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Writers’ Spaces Wednesday: Sarah Loudin Thomas
Writers Spaces Wednesday
I’ve always been fascinated by other writers’ spaces. Some of my writer friends have beautiful offices. Others frequent their favorite Starbucks, Panera, or local libraries to write. Some write at their kitchen tables or living rooms. Because I love to see where others create, I’ve started Writers’ Spaces Wednesdays.
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SLTI haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Sarah Loudin Thomas in person, but we’re agency mates with Books & Such Literary Management. Sarah grew up on a 100-acre farm in French Creek, WV, the seventh generation to live there. Her Christian fiction is set in West Virginia and celebrates the people, the land, and the heritage of Appalachia. Sarah and her husband Jim live in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Visit her website or connect with her on Facebook and Twitter
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Welcome, Sarah! Tell us about your writing space.
My “official” writing space is a lovely desk near a window in our bedroom. I keep it pretty tidy with craft books on the left, research materials on the right, and a few fun items for inspiration. The window is the best part of the space, though! Of course, I write other places, too. The kitchen table is a favorite spot!

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I can relate—my desk is next to a window in my bedroom, too. What makes it special for you?

I keep photos of family where I can see them and above the desk there’s a painting of my younger brother and I playing checkers the day I got my bachelor’s degree and he got his associate’s. My husband commissioned that painting as a gift the first Christmas we were married. Special!

Your painting sounds like an amazing gift. What is one element of your space that makes you smile?

My tiara! I think every girl should have her own tiara and my mom sent me a lovely, sparkly one several years ago. I wear it while writing on occasion. I’m still working on a reason to wear it in public!

A tiara—how fun! Every princess deserves one. 🙂 What are your “must-haves” when you sit down to write?

Time and a laptop are really all I need. I’m not fussy at all. Sometimes I drink tea, but I rarely eat while writing—eating is one my favorite things to do and it’s too distracting!

Share a typical writing day.

When I’m writing a first draft, I aim for 1,000 words a day. I come home from work, hike with my husband and dog, make and eat dinner, then settle in to write. Of course, there are a hundred things that can get in the way of that plan! On weekends I’ll try to make up for any days I was called away. A couple of times a year I take vacation time to get in some hard core writing or editing. And it really does feel like a vacation for me!

Sounds like you have a writing routine worked out. If you could choose the ultimate writing space, where would it be?

I have visions of an attic or tower room with a window looking out over a vast landscape. Cozy desk, comfortable chair, bookcases . . . But really, my writing space is inside my head and my heart so I can write just about anywhere!

Sounds lovely! Tell us a little about your latest release.

REV_Thomas_Harvest_Design 2.inddUntil the Harvest continues the Phillips’ family saga with the next generation. When Henry Phillips’ life is derailed by family tragedy his rocky friendship with Margaret Hoffman and her unique little sister will lead him to redefine what it means to find love and healing.
Casewell and Perla’s son Henry is thrown off track by a family tragedy and gets mixed up in all the wrong things (moonshine, fast cars, bad women, etc.). Margaret provide a counterpoint to Henry’s bad choices. She’s trying to do everything right and still can’t get her life to turn out the way she wants. Throw in Margaret’s younger sister Mayfair—a diabetic who seems to be something of a healer—and life gets complicated.
When I wrote the book I knew what I HOPED the theme was, but I wasn’t sure it came through. (After writing and editing a manuscript that many times you get to a point where you’re not sure it even makes sense!) I gave it to my husband and after he read it asked him what it was about. He thought a minute and then said, “Love.” Ahhh. Yes, indeedy.
I’m looking forward to reading it! Thanks so much for sharing your space, Sarah. Readers, do you have a tiara? Where’s the best place to wear it?
Lisa Jordan
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Writers’ Spaces Wednesday: Edie Melson

Writers Spaces Wednesday

I’ve always been fascinated by other writers’ spaces. Some of my writer friends have beautiful offices. Others frequent their favorite Starbucks, Panera, or local libraries to write. Some write at their kitchen tables or living rooms. Because I love to see where others create, I’ve started Writers’ Spaces Wednesdays.

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Edie Melson, crop, low resI met Edie Melson at the 2009 or 2010 My Book Therapy pizza party held during ACFW, and we’ve been friends since then. She’s also on the MBT Leadership Team, serving as My Book Therapy’s Social Media Coordinator. If you have questions about social media, she’s your go-to gal. 

As the mother of a frontline infantry Marine, Edie lived this book before she wrote it. Edie understands what it is to face adversity and come out triumphant on the other side. Her years as a wife, mother, and ministry leader have given her a unique perspective to reach out 
to others facing the same struggles.
 She’s the Military Family Blogger for Guideposts.org, social media director for several writing websites, and a popular ministry and conference speaker. Connect with her on her blog, The Write Conversation, Twitter, and Facebook.

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Edie, thanks for being here today. Tell us about your writing space.

My favorite writing space is my back porch. It’s screened in from floor to ceiling. Since it’s in the middle of our wooded lot it feels like I’m writing in the woods.

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Your back porch looks like something from a gardening magazine. What makes it special for you?

I love feeling like I’m writing in a wilderness glade. The birds flit from tree to tree, calling to each other, while the squirrels play chase through the oak branches. Beyond that, I’m always joined by my cat, Emily Dickinson, and my dog, Jake.

Emily and Jake relaxing while I write (1)

Emily posing with the pumpkins in the fall (1)

Ahh, tranquility at its finest! What is one element of your space that makes you smile?

The peace that I feel out in the midst of nature. I’ve successfully conquered many a wrestling match with writer’s block on that porch.

View from the porch during a spring rain (1)

I can see why. 🙂 What are your “must-haves” when you sit down to write?

My cat and dog, a mug of chamomile tea, and my Macbook Air.photo-30 (2)

I’m surprised you can get work done with such an amazing view. Share a typical writing day.

When I get up I have my quiet time, then begin wading through email and scheduling my social media for the day. About 9am I move to the back porch—that’s my reward for finishing the business part of being a writer—and begin to create. I guard my creative writing time, usually my best creative time is from 9am until noon.

I break for lunch with my husband—he also works his engineering company from an office at home—then it’s back to writing. If I’m on deadline, I’ll force more creative time in the afternoon. Otherwise, I’ll write blog posts, work on editing, or marketing.

I try to be finished by supper, although I may put in an extra hour or two after dinner, if necessary.

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Sounds like a productive day! If you could choose the ultimate writing space, where would it be?

Truthfully, I think I have it.

I think you do, too. 🙂 Tell us a little about your latest release.

WMSS, final, low resThousands of families send loved ones off to fight on a daily basis. These families spend a lot of time living in a world out of control. This kind of stress can take an incredible toll, but there is hope. When we feel helpless, we can take our fears to the One who loves us more than anything and holds the universe in His hands. In this book you’ll find the words to usher you into His presence. These prayers are a place to visit again and again as you take your own fears to God. They’re just a starting point, written to help you find your own voice as you call out on behalf of the one you love.

You can do more than wait. You can pray. There is nothing stronger than the power of prayer. While Your soldier is serving their country, you want to pray for them, but sometimes it is hard to find the words. These rich, powerful prayers for protection, peace, strength, wisdom and faith are written from the heart. It is perfect for the spouse, parent, friend or even prayer group who is praying for one special soldier or for all who may be in harm’s way.

Edie, thanks so much for sharing your small slice of paradise with us. Readers, do you have friends or relatives who are serving currently in the armed forces? Tell us how we can pray for them.

 

Lisa Jordan
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