This week’s author interview is with Guy M. Richard. He is the author of Persistent Prayer in the Blessings of the Faith series as well as What Is Faith? in the Basics of the Faith series.
- Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I grew up all around New Orleans, Louisiana. I moved away to attend college and have only been back to south Louisiana a handful of times since then. Most of my adult life has been spent in the southeastern part of the U.S., with the exception of the 3 delightful years we lived in Edinburgh, Scotland for my PhD. My wife’s name is Jennifer. We met and started dating in college and got married just after graduation. My personal interests are pretty much limited to family (we have three kids), work, and exercise (I especially love intense exercise, as those of you who read my book Persistent Prayer will learn in chapter 1). I do also enjoy reading, writing, and watching most sports (although I would much rather be playing them any day).
- Have you always enjoyed writing?
When I was in high school and college, I hated writing and tried to avoid it at all costs. It wasn’t until seminary that I started growing both in my ability to write and in my enjoyment of it as well. Several of my professors encouraged me and gave me detailed feedback to really help me focus on improving. My PhD was a “research” degree, which meant that all I did every day was read and write for 3 years, and that helped me to improve as a writer and a thinker more than anything else.
- Do you have a favorite quote?
I have quite a few favorite quotes. I keep them on notecards in conspicuous places in my office so that I can seem them over and over again. Here are three of my favorite quotes:
“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” —CS Lewis
“If you have no opposition in the place you are serving, then you’re serving in the wrong place.” —G. Campbell Morgan
“Live in Christ, and you are in the suburbs of heaven.” —Samuel Rutherford
- Do you have a favorite book that you have written?
Because of the topic of this book, I would say that Persistent Prayer is my favorite. As a pastor, I have been burdened for a long time to see God’s people pray more and to pray bigger prayers. It is my prayer that God will use this book to motivate and encourage God’s people in these directions, all for the praise of His glorious grace!
- At what time of day do you write most?
I am best in the morning hours, and, for that reason, try to do most of my writing (or other heavy lifting) at that time. Because of the number of balls that I juggle, however, I frequently have to squeeze in time to write whenever I can get it at various times throughout the day.
- What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
I’ll focus on the first of these questions. The toughest criticism I have received as a writer was given to me by my secondary PhD supervisor in Edinbugh, Professor David F. Wright. Professor Wright read everything I wrote during my time in Edinburgh and met with me privately to discuss it. And he didn’t simply read the papers I submitted to him, he marked them up with red ink. Every paper I got back from him looked like he had taken a red Sharpie and taped it to one of the blades of an oscillating fan, turned the fan on, and held my paper up to it. Red ink was everywhere! When I would meet with him, he would routinely ask me about the words I used. He would say things like this: “When you said ‘told,’ did you mean ‘told’? Or did you mean ‘said’? or ‘stated’? or ‘claimed’? or ‘suggested’? Say what you mean, Guy, and mean what you say.” It was always incredibly hard to hear his criticisms, but it was also incredibly helpful for me as a budding writer. I am grateful that he cared enough to invest the time in me and in my work.
I am not a “foodie,” so my favorite food is something that is good for me and satisfies my hunger! I don’t live to eat; I eat to live!
- Do you have a favorite movie? What is it and why?
If I had to narrow it down to only one, I would probably say that “Chariots of Fire” is my favorite movie. I love underdog, come-from-behind types of movies where the good guy wins but only after a lot of hard work and determination. I especially love these kinds of movies because they inspire me to work harder and push beyond what I think I am capable of.
- The Lord of the Rings or The Chronicles of Narnia? Why?
I love both—which is something of a cop-out I realize. If I had to choose one, I would say The Chronicles of Narnia, because of the oftentimes simple and straightforward Christian message that they convey. I also love CS Lewis and have been impacted by almost everything he has written. I have probably read The Chronicles of Narnia to my kids over a dozen times over the years and another 10 or so times myself.
Neither! I am too hyper for caffeine! I usually wake up in the morning ready to hit the ground running. Even small amounts of caffeine send me over the edge. I know what you’re thinking: I am a very strange person!
- Favorite sport to watch? Why? Favorite sport’s team?
I love watching swimming, road cycling, triathlons, and college football. I especially enjoy keeping up with Auburn University football (although “enjoy” is not always the right word for it, as most every Auburn fan can attest!).
How can readers discover more about you and your work?
NOW AVAILABLE — Persistent Prayer