Interview with Cathy Bryant, author of TEXAS ROADS

Tell us a little about yourself Cathy.

I’m a daughter of the King, wife, mom, Nana, musician, teacher and writer. I enjoy just about anything outdoors, including hiking, canoeing, camping and gardening. I also enjoy creative activities—home improvement projects, scrapbooking, painting, composing, and of course, writing. I love watching movies and reading books, though since becoming a writer, I can’t stop analyzing what I’m watching and reading. I’m a HUGE reality TV fan, my favorites being Survivor, The Amazing Race, Dancing With The Stars, The Bachelor/Bachelorette, and Design Star. Believe it or not, I like to use these shows as research to see how people interact—great novel fodder!!

What are you currently reading?

I’m reading The Clouds Roll Away by Sibella Giorello. Next in my teetering to-be-read pile is Here Burns My Candle by Liz Curtis Higgs. I’m a big believer in reading as a means of improving my writing. Even though it’s time-consuming, it has been invaluable. I review books on a regular basis and then pass my copies along to my blog readers. )

What genre do you prefer reading / writing?

I definitely like to write the same type of books I enjoy reading. I love romantic comedy that tugs at your heart, and I think that comes across in my writing. I also enjoy a dark women’s fiction novel every once in a while, and have a few book ideas simmering in the back of my mind in that genre. Biblical fiction and allegorical fantasy are also areas I’d like to explore someday.

Where do you write?

My century-old Texas farmhouse is big on charm and short on space, so my “writing room” also serves as our music room, library, and guest bedroom. I’m a cheapskate at heart, so I used two bookshelves we already had to flank the front windows, painted two beat-up (but entirely necessary) file cabinets, and purchased eight wooden boxes to serve as extra drawers. I topped the “drawers” and file cabinets with a cut-out piece of MDF to create my desk-top. My makeshift desk overlooks the front yard, complete with white picket fence, and a garden-full of flowers, birds, and butterflies. (I’ll leave out the ginormous late-summer mosquitoes!)

Tell us about your latest book.

TEXAS ROADS is a 2009 Genesis finalist and tells the story of a disillusioned woman’s quest for home. Here’s the back-cover copy:

“City gal Dani Davis just wants a place to call home. Miller’s Creek, Texas, with its quirky residents, quaint charm, and business potential, seems like the perfect place to start over. . .except for the cowboy who gives her a ride into town. Dani secretly finances renovations to downtown Miller’s Creek, but malicious rumors force her to choose between keeping her involvement a secret and the home for which she’s always longed. Then a devastating discovery propels her down a road she never expected to travel.

Steve Miller is determined to save his dying hometown. When vandalism jeopardizes theMiller’s Creek restoration project, he can’t help but suspect Dani, whose strange behavior has become fodder for local gossips. Can Steve and Dani call a truce for a higher cause, and in the process help Dani understand the true meaning of home?”

What inspired TEXAS ROADS?

The theme of the story really came from my own desire to put down roots. For several years, my family and I moved from one small Texas town to another. Just about the time we’d start to feel like we’d found home, God would move us somewhere else. Through the process, He helped me realize that home isn’t a place, but a person. Jesus. Nothing else will ever satisfy that home-sized hole in our hearts.

Tell us a little about the characters in TEXAS ROADS. What endears them to you?

I’m a visual person, so I based Dani’s character on Reese Witherspoon–petite and bubbly on the surface, but on the inside, hurting and seeking. She has all the outer trappings of success, but her life has been full of personal tragedy. Dani’s desire to belong, to find connections and home is what endears her to me. My heart grieves for her.

Steve Miller is a hunky cowboy with marshmallow filling. He struggles with forgiving himself over something that happened in his past, and with entrusting his heart to a woman—convinced he’ll never find the quality of woman he’s looking for. The main thing that endears me to Steve is his desire to help the town and its people, and his heart for God.

I also should point out a cast of colorful secondary characters who are the townspeople. I want people to read the story and say, “I know someone just like that!” =)

What is your favorite scene from the book?

My favorite scene in TEXAS ROADS is when Dani uncovers the devastating secret that drives her to her knees and helps her discover the true meaning of home.

Of all the characters you’ve created which is your favorite and why?

Without a doubt the answer would have to be Mama Beth, the wise woman in TEXAS ROADS. (She’ll also put in appearances in the other Miller’s Creek novels.) She is everything I want to be—wise, kind, loving—though imperfect, and holding on to a tragic secret.

What do you hope to accomplish through your writing??

First and foremost, I want to touch people’s heart with the truth of God. I want my struggle and spiritual growth to be a source of healing and learning for them. Truthfully if one person is touched and moved closer to God as a result of my writing, then the hours of hard labor, sweat and tears will be worth it to me. I had one early reader of TEXAS ROADS tell me the story brought healing to her life. I can think of no higher compliment.

