Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Interview and Book Giveaway with Amber Schamel!!


Today we welcome author Amber Schamel to The Diamond Mine. If you leave a comment for her, you'll be entered for a chance to win a copy of volume 2 in her wonderful series Days of Messiah. Here's a little about volume 2: The Messiah's sign:
Dreams…they shouldn’t bother him, but when Tyrus’ worst nightmare is vindicated, he has no choice but to face reality. His wife has been unfaithful, and God has punished her with the most feared disease in the land: leprosy. Banishing her to the leper colony, Tyrus struggles to raise and protect their son. But when Malon begins following the teacher from Nazareth, what remains of their business and reputation is at stake. Can Tyrus save his son from the beguiling lies of a false Messiah before he loses the only thing he has left?

Ir's a wonderful series, Amber! Welcome to The Diamond Mine. Let's get started with the interview!
What was the first story you remember writing?

Yikes, that was a long time ago. The first story I remember actually writing and finishing ended up being the first story I ever had published entitled The Foolish Princess. It is a medieval short story, but really it is an allegory, or testimony of how Jesus has saved us.

Sounds intriguing. What type of stories do you write, and why?

I write historical fiction with a goal of bringing HIStory to life. I’ve always had a love for history, and a love of stories, so those two naturally combined. Historical Fiction is my favorite genre. It’s what I like to read, so it’s also what I like to write. These two quotes sum up my passion for the genre:
 “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” ~Santayana
“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” ~Rudyard Kipling
Great quotes! Do you make an outline first, or write as you go?

A little bit of both. I make a rough outline, but it will morph and change as I write. My original outline is real basic, with just the highlights of the story, then I write progressively, discovering the details as I go.

How much research do you do for a story?

It varies with each story, but I probably do a lot more research than I need to. I'm a history lover, so I really enjoy research. I do basic research before I start writing, but I always run into something I have to go back and research as I go along. For example, I'll be writing a scene and suddenly realize I need to know what someone would have used to repair a torn piece of paper during the 1800s. Then I get off on a goose chase. LOL.

I know what you mean! Research can really pull you in and send you in interesting directions! What’s your favorite part about writing?

Wow, that's a hard question. I really enjoy the research. I also really enjoy the plotting and that first excitement that comes with the story idea. Then there's the thrill of actually writing, and hearing how your stories have impacted readers.
But I think the best part is when you're writing a scene, and you can really tell that the Lord is leading you, whispering ideas in your ear. There is no feeling like when you are creating with The Creator.

Wonderfully said, Amber. I think that's the best part, too!
How much of yourself is in your characters?

There's at least a little piece of me in each of them, I think. When you write a character, you're stepping into their mindset, and your experiences and emotions will play out, because ultimately, you're the one behind the mask.

Right! How has your own life experience contributed to your writing?

In more ways than I can count. For example, the Days of Messiah series focuses around a woman who contracts leprosy, but is later healed by Jesus. I fought arthritis for 9 years of my life before the Lord healed me, so I drew a lot from my experience there. I have also struggled with bitterness in my life, and that is a central theme in the series as well.

As writers, we can bring into our characters some of the experiences that have deepened our own lives, and taught us many lessons. I can see that in your writing.
What work of fiction made the biggest impression on you?

That is a REALLY hard question. For me, it has been a lot of books making a small impression rather than one book making a big one. But I'd have to say that it would be the Refiner's Fire series by Lynn Austin, specifically Candle in the Darkness. That book changed the way I saw the Rebel cause.

Where do you see yourself ten years from now?

Boy, I don't know. I'm just intent of following the Lord's leading, so wherever He takes me, that's where I'll be. He likes to throw me some curve balls, so there's no telling where He'll take me!

I hear you, and that's the best way for a believer to live. Following His lead! What are you working on now?

