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Interview with Sara L. Foust

Welcome, Sara! Tell us about your debut novel, Callum’s Compass.
I love my book! Of course, I’d say most authors feel that way. Callum’s Compass is a story I’ve brainstormed and dreamed about for more than ten years and to see it finally a reality is extremely rewarding. It has romance, a treasure hunt, a scary group of bad guys, wildlife, and characters’ journeys to faith, all set in the mountains and forests of East Tennessee.

Who is your favorite character in Callum’s Compass?
Can a dog be my favorite character? Ha! I love Kat’s Golden Retriever Scout because I wrote him to be a lot like my first dog. She was my baby! As far as people go, I love both my hero, Kat, and heroine, Ryan.

Are there parts of your life that seep into your stories?
Oh definitely. I think there is a tiny bit of truth in all fiction. My debut novel contains many real-life locations that are part of my life or my history. As far as my characters go, I tend to use my past experiences to understand them better. I write Romantic Suspense, so I can’t say I’ve ever been actually chased by a bad guy, but I can use memories of times when I was frightened or had a nightmare to help me get the emotions real.

Is there a verse in the Bible that ties into the themes in Callum’s Compass?
There are actually two. One is I Corinthians 13:13—And now abideth faith, hope, and charity, these three: but the greatest of these is charity (KJV). This is the verse for the Love, Hope, and Faith Series that ties the 3 books together. The specific verse for Callum’s Compass is Psalm 103:12—As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us (KJV). It is my hope that readers will discover or remember how much God loves us, no matter what our past holds.

How do you balance the busy life of a homeschool mom and author?
Whew! Some days it is not easy! Life here never slows down. But I feel driven to write. It is a part of me that fulfills me and it is my “mommy time.” I brainstorm when I can’t be at the computer, write as often as I can, and try to utilize my spare time to read writing-craft books.

Describe your writing routine. Do you have a favorite place to write?
I usually wake up, make some coffee and have my morning Bible study, and then head to the computer to work. I stay there as long as the kiddos will allow me to or until I have to get ready for a doctor’s appointment or other errands. When the weather is nice, I love writing outdoors. I built a bench and made it a very cozy place on my front porch so that I can enjoy nature while I write and watch the kids playing in the front yard.

Is there a favorite outdoor location that inspires you?
Cades Cove is a favorite place for our family. It is always a relaxing, refreshing day, but I don’t ever get any work done there ha! So, as far as places go that can inspire and I can work, I’d have to say when my family is camping. Our favorite campground is Frozen Head State Park (which is one of the locations in Callum’s Compass!)

What is your go-to drink of choice? Coffee, tea?
Coffee, for sure. With cream and Splenda if I’m trying to be good. Flavored Frappuccinos, cappuccinos, or lattes if I’m not. Ha!

Besides writing, do you have any other hobbies? Do these hobbies ever tie into writing?
Our family loves to camp and I’ve used my experiences camping to observe nature and tuck the little descriptions into my mind. Camping will also play a huge role in book #3, Rarity Mountain, though it will be much more ‘roughing-it’ camping than we do. I also love to take nature photographs and more often than not use my own pictures for my blog and memes. And, of course, reading. I love to read!

Any parting words?
I am so thankful to be a “real author” now. Seeing my book published and being able to hold it in my hands is a dream come true. I hope it is just the beginning of a long writing career. I would love to have readers’ prayers this spring, as I will be going on my first-ever mission trip to the Philippines for two weeks. It will be so hard to leave my family, but I know this is God’s plan for me. Pray for my husband and family staying home to care for the kids too, please!

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CJ Myerly is a graduate from Clearwater Christian College. She resides in Tampa, Florida with her husband and two children. She’s always loved reading and writing and is currently working on a contemporary romance series. She hates clutter, loves organization, and has a love/hate relationship with all electronics. CJ blogs about books, writing, motherhood, and homeschooling at http://momentsdippedinink.com.





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