48 responses to Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway
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    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 06:30)

    Very interesting thoughts about Amish fiction. I would love to read your book and see more of what you have to say.
    I am an avid fan of Amish fiction — not even sure I can really explain my love the for the genre. I have lots of “favorite” authors but am still selective in those that I really enjoy. I don’t find every book a “winner” just because it’s Amish fiction.

    I’ve had the privilege of getting to visit with a couple of Amish families in Pennsylvania and in Ohio. During our first visit with a Lancaster County lady about 3 years ago, I was explaining that my interest in making that trip was spawned by my love of Amish fiction. Miriam — in her very sweet and gentle manner — said, “Don’t believe everything you read in those books.” Her comment goes through my mind nearly every time I read an Amish novel. I enjoy the stories, knowing that many of the authors have been very authentic in what they include, but this is still fiction I’m reading. And that’s OK with me!

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    Marty
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 06:46)

    Thanks for addressing my question. Enjoyed reading the others! Looking forward to reading your book. Fascinating topic. I began reading Amidh fiction after numetous visits to Lancaster and Holmes counties. Also chose these “sweet” books after a run of thrillers and murder mysteries; cleansing the palate, so to speak!

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    Comment on thank you for interesting posts (April 23rd, 2013 at 06:54)

    thank you for interesting posts

    thank you for the interesting interview. I am a reader of Amish/Mennonite fiction and review them on my blog. I first visited PA Amish country as a preteen with my family and have been fascinated by them ever since. Would love to win this book. Rhonda
    rhonda_nash_hall@comcast.net

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      George Moore
      Comment on To Rhonda Gayle Nash Hall (April 23rd, 2013 at 17:41)

      To Rhonda Gayle Nash Hall

      How can I find out more about your blog and read it or subscribe to it. Thank you very much!

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    Bob
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:07)

    Very interesting topic. Having read many of these novels, I am most interested in Ms Zercher-Weaver’s analysis. And I was glad to learn that my alma mater (JHU) supported the project as its publisher.

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    Judy
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:11)

    I often describe myself as interested in “ALL things Amish”, and to that end I have read both Amish fiction and non-fiction. I must admit that I have backed away from Amish romance novels, and realize my losing interest in the genre is connected to some of the very observations of Ms. Weaver-Zercher. I learned so much from the above Q&A, AND, ironically,I am now “inspired” (no pun intended)to read the several books of that genre which have been languishing on my bookshelf for quite a while.
    (PS — I thought the quality of questions in this interview was exceptional — I wish I’d thought of them!!!! Judy from MN

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    New York State of Mind
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:17)

    Thank you for answering our quewstions, Valerie. I really enjoyed your replies and look forward to reading your book. Most of the novels that I read are Amish.

    Marilyn

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    Megan Parsons
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:42)

    I love this interview! I have been reading Amish books since I was a teen and have a huge collection of them! I have not heard of these books and would LOVE the chance to win them. Thanks so much!
    makeighleekyleigh at yahoo dot com

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    Osiah Horst
    Comment on Thrill of the Chaste (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:42)

    Thrill of the Chaste

    I don’t think I have ever read any Amish fiction other than Rosanna of the Amish. I have read several books by/about Conservative Mennonites and find there is usually an element of condension towards plain people who are more traditional. When I was young I read all the Grace Livingston Hill books I could get my hands on and think perhaps that may have had an effect on my reading preferences. I would rather read Valerie’s book, than the books she is writing about. A friend wrote a very popular fictional account for one of the Pathway papers and commented afterwards that he wishes he could write non-fiction. I just marvel at those who can write fiction, creating real life stories that just hold the reader. I can assemble a set of facts into a readable format but fiction is out of reach for me. I enjoy the studies by Kraybill, Nolt, Ruth, etc. and would look forward to reading Valerie’s book.

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    Char
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 07:42)

    Thank for this interview. I can’t wait to read your book!

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    Rich S
    Comment on Nice interview, Valerie, BUT . . . (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:03)

    Nice interview, Valerie, BUT . . .

    . . . I’m still rooting for you to write your own Bonnet romance, perhaps about a beautiful but radicalized feminist Amish maid who detests Amish romances but is strongly attracted to a handsome but straight-laced Amish swain who hopes to write a computer program that will disable all smartphones owned by people named Stoltzfus, Hershberger, or Miller. Besides selling a million copies, you could make millions more selling the film rights to the Japanese. Think about it.

    Rich

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      Slightly-handled-Order-man
      Comment on Oh LOL! (April 23rd, 2013 at 17:47)

      Oh LOL!

      Rich S ;
      Well played sir, well played.
      Except Miller is a common Englisher name also, so that scenario
      is farther reaching than Plain Amish. But a goodly silly concept.

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    Ruth
    Comment on Amish fiction (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:06)

    Amish fiction

    I am an avid reader of Amish fiction and have been since Beverly Lewis’s first book The Shunning hit the shelves. I have lived near Amish communities in Ohio and Pa so I knew not only about them but was friends with some of the ladies while I lived in PA. My first personal contact with any Amish was when I was just a child and my family toured Lancaster and the surrounding area in PA. They have their own beliefs and their own way of living but face it they are God’s children just like the rest of us.
    I would love to win this book but whether I do or not I will read it.

