Monday, November 28, 2011

Black Friday bonanza

Kim Watters here. I finally did it. I bought a Kindle. I wasn't planning on it when I went shopping on Black Friday. I mean, who would have thought Target would still have any in stock at 10:00 in the morning. I may be crazy enough to go shopping on that day, but I draw the line at waking up way too early, or not going to sleep at all. Trust me people, at my age, I need my beauty sleep.

Anyway, kids in tow, yes, I brought them along, too. (didn't matter because I'd already finished my Christmas shopping-shall I mention my cards and Chirstmas letter are done along with the Christmas portraits? Oh and we put up the tree and decorations yesterday.What can I say, I'm an organized Virgo!) And I just can't resist a sale.

The kids actually found the Kindle first. "Come on, Mom. Just think of how much we'll read now."

"Really?" Hooked, bait, line and sinker.

"Of course." As my youngest is playing a game on the Fire.

"Well...."

"Paleeze." They both whine.

Well, they were majorly on sale (a regular Kindle not the Fire) and still there so maybe it was time to get one since they still had five in stock and my kids are the computer literate generation and can probably teach me how to operate it. "Fine."

So, that's how it happened along with the GPS system, (so Mom doesn't get lost anymore) and the portable DVD player ( to keep my kids from killing each other on those long drive). My kids are determined to ring me into their computer world.

Next year though, I'm going out alone!

So who else ventured out on Friday and waht did you get?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

An Honorable Gentlemen by Regina Scott

How exciting to have Gwendolyn Allbridge, the heroine from An Honorable Gentleman, a November 2011 release from Love Inspired Historical written by Regina Scott, with us today.

1. Tell me the most interesting thing about you.

I help my father manage Blackcliff Hall, one of the most beautiful estates in Cumberland. From the top of Blackcliff Fell, you can see for miles. There are salmon in the streams, deer in the woods, and everywhere the fiery colors of autumn right now.

2. What do you do for fun?

Live! Forcing all the numbers associated with the estate to make sense, keeping up the gate house where my father and I live, growing and preparing the produce from my small garden, getting the Hall ready for the new owner--there are very few tasks that I don’t enjoy. Well, I don’t enjoy it when someone is sick and a villager comes for me and my mother’s cures. I love making people feel better, but I don’t like that they were sick to begin with. I’ve seen too much of that.

3. What do you put off doing because you dread it?

I’ve put off making any more of my mother’s cures since she died a year ago, especially her horehound syrup. She was the village midwife. With the nearest physician over twenty miles away, she did a lot more than bring babies into the world. Everyone loved her. They expect me to follow in her footsteps, but how can anyone live up to her skills?

4. What are you afraid of most in life?

Having to leave here. This is my home! It doesn’t matter that things have run down a bit with the last estate owner passing away. I know Sir Trevor Fitzwilliam, the new owner, will set things to rights. He has to! The village depends on the prosperity of Blackcliff. They won’t last another winter without some help!

5. What do you want out of life?

To give it my all and someday reach heaven to hear “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

6. What is the most important thing to you?

My father and my home. And Sir Trevor Fitzwilliam, but don’t tell him I said that. He can be quite puffed up with his own consequence when he wants to. And then, at times, he doesn’t seem to believe in his future at all. Perhaps that’s why God sent him here to Blackcliff, to find what really matters.

7. Do you read books? If so, what is your favorite type of book?

I read the Bible, and my friend Ruth Newton and I share books we get from the lending library in Carlisle. I like stories about real people overcoming great odds. I don’t much like the gothic stories like those by Mrs. Radcliffe. A spooky old estate? Really! I live with that every day! All her heroines really needed was a good dog at their sides and a loaded pistol in their pockets. That’s how I met Sir Trevor when he showed up at the estate in the night.

8. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I would make myself faster and more clever so I would have half a chance of keeping up with everything!

9. Do you have a pet? If so, what is it and why that pet?

I have Dolly. Father would scold me terribly for mollycoddling her, as she was bred to protect the property. Truly, would you baby a 160-pound mastiff? She’s the biggest of the breed ever raised in the Evendale Valley, and my constant companion. People think she must be vicious given her size and her brindled color. But she’s a sweetheart.

10. If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?

I’d go back to before my mother contracted consumption and stop it from happening. And perhaps shake some sense into Sir Trevor’s parents as well. Imagine not bringing your child into a family, a place where he can feel loved! But then, maybe that’s why he met me!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A CONTEST AND A FEATURED BOOK: AN HONORABLE GENTLEMAN BY REGINA SCOTT

The Craftie Ladies say: Don't forget to sign up for our book give away! http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/16640-holiday-hideout
Be Sure to Add Your Name!



