Catherine has taken the time to share her thoughts with us:~
We have recently seen collaborations like yours – what inspired you to join forces?
I feel that the Lord brought us together to write THE FOUR SEASONS OF MARRIAGE fiction series. Dr. Chapman and I first met by Divine appointment on the floor of a huge conference center. When we discussed the concept of illustrating his messages about marriage with a fiction format, we both felt comfortable. Our publisher, Tyndale House, was thrilled to pair us. Working with Dr. Chapman and Tyndale has been a dream come true.
In practical terms, how did the writing between you come together?
Dr. Chapman and I discussed the characters and the issues to be addressed in the content of each book. With his help, I developed the plots. THE FOUR SEASONS OF MARRIAGE fleshed out the inhabitants of Deepwater Cove perfectly. As I wrote the stories, I consulted with Dr. Chapman and used his book throughout the process. It has been a delightful experience.
What project or book are you working on now?
I’m currently writing Book 4 of the series, WINTER TURNS TO SPRING.
What does a regular writing day look like for you?
I usually have tea and then spend the morning answering emails, doing interviews, and the other business and promotional aspects of my work. After lunch, I start writing. At around 4 pm, I take a break for tea with my husband. Usually, I write during the evening, also. My goal is to write six pages a day.
ON SUMMER BREEZE…
Were there scenes in this book that were difficult to write?
It’s always hard to watch your characters go through conflict and try to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles. But – because I’m the writer! – I always have the joy of knowing I’m going to get to bring it all to a happy conclusion.
If the series was made into a movie, who would you cast?
That’s a difficult question to answer. I would prefer Christian actors to play the characters, and I’m not sure where each Hollywood actor stands on that issue.
What impact do you hope this book has upon the reader?
Dr. Chapman and I have the united goal of praying that the Lord will use this series to heal the marriage relationships of our readers. Of course, we also want our readers to have fun with the characters and the storylines!
Are you able to give a brief synopsis of the remaining books?
Book 3, FALLING FOR YOU AGAIN, focuses on Charlie and Esther Moore. Their long marriage has been a model for other characters in the series. But aging brings new issues to the forefront between them. Book 4, WINTER TURNS TO SPRING, features newlyweds Brad and Ashley Hanes. This young couple seems to have done just about everything possible to wreck their marriage. But as their souls turn toward God, their hearts are reunited in a love that will last a lifetime. These two books also carry on the storylines of the other characters in the series – Patsy Pringle, Pete Roberts, Cody Goss, and the central couples in Book 1, IT HAPPENS EVERY SPRING, and Book 2, SUMMER BREEZE.
ON MATTERS PERSONAL...
Are you a fiction reader yourself? If so, some favourite authors or books both Christian and/or secular?
I’m an avid reader. While writing, I find it hard to read fiction. The other author’s voice begins to infect my own and makes my writing more difficult. Between books, I love to read. Lately, I’ve been captured by the writing of author Alexander McCall Smith. Having grown up in Kenya, I love his series set in Botswana, THE NO. 1 LADIES’ DETECTIVE AGENCY.
What are you reading at the moment?
I’m reading the first book in Mr. Smith’s Scottish series centered around Mrs. Dalhousie.
Who inspires you?
At the top of the list, of course, would be the Holy Spirit. I do a lot of praying and listening to what God is telling me to write. In a more earthly sense, I’m inspired by my husband and sons, my beloved parents, my experiences as the daughter of missionaries, my journey as a wife and mother, and my friends. I also read several newspapers each day, do a lot of research, and love to eavesdrop on other people’s conversations!
Please share some of your faith journey…
When I was eight years old, I watched an older girl – someone so beautiful and sweet that I’d considered her “perfect” – accept the Lord as her Savior. Realizing she was a sinner brought my own sins before me. I repented and surrendered my life to Christ that same day. Now, many years later, I look back and view that moment as the first step on a long journey of growth. I’ve made plenty of mistakes, committed wilful sins, and tried to live my life under my own control. I’ve also been forgiven again and again – as far as the east is from the west. I truly love Jesus Christ with my whole heart. My goal is to listen to His voice and be obedient. My daily prayer is that the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart will be acceptable to the Lord, my Rock, and my Redeemer.
SOME ESSENTIAL AUSSIE QUESTIONS…
When/if you make the trip Down Under what do you want to see first? A platypus or a koala?
Oh, I’d much rather meet YOU! My greatest love is people. I’ve been all over the world (though never to Australia, I’m sorry to say), and seen lots of animals and wonders. But I prefer to sit down to a cup of tea and chat with a real live human being.
Barrier Reef or Uluru (Ayers Rock)?
I’d love to see the Barrier Reef. Snorkelling is one of my greatest loves.
You are visiting Australia ~ do you say yes or no to some vegemite on toast?!
NO! Sorry, but I grew up with vegemite, also known to us as marmite. I hate to admit it, but I can’t bear the stuff. I’ll never forget my roommate at boarding school insisting that a vegemite jar could not be broken even if dropped from a great height. We dared her to prove it. She stood on a chair and let the vegemite jar fall to the floor – where it promptly broke into several pieces, leaving us to clean up the sticky, odorous mess!
Any last words…………………….
Many thanks to all my Aussie readers for your letters to my website (catherinepalmer.com) and your prayer support. May the Lord bless and keep you until we meet!
Thank you so much Catherine for sharing about your writing and yourself at RelzReviewz ~ it has been both informative and fun!