Monday, September 10, 2007
When the Nile Runs Red by DiAnn Mills
I'm heading off to Boston today, but before I go I wanted to tell you about my friend and fellow red-head DiAnn Mills's latest book: When the Nile Runs Red.
Amazon Link - http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0802499112
Here's the synopsis: Paul Farid, who once persecuted the southern Sudanese, now loves the weary people whose lives have been destroyed by war.
Colonel Ben Alier has led his battle-hardened soldiers for two decades against the North, yet he pursues a relationship with his son even as his own demons pursue him.
Dr. Larson Kerr Farid works long hours caring for the sick, but fatigue and worry about her husband, are taking their toll. And she’s just learned something that will make everything more complicated.
These three friends face constant danger as tensions escalate between the north and south, and as Paul’s family schemes to kill him and Larson. Will Paul and Larson bridge the gap that seems to grow between them? And will Ben find peace as more than a soldier?
Use this link to view a Promo Video Clip - http://www.diannmills.com/sudan/WTNRRPromoClip.html
Best news of all: When the Nile Runs Red is being used to raise awareness of the atrocities that are taking place in Sudan. Book sale proceeds will be donated to restore the Sudanese community.
I thought you might enjoy hearing about why DiAnn chose this topic for this novel:
A: What inspired you to write this novel?
I had previously written a nonfiction book about the Lost Boys of Sudan – Lost Boy No More. From that research, I wrote the novel When the Lion Roars, but the story would not let me go.
Through numerous interviews and extensive reading, I grew to love and admire the courageous Sudanese people and was burdened by their incredible needs. I had to bring them back in When the Nile Runs Red.
A: Why Sudan in particular?
This country went through nearly two decades of civil war strife. In 1983, the northern government launched a holy war against the south. This grew out of the views of the Islamic north against the mostly Christian black African south. The war had three aspects: religion, politics, and oil. The atrocities committed against the southern people are too many to list, but the war was fought in the south through genocide.
A: How did you conduct your research?
I grabbed my backpack and sun screen and traveled to Juba, Sudan, the southern capital. There I stayed at a Christian compound and met with southern Sudanese from all walks of life: refugees, political leaders, and church leaders. I talked to as many people as I could, snapped pictures, and listened to what was being said.
A: I am so impressed! And I thought I was brave for going to the Amazon jungle! What touched you the most while you were in Sudan?
The incredible faith. I could look into a Sudanese’s eyes and see the pain of persecution and the hope of Jesus. Here, we say we love Jesus while we live in our huge homes, drive our fancy cars, are well-fed, are not hunted down for our faith, or are concerned about medical care. The Sudanese understand that all they have and need is Jesus.
A: I know every writer has his/her own methods, so how do you build your plots?
Always out of character with two simple words: what-if? John Gardner said to create the best possible characters and allow the worst possible things to happen to them. That says it all. It’s easy to coat our darlings with easy trials and struggles, but the hard stuff, the struggles that define the character are what have to happen. I’m a huge fan of Donald Maass and wouldn’t consider writing a paragraph without using techniques found in his books Writing the Breakout Novel and Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook.
A: (And that's why I'm going to Boston! I'm going to another Maass intensive, just like the one we shared together a couple of years ago!) Ahem. Back to the topic. What are you goals for this novel?
To increase awareness about the situation in Sudan and to share my passion for the Sudanese people through a compelling story. The proceeds for this novel go back to aid the Sudanese.
A: What do you hope the readers will gain?
To lose themselves in the novel. That’s every writer’s goal. But I also want the reader to sense a call to action and support the Sudanese cause.
A: What's coming up next for you?
I’m currently writing a romantic suspense series with a working series title of “Behind the Sunglasses”.
A: Sounds like a beach book! How can readers learn more about what you are doing?
Check out my website at www.diannmills.com . I have sections about Sudan, and for readers, and writers. Those signing up for my newsletter get to download a chapter of an upcoming release.
Thanks, DiAnn, for stopping by!