Thursday, July 18, 2013

Today, The Borrowed Book interviews historical romance author Karen Witemeyer about what it's like to be Karen.

1)    Thank you for taking the time to speak with us. You've been at this writing thing for a little while, and, based on your track record, you're pretty good at it! Have you always wanted to be an author? If not, what made you decide to write, and how long have you been at it?

I'd always been a bookworm, but for years I never even dared to dream about being a writer. It seemed so mysterious and far removed from normal life. After college, though, I began keeping a journal of story ideas inspired by my daydreams, thinking maybe someday I'd give writing a try. Then, when I was a stay-at-home mom with three kids under the age of five, my husband learned his position was being eliminated. Suddenly I was faced with needing to find a way to contribute to the family income. The time had come to take that writing dream off the shelf and try to make it a reality. Little did I know that it would be years before I saw any significant income from my efforts. Six months later, I reentered the workforce and claimed a "normal" day job, but by then the writing bug had bitten so hard I continued pursuing that dream in my off time. Six years later, in January 2009, I signed my first 3-book contract, and the following year I saw my first book hit the shelves.

2)    Have you ever had a funny experience connected with being an author? For instance, has someone ever overheard you discussing the merits of one murder weapon over another or caught you shooting at a can of gasoline to see if you could make it explode?

About a year ago, my family and I were eating out at the local Cotton Patch restaurant. Nothing fancy, just some good ol' chicken fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy. My husband's parents were with us, along with our three kids. Then out of the blue, a lovely lady walks up to the table and asks, "Are you Karen Witemeyer, the author?" How she recognized me, I have no idea. She must have already been familiar with my website or Facebook page more because none of my books have my picture on them. I smiled and chatted with her for several minutes, letting her know how glad I was she stopped by our table. Once she left, my kids couldn't quit grinning. It was their first "celebrity" moment with mom. Their awe lasted for all of about 2 minutes before they were back to their normal teasing and bickering, however.

3) What do your kids think about your being a writer?

My kids are proud of me and excited about asking their teachers if I can come speak to their classes, but they also see writing as an activity that keeps Mom closed up in her room for hours at a time. When they grow bored or hungry or get in a squabble with a sibling, my writing becomes a terrible inconvenience. I must say it's a thrill to have my daughter read my books and tell me how much she enjoys them. My boys just look at the covers and wonder why the people on them have no heads. Ha!

3)    How do you get your best ideas?

My ideas come from a variety of sources. Movies, television, other books, even the Bible. Short-Straw Bride was inspired by the musical Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. To Win Her Heart was inspired by the parable of the Prodigal Son and asking the question, what would life have been like for the prodigal after the celebration was over?

Stealing the Preacher, my current release, was inspired by a character – Crockett Archer, one of the Archer brothers from Short-Straw Bride. Since Crockett is no ordinary preacher, but a gun-toting rancher with a gift for doctoring . . . well, that meant a plot full of scrapes, trouble, and shenanigans. Not to mention an outlaw's daughter with the soul of a missionary. I had so much fun creating a heroine worthy of the man I had come to admire in Short-Straw Bride.

4) Do you like to listen to music when you write?

Nope. I prefer the quiet.

5) Writing is a sedentary occupation. What do you do for exercise?

I get up at 5 M-F to walk two miles on my treadmill before getting ready for work. Well, when I don't roll over and go back to sleep, that is.

6) What fun fact would you like your readers to know about you?

I live next door to my in-laws and actually love it!

 That is a fun fact! You and your mother-in-law must both be wonderful people.

Two-time RITA® Finalist and winner of the coveted HOLT Medallion and ACFW Carol Award, CBA bestselling author, Karen Witemeyer, writes historical romance fiction for Bethany House, believing that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher, shower singer, and bakes a mean apple cobbler. Karen makes her home in Abilene, TX with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at:

Come back tomorrow, when you can enter to win a copy of Karen's latest release, Stealing the Preacher. 


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