Thursday, November 4, 2021

Talkshow Thursday: Welcome Nancy Naigle!

 Talkshow Thursday: Welcome Nancy Naigle!

LM: Thanks for joining me today. Congratulations on your recent release The Shell Collector. What was your inspiration for this particular story? 
Nancy: Thank you so much for having me! I’m so happy to be here. The Shell Collector was inspired by a story my cousin once shared with me about a family friend who found special shells along the beach in Kitty Hawk, NC where she lived. Over a period of about six years, she found four shells with messages in them. The first had scripture written in it, others messages of hope and positive affirmations. 
Each of the shells came to her when she needed it most. No one else who lived in the area ever mentioned finding shells like these, which left her wondering how they came to her, and why. She treasured them considering them gifts from her angels by the sea. 
I thought of that story often, but never more than in 2014. I lost my husband and my cousin within just weeks of each other early that year. I could have used a boatload of those shells to get through that. Instead, this story of The Shell Collector took hold in my heart, and over the following years, it grew into a story not just about shells, but about surviving grief, the people whose lives a simple message in a shell would touch, and the friendships and love that grew because of them. A story of kindness, friendship, survival, and hope. 

LM: After writing so many books, how challenging is it to come up with plot lines and characters for new books? 

Nancy: I find that as long as I give myself enough balance and down-time life tosses new stories right into my lap. Lol. Just look left, then right and this crazy world we live in is bound to conjure up something book-worthy. 
LM: You had a career in finance. What made you decide to try your hand at fiction writing all those years ago? 

Nancy: Some might call it a happy accident, but I believe it was a nudge from God that put me on this path. I didn’t grow up with the desire to become a writer. I’d always known I’d work in corporate America. I was a Senior Vice President with Bank of America, and I loved my career. I worked incredibly long hours, and the stress was high, but I thrived in that environment. 
But the year I turned forty my job responsibilities included offshoring technical positions. That was really hard for me on a personal level even though I knew it was the right business decision at the time. 
After some soul-searching, I came to the conclusion that if I could just write one book, to help one busy
gal, through one bad day…that would be a positive way to give back. It was a lot harder than it sounded lol. It took a long time to get that first book written and all-in-all it was a 9-year journey to publication. I learned a lot about myself through the process too. It wasn’t until I lost my husband in 2014 that I took an early retirement and made a commitment to spend my time weaving stories of hope, happiness, and healing. I love knowing that I might touch a heart, improve someone’s outlook, or lift them while in despair with words of hope. 
My writing journey started nineteen years ago. I’ve now been published for eleven years, and have over 30 books and four novel adaptations with Hallmark/Crown Media. I don’t really think of this as a job, but rather how I live my life to share the gifts He has given me. 
LM: What is your favorite aspect of writing? 

Nancy: Editing! I’d much rather edit than write that first draft. 
LM: What did you do to prepare for this project? What sort of research, if any, was necessary? 

Nancy: This was the book of my heart. Coming from my personal journey through grief following the loss of my husband, it was more about being at a place that I could write the story that had been living in my heart and mind for several years. When the timing was right, I couldn’t wait to get started! 
LM: You’ve accomplished quite a lot. What is one thing you wish you could do? 

Nancy: Thank you. Yes, I’ve surely been blessed with wonderful opportunities, and I don’t mind working hard to fulfill them. I still have several Writer Girl things on my bucket list. I’d love to see The Shell Collector come to life on the screen, and I’ve also been working on a couple of screenplays between deadlines that I hope to sell one day. 
LM: What is your next project? 
Nancy: I’m working on two projects that will release in 2022. What Remains True coming May 3, 2022 (WaterBrook Press) is about a woman on sabbatical after her divorce who stops in a small mountain town and learns that the first step in starting over is not overthinking it. The Wedding Ranch coming Fall 2022 (St. Martin’s Press) is about a small-town wedding venue, the events that take place there, and the lives that change in and around them. 
LM: What is one piece of advice you’d like to offer to fledgling writers? 

Nancy: Be true to yourself. Your voice—the way you tell your story—is the only unique thing you bring to the table. Listen to advice, but filter it all through your personal moral compass and file the rest away. Trust that the story only you can tell will find its readers. 

LM: Where can folks find you on the web? 

Nancy: has all of my book links, blog, event calendar, and newsletter sign-up. You’ll get all the latest news there first. Of course, I can also be found on these social media outlets: 

About The Shell Collector

Two years after her husband’s death, Amanda Whittier has two children to raise alone, an abandoned dream of starting a business, and a fixer-upper cottage by the sea. She has no room in her life for anything else and little interest in moving on after losing the man she loved. 

Paul Grant is a relative newcomer to the area, and his work with former military dogs needing rehabilitation has been good for the town. Though he loved once before, he’s convinced he’s not suited for romance and is determined to find meaning—alone—through his work and role in the community. 

Widowed Maeve Lindsay was born and raised on Whelk’s Island. Spirited, kind, and a little mischievous, she pour her life into the town. But she carries a secret that shapes her every move.

Together, these three souls find encouragement in the most mysterious places and discover a love that’s bigger than their pain, healing their wounded hearts in ways none of them could have hoped for or expected.

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