I also hope to give them a brief escape from the pressures and problems of living in this fallen world, and to make them smile and laugh. I want them to get lost in Miller’s Creek, and feel like they’ve arrived in a place that’s vaguely familiar.

How can readers connect with you?

The best place to reach me is at my blog, WordVessel or my website, www.CatBryant.com. You can also find me at Twitter, Facebook, and ShoutLife. I love, love, LOVE connecting with readers!

Buy It!

Read half of the book for free via e-book or purchase in print at Amazon.com or Cathy’s e-store. If you would like an autographed copy you can contact Cathy at catbry1 (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Read a free chapter of TEXAS ROADS every week on Cathy’s TEXAS ROADS blog, where readers can also find a corresponding Bible study, discussion questions, Mama Beth’s recipes and more!

Win It!

Thank you Cathy for offering one lucky reader a print copy of TEXAS ROADS!

How to Enter:(mandatory)

Go poke around Cathy’s TEXAS ROADS blog then come back here and leave me a comment telling why you think you’d like to read this book.

Extra Entries: (optional)

Please leave a new comment, with links if applicable, for each extra entry to be counted.

  • Follow A Hen’s Nest with Blogger Friend Connect
  • Follow @CathyBryant and @ahensnest on Twitter and tweet this giveaway (daily tweet!)

Use this tweet if you like: Interview with TEXAS ROADS author @CathyBryant. #Win a copy of this touching book! #giveaway ;

  • Subscribe (and confirm) to my blog via reader/email
  • Submit my giveaway to another giveaway linky or site (leave link)
  • Add my button or blog link to your sidebar

Rules: Follow the directions above! Giveaway open to U.S. & Canada and ends March 31st, 11:59 est. Winner chosen by Random.org and must reply to email within 48 hours or I will redraw.

~ FTC compliant disclosure: All opinions are my own, yours may vary. No compensation was received for this post. Please see my full disclosure and giveaway info here.

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About the Author

Henrietta Newman is a tech loving, video game playing, backyard chicken raising, dirt road living, pr friendly mom/gramma blogger who talks about life with a teen daughter, an adult son, a toddler granddaughter, a construction worker soulmate and all that it entails. Subscribe to A Hen's Nest for giveaways, delicious family recipes, reviews and more!

Comments

  1. 1
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Henrietta, thanks so much for the interview. It was so much fun! Blessings!

  2. 2
    Lynn Squire says:

    Cathy, I'm so proud of you! Good job.

  3. 3
    Mary Hake says:

    Always fun to read about author friends and what they're doing and writing. I like TX stuff since my dad came from TX.

  4. 4
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Thanks, Lynn! I appreciate your encouragement! =)

    Mary, thanks for stopping by. All my immediate family is from Texas, so it's a place that's definitely in my blood! Thanks for your encouragement, friend!

  5. 5
    Ron Cooper says:

    Found your nice blog on Friday Follow, and am following you on Google Friends Connect.

    Check out my blog of inspirational stories and poems on family, faith, kindness and compassion. Feel free to follow me back.

    Ron

    http://inspiredbyron.blogspot.com/

  6. 6
    veterankindergartenteacher says:

    I found your blog on Friday Follow! Sounds like a great book!

  7. 7

    stopped by from FF! Have a great weekend.

    justanightowl.com

  8. 8
    bizzimommiofboyz says:

    Happy Follow Friday

    Following You From…
    http://bizzimommi.blogspot.com

    Hope You Come By!

  9. 9
    Anonymous says:

    Just found your blog; will follow! I would love to be entered for Cathy's book; have read the comments of how it helped so many, and I think I really need to read it.
    Thanks.
    jackie.smith(at)dishmail(dot)net

  10. 10
    misskallie2000 says:

    Hi Cathy, Thanks for stopping by today. I love your book Texas Roads already. Can't wait to read.

    I also checked out your blog and signed up for emails, and read 1st chapter.. Thanks so much

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

  11. 11
    misskallie2000 says:

    I Follow A Hen's Nest with Blogger Friend Connect

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

  12. 12
    misskallie2000 says:

    I Follow @CathyBryant

    and @ahensnest on Twitter and

    tweeted (misskallie2000)

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

  13. 13
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Jackie, it's so good to see you here! Your comment was very touching. My prayer is that God will send the book into the lives of those who need it as He sees fit.

    Miss Kallie, thanks so much for signing up for the free chapters of Texas Roads (and for tweeting about the book)! You may want to read the first ten chapters online, since the next e-mail release will be chapter eleven. Blessings!

