Monday, December 11, 2017

Interview with Inspirational Author Colleen L. Reece


Book Giveaway Dec 11 - 24: Patchwork Christmas or Christmas Caroling Classics. Your Choice! This giveaway is for a Book: U.S. only. Don’t forget to leave your email so we can contact you.
To enter more giveaways, click here.

Stop by often because I have a book giveaway and interview every week.

Colleen L. Reece learned to read by kerosene lamplight in a home without electricity, dreaming of someday writing a book. God has expanded Colleen’s “someday” book into 150+ “Books You Can Trust” with six million copies sold. She describes herself as an ordinary person with an extraordinary God.

Breaking News: Colleen's Romance Quartet (Romance Rides the Range, Romance Rides the River, Romance at Rainbow's End and Romance at the Hacienda) will soon be available as audiobooks. Winged Publications recently issued Shades of the Old West Romance Quartet in both Kindle and print editions. Available from Amazon.

Welcome to my blog, Colleen. You have really accomplished a lot in your life. More than 150 books published is quite an accomplishment. Please tell us about this Christmas book: Patchwork Christmas?

An Heirloom Quilt Heals Tattered Hearts: Tying many lives together—literally—with the use of a beloved patchwork quilt led to this heart-warming title. When a homeless mother and a grounded pilot are most in need of healing, a treasured patchwork quilt appears to each, offering comfort, hope, and love.

Story 1: Remnants of Faith, written by Renee DeMarco
Natalie Thorsett and her two daughters, seven and five, are in desperate straits. Natalie's letters to her husband are returned marked "Addressee Unknown." Has Mark abandoned his family?

Story 2: Silver Lining, written by Colleen L. Reece
Major Gavin Scott, a U.S. Air Force pilot, is badly injured after a plane crash in the Middle East. Can his nurse-practitioner fiancĂ©e accept the grounded "white hawk?" Will Natalie and Gavin’s former teacher’s cherished possession fulfill her dreams concerning her beloved students? Can the couples, with the help of God and an old quilt, piece their lives back together and each find true love as they struggle to make it through a Patchwork Christmas?

Award-winning aunt-and niece team Reece and DeMarco combine their talents into a touching story of those who face adversity. Note:  The story is fictional, Colleen’s mother, Pearl, made the quilt on the cover more than 50 years ago

You published a Children’s Christmas picture book that tells where some of our favorite hymns came from: Christmas Caroling Classics. Please tell us about this book.

Nine-year-old Dennis and seven-year-old Sarah love singing Christmas carols. Dennis wants to know where the carols came from and why they are called classics. Mom suggests that the children look up the answer to that question and report on the find in their family worships between then and Christmas. Dennis and Sarah eagerly agree and discover some surprising facts. A preacher who was considered one of the greatest of his time wrote over 700 hymns and psalms. However, he couldn't compare with another man who wrote over 6000 hymns! The children's favorite story is about naughty mice that may well have been the reason for one of the world's best-loved Christmas hymns. Suggested age range for readers: 6-10

Will you please give us an example of one of these hymns?

All Christmas Eve day nine-year-old Dennis and his seven-year-old sister Sarah talked about the special story Dad had promised to tell them at family worship that night. They sang as much as they could remember of “Silent Night, Holy Night” over and over, then got out their hymn books and sang some more.
At last it was time. Dad turned out most of the lights and threw an extra log on the fire. “I want you to pretend tonight,” he told the family. “Try and feel the way two men felt just before Christmas in 1818 in a little town in the Austrian Alps.
Joseph Mohr and Franz Gruber looked at each other in despair. ‘How can we have a Christmas service without music?’ they asked each other. ‘The organ is old. It needs to be repaired.’
“They stared out the window into the village of Oberndorf. Thick snow blanketed the ground and made it impossible to get a repairman through the drifts.
"'Perhaps mice have been in the or­gan. Or maybe it's just too old to work properly,' they de­cided. 'What can we do?’
"Joseph Mohr continued to stare at the snow-covered village. Gradually the snow lessened. Into the young man's mind came the words, 'Silent Night, Holy Night.' The next morning, he handed the words to Franz Gruber, who soon hummed a simple melody for the song.
Dad paused.
"What happened?" Sarah cried.

