I pray you are surviving this quarantine season with lots of good reads and a big cup of whatever you like to drink. As always, I have a pot of tea read for the drink and scones for the eating. Today I have the incredible honor and joy of introducing you to my critique partner and friend, Patti Stockdale and her debut historical romance, Three Little Things.
Patti Stockdale has returned to her home state of Iowa after moving around the country for years. She's a freelance writer and previously worked as a director at a nonprofit, an administrative assistant, and a corn detasseler - a big challenge since she's five foot one. Love letters her grandparents exchanged served as the inspiration for Three Little Things.
It is such and honor and blessing to have you here to celebrate the release of your debut! So let's dive in! As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
PS: I either wanted to be a ballerina or operate the cash register at Van’s Grocery.
CC: That is so adorable! I can see a younger version of you dressed in a tutu playing with a toy cash register.
CC: What is your favorite Bible verse? Why?
PS: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 Whenever I’m struggling, either physically or emotionally, the verse delivers peace.
CC: That is such a powerful verse. I agree it's one to turn to in times of struggle for a measure of peace.
Now for one of my favorite parts! Introducing your book! So here is the blurb for Three Little Things.
One forbidden love. Two broken hearts. Three little things.Hattie Waltz should forget the troubled neighbor leaving for boot camp in 1917. He forgot about her ages ago. It had always been the Waltzs verses the Kregers, his family pitted against hers. When she hands him a farewell gift, a chemistry lesson unfolds. The good kind.
Arno Kreger can’t leave Iowa or his old man fast enough. He’s eager to prove his worth on the battlefield and stop blaming himself for his brother’s death. Before entering the train, he bumps into Hattie. He’s loved her forever, always from the sidelines, because nobody crosses Hattie’s pa.
One innocent letter soon morphs into many. Arno and Hattie share three little secrets in each letter and grow closer together. But he’s on his way to a war across the ocean, and she’s still in her father’s house. Their newfound love will need to survive dangers on both fronts.
CC: So, Patti, which character was the most fun to create? What made them fun?
PS: My favorite character to write was Jeb, the protagonist’s brother. He dropped out of school early and starts reading the dictionary to expand his vocabulary.
CC: I did love Jeb and his sort of know it all attitude, too. Just like a brother.
This story has a special place in your heart. Can you explain why?
PS: Three Little Things is inspired by letters my maternal grandparents exchanged. Initially, I tried to tell their story. But there were too many gaps, and I couldn’t assign flaws to my grandparents.
CC: Grandparents are always perfect in our eyes aren't they. I love that they exchanged letters and you can follow their romance through it. What a sweet way to get to know them better.
How did you select the names of your characters?
PS: To honor my grandparents, I used their first names: Arno and Hattie in Three Little Things. Another character is named after my paternal grandmother: Lena. I also ask friends to tell me their grandparents or great-grandparents’ names. Then, I pick my favorites.
CC: Thank you so much for taking the time to participate in this interview. I just have one more fun question for you. What would be your writer mascot and why?
PS: I’d choose a sweet teddy bear as my mascot. They’re snuggly, friendly, and make me smile.
CC: Awww, that sounds like someone I know. Except we don't cuddle, but I'll take one of your hugs any day.
Thanks so much for stopping by to get to know Patti. If you'd like to enter for your chance to win an e-copy of her book. Tell us what YOUR mascot would be and leave us with an email to contact you. Use this format: name(at)place(dot)com -- that way no trolling bots nab your email.
Have a blessed day!