Today we welcome Jennifer Slattery to my blog. Jennifer, tell us about the book:
This story is about an artist, Faith Nichols, struggling to make ends meet doing what she loves most. When she learns about a historic church that suffered extensive fire damage in a small Texas Hill Country town, she makes a bid to restore the structure’s once beautiful stained glass windows. She hopes doing so will help her pay her bills and gain her the exposure necessary to further her career.
She arrives to discover she wasn’t exactly the town’s first choice, nor does the contractor overseeing the job want her there.
She prepares for a frustrating few weeks working under his leadership, but she never prepared for how off-kilter his boyish smile and kind ways will leave her, nor the spiritual questions his quiet yet steady faith will provoke.
Meanwhile, Drake Owens is working to restore structural components of the church where he met his wife, said his vows, and, at her funeral, said goodbye. Though he’s grieved her loss, he holds tight to the memories they formed, many of which occurred in the sanctuary he and Faith were hired to restore. Memories he’s worried Faith, the artist with creative ideas and historical tidbits, could disrupt.
What he fears most, however, is falling in love only to have her return to Austin with a piece of his heart.
How did your interest in writing originate?
I’ve often attributed my interaction with my father to much of my love for words. When I was young, he and I would play word games together while walking through the neighborhood. (He normally would skip rather than walk.) We’d rhyme, or he’d use alliteration type activities to increase my memory. He also read—or maybe I should say, sang—a particular story book to me often titled “I’m Mister Bun.” Those were fond memories that helped me associate books and language with relational interaction.
I’ve always enjoyed writing and reading, and used journaling and poetry to process thoughts and emotions as a kid, but I didn’t consider writing as a real pursuit until my adult years, when I began serving in various ministries. At first, I wrote when I felt there was a need, and I produced a wide range of material from dramas for outreach programs, curriculum, parent newsletters, and more.
One day, the children’s direction asked me to write a short story for a children’s program she was planning, and as I was brainstorming how to present the story, it struck me how deeply I enjoyed the brainstorming process. That was when I first considered writing just for the sake of writing. Two to three years later, I sensed a clear and definite call that this was something God wanted me to intentionally pursue.
What does your writing process look like?
This is changing to some extent. I initially wrote as ideas came, but then I hit some major timeline and plot issues, so I started plotting my stories out. I refused to start writing until I knew the basic idea or problem for each scene. With the book I just wrote a proposal on, however, I went back to more free flowing. I started with scene outlines but veered off track, then plotted some more scenes …
I still plot, to an extent, because I want to know, before I pitch a book or get too far in, that I have enough to carry a story. But I’ve been enjoying following wherever my muse takes me.
If you could cast your characters in the Hollywood adaptation of your book, who would play your characters?
This is so hard as I don’t want television much and I’m ignorant regarding actor and actress names. I’d much rather read (or in this case, write) the book and let my imagination determine what the characters look like. J
Who was your favorite character in [Restoring Her Faith]?
Oh, that’s so hard. I think probably Drake’s mom. She’s such a nurturing, southern mom, always ready to open her home and share her dining room table with others. She has a strong, community-building type personality but also a fierce strength when it comes to holding tight to her family. I would so love to spend the afternoon with her on her front porch, her sipping sweet tea while I drank iced coffee. Which I’m fairly certain she’d make for me, and probably gluten free cookies to go with it. She’s just that kind of woman.
What are you working on now? What is your next project?
I just turned in a proposal for what I hope to be my third Love Inspired novel, set in the same fictional, Texas Hill Country Town. While I wait to hear back on that, I’m catching up on some ministry related writing and preparing for a spring of speaking events.
Share your bio:
Jennifer Slattery is a writer and international speaker who’s addressed women’s groups, church groups, Bible studies, and other writers across the nation. She’s the author of six contemporary novels maintains a devotional blog found at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com. She has a passion for helping women discover, embrace, and live out who they are in Christ. As the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, she and her team partner with churches to facilitate events designed to help women rest in their true worth and live with maximum impact. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.
Social media and buying links
Restoring Her Faith:
She left belief behind…Yet this family could change her mind.
With two boys to raise, a fledgling contracting business to run and a family ranch to keep afloat, widower Drake Owens finds his hands aren't just fullthey're overflowing. When Faith Nichols is hired to help him renovate the church, he's drawn to the beautiful artist, but he can't fall for a woman who isn't a believer. Can love restore her faithand his heart?
Buy it HERE.