Dad smiled. ''The organ still didn’t work, but Franz Gruber played the melody in chords on his guitar. 'Silent Night, Holy Night,' or 'Stille Nact, Heilige Nacht,' the German language in which the song was written, was first heard in that candle-lit church."

"I wish I'd been there." Dennis sighed. "I kind of feel like I was." It sounded funny when he said it, but when the others nodded, he didn't feel funny at all.
"Since those early days many other wonderful hymns have been written," Mom reminded the children. "Every time we go to church and sing a Christmas carol we should remember how God in­spires people to write and compose music that praises Him. The word carol in Old French means 'song of joy.' "
"Does it make God happy when we sing carols about Jesus?" Sarah wanted to know.
"I'm sure it does, especially when we mean what we sing. I believe such songs are prayers. We always need to listen carefully to the words we are saying," Dad said.
Dennis thought about everything they'd learned. When they all joined hands in a prayer circle, he thanked God for Christmas carol classics.
But most of all, that it was almost Jesus’ birthday.

What do you love most about Christmas?

Everything! Putting up decorations on December 1st, putting a lighted star in the front window. Hanging a Christmas flag that honors the birth of Christ outside my house. Decorating the mailbox and lamppost with big red bows. Watching inspirational classic movies on TV such as It’s a Wonderful Life and A Charlie Brown Christmas. Calling “Merry Christmas” to neighbors on my daily walk and clerks in stores. Listening to carols. Spending time with family and friends. Most of all, simply giving thanks for the gift of God’s Son.

Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?

Colleen L. Reece: Writing to Inspire and Entertain
colleenreece.blogspot.com
amazon.com/author/colleenreece_booksyoucantrust

Thank you for this wonderful Christmas Interview. I hope my readers will check out your books.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Interview with Author Anna Del C. Dye

Book Giveaway Dec 8 - 18: A Christmas Story, The Other Santa. Don’t forget to leave your email so we can contact you. International: E-book

Ann Del C. Dye is a Spanish spiker that writes in English. She has four children and twelve grandchildren. Anna just happens to live in a hundred twenty one year old house in Taylorsville, Utah. She loves romance and the holidays. She has received many Awards for her books and stories she has written. 

Welcome to my blog, Anna. To live in a home that is 121 years old sounds awesome. I love old homes. You usually write fantasy, so this is a new genre for you. Please tell us about your novella: The Other Santa.

For a girl of twenty, Angieline is uncommonly wise. Perhaps losing her mother at five years old shaped her this way. Though, the presence of her forty-three-year-old tutor and the secrets they share could be closer to the truth. She and Mario, her tutor/adopted father, have been in many towns in the USA. Though their strange deeds could make them targets for unscrupulous people, they keep going even if it leads to the end to their undertakings.

When James, the reporter, appears in their lives right before Christmas, their secrets become hard to keep and their lies threaten to catch up with them. Torn between duty and love, she will have to make peace with her heart one way or the other. Though her choice could break not only her and his heart, but the heart of her tutor or the children's orphanage that desperately needs a miracle for Christmas.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

I’m not sure…one day I thought about the depression era and wondered how it could be if someone would go about helping the people, especially in the poorest part of the USA. That is how the story started.

I started this story about ten years ago, but got stuck and never did much with it. This year I made it my goal to finish it and publish it as a free download.

Did you have to do any research for this book?

Yes, I did look up all I could about the 1930s so I could get my facts right. Food, even entertainment. I was surprised to learn about the many known actors that were big in that era. Also it took me back to see how the poor people barely existed in that era, in contrast to some quite wealthy citizens. 

Tell me about one of the main characters and what you love about him or her?

