Monday, February 8, 2016

Interview with Author Kathryn Elizabeth Jones


Book Giveaway Feb 8 - 15: You have a chance to win a Self-Help book, Marketing Your Book on a Budget. To enter the contest, make a comment about the interview. Paperback: U.S. and Canada.

Kathryn loves the idea of finding all of the information for marketing in just one book. When she began marketing in 2002, papers were scattered everywhere - it was hard for her to find the marketing information she needed. Today, at her husband's request, she puts out a newly updated marketing book for herself and for other authors screaming for a little order in their lives. She loves reading, taking walks and spending time at the beach - a hard to reach venture in Utah where mountains are the rule.

Welcome back to my blog, Kathryn. This is an updated book for authors. Please tell us about your book.

Marketing Your Book on a Budget is a hands-on resource for authors needing to get a handle on reviews, blog interviews, free advertising, book trailers, and more. I update the book in January and weed out and add new great places to market for the new year. 

What is the best advice you can give an author?

Stick to it. You won't know everything in the beginning. Don't expect to, but keep an open mind and learn through trial and error what works and what doesn't. Marketing is the hard thing that comes after writing a book, but it doesn't have to be overwhelming or cost you loads of money to do right.

Did you use your own experiences for this book or add some from other authors?

Because this book is my experience only, everything has been tried out by me. If an avenue of marketing hasn't worked for me, I don't include it in the book.

Where can my readers find you online?

Authors can find me at: http://www.ariverofstones.com or at my place of business: http://www.ideacreationspress.com. Right now we have our first ever novel writing contest going! There is no entry fee and two winners will get free editing and their book published with Idea Creations Press!

Thank you so much, Kathryn, for this wonderful interview. I hope many authors will take advantage of this book and learn from it.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Interview with Fantasy Romance Author Anna Del C. Dye

Book Giveaway Feb 4 - 14: You have a chance to win a Royal Romance, A Kingdom by the Sea. To enter the contest, make a comment about the interview. Two e-books: International.

Anna has written seven High Fantasy books in her Elf Series. Two in her Royal Romance Series. One middle grade boy’s Fairy book in electronic format only. She speaks Spanish as a first language and English. She loves fantasy, the medieval era, ruins and romantic music. Anna and her husband are the parents of three princes and a princess.

Don't forget to stop by regularly because I have a new interview and giveaway every week.


Welcome back to my blog, Anna. Please tell us about your Royal Romance, A Kingdom by the Sea.

A secret passageway conceals more than spider webs. The common belief in two kingdoms is that Serena, the Princess of Delmar, wants slaves. Even her fiancé loses his love for her, in commiseration with the islanders captured in her name. When she discovers his betrayal with Linah, a slave girl, it could be the end for Linah and all the slaves held prisoner in Delmar. A brokenhearted princess, now the queen, could become a weapon too powerful and deadly for her opponents to survive. And what will she do about the spies and political intrigue found in Delmar? Will this new queen use her powers to bring destruction to both kingdoms? To mend the rift between her and her fiancé? Or use it as a reason to become a true and kind monarch to her people?

A Kingdom by the Sea is book two in my Royal Romance Series. It has Spanish names and happens by the shores of Chile, my native country. “Serena,” the main character’s name means “mermaid” in Spanish. Her kingdom is “Delmar” which means “from the sea.” “Miramar” the capital’s name, means “look at the sea” or “lookout toward the sea.” Both of these names are those of real cities in Valparaiso, Chile.

In this story is also mentioned their great wine industry, a similitude to the real Chile which has the best wine and grape industry in South America.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

The night after I saw the musical AIDA, I couldn’t sleep because I was disappointed with the ending. I spent the night thinking what would I have done different if it was my story and by morning Kingdom by the Sea had been born.

Aida has a ship’s captain and he is the main protagonist. He is the princess’ lover and he does fall in love with a slave girl. Kingdom by the Sea has some of these elements but the story follows the princess and her awakening to a world she was part of but never knew. It turns out completely different from the musical Aida and that is what makes it awesome.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

Mostly memories of my childhood and the scenes I saw when growing up. The salty smell in the air, the seagulls’ noise at the beach and the sea breeze in my face. I also read how to get the names of the different parts of a ship right and a bit about what is entailed in navigating a ship.

Please tell us about one of the main characters in this story and what you like about him or her.

Princess Serena, she is a naïve, self-centered and quite “blond” for a black haired girl. Her fiancé of many years becomes disappointed with the princess when he is told to get slaves for her. After a couple of years, he takes refuge in the company of a beautiful slave girl. The princess, now the queen, is devastated by his betrayal, and the lives of all the slaves in her realm are now at risk because of it. Could she use her new found power to force the captain’s fulfillment of his promise to her? But, why gain his love back when she doesn’t even know what love is… she has never felt it.

