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Author, Author — Shoba Sadler Author of Child of Dust

15 Jan

 

http://clashofthetitles.com

Today we’ll sit down to chat with Shoba Sadler, author of the contemporary title Child of Dust. Shoba will take us behind the scenes of her unique new novel and give us a glimpse into her writing.

Shoba, why did you choose to write this type of novel?
Social status and cultural barriers makes for great conflict. Child of Dust is like a modern-day classic of Romeo and Juliet only instead of opposing families, these lovers, Kim and Bryan have cultural and social barriers to contend with.

Kim, the rich and spoilt socialite who loses her money is taken under the wing of her reluctant chauffeur, Bryan, who has his own struggles to deal with. They find love under the most unexpected circumstances.

Can you tell us why you started with an Asian setting for your first two novels?
I was founder of Agape Christian magazine in Malaysia. I also freelanced for the leading English, secular newspaper in Malaysia, The Star. My feature stories forThe Star were several page write-ups with gorgeous photos. Many of my stories were selected by the features editor to be cover stories as well.

As I interviewed people all over the world for Agape, I saw God moving powerfully in Asia and yet there were so few stories coming from there especially in the Christian romance genre.

In Asia, Christianity is seen very much as a Western culture. Yet so many Asians have had powerful encounters with Jesus Christ. Then there is the struggle to validate their faith in the midst of culture, tradition, loss of identity, social stigma and so on.

There alone you have so much material for backdrop, tension, drama, conflict and final resolution.

An example of what I mean can be seen in my short story Finding Enlightenmentthat was awarded second place at faithwriters.com. It can be read here:http://www.faithwriters.com/wc-article-level3-previous.php?id=54362

Talk a little about your unique setting.
When I read novels I am drawn to the backdrop and setting. A great description of the setting subtly woven into the story is what makes the difference between being a narrator who takes a person on a journey through his “telling” and a facilitator who steps out of the way altogether to allow the reader to explore the journey on his own. The writer should aim to be the facilitator and not the narrator.There is nothing like a great setting to make the reader feel like they are there with the characters. It is like the difference between watching a 2D and 3D movie.

Unfortunately, many formulaic romance novels that are churned out in quick production-line succession fails to capture this allure of setting because it takes research and time. It is also not easy to write setting discreetly in the background and that is the only way to write it. Otherwise it will seem like reading lecture notes instead of a story.

I read one review of a multi-cultural romance set in an Asian country where the reviewer said she felt like she was reading a tour company’s brochure and that is the wrong emotion to invoke.

So another reason I wrote Child of Dust was to give romance readers a chance to explore unique settings and backdrops not normally experienced by a reader in the current trend of romance novels available out there.

We’d love to hear a little about the historical background for your novel. Will you talk about that?
The main character, Bryan, Kim’s chauffeur has been deeply affected by the Vietnam war in the sense that he is the illegitimate child of an American GI and a Vietnamese woman. This historical background sets a different dimension to the story and adds intrigue and authenticity.

Who would you say is the audience for this novel?

Child of Dust is an appealing read for anyone. As I have also written for the secular press, I am able to write in a manner that appeals to all walks of life both Christian and non-Christian. I have had non-Christians tell me they were so engrossed in the story that they didn’t not notice the message of the gospel woven into the story. Yet that message is undoubtedly there.

I am an inspirational writer and everyone loves a good inspirational story just as they love watching a Hallmark movie.

What readers have to say about the novel:
“Make sure when getting ready to read Child of Dust that you don’t have anything else planned for the day, you won’t be able to put this book down. I could go on and on about this book. Highly and strongly recommend it. Is it possible to give a book 10 stars?” — Debra Dunson, reviewer at The Edgier Christian Fiction Fan

“I found the writing of this story to be close to excellent…. I found this book to be one of the most enjoyable books I have read in a long time. It was interesting, the story kept moving along, and I learned a lot as I read this story. I found myself intrigued with the constant difficulties faced by the protagonists – and their stories were presented so much more like real life stories than any other book I have read in a long, long time.” — Marina, Community Writer, California

“This novel has a consistent rhythm, adding surprise after surprise, twisting our emotions at each new difficulty Kim faces. I couldn’t put this book down, waiting to see if any or all the ends would be tired up. I would actually like to see the novel transcend into a movie. An amazing read.” — Brices Mice Christian Book Reviews

About Child of Dust: 

Beautiful but spoilt Vietnamese socialite, Cao Kim Lye, learns of her parents shocking death from the dashing Amerasian family chauffeur, Bryan Nguyen.

Kim steps out of a world of crystal and chandelier to enter the dust and chaos of working-class Hanoi. She finds herself living under the roof of a shop cum living quarters with Bryan and his adoptive family.

Ever conscious of the privileged class, Kim struggles against the emotional ties she forms towards Bryan, the reluctant saviour, who considers her an unnecessary hitch to his already complicated life.

He still bears the scars of abandonment by his mother and his American GI father when U.S. troops pulled out of Vietnam.

Eventually Bryan and Kim’s powerful attraction to each other begins to break down the wall between them.

About the author: 
Shoba Sadler has been a journalist for 20 years and founder of Agape magazine in Malaysia. She is a versatile inspirational author that likes to write in multiple genres. She has pioneered a new genre in Christian multi-cultural writing with her novel Child of Dust and her many award-winning short stories can be read here http://shobasadler.com/?page_id=250

Her passion for writing is matched only by her passion for cooking with farm fresh produce. She lives a healthy lifestyle on a farm with her husband, Kevin, a talented musician, who also loves to surf and ski. They grow their own vegetables and fruits and share their home with a multitude of animals and wildlife. They are passionate about buying directly from local farmers who practice organic farming.

Top 10 Tuesday — New To Me Authors

6 Dec

2016 has been a great reading year! Lots of favorite authors with new books and plenty of new to me authors to insure many hours of reading pleasure in the future. This week the folks at The Broke And The Bookish are featuring 2016 New To You Authors. To discover a new to you author, click HERE.

toptentuesday

2016 New To Me Authors

 

 

biopicCalled “the suspense author everyone is talking about” by Family Fiction Edge magazine, Zachary Bartels is the author of critically acclaimed supernatural thrillers. An award-winning preacher and Bible teacher, Zachary has been serving as pastor of Judson Baptist Church in Lansing, Michigan, for ten years. He enjoys film, fine cigars, stimulating conversation, gourmet coffee, reading, writing, and cycling.

His debut novel, Playing Saint, has been called an “intrigue-filled thriller” (Library Journal) and “a page-turner from the very beginning . . . gripping and realistic” (RT Book Reviews). His newest book, The Last Con (HarperCollins Christian Fiction, 2015) has met early positive reviews. He lives in the capital city of a mitten-shaped Midwestern state with his wife Erin and their son.

 

71xnmguh8yl-_ux250_A graduate of Taylor University with a degree in Christian Education, and a former bookseller at Barnes & Noble, Dawn Crandall didn’t begin writing until 2010 when her husband found out about her long-buried dream of writing a book. Without a doubt about someday becoming published, he encouraged her to quit her job in 2010 in order to focus on writing The Hesitant Heiress. It didn’t take her long to realize that writing books was what she was made to do.

Apart from writing books, Dawn is also a mom to two precious little boys and also serves with her husband in a premarriage mentor program at their local church in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Dawn is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, secretary for the Indiana ACFW Chapter (Hoosier Ink), and associate member of the Great Lakes ACFW Chapter.

The Everstone Chronicles is Dawn’s first series with Whitaker House. All three books composing the series were semifinalists in ACFW’s prestigious Genesis Writing Contest, the third book going on to become a finalist in 2013.

 

davis_lindabrooks_2016_01-31-copy-2Linda Brooks Davis is the 2014 Jerry Jenkins Operation First Novel 1st place winner. Her debut historical novel, The Calling of Ella McFarland, was released on December 1, 2015. Now working on her second novel, Linda pens stories inspired by her ancestors’ lives of faith and grit, tales that testify to the hope and healing found in Jesus.

