Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY

Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY  | The Engrafted Word
Jennifer Slattery writes soul-stirring fiction for New Hope Publishers, a publishing house passionate about bringing God’s healing grace and truth to the hopeless. She also writes for Crosswalk.com, Internet Café Devotions, and the group blog, Faith-filled Friends. When not writing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her teenage daughter and coffee dates with her handsome railroader husband.

Visit with Jennifer online at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.

Read a free, 36-page excerpt of When Dawn Breaks.

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Savanna:  Welcome to The Engrafted Word, Jennifer.  Congratulations on your newest release, When Dawn Breaks. What a beautiful cover too! Can you tell us what first inspired you to write this story?

Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY  | The Engrafted WordJennifer:  Absolutely, though that’s a bit of a complicated question. 🙂 The inspiration for my heroine came from a sweet woman at our old church in Kansas City, MO, who, at the age of 51 sensed God calling her into foster care. Not only was she older, which I’m sure felt challenging, but she was also single. And yet, she answered God’s call and took in a teenager. She went on to adopt this young woman and now has two additional children in her home.

I was so inspired by her, I wanted to tell her story. Only I wanted to take it a step further. I wondered what it would be like if my heroine was not only single and older, but what if she was a new believer? More than that, what if she had deep regrets from her past, many that stemmed from how she’d parented her own daughter? Could God use a woman who had brought deep pain to her own child to bring hope to others? And thus, When Dawn Breaks was born.

Savanna:  I’m really  looking forward to reading it. From your website, it’s clear you have a heart for ministry. What do you hope readers will take away most from this missional romance novel?

Jennifer: You know, I think sometimes it’s easy as Christians to isolate. We enjoy surrounding ourselves with other believers who “get us”, and that’s great, so long as we don’t cut ourselves off from the outside world. I often ask, “Why are we here? Why didn’t God just whisk us up to heaven once we’re saved?” Of course we know the answer, and that’s to share His grace and truth with a hurting world. I think sometimes we just forget, or maybe get nervous. Other times I think we don’t know where to start, and yet, I believe if we’ll but quiet ourselves and draw near to God, He’ll show us. Then, of course, we’ll need the courage to obey. That’s the hard part, isn’t it?

In answer to your question, I hope believers will be encouraged to surrender fully to God, following after Him and His will with full obedience, for I believe that is how we grab hold of the abundant life Christ promised. It’s scary, it might feel awkward, and it might stretch us more than we feel possible, but the results will be glorious for there’s no better place to be than centered in God’s will.

Savanna:  Beautifully said, Jennifer. 😉 Do you have a fond lesson and/or memory from one of the contests you’ve participated in? We’d love to hear it!

Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY  | The Engrafted WordJennifer:  I do! The Christian Writers Guild Operation First Novel Contest. The year I placed was tough. I’d recently learned a dear friend had terminal brain cancer. In fact, I learned I’d finaled very close to the day she told me her doctors had given her a year tops to live. It felt so… wrong. Here God was opening doors for me, and her life was ending. I went through a very dark period of feeling as if I didn’t want to write anymore. Really, all I wanted to do was mope around the house and cry, which I did a lot of.

The winner of the contest was to be announced at the Guild’s annual conference, so my husband urged me to go. I didn’t want to, but he wouldn’t relent, so I went. That year it seemed every speaker spoke of death and suffering and God’s grace amidst it. I had a very clear thought as I listened, and that was that God had allowed me to live for a reason, and I needed to make the most of it. A second, equally clear thought followed: If I were driving by an accident on the freeway, would I not do everything in my power to help the wounded individual? I realized God was reminding me of the reality of eternity, telling me He wanted me to do everything in my power to share His love with a hurting world.

That same conference was when I first met my publisher, Dr. Andrea Mullins, who has since retired. She is such a wonderful woman of faith who radiated Christ’s love so strongly, I was drawn to her. Long story short, we talked, shared a few emails after, and eventually, she signed me, and I knew without a doubt God had orchestrated every step.

Savanna:  Wow.  That’s incredible, Jennifer.  I’m convinced that God’s sovereignty over all things is the greatest peace we could ever find.

Can you share a piece of writing advice that has made a difference in your career?

Jennifer:  Never give up. 😉 The journey to publication can be long and discouraging. They say only 10% of writers ever get published. I don’t know how true that percentage is, but I’ve often wondered if that was because the other 90% gave up. I can think of so many people who initially pursued their call with such enthusiasm and passion only to later quit, and I’ve always wondered how many of them did so one month before their first contract offer. The sad truth is, they’ll never know.

