I am so thrilled to introduce you to one of my favorite writers today, Wendy Paine Miller. She is one of the few authors whose every book I will read. She is a women’s fiction author, and her books always make me think about and look at the world in a fresh new way.
Today, we’re linking up to a women’s fiction giveaway here that includes Wendy’s latest, The Delicate Nature of Love, as well as many other women’s fiction novels (I see Waking up Joy in there, which was one I loved by Tina Forkner!). Here’s my review for The Delicate Nature of Love:
“The Delicate Nature of Love is sensitive, expertly-written women’s fiction at its finest. With its intriguing layered characters, a plot that won’t let go until the very end, and the poignancy of the overlapping stories, I couldn’t put this story down. Once again, Wendy Paine Miller reaches into our hearts and touches us in ways we didn’t expect. Like all Wendy’s books, this one is a must-read.”
Wendy Paine Miller is an author, a nature lover, and a book club enthusiast. When she’s not reading or writing, you’ll likely find Wendy refurbishing a piece of neglected furniture or trying to keep tabs on her insatiably curious puppy. A native New Englander, Wendy lives with her husband and their three girls in a home bursting with imagination and hilarity.
Interview with Author Wendy Paine Miller
HG: I know you’ve been writing for a while, since I followed your beautiful blog back when I was starting out (find that interview here). Tell us a little about your experiences and how you decided to indie publish. I especially want to know how many books you’ve written, because I know you are very prolific! 🙂
WM: Well, let’s see. I believe I’m working on my twelfth novel but I’m beginning to lose count. I’ve been at this novel writing business for eight years. After getting strong responses from houses and vague reasons for rejection, my agent at the time suggested I try the indie route. I couldn’t be happier that I decided to dip my feet in the waters. I haven’t been able to get out of the indie ocean since. It’s addictive.
Also, I’m thrilled to have an agent working for me on the traditional front and can’t wait to see what comes of that.
HG: Your writing style (prose) is so liquid and deep. I’d love to know how you have developed that writing skill…but maybe you were born with it! Are you in a critique group? Or do you just have excellent beta readers/critique partner, etc?
WM: Thanks, Heather. I think my voice has developed from taking risks and being true to what I feel prompted to put on the page, regardless of whether it feels a little too raw or makes me feel extra vulnerable. That’s part of it. Writing into the vulnerable places.
I’m blessed with brilliant critique partners. And I’ve hired a rockin’ editor for my published books. Looking into that beta thing. Seems to go right along with swimming in the ocean.
HG: I love that in your books, you don’t shy away from complex family or love relationships. You also tackle heavier topics, like miscarriage and, in The Delicate Nature of Love, suicidal thoughts and alcoholism. And yet your books never feel oppressive to me, which I think reflects your Christian worldview, even though they are not categorized as Christian fiction. This is the kind of women’s fiction I migrate to (and you know I’m a fan of all your books!). What inspired the themes in The Delicate Nature of Love?
WM: Okay, here goes. I have this crazy sense of empathy I’ve never known quite what to do with. After Robin Williams committed suicide I knew I had to write something to experience my way through the loss. I also have an older sister who is seriously mentally ill and has attempted suicide more times than I could begin to count. Both of these were powerful inspirations for The Delicate Nature of Love.
But my latest published work also grew from this sense that I’ve always felt like what Pharrell Williams calls “other.” Especially as a kid I felt this way. I wanted to channel some of that sense of otherness into one of my main characters, eleven-year-old Zoey Chambers. I saw her as exuding this bright burst of energy, while also struggling deeply on the inside. She’s near and dear to my heart because in many ways she’s me.
HG: Oh! I love Zoey! And I think it’s wonderful you wrote this book as a sort of tribute. You always tap into unique topics…in The Disappearing Key, there was an unusual medical element…in The Flower Girls, you wove in the condition of face blindness and a twin relationship. In The Delicate Nature of Love, one of your main male characters was a psychologist. Do you have to do loads of research for your books?
WM: I love the research part. I tend to read a lot so it doesn’t intimidate me to spend hours reading about prosopagnosia or synesthesia, etc. I view it as part of the process and often research in tandem with working on a book.
HG: Finally, can you tell us what you’re working on now?
WM: Secret, secret, I’ve got a secret. No, only kidding. Right now I’m all caught up in another work I’m seriously considering putting out this fall (told you I’m addicted). Genre-wise it’s sort of a cross between The Disappearing Key and The Flower Girls. A sweet spot. It’s captivating much of my attention.
HG: And I know it’ll captivate all your readers, too! Looking forward to it! Thanks so much for visiting today, Wendy!
Forty-four-year-old Emma Gates hasn’t cared about much in life since becoming a widow two years ago. But then she meets the inquisitive and mercurial Zoey Chambers, her next door neighbor.
Who happens to be eleven.
Soon after, Emma is introduced to Colby Havelock, a psychology professor who reaches Emma in ways she didn’t think were possible again after Max died. Emma considers the possibility of a new life with Colby. But Colby knows something about Zoey he cannot share. Could the eleven-year-old spark who helped Emma heal also be the fire that drives Colby and Emma apart?
***Find Wendy’s Novel in the Spring Women’s Fiction #Giveaway here! Giveaway ends April 20th!***