Please join me in welcoming debut author Laura Frantz. Her historical novel, The Frontiersman’s Daughter, was released in August by Revell and has received a multitude of five-star reviews. Today, she’s offered to share a little about herself and give us a peek into her writing life.
Please tell us a little about yourself.
I was born and raised in Kentucky and my love of history goes deep – way back to the 18th-century when my family first came into the Bluegrass State. It will always be home to me, even though I now live with my husband, Randy, and my sons, Wyatt and Paul, in the misty woods of northwest Washington. I go back as often as I can to visit family and all the old haunts that I love.
I grew up playing on the original site of Fort Boonesborough and swimming in the Kentucky River and climbing the Pinnacle near Berea and watching the great outdoor dramas of the early settlers. Often my cousins and brother and I would play in my Granny’s attic and dress up in the pioneer costumes she made us and pretend to be Daniel Boone, Rebecca, Jemima, or the Shawnee.
As I grew up I began to write stories and they were always historical, filled with the lore I had heard or read about. It’s no accident that my first book (which is actually my fifth book – the others were practice!) is about those first Kentucky pioneers.
I feel blessed beyond measure to write books. My prayer is that you are doubly blessed reading them.
What do you think is the greatest invention of all time?
The public library! Where else can you take something home for free, if only for 3 weeks!? I’ve had a love affair with libraries since I was a little girl and still do. When I go I still get excited and hate to leave.
Would you rather meet your great-grandchildren or your great-grandparents?
Without a doubt, my great-grandparents! They died shortly before I was born and I was named after my great-granny. They lived so much history and since history is my passion, I have so many unanswered questions. For example, why did my great-granny, the belle of her tiny Kentucky town, wait till she was 35 to marry and then marry my grandpappy, a one-legged man? Why did they only have one child, my grandfather? Why was her father never the same after fighting in the Civil War and being held at Andersonville Prison? Why did she collect rocks from every county in Kentucky? Silly questions, perhaps, but I’m left wondering.
Do you have a specific Scripture that you hold onto?
Prior to being published I came across this verse: The Lord will accomplish what concerns me; your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting; do not forsake the works of Your hands. Psalms 138:8
When I wonder what the future holds, especially in regards to my writing, I ponder this verse and trust that He has me in hand and my future is secure.
What jobs have you had in your life? What did you like most? Least?
I’ve scooped ice cream at Baskin Robbins, babysat, taught school, waitressed, and been a social worker. All of them provided great fodder for my writing:) But I’d not want to return to doing them as writing has always been my first love. I pray I can keep writing for as long as I can hold a pen or use a laptop:)
About Laura’s Writing
What’s the most exciting part of the writing journey for you? Most difficult?
I love being able to say I’m an author after 40 years of hiding it! It’s a real joy to have a dream fulfilled. I’d have to say that the most exciting part of the journey would be getting the news about the official title for my book (usually different but better than the one I’ve dreamed up) and also seeing my book cover for the first time. And, of course, holding the actual book in hand. Too many joys to count! The downside would be negative reviews though the postive ones sure make you smile. And I love reader mail. It’s a privilege to answer every one.
What do you hope readers will gain from your novel?
I hope they will see Christ manifested in the novel in some way – His truth through fiction. If my words inspire someone to draw closer to Him or seek Him out or realize His love and forgiveness, then that’s a big blessing to both the reader and myself. I also love books that offer an escape. If you finish my book and feel like you’ve said goodbye to a friend, have come to care about my characters, and hate to see it end, then I’ll feel I’ve been a good steward of the writing gift God has given me.
What do the post-its around your computer/desk say?
No post-its but I do have a little rock with flowers painted on it which says “GROW.” It’s a reminder to me that writing is a learning process and God is stretching me, often beyond my comfort zone, but it’s for my good and His glory.
What works do we have to look forward to from you in future?
I feel so blessed to write 18th-century fiction which is a mostly unexplored time period in the inspirational market. My next novel, Courting Morrow Little, due out next summer, involves a young woman and her preacher father on the Red River in Kentucky during the Revolutionary War. This book details an unusual courtship which I hope readers will enjoy so much they’ll find it hard to put the book down:)
You can learn more about Laura Frantz and her books at her website www.LauraFrantz.net and on her blog, Laura’s Journal, at www.laurafrantz.blogspot.com.