Linda was born and reared on a farm in small-town Raymondville in the southernmost tip of Texas. She attended Abilene Christian University where she earned a degree in speech pathology in 1968 and maintained a forty-year career in public schools while rearing a daughter and son who are now veterinarians in practice together. As the eldest student in her post-graduate class, she earned a Master’s degree from Houston Baptist University in 2002.

Now retired, Linda lives in Central Texas with her husband. When not writing, Linda dotes on her six beautiful grandchildren, serves in lay ministry at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, reads, and explores genealogy.

 

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4114506_origCamille Eide writes romantic, inspirational dramas about love, faith, and family. She lives in Oregon with her husband and is a mom, grammy, bass guitarist, and a fan of muscle cars, tender romance, oldies Rock, and Peanut M&Ms. I read her historical/romance novel, The Memoirs of Johnny Devine.

 

 

 

 

amy-matayo-1Author Amy Matayo is an excellent speaker, mathematician, seamstress, chef…and liar. She’s decent at writing books but not much else. Then again, the book thing makes her marginally cool and a whole lot intimidating.

Not really. Not even her kids are afraid of her.

She graduated with barely passing grades from John Brown University with a degree in Journalism. But she’s proud of that degree and all the ways she hasn’t put it to good use.

She laughs often, cries easily, feels deeply, and loves hard. She lives in Arkansas with her husband and four kids and is working on her next novel.

I read The Thirteenth Chance.

 

4129Rachel McMillan is a keen history enthusiast and a lifelong bibliophile. When not writing or reading, she can most often be found drinking tea and watching British miniseries. Rachel lives in bustling Toronto, where she works in educational publishing and pursues her passion for art, literature, music, and theater. Rachel McMillan is a keen history enthusiast and a lifelong bibliophile. When not writing or reading, she can most often be found drinking tea and watching British miniseries. Rachel lives in bustling Toronto, where she works in educational publishing and pursues her passion for art, literature, music, and theater. I read The Bachelor Girl’s Guide to Murder

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611b1ezgmtl-_ux250_For 27 years, Deb Richardson-Moore was a reporter for The Greenville (SC) News, winning three national writing awards and routine recognition from the South Carolina Press Association. She was a wife, mother of three, and that suburban cliche, a minivan-driving soccer mom.

She then took over the religion beat at The News and enrolled in a nearby seminary to learn more about it. Her life was never the same. She left the newspaper and earned a master of divinity degree. Because jobs for clergywomen were scarce in her own Baptist denomination, she accepted a job as pastor of the non-denominational Triune Mercy Center, a crumbling, inner-city mission church to the homeless.

Deb is a graduate of Wake Forest University and Erskine Theological Seminary. She and her husband, Vince, have three grown children. The Cantaloupe Thief was her debut novel.

 

41tko0oljtl-_ux250_Mike Nappa is an entertainment journalist at FamilyFans.com, as well as a bestselling and award-winning author with more than one million books sold worldwide. When he was a kid, the stories of Edgar Allan Poe scared him silly. Today he owns everything Poe ever wrote. A former fiction acquisitions editor, Mike earned his MA in English literature and now writes full time. Annabel Lee was his debut novel.

 

press-kit-headshotSandra Orchard is a multi-award-winning author of mysteries and romantic suspense She is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers of America and The Word Guild (Canada). A mother of three grown children, she lives in Niagara, Canada with her real-life-hero husband and writes full time . . . when not doting on her young grandchildren.

 

 

 

kelli-stuart-sqKelli Stuart is a writer and a storyteller at heart. A graduate of Baylor University with a degree in English Professional Writing, and a minor in the Russian language, Kelli has honed her skills in the written word through editing, ghostwriting, blogging, and traveling the world. Kelli has a gift for languages that puts her at ease in other cultures, allowing her to view this creative life from the vantage point of mothers worldwide.

Kelli is a noted blogger and the writer behind the wildly popular blog Minivans Are Hot.com. She has traveled extensively, constantly honing her craft at weaving words into tales as she experiences life and the world. Kelli has written for, and represented, such brands as The Huffington Post, 5 Minutes for Mom, Tonic.com, Disney, American Girl, The MOB Society, Extraordinary Mommy, God Size Dreams, Short Fiction Break, and (in)courage. Kelli has also served as editor-in-chief for the St. Louis Bloggers Guild and as a board member for the St. Louis Women in Media. I read Like A River from Its Course.

