I am excited to be featuring the talented Erika Mathews on the blog today!
Erika Mathews writes Christian living books, both fiction and non-fiction, that demonstrate the power of the kingdom of God through ordinary people, transforming daily life into His resting life. She’s a homeschool graduate with a Bachelor’s in Communications, a Master’s in Biblical Ministries, and a passion for sharing Jesus Christ and His truth. Outside of writing, she spends time with her husband Josh, mothers her little ones, reads, edits, enjoys the great Minnesota outdoors, plays piano and violin, makes heroic ventures into minimalism, clean eating, and gardening, and uses the Oxford comma.
Kylie: What was your biggest “aha” moment that you knew you wanted to be a writer?
Erika: I began writing in a giant notebook when I was five years old, and I enjoyed penning stories, poems, journal entries, and school notes. When I was ten, I had the idea of beginning what later became my first middle-grade novel. So I already enjoyed writing when the biggest “aha” moment hit me at age thirteen. One evening, I heard God’s Spirit speaking, telling me that I would write many books that glorify Him. From that moment on, I haven’t questioned His calling to me as a writer.
Kylie: What would you say is your favorite thing about writing?
Erika: My favorite thing about writing is rereading previous works. Whether it’s a novel, a journal-style entry, or a devotional, I love revisiting what God has taught me and put into words through me! Often I’m encouraged, challenged, and inspired (as well as surprised that I actually wrote that particular thing!). People say to write what you want to read, and when you add a spiritual dimension to that writing advice, it’s amazing.
Kylie: Are there any books or authors who have inspired you as a writer?
Erika: In my childhood, the Five Little Peppers series and the Elsie Dinsmore series were majorly inspiring to me. Rod and Staff storybooks heavily influenced some of my earlier fiction writings, as well as books by G.A. Henty. My current genre, kingdom adventure fiction (like historical fiction but set in a place that doesn’t exist), was inspired by Jessica Greyson and her books in the same genre – after reading her books, I realized that was the perfect genre setting for the message God had given me to write. The Ilyon Chronicles by Jaye L. Knight influenced my characterizations. In general, I’m inspired by vintage fiction (1800s) and deep spiritual non-fiction writers such as Andrew Murray and Brother Lawrence.
Kylie: Do you have any books you are looking forward to reading in 2021?
Erika: I am looking forward to reading the upcoming Fellowship of Light series by Chelsea Burden – I’ve heard so many wonderful things about the series. I also hope to find time to read Katja Labonte‘s Colours of Life series! I also plan to read the collection for A Very Bookish Fourth of July once it gets closer to publication.
Kylie: When you’re not writing, what are some things you enjoy doing?
Erika: If I’m not writing, I’m probably editing or taking care of my children and home. In rare free time, I spend time outside (I love lakes, autumn trees, and sunrises!), read avidly, and cross stitch Christmas stockings for my children.
Kylie: I know you had a new book “Victory’s Voice” release yesterday, can you tell us more about the story and the series “Truth from Taerna” that it is from?
Erika: Truth from Taerna is a six-book kingdom adventure fiction series born from a heart to communicate the truths of God’s kingdom—the spiritual realm hidden from our physical senses—in an engaging story format. Each book focuses on an aspect of spiritual truth that today’s church often downplays. Each book can be read as a standalone and follows a different sibling as they learn these spiritual truths. My desire is to demonstrate how the powerful, life-changing truths of God’s kingdom could play out in a fictional setting. My goal is that God will use this series to reveal His kingdom to the reader. My prayer is that by spending time seeing and knowing God within these pages, the reader may know and experience Him more intimately in daily life.
Victory’s Voice is Book Two in Truth from Taerna. It follows Ellisia as she learns the power of spoken words in the spiritual realm and it’s a story I am enthused about. (Every time I reread the climax, I still get excited – it’s so powerful!)
When an extroverted bookworm discovers the hidden power of spoken words, death and life tremble in the balance on the tip of her tongue. But not only figuratively.
At seventeen, Ellisia’s passion for learning and books dominates her small-town existence. No wonder she’s elated when an opportunity to attend Academy arises: she can finally fulfill her lifelong goals to further her education and see the famed Palace BookHall. But as she begins to discover the true power of the spoken word, she faces a choice: join forces with a foreign physicist or relinquish her dream to someday work in the BookHall. Loyalties and ambitions war within Ellisia once the scientist’s projects begin to threaten her family’s safety. When impending crisis brings a clash of spiritual kingdoms, Ellisia must once for all choose how she’ll harness the power of words. Spoken words transcend her reality, uniting heavenly with earthly and commanding the forces that drive the physical world, and Ellisia’s voice will be the catalyst for sure defeat—or decisive victory.
Kylie: Where can readers connect with you and purchase your books?
Erika: You can connect with me at restinglife.com. The best way to stay connected is to sign up for my email newsletter – I only send newsletters when I have news. 😉 If you prefer, you can find me on your favorite social media through the links here, and information about purchasing my books is here. You can also find my books (currently kingdom adventure fiction, a poetry collection, a fables retelling collection, some short historical fiction, and a Christian living non-fiction book on spiritual rest) in paperback and ebook on Amazon. I love meeting new friends who love books!
I want to thank Erika for taking the time to visit with us today and I encourage you to check out her books!