Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Come Meet Jody Hedlund

The great thing about finding a new author to love is that you get wonderful books to read; books that draw you in and make you a part of the story, so much so that you don't want it to end! The bad thing is, they can NEVER write fast enough and it leaves you impatiently anticipating the next book. 

That's how I feel about Jody Hedlund. She's written two beautiful historical fiction novels that I absolutely loved. I'd like to introduce you to her and her new book The Doctor's Lady. Click here to see a trailer. (Jody is visiting the blog today so if you have questions or comments, please post them today.)

What was the inspiration behind The Doctor’s Lady?

This book is inspired by the true life story of Narcissa Whitman, the first white woman to brave the dangers of overland trail and travel west. In 1836, she married Dr. Whitman, and then the next day left her childhood home and would never return for the purpose of starting a mission among the Nez Perce natives.
It was my hope in this story to bring Narcissa Whitman to life. This heroic woman has often been ignored and at times even disparaged. In reality, she exuded incredible courage to attempt a trip many proclaimed foolishly dangerous. It was called an “unheard-of-journey for females.” Because of her willingness to brave the unknown, she led the way for the many women who would follow in her footsteps in what would later become known as the Oregon Trail.

What message do you hope readers take away?

I hope readers are inspired to try new things and brave dangerous prospects in the pursuit of their dreams. When we go after the things that matter, we’ll have to take risks and we’ll experience setbacks and obstacles. But if we persevere, we can reach our destination and do great things along the way.

  As a homeschooling mom of five children, how do you manage to find time to write?

It’s definitely not easy. I feel like I have two very full time jobs! But like any other writer trying to balance dual careers or multiple responsibilities, I’ve had to look for ways to make it work. I’ve scaled-back on outside commitments and simplified home life as much as possible. I also stick to a very strict writing schedule when I’m in first draft mode. I block out writing time and don’t let myself go to bed at night unless I get in my daily word count.

If money were absolutely no object, what is one place you would love to go with only your husband? And as a family?

I’d love to take a research trip to England. I know my husband would enjoy going too and would put up with my obsessive need to read about and study all the historical details of everything I come across.
My children on the other hand don’t have as much patience for my appetite for history. So I’d love to take them hiking in the Rockies or to Yellowstone.  


Do you ever reach a point where you can read through a manuscript and NOT find something to correct and/or change?

No. I can always find something (usually LOTS of things) to change! Because of that, I’ve decided I won’t ever re-read my books once they’re in print. I’m afraid if I do read one of my books, I might see a mistake (or something I’d like to change), and I’ll get frustrated that I can’t go back and make the correction.

When you’re tired and running out of steam but need to keep writing, what recharges and re-energizes you the best?

Most of the time, putting in my earbuds and listening to music keeps me writing. The steady rhythm helps me block out distractions, inspires me, and often evokes strong emotions deep inside me.

What’s coming next?

In 2012, my next historical romance releases. I’m really excited about this story because it’s set in my home state of Michigan. It takes place during the 1880’s at a time in history when the lumber era was at its height. Although the story isn’t inspired by a true person the way my first two books have been, I do include several real people, particularly a real villain by the name of James Carr who was notorious in central Michigan for his violence and for introducing white slavery into the state.

 The heroine of the story is a young woman, Lily Young, who is looking for her sister who’s caught up into the degradation of lumber camp life. While Lily searches for her missing sister, she fights against the evil that runs rampant around her, and she fights not to lose her heart to the lumber baron who turns a blind eye to the lawlessness of the lumber business.

Where can readers find you?

I hang out on Facebook here: Author Jody Hedlund
I also love to chat on Twitter: @JodyHedlund
My home base is at my website: jodyhedlund.com

Jody Hedlund is an award-winning historical romance novelist and author of the best-selling book, The Preacher's Bride. She received a bachelor’s degree from Taylor University and a master’s from the University of Wisconsin, both in Social Work. Currently she makes her home in Michigan with her husband and five busy children. Her second book, The Doctor’s Lady released in September 2011.

I hope you enjoyed the interview with Jody and have found a new author to love. To help you with that, I'm giving away two copies of The Doctor's Lady. All you have to do is post a comment and you'll be entered to win. It's easy. Winners will be selected at random, and posted tomorrow. 

Thank you, Jody, for visiting with us today, and for writing such wonderful books. (Could you just write them a little faster, please??)  


Suzanne said...

I've heard great things about Jody's writing and would love the opportunity to read one of her books.
Suzanne :O)

Carol Moncado said...

I've got both of Jody's books but would love to win one for a friend.

Can't wait for the next one, friend!

Because I already have Jody's books, I hadn't planned to pop in, but the phrase up there grabbed me.

For such a time as this.

Janice Thompson mentioned something about it recently. The ladies' Bible study next to me this morning at Panera mentioned it.

I think God might have a message for me in here somewhere...

Thanks ladies!

Kim F said...

Jody shared some great thoughts with us today. England is certainly full of rich history for future books! Look forward to reading your books

babykf at hotmail dot com

Jody Hedlund said...

Hi ladies! Thank you so much for all stopping by today! And Carol, it really does sound as if God is trying to send you a message! :-) Blessings to each of you!

Tonnie said...

I love reading your blogs. I just started writing children's books last year. Reading about your struggles and how you overcame them. Those along with your triumphs keep me going. Blessings to you.