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Martha Rogers

Martha RogersThe Martha Rogers File:


The Advocate

Martha Rogers Interview

by C.J. Darlington

"I’m a kid at heart who loves Disney World, cartoons, and silly games with my grandchildren." -- Martha Rogers

Martha Rogers is a Christian freelance author of both fiction and non-fiction and speaker. Her stories and articles have appeared in a number of compilations and magazines. Her first fiction will be released in 2007. Her experiences as a public school teacher, Sunday school teacher, youth leader, First Place leader, Mom and Grandmother give Martha a unique field of ministry.

Were books a big part of your life growing up? If so, what books did you read over and over as a child? Why was it special?

Books were my way of escape into a fantasy world where everyone was happy. I had my library card when I was eight and visited weekly to check out books. Janet Lambert books were my favorite starting with Star Spangled Summer. I read Little Women over and over. It was special because I identified with Jo. I have Wendy Lawton’s doll rendition of Jo and it’s my favorite piece.

As someone who’s predominantly written nonfiction, what was it that compelled you to write fiction?

I wrote fiction before I wrote non-fiction. Story telling is in my blood as my mother and my cousins could tell you.

At 73, you are an inspiration to many never to give up on their writing! What would you say to other writers who are say, over sixty, and still trying to break into publishing?

Pray, persevere and have patience. If it is God’s plan for you, it will happen. Delight yourself in Him, be obedient to His will, and He will give you the desires of your heart.

Do you think that your being involved with youth in your teaching and mentoring of teens has helped you with your writing? Why is that?

Definitely helped me in understanding teenagers and what makes them tick. They have so many different attitudes and outlooks on life that I found were all tied back to their home environment and their relationship to the Lord.

When and how did the big break come that allowed you to have Becoming Lucy published by Realms?

Right around my birthday in June, 2009, Tamela called and said that Strang was interested in Lucy to launch their new historical line.

Did you originally set out to write a trilogy or did that come after you received your first novel contract?

The proposal was for a trilogy and I had the story ideas for all three.

Becoming Lucy by Martha RogersBecoming Lucy is set in the Oklahoma Territory. As a native Texan I bet you drew inspiration from your love for your state. But even so, I know there’s always great research when writing a historical. Do you find that your research actually gives you idea for the plot, or do you know where you’re going ahead of time?

I had the story idea first then had to decide where to set it. As I studied the history of Oklahoma in that time period, the more I could add to the story.

How important is it for you to visit the places of which you write?

That depends on the place. If it’s a place about which I can find material easily, I don’t need to visit, but other times it’s necessary to get a feel for the area and the people.

Of all the fascinating tidbits I’m sure you learned about this time period, what stands out in your mind as something that really surprised you?

How active the suffragettes were all over the country.

God has strengthened you through several difficult situations in your life. Do you have any Scriptures you hold on to during tough times?

Different ones have come at different times in my life. Memorizing Scripture and storing the verses in my heart is very important to me. Psalm 27:1, Galatians 6:9, Jeremiah 29:11, and Psalm 37:4.

What was the hardest part about writing Becoming Lucy? Why?

The hardest part was making sure I had the facts right about the era and the time line fit because it took so much writing time to do the research.

What would you love to write someday but haven’t yet?

A really good mystery or romantic suspense.

If you could say one thing to aspiring novelists, what would you say?

Pray, persevere and have patience.

Anything else you’d like to share with TitleTrakk.com readers?

Realize you have to grow and learn as a writer and that you never really “know it all.”

What are two things people might be surprised to know about you?

That I have nine hours toward a doctorate degree in education, and I’m a kid at heart who loves Disney World, cartoons, and silly games with my grandchildren.

When you’re not writing, what do you enjoy doing?

Reading and Scrapbooking

What did you eat for breakfast this morning?

Waffle and a glass of milk

Three things always found in your refrigerator:

Yogurt, sugar free chocolate pudding and fresh fruit.

You’re next in line at Starbucks. What are you ordering?

A skinny vanilla latte

What’s left unchecked in your “goals for life” list?

Visiting states in the US I haven’t been to yet.

When was the last time you cried?

Just this week as I prayed for our grandson who has Cystic Fibrosis and is going through some tough times.

Three words that best describe you:

Extrovert, deep trust in God, encourager,

What’s currently in your CD player/iPod?

Choir tape of songs we’re learning and a Scripture memory CD (MP3 player)

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C.J. DarlingtonC.J. Darlington is the award-winning authof of Thicker than Blood, Bound by Guilt, and Ties that Bind. She is a regular contributor to Family Fiction Digital Magazine and NovelCrossing.com. A homeschool graduate, she makes her home in Pennsylvania with her family and their menagerie of dogs, a cat, and a paint horse named Sky. Visit her online at her author website. You can also look her up at Twitter and Facebook.