On a dare, Kylie Matthews lands smack in the middle of Solomon's Gate—Castle Creek's new Christian dating agency—and she finds herself revealing exactly what she's waiting for in a relationship: "The kiss that steals my breath away." What she doesn't reveal is her lack of self-esteem or her irrational reaction to facial disfigurement. Neither is applicable to her quest to find the perfect match. But that seemingly superficial malady becomes all-important when her first agency-arranged date is Rick Dale—a man who is everything Kylie is searching for. He's handsome, smart, fun. Rick has it all...including an angelic six-year-old daughter with severe scarring on one side of her face. Hard at work founding a therapy camp for young female victims of deformity or disfigurement, Rick wants Kylie to be a part of those plans. She'd love to say yes...but how can she, when every contact with the facility's guests—and Rick's own daughter—will make her violently ill? Kylie is ready to admit their relationship doesn't stand a chance, but she's forgotten that God makes a way where there seems no way.
- ISBN: 1611160782
- Publisher: White Rose Publishing
Interview with Delia Latham
By Suzanne Wesley - July 25, 2011
Delia’s writing passion has found expression, not only in inspirational romance novels, but also in songs, poems and greeting card verse as well as short stories and articles. No matter what she is writing her goal is “To be used of God to touch the hearts of others.”
Your second book in the Solomon’s gate series features more than one person facing perceived ostracism due to a facial disfigurement. Was there a story or a person that sparked that particular feature of your story? (Where do you get your ideas?)
While researching a previous book, Goldeneyes, I stumbled across a website called Angel Faces. It’s a therapy camp in California, based on much the same concept as the one Rick founds in Kylie’s Kiss. It absolutely fascinated me. I was drawn in and touched by the success stories and the before-and-after photos of the Angel Faces guests, and knew I had to work something similar into one of my books. Looking back now, I’m amazed that God used an agency with “angel” in its name to influence this series. (You’ll understand why later.)
Reflecting back, what do you see as most significant to your publication journey?
Making the decision to stop procrastinating and get ‘er done. ☺ If I had applied that discipline years earlier, where might my writing career have been by now? I think about that often, but at the same time, I know God’s timing is always perfect, so I trust there was a reason I waited so long to “just do it.”
What’s your secret to cranking out words and getting the editing done (What keeps you motivated)?
I love deadlines! Seriously, having a date by which I know a manuscript is expected to be turned in lights a fire in me. I refuse to miss a deadline, so having one is a positive thing for me. Even if I’ve been slacking off a bit, receiving that official due date brings everything into focus. I become a “pro” for the duration of the project—no more playing around, just steady, onward progress.
Another great incentive, of course, is knowing your story has a home. I was amazed how much easier it was to write this series, knowing all three books were already contracted.
Do you plan out your stories or are you a seat-of-the-panster?
I’m very much a panster. Sometimes I wish I were more of a plotter, but then, God has His reasons for not making all of us alike, doesn’t He? In writing, as in every other part of life, what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for all.
That said…by the time I actually sit down and start putting words to paper, I have the first few scenes pretty much “written” in my head. I’ve mulled over them while doing dishes and making beds, tossed them around while driving down the road, worked out entire scenes as I lay waiting for sleep to claim me at night. So there is a bit of plotting, I think, even for a die-hard panster. A little seed of an idea, germinating in our imaginations, that slowly evolves into a story—even if we don’t create character charts and plot maps.
What do you consider the greatest moment of your writing/publishing career (so far)?
I will never forget receiving “the call” from Dawn Carrington at Vinspire Publishing. It was an incredible, unforgettable, amazing moment, and she sounded every bit as excited as I was when she panted out, “We want your book!” Receiving an acceptance via e-mail is still terrific, but I’m so glad I had at least one actual phone call. It made me feel validated as an author. LOL
Who is your writing support system?
My husband and children are incredibly supportive. They believe in me, which means so much. My dh, Johnny, is wonderful about being willing to do absolutely everything else when I’m writing—which is most of the time. He’s the cook in our family anyway (Thank You, God!), but has gradually taken over so much more, especially since he retired from his job. I also have a large extended family, and so many of them offer constant encouragement and support. I couldn’t ask for more or better support.
What do you think makes your style of storytelling unique?
Probably my tendency to create “old-fashioned” heroines. I was greatly influenced by Grace Livingston Hill. As a teenager, I read all of her books that I could get my hands on, sometimes reading the same novel two and three times. I realize Hill’s style is pretty much outdated now. Today’s youth would probably consider it boring and utterly unbelievable. Surely no woman on earth is really as sweet and innocent as the heroines in her books…? But I loved it, and I often catch glimpses of Hill’s influence in my own writing. I’m glad of that, and if others see it, that’s fine with me. I consider it an honor.
Any parting words?
God performed an amazing work in me as I wrote The Solomon’s Gate Series. He made me understand things I thought I’d been familiar with my entire life—things like the wonderful power in the use of anointing oil and the presence of angels in our lives. In fact, He has inserted an angel in every novel I’ve written to date, except the first one (Almost Like a Song, which became Yesterday’s Promise in a reprint version). In true panster fashion, I had no idea this was going to happen until God took over the reins. I just want to say that I hope these books bless my readers even half as much as writing them blessed me. If they do, then I can truly say, “Mission accomplished!”
Thanks for sharing with us, Delia!
Thanks for the opportunity!
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