Women of Faith and Fiction ~ Linda Brooks Davis

Good morning, dear reader! I’m excited to share author Linda B. Davis in this Women of Faith and Fiction episode. Believe me when I say, you’ll want to stay until the very end.

If this is your first time meeting Linda, check out her blog. I enjoy reading about her family history and book recommendations. Let’s get started, or as Linda would say, “Let’s chat!”

Personal

Good morning, Linda. Thank you for joining us for a “gab session”. Tell us a little about yourself.

I was born and reared on a farm in the southernmost tip of Texas–the Rio Grande Valley. I attended Christian colleges and worked 40 years in special education. I have two grown children–a son and a daughter–who are both veterinarians practicing together in San Antonio. We live minutes from one another, and I love it. My husband Al is my hero. He and I worship and minister at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio.

Professional

Why did you choose to write in your particular genre?

When my first grandchild arrived in triplicate form in 2005, and they were fighting for their lives in the NiCU, I vowed to the Lord that I would devote the rest of my life to them and leave them a legacy of faith in writing. Because family history interests me–and I find preserving and passing it on to be important–the choice of historical Christian was an easy one. When my daughter named my one granddaughter Ella after my grandmother Ella, I knew the heroine of my first novel had to be an Ella. Hence, The Calling of Ella McFarland.

What a beautiful idea, Linda. Please share something you wish the reader knew about the books.

The Calling of Ella McFarland was born from my brainstorming about how to present my family’s history as fiction. I asked myself “What if?” questions: What if my grandmother Mama had gone to school beyond 3rd grade? What if she had gotten a college education . . . What might her life have looked like?

And the story of Ella McFarland was born.

The second novel, The Mending of Lillian Cathleen, follows a victimized young girl from Ella’s story into adulthood and along the path of healing from childhood abuse.

The third novel, The Awakening of Miss Adelaide, follows Ella’s and Lily’s friend as she pursues her dream of the opera in Italy, only to be embroiled in the Great War and the Great Influenza. All three women discover the importance of the vote for women. Their stories highlight some key rights denied them as a result of being denied the vote.

Wow! What an amazing series. Love the covers.

Reader,The Calling of Ella McFarland, Book 1 of the Women of Rock Creek series won the 2014 Jerry Jenkins Operation First Novel Award under the title Greater Still. It debuted on December 1, 2015 and won the 2016 American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award in the Debut Category.”

Linda, in your opinion, what is the hardest part of the writing/working process?

For me, the hardest part of the writing is keeping the world at bay while I write. Demands live around every corner. So I’ve learned I must set aside writing time that’s beyond the reach of everyone except my husband.

I think all writers can relate to time issues. 🙂 Let’s have some fun. When writing your first draft, do you use pencil or keyboard?

I absolutely use a keyboard. Aside from arthritic hands, the keyboard action seems to stir the creative juices for me. So much do I depend on the feel and sound of key clickity-clacking that I find myself unable to think well with my fingers off the keys. Is that crazy or what?

Not crazy at all. I can’t seem to get words on paper unless I use pen and paper for the first draft. Plotter or pantser?

I thought I was a plotter for years, but I’ve discovered how freeing flying by the seat of my pants is, so I’ve learned to incorporate the two in a process. My current process involves planning the key points along the story, character, romantic, and spiritual arcs before I begin and then writing pantster-ish from each of those points to the next. I find myself most creative within this framework.

Tea or coffee?

Both! Coffee with plenty of caffeine in the morning and herbal tea in the afternoon.

Favorite thing to do when not working?

Family, Netflix, and reading!

Love doing all three!

Inspirational

Thank you for helping us to know you better! Moving on . . . . This year’s theme is sharing hope. In Hebrews, the writer tells us to encourage each other while it is called today. Would you please take a moment to share a brief testimony to encourage our readers?

Life is composed of seasons far beyond those we find evidence of on trees and in the air four times per year. These special seasons represent periods of change usually preceded by shocking loss or unexpected gain or alterations of our personal landscape that require us to grow in ways we never imagined. Sometimes such seasons knock the props from us. At times like that I’m especially grateful for the hope found in Christ’s presence, his footprints alongside mine or alone because He’s carrying me. His immovable love for me allows me to rant and rave, accuse and question, and discover He never lets go.

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that by the power of the Holy Spirit you will abound in hope and overflow with confidence in His promises.” Romans 15:13 AMP

That is one of my favorite scriptures. What a beautiful testimony. Thank you for joining me, Linda.

Book: The Awakening of Miss Adelaide, Book 3 The Women of Rock Creek series

Giveaway

Linda is giving away the Women of Rock Creek series (two novels and a novella collection) in digital format, plus the 3rd novel in the series–The Awakening of Miss Adelaide, when it releases on July 9.

We can all agree this is a generous giveaway! With that said, I’m asking the winner to please post reviews for the books to show her gratitude. I don’t think that’s too much to ask, do you? Thank you.

Be sure to leave a comment to have your name added in the drawing!

Author Links

Linda loves meeting new readers and interacting with them through her website email: linda@lindabrooksdavis.com.

Click to Tweet: Life is composed of seasons far beyond those we find evidence of on trees and in the air four times per year. #Interview with @LBrooksDavis via @GailJohnson87 #giveaway

Thanks to all who participated in the giveaway. The winner of Linda’s Rock Creek Series is Dorothy (dotluvs2write). Thank you for participating Dot. Congratulations!

Shepherd

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. Psalm 23:1

The first thing that comes to mind when reading David’s psalm is a picture of Christ hanging on a cross, his body bruised and bloody. Not exactly the peaceful scene in paintings of a shepherd holding a lamb in a lush meadow.

However, if you’ve spent time with animals, you understand my thoughts. There is a price one must pay for the privilege of owning sheep. They require patience, energy, and sacrifice. David’s psalm helps me understand the price the Good Shepherd paid for me.

Through the years, I’ve taken care of horses, goats, chickens, rabbits, dogs, and hogs. And each one came with a price. For whether you buy, trade, or accept animals as gifts, you can bank on paying for that animal in blood, sweat, and tears.

Blood and sweat because caring for animals is a messy job. Your hands will become scarred and dirty in the process. Tears because caring for an animal while they are sick or dying is one of the hardest things an owner will ever do. Sooner or later, you will eventually give part of your life to and for that animal.

Another responsibility David spoke of in this psalm is guard duty. Shepherds must protect their sheep from parasites, disease, and predators.

Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.” John 10:7

During good weather, shepherds kept their sheep in the countryside. A circle of rocks created a pen without a gate. The shepherd protected the sheep by stretching his body across the opening. What a beautiful depiction of his love and care for us.

I’m so glad the Lord is my Shepherd. How about you?