See the interview with Page Turner Champion Debbie Roome here, and fiction runner-up Annette Griffin here.

Lori Othouse has been around FaithWriters, off and on, for more than a dozen years, entering the Writing Challenge, posting in regular articles, and more. And now, her non-fiction manuscript, Grace to Remain, has been named the non-fiction runner up in the 2018 Page Turner contest. Read on to learn more about Lori, her book in process, her love for Faithwriters, and more!

JOANNE SHER: First of all, congratulations on being the non-fiction runner up in the Page Turner contest! Can you tell us a bit about how you found out? What was your reaction?

LORI OTHOUSE: Thank you so much! I’m so honored and thankful to be a runner up! I actually found out when I was out shopping with my two daughters. We were in a store and I checked my email and saw the announcement. At first, I was kind of afraid to look. Then, when I scrolled down and saw my name, I was so excited! I tried not to smile too big in the middle of the store, but I couldn’t help it. After letting it sink in for a few minutes, I told my oldest daughter when we got out to the car. She loves to write, too, and was so happy. Needless to say, that email made my day!

JOANNE: I’ll bet! Fun to have folks to celebrate with. When do you first remember developing a passion/love for writing?

LORI: I first remember writing short stories and poetry when I was about 12 or 13, none of which I would want to share now, but back then, I thought they were pretty good.  I continued writing here and there throughout high school, but nothing very significant. After I graduated, I was pursuing other things and didn’t really do any writing for about 10 years until I began writing scripts for holiday productions at my church. That’s what really got me back into writing again. I did that for several years and it really stirred up my love for words in a new way. I started writing poetry and short stories again and found a new passion for using words for good and for God in a way that I never did before.

JOANNE: I love the way God works these things into our lives 🙂 Is writing a hobby or potential career for you? Or something else?

LORI: I certainly hope it is a potential career! It was nothing but a hobby for most of my life, but now I’m realizing more and more the power of words (for good and bad) that we have and my passion is to use them for good, to achieve God’s purposes here on earth. There is so much I want to write and I pray that I will be able to accomplish all of it.

On a more personal side, writing is also a release for me. I’ve always been better at writing than speaking (although I’m improving in that area) and been able to express things in a better way when I write. So, it helps me in that way. The process isn’t always fun, but end result is (usually) worth it.

JOANNE: I am sure a lot of folks can relate to writing as a release. I know I can. Share a bit about Grace to Remain. Where did you get the idea for it? What is it about? 

LORI: The actual idea for the book came to me a couple years ago. I’ve grown up in church and seen so many faithful people do amazing things for God. Unfortunately, I’ve also seen many people fall away from God, from ministries, from marriages, etc. In meditating on this, I was asking, “Why?” Why do so many give up and walk away? There were a million different reasons. The more pertinent question, it seems, though, is how do people remain? How have I remained? How do we keep the faith? To that, there was only one answer – grace.

God’s grace is what allows us to have His precious Spirit in us that gives us all that we need – love, joy, peace, strength, patience, wisdom – everything. Without it, we fail miserably. Grace to Remain is about, first, recognizing when we are in danger of falling away or giving up, and then understanding the grace that is available to us to keep us where we want and need to be in our lives. It’s not a promise of an easy life, but a promise of power and hope when we need it most.

JOANNE: You have been around here off and on for quite a while. How did you find FaithWriters, and what has made you stick around?

LORI: Yes, I have, and let me just say how much I love Faithwriters! Even though I have been on and off, due to time restrictions and different circumstances in life, it’s like an old friend to me and I’m so grateful for it. I first found it searching for Christian writing sites back when I was trying to get into writing more. I entered one of the writing challenges, not really even knowing anything about it, and got 3rd place that week in my level. What really got me, though, was the very first comment someone posted on it that said, “Don’t ever stop writing!” That touched me and inspired me in such a huge way. The feedback makes a difference!

I’ve loved doing the writing challenges and participating in other areas as well. There’s so much there to offer Christian writers and I’m so thankful for such a valuable resource. Plus, the members are just amazing!

JOANNE: FaithWriters is certainly all of that and more! What kinds of books or genres do you prefer to read and/or write?

LORI: I love a good story, but I’d have to say I prefer Christian living non-fiction and inspirational/devotional type books. That’s also what I prefer to write. Anything that uplifts and inspires me to go further in God, do more for Him, or challenges me to grow and learn, is what I like to be reading. And writing.

JOANNE: Tell us about your family.

LORI: I’ve been married for 20 years and have 2 precious daughters, ages 16 and 4. They have taught me so much about life and love and truly are my inspiration to write and do more and make a difference.

JOANNE: What are your other passions besides writing?

LORI: I enjoy photography and crafts and being by the water, especially at sunset. Oh, and coffee. Lots of coffee in its many wonderful varieties. Probably my greatest passion, though, is giving and helping those less fortunate. If I could work full time just giving and helping provide to those in need, I would be the happiest person on earth. I just want to make a difference here that will matter in eternity.

JOANNE: I love your heart for the struggling! Where can people find you online?

LORI https://www.facebook.com/lori.lullothouse

https://www.faithwriters.com/member-profile.php?id=8826

Hoping to start a blog soon, but haven’t gotten there yet.

JOANNE: Is there anything else you’d like to share?

LORI: Just to say thank you again for the opportunity to be a part of this contest and a part of Faithwriters. I believe we are responsible to use what God has given us to the best of our abilities and Faithwriters give us a chance to do that in so many ways. It really is a blessing. Thank you.

JOANNE: You are very welcome – thank you again for sharing your story, and once more, congratulations!!

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