Monthly Archives: June 2013

God has Plans for You

Novelist Vickie McDonough has provided this weeks devotional.

Vickie McDonough 3 - smaller size

Jeremiah 29:11

A common theme in my books is that God has greater plans for you than you can imagine.

As a young girl, I loved horses. Eventually, I talked my parents into buying me one when I was eleven. The years I had my horse, rode it, and cared for it were vital to adding an authentic flavor to my writing of western fiction.

God sets thing before us to prepare us for the future. He took a young girl who loved horses, cowboy shows, and reading and molded her into a historical romance writer.

I can honestly tell you that I never once considered becoming a writer until God started sending me stories. But He had prepared the way for me. I just had to say yes to His call.

God has plans for your life too. Do you hear Him calling you?

Thanks for sharing!

Vickie McDonough is the award-winning author of 27 books and novellas. Her novel, End of the Trail, recently won the Best Published Fiction Novel of the 2013 OWFI Contest. Her books include the fun and feisty Texas Boardinghouse Brides series. Whispers on the Prairie, Book 1 in a new series set on a stage stop in 1870s Kansas, releases July 1st.

Visit Vickie’s website to learn about her books and to sign up for her newsletter. www.vickiemcdonough.com

WhispersOnThePrairie Final Medium size

Song of the Meadowlark

??????????????????????????

Please tell us about Song of the Meadowlark, Sherri.

Song of the Meadowlark’s synopsis: When trusting others only leads to pain and rejection, and loving ends only in loss, what will it take to restore hope again? Shunned by the uncovered truth about her missing husband’s secret life, Cora Buchanan sets out on a road trip for home to mend her broken relationship with her parents. When her car breaks down, she’s stranded in a small Georgia town. While staying at the struggling Southern Hope Ranch, she meets little Susie O’Reilly, who unexpectedly fills a void in Cora’s heart. But Rex, Susie’s rugged cowboy father who lost his wife a year earlier, seems to go out of his way to either confront or avoid Cora. It doesn’t help her comfort level that the news continues to report missing and murdered women in the area. Cora has no idea just how close to home the crimes will hit…or how much the sweet sound of the meadowlark’s song at the ranch will impact her future.

Sounds interesting. Did anything in particular inspire this story? If not, how did you come up with the idea?

I had always wanted to write a story with a cowboy so that’s how this one began. My first novel was a historical romance and I wanted to do a contemporary romance with a little bit of suspense. The story of forgiveness and starting over just developed as I wrote.

I always enjoy books with cowboys. 🙂 What made you want to be a writer and why?

I have written stories since I was a little girl. It was what made me tick. As I have aged (I won’t tell how old I am, haha!) writing is what I desire to do 24/7. I write novels, blogs, and I write scripts for my speaking engagements. I enjoy writing. It’s not work to me.

I hear you. I’ve always loved creative writing as well. I noticed on Amazon that you have two books available one historical and one contemporary. Do you have a favorite genre?

I love both historical and contemporary but I believe my favorite has to be historical. When writing contemporary, you have to be so careful not to date your story. If it takes years to publish, which mine did, it can quickly become outdated before it ever gets printed. Historical stories are timeless. And I love the room you have for creating towns and settings that may not really exist.

So true about things changing in contemporary towns! If you could spend a day doing absolutely anything, what would you do?

A day doing anything? It would be sitting in a comfy chair on the beach somewhere with a tropical breeze blowing, my family there with me, a good book in my hand, and the option to jump up and plunge into the crashing waves whenever the mood hit me.

What a great way to spend a day. 🙂 Thanks for telling sharing with us a little about yourself and about your book, Song of the Meadowlark.

If you would like to be entered to win a e-copy of either Song of the Meadowlark or To Dance Once More, winner’s choice please answer the same question Sherri answered.

If you could spend a day doing absolutely anything, what would you do?

Rules: You must answer the question to be entered into the drawing. Drawing ends Sunday June 30, 2013. The winner must reply to my email within one week of notification or the book is forfeited. Void where prohibited by law.

Sherri Wilson Johnson promo picSherri Wilson Johnson is an Inspirational Romance novelist, a speaker, women’s ministry leader, social media junkie, and a former homeschooling mom who loves to share God with others, while sharing her life experiences with them. She lives in Georgia with her husband and two children. She loves to dream of romantic places and romance in general–good, clean romance, that is. She is passionate about purity and sexual integrity. Sherri is a bird-watcher, loves the ocean, ice cream, her family and her Chihuahua, who faithfully sits by her side every day when she writes. She is the author of To Dance Once More (OakTara) and Song of the Meadowlark (OakTara) plus a few unpublished novels. She is a columnist with Habits for a Happy Home and Choose NOW Ministries.

http://sherriwilsonjohnson.com
https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Author-Sherri-Wilson-Johnson/138396456193536
https://twitter.com/#!/swj_thewriter

Who am I?

