About Me

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Clare writes inspirational romance, usually of a suspenseful nature. Her books are available through her publisher Pelican Book Group and Amazon. She is married with three kids and lives in the UK. She loves watching sci-fi, crime drama, cross stitching, reading and baking.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Guest Author - Donna B Snow

today I welcome my friend and crit partner and fellow author Donna B Snow. Her debut White Rose novel Daffodils came out on April 8th.


How did you come up with your premise?

I love reunion stories, and even more so, I honestly believe we all hold on to at least a little bit of our “first love”. So this is just an extra twist on that.

Is there a story behind your book?

Not really, although I honestly believe God has one perfect person for each of us, if we don’t get impatient and choose for ourselves.

How did the story evolve?

Well it actually started out as a sweetheart romance, to fit in with a preconceived story line. But as I was writing, the spirit was continuously nudging me toward the inspirational element that belonged in the story. So after many rewrites, and one final rejection as a sweetheart story, I did a major rewrite, and it became the inspirational story it was supposed to be. I could have saved myself a lot of time by just listening to the spirit to begin with. LOL But it’s all in God’s time anyway, and it’s a better story because of it.

For those who are not familiar with this story, would you please give us the blurb?

Margaret Ellington is not only grief stricken after her husband dies, but guilt ridden as well. Her solution — to run away. She moves away, hoping to escape the memories of her failure as a wife. She vows never to marry again unless she can love with all her heart—and she’ll never be able to do that unless she can finally get over her first love.

Lukas North is determined to reclaim the love he threw away ten years earlier. He’s willing to give Margaret time to recover from losing her husband—but letting her go is not an option.

When Lukas keeps a secret from Margaret about a major career move, she panics. After the mistakes they made in the past, can their relationship be rebuilt on anything less than complete honesty?

Extract:

Margaret closed her eyes as she clutched the doorframe. Oh, God, why Peter? He was the good one. I’m so sorry, Peter.

A tear splashed onto the carpet. Margaret took a deep breath, wiped her cheek, and stepped into what had been Peter’s sickroom. She walked to the window seat and stared out into the backyard, arms clutched around her middle. There would be no sound of children playing, no sitting on the glider growing old together. She put a hand on the window. If only I could have loved you more—

“Any more, Megs?” Lukas’ footsteps grew louder as he came down the hall.

She wiped away another tear as it dribbled down her cheek.

“Oh, hey, there you are.” He hesitated in the doorway, resting a hand on the frame. He lowered his voice. “You OK?”

She chewed on her bottom lip and nodded, afraid that if he came near her she would collapse in those arms; arms she knew were strong enough to hold her up. Arms she had missed for years. She hated herself for wanting to feel them wrap around her again.

Are there any fun tid-bits about this story you can share with us?

Well, actually, even after the story was basically accepted, the editor came back with one more major rewrite. See, the story was originally set to start at the beginning of the school year, but daffodils only bloom in the spring – and that really messed up my story’s timing! LOL

How did you decide on the setting?

That one’s easy! I spent a year in northern California and loved it. And daffodils are just one happy flower so it all came together.

When will it be released?

The story was just released on Friday April 8th! My first white rose!

Where were you born?

I was born and raised in New Hampshire. I’ve seen a lot of this country as well as parts of Canada and Mexico. Europe is next!

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Well, I’ve always wanted to see Ireland, but really I love it right where I am (well, except for in the middle of the long, cold, snowy winter, lol).

What hidden talent do you possess outside of writing... something you do for fun, but are good at?

Well, I also write my own Christian music. I play guitar and sing – and am hoping to some day get some of my songs published also. I recorded a demo years ago and I’m just now starting to try to do something with it.

What’s your favourite colour?

GREEEEEEN – in almost any shade!

What music groups/artists blast from your CD player while you write?

None – unless it’s purely instrumental. And even then it can’t be songs I know the words to because I end up singing along and losing my train of writing thought.

What got you interested in writing?

Like most writers, I’ve been an avid reader all my life. I spent more hours in bed with good books than in front of TV, even as a child.

Why did you begin writing?

When my daughter was little I would read to her every night. And she had favourite stories, but eventually she got tired of those. So I started a story line about a neighbourhood with six friends. And on any given night she would pick the main character and I would make up a story for her. How long have you been writing? It’s been about ten years.

What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?

Write! Just write! Then find a good critique partner that knows how to edit, and learn! Learning to edit improved my writing tremendously!

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?

Not really. There have been long stretches of time that I don’t write, but it’s usually because I don’t have the time. So I don’t get on myself about it, I just pick up when I can.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?

Oh my gosh, the hardest lesson learned, and the most important one is “Show, Don’t Tell”. Keep your writing active and you will keep your readers caught up in the story.

How do you develop your plots and characters?

Well, they usually introduce themselves to me...a little odd perhaps, but true. It’s almost like someone whispers a story line in my ear and as I jot it down, it grows. As you can tell, I don’t plot my stories. Outlines have killed a couple stories for me, so now I just let them flow. I have a clear knowledge of the beginning, some highlights of the middle, and the specific way it will end. Everything else is up to the characters.

