Today’s author interview is with Merrillee Whren, the author of Annie’s Hope.
About the Book
Book: Annie’s Hope
Author: Merrillee Whren
Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance
Release date: September 27, 2022
The Village of Hope: A community built on service and love
Annie Payton hopes for one thing—to regain custody of her children. She believes the Village of Hope’s lawyer will give her this chance until she learns that lawyer is Ian Montgomery, her ex-husband.
Since Ian has turned from his life of substance abuse, he’s all about helping others, but he doesn’t know if he can help his former wife. Her betrayal still brings him pain, and most people at The Village don’t know about his past relationship with Annie.
As Annie and Ian’s lives intersect, can she show him that she’s clean and sober and wants a second chance not only with her children but with him?
Click here to get your copy!
Greetings and welcome to author Merrillee Whren. I’m looking forward to sharing with our readers a little bit about you. Let’s get started
Q: What advice would you give your pre-published self?
A: This is the advice I give to anyone starting to write. Read books on writing, take instruction from seasoned authors, but find your own writing process. Find what works for you, not what works for another author.
~ I think your advice is spot on.
Q: What genre do you write in and why?
A: I write contemporary Christian romance because that is what I like to read. I like creating characters that live in our current circumstances.
~ And the circumstance you wrote in Annie’s Hope are so real.
Q: Is there a genre you like to read but don’t see yourself writing?
A: From time to time, I like to read Christian historical romance, but I don’t think I have the patience for the research involved in writing historical fiction.
~ All the research does seem daunting.
Q: What was your favorite character to write?
A: I don’t know that I have a favorite character to write, but I do have a favorite series, my Front Porch Promises series. It is my longest series with seven books. I loved writing the characters in this series. The series idea started with my wanting to write the grownup stories of three characters who were teenagers in my Pinecrest series. The series expanded from those three characters to include some friends and relatives of those three characters. The first book in the series starts in Montana. The next three books are set in Massachusetts. The last three books are set in East Tennessee.
~ How fun to write about so many different locations.
Q: Are you at work on a new novel? Can you tell us a little about it?
A: Actually, I’m working on the reissue of the second book in The Village of Hope series. Annie’s Hope is the first book. The second book is Kirsten’s Mission. The book was first published by Harlequin Love Inspired with the title Nursing the Soldier’s Heart, but I received the rights back to this series last year and gave it a new cover and a new title. Here is the blurb for Kirsten’s Hope:
Nurse Kirsten Bailey believes family comes first. She refuses to cut former army medic Brady Hewitt any slack for not responding immediately to his ill grandmother’s plea for his presence.
Brady has a good reason for his tardiness, and he wants to show the pretty but prickly nurse that her first impression of him is wrong. While they work together to help his grandmother and two young boys, Kirsten sees the sincerity of Brady’s kindness and charm.
Kirsten wants to return to the mission field, so falling for Brady is out of the question. But she can’t dismiss the idea that he might be the man who will make her stay forever.
The Village of Hope: A community built on service and love
~ Sounds so good! I can’t wait to read the series.
Thank you, Merrillee, for your time today. It was a blessing getting to know you.
Readers, here’s a little more about and from Merrillee.
About the Author
Merrillee Whren is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author who writes inspirational romance. She is the winner of the 2003 Golden Heart Award for best inspirational romance manuscript presented by Romance Writers of America. She has also been the recipient of the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award and the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award. She is married to her own personal hero, her husband of forty- plus years, and has two grown daughters. She has lived in Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Chicago and Florida but now makes her home in the Arizona desert. She spends her free time playing tennis or walking while she does the plotting for her novels. Please visit her Website and signup for her newsletter and connect with her on Facebook.
More from Merrillee
One of my writing goals is to set at least one book in every state in which I have lived. So far I have written books set in Washington State, Texas, Florida, South Dakota, Georgia, Ohio, Montana, Massachusetts, and Tennessee. I still have to write books set in Illinois and Arizona to complete my goal. Just for fun I’ve gone astray and have written a couple of Christmas novellas set in Maryland, where my older daughter lives. The third book in the series, Puppy Love and Christmas Cookies is ready for preorder.
Annie’s Hope is one of my books set in Georgia. It is the first book in The Village of Hope series. We lived in the Atlanta area for nine years when our daughters were in elementary and middle school. I have many found memories of that time. One of the things I remember is a ministry there that served older adults and had children’s homes. When I got the idea for this story, I thought of that ministry. I also have friends who served many years at a children’s home in Oklahoma. I expanded on those ministries to create The Village of Hope, a multifaceted ministry, a place that provides hope, love, and a helping hand for those in need. James 1:27 says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” This verse fits Annie’s Hope perfectly.
Because I’m what they call an organic writer, I don’t plot my stories. I start writing and see how things unfold. I start with a set of characters and wonder what if. In the case of Annie’s Hope, I wondered how a divorced couple might find love with each other again, despite hurt and betrayal. I’m always thankful that somehow God brings everything together when I write a book.
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To celebrate her tour, Merrillee is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of A Match to Call Ours!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
Marisela Zuniga says
Great interview with Merrillee. The book sounds great
Susan Beatty says
So glad you enjoyed the interview. I hope you check out her book and enjoy that also. Thank you for commenting.
Debbie P says
This sounds like a really great read!
Roxanne C. says
I enjoyed the author interview and learning more about the author. I’m interested in how the situation for the divorced couple in the book will be resolved.
Cindi Knowles says
I’ve added to my list, it sounds so good!