1. Tell us about your new novel, Ours for a Season.
Ours for a Season probably combines the most incompatible list of themes I’ve ever tried to meld into a single story: infertility, marital discord; questioning one’s faith; life-long friendship; homelessness; a serious health challenge; rebuilding a ghost town…But if I were to encapsulate it all into one thematic idea, I would say this is a story about starting anew. There’s a wonderful old hymn with the phrase, “Morning by morning new mercies I see…”That is what this story is about: God’s mercies blooming fresh in people’s lives.
2. Most of the book takes place in a Kansas ghost town. What inspired you to create this setting?
Being from Kansas yourself, are there any real places that remind you of the ghost town? Several years ago, my critique partners and I visited a nearly abandoned Kansas town called Elgin. The crumbling buildings in the business district made my heart ache. One could imagine the once-thriving community and the pride the owners must have taken in operating their stores. One of my critique members commented that it was too bad we didn’t have the money to bring everything back to life, and the idea of restoring the historical structures sort of got tangled with the idea of rebuilding broken spirits and emerged in this story.
I’ve always had a soft spot for people who suffer from abuse, especially sexual abuse. The subject of trafficking became personal to me when the young teen daughter of one my daughter’s neighbors was missing for several months and eventually rescued from the man who was pimping her out (such an ugly thought). If a child from small-town Kansas can get caught up in this net, it’s far too prevalent. The effects of being used in such a vile way by people who claim to care about you are deep and agonizing, and we all—every single person—need to take a stand and do what we can to put this soul-stealing industry out of business.
4. The book is in memory of your dear writing friend and author Diann Hunt. Can you tell us more about how she inspired this story?
Diann died in December of 2013 after a lengthy battle with ovarian cancer. Although the cancer ravaged her body, it never stole her faith or her infectious love for life. She wrote on Facebook on a day when she was feeling particularly low physically, “Stop! Right where you are. What do you see? Taste? Feel? Smell? Hear? Root yourself in this very moment. Memorize it. Life is made up of these. Don't be so consumed by the past or with the future that you are blinded to your moment. Right now. The one you're given by Almighty God to make a difference. Go out and live for Jesus today, my friends! I mean REALLY live!! You can do it! Start now. Ready. Set. Go!”She so loved Jesus (she glowed Jesus) and she so loved laughter (you couldn’t help but laugh when in her presence) and so loved life…She’s been gone now for several years, but she lives in the hearts and memories of her family members and many who had the pleasure of calling her friend. Brooke and Marty were to each other what Diann was to many of us—steadfast, encouraging, and ever loving. She wanted to make a difference, just as Brooke wanted to make a difference. Brooke did, and so did Diann.
5. What can you tell us about what you’re working on next?
Next out of the chute is a historical story set at the Cotton States and International Exposition in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1895. Laurel Millard, youngest of seven children and expected to stay home and “take care of Mama,”becomes a silkworm weaver at the exposition in hopes of snagging a beau wealthy enough to support both her and her mother so she can have her own home and family while still honoring her siblings’expectations. Of course, what we want isn’t always what God deems best for us. The story is calledA Silken Thread and will release in early April of next year.
6. Where can readers find more information about Ours for a Season?
Award-winning, bestselling author Kim Vogel Sawyer told her kindergarten teacher that someday people would check out her book in the library. The little-girl dream came true in 2006 with the release of Waiting for Summer's Return. Kim's titles now exceed 1.5 million copies and are available in six different language. A former elementary school teacher, she now enjoys a full-time writing and speaking ministry. Kim's passion lies in writing stories that point the reader to a deeper, more intimate relationship with God. When Kim isn't writing, you'll find her traveling with her retired military hubby, spoiling her granddarlings, petting the cats, quilting, or--as time allows--participating in community theater. You can learn more about Kim's writing and speaking ministries at her website, KimVogelSawyer.com.