Interview with Pam Hillman

» Posted on Aug 26, 2011 in Blog | 3 comments

Pam HillmanThis week I’m hosting Christa Allan with The Edge of Grace, Cerella Sechrist with Love Finds You in Hershey, PA, Raquel Byrnes with Purple Knot (an ebook), and Pam Hillman with Stealing Jake (there is no drawing from this blog but Pam is having a contest at this link:  http://pamhillman.blogspot.com/2011/07/pams-blog-tour-kindle-contest.html for a Kindle giveaway). If you want to enter the drawings for Christa Allan, Cerella Sechrist or Raquel Byrnes’ books, 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 margaretdaley@gmail.com. The drawings end Sunday (August 28th) evening.

Interview of Pam Hillman:

1.  What made you start writing? 

My age. That sounds kind of funny, doesn’t it? But it’s true. As a child, I was fascinated by how authors put all those stories on paper. Somehow, my brain just naturally made up stories. But for years, I didn’t write them down. I tried to get started a few times, but didn’t know how to construct a compelling story with an interesting beginning, firm middle, and satisfying ending. So out of lack of knowledge and fear of failure, I just kept dreaming. I think I had the idea that as long as I didn’t attempt to write, I couldn’t fail at writing, if that makes sense. In 1994, I decided that I had to put up or shut up. So I started and I haven’t looked back.

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

I’ve been writing for 17 years, along with raising a family, and working a full time job. Stealing Jake is my first published novel, and I sold it to Tyndale House Publishers in May of this year, and it came out in ebook form in July 2011. Talk about a fast turn-around!

3.  How do you handle rejections?

I pull myself up (with a little help from my friends) and keep moving forward. Writing, submitting, and getting rejections are just like going to school. And the rejections don’t stop after landing that first contract. Seekerville rule #1: You’ve got 24 hours for a pity-party, then you gotta pull up those bootstraps and try, try again! Come to Seekerville and we’ll give you a hug and a Ruthy-style pep-talk.

4.  Why do you write?

Because I’m a story teller. Some people are passionate about music. They love to sing, play the guitar, or the piano. Others long to act, to be on the stage in front of a crowd or on the big screen in Hollywood. And then there are those of us who get to make up stories that make people laugh, cry, smile, and sometimes think. That’s why I write.

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

Well, if I wasn’t writing, first, I’d finally get around to a cleaning house. Doesn’t sound like much fun, huh? But once that little monster was under control, I’d gradually get back to horseback riding with my husband. I say gradually because his idea of a horseback ride is 8 hours in the saddle from the get-go. I need to break back in to riding at a much slower pace than that, or they’ll have to pry me out of the saddle at the end of the day!

6.  What are you working on right now?

As for what’s next, there’s a feisty young widow named Johanna Thorndike in Stealing Jake who’s looking to tell her story along with a brawny coal mine owner named Trey. Working title is Trusting Trey.

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

Good question! I don’t think so, but I think I’m too close to the story and the characters to really know that. Now that some of my family and close friends have read Stealing Jake, I’ll have to ask them if they see traces of me in the book. Some of the reviews mention that I’m passionate about saving children. I’m not a crusader, but I can’t stand to see someone bullied or taken advantage of. I’ve always fought for the underdog. So many there is a good bit of me in my books.

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

When Livy O’Brien spies a young boy jostling a man walking along the boardwalk, she recognizes the act for what it is. After all, she used to be known as Light-fingered Livy. But that was before she put her past behind her and moved to the growing town of Chestnut, Illinois, where she’s helping to run an orphanage. Now she’ll do almost anything to protect the street kids like herself.

Sheriff’s deputy Jake Russell had no idea what he was in for when he ran into Livy–literally–while chasing down a pickpocket. With a rash of robberies and a growing number of street kids in town–as well as a loan on the family farm that needs to be paid off–Jake doesn’t have time to pursue a girl. Still, he can’t seem to get Livy out of his mind. He wants to get to know her better . . . but Livy isn’t willing to trust any man, especially not a lawman.

Interwoven throughout is a group of street kids arrested in Chicago and sold as child labor. Leading this band of ragamuffins is young Luke, a scared, determined orphan intent on rescuing his little brother at any cost.

9.  Do you have any advice for other writers?

Don’t cheat the reader, not in any way, form or fashion. Make your story good, make it better, then take it over the top so that the reader falls in love with it. When you’re polishing the final draft, tell yourself that it’s going to sell and that thousands of people are going to read it and you owe it to your readers not to hold anything back.

10. How important is faith in your books?

I am a Christian, so I write from a Christian world view. My stories are about the situations the characters find themselves in, but the way they react to those situations is directly related to where they are in their walk with the Lord.

11. What themes do you like to write about?

Revenge. Forgiveness. Unworthiness. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. But these three are probably the core of most of my writing.

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

I’ll have to say Stealing Jake for now. I was able to tell Jake & Livy’s story, along with Luke’s and the other street-kids. I’m so thankful that I kept working on it until I developed it into a full-bodied story with several POV characters.

13. What is your writing schedule like? 

Since I have a full-time job, and I’m the conference treasurer for ACFW, I plot and write in spurts and chunks of time rather than having a set time to write every day. I’ve been doing a lot of promotion for Stealing Jake for the past few weeks, though, so I’m itching to get back to my wip to see what my characters are going to do next.

Margaret, thank you so much for having me today. To celebrate the release of Stealing Jake, I’m giving away a Kindle loaded with Seeker books! As of this writing, there are EIGHT books preloaded on the Kindle. To sign up for a chance to win, click here.

Kindle Giveaway Link: http://pamhillman.blogspot.com/2011/07/pams-blog-tour-kindle-contest.html

 

 

Stealing Jake Prologue and 1st Chapter: http://pamhillman.blogspot.com/2007/11/stealing-jake-prologue.html

Stealing Jake Amazon link: 

http://www.amazon.com/Stealing-Jake-ebook/dp/B0057Z87DK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1309377471&sr=8-1

Stealing Jake B&N link: 

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/stealing-jake-pam-hillman/1103995167?ean=9781414366616&itm=1&usri=stealing%2bjake

Stealing Jake CBD link: 

http://www.christianbook.com/stealing-jake-ebook-pam-hillman/9781414366616/pd/19108EB?item_code=WW&netp_id=936169&event=ESRCG&view=details


3 Comments

  1. Margaret, thank you for inviting me to your home away from home on the web. Your questions made me think about why I write and my relationship with readers. I never want to lose sight of that.

  2. I’m so glad you started writing and haven’t looked back, Pam. Stealing Jake stole my heart for homeless kids. Fabulous job! I can’t wait for Trusting Trey.

    • Thanks Diana! I have so many horrible, dangerous, terrible situations for Trey & Johanna to get into. I wonder if they’ll cooperate? Nah, probably not! lol

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