Bestselling author Beth Wiseman has a deep affection for the simple, Amish life. Her novels have appeared on numerous bestseller lists, and she has sold more than a million and a half books. She is contracted with HarperCollins Christian Publishing into the year 2019, and while she plans to continue writing Amish love stories, Beth is also venturing into other areas, including Christian contemporary romance novels and novellas. This month she releases her new novella, Message in a Bottle.
Beth and her husband are empty nesters enjoying the country life in Texas with three dogs and a rooster.
What started you on your writing journey?
It’s been a long journey, for sure. I wrote my first short story in elementary school, but I didn’t get published until I was forty-five, nine years ago. I dabbled and kept my hand in the craft, and I was a newspaper reporter for five years, but my big break came writing Amish fiction. I had an agent, and I’d been going back and forth with Harlequin on a romance novel, but I hadn’t been offered a contract yet. My agent suggested I write an Amish book, so I did. And it just felt right from the beginning. If you read enough success stories and collect enough rejections to wallpaper your house, you really do start to think it just isn’t meant to happen for you. But then it does — on God’s timeframe. I’ve been blessed late in life to be able to write the stories He lays on my heart. But, honestly, I don’t think I was ready and able to do His work until this past decade.
Let’s talk about your new novella Message in a Bottle (June 2016). Please tell us about it.
I’ve actually had the synopsis for this story for a couple of years, so it’s had time to percolate in my mind, and I feel like I really know these characters. Here’s the back cover copy:
Morgan Calhoun and her parents are whisked away in the middle of the night, something Morgan always knew was a possibility because of her father’s job. But she’d always thought that if such a scenario played out that she would have time to say goodbye to those she loved — particularly her boyfriend, Kyle. Adding to her unbearable situation, several weeks after the move, Morgan finds out that she’s pregnant.
Kyle Brossmann doesn’t even get a break-up letter from Morgan. She’s just gone, along with her entire family. His heart broken, Kyle continues with his plans, graduates from high school, and then attends college. Five years later, two men visit Kyle and encourage him to travel to an undisclosed location to meet his five-year-old daughter. Rocked by the news that he has a child, Kyle learns he is the only person who might be able to save his daughter’s life.
Will Kyle give up his fiancé, a great job, and his family to be with his first love and his daughter? Or will he return to the life he had before?
The Surf’s Up Series is a bit of a detour for you. What led you to write this particular series (and story)?
I love writing stories about the Amish, but writing these beach romances is a nice change. It gives me an opportunity to alternate between the genres, which I think helps keep the stories fresh. Each Surf’s Up novella take readers to a different beach, and each story includes more than just couples falling in love. There’s also mystery, twists, and turns. Novellas are short, so they have to be tightly written and pack plenty of punch. So, that’s what I’ve tried to do with both A Tide Worth Turning and Message In A Bottle. Next on the Horizon in this series will be The Shell Collector’s Daughter. The characters are all in my head screaming plotlines, so I’ll be starting that one soon. I can’t tell you where Message In A Bottle is set, but here’s a hint – ALOHA!
A few fun questions…
If you knew you couldn’t fail, what dream would you pursue?
Probably a talk show host, lol. I’m never at a loss for words.
What Bible passage or story best describes your journey of faith?
Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. We all get weak, tired, tripped up, sad, and cycle through a host of other emotions that can wear us down. God is there for us, waiting for us to reach out to Him, so He can infuse us with the strength that only He can provide.
What’s the name of the last GREAT book you read?
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. I loved everything about this story, even though I cried for several hours as I read the last few chapters. But it needed to end the way it did, and I appreciate that the author did not rush the ending or make things too neat and tidy to believe. A great book indeed.
Thanks, Beth! It’s nice to have you back at DivineDetour.
Thank you so much for having me, Kathy! Blessings to you.
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For more information about Beth, visit her website and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
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