- Tell us a bit about yourself. Include a couple of facts that not a lot of people know about you.
I’m married to my own hero and am Maman to four beautiful children, one set of identical twins. Our story is a modern-day romance: we met online through a Christian dating site (maybe that idea will make it into a book someday!).We are both avid readers. When we moved from our apartment to our house, the movers complained we didn’t own a TV for entertainment – just boxes of books. I’m not sure what they would say now, since we’ve added a few more filled bookshelves to our collection…
- Tell us a bit about the book that will be published by Anaiah Press.
HER HOLIDAY HOPE is an inspirational reunion romance that takes place at Christmas. There’s a little bit of mystery, a family secret and some romance mixed together. There are some memorable characters who pop up in town, spreading Christmas cheer and who can’t seem to help themselves when it comes to nudging the main characters together.It’s not your typical Christmas story, though there are elements that definitely shout Christmas. It’s a story that explores truth and what lengths we go to in order to protect the ones we love. Sometimes that cost is unimaginable. It’s an exploration of what happens when the choice you must make tears you from one you cherish.Ultimately, HER HOLIDAY HOPE is about putting our trust in God, not in man.
- When and why did you start writing?
I started writing very young and fell in love with story. I won a writing contest in Gr. 5, worked on my high school’s literary magazine and newspaper, and wrote liner and program notes for the local philharmonic orchestra when I was in college. I fell into the non-profit world following graduation and discovered the real power of story when I began writing grant proposals. It amazed me when foundations would send cheques to our charity as a direct result of the proposals, or creative non-fiction, I wrote. After our twins were born, I started writing articles about our experiences as parents of twins for our local chapter of Multiple Births Canada’s magazine. On a whim, I entered one of my articles that received a lot of positive feedback from our members to Writer’s Digest Magazine’s writing contest. It received an honorable mention and was the catalyst that pushed me into a more serious focus on writing. I write because I can’t not write. There are stories waiting to be told and I love watching an idea grow into this beautiful world of storytelling.
- Is this your first book? How many have you written? How many have you published?
This is my first published book, the second manuscript I’ve written. I’m in the draft stage of my third novel.
- Tell us a bit about your journey to publication.
In February of 2018, Harlequin hosted a Romance Blitz and invited authors to submit a first chapter and synopsis, after which they’d receive a critique. I’d never written romance before, let alone a complete novel, but my husband encouraged me to try. I read everything I could on writing romance and submitted my work. I was delighted to receive an invitation for a partial submission and eventually a full. It was ultimately rejected (with lots of suggestions for improvement). That experience gave me the confidence to continue writing. I started writing HER HOLIDAY HOPE shortly after the final rejection and entered it in several contests. Most of my entries lost, but it won the inspirational category in RWA Indiana’s Golden Opportunity Contest and it finaled in ACFW’s First Impressions Contest in the romance category. I took the feedback to heart, made my revisions and began submitting it for publication in November of 2019. I had heard about Anaiah Press through Candee Fick’s guest post on a blog I followed, Seekerville. At the time, the MS I had was a clean romance, not inspirational. I tucked her name and Anaiah’s in the back of my mind for someone to contact when I did have something suitable to submit. I’m so happy I did!
- What are some of your favorite books / authors?
I just plain love to read. This list could get pretty lengthy… Jane Austen is my favourite classical writer. I also love the Narnia series by C.S. Lewis. Debbie Macomber and John Grisham for the general/mainstream market. For Christian fiction writers: Julie Klassen, Beverly Lewis, Jody Hedlund, Rachel Hauck, and Carla Laureano are my top five go to authors. I also enjoy books by Roseanna White, Mary Connealy, Laurie Woods, Elizabeth Goddard, Janice Thompson, Janice Cantore and the list goes on. I recently read a book by Tom Threadgill and was enthralled with his story-weaving, so I’m eager to check more of his novels out. For non-fiction parenting books – anything by Kevin Lehman is worth the read.
- What are some of your favorite movies / TV shows?
My favourite movies includes anything Jane Austen, including some fanfiction (by far, BBC’s Pride and Prejudice is my fav!), You’ve Got Mail, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, The Wedding Planner, Maid in Manhattan, Return to Me, White Christmas and Elf. I enjoy a good action film or legal thriller every now and then.
- Where do you find inspiration for your books?
It’s in every day little things. Something someone said. Sometimes it’s people or places I visit that spark an idea. Or a headline that catches my eye. Camping has proven to inspire me quite a bit for story ideas. A recent sermon and testimonies shared gave me the foundation for my current work in progress.
- Where can readers learn more about you?
My website is a place where readers can find out the latest about everything having to do with book releases book topics, books I’m currently reading and a place to sign up for my newsletter: https://www.brodeurwrites.com
My Facebook page is a fun, interactive place where I post things twice weekly. Stop by on Tuesdays and Fridays to join in: https://www.facebook.com/annbrodeurauthor