Greetings from Sarah Sundin! Today I have the joy of interviewing Winnie Griggs, author of 25 novels, which have won awards including the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award! Her novels have had a Western setting, both historical and contemporary, but her latest novel branches into a new genre for her—Amish fiction.
Welcome, Winnie! Please tell us about your book, Her Amish Wedding Quilt.
Spirited Greta’s been told to change or she’ll be a spinster. When her last hope for a husband chooses another, Greta pours her efforts into her quilts.
Widower Noah needs a new wife so when Greta offers to matchmake, he accepts. But no one seems right. Have they unexpectedly grown close?
That sounds fun! What do you hope readers will take away from this book?
I always hope my readers will be uplifted by my words and that they will come away with a sense of hope and renewed faith in the power of love.
A message greatly needed in today’s world. So what was your greatest challenge in writing this book?
Since this was my first Amish book, I wanted to make certain I portrayed these people accurately and that I used the language and dialect properly. It took quite a bit of research and consulting with others more familiar with the people and the genre than I.
That’s the challenge of a new genre! But no matter the genre, there’s usually one scene we novelists love best—what is that for you?
My favorite part is always the ending, when the hero and heroine, who I’ve put through their paces (i.e. tortured) throughout the story, finally reap their reward of a Happily Ever After.
With those happy endings, do you find certain themes arising again and again in your writing?
Families are not built strictly by blood but by choice as well.
I love it! What would be your ideal writing place? And…what’s your actual writing place like?
Ideal place: A room with a large window looking out on a beautiful view. It would have a sturdy wooden desk, a comfortable chair, a laptop that sat on a stand that is adjustable to use while I was either standing or sitting. Oh, and the room would be filled with bookshelves.
Current: My dining room table.
Yep. Reality. Do you have a “day job” or a previous career? Does it influence what or how you write?
I worked for over thirty years for a large, multi-state electric utility company. Most of that time I spent working as an IT professional, both on the front lines and in management.
As for how it influenced how I write, it taught me to really think through things to their logical conclusions and to try to view issues from all angles to find the most effective process. That definitely helps in the brainstorming process.
Yes! Those of us with mathematical skills are rare in the fiction writing world, but those analytical skills do help. One thing that is not rare among writers is a lifelong love of books. Do you have a library memory to share?
My favorite (and earliest) memory of a library actually involves a bookmobile. The first elementary school I attended was very small and in a poor district, and it didn’t have a library of its own. So a bookmobile came by once a month. I remember the first time I stepped inside and was told I could pick any book I wanted from what, to me at least, seemed like a huge selection. I was like a kid turned loose in a candy store. I also still remember the book I chose, it was a Dr. Seuss title, The Cat in the Hat.
A bookmobile—what a delightful memory! With such a varied background, you must have some hobbies or activities or passions outside of writing. What are they?
My biggest passion right now is my new grandbaby who’s not quite a year old – I am in awe at the miracles God has wrought as I watch how that precious little sweetie pie changes and develops almost daily.
Outside of that, I enjoy cooking (but not the cleaning up after), attending estate sales, and discovering fun new flavors of tea.
Tea and books go so well together. Thank you for sharing with us today, Winnie!
To learn more about Winnie and her books, please visit Winnie’s website.
Writing for Him,