Today I welcome author Dani Pettrey
Enter to win an autographed copy of Dani's latest book, Shattered.
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I first heard about Dani at the Bethany House session held at ACFW last year. David Long mentioned in his talk Dani's book, how it took him seconds to recognize her talents.
Well, I couldn't wait to meet her and read her book, Submerged. This is an exciting story, steeped in action and adventure. Now I can't wait to get her second book, Shattered. During my conversation with her I asked how God had led her on her writing journey. This is her awesome answer:
How God Renewed My Love for Story
I have always loved daydreaming and making up stories. I dabbled with creative writing growing up, but set it aside. It wasn’t until a bout with a serious illness that I really felt God stirring me to write. He took something that was extremely difficult, brought me through it, and then blessed me with a tremendous gift—the joy of getting to share stories with others.
The illness started while I was pregnant with my youngest and living far from my family. The doctors kept attributing my symptoms to my pregnancy, but I knew something was wrong. I was shaky, sick and losing weight. My dear mother relocated to be near me. After the birth of my daughter, instead of getting better as the doctors assured me I would, I only got worse. I ended up being hospitalized month as every test imaginable was run. I couldn’t be home with my newborn and toddler—it was devastating. As the weeks droned on with no concrete results, I feared I’d never get to be home with them again.
God used this extremely painful time to bring me into a saving relationship with Him. We had been attending church for a couple years and I had prayed the sinner’s prayer, but quite honestly, I was terrified to give my life over to Christ. The Lord used my illness to show me my great need for Him and even more, that He could be trusted with my very life. I fully accepted Christ into my life, giving myself fully over to Him. After being sick for nearly a year and half, I was finally properly diagnosed with Graves’ disease, thanks to my amazing doctor at Hopkins. Unfortunately, the disease had been progressing so long that my body was on the verge of going into shock. Treatment began immediately and within weeks, I felt like myself again. But God had more in store.
Amazingly, He also used this difficult period to renew my love of story. While recuperating, I read a great deal. Whenever my children napped, I had a book in my hand. As they grew, my love of reading deepened until one day, a number of years later, I felt the call to write deeply engraved on my heart. I wasn’t sure where to start, so I began slowly. I spent a lot of time simply reading novels, seeing how they worked, analyzing why I fell in love with certain characters and not others. I attended writing conferences, joined a writer’s group and devoted regular time to writing. Along the way, God blessed me with an amazing mentor who has greatly shepherded me in the craft and writing life.
I wrote for a number of years, entered contests and applied the feedback I received. Two and a half years ago, I attended the ACFW conference. I approached my editor after his Spotlight Session and he was gracious enough to ask to see the first three chapters. A few weeks later, I got a request for the full. A few weeks after that, he told me they were going to present Submerged for contract. The day I got ‘the call' was amazing. I had received my share of rejections, so getting the ‘go ahead’ on a story I loved so dearly was pure joy.
Here I am, years later, still desperately in love with my Savior, still dependent on His daily grace, and the author of two published novels. God never ceases to amaze.
2 Cor 12:9: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
Isa 41:10: So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Dani Pettrey is a wife, home-schooling mom, and the acclaimed author of the romantic suspense series Alaskan Courage, which includes her bestselling debut novel; Submerged and latest release Shattered. She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves--the thrill of adventure, nail biting suspense, the deepening of her characters' faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland with their two teenage daughters.
Visit her website at www.danipettrey.com
To enter the contest for an autographed copy of Dani Pettrey's book "Shattered", leave a comment and become a follower of this site if you aren't already. Include email address in your comment. U.S. residents only. Winner announced on my facebook page.
Thank you, Dani for Joining us This Weekend!
Reader, how has God deepened your love for the ministry He has called you?