What about  Elazar, the affectionate, intelligent stable-hand, who makes her feel different in an exciting new way. Despite Elazar’s own secrets, should he have a chance at her heart after all?

Life is quite complicated for Serena once she opens her eyes and sees what is going on under her nose. What I like the best about her is that she was a sleeping princess, but becomes a powerful queen and although it breaks her heart, the real “her” turns out divine.

Where can my readers find you online?


Thank you so much for this interview, Anna. My husband loves your fantasies and I know others will, too. Here are some links to where Anna's book is sold.
Amazon 

Don't forget to stop by regularly because I have a new interview and giveaway every week.



Enter another giveaway here.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Interview with Humorous Sweet Romance Author Laurean Brooks

BENEATH A MACON MOON

 

Ms. Brooks creates sassy heroines with “Foot In Mouth Disease” who are accustomed to the taste of their own shoe leather. But there's always a chivalrous hero on standby to rescue her from her self-inflicted catastrophes. Beneath A Macon Moon is a Christian Romance peppered with humor that addresses guilt and forgiveness.

Welcome to my blog, Laurie. Please tell us about Beneath A Macon Moon.

Jaela Andrews was born to well-to-do parents and accustomed to the finer things in life. Jaela has never lacked for any material thing. She is independent, determined and ambitious. Staying busy with her job as an insurance claims adjuster keeps her from dealing with grief and guilt.

When Jaela's mother reveals a shocking secret, Jaela flees to Macon, Georgia to house sit for a couple touring Europe. But her plan for peace and quiet are thwarted by Viking lookalike Eric Larsen, the handyman hired to renovate the Victorian home where she's staying. No one warned her about the renovations and Jaela's had it up to here with Eric's attitude, noisy tools--plus his nosy questions. Why doesn't he mind his own business? Jaela will not return her mother's calls until she's good and ready. If Eric knew what her mother did, he would understand.

Guilt and nightmares plague Jaela two years after her father's death. She was not at his side when he drew his last breath. Her mother must never know she disobeyed, and that her dad died alone. Jaela's attraction toward Eric grows as she begins to realize he's not trying to control her. His concern for her well-being stems from an overly protective nature. Eric gradually melts Jaela's grieving heart, a romantic entanglement leading to marriage is not in her plan.

Can Jaela forgive her mother and grandparents for concealing a twenty-three-year-old secret? She had a right to know. Will Jaela forgive herself for not being there as her father lay dying? Only God can heal her wounded heart.

Eric Larsen was hired to renovate the Victorian home while the owners are away. The project will take all summer, and all the complaints from a feisty young woman will not stop progress. Jaela obviously comes from money. Her sporty little BMW and straight-from-Fifth_Avenue-wardrobe speak volumes. But she's clueless when it comes to responsibility. Eric has worked to support his family since their father deserted ten years ago. How could Jaela comprehend responsibility or sacrifice? And why did Jaela high-tail it to Macon? Why doesn't she return her mother's calls? When he asks, she lets him know it's none of his business. He's smitten with the sassy little spitfire, but they from very different worlds. Like the pauper wooing the princess, it just wouldn't work. If only there were a way.
With God, all things are possible.

A nosy elderly couple next door add suspense and humor, keeping things lively. Madge Wilcox becomes suspicious when her neighbors come up missing to be replaced by a young woman from out of state. She doesn't buy into Jaela's story that the Cranstons are touring Europe. Madge's obsession with crime solving keeps her binoculars glued to the house next door. Then one night she slips over with her flashlight to search the backyard. Haunted with guilt, Madge has become bitter and suspicious. Can she forgive herself? Can God forgive her for what she did nearly five decades ago?

George Wilcox, Madge's mild-mannered husband, tolerates his wife's eccentric behavior. While she is glued to reruns of Murder She Wrote, George slips next door to “consort with the enemy.” Over coffee and cookies, the wise little man and Jaela bond through heart-to-heart talks.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

Five years ago my husband, son and I were sitting in a restaurant in Lexington, Kentucky when my son called a former co-worker to join us. When Dwayne arrived, he was distraught. “Man, thanks for calling me. I had to get away! My wife's going crazy. She's throwing stuff, tearing up the house.”

I won't disclose the shocking news Dwayne's wife Teresa received. It would give away my plot. But I kept the idea in the back of my mind for three years before I wrote it. With Dwayne and Teresa's permission, I dedicated Beneath a Macon Moon to them. Without them it would not be written.

What kind of research did you do?

I researched Macon, Georgia on the internet. Its tourist attractions, popular restaurants, climate and weather, festivals, and nearby towns. Did you know Macon was one town not invaded by the Union troops? As a result, the city has more beautiful antebellum homes than any other town. Many are open for touring.