How do you stay on course?

My compass is always pointed at the ending. I haven’t gone astray yet.

Are you working on anything at the present you’d like to share with us? Ah, A Piece of Heaven – the story after my own heart – and its sequel. This one centers around music. God willing, it will follow soon.

What are you reading now?

LOL Which one? I have 4 or 5 stories going right now. That’s pretty typical of me.

What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?

Honestly there are too many to count. A couple notables are: Katherine Stone – her lyrical way of writing made me fall in love with the craft, Nora Roberts early stories, her Irish trilogies will always be among my favourites, Sherryl Woods – love all of her series...and the list goes on and on. I swear every author I’ve ever read has given me a little bit of themselves, made me look at why I like their stories so much.

How do you come up with the titles to your books?

Usually it’s pretty obvious to me – something major out of the story line.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I started writing seriously – just a couple years ago. That’s when I decided I was going to get myself published.

What do you do in your spare time? (Assuming you have any ;-) )

My what??? LOL, yeah, right! There is the occasional movie or outing, but between work, home, family, church, writing and editing, something has to give to fit anything else in. So in my spare time I try to sleep.

What genre would you like to explore that you haven’t tried to write in yet?

The first story I ever wrote was women’s fiction – kind of a cross between Nicholas Sparks and Karen Kingsbury. I definitely intend to get back to it one of these days!

Will you? Absolutely!

What would you never see yourself writing? Sci fi is definitely way out there. LOL

Do you really, really want a dog?

Nope, I’m a cat person. I have been all my life. Unfortunately, I developed allergies to them so now I am pet-less.

Do you hate how you look in pictures?

Ugh, yes. I am once again trying to lose weight. This has been a lifelong battle.

What were you doing at midnight last night?

Sleeping. I’m not a late night person. But my husband is. It’s a wonder we spend any time together at all. LOL

What’s a saying you use a lot?

“Just sayin’” – our pastor uses it often and it makes me laugh every time!

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Ants. I remember sitting on my front steps when I was little and picking up the little crawly things and popping them in my mouth. ICK! I have no idea who put me up to it!

What is your favourite animal?

I love watching the way big cats move – so sleek and gracious.

What do you want to know about the future?

Who will I see in heaven? And will God tell me “well done” or just look at me with sorrow in His eyes for things I didn’t do.

Have you ever cried during a movie?

LOL All the time – sometimes I don’t even know why something hits me so hard, but I have a soft heart and it doesn’t take much.

What is your favourite pizza?

I love Greek pizza with chicken and vegetables and alfredo sauce. YUM

Are you a morning person or a night person?

Morning – much to the disgruntlement of my daughter and husband.

If you were granted three wishes by a genie, what would they be?

Make me skinny, keep me healthy, make me the best witness for God that I can be! God is the only genie I know. I just pray He holds me close!

If you could go anywhere to tomorrow, where would you go?

Ireland! I have always wanted to see the green isle. I’ll get there someday!

If you could see anyone tomorrow (dead or alive), who would it be?

My dad. He died when I was a teenager so I never got to talk with him as an adult. He was such a kind and gentle man, I just wish I could have known him better.


Review:

Can second chances happen? Is it possible for love to come again once the moment has gone? This debut novel by Ms Snow explores that in a wonderful story. Margaret leaves all she knew after the death of her husband, to start a new life in a new town. Only Lukas seems determined to reclaim her heart, one piece at a time. Filled with spring flowers and hope, this story of love and faith is one to not to be missed.

9 comments:

Marianne Evans said...

Can't wait to read it, Donna - and I pray this is the first of many releases with White Rose!! God bless, and keep writing!!

JoAnn said...

I'm just sayin’... that was a great interview. I loved learning more about you, Donna.

Best wishes~

~Dana said...

Sounds awesome Donna. Great interview =-)

Raquel Byrnes said...

I love the idea of second chances. Congratulations on your release!
Edge of Your Seat Romance

LoRee Peery said...

Lovely interview, I smiled. Nice to know you are a musician, and it sounds like you have your priorities where they need to be.
Daffodils are on my kitchen table where I can enjoy them -- can't see them from my windows.
And, I look forward to reading this reunion (love em) story.

Donna B said...

Thank you ladies, and thank you for having me, Clare. I love all the White Roses!

Dora Hiers said...

Congratulations on the release of Daffodils, Donna! The excerpt reeled me in...Can't wait to read it! Great interview, too.

Mary said...

Hi Donna,

Daffodils sounds like a great read. I can't wait to get my hands on it! This is a lovely interview, as well. So glad to get to know you a bit better...

Best wishes to you, and keep those great books coming!

Delia Latham said...

Great interview, ladies! Donna, Daffodils sounds amazing. I'm so glad you finally listened to God's gentle nudging! :)