This past September my first novel, Emma and the Reasons, released.
It’s girly and funny (and maybe a bit silly) and hopefully encouraging in some unexpected ways.
And besides all that—do you see this fun collection of gifts in the photo? They are all connected to Emma and her roommates in some way, and I am giving away this whole gift set to someone! (This giveaway has now ended.)
I’ve had quite a few questions and comments about the book in the months since it released, so I thought I’d take a minute to give you a few fun facts about the story, where it came from, and answer the never-ending question… “Are you Emma?”
1. Yes, Emma and the Reasons was inspired by my life, but no, it’s not biographical.
When I started writing Emma and the Reasons I was living with two roommates. No, the characters in the book are not replicas of the three of us, but yes, some of the interactions and situations were inspired by true events.
For example: we all learned to love coffee together, and we might have been known to hitch a ride to church from random single men in order to laugh at the raised eyebrows.
Oh, and we really did welcome all the young children on our street into our house for treats and stories about Jesus and all the songs they could convince us to sing.
2. I accidentally prophesied about two of my best friends while writing Emma.
One of the few characters in the book that I actually used specific close-to-me people to create is the character of Shari Green. I made a composition of the personalities of two of my best friends and then imagined a life for her.
When I gave my character an occupation, I decided on town librarian.
And when I gave her a love interest, I decided on a tall redhead.
Years after the book was written, one of my real-life Shari-inspirations became the town librarian and the other married a tall redhead. And no, neither of these things were possibilities at the time of the writing.
Mmhmm. Not kidding.
Of course, this might be more of a testament to me understanding the true personalities of my friends than anything to do with prophecy—but it’s still a fun story to tell!
3. One of the men in the story originally looked a bit like the guy I liked when I first wrote the book (long before I was married)…and I, not joking, rewrote his character to be more like my husband before the final edits.
What can I say? I learned what a great guy is like… 😉
4. While the characters of the Women of Promise girls are completely made up, the names were not—they belonged to actual girls in my church at the time.
I had a real-life group of “WoP” girls that I mentored, and I wanted to write a similar type of group into my book—but I was having a hard time coming up with names.
One day after church I was watching a group of several 5-8 year old girls playing together and thought, “Oooh, if my characters went to a church like this, these girls would be some of their ‘future WoP girls’.”
And boom. I had my names.
Little did I know most of those “little” girls would be in their 20’s before my book ever saw the light of day.
(Let this be my hearty “thank you” to Avery, Brooke, Breanna, Courtney, and Alexis for hanging out together that day. Your names inspired a really fun part of Emma’s story.)
5. In answer to the question, “Are you Emma?”
Since Emma and the Reasons is written in first person, I totally understand why it seems like I am writing my own personality into the story.
But no, Emma is not based completely off me.
There are some strong similarities, for sure. Her love for children and her interactions with the neighborhood kids definitely comes from me.
However, though I created Emma to have a similar worldview as I do, I did not give her my exact personality.
When I started writing this book, I had just started joking about the 3 types of women (you can read this post to get the overview of what I call my “stuck in an elevator theory”.) and I decided to make Emma an Instantly Attractive type, which plays an important role in her reasons and her story.
I am so not this type. Not even a little bit. And trust me when I say, there were never multiple guys vying for my attention. Ha!
That said. I did write myself into another character.
But I’m not telling you which one. 😉
This giveaway is now closed.
- One signed paperback copy of Emma and the Reasons
- One Café Press Stainless Steel travel mug
- One 10 oz package of Tug Hill Artisan Roasters Coffee
- One 4 oz Pure Maple Syrup
Comment on this blog post with “one thing very clever…or two things moderately clever; or three things very dull indeed.”
Or…just leave the title to the book the above quote came from in the comments and I’ll add your name to the giveaway list! 😉
This giveaway closes 12:00 am on January 24, 2019 and is open to US residents only.
Winner will be chosen by random and will be contacted via email. Winner will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.