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Thursday, April 9, 2020

Book Chat with Tina Siemens, author of SEMINOLE

by Cyrus Webb

In the book SEMINOLE author Tina Siemens not just a part of her family's history. The book is about the resilience of the human spirit and what we can achieve. We discuss the book and it's message in this Book Chat.

Tina, your book Seminole is a great mixture of family, history, and inspiration. What has it been like to see the response to it?
It’s been so inspiring to hear how people identify with the history of the story. They stop on the street to thank me for doing this book. Most of them remember the drama of that time period. After all, it was an international story in the late seventies and early eighties.

How does it feel to be a published author with a book available for the world to read?
Humbling. Out of the millions of books available on the market today, to receive a sales report each month showing folks from Europe, Canada, and Mexico are reading it, I get excited. And then to read the fantastic reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, I can only say that this project has been blessed by God.

Share with our readers what inspired you to want to share your family story with the world?
I wanted my children and grandchildren to have a written account of their family’s history. It was a dream that they would have a tool to connect them to their roots. Mission accomplished!

We live in a world unfortunately in some ways that mirror the situations your family faced. How has looking at their example helped to keep you moving forward?
In so many cases, history repeats itself. This has inspired me to study how my ancestors reacted, the actions they took, and how they persevered. That gives me the strength to keep moving forward.

You and I met through another author, Tyra Manning. How has the support of your fellow authors help you on this new journey?
Tyra Manning has been an amazing inspiration to me. I would not have gotten in touch with you if it wasn’t for Mrs. Manning. I have also been overwhelmed with other authors who have been so supportive in pushing my story to be published in the media. It’s wonderful that other authors are paying it forward. I hope to do the same.

Have you always been a fan of history or did having such a rich history around you inspire your interest?
From a very young age, I remember loving to hear stories and asking questions of my elders. As I got older and had the opportunity to travel and learn about the journeys of generations before me, my interest in history was rekindled. Now, I can’t imagine my life without looking back on where we have all come from. In fact, there’s a bestselling book that has a great deal of history about our past. It’s called the Bible.

Your family’s faith and resilience are two things that definitely come through. How has their exercise of faith helped you through difficult times?
In Chapter One, I write about a guy named Dirk Willems. At the very moment, when he could have reached freedom, he turned around and saved the one who kept him captive. His display of faith was how I wanted the book to start out. It’s that important. Another example was my father standing in line at the border for the fifth day in a row, waiting for an immigration attorney who didn’t show. When the officer called him to the counter, my father, David Rempel, vowed to himself that he would tell the truth, even if it meant denied entry into the U.S. He was willing to go back to misery in poverty to avoid lying and entering the U.S. under false pretenses. His and Dirk Willems’ examples have given me the courage to rely on my faith in tough times.

Based on your experience, what advice do you have for others who are thinking about writing a book or sharing their own story?
Every person has a story to tell. There is someone out there who would be inspired by that story. I would encourage each person to journal or record their experiences now before they forget important details. Also, record your older relatives. I failed to get my mother’s story before she died, and I regret it every day. My book would have been even richer. Finally, consider that after you are gone from this world, your story will live on forever. Leave your legacy here on Earth for us to enjoy instead of taking it to heaven with you.

Thanks so much for the time! Let our readers know how they can stay connected with you.
They can reach me through my website, which is or by email, which is I also have a Facebook page and Twitter account.

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