Gail's Book Nook

Monday, October 8, 2012

Looking Out the Window: Cathy West, Who Writes Books of Hope and Healing, Talks about Hidden in the Heart and Offers a Give Away

Cathy will give away a copy of her new book, Hidden in the Heart. To enter to win leave a comment and an email address.




First, tell us a little about yourself.
I was born and raised on the beautiful island of Bermuda. I love flowers of all kinds, but especially roses and orchids. I’m a dog lover and have a rambunctious border collie called Noah. I’m the very proud mother of two amazingly talented children – my son is in his second year at Berklee College of Music in Boston, and my daughter is finishing up her degree in photography and planning her wedding next May!

Wow! What a wonderful place to grow up and live. Were you an avid reader as a child? What did you read?
I’ve always loved books! Growing up in Bermuda, a British colony, I read a lot of Beatrix Potter and then later, Enid Blyton. I read so many books that I didn’t have enough room on the shelves for them all!

Now for your writing, is there a special reason why you write?
I write because I love it! Truly. I love creating fictional worlds where characters take over and tell me their story. Sometimes they don’t shut up until I’ve written it all down word for word! I love being able to share the message of hope, forgiveness and restoration that comes through Christ, with the world.

Tell us about your latest book.
Everything Claire wants
seems to be beyond her reach…

After losing her mother to cancer and suffering a miscarriage soon after, Claire
Ferguson numbs the pain with alcohol and pills, and wonders if her own life is
worth living.

Adopted at birth, Claire is convinced she has some unknown genetic flaw
that may have been the cause of her miscarriage. She must find a way to deal
with the guilt she harbors. But exoneration will come with a price.
With her marriage in trouble and her father refusing to answer any
questions about her adoption, Claire begins the search for her birth mother.
For the first time in her life, she really wants to know where she came from.
But what if the woman who gave her life doesn’t want to be found?

For all those who have loved, experienced loss,
and lived life’s roller-coaster

What inspired you to write this particular book?
I grew up as an adopted child. About twelve years ago, I made the decision to search for my birth mother. Hidden in the Heart is loosely based on my own journey. I really didn’t intend to write my story, but the more I talked about it and shared it with friends, the more I felt led to write it down. While it is a book of fiction and I haven’t experienced all of the things Claire goes through, her emotions are all based on first hand experience.

That sounds like a book to tug at the heartstrings. Where do you get ideas for your books?
They usually come to me. Sometimes if I read an article, see a picture, take a drive – inspiration just hits and I run with it.

In three words describe your style of writing.
That’s easy, it’s my tagline.

Stories That Resonate…

How do you get to know your characters?
Usually it’s through the process of writing. Their personalities seem to unfold as we go along. Sometimes this takes longer than I’d like, other times they tell me who they are right away. Sometimes they take me totally by surprise, which is always fun!

What themes do you write about?
I write about the things that have touched my life the most - Brokenness, Forgiveness, Healing, Redemption, Restoration and Hope.

What is your writing schedule and where do you write?
I usually write in the mornings when I’m not going out anywhere. It really depends on the day and what I have planned. If I have nowhere to go, I could literally sit at the computer the entire day! Fortunately, my dog doesn’t allow me to do that!

Do you have to juggle writing with a job, family responsibilities or other obligations? How do you balance it?
This is our second year of being empty nesters, so hubby and I are finding our way down that road. At first it was a little strange not to have the kids around, but now I think I’m getting used to it. I do like the quiet house. But of course we love it when they’re all home too.

Are you a plotter or a pantzer?
Oh, definitely NOT a plotter. I wish I was. I’ve tried, but I just can’t do it. At most I may work with  a very rough outline, but I’m a tried and true pantser!

What are you working on right now?
I have two completed manuscripts that my agent is getting ready to send out, so at the moment I’m really just working on marketing and promoting Hidden in the Heart. I do have another book that I’ve started, called First Harvest, and I’ll be working on that a bit more once the dust settles.

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
Follow your heart, follow your dreams, and don’t give up!

What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?
I can’t imagine not writing, so I honestly don’t know!!

Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
Just a huge thanks for having me here and for the interest in Hidden in the Heart. As you may have surmised, adoption is a theme close to my heart. I’m always happy to chat about it and I love hearing from my readers!

It was my pleasure, Cathy.

Bio
Catherine West is an award-winning author who writes stories of hope and healing from her island home in Bermuda. Educated in Bermuda, England and Canada, Catherine holds a degree in English from the University of Toronto. When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. She and her husband have two college-aged children. Catherine is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America, and is represented by Rachelle Gardner of Books and Such Literary. Catherine loves to connect with her readers and can be reached at Catherine@catherinejwest.com

Visit Cathy's Website here

Vist Her Facebook Page Here

Read about Cathy's Book at OakTara 

Visit Cathy's Blog

 Cathy at GoodReads

Amazon Buy Links:

Yesterday's Tomorrow

Hidden in the Heart

14 comments:

Gail Pallotta said...

Welcome, Cathy.

Carmen7351 said...

It is so amazing how different each adopted child is regarding their birth parents. Some want to know early on, others are content. The suspense behind Claire's adoption has me intrigued, particularly since her father won't talk about it. Please enter me.

Loved your interview!

Linda at: desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Connie Almony said...

Sounds like a great book. The best ones are the ones that come from the heart.

Jackie said...

Yesterday's Tomorrow is one of my all time favorite stories.

I look forward to reading your new story too. Thanks for sharing.

Jackie L.

joyfuljelatgmaildotcom

Finbar said...

Sounds like a maximum emotional roller coaster type storyline, no resting as you read. Ideas like this are always inspirational. Great work! Everyone should enjoy it from end to end.

Catherine West said...

Hey all, thanks for your comments! hope this comes through. I had trouble posting earlier!

Lindi said...

Gail and Cathy--great interview. Not only is Cathy an awesome lady, she is also an amazing writer. This story will draw you in until the very last word.
Don't enter me in the drawing, just wanted to stop by and say hello!

cjajsmommy said...

We have an in-law that is adopted and I often wonder to myself about this person's birthmom and birthfather. But it is none of my business to investigate and the in-law isn't interested. But I think to myself, there's a woman and a man out there that have amazing grandchildren that they may never know about. Maybe one day this in-law will make the decision. I would like to win a copy of your book. djragno (at) hotmail (dot) com

Sharon said...

I love Cathy's books. Looking forward to reading this one as well.

Jo Huddleston said...

Cathy and Gail, thanks for the drawing for Hidden in the Heart.

Jo said...

Sounds like a great book and one that I would love to read. I have visited Bermuda and fell in love with it. Now if only I could get my hubby to go with me.

Blessings,
jo
azladijo(at)aol(dot)com

MaryAnn Koopmann said...

Please enter me, maryannkoopmann@charter.net
Blessings,
MaryAnn Koopmann

Angie Adair said...

Sounds like a very interesting story! angadair@nwcable dot net

MaryAnn Koopmann said...

Please enter me in give away, MaryAnn Koopmann
maryannkoopmann@charter.net