Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Bear sighting and the Amish? Interview with Author Laura Hilton

Janna Kauffman loves grocery shopping for the homebound in her Amish community. When Janna’s sister washes her hands of her rebellious daughter, Meghan, and sends her to live with her Amish relatives, Janna is spending less time shopping and more time explaining Meghan’s actions to police officer Hiram “Troy” Troyer.
Formerly Amish Troy becomes a regular part of Janna and Meghan’s lives as Meghan continues to act out due to her Englisch mother’s rejection.

Could God tame a headstrong teenager and help Janna and Troy find love in the midst of it all?

Award winning author, Laura Hilton, her husband, Steve, and their five children make their home in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas. She is a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom and home-schools three of her children. Her two oldest children are homeschool graduates and are in college. Laura is also a breast cancer survivor.
Her publishing credits include three books in the Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House: Patchwork Dreams, A Harvest of Hearts, and Promised to Another. And the Amish of Webster County series, Healing Love. Surrendered Love releases April 2013, and the third book will release September 2013.

A non-Amish book The Appalachian Ballad Quilt will release November 2014 from Abingdon Press. Laura is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Laura is a professional book reviewer for the Christian market, with over a thousand book reviews published at various online review sites.
For more information about Laura, click here or here. For more on the book, here or connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Ten Questions for Author Laura Hilton
What should readers know about your latest release? Does it differ from your past books, offer a new perspective on a familiar topic, or shed light on a unique situation?

Surrendered Love varies widely from my earlier books, but it still seems to theme around forgiveness.

What was the main inspiration for the new book? Had the idea been on your mind for a while or just popped into it one day?
It popped in my head one day, and I wrote a blurb so I wouldn’t forget it – and then when I was planning a new series, I worked that one in. It was time.

Why do you feel compelled to write—in your genre or at all?
God called me, as a child, to write. It is something I have to do. What God has given me a passion for, He’s given me permission for.

How has travel been involved in your writing and/or research? What’s been your most memorable research experience?
I’ve traveled to and through Seymour several times. For the September 2013 release, Awakened Love, I went to Shipshewana.  I even researched the bear sighting—which really happened in Seymour for Surrendered Love –as well as  the buggy accident in Surrendered Love which also really happened.

Who has inspired you the most on your writing journey—a loved one, fellow author, favorite teacher?
That is hard to answer. My parents were encouraging. Another writer was encouraging. My agent was. And one man read my finished books and really encouraged me by telling others that my books had a message in them that must be heard. He bought copies of my books for missionaries.

What surprised you the most about the writer’s journey—publication, representation, platform building, the writing itself?
Marketing. I am not a self-promoter at all.  I am who I am. I devote my life to promoting other authors! It is so foreign for me to try to promote myself.  That is by and far the hardest thing for me as a writer.

If you could rewind time to when you began your pursuit of publication, what would you tell yourself?
Don’t jump ahead of the horse. Wait until a big house/agent notices you instead of going with a small press with substandard work. BUT that said, God has called some authors to self-publish. And not all small press writings are substandard. I’m speaking for myself only. Mine was, in my opinion, and no one else’s is included in that opinion.

Now to have some fun with travel…
What’s your favorite place you have visited?

The Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Someday I would love to set a book there. I do have a historical set there that a publisher is ‘holding’ and I have a contemporary planned, if God opens the door in that direction.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be? Or would you return to somewhere you’ve already been?

I would love to go to Prince Edward Island.  Shipshewana, and spend more time. Holland, Michigan. The U.P. of Michigan…a number of places. 
And now a fun tidbit—if there was one special travel destination just for writers and you were the founder of it, what would the name be and would it be located?

I am not a good title writer, so I would need to poll the audience for the name of the writing retreat. But it would be on the beach, definitely.
Readers, name this retreat – and you could win a copy of Surrendered Love. Leave your suggestion in the comments and include contact information!


  1. Smoky Mountain Fall Retreat

    It's a beatiful time of year there and very peaceful. You can rent cabins and there is lots of sight seeing for the down times.


  2. I love the Maine coastline! You can walk a small distance and find a shady spot overlooking the ocean and the hours just slowly go by. So very peaceful there. I hope to go back there again some day.
    I too love the UP.....Loved Mackinac Island! I've never been to Shipshewanna but do spend a LOT of time in Holmes County, Ohio; I highly recommend a visit if you haven't been.
    My suggestion is:

    Bayside Retreat