Sunday, November 16, 2014

Author interview: Krista Phillips

Today I am especially excited to share the story of a new favorite author of mine, Krista Phillips! She's a wife, mother, blogger, writer and author of two captivating books! Recently, I read Krista's book, A Side of Faith, and loved it! The content was solid, the topics were real and the characters are memorable. So after you read this author interview of Krista Phillips, I suggest that you follow the purchase links and buy both of her books. Your money will be well spent because you most likely will enjoy reading her stories. 

Now for the exciting news: Krista is doing a book giveaway where two winners will each receive one of her books! The winners may choose to receive either an e-book or signed paperback copy from Krista. To enter the contest, answer Krista’s two questions at the end of this author interview. You must leave your e-mail address in your comment in order to qualify for this contest. *New* info: The contest starts today (Nov. 16) and ends on Sunday, Nov. 30. Alexis will choose the winners via a random drawing and announce the winners on Monday, Dec. 1.

Meanwhile, I invite you to read my interview with the talented author Krista Phillips (questions from Alexis in bold, answers by Krista not in bold)...

Alexis: Tell me about your website, Writer’s Alley “Where Stories and Friends Meet”. When was it created? Who are the founders? Why was it created?

Krista: I LOVE the Writer's Alley... but I definitely don't claim it as my website! It is a blog founded by originally 5 of us who wanted an outlet for talking and blogging about writing outside of our personal blogs. We've grown to 11 now, and we've had some members come and go, but the cool thing is, it's become more than a blog. We've become a little family. My fellow alleycats are some of my dearest, bestest friends. And the blog has become a meeting place where stories and friends really DO meet. Our goal is to share the writing journey with each other, learn from each other, and encourage each other along the way!

Share the story of how you met and signed with your agent, Sarah Freese of Wordserve Literary. 

That's an interesting subject, actually. Sarah is my second agent. I have a deep amount of respect for my original agent, and she helped me finagle all the ins and outs of my first traditional published book, but it became evident over the last year that we just weren't a fit for each other.

This past summer, Sarah was actually referred to me by a fellow alleycat who works for Wordserve. Sarah and I chatted quite a bit back and forth, as I really wanted ensure the FIT was right, and that I just wasn't snatching up the first agent who showed interested and risk ending up right back where I started.

But goodness. I love my new agent. I can be 100% my crazy, a bit sarcastic self, and she deals with it and supports me still. She's definitely a great fit for me, and I hope she'd say the same!

How many books have you published? What are your biggest dreams for your writing career?

Two. Sandwich with a Side of Romance was my debut novel in 2012, and my follow up novella, A Side of Faith, released August of this year.

My biggest dreams for my career? That I can be true to the calling God has put on my life to share the stories he gives me, while using it to help support my family and allow me to continue to stay home with my four kiddos. That might be a little blunt and honest, but there it is.

Is your book A Side of Faith the sequel to Sandwich with A Side of Romance? Please explain.

Yup, it sure is! It is the first of three novella sequels (each can stand alone, though) titled A Side of Faith, A Side of Hope, and A Side of Love. I'll be finishing the Sandwich series off with another full length novel titled The Greatest is Love.

What are you working on now? Can you give us a glimpse of your next story?

I'm currently finishing up A Side of Hope as well as putting the finishing touches on the proposal for a new series, the first book titled The Price of Love.

I'm super excited about the new series. Confession: I'm one of those crazy women who like watching The Bachelor/The Bachelorette. So the first book in the series is a bit of a nod to that. But in a twist, it actually begins six months AFTER the show has ended and after the heroine's life has been ruined by none other than the hero.

You say you don’t write for your bank account. Please explain what you mean.

HA! I say that, yes, and then above I also say I hope to help support my family! But it is true. Writers aren't known for their large salaries, at least 99% of us aren't. I don't write to fill my bank account. I write to obey God and to encourage others in their walk with Jesus, in particular, other women.

Do I hope my career as a writer helps pay bills eventually? Absolutely. But it isn't why I write. I'd still write even if I knew I'd never make a dime.

Why do you believe God called you to be a writer? When did you receive this calling and how has it played out? 

If I was writing and God had not called me to do so, I'd be disobeying him, because I'd be following a calling that wasn't mine to follow. So yes, I definitely do.

I think I knew for a long time that I'd write. I dabbled, but it just wasn't time. But in 2007, God cleared his throat and told me it was time, and for the first time in my life, words flowed.

How has it played out? Well, I can definitely look back on the journey and see mistakes I've made. How had I made a few small, difference choices and listened better, things might have been different. But living with regret doesn't change a thing, and I'm super content where God has me in my writing life right now. I press on toward what He has for me in the future, and trust him with it!

What role does your faith play in your work as a Christian fiction writer?

Everything. Or at least, it should. I used to work in the Corporate world, and I always said, I don't deposit my faith in the elevator on the way up and pick it up on my way out. My faith colors everything I do and say, including my writing. My life, every piece of it, I lay at the feet of Jesus and pray for his guidance and blessing. My writing included.

Where do you get the inspiration for creating your fictional characters?

