Monday, November 17, 2014

Interview with Dawn Crandall

Dawn Crandall (author of The Everstone Chronicles series) very graciously allowed me to interview her for my first Q&A here!  I'm so excited!  She is such a wonderful lady and it's been my pleasure to review her books and get to know her a bit!  

To start off, a few questions about you:
Are you an introvert or extrovert?
Dawn: I am an introvert, and I love to be alone. However, when I’m around friends or family, or I’m really excited about something I become more extroverted than normal.

What are three “fun” or “unique” things about you?
Dawn: I have ADD.
I’m a lot older than I look.
I’m pretty boring.

If you weren’t a writer, what would your dream job be?
Dawn: I’d be a stay-at-home mom-which I am as well, at the moment.

Describe yourself in one word.
Dawn: Scatter-brained.

I heard that you have a 7 month old baby (very belated congratulations, by the way!) - I can’t imagine trying to keep up with home life, taking care of a baby, and writing! How do you manage to juggle everything?
Dawn: Before I got pregnant, my life was so very different! I used to take two or so full days a week and write all day long. When I got pregnant, I had a very difficult time staying awake, let alone trying to remember what I was writing about. Since my son was born seven months ago, I’ve been trying to figure out my new normal. I was already used to taking care of a baby from when I was a nanny, but writing while having a baby at home is such a difficult task! Writing used to be my absolute favorite thing to do - and now I have two favorite things: writing books and playing with my baby. I keep my notebook around at all times to pre-write my chapters into, and I usually write them out on my iPhone.

Your new book The Bound Heart just released, so of course, we have to talk about that!  (In case you missed my review, you can find it here.)

Describe The Bound Heart with 5 adjectives
Dawn: Redemptive, Emotional, Steamy, Heart-moving, Complex
As someone who has read the book, I have to agree with all of those!

Please share a little bit about your novel and the main characters (pictures are great).
Dawn: One accidental kiss. That was all it took to throw Meredyth Summercourt’s world upside-down. Determined to marry the ever elusive Vance Everstone, she simply doesn’t have the time or the desire to fall for her friend Lawry Hampton. However, with Vance out of the country and Lawry constantly at her side, Meredyth can’t help but wonder if what’s holding her to Vance is nothing more than a desire to redeeem herself from their unfortunate past.

When Vance comes home to stake his claim on Meredyth, will she be strong enough to break free from the tangled web she’d convinced she deserves? Or will she find the strength to accept that God’s plan for her life could include redemption . . . and quite possibly the love of her best-friend?

Jessica Chastain as Meredyth
Armie Hammer as Lawry
Henry Cavill as Vance

The covers of your books are simply lovely! Did you help with the design?
Dawn: I emailed the graphic designer at Whitaker House a ton of photos I’d collected over the years of my characters, the settings and the houses involved in the stories. The first time I saw the covers, they were as they are currently. They were simply perfect. 

What do you hope your readers will take away from The Bound Heart?
Dawn: I know many Christians see other Christians they know as non-struggling, perfect people with perfect lives. But every single one of us is struggling through things that we need God’s help in overcoming. Meredyth believed a huge misconception about God’s love and grace. Not everyone has such a “big” heart-issue to deal with, but dealing with them - whatever they are - is usually complicated. Even when it seems the worst possible things are happening, and that we’ve come to the end of our wits trying to unbury ourselves out of the mire, God is still working, still offering us grace and His perfect love. He is digging too - and He won’t stop trying to dig us out of our self-produced mire. Ever.
I love that!  I may "steal" some of that for a future post - just so you know. 
What responses to your novels have affected you the most and why?
Dawn: I really LOVE to read my reviews! Every reader latches on to something different in my novels, and it thrills me to no end to learn what they specifically got out of them. There is so much complexity to writing a 90K word novel that takes a character from where she is and what she’s like at the beginning of a book and transforming her, stage by stage throughout the pages into who God wants her to be. I think readers love to see this. I certainly love to write it. Creating a character’s inner/spiritual journey and seeing their transformation by the end of the novel is my favorite part of writing books.

