Monday, March 19, 2012

Interview with author Heather Hummel

Heather Hummel stopped by to do an interview with me and I think you are going to find yourselves big fans of this lovely lady after reading what she has to say! Thank you, Heather, for stopping by!

1.You are a writer, you are a there anything else you would like to tackle?

I should probably learn to cook? Give me any vegetarian breakfast recipe and I’m there…lunch maybe, dinner…it’s usually breakfast again! I never took an interest in cooking, which is a shame when I open my fridge and wonder what do with all that’s in it. I was fortunate to have a boyfriend throughout my twenties who was an amazing cook. I learned a bit from him, but mostly I learned I do better when others cook for me. It gives me more time to write, too.

2.Your photography is amazing. Was this something you were always interested in?

Yes! In high school my three favorite classes were photography, English and oceanography. Now I live in California writing novels and photographing the beaches…hence my self proclaimed title of PhotoNovelist.

3. What can you tell us about the third book in your series? Other than my most favorite, Phil, is making a return, of course.

WISDOM FROM THE HEART is turning into my favorite, but it’s also taking me the longest to write because it’s the most complicated (emotionally) of the three. The protagonist, Jamie, starts out as a fourteen year old who finds out she’s adopted. It alternates chapters between her at fourteen and in her thirties. Like the other two in the Journals from the Heart series, Jamie uses journal writing to work through her emotions and progression. And, ironically she’s a caterer! This is definitely not an autobiography in any way! My mother has assured me I’m not adopted, and I can assure you I can’t cook, let alone cater. This book is really writing itself. Phil, the man every woman falls in love with in WHISPERS FROM THE HEART (present company included), comes in as the musician who Jamie collaborates with on an upcoming event. Let’s just say, her best friend, Trinity, cooked up a way for Jamie and Phil to make music!

You will be the first to know when it’s released this spring!

4. How much of yourself do you put into your characters?

Madison in WHISPERS FROM THE HEART was the most like me because I did teach high school English and incorporated journal writing into my classes, and I was a runner through my thirties until I took up cycling. But, Madison’s life outside the classroom was all hers.

Samantha in WRITE FROM THE HEART quit her day job as an office manager to become a writer and used journal writing to change her life…those are attributes that apply to me as well, but her journey is quite different than mine. However, I wouldn’t complain if my life turned out the same as hers!

5. Who is the first person you called when your first book was published? And how did you celebrate?

Great question! I love original thoughts like this. Technically my first book deal was a nonfiction one through McGraw-Hill. My mother became a model at the age of 65 and the when the media caught wind of it she began to receive emails from women all around the country. I put my novel writing aside (I had just started writing WHISPERS), wrote a book proposal for what became GRACEFULLY: LOOKING AND BEING YOUR BEST AT ANY AGE, sent it to two agents and both wanted it. Within two weeks of pitching to them, we signed with Whimsy Literary Agency in New York and landed a book deal with McGraw-Hill just a few short months later. So, naturally I called my mom first! I also was dating a great guy at the time (come to think of it…he was a lot like Phil!) and he cooked me an amazing dinner to celebrate (see the cooking trend here?).

6. What is it like to ghostwrite for someone? Do you ever feel like yelling "That is my work" afterwards?

I’m not as in love with ghostwriting as I once was for several reasons. I’ve had clients decide at the last minute that they don’t want to go through with actually publishing the book. That’s frustrating! I’ve had clients either provide too little information or alternatively they want to have too much control. I’ve also had some wonderful clients. I’m so focused on my photography and novels right now that I’m not really taking new ghostwriting clients. But, I am doing the design and layout for a company’s 100 year anniversary book…a pictorial history. It’s been a really fun project!

7. What is a typical day of writing like for you?

I tend to do social media in the morning, writing mid-day for clients, photography in the afternoon when the lighting is dimming, and my own writing at night. Some days are really long! But, I love what I do whether it’s for a client, out taking pictures, or my novels. So, a typical day is always rewarding and fun!

8. What is next for you?

I’m working on a photography eBook titled LIFE IN THE IRIS OF THE BEHOLDER that blends my photography with my writing. There’s a teaser video for it on YouTube: and it’s due to release this spring along with WISDOM FROM THE HEART. I’m humbled by the responses I’ve been receiving to my photography on Facebook and have sold quite a few prints already. To be able to blend it with my writing and publishing is just amazing. I’m excited about this photography book because it blends my two talents to entice people to do some inner exploration through images much like I encourage with journal writing. So, it’s a great complement to the Journals from the Heart series in an abstract way. For anyone who’s interested, my photography can be viewed on Flickr

Thanks so much for letting me stop by! Always love visiting your blog!


Heather Hummel is a "photonovelist" who blends her love for photography with her award-winning career as an author. Her published works include:
Journals from the Heart Series:
Whispers from the Heart (2011)
Write from the Heart (2011)
GO BIKE & Other Signs from the Universe (2011)
Gracefully: Looking and Being Your Best at Any Age (McGraw-Hill, 2008),
Messages of Hope and Healing ( Sunpiper Media, 2006)
Blue Ridge Anthology (Cedar Creek, 2007) with David Baldacci and Rita Mae Brown
2009 Mature Media Awards, Merit Award
2009 New York Book Festival, Honorable Mention

Heather's books have appeared in newspapers such as: Publishers Weekly, USA Today and the Washington Post; and in magazines that include: Health, Body & Soul, First, and Spry Living, a combined circulation of nearly 15 million. A graduate with High Distinction from the University of Virginia, Heather holds a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree with concentrations in English and Secondary Education. She is currently earning a Ph.D. in Metaphysical Sciences.

Visit Heather’s website at website
Join Heather’s Facebook Page: Facebook
Follow Heather on Twitter @HeatherHummel:

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  1. What a terrific interview with perceptive questions and great, honest answers. I loved finding out which characters contained most of Heather, and it was interesting to get a take on ghostwriting. Great post, thanks!

  2. Thanks for having me on your blog, Michelle! Had a blast!
    And thanks, Nicky for your wonderful comment!

    Samantha - an end to another fun tour with CLP. ♥

  3. I always love reading about your passions, HH! Great interview Michelle :) XOXO