|Just so there's no confusion--these are friends, not enemies. ;) |
Stitches Thru Time friends to be exact.
That's Terri on the far right at
the 2015 ACFW conference genre night.
Terri, for those who don't have the benefit of knowing you, tell us a bit about yourself.In grade school I wrote stories in notebooks. The first Girl Scout badge I received was the Writer. These days I write historical fiction, and won the 2013 Writers on the Storm contest (Book 1) and 2013 First Impressions (Book 3), as well as being a 2012 Genesis finalist (Book 2). My research included going for a ride in a WWII B-17 Flying Fortress bomber. I have a bachelor’s degree in history (yes, I love doing research) and a master’s degree in library science. I was born, raised, and presently live in Wisconsin, but have also lived in Michigan, California, and Utah. Classic Boating Magazine, a family business since 1984, keeps me occupied as an associate editor.
Congratulations on your new release! What is Friends and Enemies about?World War II rages across Europe, particularly in Germany, claiming the life of Heidi Wetzel’s husband. In a bid to escape the frequent bombings of German cities, Heidi moves to a farm in the German countryside, where she helps care for orphaned children. While there, Heidi comes across an American airman, Paul, with whom she spent time when her family lived in Milwaukee during her high school years. When Paul’s plane is shot down over Germany, his only thought is survival—until he hears God’s voice guiding him to his late wife’s friend.
The pages of your book are filled with history and sights in Germany. Where did you get your love of WWII history? Have you been to Germany?I started writing contemporary stories in the early 2000s, but stopped after a while. When I decided to start again in 2008, I got the idea to use letters written in 1947-48 by distant cousins to whom my grandparents sent care packages. I don’t know what their beliefs were about Hitler and the Nazis, so I created a story for them, a family to be proud of. I intended Friends and Enemies to be a stand-alone until an editor at conference told me I’d probably need a series to be published. I had started a new contemporary, but set that aside to write No Neutral Ground (May 2016) and Soar Like Eagles (Sept 2016).
I have been to Germany, briefly. Twice on ocean cruises when the ships docked in Germany, I visited Berlin for a total of 2 days. I also did a Rhine and Mosel Rivers cruise. My ancestral hometown (and Heidi’s) is only about 15 miles from the Rhine. I wish I knew then I’d be writing Friends and Enemies.
What do hope folks will take away from your story?When I wrote the story, I didn’t have anything in mind beyond an entertaining tale. Both main characters must deal with personal tragedies while living in difficult times. One stays close to God, the other turns away. Paul soon realizes that God never turned away from him. That seems to be the natural take away.
Do you have a favorite scene in the book? If so, can you tell us a bit about it?The reunion after they hadn’t seen each other in six or seven years. At that time they were friends. Now they’re enemies, hence the title. In the original version, they had been high school sweethearts and there were two reunions, one totally unexpected and the second one hoped for. Unfortunately, that version covered a ten year time span. Now it’s about a year and a half.
I’m doing another WWII story about a sailor, his Rosie the Riveter wife, her WAC sister, and a
grasshopper pilot. It’s been slow going because I write only on the weekends. (Computer time is
a migraine trigger for me.)
What do you plan to work on next?