Welcome to Wahoo Wednesday!
Today we're sitting down for a fascinating Interview with guest author Katy Pistole (Pssst ... there's a giveaway involved, too. Details below.)
Hi, Katy, thanks for being willing to spend some time here on Whispers in Purple. So, tell me . . . How long have you been writing?
I began writing when I was three years old. The name of my first novel was The Turtle and it was about … a turtle. I painstakingly cut out the construction paper cover and my mother stapled the binding. I still have that little book, some 53 years later. It reminds me that I have always loved words. My mother still helps me with my books. She is nearly 80 years old and is my best editor.
What a cute story! How do you go about finding names for your characters?
The names for my characters are often given to me by Jesus. In my most recent novel, Jubilee The Love Story, the name of the horse (Jubilee) was delivered before I recognized the significance. It was not until I read the story through the first time that I realized that the horse leads my hero (Clay) to his father’s house 49 years after Clay’s last visit. I re-read Leviticus 25: 10-12 with pounding heart and teary eyes.
"You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family. You shall have the fiftieth year as a jubilee; you shall not sow, nor reap its aftergrowth, nor gather in from its untrimmed vines. For it is a jubilee; it shall be holy to you. You shall eat its crops out of the field." [NASB)]
That's quite an interesting parallel, Katy. I like the symbolism.
Moving on ... besides writing, what other hobbies do you enjoy?
I love horses. I jokingly say that I have loved horses since I could see. I love the way Jesus shows me His heart for me through my horses. When I was 12 years old, my parents bought me my first horse. Black Jack was everything I had ever dreamed of. Around the same time my folks purchased Black Jack, they also received Jesus as their Lord and Savior. They wanted me to join them in their faith but I felt no need for Jesus. I had a horse! What else did I need?
Black Jack contracted a fatal illness and was dying. Now I had a need. My mother suggested a prayer meeting and I had no other option. I agreed. The next morning I raced to the barn to find my horse healthy and eating hay. The veterinarian had no explanation. But my little girl heart knew at that moment. I knew that Jesus is real. Jesus is powerful and good. He has remained faithful to me my whole life, even when I was not aware of His goodness or presence.
Today horses continue to serve me as a modern-day Good Shepherd/sheep metaphor. I incorporate rescued horses in my ministry. One of the questions I love to ask my students is, “if I have rescued Scooter, how rescued is he? If Jesus has rescued you, how rescued are you?” This question is a great way to begin a discussion about the very real pain and suffering this life often brings. Where is God in all of my pain? This is a question that must be grappled with.
AGREED! Switching focus again ... What is your typical writing day like?
I am an early riser so when I am working on a writing project, I am often up by 4:00. I love the quiet sunrise, and when I home-schooled my children, the early mornings were often my only time alone. I finished Jubilee last summer and logged over 1000 hours in 14-weeks. I was very grateful for the summer and wanted to make the most of it. When deadlines loom large I am up early, writing until around 10:00 AM. Then I run to the barn to feed the six ministry horses. I race back to the house to work until lunchtime. After lunch, I release my ancient pony (Dreamsicle is about 45 years old) from his stall because it takes him about 4 hours to eat all of his feed. Then I am back at my desk until 4:00 when I try to rush through barn chores and evening feed time. I will eat a bowl of salad for dinner and crash by 8:00 PM. When I have a book in me I spend every second I can on it. I am very grateful for the time to focus on writing projects.
All right, now let's talk about your book.
Retired horseman, Clay Westin, has suffered terrible loss and turned his back on God. His only connection to life is his son's horse, Jubilee who has been lost on Clay's vast drought-stricken ranch for the past year. Can Clay find Jube before it's too late? Will Clay find peace in the process?
Is there a theme verse that holds this story together?
The theme of Jubilee, The Love Story is Romans 8:28
"And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." (NASB)
As a Bible teacher and pastoral counselor, I often speak with folks who are in great pain and angry with God. This verse, in particular, sounds trite and irrelevant and they are often sick of hearing it. I LOVE helping them see the Heart of The Shepherd. I love helping them find healing in His Words. I love walking with them into wholeness.
What can we expect to see from Katy Pistole in the future?
My next book is called Having Joy. It is the story of a woman who has struggled with abuse and pain her whole life. Everyone, from her mother to her ex-husbands, has attempted to make themselves whole through her. She finally has a personal encounter with Jesus who helps her make sense of what it means to belong to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.