Thursday, July 13, 2017

Interview with author, Larry Timm

We welcome Larry Timm to Love Lines from God. In addition to the joy of being a husband and father, Larry W. Timm is also honored to be the Preaching Minister with the Morton Christian Church in Morton, Illinois. But his greatest privilege is being a follower of Jesus.

Larry, welcome. 

When did you decide to become a writer? In other words, what made you actually sit down and write something?

I got tired of NOT doing it. Seriously. I’ve always loved the power of the written word, but never did much with that passion. Finally, with a bunch of story ideas swirling in my brain, I decided to stop sitting around wishing I could write a novel someday and decided to start writing one. I’ve never regretted that decision. It was such a freeing moment. By the way, that first novel is still unfinished because the idea for Murder for Emily’s Sake took hold of my imagination and said, “You better pay attention to me.” So I did.

Every writer is eventually asked this question, but where do your ideas come from? Why do you write what you do?

The ideas come from a lot of places. An idea might come from something I see, read, or hear about. At other times, an idea just pops into my head. If the idea connects with something I feel strongly about, we’re off and running. Then I must be convinced that readers could be moved by the story also. 

Sometimes I have a truth I want to communicate and look for a story idea to serve as the vehicle to carry that truth to the reader.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer to see where an idea takes you? How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?   
I’m allergic to outlines. I usually start with a concept and a character or two, then start writing. Occasionally, I picture a scene playing out on the screen in my mind. I’ll try to steer the story in that direction. Sometimes those scenes make the final cut and sometimes they don’t.

As far as how I’ve evolved creatively, probably my biggest area of growth is in giving myself permission to trust my instincts.

What’s the hardest thing about the creative process of writing?

Giving characters the space they need versus the space they want. I don’t do character bios or anything like that, so the characters develop as I write. Sometimes one character becomes more fascinating that I expected and gets a bigger role. Other times, a different character doesn’t add much to the story, so that character gets less page time or gets eliminated completely.

Name the three biggest frustrations about the writing business.

Here are three in no particular order. One frustration would be not being able to write as much as I’d like. Another would be the challenge of deciding which people to listen to and which to ignore when it comes to advice about a given area of the profession. There are a lot of self-appointed experts out there. And a third would be that I wish I was better at the nuts and bolts of grammar than I am.

On the flip side, what excites you the most about the creative process?

I love the process of creating. To be given the stewardship of story is a great joy. I see it as a gift from God that deserves my best effort. I enjoy getting to create characters that show the best and worst of human nature. And the adrenaline really pumps through me when I’m working to paint word pictures of how the spiritual battle between good and evil explodes in the physical world of my story. I’m thrilled when something I care deeply about unfolds on the page in a powerful way!

What are you reading at the moment, and who are a few of your favorite authors and why?

I just finished Terri Blackstock’s first book in The Moonlighters Series, which is called Truth Stained Lies, and am getting ready to start the second book in the series, Distortion. Terri is one of my favorite writers because I feel like there’s a “realness” to her writing.

Another of my favorite writers is Joseph Courtemanche. His debut novel, Assault on Saint Agnes, is awesome. He writes with a grit I admire.

Another favorite writer is Karl Bacon. His historical novels about the Civil War are incredibly moving.

Nancy Mehl is a suspense writer I greatly admire. She writes with a lot of heart and soul.

The fact is, it’s impossible to give proper space to all the writers that inspire me. Brandilyn Collins, Rene Gutteridge, Ronie Kendig, Deborah Raney, Jim Rubart, Kim Vogel Sawyer, and so many others are great examples of storytellers who know how to connect with readers. I hope I can do as well someday.

And one of my all-time favorite writers is Dean Koontz. He has the ability to stretch my imagination and open my eyes to the realities of the battle between good and evil, unlike anyone ever has. 

Tell us about your most recent book.

Murder for Emily’s Sake is my debut suspense novel about a man who seeks revenge on the three women he holds responsible for his teenage daughter’s death. They met his daughter, Emily, outside of an abortion clinic and truthfully answer her questions about the baby inside her womb. Emily decides to let the baby live. It will end up being a decision that costs her life when, due to rare complication, she dies in the delivery room. Her father swears that, just like he had to bury Emily, he will bury the three women. But he will bury them alive. The three women, who are used to defending the lives of the unborn, must now fight for their own lives.

It’s about how life is not only one of God’s most sacred gifts to us; it is often the most fragile. It’s about being grateful for all the things God gives us—from the miraculous to the mundane. Murder for Emily’s Sake celebrates the courage and strength and conviction and commitment of those who are willing to stand up for what is sacred and true. It celebrates hope, forgiveness, and new beginnings.

This story moved me deeply as it unfolded on the page. I hope and pray it will have the same impact for the reader.

Where can readers order your book?

There are links to order the book on my website: 

I also encourage readers to connect with me through my website, my Amazon Author page, or my Goodreads Author Page.

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