During a recent interview for my Montana Skies Historical Romance Series, I was reminded of a time earlier in my writing career when the interviewing process didn't run so smoothly...
When I first began my career as a writer, I started by writing magazine articles. By doing so, I was then able to stay home with my daughters and supplement our income, plus gain valuable work experience.
One afternoon several years ago, I was preparing to interview a prominent professional for a major magazine article. My daughters, Sunshine and Doodle, were toddlers then, and the concept of working from home as a writer was an adventure in itself. "Now girls, Mommy has a very important phone call to make. Can you sit nicely and quietly and watch Angelina Ballerina on the TV for a few minutes and after I'm finished, we'll go to the playground and Mommy will go down the slide and play on the swings with you."
My girls nodded and we made our routine pinky promise. I then reached for my phone. Two minutes and I would be dialing my most important source. The entire phone interview wouldn't take longer than 20 minutes at the most, and knowing that Angelina Ballerina was my girls' favorite video, things should run quite smoothly...or so I thought.
A few minutes later, I was on the phone and writing down answers to my questions. The source was a pleasant man with so much knowledge that I could have written a dozen articles just based on his expertise alone. The phone connection was good, I was keeping up with what taking notes, and Sunshine and Doodle were sitting quietly watching Angelina Ballerina.
I glanced down to write an answer to one of my interview questions, when from out of nowhere, two-year-old Doodle sprang from the playroom, her short stubby legs sashaying around in typical "polka" fashion. She danced in circles in the living room, giggling. It wasn't the dancing, giggling, or the joyful grin on her face that alarmed me. No, it was the loud and continous eeeeeee-aawwwww, eeeeeee-aawwwww sound of the toy accordian in her hand as she played what she called "bootiful music, Mama!"
I gasped. "No, no, sweetie," I mouthed.
Doodle smiled and continued her presentation of "How to Make Mommy Panic in One Easy Step."
"Mrs. Zeller?" My source asked, "Are you there? I am hearing some interference."
"Um, yes, sorry about that," I said. I wondered to myself how to tell my source that the interference was a child's accordian and still maintain my professionalism.
"I think we have a bad connection," my source said.
I nodded and thought to myself, well, he was about 2,500 miles away, so it could be a bad connection...
I love stories like this when my girls were several years younger. They add to the adventure of being a writer and create memories we all laugh about now.
A few years after I began writing magazine articles, God led me to begin writing books. I am amazed at how He leads and how He prepares us for His will in our lives. I pray I make an impact for His Kingdom with every word that I write, and I am in continual prayer for His guidance regarding my current book projects.
A few days ago, my little elementary-aged Doodle asked if I could interview her regarding her career. We hooked up the microphone to the computer, and just as she had seen me do numerous times for interviews for my books, Doodle slipped into the interviewee mode. “Welcome to Zeller Family Radio,” I began. “I’m here today with my very special guest, Doodle Zeller.”
Doodle pretended to be an adult and I asked her questions about the career to which God had led her. “When I was just a kid,” she began. “I wanted to be a missionary to Haiti. Now I am and I’m excited to tell you all about it!”
About Penny Zeller - Bio: Penny Zeller is the author of several books and numerous magazine articles. She is also the author of the blog "A Day in the Life of a Wife, Mom, and Author" where she also provides weekly doses of inspiration and humor, along with movie reviews from a Christian worldview, and interviews with some of her favorite author friends.
Penny is an active volunteer in her community, devoting her time to assisting and nurturing women and children into a closer relationship with Christ. Her passion is to use the gift of the written word that God has given her to glorify Him and to benefit His kingdom.
Among other books, Penny is the author of McKenzie, Kaydie, and Hailee in her Montana Skies Historical Romance Series and 77 Ways Your Family Can Make a Difference: Ideas and Activities for Serving Others.
When she's not writing, Penny enjoys spending time with her family and camping, hiking, canoeing, and playing volleyball. While she is generally a health nut, Penny does have one small weakness: hot tamales (yes, the little red candy kind!)
Penny loves to hear from her readers at her website, www.pennyzeller.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennyzellerbooks
GIVEAWAY: Penny is offering one of Chat With Vera's readers their choice of either McKenzie, Kaydie, or Hailee in her Montana Skies Historical Romance Series. You can see my review of McKenzie by clicking here. I'll be reviewing the next in the series shortly, so watch for it! Rules for the GIVEAWAY: Begins May 14 ENDS May 31 @ 8:00 p.m. EDT.
- Mandatory entry: Leave a comment (and do play nice) and tell us if you've ever read a Penny Zeller book or what you enjoyed most from her humorous life article (above). We'll need your email address, too, and your First name.
- Extra entry: Tweet this giveaway & review and use the hashtags @GG_Survey and also #Giveaway. We'll need the Tweet URL & your email address, too. (May do this once daily for extra entries.)
- Extra entry: Share this on some form of social media and leave the link in a comment. Don't forget that email address. (Each "share" can be a separate entry.)