002

Ephesians 2:10

Have you ever asked the question Who am I, and what am I doing here?

Recently I’ve been struggling with this very question and lucky for me my pastor gave a sermon on this topic this past weekend.

For the past 17 years I’ve taught piano. My identity was wrapped up in my occupation. I was a piano teacher. Then after I received my contract with Heartsong Presents my family, and my husband in particular, expressed the desire that I stop teaching. He was tired of coming home and having to listen to my students. He was tired of being inconvenienced by having to tiptoe through our open-floor-plan house, and he was tired of having to cook dinner on nights I taught. 🙂 Basically he was over it and asked me to stop teaching. Honestly, I couldn’t blame him.

I’d already committed to teaching the school year, and so I went back and forth on the issue much of the school year–I have a very hard time quitting something I’m committed to. I finally made the decision to quit.

Then it hit–I’d lost my identity. I no longer knew who I was. I’d lost part of myself. I was in crisis mode! This may seem over-the-top to some of you, but to me it was a very real problem.

But my pastor’s sermon reminded me I am not the sum total of my job. I am His child.

I am a child of God–oh, and a writer. 🙂

Speaking of writing, my debut novel releases in November to the general public. I am currently putting together my tribe A.K.A. street team to help get the word out about my book. If this interests you keep reading, if not that’s fine too.

If you would like to be a part of my tribe shoot me an email. All you have to do is click on contact at the top of the page and let me know what part of the country you live in and what you are willing to do to get the word out about my book. Please note, currently an error message shows after you send the message–don’t panic. I am still receiving the emails. I’m working on having this fixed, but in the meantime please just ignore it.

I need people from all over the country to talk it up and post reviews on online bookseller sites like Amazon, and CBD. Be creative, maybe you have a new idea for how to get the word out. Let me know. I have a limited number of books available for this purpose, so please don’t hate me if I run out of books and can’t include you for whatever reason.

Over the next month or two, I will choose up to 40 applicants to be a part of my tribe. What’s in it for you? A free copy of my book The Christmas Promise. I will also set up a FB group just for my tribe. 🙂

The Christmas Promise by Kimberly Rose Johnson is a sweet Christian romance. It is listed on bookseller sites, but the cover is not yet up. Here is the blurb about the book.

DR. PETE HARDING DOESN’T DATE SINGLE MOMS

No matter how lovely Keira Noble’s smile, or how adorable her four-year-old son. He’s been down that road before and knows it can lead to a broken heart. But that doesn’t mean he can’t help the pretty widow find a puppy to put under the Christmas tree for her son…. 

Pete claims he only wants to help her find the perfect gift for Cody. Yet Keira can’t deny the tender feelings in his eyes whenever he looks at her. Could this handsome Scrooge have a change of heart, and create a new family for Christmas?

Interested? Let me know. Remember I only have 40 spots available, so not everyone will be able to take part–but there’s always next time. I’ll contact you by email if you made the team so to speak.

Thanks everyone! I can’t wait to hear from you.

Antique Dreams

antiquedreams_lg

I’m so pleased to have Tiffany Stockton visit this week. Not only is she a great writer she is a the talented web designer who put my website and blog together for me. Welcome, Tiffany! Please tell us about Antique Dreams.

Thanks, Kimberly. Antique Dreams is book 3 in my newest series, Brandywine Brides. It wraps up the thread in the series of a family heirloom book that made its first appearance in my debut novel, Promises Promises (part of the Liberty’s Promise series). That book is available as an eBook in all formats for just $.99 for the entire month of June. You can check out my blog post on this here (http://amberstockton.blogspot.com/2013/06/promises-promises-ebook-sale-99-all-of.html). Here is the blurb for my book being featured today:

