Today on Writer Wednesday we welcome Amanda Barratt, author of My Dearest Dietrich.
Enter below for a chance to win a copy of My Dearest Dietrich! Winner announced right here next week. Congratulations to, Larinda Floyd, the winner of Kelly Irvin’s Over the Line! Please e-mail my assistant Christen with your mailing address! Note: This post contains affiliate links.
Where Writers Write
When we moved to a new home seven years ago, I knew I wanted to be intentional about crafting a place to create. Deliberately setting aside space adds a sense of purpose to our work. Reserving a corner in a bedroom, a place in a basement or loft, even a portion of a living or dining room, with the intention of “this is where I write” shows we’re taking ourselves as artists seriously. And it removes the excuse of not having a place. The place, once established, is already there. It’s then our job to make use of it.
A corner in the upstairs loft is my writing workspace. A window next to my desk lets in swaths of sunlight on beautiful summer days, and when rain splatters from the sky, I listen to its cadence on the windowpanes.
I love my desk. It’s a Craigslist find and I still remember bringing it home, skimming my fingertips across its surface, and polishing it lovingly. Since then, my desk has housed all manner of items—from three days’ worth of breakfast dishes when I’m rushing from one task to another after a writing session, to stacks of books and giveaway goodies in preparation for book signings, to piles of research books.
While writing My Dearest Dietrich, research books were EVERYWHERE. Now that I’m working on my next book, only the volumes themselves have changed. I “try” to put them away, but inevitably, many days, they end up scattered across my desk at the end of the workday, along with piles of scribbled notes and printed pages from my manuscript.
I also keep my daily planner handy. This year, I’m using My Book Therapy’s My Brilliant Writing Planner. To-do lists save my sanity, and I love this planner, designed with writers in mind.
Just a step away from my desk is bookshelves. It’s a joy having them nearby. Along with research books, favorite novels I’ve read many times and those still on my TBR, line the shelves. Often when I’m stuck during a scene, I pull out one and read a few paragraphs. Sometimes reading well-written words by a skilled author is all it takes to get my own creative juices flowing again. Also on my bookshelves are little slices of memory. A photo of dear friends. My silver sparkly Eiffel Tower ornament. A photo of me holding my first published book. And on the bottom shelf are my books—each one a testament to God’s faithfulness in bringing those works to completion.
I love spending time in this space, and since it’s the only place I currently use for writing sessions, I have many memories there. Typing the first line of my first published novella. Working on the proposal for the book that became My Heart Belongs in Niagara Falls, New York. Writing the final scene of My Dearest Dietrich with tears in my eyes. Cherished moments, all. And though there are also many moments of frustration, stress, and writer’s block, it’s a joy to look back on time spent in my little corner of creativity.
ECPA best-selling author Amanda Barratt fell in love with writing in grade school when she wrote her first story—a spinoff of Jane Eyre. Now, Amanda writes romantic, historical fiction, penning stories of beauty and brokenness set against the backdrop of bygone eras not so very different from our own. Her novel My Dearest Dietrich: A Novel of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Lost Love released from Kregel Publications in June 2019.
She’s also the author of My Heart Belongs in Niagara Falls, New York: Adele’s Journey, as well as seven novellas with Barbour Publishing. Two of her novellas have been finalists in the FHL Reader’s Choice Awards.
Amanda lives in the woods of Michigan with her fabulous family, where she can be found reading way too many books, plotting her next novel, and jotting down imaginary travel itineraries for her dream vacation to Europe.
More About My Dearest Dietrich: A Novel of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Lost Love
A staggering love illuminating the dark corners of a Nazi prison…
Renowned German pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer is famous for his resistance to the Nazi regime and for his allegiance to God over government. But what few realize is that the last years of his life also held a love story that rivals any romance novel.
Maria von Wedemeyer knows the realities of war. Her beloved father and brother have both been killed on the battlefield. The last thing this spirited young woman needs is to fall for a man under constant surveillance by the Gestapo. How can she give another piece of her heart to a man so likely to share the same final fate? Yet when Dietrich Bonhoeffer, an old family friend, comes to comfort the von Wedemeyers after their losses, she discovers that love isn’t always logical.
Dietrich himself has determined to keep his distance from romantic attachments. There is too much work to be done for God, and his involvement in the conspiracy is far too important. But when he encounters a woman whose intelligence and conviction match his own, he’s unprepared for how easy it is to give away his heart.
With their deep love comes risk–and neither Dietrich nor Maria is prepared for just how great that risk soon becomes.
Based on detailed historical research, this is a true love story at once beautiful and heartrending. My Dearest Dietrich sheds new light on a world-famous theologian . . . and the woman who changed his life.