Friday, November 4, 2016

Interview of Gail Gaymer Martin by Cynthia Hickey

Multi-award-winning novelist, Gail Gaymer Martin is the author of Christian contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and women’s fiction with 68 published novels and four million books sold. CBS local news listed Gail as one of the four best writers in the Detroit area. Her books have received numerous awards, including: ACFW Carol Award, Romantic Times Reviewer Choice, Booksellers Best, National Readers Choice, Holt Medallion, Award of Excellence. Gail is a cofounder of American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Speakers and Writers, and Christian Authors Network. She is a keynote speaker at churches, civic and business organizations and presents workshops at conferences across the country. Gail was a lifetime resident of Michigan until moving to Sedona and her website is www.gailgaymermartin.com . 




When did you decide to pursue writing and eventually publication? 
I started writing very young. My third grade teacher wrote on my report card, Gail is a good writer. I wrote poetry as a child, and by the time I was ten, I was creating stories. My writing segued more into journalism, and I wrote for my high school newspaper as well as two others, a county and city newspaper, when I was a teen, a paid position. I began college in journalism and soon changed to education with my degree in teaching high school English and public speaking. Later I taught at for Davenport University in Michigan and following a masters degree in counseling , I worked as a counselor for twenty-three years. Yet all the while I was writing for my personal pleasure along with church musical programs that were fund raisers and plays for the teachers to be performed at school events. When I retired from my counseling career and was young enough to pursue my dream, I began freelance writing for magazines and periodicals and in 1997 I began writing fiction. I sold my first novel in 1998 and today I have sixty-eight published novels.

What is your writing process like?  Do you write daily?  Are you a plotter or a pantster?  
I tell people I have holes in my head that collect story ideas and pieces of dialogue that live there until the plotlines comes to life. Then I write the movie that I see in my mind. I write daily but not set hours. I’m slower at the beginning of the novel as I create the characters and new ideas strikes me, but once I’m half way through I am a fast writer and the book seems to fly off my fingers. I am a plotter although I do not prepare detailed outlines. I know the beginning of my novel, major conflicts, and the ending but my writing process can take me on unexpected journeys to get where I am going. Often those flashes of dialogue or character’s startle me but also thrill me since it twists the plot or makes the ending far more meaningful and exciting.  

What is your favorite part of the writing process?  Least favorite?
Creativity is my favorite. Finding a new way to present a character or situation, discovering the story rhythm through the words that I hadn’t noticed as they landed on the page, or developing an unexpected plot twist that flashes into my mind. My least favorite is editing although even then I sometimes discover a surprise element that makes the story better and I then develop it more fully into the story.

What is one of the most interesting things you’ve discovered in your research?  
I love to visit the places I write about, and one of the best experiences is meeting people there who become major assistance in providing me with great information to make the book come to life. I always try to make contact with one or two key people in town who I can call or email to get answers to questions. One  example was the owner of an old time photo business who sent me detailed photographs of her wedding chapel that I had not had a chance to see. When I wrote my Christmas book set on Mackinac Island in Michigan’s Straits, With the help of the island’s bookstore manager, I was connected to a woman who had lived on the island all her life, invaluable contacts for a book set in a real location. 

Please tell us about your latest release
Secrets Within revolves around Laine whose sister on her death bed asks Laine to become guardian of her little daughter. Becca. She also learns that her sister’s wealth and beautiful jewelry have shriveled to almost nothing, and she suspects her sister’s boyfriend is a con-man. After her sister dies, Laine takes Becca to her home where the child clings to a rag doll that seems to represent the love for her mother. Laine’s neighbor Jeff becomes a source of  support and romance as he works with Laine to discover the answers to her questions while not knowing that she and Becca are in more danger than they realize.

Who or what inspired this special story?  
Secrets Within is set on an inland lake in Michigan. My family owned a cottage on a lake and I used that setting to inspire some of the ideas for this book. I had also written a few “novels” when I was about 11 and a huge fan of Nancy Drew Mysteries. I found one of the books one day and read it. I was shocked to see that as a kid who knew nothing about writing a novel, I had done a pretty good job, and one of the important elements of that book that helped solve the mystery was such a great idea, I decided to use it in a new novel. 
  
Is there anything else you would like to share?  What will you be working on next?  

Another new book is A Tucumcari Christmas, is the second novella series set in the New Mexico town of Tucumcari, on the heart of Route 66. The first book, A Trip To Remember, began the series, and I decided to use Tucumcari again for the final book, Be Mine In Tucumcari, that’s also part of a collection of Valentine novellas with Winged Publications. The romances involve the same characters but focuses on a different person in each novella.  

Can you tell us something about yourself that few people may know?
I could tell you a lot of things, but I won’t. J I took a summer course while in high school at Michigan State University and won an award for News Writing which was very exciting for me.  I also am a solo singer at my church and have sung with some wonderful auditioned Christian chorals as well as the auditioned choral group at Wayne State University in Michigan. Oh and I tap danced at the State Fair with a dance studio and was so scared I did part of the dance backward.

