I knew I wanted to become a writer in elementary school. In fact, I wrote my first book, a whodunit mystery story, as a sixth grader. I didn’t receive any encouragement, and the dream slipped through my fingers.
About ten years ago, I wrote a devotion about one of church choir songs and shared it with the choir. Several people made encouraging remarks afterward, but one person’s comments stood out. This friend asked if I’d ever considered writing and encouraged me to get the devotion published.
Wondering if the old dream revived after all these years, I sent it to one publisher. I never heard back and safely tucked the dream away again. Then after sharing a few more devotions, I received more encouragement to dust off the old dream and try again.
I first started writing fiction after taking a couple of college writing classes and correspondence courses. The assignments sparked ideas. Without the assignments, I couldn’t decide what to write about in those early days. Then I discovered writer conferences where a few days of intensive teaching takes place. I met many writers hoping to show their novels to agents and editors.
After the first conference, I began writing novels — the occupation I most wanted to do all my life. Writing sparked more ideas. My preferred genre is historical romance novels. This genre requires lots of research. To my surprise, the research sparks more ideas and shows the everyday lives of people who lived long ago. Research adds depth to the story. I can see the scene in my imagination as I write.
So exploring historic events and places continue to spark creativity and captivate my imagination.
Sandra Merville Hart loves to find unusual facts in her historical research to use in her stories. She and her husband enjoy traveling to many of the sites in her books to explore the history. She is a contributor to two books releasing in Spring, 2015: Jesus Encounters and Spoken Moments. She serves as Assistant Editor for DevoKids.com and has written for several publications and websites including The Secret Place, Harpstring, Splickety Magazine, Pockets Magazine, Common Ground, Afictionado, and ChristianDevotions.us. In 2014 she released an inspirational Civil War novella, A Stranger On My Land, published by Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas.