Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Author Interview: C. Maggie Woychik

Note as of June 20, 2011: Ms. Woychik has informed me that the book discussed here is no longer available, and will likely not be made available again. However, she did say I could leave this interview up. Thanks! --Liberty Speidel

Today I'm pleased to welcome cyber-writing buddy C. Maggie Woychik to the bits and bytes here at Word Wanderings! Please join me in making her feel at home.

Liberty Speidel: Thank you for agreeing to this interview! I'm pleased to have you here at Word Wanderings! First, how long have you been writing and when was your first book published?
Maggie Woychik: Well, first off let me say what a privilege it is to be here, Liberty! I enjoy your site and am honored you asked me to contribute. I've been writing for publication (primarily magazine articles) for 15 years. This will be my first published compilation (book).

LS: Tell us about your latest book.
MW: As the back cover states: "Thirty-nine rich reflections to savor during quiet times. I Run to the Hills is both a journey and a resting place - a collection of faith-musings draped in traveling garb."

LS: Why did you choose to write this book?
MW: It's based on my own spiritual pilgrimage. I think everyone seeks to make sense of their life, their world, and writers especially. Being a writer, I did what I felt I must.

LS: What would you like readers to take away from your book?
MW: I hope each reader will walk away with a clarity and strengthening of their own journey with Jesus Christ.

LS: What did you learn while writing this book?
MW: I learned that writing a book is hard work! We drain off a bit of our soul each time we finish a chapter, I think.

LS: How do you reach new readers?
MW: The best way in today's world is through the marvelous connections available on the internet: forums, blogs, networking sites (facebook, twitter, etc.). Of course, word of mouth is always very effective.

LS: What are three things you wish you’d known before you reached where you are now?
MW: Well, the thought has crossed my mind that if I had started writing earlier in life, say, my early 20's, I would have more credentials to show-- but then I wouldn't know what I know now and I don't think I would have been happy with my writing, if that makes sense. Beyond that, I'm actually very happy with how things have progressed. I'm just where I want to be in space and time right now.

LS: What advice or tips do you have for writers who are just getting started?
MW: I love helping emerging authors! My advice would be: master the English language (assuming you're writing in English), don't just trifle with it; live life fully, but be disciplined at the same time; hew out a solid foundation of faith and continue to build on it/Him throughout your life.

LS: Which books on writing have been the most helpful to you and why?
MW: I learn best by example, so I've adopted a "read good literature" attitude. Good literature rubs off! The author who has probably influenced me most is Annie Dillard. For sheer writing prowess and brilliance, she is incomparable.

LS: What is a typical writing day like for you?
MW: I generally file through my Post-It-Notes from the day before, then hit "THE Notebook" - you know, the one that holds most of a writer's grey matter; the thing that once lost would send their spirits to the Land of Despondency and Despair. :) I network throughout the day with family and friends via email, facebook, and twitter. And in between all that I live life! I do farm chores and house chores and shopping, cleaning, and cooking. The realities of life keep my writing in balance.

LS: What kind of planning do you do before writing a novel, article or book?
MW: I usually don't spend hours in research, but I do tend to think things through a lot before putting down seed thoughts on paper. When I feel the seeds are plentiful enough, I begin to hoe, plant, and water. Hopefully the emerging vegetation is both fodder for the soul and beauty for the eyes. If not, I plow it under and start again.

LS: Do you edit as you go or wait until completing the first draft?
MW: Editing is the life blood of every worthy piece of writing. I do it continually and with abandon.

LS: What do you have within reach as you write?
MW: Always - a cup of water or tea. A notebook and pen.

LS: What one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?
MW: I never try to sell anyone on writing -- BUT -- if I can get them to enjoy some genre of reading, then I've won, and more likely than not he or she will begin at some point to think about writing.

LS: Can you give us one “do” and one “don’t” for those aspiring to be a writer?
MW: DO begin. DON'T wait. Also, if you can find a writing mentor, DO it.

If you'd like to enter to win a signed copy of Maggie's book, please leave a comment or become a follower of this blog between now and Sunday, November 1 at 6 PM Central Time. A winner will be announced on Monday, November 2nd! Thanks, and good luck!

Maggie has over 70 published articles and poems in magazines including War Cry, Wesleyan Life, Christian Home and School, Woman’s Touch (Leadership Edition), Young Salvationist, Purpose, Christian Women Today e-zine, Seek, Women Alive!, Evangel, Cross & Quill, and others.

She has been a staff writer for, one of the most visited Christian sites on the internet with well over a million hits a month; has written dozens of teen and adult Bible studies; led a Christian writers group; and won a Roaring Lambs Award from the Amy Foundation.

Her first book, “I Run to the Hills: Reflections on the Christian Journey”, was released Fall, 2009.

Again, thanks for sharing with us, Maggie!

Until next time,


Maggie Woychik said...

I see the interview is up. Thank you, Liberty, for highlighting my book. I appreciate it muchly! :)

Liberty Speidel said...

No problem! I should note that I'm going to do my best to have a book review up at the time we announce the winner! (Of course, this is dependent on having time to read it!)

K.M. Weiland said...

Great interview, Liberty! I already have my copy of Run to the Hills, and I'm looking forward to starting it soon!

Tommie Lyn said...

Great interview, Liberty and Maggie! I enjoyed the insights Maggie shared. Thanks, both of you.


Liberty Speidel said...

Thanks, Tommie!!!

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