Mario is a wonderful man who fell deeply in love with a woman that was taken from him just a couple of weeks before their wedding. He lost her mentally, physically, emotionally and five years later to death. In all, he didn’t become bitter, instead he adopted her little girl and raised her as his own, and the two become The Other Santa.

Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?


Thank you for this fun “Christmas Season” interview, Anna. I hope my readers check out your book.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Interview with Mystery Romance Author Carole Brown


Book Giveaway Dec 4 - 11: A Romantic Mystery, Sabotaged Christmas. Your choice: a Book or an E-book to the winner. (U.S. only for the hard copy.) Don’t forget to leave your email so we can contact you.

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, with another one releasing this month, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Welcome to my blog, Carole. This month we're discussing Christmas novels. Please tell us about your Romantic Mystery: Sabotaged Christmas.

Toni DeLuca, the Italian owner of DeLuca Construction, finds herself confronted with doubts about her father and his possible deceptions—all because of the mysterious pink notes she’s receiving.

Relations with Perrin Douglas who has a troubled history—but the first man in years who’s interested her—is building to a peak. Yet Perrin's own personal problems and his doubts about women and God, keep getting in the way.

Gossip, a Spanish proposal, an inheritance, and a sabotaged construction business all converge to play a part in ruining Christmas for Toni’s employees. Will the mysterious person behind it all succeed in pulling off the biggest scam Appleton, West Virginia has ever seen? Will this culprit destroy Toni’s last chance at happiness with the man of her dreams?

Buy the book here.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story, Carole?

I first began planning a series of romance novels for my agent to propose to a certain publishing group, but eventually realized they needed to be romantic mysteries. I dreamed about a small town in WV with three friends, their loves, and their mysteries. I also wanted each female protagonist to own/work at/etc. somewhere unique or interesting. Sabotaged Christmas was the first with Antoinetta (Toni) DeLuca serving as the protagonist.

What followed were books about two close friends of Toni's: 
  • Knight in Shining Apron, Book 2, with Starli Cameron, restaurant owner even though she can't cook (and ice skater), and Sir Joel Peterman-Blair, chef and a British knight!
  • Undiscovered Treasures, Book 3, with Caroline Gibson who co-owns Undiscovered Treasures, an antique, collectible and junk shop, and Andrew Carrington, an up-and-coming artist who adores Caroline but gets no encouragement from that fair maiden!

I received so much encouragement about this series that I've expanded to include three main male protagonists, their mysteries and romance:

  • Next up in this series will be: Toby's Troubles (Tobias Leelyn Gibson), the brother of Caroline, who is caught up with solving his own small town mystery of a hidden, dark secret...and the love of his life.

Also, we've traveled so much in West Virginia and met many of its friendly inhabitants that it seemed the perfect setting for this series. Small town America, with friendly, down home people, simple, but fun lives, yet who yearn for more and face their own set of problems.

What kind of research did you do?

For this book, I researched carpentry, apples, restaurants, designed houses, Italian tidbits, inheritances, and other things. As always, I love research and get lost in the details!

I certainly understand what you mean about research. It can be so fun. Tell me about one of the main characters and what you love about him or her?

Perrin Douglas is a smart, handsome man with a young son. He has a particular longing to be left alone to write during his hiatus from working as a history professor back in his hometown. With a deceased wife who was everything she shouldn't have been, it isn't easy for him to trust and grow close to another woman. Yet something about Toni DeLuca's warmth and genuine-ness draws him. His son loves the woman, so why can he not let loose and do the same? Perrin's reluctance and eventual yielding to love, shows what the wrong relationship can do to an individual and the struggles people go through to overcome those situations.

Your story sounds intriguing. Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?

Personal blog: Sunnybank Secrets - where readers can follow my blog and/or sign up for my newsletter

Amazon Author Page: where readers can learn about my books and/or follow me


  
Thank you for this informative interview, Carole. I hope my readers will check out your books. Here are some additional links about Carole below.



