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Author Interview,  Giveaway,  Hope-filled Fiction

Toni Shiloh: Romance, Arkansas, Character Names, a Giveaway & More

I’m thrilled to welcome Toni Shiloh back to the blog this week! I hope you’ll enjoying hearing about Toni’s latest release, Winning His Trust, a Love Inspired Contemporary Romance.

Toni has offered a copy of the book as a giveaway – paperback or ebook for a US winner or ebook for an international winner. Be sure to comment below by February 28 for a chance to win!

Welcome back to the blog, Toni! First question … As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? 

I couldn’t decide! I went from wanting to be a police officer, lawyer, interior designer, owning my own business, librarian, etc. Now I get to write and give my characters all the jobs and live vicariously through them.

Yes! It’s so fun to live out our dreams through fictional characters. I never wanted to be a police officer, but I dreamed of becoming a lawyer or an interior designer at different times in my life, too. What genre do you write and what inspired you to write that particular genre? 

I write Christian contemporary romance. I love “love,” and writing romance was a no brainer. I honestly went with contemporary time period because that’s what came out when I sat down. I’ve been writing it ever since.

What’s not to love about love, right? How do you incorporate Christ and hope into your writing? 

With prayer! Every day I sit to write, edit, whatever, I pray first. I ask God to show me what to write, how to say it, etc. He never fails to lead me.

Amen! What is the setting of your current novel? Is it a real location or fictional? Tell us about it. 

Willow Springs, Arkansas is a fictional creation of my imagination. I looked in the area of Ponca and Jasper, Arkansas and kind of created the town from there. I wanted to explore the nature state and create a setting that would give a nod to the very real places there.

Cool. How did you select the names for your characters? 

Great question! Sometimes I ask my street team for suggestions. Other times, I want the characters’ name to serve a purpose. Then I search for the meaning of names and go from there. I know it’s the right one when something in my brain clicks.

If you wrote in a different genre than your current one, which would you choose and why? 

Ohhh, that’s a tough one. Either historical romance or romantic suspense. Then again, I’d love to write a YA romance as well. I would choose historical romance to give a different perspective and provide diversity. I would do romantic suspense because I love reading those kinds of books and watching those type of movies. I would do YA because it’s a genre I have never fallen out of love with.

I have no doubt you could write any of those and knock it out of the park! How do you tackle research for your novels? 

I like to research before I start writing. I research job info if I have no idea how the character does that particular job. I’ll research setting and anything related to it. I’ll research the character’s backstory and develop them all the way to their date of birth sometimes. Once I start writing, I’ll do research that comes up that I didn’t know I needed to know, but I leave a place holder so I can do it at a different time and keep writing, unless it stops me and prevents the story from continuing. 

That’s a lot of work, right? Most people have no idea how much goes into writing a novel. How long, on average, does it take you to write a book? 

Three months or less. I’ve been writing for about nine years now and my brain knows to show up and work. 

I’m amazed at how quickly you can get books out. You inspire me! Do you have a favorite drink or snack you indulge in while writing? 

Not really. I get super focused and forget to drink or eat unless it’s the afternoon. Then I might grab a piece of dark chocolate with sea salt to fuel me.

Now, that explains how you are so productive! Which character in Winning His Trust was easiest for you to write and why? Which character presented the biggest challenge? 

Declan was the easiest for me to write. I identify with the quiet person who doesn’t want to be the center of attention but can get the job done when he needs to. Jordan, on the other hand, was a mystery. Her sass is opposite from me so I really had to dig into her personality and make sure I was being true to it.

It’s definitely harder to write characters who are the opposite of our own personalities. How many unpublished and unfinished manuscripts do you have? Any plans to pursue publication for any of them? 

Too many to count! One is definitely going to be published by Bethany House. The others…time will tell.

I have a feeling more than one will come to fruition. What’s next from you? 

I have a short novella releasing in the Royal anthology April 11. I also have a novel coming from Bethany House on August 1. The Love Script will be the first book in the Love in the Spotlight series.

That’s great! I love that you have so many projects in the works at one time. You’re such a talented writer. Thanks for sharing with my readers today!

For a chance to win a copy of #WinningHisTrust by @tonishilohwrite, comment on Toni’s author interview on my blog by Feb. 28. #LoveInspired #amreading #giveaway


Join the conversation. Do you like reading Contemporary Christian Romance? Have you read any of Toni’s books? Which is your favorite? What questions do you have for Toni?

Be sure to comment below by Feb. 28 for a chance to win a copy of Winning His Trust!

Winning His Trust book cover

Winning His Trust by Toni Shiloh

Click the book cover for purchase link

To build a future together

They must both let go of the past…

Returning home after a bad breakup, Jordan Wood is eager to prove she can run her family’s store. Setting up a partnership with Declan Porter’s struggling adventure business might do the trick. But the handsome single dad is set in his ways—in business and in love. Can winning his—and his son’s—heart help them all heal?

Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and an award-winning Christian contemporary romance author. She writes to bring God glory and to learn more about His goodness. Her novel, In Search of a Prince, won the first ever, Christy Amplify award. Her novels, Grace Restored, was a 2019 Holt Medallion finalist, Risking Love a 2020 Selah Award finalist, The Truth About Fame a 2021 Holt Medallion finalist, and The Price of Dreams a 2021 Maggie Award finalist.

A member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and of the Virginia Chapter, Toni seeks to encourage authors in the writing industry. She loves connecting with readers and authors alike via social media.

Connect with Toni: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads / Pinterest / Instagram / BookBub

Please share Toni’s interview on social media to help spread the word about her new release!

If you missed my recent posts, check out these interviews with Sarah Sundin, Heather Norman Smith, and Laura Thomas.

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.