Blog Tour: What is My Writing Process? (And a giveaway!)

Many thanks  to the lovely and talented Rebecca Kanner for including me on this relay blog tour. You can read about her writing process here or take a look at my review of her debut novel, The Sinners and the Sea, here.


Linus thinks he’s helping with editing

For this Blog tour, all I have to do is answer these four questions, then pass the baton on to three more writers. When I’ve done that, I’ll let you know how to win a signed copy of The Thief!  Here goes:

1) What am I working on?

That’s a tougher question than it looks. I’m in the midst of marketing the first two books in The Living Water series, The Well and The Thief, which includes writing blog posts, Facebook and Twitter, interviews, and public speaking appearances. Last week, I turned in the manuscript for the third book in the series, The Tomb. I’m waiting on pins and needles to hear what my editor thinks of it, then I’ll be editing, writing back cover copy and acknowledgements, and editing some more. While I wait, I’m considering what to write next. I have no shortage of ideas, it’s choosing from them that’s the trick.

writing desk

My writing desk, after a little cleaning up.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My biblical fiction is fast-paced and full of action while still being historically and biblically authentic. We all know what happens in the Bible, so I like to put in some twists and turns along the way that my readers don’t see coming. And after a page-turning stay-up-late read, I hope that my readers are not only satisfied but can go back to the scriptural source with new eyes and fresh understanding.

3) Why do I write what I do?

I love to imagine what it was like to meet Jesus face to face—whether just for a few moments, like the man born blind in The Thief, or to be an intimate friend like Lazarus in The Tomb. I want to answer the questions:

  • How did it feel to meet Jesus?
  • How did meeting the Incarnation change that person’s life and the lives of their family and friends?
  • Did meeting Jesus lead to a happily-ever-after? Or to THE happily-ever-after?

4) How does my writing process work?

  1. Read and research for a month or two
  2. write out scenes on post-it notes and arrange on a board (a Save the Cat method)
  3. write a fast and terrible rough draft
  4. do more research
  5. re-arrange scenes
  6. edit
  7. repeat steps 4 through 6 for as long as my editor will allow

Now, on to some of my favorite writers who are next up for the tour. Make sure to check into their blogs next Monday, May 5th. You could visit them now and sign up for their blog updates so you don’t miss out.

Regina Jennings, a great friend and critique partner, can be found at Regina is a graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University with a degree in English and a history minor. She has worked at The Mustang News and First Baptist Church of Mustang, along with time at the Oklahoma National Stockyards and various livestock shows. She now lives outside Oklahoma City with her husband and four children.

I’ve known LeAnne Hardy since the very beginning of my writing days. She’s given me tons of great advice and is an invaluable critique partner. LeAnne has lived in six countries on four continents. Her Glastonbury Grail series is set in Britain in the time of King Henry VIII. Her YA books reflect various countries where she has lived. Find out more at

Make sure to go to Peggy Wirgau’s brand new website at It’s beautiful! Peggy writes stories, articles, and novels for middle grade readers and young adults. Her work has been published in Appleseeds, Learning Through History, Insight, and other periodicals. She has written a yet-to-be-published contemporary novel for young adults, and a historical for middle grades. She is an active member of ACFW and enjoys attending the national conferences. The mother of two adult children, she writes and edits material for a nonprofit organization and an investment banking firm. She and her husband live in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. Peggy is also a Registered Nurse.

Thanks for participating in the Writing Process Blog Tour, ladies!

To win a copy of The Thief, leave a comment below about what YOU write. If you’re not a writer, tell me your favorite kind of book to read. I’ll pick a winner on Monday, May 5th.

(Sorry, only US winners. International postage is ridiculous.)

Click to Tweet: What is my #writing process and a #BookGiveAway.

Click to Tweet: #Writing process blog tour with @ReginaJennings @PeggyWirgau and LeAnne Hardy. #BookGiveAway

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26 Responses to “Blog Tour: What is My Writing Process? (And a giveaway!)”

  1. Connie Saunders | April 28, 2014 at 9:20 am #

    My writing is limited to blog and journal entries and some PR in our local newspapers. I enjoy mysteries and Christian fiction.

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 28, 2014 at 10:41 am #

      Blogs and journals are great ways to write, Connie! Keep at it.

  2. Peggy Wirgau | April 28, 2014 at 10:05 am #

    It’s interesting to read about your writing process and especially why you write what you do. Love your kitty and office pics! As we grab our batons, I’m glad to learn more about Regina and meet LeAnne too. Thanks so much!

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 28, 2014 at 10:41 am #

      Thanks, Peggy. Looking forward to your post, too.