That’s so interesting. I love learning bits of history from fictional novels. Please tell us about the main character in this story and what you love about him or her.

This is not easy. I equally love my heroine and hero.

I like Jaela's sassy spirit, her quick wit. Her self-sufficiency and independent spirit are only a facade. Eric sees right through it. She has a lot to learn, and by God's grace she will. Jaela's refusal to accept advice from Eric gets her in trouble. She refuses the map he offers her to guide her through the backwoods of Georgia. As a result, she must eat humble pie, or crow.

I like Eric's character because he is a strong, protective alpha male with a silly sense of humor.  Eric owns a home renovation business. Because he shoulders his family's financial burden, he's had little cash to spend on a woman. Then he meets Jaela and wants to impress her. Sparks fly (in more ways than one). Eric sees Jaela as helpless and tries to protect her. But Jaela misinterprets his chivalry. What will make her realize Eric's only looking out for her?

Now it's time to tell us something about the real you that we'll never forget.

In my mid forties, the manufacturing plant where I worked closed. Employees were offered the opportunity to further their education. I took advantage of it and signed up for Legal Assistant courses at a college 50 miles away. After graduation then obtaining and being laid off from two jobs, I decided to use my newly acquired skills for something different. Instead of feeling that my schooling had been a waste, I used the computer skills to become a writer. The courses using Microsoft Word had prepped me. In fact, every class included a computer. Without these skills, I would not be a published Christian author today. Maybe God looked down the road. Could it be He had a purpose for my life that I had not considered?

Thank you for this awesome interview, Laurie. I, too, understand what you mean about computer skills. I had to take a class to graduate and it was so hard. My children knew everything about computers, but I didn't. So if I needed help, they were there. Without this skill, it would be difficult to be an author in this modern day. 

Ms. Brook's first release, Journey To Forgiveness is an embellishment of her mother's life story, set in the Depression Era. It will soon re-release with a new cover and minor changes to the story.  

A Medley Of Inspirational Romance, is a compilation of four stories which can be downloaded separately or as one unit, in either print or ebook. 

Beneath a Macon Moon, Ms. Brook's latest title, is available in both kindle download or print.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Interview with Christian Romance Author Candee Fick


Candee Fick is the wife of a high school football coach and the mother of three children, including a daughter with a rare genetic syndrome. When not busy with her day job or writing, she can be found cheering on the home team at football, basketball, baseball, and Special Olympics games. In what little free time remains, she enjoys exploring the great Colorado outdoors, indulging in dark chocolate, and savoring happily-ever-after endings through a good book.

Catch of a Lifetime is a super sweet love story. I didn’t know much about football until I read this book. The author knows so much about football that she was able to help me understand this sport. I learned that a college football coach has a lot more work than probably anyone realizes. There is more to it than just teaching techniques only. I also didn’t realize that the boys have to watch film clips to help them with strategy. I grew to respect what a coach has to go through to get his team ready. This was a fun story and I was able to feel the excitement of the game along with the tender romance. Towards the ending, there are some tense moments.” –Review by Author Linda Weaver Clarke

Welcome to my blog, Candee. Please tell us about your sweet romance, Catch of a Lifetime.

Catch of a Lifetime tells the story of a first-year college football coach and a graduate assistant athletic trainer who hates football but has to work with the football program in order to pay for her schooling. It’s a clean and wholesome read even as it deals with real life issues inside a college football program. Here’s the back cover blurb:

He breathes football. She shudders at the very mention of the sport. After a tragedy involving a football player destroyed her family, athletic trainer and graduate student Cassie moves across the country looking for a fresh start, but a change in financial aid lands her in the middle of her worst nightmare. Meanwhile, rookie coach Reed worries his dream career will slip away as injuries plague his players and his star receiver teeters on the brink of ineligibility. As the two work together to salvage the season, sparks fly, and Reed must eventually choose between the game he cherishes and the woman he loves.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

This story nugget arrived in a dream. I woke up living a scene that was so real it stayed with me for at least an hour. As the details began to fade, I realized it had the makings of a good story and so I scribbled down as much of the scene as I could and filed the paper away with other ideas waiting for the right time. Of course, when I pulled out my notes, the characters needed a bunch of tweaking in order to make the situation believable and book length, but the essence of the conflict was still there. Cassie did not want to work with the football program but Reed was hero enough to help change her mind.

Of course, they say to write what you know so several of the individual scene ideas came from my personal experiences as a football coach’s wife and mother to a player who got hurt during a game. I knew a lot about football from my guys, but I still needed to do a lot of research.

What kind of research did you do?

While I fictionalized the college, it was based on a very-real team’s schedule because I needed to know how many games there were in a season, how they would qualify for a bowl game, and a typical week’s practice plan. I also needed to know about NCAA eligibility requirements for athletes, the test schedule for a biology class, athletic training certification protocols, and how to diagnose or treat specific injuries. All those tiny details and many more from sideline game action helped create realism in my descriptions and bring the setting to life.

