Thank you for being with us today, Cara!!! How long have you known you wanted to be an author?
Since I was about 14. At that time I started writing Christian novelists asking for advice, and got great letters from Frank Peretti, Janette Oke, Sandy Dengler, Michael Phillips and more. Then in 2005 I met Colleen Coble, and my husband told her I wanted to be a writer. The rest is history. God told me to chase the dream, and I’ve been writing hard every since.
Can you tell me a little bit about your newest book?
I was working on the last book for my second World War II series for Heartsong Presents and beginning to think about where I might want to set a future series. My husband, who is as big a World War II fan as I am if not more, and I were brainstorming one night. Since I’d done two series set in the Midwest, I kind of wanted to branch out, and I’ve long had a love of classic movies. As Eric and I were talking, we hit on the idea of Hollywood during World War II.
There were so many different roles that the stars played during the war. Canteens. USO tours. Active service. 4-Fed. The plot options and historical details seemed endless. Then as I researched I stumbled on the original Hollywood Victory Caravan. My imagination kicked into overdrive. What if I created a second Victory Caravan? What if a killer followed someone on to the train? What if people died and you were trapped on the train with a killer? And what if romance blossomed in the midst of the suspense? I got pretty pumped very quickly.
Then I got a call from the woman who became my editor at Summerside. She wondered if I might be interested in writing historical romantic suspense for them. And as God works, one of the settings they were interested in was Hollywood. It was perfect timing and a great fit.
When a reader gets done with your book, what do you want them to come away with?There have been times I would ask God if I could start writing, and He said no. But since He gave me the green light in 2005, I’ve tried hard to follow His lead and avoid the need to be stopped.
In all of my books, I hope they will walk away with a sense that God is always there no matter what is going on in their lives and a strong sense of hope. In Stars in the Night, I hope they walk away with the sense that God is there in the midst of their grief and crises.
Have you ever been going one direction in your writing, and the Lord stopped you?
I’m not very funny :-). So I really don’t have any, but I’ll never forget being at a retreat for published authors and running around with digital cameras on a scavenger hunt. We were all having a lot of fun and embarrassing ourselves all over the hotel.
What is one of the funniest moments you have had while writing?
Because I am such a WWII history buff, I still long to get to Normandy and the D-Day beaches. I keep trying to talk my husband into it as an extravagant trip. I haven’t been successful yet...but I’m not giving up.
Is there a place you have always wanted to visit? A vacation spot, historical monument, overseas, etc?
If you could have dinner with 2 people, who would they be?
Harper Lee to ask her what it’s like to write one book and have it become an immediate classic. And Margaret Thatcher to ask her about what it was like to be a woman who broke so many barriers.
What one event would you love to be at? Historical or future?
It’s hard to narrow it down to one. But if I had to choose, I guess I’d select V-E Day in 1945. The sense of celebration must have been amazing!
Do you have any suggestions for the aspiring writer?
If you’re serious about writing fiction, then you have to join American Christian Fiction Writers (http:www.acfw.com). That was the best immediate advice I received from Colleen Coble, and so much of what has happened in my writing in the last five years can be directly traced to things I learned and people I met through ACFW. It’s annual conference will be in Indianapolis this year from Sept. 17-20 and I guarantee it will be great.
Any last thoughts for your readers?
It is an honor to be able to write the books that you read. Please stop by my blog, website or facebook and let me know what you like about what you read. I love connecting with my readers.
And how can they connect with you?
I can be found online at my website (http://www.caraputman.com), facebook, twitter, and shoutlife.
Now fellow Christian fiction readers, Cara has a very neat giveaway on her blog. The grand prize consists of some DVD's of Cara's favorite classic movies, popcorn, cracker jacks and a signed copy of her new release, Stars in the Night. There is also 5 first prizes of 7 of her books, including Stars in the Night. And the 5 second place winners get a signed copy of Stars in the Night. The contest ends July 31st and there are lots of ways to enter. So head over to Cara's blog and get your entries in.