said...

Good morning, Lindi and thanks for being here this morning! Great interview!

Ane Mulligan said...

I read Lindi's book and it's WONDERFUL!!! I absolutely loved it. To read a review, click here, then scroll down.

Christine Lindsay said...

Sounds like a book I'd love to read.

Cara Lynn James said...

Hi, Lindi! I can't wait to read your new book! I'm a lot like you--I love to write dialogue and find the emotional stuff harder.

Love your cat!

Mindy Obenhaus said...

Hey, Lindi! Of course you know your book is at the top of my to-be-read pile. I can't wait to read it. Because happy endings ARE just the beginning ;-)

Missy Tippens said...

Great interview! I loved this book!! So many laugh out loud moments. Lindi, you may tend to do dialogue first but your internal thoughts are hilarious.

alberto said...

I like your blog, I will subscribe to get more of your posts keep up the good work and please visit my blog sometime it would be much appreciated. thanks.

Lindi said...

Hi all!!
Patty- Thanks for having me here!
Ane--thanks for the great review :)
Christine-thanks for stopping by. They always have something interesting to read on Novel Journey!
Cara--ah--I found a new partner in crime. Thanks for stopping by.
Mindy--As long as you read it before I come to Dallas next year :)
Missy-Making people smile and laugh was what I wanted to do.
Alberto--Yes--they have great articles and all kinds of info! Thanks for stopping by.

Christy LaShea said...

I love that your kitty is right on top of the laptop. I guess you didn't get much writing done that day, LOL! Love your story of publication!


Meg Moseley said...

Lindi, it's fantastic to see your wonderful, funny novel in print. Now the rest of the world can discover your unique voice and your lovable characters!

Author Jennifer Hudson Taylor said...

Lindi, I think that is so cool about the story of your heroine's name. I love the cover and title of your debut novel, so intriguing. Can't wait to read it. Will it also come out as an e-book? I seem to be getting more read on my Kindle these days.

PatriciaW said...

Hi Lindi! Waving from the Cinder-Bella class...

Lindi said...

Christy--I think that was the week it snowed! I think the cats were trying to stay warm.

Hi Meg--Everybody needs to read your book, When Sparrows Fall!

Jenn-yes, it's on e-book now for Kindle! HI!!!

Patricia--HI--A face to put with the name--I'm having so much fun in the class. Thanks for stopping by!

Lindi P.

Beck Gambill said...

I loved hearing your writing journey Lindi, so encouraging. I chuckled when you said you loved writing dialogue and struggled with setting and emotion. I'm just the opposite. I can describe a setting or emotion to death and struggle with free, flowing dialogue. I actually put my novel away for a while because I couldn't get my characters to talk to each other! Do you have tips on how you write great dialogue that you would be willing to share?

Lindi said...

Beck--Hello! Ah--I will trade for tips on setting and emotion. :)
Seriously, though, I don't know 'how' the dialogue comes to me. Maybe it's because I love to talk? I write in first person, so it's like I'm talking to someone and thinking then I just put it down.
Sounds crazy and probably doesn't make sense. We could get together and write a first draft novel with all the elements though!

One thing that did show me that I needed dialogue was looking at a book, written in first person, and realizing every page after the first 2 or 3 had dialogue. Every page.
Wow! That's what my mind was thinking. I also think it speeds up the pace.

Lindi P.