The Writer’s Desk with Gabrielle Meyer
Gabrielle Meyer lives in central Minnesota on the banks of the upper Mississippi River with her husband and four children. As an employee of the Minnesota Historical Society, she fell in love with the rich history of her state and enjoys writing fictional stories inspired by real people, places, and events. Connect with Gabrielle on her website, Instagram, Facebook, BookBub, and sign up for her newsletter.
Q&A with Gabrielle Meyer
TG: Everyone always asks for an interesting fact, we’re going to flip the question. What is one boring fact about yourself?
GM: I live less than a mile from where I was born and less than half a mile from where I grew up.
TG: Where did you get the inspiration for When the Day Comes?
GM: I’ve always been a fan of time-travel books and movies, but one of the things that most of them have in common is the protagonist falls into another time period and struggles to get back to their “normal” life.
As I was thinking about this one day, a thought came to me: what if the person’s “normal” life was both time periods? What if they fell asleep and woke up in their other life, going back and forth each day? Instead of struggling to get back to “normal,” what if they had to choose between two equally fulfilling lives? The moment I began to think about it, my imagination went wild with possibilities.
TG: Do you have any habits or rituals as a writer?
GM: I can’t think of any. I started writing when my children were seven, five, two, and two, and I learned very quickly that if I wanted to find time to write, I had to be flexible. I’ve written in almost every room of our house, with televisions blaring, children and pets climbing over me, in the midst of Nerf-bullet fights, neighborhood children running in and out, kids pounding on the piano, and my husband remodeling in the next room. I’ve written in restaurants, coffee shops, libraries, gymnasiums, vehicles, parks, churches, and by the beach. All I need is a computer and my phone (to look up research questions).
TG: What habits would you encourage others to take up to be a more productive writer?
GM: It’s the age-old debate between plotting or pantsing through a story—but the reason I can write six books a year is because I plot before I start writing. I have a rough outline of my story laid out, with character sketches, so when I sit down to write, I know where my story is going and what I need to accomplish that day. It also eliminates a lot of revisions, which gives me time to work on a new story.
TG: What do you snack on or drink while writing?
GM: A glass of water, but that’s about it. As a mom of four teens and preteens who homeschools, I only get about three hours to work a day, so my writing time has to be productive. When I sit down to write, I usually keep my hands on the keyboard the entire time! I might stop between scenes to grab a sip of water, but that’s about it.
TG: How do you overcome writer’s block?
GM: I plot out my story, scene by scene, so I have a rough overview. I’ve never had writer’s block because I know exactly where the story needs to go next.
TG: Are you an “edit-as-you-go” writer or do you wait until the very end before you do any editing?
GM: Each day, I try to write at least one chapter (about 3,500 words). The next day, before I write, I read and edit what I wrote the day before. It helps refresh my memory and bring me back into the right frame of mind for my character. When I’m done with the book, I go back through one more time and edit it again.
TG: What would you say is the most common mistake new writers make?
GM: Staying with the same story for too long. I’ve seen some writers who have worked on the same story for five-ten years. The best thing you can do is set that story aside and start on the next one, and then the next. You grow as a writer with each story. After you have a few under your belt, go back and revise that first story with all the skills you’ve developed.
TG: What is the best piece of writing advice you’re ever received?
GM: Use your disappointments and rejections to fuel your passion, don’t let them derail you.
TG: What is coming up next for you?
GM: I just finished the second book in my Timeless Series, releasing with Bethany House in May 2023. I’m now working on one of two cozy mysteries I’m writing for Guideposts and then I have two more Love Inspired romances to write this year.
Click on the image below to watch my conversation with Gabrielle Meyer!
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More about When the Day Comes
How will she choose, knowing all she must sacrifice?
Libby has been given a powerful gift: to live one life in 1774 Colonial Williamsburg and the other in 1914 Gilded Age New York City. When she falls asleep in one life, she wakes up in the other. While she’s the same person at her core in both times, she’s leading two vastly different lives.
In Colonial Williamsburg, Libby is a public printer for the House of Burgesses and the Royal Governor, trying to provide for her family and support the Patriot cause. The man she loves, Henry Montgomery, has his own secrets. As the revolution draws near, both their lives—and any hope of love—are put in jeopardy.
Libby’s life in 1914 New York is filled with wealth, drawing room conversations, and bachelors. But the only work she cares about—women’s suffrage—is discouraged, and her mother is intent on marrying her off to an English marquess. The growing talk of war in Europe only complicates matters.
But Libby knows she’s not destined to live two lives forever. On her twenty-first birthday, she must choose one path and forfeit the other—but how can she choose when she has so much to lose in each life?