Saturday, September 27, 2014

Amber Schamel Interview

Today we're interviewing historical author Amber Schamel.
Bestselling author Amber Schamel writes riveting stories that bring HIStory to life. She has a passion for history, books and her Savior. This combination results in what her readers call "historical fiction at its finest". A homeschool graduate from a family of 12 children, Amber found her calling early in life. First published at age 21, she has continued to hone her craft. Between ministry, family and working in their family businesses, Amber loves to connect with readers. Find her on the Stitches Thru Time blog, or on any of the major social media sites.

Amber, can you tell us about your new release, The Messiah's Sign?
The Messiah's Sign is the second book in the Days of Messiah series. It follows the storyline of Book One, but from the husband's point of view. Here's what it's about:
Dreams…they shouldn’t bother him, but when Tyrus’ worst nightmare is vindicated, he has no choice but to face reality. His wife has been unfaithful, and God has punished her with the most feared disease in the land: leprosy. Banishing her to the leper colony, Tyrus struggles to raise their son alone and protect him from a merciless outlaw. But when Malon begins following the teacher from Nazareth, what remains of their business and reputation is at stake. Can Tyrus save his son from the beguiling lies of a false Messiah before he loses the only thing he has left?
The book releases on October 16th, so be sure to add it to your To-Read list on Goodreads!

What sparked this story?
Book one started as a short story, but a lot of people told me I should expand it. I picked up the story and began thinking about what the entire story would be like, and that's when the Lord drew back the curtain to show me not only Aaliyah's story at the leper colony, but also the story of her husband and son. Tyrus—as the heartless husband that banishes Aaliyah to the leper colony—is the villain of book one, so I wanted to show readers his side of the story.

What do you want readers to take away from The Messiah's Sign?
As hard as you try, you will never be sufficient on your own. It takes Christ working in you.
For those that have read volume one, I want them to realize that you cannot hate someone until you de-humanize them. The villain of book one becomes the hero of book two, and we see the motivations behind his 'heartless' acts. In truth, Tyrus was doing the best he could. If we can empathize with people in our lives, it will go a LONG way in keeping the roots of bitterness at bay.

What's your favorite genre in which to read?
The same one I write, Christian Historical. But I recently read a Christian cozy mystery that I enjoyed very much. It was The Jane Austen Encounter by Donna F. Crow.
It's the first cozy mystery I've read. I might have found a new genre! Actually, I might have found two...cozy mysteries and Jane Austen based fiction. Lol.

You grew up in a large family, how has that effected your writing?
Obviously growing up in a big family, with a job and a ministry, puts limits on the time I have to spend writing. But honestly, growing up in a big family has benefited me in many, many ways. I have had lots of experience telling stories, I have TONS of story fodder, a lot more people to base characters on, lots of people to observe, emotions to learn from, and on and on. Growing up in a large family has also helped me with public speaking, because it's public speaking every time I ask "please pass the salt."

Do you have a favorite writer?
I really enjoy Susan J. Reinhardt, Max Lucado, Julie Klassen and Francine Rivers.

If you had to come up with a book title to describe your life, what would it be?
Wow, that is a great question! I'm going to start using that one too. ;)
It would either be "But for the Grace of God" or "The Only Thing That's Good in Me is Jesus."

What are you working on next?
I am finishing up a really fun series with three other historical authors on the signers of the Declaration of Independence.
I'm also setting to work on a Christmas story set during the Civil War entitled The Christmas Pardon.
In the aftermath of the Civil War, a young lawyer battles with the U.S. Supreme court. In what seemed to be a Christmas miracle, he had secured a pardon for his friend from Lincoln himself. The army executed the boy anyway. On the fifteenth anniversary of his death, will the lawyer finally clear his friends name and bring justice to his memory?

I'm running a giveaway for a fan to pick the name of my two main characters! You can enter the giveaway here.

Thank you for joining us today, Amber.
Thank you for hosting me! It's been a pleasure. I'd like to invite each of you to join me in celebrating my new release with the Name-A-Character Giveaway! Enter to for a chance to pick the name of a main character in Amber's upcoming book The Christmas Pardon. Terms and conditions apply.

In the aftermath of the Civil War, a young lawyer battles with the U.S. Supreme court. In what seemed to be a Christmas miracle, he had secured a pardon for his friend from Lincoln himself. The army executed the boy anyway. On the fifteenth anniversary of his death, will the lawyer finally clear his friends name and bring justice to his memory?
Click this photo above to ENTER!


  1. Thanks so much for hosting me today, Natalie! I'm so excited for this giveaway. It will be so much fun to have a fan name a character!

    Amber Schamel
    Bringing HIStory to Life

  2. I love the theme title for your life!

  3. I love the theme title for your life!

  4. Thanks, Debbie. So glad you stopped by!

    Amber Schamel
    Bringing HIStory to Life

  5. So glad you come come today, Amber!! I'm excited about this giveaway, too! What a fun idea!

    Debbie, welcome to the Sweet South Blog! Thanks for coming by!

    Patti J., welcome to the Sweet South Blog! so glad you enjoyed the interview!

  6. Love the "book title" question! Right now my title might be "The Most Impatient Woman in the World."

    It's interesting to see villains used as heroes in later books. But it is quite believable since we are all sinners and God can change each of us.

    Fun interview :)

  7. Courtney, I LOLed at your life title. I feel that way a lot.

    Mine would probably be, "The Waiting Games." HA! I can see it now, a huge tournament where authors from all over the world are selected to compete for a huge publishing deal and the champion is determined by who can wait the longest without crying or stomping his feet. :D

    The villain I'm writing right now is DEFINITELY going to have his own story. I had no plans for that AT ALL until I started working on his character profile. I found out he had good, honorable reasons for everything he did. :/ I couldn't hate him anymore. (Like Amber talked about, I couldn't "dehumanize" him anymore. He was real then, and needed to be loved like anyone else.) So now I'm excited about creating the perfect leading lady whom God will use to heal his wounds and make him want to change and become a better man. I have to be careful, though. I can't let him overshadow the hero. But it's hard, cause he's a redhead. I LOVE redheads, lol.

  8. Haha, Courtney, I can definitely relate to that. Patience is a hard character trait that one must continually work on. :)

    Natalie, I love redheads too. I have four siblings with red hair. Actually, my next book will have my first red headed character. I'm excited about that! You always do such a great job with your characters. I'm sure all your readers will fall in love with them too.

  9. Hi Amber,

    I can't wait for your next book! Days of Messiah hooked me from the first page.

    Wow, I'm so honored that you consider me one of your favorite writers. To be mentioned in the same breath with Lucado, Klassen, and Francine Rivers is humbling to say the least.

    Susan :)

  10. Natalie, I would have to bow out of that tournament. I'm a foot-stomper. ;)


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