Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Interview With Our Founder, Gina Holmes--Win an Autographed Copy of Driftwood Tides!

Gina Holmes is the founder of Novel Rocket, regularly named as one of Writers Digest’s best websites for writers. Her debut, Crossing Oceans, was a Christy and Gold Medallion finalist and winner of the Carol Award, INSPY, and RWA’s Inspirational Reader’s Choice, as well as being a CBA, ECPA, Amazon and PW bestseller. Her sophomore novel, Dry as Rain was a Christy Award finalist. Wings of Glass has been named as one of the best books of the year in 2013 by Library Journal and was a SIBA Okra pick and a finalist for Romantic Times’ Reviewers Choice Award. Her latest novel, Driftwood Tides is in stores now. She holds degrees in science and nursing and currently resides with her family in southern Virginia. She works too hard, laughs too loud, and longs to see others heal from their past and discover their God-given purpose. To learn more about her, visit www.ginaholmes.com.

Connect with her on Facebook or Twitter. 

To be entered to win an autographed copy of Gina's latest release, Driftwood Tides, leave a comment. One winner will be drawn. Winner announced tomorrow. 

Gina, you've come a long way since starting this blog back in 05 to chronicle your first novel journey. I'm sure you've learned a lot since your first novel, Crossing Oceans, was published. How has becoming an award-winning and bestselling novel changed your life?

The truth is not all that much. I still work as a registered nurse, spend too much time sweeping up dog hair and wish there was more time in the day to just be. One of the gratifying changes has been the respect I've garnered post-publication that I didn't before the first book hit the shelves. A lot of people in my circles thought writing was a waste of time at worse, an amusing hobby at best. I think people listen to me a bit more when I give advice. I was prepared in a lot of ways of the reality of being on this side of the publishing fence having done so many interviews on Novel Journey and Novel Rocket. Even knowing what I did, I still kind of thought the amount of work, particularly in the promotion arena would ease up by this point, but it doesn't. I think that part tires most authors out and I'm no exception.

Tell us  a little bit about your newest release, Driftwood Tides.

Driftwood Tides, in stores now!
Driftwood Tides tells the story of an aging, alcoholic driftwood artist turned beach bum, Holton Creary, and young Libby Slater. Libby grew up with an absent father and a loving but cold, socialite mother. Leading up to her wedding, Libby and her groom-to-be go through genetic testing and she learns her blood type doesn’t match either of her parents. She confronts her mother and is reluctantly told that she’s adopted. She goes searching for her mother, Adele, only to find her husband, Holton Creary lying face down on the carpet of his Nags Head beach shack.

She lies about her real identity until she is finally found out. Holton does not welcome the news. He never knew the wife he had given saint status too had given up a daughter for adoption. Together the two search to find the truth about Adele, Libby’s father and themselves.

What do you hope readers will take away from this book?

 At its heart, Driftwood Tides is really about discovering who we are, whose we are, where we belong and the need to accept and bestow forgiveness.

Why did you set the novel in Nags Head?

 Oh, how I love that place! I’m not sure there’s a more peaceful setting in all the world. And the further out I get from civilization, the happier I am. I love the sand dunes, the untouched nature, the quaint towns. Just everything! (Well, except sand in my bathing suit maybe J)

You seem to have a recurring theme in your novels about absent fathers, why do you think that is?
When I was 6 years old, I was packed up by my stepfather and driven to my father’s house. Overnight I had a new Mom, new sisters and brother, house and life. It was as traumatic an experience as I can imagine. There were few explanations that made sense to me and I missed my other family desperately. I think ever since I’ve been trying to settle some pretty deep-seated questions. Writing books is wonderful for that.

Crossing Oceans
The novel you’ve written that seems to be a fan-favorite is Crossing Oceans, do you ever
see yourself writing a sequel?

I love that book too. Makes me cry just thinking about certain scenes. I would love to write a sequel, prequel or off shoot stories. I love those characters dearly. I’m under contract for three different novels, so I’m not sure when I’ll have the time, but I’d love to explore Craig’s story and of course, Bella’s. I miss Mama Peg very much!

You’ve said that your favorite novel you’ve written is Wings of Glass. Why is that your favorite?

It was a deeply personal novel to write. I grew up watching my mother in abusive relationships, and then two of my sisters. I swore it would never be me, until that is, my (then) boyfriend hit me for the first time and I found myself making excuses for him. I've matured a lot since then and have done a lot of work on the flawed thinking that I learned growing up. I see so much of it in women around me though and Wings of Glass was my answer to that burden on my heart.

What do you like most about being a writer? Least?

 Most, I like being able to have a platform to share lessons I’ve learned in my life that I know others would benefit from. And more than that, I just love to tell a good story.

 Least, would be the unpredictability of the business. Sometimes it seems so random and the lack of control makes me uncomfortable sometimes. (Which is probably right where God wants me!)

 Do you have any advice for aspiring novelists?

 My advice is pretty much always the same. 1. Write. So many people want to have written but don’t actually do the work. 2. Get to a writers conference because there’s so much  you don’t know, that you don’t even know you don’t know. If you don’t you’ll be spinning your wheels for years, wasting valuable time. 3. Run, don’t walk, to the nearest bookstore and buy yourself a copy of Self-Editing for Fiction Writers. Then apply it. (Best money I ever spent!) 4. Join a good critique group and get a nice thick skin, ‘cause you’re sure going to need it!

