Her 2010 release Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico, won the 2011 Will Rogers Medallion Award for excellence in publishing Western Fiction. Maggie’s Journey appeared on a reviewers Top Ten Books of 2011 list. It also won the
2012 Selah award for Historical Novel. Mary’s Blessing released in May 2012 and was included in Book Review Sisters list of top five reads in 2012. Catherine’s Pursuit is releasing in February 2013.
The following is a January 2013 interview with Lena.
I'm a wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. All my children and grandchildren live close to me, except a grandson who is in the US Army. I live in Texas with my wonderful husband of over 48 years. And I write novels.
2. How did you become a novelist, and did you always want to write?
I grew up in a family where everyone wrote, not for publication, just wrote. I didn't know everyone didn't write until I was almost an adult. I actually have a BA, and most of a Master's degree in Drama. I actually didn't begin writing professionally until 1984 when God used the events of one week in May to tell me to become a professional writer. You can read the testimony about that on the About Me page of my website: www.lenanelsondooley.com
3. What do you think is significant about Christian fiction?
I love to read and can get lost in an interesting story. I believe many people are that way. An author can use Christian fiction to depict how a person's daily life can be impacted by the presence of God. That's what I try to show without being preachy in any way.
4. How do you hope your readers react to the stories you write?
Every author hopes that readers will like their stories. But I've learned over the years that you can't please everyone all the time. I just hope that my books will reach the people who can be most affected in a positive way with the stories.
I love to hear from readers, whose lives have changed because of a story of mine they read. And they do contact me. Sometimes I even cry when I read how a story made a dynamic difference.
6. How has being a novelist impacted your relationship with Christ?
I have loved the Lord for a long time. He is woven so deeply into my life that the relationship spills over into the stories I write. I believe that is what true Christian fiction is all about.
7. Other than writing great novels, what other goals do you have for your life?
I want to bless the Lord with my life. I cannot bless Him even a small part of the amount he blesses me, but I want to. It's important to me to keep my marriage alive and vital. Being a good mother, grandmother, friend--all of these are important as well.
8. What do you like to do in your spare time?
Of course, I love to read. James and I love to watch historical movies and Christian movies. We like to go out to eat occasionally, and spending time with our family is essential. Spending time with friends is important, too. I like to travel, but I don't do it as much as I used to.
9. What can you tell us about your latest novels?
My latest series is McKenna's Daughters. Identical triplets born on one of the last wagon trains on the Oregon Trail. Their mother dies giving birth, and they are separated. They don't find out they have sisters until near their 18th birthday. Each book is one of the sisters' story. Maggie's Journey released in 2011 and won the 2012 Selah Award for Historical Novel. It also appeared on a reviewers list of Top Ten Books in 2011. Mary's Blessing released in 2012 and appeared on Book Review Sisters blog's list of Top Five Reads in 2012. I'll be entering it in contests this spring. Catherine's Pursuit will release February 5th this year.
10. What stories can your fans expect from you in the days ahead?
My next series is Love's Road Home. We have a major publisher interested in the series right now.
11. What would you like to say to your fans in New Zealand, and others worldwide?
One of the reasons I love the Internet is the ability to connect with readers around the world. And I've been interested a long time in both New Zealand and Australia. So I'd love to hear from all of you who read my books.
12. Do you have any parting words?
Thank you for allowing me to appear on your wonderful blog. I hope to make lots of new friends here.
Buy Lena's Books at The Book Depository
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