Saturday, August 31, 2013

Interview with Mindy Obenhaus

Heidi Main here today with an interview with debut novelist, Mindy Obenhaus.

Mindy Obenhaus always dreamed of being a wife and mother. Yet as her youngest of five children started kindergarten, a new dream emerged—to write stories of true love that would glorify God. When she’s not penning her latest romance, she likes cooking, reading, traveling, and spending time with her grandkids. Learn more about her at,, or

Family means everything to Dr. Trent Lockridge. Growing up without a father, he always yearned for a family of his own. One long-ago summer in Ouray, Colorado, he thought  he might build a future with beautiful  Blakely Daniels. But when he abruptly fled town, he broke her heart and left behind more than memories. Years later, Trent is shocked—and overjoyed—to learn he's a father. He'd like to earn back Blakely's love and trust— but it won't be easy. And the clock is ticking. He's got only a few weeks to prove that, this time, he's here to stay…forever.

Mindy, thank you for stopping by to visit with us today and congratulations on your debut novel, THE DOCTOR’S FAMILY REUNION! What was your inspiration behind writing this book?

I’m glad to be here, Heidi. Thanks for having me.

My inspiration would have to be the setting, Ouray, Colorado. I love this place because it is so unique in its locale. The former silver and gold mining town sits in a bowl, surrounded by thirteen and fourteen thousand foot peaks and is as rich in history as it is in beauty. Ouray is also the Jeeping capital of the world, so I was able to use that element in my story as well.

That town sounds lovely! I see the ten things you love about Ouray, Colorado, but what in the world is a Marmot?

A marmot is essentially a very large squirrel (though some of their faces look a little more beaverish to me) that lives in mountainous regions. They like the higher elevations.

Also, the picture of the Alpenglow is gorgeous, but what is glowing in that photo? Can you tell I’ve never been out west?
That would be the mountain tops you see, bathed in the light of the Alpenglow. Alpenglow is a phenomenon that occurs after the sun has dipped below the horizon. The indirect light reflects off of particles in the air, creating this reddish, pinkish, orange-ish glow on the west-facing mountain tops. At least that’s the scientific definition. I just call it beautiful.

Yes, gorgeous! You are a wife, mother of five, grandmother of four. Of course, you have a litany of duties on a daily bases. So, what’s your biggest challenge in balancing writing time with your other responsibilities?

Actually, I have five grandkids. J And balancing my writing time is a challenge indeed. Though I’m a stay-at-home mom, I’ve learned that I have to treat my writing as a job. A job that requires me to work at it every day. That’s a little easier during the school year, because summers are just chaos.

For fun, if you could take a plane to ONE place, where would you go? If you could bring one person with you, who would it be? And if you could eat only one kind of food during your trip, what would that be?

Easy. I would go to Ouray with my husband, and we would enjoy chocolate from Mouses’s Chocolates! :-)
Chocolate . . . one of my favorite foods as well! Who/What spurs you to write? Where do your story and character ideas come from?

Deadlines definitely spur me to write. I learned that after I signed my first contract. Of course my husband and agent push me to stay the course.

Ideas, both character and story, can come from just about anywhere, even the evening news. Life experience or the experiences of people I know.

One day, I was using the powerwasher and this character just stepped onto the stage of my mind, introduced herself, and proceeded to tell me all about her. That was cool. Unfortunately, I wasn’t exactly where I could write stuff down. I remember what she looked like, her name, and a bit of her history. Unfortunately, I told her she was going to have to wait because I other folks whose stories needed to be told first. Her turn is coming, though.

Looking forward to meeting this new character in day in a future novel of yours. Tell us, how do your faith and spiritual life play into the picture and affect your storytelling?

From the start of a story, I have to ask God what lesson or spiritual truth He wants me to convey through the story. Although sometimes, He doesn’t let me know what that is until later, which, considering I’m an impatient person, can be rather frustrating. Nonetheless, I try to stay true to the characters and how they would approach life given where they are in their spiritual walk. Though even the strongest Christians have their flaws/weaknesses.

Mindy, thank you for your time today, it was fun! And congratulations again on your debut novel, THE DOCTOR’S FAMILY REUNION. Read an excerpt here.

Thank you. It’s definitely been a very exciting year.


  1. Heidi, Thank you for the wonderful interview and introducing me to Mindy. Mindy, I, too, think Ouray is one of the prettiest place I have ever seen. My husband and I were there in July. We had a home in Silverton for a few years so we became very familiar with those beautiful Rockies, all the jeep trails (easy ones and hairy ones) and even a Marmot. My husband was riding his dirt bike on a trail and one ran right under his front wheel. Needless to say, my husband took a tumble, dislocated his shoulder, and he Marmot was fine! You have brought back great memories. Thank you and I can't wait to read your book. The Doctor's Family Reunion is just my kind of read!

    1. Hi, Melanie! Wow, I'm envious that you actually got to live in that beautiful region. What a blessing.

      You know, I was just in Ouray last week and we drove up to Clear Lake, right outside of Silverton, and you wouldn't believe the marmots. We had one eating out of our hand. I was so surprised, because they're usually kind of skittish. But not this little guy.

      So glad you stopped by. It was nice to "meet" you.

    2. Melanie, Mindy ~ I am jealous that you've seen Ouray, it sounds so glorious! We are planning a trip "out west" in a few years. I'm looking forward to see that countryside. Other than a business trip to Colorado and California about 20 years ago, I've not been off the east coast!

  2. Mindy,

    Ouray, Colorado is a beautiful setting. I miss being able to go visit on the weekends whenever I felt like it like we did while living in Grand Junction. We liked to go up for our anniversary. Went four wheeling a few times, but I am not a fan as I get afraid on certain sections and had to get out and walk. But then, there was always the fear of falling rocks too. I love the mountains and am so bad in them.

    Five children and a mob of grandchildren keeps a person busy that's for sure, but it sounds like you are staying the course and your story sounds interesting.

    1. Hi, Tina! Want to know a secret? I'm pretty chicken when it comes to driving in the mountains. I do okay part way, but when we get to those steep drop-offs, well, I'd rather leave the driving to somebody else.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  3. Thank you so much for this introduction to Mindy. As my mother, Melanie, said, my parents had a house in Silverton for several years and we enjoyed our times there. I look forward to "revisiting" this beautiful area of Colorado through the pages of THE DOCTOR'S FAMILY REUNION!

    1. Hi Britney! You are so welcome for the interview. I am thrilled you found it and will be able to read her new novel with the Ouray setting!

    2. Aw, Brittany, that warms my heart. I hope you enjoy the story!

  4. Heidi, so glad you interviewed Mindy. Loved learning more about her. And, The Doctor's Family Reunion sounds great. I would love to visit Colorado, and Ouray sounds like a beautiful place. I've only flown over the Rockies and they were beautiful from 30,000 feet. Can only imagine being up close.

    1. Pat, you are welcome! Glad you stopped by :-)

  5. Hi, Pat! The Rockies are gorgeous, no matter what elevation you're viewing them from.

  6. Mindy, I enjoy your presentation of awards at the ACFW banquet every year! I've been looking forward to reading one of your books and I'm so excited the day is finally here.

    1. You are so sweet, Susan. Thank you! I hope you enjoy the book.