Two-time RITA® Finalist and winner of the coveted HOLT Medallion, CBA bestselling author, Karen Witemeyer, writes historical romance fiction for Bethany House, believing that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher, shower singer, and bakes a mean apple cobbler. Karen makes her home in Abilene, TX with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at: www.karenwitemeyer.com.
Welcome to The Engrafted Word Karen Witemeyer! It’s wonderful to have you here!
Savanna: What was the first book you ever remember reading?
Karen: I can recall begging my mom for a quarter when I was four years old so that I could buy a book at a neighbor’s garage sale. It was a classic – Dick and Jane. With the help of Sesame Street and that book, I taught myself to read before I entered kindergarten. Dick, Jane, and their faithful pup, Spot, became dear friends who entertained me over and over again.
Savanna: What was your favorite thing about writing A Cowboy Unmatched in the novella collection A Match Made in Texas?
Karen: The brainstorm sessions were definitely my favorite part. I already had a pretty good idea of the individual story I wanted to write, but getting together with three other creative minds to come up with ideas about how to tie each of the stories together was a blast. Mary usually got the ball rolling with a list of brainstorm ideas. I would latch on to one or two and spin them a little farther. Then Regina and Carol would chime in with their thoughts. One idea would lead to another and another. Before we knew it, we had our continuity and were ready to start writing. Regina helped keep us organized by making a basic layout of the town, then we would occasionally check with each other on story details. It was definitely a group effort!
Savanna: Sounds like fun! If you were to give a tour to some visiting friends of your beloved home state of Texas, what would be your first stop and why?
Karen: Even though it is at least a five hour drive from my house, I would have to take them to San Antonio to see the Alamo. I’ve only been there once, myself, so I would love the chance to walk through those hallowed halls again. Besides, it would be disloyal to the Archer brothers to go anywhere else. Travis (Short-Straw Bride), Crockett (Stealing the Preacher), Jim (Short-Straw Bride), and Neill ( A Match Made in Texas) were all named for heroes of the Alamo.
Savanna: Can you name a historical figure you would have enjoyed getting to meet in person and have lunch with?
Karen: Susanna Dickerson. She was one of a handful of survivors from the battle of the Alamo. Her husband was stationed there and died with all the other soldiers during that famous battle against Santa Ana. A few women and slaves were spared. Susanna was one who survived, and after being questioned by the Mexican commander, she was instructed to carry a letter of warning to Sam Houston in Gonzalez, Texas. She was only 22 at the time and had little more than the clothes on her back, yet she accomplished her mission. I’d love to listen to her tell her story.
Savanna: What is one of your most unforgettable moments from your writing career to date?
Karen: Hearing from readers is the most rewarding aspects of my career. I heard from an Australian fan one time who told me that she had been trying to bring a friend of hers back to the Lord after she had fallen away. She hadn’t found much success. However, after reading my books, she recommended them to her friend. Her friend decided they sounded interesting and asked to borrow them. She read them all and loved them. But best of all, she started seeking God again. The stories had planted seeds that her friend could then water and tend, and God willing, someday those seeds will grow into strong, faithful plants. Reading that letter brought tears to my eyes and confirmed for me the reason that I write–to glorify God and to plant seeds that lead people to greater faithfulness and maturity in Christ.
Karen: I’m nearing the final stage of edits for my next full-length novel titled, Full Steam Ahead. It pairs an obsessed scientist with a woman on a mission to protect her family. Throw in exploding boilers, a legendary pirate dagger, and a runaway boy, and you have all the making for one crazy adventure. Can you tell I had a lot of fun with this one? I even traveled a little farther back in time than in my previous books, going all the way back to 1851. There’s a follow-up novella in the works as well. Full Steam Ahead will release June 1, 2014.
Savanna: Oh, I can’t wait to read it! Thanks so much for stopping by today, Karen. It was great to have you as a guest on The Engrafted Word! One more thing, how can readers connect with you?
Karen: The easiest place to find information about my books is on my website – www.karenwitemeyer.com
I also love to interact with readers through Facebook and the two group blogs I contribute to:
www.petticoatsandpistols.com ( A western romance blog )
www.writespassage.blogspot.com ( A Christian fiction blog of bestselling authors )
Karen has generously offered a free copy of her newest release, the novella collection – A Match Made in Texas to one lucky winner.
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