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(All author biographical information came directly from their websites.)

What new authors did you discover in 2016?

Hope after Trauma — Justine Johnston Hemmestad

21 Aug

 

http://clashofthetitles.com

 

by Justine Johnston Hemmestad

In 1990 my car was broadsided by a speeding city bus as I turned out of a parking lot – I was in a coma and had sustained a severe brain injury. I was paralyzed when I woke up from my coma, though I worked hard to walk again within a few months, and to relearn how to perform the basic functions of life.

I began to write when I was carrying my first child Megan, less than two years after my accident, as tool or a way to cope with feeling so alone in my disability and misunderstood. Writing, throughout the darkest part of my recovery—when everyone looked down on me and I had no one to talk to or relate with me—helped me to get my thoughts in focus, to learn new things, and to remember what was important to me. I felt bullied, my thoughts and perception were skewed, and I felt emotionally alone, isolated by my personal lacking (my speech was slurred; my reactions were slow, etc.).

But writing was my Savior. When I was so afraid and so filled with guilt for being disabled, writing offered me a safe and comforting place to go, where I could cry and feel loved. Writing was my confidante and gave me hope when the world was crushing me. Writing even helped me find out who I was, since everything about “me” seemed to have melted away with my TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury). Writing helped me find my words to speak again. Writing was my purpose, and writing was my healing.

 

http://faithbygracepublishing.com/products/truth-be-told

My novella, Truth be Told, is essentially the story of my recovery wrapped up in fictional characters in a different time and place. Everything is symbolic in my novella because symbolism itself taught me how to travel deep inside my thoughts and search until I found the answers. Symbolism aided my memory by the weight of its meaning.

The old man in my novella is symbolic of God, prayer, love of my children, and the inner truth I found when I dug deep, the challenges that stretched my mind and that I knew I had to face when I wanted to give up on life completely.

The Lady is the aspect of my recovery in which I felt lost, even to myself—I didn’t know who I was—but in prayer and meditation I learned to focus my mind, calm my thoughts (which were drowning in the guilt I felt for being disabled) and listen to God’s answer…what defines me?

The knight is the aspect of my recovery that was assaulted by PTSD. Not only was I recovering, but I was recovering amidst a torrent of fear, pain, and false persecution. He represents the survivor’s guilt I had for living as brain-injured, and the part of myself that felt I deserved the lies that people told about me simply because it was easy to lie about me. I illuminated my purpose— the purpose that any recovering person needs to be able to climb out of the darkness—symbolically as Jesus. When people lied about me, writing defended me and made the truth immortal. My purpose, as writing, was the well within me; writing saved me and gave me direction in life (even when I no longer had any sense of direction due to my TBI). There were people who tried to point me in the wrong direction, but my prayer, and written prayer, was always brimming with truth.

My purpose in writing raised me out of the darkness and set me on a new path. As my characters in Truth be Told founded one of the first Universities in Europe, my purpose led me to enter into college, to study tirelessly, and to set goals and reach them. For a person with a TBI, these things stretched my mind to the breaking point. And yet my savior, writing, was always there, so much that my purpose and my goals became intertwined. Every class I’ve had brought me new challenges; every professor’s pushing has helped me more than they were ever aware.

My husband and I now have seven children and I’m still writing, for both have truly been essential to my recovery. I’ve also earned a BLS through The University of Iowa and am now working toward a Master’s Degree in Literature through Northern Arizona University. I’m grateful to have written a book that I felt so strongly, all along, could be of help to survivors, for them to recognize themselves in the characters and to know that they’re not alone. I would have recognized myself in this story and it would have given me hope. My mission now is to give other survivors hope.

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Author Inspirations: Annette O’Hare

7 Aug

Authors get stories from so many different places and experiences. It’s always interesting to discover where the inspiration comes from. Today, we’ll hear from debut author, Annette O’Hare. Her historical romance, Northern Light has already garnered some terrific reviews!

