Today we are happy to interview Valerie Comer. Thank You Valerie for being here today and for agreeing to do this interview.
In looking over your recent books, it’s clear you like farming and romance. That’s an interesting combination. Can you tell us how you arrived at it?
They say to write what you know! I’ve been happily married for [cough] quite a few years now, and have lived on a farm about half my life. My husband and I did the gardening, preserving food, and cooking/baking-from-scratch thing from necessity for many years. Suddenly we are stewards of information the next generation is craving, and it seemed very natural to incorporate the whole local food lifestyle into my fiction. It’s the in thing!
So far, what has been your favorite book that you’ve written and why?
Wow, this is such a difficult question. It’s like asking which of my children is my favorite — there’s just no polite way to answer, so I’ll just say it’s usually the one I’ve just finished, and my least favorite is always the one I’m currently working on!
What’s your new book about?
After a six-book series exploring food culture on a communal farm, it was time to move venues and look at it from a more urban angle. Secrets of Sunbeams is the first in my new Urban Farm Fresh Romance series, a spin-off of my Farm Fresh Romance series.
In Secrets of Sunbeams, we find one animal control officer with her own escapee goat and one solar architect whose report has been eaten. Can romance and urban farming blossom on the same city block?
This one is part of a collection of books. What can you tell us about the collection?
Yes, I’m thrilled to debut Secrets of Sunbeams in the multi-author box set, Whispers of Love! Twelve bestselling authors of Christian contemporary romance have joined together to offer twelve all new romance novels for our readers at the absolutely unbeatable bargain of ninety-nine cents. That’s like eight cents a novel!
Why would we do such a crazy thing? To reach more readers, for sure, but I’ll be honest. Sometimes it is just plain fun to work amid a group of friends to do something really cool. I have great respect for each author in this collection, and am so honored to call them all my friends.
Who would you say has been your biggest writing inspiration? Why?
Hmm, this isn’t an easy question to answer. I think I’ll say fellow Canadian author Janette Oke. While her genre was historical romance rather than contemporary, she really opened many doors for those who came after. Even though her first book was published when she was over 40, she has many dozens of titles out now. What a legacy and inspiration!
Who has been your biggest personal inspiration? Why?
My girls. That includes my daughter, my daughter-in-law, and my three young granddaughters. They are gardeners and real-food-lovers and often give me story ideas.
What is one thing about being an author that people would be surprised about?
When I was a child, it never occurred to me that normal people could write books. Once I finally began writing stories in my forties, I began to realize that my initial perception was correct. Writers really are not normal! But you can’t tell from the outside… usually!
Still, everyday life is the same as yours. I go to work (in front of my computer), do laundry, forget to make dinner, and allow weeds to overtake my garden.
What’s “next” for Valerie Comer? More farming or are we going somewhere else?
I’m excited to have two new series on the go right now. I’m nearly done writing the second Urban Farm Fresh Romance, Butterflies on Breezes, which is centered around a city community garden. I’m also working on a related Christmas series which will begin releasing in the fall. There are many ‘real food’ stories left to tell, and I’m not planning to stop writing them in the foreseeable future.
Where can people find out more about you and your books?
Come visit at http://valeriecomer.com where you can find my books, read my blog, learn more about the local food movement, follow me on social media, and join my email list.
About the Author:
Valerie Comer’s life on a small farm in western Canada provides the seed for stories of contemporary Christian romance. Like many of her characters, Valerie grows much of her own food and is active in the local foods movement as well as her church. She only hopes her imaginary friends enjoy their happily ever afters as much as she does hers, shared with her husband, adult kids, and adorable granddaughters.
Her debut novel, Raspberries and Vinegar: A Farm Fresh Romance, won the 2014 Word Guild Award for best contemporary romance by a Canadian author. She injects experience laced with humor into her tales of farm living in this farm lit series that includes Wild Mint Tea, Sweetened with Honey and Dandelions for Dinner. Valerie also writes fantasy as Valerie R Comer.
Find out where food meets faith and fiction at http://valeriecomer.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter, follow her on Twitter, or like her on Facebook.