Ane Mulligan writes Southern-fried fiction served with a tall, sweet iced tea. Her debut book, Chapel Springs Revival, released Sept 8th. She’s a novelist, a humor columnist, and a multi-published playwright. She resides in Suwanee, GA, with her artist husband, their chef son, and two very large dogs. You can find Ane at her website, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+.
Congratulations! You’ve written a book and seen it to publication. What are three things you’ve learned from this experience?
1. Perseverance – it took me nearly 13 years to see a book published. If I’d given up somewhere along the way, I wouldn’t have made the goal.
2. Writers can’t have egos. Somebody must critique your work and if that hurts too much, then you’ll never get better. I donned rhino skin the day I found a critique group.
3. Always figure God in the equation. After about 3 or 4 years of hard work, I began to go to committee, but never got a contract. I received a lot of confirmation that my writing was ready, but God wasn’t ready for me to publish yet. I often wondered if that was because those whom God gave me the story for weren’t ready to hear it.
It was such a long journey most people assumed I was already published. Oh don’t get me wrong, I whined—a lot and asked God why when all my critique partners were getting published. But He kept telling me to have faith and wait. He didn’t give me any alternative, so I chose to wait.
What is your favorite sentence or paragraph in the book?
It’s not a literary gem, but it’s so indicative of Claire:
Claire nearly tripped over her heart as it zinged to her toes. Was that what was wrong with her and Joel? She never prayed for a husband. Well, she did, but not like that. She asked the stars to send her one. The day she met Joel, she fell in love and never looked back.
Writers sit for extended periods of time. What do you do to combat fatigue?
With two English mastiffs that are like two-year-olds, I never get to sit too long before one of them just has to have a drink from the bathtub faucet, or needs a rawhide chewie, or a Milkbone biscuit. Throw one hubs into the mix, and I’m up and down more than an elevator. I get a workout before I go to the gym.
How do you personally handle “writer’s block?”
I don’t get blocked totally, but sometimes, I get off track. If I can’t figure out what’s wrong, I study the scene. Why is it here, what am I trying to say, and how does it further the story. Then, if all that fails … I immediately call my brainstorm buddies.
What fun fact would you like your readers to know about you?
I’ll take a girls’ road trip at the drop of a hat. There is nothing more fun than a car full of girlfriends and the open road. Put a book event or research destination at the end of that road trip, and that’s my idea of Heaven. But don’t tell Hubs. ;o)
Chapel Springs Revival
Everybody in the small town of Chapel Springs, Georgia, knows best friends Claire and Patsy. It’s impossible not to, what with Claire’s zany antics and Patsy’s self-appointed mission to keep her friend out of trouble. And trouble abounds. Chapel Springs has grown dilapidated and the tourist trade has slackened. With their livelihoods threatened, they join forces to revitalize the town. No one could have guessed the real issue needing restoration is personal.
With their marriages in as much disarray as the town, Claire and Patsy embark on a mission of mishaps and miscommunication, determined to restore warmth to Chapel Springs —and their lives. That is if they can convince their husbands and the town council, led by two curmudgeons who would prefer to see Chapel Springs left in the fifties and closed to traffic.