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    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:11)

    What a fun interview, and some really good questions. This isn’t a question so much as just a wondering thought, but I wonder how people like Beverly Lewis and Wanda Brunstetter, who were probably a couple of the big names at first in Amish fiction feel about the big boom now? I know only they would be able to answer that, but it may be a good thing for them in that their books are still very popular and now probably reach an even bigger audience. Who knows? Thanks so much for such an interesting topic ~

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    Katie Troyer
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:22)

    I love reading these questions and answers. It makes me want to read Valerie’s book.

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    Leon Hadden
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:46)

    Fantastic interview. So many times, you don’t really know the complete background of how a novel came into being written. Yes, I read the novel for the content, but as I read, my mind is stimulated to ask other questions and to research the real world for the answers to my questions.

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    Eugenia
    Comment on Great Questions! (April 23rd, 2013 at 08:56)

    Great Questions!

    Very well thought out questions. I love all things Amish and enjoy the safety of the clean Amish stories, albeit some more well written than others. Would love to read Valerie’s book to see how other Amish fans are thinking.

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    KimH
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 09:12)

    How very interesting this read has been. Thanks so much for giving us an enlightening experience.

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    Erin
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 09:53)

    Thanks for the interview with Valerie. I agree with the others, that after reading your responses, I want to read your book!

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    Gail D
    Comment on Excellent insight (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:02)

    Excellent insight

    Thanks for the research you’ve done on Amish fiction, its authors, and its readers–your answers have been very helpful. Looking forward to reading your book.

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    Jeff FRame
    Comment on Great article (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:13)

    Great article

    very interesting read

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    Brenda Higgins
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:15)

    A very informative and intersting interview.

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    Naomi Wilson
    Comment on an "Amish" voice (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:26)

    an "Amish" voice

    I am impressed by anyone who can communicate well with the written word, be it through fiction or non-fiction. Whenever I go back and read something that I have written, I feel I have not quite managed to communicate my desired message, and it just plain doesn’t sound like me.

    Speaking of the author’s “voice,” after all the recent discussion about Amish fiction on AA, I have realized what for me makes the Amish fiction genre less appealing than fiction written by Amish (stories published by Pathway) or former Amish (Rosanna of the Amish, or the Ellie’s People series, for example). In my experience, Amish and former Amish authors tend to have a very simple and spare writing style. To me this is such a breath of fresh air, and I find it much more pleasant to read aloud to my children. Non Amish authors, by comparison, sound verbose like everyone else I know who lives surrounded by talking heads and other media inundations. Well researched details or no, I am generally turned off within the first few pages of a non Amish author writing an Amish story. I just don’t enjoy reading, and in the case of reading aloud, wrapping my tongue around all those flowery, unnecessary words.

    Is the non Amish “voice” discussed in TOTC?

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    Debbie
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:26)

    Thanks for the question and response. I like Kim was not to interested in reading the book until I read the answers to these questions. Now I can’t wait to read it. If I do not win the book I hope my library gets it in soon.

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    Liz D
    Comment on Thank you so much for the Q&A Session (April 23rd, 2013 at 10:49)

    Thank you so much for the Q&A Session

    This was a really interesting Q&A; I now cant wait to read the book! Roll on payday!

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    LEANNA
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 12:33)

    I would love to read this book. I enjoy reading, but will say that I choose not to read Amish fiction. I find they are not consitant with the Amish life in general. People I have talked to who do not have amish background tend think they know so much about the amish – when in reality they seem to be mislead.

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    John Lueders
    Comment on VW-Z Interview (April 23rd, 2013 at 12:50)

    VW-Z Interview

    A lot of great questions. Many that offer a different perspective I would not have thought of. Ms. Weaver-Zercher was very concise and honest with her answers. Especially about her writing preference, non-fiction over fiction, which is what prefer to read. So please keep on writing them.

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    Nancy Consolo
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 13:05)

    I am interested in reading this book. Earlier I tried some Amish fiction since I admire the Amish ways and found many in my own Family Tree. The few books I read were boring and unrealistic so I did no more hunting for a good one.

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    Wendy Bailey
    Comment on Amish Conference (April 23rd, 2013 at 13:23)

    Amish Conference

    I had never heard of the upcoming Amish Conference that Erik posted about last week. I believe I saw where you were one of the speakers. Does this conference draw a large crowd and is it open to anyone? I haven’t read your book yet but plan to. Enjoyed the interview posting here.

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    Kathy Rowe
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 15:58)

    Very interesting as are all your articles, Erik. Please enter me in the book giveaway. Would love to read this for sure.
    Thanks, Erik, for taking the time to do this for us folks that are interested in the plain lifestyles. We appreciate it a lot!

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    ANN*H
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 16:27)

    I love Amish everything, books and food and so on. We live close to Lancaster Co . and been there lots of time. I love seeing the little boys and girls . I have a lot of Amish books and cook books also. I just enjoy reading about them . Their lives are interesting to me.
    I would love to enter for the book to – thanks

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    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher (April 23rd, 2013 at 16:34)

    Valerie Weaver-Zercher

    Very interesting reading! I’d love to have my name submitted in your contest. Thanks for sharing all that you share with those of us who love learning about the Amish.