 

From the first sentence to the book’s stunning conclusion, Annette O’Hare’s brilliant first novel Northern Light captured my heart. O’Hare’s storytelling is flawless and her grasp of Texas history is spot on. This tenth generation Texan heartily approves! Do yourself a favor and savor this meeting of North and South on the Bolivar peninsula. I promise it will be the best book you’ll read in a very long time! —Kathleen Y’Barbo, best-selling author of over 40 titles

 

My Inspiration For Writing Northern Light

By: Annette O’Hare

Annette O’Hare

There’s a wonderful phrase known to authors that says, write what you know. This simple idiom by Twain, or was it Faulkner, no…I think it might have been Thurber, no it was definitely Twain who said it. Whoever it was knew what they were talking about and that’s why I wrote Northern Light. The setting for my debut novel is the lighthouse on the Bolivar Peninsula on the Texas coast; a place near and dear to my heart. A place I know very well.

When I was a child growing up in Houston, Texas in the 1970’s, my family visited Bolivar every summer for fishing, swimming, and shell hunting. My father would drive our family of five to Galveston, and then onto a short ferry ride connecting Galveston Island with the Bolivar Peninsula.

The ferry ride was a favorite part of the vacation. We made playful bets concerning which ferry we would ride. Would it be the Cone Johnson, the E.H. Thornton Jr., the R.S. Sterling, or the Gibb Gilchrist? We knew each boat by name. My two older brothers and I would save back French fries and pinches of bread from our fast food meals. After the boat was loaded and the captain gave the safety speech, we would bolt for the back of the boat to feed the seagulls and dolphins.

I always knew the exact place the ferry would dock at the peninsula because Daddy told me to look for the landmark. It was hard to find at first, but the closer the ferry came to Bolivar, the bigger it became. By the time the boat landed, the Bolivar Point Lighthouse was as big as a skyscraper in this little girl’s eyes.

http://annetteohare.com/images/misc/bolivarpoint-688.jpgOnce off the boat we drove past the iron lighthouse. Her light extinguished, she no longer lit the way for ships coming in or going out of Galveston Bay. Daddy always pointed out the two, abandoned keeper’s houses beside the lighthouse. He showed how one of the house’s nameplates read Boyt and the other, Maxwell. I didn’t understand the significance then, but later I realized the connection. Daddy’s aunt, my great aunt, was married to a Boyt, and she and her sister, my grandmother, were born with the surname Maxwell.

You’re probably wondering if my daddy’s family were the lighthouse keepers. No, the truth is that Mr. Boyt, my great-uncle, bought the lighthouse and property at an auction and it has been owned by that family ever since.

 

The original Bolivar Point Lighthouse dates back prior to the Civil War. In fact, it was during that war that the Confederates completely dismantled the lighthouse. Some accounts say it was so the Union wouldn’t use the light to

their advantage. Others say the Confederate army used the iron for weapons and artillery. Nevertheless, the lighthouse was rebuilt shortly after the war. The great conical tower has seen over 150 years of United States history and it still stands tall on the Bolivar Peninsula to this day.

——————————————————

Visit Annette at AnnetteOHare.com

 

About Northern Light

 

Civil War has robbed Margaret Logan of all she holds dear, including her beloved New Orleans home and her fiancé. When her family moves to the desolate Bolivar Peninsula to manage a lighthouse that is no longer there, all her hopes for a normal future are dashed. Her world is rocked once again when a wounded Yankee soldier washes ashore needing her help. Despite her contempt for the North, Margaret falls in love with Thomas Murphy. As their love blooms, Margaret’s sister is overcome with neurosis, and her mind slowly slips away. Bitterness, psychosis and depression yield a decision fueled by contempt. Will one fatal choice cause Margaret to lose the man she loves and condemn Thomas to death?

Purchase Northern Light in e-book or paperback

Author, Author! — Dani Pettrey

12 Jul

DaniSpring2016I am honored to welcome Dani Pettrey to By The Book today. Her latest novel, Cold Shot, was By The Book’s June selection. We have found another favorite author! Thanks, Dani, for sharing with my readers today.

