Sandra Robbins’ interview

» Posted on Aug 18, 2009 in Blog | Comments Off on Sandra Robbins’ interview

This week I’m hosting Sandra Robbins with Final Warning and Golden Keyes Parsons with In the Shadows of the Sun King. If you want to enter the drawing for the book, please leave a comment on one of the post during the week with your email address. I will not enter you without an email address (my way to contact you if you win). If you don’t want to leave an email address, another way you can enter is to email me at The drawings end Sunday (Aug 23rd) evening.

Sandra Robbins’ interview:

1. What made you start writing?

I always had the dream that one day I would write a novel. However, my days were filled with being a teacher, a wife, and a mother to four children. As my children grew older, I moved from being an elementary teacher to the position of principal, and again my dream was put to the side. One day it suddenly dawned on me that life is short and I might never write a book if I didn’t get started. So I sat down and began to write. I knew nothing about the craft. I just began putting my thoughts down on paper. That first book has never sold, but I learned about writing while I was working on it.

2. How long have you been writing? When did you sell your first book?

I started writing six years ago and sold my first book three years after I began. When I got the call from the editor who bought it, I was thrilled and amazed at how God had blessed me in such a short time. His blessings continued when this book was a finalist in the inspirational category of the Daphne du Maurier Awards sponsored by the Kiss of Death Chapter of Romance Writers of America.

3. How do you handle rejections?

I’ve had my share of rejections. That’s just part of the writer’s life, but I think I handle them well. I thought of rejections when I saw a message on a church sign in my hometown that said, “Patience is God’s timing.” When I receive a rejection, I know that it wasn’t the right fit for that particular editor and publishing house and that God has the right one picked out. I just have to wait for His timing.

4. Why do you write?

When I first started to write, I did it because I wanted to fulfill my dream and prove to myself I could write a book. However, after placing my writing life in God’s hands, I came to understand that the words I produce are going to be read by people I’ll never meet. If I can say something that will touch a need in the hearts of my readers, I feel like I will be doing what God wants me to do. I’ve received wonderful letters and emails from people who tell me how my books have impacted their lives, and I’m thankful that my words are being sent out to those I will never know.

5.What would you be doing with your free time if you weren’t writing?

There are many things I enjoy doing—reading, playing the piano, volunteering in various church-related ministries. I’m sure I would find something to fill my time. I think God expects us to carry on His work, and I would be busy.

6. What are you working on right now?

I have several things I’m working on. I have just submitted my completed manuscript for another Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense which will release in April, 2010. Its title is Mountain Peril. I am also working on a romantic suspense which deals with a young woman and the cadaver dog she’s trained, and I’m also working on a romantic suspense about a young man who returns home to face his past.

7. Do you put yourself into your books/characters?

I’ve never really intended to put myself in my characters, but I think we’re all a product of our past experiences. So I’m sure that’s reflected in my work.

8. Tell us about the book you have out right now.

Final Warning is the book that I have out right now. The heroine is C.J. Tanner, a radio talk show hostess. Her life changes when she receives an email from a listener who calls himself Fala. He challenges her to a game where she must solve his riddles to keep him from killing his next victim. When she can’t solve them, the gruesome murders begin, and she finds herself the pawn in a madman’s game. Her ex-fiancée Mitch Harmon is a police detective and is determined to catch the killer before he makes C.J. his final victim.

9. Do you have any advice for other writers?

My advice is the same as what I often hear from other writers. Go to writers’ conferences where you can network with other writers, editors, and agents. I think this is so important. I made my first sale from meeting a writer at a conference. Six months later she became editor at a publishing house and bought my first book. Also I would tell aspiring writers to develop a thick skin. You can’t survive in this business if you don’t. It’s a scary thing to send your manuscript out and know that not everyone will love it like you do.

10. How important is faith in your books?

Faith plays a big part in my books. My characters may not be believers at the beginning of the book, but by the end their experiences have opened their eyes to the fact that life is overwhelming if you don’t have God in your life.

11. What themes do you like to write about?

In my first book I dealt with Jesus’ commandment to love your neighbor as yourself. In Final Warning I deal with the affect that rejection has had on the heroine. In the book I’m working on now I deal with forgiveness.

12. What is your favorite book you’ve written and why?

That’s a tough question. It’s almost like asking which one of your children is your favorite. I love all my books, but I suppose if I had to choose one it would be Murder in Small Doses. This book has been contracted, but the release date has been extended into the future. I hope it sees publication because I had a great time writing that book. It is the sequel to Pedigreed Bloodlines and takes the heroine Leigh Dennison who suffers from Attention Deficit Disorder into the world of bunchers who take pets from people’s yards and sell them to unscrupulous Class B animal dealers who in turn sell them to research facilities. I enjoyed writing all the dilemmas that faced Leigh as she tried to stop the ring of lawbreakers.

13. What is your writing schedule like?

Although I don’t have a set schedule, I write some every day. I’m not a morning person, but I gather steam as I go through the day. By nighttime I’m charging ahead at full speed. So it’s not unusual for me to be up late writing. I even try to write some on weekends. I don’t set word or chapter goals for myself. I write until I feel like it’s time to stop.