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Welcome to Wednesday Writers! Today I’m interviewing author Kathy McKinsey. We’ll be talking about her new book, Gifts of Grace, and learning some interesting things about Kathy. She also has an excerpt from the book for your reading pleasure. So without any further ado, let’s welcome Kathy to the blog!

Welcome, Kathy! I see that your new book, Gifts of Grace, is a collection of three novellas. Please tell the readers a bit about the book.

I wanted to challenge myself with this book. I grew up on a farm, and I had fun setting one of the stories on a farm. I am blind, and I wanted to have one of the main characters be blind. This wasn’t as easy as it might sound, but I found this task an excellent project to stretch my writing skills.

You’re blind? How does that work with writing and editing your work?

I use a screen reading program with my computer. With audible speech, it reads to me what I type, other people’s documents, emails and internet articles, etc. I can listen by page, line, word, individual character.

Wow! That’s interesting. I know about dictation to text computer programs or those that read to you. I use one of those programs to listen to what I’ve written, but the programs I’m familiar with don’t show punctuation. What a great tool!

So, how did you come up with the concept for Gifts of Grace?

I have found that God’s grace last much longer than the day of our salvation. He walks with us through every situation every day, covering us and helping us with his grace. I want to show stories of how God continues to pick us up when we fall and strengthen us with his grace throughout our lives as Christians.

Your web page indicates that you’ve written in several genres. Am I correct is saying Gift of Grace is women’s fiction? If so, is this your first book in this genre?

My first book, All My Tears, is also a collection of women’s fiction novellas. My second book, Millie’s Christmas, is a children’s Christmas story.

Do you have a favorite genre in which to write and, if so, why?

I write mostly women’s fiction. I like to write stories that I would want to read.

How did you get started writing?

I started writing stories at about ten and continued to write throughout my teens. Then I didn’t write much for more than 30 years, through college and work and raising a family. When I had to stop working due to health issues, I took up writing again as a new career.

Let’s get some personal info on you:

What is the farthest place from your home that you have visited?

In about 2005 or so, my husband and two of our sons and I went to Los Angeles where my sons participated in a braille competency contest.

The most fun place?

A few years ago, my two adult daughters and I went to Missouri to visit my mother on the farm where I grew up. I think that’s probably the most fun vacation I’ve ever had.

Tell us a little bit about your hobbies outside of writing.

I enjoy knitting and crocheting. I also enjoy making drawings from braille. I follow patterns which use braille symbols to draw pictures of animals, people, vehicles, holiday decorations, many, many things.

Braille drawing? Can you share a little bit about that?

In braille drawings, the pictures make an image which can be seen by sighted people as well as felt because of the braille.  Here is a site which explains this more: https://www.perkins.org/library/for-kids/braille-drawings

That’s cool! I’ve never seen a braille drawing before. Thanks for sharing. Next question—Name three interesting things most people don’t know about you.

I enjoy baking yeast bread; dogs give me so much joy; and, I love to sing.

What would I see if I peeked into your writing office?

You would see my arm chair in my living room, where I sit with my computer on my lap.

Do you have a day job? If so, what is it?

I no longer work outside the home. Besides writing, I proofread and edit for other writers.

Is there anything about Gifts of Grace I haven’t asked that you’d like readers to know?

I want Christians to know that God is always looking to welcome us back, if we’ve moved far away from him, if we turn to come back.

It’s been a pleasure having you here today, Kathy. As you say goodbye, can you leave the readers with an encapsulation of your life’s philosophy? (a quote, a Bible verse, a precept you live by or have tried to instill in your children?)

Psalm 86:5   “O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.”

Thanks for being with us today, Kathy. I’ve enjoyed getting to know you.

Now, here’s a peek at Kathy’s book.

Gifts of Grace

by Kathy McKinsey

Tammy needs a new goal to fill her empty nest, and she needs to find forgiveness for her heart.

Three novellas. Three women search with hungry hearts, and God shows them surprising answers.

Mourning the loss of her baby, Judy flees to the home she abandoned twelve years ago. The family farm. Is something new waiting for her at this old home?

Iola, who is blind, struggles to prove herself as a professional and to be the mother her sixteen-year-old daughter needs during a rough time.

Watch as God opens doors these women would never expect.

Excerpt:

“All right, my family.” Chris clapped his hands. “Let’s get this tree decorating party going.” He pulled the lid off a box. “Here, we have a plethora of stars to choose from to shine at the top.”

“A plethora, huh?” I wound my way through the clutter on the floor to join him. “That means we probably have some that’ll go in the throw away pile too. Evan, go tell Sony to come down and join the party.”

Esther screeched.

“Oh no, I stepped on the kitty’s tail.” Stooping, I grabbed her up and gave her a squeeze. “It’s your own fault, cat. You know better than to get in the way of my feet.”

“Here’s something that’ll cheer the kitty up, a whole chain of bells.” The ringing concoction sailed across the room as Chris tossed it, and Esther hurried to jump out of my arms.

“I hope it wasn’t something we wanted to keep.” I grinned. “We’ll never see it in one piece again.”

“Mama? Daddy?” Evan’s feet raced down the stairs. “Sony’s not here.”

“What? Of course, she’s here. I just saw her half an hour ago.” I scrunched my nose. “Maybe an hour.”

“Check in the basement.” Chris made his way to the tree. “I’ve found the perfect star. Ev, she’s probably doing laundry.”

“Sony, Sony, Sony.” Evan screeched his way down the basement stairs.

“I didn’t hear her go down.” A prickle of fear touched the back of my neck.

“She’s not there.” Evan slammed the basement door. “Sony, where are you?”

“Chris?”

“I’ll check her room.”

He was back in an instant. “Her wallet’s gone. Her keys. The shoes she wore today.”

Want to read more? You can find Gifts of Grace at Amazon

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About the Author:

Kathy McKinsey grew up on a pig farm in Missouri, and although she’s lived in cities for more than 40 years, she still considers herself a farm girl.She’s been married to Murray for 33 years, and they have five adult children.Kathy’s had two careers before writing—stay-at-home-Mom and rehabilitation teacher for the blind.She lives in Lakewood, Ohio with her husband and two of her children. Besides writing, she enjoys activities with her church, editing for other writers, braille transcribing, crocheting, knitting, and playing with the cat and dog.

Connect with Kathy on her website