Thursday, April 25, 2024

Talkshow Thursday: Welcome Becca Wierwille!

Talkshow Thursday: Welcome Becca Wierwille!

Becca is a new-to-me author, so I'm excited to welcome her to my blog for the first time. Grab a cup of your favorite beverage and get to know this interesting lady!

1. What was your inspiration for the story?

Book one in the series, Road Trip Rescue, is the story of a girl named Kimmy who embarks on a wild road trip with her aunt to find her lost dog. Along the journey, Kimmy meets and befriends a boy named Daniel.

I didn’t initially know Daniel would need his own story, but when beta readers gave me feedback on Road Trip Rescue, several of them told me they would love to spend more time with Daniel. And the more I thought about it, I did too!

And so, in book two of the series, Road Trip Return, we have Daniel’s story. And he must save his brother from making the biggest mistake of his life—even if that means embarking on an international adventure to Guatemala, the home of his father, and the last place in the world he wants to go.

In college, I spent a semester in Guatemala, and I’ve been back to visit several times since. The
Photo: Pixabay/
country holds a special place in my heart, and I always thought it would be fun to write a story set in Guatemala. My time in Guatemala inspired the setting of this story and helped create a sense of nostalgic wonder and adventure for me as I wrote.

2. What sort of research did you do for your story, and was there an exceptionally interesting tidbit you knew you had to include?

Because it’s been about ten years since I lived in Guatemala for a semester (which I can hardly believe!), I needed to do a lot of research beyond trying to relive only my own memories. I spent a lot of time on Google Earth, read back through my old journal entries, and shared the book with several friends who had lived in or were from Guatemala.

In Panajachel, the town in the Guatemala Highlands where Daniel and the others travel to in Road Trip Return, I had forgotten that Spanish is not the first language of many people who live there. Their first language is Kaqchikel, a Mayan language. It was fun to include details like that in the story so readers can learn about a different culture as they embark on the adventure with Daniel.

3. If your book is part of a series: Did you set out to write a series? Why did you decide to write a series?

No, I did not set out to write a series! Road Trip Rescue was originally a standalone novel. However, after beta readers suggested I write Daniel’s story, I realized another character in book one also needed her own story. And so, the three books in the Road Trip Rescue series began to take shape in my mind.

4. How has your book changed since your first draft? Road Trip Return has changed immensely since the first draft! In the first draft, Daniel didn’t have a whole lot of agency. He was kind of just “along for the ride,” and usually being dragged along where he didn’t want to go. I knew the story needed more conflict and tension, but I couldn’t figure out what that looked like.

Then, my developmental editor, Jon Tilton, gave me an idea that changed the trajectory of the entire story. Yes, it did involve almost a full rewrite—but it was so worth it!

5. Why do you write in your particular genre?

Photo: Pixabay/
Sasin Tipchai
I write for middle-grade readers (kids between the ages of 8 and 12) because these are the stories that so impacted me when I was that age. And I can still remember so many of those books today!

My mission statement is this: “I write stories to show kids they are wonderfully created for the unique adventures in their lives. They are not perfect, but they are extraordinary and they are loved. And every adventure will be better when they know they’re not alone.”

6. What is your process for writing? (do you outline, have a special place or time of day you write, etc.) What is your favorite part of the process?

In this season of life, my process is to either attempt to wake up and write before my daughter (which doesn’t always happen—she’s an early riser too!), or to write during her nap time.

When it’s warm enough outside, I love writing on the picnic table on my back porch. If it’s too cold, I like to write in the basement, in a chair right in front of the glass door so I can pretend I’m outside.

I usually outline my stories, though my outlines grow and change a lot as I draft. My characters tend to have ideas of their own! And that first draft is my favorite part of the process. I love discovering the story along with the characters who become my friends.

7. How does/did your job prepare you for being a novelist?

Before becoming an author, I worked as a newspaper reporter, in college admissions, and as a kindergarten teacher.

Working as a reporter helped me learn to tell stories in a concise but interesting way. Working in college admissions helped me learn how to manage my time and how to work well with others (something that matters a lot as a writer!). And working as a teacher gave me a chance to dive deep into the world of kidlit and read so many great stories out loud to my students.

8. What is your advice to fledgling writers?

Don’t try to do it alone!

We often have this idea that writing is a solitary process—an author alone at their desk, typing away. But invite others into your process! Learn from other authors. Connect with readers. And, above all, invite God to lead and guide your writing.

9. What was your favorite childhood book and why?

I still love Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo. I connected with the characters in the story so
deeply and felt like they were my friends. Also, I loved the themes of friendship and not being alone, which I have integrated into my own stories as well.

10. What is your next project?

Road Trip Return
, book two in the Road Trip Rescue series, is available now for a limited time (April 16 - May 2, 2024) to order directly from me through Kickstarter for some really fun rewards—and to get the book early! Here is a link to the campaign page if you want to learn more and order the book.

After the campaign, Road Trip Return will release on retailers in September.

I am currently working on book three in the series. More details on book three are coming soon. Sign up for my email newsletter for updates and for a few free gifts, including family-friendly conversation cards that would be perfect for a road trip!


A faith-filled international adventure for kids ages 8-12 about facing the past to embrace the future.

Daniel likes his life the way it is.

Simple. Predictable. And most importantly, just him and his older brother, Mateo. But as Mateo's wedding approaches, life is already changing. And Daniel worries Mateo’s fiancĂ©e, Skylar, will ruin everything.

When Skylar disappears a week before the ceremony, Daniel’s concerns are confirmed. Skylar is trouble. The wedding must be stopped.

Drawing on his twelve years of wisdom, Daniel vows to save his family from disaster. Even if that means traveling to Guatemala—the home of his father, and the last place he ever wanted to visit.

Daniel must sabotage the search for Skylar before Mateo makes the biggest mistake of his life.

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