Thursday, June 11, 2009

Author Missy Tippens at Cup of Faith!

I’m delighted to have Missy Tippens, a dear friend and fellow Seeker at “Cup of Faith” today. In 2006, Missy and I were Golden Heart finalists, Romance Writers of America’s unpublished contest. Now we both write for Steeple Hill Love Inspired and hang out in Seekerville and at American Christian Fiction Writers and RWA conferences.

Good morning, Missy!

Janet, it’s great to be on your blog today!
JD: Why do you write?

MT: Why do I write? Well, in the beginning, I guess I did it because I thought it would be fun to try. So I waited until I got my first computer and jumped right in. Then the more serious I became about it (as I started to write for publication), I found that writing was harder work than I ever imagined. The rejections were difficult, too. But the more I wrote and learned and re-wrote, the more I grew to love what I was doing—even though it can truly be hard work! It’s very rewarding, especially once you make that first sale and get your first reader letters. Nothing compares to those wonderful reader letters!

JD: Aren't Steeple Hill readers the best? If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing with your free time?

MT: Probably still teaching. And I would also want to do something creative—maybe making jewelry like I used to do for fun. I would love to paint, too, but I didn’t get the artistic gene my dad gave to my sister. :)

JD: What are you working on right now?

MT: I’m working on a new proposal for Steeple Hill. It’s so exciting to be working on something new! And I just love this story idea. I wrote the gist of the idea in my “ideas” file in 2006. :)

JD: Tell us about His Forever Love, the book you have out right now.

MT: This was a story I loved so much! I just love the hero, Bill. Here’s the back cover copy:
In Magnolia, Georgia, local legend says that a couple who holds hands around the “forever” tree will have an unending love. Even so, Bill Wellington held Lindsay Jones’s hands around that tree years ago…and then left her behind. He chose the big city, and now he wants to bring his grandmother there. But to his amazement, he finds that Granny has a boyfriend—and a vibrant life. A life that includes Lindsay, Granny’s caregiver. Bill never thought he’d want to come home, yet Magnolia clearly has its charms. As does Lindsay, who makes him long for a second chance at forever love.

JD: What themes do you like to write about?

MT: I think I’m not alone in that I seem to have my own themes that keep popping up over and over. Maybe it’s based on life experiences. But whatever the reason, I find I tend to write stories about opposites attracting, about wanting to be loved for who we really are, and reunion stories. And it always seems like my stories have some sort of secret in them. But no, I don’t have any juicy secrets in real life! :)

JD: How has your view of romance changed over the years?

MT: Interesting question! If you’re talking about real-life romance (not in books), I guess I’d have to say I’m a little more realistic after nearly 23 years of marriage. Romance is hard work! LOL It takes effort, and yes, even planning. It doesn’t just seem to happen like it did when we were students and dating. Or like it does in any new relationship. Things like bills and jobs and children make it a little more difficult to keep the flame burning. But it’s something worth working for! :)

Great questions, Janet! Thanks so much for having me today.

Thanks for coming, Missy, and sharing a look at you and His Forever Love with us today.

Readers leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of His Forever Love.


Patty Wysong said...

Hi Missy and Janet!
Your book sounds wonderful, Missy! I'd love to be entered into the giveaway!! patterly at gmail dot com

Have a great day!!

Cathy Shouse said...


You mention how much fun writing becomes after your first sale.

Can you pick out one tip for us that you think made the difference in your getting sold?

I'd love to win the book.

cathy underscore shouse at yahoo

Julie Lessman said...

MISSY AND JANET -- Love the interview, and, Missy ... LOVE the book!! Just finished it (read it while Aunt Julie had my copy of Janet's book), and I will be posting a review down the road (after my deadline!). Absolutely LOVE your style, my friend!


Cara Slaughter said...

Missy, I loved His Forever Love! How does it feel to be multi-pubbed?

Janet, I also recently read Courting the Doctor's Daughter. It was wonderful, also!

Janet Dean said...

Hi Patty, good to see your smiling face this morning! Thanks for popping in.


Carly Kendall said...

His Forever Love sounds like a very good book. Please enter my name in the contest. Thank you.

Janet Dean said...

Cathy, great question. It'll be interesting to hear Missy's answer.


Janet Dean said...

Julie, I loved A Passion Denied! When will the next book release?


Janet Dean said...

Good morning, Cara, Miss Golden Heart Finalist! So proud of and happy for you!!! I'm delighted you enjoyed Courting the Doctor's Daughter!


Diana said...

I had to chuckle at the 'real-life romance is hard word" comment.

Missy Tippens said...

Good morning, everyone! I just got back from taking my daugther to horse riding camp. I've had breakfast and will jump right in on all these great comments!

Janet Dean said...

School's out and it sounds like you're on the road with the youngins, Missy. Do you ride?


Missy Tippens said...

Thanks, Patty! I'm glad you stopped by this morning.

