Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY

Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY | The Engrafted Word

Melissa Tagg is a former reporter, current nonprofit grant-writer and total Iowa girl. She’s also a multi-published novelist. Her latest book, Like Never Before, was named by Publisher’s Weekly to their spring 2016 “Religion and Spirituality” Top 10 list. Upcoming books include Keep Holding On (Sept 2016) and a sequel to last year’s One Enchanted Christmas, releasing in late 2016. Melissa has taught at multiple national writing conferences, as well as retreats and workshops. When she’s not writing, she can be found hanging out with the coolest family ever–not that she’s biased–watching old movies, and daydreaming about her next book. Melissa loves connecting with readers at and on Facebook and Instagram.


Welcome back to the blog, Melissa. I’m so happy to have you here today. Congratulations on your recent release, Like Never Before. Such a cute story!!

 Many readers enjoy picking their favorite quotes from novels. Do YOU have a particular favorite quote/scene from “Like Never Before”? Can you share a little bit of it with us? 🙂

Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY | The Engrafted WordI have several favorite scenes…and let’s face it, I basically love everything that comes out of Logan’s mouth. LOL! But probably one of the more personally meaningful scenes for me is the scene where Logan and Amelia are visiting the Smithsonian to check out Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart’s planes. Logan says a couple different lines in this scene that I love…

“I just think one person seeing you for who you really are is better than 150,000 who’ve got it wrong.”

“When you really let people see you, Amelia—all of you, not just the snow-obsessed reporter—it’s impossible to look away.”

Totally “awwww” sort of lines. But there’s something deeper going on when they’re talking here…Amelia, without really even realizing it, is revealing a desire to Logan—a desire to be seen and known and recognized. And he picks up on that and says exactly what she needs to hear. And just love that! It makes me want to be a person who listens deeply and speaks purposely.

Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY | The Engrafted WordWhat do you love most about your hero and your heroine in this story? (We know how much you love Logan!!) 😉

Haha, wait, how do you know I love Logan? Lol!

Amelia—I love how much she loves Maple Valley. Maple Valley is a made up town but after writing two full-length novels (and I’m almost done with a third) plus two novellas that take place there, it’s become soooo real to me. And so Amelia’s love for the place—the way she just adores its charm and quirk—it very much connects with me. I also love that she’s a reporter.

Logan—Ummm, everything?!?! What I love most is probably what I mentioned above. Logan is a listener. He’s such a wordsmith, a writer, and yet, he’s not loud or overbearing or obsessed with his own words. He listens to other people and sees them for who they really are. And I just adore that about him.

I’ve heard you love watching old movies. I do too!! 🙂 What are a few of your favorites?

Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY | The Engrafted WordSo many! Some of my very favorites are His Girl Friday, Bringing Up Baby, The Philadelphia Story, What’s Up Doc?, Roman Holiday, It Happened One Night, My Man Godfrey, Mr & Mrs Smith…I could go on and on.

You’ve taught several workshops at several writing conferences and retreats. What is one of your favorite topics?

I really love talking about dreams and calling and finding our identity in Christ. But when it comes to writing specifically, my favorite topics are dialogue and emotional layering. I also want to say humor—because I love talking about it—and yet, I really think humor is one of the hardest things to write…so I haven’t figured out quite how to teach or speak about it. But someday!

Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY | The Engrafted WordWhat’s something your readers would be surprised to know about you?

Honestly, I think readers might be surprised to learn that writing stories is actually pretty hard for me! I think perhaps sometimes I come across as the super giddy, excitable, happy-go-lucky writer who is always gushing about her characters and stories…and that’s very authentic because I do ADORE my made-up people. But I also struggle a lot with actually crafting a whole plot…with sitting down and making myself write after a long day of work…with figuring out how to balance my fictional world with my real life. Writing, for me, can get emotional and vulnerable and at times, very bang-my-head-against-the-wall-ish. 🙂

Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Melissa! Is there anything else you’d like to add? Any upcoming projects you can share with us?

I can definitely share that my next book will be Beckett Walker’s story! It’s called Keep Holding On and features not only Beckett, but also a heroine named Kit Danby…and the both of them have hugely attached themselves to my heart.

I can’t wait to read it! Have a great summer!


Melissa has graciously offered to give away a copy of Like Never Before to one lucky reader! Enter below and it could be YOU! ;)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for entering! Contest is open for US residents only. Contest ends July 5, 2016.  The winner will be notified by email. Happy Reading, everybody!







57 comments on “Interview with Melissa Tagg & GIVEAWAY
  1. Thanks for such an awesome giveaway! I’ve hear so many good things about this book! One of my most favorite old movies is The Princess Bride!

  2. Beth Erin says:

    I love movies based on books even though they never really get it right. Bless your heart, Melissa, I want to give you a big ‘ol hug for your emotional, vulnerable, nearly dangerous writer moods. I love your style, your characters, and your facebook gushing over Logan. I’d be really excited to win the giveaway and I’d have to give you another hug for if that happens! 🙂

  3. Melanie Backus says:

    One of my old favorites…An Affair to Remember.