Please tell us about the main character in this story and what you love about him or her.

Cassie Parker hates football, mostly because she blames a football player for the tragedy that destroyed her family. But she’s also a fierce competitor who remembers the commitment to excellence required in her previous sport of gymnastics as well as the agony of career-ending injuries. She’s dedicated to her new field of athletic training because she wants to help others and resolves to put up with the football players in order to fulfill her vow to her late mother and finish her education. I love how her empathy toward an injured player opens the door for her to face the past and learn how to forgive so she can move forward to a bright future. She’s a spunky fighter in a petite package.

Now it’s time to tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.

I get to read and write for a living. Unfortunately, what I get paid to read is thousands of pages of depositions from asbestos cases and the writing involves summarizing work histories for legal reports. I’m blessed to get to work from home with flexible hours, but it’s definitely my dream that the income from my fiction would someday replace the need to read and write about asbestos. Can you blame me? I guess in that way I’m like my heroine Cassie because I’m doing something I don’t like in order to support my real dream.

Thank you so much for this interview, Candee. It was a great pleasure reading your book. It was so much fun and I hope my followers will check it out.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Interview with Romantic/Suspense Author Shirley Raye Redmond


Shirley Raye Redmond is the author of several sweet romance novels and dozens of children’s books. Many of her titles have won national and regional awards. She is a member of numerous writing organizations including American Christian Fiction Writer, Romance Writers of America, Women Writing the West, and SCBWI. She lives in New Mexico, has been married 41 years to her college sweetheart. They have two adult children, two adorable grandsons and one sassy Scottish terrier.

Welcome back to my blog, Shirley. Please tell us about your new book, Viper’s Nest.

Caring for her 9-year-old daughter, Pippi is Widow Wren Bergschneider's main priority. But she becomes frightened and mystified when she receives an anonymous note hinting that her husband’s traffic death the year before might not have been an accident after all. When an unidentified shooter makes Wren and her boss, history professor Allan Partner, his targets after they emerge from the basement of a 175-year-old insane asylum slated for demolition, their lives take an unexpected—and dangerous—turn.

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Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

I actually had a private tour of the Jacksonville Insane Asylum many years ago. Mary Todd Lincoln was a patient there briefly following the death of President Lincoln. Built in the mid 1840s, the asylum was the product of humanitarian Dorothea Dix’s impassioned plea to the Illinois Legislature. Miss Dix was a stalwart advocate for mentally ill individuals mistreated by society. Some were locked away in cellars and attics. Others were put on display in county jails. No medical aid or social services were available at the time for those declared insane. Everyone was lumped into the same category—whether one was a cruel psychopathic killer or a melancholy young mother suffering from postpartum depression.  Dorothea Dix changed that.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

Originally, I wrote about my tour of the asylum for a Writer’s Digest nonfiction contest. My submission won an Honorable Mention. People who read the piece urged me to “do something else” with all the historical information I’d collected.  After toying with the idea of for quite a while, I decided to write a suspense novel, using the abandoned asylum as the backdrop of the story. Besides the tour, I did a lot of research on Dorothea Dix and Nazi medical experiments during World War II.

Please tell us about one of the main characters in this story and what you like about him or her.

I am fond of Wren Bergschneider, the heroine of the story. She’s not one of those fearless women who dash headlong into danger. Being a good mother is her first priority, and that priority influences every decision she makes. Since her husband is dead, Wren realizes that if she’s too careless, her young daughter Pippi could end up an orphan. That’s her biggest fear. It makes her particularly vulnerable, and I think that adds to the suspense of the novel.

Where can my readers find you online?

I love to connect with readers through my website at www.shirleyrayeredmond.com and on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shirley-Raye-Redmond-Author/533496973399344

Thank you, Shirley, for this interview. I hope my followers will take a look at your website and check out your book. It sounds very intriguing.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Interview with Fantasy Author Iain Reading


Iain Reading is passionate about Root Beer, music, and writing. He is Canadian, but currently resides in the Netherlands working for the United Nations. Iain writes middle grade and young adult books. His published works include the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency Series, The Wizards of Waterfire Series, and the dragon of the month club. To learn more, go to http://www.amazon.com/Iain-Reading/e/B00B0NGI6Q/

Welcome to my blog, Iain. Here is a synopsis of your fantasy: The Dragon Of The Month Club.

This fantasy tells the story of Ayana Fall and Tyler Travers, two best friends who stumble across an extraordinarily magical book and soon find themselves enrolled as members of a very special and exclusive club: The Dragon of the Month Club.

