This week I would like to introduce you to nonfiction and fiction author, Harriet Michael. I have had the privilege of getting to know Harriet through my ACFW Writer’s Group. Harriet is a wonderful woman who gives me the inspiration to keep on going.
About Harriet Michael:
Born in Nigeria, West Africa, as the daughter of missionaries, Harriet E. Michael is a writer, gardener, wife of over 37 years, mother of four, and grandmother of two.
She is the author of three books, “Glimpses of the Savior” published by TMP Publishing, “Prayer: It’s Not About You,” a finalist in the 2011 Women of Faith book contest, published by Pix-N-Pens Publishing Company, and “The Whisper of the Palms” published by Olivia Kimbrell Press.
Her stories, articles, and devotions have appeared in publications by Focus on the Family, Lifeway, Standard Publishing, David C. Cook Co., Bethany House, American Life League, Crosswalk.com, Christian Communicator, Judson Press, The Upper Room, Pentecostal Publishing House, Smyth and Helwys, and more.
Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions, Harriet.
You have many writing projects out there, both non-fiction and fiction. What are some of your current projects?
I am working on two books at the moment and will be getting a contract for a third any time. I’m under contract with Pix-N-Pens Publishing for a devotional book about prayer that I am co-writing with my childhood friend, Shirley Crowder. That book has a tentative release date of early December. Shirley and I have also been told we will be getting a contract for another nonfiction that PNP will release sometime next year, summer or fall of 2018.
In addition, my husband and I have co-written a book about his time as a trustee at Southern Seminary from 1984-1994. This book is at the “finding a publisher” stage. We have an agent friend who has been helping us. We recently sent him the finished book proposal along with several strong endorsements of the book so now the waiting game begins.
I also constantly freelance small pieces and have many of those irons in the fire, as always. I have a short story out in the newest Chicken Soup for the Soul (the one about dogs that released Aug 6) and several articles and devotions in various stages of publication.
What has been your favorite project so far? Why?
I don’t think I have a favorite. I really have only written two fiction works—a novel and a short story. The short story is, as of yet, unpublished. Both are fiction based on fact. Writing fiction and writing nonfiction are very different experiences and I am hard pressed to try and decide which I like more.
Writing nonfiction, which I do most of the time, feels like an itch I get to scratch. It’s pulls at me, begging me to write it. So, the experience feels quite satisfying, like soothing an itch or fulfilling a calling. Writing fiction, on the other hand, feels like play. It’s a lot of fun but in some ways less satisfying. Still, I thoroughly enjoyed it and hope to write more fiction in time.
What has God taught you along your publication journey?
That question almost makes me chuckle. One of the greatest lessons He teaches me in the publication journey is humility. I am always amused and often embarrassed at the mistakes an editor or publisher finds in my work that I did not catch.
He has also taught me patience, many times over!
What is your work schedule like when you are writing?
I have a better routine in the school year instead of the summer, even though I am busier in the school year. I work as a substitute teacher, three days a week and somehow having that routine helps me use the other two days for writing more efficiently. In the summer, I have a long list of projects I want to get done, and then I find weeks have gone by without meeting my writing goals. Basically, I try to sit down at the computer for a few hours at a time at least two days a week. But I do not have a specific routine, and I write as the need (or deadline) arises.
What is one of the most surprising things you have learned while working on your projects?
Actually, the fact that I can write at all is a surprise to me. In high school, I loved writing but hated all the red marks I received for all of my punctuation and spelling mistakes. To see something I have written, all cleaned up by an editor, in a form that appeals to readers, is still a pleasant surprise to me.
What are you reading right now?
Betty Thomason Owen’s, “Sutter’s Landing” I loved the first in this series and am enjoying this sequel a lot.
What do you like to do when you aren’t reading or writing?
I enjoy family and church things like Bible study, fellowships, fun with my family. I also love working on projects around the house—painting, gardening, redecorating. I enjoy drawing too, but do not do it very often.
Connect with Harriet on her Amazon Author Page, Facebook, or her Blog: http://harrietemichael.blogspot.com/.
Then come back next week to meet Betty Owens, author of Sutter’s Landing.