Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Interview with Elizabeth Musser and GIVEAWAY!


Howdy ya'll! Today I have an interview with Elizabeth Musser. I also have a copy of her book, Words Unspoken that is signed by the author which I will be giving away here today:) So, read through the interview and make sure you complete the mandatory entry at the bottom for your chance to win this book.

Thank you for being with us today, Elizabeth!!!

It’s a pleasure to join you, Charity.

How long have you known you wanted to be an author?

Ever since I was 6, I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up: a writer. I could not not write. It was stronger than I was. Writing was how I expressed joy, sadness, worries, faith, my questions about life, love. My first poems were about animals; I also wrote birthday poems for family and friends. I always had stories running around in my head. At nine, I started what I presumptuously called “my first book”. I wanted to be the youngest writer and illustrator ever! That book remains unpublished to this day.

Can you tell me a little bit about your newest book?

My most recent novel is called Words Unspoken (Bethany House, 2009). Have you ever been bothered by negative things from your subconscious—you know, those voices from the past that whisper ‘you’re not good enough’, ‘you’ll never succeed’, ‘you’re a failure’ or ‘you need more, more, more to be happy’? Well, I’ve written a novel about the lives of seven seemingly unrelated characters who are motivated by voices from the past. Eventually these characters’ lives will all come together. Lissa, the protagonist, is a young woman who is trying to learn to drive again after a tragic accident has effectively put her life on hold. Ted is a ‘rogue’ stockbroker, motivated by greed; Katy Lynn is an Atlanta socialite whose life is unraveling, Janelle is a depressed missionary in France, Silvano is a cocky assistant editor at a publishing house who is ready to compromise, Stella is a mysterious best-selling author who is determined to remain anonymous and Ev is a driving instructor on the verge of retirement with plenty of secrets of his own. Come with me to a girls’ school and a military park in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and to beautiful Lookout Mountain in the fall of 1987 where mystery and the effects of Black Monday are awaiting. Words Unspoken promises you the ride of your life. Won’t you join me? Hold on tight!

I’ve put out a video on YouTube to give my wonderful readers a chance to get to know me better and have a peek into some of the places where Words Unspoken takes place. Here’s the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVAKxLogoDQ

I have another novel coming out in June, 2011, called The Sweetest Thing, set in Atlanta in the 1930s. I’ll be posting more about this novel on my website at the beginning of 2011.


If you could be one person in history, who would it be?

I cannot begin to choose one person, but right now, I’d like to walk in Catherine Marshall’s shoes for a little while and find out how she managed her life as wife, writer and woman of faith in the midst of many challenges. Her novels and non-fiction books have inspired me for many years.
When a reader gets done with your book, what do you want them to come away with?

What I love most about the craft of writing is the aspect of telling a story. I enjoy creating realistic characters and putting them in a setting that is historically accurate. I write recent historical, inspirational fiction. I once wrote an article called ‘Entertainment with a Soul’. That is indeed how I view my writing. Hopefully there’s a good story and an interesting plot. But there should be more. I want the reader to find the soul in my book and in my characters. My goal is to write the best literature I can, with real characters and themes that strike a chord in the reader’s heart and force the reader to think, to ask questions, to laugh and cry and hope. To be entertained way down in her soul. Writing to me is a vocation. I consider it a great privilege to be able to do what I love and to write stories that can make a difference in someone’s life.


Is there a place you have always wanted to visit? A vacation spot, historical monument, overseas, etc?

Since I have lived in France for over 20 years, I’ve had the opportunity to visit many wonderful places in Europe. But my husband grew up in Brazil, where his parents were missionaries and I’ve never gotten to visit there, but I hope to be able to one day.
If you could have dinner with 2 people, who would they be?

I’d love to have dinner with Amy Grant and Beth Moore—both beautiful women of faith who have been called by the Lord to live out their lives in the public arena. Their passion and creativity inspire and encourage me. They are both so honest and real and let God pick them up after all their failings and keep going on in faith.

What one event would you love to be at? Historical or future?

I want to be at the Wedding Feast of the Lamb. Fortunately, I know that I have a reserved seat!

Do you have a favorite hobby?

