Angela Ruth Strong sold her first Christian romance novel in 2009, then quit writing romance when her husband left her. Now, ten years later, God has shown her the true meaning of love, and there’s nothing else she’d rather write about. She also writes articles for SpiritLed Woman.
Her books have earned Top Pick honors in Romantic Times, won the Cascade Award, and been Amazon best sellers. Her novel Finding Love in Big Sky was filmed on location in Montana and was aired recently.
Angela lives in Idaho, where besides writing, she teaches exercise classes, works for an airline, and enjoys Harley rides with her husband and camping with her three kids.
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What started you on your writing journey?
My mom was a writer. She published a lot of stories in Sunday school curriculum and once wrote about me in Women’s World. So when I was cheerleading at age sixteen, and a basketball player dove out of bounds for a ball and ended up breaking my bones, I wrote about it. That’s just what you do, right? She helped me send it to American Cheerleader Magazine. They published it and paid me $100, which was the easiest money I’d ever made at that time. It’s never been that easy since, but I was hooked.
Just as all good novels include a plot twist, the Author and Creator of our lives often writes in a twist that ultimately blesses us more than our original plan. Have you ever experienced such a “Divine Detour”?
Oh my. So many stories. Including the one above. I love connecting with God as the Author of Life. As an author, I know that the darker the black moment, the more powerful the story of overcoming. There have been times when I’ve shaken my fist at heaven and said, “I’m on to you!” He’s giving me a story of overcoming that will touch lives.
Most recently, I went through breast cancer. It was hard, and it was beautiful, but most importantly it showed me that I can’t earn my worth. Going through chemo, I lost my hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, and more. I didn’t have the energy to do anything. Yet I’ve never felt so loved. It really set me free in a lot of ways. I am currently cancer free, so now I’m alive to take all that love that was given to me and go share it with the world.
Let’s talk about your new book, Husband Auditions (Kregel Publications, August 2021). Please tell us about the story.
It’s about a woman who is bummed to be the last of her friends to remain single, especially since, as a joke, she inherits from them a list from the 1950s of ways to find a husband. She just wants to throw it away, but her brother’s roommate (and now her roommate) convinces her to try the list out for a YouTube show.
What led you to write it?
I got a big kick out of a real-life list that was circulating on social media a few years ago. I said, “Imagine if someone tried those out today.” Then I thought (voiceover with evil laughter goes here), “I’m going to write it.”
A few fun questions…
When the words aren’t flowing—or when you want to celebrate if they are—what is your favorite comfort food and why?
Pretzels with Nutella. In a pinch, caramel dip works too. I just ate some actually. Because tonight I get to watch a sneak peek of the movie based on my book Finding Love in Big Sky. (Voiceover with excited squeal goes here.)
What Bible passage or story best describes your journey of faith?
I love the Shunammite Woman. Elisha told her she’d give birth to a son, but when the boy was about twelve, he died. She went to go track Elisha down, believing the prophet could bring her son back to life with the power of God.
She told her husband where she was going, but when he asked what was wrong, she said, “Everything is all right.” Elisha saw her coming, and sent her servant to ask her what was wrong. She responded, “Everything is all right.” It wasn’t until she got to the prophet himself that she shared her problem. And she wouldn’t leave unless Elisha went with her. So Elisha went back with her, and her son returned to life.
I read this at a time in my life when everything did not feel all right. But I chose to claim it anyway. And though I do believe that many devastating things happen in life, if you pursue God, everything is all right.
In the story that is your life, are you the strong, female lead; the girl next door; the mysterious woman behind dark glasses; the super heroine; or the little girl trying to walk in high heels?
Oh man. I’m the one going through a mid-life crisis right now. My baby just moved out the same week my grandpa died, so it feels like everything is changing and life is so fragile, and it doesn’t help that I don’t recognize myself in the mirror with this short hair that is trying to grow back after chemo. Last time my son flew into town, the first thing he said to me was, “You look like Austin Powers.” The good news is that I can laugh at myself. I’m making the most of it. So maybe I’m the quirky one?
I’m a dog lover. Please tell us about your pets, if any, or your favorite pet as a child.
I have two dogs who are brothers and a mix of Pomeranian and Jack Russell. One look likes a Pom and the other a Jack Russell, so nobody thinks they are related at first. Their names are Chewbarka (Chewie) and Indiana Bones (Indy). Chewie inspired Cocoa in my CafFUNated Mysteries.
Thanks, Angela! It’s nice to have you as a guest at Divine Detour.
Thanks for having me. <3
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