Today it's a privilege to introduce you to fellow author Myra Johnson. This award-winning author writes emotionally gripping stories about love, life, and faith. Her historical romance
When the Clouds Roll By won the 2014 Christian Retailing’s Best award for historical fiction. Myra is also a two-time finalist for the ACFW Carol Award and winner of the 2005 RWA Golden Heart. Married since 1972, Myra and her husband have two beautiful daughters and seven grandchildren. They reside in beautiful North Carolina near four of their grandchildren, but as a native Texan Myra sorely misses real Texas barbecue and those gorgeous bluebonnets every spring! The Johnsons share their home with two pampered rescue dogs.
Welcome back to PASTimes! Thanks for joining us and sharing a bit about your writing world. Yesterday you told us a lot about your new novel, The Sweetest Rain.
What do you hope readers remember after your stories end?
Since I write from a Christian worldview, faith is inherent in the lives of my characters. However, the characters are far from perfect, and faith doesn’t always come easily. They struggle against external difficulties while striving to overcome their personal failures and flaws, all in light of God’s goodness and unending love. What I hope readers remember is that God is always with us, able to carry us through every trial no matter how dark things appear. I’m certain that for many survivors of the drought and Great Depression, it was faith alone that gave them the strength to endure.
What surprises you most as you write?
I’m always surprised by what the characters reveal about themselves and their lives that I could never have consciously figured out on my own. Even when editorial needs require a synopsis or plot outline before I actually write the book, my characters don’t always follow the plan. And usually the stories they tell me are a lot more interesting than anything I originally thought of. I certainly didn’t know until it happened that Bryony would try to win over her landlord with a jar of homemade pickles!
What piece of advice do you have for readers who want to write? If you could teach them something what would it be?
My first recommendation would be to study novels in their chosen genre and learn what publishers are looking for. Then I’d invite them to visit my group blog, Seekerville, where we’re all about helping writers along their individual journeys. Join a writers group, find a critique partner, and keep learning and writing!
What’s next for you?
I just turned in book two of the Flowers of Eden series, this one featuring Larkspur, the second Linwood sister, as she pursues her dream of teaching. I’ll soon begin work on book three, which will tell the story of Rose, the youngest (and probably the feistiest) of the Linwood girls. In addition, I’m looking forward to the release of my first romance from Love Inspired. Rancher for the Holidays, a contemporary love story set in West Texas, will be out in November.
What has been the strangest/most unexpected part of your writing journey?
I really had to think about this question, and then it came to me. It was the day I learned my former allergist and otolaryngologist, Dr. Richard Mabry, had also started writing fiction. What fun to see “Doc” again at writers conferences and discover we shared this common interest! Things got even more “coincidental” when both our careers were launched by the same editor and publisher, Barbara Scott and Abingdon Press!
What are you currently reading?
I’m just finishing Refuge of the Heart, another novel from Franciscan Media by my good friend Ruth Logan Herne. It’s been such fun sharing “release month” with Ruthy and being a part of Franciscan Media’s debut fiction line! Now I need to take another look at my to-be-read stack and see what’s up next. So many wonderful authors and books—it’s always a dilemma!
Which of your books would you love to see turned into a movie?
It’s been a long-standing dream to see my debut novel, One Imperfect Christmas, made into a Hallmark movie. The idea started percolating several years ago while I was watching one made-for-TV holiday movie after another, and I decided I wanted to write my own Christmas story. So seeing it as a movie would be really special, and I could readily imagine Reese Witherspoon as my heroine!
Do you participate in author book signings or events? Where can readers find you?
I don’t have any appearances currently scheduled, but readers can keep up with the latest by subscribing to my e-newsletter (http://myrajohnson.com/newsletter-signup/) or visiting me online at the links below:
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/MyraJohnsonAuthor
Twitter: @MyraJohnson and @TheGrammarQueen
The Seekers blog: http://seekerville.blogspot.com/
Thanks so much for hosting me and featuring my latest release. I hope your readers will enjoy it!
Myra is giving away a copy ofThe Sweetest Rain, so be sure to use this form to enter!