A Christian YA Supernatural Title, by Tammy Hill

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Ember Matthews has a gift…
Sixteen-year-old Ember Matthews is tired of being the person everyone else wants her to be. Although she is nervous about moving to a small town and leaving behind the comforts of her old life, Ember welcomes the opportunity to escape the mistakes and pain of her past. Ember truly wants to change, but when faced with temptation and peer pressure from some new friends, she finds herself slipping into the same old patterns.  As she reconnects with God, Ember begins to realize that she is no ordinary teenager. She sees things that no one else sees, and knows things she has no business knowing.  Will Ember learn to use her God-given gift, or will the burden of her calling be too much for her to carry?

 

I “met” Tammy Hill one day at Twitter. I don’t remember why or how we were connected, but when I saw her bio I was instantly drawn to her because her book sounded similar to one of mine, one I’ve been trying to sell. But some Christian publishers seem afraid to publish stories about a character with supernatural gifts, so I wanted to know how Tammy sold Knowing: A Series of Gifts.

When I reached out to her she agreed to do this interview. (Her website is: www.aseriesofgifts.com)

What inspired you to write this novel?

I read a lot of Christian fiction but grew tired of the “bonnet books” that were popular at the time.  My teenage daughter offered me one of her books and that piqued my interest in YA books.  I liked them because they were different, but “cleaner” than most adult, secular fiction.  There were numerous secular YA books about ghosts, vampires, werewolves, angels, and more.  I found myself frustrated that I couldn’t find any with a Christian perspective.  I felt the Church should step up and fill that vacuum.  As I grumbled, I received a gentle reminder that I’m part of the Church.  I stopped pointing my finger at others and said “yes” to writing a book myself, though it was two years before I began the creative process.

Who is your intended audience?

My book was intended for teens and young adults.  I was pleasantly surprised to  receive a lot of positive feedback from adults.  It’s just another example that God is bigger than our, sometimes narrow, vision.

How did you convince a Christian publisher to print your book when it has paranormal tendencies?

The term paranormal conjures up images of witches, vampires, and other characters who are associated with the occult. Knowing: A Series of Gifts, is the polar opposite. The gift mentioned in the book is supernatural, imparted by God and a reflection of His character.  The message is clear, so there was no convincing needed.

I love your trailer. Who did that for you? Did you write the copy for it? (If you’d like to watch Tammy’s book trailer check it out HERE.)

Knowing Book Trailer from aseriesofgifts on GodTube.

Thank you!  I’m so glad you like it.  I was the writer, photographer, director, and video editor (whew–just thinking about it makes me tired)!  My daughter, who is also the model for the book cover, narrated it. The model for the next book is British, so I’m not sure how we’ll manage a southern accent this time.

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What do you hope to teach teens with your book?

I want teens and Christians of all ages to walk away from this book knowing there is so much more to a walk with Christ than just “warming a bench” at church.  Each of them has an exciting purpose and a higher calling.  God has provided the tools to empower them to make a real difference to a hurting world and to serve others with love.

Who was your publisher?

Creation House.

This information was taken from their website:

“Creation House, a division of Charisma Media, publishes Christian books with a high standard of quality. We specialize in a variety of genres and provide professional production, editing, and marketing for our authors.

Today, our 40 years of successful publishing have equipped us to offer Christian authors unique advantages in affordable, customized publishing. Major publishing houses are increasingly selective about works from new or unknown authors, so getting even very well-written manuscripts published is usually quite difficult. That’s why we offer co-publishing as an alternative.”

What is Co-Publishing?

Creation House says, “We use the term co-publishing to describe a hybrid between self-publishing and conventional royalty publishing, utilizing the best of both worlds. In co-publishing, we partner with you, the author, to develop a quality book according to your specifications, producing a finished product suitable for the bookselling marketplace.”

Did you consider self-publishing?

No, I didn’t know anything about self-publishing. Based on what I’ve learned since then, I’m open to the possibility for my next book.

What else are you working on?

I’ve started the research for my next book, the second in the A Series of Gifts series.  I’ve also recently created a review blog for Christian YA Indie books:  www.yachristianbooks.com. If you know of any Christian YA Indie authors who need book reviews, please send them my way:  www.yachristianbooks.com.

 If you had to teach (or give advice to) writers who write YA what would it be?

My advice would be to read and write as much as possible. Books were an inexpensive vacation for me; a way to have “me time” without ever leaving the house.  I practiced writing (though not intentionally) by starting a family blog during the process of our first adoption. I intended it to last for a few months but continued for four years and cried like a baby when I knew it was time to end it.  The blog gave me a reason to write—to keep a journal for our daughters and to help other families considering special needs adoption.  Part of my decision to start a review blog is based on the same principle—to remind me just how much I love writing.

How long did it take you to write the book?

It only took me a few weeks to complete Knowing: A Series of Gifts, but the time was divided between two periods of writing, one in January (as my New Year’s resolution) and the second in September (after we settled into our new home in France).

How long did it take you to find a publisher?

It didn’t take long at all.  I researched publishers and knew I wanted to go with Creation House before I put pen to paper.  I didn’t submit my manuscript to any other publishing house.

To take a peek at the first pages of KNOWING click HERE.

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The pictures and Knowing’s book trailer inspire me to read this book. What about you?

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Comments

  1. Thank you for hosting me on your site, Michelle. I love the additional photos and information!

    • Hi Tammy!
      Thank YOU for being our guest.
      I hope it helps spread the word about your novel, and maybe you’ll get some book reviews since I tweeted about that yesterday.
      Michelle

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