Author Liz Mitchell Talks About the Challenges and Hopes Behind Her New Novel

Liz Mitchell

Inspired by attending "The Call," (a movement created by Lou Engle Ministries), Liz Mitchell debuted her first novel in the unique genre of Christian Suspense Fiction. That book, Like The Ocean Moves, was endorsed by Gary Chapman and included a foreword by Dan Madigan. Now, despite forces that seemed intent on preventing its release, Book Two in The Torchbearer Series, Sound The Alarm, is finally available. 

Mitchell is a gifted new voice in the genre. Her faith is strong, her message is clear, and her writing is riveting. Originally from Madisonville, Kentucky, Liz Mitchell now lives near Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and children. She earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Evansville and graduated with her MFA from Murray State University. After teaching high school for ten years, Liz went to work as office manager for a tree care company. In addition to her family and her passion for writing engaging fiction, Liz loves to sing loudly in her car and find more ways to enjoy chocolate. 

Q: Liz, thanks for doing this interview with us. How did you become an author?

Thank you for asking me! If you'll forgive the pun, I'm an open book. (I know. I can hear the groaning from across the big blue pond). I'm not certain there was ever a process of becoming for me. Being a storyteller is something that has always existed within me. I can remember being a young child and, instead of going to sleep like we were supposed to, laying in bed with friends and making up all sorts of tales just to hear my friends giggle. I started writing down my stories in elementary school and plunked out my first novella in high school. Bless my dad's heart, he stayed hours after work with me to help make copies of that novella and put them in folders to give away as gifts to friends and family. I just couldn't help myself. Stories have always floated around within me. I joke with people but I'm also serious when I say that if I don't write the stories in my head, my brain starts to itch.

Q: Why did you choose to write novels, especially Christian suspense?

That's a great question. I am not a non-fiction gal at all. Fiction is where I come alive. And when I get in that place with Holy Spirit, everything changes. On principal I like to read fiction that is exciting, mysterious, romantic, comical, suspenseful, and heartwarming. Yes, all of those things in one book. So if that's the kind of thing I want to pull off a shelf and spend money on to read, it darn well should be what I'm producing as well. When I bring God into the gift of imagination that He has given me, what I do is elevated. It's not my brilliance; it's His touch.

Q: Can you tell us more about the Torchbearer Series?

The Torchbearer Series is scene after scene of Heaven colliding with Earth. In it we find ordinary people doing extraordinary things: demolishing human trafficking rings, rescuing women and children, and waging war against dark political agendas. But they do those extraordinary acts alongside their guardian angels, moving between Heaven, Hell and Earth in an ever-advancing timeline requiring more faith in the seen and unseen than they ever thought they would need.

Torchbearers are those who walk among us to bring Heaven to Earth, light to darkness. They live on the line where the natural meets the supernatural, waging war alongside angels and demons to move the world toward one goal: preparation for the second coming of King Jesus. Our Torchbearers learn how to fight in the physical realm with spiritual realm weapons, enlarging their arsenals to be powerful enough to face down assassins, underworld figures, and the demons from Hell assigned to end them all. It's action-packed, globe-trotting, back-to-back tales designed to not only engage the readers, but invite them to more. Because even though these books are fiction, the One they honor is not.  

Q: "Sound the Alarm" is the second novel in the series. Briefly tell us what the book is about.

In the second book of the Torchbearer Series, we rejoin two men from Like The Ocean Moves saved in a most unusual way as they forge a path from trafficking women and children to fighting alongside angels to rescue them and right the wrongs their sins created. In the ultimate story of redemption, Nikolai and Rutger join Sara Ramos and Alejandro Guerra in a race across the world to find and rescue not only a victim of trafficking, but also the key to unlocking the coming of a new age on the Earth.

Standing in their path are assassins, a crooked American senator, and an onslaught of demonic darkness that takes them on a twisted path to Hell, straight into the courts of Lucifer himself. In a tangled web of light and darkness, they must walk the line where the spiritual and physical worlds collide to discover, to rescue, to fall in love, and to triumph. Miracles abound as these Christians living in the Last Days fight alongside their guardian angels to unlock a new age, ushering the world toward the coming of the King.

Q: What are some of the themes that may help our readers in their faith journeys?

It is my heartfelt desire that Christians the world around understand the power available to us when we invite Jesus into our everyday lives and grant Him permission to do what He wants to do. There are so many hard days, so many insurmountable situations we face: cancer, addiction, untimely deaths, poverty, heightened anxiety, violence from those we should be able to trust, and the list goes on. I don't know how to fix those horrible crises. Not a single one. But I know Someone who does. When we invite Him into our worst moments, things change. Readers witness miracle after miracle tied to that one invitation: when we ask Heaven to move to Earth, for the Holy to dismantle the unholy, and for the Author of our stories to intervene and flip the script.