I'm currently working on a Christmas novel set during the Civil War. Caleb Satch is a would-be attorney who flees his failure by joining the ranks of the Union army. But when his closest friend is court-martialed for desertion, he begs Caleb to plead his case. Caleb stands against all odds, and his greatest fear, for his friend's life, but when justice is ignored, he vows to clear his friend's name. On the fifteenth anniversary of Toby's death, will Caleb finally find victory and restore honor to Toby's memory, or will Caleb end his life in failure?

Wow. That sounds really interesting! It's been wonderful sharing this time with you, and learning about you and your writing. I'm going to include a short bio now, for our readers to learn more. Thanks again, Amber. God bless you!

Multi-published author Amber Schamel writes riveting stories that bring HIStory to life. She has a passion for history, books and her Savior. This combination results in what her readers call "historical fiction at its finest". A homeschool graduate from a family of 12 children, Amber found her calling early in life. First published at age 21, she has continued to hone her craft and is now the author of over half a dozen books. Between ministry, family and working in their family-owned businesses, Amber loves to connect with readers. Find her on the Stitches Thru Time blog, or on any of the major social media sites.  Amber is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Historical Novel Society.

Remember to leave a comment for a chance to win. For those of you who want to buy a copy, here are the buy links: 


Amber Schamel said...

Thanks so much for having me on the blog today! Can't wait to see who wins the #Giveaway!

Deanna Stevens said...

Being banished.. That would be so hard.
I do enjoy reading this kind of book, thanks for the giveaway!
I liked getting to know you in today's post.
dkstevensneAToutlookD otCoM

Becca R said...

Hi Amber,

I love your first book. I am looking forward to reading the second one.

Sally D said...

Your book sounds wonderful !

Anonymous said...

Thanks Nancy for hosting Amber today. I really enjoyed this post. Oh my Amber, Homeschooling 12 children. Your mom must been a strong, patient lady. :) I have a granddaughter who home schools hers. She has 5. The oldest is 12. Your book sounds very good. I would love to be your winner. Sounds like you are busy, busy yourself. and a very young author. Glad you follow GOD's lead. Would be a better world if we didn't have so many who don't. GOD bless you and your work. Thanks, Maxie > mac262(at)me(dot)com <

Jamelah Aishah Ambor Tago said...

me please.

Renee Blare said...

Welcome to the Diamond Mine, Amber! What a great interview AND book! Thanks for joining us this week. You sound like a terrific person as well as an awesome writer:)

Amber Schamel said...

Deanna, Thanks so much for stopping by! Best wishes in the giveaway.

Amber Schamel said...

Thank you, Becca! I hope you will get a chance to do that. :)

Amber Schamel said...

Thank you, Sally! This book was a lot of fun to write.

Amber Schamel said...

Hi Maxie,
Thanks for stopping by! Yep, my mom is SuperMom! Haha, and everyone wondered if she really existed. ;)

My life is pretty busy, but this is the only chance I have to serve God in this way, so I'll make the most of it.

Best wishes in the giveaway!

Amber Schamel said...

Thanks for stopping by, Jamelah!

Amber Schamel said...

Thank you, thank you, and thank YOU, Renee! It's an honor to be on the Diamond Mine.
I look forward to getting to know you gals better. ;)

Peggy Trotter said...

Welcome, Amber! You are so inspiring! I agree that it's a battle against bitterness. Satan sure uses that weapon against us to the fullest! Your books look very intriguing!

Phyllis Kemp said...

I appreciate, so much, your comments about writing HIStory and you state "The Lord is leading" you. These thoughts were just what I hoped to read from you. I will be reading more to get to know you.
Gpk1946 at gmailDOTcom

Amber Schamel said...

Thank you, Peggy. You ladies have made me feel so welcome. :)
You're right about that, bitterness is one of Satan's favorite tactics.

Amber Schamel said...

Thank you, Phyllis! I will look forward to hearing from you again soon.
Best wishes for the giveaway.

Melissa B. said...

Just reading the description gave me chills. I would love to read this, then share it with my mom.

Amber Schamel said...

Thanks, Melissa! I hope you and your mom get the chance to read it!