Thursday, June 6, 2013

Interview with Sherrie Ashcraft and Christina Berry and giveaway!!!!

Answer the authors' question to be entered into the giveaway. Void where prohibited by law. 
                                            Christina and Sherrie 

What are you reading right now?

C: I just finished reading Leslie Gould’s Adoring Addie. I am not usually a fan of Amish books, but Leslie is an amazing writer and this current series is all based on Shakespeare plays. In particular, Adoring Addie is based on Romeo and Juliet. How can one of the most tragic loves stories be told in an Amish setting where every reader expects a happy ending? Well, let’s just say I was very statisfied by the time I turned the last page.

S: I don’t often read non-fiction, but just finished a great book by Jodi Detrick entitled The Jesus-Hearted Woman. I’ve been involved in women’s ministry for a number of years but still found this book for leaders very helpful. It’s written in an easy-to-read format with quite a bit of humor, which is something I always enjoy.

What three things about you would surprise readers?

C: I’ve always wanted a descented skunk as a pet, …

S: I’m a great grandma, …

Both: And we were on a winning Family Feud team!

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it

In writing a book together, the biggest challenge has to be keeping the stories and characters straight. Some readers might assume that we wrote separate characters, but nope—we each wrote all of them. We found catalog pictures of our main characters and filled out detailed histories on them so we would not confuse facts. Then we plotted out about 90 scenes, but rotated through three characters. By having three points of view, we always knew what had happened in the last scene by the time that person came up again in the lineup.

Tell us about On the Threshold.

Suzanne Corbin and her daughter, Beth Harris, live a seemingly easy life. But all that is about to change. Tragedy strikes and police officer Tony Barnett intersects with the lives of both women as he tries to discover the truth. Left adrift and drowning in guilt long ignored, Suzanne spirals downward into paralyzing depression. Beth, dealing with her own grief, must face the challenge of forgiveness.

Suzanne—a mother with a long-held secret. Tony—a police officer with something to prove. Beth—a daughter with a storybook future. When all they love is lost, what's worth living for?

 Is there one particular message or “moral of the story” you hope readers walk away with?

That there is always hope if your trust is in God. No matter how dark things look, there is joy waiting on the other side.

 How did On the Threshold get started?

S: Both of us had always talked about writing a book, but fourteen years ago I said if we were ever going to write, maybe we should work on a book together. It would hold us accountable. We lived on different sides of the state of Oregon at the time, so we did a lot of it via e-mail, and once a month I would make the 250-mile drive to Christina's house and we'd work on it in person.

C: Once we decided to write a book together, we knew immediately that we wanted to show various sides of a mother-daughter relationship, as well as tackle a subject not many Christian books cover in a realistic fashion—depression. Don’t worry, as it’s an uplifting book and has humor scattered throughout, but we wanted to spotlight a tough subject.Yes, we took our characters into a dark place, but we also get to show the glory of God shining in their hearts. Eventually, that is.

9. How do you see yourself in your character’s story, if at all?

C: I lost a baby to miscarriage, so that part of the story really hits me hard.
S: I’ve walked through the dark valley of depression, so drew upon that for part of our novel.

10. On the Threshold is set in Beaver Falls, Oregon. What’s so special about Beaver Falls?

Beaver Falls, Oregon. What we loved about this setting is that we got to make it up! We’ve spent years living in small-town Oregon, so we drew on the beautiful green of the western part of the state, added in rings-true-to-life issues like the town’s sawmill closing and the resulting economic downturn, and still got to use the gorgeous Oregon coast in the climax of the novel.

Answer this question to be entered in the giveaway: 

What one question would you like us to ask your readers?  

Would you erase the hardest time of your life? Or were the lessons you learned invaluable?

