When Love Inspires: Regina's story
There are so many ways that an author is inspired to write a book, or to start writing in general.
For me? It was fanfiction. Yes, the television aficionado that I am chose fanfiction to quell the longing for the continuation of a show that only lasted four seasons.
Based on a true story, “Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye” features Sue, an FBI analyst who is deaf, but reads lips with amazing skill. When this is discovered, she is placed within a surveillance unit. Look up the real Sue Thomas. She’s a fascinating lady! Ice skater, FBI analyst, missionary – she’s a wonder.
After I binge-watched the whole show, my sister clued me in on the whole “fanfiction” realm on the Internet! When I found RomanceFanfiction.com (alas, it no longer exists!), I found my home. I found a group of writers that wrote from a Christian world-view, and they continued the stories of Sue, Jack, and all the others, many stories taking up where the show left off, adding more cases and the fictional romance angle that we all wanted between Jack and Sue, but was never explored to our satisfaction.
After writing several novella-length stories for this site (we’re talking 40,000-word stories, here) and winning a few fan-picked awards for online contests on the site, I found myself in contact with other writers on the site who were using fanfiction as a proving ground for their own writing skills. I was writing for fun, but these ladies invited me to join their forum, where we could encourage one another on the road to publication.
It was during this time that I had a dream. You know, one of those dreams that just won’t go away? This dream was the inspiration for my first novel, Carolina Dream. All it took was a dream and a “what if” session with pen and paper, and it began. It was an eight-year journey of inspiration, excitement, disappointment, surprise, and finally, publication.
When book one was published, I knew I had to continue the story, so that story became the inspiration for book two, Carolina Mercy, and then book three, Carolina Grace, which released last week. I’m currently working on a novella that will be connected to the Southern Breeze Series, releasing this fall. It will be part of a collection of four stories that take place on the Eastern seaboard with a group of authors from Mantle Rock Publishing.
But the initial inspiration to write? A television show that honored God and formed a community of writers willing to reach out and encourage others.
Let your inspiration do the same. Encourage, love, and assist others in your area of creativity. Tina, Lorna, Marlene, Kimberly, Kav, and Sue did just that for me.
Regina Rudd Merrick began reading romance and thinking of book ideas as early as her teenage years when she attempted a happily-ever-after sequel to “Gone With the Wind.”
That love of fiction parlayed into a career as a librarian, and finally to writing full-time. She began attending local writing workshops and continued to hone her craft by writing several short and novel-length fan-fiction pieces published online, where she met other authors with a similar love for story, a Christian worldview, and happily-ever-after.
Married for 30+ years and active in their church in Marion, KY, Regina and her husband have two grown daughters who share her love of music, writing, and the arts.
She is the author of three books: Carolina Dream (Apr. 2017), Carolina Mercy (July 2018), and Carolina Grace (Feb. 2019), in the Southern Breeze Series.
Blurb for Regina's book, Carolina Grace:
She knows about God’s grace for her life, but pushes it away. He hasn’t experienced it, but finds grace in a way he never expected.
First-year Special Education teacher Charly Livingston demonstrates God’s love on the outside, but is resentful that God allowed back-to-back tragedies to happen to her family.
Rance Beaumont is a top-notch medical intern. He’s on his way to the top, and when he meets Charly, he knows things can only get better. When he discovers family secrets and a dying father he never knew, his easy life seems to disintegrate.
Even in the idyllic ocean breezes and South Carolina sunshine, contentment can quickly turn to bitterness and confusion except for God’s amazing grace.
Connect with Regina:
Facebook Author Page
Publisher's Website: https://mantlerockpublishing.com/
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