Q: How has the writing of this book helped you personally in your own life?

When we invite Holy Spirit into our mundane routines, all kinds of surprises await us. Exploring the characters in this book is personal. I think we all know brothers and sisters in Christ that refuse themselves the gift of grace and forgiveness. They want to continually remind themselves of their sins because their guilt has not yet met the onslaught of benevolent grace the Father offers through Jesus. It's not something easily understood from the outside or easily released from the inside. A deeper understanding of grace for both the giver and the receiver is pivotal as we face an End Times Church that must be leaner, clearer, and unafraid to live out the full Gospel of Christ.

Q: It has been reported that you had several challenges getting the second book to press, as if negative forces don't want this uplifting series shared. What can you tell us about that?

I don't know how to answer this question without going all in, so grab a snack and put your feet up for this one. Like the Ocean Moves was released 07/07/2017 and at the time, I thought it would take two or three years to produce the sequel. Looking back now at such naivety and innocence, I sincerely wish it had been so simple. But in the time that it took to write the first book and begin the second, I'd gone back to work full time managing a small company in Nashville. Paired with a commute, three children, three dogs, and a husband, life was busier than I'd planned. Two months after I published LTOM, I was in the first of a series of rear-end collisions.

In 2019 I was in three more. So many whiplash injuries in such a short period of time wrecked my body, causing disc damage in my cervical spine and assigning me to fifteen months of physical therapy. I didn't write a single word during that time. Didn't even open it up. I had to fight through that valley and slug through hard days of pain and weakness. During that time period I also became acquainted with a new monster: anxiety. I knew people who had battled anxiety, but I had absolutely no concept of how truly crippling and life-changing it can be. In my typical fashion I got up every day and went to work, crying all the way there and all the way home. I did a lot of praying and worshipping and seeking on those commutes. So if you saw me rolling toward downtown Nashville a tear-streaked, snotty mess five days a week, it's because I was battling my Goliath over and over again.

In March of 2020 I was finally released from physical therapy and right into a world pandemic. Everything changed for everyone at that point, didn't it? But I was blessed with a job that was essential and found myself working more than ever during that time period. At that point the sequel was written, but needed editing. I thought I'd be able to produce it that same year. Why not, right? Half the world's population was stuck at home and bored to tears. Sounded like a great time to publish a book to me! But I just couldn't get it out. Couldn't press through. Something wasn't right. I felt the Lord telling me to keep it on pause, like it had been during my time of recovery. I didn't like that plan. But I trusted him.

Then on May 3, 2021, I walked out of my bathroom and found my husband face down in the floor, unconscious. He had suffered an unexplained medical event and when he fell, he hit head first, causing a major concussion. Life separated for me at that point; before his fall and after. The after was hard. The after weighed us down with too many unknowns and challenges. It felt like stumbling around in dizzy circles in a wasteland where nothing looked familiar and no one could tell us the way home. We pressed on through that wasteland and over time my husband got much better. Many would never know he has suffered so much. But I know. And our children know. And walking through such an intense time period as a family ratcheted the anxiety for all of us up to new heights. That wasteland stretched on as far as we could see and I had no idea how to navigate, no idea how to steer my family through so many days and nights that in honesty, felt like Hell to me.

During those months my editor, Terri, excelled at badgering me. We were college roommates and traveled a lot as students, so she knew me well. Every single day she texted to see how we were doing. Many times I couldn't find the bandwidth to say much, but that woman is stubborn and knows no limits when it comes to fighting for what she loves and believes in. So she fought for me and she fought for the sequel, pushing, needling, elbowing, pulling me through the hardest season of my life one text, one phone call, and one email at a time. And I did get through it.

What I can tell you is that in that season of such intensity and pain, I dug deep. The place in which we found ourselves had no living water, no provision for nourishment and life. We had to dig deeper to find the wells of Holy Spirit that move, that billow, that rise in swells and tides that turn and bring us up out of the Hell we find ourselves in on this Earth and into the throne room where healing takes place, where life is renewed, and where finally, the next part of our stories are written.

Q: Where can our readers go to read more about you and your ministry?

Instagram: @LizMitchellFiction



Tags : liz mitchell liz mitchell interview Liz Mitchell author Sound The Alarm The Torchbearer Series

Hot Trends

Most Popular

popular videos