The Story Behind My Blog's Title

The Story Behind My Blog's Title
Why is my blog named "My Father's Oldsmobile"? Click on the car and find out.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Author Interview: Tina Pinson

I have another great author visiting today by the name of Tina Pinson. Tina is, like me, an Inspy writer. Today she's here to tell us about her new release, In the Manor of the Ghost. I've had the privilege of reading this book and can honestly say that you don't want to miss it. I never knew who was behind everything until the very end. There's a review in the blog post prior to this interview that you might want to check out.

Tina, would you please tell us a little about yourself?

I was an Air Force brat and a navy widow. Meaning of course, my father was in the Air Force and my husband served in the Navy. I lived in Germany and Turkey and moved to several different states. Now I reside in Western Colorado--God's Country-- with my high school sweetheart, Danny. We've been together for 34+ years, married to for over 30 years. I am mother to three grown sons. I have two lovely daughter-in-laws and four grandchildren, with another one due by the end of the year.

Congratulations! When did you first become interested in writing?

I started writing in elementary school. I actually wrote my first novel then. I continued to write, working on short stories, poetry, songs and some longer stories. I started another novel in Junior High called, Just In Time for the Rain. It took place in Turkey where we lived at the time. I got involved in journalism, enjoyed it but found fiction was still my favorite. When my children were born, I decided to cut back and not push as hard getting the stories done. I wondered if that was the right decision and decided with my husband in the Navy and gone a lot and three boys, I couldn't wrap my head around a story and give it the necessary attention. Once the boys were in school, I picked it up with a bit more fervency. I sat down and wrote a 900 page novel in a few months time, which promptly got deleted when my computer fried on me. Thank heaven I made a hard copy and was able to plug it all in again.

Yikes! That's like a writer's worst nightmare. Can you tell us a little about the ups and downs on your journey to publication?

Sadly I think there was a time I spent looking at the downs and not recognizing an up for what it really was. I'd been told I was good writer, and had great characters. But I was also told I needed to learn the rules of writing. And my characters were written too well. What did that mean? I've been told a lot of things over the years, and tried to keep plugging away. I got discouraged and decided to publish my own novels. Which didn't go over so great, but it taught me some about writing.

Vickie McDonough reviewed my books and while she liked the stories, she told me about the new rules of writing. She introduced to me ACFW and asked me to join a critique group. In ACFW I became a sponge, soaking up knowledge from the courses they provide. I learned about rules, like POV, GMC, among other things. I entered a book in the Genesis Contest and went to the ACFW Convention. When I placed third in the overall of the contest, and Joyce from Hartline Literary Agency approached me to be my agent, I believed I was on my way to publication. Five years later and I still wasn't published. I continued to write, but I questioned why. What if I never became published? What if I lost my writing skill, or worse never had it? They say a writer is harder on themselves than anyone else, I was horribly mean, and listened to the voice of failure well. I finally had to give myself the freedom to write and know that I had a talent whether published or not.

Uncertainty is really hard to handle. I asked all those same questions, and wondered if God had given me this desire for a purpose, or was I deluding myself. I have an amazingly talented friend who is going through the same thing. I think pretty much every writer out there can relate.

How do you approach a new project? Do you research and plot before you write? Or do you have a general idea and just go to it and see where it leads?

I am what they call a seat of the pants writer. I get an idea, usually a dream, and I start to write the story and follow where the dream, characters and ideas take me. I do an outline and of course, research. I like delving into the history.

Tell us about your latest release?

In the Manor of the Ghost has romance, a love story and a ghost. I'd like to think it's a pretty good read. But it's important to know that some of the houses we reside in aren't always made of lumber or stones. They are fashioned from our fears and are as thick around us as a wall might be. Some of the Ghosts we face are those fears, real or perceived they haunt us.

While the main scene for In the Manor of the Ghost does take place in a manor, the story is inspirational fiction written with the spiritual aspect in mind. It is my belief that as God is the author and creator of love and romance, some of the most beautiful love stories come out of two people growing together through good times and trials, facing their fears and turning them over to the Lord.

I'm huge into symbolism within a story. I use it a lot too. I picked up on this while reading yours. What inspired you to write this story?

The why behind In the Manor of the Ghost? Hmm… I've given that consideration, we had just traveled to Minnesota and I wanted to work it into a story, but I think where I was at in life pulled the biggest part of the story out of me. Though like Kaitlin, I wondered how I fit, and had lost a loved one, (my father had passed away not long before), I identified more with Devlin in some aspects of the story and his journey to find himself. To believe he had the worth. He invested in everyone else, but didn't think he could find redemption.

Can you give us a little history on the characters, including how you developed them, and what endears them to you?

Devlin is a lawyer, with a unique background. He was adopted by a loving, nurturing family, who loved him. I find his torn spirit and need to fix him endearing. Although it does seem so, he has a quiet accepting spirit. The Manor Devlin lives in, was once a place of joy and safety. It was used as a safe house during the Indian Raids a decade earlier. After losing his wife and daughter, Clayborne Manor has become a dark, sad place with too many haunting memories. But the walls around Devlin's spirit seem to be almost as thick as the Manor's.

Kaitlin lost her husband and daughter in a fire, and went through years of Therapy for her burns. She hopes moving to Minnesota to live with her sister, Constance, will help heal her spirit.
Accepting a contract to marry Devlin, Kaitlin finds herself living in the Clayborne Manor. When she begins to uncover secrets and resurrect ghosts, she questions her choice. Does she have the strength to break down the walls that confine those who reside in the Manor? Does she have the faith to lead them to the one who sets the captive free? I find Kaitlin's resilience, gentle and loving spirit endearing.

I really enjoyed the supporting characters too. Loved them actually! They added so much to the overall story. What do you hope to be able to accomplish through your writing? Any long term goals?

