Happy Tuesday, Reader Friends!
Jennifer Slattery has stopped by today to talk about her novel, Restoring Her Faith. Grab a cup of tea (or coffee) and chat with her!
Story Behind the Story
If I could understand the creative brain, or more accurately, my brain, I’m certain my home would feel less chaotic and … bizarre. The other day, my husband told me, one of the things he loved most about me was my silliness.
I am that. And a bit out of touch with reality, at times, like when a picture or an article or casual statement triggers an ever-growing story, all of which plays out, quite vividly, in my brain.
Normally, my novels start with a character I can’t forget or ignore. I know her struggles, her fears and dreams, where God wants to take her, and usually those obstacles that stand in the way. As I get to know her (or him) better, the plot usually unfolds, and this usually in tern leads to setting.
Restoring Her Faith, however, was different. This story began not with a person or a plot idea or even a problem but rather a building. Or rather, a series of building known as the Painted Churches of Texas. They are some of the most beautiful buildings I’ve seen, with intricate stained glass windows and interiors painted from floor to floor, the entire ceiling included, with elaborate and symbolic murals and designs.
I don’t even remember how I learned of them, but one day, in the middle of Google searching, I landed on a website highlighting these historic treasures scattered throughout Texas, and I began to wonder, what would happen if one of them were damaged, perhaps through flooding or a fire? Can you imagine the history that could be lost? The sting the surrounding communities, filled with families who’d been celebrating their most sacred moments within its walls, for generations, might feel?
Thus, Faith Nichols was born. Although … I do think perhaps my daughter snuck in a little here. She’s an artist I’ve long admired for her ability to create lasting, beautiful things that capture deep emotion or stir thought-provoking questions. And, of course, I involved her in my research.
Once the plot took form—an artist hired to restore the stained glass windows of a church damaged by a fire working with a widower father overseeing the project—I knew I’d need to conduct a good deal of research. I studied building restorations, colors, history of paints, history of church architecture, and perhaps, most enjoyably, everything that goes in to making and restoring stained glass windows.
We found a stained glass store near where my daughter lives, which is an hour from me, that hosted stained glass classes and signed up for seven lessons. We had so much fun, and I learned a lot! I also have a fun little window hanging to remind me of the time my daughter and I spent together and the writing of my first ever Love Inspired story.
About the Author
Jennifer Slattery is a writer and international speaker who’s addressed women’s groups, church groups, Bible studies, and other writers across the nation. She’s the author of six contemporary novels maintains a devotional blog found at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com. She has a passion for helping women discover, embrace, and live out who they are in Christ. As the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, she and her team partner with churches to facilitate events designed to help women rest in their true worth and live with maximum impact. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.
About the Book
She left belief behind…Yet this family could change her mind.
With two boys to raise, a fledgling contracting business to run and a family ranch to keep afloat, widower Drake Owens finds his hands aren’t just full they’re overflowing. When Faith Nichols is hired to help him renovate the church, he’s drawn to the beautiful artist, but he can’t fall for a woman who isn’t a believer. Can love restore her faith and his heart?