Savanna:  Great points.  Is there anything else you’d like to add? Any upcoming projects you can share with us?

Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY  | The Engrafted Word

Internet Cafe Devotions

Jennifer: Sure! I have another novel coming out in October, this one on forgiveness and God’s grace revealed through our deepest hurts. This novel has a great story surrounding it, too. Maybe I can come back and share it. Here’s the blurb:

Abandoned by her husband, an organ procurement coordinator fighting to keep her job and her sanity encounters an old flame facing an unthinkable tragedy.

For Tammy Kuhn, being an organ procurement coordinator is more than a job. It’s a ministry. But when her husband of sixteen years leaves her for another woman, struggles with childcare, her absentee ex-husband, and an altercation with a doctor threaten her job. Embittered and overwhelmed, she fights to maintain her sanity when a late night encounter with an old flame stirs emotions long since buried but the ICU is no place for romance.

Savanna:  Thanks for sharing, Jennifer! Wishing you a blessed year ahead. We’re so glad you could join us this week as our guest!

Jennifer:  Thank you so much for having me! I’d love to ask your readers a question: What is God calling you to do, and what’s keeping you from that? Or, if you are pursuing His call on your life, was that first step hard? What gave you the courage to move forward?

Readers, don’t be afraid to answer. 😉  We’d really love to hear your thoughts.  (Plus, a comment will give you 1 more entry in the giveaway!)

GIVEAWAY!!

Jennifer has graciously offered a copy of When Dawn Breaks to one lucky reader! Enter below and it could be YOU! 😉

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for entering! Contest is open only in the U.S. and ends January 20, 2015.  The winner will be notified by email. Happy Reading, everybody! 😉

Posted in Author Interviews, Giveaways
24 comments on “Interview with Jennifer Slattery & GIVEAWAY
  1. Deanna S says:

    Being a good example is something I strive to do. Also I am the family peacemaker when needed…

  2. Caryl Kane says:

    God has called me to be an encourager. I really enjoy blessing people and brightening their day. 🙂

    I would LOVE to read When Dawn Breaks….

    Savanna, I subscribe to The Engrafted Word and like you on facebook.

    psalm103and138[at]gmail[dot]com

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      You’ve certainly encouraged me, Caryl, on more than one occasion! 😉 Thanks for your friendship. And good luck to you in this drawing. Have a blessed week!

  3. What a wonderful gift! I think we all need encouragement–often! How blessed your friends are to have you. 🙂 Best of luck in the drawing, Caryl!

  4. Kathryn Voss says:

    I let myself get in the way too many times. Life is so hard, and withdrawing into myself so easy. Prayers are appreciated.

    Thanks for the contest!

    • Kathryn, I so get that! In the past, when going through a difficult time or encountering uncomfortable situations, I liked to write Psalm 91:1 on a notecard then tuck the card in my back pocket. Whenever I read or thought of that verse, I liked to envision myself literally hiding in God’s shadows. It reminded me that He is my protector, with me wherever I go. That has always brought me great comfort. I’m going to pray for you as soon as I hit “post” on this comment. Hugs! And best of luck in the drawing!

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      It’s easy for all of us, I’m afraid, Kathryn. You’re not alone. Praying the Lord refreshes and strengthens your heart. Thanks for sharing with us. Ephesians 3:14-21 is my prayer for you!

  5. Deanne Patterson says:

    Having 12 childre I have found I need to have almost endless understanding and patience. It’s not always easy to do but then I think to myself will this little thing be important an hour from now, a day from now, a month from now, a year from now ? Most things ,you will make yourself a lot happier if you just let it go and don’t stress over it. I love Christian fiction of all types and would love to read this. Have a blessed day !

    • Oh, how I love that! I can get so caught up in silly things, allowing whatever I am fretting over to completely overshadow my day. What a great question to ask. I’m going to try that the next time I’m tempted to zero in on a nonessential/consequential. 🙂

      Best luck in the drawing, and you have a wonderful day as well. 🙂

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      Great point, Deanne! My mom always likes to share one of her favorite verses with me when I’m feeling stressed and overwhelmed with things. I hope Philippians 4:6-7 blesses you too. Good luck in the drawing!

  6. Melanie Backus says:

    I was brought up in church. God is first, family next. I want people to feel good and be happy around me so I do my best to make that happen. If, in this life, I have brought a smile to one’s face, then I feel that I have done something.

