Blog Post Header Amanda Wen
Author Interview,  Giveaway

Zoom Interview with Author, Amanda Wen & a Giveaway

By Deena Adams

I’m thrilled to welcome debut author, Amanda Wen, to the blog today! Amanda’s novel, Roots of Wood and Stone, released on February 2 through Kregel Publications. I hope you’ll snag a copy and leave glowing reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, and other bookish platforms.

Be sure to comment on this post by February 16 for a chance to win a paperback copy of Amanda’s book! (US residents only)

I’m also giving away a copy of Amanda’s book to a lucky winner on February 22. To enter, scroll to the footer on this post, or on any page of my website, and subscribe to receive new posts by email and you’ll be in the drawing.

I hope you enjoy meeting Amanda as much as I did!

Amanda, thanks so much for spending some time with me and allowing readers an inside look at your writing life and your debut novel. Blessings to you!

Since recording the interview with Amanda, I’ve finished reading her book and it’s amazing! You can find my review on Goodreads here.

Join the conversation. Are you a fan of split time fiction? Do you prefer the historical story or the contemporary? Do you enjoy stories and characters based on the author’s personal experience? Any questions for Amanda?

Amanda Wen is an award-winning writer of inspirational romance and split-time women’s fiction. She has placed first in multiple writing contests, including the 2017 Indiana Golden Opportunity, the 2017 Phoenix Rattler, and the 2016 ACFW First Impressions contests. She was also a 2018 ACFW Genesis Contest finalist.

Wen is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and regularly contributes author interviews for their Fiction Finder feature. She also frequently interviews authors for her blog and is a contributor to the God Is Love blog. Her debut novel, Roots of Wood and Stone, released from Kregel Publications on February 2, 2021.

In addition to her writing, Wen is an accomplished professional cellist and pianist who frequently performs with orchestras, chamber groups, and her church’s worship team. She serves as a choral accompanist as well. A lifelong denizen of the flatlands, Wen lives in Kansas with her patient, loving, and hilarious husband, their three adorable Wenlets, and a snuggly Siamese cat.

Connect with Amanda: Website, blog, and short stories / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Sometimes You Find Your Roots Where You Least Expect Them

Click the book cover for purchase link

This debut novel from Amanda Wen shows the beauty in God’s plan for our lives.

Sloane Kelley was abandoned at birth, and while she wants more than anything to learn where she came from, her family roots remain a mystery. As curator of the Sedgwick County Museum of History, Sloane has dedicated her life to making sure others can connect with their history. When a donor drops off a dusty old satchel, she doesn’t expect much from the common artifact; after all, the museum has a few on display and more in storage. However, she finds real treasure inside: a nineteenth-century diary. Now, she’s on the hunt to see if there’s more where it came from. 

Garrett Anderson just wanted to clean out his grandmother’s historic but tumbledown farmhouse before selling it to fund her medical care. He’s always been the responsible one, and with her advancing Alzheimer’s, he can’t afford to be sentimental about the family home. But his carefully ordered plan runs up against two formidable obstacles after he takes a few things to the local museum: Sloane, who’s fallen in love with both the diaries and the old house, and his own heart, which is drawn to Sloane. Selling the house that holds so much history will disappoint both Sloane and his sister, Lauren, who is doing her best to care for their grandmother, but Garrett finds himself in an impossible situation.

A century and a half earlier, motherless Annabelle Collins embarks with her aunt and uncle on the adventure of a lifetime: settling the prairies of Sedgwick County, Kansas. The diaries she left behind paint a portrait of life, loss, and love—and a God who faithfully carried her through it all. Paging through the diaries together takes Sloane and Garrett on a journey they never could have planned, which will change them in ways they never imagined.

And Sloane may just find her roots in a place she never would have expected.

Click here to read an excerpt of Roots of Wood and Stone

Roots of Wood and Stone is set in the area of Kansas Wen has lived in most of her life. In fact, the story is inspired by aspects of her own family history. “One of my favorite things about split time is watching the contemporary characters dig into the past,” Wen explains. “My mother is a genealogist who’s been tracing our family history since before I was born, and her passion for uncovering our family’s stories has been an important backdrop my entire life. Her research has given me an appreciation for those who came before and a desire to pass along this appreciation to my own kids.” As an homage to her mother and all the rest of her ancestors, Wen named many of the people and places in the book after family. Parts of their stories are even woven into the historical portion of the book.