  3. deha | April 28, 2014 at 10:20 am #

    Just love to hear updates on all that you do. I am really excited to here you are working on a new book. I have to say that you are a favorite…and you ask?, What are my favorite kind of books? Well, the ones you write, of coarse. : ) Have a great day.Stephnie, and God bless.
    -Debra ♥

  4. deha | April 28, 2014 at 10:24 am #

    Oh I forgot to add my website, so I have now picture attached to my previous post. I am looking forwar to “The Tomb”. Oh I forgot to tell you that i bought “Sinnersof the Sea” on your recomendation and found it a good read. Thank you.

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 28, 2014 at 10:42 am #

      Thanks so much, Debra. I’m still not seeing your picture, though. Sometimes WordPress is funny that way.

      • deha | April 28, 2014 at 10:45 am #

        Oh Ok, how do you edit. I sent the prvious post before i had time to spell check. Gees. Sorry about the typos. : (

        • Stephanie Landsem | April 29, 2014 at 5:50 am #

          I don’t think you can edit a comment. But don’t worry, typos are ok with me!

  5. Ashley S | April 28, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    My writing is purely for pleasure through journaling and blogging (which I just started and am really enjoying). I love reading almost anything I can get my hands on, but historical fiction, classics, and history are my absolute favorite! 🙂

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 28, 2014 at 4:51 pm #

      I’m with you on the reading choices!

  6. LeAnne Hardy | April 28, 2014 at 4:37 pm #

    So excited to know that The Tomb had gone to your editor. She’ll love it, I know she will! “New eyes and a fresh understanding of Scripture”–that’s what I love about Biblical fiction.

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 29, 2014 at 5:52 am #

      Thanks Leanne. Me, too. I had a great talk last night with a book club and they said they went back to the Bible with new understanding. Music to my ears!

  7. Melanie Backus | April 28, 2014 at 8:44 pm #

    I only write for my own enjoyment but who knows, one day! I love Christian fiction, thrillers, bios…just a variety of books.

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

    • Stephanie Landsem | April 29, 2014 at 5:53 am #

      I’m glad you write for your own enjoyment. It’s such a great way to organize your thoughts and come to new understanding. Good luck in the drawing!

  8. Barbara L Coats | April 30, 2014 at 9:13 pm #

    I am not a writer and am in awe of those that are gifted with that talent! I really do not have a favorite kind of book to read. I like a good romantic thriller, historical romances and westerns. My Dad started me reading Zane Grey westerns when I was 14 years old. I am 72 now so have read countless books. Reading is my favorite hobby. You didn’t ask for a biography, but just had to let you know how much I like reading. Thank you so much for the opportunity to win a copy of The Thief. Keep up the good work. Sincerely, Barbara

    • Stephanie Landsem | May 1, 2014 at 7:18 am #

      Thanks, Barbara. I always like to hear from an avid reader. I’ve always been one, too. I got in trouble more for reading than (almost) anything else when I was a kid. “Stephanie, put that book down” was heard in our house frequently!

    • Stephanie Landsem | May 8, 2014 at 1:56 pm #

      You are the winner of the signed copy of The Thief, Barbara. Email me at with you address and I’ll get it in the mail!

  9. Stephanie Landsem | May 8, 2014 at 1:55 pm #

    And the winner is . . . Barbara Coats! Congrats, Barbara! I’ll contact you for your address.

  10. Jana | May 11, 2014 at 3:08 am #

    My brother suggested I might like this blog.
    He used to be entirely right. This put up actually
    made my day. You can not imagine just how so much time I had spent for this information!

  11. Elaine Sellers | May 31, 2014 at 7:28 pm #

    I only wish I could write because I love reading so much. I have really enjoyed your books. I could hardly put them down. I can’t wait for the next one. Thank you for writing them. What a blessing God gave you & what a blessing you are to your readers.

    • Stephanie Landsem | June 1, 2014 at 8:27 am #

      Thank you so much, Elaine. It means everything to me when someone reads my books and finds meaning in them. I’d appreciate it if you’d consider writing a short review for The Well and The Thief on Amazon. My editors love it!

  12. domain | October 23, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

    There is definately a great deal to know about this topic.

    I really like all of the points you have made.

  13. Jeff | November 22, 2014 at 3:09 pm #

    I have read Jerry Jenkins Biblical character books and I suggested to him about writing a story based on the next younger brother of Jesus and his reply was he has more ideas than time to write and suggested that I write it and so I am doing that I never have written a book, but I am have fun doing just that. I love books that can bring the disciples down to everyday life and make them easy to relate to hopefully then when read the Bible it gives deeper meaning. I know that is what has happened to me and I a glad for authors such as you that write these stories.

    • Stephanie Landsem | December 1, 2014 at 10:00 am #

      Good luck with your writing, Jeff. That sounds like a great story.


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