Christmas Off the Beaten Path: Sandra Merville Hart

Christmas Off the Beaten Path: Sandra Merville Hart

Welcome to the third of my Christmas interviews with my fellow authors in the Christmas Fiction Off the Beaten Path anthology, available for purchase right here! If you missed the first two interviews, find them here with Ronnell Kay Gibson and JPC Allen.

I’d like to invite you to grab a candy cane or two and pretend you’ve just joined us at a table where you can enjoy listening to a conversation between two authors you’re interested in learning more about. Ready? Then let’s dive in!

Hello, Sandra, thanks for joining us today. I’d like to ask you some Christmas questions about this most wonderful time of the year, but let’s start with an introduction. Tell us a little about yourself.

I am an award-winning and Amazon bestselling author who loves to uncover little-known yet fascinating facts about our American history to include in my stories. A Musket in My Hands, a Civil War romance where two sisters join the Confederate army with the men they love, is 2019 Serious Writer Medal Fiction Winner and a 2019 Selah Award Finalist. A Rebel in My House, set during the historic Battle of Gettysburg, won the 2018 Silver Illumination Award and second place in 2018 Faith, Hope and Love Readers’ Choice Award. My debut Civil War Romance, A Stranger on My Land, was IRCA Finalist 2015. My novella, Surprised by Love in “From the Lake to the River” is set during the 1913 flood in Troy, Ohio. Trail’s End, in “Smitten Novella Collection: The Cowboys” is set in the wild cattle town of Abilene, Kansas. 

For those who haven’t had the chance to enjoy reading your story in our anthology, could you give us a quick pitch?

“Not This Year”Anticipating tough financial times, the decision not to buy or exchange presents leads to some painful and surprising revelations for a hardworking family man. 

Thank you, now let’s get into the fun Christmas questions…

1. What is your favorite Christmas carol?

What Child Is This?”

2. Hot cocoa, pumpkin latte, or apple cider?

Hot cocoa

3. What’s the first thing to go on your Christmas tree each year?

The Christmas lights

4. If you could be any character in The Nutcracker, who would you be and why?

It’s been several years since I saw this ballet. The toys coming to life sparks my imagination so I’d probably be a mechanical doll if I could dance.

5. When do you start watching Christmas movies and what’s your favorite?

Reading Christmas books and watching Christmas movies are among my favorite holiday traditions. I begin in November and have some favorites every year. One of them is White Christmas.

White Christmas is definitely a classic! Such great songs!

6. What’s your favorite Christmas treat?

Christmas cookies

7. Which version of the Grinch do you prefer? The book? The classic cartoon? Jim Carrey? Or the newest version?

I like the original classic cartoon. 😊

8. If you could be any ornament on the Christmas tree, what would you be and why?

I’m not sure. Though I do want to buy some new ornaments for the coming holiday season.

9. What’s your favorite Christmas story?

Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens


10. How do you keep Christ at the center of your Christmas?

This is a challenge in the busyness of the season. I like to read the Biblical accounts of Jesus’ birth and go to the candlelight service on Christmas Eve.

11. Why did you write your story for Christmas Fiction Off the Beaten Path? What makes your story “off the beaten path”?

My story, “Not This Year”, is inspired by a person who is very dear to my heart. The story has some twists that take a turn readers may not expect.

Yes, it does! But you’ll have to read it to find out. 😉

12. If you could ask for one thing for Christmas this year, what would it be?

Our dishwasher has been broken over a year. My husband doesn’t want to replace it, but it’s such a timesaver when I’m busy. I’m hoping for a new one. This is the first thing that came to mind.

I don’t have a dishwasher currently, either. Time to crank up the Christmas carols!

Thank you so much, Sandra! If you’d like to learn more about Sandra Merville Hart, you can find her at:

Sandra’s Blog, Historical Nibbles:




Sandra’s Goodreads page:

Amazon Author Page:

Thanks again for joining us at our table! We’d love to hear your responses to these questions in the comments below!

Be sure to pull up tomorrow when we speak with Laurie Lucking, author of “Return to Callidora.”

If you’re in need of a copy of this wonderful anthology, you can purchase a copy here, or if you’re in the Spokane area, join me for my reading THIS Saturday, December 7, at 2:00 at the South Hill Branch of the Spokane Public Library. Signed copies will be for sale, without shipping/handling. 🙂

Merry Christmas!

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