Cheryl Wyatt has hit the ground running with the release of her debut novel, A Soldier's Promise and the sequel, A Soldier's Family. Both books received Top Picks from Romantic Times Magazine and deservedly so.
Cheryl is a lot of fun so after you learn more about her in the interview below do check out her website and blog, Squirrel's Treehouse.
Over to you, Cheryl:~
If you could have chosen your own name, what would it be?
SOMETHING EXOTIC. LOL! I’VE ALWAYS ENVIED WOMEN WHO HAVE BOYS’ NAMES..SUCH AS “SAM” ETC
Your first pet’s name?
A PAIR OF DOBERMANS NAMED JAKE AND JASPER I THINK. I WAS A BABY-TODDLER WHEN WE HAD THEM IN NEW MEXICO. THOSE DOGS LOVED ME. THEY WERE MY GUARDIANS. MY MOM HAS PICTURES OF ME SITTING IN THE ROCK GARDENS WITH THE DOGS ON EITHER SIDE OF ME. BOTH OF THEM LOOK LIKE CHIPMUNKS BECAUSE I HAD CRAMMED BOTH THEIR MOUTHS FULL OF ROCKS AND DIRT AND STICKS…AND THEY LET ME! DIDN’T CHEW MY HAND OFF AND I PROBABLY STUCK MY ARM INTO THEIR MOUTHS UP TO THE ELBOWS. LOL!
Your best friend’s name in primary(elementary) school?
NANNETTE HOLMES FROM NEW MEXICO.
Did you have a special toy that went everywhere with you when you were young? Please describe.
YES, MY SISTER LISA. GUFFAW! I TRIED TO DRAG HER EVERYWHERE. LITERALLY.
If you could be an animal for one day, what would you be and why?
A MUTANT ANIMAL CALLED A CHEAGLE. THAT IS AN EAGLE/CHEETAH MIX. PARTLY BECAUSE I CAN’T CHOOSE JUST ONE AND PARTLY BECAUSE I WOULD WANT TO BE ABLE TO BOTH FLY AND RUN LIKE THE WIND.
If you could meet a famous person, who would it be?
MEL GIBSON AND HE WOULD BE ASKING ME ABOUT A MOVIE DEAL FOR MY WINGS OF REFUGE SERIES. LOL! OR I’D LIKE TO MEET LAURA BUSH BECAUSE I ADMIRE HER STAND FOR LITERACY. OR BRITNEY SPEARS SO I COULD PRAY FOR HER AND OFFER PARENTING TIPS.
If you were stranded on a desert island what one object would you want with you? (Besides your Bible)
UM, CAN IT BE A PERSON? IF SO, I’D LIKE IT TO BE A MUTANT MALE. HIS NAME WOULD BE GEORGE KEVIN COSTNER EADS. BUT ONLY IF MY HUBBY PERISHED IN THE SHIPWRECK. OTHERWISE, I’D WANT THE OBJECT TO BE HIM. LOL!
If you could only have one favourite food to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?
MY MOM’S CHEESY BEEF TACOS WITH TOMATOES OF THE NON-SALMONELLA SORT, OR HEART ATTACK-ON-A-PLATE CHEESEBURGERS FROM THE GRILL.
What's your favorite ice cream flavor?
HATE ICE CREAM. BUT I’LL TAKE THE BANANAS, CARAMEL, HOT FUDGE, PECANS AND WHIPPED CREAM FROM A BANANA SPLIT ANY DAY! A
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A DARN FAST RACE CAR DRIVER AND A BOOK WRITER.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
AUSTRALIA TO A CRICKET GAME OR BACK TO INDIA TO LOVE ON THE TSUNAMI ORPHANS AGAIN. HAWAII WITH HUBBY FOR HOT, HOT… VOLCANOES. WELL? WHAT DID YOU THINK I WAS ABOUT TO SAY? HE LOVES FIRE AND SERIOUSLY WANTS TO SEE A VOLCANO UP CLOSE. SO I’D GO WITH HIM. A CRUISE THERE WOULD BE NICE. BACK TO DISNEYLAND WITH MY ENTIRE FAMILY TOO.
Besides God, who has influenced you the most?
TOO MANY TO NAME.
What's your favorite book?
PASSION FOR JESUS BY MIKE BICKLE. THE APPLAUSE OF HEAVEN BY MAX LUCADO FOR NON-FICTION. FOR FICTION: COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO BY ALEXANDRE DUMAS.
What part of your daily routine do you enjoy most?
What's your favorite movie?
TOO MANY TO NAME. PASSION FOR JESUS. THE GUARDIAN. SCHINDLER’S LIST. THE GREEN MILE. FRIED GREEN TOMATOES. AUGUST RUSH. RAISING HELEN. SERENITY. MORE.
Where's the most interesting place you have been?
AN ICE CAVE IN GRANTS, NEW MEXICO
What's your most fervent prayer?
FOR EVERYONE I KNOW TO GO TO HEAVEN
What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
WENT TO INDIA ON A MONTH LONG MISSION TRIP WITHOUT MY FAMILY. DRAGGED RACED IN HIGH SCHOOL. (AND WON!)