7. Tell us about the giveaway you’re offering. 

If you leave a comment here, you’ll be entered to win a free e-book version of On the Threshold. Also, if you spread the word about the book and let us know how you did it (everything except Facebook counts for entries) before June 30th,  just drop a line to christina [at] ashberrylane [dot] net and we’ll enter you that many times. The rules are here. And sign up for the Infrequent, Humorous Newsletter and you’ll be entered to win free books for the life of our writing careers.

Bios: Mother/daughter writing team Sherrie Ashcraft and Christina Berry Tarabochia bring a voice of authenticity to this novel as they have experienced some of the same issues faced by these characters. They like to say they were separated at birth but share one brain, which allows them to write in a seamless stream. Both live in NW Oregon and love spending time together.

Sherrie is the Women's Ministry Director at her church, and loves being the grandma of eight and great-grandma of one. Christina is also the author of The Familiar Stranger, a Christy finalist and Carol Award winner, and runs a thriving editing business.


Judy said...

A very enjoyable interview with Sherrie and Christina. It is so wonderful that a Mother and Daughter are so close they even penned a book together. I loved it!

The hardest time in my life was going through a divorce after 25 years of marriage. The shock of finding out that your spouse lied, cheated on you, and found the love of his life was devastating. Would I want to erase it all? If, I had not had two beautiful children during this relationship, my answer would probably be yes. However, since I had two beautiful children out of this relationship, my answer is no I would not wish it to be erased. I grew closer and closer to God during this devastating time in my life and I learned to cling, trust, and to place my Hope in Him. God never leaves us nor does he forsake us. His Love Never Fails!

Judy B

Christina (Berry) Tarabochia said...

Thanks for having us on, Laura!

Wow, Judy, I love your transparency. My divorce happened after 13 years, but I also got two amazing kids from it. Thinking back, though, I wouldn't erase it because it made me who I am. I was forced to rely on God as my provider, protector, lover of my soul, etc ... I grew in so many ways because of the challenges in that marriage and it's sudden and surprising demise. As I look at him and his new wife and their baby, I don't wish them any ill will. I'm supremely glad to have been given the second chance at love--and choose a man rich in integrity and honesty. That's priceless.

Sorry for the LONG comment, but you might want to check out my debut novel, A Familiar Stranger, which is about a husband leaving his family, but they don't know his plans. It released within months of my divorce. God's plans are pretty crazy!

Sherrie Ashcraft said...

Thank you for letting us be on your blog today, Laura! It was a fun interview to do.
Judy, thanks for sharing your story. That's a very hard thing to go through and I imagine you changed a lot through the process. I imagine Christina will take note of what you shared, as she went through the same thing. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

Cheri S. said...

Thank you for this chance to win your book. Can't wait to read it.

The hardest thing in my life was 2006/2007. We had a miscarriage in December 2006 and then my husband fell ill in February 2007. It brought me to my knees and began a journey of learning to trust God. I would have to say I'm still on the journey but God is definitely freeing me from fear and learning real faith; trusting Him no matter what. We have since been blessed with a "bonus blessing" (as I like to call our three-year-old). I wouldn't change the miscarriage; as hard as it was, it began a long journey of trust in God and I know I will see our baby again for eternity. It also began my journey into writing.

However, even though some good has come from my husband's illness and I have FAITH that more good is yet to come (it hasn't all manifested yet) as he has gone to school to change careers so he can help others who might be suffering physically, I can't say that I would willingly go through these difficult years again.

Wow - You've started me thinking. I don't want to be ungrateful to God for the blessings we have received during this time in our life (our marriage is strong with each other and we are growing closer to God together and individually as well as teaching our children truths about God they may not otherwise have learned; generational issues are being lain at God's feet, and conflict with extended family is being healed) but I guess because I have been watching my husband suffer versus suffering with the illness myself, it's harder to say I would willingly go through it again. And we're still going through it so it's not over yet. But, through it all, I give God praise and know that my husband will be completely healed someday.

Thank you for asking that question. I look forward to reading your book.

clSwalwell (at) gmail (dot) com

In Him,

Cheri :)