What inspired the book? As a young boy, I loved to hear about my grandparents and great grandparents. My parents, aunts, and uncles told wonderful stories and painted vivid pictures of every event. Those stories intrigued me because they really happened -- and they happened to people that were connected to me. I wanted to know more about my ancestors and developed an early interest in history, the only subject I ever excelled in. I began researching my family history more than 30 years ago. After a close call with death in a motorcycle accident, I wanted to be sure this history was passed down to my son, daughter, and three grandchildren. My first attempts told the family stories but bored everyone who read them, so I decided to add dialogue and scenes to give the stories some true life drama. I have done extensive historical and genealogical research and have written nothing -- and will write nothing in future books in The Westward Sagas-- that contradicts known historical facts, characters, or events. The books are written as historical fiction rather than as nonfiction to allow me to imagine and create details of how events might have occurred when those details are not actually known.
What makes this book special to you? I love history and genealogy, and this book gives me the chance to share my research and entertain others at the same time.
What makes this a book that other people MUST read and WHY? Spring House tells little-known details about the Revolutionary War and shows the important roles of women and churches in the American Revolution through the eyes of one Patriot. Adam Mitchell, his compatriots, and his family were ordinary Americans in extraordinary circumstances, people who became heroes because of the way they responded to their situations. Not only will readers gain a new understanding of American history, they will be inspired by the courage and strength of the Mitchell family and their fellow revolutionaries.
What people NEED to read this book and WHY? Anyone interested in American history, especially the Revolution, will enjoy the history. Readers who like romance will appreciate Adam Mitchell's two love stories--his first wife who died bearing their son and his second wife who bore him twelve more children.
What sparks your creativity? Any tips to help others spark their own creativity? I'm inspired by history, which is my passion. I think passion sparks creativity.
What has been the biggest stumbling block in your writing? Can you share some tips to help others get past similar problems? It's difficult to find the time to write. I run a full-time business and write part-time. The only way I can get any writing done--and I'm struggling with finishing the second book now--is to set aside time and not let anything interfere with my writing. I've even gone away to write so I'm not distracted by the interruptions of life.
What do you think motivates people to become authors? What motivated you to get into this unusual industry? Unlike many authors, I never set out to be a writer. But I got so excited about my family history that I knew it was a story that needed to be told. When I couldn't get anyone else to write the story, I decided to do it. And am I glad I did! I've caught the writing bug.
Tell me about the most unusual things you have done to promote any books? Some of my best promotion was in writing the book itself. I made sure to include lots of people in the story--not only my own family but their friends, neighbors, and fellow citizen-soldiers. The book is in Google search and Amazon's Inside the Book so when people search for information about their own ancestors or historical characters, my book comes up. That has generated sales.
FICTION - If there is a setting, tell us how you decided on that setting and what you did to create a complete and vivid setting for your readers? Since the book is based on history, I didn't choose the setting--I set the book where it really happened. I did a lot of research to learn details of the place and period and incorporated those details into the story to make the setting vivid.
FICTION - What inspires you about the hero or heroine in your book? What makes them memorable for the reader? What motivates the hero and/or heroine? You can include information about both if you want. Adam Mitchell and his family just wanted to be left alone to farm their land, practice their faith, and raise their family. But life on the new frontier, politics, and war intervened. The way they responded to these circumstances made heroes of these ordinary citizens. I am in awe of their strength and courage in very difficult circumstances and proud to be descended by from such heroic ancestors.
FICTION - Is there a villain or something that causes friction in your story? Tell us about what or who it is and how that contributes to the story. Any details about conflict and friction is good information to know. The “villain” is the circumstances the characters face: the hardships of life on the new frontier, the political situation that motivated them to stand up for what they believed, and the dangers of war.
NON FICTION - Why are you the BEST person to write this book? What in your background or in your research makes you qualified to do justice to this topic? Although Spring House is fiction, I will answer this question because the book is based on extensive historical and genealogical research. I heard stories about my family and their place in history from early childhood and developed a passion for history as a result. My 30+ years of research coupled with my passion make me the BEST person to write this story.
NON FICTION - If a potential reader thinks that your book wouldn't interest them, what would you say to convince them to buy? I'm thinking something better than "Its the greatest book ever." Give me something more specific :)
NON FICTION - Why does the topic of your book interest you? Why would it interest potential readers? Give us a hook to reel in new readers.
NON FICTION Is there a way to tie your book topic to current events? If so, tell us about how you could do that. I have a blog to feature information and examples about tying books into current events that might be a good place for you to promote your book.