Grab a cup. Gather ’round. And comment below. Kathleen’s offering two ebooks (Melody’s Song and Nila’s Hope).
Winners of Kathleen’s books, Melody’s Song, Nila’s Hope, and Redemption’s Whisper are Bunny Bassett and Marilyn Ridgway. Congratulations, readers!
We’re so glad you joined us this week, Kathleen. A writer who hails from Canada has our undivided attention. 🙂
Tell us about your pre-author life, a bit about your journey thus far, and any advice and encouragement you may have.
Pre-Author Life of Kathleen Friesen
My childhood was spent in the lush green that is Washington and Oregon, but God nudged me to follow high school graduation with Bible school at a tiny place in Saskatchewan, Canada. “Where’s that?” I asked. “Are You sure?”
But I headed to Canada, and when I arrived in Saskatchewan, the flat, bare landscape and strong winds made the Canadian prairie seem like an alien planet. But God was there, waiting. In His love, He brought an intriguing, handsome young man to Millar Memorial Bible Institute that year. In spite of a no-dating rule, we quickly fell in love and were married the following winter.
More than forty-four years later, I am proud to be fully Canadian just like my husband, children, and grandchildren. I am so thankful for that initial God-nudge.
Another Kathleen Friesen God Nudge
God nudged me again when our three children were grown, this time to do something about the desire to write. Fear had kept me from daring to share what lay in my heart, but my husband encouraged me, and I signed up for an online writing course. This changed my life–a cliché, I know–but it’s true. Through lessons, critiques and constant encouragement from my mentor, that long-held dream came true. God is good!
A Debut for Kathleen Friesen
As a newbie, I believed prominent authors who said no traditional publisher would look at a book by an unagented author. I submitted my work to two or three agents (yes, I gave up too quickly) who rejected my work. The costs incurred by publishing with this vanity press will likely never be recovered, so I hope readers will learn from my mistake.
Nevertheless, when that first box of freshly printed books arrived, I was ecstatic. These characters had become cherished friends, so I had to continue writing. It helped, of course, when a reader friend told me I simply had to tell Nila’s story. So I did.
A Debut of a Different Sort
The second, Nila’s Hope, and third, Redemption’s Whisper, are published by Pelican Book Group. Working with a Christian publishing company renewed my faith in the business of writing. Redemption’s Whisper released March 24 in e-book form and will be available June 2 in print. I can’t wait!
These three books are sequential, with old friends returning and new ones introduced, but each story stands alone. By the way, I appreciate hearing from readers, especially when they have questions.
None of my stories was easy to write, as they deal with hard subjects. But I hope and pray they touch each reader’s heart with the truth that God is a God of hope and grace.
A Final Word from Kathleen Friesen
I joined ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers), one of the best moves I made. ACFW provides an opportunity to join the greatest critique group in the writing world. Fortunately for me, they don’t even mind that I’m not American. We critique one another’s work chapter by chapter and brainstorm online. I count these ladies as dear friends. Close, understanding friends support us and, now and then, Gibbs-slap us up the side of the head. (Tweet That!)
I joined another group of writing friends who meet once a month.
Rather than critique, we encourage and pray for one another. I need a lot of both, and I adore these dear friends.
Good friends, whether local or online, are an absolute necessity, especially for writers. When I stay in my writing cocoon too long, I lose my connection to what matters. So find a group, meet with friends, and above all, pray!
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Readers can find Kathleen and her books at the following locations:
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Lord, we declare You the Author of Everything. We bow before You in awe and adoration, and we thank You for stooping to love us, nudge us, and use us. We write because of You, and we read to find You. Keep us in the center of Your Will as readers and writers.
~ For Jesus’ sake
Every word of God is flawless …
Proverbs 30:5a NIV