Tuesday, 04 October 2022

I Interviews

Interview: Susan Spess

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Sometimes it takes the loss of everything to gain the joys God has in store.


When Pastor Eli's wife and brother ran away together, he was the one who lost—his family, his church, and his faith. All he has left are his four-year-old daughter and a little church in the world's smallest town. But he still has his speaking talent, and with it, he's sure he can build up their numbers so he can catch the attention of another mega-church. He needs to be back in the big time, where he belongs.


Glory Matthews voted against hiring the new minister. He's single and handsome and more charismatic than any man has a right to be. He'll draw every man-hunting woman around. And because he's used to the big time, he won't stay long . But when Eli is with his daughter, he's down-to-earth, loving and everything she could want, and Glory's heart melts like a forgotten candle burning in the night. If it's one thing Eli Daniels doesn't need, it's Glory Matthews. She's head-strong, pretty, faithful and doesn't seem to be fazed by his "celebrity." But Glory is also everything he could ever want, and somehow this Jordan Valley miss, just might help him find his faith and mend his heart.




 How did you come up with your title?
Jordan Valley is the historic name of the area where I live. After I tried a name like Skinner, Oklahoma, and Mayfield, Oklahoma, and got a thumbs down from my critique partners, I asked them about Jordan Valley. They all liked it.
The MISS is because Glory might have missed out on life.


Tell us about your hero and heroine. What makes them likeable?
Glory is in her thirties, and the people in Jordan Valley think she's missed her chance to marry. She loves children and thinks her best gift is building children up, so she does!
Eli was a minister at the largest church in Texas, but when his wife and brother are killed together in a car wreck, he is fired because the powers that be think they were having an affair. He takes a job in the smallest town in the world in order to support his daughter and find his way back to the limelight.


How much of the book is based in real life?
The setting is loosely based on my hometown of Cleveland, Oklahoma, and a couple of older women who lived here but are now deceased. Other than that, it's just my imagination working.


What makes this book special to you?
The young people in the book just stole my heart. The children remind me of my younger siblings when we were kids. I'm the oldest of 6, and my childhood was the stuff dreams are made of.


Are any events in your book based in real life?
Twenty nine years ago, my mother, sister, paternal grandmother, paternal aunt, and two nieces were hit by a drunk driver one morning on their way to Tulsa, and they all died except my sister. The wreck in the book comes from that tragedy


What makes this a "must read" and why?
Getting to know about the internal workings of a church, It also relates the fun of a daycare center, where the adults are trying to help a little girl who doesn't speak. When finding out why Brandi doesn't talk and how she gets helped is a surprise.


What is your next project?
I have a couple more books finished in this series. They need to see the light of day!


How can readers connect with you?

I'm on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, where my name is Susan Spess Shay.  I'd love to hear from my readers!


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