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

    • That is so beautiful! I love how others’ focused your response is. That is a goal I always have on the forefront of my mind–to focus on others not myself. I find selfishness comes incredibly easy; selflessness is a bit harder, but oh what a blessing we receive when we allow God’s love to flow through us to others unhindered!

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      It makes me smile just to read this, Melanie. Thank you for sharing your heart with us. Your love for Him and others definitely shines through. 🙂 Thanks for joining us!

  7. Joan Arning says:

    I believe God has called me to minister to single women. I want them to know they are not alone in their situation.

    • I love that, Joan! I know many single women can feel out of place in the church, so that’s awesome that you are coming alongside them.

      When I first began going to church as an adult, I went by myself. (My husband wasn’t Christian at the time, though I thought he was! Long story.) I remember looking around and seeing all these couples and feeling very sad. And like I didn’t quite fit. Praise God my husband accepted Christ in 2002, and we’ve been going together ever since, but I do remember those days.

      It’s awesome that you can be a friend and support to these precious women. 🙂

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      A wonderful ministry, Joan! I’ll be praying for you, friend. May the Lord continue to bless you as you serve Him above all. So glad you stopped by! Good luck in the giveaway.

  8. Trixi says:

    I’ve always felt the call to be an encourager, like Caryl here. But oftentimes I find myself not wanting to, not because of fear of saying the wrong thing, but portraying it exactly as God has it. I’m too much of a perfectionist at times! I hate to be misunderstood, so I guess I get in the way of myself too often. This year though (so far), I’ve just let the Lord speak through me & trusted that whatever comes out of my mouth or in writing, is EXACTLY what He has me to say. I guess in a way, I am a seed-planter & I trust Him to be the waterer & grower of that seed. It’s hard though to fight against myself, you know? But I do feel good when I KNOW the Lord has spoken through me & made someones day a bit brighter. Thank you for a wonderful interview Jennifer! I loved that you shared how we must be open to sharing God’s word more & how difficult that may be sometimes. I find it difficult to openly talk of the gospel, so I would really like to be more open to God’s leading in this. I really do try to show it in the way I live, talk, act, etc. Savanna, thank you for the feature author. I love reading about others lives & it compels me strive harder to become the kind of Godly woman He wants me to be. Thanks for a chance to win a copy of “When Dawn Breaks”. Blessings to you & Jennifer!

    • That is so beautiful, Trixi, and what courage! Our pastor says “What God can do through limited people who are completely dependent on Him is limitless.” I love remembering that–that it’s not about us but Him working through us. May He continue to grant you courage as you share His grace and truth! And best of luck in the drawing! 🙂

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      In just the little time I’ve “known” you here online, Trixi, I have seen your heart for encouraging others. Your heart for the Lord shines through your words more than you realize. I know exactly what you mean about the struggle. We get in the way of things way too much sometimes. 😉 Praise God He is so patient with us, right? I read this verse earlier this morning and was reminded of it when reading your comments.

      “He that watereth shall be watered also himself.” Proverbs 11:25

      That is my hope for you! Praying the Lord continues to guide you and use you for His glory. I’m so happy to know you!

  9. Savanna Savanna says:

    I just want to thank you again, Jennifer, for taking the time to stop by and leave such kind words and comments for everyone. We really enjoy getting to know the author behind the stories. 😉 It’s a delight to have met you and I hope the Lord continues to bless your ministry!

  10. Lisa Cowell says:

    I don’t really feel “called” to do much of anything anymore. I joined our church 23 years ago, and over the first 10 years or so, I was led to do many things, nursery worker, toddler teacher, grade school activities, visitation, choir, ladies group, newsletter…you name it, I got involved if there was a need. My husband kept telling me that he didn’t want me to be so involved in church activities, and should spend more time taking care of him. He kept telling me that they only tolerated me because they wanted to keep on his “good” side. After he died, it seemed that what he said was true. I was “uninvited” to most of the activities that I was previously involved in. It seems that only married women can be involved in many of those activities, and since I declined to remarry in the first month or two after his death, things went steadily downhill.

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      Dear Lisa, thank you for sharing your heart with us. I’m so sorry to hear this. I can only imagine how painful that must have been for you. And probably still is. I hope you don’t feel like the work you were called to do was unprofitable. I know the Lord must find great pleasure in your obedience. I found something from my favorite devotional that I’d like to share with you. I hope it encourages you as well. https://www.biblegateway.com/devotionals/morning-and-evening/2014/10/02

      I’ll be praying for you, Lisa. May the Lord comfort your heart with His rest, His peace, and His hope. Never forget that He is our reward and we live for Him. I’m here if you’d ever like to talk more.

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