Cathy, it would hard to say one thing that I think helped make that first sale. But I can tell you a couple...or may three. LOL

1. A marketable idea. That one liner that'll catch an editor's attention. I think they like something they can latch onto and pitch to marketing.

2. I got my manuscript requested through a contest! So enter those contests.

3. The book that finally sold, Her Unlikely Family, is the first I did heavy planning for. I used Alicia Rasley's The Story Within guidebook and Carolyn Greene's Prescription for Plotting notebook. I took at least a month to do all the character work and excercises in those workbooks! And I think that made the difference in the depth of my characters. (my previous rejection had said I had cardboard characters.) So I credit those wonderful resources with my sale! :)

Thanks for the great question!

Jo said...

Missy, "His Forever Love" sounds like a wonderful book. I would love to read it. Please enter me in the contest.


Missy Tippens said...

Julie, THANK YOU!! I really appreciate you reading it while you're in the midst of a deadline!

I just posted a review of A Passion Denied! I forgot to email you to let you know! It's at www.writingbyfaith.blogspot [dot] com.

I loved it!! And Janet, I'm reading Courting the Doctor's Daughter now! It's so good!

Missy Tippens said...

Hey, Cara! Thanks so much for reading my book!

As to your question, it feels SO good! I was so afraid I would be a one-book wonder! LOL (And I laugh, but I'm serious! It was really stressful unti making the second sale. Nothing ever seems like it can be as good as that first "baby", especially since we often spend so long writing them.)

Missy Tippens said...

Good morning, Carly! Thanks for stopping by.

Missy Tippens said...

Diana, yeah, I guess I was pretty honest, there. My husband would probably agree, but might not like to read about it online! LOL



Missy Tippens said...

Yes, Janet, our crazy summer schedule has started. :) But camp is actually ending today. So I won't be running so much now.

I don't ride very often. Only if I get the opportunity. But we don't have horses or ride regularly. I just can't commit to owning a horse!

Missy Tippens said...

Hi, Jo! Thanks so much for stopping by this morning.

Janet Dean said...

Missy, I'm not comfortable on horseback and horses sense it. Haven't even tried to ride in years and years. I admire you and Myra for your fearlessness.


Carmen7351 said...

Second chances, huh? I would love to read this book and see how Lindsay responds. Please enter me in the contest. Thank you.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Missy Tippens said...

Carmen, yes, Bill missed his chance in high school, so he has to take the chance on love this time. :)

Thanks for dropping by.

Missy Tippens said...

Janet, I'm not really fearless! I'm usually pretty tense when I'm on a horse these days. When I was young, I was fearless (and dumb). I loved to just let the horse run and fly through the fields at a camp I attended in the summers. :)

Ahhh, to be young and invincible again.

Sandee61 said...

I'd love to be entered in the giveaway for Ms. Tippin's book. I haven't read any of this new-to-me author and would so love too.
Thank you! Enjoyed the interview and learning about Missy Tippin, I will look forward to reading some of the other books she has written.



Janet Dean said...

From all the stories I've heard horse related injuries maybe it's a good thing you're not fearless, Missy. I never felt invincible. Sad but true.


Emma said...

Hi Missy I read the excerpt of His Forever Love and it sounds wonderful. Please enter me in the giveaway. Thank you. Have a good week. augustlily06(at)aim(dot)com

Jessica said...

Great interview guys! Missy, I'd love to be entered to win this one. I remember your first one made me chuckle quite a bit. LOL

jessica_nelson7590 (at) yahoo (dot) com

Missy Tippens said...

Thanks, Sandy! I hope you get to read it.

Missy Tippens said...

Thank you for reading it, Emma! I appreciate your nice comment.

Missy Tippens said...

I'm glad, Jessica! I think this one has some fun scenes as well.

(I had fun writing them, anyway.) :)

Janet Dean said...

Missy, I just finished His Forever Love while I waited for my allergy shot. I just loved Bill and Lindsay's happy ending! Great job!


Missy Tippens said...

Oh, I'm so glad, Janet! Thanks for reading it.


Patricia said...

Missy, Your new book sounds delightful--opposites always provide for strong characters which is a plus. Thanks so much for your answers to the question on getting published. We all need encouragement to do the background work before jumping into writing the story. I'd love a copy of your book.
pgrau (dot) ggi (at) gmail (dot) com

Missy Tippens said...

Patricia, I know that planning doesn't work for everyone. But I've found it saves me a lot of heartache during revisions! :)


Janet Dean said...

Missy, thanks for sharing with us at Cup of Faith. It's always great to have you here. I've drawn Emma's name as the winner of your book, His Forever Love. I'll contact her today.

Hugs, Janet

Missy Tippens said...

Congrats, Emma! I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks for having me, Janet. I had a great time.

Emma said...

Hi Janet and Missy. I won Missy's book, "His Forever Love." It was a wonderful book. Thanks for having the contest. Have a great week!

Janet Dean said...

I'm glad you enjoyed the book, Emma.

Blessings, Janet

Missy Tippens said...

Emma, thank you!! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.

And thanks, Janet, for sending it!