On the thirteenth of every month a new dragon conjuring spell is revealed, and Ayana and Tyler attempt to summon the latest Dragon of the Month. The varieties are almost endless: Air Dragons, Paper Dragons, Fog Dragons, Waterfall Dragons, Rock Dragons, Tree Dragons - not to mention special bonus dragons for all the major holidays, including a particularly prickly Holly Dragon for Christmas.

One day when a conjuring spell goes wrong, Ayana and Tyler find themselves unexpectedly drawn into a fantastical world of adventure based on the various books scattered all across Tyler's messy bedroom. Travelling from one “book-inspired world” to the next with nothing to rely on but their wits and a cast of strange and exotic dragons at their disposal, they must try to somehow find their way home again. From 19th century German folktales to the streets of Sherlock Holmes's London, the adventures of Ayana and Tyler bring these classic stories to life. Filled with fascinating detail and non-stop action these books will spark the imaginations of readers of all ages to inspire a life-long love of reading and seeking out books that are just a little bit off the beaten track.

I understand this is book one. Where did you get your inspiration for this series?

Just outside of San Francisco there is a small town at the end of a dusty road. Just up the street from a haunted hotel there is a wishing tree. And that wishing tree is where this story began. But of course, when you're talking about dragons and books already, what other inspiration do you need? This idea just seemed to come out of nowhere.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

For this book I had to do some of the best research I've ever done: reading. I had to read many stories and books as part of getting ready to write this book. Can you imagine anything better than that? Unlike those pesky Kitty Hawk books I write, I didn't have to go out and travel around the world for research. All I had to do is sit at home in my favourite comfy chair and read.

Please tell us about one of the main characters in this story and what you like about him or her.

The two main characters in this book are Ayana and Tyler. Of the two of them I think I relate to Ayana the most. She is brave and confident, but she's also wounded and sometimes she doubts herself and is frightened. She is human, in other words, just like the rest of us. She has dreams but even I (the author) am not sure yet what those might be. So I am looking forward to writing the rest of the series to find out what becomes of her.

Where can my readers find you online?





Thank you, Iain, for this wonderful interview. I hope my readers will check this series out.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Interview with Regency Romance Author Donna Hatch

Donna Hatch, author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” has won writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of eight and has been listening to those voices ever since. She is a sought-after workshop presenter, and juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children. A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty five years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.

Welcome back to my blog, Donna. This is the synopsis of your new Regency Romance: The Suspect’s Daughter.

Determined to help her father with his political career, Jocelyn sets aside dreams of love until she meets a mysterious gentleman with dangerous secrets. Working undercover, Grant’s only suspect for a murder conspiracy is the father of a lady who is getting increasingly hard to ignore. They must work together to find the assassins. England’s future hangs in the balance...and so does their love.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

The murder plot in The Suspect’s Daughter was inspired by a true event in England known as the Cato Street Conspiracy, which thankfully, was averted largely in part due to an undercover Bow Street Runner whose name I never learned. This event happened in 1820, the same year my book takes place, and though my conspiracy varied considerably from the true events, there is a similar basic plot.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

I’ve been researching the Regency since 2002 when I first decided this was going to be my specialty so I can weave in details about customs, fashion, the political climate and current events into my books. For this book specifically, I researched the Cato Street Conspiracy from many different sources, as well as Parliament and how a new prime minister was chosen. I also studied maps and travel guides to understand the layout of London so I can add little details to make the readers feel as if they are there. In addition, I inadvertently researched concussions when my husband got one, and Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome through his friend who’d recently returned home from serving in the armed forces in the Middle East.

Please tell us about one of the main characters in this story and what you like about him or her.

Though Grant Amesbury is a cynic and a loner, his brothers always turned to him when they needed help. Grant would be the last one to classify himself as a dark knight, but he thrives on chasing down villains and dragging them to justice--dead or alive. Intriguing and enigmatic, Grant has captivated readers since the first book in the series, The Stranger She Married, hit bookstores. And each time he appeared in subsequent books, The Guise of a Gentleman, and A Perfect Secret, his fan base grew as did requests for his very own story.

I have been planning to finish his story in time for an autumn release date, but my daughter got married and then our family moved out of state. All of these events took me away from writing. But I was determined to release the book this year—I felt I owed that to my fans. So I pushed and pushed and managed to get it finished in time for a December release date—sort of a Christmas present to my fans who’ve been begging for Grant’s story.

I, too, liked Grant when I read The Stranger She Married, so I’m glad that you have made him a main character in this story. Where can my readers find you online?

Donna's Website: http://donnahatch.com
Donna's Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DonnaHatch.Author
The link to buy The Suspect’s Daughter

Thank you, Donna, for this wonderful interview. I hope my followers will grab a copy and read it. Your regency romances are not only intriguing but very clean. A BIG PLUS!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Interview with Inspirational Author Dave Arnold


Dave Arnold is a pastor, author, speaker, life coach and adjunct professor at a college. Dave is married to Angie and they have two children, Luke (5 years old) and Angelina (20 months; a little over a year-and-a-half). Dave has written three books and is working on two more.

