Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Elizabeth Maddrey {Writer Wednesday}

A little bit about Elizabeth...

Elizabeth Maddrey began writing stories as soon as she could form the letters properly and has never looked back. Though her practical nature and love of math and organization steered her into computer science for college and graduate school, she has always had one or more stories in progress to occupy her free time. When she isn’t writing, Elizabeth is a voracious consumer of books and has mastered the art of reading while undertaking just about any other activity. She loves to write about Christians who struggle through their lives, dealing with sin and receiving God’s grace.

Elizabeth lives in the suburbs of Washington D.C. with her husband and their two incredibly active little boys. She invites you to interact with her at her website or on Facebook:

How to connect with Elizabeth...

-->Website: Facebook:
--> Author RE:Interview | Getting to know Elizabeth Maddrey…again
--> You and Writing

Who is one of your favorite authors and why?
...I have so many favorites for various reasons, but Anne McCaffrey is a definite standout. She was able to blend so many different genres into her science fiction that they really have universal appeal. Plus, her characters are so amazing, it’s hard to remember that they’re not my real friends who just live far away.

What is one book or resource you would recommend to other writers? Why? 
...A good editor is a resource you really can’t do without. As a writer, we get so attached to our books that it’s hard to see the places where they’re ugly. Even when we’re looking for those ugly bits, we gloss over some of them. Having someone who will be honest (brutally so, if necessary) about the things that need fixing is critical. And then you just have to remember that you asked for their help, swallow the innate desire to be defensive, and implement the changes.

Share a writing-related milestone with us?
...This month I released my first indie project. I love the small press that has published the rest of my books (and has contracted another series for next year), but I’m pleased to have also taken the deep breaths necessary to dip my toe into the world of self-publishing.

How do you balance your time between writing and other actives? Any helpful tips, tricks, or suggestions? 
...Sometimes I’m not sure I do very well at this! The most helpful thing I try to keep in mind is actually something my husband reminded me of when I was expressing some mommy guilt because I was coming down to the wire with my deadline and I felt like everything else was slipping out of control: life has seasons. I try to keep things balanced and work a little writing into every day while keeping my priorities on the kids, homeschooling, and keeping the house tidy, but sometimes one has to take precedence over the others for a day or longer…and that’s okay. After the major hurdle is past, you rearrange and get back to the more balanced schedule. So it’s a matter of constantly evaluating and adjusting.

-->Your Writing
Tell us a little bit about your book.
...Kinsale Kisses is a contemporary romance that primarily takes place in Cork County, Ireland, though the hero and heroine are both Americans on travel.

Here’s the back cover:
She wants stability. He wants spontaneity. What they need is each other.

Colin O’Bryan cashed out of the software company he founded and started a new life in Ireland. Content to wander from town to town as a traveling musician, he had no goals beyond healing from the betrayals that led to his career change, and finding his next gig.

After the death of her parents, Rachel Sullivan hoped her aunt’s B&B on the Southern coast of Ireland would be a place for her to settle and start a new life. Though she can’t deny the sparks in Colin’s touch, his lack of concern for hearth and home leave her torn. Can this free-spirited minstrel win her heart or will Rachel choose roots and stability over love?
What was one trail you faced when writing it? One success?
...I initially wrote Kinsale Kisses for Pelican Book Group’s Passport to Romance line, but in the time it took for me to write, Ireland went from available to having a novella already contracted. I was bummed. Since it was so specific, there didn’t seem to be much point in trying to submit it elsewhere, but I’d fallen in love with the story and wanted it to have a chance for others to enjoy it as well. So for a success, I guess you could say it finally pushed me to give self-pubbing a try. I’d been kicking it around in the back of my head and this made me do more than that.

Who is your favorite character and why?
...As much as I love Rachel and Colin, I think Rachel’s Aunt Siobhan might be my favorite character. She’s a 70-something, feisty B&B proprietor who’s still willing to reach out and grab life by the horns.

What is one take-away from your book that you hope readers identify with?
...That God’s plans are bigger and better than ours, and when we fail, we need not be afraid to wait on Him.


Favorite writing snack: I try so hard not to snack while I write – if I start, it’s tough to stop. But if I absolutely have to munch, I aim for mixed nuts or a cheese stick.

Book you’re reading right now: Right now I’m beta-reading the second in a fantastic indie Christian fantasy series titled The Dragon’s Tongue. The first in the series is Things Unseen. Both are fantastic!

If you could go anywhere in the world for one month (for free) where would it be and why?
...This is hard. My knee-jerk response is Ireland – I adore Ireland. We’ve been twice and I’m dying to go back again. But there’s so much more of the world to see! My hubby and I are tentatively planning a trip to Scotland for our 20th anniversary next year, so that definitely makes the list but I also desperately want to see New Zealand before too long.

Enter to win a copy of Kinsale Kisses by leaving a comment below! I'll announce the winner next Tuesday.

Thanks for sharing with us Elizabeth! Your advice about swallowing the desire to defend your work to an editor (I'd add critique partner too) is so true and timely for me! I always think I want to hear critique...and yet when it comes it's always hard but good to take. Also love hearing about your next book - I love that its set in Ireland! So great that you've gone there two times already. I'm also extremely jealous of your tentative trip planned to Scotland. That is on the very top of my list :D

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