I have lots of hobbies I enjoy, but one of my oldest hobbies is scrapbooking. I started making scrapbooks at 17, long before scrapbooking was considered a word. Our home now holds over 50 scrapbooks, with more being made. I find that my scrapbooks have been used in many ways, often as a ministry to someone who needs encouragement. I’ll pluck a photo or two of a friend from an old scrapbook, scan it, or photocopy it, and send it to that friend when she’s going through a hard time.

Is there something about you most people wouldn't know?

Here are a few things:

~I love to take long walks

~I enjoy most being one-on-one with people and having deep discussions

~We have the sweetest, smartest and most neurotic dog in the world

~I love being the only girl in my family (I have a wonderful husband, two amazing sons and that neurotic (male) dog.)

~I delight in my ministry to young teen girls. I do lots of informal discipleship—through meeting together, sharing, praying, memorizing Scripture.

~I don’t like to watch the news on TV or on internet—too depressing. I have to be very careful what kind of information I put into my little head.

~I love to cuddle up in bed at the end of a long day with a good book.

~ France has great food, so the only food I miss in America is Cheetos!


Do you have any suggestions for the aspiring writer?

My simple formula is: write, write, write and pray, pray, pray! That’s what I did for 30 years before I got my first book contract. But I also encourage aspiring writers to attend a writers' conference. I have only been to three in the past 15 years, but at the first one I met the editor who would eventually publish my first novel and is still my editor today, at the second one, I took a class from a man who is now my agent, and at the third, I connected with many other writers. If your novel has a Christian slant, I would suggest attending a Christian writers' conference, of which there are many. The biggest Christian fiction writers' conference is the ACFW conference, held each September. You can find out about this wonderful association and their conference at www.acfw.com Look on the left side of the home page and click on 'annual conference'.

At most of these conferences, there are very helpful classes and seminars on everything about writing and getting published, for beginners up through professionals. And typically, you can schedule an interview with an editor from a publishing house and with an agent. Both are excellent opportunities to 'pitch' your idea for a novel. Plus you'll get loads of info at the conference to help you along the way towards publication. Again, if your writing has a Christian slant, I suggest you become a member of ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers), for $40 a year. They have incredible resources, and are growing daily--I think the membership is over 2000 now.

But there are many, many other writers' conferences all over the US, for every genre, so spend some time on the internet and I'm sure you'll find lots to help.

Any last thoughts for your readers?

I am often asked ‘what is the most fulfilling thing about your work as missionary and author?’ For me, in ministry, it is when someone catches on to Jesus! When they begin to understand. And with my books, it’s when someone writes to me or comes up to me and says, “your book made me think, or brought me back to the Lord, or caused me to look at things differently or encouraged me in my faith…’.

And I want to tell y’all that it really is a great blessing for an author to interact with her readers and hear from them. On many days when discouragement sets in, the Lord uses an email from a reader to give me a gentle hug and get me back on track! Thanks for reading!


And how can they connect with you?

For more information about my life and books, please visit my website at: www.elizabethmusser.com There you can read the first chapter of each of my novels and there’s a place to send me emails on the homepage.

Merci beaucoup!

Well, readers, One thing almost all these authors have brought up to aspiring writers, is the ACFW club. If any of you writers out there want to know more, please check out the ACFW website. They have a lot of helpful information and I enjoy browsing the website even though I am not an author, just a reader:)


MANDATORY ENTRY-To enter the giveaway for Words Unspoken, leave me a comment telling me what your favorite hobby is. I like to do some scrapbooking myself but definitely nowhere near what Elizabeth has done. Like I said before, I would like to know more about my readers and the things they enjoy.


EXTRA ENTRIES-These can only be done after the Mandatory entry has been completed. Please leave a comment for each entry you do.

1.Join Elizabeth's mailing list. It is on the home page of her website here.

2.Follow my blog.

3.Follow me on Twitter.

4.Enter any of my other giveaways.


This giveaway will end 11/3. Winner will be chosen through Random.org. They have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

45 comments:

PoCoKat said...

My favorite hobby is photography.

littleone AT shaw DOT ca

PoCoKat said...

I follow your blog on GFC.

littleone AT shaw DOT ca

Linda said...

