Thursday, March 07, 2013

Interview With Dani Pettrey

The amazing Dani Pettrey agreed to do an interview with me and here it is!

Welcome! Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a wife, homeschooling mom, and author. I feel blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things I love--the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters' faith, and plenty of romance. My family and I live in Maryland, where
we love being so close to both the mountains and the ocean.

What is your latest release, Shattered, about?
Piper McKenna couldn't be more thrilled that her prodigal brother, Reef, has returned to Yancey, Alaska, after five years. But her happiness is short-lived when Reef appears at her house covered in blood. A fellow snowboarder has been killed--but despite the evidence, Reef swears he's innocent. And Piper believes him.
Deputy Landon Grainger loves the McKennas like family, but he's also sworn to find the truth. Piper is frustrated with his need for facts over faith, but he knows those closest to you have the power to deceive you the most. With his sheriff pushing for a quick conviction, some unexpected leads complicate the investigation, and pursuing the truth may mean risking Landon's career.
With Piper waging her own search, the two head deep into Canada's rugged backcountry--and unexpected complications. Not only does their long friendship seem to be turning into something more, but this dangerous case is becoming deadlier with each step.

I loved this book! Check out my review here!

What made you want to start writing?
I have always loved daydreaming and making up stories. I dabbled with creative writing growing up, but set it aside when I got married and had kids. It wasn't until after the birth of my youngest daughter and a bout with a serious illness that I really felt God stirring me to start writing again.

Who would you say has had the biggest influence on your life?
Other than the Lord, I would say my mom. It was just the two of us from the time I was nine. We had a really close relationship. She went home to be with the Lord a year ago and I still miss her terribly.

What is one of the best names you ever gave a character in a story-published or unpublished?
Hmmm. That’s a tough one. I guess I would have to say Gage. Not sure why it’s my favorite, but I really like the name and it really suits him.
I agree that it suits him!

Where is your favorite place to write?
Curled up on the loveseat in my office.

What would you say is your most interesting writer's quirk?
I write all my first drafts longhand. I know it’s unusual in this day of technology but put me in front of a computer scene for a first draft and I freeze up. There’s something about having pen to paper that helps the words flow.
I'm not a writer by any stretch of the imagination but I liked to write my school papers like that!

What activities do you enjoy besides writing?
Traveling, reading, hiking, and watching movies.

How do you to get over writer's block?
I’ve found two different approaches helpful. I either take some time away—go for a walk, watch an inspiring movie, take a nap, etc. or I immerse myself in my story world—make a story collage, do research, listen to music I think fits the story.
Since you mentioned music that fits the story I thought I'd just say that I loved the playlist you put up for Shattered! Very fitting!

If you could switch places with one of your characters for a day, which one would you pick?
Cole McKenna. I love his strength, bravery and sense of adventure.

What book or books are you currently reading?
The Survivor by DiAnn Mills and Holiness by J.C. Ryle.
Can't wait to read The Survivor!

What are some of your all-time favorite books and/or authors?
Jane Austen, Dee Henderson, Sue Grafton, Terri Blackstock and Karen Witemeyer.
I love Dee Henderson and Karen Witemeyer too!

Favorite book you read as a child?
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. I know it’s not your typical children’s favorite, but I've loved mysteries from a very young age :)

Favorite book or verse of the Bible?
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV 
I love it because it explains why death is so hard for us to deal with. It is because God has set eternity into our hearts. We know He has created us for more than this life, this world.

What is your favorite color?
Blue because it reminds me of the ocean.

Early bird or Night owl?
Night owl

Cat or dog?
Dog. We have two—a black Lab who thinks he’s a lap dog and a miniature dachshund who thinks she’s a lion :)

Tea or coffee?

What is a charity or mission that you are passionate about?
We sponsor a child through Compassion International and think it’s a wonderful way to help impact children and families for Christ. I also love Samaritan’s Purse—I think the work they do is incredible.
My brother and his wife sponsor a kid through Compassion and my family has a bunch of sponsor kids from Gospel for Asia and World Vision!

Are you currently working on a new book and can you tell us a bit about it?
I’m wrapping up edits on Stranded, which will be out this fall. Here’s a sneak peek:

When her friend vanishes from a cruise ship, reporter Darcy St. James isn’t satisfied with their explanation that she simply left her job of her own accord. Something isn’t lining up, and Darcy believes the only way to find the truth is to put herself in Abby’s position.
Within days, Darcy learns her friend wasn’t the only person to disappear mysteriously. Last summer, a woman vanished under almost identical circumstances.
Gage McKenna has taken a summer-long stint leading adventure excursions for the passengers of various cruise lines that dock for a few days of sightseeing. He’s surprised to find Darcy working aboard one of the ships, investigating a troubling report.
Something sinister is going on, and the deeper they dig, the more Gage fears they’ve only discovered the tip of the iceberg.

I can't wait!!!!

Thank you so much for answering my many questions Dani, and for writing such amazing books!


Dani Pettrey said...

Thanks so much for having me, Abby! Sounds like we have a lot in common--favorite authors and charities :)

Melanie said...

Great interview! Can't wait to read Stranded! :)

Cyndi said...

Great interview!

Dani Pettrey said...

Thanks, Cyndi! So glad you enjoyed it :)

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