As you know, I’m part of a Blog Train at the moment but I have enjoyed getting to know Kelsey so much via this train that I have decided that I will now, from time to time, interview other Christian authors. So watch this space!
But today it’s my privilege today to welcome Kelsey Bryant on my blog and to have the opportunity to have a chat with her about her life as an author. Kelsey is from Texas and has written a beautiful book called ‘Family Reunion’. I have read this book so feel very qualified to comment! But that’s enough from me – let’s hear from Kelsey:
Kelsey, tell us about the first book you published.
“Fourteen-year-old Marielle Austin’s grandpa has devised a series of projects for Marielle and her five cousins to complete—there’s a shed to fix up, a missionary to interview, and a trail of clues to solve, leading to a treasure. Success will earn them a prize beyond anything they could imagine!
Marielle, Emma, and Caroline are completely committed, but what can they do when bad attitudes and work ethics seem to be all Abby, Kailey, and Reanna can offer?
The week is passing quickly…. will the mysterious prize slip away, and with it any chance of friendship between these very different cousins?”
It’s a simple storyline….. six cousins are at a week-long family reunion, and they come from two quite different backgrounds. Three of the girls are homeschooled. Their grandfather has created funt asks for them to accomplish together, but their success depends on overcoming differences. I recommend this book especially for ages 11-16. Homeschoolers in particular may want to check it out!
And I would certainly agree that this would be an excellent resource for homeschoolers. I love the way the book puts across key Christian values and messages without sounding ‘preachy’.
I would also be interested to know how you move through ‘writer’s block’? What keeps you writing?
When the writer’s block simply involves something like a difficult story knot, I sit and think, or talk it through with someone (usually my mom) and think, or go through my day (driving, working) and think. I firmly believe that a great deal of writing happens in your mind. (Confession: sometimes that’s all the writing I get done in a day; it’s essential to keeping the story alive!) Other people who understand my writing are a source of inspiration, and so is a blank document where I type out all my conflicting thoughts.
When the writer’s block is the malignant type that threatens to choke out all desire to ever write again, what always enables me to keep going is the knowledge that God has given me this gift, so I have to use it. I have faith that God wouldn’t have given me an ability like this if He didn’t mean for me to use it. Everything the Lord gives us, we are to render unto Him.
And, prayer always helps.
I couldn’t agree more about prayer! And again I love the way your book often brings this into the daily lives of those about whom you write.
So, which author, either living or dead, would you most like to meet? What one question would you ask them?
Jane Austen! I would actually want to talk with her for a whole day, but since I’m limited to one question, I would ask her, “How did you create characters that are so realistic?”
Actually Kelsey, I think your characters are extremely realistic too! Perhaps you have learned this from Jane Austen without realizing it!
Now I also want to ask you some more questions about you, as an author. What is your biggest strength as a writer? How do you utilize that to your advantage? What is your biggest weakness or fear as a writer? How do you overcome this? Sorry, for so many questions at once!
That’s fine Margaret. I love talking about my work. I would say my descriptiveness is a strength. As long as I know or can discover enough about a scene or a sensation, I see a complete picture in my mind and paint it with words. (People say they enjoy my descriptions of food—it makes them hungry!) This is such a blessing to be able to do because it goes a long way in drawing readers into a story; I also hope that it infuses them with joy.
My stories, so far, aren’t the exciting type that are popular today. I’m a contemplative person, so I tend to focus on characters and relationships rather than action and sensation. My fear is that people will think my stories drag. But I overcome this by realizing that there are readers who appreciate a thoughtful and inspirational storyline—and not everyone has to like my books. I don’t write for the people who don’t like my kind of thing; I write for those who do.
Well, Kelsey – I certainly enjoy the way you write – although I’m not exactly in the 11-16 age range! I think there is a great need today for books like yours, especially for the younger generation.
Now one final question and then we must stop – although I could talk to you all day! What book project/s are you working on right now?
I’m working on the sequel to Family Reunion, which follows the six cousins as they visit England. Lord willing, I will publish that in November. I’ve also begun book three of the same series, which is about the girls grown up. And I’m about 54,000 words into an unrelated young adult novel, also about a young woman: Amy Brown is waiting for the day when the Six Cousins series is complete and she can receive my full attention.
Margaret, thank you so much for hosting me!
Thank you Kelsey for agreeing to be interviewed on my blog! I hope you will stop by again when you publish your next book. God bless you
Here’s the link to Family Reunion and also to Kelsey’s author page on Amazon:
If you want to follow Kelsey or contact her directly you can use one of the following links: