Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Interview and Book Drawing

When fellow blogger Lynnette Bonner asked me to host an interview with her for the debut of her book Rocky Mountain Oasis I did not hesitate. Lynnette is not only a great novelist but a fascinating person with an intriguing past. Please join me in welcoming Lynnette Bonner.

Lynnette, I haven’t much experience at interviewing, but I love getting to know people, especially authors. When you first began writing seriously, did you have a difficult time referring to yourself as a writer?

Yes, I still do. But it is coming easier these days. I’ve had to start the self-promotion gig and so I’ve had to introduce myself to several book store owners/managers. Also, I think attending my monthly writers group where there are about 100 other writers helps with that too. We are all writers there – it is really nice to get together with others who understand the writing life.

Is there an author whose work you admire, and would love it if someone said, “Your writing reminds me of ______?”

There are many authors that I enjoy and if my work was compared to any one of them it would be high praise. Three of my favorites are: Bodie Thoene, Francine Rivers, and Jeanette Windle. All of those authors have a way of drawing me so into a story that I don’t want to come out, even at the end.

From the moment you got the idea for Rocky Mountain Oasis to its release, how long was the process?

I started writing Rocky Mountain Oasis in 1999, I think. So about 10 years from start to publication.

Look at this, friends! Ten years! Does this give you a little hope for your baby?

I noticed you grew up in Africa, attending a boarding school for most of your education. Is this where you developed your love for literature and writing?

To be honest, I’m not sure where my love of writing came from. I was an avid reader all my life – but honestly, I didn’t start seriously writing until after my son was born in 1993 – even then, I didn’t complete a work until I finished Rocky Mountain Oasis in 2000.
I do remember my mother telling me that I had the imagination of a writer when I was in the 7th grade, or so. And I remember thinking, at that time, that it would be fun to be a writer, but again, I didn’t take it seriously for a long time.

Rocky Mountain Oasis is the story of a “mail-order bride.” What caused you to choose this situation for your story?

I’m a seat of the pants writer, and that just popped into my story of its own volition as the story unfolded for me. Brooke, my main character, has been abused all her life by various men, and that seemed like something an abusive uncle, who didn’t want to deal with her anymore, would do – sell her as a mail-order-bride.

I love that your husband is a redhead! Are any of your four children redheads?

LOL – no actually they are not. A couple of them have some reddish highlights, but none are true red-heads.

Does your writing room look more like Mr. Rogers’ living room or Lost in Space?

Ha! Probably more like Lost in Legos. I also run an eBay business out of our home office. I have a Lego store on eBay. So my writing space contains my husband’s desk, my desk, all my unlisted Lego inventory, cabinets and bookshelves of storage space for the listed inventory, and my packaging area. (I close my eyes a lot when I write – LOL)
Wow. I will never again whine about a cluttered writing space! God forgive me...

What helped you overcome discouragement along the journey to publishing Rocky Mountain Oasis?

You know, discouragement is just part of a writer’s life, sad to say. There WILL be discouragement, but we just have to persevere.
Looking back, the Lord gave me little boosts of encouragement sprinkled in with the rejections to keep me submitting. There was a Christian subsidy publisher who only published a few books a year that really liked the book – but I didn’t want to help pay for the costs, so I turned them down. Then there was the e-book publisher who actually published the book for just a couple months before they went out of business, and there were the numerous friends, critique partners, and family members who encouraged me along the way.
I’d say one main way for a writer to stay encouraged is to get into a writer’s group. Everyone there will understand the feeling of discouragement that comes with rejection. And that in itself will be an encouragement.

Are there any words of wisdom you’d give new writers?

I’ve said it several times throughout this interview and I’ll say it again, get into a writer’s group. If there isn’t one in your area there are a lot of online groups available now. ( is a good example.)
And, of course, it goes without saying that your writing should be the absolute best it can be before you start submitting it to publishers.
Study the craft, attend writing conferences, persevere, and pray that the Lord will guide you.
I just want to add a quick note of thanks to Jeanette for allowing me to be here today. Also, I’d like to give away one e-copy of the book to a winning commenter drawn randomly next Wednesday the 2nd of September. So leave a comment if you’d like the chance to win a copy of the book.

Thank you, Lynnette, for joining us today. May your book sell through the ceiling, and we pray that many lives will be touched by it. May God richly bless you as you write for you Audience of ONE, Jen

If you'd like to order a copy of Rocky Mountain Oasis, click here for Amazon or here for CBD.

Lynnette Bonner ~ Inspirational Romance Author


  1. Great interview ladies! I love mail-order stories and it's very unique that the hero has red hair. :-)
    Congrats Lynnette!

  2. Another great interview! Thank you for sharing more about your journey to publication, Lynette! God's blessings!

  3. WOW...10 years from start to publication! Patience is truly a virtue.
    Blessings, andrea

    PS: you have an award at arise 2 write

  4. Great interview. 10 years does give me hope. Persistance with God!

  5. Wow, what an encouraging interview. From writing seat of the pants to ten year journey to publication. Suddenly I feel freer, and more patient for my day to come. Thanks so much you two!!

  6. Fun interview! I had a chance to read this book and really enjoyed it. Looking forward to hosting you on my blog later this week, Lynnette!

  7. Thanks for stopping by everyone. Yes, ten years seems long on the front end, but from the back end it sure did fly by.

  8. I've been following Lynnette on her blog and even from the comments from the Oak Tara board. I'm so thrilled for you Lynette! I can't wait to read your book! God bless you always.

  9. Thanks to you all for commenting today. I have put your names in the 'hopper' for the free ebook Lynnette is gifting for one blessed winner! The contest will continue through Sept. 1st.

  10. T. Anne, Thank you. I hope you enjoy the book when you get it. :)

    Jeanette, Thanks again for hosting me here today. You're a gem! :)

  11. What a great interview and how inspiring! Gives me hope for future writing.

    Thanks for the interview Lynnette and Jeanette. :)

  12. Lynette, funny that mine was a ten year process as well! :-)

  13. I am posting for Susan Reinhardt, whose browser does not allow her to comment on my posts. She dearly wants to win a copy of your book, Lynnette.

  14. Karen, Thanks.

    Christina, I've heard a lot of people say that it took them about 10 years.

    Susan, I hope you win a copy! :)

  15. Please enter me for your book.
    I enjoy books of the West and mail-order brides.
    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

  16. this interview gives hope. 10 years is a long time to wait...but it shows I shouldn't give up and need to keep moving forward. Great interview!


Oh, it's YOU! I'm so happy to see you here today, and look forward to reading your comments.