Welcome to Writing for Christ Nancy Herriman, it is great to have you here! So you’re a writer? What made you decide to start creating characters and story world?
Thanks for having me, Casey!
Wow. What made me decide to start creating characters? I guess I would have to say I was bitten by the bug way back in eighth grade when our class was given a writing assignment. I dashed off a ten page short story, all the while imagining life as a famous author in a loft in Paris, perhaps, surrounded by other artists (and hopefully eating great food while there, but I digress…). When my teacher praised my writing, a dream took hold.
Clearly, I’m not living in Paris, but many, many years later I am at last fulfilling that dream. And by this point, the characters that pop up in my head wouldn’t let me rest if I did not write them down, so I must write anyway!
What is the one title that has significantly impacted your life?
There are so many books I could mention, but if I had to narrow down my choice, it would be The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. When I read it as a young kid, I was so inspired. I loved everything about it--the characters, the other-worldliness, and of course, the message. I confess that I loved the book so much (okay, this is embarrassing) that I used to act out scenes.
If you could get a do-over when it came to learning this whole thing called writing, what would you go back and tell yourself?
That attaining success, however you measure it, will require patience and resilience, a certain amount of humility, and a great deal of faith. Allow yourself to make mistakes--they are a part of what is required to learn the craft. Also, remember that the first draft does not have to be perfect. Not even close! I usually end up doing four or five drafts, and have to keep telling myself that lots of edits are simply a step in my process. The main goal for me is to get the words on the page and let the characters ‘speak’. I have been surprised (and delighted) more times than I could tell by the unexpected things my characters have done.
I would also tell myself to not get discouraged. Getting published may feel like the end of the journey, but in many ways it is only the beginning. Maintaining trust in your calling can be difficult when the world can seem set against you.
5 preference questions:
Homemade or take-out?
My mother’s cooking? I much prefer homemade, even though I am not the most patient cook.
Email or snailmail?
Email, definitely. Sadly, I can’t even remember when I last sent a real letter snail mail. A lost art, in my opinion.
Online shopping or Black Friday deals?
Online shopping ON Black Friday!!! I do a lot of online shopping (too much--just ask my husband).
Books or movies?
Books, without a doubt. I feel that a book allows a story to unfold in detail and in depth, whereas too often movies get caught up in cliche and fast pacing, character development lost in the rush to thrill.
Note-taker or memorization?
At my age, note-taker!
Yes, I’m asking you to play favorites…which of your books is your favorite, published or unpublished? And if this is your debut novel, has your favorite been published yet?
My favorite has to be my debut novel, The Irish Healer. That book was the first time I wrote with a specific theme in mind, specifically that through faith we can find healing. I also enjoyed doing the research required for the story, which takes place during the cholera epidemic that swept through England in 1832. The pre-Victorian London setting, the struggles of emigrants, and the medical details (since my heroine is a nurse and my hero, a doctor) fascinated me. And though in frustration I attempted to put the manuscript away more than once, the characters and their story kept calling me back. I’m glad I listened.
Places for readers to learn more about you?
Readers can learn more at my website, www.nancyherriman.com, where you will find a link to the opening chapter of my latest book, Josiah’s Treasure, as well as the opening chapters of The Irish Healer. If you participate in social media, you can find me at my Facebook author page, https://www.facebook.com/Author.NancyHerriman as well as at https://www.facebook.com/nancy.herriman. I also can be found on Twitter (@Nancy_Herriman).
Thank you for being with us today!
Again, thank you for having me, Casey! It’s been a pleasure.
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