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I spend most of my time daydreaming and creating otherworldly tales steeped in myth, magic, and romance. All of my heroes have long hair, and my heroines are strong-willed. Prior to being a writer, I played bass guitar in an all-girl hard rock/metal band in southern California. When I'm not writing, editing, or reading, I enjoy practicing target archery.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Holly Jolly Blog Fest Week 4 with Regina Andrews

Welcome to our winter blog hop, The Holly Jolly Blog Fest. Each week, from December 2 to January 6, six authors answer two holiday related questions.
This week, my guest blogger is Regina Andrews who is one of the nicest people I know and a talented writer whose inspirational stories remind people that there can be happy endings.

Hi Kelley, and thank you so much for having me visit your blog this week.
Thanks, everyone for stopping by Kelley's blog to spend a bit of time getting to know me. I am Regina Andrews, Inspirational Author - but that sounds kind of stuffy, don't you think?
Let's try this -- everyone calls me Gina and I love happy endings, I love writing, I love romance and I love God, so naturally I write romance novels with an inspirational point of view. After all, what's life without a good dose of faith to carry us through those times when things are not exactly going the way we'd like them to be? I know I need it, most definitely.
During the day I am lucky enough to have a full-time writing job at a national jewelry company, specializing in high-end designer and Estate pieces - I'm the one writing what you read about all these one-of-a-kind treasures! Just last week, I wrote for a 7.45 ct. t.w. diamond engagement ring priced at $143,000! Now THAT'S a stocking-stuffer! I can only imagine the look on that very lucky lady's face when she opens the box...but I digress, sorry!
In my off time, I volunteer for the blind, work at the local children's hospital and sing my heart out in the church choir. My hubby and I are proud 'parents' of a semi-feral cat named Queenie who really is in charge of the whole house. She loves Christmas -- especially tinsel! -- and so do I, so let's get to the questions and kick off Week 4 of this fun and fabulous "Holly Jolly" blog tour!
How do you manage your writing/reading schedule with all the other activities around the holidays?
That's a wonderful question. I guess first of all, even though I am a disciplined writer, I have learned through experience that, personally, my creativity can't be scheduled. By that I mean while I keep my goals realistic and set deadlines for myself, I also know when to quit if it's just not there. Instead of forcing myself and getting exhausted and frustrated, that time is better spent, for me, daydreaming, re-charging my battery and enjoying life at the moment. So I'll go to a Christmas concert, for example, and thoroughly cleanse my writing palate for one evening, and return the next day (or later that night, usually!) completely renewed. As you can tell, then, I am not the type of writer who sets a daily word count quota. Oh, no.I'm not linear like that - although there are many days when I fervently wish I could be!! For instance, sometimes I'll write a scene, or even a few scenes, and then use them at another point in the book as the plot evolves from my basic outline. From my point of view, I draw a lot of energy and emotion from this time of year and all the activities. They are not distractions, rather, they are inspirations to me. On the one hand, it's such a frenzied, hectic time...and yet, it really is a time for inner reflection. Finding an individual balance between these two extremes enriches the whole season, for me; by extension, my writing also becomes more productive, efficient and enjoyable. I think a motivated writer will get it done, no matter what. It's interesting to hear how others get their work finished. Thank you for asking. :-)

How about traveling during the holidays: do you go visiting or have you in the past? What has that been like? Have there been any absent family members during the holidays ? How has it effected your writing; have you used any of that in your stories?

Oh, this question brings back such wonderful memories. When I was a youngster, we'd have a big Christmas dinner at our house, and then everyone would leave. My parents and sister and brother and I would clean up as dusk fell and then it would get dark (4 o'clock in the afternoon, but it felt like midnight). When everything was all set, my father would pile us all in the car and we'd drive all the way over to my aunt's house across town. This was quite an adventure, because we didn't go out much at night at all. It seemed like it took us forever to get there when I was little...but it not even a ten minute ride! The child's perspective is so different from the adult's, isn't it? Then, when we arrived at my aunt's, there was more feasting, all the cousins and aunts and uncles you hardly saw through the year...and singing around the piano and more silly fun and games. The worst year was when my brother was away in the Air Force in Taiwan. We waited all day for him to call, and when he finally did all we did was cry.
Now, we still stick close to home; my sister and I and our families live very close to each other, just like my mother and her sister, my aunt that we visited. But my parents are gone now, so is my brother, so are my aunt and uncle...yet they live on in our memories and our traditions. I have, in fact, used the theme of absence at Christmas in one of my books, "Glory of the Heart", which is Sterling Lakes Book Four and will be re-released very soon by WEE publishing as an ebook and in print. This book tells the story of how my father was away from my mother during WWII in a fictionalized account of letters found in an attic. Book five of the series, "Reflections of the Heart", which I am completing now, is also set at Christmas and deals with two sisters who are reunited after many years apart.
Thank you so much for hosting me, Kelley! You can find out more about me and my list of published books at: www.reginaandrews.com and
Light of the Heart is now available in Print here: http://www.writers-exchange.com/Light-of-the-Heart.html
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Please visit all our wonderful blog hop authors. Leave a comment and be automatically entered to win a fifty dollar AMAZON gift certificate!
Ann Tracy Marr - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ann-Tracy-Marr/114711658247?ref=ts
Sharon Poppen - http://poppensthoughtsonwritingandstuff.blogspot.com
Regan Taylor - http://regantaylorsworld.blogspot.com
Regina Andrews - http://worldofgood-gina.blogspot.com/
Angie Dobson – www.loveromancesandmore.blogspot.com
Christine London -- www.christinelondon.com
Thanks for reading. Now leave a comment and then hop over to the other author's sites. Every comment gives you one more chance at winning that 50 dollar gift certificate!!

Thanks, Regina! I can be found over at Ann Tracy Marr’s blog this week.
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