I always have to ask: what inspired this story? I know you always select issues to write about, but what brought this issue to your mind?
Kathi: I’ve served in homeless ministries off and on through the years, so I have a heart for this subject. But it was one close to me who had experienced this personally at one time who really challenged me to write about it.
Anne: The story breaks my heart. I know it's fiction, but I also know it's all too true. It sounds like you have personal experience. Do you personally know someone who lost their home to foreclosure and became homeless?
This is very close to what happened to my brother and his family when the economy crashed a few years ago. He lost his job, then their home, and lived in shelters and their car for a while. Thankfully that’s behind them now, but it’s not something you easily forget—nor should you! We all have a heart for this ministry now.
Anne: Why is it that you always select social issues to write about?
Kathi: I believe that’s my calling. Social issues were my passion even before I became a believer at the age of 26. I came of age in SoCal in the ‘60s, so I was naturally passionate about such topics as Civil Rights, women’s rights, the Vietnam war, etc. But though I cared about those topics, I didn’t know the One who was the answer. Now that I do I feel compelled to shine the Light in the darkness every chance I get.
Anne: One of your characters in this book spends a lot of time in prayer. Would you like to share a little about your own prayer time?
Kathi: I try to have at least one prayer warrior in each book. I think it’s vital for people to see the part prayer plays in our everyday lives. The primary reason I get up so early (way ahead of the sun!) is so I can have that alone time for prayer and Bible study.
Anne: I know there's a special story, too, regarding the man who was the model for the cover of Unexpected Christmas Hero. Would you share a little about that?
Kathi: Yes, the publisher (New Hope) sent the cover designer and his wife out to try to find a man who resembled the main character in my book, a disabled homeless Vietnam vet named Rick. When they spotted the man who ended up on the cover, they were stunned at how closely he resembled the description of Rick. They asked if he would be willing to pose for the cover, and he readily agreed. Then he went on to tell them he really was homeless! His name is Willard Parker, and he’s a believer who has been separated from his family for years and would love to be reunited with them, especially his grown daughter. He said he is hoping/praying that being on the cover will help make that happen. (You can read more of this story and how you can help at http://kathimacias.com/help-reunite-a-family/.)
Anne: Do you want to share a tidbit about your next book?
Kathi: The next release is The Moses Quilt, the first in our new Quilt series from New Hope Publishers. It will release in January. It is a contemporary story about an interracial couple who struggles with various issues but find them resolved as they learn about the life of Harriet Tubman through a very special quilt built around her life.
Anne: Kathi Macias' books can be found on Christian Book, Amazon, and Barnes and Nobel. Click on the name of the store to be taken to the web pages with her books.
Thanks for your answers to my questions, Kathi. I'm hoping and praying someone who reads this post (or any of the others about this book) will recognize Mr. Parker and that he'll be reunited with his family--that would truly be a Christmas miracle!
If you have questions for Kathi, respond to this post in the comments section below.
I have it on good authority Kathi will give one free hard-copy book to one lucky commenter on this interview or yesterday's book review. AND, IF you respond by October 31 (this year, of course) or BEFORE the end of Amazon's $2.99 sale on Unexpected Christmas Hero, you may have a free kindle copy as her Christmas gift to you if you don't win the hard copy! Wow, thanks, Kathi!
Don't have a Kindle? No problem. You can download the Kindle app on your computer from Amazon for free. (Click HERE)
DON'T FORGET TO INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL!