Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Carrie Fancett Pagels {Writer Wednesday}

No, don't worry - you didn't skip the next few months and find yourself at Christmas time...well, mostly ;) Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Carrie Fancett Pagels! I met her last year at the ACFW writers conference and was able to get to know her a little better during our headshot session! I'm excited to have her on the blog talking about some of her published works - one of which is a Christmas novella! 

Today, she's offering either a paperback or ebook copy of her novel, Return to Shirley Plantation: A Civil War Romance.  I'll be drawing the winner next Tuesday and announcing on Wednesday September 3 (due to the End-of-Summer Giveaway winners being announced on Tuesday). 

To enter to win this giveaway, leave a comment below for Carrie and/or comment about your plans for Labor Day!

A little bit about Carrie...

Carrie Fancett Pagels, Ph.D., is the author of the short story, Snowed In, published in Guidepost Books’ “A Cup of Christmas Cheer” (October, 2013) which sold through its first printing of 30,000 copies within weeks of release and went into a second printing. Her novella, Return to Shirley Plantation: A Civil War Romance (Helping Hands Press, 2013), an Amazon Civil War bestseller, remained on the top rated Civil War ebooks for over a year. Carrie also contributed to God’s Provision in Tough Times, by Cynthia Howerter and LaTan Murphy (Lighthouse of the Carolinas, July, 2013) a 2014 Selah finalist. With a Ph.D. in School Psychology, Carrie served as a psychologist for twenty-five years. She has two popular group blogs: Overcoming With God ( and Colonial Quills (
Carrie is the former ACFW Zone Mid-Atlantic Zone Director and Virginia/West Virginia Area Coordinator and continues to serve as co-hostess of the Tidewater Area Christian Writers group. She mentors several beginning Christian writers. Married for 26 years to the love of her life, she resides in Virginia’s historic triangle. She has a 12-year-old son and a 25-year-old daughter.

Her tagline “Hearts Overcoming Through Time” reflects her writing—historical romance with strong elements of overcoming with God’s help.

How to connect with Carrie...

Facebook Author Page
Facebook Personal Page
Author Interview |  Carrie Fancett Pagels

You and Writing

Do you have a favorite book or work that you’ve written? If so, why?
...Yes, I do. I can’t say the title because it is so specific and it hasn’t been bought yet. But I have a story set in Virginia in 1815, as the War of 1812 is ending, that I love and that was requested by a bunch of the publishing houses but hasn’t yet found a home. I have endorsements from a half dozen published authors who read it and from Beta readers who loved it. I love the heroine and hero because while they have their flaws, they have really risen to the occasion in their life situations. And she has an avocation that is highly unusual, which I think is pretty cool. I had consultations from some top people in their fields when I was working on this manuscript—such a blessing from God. This MS did get through committee at a CBA house and was on its way to the publishing board when that company decided to cease publishing fiction. So I don’t know why God hasn’t found a home for it yet, but this story is really near and dear to my heart.

Your Writing

Do you have a favorite character your current work? If so, why?
...I have a book I’m working on right now where I love the hero. He’s really special to me because he’s such a great guy and has been through so much but he hasn’t let it affect his soul. I was so happy to discover Ben Utecht as someone who resembles my Friedrich. Here’s a link to a great inspiration song for my Friedrich, sung by Ben! My hero feels this way at the end of the story and so I like to listen to that when I am doing rewrites and edits right now!

What is one take-away from your book that you hope readers identify with?
...I’m going to address this one to my published novella. “Return to Shirley Plantation: A Civil War Romance” is about obedience to God, which really resonates with me. My heroine, Angelina, obeys when God tells her to stay put even though it is at a detriment to herself. I think it is pretty cool that a Civil War book about obedience to Christ stayed on the top rated Civil War books on Amazon for a year and was a best seller for many months, as well. I have to think that the story resonates with readers as well and I’ve been blessed with 61 reviews on Amazon, with an average 4.7 rating out of 5 stars!


Where do you find inspiration for your story/characters? Are they based on real life or pure imagination or both?
...I get a lot from real life. But not all. And what is “odd” is when I get a character who I discover is very similar to a real person who lived in that time period in that setting! In my 1815 story, I was totally inspired by the story of a real life person who was a hero during the War of 1812. However, the docent who spoke about the situation had some of the information wrong. But that all worked out fine for my story and I believe God intended it to be that way. And I had a heroine inspired by a real life person I know. I named her for a dear friend I’d been seeking to reunite with, for decades. Sadly, as I was finishing up the edits, I discovered my friend’s name online—in an obituary. But I hope to keep her first name in this story.

When you write, what is your overall intention with your stories?
...I wrote about this on Seekerville this past winter. I write Christian fiction and I see no point in writing if I don’t have a Christian theme in my books. I want the reader to take something away that will apply to their everyday spiritual life. I also want the reader to experience the emotions my characters are feeling and to consider the struggles and how they might address a similar situation. So I’m expecting a lot!


What are you currently reading?
...Lisa Norato’s upcoming release and Kristi Cambron’s and Karen Witemeyer’s. Yup, all three at once!

Apparently August 15th is National Lemon Meringue Pie Day (who knew). What is your favorite dessert? 
...German sacher torte My recipe is from a recipe book from the 1970’s Supercookery, a European based cookbook given to me by my first fiancé who was from Italy. And I didn’t cook at that time…That relationship didn’t pan out but I do love that dessert, as does my husband!
Thank you so much for stopping by Carrie! I love hearing about the "behind the scenes" of a character's story. I can only assume how much research goes into historical novels and always appreciate that! Contemporary writing takes a lot of research too, but at least those who write it live in the era ;) And that torte sounds sweet tooth could easily get away from me if I made that! 

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