Helena Schrader's Historical Fiction

Dr. Helena P. Schrader is the winner of more than 20 literary accolades. For a complete list of her awards see: http://helenapschrader.com

For readers tired of clichés and cartoons, award-winning novelist Helena P. Schrader offers nuanced insight to historical events and figures based on sound research and an understanding of human nature. Her complex and engaging characters bring history back to life as a means to better understand ourselves.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Writing as Praying

 Since the second grade, I have been inspired (not to say compelled) to write novels. I have never been able to explain why, nor how I ‘select’ the topics of my novels. The ideas for novels occur to me spontaneously, sometimes as very vague and ephemeral ideas, which I then refine and redefine at a rational level, sometimes very specifically as in the case of Kit Moran. No matter how much research and work I later put into a novel, the irrational and inexplicable manner in which the initial spark of inspiration occurs has always suggested to me that my novels were genuinely “inspired” not conceived. 

With time, I came to realize that the process of creative writing is my way of communicating with God. Creative writing is not about asking God for something. It is not about me articulating my thoughts and feelings to Him.  Rather, it is about receiving ideas, guidance and understanding. When I sit down to write, I open both my mind and my subconscious to inspiration. As I write, I am almost always surprised and excited by the unexpected reactions of my characters. They then become my teachers, giving me new insight into human nature. Again and again, I have felt a wonderful sense of awe at the end of writing a scene, a chapter or a book, when suddenly I start to understand things that I had not rationally grasped when I started writing.

Because I am an imperfect human being, I do not always understand what I “hear,” nor do I always have the skill to describe and convey to readers the insights I have gained during the process of writing. Nor do I claim that my insights are relevant to everyone. We all have an individual relationship with the Divine, and we must all communicate with Him in our own way.  Nevertheless, I firmly believe that like a good meal or a beautiful building, a divinely inspired work of fiction is something that can comfort, sustain and inspire more than just the creator. For that reason, I share the products of my “prayers” – my books – with others.


Riding the icy, moonlit sky,

they took the war to Hitler. 

Their chances of survival were less than fifty percent. 

Their average age was 21.

This is the story of just one bomber pilot, his crew and the woman he loved. 

It is intended as a tribute to them all.  

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Disfiguring injuries, class prejudice and PTSD are the focus of three heart-wrenching tales set in WWII by award-winning novelist Helena P. Schrader. Find out more at: https://crossseaspress.com/grounded-eagles







"Where Eagles Never Flew" was the the winner of a Hemingway Award for 20th Century Wartime Fiction and a Maincrest Media Award for Military Fiction. Find out more at: https://crossseaspress.com/where-eagles-never-flew

For more information about all my books visit: https://www.helenapschrader.com




  1. Excellent post, Helena. I definitely need to figure out the whole treatment book thing, especially for my Books For Spiritual Growth And Guidance site.

    Have you tried creating any books in brand-new niches where you don’t have any presence yet? Curious as to how hard it is to build sales from scratch.

    1. Have I tried writing books in new niches? Repeatedly! My first six novels were set in Ancient Sparta. I then published the first edition of my Battle of Britain novel and my German Resistance novel, before publishing seven novels set in the era of the crusades. Two years ago, I re-issued the Battle of Britain novel and the German Resistance novel, and added two more WWII books. I have found that my readers interested in one of my eras (Ancient Sparta, the crusades and WWII) are rarely interested in the other time periods I write about. So each time I shift from one period to another, I am starting almost from scratch.
      How hard is it to build up sales? Extremely difficult! If I had to live from royalties, I would never change topics.
      Fortunately, I don't live from royalties and can follow my heart. I think I mentioned in one of my posts that I made a conscious decision not to try to make a living as a writer preceisely because I did NOT want to have to write what sells, but rather listen to the inner voice (inspiration) that directed me to one topic or another.
      While I like to share and hope that others will enjoy and benefit from my writing, maximizing sales is not my focus.
      Hope this makes sense.