Wen not only offers readers two plotlines filled with plenty of history and romance wrapped into one story, she mixes in a healthy dose of humor and strong faith elements as well. “All my characters have deep needs that they try to fill through other means (achievement, research, hard work, planning, etc.), but throughout the story they learn that only God can fill those needs,” Wen shares. “He has a beautiful plan, one that goes far beyond anything we could ever ask or imagine, and he takes all our broken pieces and loose ends and weaves those trials into a tapestry more beautiful than we could possibly imagine. He is always there, faithfully guiding our steps, even—or perhaps especially—when we’re not aware of it. I hope my readers will trust him, his individual love and care for each of us, and his perfect plan just a little bit more after they close this book.”

Please share this interview on social media to help promote Amanda and her novel.

If you missed last week’s Zoom interview with Ronda Wells, find it here.

As a Jesus girl for more than thirty years, Deena Adams understands how important hope is to daily life, which fuels her passion to inspire others through hope-filled fiction based on true to life stories. She is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency and is a multi-award-winning writer, an active ACFW member, and ACFW Virginia president. Connect with Deena through her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


  • Deena Adams

    Thanks to everyone for watching the interview with Amanda and for joining the conversation! The winner of a signed copy of Amanda’s book is Rebecca B! Congratulations, Rebecca. Please check your email and reply to my message with your mailing address.

    I hope you all will continue to check out the interviews and comment for more chances to win! Also, you still have one more chance to win a copy of Amanda’s book. I will be drawing a winner on February 22 from those who have subscribed to my weekly posts by email. If you haven’t yet subscribed, simply click the little box below before you post a new comment. You can also subscribe using the button in the footer of any page on my website.

  • Terri Wangard

    I was a coordinator with First Impressions when Amanda won. So great to see her debut novel!

    • Deena Adams

      Hi Lisa Renee! Thanks so much for watching and joining the conversation. Glad you enjoyed the interview. It was fun getting to know Amanda and the history behind her story.

  • Amanda Wen

    Thank you so much for having me on your blog, Deena!! It was so much fun chatting with you! I’m so glad you enjoyed Roots of Wood and Stone, and I look forward to blessing one of your readers with a copy!

  • Stephanie

    I have such great respect and admiration for authors of split-time stories. And this one sounds great.

  • Christina Sinisi

    This book sounds lovely! I lived in Kansas for six years while my husband was in the Army and stationed at Ft. Riley. I attended Kansas State University while there. There’s a beauty in the expanse of those rolling hills.

    • Amanda Wen

      Hi, Christina!! I’m glad you enjoyed your time in Kansas, and I’m deeply grateful for your husband’s service (and yours, too; it’s never just the soldier who serves!). The Flint Hills are absolutely gorgeous, and if someone tells me Kansas is boring I know in an instant they’ve never seen that part of the state. Thanks so much for stopping by!

    • Deena Adams

      Hi Audra! I love split-time novels too. And I can’t imagine how challenging it is to keep two timelines straight. Maybe I’ll tackle it after I figure out keeping one straight. LOL

    • Amanda Wen

      Hello, Audra!! Split time is fun. It is indeed a challenge keeping two storylines straight, but it’s a fun challenge and well worth it! I’m glad you enjoy the genre!

  • Traci Winget

    Good to meet you! I have alwas wanted to play the cello!! Its so magical!
    I had an aunt & uncle who lived in Kansas City, but never visited. Look forward to reading about your state! Blessings

    • Deena Adams

      Traci, it’s not too late to learn to play cello! And I think you’ll really enjoy Amanda’s book. She did a fabulous job weaving the two timelines together. It’s a beautiful story.

    • Amanda Wen

      Hi, Tracy! Deena’s right, it’s never too late! I’ve taught many adult beginners over the years and they’ve always been my favorite students to work with. Hope you enjoy your trip to Kansas through the pages of Roots of Wood and Stone!

  • Teresa+Moyer

    I have just begun to explore historical fiction and Christian love stories so these two genres are very new to me but I have enjoyed the books I have read so far in these grenres. I also just began to read split fiction over the last year. This book sounds really good. I have added it to my Amazon book wish list. So I will buy it before too long. If I could I would buy every new book right away!