Monday, January 07, 2008

Cheryl Wyatt is here today! Win an i-pod, too!




Hi everyone! Cheryl Wyatt is my guest today and I just want to tell you a little bit about Cheryl and her new book that’s out now.

I had the privilege of meeting Cheryl back in November when she came all the way from Illinois to North Carolina for a writer’s brainstorming weekend. There were six of us and we had so much fun hanging out!

It was just a pleasure to get to know her and share laughter, prayers and brainstorming. She was one of the crazy people who stayed up until 4:00 in the morning working. I have to admit that I missed that part as I slipped off to bed around 11:00 each night! (The joys of getting old. Hehehe.)

Just so you know, Cheryl is an awesome prayer warrior. I know that if I ask her pray for something, she’s storming the gates for me. Thank you for that, Cheryl.

Now, if you readers want to win a copy of A Soldier’s Promise, Romantic Times TOP PICK, just sign the guest book and leave a comment. We’ll put all the names in a hat and draw one at the end of the day.

Lynette: Cheryl, I read A Soldier’s Promise and absolutely LOVED it. You have a wickedly clever sense of humor. Your book was laugh-out-loud funny in some places. And quite the tear-jerker in others. You did a fabulous job and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves a love story…but is so much more, too. Tell us a little bit about the process. Give us a little background on your story, A Soldier's Promise. How did you come up with the idea, the characters, etc.?

Cheryl: I love to write about characters who have very unique careers. I also love to read and write anything high-action. I'd heard about PJs some years ago and became enthralled with them. You hear quite a bit about Navy SEALs but hardly anything about PJs. I wanted to do a series about them, so I plotted it out. The stories were originally romantic suspense. But the suspense I write is more the action/adventure-driven suspense rather than mystery/murder/mayhem type of suspense. Steeple Hill was interested in the story, but it needed serious help. LOL! They gave me the option of either repairing the ailing suspense thread, or stripping it out and deepening the emotion to aim it more toward Love Inspired than Love Inspired Suspense. I stripped the suspense and focused on the romance, and executed all the changes in their revision suggestions and it sold. I chose my heroine to be a teacher, but I gave her a specialty in that she taught children with special needs. I did this to honor my author mentor, Margaret Daley, who spent a lot of time encouraging me and answering questions and critiquing my work until it improved to the point of being publishable.

Lynette: I’m so impressed. Stripping your story like that had to be a lot of work. Obviously, it paid off for you. How does your faith influence your writing?

Cheryl: It influences every aspect of my writing but especially the faith thread in the story. I try to give my characters a faith struggle and triumph that comes from something God has taught me in my own struggles. The situations in the book are entirely different than my real life situations, but often, the way God responds to the character reflects God's dealings with me on a lot of things.

Lynette: Do you do anything special to plot out your books? Do you have a system or are you a Seat of the Pants writer?

Cheryl:I'm in between. I used to fly by the seat of my pants but since I have to turn in a proposal before the book is finished now, I have to have an idea of where the story will go. So I do a loose scene index and a very detailed, in-depth character analysis and charts.

Lynette: And I know you have three little ones and a husband at home. When you write?

Cheryl: I'm very creative with time management and fiercely protective over family time. I always strive to put my children and husband first. As a result, they're mostly understanding and considerate of my writing time. I try to write while my children are in school so I can focus on them when they're home.

Lynette: What's one thing you want your readers to know about you? One kinda crazy, quirky thing, and one serious kind of thing.

Cheryl: One crazy quirky thing is I really do have a phobia of Popsicle sticks. The wooden kind that, when I see someone's teeth touch them, I flee the room and shudder. It makes my skin crawl like someone is scratching on a chalk board with a nail. The thought of them touching my teeth makes me cringe and my teeth physically hurt. It agitates me to write about it in fact, I'm pursing my lips and pinching my face as I type this. Really strange. So my poor children are deprived of ice cream bars. I'm the only mom in town who runs from the ice cream truck when it jingles through town. But who can blame me? I know that thing is FULL to the roof of all kinds of evil wooden Popsicle sticks.

Lynette: Oh. My. Goodness. I am seriously rolling on the floor laughing. I can so see you putting that into one of your books. And the serious thing?

Cheryl: One serious thing is I know my main gift is intercessory prayer and the one thing I love to do more than write and create, is worship the living God, and pray for people. The one thing that struck me as I started getting reader letters, is as I widen my readership base, that's all the more people I can pray for. Especially when some of them really open up about their life circumstances if something in your book has surfaced stuff in them or ministered to them in some way. I consider it a blessing and an honor to pray for people. In addition, I consider prayer from others for me and my loved ones the best gift ever.

Lynette: Cheryl, thanks so much for stopping by and answering these questions. I’m sure readers will have tons more. So, readers, if you didn’t get enough of Cheryl here, she'll be on Jill Elizabeth Nelson's blog tomorrow. Hop on over to visit:

http://www.jillelizabethnelson.com/artisticblogger.shtml.
Cheryl is the guest there on Jan. 8th!

To purchase Cheryl’s book online, follow this link: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0373874669

Okay, one more thing I need to mention. Cheryl is having this ***cool contest***.

I’ll let her explain it in her own words.

First, to celebrate the release of my debut novel (A Soldier's Promise) I'm holding a contest for a chance to win great prizes. The main prize is your choice between an 8 GB iPod Nano, an AlphaSmart Neo (www.alphasmart.com) or a six-month subscription to any Steeple Hill line of your choice.

Other prizes include ten 128mb flash drives, ten $10.00 certificates to Barnes and Noble, autographed books from me and pens.

