Monday, March 5, 2012
Looking Out the Window: Peggy Blann Phifer Talks about Her Creative Process and Her New Book, To See the Sun
Peggy will give away a gift certificate for an e-book that can be read on Kindle or Nook.
To enter to win leave a comment and your email address.
My online profile reads: I am a called-to-serve writer; born again Child of The King; wife, mother, grandmother; foster-mom to a family of spoiled—but beautiful—Lynx Point Siamese cats.
But that really doesn’t define me these days, and I need to update it. Somewhere in there I need to include “Published Author” Need to work on that.
Congratulations on all counts. Many authors also like to read. Were you an avid reader as a child? If so, what did you read?
I devoured every book I could get my hands on. As a sufferer of childhood asthma, I spent many lonely days bed-ridden or on restricted activity. My teachers soon learned of my voracious reading appetite, so, along with my homework (brought home to me by my sister) my teachers started sending me books from the school library. I was reading at eighth-grade level in fifth grade, and I was in heaven.
Let’s talk about your writing. Why do you write?
I’d like to say, like many others, “I can’t NOT write.” While that is true, I write because I love creating. I love the creative process while I’m sitting at the computer, just waiting for the next phrase, or word, or scene, to appear in my writer’s mind’s eye. Maybe I should add “creator of fiction” to my profile.
Tell us about your latest book.
It’s about a young woman in her late 20’s who finds herself pregnant after seven years of marriage. Then her husband suddenly dies and she faces a situation she could never have imagined. But raising a child without a father isn’t her only worry. Now it seems someone is stalking her. Fear mounts when an ex-boyfriend turns up with a four-month-delayed package from her dead husband indicating her life is in danger.
Where do you get ideas for your books?
My mind is always working, and I have a very vivid and active imagination. Ideas are everywhere. Too many, sometimes. (Grin)
How do you get to know your characters?
I wish I knew how to answer that. It’s really weird. In the case of what eventually became To See the Sun, I happened across a petite, blonde, model in a woman’s catalog that caught my eye. She sat in a casual pose, sitting on a tree-stump, forearms on her knees, a pensive expression on her face. As I thumbed through the pages, I saw her several more times. She captivated me, so I cut out all her poses and stapled them to a piece of cardboard, wondering why, and what I was thinking. When my writing took a serious turn, I looked at her again and I knew: THAT was my female lead. It’s like she perched on my shoulder and whispered as I wrote, revealing bits and pieces of herself along the way. The other characters just kind of introduced themselves when I needed them. It’s more intuitive, I think. Does that make sense?
Sure. What themes do you write about?
This one turned out to be ‘second chances’ though not consciously, and heavy on Forgiveness, too. I don’t write with any particular theme in mind. It just happens.
Does your faith affect your writing? How?
My faith is such an ingrained part of me, of who I am, it just comes through as I write. I don’t have to force it or think about it. It’s just there. When I edit I’m actually surprised when I see the evidence.
What are you working on right now?
I’m working on Book 2 of the Desert Faith Series. The title is To Hear the Wind. It’s about one-third written in very rough draft.
Sometimes in life we’re caught unaware. Has that ever happened to you?
At the 2006 ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) conference in Dallas, I had a one-on-one appointment with an editor. I had a nice one-sheet all prepared, I’d had an excellent (paid) critique of my manuscript shortly before my appointment, and I was all ready to pitch and I was sure I’d get a request for a full. But when I sat down in front of this nice lady editor, I froze. She waited. I mumbled. Desperate, I reached into my folder and thrust my one-sheet at her. She glanced at it, asked if she could keep it, we exchanged business cards and she told me to contact her when the manuscript was finished. I’m pretty sure she was just being nice and simply wanted to get me out of there. When I left, I could have walked upright beneath the door without ducking.
About To See The Sun
Pregnant and widowed hadn’t been part of her “happily ever after” dream. And now, someone was trying to kill her . . .
Erin Macintyre never expected to be a widow and a new mother in the same year, anymore than she expected mysterious notes, threatening phone calls, and a strange homeless man who seems to know all about her. The thought of raising a child without a father is daunting enough—worse when you have no idea who might want to harm you. Put an old flame into the mix, and her life begins a tailspin into a world she never knew existed.
When P.I. Clay Buchanan, stumbles upon Erin at her husband's gravesite, he’s totally unprepared for her advanced pregnancy. Her venomous reaction at seeing him, however, was predictable. But Clay can’t let her distrust, or his guilt, get in the way—not when he has evidence that proves Erin’s life is in danger.
With few options left, Erin begrudgingly accepts Clay’s help . . . and it just might be her undoing.
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Peggy Blann Phifer is an author and columnist, book reviewer and author interviewer, whose work has appeared on various Web sites and writer periodicals both in print and online. She is also an avid reader who loves to escape by diving between the covers of a good book. Peg enjoys handcrafts of all kinds and her home shows off some of her work, though most end up as gifts for friends and family. A retired executive assistant, Peg now makes her home in southern Nevada with husband of 25 years, Jim.
TO SEE THE SUN is her debut novel, released January 2012
Contact her at her website at: http://peggyblannphifer.com/
Visit her blog “Whispers in Purple" at http://www.whispersinpurple.com/