Today I'm pleased to welcome Cathy Bryant to my blog. Cathy hosted me over at WordVessel when my novel debuted, and I received such a warm welcome that I hope y'all show her an awesome welcome here too!
As usual, please leave your comments below with an email address for a chance to win a copy of Cathy's book!
Cathy Bryant’s debut novel, Texas Roads, was a 2009 finalist in the American Christian Fiction Writers' Genesis competition and is available wherever books are sold. A Texas gal by birth, Cathy lives with her husband in a century-old Texas farmhouse, complete with picket fence, flowers, butterflies, and late summer mosquitoes the size of your fist.
About Texas Roads
Dani Davis longs for a place to call home. With quaint country charm, quirky residents, and loads of business potential, Miller’s Creek, Texas seems like the perfect place to start over…except for the cowboy who gives a ride into town. Then malicious rumors and a devastating secret propel her down a road she never expected to travel.
What's your latest book?
My latest book is TEXAS ROADS (published under my imprint, WordVessel Press, March 2010).
What was the hardest part to write?
The scene where Dani uncovers an age-old secret was very emotional. I can only speak for myself, but emotional scenes are exhausting to write. Sports writer Red Smith said: “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.” That’s what writing emotional scenes feels like to me.
LOL. What a fabulous analogy. I just nearly killed my heroine today (again--this chick has some bad luck!), so yeah. I get it. =) What do you hope your readers will get out of the story?
First of all, I hope they glimpse God’s goodness and sovereignty even in the midst of trying circumstances. I also hope as they visit Miller’s Creek, Texas, they feel they’ve arrived in a place that is both charming and vaguely familiar.
Oh, I love it when a setting becomes a friend. Is there a theme to this book?
Yes. The theme of the book is finding home, and comes from my own spiritual journey. For years it seemed my family and I were destined to be Texas nomads. Just about the time we’d start to put down roots, God yanked us up and transplanted us to yet another small Texas town. I longed for a place we could make home, but God had a lesson He wanted me to learn. No place on earth will ever truly be home for believers. Only God can fill that home-sized hole in each of our hearts. Only He was intended to.
This verse from John 14:23 became the theme verse for the novel: If anyone loves Me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and We will make Our home with him. Dani Davis, one of the main characters, takes the same spiritual journey I did a few years ago.
"Texas nomad"--I love it. And a fabulous lesson. Any funny family stories about living with a writer?
My hubby and I recently took a “Texas Roads” trip to see the beautiful bluebonnet display in the Texas Hill Country. We stopped at a convenience store in one small town. I stayed in the car while my husband went in. When he came out, he found me eyeing an older gentleman standing nearby. I nudged him and said, “That’s Bo Miller.” (Bo is one of the minor characters in the story.) A few minutes later, we stopped at the town’s library. As we were walking in, we passed a lady dressed in pioneer attire. She sent us a sunny smile and a “hello.” We looked at each other and both said at the same time: “Mama Beth.” (Mama Beth is one of the main characters in the story, a wise old woman who serves as a mother figure for Miller’s Creek.) I love running into people that remind me of my characters!
And two in the same trip? Jackpot! LOL. What are you writing right now?
I’m currently working on book two in the Miller’s Creek, Texas series, tentatively titled A Path Less Traveled (and hopefully available in the Fall of 2010). Here’s the basic storyline:
Trish James is tired of being rescued. When a spooked horse claims her husband's life, she determines to make a life for herself and her son without outside help. But will that entail leaving the place that's etched on her heart?
Andy Tyler has had to struggle for everything, and starting a new law practice in Miller's Creek, Texas is no different. Though prepared for business challenges, he's not prepared for falling in love--especially with yet another woman who will probably abandon him for her career.
Will Andy and Trish be able to see beyond the obvious to take the path less traveled?
The story will feature Andy and Trish, but will also include the old friends from Miller’s Creek.
Sounds great! Is there another author who has greatly influenced your writing?
I would have to credit Francine Rivers for first drawing me into the world of Christian fiction. I remember sobbing (on more than one occasion!) as I read Redeeming Love. I knew then I wanted to touch people and make a difference in their lives through the stories I wrote.
Thanks for visiting, Cathy! Readers, don't forget to check out WordVessel. You can purchase Texas Roads at Amazon.
Void where prohibited. Entry into the contest is considered verification of eligibility based on your local laws. Contest ends 7/29/10. Winner will have two weeks to claim book.