Beth will give away EITHER an e-book OR a print copy (U.S. only) of Message In A Bottle. Winner's choice. To enter to win leave a comment and an e-mail address below.
Hi Beth, first, tell us a little about yourself.
My husband and I are empty nesters living in South Central Texas. We wake up in the country to our rooster crowing, and we listen to the coyotes howling at dusk. As much as we love where we live, we have monthly discussions about selling everything and hitting the road in our RV. I suspect we will do that some day, even if just for a while. I’m blessed to be able to write for a living, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.
Tell us about your latest book.
Each ‘Surf’s Up’ novella takes the reader to a beach locale, weaving romance and adventure into a soul-soothing journey of hope. In Message In A Bottle, Kyle loses the love of his life when girlfriend, Morgan, is whisked away by the CIA in the middle of the night. Almost six years later, two men show up at Kyle's door with news that he has a daughter who is ill. Her only chance of survival lies with Kyle, if he'll fly to an undisclosed island location in the Pacific. But reuniting with his first love and saving his daughter places his engagement to his fiancée, Lexie, at risk.
This is a love story, but not just love between a man and a woman. My books tend to be character driven, and I like to explore relationships between friends, parents, and siblings also, while subtly showing the way God works in our life. In Message In A Bottle, it almost seems like there can’t possibly be a good ending, one where everybody wins. But God has a plan for these characters, and sometimes the journey isn’t what we expect, but the destination is all in God’s good plan.
What do you love about this book? And what do you hope readers will tell others about it?
I love the beach, romance, mystery, and humor. Most of my books will have all of these elements. And I particularly like the locale of this story. I’d hate to give any spoilers, but . . . Aloha! I hope readers will tell others, “It’s a love triangle with a seemingly impossible good ending, but the author does give readers a happily ever after.” And when someone picks up one of my books, I think they expect that.
How do you get to know your characters?
Writers are like crazy people, I reckon. We hear voices, even when we’d prefer not to. But there is no Mute button when the characters demand to tell their story, so over the years I’ve just accepted things on my characters’ timeframe. They reveal themselves to me a little at a time, and I get to know them as I go along. It’s like a real-life friendship. We don’t get to know a person in one day. It takes time to bond and grow into a relationship. That’s how it is with my characters, and by the end of the book, the people in my stories are real to me. I hope readers will feel that way too.
Does your faith affect your writing? How?
My faith affects everything I do, including my writing. I usually don’t know the spiritual journey God has in mind when I start writing, but I always hope and pray that my books will find those who need the message the most. The surprising thing about writing inspirational fiction is that I am always ministering to myself. The message is usually for me. I think of it as a gift from God that He encourages me to share with others.
What are you working on right now?
Right now, I’m working on book #3 in the Amish Secrets series. This book (not yet titled) will follow Her Brother’s Keeper and Love Bears All Things (releasing in October). I love being able to alternate between Amish stories and these beach romances like Message In A Bottle.
Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
This is either the best possible time to be a writer, or the worst, depending on who you ask. As traditional publishing merges with Indie publishing, there is a hodgepodge of opportunities available for writers. But my advice to aspiring writers would be to write the very best book you can. God will provide for the rest. A book is around forever. You’ll be long gone when people are still reading your books, so make it the best that it can be.
What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?
I like to talk and I like to eat, so it would be a toss-up between talk show host and chef. Oh! Maybe a talk show about food, lol!
That works. What is the coolest, wackiest, most risk-taking thing you’ve ever done?
It’s odd because I’m a risk-taker when it comes to anything that keeps my feet on the ground and doesn’t require any type of life or death defiance. But you won’t ever catch this gal jumping out of a plane, attempting to climb the highest mountain, scuba diving, or even getting on my own roof. So, my risk taking comes in an emotional or business way. For example, I’ll risk my heart getting broken if I feel that the fight is worth it. I’ll try something new in business that others might think will fail. I’ve done a lot of whacky things, etc. Can I opt to not to share those publically, lol? Although, here is a fun one that’s writing related: After my first book signing, I had a slumber party. Envision a group of middle-aged women doing all the things that slumber parties entail. We went on a scavenger hunt in our PJs, and we TP wrapped houses. I’ll stop there to protect the privacy of the other crazy ladies who were with me, lol.
Sounds like fun! What is the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you?
Well, I’ve certainly embarrassed myself plenty of times, but here’s another writing related recollection. Some of your blog readers might know Allen Arnold, former VP and Publisher for Thomas Nelson (now HarperCollins Christian Fiction). Allen and I were all dressed in our pretty clothes following the ACFW Carol Awards gala a few years ago. As we discussed a new book contract for me, I suppose I was talking with my hands too much. Poor Allen hadn’t even taken a sip of his drink when I spilled it in his lap. It was icy cold too! I was still pretty early into my career with Thomas Nelson and still nervous around Allen. I was hoping that the floor would open up and swallow me.
I knew Allen liked hot sauce, so when I got home, I sent him a bottle of my husband’s favorite hot sauce with a note—Here’s a little something hot to make up for the something cold that I dumped in your lap. His response—Thank you so much for the hot sauce. But this in no way makes up for what happened. You will never live this down! And I haven’t. The topic continues to be brought up in writing circles everywhere.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
I’m grateful. Sometimes I get whiny about deadlines, the pressure, and the process. I have to remind myself that I’m doing what I love, that God gifted me with the opportunity to comingle my words with His through story. I don’t want to ever take that for granted.
And thank you for having me as a guest on your blog. Blessings for a great rest of the year!
Having you was my pleasure!
About Message In A Bottle
One man. Two women. A child desperate for medical treatment. How can Kyle choose between the woman he once loved and his current fiancée? Is there a solution that suits all involved, or will someone end up out of the triangle forever?
Morgan Calhoun and her parents are whisked away in the middle of the night, something Morgan always knew was a possibility because of her father's CIA job. But she'd always thought if such a scenario played out that she would have time to say goodbye to those she loved—particularly her boyfriend, Kyle. Adding to her unbearable situation, several weeks after the move, Morgan finds out that she's pregnant.
Kyle Brossmann doesn't even get a break-up letter from Morgan. She's just gone, along with her parents. His heart broken, Kyle continues with his plans. He graduates from high school and attends college, where he meets his fiancée, Lexie. But two men visit Kyle and encourage him to travel to an undisclosed location, where he will meet his five-year-old daughter. Rocked by the news that he has a child, Kyle learns he is the only person who might be able to save his daughter's life.
Will Kyle choose his first love and his daughter? Or will he stay with Lexie and live the life they’ve been planning?
Each Surf’s Up novella takes the reader to a beach locale, weaving romance and adventure into a soul-soothing journey of hope.
Beth Wiseman is best known for her Daughters of the Promise series and the Land of Canaan Amish series. Having sold over 1.5 million books, her novels have held spots on multiple bestseller lists, and she has been the recipient of many prestigious literary awards. Beth is contracted with HarperCollins Christian Publishing into the year 2019, and she has published fourteen novels and sixteen novellas to date.
Beth has a deep affection for the Amish and their simpler way of life, and while she plans to continue writing Amish love stories, she is also branching out into other areas including Christian contemporary romance novels and novellas. Need You Now, The House that Love Built, The Promise and A Tide Worth Turning are some of these recent releases.
Beth and her husband are empty nesters enjoying the country life in Texas with three dogs and a rooster. When she’s not writing, Beth loves to travel, paint, and enjoy time with friends and family. You can find Beth and her books at her website Beth Wiseman.com, Fans of Beth Wiseman on Facebook where she interacts with readers, and on twitter