When the owner of ramshackle Blackcliff Hall arrives, the locals have high hopes that Sir Trevor Fitzwilliam will set things to rights. Especially Gwen Allbridge, the estate manager's daughter who has single-handedly kept Blackcliff Hall going. Now she must convince Trevor to stay and make the hall—and the village depending on it—prosperous again.The decaying estate is just another reminder to Trevor of his noble father's rejection. Abandoning it for London could restore his cheer…but how can he disappoint Gwen? Her faith in him makes him yearn to live up to the ideals she holds dear. As disturbing, unexplained events encroach on the pair, Gwen's steadfast courage will rise to meet Trevor's newfound honor as they learn that there's no dream like home.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Ask Elnora--Black Friday or Quiet Friday?? Lenora Worth

Hello my beatiful friends. I am fashionably late to this post. I bet you all think I was out Black Friday shopping, right? Wrong, precious people. Elnora's delicate sensibilities can not suffer through such brutal challenges. I don't like mean, pushy people. I was simply tired and rested a bit after indulging in too much turkey and dressing and chocolate pecan pie yesterday. I went to bed early, read a little bit of a James Lee Burke mystery and thanked the Lord that I had the good sense to STAY HOME until the worst of the craziness was over. But this does beg the question? Are you a Gunho Commando Shopper? Do you plan a stragedy, pick a point man and plot your invasion of the shopping center? Do you camp out for a good bargain? (Elnora's idea of camping out is a suite in the Ritz and room service.) Did any of my peeps venture out onto the frozen tundra just to buy a television or a topcoat? Did anyone get a good buy on shoes and shower curtains and snow sweaters? Let's talk about the horror and beauty of Christmas Shopping? It's the season of sales and bargains and coupons and malls and lines and wrapping and tinsel and that fabulous spiced coffee at Starbuck's. But ... it is also the season of quiet time and silent nights and joy to the world and harking the herald angels and peace on earth and goodwill to all men. And yes, even peace and goodwill to that woman who stole that wonderful cashmere sweater that was marked down 50% right out of your hands. Black Friday or Quiet Friday? Let's discuss!!!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

We're Thankful

To you, our wonderful readers, friends, and fellow authors

we say


Happy Thanksgiving!

Today, I'm so very thankful for you, our wonderful readers. Without you, we wouldn't be here at all. So thank you for helping to make my dream of being an author come true! :) Missy Tippens
I want to thank all the readers who enjoy my books. I hope that my stories are entertaining and inspiring. You are the reason I write.

Margaret Daley

Wishing everyone a blessed Christmas time, filled with family and friends, as we celebrate God's most precious gift to us. May you experience His love in a special way this season.

Sandra Orchard

I am so thankful for all the readers who believe in the delicate art of romance.

Sherri Shackelford

Thank you so much, wonderful readers, you are the reason we write.

Pamela Tracy

I’m thankful for readers, with whom I get to share the stories that bring me such joy to write. I’m pretty sure I would write these books even if no one besides myself ever saw them, but it is so sweetly affirming to know that they have touched a number of you in such a way that you felt compelled to share a small bit of your own story with me. Please know that each and every communication of this sort I receive from you touches me in return.

Winnie Griggs

"I'm so grateful for the sacrifices others have made to keep us free--proud to be an American-grateful to God for our amber waves of grain."

Lyn Cote

I'm thankful for you and other readers everywhere for letting us into your home to share our stories with you.

Jean C. Gordon

I am thankful to be one of the rare people who can do what she loves doing and earn a living at it. I want to thank all the readers I've met this year and those who I haven't met but have read one of my books.

Lisa Mondello


Dear readers, you are the reason we write! I'm so grateful that you visit our blog, that you read our stories, and that you lift us up with your encouragement. May God bless you this Thanksgiving and every day.

Christine Johnson

I wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving, hoping it will be a day to savor the beauty in this world. Regina Scott

I'm thankful for readers who have been welcoming to a new author and those who have supported the LIH line up until now so I have a place to write.

Lacy Williams

I'm thankful that my husband has survived another year cancer free. I'm thankful that the Lord has given me a writing career, which I hope and pray is a blessing to my readers.

Louise Gouge

I'm thankful for all the readers who support the Love Inspired lines. As a new author, the best part is hearing from readers! It's both humbling and rewarding to hear how my book has encouraged or entertained someone. Happy Thanksgiving!

Karen Kirst


I'm thankful for The Love Inspired readers who have welcomed me into the family. Without you, my stories would have never found a home. Bless you and yours this holiday season.

Kim Watters

I am thankful for our wonderful readers. I feel as if I have friends all over the world. I'm also grateful for my editors. I know how hard they work and I appreciate how patient they are with me and how they help me to write the best books possible. I'm thankful that I live in a country where I am allowed to write my stories and to show the love of Christ in my books. And I'm very thankful for my writer friends who sustain me and pray for me and brainstorm with me. We have so much to be thankful for. And of course, I'm thankful for shoes and I pray that all children have shoes to wear.
Lenora Worth :)

I am thankful for my family. Some of my proudest moments is when I get to go to church with my grown children and their spouses, singing and praising God. I am grateful the Lord allowed me to see this time. (I was very ill 15 yrs ago.) I am also grateful for being able to write stories for Him.
Leann Harris

I'm thankful for the health and happiness of my family. I'm thankful to the MakeAWish foundation who helped us celebrate my son's recovery with an amazing trip to Europe. I'm thankful that I get to craft inspiring stories every day, and that I love my work as well as the people I work with. I'm thankful for a vivacious church and the many comforts I enjoy in my home and community. I'm grateful to the Lord who holds all these things in His sovereign hands. And I'm grateful for wonderful, supportive, loyal readers like all of you! Thanks,

Allie Pleiter

I so appreciate when readers take the time to write to say they've enjoyed a book. So thank you dear readers for reading. You make the writing more worthwhile.

