Friday, February 15, 2008

Book Highlight: Meet Sheila Davidson author of Hear Heaven

Welcome Sheila Davidson. Enjoy this up close look at the author and her writing. Sheila is a member of The Word Guild (me too!) and has agreed to share some interesting insights she has about writing, fiction, and why it matters.

Title and genre of your novel: Hear Heaven is an inspirational romance set in medieval times and came out in 2005.

Why you write in this genre: I’m a sucker for books with a love story in them. In fact, most of the fiction I read has an element of romance, and I’ve been known to say, “If there’s no romance, what’s the point of reading it?” I also like castles and heroes and chivalry, so the setting of my novels was an easyfit.

Synopsis: Only once in his lifetime did Isgoré Armaddi abandon his God. And it nearly cost him everything. Hear Heaven is a novel set in the 12th century. As a young man Isgoré Armaddi inherits Braydon Manor and Village and the guardianship of his brother, Ardon. When Ardon turns five Isgoré hires a tutor for him, the beautiful and evil Kora Rae Doxler. As Braydon’s landlord falls beneath her spell the manor suffers dark days indeed. Only a gift of God can deliver Isgoré and his home from sure disaster.
Years later, Isgoré becomes guardian to Ardon’s daughter, Stella and when she requires a tutor he is flooded by the pain and fear he carries from his experience with Kora. He hires Raymore Leotte but before he meets her, she is attacked and falls prey to a curse that leaves her in a coma-like state when attended, awake only when alone or when her caregiver is asleep. Guilt-ridden that such a fate should befall someone under his care, Isgoré tends Raymore’s wound and prays for her. As he does so, his heart is drawn to the young woman.
Raymore longs to marry someone her own age and has come to Braydon in part to escape a marriage proposal from a much older man. As the days of the curse unfold she develops feelings for Isgoré but when she sees him as he sleeps, she is dismayed to find that he is at least twice her age.
Once Raymore awakens and settles into life at Braydon she is brokenhearted that Isgoré avoids her, even as her own feelings are unclear.
God will have to take action if the barriers between Isgoré and his love, Raymore, are ever to be dismantled.

Why you wrote the novel: I started writing Hear Heaven because I had a dream with two elements of the story in it, and, as is my habit, I sat down at the computer to record the dream. From there I kept writing and in about three months’ time the story had reached 80,000 words – a novel

A significant moment for you as you were writing the book (either personally or professionally): The writing of Hear Heaven was just plain fun. I enjoyed the story, the characters and the process and had no idea I was writing a book. It took awhile before I braved showing it to friends. Their positive responses and encouragement prompted me to seek publication. And of course the ultimate thrill was holding a printed copy in my hands. I think God wanted me to have this experience and it has certainly been a gift to me.
Since then the writing continues, with two more novels completed and two more installments (volumes 4 and 5) begun. This is all such a thrill and so unexpected.
Another thing that happened is that God ‘resurrected’ something from my past. It had been years since I had taken up pen and ink to draw, and as Hear Heaven was going to press I had the idea to try drawing again. As a result there are two of my own illustrations in each of the three published novels. And I have come to realize that God does not let anything go to waste.

Why your Fiction Matters: Hear Heaven is just a story, an imaginary place peopled by fictitious characters. Yet my portrayal of God mirrors my experience of Him, that He is ‘the one true God’. If others are helped to see God in this way then that makes the writing and the reading worthwhile.
Fiction matters because we love stories that penetrate our minds and hearts in ways that teaching of facts cannot. A personal example for me is years ago when I read Frank Peretti's books This Present Darkness and Piercing the Darkness. He said the works were purely fictional, and not necessarily theologically sound, but they changed the way I pray.

A list of other books you have written or that will be coming out soon:
The sequel, Heaven’s Tears, was published in 2006, and the third in the series, Heaven Knows, will be coming in the spring of 2008.
Links to your books site: My website address is: website:
and the book(s) may be purchased through that site.

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