Award-winning author, Sunni Jeffers is setting course for a new life adventure. After ten years as a navy wife and mother, they moved to Denver, Colorado to manage the family security business. When her children left home, she began writing books. In 1992, Sunni and her husband moved to the Great Northwest to raise cattle, timber and hay and to give her the time to write stories of other women and their struggles and victories. Now Sunni’s fourth adventure has begun. She and her husband are exploring the US and Canada in their motorhome. As they travel, she continues writing heartwarming cozy mysteries and stories of delightful women living out their faith as they face challenges and adventures in everyday life.
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INTERVIEW WITH SUNNI JEFFERS
S.S: How long have you been writing?
I started writing in 1988, after I took a two-day class on writing a romance novel with my sister. She wanted to write. I didn’t have a clue. Ten years later, I won the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award for Best Unpublished Inspirational Novel. It was my third completed book. It was finally published in 2001. Since then, I have had fourteen books published.
S.S: Do you write full time? If the answer is no, what else do you do? If you are a full time author, what other jobs did you have in the past?
I’ve been a Jill-of-all-Trades. Nurse’s aide, florist, sewing instructor, seamstress, and school bus driver. I spent eighteen years as a business owner/office manager/bookkeeper in a security business, then nineteen years as a cattle/hay rancher with my husband. During the last twenty years, I have written full time and part-time. I write part-time now. We are living the retirement dream of traveling half the year in a motorhome. I write while we travel, but take plenty of time off to explore and to play.
S.S: Tell us about the moment you finally felt like a “real author”?
I didn’t feel “legitimate” until my second book was published and I had a third contract. Even then, I wasn’t confident that I had a career.
S.S.: Who has been your greatest supporter as an author?
Definitely my husband. He was proud of me when I started and every step along the thirteen years before my first published book came out. He read every word and did his best to help me. He sacrificed so I could attend conferences and classes and spend hours alone writing. Without his encouragement, I might have given up a long time ago.
S.S: Do you write in any other genres? If so, what?
I have written romance, contemporary inspirational series (Americana) and cozy mysteries. I’m leaning back to romance and romantic suspense, and plan to write several historical romance series.
S.S: How does your faith play into your writing?
All of my writing – even my new book, which is more of a secular book than an inspirational – are written from my world-view, which is definitely Christian. It is who I am. I can’t write from a view that I don’t believe. In each book, I seem to learn a spiritual lesson along with my characters. Those lessons aren’t planned. They just happen.
S.S: If you couldn’t write, what else would you want to do?
I love to travel. Fortunately, I get to do that and write, also. I love research and history. When I visit someplace new, I always think of stories I’d like to write about the history of the place or something in the setting.
S.S: Tell us about your current release.
My most current release is All Sewn Up, a cozy mystery for Guideposts Books series, Secrets of the Blue Hill Library, writing as Emily Thomas. It’s the first time I’ve had to use a common pen name.
S.S: Where did you get your inspiration for this book?
This is part of an ongoing series about a small town in Pennsylvania, and a beautiful Victorian library bequethed to the town. The stories are collaborative efforts between the editors and the authors.
S.S: What is the main thing you hope readers remember from your story?
Giving is a gift to the giver, as well as the receiver. It’s a lesson I learned from my mother, who was always giving of her time and talents to help someone.
S.S: Who is your favorite character in this book and why?
Anne, the librarian, is a delightful character with big heart and a large dose of creativity and curiosity.
S.S: What are you working on now?
I’m glad you asked. I’m finishing the final edits on a book that captured my imagination many years ago. Brush of Angel’s Wings is a romance, a suspense thriller, a book with love and angels and genetic engineering. It should come out in August. It will be available on Kindle and also in print through amazon.com.
S.S: Any writing goals you still hope to achieve?
There are many writing goals still out in front of me. A romance series to complete—Rocky Mountain High, with book two ready for an editor. Two historical romance series in proposal state—The Solomon Brothers, and Angels in White. A romantic series in a small river town in Washington State—2nd Chance Ranch. Besides those, I have several stories floating around in my head.
S.S: Now let’s get a little personal. Name two things on your “bucket list” that you haven’t done yet.
My husband and I are living our 4th life together. We’ve gone through one bucket list and fulfilled all but one dream. To live aboard a boat. Not sure I still want to do that for a long period, but I’d love to try it out for a month or two. I’d love to charter a boat and travel up the Inland Waterway from Texas up to the Great Lakes.
A second item on my bucket list is travel, which is unending. I dream of visiting Israel and the Bible lands. With the conditions in the world, I hope that will be a possibility someday.
S.S: What is the silliest thing you have ever done?
Go rattlesnake hunting in Montana. Insane. We bagged 26 rattlesnakes, 9 blue racers and 4 king snakes. They all went into a large glass cage in the local utility district office. They would be used for educational purposes at the local schools, then released.
S.S: What is the hardest thing you have ever done?
I’m still recovering from the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I wasn’t alone. My husband and I cared for our son-in-law during his last months battling cancer. He passed away in May. This was an emotional and physical and spiritual journey that held many heartaches, but also many blessings. We saw first hand how God is always faithful and present and how we can trust Him in all things.
S.S.: Where can readers find you on the internet?
S.S.: Anything else you’d like to share with us?
I love to connect with readers. Please come visit me on facebook. I’m in the process of revamping a very out-of-date web site and blog, so stay tuned. I’ll share on facebook when they are up and running.
If you'd like a copy of Sunni's book, ALL SEWN UP, leave a comment, along with your contact information. We'll draw a winner on Monday!