Thanks for having me! Hmm, let’s see. Well, I guess the first fun fact about me is that I live on an island. Bermuda is a tiny island in the middle of the Atlantic, about 700 miles off the coast of South Carolina. I was born and raised here, and I absolutely can’t imagine living anywhere else. I’m married to the love of my life, and we’ve raised two amazing children together. Our daughter and her husband live in Bermuda, and our son is about to graduate from Berklee College of Music in Boston! When I’m not writing, I’m spending time in the garden, going for walks, reading and swimming.
When did you decide to pursue writing and eventually publication?
I’ve always loved to write. I guess I got serious about it maybe 20 years ago, yes it’s been that long!! I’ve had a few ups and downs along the way, but I think I’ve finally figured out that this is really the path I’m meant to be on.
What is your writing process like? Do you write daily? Are you a plotter or a pantster?
When I am working on a book, yes, I try to write daily. If I can get four or five hours in, that’s a good day. It really depends on outside factors. If the story is going well, then it’s a breeze and I can’t wait to get to the computer. If I’m stuck, then I kind of have to make myself write. LOL. But usually it’s more fun than anything. I am NOT a plotter. I kind of feel like if I was, this would be easier. I’ve tried. I’ve read every book on plotting and I still don’t enjoy it. It doesn’t come naturally at all. So I’ve accepted that, and I muddle my way through my books and fix it all at the end. 🙂
Where do you do most of your writing? Please describe your writing space or share a picture.
On the couch. LOL! Actually I do have a lovely office, and once I get seriously into my next book, I’ll be in there a lot. But this was my writing space over the winter –
What is your favorite part of the writing process? Least favorite?
I’m not a fan of editing, so I suppose that’s my least favorite! My favorite part is really watching the story come together. While I always have a vague idea of how it’s all going to turn out, I never really know how we’ll get there until it’s down on the page, and sometimes I’m totally taken by surprise. I love it when that happens! I don’t understand it, but I love it. 🙂
How much of yourself do you see in your characters?
Oh, I’m sure there is probably a little of me in all of them. Not sure if that’s a good thing or not! LOL.
Please tell us about your novel, Bridge of Faith.
Two lives taken down different roads – one enduring love – one shot at starting over.
If only they believed in second chances.
Julia Connelly is finally free from twelve long years in an abusive relationship. Now able to live the life she’s longed for, Julia takes her two children back home to Vermont, hoping for peace and healing. The last person she expects to see is the man she eloped with at eighteen—who then abandoned her two months into their marriage, with little explanation.
When an assignment in the Middle East ends in tragedy, popular news correspondent, Reid Wallace, returns to his hometown seeking answers and peace of mind.
Confronting his past was not in the plan.
Now he’s asking different questions. Like why the only woman he’s ever really loved still mesmerizes him. Why the haunted expression she wears reaches right into his soul.
And why her twelve year-old son looks just like him.
They say you can’t go home again. Sometimes you don’t have a choice.
What inspired this complex story?
Hmm. Nothing in particular comes to mind. I’ve always liked the idea of lost love and second chances. And I love Vermont, so the setting clicked for me. I think it’s important to write about real issues like spousal abuse, abandonment, divorce, all the real stuff of life, so when I figured out Julia’s story, I knew it would be something I had to write.
Did you encounter any surprises while you were writing Bridge of Faith?
Not specifically. I did love watching Julia and Reid’s romance unfold. And some of her one liners came out of nowhere. Because I’m not sarcastic like that. At. All. 🙂 Actually, the real surprise is how people are relating to it now that it’s published. That’s the awesome thing about writing. You never quite know you’ve hit it until it’s out there. And I’ve been really pleased with the reception the book is getting so far.
Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share?
Well, okay. 🙂 I love this one. Reid and Julia are slowly finding a way to talk to each other without yelling … sorta.
“Does this mean you forgive me?”
“Not in the least.” The dogs rounded the corner and she bent over to pat them. They soon raced off and she set her gaze on him once more. “I’m tolerating your presence for Mark’s sake.”
Okay, then. Reid contemplated counting to a hundred before speaking again. “Oh, I almost forgot.” He slapped a palm to his forehead and fished in the pocket of his jeans. “I have something for you.”
“For me?” Curiosity crept into her eyes.
Reid held out the new cell phone he’d purchased yesterday. “In case some moron on a motorbike tries to sideswipe you again.”
“Reid.” A blush colored her cheeks, but the smile he hoped for didn’t show. “I really don’t need that. And I don’t have the extra cash right now.”
He tipped his head, ready for the fight. “It’s already bought and paid for and the monthly charges are coming to me, so you can just say thank you.”
“Reid.” And there it was.
“Oh, wait … was that …” He staggered back, hand over his heart. “Was that an actual smile?”
“Shush.” She took the cell phone from his hand like it would blow up any second. “It looks complicated.”
“It’s pretty simple, actually.” He stood beside her and flicked a finger over the screen. “I’ve already programmed a few numbers. Cade’s, Deb’s, and there I am.”
“There you are.”
He’d used an old stock photo from the network, the one all the ladies apparently went nuts over. Looked pretty darn good too, if he did say so himself.
“This was taken a few years ago, huh?”
Ouch. Reid ran his tongue across his bottom lip and decided not to answer that.
“So how do I call you? If I need to. Which I probably won’t.”
“Just punch the button.” Reid demonstrated, and the other cell in his pocket began to ring. “See? Easy.”
“Okay.” Julia studied the phone, glanced upward, one eyebrow raised in question. “So whenever I want to call you, I just punch you in the face.”
“Punch away. But try not to look so ecstatic about it.”
What do you hope readers will take away from this story?
That there is always hope. And through God’s grace, forgiveness is possible, even when we don’t want to give it.
What will you be working on next?
I have a few things going on. I’m concentrating on marketing, but I’ve also got some publishing news on the horizon which is super exciting, and that’s going to be keeping me very busy, I’m sure!
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Just that, with God, ALL things are possible. Really.
INSPY Award-winning author Catherine West writes stories of hope and healing from her island home in Bermuda. When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or tending to her roses and orchids. She and her husband have two grown children. Catherine’s latest novel, Bridge of Faith, is now available on Amazon.
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You are such a delight, Cathy! I appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions and share a Kindle copy of Bridge of Faith with one of my readers!!
Click here to read my review of Bridge of Faith.
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