  14. 14

    Part of the proceeds go to charity. That is great. I've read so many good things about this book. I can't wait.
    csdsksds[at]gmail[dot]com
    I am a follower

  15. 15
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Hey, Denise, it's good to 'see' you here, too! Yes, I actually got the idea from a book club I spoke to. They mentioned a nearby author who gives part of the proceeds from her books to different charities. I decided that was a worthy practice to emulate, so I've chosen Buckner International for this book's charity. They do marvelous work worldwide to help disadvantaged children.

  16. 16
    Sarah Lynne says:

    I love to read inspirational, real people books. I could relate to these characters. I would love to read this and do a review on my blog!! Thank you for the chance.

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

  17. 17
    Sarah Lynne says:

    I am a follower

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

  18. 18
    Sarah Lynne says:

    I am an email subscriber

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

  19. 19
    Sarah Lynne says:

    I have your button

    sarahsblogoffun.blogspot.com

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

  20. 20
    Sarah Lynne says:

    I am a twitter follower of you and Cathy.

    sarahsblogoffun

    http://twitter.com/SarahsBlogOfFun/statuses/10601078400

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

  21. 21
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Hi Sarah! And I would love for you to do a review! (I've sent you an e-mail!) Thanks so much for dropping by and for the Twitter follow! Blessings!

  22. 22
    mavericks_mommy says:

    I believe I could really relate to this book. I moved an hour away from my home in search of my new home! Im still havent found it yet but Im having fun on the way! I would love to review this book on my blog if your looking for more reviews? Just let me know, I feel my readers would really enjoy it!

    manny01373@gmail.com

  23. 23
    mavericks_mommy says:

    Im a follower!!

    manny01373@gmail.com

  24. 24
    mavericks_mommy says:

    Im an email subscriber!

    manny01373@gmail.com

  25. 25
    mavericks_mommy says:

    I grabbed your button!!

    manny01373@gmail.com

  26. 26
    Misusedinnocence says:

    It sounds like a book I would really enjoy.

    misusedinnocence@aol.com

  27. 27
    Anonymous says:

    i would love to read cathy's masterpiece…her blog is such a blessing!!!

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  28. 28

    I read all the review, everyone agreed, "I found the book very hard to put down" I can't wait to pick it up…

    Donna
    dwarrington1@gmail.com

  29. 29

    I follow your blog.

    Donna
    dwarrington1@gmail.com

  30. 30

    I subscribe through e-mail.

    Donna
    dwarrington1@gmail.com

  31. 31
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Hi mavericksmommy! Your pooch is sooo cute!

    Karen, you're the blessing! =)

    Donna and misused innocence, Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by! =)

  32. 32
    jenzen69 says:

    The comments about the book make it sound like a fun read
    jenzen1969atgmaildotcom

  33. 33
    jenzen69 says:

    twitter follower of both/tweet
    http://twitter.com/jenzen1969/status/10933941585
    jenzen1969atgmaildotcom

  34. 34
    jenzen69 says:

    blog follower
    jenzen1969atgmaildotcom

  35. 35
    jenzen69 says:

    email subscriber
    jenzen1969atgmaildotcom

  36. 36
    jenzen69 says:

    rss feed
    jenzen1969atgmaildotcom

  37. 37
    jenzen69 says:
  38. 38
    jenzen69 says:
  39. 39

    After checking out her blog, I decided I'd like to read this book because – like Cathy – I am a native Texan!

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  40. 40

    I am an e-mail subscriber.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  41. 41

    I follow via Google Friend.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  42. 42
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Nice to meet yet another native Texan, Nancy! Thanks for dropping in! =)

  43. 43
  44. 44
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Thanks so much for tweeting! =)

  45. 45
    jenzen69 says:
  46. 46

    Hey Cathy – having sung several of your songs, I bet your book is awesome! Hope to read it soon.

    Shalom!
    Steve

  47. 47
    jenzen69 says:
  48. 48
    jenzen69 says:
  49. 49
    Katy~The Country Blossom says:

    I would love the chance to read this book because I love sweet fiction that is written by an author with a heart for God!!! :)

    thecountryblossom AT hotmail DOT com

  50. 50
    Katy~The Country Blossom says:

    I am a blog follower! :)

    thecountryblossom AT hotmail DOT com

  51. 51
    Katy~The Country Blossom says:

    I follow you both on Twitter and I tweeted this giveaway!!!
    https://twitter.com/KatyLMA/status/11397853609

    thecountryblossom AT hotmail DOT com

  52. 52
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Thanks for commenting, following and tweeting, Katy! =)

  53. 53

    I would like to read /win this book because it sounds interesting.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  54. 54

    follower

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  55. 55

    email subscriber

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  56. 56

    I follow both you & Cathy on Twitter and I Tweeted

    http://twitter.com/NancyeDavis/status/11403365388

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  57. 57
    Cathy Bryant says:

    Thanks for the follow, subscription & tweets, Nancye! Blessings!

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