Writing and storytelling came along in elementary school, including rewriting song lyrics. Often, I would rewrite them to God, and my favorite to sing was “You Are the Sunshine of My Life.” I told elaborate tales to my Barbie and Dawn dolls, stuffed animals and imaginary friends. Around my middle and early high school days I was writing poetry and really terrible rock and roll lyrics. No, it’s true, they were horrible! I credit a high school English teacher for getting my head out of emo songs and into creative writing and fiction, and an art teacher who kept my creativity flowing in other areas.
After marrying and the children started to come along, my fiction writing slowed down as I became busy with the joys of being a young mom and studying God’s word more thoroughly. My love of reading, however, never waned and I’ve always enjoyed many genres, including my introduction to Christian fiction. Through those years, my writing was mostly journaling, including short articles and devotions. I have boxes of yellow legal pads filled with my less-than-perfect handwriting (my apologies to my third grade teacher, who attempted to drill the virtues of proper script into my head.)
My introduction to the internet, and blogging, spurred on my writing once again. By that time, we were living in the beauty of the Pocono Mountains. My very first published article was on The Leaky Cauldron, a Harry Potter fan site, titled “Harry Potter and the Great Battle Within The Church”* under my username of PoconoBarb. I am still using a pen name, because, let’s face facts. The maiden name, is as hard to spell as the married name is to pronounce! I decided on the pen name of D.H. Barbara, which is a variation of my name. It’s easy to remember and I thought it was catchy.
My fledgling career as a Christian fiction author started innocently enough. In November of 2008, with a little push from friend and fellow author Chautona Havig, I joined an internet contest called National Novel Writing Month, or, NaNoWriMo* as those addicted refer to it. The challenge is to complete a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. No editing, just raw, really raw, plotline. It was fun and I was hooked. My first attempt was a fanfiction offering set in one of my favorite genres, Anne McCaffrey’s world of PERN. My first published novel, Seasons of a Life, started as a NaNo story in 2009.
My faith is vital to me, and my writing. I write Christian fiction/romance because, frankly, I can’t help myself. I have tried to write without the faith element and it’s next to impossible for me. This is one reason I chose to independently publish. I want my story to reflect faith and honest struggles. I enjoy having the final say on content and cover creating.
The plots appear in my mind as if I’m watching a full length feature movie. At times, it’s hard for my fingers to keep up with my brain. I’ve moved from my beloved yellow legal pads and Crystal Bic pens to a keyboard, but the process is the same. I start at the beginning, find a “soundtrack,” and start typing! In the back of my books you’ll find a section titled The Song Behind The Story. Many times, I find a worship or praise song that fits the story perfectly and that becomes the main track I listen to while writing.
If I’m not writing something, I’m reading a wide variety of fiction, nonfiction, theology and apologetics, to name a few. My favorite genres are, by far, science fiction and suspense. Some authors I enjoy are, in no particular order, Susan Sleeman, Anne McCaffrey, C.S. Lewis, Max Lucado, John Jakes, Stephen King, Robin Lee Hatcher, Chautona Havig, Frank Peretti, Randy Alcorn, Dr. Richard Mabry, Tess Gerrison, J.K. Rowling, Peter Tremayne, Elis Peters, oh, the list could go on and on and on! I have the immense pleasure of interacting with some of them online via social media. Currently, I’m working on the fourth novel in my Lakeville series. Lakeville is a fictional town in the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania. I do have other manuscripts that I would like to get into print, and Lord willing, they will be.
I invite you to find me on Facebook, Twitter and Pintrest, as well as my blog. On my webpage you’ll find samples of my work. It’s been fun “virtually” visiting with you all! Let me know if you stop by!
- @dhbarbara1 (Twitter)
God is the Greatest Author, and His Book is one everyone needs to read. If you need a copy, please email me and you will receive one. email@example.com