Murder for Emily’s Sake by Larry W. Timm

Posted by on Sep 22, 2017 | 8 comments

Murder for Emily’s Sake by Larry W. Timm

Murder for Emily’s Sake by Larry W. Timm is a suspense-filled story of love, loss, and redemption. I know you will enjoy meeting the author! Leave a comment on the blog and sign in on the Rafflecopter for a chance to win your choice of a print or Kindle copy!



Fabulous Fridays

Murder for Emily’s Sake

Welcome, Larry! I have read some great interviews with you recently and am excited to introduce you to my readers! Please share a little about your background and how it led to writing Murder for Emily’s Sake.

Thank you, Norma, for the kind words and for the gracious invitation to be a part of your blog. I’ve had a variety of experiences and jobs that have seasoned my life and prepared me to write. In addition to serving in ministry for 30 years, I’ve worked as a cemetery caretaker, a city worker (which included being a trash man), been a licensed funeral director, and, of course, I’m a husband and father. After I became a Christian in 1981, I attended Ozark Christian College in Joplin, Missouri. It was during my time there that I was introduced to some wonderful people in the local pro-life outreach and watched a movie called Silent Scream. From that moment on, a deep passion for doing whatever I could to speak up for the sanctity of human life began to take root in my heart. I’ve tried to speak, write, and engage in other ways (such as serving on the board of directors for a pregnancy care center) that actively supports the pro-life movement. Therefore, I wanted to write a novel that had a strong pro-life theme.

I’ve always had an interest in writing, but a class at Ozark Christian College, called Excellence In Writing, taught by Jackina Stark (a published author also), helped that desire to grow. Then, in 1990, a lady in the church where I was preaching handed me a couple of books by an author I’d never heard of…Frank Peretti. One was called This Present Darkness and the other was entitled Piercing the Darkness. I began to be fascinated by Christian Fiction, though it would be more than 20 years before I committed myself to writing novels and not just reading them. Then God’s gracious plan for my life gave me the opportunity to meet Deb Raney. It is because of her advice, which included encouragement to join American Christian Fiction Writers, that I’m able to celebrate the release of my debut novel.

Some real-life experience helped you in writing one of the more difficult parts of Murder for Emily’s Sake. Please share a little about your daughter’s influence on your writing.

There are a couple of threads running through Murder for Emily’s Sake that relate to my daughter’s recent experience with battling cancer. While the first draft of the book was written before Jayne was diagnosed with cancer, after we learned she had cancer I was overwhelmed by how I could identify with the family in the Book (Marcus & Nancy Gunn) who had just lost a son to leukemia. While I’m thrilled to say that it appears that Jayne’s cancer (Hodgkin’s Lymphoma) is in remission, when we were at the beginning of the battle we had no idea what the future would bring. Like never before, we embraced each day as a unique and unrepeatable gift from Almighty God. The Heroine in the book, Lindsay Birk, was also a great example of the kind of fighting spirit that Jayne has shown through this difficult journey. When I first saw the cover that the artist designed for the book, I was blown away. The image captures exactly what I want people to see in Lindsay (and what I’ve witnessed in Jayne’s life): unwavering determination in the face of fear and suffering. And, as a parent, I could really identify with Lindsay’s father as evil stalked his daughter and threatened her precious life. I can feel his emotions and his desire to protect his daughter from the danger. That’s what I wanted to do for Jayne. Murder for Emily’s Sake, my debut suspense novel, is dedicated to Jayne Lindsay Timm.

Murder for Emily's Sake meme


What was your main motivation in creating the plot for Murder for Emily’s Sake?

I wanted to write an entertaining story that honored life—at all of its stages—as a gift from God to be cherished and protected, and I wanted to encourage respect for those courageous individuals whose commitment to defending the sanctity of human life saves lives every day. Perhaps no one expressed it better than the CEO of a group of pregnancy resource centers here in mid-Illinois, Sherry Sherwood. In her endorsement for book, she wrote, “The battle for the life of the unborn is dark and intense. Every day, God’s people stand on the front lines of this battle to lovingly give women the strength to choose what their heart is telling them to do—to choose life. Murder for Emily’s Sake gives us a glimpse into the intensity of this battle against evil and the strength of those willing to do what is necessary to stand for life.”

