Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Guest Blog with Elizabeth Goddard

Here's Elizabeth!

I’m thrilled to be here with you today. Oh, and please just call me Beth. I’m a pastor’s wife and mother to four children whom I home school. Over the years I’ve met a lot of home schooling mothers who write novels. I think it’s because while reading books and novels to our children, we think about how much we’d love to write our own novel one day. I know that’s part of what it was for me. I love books and there is never enough bookshelf space for them even though I’ve shared plenty, only keeping my favorite ones.
I remember reading The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck in the fifth grade and 2001: A Space Odyssey. That’s quite a mix, I know. Then in my early twenties I got hooked on Boede Thoene’s historical WWII novels and from that point on I was hooked on Christian fiction. I’ve always loved to write so at some point, God began to kindle in me the desire to write Christian fiction—so much so that it’s became a dream. But it’s taken many years of hard work for me to achieve this dream.
In some ways, Andi Nielsen is like me—she works hard on whatever is set in front of her. In her case, she believes life has delivered her some blows for which she blames God and she has to learn what it means to be content—something I learned, thankfully, long ago. This is a recurring theme in my books—there’s really nothing that can make you happy, nothing that brings contentment. You have to find contentment in God.
As for the idea for Disarming Andi, it took me a long time to cultivate the ability to create story ideas, to learn to observe things around me. Now, it’s difficult to shut that off—I see story ideas everywhere I look and usually, the ideas stem from settings. When I saw a cranberry farm on a brief news story, I knew I wanted to write a story set on a cranberry farm—Seasons of Love. The same is true of Disarming Andi. I loved the idea of building an underground home in a decommissioned missile site and knew I had to use this as a story setting.
Instead of the usual handsome hero, I wanted my hero to be a computer geek—hence, Vance Young was born. He’s a bit of a quirky character and loves astronomy, which works great for the story because he’s stuck in an underground home and can’t look at the stars—there are no windows. Before I started writing Disarming Andi, I became intrigued with the Louie Giglio DVD ‘How Great Is Our God.’ If you haven’t seen it, you really should. Vance loves to look at the stars because it reminds him how big God is, and puts him in his place, in a manner of speaking.
So, it was only natural to use this verse, ‘When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; what is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that You care for him? Psalm 8:3-4’ for the key verse of the book.
And the really fun part? Like me, Vance doesn’t believe in coincidence—life is a tapestry that is woven by the Master-weaver. So, when things happen in Vance’s life, he knows they happen for a reason. This plays into the story in a big way. If you read Disarming Andi, I hope you love the characters as much as I do, and that you come away knowing God in a deeper way and maybe you’ll look at the stars just a little bit differently, too.

Question of the day: If you're reading this blog, you're obviously a little computer savvy, but how would you describe yourself? Are you computer literate? Are a computer geek?


  1. Wonderful post, Beth. So neat to learn what inspired your stories. I'm sure writing about Vance, a computer geek, was a lot of fun for you. What I've learned on the computer has been through trial and error. Thank goodness I've been able to turn to a few computer geeks when needed. LOL. Blessings on your new book release!

  2. Like Deborah, the computer skills I've acquired have been mostly through trial and error, though I do have some computer savvy folks to call up on from time to time. :)

  3. I've mostly learned what I know through trial and error, too. When I started editing for Barbour I actually printed out the first couple of books and then entered the changes on the computer. Now using track changes seems the simple way to do things. My writing partner, Diane, is the computer savvy one, so I have her to lean on when I don't know what I'm doing. Great blog, Beth!

  4. I have a hubby and two computer literate sons, so if I stray into unknown territory, there's always someone to help me out.

  5. I consider myself computer literate. I have a love hate relationship with my computer as a lot of people do. Sometimes I'd like to throw it out the window. But I have learned to be thankful that I don't have to hand write my MS! And that spell check is a gift from God.
    Blessings, and great post Beth.