Friday, December 1, 2017

Interview with Award Winning Author Sherrill Cannon


Book Giveaway Dec 1 - 11: A Children’s Christmas story, Santa’s Birthday Gift and a book of poetry, A Penny For Your Thoughts. Your choice! Let us know which book you’re interested in. There will be a separate winner for each book. One Book and one E-book will be given out, so let us know if you prefer a hard copy or an e-book. U.S. and Canada only.

Sherrill S. Cannon is a former teacher and grandmother of ten, and the author of nine published rhymed children's stories which have received forty-eight National and International awards. Her first book of poetry has just been released. She is also a playwright with seven published plays for elementary school children, which have been performed internationally in over 20 countries. Most of her books try to teach something, like good manners and caring for others. Married for 57 years, she and her spouse are now retired, and travel in their RV from coast to coast each year to spend time with their children and grandchildren. 

Welcome to my blog, Sherrill. I love your children’s books because they rhyme and that makes it fun to read. Please tell us about Santa’s Birthday Gift.

Santa's Birthday Gift is an attempt to include Santa in the meaning of Christmas. One reviewer who critiqued this book wrote: “What a cute story! I know there are many stories about how Santa came into the picture, but this is a delightful idea behind the gifts at Christmas.” The story is best for ages 3-10, to be read to children who still believe in Santa!  This book received a 2011 National Indie Excellence Finalist Award, and a 2011 Readers Favorite Silver Medal.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

When my granddaughter was 3 years old, I read her the story of the Nativity.  When I finished, she looked at me and asked, "But where’s Santa?"  That night, the entire story came to me in a dream - and when I sat down to write it, the words just flowed...with ideas I had not even thought about before!  How do reindeer fly, why does Santa wear a red suit, where do all the presents come from?  I know that God blessed me by allowing me to write this story - and I hope that its message will be shared with as many children as possible.  Santa's Birthday Gift to Jesus was his promise to bring presents at Christmastime each year, to celebrate the birth of the Christ Child.  "He remembers his promise in a wonderful way...He gives Christmas gifts for the Christ Child's birthday."

Could you please give us a few lines from your book?

And kneeling before Him, with a sack full of toys,
He offered his heart to this dearest of boys.
He leaned toward the Christ child and blew Him a kiss
And promised to Jesus what would be his gift:
Each year on Christ’s birthday, he’d deliver his toys
To all children everywhere, all girls and boys.”

That was a perfect example from your book. I loved it. You also have a book of poetry called A Penny For Your Thoughts. I really like the cover. Will you please tell us more about this book?

As a Valentine, I have always been preoccupied with love in all its many forms, and I have also found great joy in writing poetry. As a teacher, I used poetry to help counsel many troubled teens and friends, and have continued this pattern throughout the years. A Penny For Your Thoughts combines all my loves into a book full of feelings.  There are three sections:  Heads, Spinning, and Tails… (Love & Loss: Coin Toss?)  The poems are a variety of forms, including free verse, blank verse, haiku, sonnets, and some are just ways to play with words…like this one:

            WORDS

Words, words, words, words -
Fill my mind like a flock of birds:
Flying, dipping, soaring, twirling,
Keeping my mind always whirling;
Singing, chirping in my heart,
Helping all my feelings start.
Bound within my heart they rage -
Gliding, diving in a cage;
Winging, darting everywhere,
For there is no way to share.
Until, finally, my heart is loosed…
I put them on a page to roost.

This one captures a little of the longing for love and community that many of us feel:

               A LONGING

I know I'm loved, but still I'm insecure...
My longing heart cries out for something more -
And I don't know just what I'm searching for,
For what it is, I'm still not very sure:
A perfect love, that's strong yet sweet and pure?
A love to make my thoughts and feelings soar?
A love that satisfies, deep in my core,
That I can trust forever to endure?
All this I have, and yet my heart still longs
For something deeper - that may never be...
How can my heart find out just what belongs
Within that empty space inside of me,
When even I cannot identify
The longing that still makes me want to cry?

That was beautiful, Sherrill. Where is your website so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?