I also felt the need to show that abortion is not the only threat to Life. There are many forces that threaten the sacred gift of Life, such as the evil or careless actions of others, the self-destructive choices and behaviors we bring into our own individual lives, and things like sickness and disease.

I hoped to encourage readers to cherish the gift of Life in general and their own individual lives as precious and sacred gifts from God.

As a pastor, how do you see the impact of Christian fiction?

I see the power of story as an incredibly effective vehicle for conveying truth in an engaging and entertaining manner. One need look no further than our Lord Jesus to see that He obviously felt the same way. He used nearly 3 dozen stories (i.e. parables) to illustrate truth. Several of His fictional stories picture the battle between good and evil, and, in quite gritty fashion, show disturbing realities (see Matthew 18:23-35; Matthew 21:33-44; Matthew 22:2-14; Matthew 24:45-51; Matthew 25:14-30; Matthew 25:31-46; etc.). Jesus illustrates the battle between good and evil or light and darkness with references to physical attacks, deceit, murder, vengeance and other disturbing actions. Christian fiction is simply the act of using story to deliver truth in a way that both entertains and enlightens. I firmly believe that anyone who wishes to be a communicator must be an effective storyteller.

How does writing fiction dovetail with your ministry?

I believe that writing is one aspect of a multi-faceted ministry. It is one way that I can connect people with a God who loves them. In fact, to choose which expression of ministry I’m most passionate about overall is nearly impossible to do. When I’m writing, that is what I am most passionate about. When I’m teaching a class, that is where my passion is at that moment. And when I have the privilege of standing and preaching, I’m totally devoted to that expression of ministry. I see all these things as different ways of being a good steward of service opportunities to and for my Lord. Christian fiction, specifically, allows me to use story to bring truth to people.

What is one thing you recommend to writers who are starting out?

One piece of advice that I’ve tried to consistently give is to remember that writers write. Some who read that may roll their eyes and say, “Well, duh!” But before tagging me with the Captain Obvious moniker, or calling me an unfortunate Yiddish term, let me explain. There are many parts of the writing experience that can be so seductive that, if not careful, a writer can surrender way too much time doing those things instead of actually writing. While it is true that time spent on platform building or attending groups and conferences can be useful, there is no substitute for applying rump to chair, ignoring social media, and cranking out a steady amount of words every day. So, my advice is simple: if you want to be a writer…write.

One related note is appropriate here: It probably is wise to point out that while writing is what a makes a person a writer, there are several additional important steps that a writer must do to become a published writer. This is where study of craft, attendance at conferences, and working to build relationships with other writers and industry professionals are just some of the areas into which a writer must pour their time and attention.  Learning to balance these important areas while still cranking out the good old word count is crucial.

How did you go about creating a realistic setting and characters for Murder for Emily’s Sake?

Trial and error…and then more trial and, hopefully, less error. I study how respected writers do it, then I try to apply things I’ve learned. I write and rewrite until I think a scene delivers a realistic setting that people can picture. Often, I will research certain elements of a setting until I find that little bit of info that can give a setting life. My goal is to paint a setting on the canvas of a reader’s mind that leaves them feeling as if they know of just such a place.

As far as characters are concerned, I learn about them as I’m writing the story. I’m not a plotter, so even though I may have an idea of good and bad character traits for a couple of main characters before I start writing, as I get to know them better, I learn more about how they would or wouldn’t act in certain circumstances as the story unfolds. Then I go back and revise earlier scenes for added depth and realism. Since I write suspense, I must confess that I enjoy discovering what a character likes and dislikes, then taking away what they like, and piling on the things they dislike. I want my character’s actions—even the extreme actions—to be believable, even if we don’t agree with them.

