About the Book
Book: Finding Common Ground: One Octogenarian’s Quest to Help Our Nation Heal
Author: Robynne Elizabeth Miller & Marilyn Siden
Genre: Narrative Nonfiction/Memoir
Release date: April 2, 2021
Because she’d had enough. Enough anger. Enough hatred. Enough division.
Marilyn Siden has lived through much: the aftermath of World War II, Korea, and the horror of Vietnam. She’s navigated good political administrations and struggling ones, a thriving economy and want. Her eight decades of experience living in the US have shown her the best America has to offer and, unfortunately, the worst. But she never thought America would become a place of vitriol and despair.
So, she decided to do something about it.
Through a series of epic journeys across America, Marilyn discovered what she was after: practical advice on how to help our nation heal.
But she found something she wasn’t expecting . . . something far more powerful.
Marilyn found our common ground.
If you could spend the day with anyone (living or dead) who would it be? Why?
I am a huge Laura Ingalls Wilder fan and would love to spend the day with her. (mostly grilling her for details of the various people she wrote about!) I have written several books about the real-life characters included in her beloved series, and have several more in the works, but even intense research leaves some holes. I would LOVE her to fill in those gaps.
What kind of research do you do?
I am partial to the pioneer period of American history, as well as British history in the late 1800’s. As a result, I spend a lot of quality time with census and land records, diaries, and personal letters. I use them in conjunction with timelines and historical event data to build a full picture of the lives and circumstances I so love to write about. But any research that looks into how a person lives and thinks and interacts with the world is of particular interest to me.
How long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
It depends on the type of book, but for a biography or a memoir, I can spend one-two years gathering data, visiting sites, and constructing the historical context before I actually begin to sit down and start the formal writing process. For Finding Common Ground, the book was a collaboration, so the research was really a shared process and, therefore, that phase was abbreviated to just under a year before a year of writing commenced.
Was there anything you found interesting while researching the topic?
YES! I had always suspected that we were far more alike than we were different, but this book confirmed that in spades. And the way we can get to that place of discovering commonality is to just listen to each other … which we all can do.
Do you have any writing quirks?
YES to this, too! I work best when I have visited the sites I am writing about, put photos of those places around my writing space. With that environment and foundation, I then ignore my beautiful desk to sit in my favorite antique chair and pound the manuscript out on my laptop, which is literally in my lap.
Click here to get your copy!
About the Authors
Robynne Elizabeth Miller is wife to an amazing Brit and mother to a glorious brood of adopted and biological kids. Her adventures have led her to over twenty-five countries, from Malta to Russia, and she’s lived about a quarter of her life in the English countryside. She currently makes her home in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, spending much of her time telling locals they don’t need to apologize for the rain.
With dozens of articles, essays, and blog posts to her credit, as well as eight books and collaborations on several more, she’s put her B.A. from Westmont College and her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction & Fiction from Ashland University to good use She’s an experienced speaker, editor, and writing coach, and teaches regularly at conferences and writer’s workshops. She currently serves as President and Director of Leadership of Inspire Christian Writers and hosts The Art of Semi-Fiction podcast, where she explores every corner of the written word.
On quieter days, Robynne can be found meandering back roads with her family, cooking up some grand adventure with her friends, singing at the top of her lungs, or making bacon from scratch.
is blessed with a wonderful family—four grown children, twelve beautiful,
talented, Godly grandchildren, and an amazing husband.
More from Robynne and Marilyn
Hello Dear Readers!
Feeling a little discouraged about the state of our nation today? Convinced you have no hope of being part of the solution?
Not only are you ABLE to be a part of helping to heal our nation, but you are both called AND equipped to do so, right where you are. No matter your skillset or resources, you can start being a light for Jesus right now. And that light, however small you perceive it to be, WILL shine in these dark times.
Taking this journey at nearly 80 and crossing the country in search of practical solutions to start reversing the hatred and hurt blanketing our nation was challenging.
But it was worth it, too.
Not only is the book filled with stories of hope and encouragement, it’s filled with practical steps we can all take to start healing hurts, restoring our communities, building a safer future for our children, and bringing light back to our nation.
Are you ready?
We are standing on common ground!
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By The Book, August 17 (Author Interview)
Texas Book-aholic, August 18
Inklings and notions, August 19
For Him and My Family, August 20
Blossoms and Blessings, August 21 (Author Interview)
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, August 21
deb’s Book Review, August 22
Locks, Hooks and Books, August 23
Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, August 24
A Modern Day Fairy Tale, August 25
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, August 26
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 27
Splashes of Joy, August 28 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, August 28
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 29
To celebrate their tour, Marilyn and Robynne are giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a signed copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.