 

By The Book: Dani, your debut novel released just over 4 years ago, in May of 2012. Since that time, you have released six books, including your latest novel, Cold Shot. How do you write so fast?

Dani Pettrey: Ha. I feel like I write so slow. I have author friends who can write a book in three months. I need closer to eight, but thanks for saying I write fast ☺. I have to write at a pace that gives me enough time to make a book the best it can be and for me that time is a bit longer. It is hard to believe I’ve written six books in that amount of time. God is good.

BTB: All of your books have been on bestseller lists and received accolades from book critics and readers. Why do you think your books have struck a chord?

Dani: God’s grace. I really give Him the credit as all good things come from Him. As far as I can tell from the wonderful emails and letters I receive from readers, it appears they really fall in love with my characters. I think that’s so crucial in a story. If you can’t identify or empathize with the characters, it’s very hard to feel connected to the story.

BTB: Writing was a dream for you. What encouragement do you have for those who are pursuing a dream — whether it’s writing a book, launching a business, or changing careers?

51OX8So3TkL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Dani: Never give up. I read a statistic somewhere that said ninety-five percent of people who start out to write a novel never finish. It takes perseverance. It’s the same with any dream. You need to be dedicated and willing to stick to it for as long as it takes to achieve that dream. But it’s also important to fill yourself with encouragement along the way. Celebrate the steps you take even if some are baby steps—they are all leading in the right direction.

BTB: Your latest novel, Cold Shot, is the first in a new series set in the Chesapeake Bay. Tell us a bit about the series and why you chose the setting you did.

Dani: The Chesapeake Valor series is about four men who grew up together in a small, waterfront town in Maryland. They have been friends since Little League, but a tragedy and the disappearance of one of the friends just shy of college graduation, rocks them and fractures their friendships. In Cold Shot, they are reunited as their various law enforcement expertise is needed to solve the case. I chose the setting because it’s where I live and I wanted to share the beauty of this area with my readers. Also, living along the 95 corridor opened up a lot of wonderful fields of law enforcement we have in the area.

BTB: How does the new series differ from your first series, Alaskan Courage?

Dani: My Alaskan Courage series really focused on adventure as a key element and family relationships. My Chesapeake Valor series focuses more on the suspense aspect and friendships.

BTB: I think one of the most fascinating parts of writing must be researching. What kind of research did you do for Cold Shot? And, what did you learn?

51zFMwvAugL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Dani: Oh, boy. I did a ton of research — everything from talking with an incredible Forensic Anthropologist, a Baltimore County Police Officer, and several key people at the International Justice Mission, to reading everything I could find on the subjects I was covering, along with visiting the actual locations — another perk of setting a series where you live. I learned how to step-by-step process a crime scene from a forensic anthropologist’s perspective, where to hide a body in Gettysburg National Park (okay, not really, but I did pick the actual location while on a private research tour. It freaked our guide out a little, but we assured him it was all for researching a novel. Pretty sure he believed us ☺.), and I got to visit so many places I’d never really seen and enjoyed in my area.

BTB: What do you hope readers will take away from Cold Shot and your new series as a whole?

Dani: I hope they will take away the beauty of friendships even through the difficult times, the hope we have in Christ, and the freedom we experience when we extend forgiveness.

BTB: What are you working on now?

Dani: I’ve just finished book two in the series, Still Life, and am now in the beginning stages of writing book three. I hope readers will enjoy the entire series.

Thanks for sharing with my readers, Dani!

 

dpettrey3smDani Pettrey is a wife, mom, grandma, and the author of Cold Shot, the first book in the Chesapeake Valor series, and the Alaskan Courage romantic suspense series, which includes her bestselling novels Submerged, Shattered, Stranded, Silenced, and Sabotaged. Her books have been honored with the Daphne du Maurier award, two HOLT Medallions, a Christy Award nomination, two National Readers’ Choice Awards, the Gail Wilson Award of Excellence, and Christian Retailing’s Best Award, among others.

She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves—the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters’ faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their two daughters, a son-in-law, and a super adorable grandson.