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    Slightly-handled-Order-man
    Comment on seriously though (April 23rd, 2013 at 17:51)

    seriously though

    PS,
    I don’t want to win the book, so just pass my name by, I don’t mind.
    I have enjoyed the article and what everyone has said so far.

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    Barb
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 19:20)

    A very interesting interview — thank you. The most interesting thing I found was that people (you, publishers) consider Amish fiction to be historical fiction. I’ve always classified it as contemporary fiction and can’t remember ever seeing one set “historically”. Most interesting interpretation fo what is historical vs contemporary.

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    Betty Hamilton
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 19:33)

    Gat iinterview! I am looking forward to eading the book.

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    sharon c
    Comment on so many authors now (April 23rd, 2013 at 19:37)

    so many authors now

    Years ago you could only find one or two authors writing Amish fiction, now everywhere you look a new name pops up, are that many more readers asking for more of this type of literature? I read a lot of books for pleasure, I also have several Amish friends, some of what I read I know is fiction, but most have done their homework well. thanks for adding another book to my long wish list!

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    Eli
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 20:07)

    From my usual checkout lane in Walmart I always see several young Amish ladies peeking out from the book section (on the covers). It makes me laugh.

    My favorite was a Christmas Quaker fiction novel. I thought to myself “now there’s a genre that hasn’t been tapped yet!” :)

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    Alice Mary
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 20:15)

    Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of this book…and if I don’t, what a nice Mothers Day gift it could be (hint, hint!):) I appreciate your answering my questions,too.

    I found it interesting that some publishers consider Amish fiction as being historical fiction (THAT sure wouldn’t fly in a library, though maybe book stores might try to market it that way.)

    I enjoy both fiction and non-fiction (Amish or otherwise). I look forward to expanding my knowledge of what makes Amish fiction so appealing to the masses…or not!

    Alice Mary

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    mary ellen ashenfelder
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 23rd, 2013 at 20:17)

    Informative and interesting interview. Love reading about the Amish. Please accept my entry in this giveaway. Always exciting to meet a new author. Thank you!

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    Comment on Amish books (April 23rd, 2013 at 20:51)

    Amish books

    I love Amish books, thank you for the chance to win this one.

    wfnren(at)aol(dot)com

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    Elena
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 24th, 2013 at 01:02)

    I´m an avid reader of Amish fiction, and have often thought about who else might be reading this kind of books. The topics that Valerie´s book addresses sound quite interesting!

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    Andrea
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 24th, 2013 at 07:51)

    I would really love to win this book, if I don’t, it will be on my wish list and hopefully, someday I will be able to purchase it.
    ajwbear@yahoo.com

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    Tom
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 24th, 2013 at 07:53)

    Great interview and the questions that were submitted were also very good. I cant wait to read this book. Being a male who started out reading Amish non-fiction to learn the history and beliefs of the Amish I suprised myself when I picked up an Amish fiction/romance book. I find the fiction books entertaining buyt can also see many flaws in them after reading many non-fiction books. For me it is good entertainment but as I said being male alot of people who know I read the Amish fiction books can not understand why I do.

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    Katie Johnson
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 24th, 2013 at 14:09)

    I really enjoyed reading the interview and love Amish Fiction. Thanks for the giveaway.

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    Loretta
    Comment on Book (April 24th, 2013 at 22:44)

    Book

    The interview and questions are informative and interesting. Thanks Erik for doing this kind of posts for us.

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    Shari Larsen
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 26th, 2013 at 08:52)

    Very interesting interview. I sometimes read Amish fiction and I appreciated Valerie’s insights into it. While I enjoy the Amish stories, I do take them with a grain of salt, and I enjoy them for what they are- fiction.

    About the book covers, that always bothered me too, with the makeup, and loose, flyaway hair. In the books, proper Amish women always have their hair very neat under their Kapps. I remember one book I read, on the cover the young Amish woman was leaning on a fence post with her hair completely down, no Kapp on.

    I would love to read Valerie’s book.

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    Juanita Cook
    Comment on Valerie Weaver-Zercher interview & book giveaway (April 27th, 2013 at 07:08)

    I love reading everything about the Amish. The Amish fiction are wonderful good clean books to read. Would love to read this bok.

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    Comment on Interesting Interview (May 8th, 2013 at 15:23)

    Interesting Interview

    I throughly enjoyed this interview…many points were quite thought-provoking go me. Widowhood in Amish country. Perhaps the fact that an Amish widow is encouraged to re-marry quickly (by English standards) is the reason. The young English widows I have known are often passed over because they have children or the women have become quite independant…there isn’t the need seen so much in the English world.

    My daughter was engaged to make an apron for a young lady to wear as she had her portrait paited for the cover of an Amish Fiction book. The apron was NOTHING like any Amish or Mennonite woman would ever wear. The model did not wear any make-up for the sitting (however her brows were tweezed) but the painter put in much eye makeup and dark, long lashes.

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