TTAC - Interview Q&A Part 1

When Kathy Carlton Willis put together the press kit for my latest book, Third Time's a Charm, she came up with some terrific interview questions. They were included in mailings to media personnel all over the country, and they've generated some terrific discussions as I've been interviewed by radio hosts, journalists, and bloggers. Some of you might not have had the opportunity to catch those interviews, so this week I'm going to answer the eight questions on my Journal. I'll spread them out over the week, so check back later in the week to make sure you read them all.


1. Bits and pieces of your own life are woven into the story. Give our listeners an idea of the similarities between the lives of you and your real-life sisters, and those of the Sister-to-Sister series.

The relationships between the fictitious Sanderson sisters is modeled after my relationship with my own sisters. They’re incredible women, intelligent and creative and energetic, and we are extremely supportive of one another. Our parents divorced when we were younger, and we learned to rely on each other to get through the tough times, as the Sanderson sisters do in Third Time’s a Charm.

Not everything about the Sanderson sisters is based on fact, though. My sisters and I have never played matchmaker for each other. We don’t meddle in each others’ romantic lives at all.

2. In Third Time’s A Charm, Tori deals with her feelings of abandonment regarding her absent father. Have you ever dealt with similar feelings? What would you say to someone who is in a similar situation?

Oh, yes, I’ve felt that way. My parents divorced when I was eight, which was about the same age as Tori in Third Time’s a Charm. My father didn’t disappear from my life completely, but he was a young businessman, and his professional pursuits kept him extremely busy. I sometimes went for months without seeing him. So after the divorce, my father was no longer a constant presence in my life. That was hard.

I think it’s important for people in that situation to find ways to fill the gap in a positive way. Sometimes when we lose the relationship with one person in our lives, we can become so focused on that loss that we overlook the blessings we have left. I was extremely lucky to have a supportive mother, and a grandmother and aunt. And, of course, my sisters.

3. How do women with absent fathers deal with relationships with other men? With their Heavenly Father?

That can be tough. I read a report from a study earlier this week that talked about how important the father-daughter relationship is, and how it has such an impact on a girl’s future intimate relationships. A father has such an influence on his daughter’s developing self-esteem, and of course that can affect how she relates to men later in life. But even more than that, it can be very hard to learn to trust in a God who we’re told is our heavenly Father, when our relationship with our earthly father was lousy or nonexistent. So an absent or inattentive father can have a huge impact on a young woman who is trying to establish a lasting relationship with a man, and with God.

But you know what the Bible tells us? We have a God who binds up the brokenhearted. He provides for all our needs, including our emotional needs. Our job is to make an effort to get to know Him, and to believe that His love for us – for me – will never, ever go away.

I'd love to hear your thoughts. If you're following me on Facebook, post a comment in response to this note. If you're reading this on my Journal, send me a comment here.