What is your most treasured possession?
My mother wore a ring all of her life, an amethyst stone in a gold setting, which had been her mother’s. She told me that since I was the oldest daughter that it would be mine when she died. I have worn that ring daily since my mother went to heaven, but I would give it back if I could have her with us again. 

If you had to leave your house suddenly, what is one thing you would grab, other than family and pets?
As I said above, the ring, but also I would take the computer. It’s backed up in the clouds but I never find things there. My whole writing career is on that computer.

Thank you so much!  Where can readers find out more about you and your books?
 My website is  http://www.gailgaymermartin.com where I have all my books available under the  Books tab. Also both books and eBooks are found on Amazon.com which has the most complete listing of my novels and novellas. Readers can also find me at: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gail.g.martin.3  Twitter: http://twitter.com/GailGMartin Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/83354.Gail_Gaymer_Martin  LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/gailgaymermartin Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/109587381229322171655/posts

Leave a comment about your favorite place to spend Thanksgiving for a chance to win a copy of Secrets Within.




21 comments:

  1. As we keep our four yr old grandson during the day and have since birth (his parents are teachers) we have the week of Thanksgiving "off". The last couple of years we decided to take that week and go RVing, just the two of us, to escape the craziness of family and cooking. Maybe it's selfish but we enjoy traveling to different camp sites every couple of days and spending relaxing time together. Last year we traveled the Natchez Trace Parkway and it was beautiful!

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  2. Beverly Duell-MooreNovember 4, 2016 at 7:53 AM

    My favorite place to spend Thanksgiving is with family in the area where I live. I would love to read "Secrets Within"! It sounds like a great book!

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  3. Always spend Thanksgiving with family, and wouldn't have it any other way. And this year I've gained a husband and some wonderful in-laws! :)
    I love your books! And this one looks so good!

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  4. Thanksgiving is the best time of the year for all our family to get together. Part of my family lives in Arizona so they don't get to be with the rest of us very often. But home is my favorite place. I became acquainted with your books several years ago and this one sounds really good. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

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  5. I love spending Thanksgiving with my family and then going the next day to do some shopping with them. We don't like to go on Thanksgiving b/c it cuts into our family time. Lela

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  6. Always loved having it with family..most of the family is gone now so we met at a restaurant with my last aunt and my cousin...not the same ad a home cooked meal but still a wonderful and enjoyable time

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  7. I was born and raised in Michigan (except for a few years in Missouri). I've been a Troll and a Yooper. It's a beautiful state and I miss it. But my all-time favorite place to spend any holidsy, especially Thanksgiving, was at my grandparent's 160 acre farm in Pewamo. It was the Centennial Farm and was in our family sine the early 1800s, until my grandmother died, and it was sold. Broke my heart. I'd also like to ask what the little girl is pointing at on the cover of your book? Thanks for a great interview.

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  8. Secrets within sounds like my kind of book. Hope I get a chance to read it.

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  9. I love celebrating Thanksgiving at home. We never have a set date, because we pick a day when ALL of our children and grandchildren can come. It can be as early as the first week of November or as late as the last week of November. When is it this year? Not sure yet, but it doesn't matter as long as we are all together in one place.
    This book sounds really good. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy.
    debsbunch777(at)gmail(dot)com

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  10. My favorite place to go is to a small little town about six hours from us. We take all the family and camp out. It's all about being with family.
    Jhdwayne(at)peoplepc(dot)com

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  11. The location doesn't matter as long as our family can enjoy the day together. For many years, I only had Thanksgiving Day off so traveling has never become a tradition.
    Thanks for sharing about Gail's book.
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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  12. My favorite place to spend Thanksgiving is any place where I'm with my family and friends.
    diannekc8(at)gmail(dot)com

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  13. For about 5 years, we struggled with homelessness because of my severe toxic injury. Last year, our new church helped us build a low-tox home. So you can bet my favorite place for Thanksgiving is here in our own, amazing low-tox home. Although even in the rough years, I was SOOOOO blessed to be with my faithful, loving husband and 3 dear children.

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  14. My favorite place that we celebrated Thanksgiving one year was at a camp on Fox Island in Washington state. My cousins were caretakers that winter so we had the huge lodge with kitchen to cook in, a toasty fireplace to keep us warm and each family slept in one of the cabins. It was a beautiful setting and it was the biggest extended family gathering we ever had.

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  15. My favorite place that we celebrated Thanksgiving one year was at a camp on Fox Island in Washington state. My cousins were caretakers that winter so we had the huge lodge with kitchen to cook in, a toasty fireplace to keep us warm and each family slept in one of the cabins. It was a beautiful setting and it was the biggest extended family gathering we ever had.

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  16. My favorite placed to spend Thanksgiving is to travel many hours to be with our families out of state!
    Janice
    pjrcmoore@windstream.net

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  17. At home or at the home of other family members.
    Martha T. at CRPrairie1@imonmail(dot)com

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  18. I like to spend Thanksgiving at home with my family, enjoying some good food and time together.

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    1. I forgot to leave my email lclee59(at)centurylink(dot)net

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  19. My family meets at one of my sisters and we all pitch in to help with the meal. It is one of the few times most of us get together during the year. Thanks for this interview and giveaway!

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  20. Janice Moore is the winner of Secrets Within! The author will be contacting you

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