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      I haven’t seen that one yet, but I’ve heard about it a lot. I’ve been meaning to watch it for awhile now. 😉 Thanks for sharing, Melanie!

  4. Rach Merritt says:

    Love old movies. Roman Holiday would be one of my many favorites. I love The Shop Around the Corner, Fountainhead, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Gentleman’s Agreement, and so many more! 🙂

  5. Joanne Keith says:

    It’s A Wonderful Life is one of my favorites!

  6. Raechel says:

    Fantastic interview! Loved it. And I love “Like Never Before” – so sweet!

  7. Sierra Faith says:

    I love the Abbott and Costello movies! We’ve recently been re-watching them!

  8. Joan Arning says:

    White Christmas!

  9. Amanda R says:

    I love old movies. Some of the best acting I have ever seen are in old black and white movies. My favorite is hard to choose but I think it would be Rebecca 1940’s by Alfred Hitchcock.

  10. Candice Valdez says:

    The Sound of Music! My poor family has had to watch that movie a million times! LOL

  11. Becky B says:

    I like It’s Wonderful Life!

    Thank you!

  12. Kim Potter says:

    Sounds like a good story. Thanks for the chance to win.

  13. Karen K. says:

    That’s easy! I LOVE Singin’ in the Rain! Gene Kelly was so swoon-worthy in it, and Debbie Reynolds was adorable! Even Donald O’Connor was hilarious!

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      Ahhh, yes, I grew up watching that and LOVED their dancing!! And yes, I still remember laughing over Donald O’Connor every time. 😀 I’m so glad my grandma introduced me to Gene Kelly’s movies from an early age. 😉

  14. Joan says:

    My favorite movie is It;s A Wonderful Life. The characters are realistic.

  15. Jan Hall says:

    The Sound of Music is one of my favorite

  16. KayM says:

    One of my favorite old movies is Gone with the Wind.

  17. Linda Romer says:

    I loved Casablanca ♡ And many, many more! I love all the old John Wayne movies and Elvis Movies, thank you ♡

  18. Susan Mason says:

    Hey Melissa,
    Just finished Amelia & Logan’s story and I LOVED it!! Something about a single dad just warms your heart!
    Can’t wait for Beckett’s story!

  19. Pam K. says:

    I like old movies too. My all time favorite is Arsenic and Old Lace with Cary Grant. No matter how many times I watch it, I always enjoy it.

  20. Abby Breuklander says:

    I absolutely love old movies!! I think I’m going to have to choose Sabrina with Audrey Hepburn as my all time favorite!

  21. Amanda T. says:

    Oh, I love classic movies. A few of my favorites are The Scarlet Pimpernel (1934), Miss Grant Takes Richmond (1949), All Through The Night (1941), and The Lady Vanishes (1938).

    I haven’t read Like Never Before yet, I’m planning to read it this weekend. 🙂

  22. dianne casey says:

    My favorite old movie is “Gone With the Wind”.

  23. Trixi says:

    I guess the only “old” movies I really love watching are westerns…lol! Around Christmas time, I love all the older ones; It’s a Wonderful Life, White Christmas, George C. Scott A Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th Street, and any others I can catch. Even though I’ve watched them hundreds of times, they never get old!!
    Wonderful author interview! I have one of Melissa’s books on my shelf, but have all of them on my huge TBR list (it gets longer everyday I think!). Thanks for the chance to win a copy of “Like Never Before”.

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      Hi Trixi! It’s great to see you here. You mentioned some of my FAVORITE Christmas movies. I’m just like you, I watch them every year and never get sick of them. 🙂 Good luck in the drawing. Happy Reading on that long list of yours. 😉

  24. carylkane says:

    I love The Bishop’s Wife.

    Savanna, thank you for the wonderful interview with Melissa. 🙂

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      I don’t think I’ve seen that one, but I’ve heard of it. Isn’t it similar to The Preacher’s Wife? I’ll have to check it out. 😉 I’m glad you enjoyed the interview, Caryl. Good luck in the giveaway!

  25. Wenona says:

    Anne of Green Gables! Just LOVED watching that when I was young and still enjoy watching it now!

  26. Melissa Oldaker says:

    Sound of Music would definitely be one of my favorites. Love Melissa’s books. Thanks for the giveaway.

  27. MS Barb says:

    “Holiday Inn” (to watch at Christmas Time) & not so old, a Disney film, “Snow Dogs!”

    • Savanna Savanna says:

      Ahhh, I love Holiday Inn. I’ve always wanted to stay at a place like that. 😉 “Snow Dogs” is a new one to me, though. I’ll have to look that up. Thanks for stopping by, Barb!

  28. Brenda G. says:

    I may or may not have a thing for musicals but West Side Story is my all time favorite. Let’s keep the American Dream alive right?

    Happy 4th,

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