EVERYWHERE! Seriously! I couldn't pinpoint one place if I tried. I love to people watch, so definitely get some inspiration there. For 
Sandwich with A Side of Romance, my eldest daughter brainstormed the heroine with me, and that was super fun! And sometime the characters just talk to me in my head, and tell me about themselves. There is probably medicine I can take for that somewhere...

Do you have a special writing space? If yes, describe it.

Nope. I am a mom of four kids. I write a LOT of different places. Sometimes on the couch, sometimes at my desk, sometimes in bed late at night. Other times I take myself off to Starbucks or Panera or the library to get away from kiddos to write. I've learned to make do with what I have in the moment that God has given me!

On your website, you described marriage as “hard work” that’s “worth every bit of effort.” What words of wisdom do you as a married woman and romance writer, have for the “hopeless romantics” who see marriage through rose colored glasses?

Keep your rose colored glasses handy. You'll need them! Marriage is joining two people who have opinions that don't always match up, cultures that don't always agree, and ideals that aren't always the same. There is BOUND to be conflict. Advice would take a whole book, I think, but to sum it up: Show love, forgive a lot, and make Jesus the center of your marriage from day one. A cord of three strands is not easily broken!

You are a mom of four girls! Congratulations! How do you and your husband manage your family of six and when do you find time to write?

Um.... we don't? I don't view it as managing. That sounds so... business like, LOL. We live life together as a family. We teach our kids the best we can. We have fun and silly moments. We take time to go on dates, and we take our kids on dates. We make sure they know how absolutely loved they are, even when we have to say no to things because those things don't fit into our crazy schedule. We go into knowing we won't be perfect parents, and thankful that God's grace covers our failings.

I view writing as my "job", and since it's my job, I have to make it a priority sometimes. My kids have chores and pitch in and help around the house. That's what a family does, they help each other. Maybe that isn't the best answer, but it's the one I have. We just take each day as it comes, do our best, and give the rest to God.

What advice do you have for unpublished authors seeking a book deal and an agent?

Read a lot. Write a lot. Pray a lot. Lay each manuscript before Jesus' feet and say, "Not my will but THY will be done."And trust that God knows what he is doing and will guide you each step of the way.

Every writer has a muse. What’s yours?

My muse is usually this crazy voice in my head coming up with all these silly ideas. The intelligent part of my brain has to figure out which idea is actually worth something and toss out the rest. The crazy voice isn't always happy with her ideas being trashed, but she gets over it.

Who’s your favorite author? Why?

Francine Rivers because I've never read a book of hers that I haven't been totally, completely in awe of.

Is there a favorite book by a Christian author that has inspired you as a writer? If yes, please explain.

Faking Grace by Tamara Leigh. I laughed hysterically, and it sealed the deal that I wanted to bring a smile to people's faces when they read my books. I think a lot of us women could use more smiles in our day!

What’s it like being a Christian woman and writer in today’s world? What would you say are the unique challenges and benefits?

The benefits are amazing. We have so many outlets and so many options, whereas twenty years ago it was a much steeper hill to climb (and you had to write on a typewriter... NO THANK YOU!)

The challenges, for me, are the social issues of the day. It is such a balancing act to show God's love for EVERYONE yet still stand up for your beliefs. So many Christian women spend so much time judging each other and putting each other down because of this, when all that does is give the enemy a foothold in ALL our lives. It's something I struggle with and pray about daily.

At the end of the day, what keeps you going? Explain.

God and Dr. Pepper. I don't think an explanation is needed!

Alexis: Thank you for the interview, Krista! Is there a question you’d like to ask my readers? If so, please write it now.

Krista: Thank YOU for having me! You've really challenged me with YOUR questions, goodness!

My question for readers—actually, I'll do two—one fun and one serious.

1.) Favorite Sandwich.

2.) How can I pray for you today?

Author Bio: 

Krista Phillips is the author of Sandwich, with a Side of Romance and A Side of Faith. She enjoys life with her husband and their four beautiful daughters in Tennessee. She is an advocate for congenital heart defect and organ donation awareness and blogs at

Links to A Side of Faith

Buy Krista's first book:

Connect with Krista: 
Blog/Website – 

Facebook –

Twitter –


  1. Thanks Beverley! So happy you enjoyed the interview! :) Please reply again with your e-mail address so Krista can contact you if you win.

  2. Alexis, copying a comment someone sent me who couldn't publish her herself because her phone wouldn't let her....

    Linnette Mullin

    I enjoyed the interview! My favorite sandwich is probably a turkey club. My prayer request would be for the completion of my current WIP.

    (I have her contact info)

  3. Dear Jessica,

    I am happy you loved Krista's first book in the series about the sandwich shop! :) Please reply again, this time with your e-mail address so we can contact you if you win.

  4. My favorite sandwich is a PB&J. My prayer request would be that me grandma stays healthy and is able to come visit and stay through Christmas. I read Sandwich and loved it. It drew me in right away and I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen. Looking forward to reading A Side of Faith. My email address is:

  5. And the winners are *drumroll*... Linnette and Jessica! :)

    Linnette Mullin won Sandwich with a Side of Romance and Jessica Browning won A Side of Faith.

    Krista Phillips will be in touch with each of you to make arrangements for you to receive your prize (free book)! :)


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