If you could go back to the pre-published writer you were, knowing what you do now, what advice would you give her?

Well, I wouldn’t have told myself how many novels I’d write that would never see the light of day, because I would have given up. I wouldn’t have told myself how little money there is actually to be made or how lonely writing can sometimes be. I wouldn’t have told myself that I’d still have a day job with 4 novels out in stores, including 3 bestselling novels… okay, but that wasn’t your question… I would tell myself to relax. Some of this, most of this is, is out of your hands, and that’s okay. It’s not going to be at all what you think it is, but it’s going to be so much more. You won’t get rich, but you will touch lives. At the end of the day, that’s going to be exactly what will fulfill you.

Where can readers find your books and more about you?

 Thanks for asking. My books are in B&N, BooksaMillion, Amazon, Lifeway, Parable, Family Christian and hopefully a good number of independent bookstores. You can find me at Ginaholmes.com. 

"[Driftwood Tides] moves like a serene sea: gentle,persuasive, and transformative. Much in the same way time and the elements turn driftwood into something beautiful, Libby and Holton learn that they, too, can change for the better. Readers will delight in this story of redemption and growth." Booklist

"Holmes weaves a superb story of discovering how to forgive." Romantic Times


Cheri Swalwell said...

I would love a chance to win Driftwood Tides. I absolutely loved Wings of Glass and Crossing Oceans. Thank you for this opportunity.


in Him,

Cheri :)

Sally Shupe said...

Loved this post! Thanks for the interview and a chance to win a copy of Gina Holme's book. I would love to win this book! Thanks!
sallyshupe1 [at] gmail [dot] com

Heather Day Gilbert said...

Thanks for this interview and not sure if I can enter as a Novel Rocket blogger, but I'd love to win. I love the blurb on this one and it sounds right up my alley. I love Nags' Head, too! heatherdaygilbert (at) gmail (dot) com.

Ruth O'Neil said...

You are a new author to me. I've read "Dry as Rain" and really enjoyed it. Looking forward to reading more of your books!

Robin Patchen said...

Great interview, Gina. I love your advice to aspiring writers. I think you're right that so many people want to have written but don't enjoy the process of writing.

I loved Crossing Oceans and Wings of Glass, and Driftwood Tides is on my TBR list, whether I win it or not.

Keely Brooke Keith said...

Excellent interview. Your books sound terrific, Gina!

Deanna Stevens said...

We all need to have a little forgiveness within us :) Sounds like a book I'd enjoy reading :)
dkstevensne at outlook dotcom

Michael Ehret said...

I love the idea of this book and can't wait to start reading it. Thanks for sharing your heart in your books and in this interview. My family is renting a home at Nags Head this summer to celebrate my Dad's 80th birthday! Your description sounds divine.

Nina said...

Thank you for all you have done for the writing world! You are an inspiration.

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Cheri!

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Sally. Good luck!

Gina Holmes said...

You can enter, Heather, and you did :)

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Ruth. Check out Crossing Oceans. That one's most everyone's favorite of mine. Good luck!

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Robin!

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Keely!

Gina Holmes said...

Yeah we do! Thanks Deanna

Gina Holmes said...

Maybe we'll see you down there, Mike!

Gina Holmes said...

Aww, shucks. Thanks Nina!

traveler said...

Thanks for this wonderful post. It was very interesting to learn about your writing, your novels and your background. Your books sound captivating and memorable. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

jude urbanski said...

Gina, thanks for sharing from your heart in this post. I've enjoyed your books and look forward to reading this one. Your subject matter is the real we don't always want to see. I'm a nurse and also a great lover of the Outer Banks.

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Traveler!

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks for that, Jude. Any nurse who enjoys my books and the Outer Banks is a friend of mine :)

Lillian Humphries said...

I love hearing about the lives of writers. I imagine what I would say to the questions. Ha Ha. Thanks for the opportunity to get to know you better and I hope I win your new book.

Barbara Latta said...

I love that you write about flawed people who are able to find redemption. It's inspiring to know you have written three novels while still working as a nurse. I should never say I don't have time to write!

Gina Holmes said...

Ha ha, Lillian. In true writer style. :)

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Barbara. I write what I know and since I'm a flawed person... well... It's funny, the more time I have to write, the less I seem to do. There's never enough time whether you work two jobs or none.

Samantha B said...

Great interview!
You're somewhat a new author to me. I read your book Wings of Glass this August and I absolutely loved it :)
I intend on reading your other books eventually.

I would love to win your book, but I don't know if I'm eligible since I live in Canada. Here's my e-mail address just in case:
sbissonnettes_23 at videotron dot ca

Pam K. said...

I read Wings of Glass and really liked it. Thanks, Gina, for being willing to write about difficult subjects. I enjoyed learning more about you from this interview. I'd love to win your new book.

Jackie Smith said...

I have loved and been inspired by all of your books, Gina! I am so anxious to read this one....so thanks for the giveaway!!
Keep up the great writing!!
jacsmi75 at gmail dot com

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Samantha! You're entered!

Gina Holmes said...

Thanks Pam!

Gina Holmes said...

Really appreciate that, Jackie!

Gina Holmes said...

Deanna, your name was drawn. Congratulations message me your mailing address at rnglh1 at yahoo dot com