Thursday, May 19, 2022

Talkshow Thursday: Welcome back, Sherri Stewart!

Talkshow Thursday: Welcome Back, Sherri Stewart!

Linda: Thanks for joining me today. Congratulations on your recent release, A Song for Her Enemies Where did you get the inspiration for the story? 

Sherri: My publisher wanted to do a collection of stories about real female heroines from a fictional character’s point of view. My heroine has always been Corrie ten Boom, so I signed up to write a book about Neelie Visser, someone like Corrie, from the viewpoint of one of the Jewish guests she hid in her home during WWII. Since it had to be from a fictional character’s point of view, I wrote about Tamar Kaplan, a Jewish aspiring opera singer, who learned about Neelie’s God through their time together in hiding, then at the camps. 

LM: What is it that draws you to the World War II era, and when did you first develop the interest? 

Sherri: My interest in World War II fiction has grown since visiting holocaust museums in Israel and Washington D.C., reading Corrie ten Boom’s books, as well as other novels about that time, and visiting Vught Concentration Camp in the Netherlands. I am appalled at how one evil man could change the course of modern history. Most of the survivors have passed away, but their stories need to survive their deaths; otherwise, the world will let it happen again. 

LM: You’re working on the sequel, In Her Enemies House. Did you set out to write a series? What was your inspiration for this story? 

Photo: Pixabay/
Helena Jankovicova Kovacova
Sherri: I didn’t start out to write a series, but after I wrote A Song for Her Enemies, it occurred to me that the story of the holocaust survivors didn’t end when the war ended. People were physically alive, but the emotional scars they carried had long-term effects on their lives. In the Netherlands, a lot of survivors chose “the Conspiracy of Silence,” which meant they refused to talk about what happened. Since all their choices had been ripped away from them, silence was the one thing nobody could rip away. In the sequel which occurs three years after the war, Tamar Feldman craves justice, but all around her people are living as if the holocaust never happened, including her husband, Daniel, who tells her to bury the past and get on with life. 

LM: How long does it take you to write a book, and can you tell us about your process? 

Sherri: It all depends on the word count. A long book—95000 words—usually takes me a year to write because I spend hours every day editing my clients’ books, so my eyes get a bit tired. My general rule is to write 500 words a day, 6 days a week. Then the editing starts, which adds another month or two to the process. I’m a plantser, which means I have a general idea of where the book is headed, but I leave room for God to take me in all kinds of directions. 

LM: What did you edit out of this book? 

Sherri: What a great question! One thing I deleted was about the three-year-old son of Tamar’s nemesis, Margot, who had Amblyopia, a lazy eye. Tamar asked her husband, who’s a doctor, what could be done for the boy, and he mentioned wearing a patch, then surgery later. It seems I didn’t follow up on it. My sister who’s one of my beta readers noticed, and we decided that it didn’t move the story forward. Also, Margot doesn’t have much to commend her to the reader, but I don’t like my antagonists to be totally bad. Then they just become comic-book characters. 

LM: What is your next project? 

Photo: Pixabay/Arek Socha
Sherri: Right now I’m working on a romantic suspense novella for a collection of books coming out in the fall of 2022. The working title is The Girl with ‘Deer in the Headlights’ Eyes. When I was in law school, I wrote my third-year research paper on Tarasoff v. Regents of the University of California, which is about an attorney’s or counselor’s duty to warn the victim if they know their client might pose a threat to the victim. My book is about a girl who is being stalked by an obsessive guy, so she moves to Bar Harbor, Maine to get away from him. 

LM: Where can folks find you on the web? 


Quarterly newsletter signup:
If you like historical tidbits, go to

About A Song for Her Enemies

After Nazi soldiers close the opera and destroy Tamar Kaplan’s dream of becoming a professional singer, she joins the Dutch Resistance, her fair coloring concealing her Jewish heritage. Tamar partners with Dr. Daniel Feldman, and they risk their lives to help escaping refugees. When they are forced to flee themselves, violinist Neelie Visser takes them into hiding. 

Tamar’s love for Daniel flowers in hardship, but she struggles with the paradox that a loving God would allow the atrocities around her. When Tamar resists the advances of a Third Reich officer, he exacts his revenge by betraying the secrets hidden behind the walls of Neelie’s house. From a prison hospital to a Nazi celebration to a concentration camp, will the three of them survive to tell the world the secrets behind barbed wire?

A Song for Her Enemies is the story of a talented young opera singer and the bittersweet love that grows amid the tyranny and fear of World War II. Set against the backdrop of neighbors willing to risk their lives in the German-occupied, war-torn Netherlands, A Song for Her Enemies is an inspiring and beautiful novel celebrating the resilience of the human spirit and the determination of Christians in the face of persecution. It is a novel for everyone seeking to understand the pain of the past and be inspired to embrace hope for the future.

No comments:

Post a Comment