Please welcome Natasha, a brand new author from Rebel Ink! You’re welcome to ask her questions and connect through the comments!
- You are going to be new to many of my readers. Tell us about yourself.
When I’m not writing, I love sharing in experiences with my family and friends, hosting get-togethers or traveling with them, and going to events. In my quiet time, I always love reading a good book, conducting genealogy research, trying new recipes, playing guitar, gaming, browsing Pinterest, and listening to music. I love singing in the car, and you’ll find me listening to my favorite artist – Sir Paul McCartney!
Elaina Ellis would do anything to protect her family – even if it means keeping secrets from them.
Elaina has always been a dutiful daughter. When her father suddenly dies in the summer of 1905, she begrudgingly leaves the safety of her life in Philadelphia to return to her hometown. Once there, Elaina encounters the very man responsible for her leaving her home to begin with, as well as a newcomer she distrusts—a man who seems determined to stand in the way of her future.
When the newcomer turns out to be yet another man in town Elaina feels she must answer to, she’s all too glad to leave him, and everyone else in her small, narrow-minded town, and return to Philadelphia, where she feels she belongs. Convinced that no man should dictate the course of her life, she expects to find solace from her grief and pain in the big city, but is sorely disappointed when everything starts to fall apart.
Will the secrets she harbors be her undoing? Will she ever truly find a place she can call home?
- What started your love of writing?
Honestly, fiction writing started as a means of entertaining myself during an extended trip overseas with my family when I was 8 years old. With nothing else to do, I would dream up alternate endings to my favorite television shows. So many times, I would think about what the characters were up against, and how they could have done things differently, and create new storylines accordingly. I did love books at an early age, and if anything, I’d considered myself a poet or a lyricist back then. I was 12 when I began aspiring to become a writer by profession, which was also actually when I first got the inspiration for The Ellises!
- Do you write in more than one genre – tell us a little about each one and the book you’re working on in each.
Fiction as a whole of interest to me; however, the older I get the more important I find inspirational fiction to be, which is why A Place to Call Home is just that, and I could think of no better way than to have it be my debut novel. Writing historical fiction is also a first for me, but it is something I enjoy as a reader and as a genealogy fanatic. I do have other storylines from contemporary inspirational fiction, and Christian Chick Lit in mind as well.
- Have you attended any writing conference or classes. Tell us about some that and some that have been especially helpful.
I haven’t, but plan to in the future! When I was a senior in high school, I enrolled in a freelance writing certification program on the side, which is how I got my career off the ground and landed two completely different writing gigs that have helped shape what I do most – I wrote (non-fiction) website content and had my first article published in a Christian magazine.
- Are you a member of any writing groups?
No, but I plan to be!
- How attached do you get to your characters? Do you know what happens after the book ends?
I see elements of my characters in myself or others in my life, so I frequently am thinking of how my characters would think or act to a given situation I experience, which leads to thinking up new ideas. I have to get into “character mode” and when I do, I envision myself as each of the characters in some way. Usually I know what happens after the book ends, but it sometimes can take a little while for me to envision it. When I do, it’s the lead-in for the next storyline.
- Describe your perfect writing day.
The perfect writing day to me is when I can be in a scenic setting overlooking woods or water, where I have uninterrupted time to write as soon as I wake up and have the most energy to be creative. Having free access to food and drink as the mood strikes is essential, because writing sure makes me hungry and thirsty!
- Could you tell us the one question you wish people would ask about your writing and don’t forget the answer.
Where do your inspirations come from?
NATASHA L. POLAK (nee Kohlhoff) writes and copy-edits non-fiction articles as well as Inspirational fiction, Inspirational Historical fiction and Christian Chick Lit novels, and is the founder of The Barbie Girls Project.
Her earliest writings were poems that appeared in school publications and local newspapers. Since then, she has successfully written and edited for a variety of websites, newsletters, and in-print magazines for over 20 years.
In addition to her debut fiction novel, The Ellises Book 1:A Place to Call Home, she has also authored the e-book “10 Toxic Ingredients That Should Never Touch Your Face” for Trevida.com in 2016, self-published a devotional “Love, God” in 2009, and was a contributing writer with “The Wise Guides: The Fan Navigator to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway” in 2008.
Originally from Boston, MA, Natasha spent her childhood in Manchester, NH, but has resided in Indianapolis, IN since her teens. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have one daughter and a cat whom they refer to as their second child.