What gift have you received that you will always treasure?
AN OUTFIT FROM INDIA AND GIFTS FROM THE TSUNAMI ORPHANS. LITTLE SHELLS FROM THE BEACHES WHERE THEIR PARENTS DIED. SHELLS TO REMIND ME TO PRAY FOR THEM.
What is your favorite Bible verse (or "one" of your favorites) and what does it mean to you?
Jer 29:11 because it’s filled with hope and reminds me of God’s promises
Zeph 3:17 because I love to know he sings and dances over us with joy and that he is mighty to save
Gal 2:20 because Jesus means everything to me
Psalms 91-1-4 because I have a strong sense of being rescued by God and hidden in the shelter of His wings
TOO MANY TO NAME BUT PROBABLY WHEN SOME MEAN BOYS THREW A LEAKING BLUE PEN AT ME. IT LANDED IN MY BLONDE HAIR AND WOULDN’T COME OUT FOR WEEKS. AND BLUE HAIR WAS not THE IN THING AT THE TIME. LOL
How did your husband propose to you?
SWEATING, SHAKING AND BITING THE EDGE OF A BLANKET. DON’T ASK. IT’S THE ONLY TIME I’VE SEEN HIM NERVOUS. LOL.
What was the best advice you received on marriage before you were married?
UM..IT’S KIND OF OBSCENE. BUT THERE WERE TWO THINGS. THE OBSCENE THING WAS FROM HIS GRANDFATHER WHO TOLD ME THAT I NEEDED TO ALWAYS KEEP IN MIND THAT MEN HAD TWO HEADS BUT ONLY ENOUGH OXYGEN TO SUPPLY ONE AT A TIME.
AND SECONDLY, FROM MY PASTOR WHO SAID THAT I NEED TO LOOK TO JESUS TO MEET ALL MY NEEDS AND NOT MY HUSBAND TO DO IT. THAT THINGS WOULD GET OUT OF BALANCE IF I BEGIN TO DEPEND ON MY HUSBAND MORE THAN DEPENDING ON GOD
What is the best gift your hubby (or someone) ever gave you?
MY FRIEND KELLY GAVE ME A REAL ALABASTER JAR FROM FRANCE WITH ISRAELI NARD INSIDE OF IT
MY HUBBY GAVE ME MY ENGAGEMENT RINGS, MARRIAGE AND MY CHILDREN.
MY GRANDPARENTS GAVE ME MY PARENTS
MY PARENTS GAVE ME LIFE AND A SISTER WHO IS ALSO A BEST FRIEND
AND GOD GAVE ME ALL OF THE ABOVE.
Ask each of your children one thing they think is special about you and share it with us, please!
ENO: THAT SHE TEACHES US ABOUT GOD AND THE BIBLE AND HOW TO PRAY AND SHE LAUGHS A LOT, LIKE ALL THE TIME, SHE LAUGHS
RANDA: THAT SHE, WELL I DON’T KNOW BECAUSE SHE CAN’T REALLY COOK MACARONI LIKE SHE SHOULD AND SHE BURNED THE MICROWAVE AND DADDY HAD TO GO GET ANOTHER ONE
MAGNUM: THAT SHE GAVE ME A ZACH EFRON POSTER FOR MY WALL
A Soldier’s Family
Tell us a little of the inspiration behind this story.
A SOLDIER’S FAMILY WAS INSPIRED BY A HARD SEASON IN MY LIFE WHEN I WENT THROUGH A PERIOD OF CHRONIC, EXCRUCIATING PAIN THAT WAS UNRELENTING FOR THREE YEARS SOLID. NO BREAK, NOT EVEN FOR A SECOND. IT TAUGHT ME UTTER AND COMPLETE DEPENDENCE ON GOD. THE REPAIR OF THE PROBLEM CAUSING THE PAIN REQUIRED A COMPLETE RECONSTRUCTION OF MY HIP BONES AND SOCKET, PART OF MY FEMUR AND PELVIS AND I’M A RECIPIENT OF DONOR BONE. I TOOK ALL MY PAIN AND PHYSICAL THERAPY WOES OUT ON POOR, DEFENSELESS MANNY, THE HERO IN THE BOOK. SO THE BOOK WAS THERAPEUTIC FOR ME. I’M GLAD IT SOLD. BUT IF IT HADN’T, WRITING IT WOULDN’T HAVE BEEN IN VAIN BECAUSE IT ALLOWED ME DISTRACTION FROM THE DISCOMFORT I WAS GOING THROUGH.
Describe Manny, Celia and Javier in one word each
So many of Celia’s decisions are driven by fear ~ is that something you relate to?
OH, YES! I BATTLE FAITH OVER FEAR OFTEN. OVER SAFETY, HEALTH, AND UNKNOWNS OF THE FUTURE. ETC. BUT I HAVE A WONDERFUL HUSBAND WHO BALANCES ME OUT AND WHO ALWAYS EXHORTS ME THAT I CAN’T LIVE MY LIFE IN FEAR AND I HAVE A GOD WHO IS DETERMINED NOT TO LET FEAR RULE ME. SO THERE IS HOPE. LOL!
