Today, I’m thrilled to have one of my sweet author friends, Amber Lynn Perry, visit. First of all I’d like to say that I love Amber’s boots in the picture above (sorry, had to interject that comment). Amber writes romance set in Colonial times and is getting great reviews on her debut novel, So Fair a Lady. Let me show you the GORGEOUS cover:
I’m just basically blown away by that cover. Such pretty colors, everything in balance.
So now, on to our interview! AND one lucky commenter will win their choice of e-book or softcover copy of So Fair a Lady (Click to Tweet)! So please comment and share on twitter or Pinterest! Will draw a winner next Monday.
On to our chat with Amber!
Interview with Amber Lynn Perry, Author of So Fair a Lady
HG: Hi, Amber, so nice to have you visit today! I love your website. You say you only recently began writing books. How long has your journey to publication taken? Any twists and turns you’d like to share?
AP: Heather, it’s truly an honor to be here, thank you so much! My journey actually started in junior high. During that time I developed a strong obsession for the American Revolution and I “had this great idea for a book”! LOL I even drafted some scenes into my college-ruled notebook while lounging in my purple beanbag chair, and told my mom that one day my story would be published. But my great idea was quickly canned when I found out just how hard writing actually is. 😉 I’d almost forgotten about that book and those fabulous characters until two years ago when I discovered a genre that I didn’t even know existed! I immediately devoured every historical Christian romance book I could find and even started a blog where I reviewed (and still review!) books as I read them. I remember thinking, “Huh! Back in the day I had a great idea for a story. I wonder . . .” After that I just couldn’t get the thought out of my head and after two years of writing and rewriting I’m pleased to be able to share my book—nearly twenty years from its first inception—with the world.
HG: Wow, 20 years! And I thought it took forever for my books to come to fruition…On that note, I’d love to know how you decided to self-publish your novel, So Fair a Lady. And please share some highlights (or warning caveats) from that publication process.
AP: At the beginning of my writing journey two years ago I was sure I would never go the indie route—famous last words right? * wink * The more I learned about the process and the freedom and control indie writers have over their manuscripts, I was sold! My specific sub-genre isn’t particularly pleasing to trade publishers (from what I hear) and I didn’t want to be told I had to change major plot lines, or even the entire era or setting to please a particular publisher. After praying about it, I knew what to do—and I had so much peace. I still do! I love indie publishing—though it’s not without its challenges, that’s for sure. My learning curve is straight up. I’d say the thing I’ve learned the most is to ask questions and go forward with courage, knowing I will make mistakes, but that’s ok. It’s part of the process.
HG: Straight-up learning curve–yeah, I think all indie authors can relate! I know you love American Revolutionary history, thus your setting for your novel. Was there some author who inspired you to write in this time period? Favorite books or resources from this era? My daughters and I are currently reading Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes and it’s so well-written. I feel like I have met Sam Adams.
AP: Oh my goodness, I LOVE that book, too! I haven’t read it for years, but I remember loving her style and how she just made the period come to life. Makes me want to read that again…. 😉 As far as other novels from the era, to be honest not many come to mind! Though that doesn’t mean they aren’t out there, of course. Right now I’m particularly in love with a non-fiction title by Nathaniel Philbrick about the battle of Bunker Hill. He actually goes way back into the history of Boston and I am swept away at how he makes the time period come alive. Absolutely amazing. I’m not typically a huge non-fiction fan, but he is a MASTER and I would read that book over and over again.
The American Revolution era is such a magnificent time in our history, and I love being able to shed some light on it through these books. Many people are already familiar with that time, but others aren’t, and I love hearing from readers that my book (and hopefully the others that will come out soon!) have increased their appreciation for America and what the colonists sacrificed in the name of freedom.
HG: You do book reviews on your blog. Which authors are your go-to favorites and why?
AP: Fun question! I have about four authors that come to mind instantly. Julie Lessman, Laura Frantz, MaryLu Tyndall and Deeanne Gist. Their unique and individual styles never fail to capture my imagination in such a way that their novels truly come to life in my mind. Their stories are always in my top ten go-go reads and if I can someday grow up to write as masterfully as them, I will be one happy girl!
HG: What are some themes you wrestle with in So Fair a Lady?
AP: My heroine, Eliza, is searching for the truth of why her father would go against King George and spy for the Sons of Liberty—why he wanted freedom. One of the main themes is putting your faith in God, and trusting that he will lead you to the truth you are searching for—whatever that may be in your life. Today we often take our freedoms for granted, but in those days they craved freedom and knew the benefits of having it would be innumerable. So, in my story, Eliza’s “truth” is the value of freedom, a precious gift we all have and hopefully can keep forever.
HG: As a homeschooling mom, how do you manage your writing time? Please give me any time-management tips you have!
AP: Oh, Heather, this is a very good question! LOL I try so hard to make sure my life is balanced—God, family, church, homeschool, writing, etc. But wow. It’s hard! Recently I found an article that said one writer sets aside two hours a day to write and she guards those hours ferociously. I’ve started to do that in the evening and so far (fingers crossed) it’s working! I lock myself in the back room, put in the ear plugs and go for it. However, two hours isn’t much in the grand scheme of things, but that’s ok. I do what I can and I know if I stick to my plan, eventually things will get done. Of course, that’s not to say I get two hours every single day, but I try. I find I can enjoy the day so much more—and focus on everything else so much better, knowing that in the evening I will MAKE time to write, that way I don’t end up panicking about whether it’s going to get done.
HG: Do you have a release date and title for your next book? Is it part of the Daughters of His Kingdom series?
AP: I do—and it is! The second book in the series is titled SO TRUE A LOVE, and it follows the story of Nathaniel and Kitty—both characters in the first book. I’m hoping to have it out sometime mid-to-late summer.
HG: Thanks again for visiting, Amber!
AP: It was such an honor to be here, thank you so much!!!
****So, readers, comment away! Any questions or comments for Amber about the Colonial time period or her publishing journey? One lucky commenter will win your choice of ebook or softcover!****