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Full Cover for More Remarkable Housewives of the Bible

More Remarkable Housewives of the Bible is complete and ready for release on January 31st! It should be available for preorder within the next few days. Until then, take a look at the fabulous full cover spread!

MoreRemarkableHousewivesoftheBiblePrintPREVIEW

 

An Interview with Shirley Kiger Connolly

1.     Please tell us a little about yourself. Who is Shirley Kiger Connolly?

As a mom with three grown children and several grandchildren, I’m also the wife of a former pastor. That’s a story in itself. After my college years I graduated from the Institute of Children’s Literature, and I love to pen reflections and share my thoughts with readers in need of encouragement. I also love to be creative. Part of that includes doing research for the historical fiction romances I write that are laced with nuggets of inspiration. Since my husband and I have stayed in the ministry in some capacity, I continue to speak and teach at women’s retreats and Bible Studies. Outside writing and speaking, I stay actively involved at home with my beloved animals, and from whom I learn so much about life. My husband and I remain avid travelers and vagabonds, gypsies of a sort. We’ve lived and traveled in some of the most amazing places, from North Queensland, Australia to Grenada, over in the West Indies down to California, up in Washington and all the way across the US to New York. I must admit it’s not as easy for me as it once was to pull up roots. Most of all, the Shirley Kiger Connolly, I know today simply loves to write.

2.       You’ve written a romance, as well as a collection of devotionals. Which type of writing do you most enjoy?

I really began by writing feature articles back when I was in my journalism classes for the school newspaper. Although they weren’t necessarily inspirational, they always had a moral or focus at the end. I began penning romances back in the 80s and Flame from Within was my second published novel. I love to do the romances, probably because I can escape in them and search for a deeper meaning in what I’m writing. The books of reflections I write allow me to bring a sense of inspiration to absolutely anything that comes to my mind. I get strange ideas throughout the day from the time I wake up till when I go to sleep at night. I imagine my mood dictates which I’m enjoying the most at the moment.

3.       A book of devotionals contains such a diverse range of topics. Where do you get all the ideas?

Absolutely everywhere. I find a story or a message or a moral of some kind in everything about life. I’m always learning something more about what God has to teach me. Since He’s the Creator of life and all there is about life, He has a purpose in everything. I might be in bed, on the couch, out in the laundry room, taking a walk, or maybe even sitting in the pew at church daydreaming when I should be listening to the message, or watching the fire blaze in the fireplace, or cutting a piece of steak (medium rare, please and with steak sauce on top) while I’m at the dinner table. There’s always something new I need to learn about the Lord that I can share with others to encourage them or enlighten them about something they might not have necessarily gained insight to until I brought their attention to it.

4.       How long have you been writing? How difficult was it to get that first book in print?

I’ve been writing something or other since I was at the tender age of eight. Back then it was poems or little pun-flavored stories, even before I knew what a pun was.  Most were pretty silly.

How difficult was it to get my first book in print? Once I found a publisher twenty years after I wrote (terribly) my first tender romance, and before Vinspire found me much later, it was way too easy to get it into print to tell you the truth. That was because I didn’t do research into the company I came across online and sent my manuscript to. It’s a lesson important to learn early. I realized later I was stuck someplace where I didn’t learn a thing to help me with my writing.

5.       Tell us about the day you got “the call” for the first time.

My real call came from the Editor-in-Chief at Vinspire (when the company went by a different name). My husband and I were in the kitchen cooking dinner together. He was giving me a hand because I wasn’t feeling too well that night. He got the phone and brought it in to me and told me who it was. I was flabbergasted. Then I panicked, because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to respond to the kind voice on the other end. I know I did a terrible job. But somehow I got through it. (Thankfully, the editor didn’t change her mind.) I just remember wanting to cry and laugh at the same time. I never did eat my dinner that night.

6.       Are you currently working on any new projects?

I’m always working on something. I’m in the brainstorm stage of another devotional (as I love to write for women). And I’m at the early stages of another story. It takes me a very long time to write anything, because, though I know what I want to do, I always want to fix things before I get too far. I have this habit of doing a billion things at the same time. Right now, I am also in the fourth chapter of my newest story while I wait to hear about another story I have out somewhere looking for a taker. I can’t tell you how many times I edited that one before I thought it was ready enough to really begin searching.  I’m also waiting for the release of my third devotional, which I’m looking forward to sharing with the world.

7.       What do you find most challenging about writing a novel? (POV? Conflict? Mechanics? Dialogue? Etc.)

No longer the POV although that used to be a real problem for me. I’m fine with conflict too. Maybe it would be the mechanics. For me, that would be the guts of the thing, and also the grammar aspect.  I know I want a good beginning, middle and end. It’s the in between, and making it work, while I also make my hero and heroine likable to the reader.  That’s where critique partners come in for me. hey are worth their weight in gold.

8.       You’re a teacher and speaker as well as a writer. How do you balance so many hats on just one head?

Well, I’ve always loved a diversity of hats as long as they’re color coordinated with what I’m wearing. (smile) Maybe that helps. I don’t care if they are in style or not. I just make them work. It’s the same with whatever I teach or speak about. My subject matter often finds its way into what I write in my devotional books. Or what I learn from sharing with others or from hearing about the lives of others in a counseling session might often find its way into the nucleus of a story I’m writing. It all seems to meld together. That’s my balance as best as I can do it.

9.       What’s your strangest writing habit?

Being too wordy for one. The other would be how quickly someone tells me how much she or he sees me in my writing. I’ve heard that from readers continuously, who say, if they know me, “I could see you so much in that story,” or “When I read your reflection it was like you were sitting right next to me talking to me face to face.”

10.     What one piece of writing advice has been the most beneficial to you on your writing journey?

Learn and take to heart the lessons you are being taught by those more experienced than you, who are the best help in the world to make you a better writer today than you were yesterday.

Shirley Kiger Connolly is the author of Flame from Within, I See God in the Simple Things, and I See God in the Thorns ~n~ Thistles as well as the upcoming I See God on the Narrow Road.

Interview questions provided by Delia Latham.


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