Hello readers! I’m very excited to share about one of my planned monthly features – an author interview! And I will be opening this new feature with none other than Roseanna M. White! Her latest book, “A Song Unheard” just released last month, and let me tell you, it’s a beautiful story. I am thoroughly enjoying the Shadows Over England series, and am looking forward to the next book in line, “Time Unspent”. :)
Check back here on Valentine’s Day, February 14th for the cover reveal!!
So without further ado, let’s begin!
Welcome to my “Peculiar” Blog! I’m so happy to have you here :) Please introduce yourself and what you write:
Thanks so much for having me, Raechel! I’m Roseanna M. White, and I write historical romance, usually with a thread of suspense or intrigue or mystery. My current series is set in the early days of World War One, in England.
Of your books, is there a character that you relate best to? And if so, why?
A combination of two. =) My personality is very much like Ella from A Lady Unrivaled, the last book in my previous series, Ladies of the Manor. By a lot me also worked its way into my novelist-hero in A Name Unknown, first book in this newest series.
Of your latest series, “Shadows Over England”, the first two books have their own theme – “A Name Unknown” being books, and “A Song Unheard” being music. Is there one pastime you prefer over the other?
Um…I guess if it came down to it, books—whether reading them or writing them—are my deepest passion. But I do love music. I’ve been playing piano since I was seven, and that’s where I turn when I’m anxious or nervous and need to kind of tune in (ha ha) to the Lord and find peace.
I have heard that many authors have their own interesting writing quirk – do you have one? If so, would you mind sharing?
I don’t think I’m terribly quirky about my writing…I don’t think. It’s generally just me, my laptop, the kitchen table, and exactly two cups of coffee a day. Though I do tend to zone out when in the groove, and my family has learned that they often need to repeat things several times before I actually hear them…
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Both, LOL, depending on the day, the project, and whether I’m in a good groove or just working hard under a deadline.
How important to you is the faith-element in your writing?
I’ve just been thinking about this! It’s vitally important. While I wrote a few novels back during college that I wanted to aim at the general market, I decided then that I just couldn’t do that—I couldn’t put them out there because I didn’t feel like they glorified God. I don’t regret writing them—they helped me grow as a writer—but writing for me is a calling and ministry, so if faith isn’t a part of it, then it’s a fail. Now, other writers have different callings, and I applaud that! Some are called to write in the general market, others view writing as a job and not a ministry, so I have no beef with them either, LOL. But for me, writing is all about faith. I feel like I’m robbing the story of its vitality if I leave out the faith element.
What does your family think of your writing?
My parents and sister were always fully supportive and never minded me disappearing into my room where paper and pens called to me. My husband knew from the get-go that to love me was to support my passion, and he has been an AMAZING champion, going so far as to start a publishing company to help me achieve my dreams (WhiteFire now published 30 other authors too, which goes to show to degree of his awesomeness). As I enter each new stage of this writing life, he goes out of his way to make me successful, whether that means annual writing retreats with my best friend, conferences, or a weekly writing day away from the house. My kids have never known any other mama, LOL, so while they occasionally groan that I’m writing another book instead of playing Mario with them, they also love stories and are learning how much dedication it takes to chase a dream. Plus my daughter spends much of her own time drawing and writing, so I’ve definitely rubbed off! (The boy-child, not so much, LOL. Yet.)
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
That your path is your own, and it’s exactly the one the Lord wants for you. You’ll never be Francine Rivers or Lori Wick or [fill in the blank], but that’s okay. You’ll be you, and you’ll discover things about God and yourself through this journey that is worth far more than the biggest royalty check in the world.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
Oh dear. Um… I have 17 finished manuscripts that are unpublished. (Some of them are earlier versions of what became The Ladies of the Manor Series, so they will definitely never be published in their original form. Others are the aforementioned general market ones that will never see the light of day. And others I still hope to find homes for eventually!) As for incomplete ones…not they’re all even half finished, but I have about 50 files in my “WIPs” folder. Most of them will probably languish there forever, but I do occasionally go back in and “steal” some characters or plot for contracted books, LOL. (Lukas De Wilde, for instance, was totally stolen from Giovanni, the hero of a book I wrote in college called To Dance with Lightning. Which title I also intend to steal at some point too, LOL.)
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
Wow. Well, most of my friends at this point are other authors, including my very bestest friend ever, Stephanie Morrill. Stephanie writes young adult novels—we met at our first ACFW conferences, where we were both pregnant and had matching bags, which sparked conversation. We became critique partners afterward and soon got to the point where every stray thought must be shared. We just realized last fall when those kids we’d been pregnant with turned ten that it’s been a DECADE since we met! At that point in time, we were both unpublished. Now we’ve both worked with several different publishers, tried the indie/small press route, and gone through quite a lot of ups and downs together.
Stephanie makes me look at things differently, is always there to help brainstorm, all that fun stuff. But I think what I appreciate most about her critiquing is that she knows when to say, “No, that’s not what you meant to happen here. You meant her to do this.” And she’s inevitably right. Beyond that, Stephanie is also an avid reader of craft and industry books (which I am not) and will share new things she learns (I so appreciate that!) and we hold each other accountable. I can’t imagine being on this journey without her!
And lastly, would you recommend a book that my readers might like if they’ve read your Shadows Over England series?
Absolutely! If they’re looking for the same era, they should check out books by Carrie Turansky. If they want similar style in historicals but not necessarily Edwardian/WWI, then I can’t recommend Laura Franz or Lori Benton enough. And if they want to advance a bit more into modern time, definitely check out Stephanie’s The Lost Girl of Astor Street!
Thank you so very much, Mrs.White!
That was a fantastic interview – I love the faith-element answer, as well as what she’d tell her younger writer-self. So beautiful, and relateable for me too. I hope you enjoyed this interview, too, readers! Check back next Monday for a spotlight of “A Song Unheard”s main character, Willa Forsythe!
Roseanna M. White is a bestselling, Christy Award nominated author who has long claimed that words are the air she breathes. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two kids, editing, designing book covers, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of a slew of historical novels that span several continents and thousands of years. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to find their way into her books…to offset her real life, which is blessedly ordinary. Find out more at www.RoseannaMWhite.com and get exclusive content when you sign up for her newsletter.
*Some images were taken from google/pixabay, but some were provided by the author, or created by me.