Welcome to my blog, Dave. Please tell us about your book: It’s Possible.

It’s Possible is a short, action-packed book that will help you learn to thrive. So many people just settle in life: they live for the weekends, that next vacation, etc. But God has created us with a purpose and a unique set of passions. We are here for a reason and to make a difference in the world. Throughout this book, I use inspiring stories and give practical tips on how to take steps towards thriving. Of course, thriving is a life-long process; but I do believe it’s possible (hence the title) to take steps to becoming all that we are meant to become.

Wow! That is such an inspiring thought, that God has created us with a purpose and we have to find that purpose and take those steps to becoming what he wants us to be. Where did you get your inspiration for this book?

It’s Possible was written out of my own experience of when I was merely “surviving” in life. There was a time I was working so much that I barely had time to breathe and found myself discounted from my wife and from my faith in God. But thankfully, through a poignant conversation with my wife, I began to take steps to learn what it means to thrive.

What kind of research did you do?

My own study of the Bible was most prominent for the writing of this book. I also weave throughout many quotes from people throughout history. I am an avid reader, so much of my material comes from the books I read.

The study of the Bible is the best research a person can do, Dave. Now it’s time to tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.

Growing up I struggled a lot in school. I had a hard time keeping up. Because of this, I was told I had a learning disability and was forced to go to Resource, a special Ed class. I was humiliated. But it was during this time that my Resource teacher, a wonderful kind woman, recognized a gift in me – the gift of telling a story. And so, she encouraged me to write and use my imagination through words. She saw something in me that I didn’t see. All I saw was there was something wrong with me; she saw potential. “Love,” said Bono of the band U2, “is seeing potential in someone.” What a gift we can give others!

Thank you for sharing a part of yourself in this interview, Dave. Where can my readers find you online?

My website is www.davearnoldspeaks.com.
You can also find Dave Arnold Speaks on Facebook and you can find me on Twitter at @davejarnold16.

I hope my followers will check out this wonderful and inspiring book. I’m sure it will help you in your life.

Friday, December 11, 2015

A Christmas Miracle: Don’t Let Him Die


All of us wish our lives could go smoothly, with no trials or tribulations to endure, but that is not possible. Disappointments, physical or mental stress, and sorrow are part of life. George MacDonald (1824 – 1905) said, “How often we look upon God as our last and feeblest resource! We go to Him because we have nowhere else to go. And then we learn that the storms of life have driven us, not upon the rocks but into the desired haven.”
We must rise above our problems, become humble and continue on. That’s where the line is drawn between those who give up and those who have faith in themselves and in a loving God. Our Father in Heaven is here to help us endure our trials.
We grow from the many experiences we have in life, and it molds us into better people. We can compare it to a rough stone that tumbles in a streambed and gradually becomes smooth and beautiful. All the jagged edges have been worn off. The result is a beautiful polished stone.
Opal H. Clarke and her twelve-year-old son endured a difficult trial. She wrote about the experiences they had to bear when he contracted a dreadful illness.


