I am pleased to say that I met Tiff right before
she sold her first book. And I am so heartened to watch her career and
family blossom. Take it away Tiff!
Hi! My name is Tiffany Stockton,
but some of you might know me better as Amber Miller or more recently
Amber Stockton. No, I don’t suffer from a case of multiple
personalities. It’s simply my pen name—a combination of my middle and
last names. The first was my maiden name, and now I am using my married
Bonnie has been quite gracious
to extend the invitation for me to be her Publisher’s Choice spotlight
for this month. She’s asked me to share about my writing, my books and
the web design business I own with my
husband, Stuart. He is also an
author, with his first book having just released in April.
So, let's see. My journey began
many years ago. I wrote my first short story in 5th grade with several
accolades from both my teacher and my fellow students. It was entered
into a ‘Young Writers of America’ contest and placed but didn’t get
selected for publication. In 1994, during my Senior year in high
school, the writing "bug" bit me. My English teacher saw potential, and
as an author herself, she encouraged me to pursue the talent further. I
dabbled in fan fiction, short stories and other writing for a few
years. Then in 2002, thanks to friend and mentor Tracie Peterson, I
took the step professionally to begin a career by joining ACFW
(American Christian Fiction Writers).
Four years later, I sold my
first book and took the rather scary step into the world of authorship.
But I am not the ‘common’ story. I was published before I turned 30 and
had books released before children came into my life. So, I already
established a pattern and routine and placed a certain spotlight on my
writing that would transition with the growth of my family. I don’t
have to convince them of the importance of my writing and my career.
However, being younger in this
industry has its pros and cons. I sometimes have to work twice as hard
to be 'accepted' and have encountered folks who are fifteen years older
or more who believe that because I have not passed certain rites of
passage along the way, I don't 'qualify' as one who can offer any
advice to others. On the flip side, I have encountered those who have
been inspired by my goals and determination and have found their own
inspiration as a result. They commend me for going for what I wanted
early in life, and gain a newfound desire in their own lives. This
group is far more common and makes the journey worthwhile.
When I received the notification
that my first book was going to be bought, the first thought I had was,
“I have to tell someone!” Since the hour was late, and everyone had
gone to bed, I logged online. The only one signed on was the man who is
now my husband, Stuart Vaughn Stockton. Some people would call that
ironic. I call it God. One of the biggest moments of my life, and the
first person I tell is the man I would marry just eight months later.
My husband began creating his
science fiction world when he was a teenager. After working on his
stories for the next decade, in 2004, he finally took the same step I
did to pursue his writing professionally. Although Christian Science
Fiction was a tough sell to publishers, there was a demand by readers
for it. Last year, Jeff Gerke (the publisher’s choice in April)
launched Marcher Lord Press and gave a place for speculative fiction
authors to publish their books and please those who wanted to read
them. Stuart was one of the authors in the second launch with his debut
novel, Starfire. It’s exciting to say we have two published authors in
It’s now been almost two years
since we married, and just last
month we were blessed with a new addition to our family. Victoria
Elizabeth was born to us on April 2nd and has become a great joy in our
lives. So many have already predicted she’s destined to become a
as well. Only time will reveal her future. The first few weeks have
been quite exhausting, but we know it’s only temporary and we’ll soon
be able to get a good night’s sleep again! And in just a couple of
weeks, we’ll be able to get back to work for our clients.
They have been amazing. I admit,
wondering how I was going to balance a newborn and serving the needs of
our clients has crossed my mind many times. But all of our clients have
extended the grace and patience to allow us to settle again with our
daughter for a few weeks before returning to work. It’s a tremendous
piece of good fortune.
Although I began this business
in 1997, it didn’t grow to what it is today until I began designing
sites for authors and other industry professionals. Yes, we do have a
handful of celebrities and other trade-related clients, but the bulk of
our clientele is authors, speakers and editors. Because Stuart and I
are connected to the writing world, we have a unique perspective to
share with our clients, imparting marketing angles they might not
otherwise discover to help take their careers to great heights.
Eagle Designs exists to benefit
those who want to establish a presence online but might be faced with a
limited budget or even lack the expertise needed. We have also recently
expanded our services to include blog tours, book mailings for tours,
banner designs, customized graphics and so much more. If you or someone
you know is in need of these services, take a moment to visit our site
and get in touch. (Click on the banner ad at the top of the page!)
It can be a challenge to balance
writing, marketing, client design, and now attention to our daughter.
But God wouldn’t have called us to this or provided the tools we need
if He wasn't going to stick with us and guide us through it. I still
have a lot to learn, and I am remaining
teachable, learning from those
who have gone before me so that I might one day pass the torch as they
So, what's next?
I have sold 6 books with 2
anthology collection repackages coming from those 6 novels. This year,
I'm working on finding an agent so I can diversify more and get
established with trade-length fiction. I am also monitoring other
submissions with editors that are floating out there. Right now, I am
finishing book #6, which is due this month. This and the two previous
books are part of my newest series set in Detroit during the Industrial
Revolution. My first three are what will become Liberty’s
Promise next year.
And that's about it for me.
Kudos to those of you who have stuck it out with me and read all the
way to the bottom. I greatly appreciate it.
Feel free to visit these web
sites to learn more or get in touch with me or Stuart. We would love to
hear from you.