Gail's Book Nook

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Behind The Scenes With Guest Blogger Eva Marie Everson


I've been asked a lot lately what inspired my new novel, Things Left Unspoken. It’s a natural question; people often assume that novels are a look into the writer’s real life. Typically, for me, that’s not true. But in this case, it’s partly true.

When my great-uncle died, he left my great-aunt (they had no children) in the house she’d grown up in. She was unable to live alone so she came to live with my mother. My mother sold the house — now in a dying town — to a land developer who was going to restore not only the house, but the town. (It didn’t happen … ) Anyway, it snowed the day we buried Uncle Jimmy. Fleeting snow. Years later (about 10 years!) I was sitting on my back porch, rocking in one of the front porch rockers given to me from my great-grandparent’s estate. It was cold. February. Very gray. And I thought, “It snowed the day we buried Uncle Jimmy.”I knew immediately I had written the first line of a novel. So, I ran inside and typed one sentence, then saved it. It snowed the day we buried Uncle Jim.A few weeks later I wrote some more, then more, and then — as I thought about the restoration of the town that didn’t happen — a story formed. I wrote about five chapters and put it away. Some time later I was talking to my editor at Baker/Revell (Vicki Crumpton) and shared with her three ideas I had for a new line of Southern fiction. The story we now know as Things Left Unspoken was one of them …I wanted to write this book for a number of reasons but one is that I believe we are all lied to. Call it the devil or your own self esteem issues … we hear the lies and we believe them. We think we are the only ones. Or that we are protecting someone, even putting ourselves at risk to do so. One of the characters — Stella — is holding on to more than one family secret. One, she thinks she is protecting someone she loves more than life itself. The other, the same … For Stella, it’s not about her, but about them. Then there’s the main character — JoLynn. Her secrets are so deeply engrained she doesn’t even know what they are. She’s missed out on something she wants so desperately … so many things … but her silence will harm her spiritually and … in the end … maybe even physically!

Finally, this book had everything to do with my own self-discovery, so to speak. I had been writing The Potluck Club books with Linda Evans Shepherd. These are great books, full of things that Christian women deal with. Though the subjects were deep, sometimes the approach to them was light. I’d been reading some deep fiction on my own and really wondering “what I wanted to be when I grew up” as a writer. I knew I was searching for deeper things. I wanted to write things that made a difference (not that TPC doesn’t!) and were more literary. Things Left Unspoken is my first stab at that.

Eva Marie Everson


Eva Marie Everson grew up in a rural southern town in Georgia just outside of Savannah. She is married, has four children and five grandchildren, and lives in Central Florida. She taught Old Testament theology for six years at Life Training Center in Longwood, Florida and has written numerous articles for (including the acclaimed Falling Into The Bible series), and has had articles featured in numerous publications, including Christianity Today, Evangel, Christian Bride, Christian Retailing,, The Godly BusinessWoman and Marriage Partnership magazines. Eva Marie has been interviewed by radio, television, newspaper, and Internet media outlets. In 2002 Eva Marie was one of six Christian journalists sent to Israel for a special ten-day press tour. She was forever changed.

Writer of Books, Author of None
Eva Marie’s work includes the award-winning titles Reflections of God's Holy Land; A Personal Journey Through Israel, Shadow of Dreams, Sex, Lies and the Media, and The Potluck Club as well as The Potluck Club: Trouble's Brewing, The Potluck Club Takes the Cake; The Potluck Catering Club Secret's in the Sauce, The Potluck Catering Club A Taste of Fame, The Potluck Cookbook, Things Left Unspoken (her first in the new series of Southern novels released by Baker/Revell), Oasis: A Spa for Body & Soul, and Sex, Lies and High School to name a few. Eva is a contributing author and/or editor to a number of other publications.