Don’t Let Him Die

I first became aware of my twelve year old son’s illness when the choppy rendition at the piano of “Hark! The Herald Angels sing,” had stopped. Glancing at him, his head resting on the piano, I asked, “What’s wrong?’
He replied, “I don’t feel good.”
As he looked up I saw his cheeks were flushed; on closer inspection it proved to be a fine rash. He had a temperature. I called our family doctor and described the symptoms. He said it sounded like the measles that were going around and he prescribed a well-known drug.
The next day, George complained of his eyes hurting. Blisters began to appear on his ears and lips, and his temperature rose. After sitting by his side for several hours, I had to leave the room momentarily. As I returned, the sight was so shocking. I rushed from the room, dropped to the floor and cried. George had rubbed all the skin from his blistered lips. His ears, neck and face were a mass of blisters, with one large blister hanging like a sac on one side of his face. George did not sleep. He kept asking us to please turn out the lights. It was frightening to hear him ask this; there was only a small night-light burning and I had a small folded towel over his eyes.
Upon our arrival at the hospital, we were taken to an isolation room. As the ambulance attendant lifted my son onto the bed, the large blister on his face, a hanging sac of sloshing fluid, broke.
Now, lying naked on the sterile sheets, coughing and choking, his body a mass of blisters and skinless places, he looked like someone wearing an ugly mask. I wanted to cry out, “No! No!” But I prayed that for my son’s sake my voice would be calm.
Nothing could have torn me away from my son at this time; so I was given a hospital gown and a mask. The next few days were crucial ones. Large areas of skin that had gone dark and looked as if they were scalded, pushed off from George’s back and he stuck to the sheets. The skin, pushed up on his upper arm, looked like a wrinkled nylon stocking. George’s mouth and throat were blistered, as well as the bronchial tubes, and he was coughing constantly. I covered my face, put my head on the windowsill and fought the tears.
The eye doctor said the eyes were blistered, even on the cornea, and added, “If he comes along—we may not be able to save his eyes.” It came to me that my son might be blind!
A new nurse coming in to put drops in George’s eyes, leaned over him and said, “George, I have something to put in your eyes. Can you turn your head this way?” She leaned over, and as he turned his face with its black-rimmed hole for a mouth, one side of his face practically skinless, and skinless ears—all this was too much for this nurse. She became nauseous, gagged and hurriedly left the room.
One night, two couples were standing in the hall. One of the men looked in at George and gasped. When his wife stepped over to where he was standing, he led her away, remarking, “You do not want to see that.”
Each time the doctor entered the room, he would greet my son with, “How are you, George?” George would answer, “Pretty good.” Always pretty good. At one time the doctor looked at him and said, “You are a game little guy!” There were tears in his eyes.
George asked me if I was praying. I assured him I was. He also asked if the church members could pray for him.
One evening, the young doctor gravely told me things were not going well and that he had done all that he could. At that moment I felt desperately alone; what could I do except go to God for help? I returned to the room and knelt beside my son’s bed and pleaded with God to let him live.
The next day, George asked, “Are they still praying for me?”
I said, “Oh, yes. We surely are, son.”
Then he asked me if I’d hold his hand. He said, “If you don’t mind holding a scratchy one.”
All day I held his hand. By evening I sensed a calmness come over him. I said, “Doctor, I think he is better!”
The doctor examined him, turned to me, and with a look of almost disbelief and surprise said, “I think he is!” The crisis had passed.
The miraculous powers of the body to heal took over. New skin began to grow and the old skin sloughed off. All twenty of his fingernails and toenails came off.
Suddenly we were aware that it was Christmas Eve. Kind nurses and Santa himself came to where a brave young boy with a blotched and burned-looking body sat in the bed. By tipping his head back, he saw through slits of eyes a Christmas bouquet and said, “I can see! I can see!” At that moment I was humbled beyond words.
The young doctor came into the room and said, “George, you have made medical history.” Then he asked if we minded the case being written for the medical journals. I tried to thank our tall young doctor. He said humbly, “I just stood by.” But I knew he had worked valiantly to save my son.
Our family doctor came into the room and said, “George, you are a walking miracle.” The nurses, who came to say good-bye to us, said that no one in the hospital expected to see our son go out of the hospital alive. The eye doctor said, “I feel so humble about this boy. It certainly has made me a believer.”
At this unforgettable Christmas time I realized that, to me, Christmas would forever be a time of rejoicing; rejoicing for the gift of a son.” (Opal H. Clarke, “Don’t Let Him Die”)
This young man grew to adulthood but his body wasn’t the same. His eyes are constantly red because his tear ducts were destroyed and he has to put special eye drops in his eyes constantly. He coughs frequently and has a raspy sound when he breathes because he has Chronic Bronchitis but he never lost his faith in God. This faithful man, George Amos Clarke, my sweetheart and husband, was grateful for a miracle.


The True Spirit of Christmas

Monday, December 7, 2015

Interview with Author Jill Vanderwood, AKA, Mrs. Claus


Jill Ammon Vanderwood is an associate member of IBRBS, International Brotherhood of Real Bearded Santas. Along with Santa Claus, she sees hundreds of children each Christmas season. Jill is also a multiple award winning author, including the National Mom’s Choice Award. You can visit her on the web at www.jillvanderwood.com

Welcome back to my blog, Jill. Please tell us about your new book, Santa’s Mystery Boot.

Santa is trying out a special boot this year to make snow in places like New Zealand where it's summer in December. There are buttons along the side of the boot that not only make snow. One button plays Christmas music, one sprays a mist to help children have gingerbread dreams, and the other button makes the boot turbo charged to help Santa get up the chimney. Tim and Tommy Adams have plans to capture the real Santa, but Santa has other plans. His boot has a special part in helping the boys discover the true spirit of Christmas.

Where did you get your inspiration for this story?

I listen to kids when they talk to Santa Claus. I have heard kids say they wanted to stay up late so they could catch Santa Claus. Children ask many questions, such as, what do you do when there isn't snow at Christmas time? Another question is, how do you get up the chimney? I decided that Santa needed a special boot to solve all of his problems. But, as the story goes along, the boot also creates problems.

Your husband is Mr. Claus and spreads joy to many children. Please tell us how he came into this role.

My husband is a professional Real Bearded Santa. He first started being Santa when our kids were young, and he fit into the Santa suit the church had in a closet. I was always trying to get him to be Santa again and he finally decided to transform into the jolly old elf.  I would bleach his beard so it would be white.

