Hello everyone! Today I'd like to introduce you to a very special author. Heather Manning is now 18 years old, and has just published her second novel!heathermauthor.blogspot.com.
Welcome Heather! We're so glad you could visit us today.
Thank you so much for having me! I am glad to be here today.
You found your calling very young. Can you tell us a little about your accomplishments so far?
I am very thankful to God for all he has allowed me to accomplish by the age of 18. When I was 16, my first novel, Swept to Sea, was professionally published.
Now, at 18, I have two published novels under my belt, my most recent being Carried Home.
What made you decide to become a writer?
I supposed I always enjoyed creating stories in my head, even if I never truly realized it. Before I knew how to write, I would dictate stories and have my mom or my sister write them down in words. I remember one particular retelling of The Princess and the Pea that I wrote and hand-illustrated. But I don’t think I really considered the possibility of becoming an author until seventh grade or so, when I had an amazing English teacher who really believed in me and encouraged me to write. Before that, I didn’t know people other than my family actually enjoyed what I created. I decided I loved the feeling of creating a world where anything I want can happen and writing it down for others to enjoy.
Where did the inspiration for your latest book come from?
Carried Home came straight from my first book, Swept to Sea. I had always planned on writing a trilogy, so this second novel about another set of characters was right there for me to grab. I loved being able to tell Ivy and Gage’s full stories, especially after I saw readers enjoyed these characters who were only secondary characters in my first novel. From there, I honed in on my character’s weaknesses and decided to force them to face their worst fears, like suddenly becoming captain of a riotous crew or being trapped an ocean away from her beloved young brother.
How does your faith and spirituality work in with your writing?
My faith always plays a big part in my writing, since it is a big part of my life. My characters face struggles regarding their faith, and they overcome them as well, which I hope also helps my readers. I like seeing my characters go on all kinds of journeys across the world as well as spiritually and helping them find the right path to nurture their faith.
What has been the most difficult thing for you as a young author?
Definitely not being taken seriously once people find out my age has been a struggle. Whether it’s fellow teenagers or well-seasoned writers, there are always some people who are not used to someone being published so young, so they respond unexpectedly. Of course, there are many others who are excited about me, and the good far outweighs the bad in this case.
Well, in this case, we're excited for you, Heather. :D What are you working on next?
I’m writing the third novel in my Ladies of the Caribbean series, Tossed Together. For fans of Swept to Sea, this is the story of Aimee and Matthew after they find themselves….you guessed it….tossed together. I am in the middle of the first draft and LOVING this book.
Very interesting. Looks like you have some great stuff going on. Thank you so much for being with us today, Heather. I find your journey to be very inspiring!
Thank you so much for having me!!!