Krista Phillips

Three years ago, Krista Phillips and I shared a journey — the journey to publication — when our books, Sandwich, with a Side of Romance and The Road to Mercy, were published by Abingdon Press (September 2012). During a recent conversation, Krista and decided it would be fun to celebrate again. And to talk about how publication has changed our lives, and where we are now as writers.

For Krista, that’s meant two spin-off novellas, and a third on the way, as well as additional projects now in the works. Her debut novel was also recently released as an audiobook.


Taking a moment to reflect on the past three years, what has been the most surprising/amazing/rewarding experience in your writing career?

I don’t think it was any one experience in particular. I mean, don’t get me wrong. There were some awesome stuff. My first book signing, while a little terrifying, was such a fun experience. And reading reviews of MY book, seeing my name on a book in a bookstore — all things that just felt so surreal.

audio book announcement1But I think the most REWARDING part of the last three years is the perspective shift I’ve experienced. Looking back on what was instead of before, when publication was this big exciting unknown dream — it’s much different than I thought. It’s like I was looking at it through a pair of binoculars and it looked so HUGE and COOL and AWE-inspiring… But now I see it for what it really is. Another step on the journey that God has called me on. A fun and cool step, no doubt. I’ve grown a lot through the experience, learning a WHOLE lot of patience and renewing my need to trust in God for things like book sales and to find my VALUE in God and not author reviews, because there will ALWAYS be that person who doesn’t like your book.

So — I guess the most rewarding part was the growth in my spiritual life that I’ve experienced along the way.

What advice would you give to those just starting out as writers?

Have fun.

Enjoy the journey.

Keep your eyes on Jesus and don’t fret every rejection and stumble. God’s got this, in His timing and not yours. Publication isn’t the end all. It isn’t the top of the mountain. It isn’t the final step. It’s just a fun step in this journey of life.

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If you could go back three years, what advice would you give your younger self?

Be bold.

Do not fear.

Pray. All the time.

Trust God and stop fretting.

You write fiction, but even fiction has autobiographical leanings. How much of your writing is autobiographical in nature?

Eh, it varies. I definitely get inspired by things that happen in real life, but usually just in tiny pieces that no one except for me would recognize. Most of the time it’s just in quirks and habits more than anything. Or personalities. But the situations they face are rarely personal things I’ve experienced.

Of course, my books set in Sandwich, IL have a definite personal meaning to me, since I was born in Sandwich and still have family there.

A Side of hope-finalfrontonlyThis would be a great time to talk about A Side of Hope (March 2015). Please tell us about it.

My second little side dish! One reader, when my first novella (A Side of Faith) came out, called it a little side dish to Sandwich, With a Side of Romance. It kinda stuck with me!

A Side of Hope was a bit of new experience for me. I tend to write about younger characters, and in this book, Tilly, my heroine, was celebrating her 40th birthday.

Of course, all chaos breaks loose in her life when the party is crashed by her husband — whom she hadn’t seen in over eighteen years and is unknown by her birthday guests.

Now THAT’S a surprise birthday gift!

What’s next for you?

LOTS! My plate is fairly full writing wise lately!

My last Sandwich side dish releases later this year, A Side of Love, and then in 2016, I’ll wrap up the Sandwich Romance series with a full-length novel, The Greatest Is Love.

I’m also releasing a Christmas novella this fall (November 4th) in a collection with a group of other authors. The collection is called Love’s Gift, and my novella is A (kinda) Country Christmas.

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Thanks, Krista! It’s been fun celebrating with you.

Thanks SO much for having me, Kathy! It was a BLAST partying with you to celebrate THREE YEARS of Sandwich, with a Side of Romance and The Road to Mercy. Happy BIRTHDAY to our little books!

~ ~ ~

For more information about Krista, visit her website. friend her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.

To purchase A Side of Hope and other books by Krista, log on to:

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