Author J.L. Campbell explores a not-often-talked-about topic in her latest release, Sacrifice.
Tell me about your latest book.
Sacrifice is an inspirational novel about the effects that losing a child can have on a family and a marriage. Dane Whitby and his wife go through a harrowing experience that some couples do not survive. The novel speaks to our faith journey, the mistakes we make, the healing process, and the fact that we take different paths on our way back to God.
What inspired you to write it?
The first book in the series, DNA, had me thinking about what Dane Whitby’s life might look like after he declined to accept his paternal responsibility. Dane found out after seven years that he fathered a son, but felt he wasn’t in a position to be part of his child’s life. The question “What if?” resulted in Sacrifice.
When did you fall in love with the written word?
That would have been when I was little more than a toddler. My mother was instrumental in buying books and encouraging me to read. Aside from that, there was also a book distribution company close to my home. One of their workers lived on the same property as us and used to bring home the covers from the stripped books. All of us children were fascinated and used to play with them. My love of reading grew even more when I started school and discovered the library.
What’s the best part of being an author?
Sharing a story that people enjoy and can relate to makes producing a novel well worth the time, emotional investment, and energy. I cannot describe the satisfaction that comes from creating a story from the seed of an idea and developing it into a finished product that has layers and subliminal messages that readers pick up from what I do only on a subconscious level at times.
What’s the hardest part of being an author?
Finding the energy and discipline to continue writing when it feels like I’m not making a mark with my stories can be challenging. I’ve learned to celebrate my wins and find like-minded people for sharing knowledge and wisdom about the book publishing world. Years ago, I read a book about setting targets as a writer. I’ve given myself permission to stop publishing if I don’t meet my version of success after I’ve written one hundred books.
What books have you read lately and loved?
I’ve enjoyed the stories in the Knights of the Castle world, in which I also have a story—Knight of Paradise Island. Lately, I’ve been delving into non-fiction and am still finding nuggets in Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Change Your Life Before 8:00 A.M. There is also a version for writers. There are simple truths captured in these books that make me wonder why I haven’t been doing more to maximize my time and efforts in a more productive way.
What book(s) are you most excited to read next?
Good question, especially since I have more than fourteen hundred of them tied to my Kindle account. I’ve picked up The Rules of Engagement for Overcoming Your Past by Dr. Cyndi Trimm, which I started a couple of days ago. I’ve found so much food for thought in that small book.
The Bonesetter’s Daughter and The Kitchen God’s Wife by Amy Tan are also at the top of my queue. Plus, I recently bought The Book in Room 316 and More to Life by ReShonda Tate Billingsley. I’m late to the party, I know, but I never can resist book sales.
What’s next for you?
I’ve been fooling myself that I can be successful at NaNoWriMo this year, but November, which is National Novel Writing Month, has been good to me over the years. I’m produced 50,000 words several times, which is a great start to a novel.
I want to write Dominic’s Pride, Book 3 in the Virtues & Vices series. I’m testing a theory. Usually, the series books I write come a year apart. This time, I’m trying a rapid-release formula to see if it makes a difference to readers. There’s also the advantage of jumping back into writing a story while the characters are fresh in my mind. Dominic’s Pride is scheduled for release in March of 2021.
Do you have anything you would like to add?
My publication journey over the last eleven years has taken me in several directions. I’ve written romance in several sub-genres, women’s fiction, and young adult fiction, so Sacrifice was a different experience.
Loss, grief, and marital challenges are some of the themes covered in the novel. While the book may be intense, I hope readers will be satisfied with the story, which I wrote exactly as it came to me. I didn’t want to dress it up because I would have lost some of the essence of the story I set out to tell.
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J.L. Campbell writes contemporary, paranormal, and sweet romance, romantic suspense, women’s fiction, as well as new and young adult novels. Campbell, who hails from Jamaica, has penned over thirty books. When she’s not writing, Campbell adds to her extensive collection of photos detailing Jamaica’s flora and fauna. Visit her on the web at www.joylcampbell.com
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