Friday, October 16, 2009

Gale Sears Interview

Last spring I asked Gale Sears for a blurb on the back of my Christmas book, An Angel on Main Street. Though she was very busy she said yes. I was so excited. Gale Sears is a legend in the LDS market and I was so honored that she would do this for me. Turns out we both have Christmas books coming out this month. I wanted to repay her kindness and do an interview with her for my blog. I hope you enjoy it.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?
Like many authors, writing started with my love of reading. Books fascinated me. I loved the smell of the pages, and the sound they made when you turned them. Beginning at eight or nine I’d write little stories and read them to my mom. I spent most of my adult years working in the theater, so I came to writing novels later in my life.

Tell us a little bit about your new book, The Route. You also have a Christmas book due for release this fall. Tell us about it as well.
The Route is a little novel about my experiences delivering meals-on-wheels to some delightful and interesting older folks. I loved writing this book because I was able to revisit those times and contemplate the lessons I learned.

My Christmas booklet, Christmas for a Dollar was published in 2008. It’s the story of a Christmas my father and his siblings had during the depression in 1931. It is coming out in 2009 as a children’s picture book with illustrations by Ben Sowards.

I know you’ve had other books published. Tell us about them.
The Autumn Sky series were my first three books: Autumn Sky, Until the Dawn, and Upon the Mountains. They are historical fiction, based in the early 1900’s before and during the Great War (WWI) and the Influenza Epidemic of 1918.

What inspires you and motivates you to write the very most?
I love the fascinating stories of history. I love wondering how characters will react in certain historical settings. I’m also inspired by real people experiencing real challenges.

Is there an established writer you admire and emulate in your writing? Do you have a writing mentor?
I love Ellis Peters, Mark Twain, CS Lewis, Amy Tan…the list could go on and on. I’m also impressed with several of the LDS writers. LDS editor, Darla Isackson, and LDS author, Kerry Blair were both amazing sources of encouragement when I first stepped onto the writing road.

Location and life experience can sprinkle their influence in your writing. Tell us about where you grew up and a little about where you live now - city? Suburb? Country? Farm? If you could live anywhere you want to live, where would that be? This is a great question, and a sentiment I agree with completely. I grew up in Lake Tahoe, California, and it would be difficult to find a more magical place for a child’s imagination. I was surrounded by pine trees, alpine meadows, and towering mountains. And of course, the lake itself was a thing of wonder. I live now in Salt Lake City, Utah, in the shadow of the Wasatch Mountains.

Bring us into your home and set the scene for us when you are writing. What does it look like? On the couch, laptop, desk? Music? Lighting, handwriting?
I sit in my (quiet) bedroom, in an area that has an overstuffed chair, an ottoman, and my bookcases. If I’m writing an historical novel, I’m surrounded by books and files of research. I have my stack of blank lined paper and my yellow pencils. Yes, it’s true. I write pencil on paper! Once the story is down on paper, I transfer it to the computer. I do all of my editing on the computer, but the original creative flow has to come from my brain, through the pencil, and onto the paper.

Do you watch television or movies? If so, what are your favorites? Do they inspire your writing?
I love well-made movies in every genre except scary…I don’t like to be scared. I really love movies based on historical people and settings. As for television—I watch HGTV, the Food Network, NCIS, The Amazing Race…A well done historical movie can remind me to appreciate the lessons of history, and to wonder what other interesting stories are out there.

How has being published changed your life?
I feel very blessed to have my work published, but it’s made my life much more complicated and busy. A writer, especially in the LDS market has to spend a great deal of time marketing and promoting their books. And once you have one book done, your mind jumps to the next story. It’s amazing and chaotic at the same time.

Do you have any book signings, tours or special events planned to promote your book that readers might be interested in attending? If so, when and where? Also tell about your blog and website.
I don’t have any book signings scheduled as yet. My Christmas book will come out in October and I will have book signings at that time. I’ll keep you posted! My web site is: and my blog site is:

Thanks for the fun interview, Kathi!

Thank you, Gale!


  1. I am a huge fan of Gale's and am lucky to also call her a dear friend. Thanks for the wonderful interview about this amazing woman!

  2. It's so good to hear from you. Yes, Gale is the real deal. Thanks for stopping by.



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