Lillian’s brother has one last request. On a cold April night as the Titanic sinks to the ocean floor, Conrad Bradenton asks his new business partner, Aaron Stone, to fulfill a final wish: that Aaron return a well-worn book to his family and take care of his sister. Aaron seeks out Conrad’s family, never imagining the depth of his commitment until he meets lovely Lillian Bradenton. Hit hard by the despair in her eyes, Aaron encourages Lillian to restore her hope by bringing a boarded-up bookstore back to life. Lillian is uncertain whether she can trust this stranger, the last link to her beloved brother. But she has faith in her brother’s ability to read people. If Conrad saw something in Aaron, maybe she will in time. Then Aaron is summoned to London, and Lillian wonders if it is too late to turn hesitant friendship into undying love.
Oh my, that sounds like a good read. 🙂 I was looking at the books you have published on Amazon and I was wondering if they are all historical romance. Have you ever written contemporary romance, or is historical your passion?
Historical certainly started out as my passion. I’ve already been a fan of the “simpler” and less complicated times. Give me Little House on the Prairie, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, or the era of Jane Austen any day. Growing up, any romantic tale caught my eye, whether it be contemporary or historical, but once I began pursuing publication professionally, historical is what sold. It took me to the sale of my 14th book before I was able to write a contemporary romance, though I have at least a dozen contemporary stories in various stages of completion, just waiting for a publisher to acquire them.
Ah the waiting game. I’m quite familiar with that aspect of writing. What else are you working on? When will your next book release?
Right now, I am plodding toward the finish line on one of those contemporary romances, due July 1st. It’s a romantic comedy with a smidgeon of mystery, set on Mackinac Island. A single gal wins a 2-week getaway for two, and she takes her best friend along for the fun. While there, they visit with the heroine’s grandmother and help her assemble a Friendship Quilt from members of a long-ago disbanded quilting circle. Their adventures gain them access into some of the most prestigious homes on the island and time spent at the world-famous Grand Hotel, where they’ve caught the eye of two employees. A little mystery about precious artifacts gone missing from the hotel throws all of them into a frenzy of suspicions and novice crime-solving. It releases in August 2014 as part of Abingdon Press’ Quilts of Love line (http://www.quiltsoflovebooks.com/).
This sounds like a must-read story. I can’t wait until it comes out. Too bad we have to wait another year. Besides writing, what do you like to do for fun?
Traveling is at the top of the list, though our family loves walking and going on hikes, taking drives through the mountains, and visiting parks (regional, state, and national). Another hobby is photography, though I wouldn’t even consider myself an amateur. I merely love taking pictures, and some of them turn out great. A bonus of the digital aspect where you can take a lot of pictures at once and hope one of them comes out nice enough to keep.
LOL I know what you mean about taking a lot of pictures. I’m with you, if I take enough a few are bound to turn out great. 🙂
If you could go anywhere this summer where would you go and why?
I have always dreamed of going to Mackinac Island in Michigan. The island has appealed to me ever since I first saw Somewhere in Time starring Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve. The fact that they don’t allow cars on the island and so much of the ambiance is circa 19th century is a definite plus! Another island I’d love to see is Prince Edward Island in Canada. That island became famous to me thanks to the books by Lucy Maud Montgomery that I read as a child, and the depiction of the island through the TV show, Avonlea and the Anne of Green Gables movies. Just last week, my husband’s parents headed out for a cruise that would take them through those maritime provinces, and one of their stops would be PEI. Another friend just a few weeks ago confirmed her vacation plans to visit Mackinac and other areas of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. And of course, as I stated above, the book I’m currently writing is set on Mackinac. Cruel teasing, or merely friends and family going before me and paving the way for when I’ll get to go? You decide. 🙂
I see you are as fascinated with islands as I am. I hope you get to go to Mackinac Island someday soon. Thanks so much for joining us and sharing about Antique Dreams.
Tiffany has offered to give away a copy of Antique Dreams. If you would like to be entered to win you must answer either of the following questions:
Do you feel you have good perception when it comes to judging character in people? Why or why not? Or….. How long does it take you to truly trust someone?
Rules: Drawing open to U.S. addresses only. There must be at least 10 qualifying comments for the drawing to take place. Drawing ends Sunday June 23, 2013. Void where prohibited by law.
Tiff_headshot_lowresTiffany Amber Stockton has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood. Today, she is an award-winning best-selling author, speaker, and virtual assistant who lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have a daughter and a son, and an Aussie/retriever mix named Roxie. She has sold 14 books so far and is represented by Sandra Bishop of MacGregor Literary Agency. Three of her novels have won annual reader’s choice awards, and in 2009, she was voted #1 favorite new author for Barbour’s Heartsong Presents book club. Read more about her at her web site: www.amberstockton.com.

God is Great

2012-03-30 07.32.09

Deuteronomy 32:3

Some of you may have noticed I missed posting a devotional last week. I was with my son in pediatrics ICU and didn’t want to try to post from on my iPod. I’m writing this the day after my son was discharged from ICU where he spent part of Wednesday all of Thursday and part of Friday. He is home now thanks to his miraculous recovery from Negative Pressure Pulmonary Edema which he experienced in the middle of ACL surgery.

It’s been a wild week to put it mildly, but God took care of my son and he went from ICU to home. Once I got the word out and people started praying he improved so amazingly fast there wasn’t time to move him out of ICU to the standard floor. God is great!

