I am grateful for the opportunity I had to catch up
with Diane Moody. She is an exceptional author - bursting with energy and bursting at the seams even at
the thought of sitting down to write. It was like a rat race trying to steal a few moments of her time, to be honest, which makes it even more rewarding to actually be able to introduce you to
As with all the authors I feature on this site, I asked Diane a series of questions. Some of her responses beat me out when reading them because I could feel her energy coming through the words. I even had to look up the meaning of one expression because I wasn't sure whether I was seeing things or she had gone off into another language: oy vey. Have you heard of this expression? I certainly hadn't - until today, that is. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the interview.
Norma: What does being an author mean to you?
Diane: It means experiencing the joy of a gift I feel God has given me. It recently sunk into my thick skull that writing truly is an art. While a painter's brushstrokes blend colors together to create a landscape or portrait, an author strings together words in a unique pattern to tell a story. It's such a thrill to see those stories come to life.
Norma: When did you first realize that you wanted to write and publish a book? How old/young were you at the time?
Diane: I've written for as long as I can remember. My first attempt was a pathetic excuse for a love story about my then pre-teen crush on a certain "boy in the band" (which explains a lot considering my recent release, Blue Christmas.) But it wasn't until fifteen or sixteen years ago that I decided to try my hand at serious writing. I attended several writers' conferences and started studying the business of writing.
Norma: From its inception, how long did it take you to write and publish your first book?
Diane: That's hard to say. I dabbled for years writing my first story, The Runaway Pastor's Wife, mostly because I didn't really know what I was doing. I just wrote. It probably took me about ten years total, but that was spotty writing, not a concentrated effort. It took another six years before it got published. Long story short, I ended up self-publishing that book and fell head over heels in love with the process! In the meantime, I'd had two other non-fiction books published by a small press.
Norma: Was the experience of publishing your first book mostly rewarding or filled with varying levels of frustration?
Diane: Oh my yes, soooo many levels of frustration. From a boat load of rejections over the years to near-misses with editors who wanted to strip some of the essential story lines. The rewards started rolling in when I published it myself. It's been such a blast watching the sales soar and to see the book cover show up at the top of several Amazon best-selling lists (primarily Kindle versions). Granted, those are in specific categories like "Christian fiction" - but I don't have to bump Grisham off a list to be happy!
Norma: Are you currently writing another book which you hope to publish at some point? If so, we'd love to hear more about it.
Diane: I've also released two other fiction titles this year - Blue Christmas and Tea with Emma. I'm currently finishing the second book in the Teacup Novellas, which I hope to release in January. Then I have two more full-length novels I'm chomping at the bit to start writing after the first of the year.
Norma: If you have published multiple titles, which book is your favourite and why? If you can't decide on one favourite, that's OK; break the rules and give us two or three.
Diane: The Runaway Pastor's Wife will always hold a special place in my heart. It was my "therapy" project following a particularly difficult time in my life. Such an easy story to write as I'd been a pastor's wife for so many years. A lot of emotion went into that one - but I also loved writing Blue Christmas. On my website, there's a detailed backstory about how that book came to be. It started as a story I wrote for my daughter one Christmas. SUCH a fun experience, that one.
Norma: Who has been a major source of inspiration for you as a writer/author?
Diane: My husband. He has believed in my writing much more than I ever did, for as long as I can remember. Ken has the gift of encouragement and what a blessing that's been to me. I honestly don't think I'd be published if he hadn't kept after me to stay on task.
Norma: What is your ultimate dream, in terms of being a writer/author?
Diane: To keep writing the stories God keeps placing in my heart. Part of the thrill of self-publishing is the extreme freedom it gives me to get my stories to readers. No more gatekeepers and, let's face it: if my books are selling - if they're showing up on bestseller lists - and if my readers love what they read, what else matters? I don't need a major house's imprint or logo on the spine of my book to be a "success." I wish more authors understood that!
Norma: What is one of your favourite quotes? It can be from a book you wrote or something you heard throughout your life. If you did not write it, please cite the source, if possible.
Diane: That's an easy one for me. It's on a plaque that hangs over my desk. "Never never never give up" by Winston Churchill. Think about it. What if I'd taken those early rejections to heart and believed I wasn't good enough to share my stories? It breaks my heart just to think about the blessings I would have missed.
Norma: Tell us a little about your life. What does an average day look like?
Oy vey. (Oh my!) No two days are the same. I'm desperately trying to be more disciplined and treat this as a "real job" with specific hours to write/edit. But like a lot of other authors, I write best when the creative juices start to flow and that's not always on a timed schedule. As we speak, I've been at a friend's cottage for three days, writing almost around the clock. Now that's heaven on earth!
Norma: What are three of your favourite hobbies?
Diane: Reading, reading, and reading.
Norma's closing thoughts:
Diane, it has been a pleasure catching up with you. I realize you are busy and I certainly appreciate the time you took to respond to my questions. I look forwward to reading more of your work in the near future.