I’m very pleased to welcome author Faith Blum to The Book Corner. I’m so grateful that she took time out from her busy schedule to do an interview with me. I admit I just recently discovered Faith Blum (and her books) through a group on Facebook that highlights the Historical fiction genre. I had recently put out a notice that I was looking for authors to interview and Faith was one of the very generous authors who volunteered, lucky for me. ;) I’m so excited to have Faith on the blog, so without further ado….
Me- Hi Faith! I’m so honored to have you on the blog. To get things started, will you tell us where you were raised and where you live now?
Faith- I’m happy to be here! I was raised and still live in Wisconsin. We moved about three times in my lifetime, I think, though all within the same county. My favorite place is where we live right now. We’re out in the country with five acres of our own and surrounded by fields.
Me- That sounds wonderful. Wisconsin is actually on my list of states I want to visit. I also live in the same state I was born in (New York), though I’ve never actually moved. I’ve lived in the same house for 25 years now. One of my favorite things about where I live is that it’s out in the country. We have mountains and hills, and it’s just a nice place to live.
What’s your favorite thing about where you live, do you have a favorite spot or activity?
Faith- Oooo! If you ever do get here, let me know. We should try to meet up. :) I love how quiet it is out here. We live on a quiet road where few cars go by.
Me- Ah, a girl after my own heart. I enjoy the quietness of where I live too. It’s so much nicer than living somewhere with a lot of people and noisy traffic. As a writer myself, and one who has always loved the craft, I always like to ask authors whether they’ve always loved to write or if they developed the passion over time?
Faith- Yes! Most definitely yes.
Me- When did you first start writing stories/novels?
Faith- I think I was about eight before I started writing stories, but I can’t remember exactly. I didn’t start actual novels until I was about 15, though. And now that I know better, that one would technically be a novella, not a novel.
Me- Wow, that’s cool. I use to scribble all the time, writing short stories and poetry, and then worked my way up to writing for blogs and websites, but I have yet to write a novel. In fact, I’m currently working (on and off) on my first book.
Another question I always like to ask authors is how they got started as an author, can you tell me how you got started?
Faith- Er… How long did you want this answer to be? I’ll try to give you the short version. I wanted to be an author for quite some time, but the whole “get an agent, send query letters, etc.” overwhelmed me.
Fast forward a couple years. A friend told me about a writing contest. The grand prize was a good chunk of money, being published by WestBow Press and possibly Thomas Nelson. I didn’t win, but I was a semi-finalist and the editing process I went through to submit my manuscript got me prepped to publish the book on my own. With the help of a couple of other indie author friends, I got my book published and haven’t looked back since then.
Me- That’s interesting! I totally understand being overwhelmed by that whole process, as I still find myself overwhelmed lol! So, tell me (as I try to tally the ones I’m aware of up in my head), how many books have you written so far?
Faith- Written or published? There’s a big difference. I have written countless books. Some will never see the light of day. Others will in the future. I have published 19 eBooks with a few less of those in paperback either because I published them in one volume or haven’t made them available as paperbacks yet.
Me- Oops, my bad! I meant how many books have you published, I tend to forget to be specific because, with the blog, I deal only in books that have already been published.
As a writer myself, I’m always interested in other people’s writing processes. Could you tell me a bit about your writing process? Do you outline your stories or do you just start writing? Do you model your characters after real-life people (either in your own life or maybe an actor?) Do you listen to certain music? Do you write at a certain time (like mornings or nights)?
Faith- I didn’t use to outline. Or rather, I did a little, but it was a really rough outline with just an idea of where I wanted to go with the story. Now, though, I’ve changed my ways and do a more in-depth outline and character development. It’s really helped.
My characters are not usually modeled after real-life people, at least not intentionally. I also don’t try to find an actor who looks like them mainly because it’s really hard to do that when you don’t know very many actors’ names.
I listen to music almost all the time, writing or not. I usually listen on Pandora and have it shuffle through various stations including classical, a few select movie soundtracks, and some Christian stations.
I write whenever I have a moment. Usually in the mornings and later evening. It really depends on the day, though. Most Tuesdays, the only time I have to write is in the afternoons, Wednesdays, I have about an hour in the afternoon, if that. I don’t really have a “Best” time to write.
Me- I always love asking about an author’s writing process because I always get a different answer for each author I speak to. It’s fascinating and I find it interesting to learn people work, because it’s true, we all have a different way of doing things.
As an avid reader myself, I’m always interested in authors’ reading habits. Have you always loved reading or did you develop the passion for it over time?
Faith- I’ve always loved reading.
Me- What author has had the most influence/impact on you as a writer?
Faith- At the moment, I would say K.M. Weiland because she’s the one who got me started on outlining and it really made my stories better. And I also read her book on story structure which has also helped quite a bit.
Me- Who are a few of your favorite authors?
Faith- Louis L’Amour, Karen Witemeyer, Janette Oke, Jaye L. Knight, Amanda Tero, Bodie and Brock Thoene, and more, but I’ll stop there.
Me- Oh my goodness, we have several favorites in common. :) I adore Karen Witemeyer’s books and I grew up on L’Amour’s westerns, my favorite being The Lonesome Gods. I’ve also just started reading Janette Oke’s When Calls The Heart. What are a few of your favorite books?