Author, Author! — Rose Chandler Johnson

27 Jun

croppedToday I have the great pleasure of welcoming Rose Chandler Johnson to my blog. The author of the devotional guide God, Me And Sweet Iced Tea has a debut novel out too! Thanks, Rose, for joining us today!

Tell me a bit about yourself, how long you’ve been writing, what types of writing you do, etc.

Rose: I wrote in the late 70s and 80s, had some poems and articles published then, and then basically didn’t write for close to 20 years. Due to the demands of my family life—I raised six children as a single parent—and the fact that I’ve been a teacher and a student myself over the last twenty-five years, writing took a backseat until 2008. I began writing again in 2008 almost daily and I’ve been writing ever since.

Why did you decide to become a writer?

Rose: Writers write because they have a passion to write. I always enjoyed it so much. I was a big fan of the classics growing up and very studious. I decided to get a degree in English and French and dreamt of one day writing a great novel.

What is the one piece of writing advice you wish you’d had at the beginning of your career?

Rose: The one piece of advice—write everyday.

41-iu2lHhsL._SX307_BO1,204,203,200_What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Rose: Keep a writing journal and jot down words, phrases, and ideas that come to you every day. I’ve forgotten entire story ideas because I failed to write it down.

What is your personal, most effective way to get past writer’s block?

Rose: Write. I simply start putting words on paper. It’s called “freewriting” and I’ve found that if I just start writing that I will eventually come around to the words I needed.

 

What are you currently working on? Any special projects?

Rose: I’m working on a couple of projects when I find the time — a non-fiction book and a second devotional, and another novel. I think of the non-fiction as a priority because it’s an overflow of what the Lord has done in my life and what He continues to reveal to me about Himself. I’m doing research for the novel and working on my characters. I do elaborate character sketches, with pictures and biographies for all of the main characters. I’m looking forward to see God’s timing in all of this. In the meantime, I want to be faithful to write everyday whatever God puts on my heart.

What kind of books do you enjoy reading?

Rose: I love the classics. My tastes are a bit old-fashioned. My favorite novel is Jane Eyre, which I read every year or so. I actually read more spiritual non-fiction than anything else. I particularly love Oswald Chambers and have read his complete works. I usually reading 2 or 3 books at once.

Do you have a favorite time of day to write?

Rose: I like to write first thing in the morning, even before I begin my bible reading. This is when I’ve written most of my devotions. My most productive time to write fiction is the middle afternoon to early evening. I figured this out over time.

Do you have your plotline and character development already laid out before you begin writing a book, or do they develop as you write?

MyFathersHouse_FinalFrontRose: My Father’s House was recently published. I lived with those characters for several years. I had my plotline developed all the way down to chapter summaries, and I found pictures for each character, even for places, things, and pets. (See my Pinterest pages for my books.) But, one of the most delightful things about writing My Father’s House was that my characters and events surprised me. Things happened that I didn’t anticipate. I learned things about the characters that I didn’t know when I started. Together we discovered the story.

How can my readers find out more about you and your work?

Rose: I really appreciate it when readers connect with me on the social media sites, including my Amazon Author Page. My blog offers encouragement and monthly book giveaways from guest Christian authors. I always respond to the reviews readers write for my books, and that leads to the occasional sharing of personal information as well.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?

Rose: I’m still working on the greatest roadblock, which is managing my time to write. My family has always been my priority, so I have to work very hard to carve out time to write. Often I have to give myself permission to make writing time for me.

Tell us about the featured book?

Rose: One reviewer called it “a triumphant story of hope”. I think that describes it. It reminds me of the verse Psalms 27:13: I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.

A bit about how the story came about:

I wanted to write a story about a young woman who in spite of devastating hardships, disappointments, personal loss and mistakes ultimately finds happiness after reconnecting with family and faith. I wanted the reader to take the journey with her, go with her through some of the hardships, but I didn’t want the painful things to be the focus of her triumphant story. Lily Rose has an indomitable spirit and warm heart that is endearing to readers. Her father believed that she would be alright; the reader wants to know she will be too. With my roots firmly planted in Georgia, the setting had to play a critical part in the story. So, I modelled my fictional town after so many small Southern towns and I set in some of my love of nature and gardening. Being a Southerner, I had definite ideas about elements I needed for this story to come alive. Besides fascinating characters and a distinctive setting, there had to be a little crazy, eccentric, and some downright mean, mixed with suspense, romance, and lots of southern charm.