I want to become world renown and get a gazillion stories published. Okay, while being world renown might be nice, let face it, getting a gazillion stories published would take forever. What I really like to do is leave a legacy perhaps. I would like my books, published and unpublished to touch lives for years to come. My themes usually deal with forgiveness, grace and overcoming insurmountable odds for that reason. I want to introduce my readers to a God who is bigger than any troubles, scars or sin my characters may have. He's a God of second chances and a God that carries us sometimes, and others, allows us to walk through valleys while guiding us. To help us grow. Having been a benefactor of that grace, I want people to know and understand the love God has for them. I try not to be too preachy, I hope. I want to show how you get from Point A to Point B with God. It's a process and my characters get to go through it. A process that has been cathartic for me and a truth I hope to relate to others.

Not preachy at all! The faith element was woven perfectly into the story, and I think that even those who don't typically read Christian Fiction would find this story entertaining. Any ideas for future projects?

My book Touched By Mercy is due for release in December 2010, so I'll be working on edits for that. It tells the story of one woman's journey to grace. Samantha Northam comes from a background of physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, having been molested as a child, I identify with Samantha even more than Kaitlin from In the Manor of the Ghost. The story was pretty much my rite of passage. Coming to a point where I believed God could find me lovely. I made it a bit harder on Samantha than myself, but I wanted to show the beauty of God's grace on us, his arms around the brokenhearted. Samantha hadn't done anything wrong, as far as the molestation went, but she spent years believing she had, and spent long years hating and being afraid to love. I went through long years of wondering like Samantha.

I think many of us have areas where life catches us, uses us and beyond no fault of our own, leaves us feeling dirty and unlovable. It literally spits us out. That's the nature of abuse. I wanted people to see that God knows exactly what happened. He hurts to see that his creation could be so cruel, and he loves us and wants to heal the scars. If we'll allow him to, he has gentle hands, strong arms and a loving heart

I am currently working on a Sci-fi time-travel series, with clones, gene mutation, and sinister people trying to get rid of Christ. Counting Tessa is the first installment. Then I plan to get back to two Civil War Era stories I've been working on, Finding Middle C, as story about finding the music of Life and From Hell to Eternity, a story about Andersonville Prison

Very cool! Now it's time for trivia. What's your favorite movie, food, and place to vacation? Also, any other hobbies?

I like a lot of movies, old musicals, comedies, war movies… but I have a couple movies I could watch again and again. Calamity Jane with Doris Day, and Emma ,with Gwenyth Paltrow.
As for food. Give me a good cheesecake any day. I love salt and vinegar chips, and applesauce and cottage cheese too.

My husband and I would love to get to Australia for a visit, someday… it could happen, but for now, we plan to camp some here in Colorado.

As for Hobbies, I like to doodle, write poetry and songs, and love to sing. I like to have a good vegetable garden, and have been known to do some canning.

Other than your book, do you have any recommendations you'd like to pass along?
Well I've been reading our gracious interviewer's book, hey, Shawna, No Other. Pretty good so far.

Why, thank you.

I also like Mary Connealy, Julie Lessman, Colleen Coble, and Maggie Brendan among many others. If the story catches my imagination and curiosity, I stick with it. One of my favorite books growing up was From the Mixed up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler, a story about two kids who runaway and live in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I still love the concept and read the story from time to time to reacquaint myself.

You can find me on the web at:
Visit my website --
Purchase my book at Desert Breeze Bookstore.
Stop at my Blogsite—
Shawna, thank you so much for giving me this opportunity to share my books and myself.
In honor of the release of In the Manor of the Ghost, I am running the contest … Win a Kindle… Catch a Ghost… for the entire month of June 2010. Check out my blog for the particulars.
My whole family is begging to enter this, btw. One daughter wants her own ereader, and the other said if she wins she'll sell it to save up for a car. She also informed me today that in 4 days, 6 months and 1 year she'll be 16. Not sure what hubby and son would do. Neither are big readers, but they still think it would be cool to win. I'm rooting for my daughter who will actually read on it so she'll stop borrowing mine.

Leave a comment today, for a chance to win a copy of Tina's e-book of In the Manor of the Ghost.


  1. HI Tina and Shawna,
    Couldn't resist dropping by to check out your interview. Great job and lots of interesting info.
    And Tina, your goal to share God with your readers is wonderful. I know God will bless you abundantly for it. Mega sales, Ladies.

  2. Tracy Rossi (facebook)June 3, 2010 at 3:59 PM

    The book sounds so interesting. I hope I win Kindle and e-book, it would be my first summer read.

  3. Great interview...
    I love the sound of this book.

  4. what a fantastic interview, ladies! Great peek into the journey of a writer to publication as well as a nice glimpse of the flesh and blood of an author. May you sell those gazillion books, girlie! :)

  5. What a great sounding book! Thanks. I would love to be entered for this book. Thanks.
    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

  6. Hi Tina,
    Your new book sounds great. I'd love to read it.

    I enjoyed the interview. Best of luck to you in all your writing endeavors!

  7. I've got you guys entered, and I definitely recommend Tina's book.

  8. I left a message earlier and it didn't come through, but thank you everyone for coming by. I do hope readers are touched by my story and that it's well received. PLEASE DON'T FORGET TO GET ENTERED IN THE CONTEST FOR THE KINDLES. I WOULDN'T WANT YOU TO MISS OUT ON THE CHANCE.

  9. This is a great interview. I have been following Tina's blog recently and now I know why! She seems like such a diverse writer and I can relate to many of her experiences as a writer.

  10. I enjoyed reading the interview and can't wait to read Tina's works.

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 at gmail dot com


1970 Olds 442


If you're curious about the story behind the name of my blog, click on the car. :)