At first, Santa would wear a red shirt and a Santa hat and deliver candy to his co-workers at Christmas time. One of our granddaughters said she knew he wasn't the real Santa. When asked how she knew he wasn't the real Santa, she said, "Because you don't have red pants!"

I understand that you have a hidden identity, also. I heard you became Mrs. Claus about six years ago. What is it like being Mrs. Claus and how do you get into the Christmas spirit?

I say I married well and we get invited to all the best parties! I was trained at the Mrs. Claus Academy at a Santa convention in California. I made my own outfit from the same fabric as Santa's suit. One of my rolls as Mrs. Claus is to calm down little children. I hold most of the little ones who are afraid of Santa. I imagine our pictures are all over Facebook because we smile for continuous pictures. I also give out the gifts to the children. 

We always do our first event the weekend after Thanksgiving. We get into the Christmas spirit by watching movies such as the Santa Claus and the Polar Express. We listen to Christmas music in our home and on our way to events.

Where can my readers find you online?

My website is http://www.jillvanderwood.com and Santa's website is http://www.utahsantavisit.com.

Santa's Mysterious Boot is available through Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com and on Amazon Kindle.

Thank you so much for this interview, Jill. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Interview with Romance/Suspense Author Diane Dean White

Diane started writing for newspaper, covering hard news and feature stories including a column called: “Yankee Viewpoints”. Her writing includes ancestral history and writing donor appeal letters for non-profit organizations. She wrote for Frank Talk, a weekly magazine for over four years, with her column, “Caroline Calling,” and is the author of Carolina in the Morning, Texting Mr. Right, Stories from a Porch Swing, On a Summer Night, and Winter Wonderland. Diane is also the author of over three-hundred short stories. She and hubby, Stephen, have been married for forty-three years, and they are the parents of three grown children and three granddaughters.

Welcome back to my blog, Diane. We’re going to talk about two books today. The first one is an Inspirational Romance called Winter Wonderland. Please tell us about this story.


While most young women are looking for husbands, Ruth tries to further her career and concentrates on obtaining a job with her business skills at Detroit’s J. L. Hudson Department Store. She feels good about her new office position and then meets Clint…who changes everything.

Was he part of the reason for their move? During a health problem will their faith hold them together or threaten a loving relationship? Celebrate the Christmas holiday and follow Ruth in this romantic story, during Detroit’s heyday, in Winter Wonderland.

Where did you get your inspiration for Winter Wonderland?

Being raised next to the capital city of Michigan, we often visited relatives and went shopping in the much larger city, Detroit. JL Hudson Company was a huge department store, and well known. It was a fun adventure, and especially during Christmas with “Toyland” a great place to visit Santa. I was aware of the number of families that came from various states to seek employment with the growing auto industry, after WWII, and it was something I wanted to capture in my book. It was also important for me to share about my character Ruth and her walk with the Lord, her sweet spirit, and ambition to work as a secretary for Hudson’s. As happens in true life, something often gets in the way of our best laid plans, and Clint was a distraction for Ruth. Not without glitches, readers can enjoy a 1951 romance. Once the tallest department store in Detroit, and due to the increasing malls, Hudson’s was sadly taken down in the late 1990’s, with camera crews to capture the historic moment.

The second book is an inspirational suspense/romance. Please tell us about On A Summer Night.

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I loved writing this book. I’m pretty much a fly by the seat of the pants writer, but I had an event I wanted to share with readers. Things have changed greatly from the 1960’s when this story starts out, and captures something two high school graduates discover. Coming back to present day, my main character Kate and her husband return to the area, and she struggles with how much to tell her husband. The book takes a number of twists and turns and readers enjoy a trip to beautiful Montana and the snow-covered mountains, a visit to Lansing, Michigan and the town near Everglades, I call Gladesville, is where the story takes place. The plot deals with a scene that stays in Kate’s mind, and abused women, an uncle whom Kate loved, and redemption all come full circle.

Where did you get your inspiration for On a Summer Night?

I spent time visiting the Everglades in the late 60’s and I also attended college in Florida around the same time. There were a lot of things I was familiar with having grandparents who had a winter home in Florida, but I was from the North and many things happened that I’d never seen in an active University city. I knew the suspense I wanted to share, and I wanted to work spousal abuse, something too many women deal with, into the chapters. It’s important for me to share the plan of salvation in my books, and this has a large influence in two of my characters lives, and something as a Christian, Kate has a hard time accepting. I was happy to see the reviews and that readers enjoy the turns and action that takes place. When the publisher first came out with my book he priced it at a very high cost, and didn’t do an ebook, which was promised. I retained my author rights and cut the paperback price in half, and offer it on Kindle now too.  

Where can my readers find you online?


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