Episode 076 – Susie Finkbeiner is the author of successful historical and contemporary fiction books.

Show Overview

  • Susie Finkbeiner is the author of successful historical and contemporary fiction books—but offer a whole lot more. After two successful contemporary contemporary fiction books, Susie made the switch to historical fiction—and loves it. She takes us through her process of writing A Cup Of Dust, a depression era novel centered around the dust bowl. She relates the experience of rewriting Paint Chips 11 times and how her writing has changed in the years since. She stresses the importance of writing in other areas, working on social media, blogging, and getting your work out there as good exposure. Susie walks us through lessons she learned on her way to become published. Other topics included tips on finding and getting an agent, the collaborative efforts of working with an editor and publisher, and the problems with reading your books after they’re published. The perfect interview for fiction writers.


  • Historical and contemporary fiction.

My Books

What I Did to Learn How to Write Novels

  • I read every novel I could get my hands on—all kinds of novels. I read to learn what worked and didn’t work.

My Most Rewarding Moment as an Author

  • I think it was when I signed the contract for A Cup of Dust. It happened at the Breathe conference and in front of my peers, my friends, my agent, and the editor. It was so fantastic to be among these people who were like family to me.

How New Writers Can Tell if an Idea is Worth Developing

  • I think all ideas are worth being explored. Look at the market. Has the idea been done before or is it overdone. Bounce the idea off others. Find a writing critique group. Just write some of it and get it out and see where it takes you.

My Most Difficult Writing Challenge

  • My most difficult challenge is to silence my inner voice. You know, the voice that tells me I have no reason writing this story—you’re a fluke, a fraud.

The Best Advice on Writing I Ever Received

  • The best advice I ever received was to write something you want to read. If I write a book I would want to read, I put more into it and invest more into it. If I write something I don’t want to read, I won’t have passion and a love for it.
If I write a book I would want to read, I put more into it and invest more into it. @susiefinkbeiner Click To Tweet

My Best Advice for Struggling Writers

  • When you’re struggling, it’s easy to look at all your rejections. It’s really tempting to see rejection as the end. I always tell myself that rejection is not the end—it’s a chance to try something else, a chance to try again.

What Writing Success Means to Me

  • I could get a book deal for a million dollars or I could sell books across the country and all across the world. But to me writing success is having the opportunity to spend time every day making up stories. And I can do that even if I never get published. To me, publication makes that possible.

My Favorite Book on Writing

The Author That Inspires Me

  • The author who inspired me to be a writer is John Steinbeck. His books are poetic, their hard-edged but soft.

Favorite Resource

How To Find Me

About Susie from Her Amazon Author’s page

  • Susie Finkbeiner is a novelist from West Michigan. She is the author of A Cup of Dust: A Novel of the Dust Bowl (Kregel, 2015), Paint Chips (WhiteFire Publishing, 2013) and My Mother’s Chamomile (WhiteFire Publishing 2014).
  • She is currently working on her fourth novel.
  • Susie is a wife, mother of three, and avid reader. She enjoys time with her family, coffee dates with her good friends, and quiet moments to read and write.

From My Perspective

  • In the show’s From My Perspective segment, we talk about asking for book reviews, with a way of doing this you may not have considered.

We’d Love to Hear Your Comments or Questions on this Podcast

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