Thank you to all who prayed. To look at my son you would never know he nearly died four days ago. Too bad the doctor didn’t have time to finish the surgery and his ACL is still torn. But I know that God will take care of him and with His help I will manage to get through the waiting during his next surgery.

Surrendered Love

Surrendered Love Cover (1)

Laura Hilton is here today to share with us about Surrendered Love. Please tell us about your book Laura.

Janna Kauffman loves grocery shopping for the homebound in her Amish community. When Janna’s sister washes her hands of her rebellious daughter, Meghan, and sends her to live with her Amish relatives, Janna is spending less time shopping and more time explaining Meghan’s actions to police officer Hiram “Troy” Troyer. Formerly Amish Troy becomes a regular part of Janna and Meghan’s lives as Meghan continues to act out due to her Englisch mother’s rejection. Could God tame a headstrong teenager and help Janna and Troy find love in the midst of it all?

What made you want to write Amish Fiction? 

I am descended from Amish maternal grandparents and I have always been fascinated by the people and the culture. So I decided to try.

I can imagine having an Amish heritage would be a good motivator. 🙂 What kind of research did you do?

I have traveled to Seymour many times, and I find it easier to write about real places I’ve seen. It is also helpful to pick up brochures and postcards if available, and take  pictures (obviously, not of the Amish.)

What made you want to become a writer?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer, and played with it most all of my life. What God has given you a passion for He’s given you permission for. I have that posted beside my desk.
What are you currently reading or Have you read a book recently that you want to recommend?  

Currently, I’m reading Duchess by Susan May Warren.  One of the best books I’ve read lately was Susan’s book, You Don’t Know Me.  Great story. 

I’m reading You Don’t Know Me also. 🙂 Thanks for joining us today, Laura and sharing a little about yourself and and your book Surrendered Love.

Laura has offered to give away one copy of her book to a lucky commenter. You must answer the following question to be entered. What are you currently reading, or what is a favorite book that you’ve read recently?

Rules: You must have a US address. There must be at least ten qualifying comments for the drawing to take place. The drawing ends on June 16, 2013. Void where prohibited by law.

35839_1469192045700_1110551537_1419357_4095333_n

Award winning author, Laura Hilton, her husband, Steve, and their five children make their home in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas. She is a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom and home-schools three of her children. Her two oldest children are homeschool graduates and are in college. Laura is also a breast cancer survivor.

Her publishing credits include three books in the Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House: Patchwork Dreams, A Harvest of Hearts, and Promised to Another. And the Amish of Webster County series, Healing Love. Surrendered Love releases April 2013, and the third book will release September 2013. A nonAmish book The Appalachian Ballad Quilt will release November 2014 from Abingdon Press. Laura is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Laura is a professional book reviewer for the Christian market, with over a thousand book reviews published at various online review sites.

Calico Brides

calico brides

This week features Darlene Franklin’s book Calico Brides.

 Determined to sow good deeds into the lives of needy people, the four youngest members of the 1876 Calico, Kansas, sewing circle reap romance. Gladys Polson, designing to aid a crotchety widower, falls for a stranger. Annie Bliss, knitting for soldiers, has a fort chaplain on pins and needles. Birdy Landry, sewing dresses for saloon girls looking for a new life, has her feathers ruffled by a beneficent shopkeeper. Schoolteacher Ruth Fairfield is about to teach a new guardian a few lessons in life and love. Will God stitch forever-after romances into the lives of these four women?

If you would like to be entered into a drawing to win a copy of Calico Brides please answer the following question. Where is your favorite place to read?

Rules: Drawing is only open to US addresses. There must be a minimum of ten qualifying comments for the drawing to take place. The drawing ends Sunday June 9th, 2013. The winner will be notified by email Monday June 10th, 2013. Remember you must answer the question to be entered into the drawing. Void where prohibited by law

Darlene loves music, needlework, reading, and reality TV. She has published several titles with Barbour Publishing, including her two latest releases, A Bride’s Rogue in Roma, Texas, and Merry Christmas, With Love, in Postmark: Christmas. She has also written two books in the Texas Trails series with RiverNorth Fiction, Lone Star Trail and A Ranger’s Trail. She’s a member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers.

You can find Darlene online at http://darlenefranklinwrites.blogspot.com/, http://mydailynibble.blogspot.com/ and https://www.facebook.com/darlene.franklin.3 You may also be interested in my Facebook page, Darlene’s 5 Questions a Day (https://www.facebook.com/groups/542991419047696/?bookmark_t=group) where I will answer the first five questions related to the writing life posed on any given day. Group members are also welcome to contribute.