Books by Others ~ An Interview with Poppy Smith

Books by Others ~ An Interview with Poppy Smith

Poppy

I’ve had the privilege of getting to know Poppy and her work over the past few months. She is a delight! Reading her books means laughing (often out loud), and being challenged on a heart level about faith and the things believing women face. Poppy is an international speaker and it’s her desire to encourage Christian women to thrive. Thank you for stopping by the blog today, Poppy!

And. . .Poppy is the featured author on the newsletter tomorrow – sign up today using the form on the right side of this page and read an excerpt from her book I’m Too Young to Be This Old – a funny, inspiring book about this thing we call mid-life. It’s my favorite Poppy Smith Book!

Q. How did your writing journey begin?

A.  I am not one of those women who always longed to write.  In fact, it never occurred to me until three writers who heard me teaching asked why I didn’t write what I was presenting.  As a former Bible Study Fellowship Lecturer, teaching is my love.  It was only when a pastor said, “What you write will reach far more people than speaking,” that I began to weigh it seriously.

But I still wasn’t convinced I could either write or get published.  Reading an article on the Parable of the Talents one night, God began to deal with my attitude.  What was behind my reluctance to explore if this was part of His plan for me?  Fear, laziness, indifference or what?  Convicted, I told God I would move forward, do my best, and leave the results to Him.  For me, writing books is an act of obedience because I love the Lord and I’m committed to do whatever He leads me into.

Q. What were your early steps toward publishing?

A. My first steps included attending a Christian writer’s conference, connecting with a free-lance book editor, and beginning to write.  Meeting with my book editor/teacher after writing each chapter gave me the one-on-one training I desperately needed.  After finishing three chapters and polishing my book proposal I submitted the manuscript to three publishers.  Two quickly declined.  My topic wasn’t of interest to them.   The other didn’t reply for three months.

Finally, a postcard arrived saying they were considering my book.  Then silence.  I waited four more months.   When I finally called the editor, he told me they were going to consider it the following week, but I didn’t believe him!  One week later, they called and offered me a contract.

Q. What happened after this in your writing journey?

A. I was a complete unknown with no writing experience, but my book, I’m Too Young to be This Old: Surviving and Thriving in the Muddled, Middle Years” was published by Bethany House.  It sold almost 150,000 copies, and has just been republished by Harvest House with a bright new cover.  Because of the early sales figures, Bethany House gave me contracts for two more books.  After I finished my third book, however, I vowed never to write again! And I didn’t write again for ten years.

Q.  What happened that caused you to stop writing and choose to focus on your speaking ministry?

A. I had an unfortunate experience while writing my third book that triggered some deep issues I wasn’t even aware of at that time.  I ended up struggling emotionally with a lot of negative feelings towards myself and my writing. I speak on the power of words, including our self-talk, because I’ve experienced it.  I discovered that emotional pain is often triggered by early childhood experiences. But we can heal and grow no matter how painful those experiences were by refusing to allow those past hurts the power to limit or destroy our future.

Q. Your fourth book , Why Can’t He Be More Like Me? was released last year by Harvest House and won the AWSA Golden Scroll Award for best non-fiction in 2012. What brought you back to writing?

During my ten year hiatus from working on another book, I went to seminary and graduated with a Masters in Spiritual Formation and Direction.  We were required to have a monthly meeting with a Spiritual Director and I found this wonderfully healing. I came out of seminary with a deep acceptance of who I am and an inner peace that has enabled me to reject the negative self-talk that had overwhelmed me ten years before.

I also joined a writer’s critique group composed of experienced, published authors. One of them became an agent. She then represented me to Harvest House who gave me a contract.

Q. As we close this interview, tell us a little about the passion that drove you to write this book about understanding yourself and your husband.

A. I am saddened by the divorce rate among Christians and yet I understand how a marriage can come apart because of differences between each spouse.   My passion is to help women grow spiritually and personally by recognizing their husband isn’t their clone, didn’t come from the same home, probably has a different personality and way of processing information, handling conflict and communicating. I want my book to give hope to women that change is possible when we let God change us.

~Poppy Smith

BIO:  Poppy Smith’s passion is to inspire and encourage women toward spiritual and emotional health through her ministry as a retreat speaker, writer, and spiritual director. To learn more about her books and speaking topics, visit www.poppysmith.com . Follow her blog: www.poppysmith.com/blog

I’ve read and enjoyed all of the following books authored by Poppy. To purchase your own copies, click on the book covers.

Until Next Time,

Joy

About Joy DeKok

Joy DeKok is a multipublished author. She not only enjoys sharing her writing, but also the writing of friends who write and authors whose writing she enjoys.

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