And one lucky person will win the chance to name a character in one of my upcoming books.

Only my newsletter subscribers will be able to enter.

To sign up for my newsletter, go to the homepage of my Web site www.CherylWyatt.com and type your e-mail address in the space provided that says "Join Cheryl Wyatt's Author Mailing List". Once signed up for my newsletter, send an e-mail to

Cheryl@CherylWyatt.com and be sure to put "CONTEST" in the header.

Deadline entry for the contest is Midnight, Central Standard Time the night of February 14, 2008. I will draw winners' names February 15, 2008 and notify them that week, so be sure to leave a valid e-mail address when you sign up. Also, for every person you send to sign up for my newsletter, you will receive another entry in the hat. So be sure to tell them they need to sign up for my newsletter on my Web site and remind them to mention who sent them to sign up.

Second thing...
My blog tour is happening right now. There are tons of chances to win a free, autographed copy of my debut novel, which is a Romantic Times TOP PICK! for January.
Visit the link for a list of where I was/am/will be the month of January. http://scrollsquirrel.blogspot.com/2007/12/my-blog-tour-schedule.html
Thanks so much for your support!

14 comments:

Pamela J said...

Lynette, you are absolutely right about the range of emotion this book produces! That is how I judge the books I read by what emotions it produces in my. Take my word, along with Lynette's and SO MANY OTHERS, this is a great read. I have mine, but be sure to sign up now for a free book. BUT if you don't win, don't let it slip away without purchasing and reading anyway. You will be happy you did.
Pam
cepjwms at yahoo dot com

Kim S. said...

Wonderful interview with a fabulous lady. Thank you!

Tracy Ruckman said...

Hey Cheryl! We were in Walmart this past week, and I always check out the books. Yours was there, and I told my hubby, "Hey, I know her!" He wanted to know how, and I said, "You know - she was the Book of the Year coordinator!" He said, "Oh yeah, I know her too!" He picked up that book like a proud papa!!

Congrats!!!

Betsy Ann said...

Great interview! Thanks Cheryl and Lynette! I enjoyed it and I just signe dup for Cheryl's newsletter and contest! =)

Pammer said...

Wonderful interview. Cheryl is one of my best buds, but I sure am enjoying learning more about her during the interviews.

Great job. (You don't have to sign me up for the book though.)
Hugs!

Cynthia Ruchti said...

I can attest to Cheryl's heart for prayer and worship. One of the sweetest moments of my entire life as a writer was wrapping my arms around a sister in need while another writer hugged from the other side of her (at a conference in Nashville). We prayed together and felt heaven move...on behalf of our friend and also stirring within us. When introduced to the "other hugger," I discovered it was a woman I had longed to meet--Cheryl Wyatt! Her sweet spirit and heart for the Lord won my affection and appreciation forever. Can't wait to read her books!

Ruth Logan Herne said...

Lynette and Cheryl, great post and wonderful interview.

Umm...

Cheryl did forget to mention me in her thanks....

I did, after all, set her up with Margaret as her mentor... (ahem...) and I was one of her original slap-down, "learn how to cut and paste kid" contest judges. Luckily, she still speaks to me...

And she's learned how to delete, cut and paste.

In that order. Most times.

Cheryl, great book, great author, wonderful friend and prayer partner.

Ruthy

Mary Connealy said...

Hey, Cutie, nice interview.
At least my phobia is MICE. Something everyone can relate too even if they're not scared.

But you've always been one of a kind.

Let me know if I can throw myself between you and an ice cream bar any time. I'll save you...and have ice cream in the bargain.

LOVED A Soldier's Promise. Great, sweet, tough hero. Such a brave, strong and soft heroine. And, well, don't enter me in the contest, I've got my copy. YAY! Can't wait for the sequel.

Cheryl Wyatt said...

HE HE! You are all making my blush over here.

And yes, Ruthie knows I STILL have trouble repeating the same scene like a gazillion times in different ways. LOL!

Tracey, that's sweet about the book and your hubby? Did you guys buy it? LOLOLOL!

Cynthia, that prayer time is a fond one in my memory too! He is faithful isn't he? Oh and Cynthia is one of my favorite authors! She's a total hoot and I can't wait for some lucky publisher to snap her right up.

Mary and Ruthie and I are on a Seeker blog too! You all will have to check it out. We're giving away critiques and books! www.Seekerville.blogspot.com

I had the pleasure of meeting Betsy in Louisianna! Ask her about apples and corn mazes. LOL!

Kim and Pam and Pammer thanks SO much for stopping by!

Special thanks to Lynette for hosting me!!!!

Hugs,

Cheryl

Missy Tippens said...

Cheryl! I'm with you on the popsicle sticks!! LOL I used to eat my icecream with a metal fork in elementary school so I didn't have to use one of those wooden paddles. Just reading your message made my skin crawl! LOL

Lynette, I already have to book, so don't enter me in the drawing. I loved it so much!! Great work, Cheryl.

Missy

Abby Gaines said...

Cheryl, I ordered your book, and I'm expecting it to arrive today - yay!!! It sounds like a wonderful read, congratulations.
Abby

NotesbyNewsome said...

Hey Lynette! Andy told me about your blog and your new book!! I'm so excited for you! My blog is at newsomenotes.blogspot.com I hope we can can keep in touch. We miss you guys!

~Michelle Newsome

Cheryl Wyatt said...

Thanks all!

Kim S...you won a copy of the book. Contact Lynette privately with your address, so I can get your copy to you, okay?

Thanks everyone for visiting this stop on my blog tour!

Cheryl

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