Michelle, tell us about yourself.
I am a single mother of two teenaged sons. Need I say more? When I am not busy being their secretary and chauffeur, I work full-time as an ESE Reading Specialist. At night, I write. Sing a New Song is my first published work as a Christian fiction author.
As a preacher’s kid, ministry is an every day part of my life. I preach, teach, and lead praise and worship in our small congregation. I love singing, word games and reading.
How do you find time to connect with God?
I connect with God daily. If I waited to ‘find’ the time, I never would. Instead, I make the time to speak to God every day. At one point, I confess to setting an alarm in my phone, and myself and my two sons have a short devotional. I read His word and attend services regularly to keep myself grounded in Him.
Who are your favorite authors? Favorite books?
- Victoria Christopher Murray – I have read every single one of her books. Joy and Temptation are standouts.
- Reshonda Tate Billingsley – I loved “The Secret She Kept”.
- Rhonda McNight – “What Kind of Fool”
- Sandra Brown – almost all of her books I have read.
Tell us about your journey to publication.
I have always written songs and stories, but my journey towards becoming a published Christian fiction writer took time. I accepted Christ in my life at sixteen years old, but as a teacher, wife and mother of two, I had learned how to compartmentalize my life. Though I preached, sang with the praise and worship team, taught and expounded on God’s word, I viewed my writing as ‘my’ thing. It was my pleasurable past time, but God had other plans. He saw a different purpose for my secret passion!
It took twelve years and a lot of trials and errors, before I blossomed spiritually and I truly realized that God needed to lead and preside over every area of my life. God needed my hands and my creativity to bring Him glory and to be a tool for his ministry. I attended my first ever writer’s retreat, the Faith and Fiction retreat in July 2011 where following much fasting and prayer, I pitched Sing a New Song. God granted me favor, as I was the sole recipient of a two-book deal with Urban Books for that year.
Tell us about your current book, Sing A New Song?
Sing A New Song is the story of One renowned singer. Her beautiful daughter. Five potential fathers.
When former chart-topper Tiffany Knightly learns that she’s dying from cancer, she leaves behind her plush California lifestyle to return to Hempstead, New York, with Karlie, her reluctant teenaged daughter. Her fans think she has simply gone home to die, but Tiffany has another mission. She desperately wishes she could leave her past in the past, but in order to secure her daughter’s future, she must tear open past wounds.
Life wasn’t always easy for Tiffany. With a stepfather who abused her and a mother who didn’t believe her, she acted out by becoming promiscuous. Fifteen years later, she’s back to reveal to her ex-husband that he might not be Karlie’s biological father. In fact, there are four men who could have fathered Karlie—four that she’s willing to acknowledge, anyway.
As Tiffany reveals her truth and searches for Karlie’s father, she reconnects with old friends and old lovers. Some reunions are happy, but some innocent lives are torn apart, leaving Tiffany to wonder if she’s doing the right thing. Through it all, she will have to learn to rely on the healing power of God’s unfathomable love.
How did you come up with ideas for this book?
The ideas for the book came from watching the Maury Show. I watched the talk show with my mother and cracked up at the girls who had a parade of different men take paternity tests. Each time Maury spoke the words, “You are not the father,” her face would fall. Once the show was over, the Holy Spirit convicted me. I started to think about these girls and wondered what could have happened to them to land them in this predicament. Thus, the inspiration for Sing A New Song.
What valuable lessons do you want readers to learn from your book?
I want readers to learn the valuable lesson of God’s love and forgiveness. For His blood washes all sins clean.
What’s next for you?
I am currently working on editing my novel, Walk A Straight Line, for publication next year.
Where can readers find you online?