Sundin #D70 ©2008 Linda Johnson Photography web (2)Greetings from Sarah Sundin, recently returned from a literary agency retreat in Monterey – where I got to hang out with Becky Melby! Becky’s warm humor and gentle spirit shine as well in person as they do in her delightful stories.

CAN Becky MelbyBecky, how did you get into writing?

I started writing when I was eight, but my big break didn’t come until fifth grade when my teacher tacked my bunny poem on the hall bulletin board. I knew right then what I wanted to be when I grew up. Still waiting to grow up, but I still know what I want to be! I had several poems and short stories published over the years, and then in 1992 my good friend Cathy Wienke called to say she’d just literally thrown a book at the wall because of its predictable plot and unrealistic dialogue. “We should write our own,” she said. And so we began. It took us nine months to write our first story. After half a dozen rejections, Barbour Publishing replied that they were interested in Far Above Rubies for their Heartsongs Presents line. Only one small problem – our manuscript was 75,000 words and their word limit was 50,000. What we’d anticipated as a painful surgery turned out to be a fun and freeing experience. We had a lot of laughs over unneeded words and rabbit trails as we chopped – a great lesson in self-editing.

CAN Melby bookHow many books do you have published?

Cathy and I went on to write eight more Heartsongs and a novella together. This year, my first full-length books, the Lost Sanctuary series, releases. Tomorrow’s Sun and Yesterday’s Stardust are already out, and Today’s Shadows releases in December. I’ve also had the joy of working with three amazing authors – Cynthia Ruchti, Eileen Key, and Rachael Phillips – on two novella collections. A Door County Christmas released in 2010, and Cedar Creek Seasons just arrived on our doorsteps in September.

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