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  • Writer's picturemaryhagen14

Multi-published, Multi creative Author

Donna Schlachter – Time Will Tell

About Donna:

Donna writes historical and contemporary mysteries, and has been published more than 50 times in novellas, full-length novels, and non-fiction books. She is a member of several writing communities; facilitates a critique group; teaches writing classes; ghostwrites; edits; blogs regularly; and judges in writing contests. She lives in Denver with her husband and two cats, finding mysteries wherever she travels. You can find her books on Amazon under both her name and that of her former pen name, Leeann Betts.

Questions for Donna

1. Please introduce yourself: Where did you grow up? Where do you live today? What are your favorite activities?

Thanks for hosting me, Mary. I grew up in eastern Canada, on the island of Newfoundland, or, as its residents call it, The Rock. I live in Colorado, and I love writing, watching mysteries, knitting, and oil painting. Oh, and keeping two very spoiled cats.

2. Tell us about your family. Do you have an occupation outside of writing?

My immediate family consists of two brothers and two sisters, all younger than me, who still live in Canada. I married a grandfather, and am the proud mother to two daughters, two sons of my heart, and eleven grands. Writing is my main occupation, although I do a little data entry for a publishing company, and, of course, my oil paintings, which I sell.

3. When did you start writing? Why do you write? Do you write about other genres than cozy mysteries? Are your cozy mysteries historical or contemporary? Are you an indie publisher, traditional, or both?

I’ve been writing ever since I could hold a pencil or pen. I started seriously writing in 2002, just to see if I had one book in me. I began publishing in 2006 with a couple of devotional books, then turned to fiction. My first indie book came out in 2015, and since then, in total, I’ve published more than 50 books, novellas, books on writing, devotionals, and books I ghostwrote for others.

I write because the stories are in there, and if they don’t come out, I fear I will burst with them. I write historical and contemporary mysteries, romance, romantic mysteries, cozies, and, as I said, devotionals, books on writing, and memoirs. I am a hybrid author in that I have published traditionally and independently. I operate my own imprint, PLS Bookworks, as well.

4. Do you write series or single title books, fiction or nonfiction? Where do your ideas come from for a book? How do you create characters, decide on conflict, and time period? How do you research books, if any are necessary, for your books?

I write series and single titles, primarily fiction, although I have penned 2 books on the craft of writing, as well as memoirs for others, including two for my dad.

My ideas come from life around me, movies, books, conversations, eavesdropping, newspaper articles, and asking the “what if?’ question over and over and over…

I research by visiting the setting when possible, or through watching videos and movies, online research, listening to folks who’ve been there, and just plumb making some stuff up. After all, it’s fiction, right?

5. How long does it take you to write a book? Do you have a writing schedule and a special place set aside for writing? Do you outline or are you a panster or a combination of both?

I can write a novella in a month, a novel in two months. I write every weekday for at least two hours. I outline, then write a synopsis, then fill in the gaps as I write the story.

6. Do you instill some of your own life experiences into your characters?

Absolutely. Don’t they tell us to “write what we know”? And who do we know better than ourselves? I also add in some of the life experiences of folks around me. Sometimes, I take a really embarrassing incident that happened to me and ascribe it to somebody else I know to see how they would react, and write that version in my story.

7. What do you hope readers will take away from your books?

My big takeaway is that our God is a God of second chances. And third chances. And so on. I know I’ve needed that mercy and grace from Him, and I’m far from arrived yet. My characters are so flawed, I sometimes think of them as my Humpties – never able to be put back together again. Because that’s how I feel. And yet God manages, every time, to make all things beautiful in His time.

Would you please send a blurb about your latest book and a short excerpt?

About Time Will Tell:

Sadie Bauer inherits her father’s watch and clock repair shop in the mall beneath Main Street, Pueblo. However, she soon learns that Fate conspires against her operating this business and keeping her father’s memory alive.

Will O’Reilly, recently dismissed for fighting, longs to help this beautiful damsel in distress, but she’s about as prickly as a porcupine. He’d like their relationship to be more than employer-employee, but if she learns of their connection through their ex-fiancés, she might not want to have anything to do with him.

Can Sadie overcome her mistrust of men in general, and of a certain suave salesman in particular? Can Will get past his former betrothed’s infidelity? And can both learn to trust the God who makes all things beautiful in His time?

Excerpt from Time Will Tell:

Sadie sank onto the ancient leather chair behind her father’s workbench. Correction. Her workbench, now. She huffed, her breath raising the errant strands of hair at the center of her forehead. Her trembling hand gripped the official-looking envelope neatly addressed to her father. Not her. Although he died a month ago, still his loss created an ache in her throat.

Bitter tears burned at the back of her eyes, blurring her vision, making the words dance. All around her, reminders of him. That ratty old sweater, holes in the elbows and all the buttons long gone, hanging on the coat rack inside the door. His cold pipe in the ashtray in front of her, a faint whiff of his favorite tobacco hanging on. At her elbow, the sign she’d placed on the front door alerting customers to a death in the family. She must open the shop, generate income, and save her father’s—correction—her business and livelihood.

She set her reticule on the table and sat back in the chair. Surely no good news ever arrived in a linen wrapper from a law firm. Sadie picked up a jeweler’s file, its length and span in stark contrast to the task she now assigned it. Slipping the pointed tip beneath the seal on the rear of the envelope, she eased the brittle red wax from the stark white.

Inside, a single sheet of paper. She inhaled, then breathed out through her nose.

Stop wasting time. Read it.

Contact Donna Stay connected so you learn about new releases, preorders, and presales, as well as check out featured authors, book reviews, and a little corner of peace. Plus: Receive a free ebook simply for signing up for our free newsletter!

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Apr 15, 2022

This is a great interview, Donna and Mary! Always love your books, Donna, and the new one looks good. Nice cover!

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