What do you least like about being a writer? Most like?
Dawn: I really hate how long it takes to form the story and then get it out (I’m not a fast writer). My favorite thing is having the finished, complete story in my hands!

I know The Captive Imposter, the third book in The Everstone Chronicles series, is set to release in February 2015. Do you have plans for any more books, yet?
Dawn: I have lots of book ideas on the back burner. As soon as all this craziness of releasing my debut series - three full length books in six months! - is over, I’m going to write up a bunch of proposals for my agent to start pitching to publishers. I’d really love to continue writing stories about some of the other characters introduced in these first three books!
Wow!  I have no idea how you've managed to keep up with everything!  I've just recently witnessed how much promoting you're doing for The Bound Heart so I can definitely concur with the craziness.  I think most readers assume that once the book is released you are able to start on your next one, but that is so not the standard.  I can't wait to see what you come up with next, but hopefully after you've had a chance to take a break!
What are some ways we can support and encourage you, both personally and as an author?
Dawn: I really love to hear from readers! Writing is a very lonely job. Unlike “normal” jobs where you get job evaluations every once in a while writers don’t really get that. We get, “Produce more! When’s the next book coming out?” it’s kind of crazy - and I love that readers adore the stories that I’ve written, and my writing even - but it takes a reader a few days to read and enjoy what I spent a year producing. Think about putting that kind of timeframe in any other kind of job or industry . . .it’s enough to drive a writer bonkers at times! I really like hearing encouragement; that readers really liked my words and the stories I made up. I know from experience that I’ve assumed my favorite authors KNOW that they’re awesome, that their writing is the best thing since sliced bread and all that - but really, because of the way this while publishing books thing works, it feels more like we’re not doing nearly enough when we’re doing all we can.
I definitely assume that my favorite authors know they're awesome and I try not to bug them with messages.  Hmm . . .  Any authors that read this, be forewarned that Dawn just gave me a free pass to drive y'all nuts with Facebook messages and emails! LOL  Don't worry, I'm kidding (mostly).
Thank you so much for joining me (us) Dawn!  And for letting me pester you with questions!  :)
If you'd like to follow Dawn online, you can find her on:
About Dawn:
A graduate of Taylor University with a degree in Christian Education, and a former bookseller at Barnes & Noble, Dawn Crandall didn’t begin writing until 2010 when her husband found out about her long-buried dream of writing a book. Without a doubt about someday becoming published, he let her quit her job in 2010 in order to focus on writing The Hesitant Heiress. It didn’t take her long to realize that writing books was what she was made to do. Dawn is represented by Joyce Hart of Hartline Literary.
Apart from writing books, Dawn is also a first-time mom to a precious little boy (born March 2014) and also serves with her husband in a premarriage mentor program at their local church in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Dawn is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, secretary for the Indiana ACFW Chapter (Hoosier Ink), and associate member of the Great Lakes ACFW Chapter.
The Everstone Chronicles is Dawn’s first series with Whitaker House. All three books composing the series were semifinalists in ACFW’s prestigious Genesis Writing Contest, the third book going on to be become a finalist in 2013.



  1. Thanks for having me, Sarah! That was a really fun interview! And I'm so glad you enjoyed reading my books! :D

  2. Love your interview and your review. Thank you for sharing.

  3. You totally seem awesome Dawn and not boring! :D I also think it fascinating that you love to read your reviews! Most authors don't so that is very unique! :)

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Thanks, Laura! I do still feel boring. I have no fascinating hobbies besides writing. :) I cook easy meals, eat, sleep, take care of Rhett as best I can and write, edit and brainstorm when I can squeeze it in! :)

  4. Thanks for the interview, Dawn and Sarah - loved learning more about Dawn and her writing journey and would love to read "The Bound Heart"!!

    Dawn, have you had any reviews that upset you??


    1. I've had a few that made it clear that The Hesitant Heiress wasn't exactly the kind of book the reader was looking for.... too much brooding and drama and not enough sunshine and rainbows. :) Well! That's the kind of book I set out to write, so I couldn't disagree! :D I do write happy parts and VERY happy endings, but my characters have to go through their challenges to get there! And I like drama! :D