Pastors are busy people with many responsibilities. How difficult is it for you to protect your writing time?

It is, at times, very difficult because my schedule is often impacted by the tyranny of the urgent. I’m the type of person who likes routine and structure, so I’ve had to learn to be flexible and write when I can, instead of having a non-negotiable writing time. This whole area is still a work-in-progress.

If you could spend the day with a character from your favorite novel, who would it be and what would you do?

Wow, this is an interesting question! I’m one of those readers that doesn’t really have a favorite novel of all time, which may just mean that I’m fickle or shallow. Often, my favorite novel is whichever one I’m currently reading. But one character who has fascinated me for years is Sherlock Holmes. I’d love to just tag along as he investigated and dissected a case. Most recently, my list of favorite characters would include Odd Thomas (from the series by Dean Koontz). Following Odd around would be a wild ride indeed!

Please share the opening scene of Murder for Emily’s Sake with us.

In the opening scene, Emily’s father is sitting by her grave, his grief driving him farther into a hate-filled darkness of the mind. He remembers the moment at the hospital when the doctor came out to tell him that his daughter had died in the delivery room, despite all they did to try to save her. As he sits by the mound of dirt, under which is buried the body of his beloved daughter, Emily, he makes a vow to hunt down the three women who talked Emily out of having an abortion, instead helping her to choose to let the baby live. He believes that if they had left her alone that day, or if they had not been there in front of the abortion clinic for their prayer gathering, Emily would still be alive. Her determines that soon there will be three more caskets buried in three more graves. He swears he will capture them and bury them…alive.

Book Blurb:

On a moonlit night in Wichita, Kansas, a tormented father stands by the grave of his teenage daughter, Emily, and makes a chilling vow to avenge her death. Once he gets his hands on the three women he holds responsible for his daughter’s death, they will regret the day they met Emily outside the abortion clinic. He will expose a dark secret. He will bury them, as he buried Emily. Bury them alive. And after their caskets are in the ground, they will die…for Emily’s sake.

About the author:

Larry W. Timm is a husband, father, preacher, and writer who loves creating stories with heart, soul, and high doses of adrenaline. He hasLarry Timm author always been intrigued by the power of words, and considers the stewardship of story to be a great joy and honor. Whether he’s writing fiction or non-fiction, he wants readers to be enlightened, inspired, and entertained.

A 1986 graduate from Ozark Christian College (Joplin, MO), Larry has been involved in church ministry for thirty years. He is currently serving as preaching minister with the Morton Christian Church (Morton, IL). His greatest joys are being a husband, father, and follower of Jesus Christ.

Connect with Larry:




Murder for Emily’s Sake:

Murder for Emily's Sake cover

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  1. Book looks very intriguing. I like the cover and the story line has a great plot, it sounds like.

    • Rebekah, thank you for reading the interview and commenting. The plot idea grabbed my attention and I knew I had to see where it would lead. This book was a blast to write. I hope you get a chance to read the book.

  2. Wonderful interview and book sounds like a good one.

    • Thank you for commenting, Ann. I appreciate you taking the time to read the interview.

  3. Larry: Your book sounds intriguing and full of suspense. Thank you for sharing a bit about yourself. Wishing you success with the book.

    • Linda, it was my pleasure to be a part of this wonderful blog. I hope you have a chance to read the book, and that you enjoy it.

  4. Wow, this sounds like a wonderful read. Thank you, Norma and Larry, for sharing a bit about the book. I’ve had the honor of playing a small part in being supportive of pregnant women who were surrounded by people pressuring them to abort their babies. The voiceless unborn and the vulnerable mothers(& fathers) need us to stand by them in word and deed.
    Blessings ~ Wendy

    • Thank you, Wendy, for being a part of the light in this battle against deceit and darkness. I am honored, too, to play a small part in speaking up for the sanctity of human life. I hope MURDER FOR EMILY’S SAKE can use the power of story to encourage others to cherish God’s gift of Life.

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