Welcome to Author Spotlight! Each week will feature a different author. We’ll get the scoop behind their writing life and dish a little. The authors will also be giving away a copy of their latest book. FUN.
The winners from last week’s Author Spotlight with Anita Higman is Katie Johnson! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing address!
This week we are featuring Camy Tang! To win a copy of her new book, Whispers on the Dock (Guidepost, 2013) leave a comment on this post.
And be sure to check back later this afternoon with another Author Spotlight feature with Sarah Sundin and a chance to win her new book On Distant Shores!
Tell us a little about your new book . . .
It’s the third book in the Postcards from Misty Harbor series, titled Whispers on the Dock. Here’s the back cover blurb:
The blooms in the Misty Harbor Gardens reach the pinnacle of their summer glory, and Sam Carter, the youngest Marris sister, decides to enter her mother’s blackberry cobbler recipe in the Summerfest baking contest. Bus Sam is competing against a formidable opponent, a past winner who is not above engaging in dirty tactics to keep her title. Can Sam’s newfound faith help her rise above the fray to reach out to this lonely woman?
The sisters also welcome a new guest, an elderly woman who knows a great deal about the inn’s history. When she share her photo album, they are stunned to find that their mother lived there for a short time as a child. But their mother never mentioned that. In fact, she told them she’d never been to Nantucket until her honeymoon! Why would she lie? What was she hiding?
Through clues in the woman’s reminiscences and photos, the sisters make an intriguing discovery – not only about the mysterious Hannah Montague, but also about their own family history.
As the warmth of summer turns to autumn, Sam and her sisters are amazed at the ways God has blessed them in their new Nantucket home.
How can readers find you and your books?
Anything new for you on the book horizon?
Right now I’m working on a historical romance set in England during the Regency period. It’s a lot of fun since I enjoy history so much!
Why do you write?
I can’t NOT write. There was a time during my twenties when God asked me to lay down my writing, and so I did after much kicking and screaming. I thought I’d never be able to write again, but I couldn’t stop coming up with stories in my head—so I just told them to myself. When God gave me the green light to pick up my writing again, I put those stories down on paper!
What are you best known for . . . writing or otherwise?
Wherever I go, I knit. I also knit while writing, believe it or not. Instead of just staring at the blinking cursor on my computer screen, I’ll knit something easy while I think of what to write next, and then set my knitting down in my lap while I type.
Best author moment?
Holding my first published book in my hands, and the look on my husband’s face as he held a copy, too, and realized, “This author thing of yours really is true, isn’t it?”
Worst author moment?
Whenever I need to ask for a few days’ extension on a book due to my editor. I hate not making a deadline. It makes me feel horrible.
If you weren’t able to write, what would you do?
I might focus more on my music, since I enjoy singing a lot and writing song lyrics is a bit like writing poetry. Don’t know if I’d actually be any GOOD at it, but . . . 🙂
Describe your ideal circumstances to write.
I would love to rent a cabin up in Mendocino, California. The area is far away from large cities and there are absolutely gorgeous hiking trails (I love trail running as long as it’s not too wild!). I’d go running in the mornings and write during the day. It would be fun to have a few of my friends with me, but we’d all be dedicated to working on our own books. Then in the evenings we’d walk along the beach and have a leisurely dinner before hanging out all night talking. 🙂
Right this moment, what does your office look like?
Messy! Although I did clean up a little. My family is in the process of simplifying our lives this year—we’d like to get rid of at least 50% of our things so we can reduce the clutter in our home and also reassess our attitude toward material things. But we’re not quite there yet—we still have a lot of stuff to go through to determine if we’re keeping or getting rid of it. My office is full of stuff to go through.
How would you describe your writing style to a reader?
I’m a very sensory type of person—especially when it comes to smell and touch—so I tend to write in hopes that I can immerse my reader in the scene, to make them feel what the character is feeling.
If you could write any book—on any topic—and be guaranteed a publishing contract, what topic would it be?
Right now, I have a speculative young adult book idea that’s burning in my heart, which I’d like to write eventually. It seems fitting that after years of working with the teens at my church, I’ve finally gotten an idea for a young adult novel.
Ever had a bad review? How did you handle it?
I’ve had lots! It sometimes hurts to read it because it almost feels like the person is criticizing me, personally, but I also understand that my books are not all going to appeal to all readers, and I’m okay with that. I know that God leads my books to the people He wants to read my books.
What’s one thing you learned about the publishing industry in last five years? Last year? Last six months?
It’s very unpredictable, but that’s also what makes it exciting!
How do you solve a grammar dilemma?
Usually with an internet search or a search through the Chicago Manual of Style website.
Are you an introvert? Extrovert? In between?
I’m an introvert, but I really enjoy spending one-on-one time with people. Crowds not so much, but I love chatting with one person and focusing my attention on them, connecting with them.
Do you enjoy public speaking as an author? Why or why not?
I enjoy teaching more than public speaking, but I’m comfortable with both, partly thanks to the fact that I lead a music worship team at my church and have to MC the order of events for the worship service. When speaking or teaching, I like to focus on people one at a time and pretend I’m just talking to them over coffee at a cafe.
Can a person make a living as a writer?
I think that’s a discussion each person has to have with God. It took a time of prayer and fasting before I quit my biology job, and that was after talking to my husband to determine if his income could handle the bulk of our expenses. Most of my writer friends work at least part time in addition to writing.
What are you working on now?
A historical romance set in England during the Regency era. I love history and it’s been a lot of fun!