TAKE HEART AND TAKE NOTES
by Meg Moseley
Novels are fun and easy to read, so they must be fun and easy to write, too. Right?
Wrong. Sure, parts of the process are incredibly fun and sometimes it even feels easy—for a while—but novel-writing is hard work. Still, I wouldn’t trade this job for anything.
When I started writing, I was just a wee bit naïve. I thought it might take me six months or a year to write a novel and sell it. (Okay, stop laughing!)
Once I realized I didn’t know a thing about writing, I buckled down to learn the basics. I studied the rules and the market. I entered contests. I went to writers’ conferences and read how-to-write books. I absorbed so much advice that I didn’t have room for my instincts anymore. I lost my voice as a writer. Everything I wrote sounded like what everybody else was writing. I hated it.
So, I played Lone Ranger for a few years. I backed off from attending writers’ conferences, from reading how-to’s, and even from participating in a critique group. It was just me, my computer, and the Lord. (And the cat camping on the back of the chair.) But when I emerged from my self-imposed exile, I had a novel that I knew was better than the ones I’d written before. That novel helped me find a good agent, and it became my debut novel, When Sparrows Fall, from Multnomah Books.
Looking back, I’m glad for the time I spent learning and then un-learning the rules. Even when the hope of publication seemed to be on hold, I was growing and learning. I have more to bring to my fiction now, simply because I’ve lived a little longer. I’ve experienced more of life’s joys and sorrows, and they’ve changed me.
If you’re not published yet, you know the pre-publication wait can seem excruciatingly long, but it’s all part of the process. Living life prepares us to write about life. So, take heart—over and over—and take notes. That’s what writers do.
WHEN SPARROWS FALL
by Meg Moseley
Waterbrook Multnomah, May 2011
A widow and mother of six, Miranda Hanford leads a quiet, private life. When the pastor of her close-knit church announces his plans to move the entire congregation to another state, Miranda jumps at the opportunity to dissolve ties with Mason Chandler and his controlling method of ruling his flock. But then Mason threatens to unearth secrets from her past, and Miranda feels trapped, terrified she’ll be unable to protect her children.
College professor Jack Hanford is more than surprised when he gets a call from his estranged sister-in-law’s oldest son, Timothy, informing him that Miranda has taken a serious fall and he has been named legal guardian of her children while she recovers. Quickly charmed by Miranda’s children, Jack brings some much-needed life into the sheltered household. But his constant challenging of the family’s conservative lifestyle makes the recovering mother uneasy and defensive—despite Jack’s unnerving appeal.
As Jack tries to make sense of the mysterious Miranda and the secrets she holds so tightly, Mason’s pressure on her increases. With her emotions stirring and freedom calling, can Miranda find a way to unshackle her family without losing everything?
Meg Moseley is a Californian at heart although she’s lived more than half her life in other states. She formerly wrote human-interest columns for a suburban section of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and home schooled for more than twenty years. Meg enjoys reading books, traveling, gardening, her three grown children, and motorcycle rides with her husband Jon. They make their home in northern Georgia.