Faith- I grew up on L’Amours westerns, too. He’s actually the one who got me so interested in writing them. I have too many favorites to name. A few would be: The Holy Bible by God, Journey to Love by Amanda Tero, Befriending the Beast by Amanda Tero, The Secret Slipper by Amanda Tero (not published yet), The Shiloh Legacy trilogy by Bodie and Brock Thoene, To Win Her Heart by Karen Witemeyer, Ride the River by Louis L’Amour.
Me- Of course the Bible is a staple for me as well, nothing compares to the word of God. I LOVE Karen Witemeyer’s To Win Her Heart, it’s one of my favorites by her. I’m just getting familiar with Amanda’s books. I’m actually in the process of doing an interview with her which will be scheduled around The Secret Slipper’s release. :)
What are you currently reading? Do you have any recommendations?
Faith- Seasons of Joy by Alexa Verde and All the Way by Faith Blum (yes, that’s mine, but I really am reading it right now as I edit it. :D As for recommendations, all of the above books in question 11. ;)
Me- lol I actually get that answer (reading your own book) a lot. It’s totally understandable, because after all, you have to read your own book if your editing it. ;)
You’re latest series, Hymns of the West, has been very successful. Three of your books already have over 100 reviews on them, which is a huge accomplishment for an indie author, AND if I remember correctly, the first three books in the series hit the top of listings on Amazon. You’re currently five books into Hymns of the West, will there be more installments?
Faith- At the moment, I plan only the 5 books in the Hymns of the West series. However, I do have a spin-off novella series and my Orphans of the West series is a continuation of the stories of some of the characters in the Hymns of the West series. How’s that for a complicated answer?
Me- Haha, that’s very cool, having a spinoff series. Your Orphans of the West series is actually on my “to read” list, the ever growing list that it is lol :)
Could you tell me a bit about the series? What was the inspiration for writing it, if any?
Faith- Here’s my logline for the series: God's providence brings two families with two different worldviews of living together in ways only He could have planned.
The inspiration for the first book was a story contest. I didn’t actually submit to the contest because I was too old and my story was WAY too long, but it got me started. The inspiration for the series was a beta-reader’s question: “What’s the next book about?”
Me- Oh wow, that’s very interesting.
Ok, so here’s a fun question for you: If you had to pick a favorite character from the series, who would it be?
Faith- Um, uh… That would probably be a tie between Rachel and Ruth. I like them both a lot. Well, I like all of the characters…
Me- Which of your characters is most like yourself?
Faith- Ruth. Definitely. Although, that wasn’t intentional.
Now a few fan questions:
What are a few of your favorite hobbies, outside of writing?
Faith- Crafts of various sorts. I like to knit, crochet, sew, embroider, and more.
What’s your favorite holiday?
Faith- I guess I’ll say Christmas because all the family gets together at that time.
What’s your favorite Bible verse?
Faith- This changes a lot, but right now Titus 2:11-14 are my favorite.
If you had to live in one book, it can be any book, which one would you choose?
Faith- Blessed Assurance by me because I really want to meet Adelaide. :)
How old are you?
Faith- I’m 26 years old. :)
Well, I suppose I should bring this to an end at some point! ;) It’s been truly wonderful having you. Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to do this with me, it was great fun! :) Do you have anything else you’d like to say or add before we sign off?
Faith- Thank you for the fun interview! :)
Stay Up-To-Date with Faith through her website, blog, and socials:
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Faith-Blum/e/B00GSPBHW6
Maureen O’Hara was a part of the Golden Age of Hollywood (1930s – 1970s), and has starred in icon movies such as The Quiet Man, Miracle on 34th Street, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, How Green Was My Valley, McLintock, and The Parent Trap. She has worked with legendary directors such as John Ford and Alfred Hitchock, and legendary actors such as John Wayne, Tyrone Power, Charles Laughton, James Stewart, and Henry Fonda. The tough, independent Irish actress made a name for herself on and off the screen by standing up for herself and staying true to her beliefs and principles.
‘Tis Herself is an absolutely delightful read. The book is told in Maureen’s own voice and takes the reader through the story of her life. When reading this book, you feel as though you’re sitting on the porch with Maureen, as she tells you the story of her life. It’s an easy read that flows and is more conversational than dictatorial. O’Hara’s personality is front and center throughout the book, as she shares her triumphs and her struggles. She works to clear up any misconceptions and rumors that may be floating around about her, the people she worked with, and the movies in which she starred. I enjoyed the behind the scenes stories O’Hara shared with us, particularly the ones revolving around the making of The Quiet Man. She also shares never before told stories and insights about several industry people she worked with, the most intimate and surprising ones revolving around legendary director John Ford. As a fan of his work and someone familiar with his reputation, I found Maureen’s insights both a little shocking, but necessary to better understand the man himself. I also loved all of her stories regarding legendary actor John Wayne. As most people know, O’Hara and Wayne shared a long and deep friendship, and getting to read about it in her own words was a treat, particularly when she talked about her last moments with Wayne.
This is an absolute must read for any fan of Old Hollywood, and truly an enjoyable read for anyone. O’Hara has led such a colorful and inspirational life, and she doesn’t sugar coat any of it. I highly recommend this book. It is indeed one of the best autobiographies I’ve read to this date.
Grab this wonderful book here: https://www.amazon.com/Tis-Herself-Autobiography-Maureen-OHara/dp/0743269160/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1491679837&sr=8-1-spell&keywords=Tis+Herslef
Liz Austin. Bibliophile. Writer. Book hoarder. I would rather be reading....