I’m so excited to welcome one of my long-time writing friends today, Camille Eide. Camille and I have known each other since I moved to the Northwest…before either of us were published authors. We’ve cheered each other on through lots of rough drafts, writers conferences, and rejections. She’s an amazing lady, and I’m thrilled to introduce her to you!
I first met Mesu at our local ACFW chapter meeting. I loved her wit and enthusiasm for novel writing, and her desire to write from God’s word.
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
Age 7. I actually wrote and illustrated a book about Snoopy including a cover made out of cereal box cardboard and black electrical tape. It was a stunning debut. Actually, I got “hooked” on writing when a Jr High English teacher loaned me well-written books to read with some notion that there was a writer in me, which inspired me to begin writing. Stephen King’s masterful dialogue inspired me to write stories that were entirely dialogue driven. I firmly believe that writing is a skill that must be developed with training in writing craft first, but followed up with training your instinct by reading GOOD writing, and then trusting your instinct.
What problem with writing was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Being faced with a task far greater than my ability was both a curse and a blessing. I once got a 10 page revision “memo” from my agent that meant a major overhaul of an entire book. I had done the best I could and couldn’t see how I could ever make the changes she suggested. It wasn’t that I disagreed, I just didn’t see how I could pull it off. I spent a month staring at the manuscript. Another month whining to friends. I finally asked God to take over the reconstruction of this story because I simply couldn’t. And that was when the ideas began to trickle in. It took realizing that anything truly worthwhile would be beyond my ability to execute, and that I needed to surrender and depend on God to accomplish anything really good. I learned that no matter how good my skills are, I will always need God, my Source, because anything of great worth will—and ought to—be just beyond my ability.
Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Novelists can’t avoid inserting parts of themselves in their characters to some degree, whether we mean to or not. But my characters still often surprise me. Elderly Scottish sisters Maggie and Grace in Like There’s No Tomorrow were secondary characters who took center stage and ran off with it. With a box of matches. I had to do a wee bit of intervention. I’m nothing like either of them. (*wink) 😉
How do you choose your characters’ names?
I often look at the meaning of a name, both its actual meaning and the cultural impression it gives to choose a name that suits the character. Emily is a sweet name for a young woman who is lovely and kind. In my second book, the hero is loosely based on Joseph in the Bible, a man who feeds people and cares for the fatherless, so his name, Joe Paterson, reflects that. In another book I hope to publish soon, I chose “Eliza” for the heroine because it sounded like a good fit for the 1953 setting and the Golden Age of Hollywood backdrop for the story.
Scottish widower Ian MacLean is plagued by a mischievous grannie, bitter regrets, and an ache for something he’ll never have again. His only hope for freedom is to bring his grannie’s sister home from America. But first, he’ll have to convince her lovely companion, Emily, to let her go.
Emily Chapman devotes herself to foster youth and her beloved Aunt Grace. Caring for others quiets a secret fear she holds close to her heart. But when Ian appears, wanting to whisk Grace off to Scotland, everything Emily needs to protect—including her heart—is at risk.
is an amusing yet heart-tugging love story about two kind, single caretakers, two quirky, old Scottish sisters bent on reuniting, and too many agendas. It’s a tale of family, fiery furnaces, faith, and the gift of each new day.
Please give us the first page of the book.
Ian MacLean had spent the last two years feeding chickens, hiding the kitchen knives from his mule-headed grannie, and questioning his sanity.
But if his luck held out, all that was about to change.
Feeling lighter than he had in months, Ian crossed the street, climbed into the old farm truck, and looked back at the row of flats he’d just left. Beyond the building and to the west, the lights of Glasgow cast a golden glow against the night sky.
Ian slipped the key into the ignition, but hesitated, studying the windows of his sister’s flat. When had he last felt so free?
His talk with his absentee brother-in-law had succeeded. Davy had not only come home, but he was home to stay. He’d given Ian his word. Ian could still see the look on his sister’s face when her husband walked in the door. Claire’s stunned silence proved that she could actually hold her tongue when she fancied.
Ian started the truck and smiled. All in a day’s work.
Aye, he’d helped Claire’s family, which had lifted a huge weight from his shoulders. Not that Claire or her kids were a burden. Ian loved his nieces and nephews as if they were his own, and as long as he drew breath, they would never go hungry. But more than food, those kids needed security and stability. They needed their da.
And now, Davy was home.
Ian tapped the pedal to bring the truck’s idle down to a low grumble. Only one obstacle to his freedom remained: Maggie MacLean. But if his luck held out and if all went as planned, he would soon be free of his daft grannie and her mind-numbing nonsense. Free to explore a world of possibilities. Free to write that series of feature articles that would take him to remarkable, far-away places.
But then, any dull place would do—as long as it took him away from Kirkhaven.
Ian glanced at the envelope tucked in the cracked visor above him. Mailing the latest letter to Aunt Grace was all he had left to do. The sooner it arrived in Oregon, the sooner his great-aunt could move back home to Scotland and take charge of her errant sister, Maggie.
And the sooner Ian could get on with his life, shackle-free.
More About Camille…
- Website: CamilleEide.com
- Facebook: facebook.com/Camille.Eide
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/CamilleEide (@CamilleEide)
- Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/camilleeide/like-theres-no-tomorrow-a-novel/
- Along The Banks: The Beauty of God’s Grace – camilleeide.wordpress.com
- Extreme Keyboarding: Fiction & Film – camilleeide.blogspot.com
- Amazon book link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NCHZMRE
Thanks so much for hosting me, Mesu! I love to hear from other readers and welcome emails and comments. Bless you!
- Did you have an elderly person (grandparent, aunt, uncle, non-family member) who influenced you greatly as a child or young adult?