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What kind of research did you do for Unconditional?
My research mostly concentrated of gathering information for a cruise Elizabeth and Chris, my heroine and hero, took during the novel. I’ve never been on a cruise so I asked several friends about their experiences. I was grateful for them sharing their memories and pictures.
How did you come up with the plot for Unconditional?
I don’t know if I came up with the plot or if God had put it on my heart. Many families, churched or un-churched, find themselves struggling in their marriages for one reason or another, but God wants them to fight to save their marriages and families.
I grew up in a family were divorce is common, like most people today, with the idea once you “fall” out of love, and you can’t get along anymore, it’s time to get a divorce. It was almost engraved in me witnessing everyone in my family get divorced one time or many times. I, too, almost went down that route with divorce papers in hand. I told myself many things at the time, but the truth. I was focused on our failures, not the hope that with God, all things are possible. The question was, were we willing to save our marriage at all costs? Would we fight for each other, whether we felt like it or not?
It is my hope through this story, that no matter the circumstances the reader is facing, a loss of a child, infidelity, abandonment, anger, emotional hurt, etc., they will know there is hope in Christ.
He will fight for her at any cost...
Elizabeth Roberts can't remember her past, and the present is too painful. She turns to nightclubs and drinking to forget her infant daughter's death, her husband's affair.
When his wife's coma wiped out the memory of their marriage, Chris Roberts found comfort elsewhere. He can't erase his betrayal, but with God's help he’s determined to fight for Elizabeth at any cost.
She wants to forget. He wants to save his marriage. Can they trust God with their future and find a love that’s unconditional?
What role have your life experiences played in the characters and/or the situations you develop in your books?
I’d have to say that every character has a piece of me within them whether it’s something the character likes, a physical attribute, or even a journey of spiritual growth. There’s a scene in the novel were Elizabeth and Chris head out to the lake. Elizabeth tries to hold onto the dock, but is unable and the boat floats away. When I thought to add that scene, I could only laugh. It was the first time I’d ever tried to use a trolling motor.
Do you see parallels or do you try to avoid using your own personal life as a source of inspiration?
Interesting question. I believe God allows us to go through things in our lives. Why? I don’t know. That’s for God to decide. But I know in my life, God has allowed me to experience hardships so I may help others, to be a witness, and to have a closer relationship with Him. So if God can use my life and my words for His glory, I should get out of His way and incorporate it within my stories.
What are your own favorite authors? Genres?
I know this is going to sounds strange, but I don’t have a favorite author. However, I do enjoy reading historical romance.
How has your passion for reading impacted your writing?
I had finished reading a Lori Wick series when I knew the Lord was calling me to write. What an impact that has had on my life, taking this non-writer to published author.
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?
As a writer, I heard time and time again that I needed to write every day to be successful. I used to beat myself up when I couldn’t meet that goal. It took two years fighting with this idea when I finally gave up. So I decided to do something different, I set a word count goal each week, and it’s worked. Some weeks I write 3,000 words and others 7,000 depending on what’s going on during the week. Flexibility is the key for my writing success.
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.?
Oh, how I’d love to be outside and write, but with three children, it seems the only time is at night after they are in bed.
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?
I enjoy doing research for my novels since I know I will never be able to go to the places I write about, or time period for that matter. I’d also have to say, if it wasn’t for email and ACFW, a Christian writers’ network I belong to, I wouldn’t be the writer that I am today. I’m very thankful, however, social media sites, if I’m not careful, take away from my writing time. I have to be disciplined to the point that if I have something that needs to get done, I avoid it.
Laura, thank you for having me on! I’d like to leave by giving away one copy of Unconditional to one of your commenting readers by asking a question. Who’s your favorite author? What genres do you like to read?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Tanya Eavenson and her husband have been in the ministry for fifteen years teaching youth, adults, and counseling. Tanya enjoys spending time with her husband, and their three children. Her favorite pastime is grabbing a cup of coffee and reading a good book. Tanya is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and writes for Christ to the World Ministries sharing the Gospel around the world. You can find her on Twitter at @Tan_eave and contact her at her website www.tanyaeavenson.com Want to learn more about writing? Stop by her blog http://guidedgirls.blogspot.com