Thanks so much for sharing with us today.

Make sure to check out Rose’s bio and links to her blog and other sites.

 

RJohnson-298Rose Chandler Johnson’s devotional journal, God, Me, and Sweet Iced Tea: Experiencing God in the Midst of Everyday Moments was released in July 2013. Her devotions, poems, and articles have appeared in numerous Christian publications and online. She enjoys writing for her popular blog, Write Moments with God, and engaging with her readers. Rose is a native Georgian and happily makes her home near Augusta, GA. She has been a French and English teacher over the last twenty plus years. Currently, she is an English instructor at a community college. Rose enjoys baking, gardening, and spending time with her six children and their families. You get a glimpse of those interests in the pages of My Father’s House, where sweet iced tea is served in abundance. Rose wants to make it clear that the mention of all that sweet tea wasn’t a shameless plug for her devotional. No, ma’am. It’s just the beverage of choice in the South.

Connect with Rose:

Blog: http://www.writemomentswithgod.blogspot.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/rechanjo
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/rosecjohnson/boards/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rosechandlerjohnsonauthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/18188725-rose-chandler-johnson

COTT Blog Alliance Featured Book: Bitterroot Bride by Angela Breidenbach

19 Jun



A beautifully spun story about the power of second chances. ~ Amazon Reviewer

I loved The Bitterroot Bride! The part where she compares church 
to riding a trot made me laugh out loud.  ~A. Chatman
 


About the book:
No one knows the real Emmalee Warren, just what they want from the infamous prostitute. Men are coming out of the woodwork to stake a claim on the miner’s widow. They wanted her body before. Now they want her money. Hiring a lawyer, Richard Lewis, to save her from financial ruin might let her start over where no one knows Miss Ellie. Becoming an unknown is the only way to freedom…or is it? Can she leave her past and build a new future?
Purchase
Chat with Angela:
Ques: We heard there was something special that happened to you while writing your fourth book in the historical romance series, Montana Beginnings. What was special about the Bitterroot Bride heroine for you?
Angela: Writing Miss Emmie learning to read became an amazing experience. Though I’d learned to read at four, I didn’t understand how to connect and read people until well into my adulthood. So while Miss Emmie became proficient in reading, I became proficient in relationships. She’d eat up every book she could get her hands on and studied with intensity. I did the same thing, but about relational topics.
Ques: When did you realize the parallel character arc had so much in common with your real life?
Angela: About halfway through the first draft an epiphany happened. I stopped, took a day or so to really think about my personal experience, then began an intentional focus on writing the emotional parallel.
Ques: What do you hope Bitterroot Bride does for readers?
Angela: I hope this story is both entertaining and encouraging. I’d like readers to absorb the idea that like Miss Emmie and me, if you have the desire to learn something then you can. Age doesn’t matter.
Ques: Can you tell us the titles and a little about the Montana Beginnings series?
Angela: All four titles are set in Helena, MT from 1889 – 1895. It’s right when we became a state, but mining couldn’t support us forever. The Debutante Queen introduces us to Calista who steals an orphan off the street to protect her from a cruel master. Eleven Pipers Piping brings forward the newsies, newspaper boys and orphan train leftovers, into Mirielle’s classroom. Then in Taking the Plunge, Delphina takes us back to the iconic Broadwater Natatorium as a swim instructress. Then Emmalee enters the scene as we find out how Montana chose her state flower. Each of these lovely Victorian ladies finds her true love while carving out a meaningful life in Montana’s frontier.
~~~~~~~
About Angela:
Angela Breidenbach is a bestselling author and host of Grace Under Pressure Radio on iTunes. Angela is the Christian Author Network’s president. And yes, she’s half of the comedy duo, Muse and Writer, on social media.
Connect Here:
Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest: @AngBreidenbach