Lisa here…with a special guest today! I had the wonderful privilege of meeting author Cathy West at the annual ACFW Conference. We are agency-mates, both represented by Rachelle Gardner of Books & Such. I love her beautiful writing and am so pleased to welcome her here to Inspy Romance today. She recently re-released her novel, Yesterday’s Tomorrow.
1. Yesterday’s Tomorrow is set during Vietnam. What prompted the story and during that time period?
I’ve always been fascinated by that era for some reason. I remember reading something about female journalists who’d quit their jobs and head off to cover the war – it was really the beginning of women truly making their mark on journalism in general – so I began to research the idea. And then the story sort of fell into place around the idea of a young journalist leaving the safety of her home and family and traveling to war-torn Vietnam, and in the end, willing to risk it all for what she believes in.
2. Do you relate to your characters in any way?
I can’t say I relate to them as far as the adventurous spirit. I’m very much a homebody. I do like to travel, but I’m not too comfortable treading terribly far from my comfort zones. I think I relate most to them in their spiritual struggles. Why does God allow tragedy? How do we reconcile the unimaginable horrors of war with a loving God? How do we forgive those who have wronged us in ways we never thought possible? All those soul-deep questions are ones I think we all wrestle with. So many of us are struggling, each in our own way. We’re all on our own faith journeys, as are Kristin and Luke. I think the way they deal with these issues and come to their own conclusions is something we can all relate to.
3. What takeaway do your want your readers to draw from your story?
You can run, but you can’t hide. Kristin does a lot of running. She runs from Luke, from the truth, and from God. But in the end, circumstances catch up with her. You really can’t run from the things that matter most. Even when you’re angry with God, He’ll wait. And then when you’re ready, He’ll show you how He’s been there all along. The other big theme is forgiveness. We’re all in need of it and we all need to give it. Finding the way to do that, to truly forgive and love others, often seems impossible. But if we really want it, that heart change, it is possible. And I think that’s what the characters in Yesterday’s Tomorrow eventually discover.
4. Describe your typical writing routine?
Every day is different depending on the week. Right now I’m spending a lot of time on promotion, and I’m not working on anything new. But generally, when I’m writing, I’ll work all morning, break for lunch and write more in the afternoon, breaking to walk the dog. I try to get in four to five hours a day, when I really want to get a project finished. Fortunately I haven’t yet experience the dreaded deadline madness, so my days are pretty much my own. I know they say when you get stuck, write anyway, but I don’t do that. If I’m not getting anywhere, I’ll just back off a bit. I’ll blog or research new ideas or something else entirely. I never force it. And that seems to work fine for me.
5. What fun fact can you share about yourself?
Um. I have 24 toes. Just kidding. Wow. Fun fact? Well, I suppose most people might know that I live in Bermuda. Which is kind of fun. Except for two things. I really don’t like sand and I really hate to fly. Of course the beach is beautiful, so I force myself to go…sometimes. The flying thing I really can’t avoid if I ever want to get off the island. So I suck it up, close my eyes and pray a lot. And usually everything is fine. Except for that time we…oh never mind, I’ll just freak myself out. I’m also quite a fraidy-cat. But that’s probably way more than you wanted to know.
Catherine West is an award-winning author who writes stories of hope and healing from her island home in Bermuda. Her first novel, Yesterday’s Tomorrow, released in 2011 and won the INSPY for Romance, a Silver Medal in the Reader’s Favorite Awards, and was a finalist in the Grace Awards. Catherine’s second novel, Hidden in the Heart, released in September 2012, was long listed in the 2012 INSPY’s and was a finalist in the 2013 Grace Awards.
When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. She and her husband have two grown children. Catherine is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America, and is represented by Rachelle Gardner of Books & Such Literary. Catherine loves to connect with her readers and can be reached at Catherine@catherinejwest.com
Website – http://www.catherinejwest.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/CatherineJWest
Twitter – https://twitter.com/cathwest
Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/cathwest/
Amazon Buy Link for Yesterday’s Tomorrow – http://www.amazon.com/
Independent, career-driven journalist Kristin Taylor wants two things: to honor her father’s memory by becoming an award-winning overseas correspondent and to keep tabs on her only brother, Teddy, who signed up for the war against their mother’s wishes. Brilliant photographer Luke Maddox, silent and brooding, exudes mystery. Kristin is convinced he’s hiding something.
Willing to risk it all for what they believe in, Kristin and Luke engage in their own tumultuous battle until, in an unexpected twist, they’re forced to work together. Ambushed by love, they must decide whether or not to set aside their own private agendas for the hope of tomorrow that has captured their hearts.