Millie is giving away one of each of her books! Make sure to leave a comment and your email address!
How long have you known that you were a writer? Did you receive a clear “call?” Or have you just loved writing all your life?
The seeds for my first and surprise Last Supper book were planted decades ago in China, where I was born and raised during devastating WWII times. (Yes, my younger brother and I survived, but our three older brothers are buried in Xian.) Until seventh grade, my sporadic schooling was by my missionary parents as we fled from place to place, seeking refuge from bombs and anti foreign-devil mobs.
During those years, Dad’s pocket New Testament was often my only textbook.
I still vividly remember one day reading a lesson in the Gospels, then asking, “Daddy, why didn’t Jesus have any girl disciples?”
That said, each of my novels has taken me about five years to write, and the same for my newest Last Supper book. But keep in mind, I don’t write full-time.
You recently had a book published. Would you take this time to describe it to us? How and where can readers buy your books?
What is the spiritual message in your book? What can readers expect to get from reading it?
While I write to inform and entertain,
I write because of the message words contain.
And what is that, you may be wondering,
As upon my words you have been pondering.
The answer? God grants His loving grace
To those who pray and seek God’s face.
Those lines just came to me as I started to write Romans 8:28 for you. This Bible verse is the theme and testimony of all I write, whether the circumstances are filled with light or darkness: “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them” (NLT).
I often pray God will speak to each reader of my books in a personal and encouraging way. Based on the steady, affirming feedback I receive (often email from people I don’t know), God is answering that prayer.
Do you ever feel like giving up? Most people don’t understand the stress, the work, and the joy of being a writer. How tenuous becoming a writer is. Do you care to share how it feels, what discouraging/encouraging times you’ve gone through?
No, I’ve never felt like “giving up”! My writing journey has been nearly one hundred percent joyous (minus a bit for rejections here and there). Sometimes, though, I do ask God, “Okay, if this isn’t going to work out, what should I try next or wait for?” And God always opens some door of opportunity or encouragement. I hear about authors having disappointing self-publishing experiences, but I sure haven’t. Even if it all stopped right now, I could look back and say, “Thanks, God! What a wonderful experience! Thanks for using the stories in my books to bless and strengthen many, including me.”
Who’s inspired you the most?
The greatest Author of all, God, and the God-inspired stories in the Holy Bible!
Many humans, too, like Emily Bronte, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Willa Cather, C.S. Lewis (can you tell I taught English?), L.M. Montgomery, Lloyd C. Douglas, Pearl Buck, Amy Tan, Mary Stewart, Tony Hillerman, Jan Karon, Jeanette Oke, Gus Lee, Harry Petrakas, Rosamunde Pilcher, John Grishman, and oh so many more. For me, the best part about reading other’s stories is how they inspire me to write “my” stories. I often remember as I write what C.S. Lewis said: “We are never closer to God, the Creator, than when we ourselves are creating.” The novel craft book that’s helped me the most is Penelope J. Stokes’ Writing & Selling the Christian Novel.
Now, that you’re published, can you sit back and relax from the success you’ve experienced?
No, not until I sense that’s God’s will for me. Right now, I’m having too great a time to just “sit back and relax.”
Do you mind telling us some of your likes and dislikes? Hobbies, interests? Where would you like to travel if you could?
My greatest dislike in life is war, based on today’s news reports and my own childhood experiences. I had terrible war nightmares for decades. But now that I’ve written my China novels and told about some of those horrific experiences, I’ve been freed from those nightmares. I’ve always known writing was excellent therapy, and now I know it in a major way.
While my worst experiences happened overseas, that’s also true of some of my best experiences. I LOVE to travel, and so does my husband Dave. Together we’ve lived or traveled in more than thirty countries. Some of our recent travels have taken us to the Holy Land, Sweden, and China (including a Yangtze River cruise). We really enjoy cruises, and count ones to Alaska, the Greek Islands, and the Caribbean among our favorite trips.
Would you give us your blog or webpage so everyone can check it out? Anything else you’d like to share? Promotional information?
- Looking for a speaker? I’m always grateful for any door that opens for God’s message through my books and me.
- Check out my website: http://www.milliesbooks.org/.
- I also blog every second Friday of the month on http://www.hoosierink.blogspot.com/, a great site where ACFWriters from all over Indiana take turns blogging every day.
- On Face Book, I’m Millie Nelson Samuelson, and I enjoy new friends.
Thank you so much for being here today. Your interview was interesting and gave me more of an idea of your writing life and you.
Readers, please don't forget to leave a comment and your email address for a chance to win one of Millie's books!