Happy September! Here in PA the days are already getting cooler, which I'm loving. :) Cool days are excuse enough to curl up with a new book. Today I'd like to introduce you to Angie Dicken. Her first novel is debuting this month.
Welcome Angie. How did you develop a love of story?
This is a great question. I feel like my love of story has been a lifetime pursuit. From the time I was a child in England, to listening to my grandparents’ stories, I have always loved the chance to immerse myself in a good story. But, while good literature and conversation kindle my love, I must credit it to the theatre arts also. I was in a highly competitive theatre program in high school. My teacher’s deep passion to completely transport ourselves into the story world deepened my attraction to a well-told, and well-played story.
How exciting that you grew up in England. What is your most difficult writing challenge?
My very crowded brain! I have four kids, a part-time job, and crazy busy after-school schedules. I can’t just write anywhere. I need quiet, focus, and peace. If I just write “whenever I have a chance”, a million other things fight for my attention. To sum it up, I think life, my biggest inspiration, is also my biggest writing challenge! :)
It's difficult to shut off all the things that battle for our attention. How does faith play a part in your writing?
I have come to realize that writing is one of my greatest ways to commune with God. Some of my deepest connections with Him have been as we write together. If I am only listening to myself as I write, the writing process becomes a battle. But when I allow God to lead, I am always amazed at how He shows up. The whole self-concept thing I mentioned? Yeah, God has worked on my own heart through my writing so many times, revealing more and more of my own self-concept, and sloughing off my fictional perspective of myself! HA!
Chuckle. I can relate to that. What do you want readers to come away with after reading your books?
I want them to know that it’s okay to change, and the only way to do that is by giving up control and listening to God. In my own life, I build these false foundations of what I need to be, look like, and believe. But God is so much bigger than my monochrome vision for myself. There is only one thing that does not change—God. Everything else is just topsy-turvy details. Each of my hero’s and heroine’s journey is a process toward a new self-concept. So, after reading an Angie Dicken novel, I want readers to 1.) Give themselves grace 2.) Find satisfaction in a story that gives God the control 3.) Dare to step forward in authenticity and excitement for the unpredictable journey God has for each of us in real-life.
Those are some great take-aways. Tell us about your new book.
The Outlaw’s Second Chance hit the shelves yesterday! It is my debut novel. The editors at Love Inspired are amazing, and my experience for my debut couldn’t have been better! I have always been fascinated with the land runs of the 19th century, and this story is a sweet romance that blooms from the night before a run, through the hardships of building life from the ground up (literally)! Here’s the blurb for the book:
When Cort Stanton and Aubrey Huxley try to claim the same land in the Oklahoma Land Run, Cort offers a deal—one that could help him keep his freedom. After taking the blame for his brother's crime, Cort needs to lie low, so he gives Aubrey the land for her horse ranch…if she'll hire him. Now he just has to avoid growing too close to the gorgeous seamstress, who can never know his secret.
Aubrey refuses to depend on any man, even one as handsome and kind as Cort. Yet, as they work together to make her dream a reality, it's impossible to imagine life on the prairie without him. And though Aubrey knows Cort has secrets that stand between them, she can't help but wish she could stake a claim on his heart.
If you would like to celebrate my debut with me, I am having a fun online launch party on September 12th! Please go to my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/dicken.angie to rsvp to the pinned post! Lots of fun, games, and giveaways!
Sounds like lots of fun. I also wrote a book set during the Oklahoma Land Run. Do you listen to music or snack while writing?
I just love Pandora. I have a station for each book I write. This year, I was writing/editing three different novels simultaneously. Music was a great way for me to get in the zone for the particular story I was working on.
That's a great idea. I'll have to keep that in mind next time I'm working on multiple projects at once. :) Thanks so much for sharing some of your writing life with us, Angie. I pray the Lord blesses your writing career.