Monday, November 27, 2017

Interview with Inspirational Author Linda Shenton Matchett

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 I have my blog page connected to my website for convenience:

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.