Welcome to a new edition of Women of Faith and Fiction. Thank you for joining me. I’m so glad you’re here! Today’s guest is Candace West.
Good morning, Candace. Tell us about yourself.
I’m a preacher’s daughter, a wife, a homeschooling mama, and a friend. I tend to be shy in large groups of people. A little bit of an introvert. Chocolate is my go-to dessert! I love animals, particularly cats. Family means everything to me. I’m always ready to go antique shopping or browse for books. Exploring or touring old houses is one of my passions. I’ll sit all day long and listen to someone telling a story about the old days. Bluegrass, Big Band, and classical music flow through my veins. I hoard old photographs, especially family ones. The Ozarks are my favorite place in the world other than home. I’m an avid reader. And I love to write stories.
I’m with you on the antique shopping and book browsing. Please, tell us about your writing.
When I get a story idea, I’m usually doing something else besides writing. I might be cooking, cleaning, or driving. A character pops into my imagination, and a story blooms. I’ll jot notes on whatever is handy. Whoever said paper towels were only for cleaning up messes? Later, I’ll type a rough outline. When I start writing, I let the characters take me to the place and action. I guess I’m a mix between a pantser and plotter.
I guess we’re both plantsers. LOL. Now, what is your latest book about?
I’m excited and a bit nervous about my new writing venture. I have two books scheduled for next year. One will be the third book in the Valley Creek Redemption series. The other is a historical for The Mosaic Collection. Prayers appreciated!
Congratulations on the new adventure! From where does your inspiration come?
Many places. I’ve been blessed to have men and women of God in my family who have overcome trials and obstacles. My mom, my grandmothers, and my aunt have shown me their bravery, their steadfastness, and their love. Special friends have weathered storms along the way. Most of all, my faith inspires me because “with God, all things are possible.” Hope and redemption are things I love to write about because they’re real and lasting. Available to anyone. Eternal.
It is truly a blessing to have others encouraging us along our way. Would you share a word of encouragement with our readers?
I would love to! In my launch team, I recently shared a thought with the ladies (they are amazing) that I hope encourages someone here. You know, we’re moms, sisters, daughters, grandmothers, aunts, cousins, granddaughters, mothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, daughters-in-law, nieces, and friends.
We’re ladies and we’re doers. We’re caretakers. We’re the shoulder that someone needs to cry on. We’re helpers. We desire to minister to the needs of others. And we should.
“We’re ladies and we’re doers. We’re caretakers. We’re the shoulder that someone needs to cry on. We’re helpers. We desire to minister to the needs of others. And we should.” ~ @candacewest111 via @GailJohnson87 #WFF #interviewTweet
Sometimes the load gets tough. In the busyness of life, we sometimes forget there is One who has shouldered the burdens before we did. We get so accustomed to carrying the load that we forget to ask for help.
Breathe, ladies of God. Take a little time to rest in Him. No matter what you’re facing, remember that it’s OKAY to lay your burdens on the Lord. You don’t have to shoulder it alone.
Thank God we don’t have to possess all the answers. We can cast all our cares on the One Who does. He will see us through.
Candace, thank you so much for joining us and for that word of encouragement. Readers, you can connect with Candace here:
A shattered heart.
A wounded spirit.
A community in crisis.
Lorena Steen gave up on love years ago. She forgave her long-time estranged husband, but when circumstances bring her to the Ozark town of Valley Creek, she discovers forgiving is far from forgetting.
Haunted by his past acts of betrayal, Earl Steen struggles to grow his reclaimed faith and reinstate himself as an upstanding member of Valley Creek. He soon learns that while God’s grace is amazing, that of the small-town gossips is not.
When disaster strikes, the only logical solution is for Earl and Lorena to combine their musical talents in an effort to save the community. But even if they’re willing to work together, are they able to? Or will the shadows that descend upon Valley Creek reduce it to a ghost town?