Thank you for this interview, Sherrill. You are a very special poet who shares your talents with children around the world. I hope my readers will check out your books.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Interview with Inspirational Author Linda Shenton Matchett

Book Giveaway Nov 27 - 11: A Collection of Historical Romance Novellas – The Hope of Christmas. To enter the contest, make a comment and leave your email. Ebook: International.

Terri Wangard grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin, during the Lombardi Glory Years. Her first Girl Scout badge was the Writer. Holder of a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in library science, she keeps busy as an associate editor of Classic Boating Magazine, a family business since 1984.

Jodie Wolfe creates novels where hope and quirky meet. She's been a semi-finalist and finalist in various writing contests and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Romance Writers of America (RWA). When not writing she enjoys spending time with her husband in Pennsylvania, reading, walking, and being a Grammie.

Linda Shenton Matchett is an author, journalist, blogger, and history geek. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry, Linda has lived in historical places most of her life. She is a volunteer docent at the Wright Museum of WWII and as a Trustee for the Wolfeboro Public Library. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, and Sisters in Crime.

Welcome to my blog, Linda. There are three short stories in this collection of Historical Romances called The Hope of Christmas. Whose idea was it to put together a collection of Christmas stories?

The idea came from Sandy Barela of CelebrateLit Publishing. She has put together several collections over the last couple of years, and for this year’s Christmas collection, she approached the three of us to do a trio of historical novellas. It was an honor to be asked (every writer’s dream!) I had just finished reading about the estates and country homes in England that were requisitioned for use during WWII, so it seemed like a fun topic to explore.

Jodie Wolfe wrote Picking a Bride for Paul. This is a description of the story.

When Teddy Love’s neighbor and best friend breaks his leg, she pitches in to do whatever she can to help him on his farm. But when he enlists her aid in finding a wife, she comes to realize she has feelings for him.

Paul Baker follows his mother’s wishes by looking for a bride from the East who is refined and genteel, two qualities Teddy isn’t. When his potential bride arrives, he finds himself comparing her to Teddy. How can he go back and change things before he makes the biggest mistake of his life?

Terri Wangard wrote Typhoon Prompting. Here is a description of this story.

A destroyer escort is among the smallest of warships, but the USS Tabberer has the heart of a giant. A typhoon threatens the US Fleet in the Pacific during World War II, days before Christmas. The men of the Tabberer stand tall as they rush to the aid of their fellow sailors. 

For Seaman Jerry Collier, the typhoon prompts a greater awareness of what he wants in life. First, though, they have to survive.

A Doctor in the House was written by Linda Matchett. Please tell us about this story, Linda.

Emma O’Sullivan is one of the first female doctors to enlist after President Franklin Roosevelt signs the order allowing women in the Army and Navy medical corps. Within weeks, Emma is assigned to England to set up a convalescent hospital, and she leaves behind everything that is familiar. When the handsome widower of the requisitioned property claims she’s incompetent and tries to get her transferred, she must prove to her superiors she’s more than capable. But she’s soon drawn to the good-looking, grieving owner. Will she have to choose between her job and her heart?

Archibald “Archie” Heron is the last survivor of the Heron dynasty, his two older brothers having been lost at Dunkirk and Trondheim and his parents in the Blitz. After his wife is killed in a bombing raid while visiting Brighton, he begins to feel like a modern-day Job. To add insult to injury, the British government requisitions his country estate, Heron Hall, for the U.S. Army to use as a hospital. The last straw is when the hospital administrator turns out to be a fiery, ginger-haired American woman. She’s got to go. Or does she?

These stories sound intriguing. You love to write Inspirational Romance. What intrigues you most about this genre?

I love the challenge. I also write mysteries which is easier for me because the plot revolves around solving the crime. With inspirational romance, the relationship must develop naturally and not be contrived, and the faith element mustn’t come off preachy. Succeeding at that is sometimes easier said than done, especially in a novella, which is so much shorter than a novel.

List the websites for each author so my readers can check out past books that all of you have written?



