Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Ann Tatlock - Award-Winning Author of Once Beyond a Time

Ann Tatlock is a novelist and children’s book author. Her books have received numerous awards, including the Christy Award, the Midwest Book Award and the Silver Angel Award for Excellence in Media. She also serves as managing editor of Heritage Beacon, the historical fiction imprint of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. She lives with her family in Western North Carolina. Please visit her website at www.anntatlock.com. You may write to her at anntatlock@yahoo.com.

Today we welcome Ann Tatlock to Novel PASTimes. Nearly nine years ago, Ann was our first author interviewee on this blog, at the time called Favorite PASTimes, and launched by Cindy Thompson and her first team.

It’s great to finally have you back at Novel PASTimes today, Ann! Could you share with us some of the lessons you learned on your journey to publishing?

I’m delighted to be back with you at Novel PASTimes. Thanks for inviting me!  
My journey to publishing taught me the importance of perseverance. It took me seven novels and 11 years to get to the point where my work was ready to be published. Maybe I’m a slow learner, but writing novel after novel (none ever published) taught me how to write. It’s a craft that needs to be honed and it takes time. He who gives up after one book is doomed!

Please tell us something about your latest novel, Once Beyond A Time.

This new story is a historical novel with a twist. I’ve also been calling it a non-paranormal paranormal novel. At first glance it looks as though some of the characters are ghosts, but that’s not the case at all. The story has to do with time; or rather, God’s timelessness. As the Alpha and the Omega, He stretches from the beginning to the end, unlike humans who occupy only one point in time. I wondered what it would be like if there were a place where all of time is happening at once, and where people could see into time the way God does (though still in a limited way). When my characters appear to be talking with ghosts, they’re actually talking with people who are living in different eras.

I love how you explore this concept, Ann!

Once Beyond A Time straddles three eras. Please tell us what drew you to write about these time periods and the location your story takes place.  

My story takes place in Black Mountain, NC, which is a delightful little town just down the road from where I live. Our mountains seemed like a good place to set a house in which the unexpected happens. The main characters, the Crane family, move into the house in the summer of 1967. They are able to see and speak with residents of the house who lived there in 1916, and who will live there in 2005. These eras are close enough together that the characters are connected to each other in more ways than one.

Have you found that similar themes run throughout your writing? Why? Or why not?

Each of my stories seems to be built around its own theme, because with each book I’m considering a different aspect of faith. For instance, the theme of I’ll Watch the Moon is hope, of A Room of My Own is servanthood, of Sweet Mercy is, of course, mercy. One of the underlying themes of Once Beyond A Time is forgiveness, but I think the greater theme is trust: trusting God for our future because he is already there.

What drew you to writing historical novels?

I love the research. I love reading about times past. When I was in high school, I thought history class was tedious and boring. Not until I was an adult did I realize history is simply stories. Stories about real people and real events. Very often, the stories reveal God’s hand at work in the world, and that inspires me.

If you’re anything like I am, one favorite book is hard to pick! Do you have two or three top picks among the historical genre that you would care to recommend?

More tomorrow from award-winning author Ann Tatlock!

Please enter the drawing for Ann's amazing novel, Once Beyond a Time, through Rafflecopter
or in our comment section, please answer her question:

If you could live for one day at any place in time, what historical era would you choose and why?

Please leave your email addy with your comment, so we can contact you. Thanks.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Deanne said...

I would enjoy tarveling back to the 1800's particularly the 1860's to Civil War times. I am totally fascinated by this time and the rich historical details involved. I would very much enjoy reading Ann Tatlock's new book. I have read some of her books in the past but none recently but I hope to change this soon !

traveler said...

I would love to experience Churchill's England since his leadership was so inspiring and memorable. The era was vital. profound and meaningful. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Deanna Stevens said...

I would like to be back in the Victorian Age. Beautiful gowns, balls, horse & carriage.. so romantic :) dkstevensneAToutlook DoTC OM

Kathleen Rouser said...

Thank you for your comment, Deanne. I can
understand your fascination with the Civil War era.
I'm more of a Revolutionary War era gal, myself, but
either would be interesting to experience for a day.

Kathleen Rouser said...

Traveler, thank you for sharing your thoughts on
your favorite era in history. Churchill's England was
definitely an era of distinction!

Kathleen Rouser said...

Deanna, thank you for sharing your reasons for
wanting to visit the Victorian age. I can certainly
appreciate them! I think the Edwardian time was
also very elegant!

Ann Tatlock said...

The Civil War era, Churchill's England, the Victorian Age...what great eras to want to visit! Wouldn't you love to be able to experience it all? The only way we can, of course, is through books so I'm grateful for all the stories that enrich our lives. Thanks for dropping by and leaving your answers, Ladies!

Ruth Ann Dell said...

Thank you for the interesting interview.

I would love to spend a day on Prince Edward Island at the beginning of the 20th century. Why? To see the wonderful world that Anne of Green Gables described so vividly in L.M. Montgomery's books.


Kathleen Rouser said...

Ruth Ann, thank you for leaving a comment. I agree
that it would be fun to observe Prince Edward Island at that time. Too bad Ann was a fictional character,
because it would be fun to meet her too.

Barbara Anne Waite said...

It would be 1900. So much was happening. Events that were changing lives. Love the dress styles too.

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