Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
Karen: I was born with a big imagination. Since there were twelve years between my older brother and me, I grew up as an only child. I spent my days different ways– acting out plays, (especially about princesses and Knight’s in shining armor), playing school and house with my dolls, and devouring books (the Bobbsey Twin series was my favorite). After I learned how to write cursive, I penned the stories I acted out and have been writing ever since. My innate love of English carried me through a teaching career until I retired two years ago. Now I am a full-time author and blogger. I enjoy angling my writing so as to minister to my readers through scriptural answers to life’s trials.
What genre are your books? What draws you to this genre?
Karen: I write contemporary Christian romance. Not planned—I just fell into it. Last year my local critique group had decided to publish an anthology with a Christmas theme, and I joined in. Since retiring from my teaching career, I miss my interaction with teens and have always wanted to make a difference in their lives for Christ. After re-editing and expanding my original novella into Desire’s Promise, it was clear that this story targets that age group. It was born out of my personal desire to see my daughters happily married to Christian husbands, just as I had set out to do that age. For young adults who are seeking a Christian mate, this story illustrates the miracles God can perform if you trust Him with your future.
Do you work from an outline or do you see where an idea takes you?
Karen: I do some of both. I am a plotter and a pantster. I first map an outline of the entire story’s main plot and characters. But as I create a scene, the characters come alive, like actors on a stage, and show me what they want to say. It’s funny how they become so real to me, even creating their own subplots. If I ever sink into writer’s block, I give the scene back to the characters, although sometimes we have a tug-of-war. In the end, everyone is satisfied. There’s never a dull moment when the creative juices are flowing.
What is the hardest thing about writing?
Karen: The hardest thing for me was learning how to write fiction. I had always been an expert in non-fiction and editing from my English background, but this is a new animal and harder than I expected. I had to take the time to research and read books about deep POV, beats and tags, and character development arcs. Then I had to learn all the current trends, such as adverbs are a no-no (which distresses me because I love them so), and cook up strong, exotic verbs to replace them. Although I was well acquainted with “show-don’t-tell,” I have to constantly police my writing so as not to violate that rule. I’m no expert yet, but it gets a little easier as I progress.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Karen: I see myself as an editor working for a publishing company. I have recently begun exploring this option and love it. It is so much more enjoyable for me to help writers to become better at their craft. That is where I have invested my entire career and am at my best. My ultimate dream? To someday even become a publisher.
Thanks, Karen, for the visit!
Carlie Livingston is steering into her last year of college in Oxford, Ohio, confident that she and Lance Holloway are headed to the altar after graduation. Those plans are wrecked, however, by her dad’s infidelity, causing her parents to walk through a messy divorce. Will she have the same fate if she marries her college sweetheart who comes from a secular family? Her mother insists she will.
She tests God’s Word by letting Him take the wheel of her life. But if God is in control, why are all her close relationships crumbling? Nothing makes sense.
Just when it appears hopeless, Clay McKinney two-steps into Carlie’s life, promising to provide everything she’s looking for. But if he’s God’s answer, why can’t her heart release Lance? Where will her final destination be on this journey of trust?
Karen Jurgens, a Cincinnati native, has been a Texan transplant for thirty years and counting. As a lifelong writer, she has written stories since her elementary school days. As an adult, she wrote Christian fiction for her church’s newspaper as well as non-fiction that was published in a national magazine.
Since retiring from teaching in 2014, she has begun a new career as an author, blogger, and speaker within the context of Christian ministry. Her first contemporary romance novella, A Christmas Mosaic, was published in October 2015, and is part of a multi-author anthology, Warm Mulled Kisses. Her second novella, Desire’s Promise, was published in November, 2016.
Karen is the proud mother of two wonderful daughters—Meghan, a dietician, and Caitlin, a journalist. As an avid gourmet cook, she loves to go all out for holidays and family birthdays. She enjoys spin classes, reading the Classics, and playing online word games. Participating in several professional organizations, volunteering, Bible studies, and her invaluable critique group keep her actively engaged in her community.
You can follow her blog about scriptural answers to life’s trials at Touched by Him Ministries at www.karenjurgens.com.
eBook Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M4PPF38
Fb Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/TheKarenJurgens