Thank you for this fun interview. I hope my readers will check out this Christmas book.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Interview with Humorous Romance Author Brooke Williams


Brooke Williams is a former radio announcer and TV traffic reporter turned freelance writer/author/stay at home mom. When she’s not caring for her girls, she’s writing blogs and web content for clients. And when she runs out of work, she makes up stories about fictional characters that bother her until she writes about them. Brooke has been married to her husband, Sean, for 15 years and they have two dauthers, KAelyn and Sadie.

Welcome to my blog, Brooke. Please tell us about your Christmas story: Another Backwards Christmas.

Another Backwards Christmas takes place in the fictional town of South Pole, Alaska. This town does everything backwards around the holidays. It’s their claim to fame and how they get tourists through. Before they created the holiday celebrations, the town was dying out. Now, they hang trees from ceilings, paint mistletoes on the sidewalks, and drink hot chocolate from marshmallow mugs.

This sounds like a fun story to read. Where did you get your inspiration for this book?

I visited Alaska when I was in college and have always been fascinated with the area. I wrote “Backwards Christmas” a few years ago and couldn’t leave the town or the people behind, so I’m going back for a second pass at the area and its quirky celebrations with another story, “Another Backwards Christmas.”

You write humorous stories. Do you ever have a tough time coming up with a bit of humor for your books or does it just come naturally?

Not very often! I’ve found that a lot of funny things have happened to me or people I know. They may not seem funny at the time, but later, they certainly do. I often use my dad and things that happen to him for inspiration. For example, in Backwards Christmas, a man glues his mouth shut with super glue. That ALMOST happened to my dad. And in Another Backwards Christmas, there’s an incident with a fish that DID happen to my sister. There are plenty of funny things out there. You just have to morph them into the story!

Haha. I understand. I’ve put a few funny experiences into my stories from things that happened to my husband or daughters. Just because it was so funny! Tell me about one of the main characters and what you love about him or her?

Rob Joleigh is the main male character in this story. He’s like a  young scrooge. He’s had a lot happen to him revolving around Christmas and he’s just so over the holiday. He looks at everything with scrutiny because of his past. But you can see his heart melt and he’s really a good guy in his depth. It’s fun to watch that come out.

Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?


Thank you for this interview, Brooke. It’s always a delight to have you visit my blog. I hope my readers will check out your books.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Interview with Inspirational Mystery Romance Author Mary Ball


Mary Ball enjoys creating small towns and friendly, but flawed characters. She has one wonderful daughter who has given her two handsome grandsons. She also has a daughter in heaven. That experience gives her the courage to tackle death in her novels.
Recently, she shared a story where God touched her life, in Life-changing Miracles, by Bethany House publishers. 

Small town romance, suspense and mystery, surrounded by His grace. Mary Ball's writing will make you smile, fill your heart with joy and give new meaning to Christmas, love and answered prayers. 
 
Welcome to my blog, Mary. Where did you get your inspiration for Thanksgiving Secret?

Each year in November, I do a book signing at an annual Christian Church bazaar. Last year, I took my ten-year-old grandson with me to spend the day. On the way home he says, “Nana, I want you to write a book that has Thanksgiving in it so that next year we’ll have one at the craft show.” I just shook my head, smiled and glanced at him in the back seat. The next day he reminded me about the book. So I thought, “why not.” As I’m contemplating ideas, Matthew Blake’s secret started begging to be written. I dedicated this book to Blake, my grandson, for pushing me to do a Thanksgiving novella.   
          
What is Thanksgiving Secret about?

A secret has a life of its own.

Matthew Blake left home in search of fame. Years later, writer’s block threatens his career. He returns to his roots hoping to rejuvenate his creative juices and meets Lucinda Wise. Unknown to Matt, he’s involved in a mystery, that is soon to be unearthed.

Lucinda rents her tiny house to Matt. Despite his self-centered ways, she finds herself enjoying his company and sharing her faith with him, but timing is everything. She’s dedicated her life to her five-year-old daughter and will do anything to keep her safe.
As Thanksgiving approaches, Matt discovers that Lucinda is the partaker of a secret that will change his life forever. Can he accept that God’s plan for his future is the right one?

