Monday, July 13, 2020

2020 Interview: Megan Vance

Megan Vance: I am a Pittsburgh girl born and bred. I have lived in Natrona Heights the last 32 years. I have three adult children and three adorable grandsons. I have been happily married to Kevin for nearly 36 years. We have two cats that we dote on. I earned a BSN in Nursing from the University of Pittsburgh in 1985.

Do you have any hobbies?

Probably too many! I like to read...a lot... as my many bookshelves will attest. I also love sewing and quilting as my cluttered sewing (dining) room will also attest. I enjoy taking photos of nature also.

What is your favorite vacation spot?

Don’t travel much anymore but when I was young, I adored visiting my Iowa farm relatives every summer, camping on the way back and forth.

If you were given a ticket to anywhere and spending money to indulge, where would you go?


Do you have pets?

Missy, a spirited dilute tortie cat, and Grace, a sweet-tempered Manx.

What is your favorite color and what do you love about it?

Robin egg blue, but purple comes in a close second.

What was your favorite book as a child?

Little Women.

What is one thing about yourself you’d like to change or are trying to work on?

I would like to be able to read New Testament Greek.

What music genre/singer/band is your go-to for a bad day? For working? 

Contemporary Christian (the older stuff) For cleaning and/or exercising 70s music.

Do you re-read books? If so, is there one in particular?

I am re-reading Earthquake Resurrection by David Lowe about end-time prophecy. I have re-read The Great Divorce by CS Lewis a few times because I love it.

Are you an introvert, extravert, or ambivert?

More of an introvert.

Does pineapple go on pizza?

Never tried it.

How many places have you lived? 

Only when I was a baby we lived in Kellogg, Michigan for about a year. Rest of the time, Moon Twp., then the McCandless area, Oakland, Squirrel Hill, Mount Troy and finally Natrona Heights since 1988.

What was your first job?

Camp counselor at the Fresh Air Camp in Warrendale.

What is your favorite down time activity?

Sewing or quilting.

Are you an outdoor type? Have a green thumb?

No did not inherit that unfortunately.

Are you the type to take a dare?

Not really, but sometimes I take on my own challenges, like writing my first book, or somehow passing my lifeguard class in high school.

Do you have a favorite motto or quote that applies to your own life?   

“But seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)

What is one thing you’ve learned through experience that you’d love to pass along to others? 

Life is easier when you forgive others.

What books, other than your own, would you highly recommend?

The Bible, CS Lewis: Surprised by Joy and The Great Divorce.

On to writing: what inspired you to start creating stories/non-fiction? How long ago? 

I wrote poetry in high school and was published in the high school anthology, but never thought about taking writing seriously. When I was going through a hard time in 2005 I decided to take a children’s writing course. It was risky but I wanted to prove something to myself.

How do you choose your settings (fiction) or topics (non-fiction)? 

I like to write inspirational articles that might help someone struggling in their faith. When I get an idea for a poem, I have to write it quickly or I will forget it. I feel challenged by writing fiction, am more comfortable with non-fiction.

Can you tell us a bit about your path to publication?

I began a children’s writing course in 2005 with the Institute of Children’s Literature (ICL) and after the course was published for the first time in a children’s magazine.  My book project for the Advanced Course at ICL led to publication of my first book, Sure Mercies: Hope for the Suffering, 4RV Publishing.

 I have written many poems over the years when inspiration strikes. I finally compiled some of my favorites in my Praises and Ponderings book, which came out last year.

 I like to try my hand at humor writing and have been a blogger for quite some time.

I was published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, children’s and adult magazines, anthologies, and have written two published books, the devotional Sure Mercies and a poetry collection, Praises and Ponderings from a Poet’s Path. I am working on a manuscript for a children’s Bible workbook to submit to a Christian publisher.

Finally, please tell us about your books and add your website so we can find you:

Sure Mercies: Hope for the Suffering, 4RV Publishing 2015.   Devotional book based on the Psalms of David and people who overcame great trials and obstacles. It is my hope that this book would encourage and help those who are struggling in their faith.

Praises and Ponderings from a Poet’s Path, Tree Shadow Press, 2019.  I share some of my life, faith and struggles in this collection of fifty different poems.

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