Why military romances?
BECAUSE THOSE ARE THE STORIES THAT STEEPLE HILL HAPPENED TO CONTRACT FIRST. I HAVE HAD A FASCINATION WITH THE MILITARY SINCE MY DAD WAS A VIETNAM VETERAN. HE WOULDN’T ALWAYS TALK ABOUT THE WAR SO THAT CREATED AN INSATIABLE DESIRE TO UNDERSTAND IT. I GUESS I NEVER GREW OUT OF THAT CURIOSITY. ALSO, THE PJs (PARARESCUE JUMPERS) ARE MEDICAL AND SO AM I. SO THAT MADE ME DRAWN TO STUDY THEM AND MADE THE RESEARCH EASIER BECAUSE I AM ALSO AN RN WHO PRACTICED FOR 15+ YEARS BEFORE WRITING FICTION. I LIKE TO WRITE ANYTHING ACTION AND ADVENTURE DRIVEN. ACTION-DRIVEN ROMANCE. I LIKE WRITING ABOUT CHARACTERS WITH UNIQUE CAREERS. AND I HAVE A
HEART FOR OUR MILITARY, THOSE WHO SERVE AND THEIR FAMILIES AND I HOPED TO HONOR THEM. I WAS RAISED WITH A GREAT RESPECT FOR OUR MILITARY AND COME FROM A VERY PATRIOTIC FAMILY. I LIKE WRITING ABOUT RESCUERS…AND PJs’ MOTTO IS SIMILAR TO THE COAST GUARD: THEY RISK THEIR LIVES SO OTHERS MAY LIVE. THAT APPEALED TO ME AND I WANTED TO FEATURE THEM IN MY BOOKS.
Tell us about upcoming books in your Wings of Refuge series, please.
TWO HAVE RELEASED IN 2008:
( A SOLDIER’S PROMISE-JAN 2008 & A SOLDIER’S FAMILY-MAR 2008)
AND SO FAR, THREE MORE ARE SLOTTED TO RELEASE IN 2009 FROM
STEEPLE HILL LOVE INSPIRED. THEY CAN BE PURCHASED ANYWHERE BOOKS ARE SOLD ONCE THEY RELEASE.
READY-MADE-FAMILY (BEN’S STORY) APRIL-2009
A SOLDIER’S REUNION (NOLAN’S STORY) JUNE-2009
YET-TO-BE-TITLED (AARON’S STORY) OCTOBER-2009 (TENTATIVE DATE)
EACH OF THESE ARE STAND ALONE BOOKS, MEANING PEOPLE NEEDN’T HAVE READ THE FIRST BOOKS IN THE SERIES TO START. EACH BOOK IS ITS OWN STORY. WHAT LINKS THE SERIES TOGETHER IS EACH STORY FEATURES A MAN FROM THE SEVEN MAN PARARESCUE TEAM. EACH GUY HAS HIS OWN STORY. THERE WILL POSSIBLY BE 8 PJ STORIES IF ALL OF THEM GET CONTRACTED SINCE AARON WAS ACTUALLY A COMMANDER OVER THE TEAM.
THE OTHER THING LINKING THE STORIES TOGETHER IS THAT THEY’RE ALL SET IN A FICTIONAL TOWN IN ILLINOIS CALLED REFUGE.
BEN’S STORY IS A ROMANCE ABOUT A SINGLE MOTHER AND HER DAUGHTER WHO BECOME STRANDED IN REFUGE AND BEN FEELS DRAWN TO HELP THEM.
NOLAN’S STORY IS ABOUT HIGH SCHOOL SWEETHEARTS REUNITING
AARON’S STORY IS ABOUT A SINGLE FATHER, A WIDOWER OF TWIN BOYS AND THE HEROINE IS THEIR NANNY
FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THEIR RELEASES, I HOPE PEOPLE WILL JAUNT OVER TO MY WEB SITE WWW.CHERYLWYATT.COM AND SIGN UP FOR MY NEWSLETTER BY ENTERING THEIR E-MAIL ADDRESS IN THE SPACE PROVIDED THAT SAYS “JOIN CHERYL WYATT’S AUTHOR MAILING LIST”. I RESPECT THEIR PRIVACY AND WILL NOT SHARE E-MAIL ADDRESSES WITH ANYONE. I HOLD CONTESTS WITH GREAT PRIZES THAT ARE ONLY AVAILABLE TO MY NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIBERS.
IN ADDITION, I HAVE UPDATES ON FICTIONAL REFUGE EVER SATURDAY FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF PSYCH THE CAT WHO SKITTERS THROUGH THE STORY. THAT URL IS WWW.SCROLLSQUIRREL.BLOGSPOT.COM
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HELPING TO GET THE WORD OUT ABOUT MY BOOKS! IT HAS BEEN AN ABSOLUTE HONOR DOING THIS INTERVIEW. YOUR QUESTIONS WERE FUN AND UNIQUE!
Thanks Cheryl - back atcha!!
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Buy Cheryl's books at Amazon