LAURIE: Andrea, I’m so glad you could join us today to talk about your new book and your writing journey. First, can you tell us a bit about your book and what inspired you to write this story?
ANDREA: Saving the Statue of Liberty: Saint Michael the Archangel Academy, Mission 2 is a middle grade novel which combines adventure, Christian values, and information about the Statue of Liberty. John Jenkins and Team Liberty must uncover clues and solve puzzles as they race against Team Mischief to save our famous symbol of liberty.
I was inspired to write the book after our family visited Ellis Island, Liberty Science Center, and the Statue of Liberty. I love the idea of ordinary kids, like John Jenkins, who can do extraordinary things.
LAURIE: And is this the first book you have coming out with Anaiah Press?
ANDREA: This is my second book with Anaiah Press. My first book is Saving Mount Rushmore: Saint Michael the Archangel Academy, Mission 1.
LAURIE: What led you to publish with Anaiah Press?
ANDREA: I pitched my book to an Anaiah editor at the Catholic Writers Guild Conference. She asked me to send the manuscript and I’m happy to say she liked it. It fit in with their goal to expand the Anaiah Adventures line.
LAURIE: What draws you to write middle grade adventure?
ANDREA: I guess I’m still a kid at heart. I also have twelve-year-old twins, and I enjoy reading the adventure books that they read. I decided to write one myself, grounded by the principles of faith and patriotism.
LAURIE: Are there any authors who’ve influenced you in your writing? Do you have any favourite authors?
ANDREA: Growing up, I loved the Encyclopedia Brown series by Donald J. Sobol as well as Nancy Drew. As I grew older, my taste turned to anything by Jane Austen, especially Pride and Prejudice.
LAURIE: How long has it taken you to get published?
ANDREA: My first book is At Heaven’s Edge: True Stories of Faith and Rescue. A literary agent accepted my proposal in December 2013. The book went under contract in June 2014 and was released in 2015.
I feel incredibly blessed that my second heaven book, On Heaven’s Doorstep: God’s Help in Times of Crisis, True Stories from a First Responder, came out in May. The two books describe true inspirational experiences from my volunteer work as an emergency medical technician.
LAURIE: Thank you for telling us about them. I enjoy true stories about personal miracles. In an earlier part of my life I was a first responder as well. Now, what advice would you give to other writers trying to break in to the Christian market?
ANDREA: Include a Christian theme without being preachy. Be subtle rather than beating the reader over the head. Be patient and don’t give up. Good things take time to come to fruition.
LAURIE: What hobbies do you like to do when you’re not writing? Anything else you’d like our readers to know about you and your work?
ANDREA: I enjoy volunteering as an emergency medical technician on my local first aid squad. I also enjoy reading and taking day trips with my family. I’m a physical therapist and specialize in women’s health, orthopedics, osteoporosis, and lymphedema. I squeeze in a few minutes of writing whenever I can.
LAURIE: Where can your readers find you on social media?
ANDREA: Readers can find me online at www.andreajorodgers.com and on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/AndreaJoRodgers/)
LAURIE: And finally, how long do we have to wait for your next book?
ANDREA: Currently, I have my fingers crossed as I’m waiting to hear back on a proposal. In the meantime, I’m keeping busy working on another writing project.
LAURIE: And here is the beautiful cover of Andrea’s book, Saving the Statue of Liberty: St. Michael the Archangel Academy, Mission 2, along with it’s back cover blurb and the link to buy it on Amazon.com. Thank you for being here today Andrea! If anyone has any questions for Andrea about any of these three books, she'll be around during the day.
John Jenkins is on probation at Saint Michael the Archangel Academy. That means one wrong move on his part, and he’ll be tossed off Team Liberty like wilted lettuce on a soggy hamburger bun.
But Team Mischief, up to their old tricks again, plans to vandalize the Statue of Liberty. Knowing his team needs him, John snags the opportunity to prove himself worthy of the academy. Together, Team Liberty must uncover clues and solve puzzles at Liberty State Park and Ellis Island as they race against the mischievous trio to save the universal symbol of freedom from harm.
BUY LINK: a.co/d/g3cXkKg
Author Bio: Andrea Jo Rodgers holds a clinical doctorate in physical therapy and has worked as a physical therapist for over twenty years. She has been a volunteer EMT for more than thirty years and has responded to over 7,500 first aid and fire calls. She lives on the east coast with her husband, two children, and their Dachshund. Andrea enjoys reading, biking, writing stories, and day trips with her family.
You can find Andrea at:
I'm a military wife who's raised two wonderful special needs children to adulthood. We've lived all over Canada and are still on that journey. When I'm not writing, I can be found spinning, knitting, and hanging out with my dogs.