Monday, November 12, 2012

Interview with Christian Author Diane Craver

As the youngest in the family, growing up on a farm in Findlay, Ohio, Diane often acted out characters from her own stories in the backyard. She met her husband while teaching at an orphanage, and they married three years later. While raising their six children in southwestern Ohio, Diane started writing nonfiction. Later, she decided it would be a nice escape to write fiction. Diane has published through a variety of houses, but recently decided to try Indie Publishing. She writes fun and inspiring stories filled with memorable characters. Diane gives thanks “to God daily for all her wonderful blessings.”

Ms. Craver has a knack for pulling at your heartstrings with her endearing characters.

Hello, Diane. Please tell us about your novel, A Joyful Break.

Thanks for having me, Linda. Here is my blurb for A Joyful Break: “After her mother’s untimely death, a twenty-year-old Amish woman has a difficult decision to make: Make a break from the Amish church and her boyfriend…or live in the English world permanently.”

Rachel Hershberger wants to get away from her Amish home in Fields Corner, Ohio. For a year she’s been trying to fill her mother’s shoes by taking care of her father and siblings. She quit her job at the bakery so she could have more time to clean and cook at home. Before her mother died, Rachel was positive she wanted to marry Samuel Weaver, but now she can’t think about wedding plans. She blames her father for her mother’s death. If they had installed a phone in their barn or a shanty, her mother might have received medical help in time to save her life. Her mother’s death has made Rachel question if she should be baptized and join the church. She wonders if non-Amish women live longer and have less stress. Maybe her forty-four-year old mother would still be alive had she left the Amish lifestyle like her sister Carrie did.

When her Aunt Carrie invites her to go to the beach, Rachel decides the time away will help her to decide whether to join the Amish church or to live in the English world. She is conflicted because she loves Samuel and her family. Instead of a relaxing time away, disturbing events happen while Rachel’s in Florida. A photographer snaps troublesome pictures of Rachel because of her famous senator uncle, and a handsome and charming college student falls in love with Rachel.

Where did you get your inspiration for this book?

My inspiration for writing this book came from my sweet late mother, Laoma Oberly Wilson. She lived a long Christian life and enjoyed being a wife, mother and grandmother.  Her grandfather was a Mennonite minister, and she shared many stories about him. Also the Amish community in A Joyful Break  is fictional, but exists close to Wheat Ridge which is an actual Amish community in the southern part of Ohio where I live.

What kind of research did you have to do for this novel?

Before I started writing my Amish novel, I did extensive research to portray this wonderful faith as accurately as possible. However, there are differences between the various groups and subgroups of Amish communities.  This is because the Amish have no central church government; each has its own governing authority. Every local church maintains an individual set of rules, adhering to its own Ordnung.

What does your family think about your writing?

My husband and children are very supportive of my writing. My hubby is a nonreader so I was impressed when he read four of my print books. He doesn’t want to read from my Kindle. My daughters have proofread my manuscripts and given me constructive feedback about what I’ve written.

That’s awesome. Real family support! Now it’s time to tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.

When my daughter Christina was in San Diego on a conference, she booked a flight for me to join her. We ate lasagna at an outside restaurant and enjoyed walking on the beach. I thought I was the smart one keeping my shoes and socks on. Apparently a bug bit my big toe while it was trapped in my shoe. I ended up with cellulitis, which is an infection of the skin. Another daughter, Emily, thought I meant I had cellulite when I called home about my illness. LOL. My toe, foot, and leg were swollen and turned a nasty purple color. I was hospitalized in San Diego overnight and discharged. When I arrived home, I needed to be admitted and was in the hospital for five days. Pretty serious stuff. But my favorite vacation will always be to go to the beach. I love the ocean so it was especially fun to write about Rachel’s impression when she first steps foot on Cocoa Beach in my novel.

Man, I didn’t realize that an insect bite could do so much damage. I’m glad that you recovered. I’ll remember to take off my shoes when I go to the beach next. I live among the Rocky Mountains, but I go to the California beach once a year when I’m on tour. Thanks for being a guest on my blog.


Diane Craver said...

Good Morning, Linda! I'm thrilled to be on your lovely blog! I never heard of anyone else having this happen while walking on the beach - it was weird and painful.

I have a scoring job today but will check back this evening!

Becky said...

Great interview! I enjoy learning new info about an author besides how they decided to write about a certain ideal. "A Joyful Break" sounds like an interesting story. When reading the blurb for "A Joyful Break" and reading Rachel's last name made me think of my mother-in-laws neighbors. Her neighbors are Amish and their last name is Hershberger. I didn't realize either that an insect bite could cause so much damage. I'm glad that you recovered from it Diane.

Celia Yeary said...

Hi, Diane--and Linda:
I highly recommend this novel by Diane. The plot surprised me because I thought I knew a little about the Amish, but this story made me even more aware. My heart hurt for Rachel as she struggled through her decision.
The cover? Don't you love that? It perfectly depicts this story.
Diane, I believe you have a good thing started with this series.
Best wishes, and God Bless you and your writing endeavor!

Glenda Parker Fiction Writer said...

I loved your interview. That was a serious bug bite. Your book sounds great, I know I will enjoy it. God bless you.

Glenda Parker

joye said...

I like reading these kinds of books. This one sounds really good

Anonymous said...

Diane Craver sounds like someone I would love to sit down over coffee with! With our 6 kids each we would have much to chat about. The book sounds great!
melanieinoh2003 at yahoo dot com

apple blossom said...

thanks for chance to win

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Debby said...

Amazing what one bug bite can do. I hope you have no lasting ill effects.
debby236 at gmail dot com

Brenda Rumsey said...

This sounds like a great book with insight into the Amish life. I really enjoyed your interview. Thank you for sharing with us.
grandmabkr at yahoo dot com

Diane Craver said...

Hi Becky,
Thank you for commenting and stopping by! My leg was so painful and I had so many nurses coming in my hospital room to look at my foot and leg. They had never seen anything like it. :)

That's interesting about your mother-in-law's neighbors being Amish and having Hershberger for their last name.

Diane Craver said...

I'm happy you stopped by. I love the cover too. Thanks again for your input when working on getting it right. I'm glad you enjoyed A Joyful Break! I hope I can get started on the next book in the series soon. I always appreciate your friendship and wonderful support!

Diane Craver said...

Hi Glenda,
Thanks so much for visiting. God Bless you too. Have a wonderful evening.

Diane Craver said...

Thank you, Joye! I appreciate you visiting Linda's blog! I'm glad you enjoy reading Amish romances. :) Have a terrific evening!

Diane Craver said...

That's wonderful you also have 6 kids. We would have fun talking together over coffee! I'm glad you stopped by. Take care and continue to enjoy your family!

Diane Craver said...

Hi Apple Blossom,
Glad to see you. Hope you're staying warm. Our temperature dropped here in Ohio.

Diane Craver said...

Hi Debby,
My leg is fine now. I had to get an ultrasound several wks. after it happened because it was still weak. Thanks for visiting!

Diane Craver said...

Hi Brenda,
I enjoyed doing a lot of research before I started writing A Joyful Break. I wish my mother was alive because I know she'd enjoy reading this sweet story. I'm glad you stopped by - have a nice evening.

karenk said...

a wonderful posting...thanks for the chance to read this beautiful book

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Diane Craver said...

Hi Karen,
Thank you! I hope you get a chance to read A Joyful Break! I'm planning to have Book Two available in 2013.

tickmenot said...

I love Amish books, and this one has a unique story line that really draws me in.

What an awful experience you had at the beach, I will always warn people about their shoes after reading that!

Thanks for the giveaway!

Diane Craver said...

Hi tickmenot,
So nice to see someone else popped in. Thanks for commenting. I love Amish stories, too and hope everyone enjoys reading A Joyful Break. Writing about Rachel's challenges and Samuel's love for her was something I am happy to share with readers.

Nancy Luebke said...

Thanks for this giveaway. My husband got a bite on his arm and had that too. Nasty stuff. Glad you're better and didn't let it turn you off beaches.

Diane Craver said...

Hi Nancy,
Sorry your husband had a nasty bite.
I love the beach. My husband and I went on our first cruise to the Bahamas together to celebrate our 36th wedding anniversary in 2011. We enjoyed the beaches. Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Awesome interview! Please enter me in giveaway,
MaryAnn Koopmann

Diane Craver said...

Good Morning, MaryAnn,
I'm glad you enjoyed interview. Linda asked great questions. Thanks for visiting. Have a great day!

Mary Ellen Ashenfelder said...

Sounds like a wonderful read. This is a new author to me -- looking forward to reading her work. Please enter me. Thank you.
Mary Ellen

Jean Kropid said...

I Love Amish themed books and have not read this author, as yet. I would love to add her to my inventory of beloved authors!
Jean Kropid

Diane Craver said...

Hi Mary Ellen,
I appreciate you stopping by. I'm glad you're interested in reading A Joyful Break! Have a nice evening.

Diane Craver said...

Hi Jean,
Thank you for your lovely comment! I agree about Amish stories - they touch a chord in a lot of us with their faith and priorities.

J. Augustine said...

This is a new author to me... I think I will be checking out my local library for more.

Please enter me for the giveaway.

Diane Craver said...

Hi J.Augustine,
Thank you so much for your interest - have a great day!

chirth7 said...

Hi Diane and Linda! What an awesome storyline. I would love to read this book as would my Mom. The amish religion is something I have not read a lot about but sounds facinating.

I'm so sorry what you went through due to that bug bite. But so glad your all recovered now.

Thanks for the book giveaway! I'd love to win your book.


Diane Craver said...

Hi Christine,
Thank you for stopping by and commenting. That's great you and your mother would like to read A Joyful Break. I think you'd enjoy reading Amish romances - I have liked reading several of them myself.

Have a nice weekend!