You also have a Christmas story. Please tell us about A Love Valley Christmas.

Step off the pavement, onto a dirt road and join our fictional characters celebrating Christmas in Love Valley, North Carolina, a real western community.

When Susie Aleman isn’t running Spurs, a mercantile in Love Valley, she’s raising her sixteen year old son, Zam. She’s content with life, and relies on no one but God. Then Ty Porter moves to Love Valley and stampedes into her heart.

Ty Porter has given up on women. All he wants is a fresh start, and a new pair of cowboy boots. That is, until he meets Susie. As Christmas Eve rolls around, can he convince Susie that love after thirty-five is worth the risk? Will Susie lead Ty to see that the Lord can be trusted?

What was the inspiration behind this book?

A Love Valley Christmas is the first book I’ve written about a cowboy. My publisher sent a call-out for Christmas novellas. She specified it could be contemporary or western, with a cowboy, ages from twenty-five to forty. I was immediately drawn, because I’d always wanted to write about a modern day cowboy, and characters that were older than thirty.    

Oh yes. I understand completely. There aren’t many romantic stories with couples between ages 30 – 40. What is your favorite thing to do at Christmas time?

Get together with the family, and go sightseeing for Christmas decorations and lights.      

Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?

Linda, thanks for asking.

My website is http://www.marylball.com/index.html. I have my blog page connected to my website for convenience: http://www.marylball.com/blog-monthly-smiles

Thank you so much for this interview, Mary. I hope my readers will check out your books.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Interview with Christian Author Deborah Malone


Deborah Malone’s first novel Death in Dahlonega, finaled in the American Christian Fiction Writer’s Category Five writing contest! Deborah was nominated for 2012 and 2013 Georgia Author of the Year Award in Novel category. She is a member of the Georgia Writer’s Association, Advanced Writers and Speaker’s Association, and the American Christian Fiction Writers.

Welcome to my blog, Debbie. You usually write cozy mysteries, but this one is completely different from those. Please tell us about this book, Blooming in Broken Places.

Thank you for having me again, Linda. I enjoy being a guest on your blog. I have six Cozy Christian Fiction books published, but Blooming in Broken Places is my first non-fiction book. This is the story of my life woven through women in the Bible that God used even during the darkest times of their lives. There are 12 chapters and 12 women.

I love reading about strong women from days gone by. This book sounds intriguing. Will you please tell us about one of the women from the Bible that impressed you?

I think my favorite is the Samaritan woman at the well. She came to the well at the hottest time of the day to avoid other women and the gossip she would have to endure. She never expected to meet Jesus. They talked and Jesus taught her about his grace. She said she knew the Messiah was coming and then he told her, “I Am the Messiah.” She was so excited she dropped her water jug and ran to town and told the people about Jesus. Now this was a woman that avoided being around people. Her confidence and self-esteem just jumped 100%. Because of this woman and her belief in Jesus many people were saved the next several days. God didn’t wait to use her until she was perfect – he used her right where she was in her walk. He can use us, too, right where we are!

I love that story, too. I recently watched a short video (5 minutes long) about her experience with Jesus. It is very touching. For those interested, click here. Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

Linda, over the years people had asked me to write my story. At that time, I didn’t have any desire to write it – I didn’t want to be negative and I didn’t want to bring up all the feelings I’d hidden in the recesses of my mind.

In the past couple of years, I’ve given a few talks on this subject and once again I was encouraged to write my story, to encourage other women. Early in the year I was working on the third book in my second cozy mystery series when I was led to write “Blooming in Broken Places.” I was at a point in my life I felt I was ready. I came up with the idea of adding the women from the bible to show how God used broken women all the time for his glory. How encouraging is that?

I love the idea of using Bible stories to help you through the struggles in your own life. What kind of research did you do?

