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A Talk with Laura Hilton

Laura Hilton’s publishing credits include Hot Chocolate and Shadows of the Past from Treble Heart Books; a devotional in a compilation from Zondervan; and the first book “Patchwork Dreams” in her Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House released in April 2011, the second book, “A Harvest of Hearts” in September 2011, and the third “Promised to Another”   will be out in April 2012. Laura has her business degree from Ozarka and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Laura is a professional book reviewer for the Christian market, with over a thousand book reviews published at various online review sites.

 

Laura, when did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I don’t remember ever waking up one day saying “oh, I want to be a writer…” It was just a dream I always had. When I was in third grade my teacher assigned us to write a short story. My short story ended up 300 pages long before the teacher took it and told me it was long enough…   I had poems published in fifth and sixth grades, and in high school. 

As someone who is fascinated with the Amish way of life I love to read Amish fiction. What is it that drew you to that genre?

My maternal grandparents left the Amish – Pennsylvania ones, though they lived in Ohio briefly in an Amish community there before they totally left.  They moved to a German community in Michigan (not Amish, but basically same language.) So the Amish have always fascinated me.  I love to read Amish fiction and thought it’d be fun to write. I never expected the high interest from publishers when I proposed one.  I only had three chapters written (for the proposal) and it sold—I was so surprised.

As a pastor’s wife with five children which you home school however do you find time to write book reviews let alone author your own books? You must be very organized.

I make a list of everything I would like (or need) to do in a day or else I’d forget something.  I have a calendar of when book reviews are due – but sometimes it gets down to the last minute before I get the book done. I don’t like it when that happens. I try to have them done two weeks before they post so if something happens and I can’t (or don’t want to) read then I’m not behind.   And actually, I’m only homeschooling three of the five right now. My two boys are homeschool graduates and attending college—and doing very well.  One son is maintaining straight A’s in college!   My daughter is using ABeka DVD school for highschool, so I have minimal work there (just grading papers and administrating tests) and the two little girls right now I use a mixed curriculum. They do a lot of fun homeschool books that I get to review in addition to the normal reading, writing, arithmetic stuff…  Right now we have a winter unit study, French, Beethoven, and wilderness survival stuff to review.  I have a goal of writing 1000 words a day with Sundays off.  Some days I make it, some I don’t.

Both your books published by Whitaker House–Patchwork Dreams and A Harvest of Hearts have been highly praised by reviewers. With your next book, Promised to Another, releasing this April 2012 do you have more books in the works?

Yes. Whitaker House has contracted me for three more Amish fiction, all three set in the same area of Seymour, Missouri.   The first one will release later this summer with two following in 2013. 

Thank you for taking time to visit with us, is there anything else you’d like to share?

You can find me on face book (Author Laura V. Hilton), on twitter Laura_V_Hilton, or visit my blogs http://lighthouse-academy.blogspot.com and http://laurav.hilton.blogspot.com.    My books are available on Amazon, Christian Book Distributors and Barnes and Noble if you can’t find them in an actual brick and mortar store. Or you can ask the store to order them in for you.

Here’s a blurb for Promised to Another – Book 3 in the Amish of Seymour series

Annie Beiler is an Amish school teacher. She was in love with an Amish man, Luke Stultz, but Luke left the Amish community during his rumspringa, but not without begging Annie to go with him. Now Luke is back, trying to win back Annie’s love. Joshua Esh may be Amish, but he has been bitten by the travel bug. He sees the opportunity to relocate from Pennsylvania to Missouri as a way to satisfy his longing to see another place yet remain with people of his faith. Josh quickly notices the beautiful Annie, but Annie is slow to respond. With Luke in the picture, and Josh’s admission that he willingly left his district, will either man be steady and dependable enough to win the gift of Annie’s heart?

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