Toady, Pamela S. Thibodeaux visits my blog and answers questions about her writing. Pamela has written a number of books (see her web site), but is introducing Tempered Dreams on this virtual book tour. Thank you for taking time to stop by, Pamela.
PAMELA: Thank you, Mary Emma, for hosting me and discussing my book, Tempered Dreams.
MEA: People frequently ask me, "Mary, where did you get the idea for that story?" So...since there seems to be universal interest in how authors find their ideas, I'll ask you, "How did you come up with the idea for this novel?"
PAMELA: How did I come up with the idea for this novel? To be honest, when I began my 'Tempered' series, I only had the idea for two books (Tempered Hearts #1 and Tempered Fire #3). However, when Dr. Scott Hensley came on the scene in Tempered Hearts, I knew he must have a story! My heroine and the opening scene had occurred to me several years back. I'd jotted down some notes and forgot about her/it. But when Scott started talking to me about his story, she came back to my mind. The rest, as they say, is history.
MEA: This appears to be a novel in a series. I started to ask you how you decided to write a series and if one book evolves from the first. You partially answered that above. Perhaps you’d like to expand upon this since series seem so popular.
PAMELA: Yes, Tempered Dreams is book two in a 5-part series. As I stated above, I'd originally intended to have only two books. However, as secondary characters came to life, I just knew they must have a chance to tell their story, too. On top of that, what intended to be only an interesting fact, turned into a major thread throughout the books….are Craig Harris (Tempered Hearts) and Scott Hensley (Tempered Dreams) blood relations as gossip and rumor has suggested? So yes, I guess you can say that three other stories evolved out of the original two
MEA: Not all of your novels have the same locale. Do you find it easier to write about one location or to vary this. How do you decide?
PAMELA: Well, four out of the five 'Tempered' novels take place in Bandera, Texas. However, since my heroine, Katrina Simmons, in Tempered Dreams lived in Louisiana, I had to find a way to have the two not only meet but develop a relationship. So the novel had to be set in Louisiana.
My other novels –not related to the series- have different settings. For instance, my novel The Inheritance (available from The Wild Rose Press) begins in Washington State and ends in Hammondsport, New York. I enjoy writing about different locales but usually it’s my characters who take me on their journey, not the other way around. Therefore, I don't always know what's going to happen, when it's going to happen or how it's going to happen. After all, this is their story….I'm just writing it down.
MEA: As an author, I'm often asked, "Do you outline and plan your stories? Or do the characters somewhat determine what happens?" Perhaps you'd like to answer these questions.
PAMELA: I'm definitely a SOTP (seat of the pants) writer and my characters determine every single thing that happens in a novel. Half the time, I have no idea what's happening or going to happen until I'm actually sitting down and writing. I may get a scene or two in advance, but really have no inkling as to where/when that scene takes place until the characters lead me up to it.
In fact, even I didn't know the answer to the question that evolved throughout the 'Tempered' series as to whether or not Craig Harris and Scott Hensley are blood brothers until book #4 Tempered Joy! That answer is what led me to begin book #5 Tempered Truth, which actually will take place before these two characters were born. Tempered Truth will be Scott's quest for the answer -the truth- about his parentage, because it's only when you know the truth that the truth can set you free.
MEA: Your novels often are referred to as "inspirational" ones. What do you hope your readers take away from this novel?
PAMELA: Well, Mary Emma, although my stories are "inspirational" I do not write 'conservative Christian.' My goal is to reach those outside the traditional CBA market/readership, those who might not ordinarily pick up a Christian novel. Tempered Dreams tackles the tough and sadly, growing, problem of domestic violence and though one might not be a victim of this hideous problem, chances are they know someone who is.
My prayer is that everyone who reads Tempered Dreams will get a realistic view of domestic violence and reaches out in some way to help and that they will experience a new appreciation for the blessings in their lives. I also pray that everyone who reads Tempered Dreams or any of my other novels will come into a fuller realization of the value and reality of a relationship with God through Christ.
Also, I hope to show through the characters in Tempered Dreams and all of my novels the awesome healing power of God through forgiveness and that forgiveness is where healing begins....accepting it, standing on it when the devil comes against you and reminds you of the sins of your past, and finally offering it.
One more thought if I may…Although I do not write conservative Christian, I am not saying that what I write is better, only different. My firm belief is that everything that gives God glory deserves to be praised!
Once again, thank you, Mary Emma for hosting me on my tour.
MEA: Thank you, Pamela, for visiting with me and providing insight into your writing. May you have much success with your Tempered series
(In conjunction with the Tour, Pam is giving away a discount coupon for 25% off the purchase of Tempered Dreams! Simply email her with "VBT Discount Coupon" in the subject line and she'll send your coupon with instructions on how to redeem it.)