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Who knows who you may inspire!

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Columbus’ notes in a copy of Marco Polo’s book (click pic to enlarge).

It’s really amazing how things work out in history.

As I was doing research for my book about Marco Polo, I learned that Columbus read Polo’s book and it may have spurred him on to look for the far east himself.

Is that cool or what?

What if Marco Polo had never written about his travels? (Okay, so he didn’t actually write it himself, he had a ghost writer, Rustichello, from Pisa.)

What do you think Columbus was thinking when he read about such travels?

I don’t know, of course, and we can only speculate. But it reinforces why writing history is important to me. We must pass on these stories so they won’t be forgotten. Who knows who or what they may inspire!

One of my favorite resources for writing history is a book entitled, Annals of the World by John Usher. It’s a $50.00 book in hardback (that’s the copy I have) but right now it’s on sale on kindle for only $9.99! A STEAL if you want to write about ancient history and need to know what was going on and when. It takes you all the way through Biblical history using scriptures. It’s not an in-depth book, but more of a timeline type of book. I absolutely love my copy.

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Click to Tweet: We must pass on these stories so they won’t be forgotten. Who knows who or what they may inspire!

What are some of your favorite reference books?

Introducing pre-published author, Tom Threadgill!

I’m extremely excited to introduce you to one of the best writers I know: Tom Threadgill.

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When I first read Tom’s work, I was blown away by his talent. When you read his book, you’ll see why. His writing is seamless and spell-binding. Usually when I read a break-out author’s first work, I find myself editing. When I read Tom’s, I got caught up in the story. It gave me the creeps. And that’s a good thing, because he writes creepy Christian fiction! I see big things in this man’s future!

If you want to be among the first to get to know the next John Grisham/Dean Koontz/Ted Dekker, here’s your chance!

Take it away Tom!

Karla:  Tell us a little about yourself.

Tom: I worked for a large corporation and moved all over the southeastern U.S. for almost thirty years before retiring to a small rural community in west Tennessee. My wife and dog tolerate me as much as possible, though I sometimes catch them conspiring. We have two sons, two beautiful daughters-in-law, three grandsons, and were recently blessed by the birth of our first granddaughter!

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Karla: How precious! Nothing like a new baby granddaughter. I have four of them! We’re blessed, aren’t we? It’s hard to tear yourself away! But back to writing. As a new author, it’s important to develop a solid online presence. Where can we find you online?

Tom: The best place to start is on my website, aptly named tomthreadgill.com. I’m also on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.

Karla: When you’re not cuddling your grandchildren, where do you write?

Tom: Usually I’m in a leather recliner in the living room with a laptop. I’m easily distracted so I use earphones to play music and coffitivity.com. My co-writer/dog is usually somewhere nearby offering advice.

Karla: Sounds like my “office,” too. What is your process? (Spreadsheets, Snowflake, Lists/Outlines, Seat of the pants?)

Tom: Definitely a seat-of-the-pantser, although I prefer the term “organic writer.” I’m pretty much making it up as I go! I started with the vaguest of notions about the story, and fleshed it out as I went. The downside is that at several points in the story my characters surprised me and I had to rework some of my previous work.

Karla: I know how that is. I do the same. Tell us about your book.

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Tom: Hollow Target is a suspense/thriller novel about FBI agent Jacob Thomas as he pursues a serial killer. The murderer is using the Old Testament as his instruction manual, and Jacob is “spiritually scarred” due to an event in his past. It’s written so that the reader sees the world through each of their eyes.

Karla: Why should readers pick it up?

Tom: First of all, it’s Christian fiction. That can mean a lot of things, but for me it means it’s a story of redemption. Secondly, I try to write in a way that shows Christians as real people with struggles, doubts, and problems, but there’s no preaching in the book. Finally, I think it’s a great story with fantastic characters. But I may be a little biased. 🙂

Karla: How did your book come to life?

Tom: That’s a novel in itself! I never set out to write, but decided for my thirtieth wedding anniversary to pen a semi-autobiographical book for my wife. It was epically bad, and I figured I’d better learn something about writing before trying again. Hollow Target actually originated from a writing prompt I saw in a magazine.

Karla: That’s fascinating! My current work in progress actually originated as a short story. I love when that happens. Who is your favorite character in the book and why?

Tom: Tough call. I think the one I have the most fun writing is the serial killer, Ryder (Levi) Talbot. I’m not sure what that says about me though. But I think my favorite is probably Maggie Keeley, Jacob’s partner. She has some quirks that are based on my wife, and I’m a sucker for a strong female character.

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Karla: I love that! How did you name your characters?

Tom: Not well, apparently. They’ve gone through several name changes so far!

Karla: Are the characters based on people you know?

Tom: I use a few mannerisms from different people I know, but nothing too specific. I intentionally stayed away from tying any character to someone I know. Except the serial killer. You know who you are.

Karla: What is your favorite scene in the book?

Tom: I can’t tell you, because it’ll ruin it. I can say that while I was writing it, I kept flashing back to one of my favorite scenes in the original Indiana Jones movie.

Karla: That’s funny. What a lot of people won’t know when reading this book is how naturally funny you are. If they read your blog, they’ll pick up on that. I hope you write a humorous book soon. But tell me, why Christian fiction?

Tom: I don’t want to put anything out that wouldn’t be pleasing to the Lord. If I have any talent in writing, it’s from Him.

Karla: Is there anything else you’d like us to know?

Tom: I’m a big hockey fan (Go Preds!), which oddly enough is pretty rare in a southern farming community. Who knew? My wife and I like to spend most of our vacation time in the Smoky Mountains, and love riding our Harley there. I’ve also started doing a little woodworking as a hobby. So far I still have all ten fingers.

Karla: Another thing I love about you–Harleys and the Smoky Mountains! (These are a big part of my book, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots.)

Tom is modest as well as funny, and is a gifted photographer. Be sure to check out his blog to see his photos, too. I am honored he’s given me permission to use them on my Silent Sunday blog posts. (Click on pics to see them in all their splendor.)

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Tom

Watch for Tom’s book and I’ll keep you posted, too. When it comes out we’ll do another interview. I can hardly wait to see it in print! Write on, Tom! And congratulations on that beautiful granddaughter!

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R is for Rain

Heavy DownpourMy favorite sound in the world is rain. Sprinkle in a tiny bit of thunder, and I’m in moody heaven. Rain helps me think. Rain makes me want to curl up with a blanket and a book and read. Some people listen to Pandora while they work. And I do, too, sometimes. But my favorite go-to sound for drowning out the world is rain.

Fortunately for me, there’s a website where this beautiful sound is available: http://www.rainymood.com/.

You’re welcome.

What’s your favorite sound for getting work done? (Tweet this.)


A to Z blog hop at Patterings.