This is an interesting question, Linda. I had heard the story of some of these women, but others I hadn’t. The most surprising thing is that we aren’t always told the whole story. To discover that these women were so much like we are today was amazing. For instance, we talk a lot about Ruth, but seem to forget how strong Naomi was. She left to return to her hometown and told her two daughters-in-law to return to their families. She was willing to travel alone if it meant they could remain in their homelands. She was so downtrodden and discouraged that she asked her people to change her name and call her Mara. But – that isn’t the end of the story. I’m not going to tell you, because I want you to read the book and find out how she goes from broken to blooming.

Oh, back to the research. I used the New Living Translation of the Bible. There are two books I used most for my research, they are: “All the Women of the Bible,” by Edith Dean and “Women of the Bible for Dummies.” Either of these books would be great for anyone interested in learning more about the women of the Bible and how they lived a life filled with challenges, just like we do today.

Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?


Thank you, Deborah. I have learned a lot from you in this interview. I hope my readers will check out your book.


Thursday, November 2, 2017

Interview with Inspirational Romance Author Regina Andrews



Gina had a golden, happy childhood where she felt loved and cherished every day. She grew up feeling like she could do anything. Even when she began writing early on, her parents would eagerly listen to her stories around the kitchen table. She can't imagine a better start and is so thankful for the blessing of the love her family showered on her. 

The Perfect Proposal is a sweet romance and I totally enjoyed it. The conversations between a wealthy man, who owns a corporation, and his very attractive secretary help to make this story come alive. I believe the conversation between these two main characters helps us to understand who they are. Lindsey is a devout Christian and Dean is beginning to realize why she is the person she is. I loved this sweet story.” --Review by Linda Weaver Clarke

Welcome to my blog, Regina. This is one book that I'm grateful I read. It was so fun. Where did you get your inspiration for The Perfect Proposal?

This book is loosely based on my personal experience. I was taking care of my mother after my father passed unexpectedly, and then I met someone...

Wow! I didn’t know that about this story when I read it. How romantic! Please give us a description of your book.

Never in her wildest dreams did Lindsay Richardson imagine that her life would shift from that of a quiet elementary school teacher to being the assistant to Dean Singleton Copley, one of the nation's most dynamic business leaders in the high-powered corporate world.

Although Lindsay desperately needs this new job, she is mourning the loss of her father and facing the unexpected twists her life has taken. Her struggles extend to not knowing what God expects from her regarding Dean Singleton Copley, the dashing bachelor, a man so different from her on the surface...yet, also, scarred from events in his past.

Finding out what life has in store for her is a great challenge. Is Dean Singleton Copley destined to become more than an employer to her?

Tell us about your second novel: Glory of the Heart.

Perrin Marlowe, a war hero, has based his life on the ideals of his father and pursued a livelihood in the realm of stonework and masonry. Returning to Sterling Lakes, he finds the truth about his past in the attic of CC Cogshell's house--and for CC, who has started a new life in this rural New England town, this seminal move in her life as she leaves a terrible relationship may lead her to places she never dreamed of going. It is through the past that they will both be able to move into their futures...will it be a future they can share together?

You love to write Inspirational Romance. What intrigues you most about this genre?

What a great, question, Linda. Thank you for asking.

To me, as a writer, and as a woman who adores God, I would say this: Inspirational Romance, at least the ones I write, are different from traditional romances because of a few things, First, my inspirational romances have 3 main characters.

Traditional romances have 2 - hero and heroine.

My books have 3 main characters - hero, heroine and God.

Another thing is that God's presence is often subtle in the book, and the hero and heroine might be having a shaky time with their faith. Or they might not have any faith. Or they might be mad at God and renounced their faith, or lost it for some other reason.

Yet, in the end, with all the obstacles overcome and (some) questions answered, the hero and heroine get through their personal faith crises and let the love of God into their hearts...yet, only through God's grace.

Each instance is different, showing us how much God loves us, cares for us and is there with us in the journey of life. And the journey of faith.

That was a beautiful and perfect description of your books. Where is your website and blog so my readers can check out your recent and past books that you have written?

Thank you for this wonderful interview, Regina. I hope my readers will check out your books.