Anaiah Press, Interview

Author Interview with Delaina Netherland Smiley

Jump into the Christmas spirit with Anaiah Press and Delaina Netherland Smiley, author of One More Santa.

More Santa

By Delaina Netherland Smiley



Release Day: November 8,2019


Book Blurb:

Cassie McWilliams is completely committed to her work as a professional sports photographer, president of The Santa House Women’s Charity, and helping her family in their hometown diner, which leaves no time for romance—and that’s perfectly fine with Cassie. She has no interest in trying to squeeze dating into her busy schedule. 

Officer Talent Marshall is a new recruit to the police force and the newest bachelor in town. All he wants to do is start over, away from the shadows of his past, but when he meets the beautiful and smart Cassie, his priorities suddenly change. And when he’s assigned to security detail for The Santa House, he’s one step closer to getting exactly what he wants. 

As Christmas approaches, their attraction grows, but when Talent is called to help find a missing child, their relationship is threatened by raging waters, leaving Cassie to realize one very important thing: She doesn’t want one more Santa—a precious gift her late father gave her mother every year before he passed—she wants more chance with Talent.

About the Author:

Delaina Netherland Smiley is an East Texas native, who lives in the country with her three fun teenagers/young adult children. She’s a business coach and trainer by day, a writer by night, and a hobby photographer whenever she gets the chance. Her favorite genre of books is, of course, romance (faith-based, military, contemporary and historical), but her music playlist is oddly eclectic (at least, according to her children). She loves to go fishing at the lake and she can’t get enough of watching her children excel in their own varied talents and ambitions. She also enjoys being an aunt and loves time spent with her tight-knit family, who serve up all the creative inspiration she could ever need. 

Facebook: Delaina Netherland Smiley – Writer (@dnetherlandsmiley)

Instagram: Delaina Netherland Smiley (@dnetherlandsmiley)

Twitter: Delaina Netherland Smiley (@DelainaSmiley)

What is the inspiration behind your writing?

I would say that my faith and my wonderful family are definitely my inspiration. “One More Santa” is evident of that as I drew from my own experiences with “God’s plan vs my plan” as well as my son’s competitive archery experience, my daughter’s love of photography, the names of my grandmother and her sisters, and the wonderful Santa collection my mother started for me many years ago. In other books, I’ve also been inspired by my brother’s experience in the Marine’s, my husband’s love of music, as well as my oldest son’s welding experience. No one gets left out around my house.

How have you surprised yourself during your writing journey?

I guess I’ve always been waiting – for the perfect time, the perfect story, the perfect alignment of all the right people. But in December of 2017 through 2018, I stopped waiting and I challenged myself to share my stories (as imperfect as they were) with close friends and family. Seeing them all so engaged and feeling their encouragement so much, I couldn’t just stop there. So I challenged myself in 2019 to publish. Having my books out in the world has been an absolute dream come true for me! And publishing “One More Santa” with Anaiah Press was certainly a fun surprise because I entered #faithpitch on Twitter on a whim. God is never surprised, though, and I’m so grateful for this amazing experience!

If you could sit down to dinner with three authors, who would they be and what would you discuss?

Rachel Hollis would be one I’d love to sit with and pick her brain. Her book, “Girl, Wash Your Face,” was what moved me to self-publish first and I love that she’s working so hard to encourage women to work for their big dreams. The second one would be Beverly Cleary because I’d want to tell her how instrumental she was in growing my love for reading at a young age. And the third would be Janette Oke, but my mother would have to sit in on that conversation because she and I both enjoy her books (and the movies inspired by them) so much. Because of her, I have a passion to write books that can be handed down from grandmother to mother to daughter – no matter what age – and hopefully spark conversations between them the way her books did for me and mine.

What’s next for you as an author?

Hopefully more published books! I’m challenging myself to put out five books in 2020! I know that sounds lofty but I have two complete manuscripts I’m revising so I have a little bit of a head start. I also have dreams of two non-fiction books that I’m hoping will inspire others someday. Who knows what new stories God will plant in my heart, but I don’t think I’m done writing by any stretch of the imagination.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

When I’m not writing, I’m either working as a business coach and trainer or I’m with my family at home or on the go. There aren’t many hours to carve out for free-time, but I do love date nights with my husband, conversations in the kitchen with my young-adult children, watching my young nephews play sports when I can, getting cuddles from the newest little member of our family – my niece, and any quality time I can get with my parents and grandmother. I do love to read and take pictures and watch Christmas movies (of course!), but I’d much rather be with the people I love.

What does your family think of your writing?

I couldn’t ask for a more supportive family! They are always so willing to jump in and help me. I call them my “human google” because, when I’m in the middle of a project, I’m constantly asking them all sorts of weird, random, and completely unexpected questions. They don’t blink an eye, though. They either have an answer or break out their phones to help me research. No side-eyes or raised eyebrows – just ready to help. Getting to share the journey and the joys of publishing with them has been the best part of being a writer.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

That I could finish writing a manuscript in less than a month if I had people behind me, pushing me for the next chapter and offering me feedback along the way. They made me want to deliver a great story to them – and do it quickly. I found that I really loved that kind of challenge.

How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?

Well, I’ve self-published four (three being a series) on Amazon and my newest book, “One More Santa” is being released on November 8th with Anaiah Press Publishing. As for a favorite, “The Un-Patriot” has always had a special place in my heart because it was my “baby” when my children started going through high school and didn’t need me as much. (I think even they were grateful I had some kind of a distraction.)

Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

I hear from them daily! My readers are always so supportive. My favorite conversations are when they relate to certain characters. A lot of my women readers relate to Lydia, the matriarch in “The Patriot Diaries”, and I love talking to them about continuing to enjoy life even after facing heartache as she did. I’m really looking forward to seeing how they connect with Cassie in “One More Santa” as she is so focused on her full life as it is and isn’t expecting romance to fall into the mix easily. But mostly my readers are asking “when is the next one being released?” I’m so grateful they’re excited to keep reading, but even more thrilled that I can give them an actual date! November 8th!

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

I wanted to be a writer! My favorite subject was English and I had wonderful teachers in that subject. I was always excited about the next assignment and then the next. I loved seeing my imagination come to life on paper and that has never changed.

Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

I try to be original. When I was writing “One More Santa” my number one goal was to write a Christmas story that was not like any other book I’d read or any other movie I’d seen. I didn’t want it to be predictable. I love a book that keeps me guessing so I work hard to give the same to my readers.

My sincerest thanks for Delaina for stopping by the blog today. Wonderful answers and a great insight into your writing. I can’t wait to read One More Santa.


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