Favorite hobby is crocheting because I'm physically unable to do what I really like!

I follow on GFC.

I subscribed to Elizabeth's mailing list.

I follow you on Twitter.
Please enter me.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Ariel said...

I have so many hobbies! I crochet some, and do a little scrapbooking as well as writing poems and stories.

pinkdaddysgirl[at]msn[dot]com

Ariel said...

I am a follower.

pinkdaddysgirl[at]msn[dot]com

Ariel said...

I follow you on Twitter.

pinkdaddysgirl[at]msn[dot]com

Ariel said...

I am now signed up for Elizabeth's mailing list.

pinkdaddysgirl[at]msn[dot]com

Karen Lange said...

My favorite hobby is sewing. :)

Thanks to both of you for this interview! Charity, your interviews are always informative and such fun.

Blessings,
Karen
klange61(at)hotmail(dot)com

Karen Lange said...

I am a follower.

Thanks!
Karen
klange61(at)hotmail(dot)com

Karen Lange said...

Just signed up for Elizabeth's mailing list.
Thank you,
Karen
klange61(at)hotmail(dot)com

Inspired Kathy said...

Reading and Blogging are my hobbies.
bkhabel at gmail dot com

Inspired Kathy said...

I follow on GFC
bkhabel at gmail dot com

Mystica said...

Reading and quilting and crafts are my hobbies

mystica123athotmaildotcom

Mystica said...

I follow you on GFC

mystica123athotmaildotcom

allisonsbj3 said...

I like reading, scrapbooking, and knitting.

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

allisonsbj3 said...

Blog follower

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

allisonsbj3 said...

Twitter follower

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

Patrick and Emillie said...

I enjoy wood working with my husband (mostly building or refinishing furniture) and sewing quilts.
emem0831(at)yahoo(dot)com

Patrick and Emillie said...

I follow -gfc
emem0831(at)yahoo(dot)com

yllektra (force-oblique) said...

Thanks for hosting this interview and giveaway!!

I love photography, reading *g*, writing and music.

I'm a follower on GFC and twitter (@Kelly A. {aka yllektra(force-oblique) || @yllektra)

I also joined the mailing list! XD

yllektra (force-oblique) said...

Oops, I need to make separate entries! *slaps forehead*

I follow on GFC (Kelly A.)

yvantis[at]hotmail[dot]com

yllektra (force-oblique) said...

I follow on twitter @yllektra)

yvantis[at]hotmail[dot]com

yllektra (force-oblique) said...

And I joined the Mailing list

yvantis[at]hotmail[dot]com

Kristie said...

I like reading. And I'm trying to better at photography. Monday I start a fused glass jewelry class. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com

Kristie said...

I follow via GFC. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com

Kristie said...

I follow via Google Reader. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com

marybelle said...

I joined the mailing list.

marypres@gmail.com

marybelle said...

My favorite hobbies are reading & knitting.

marypres@gmail.com

Mama Zen said...

My favorite hobby is reading!

AmandaSue said...

I Love photography, its a great way to express myself and to capture beautiful memories! Thanks for the chance into this giveaway.

unforgetable_dreamer_always (at) hotmail.com

ruslady said...

reading and gardening
galyettina(at)yahoo(dot)com

Debbie F said...

My only hobby is reading. Love to read. Like gardening too

dcf_beth at verizon dot net

Debbie F said...

Follow thru GFC

dcf_beth at verizon dot net

tina reynolds said...

I love scrapbooking and making jewelry thanks for the chance to win eaglesforjack@gmail.com

tina reynolds said...

I follow your blog

tina reynolds said...

i follow you on twitter @mrstinareynolds

Nancye said...

My favorite hobby is reading.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I joined Elizabeth's mailing list.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Follower

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow you on Twitter
@NancyeDavis

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I am heading over right now to enter "Legacy of Lies"

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Tori said...

I enjoy sewing, I'm a beginner though.
vrtheriot@gmail.com

Tori said...

I follow you on twitter - mommatori82
vrtheriot@gmail.com

Tori said...

I follow your blog
vrtheriot@gmail.com

Tori said...

I entered your legacy of lies giveaway
vrtheriot@gmail.com

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