Answer Joi's question to be entered into the giveaway. Include contact information
Joi Copeland is married to a wonderful man, Chris, and has three amazing boys, Garrison, Gage, and Gavin. She is living the dream in beautiful Denver, Colorado. Joi loves being a wife and mom! She enjoys spending time with her sister Steffanne, and loves to sit and have a cup of coffee or tea with friends! She's been a Christian for over twenty years. Following Jesus has been the best decision she has ever made. Joi's other books are Hope for Tomorrow, Hope for the Journey, Christmas Rayne, and Sheriff Bride Rob's Story.
What kind of research did you do for Letters of Love?
I had to do a lot of research in regards to what role my grandfather played in the Army. He was a part of the O.S.S., which is the modern day C.I.A. I also had the great opportunity to read all the letters he wrote to my grandmother.
How did you come up with the plot for Letters of Love?,
The story is based off of those letters. While reading them, the book took form in my head.
Two men fighting for their country.
Two women dealing with tragedy alone.
Two different stories, two different eras, one common thread.
Sophia Philips, a wife and mom, finds herself missing the two most important people in her life. One ripped from her because of war, the other by death.
Sophia's grandmother, Lucia Snell, gives her an early inheritance; letters written to her by her husband while stationed in China during World War II. Lucia believes these letters will help her granddaughter heal from the heart-wrenching tragedy she faces.
Will Sophia carry the anger, bitterness, and guilt within her or go to the only One who can heal her from the pain? Will she find the strength to carry on and the will to survive through her grandparents' Letters of Love?
\What role have your life experiences played in the characters and/or the situations you develop in your books?
I think for me, my characters are all a part of who I am, the good, the bad, who I want to become. I can see myself in each character (mostly female).
The situations really depend. At times, they can be based on something I'd gone through to a certain extent, but when I pray about what I should write, I try to hear what God directs me to.
Do you see parallels or do you try to avoid using your own personal life as a source of inspiration?
Always a parallel, I think. I use my life and others' as a source of inspiration.
What are your own favorite authors? Genres?
Laura Hilton (not just saying that, it's true), Francine Rivers, Lisa T. Bergren, Bonnie Blythe. The list goes on and on! I love historical romance, contemporary romance, amish.
How has your passion for reading impacted your writing?
I love to read, always have. By reading, I am able to learn my trade better. I typically start to read a book with the thought, “What can I learn?” both spiritually and writing related. I often get so sucked up in the story that I forget about the writing related part and have to go back and reread it!
Describe how you write a book – with your other responsibilities, does it tend to be something you work into your every day, or do you have to “set apart” time to write with open, undesignated blocks of time?
I try to write every day. When I worked, I had to have designated time.
What provides your inspirations during that time – i.e. do you go out in nature, do you seek to be in a busy place with people or in a quiet library, etc.?
Christian music playing in the background.
How have social networking sites, even including email, etc. impacted your writing? Do you find the internet to be a helpful or harmful resource in research, advertising, reviewing, etc. your books?
The internet can be helpful with reviewing and advertising. I met one gal online because she won my book on a contest. Since then, she's been amazing at getting new readers my way. I spend a lot of time trying to get interaction between me and readers. It can be incredibly useful, but then, it can also side track me. I have to be careful.
Do you use these tools such as facebook as a means of observing the behavior of others which could be the basis of a character, or are you of the ‘old school’ that relies more on personal relationships and “human” touches?
I don't really observe on facebook. I do that through personal relationships or by watching people from a distance.
Have you ever received a letter that was life changing? If so, tell us a little about that, and do you still have that letter?