Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summer is Peeking Around the Corner

Here we are in mid-June with graduations, vacations and staycations in the works. Do you ever recall when you were a youngster and school was out for the summer? At first you thought, Oh this is fantastic! I can sleep late, hang out with my friends, do whatever I feel like doing. Then as August approached, you began to feel as though you couldn't wait to get back to school for new challenges, new teachers, back-to-school clothes and supplies. My favorite school supply was always a black composition book. You know the one with the lined paper inside. I always loved writing, and that composition book represented an exciting adventure to me. Okay, I guess I'm a little strange, but just remember that God made each and every one of us uniquely designed characters!!

Today, I am featuring fellow writer, Naty Matos, with a recent interview. Travel beside us as we learn about Naty's writing journey and her new book, The Road Home!


Naty, I read on your blog at that you have been a lifelong lover of writing. Please tell us about your works that have been published and what we can look forward to in the near future!

My first published story was titled “The Janitor.” It was a short story that won a contest for Whispering Angel Books in 2009. It’s the story of a man who had lost his faith and his way. At a church, he meets a janitor who shows him the way back to live life the way it was intended.

Then again in 2010, I won another contest with them with the story “Obedience.”  This was an essay about the influence a friend of mine had in my life during a very hard time and how her obedience to God had inspired me.

In 2011, I published my first book, Growth Lessons, a devotional with stories from my first year after rededicating my life to Christ.

I have several projects in the works, but the most exciting one is my first novel, The Road Home, which has just been released. The Road Home is the story about a woman looking for love in the wrong places, and when she finally finds true love, she needs to unlock a mystery from her life to be able to be with her lover.

Where do you live, and what do you enjoy about living there?

I live in North Atlanta. I’ve been here for the last ten years. What I like the most about Atlanta is the weather. Growing up in the Caribbean, where it is usually summer all year around, I always wanted to experience a real winter with snow and a fireplace. Now I do know that Georgia is not all that winter could be and that it only snows one day a year, but it’s as much winter as I could handle anyway. 

What challenges does living there represent?

I think the biggest challenges in Atlanta are traffic and lack of water. By lack of water, I’m referring to the fact that I miss the beach. I could drive ten minutes and see the ocean back home, and now the closest thing would be five hours away.

I notice on Grace & Faith Authors that you are so efficient and enthusiastic about marketing and Tweeting, in particular. I really admire that because the marketing aspect is the most difficult for me to work into my schedule, though I know it is vitally important. Could you share your marketing views and any tips about Tweeting, etc.?

I think the most important part of marketing in social media is to remember the social aspect of it. If we use social media, Twitter, Facebook and others as mere posting boards, we will be ignored. The challenge is that those things take time. The best way to manage it is to dedicate at least 30 minutes a day to not promote, but just engage with people.

The other thing that is important is to engage with people beyond authors. Although authors read, we need to expand our followers beyond other authors, so socializing within our other interests can be very productive for our marketing efforts.

Could you share what inspires you to write and what you would like for your upcoming book to convey?

Writing is the best way that I can communicate with others. In terms of stories, I think that the need to reach out and show the different aspects of the down to earth Christian life is what moves me to write. As a Christian, I see sometimes people struggle with being transparent about their issues because of the false belief that they need to be perfect. My stories are filled with the real lives of Christians who, yes, are redeemed by the Lord, but who even after being saved go through issues in life and demystifies for the unbeliever that getting to know Christ is unattainable.

The Road Home conveys some important messages: Do not take for granted how your daily life can impact the life of an unbeliever. Do not forget the mercy that you have received when it’s time for you to grant mercy and that there’s nothing too big or too bad that God can’t forgive and redeem in your life. 
Thank you so much for visiting with us today, Naty. I'm looking forward to devouring The Road Home and have it on my reading list as we speak. 
on Kindle and also available on Nook!

And while you are adding to your own personal reading lists, don't forget these books for your leisure time reading!
 All in print on Amazon and e-format at Nook and Kindle. 

Until next time, walk slowly and deliberately in His path of peace.

Lots of love,
Mary Anne Benedetto

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