Tabitha Bouldin is an avid reader, a hobby photographer, with a love of all things coffee. She has a bachelor’s degree in creative writing from Southern New Hampshire University and splits her time between writing and homeschooling her teenage boys while trying to keep their three cats from sleeping on her laptop. While she enjoys reading across multiple genres, she prefers to write contemporary romance that shows the power of second chances and God’s unwavering love.
Harlequin: Tell us about yourself. Our readers want to know!
Tabitha Bouldin: I’ve never met an animal I didn’t like, but horses will always hold a special place in my heart. I suppose that’s why I love writing cowboy stories. I was the kid always bringing home stray animals, and at one point I thought I’d become a vet. Now I’m the adult who still brings home all the stray animals (much to my husband’s dismay). While writing is by far my favorite occupation, I didn’t always know that I wanted to be an author. In fact, I spent ten years working as a medical assistant before the overwhelming urge to write took over and led me down this path.
H: Why did you want to become a romance writer?
TB: I love the power of story, especially second chances and tales of redemption. There’s nothing better, in my opinion, than curling up with a warm drink and a book that gives me the warm fuzzies. I love romance and the happily ever after, but the journey is what drew me to writing romance. Taking characters and putting them in situations that challenge them while giving them the chance to work through their fear and doubts is one of my favorite things.
H: What were the big steps in your journey to becoming a published author?
TB: My journey to becoming a published author started in 2016 when a story idea burned so bright that I jotted it down in every spare minute. I thought I would get it out of my head and then I’d be ready to leave it behind. You know how humans make plans and then God laughs? Yeah, He showed up in a big way once I finished that first book and I ended up writing a complete trilogy.
Between 2016 and 2019, I continued writing. Most of those stories are still sitting unpublished on my hard drive. I learned invaluable information during the process of pouring those books into the computer, and once I reached a point where I knew that writing wasn’t something I could escape, I began seeking publication and landed a contract with a small press for a series of beach romance novellas.
While working on that series, I researched how to submit to Love Inspired and crafted a story that I thought would fit. My critique partners read it and agreed, giving me the encouragement I needed to submit. Now, I have an amazing agent (thank you, Ali Herring) and I finally get to say I’m a Love Inspired author.
H: What advice would you offer aspiring writers?
TB: Writing is one of those occupations where you can easily feel like you’re on your own. My advice is to find your people. Create a group so that you have people to talk to when things start to go sideways—because they will. Other authors understand the rigors and challenges of writing a book, and having a friend to bounce ideas around with is a unique blessing. I wouldn’t be here today without my critique group and authors like Tina Radcliffe who helped me along the way.
H: What did you do when you got the call from Harlequin?
TB: When I got the call, I was on vacation with my family. I told Caroline where I was and she offered to call me once we were back home, but there was no way I could wait. I’d been pursuing Love Inspired for four years, and I couldn’t imagine not answering right then. Incidentally, it was also my sister’s birthday, so I found that amusing. After I hung up, my intention was to run through the house screaming, “I got the call!” I think the shock caught up with me, because I ended up standing in the middle of the living room, staring at my husband with my phone clutched in my hand asking, “Is this real? Did that really happen?” Once he reassured me that I wasn’t dreaming, I started texting everyone and giving them the news.
Now let’s hear from the editor, Caroline Timmings:
I found Tabitha through the Great Love Inspired Author Search and I could not be happier that’s she’s writing for Love Inspired. I was impressed by Tabitha’s ability to evoke very real and powerful emotions in her story. Without giving anything away, there is a scene at the end of Tabitha’s debut Love Inspired novel that almost brought me to tears (happy tears!). I can’t wait for our readers to get to know Tabitha’s wonderful writing, multi-faceted characters, and engaging stories.