Stress Free Book Marketing talks to author Hope Griffin about her book Finding Joy.
SFK: Tell me about your latest book and why you wrote it?
HNG: I wrote, Finding Joy, because I was struggling to find it. Being a military spouse and having to care for a young child with cancer did not fall in line with the plans I had laid out for my life. And yet, I found myself in the middle of that life faced with a choice to embrace fear and be bitter or find joy. I picked the later. I wrote this book for myself and I shared it so that others who struggled would find purpose and hope in its pages.
SFK: How long did it take you to write this book?
HNG: Finding Joy began as a personal journal. I’ve always been a writer, it’s how I make sense of the world, so when my soldier first deployed in 2009 I began to write. Some of that journaling turned into blog posts and the more fleshed out intimate details became a part of the manuscript that was published in 2015. It took 5 years to write and edit and another year before it was published.
SFK: When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
HNG: Fairly early on. I wrote my first full manuscript when I was in ninth grade. I couldn’t make sense of Revelations, it terrified me as a kid, so I wrote a novel about a young girl whose entire family was raptured, and she had to figure out how to survive. It was terrible. I still have it somewhere. It wasn’t until this first book was published though that I decided I wanted to be a writer full time. Now I pay the bills as a freelance copywriter so that I can spend more time on my novels and short stories.
SFK: Do you have any friends who are authors, and have they helped you in any way?
HNG: Yes. Absolutely yes. My author friends are great sources of encouragement. My family recently moved from El Paso, TX to Tampa, FL and my top priority was to start connecting with other authors in the area. I went to a writing conference first chance I got and met some wonderful local authors. I’ve joined a critique group, Sisters-In-Crime, and the Florida Writer’s Association. It is so important to learn and support one another.
SFK: How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
HNG: I’m not sure I want to confess this one. I have a hard time saying ok it’s ready to go. Right now, I have a novel that I believe is on its final edit before I start looking to publish it and another novel that is half way finished. I’ve started a number of non-fiction books by will get distracted by a story in my head and suddenly I’m writing a short story.
SFK: Have you ever used beta readers to provide honest feedback?
HNG: I did not with Finding Joybut I already have a few waiting on the novel. This time around I’d like to add sensitivity readers as well since the book is multi-cultural.
SFK: If you could eliminate one thing from your day what would it be?
Hope N. Griffin lives in Florida with her newly retired Army Veteran and their three children. She blogs at www.HopeNGriffin.com where she shares her journey as a ministry leader, military spouse, caregiver, and writer. A graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary Hope often discusses her faith and how that faith intersects with everyday life. Follow her across social media @HopeNGriffin. You can find Hope’s book at http://hopengriffin.com/finding-joy)