Christmas of Hope: Author Carol Caldwell

Christmas of Hope
A Collection of Christian Inspirational Novellas
Christmas of Hope
Christmas of Hope
    CHRISTMAS OF HOPE is an exciting new collection of Christian inspirational novellas featuring women who struggle to make their dreams come true and find faith, hope, and love along the way. Coached by multi-published author, Darlene Panzera, the group of contributing authors met every two weeks for nearly two years as they learned to craft their fictional stories and polish them into perfection.

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Today I'm interviewing Carol Caldwell who wrote A True Christmas Present as part of the anthology.

Good morning Carol.  When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

My desire to write began in the ninth grade when my English teacher, Gloria Ward, gave me my first poetry writing assignment. I started out very dramatically with “It was a dark and stormy night.” I knew the sentence was a cliché by then, but I loved it. So did my teacher and she encouraged me to write. Did you start writing right away? My writing over the years was here and there, essays, letters to the newspaper, newsletters. But not serious. I think God was preparing me on the inside. Then grandchildren came along, five of them, and they were the inspiration I needed. I decided I would write a story for each one of them. That is a tall order.  Have you completed all five stories? I haven’t reached my goal yet. I have a published book for the oldest granddaughter titled “Princess to the Rescue.” Her brother’s story is waiting for a publisher to grab it up while he grows up. I have the basic story line for each of the other three, but I got side-tracked. How did you get side-tracked? I began a story of my own about a girl, some horses and an exchange student. That has blossomed into three books with a fourth waiting to be written. All the while, I’ve been searching for an agent. How did you find a publisher? I fell into the small publishing company that took on my first book because a critique group partner recommended me to them. They readily accepted my story, but I had no idea when I began the process that it would take so long. In the meantime, I wrote two other Princess stories. The second story is in the process of being published. Have you tried other genres? While I was madly writing children’s stories, I joined Penning on the Peninsula, an offshoot of Northwest Christian Writer’s Association. I met a great group of writers, among them Darlene Panzera who was about to start teaching a class on how to write a short story. I signed up for it and a whole new world of adult fiction opened up to me. How was writing adult fiction different from children’s stories? Suddenly I could use large words and complicated sentences. I felt freedom that was new. I wouldn’t say writing children’s stories boxed me into a cage, but the style is more limiting than for adults. However, my inner child was still in control, so I needed to learn to use an adult voice. The class has been a growing experience and I appreciate the other writers who worked with Darlene to publish the anthology. What is your story about? My story is A True Christmas Present.  It is not technically a romance as the other six are. Yet, in a way, my main character does learn to fall in love with God again. What is your take-away from Darlene's class? Darlene taught us about marketing, our author web presence, and a lot more things that I never knew were involved with being a writer. Writing is more of a business than I thought! I agree!  Writing is more of a business than many of us thought!  Mahalo, Carol, for joining me today and all the best on your writing journey.   carol-author-pix Carol Caldwell lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband Bob and two dogs. Their sons and five grandchildren live close. Carol has been interested in writing since her teen years and holds a BA in English from the University of Southern California. Her first book is now published, titled Princess to the Rescue, with a sequel to come next year. Her other writing experience includes articles published in a variety of newsletters, and editing and layout for a women’s church newsletter. Carol is also an artist, working in a variety of media including pastels, watercolors, and fused glass. The influence of her older grandchildren motivated Carol to begin writing children’s stories when they asked her to tell stories at bedtime. The first story about Princess Claire was a natural outcome from her granddaughter Claire who loved to dress up as a princess. Carol and Bob are involved in their church where Carol works with women’s ministry, MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), and leads a Bible study. They have hosted over twenty high school age foreign exchange students from all over the world, and have been adult mentors for the church’s high school youth group. Christmas of Hope Authors
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