Friday, August 10, 2012

THE JOURNEY by Guest Blogger Nancy Herriman, Author of "Irish Healer" (GIVEAWAY)

When I approached Nancy Herriman about the possibility that she would be a guest blogger here on Chat With Vera, it was with brazen cockiness, fear, and trepidation.  (I know that combination doesn't really make sense, but it explains exactly how I felt about asking her.)  So it was with rejoicing I received her answer saying, "Yes!"  So let's not waste more words from Vera but get on with what Nancy has to say.

The Journey….

I have a confession to make about writing--as often as I love it, I loathe it, too. I know this comes as a surprise to my non-writer friends, who imagine all authors happily typing away, a box of bonbons at one elbow, a cup of their favorite beverage (mine would be tea) at the other, the words flying off their fingertips, a book achieving completion in a matter of short months. I also know the above statement is not at all a surprise to my writer friends. They know that the process is a roller-coaster journey of giddying ups and rather nauseating downs, moments where you can’t type fast enough for the voices speaking in your head and other moments (oh, these happen too often) where the blank page stares back or the words get written and erased and written again and erased and….you get the point.

Author's favorite Bible verse:
"I can do everything through him
who gives me strength." Phil 4:13
I began my first effort at writing a novel when my children were toddlers, fitting a few sentences in during nap-time or while they were watching videos on TV. Not the most productive years, but it began a habit of writing that has served me well. A book cannot take form if the words don’t go onto the page, and even if it’s only a few hundred words a day, eventually they will become chapters and those chapters, an entire novel. That first book, like so many first books, has long been consigned to the dark, dim recesses of my desk where no one can find it (maybe not even me). The second book joined it there, as well, speedily sent to its demise after an agent asked me what made it so special and I had to concur--not much. By my third (you can see I was not exactly an overnight success), I was winning contests and attracting the attention of agents. I was convinced I was just weeks from publication! I would receive multiple offers and endless accolades! My career was launched!

Alas, when the book that had shown such promise didn’t sell, I had to regroup. It was very tempting to give up, but there was that writing habit I couldn’t shake. Just one more book, I told myself. Just one more attempt at getting published and then I’d stop.

And then I began work on The Irish Healer at the encouragement of a dear friend and critique partner who’s been with me since that first book. It helped that when I pitched the idea to an editor, she was excited by the premise. I knew I was on to something good, something meaningful, but that recognition did not equate to an easy time of writing. More than once, in distress over what was transpiring on the page, the manuscript went into the drawer of that desk where all deceased book ideas and opening chapters of incomplete projects are consigned. I worked on a completely different book for a long period of months, trying to forget about The Irish Healer, but it kept calling me back. Boy, am I grateful. 
Now Vera is going to speak.....  Well folks, I don't know about you, but I am so grateful that Nancy decided to continue plugging away at the keyboard, kept her chin and her hopes up, and gave us The Irish HealerNancy, we are going to be looking for more from you in the coming months and years. Thank you for sharing The Journey with us.
A blurb about The Irish Healer:  Acquitted of murdering a child under her care, Irish healer Rachel Dunne flees the ensuing scandal and vows to never sit at another sickbed. She no longer trusts in her abilities—or God’s mercy. When a cholera epidemic sweeps through London, though, she is forced to nurse the dying daughter of the enigmatic physician she has come to love. James Edmunds, wearied by the deaths of too many patients, has his own doubts about God’s grace. Together, they will have to face their darkest fears...and learn what it means to have real faith.

Author Bio:  Nancy Herriman abandoned a career in Engineering to chase around two small children and take up the pen. She hasn’t looked back. When she is not writing, or gabbing over lattes about writing, she is either watching history shows on cable TV or singing. She lives in the Midwest with her husband and sons, and wishes there were more hours in the day. You can learn more at her website,, where you will also find a link to the opening chapter of The Irish Healer and a book trailer.

If you participate in social media, please join Nancy on Facebook at or on Twitter (@Nancy_Herriman).

Now CLICK HERE to read Chat With Vera's review and see the details of the GIVEAWAY that Nancy is offering Chat With Vera readers!


  1. Thanks for sharing a little about your journey. I have "several" brothers who are engineers, one a Harvard grad. And while stories about facing darkest fears are a little daunting to me, I'll wager you've written a good one from all the buzz I've heard. I'm going to check out your book trailer.

  2. Wonderful post, Nancy. I've been fortunate to be onboard for much of your publishing journey--and still have fond memories of the stories/characters that are tucked away in those desk drawers. I'm so thrilled that readers are now able to enjoy your gift of writing.
    Yes, Vera, we're all grateful that Nancy kept "plugging away" at that keyboard--and will continue to bring us such wonderful stories!
    Don't enter me in the giveaway; I just wanted to drop by and enjoy. I did. Thank you.

  3. Thanks Judi and Candace, of course. ;-)

  4. Thanks for sharing...Great

  5. thanks for giving us an opportunity to win a copy! historicals in the highlands, ireland, scotland, or even characters from that area are my all time favorite.

  6. Enjoyed the interview with Nancy. Thank you Vera. Sounds like a very exciting story set in the British Isles. My fav spot.


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