Terri Reed

Once upon a time, I dreamed of writing a book that would make others feel the way I felt when I read a story I didn't want to end. Thanks to all the wonderful readers out there who share my passion for stories of romance and adventure. You have made my dreams come true.

Patricia Davids

I'm so thankful for the readers who buy and read our books and send us encouraging notes and heartfelt thank yous for out stories that touch their lives. Thanks for sharing with us.

Merrillee Whren

Thank you to the readers who join us on a journey to a place where life isn’t easy, but love always wins. May you have a blessed Thanksgiving and a joyful Christmas season.

Cara Putman :-)

I'm so thankful for God who sent his son, for Jesus who gave his life to set us free. I'm so thankful for the love of my wonderful family, for the love I've known, and the love I know now. I'm so thankful for the joy I get from sharing my stories with readers, and for you--the readers who make this all possible! May you have a joyous Thanksgiving and Christmas season.

Debra Clopton

I thank God for you, dear reader. You are the reason I write, and you bring joy to my life. As you gather with friends and family, may you feel my prayers offered on your behalf and realize how special you are to me. Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Debby Giusti

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

When Thanksgiving Doesn't Feel Right

Last weekend I was involved in a horrific accident. I walked away physically unscathed. The other person did not. Right now a young man is in ICU in serious condition.

I'm very thankful for my family, my friends, my health, but I can't help but wonder how this young man's family is feeling this Thanksgiving.

If you would, please pray for my emotions and for this young man (Larry), that he'd fully recover.

For those of you on a mountain peak, may your Thanksgiving be wonderful and merry and full of good food. And to those of you in the valley right now, I feel you and hope you'll see a sunny spot where you can rest awhile. Perhaps finding a blessing to hold close until your journey brings you back to the mountain top.

Where are you right now? Have you ever been in a dark spot on a holiday? How did you end up leaving that place?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Wall



Come Help Build a Thanksgiving Wall of Gratitude

Harlequin readers, writers, and staff are sharing what they're grateful for this Thanksgiving season over on the eHarlequin site.
Just click on the link here and come on over: http://community.harlequin.com/content/harlequin-community-thanksgiving-wall

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Loner's Thanksgiving Wish by Roxanne Rustand

How exciting to have Mei Clayton, the heroine of The Loner's Thanksgiving Wish, visit with us today! This book, written by Roxanne Rustand, is a November 2011 release from Love Inspired Romance.
1. Mei, tell me the most interesting thing about you.
As a child, I was adopted and brought to America by a rural physician and his wife. I was so blessed to be given endless opportunities in this wonderful country, to pursue an education and reach my dreams. But being adopted into the Clayton family wasn't all roses and sunshine. Coming to terms with my past, healing old emotional wounds and finally becoming a happy, well-adjusted adult has been a lifelong process. Now, I understand so much more about the complexities and conflicts in my family, and can fully embrace my life. The saying about needing to love yourself before you can love others is so true.
2. What do you do for fun?
People laugh in disbelief when I say this, because I look more far more fragile than I am, but I love rock climbing up in the mountains and long distance hikes on my favorite trails.
3. What do you put off doing because you dread it?
I actually have put off coming back to my home town for years. I don’t have a lot of happy memories of my childhood. My grandfather openly disliked me, my cousins always seemed distant, and I never felt I really fit in anywhere until I went away to college.
4. What are you afraid of most in life?
Has that ever changed! I used to be terrified of standing in front of people--I could barely speak, I was so shy. But I love kids and I found that I love teaching, and now that fear is gone. Becoming an adult made a difference as well. I no longer worry about what people think of me, and have much more confidence.
5. What is the most important thing to you?
That has changed a lot too, especially recently. I used to take my faith for granted--going to church was just something I did now and then, because I was "supposed to." Now my faith is far more personal and is a big part of my life. I find my life is enriched in so many ways by making it a priority.
6. Do you read books? If so, what is your favorite type of book?
I'm an avid reader. Fiction, non-fiction, news magazines--but my favorite books are romantic suspense.
7. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I look back, and when I felt like I didn’t really belong anywhere and thought some of the townsfolk were being judgmental about me, I was actually being judgmental about them. I made false assumptions and withdrew before giving people a chance. Now that I'm back in my hometown, I've been working hard to change.
8. Do you have a pet? If so, what is it and why that pet?
I have a giant, fluffy dog named Moose, and for good reason!
9. If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?
I would love to travel back in time to the cowboy days here in Colorado. Not for a long stay, but long enough to visit with the amazing strong, resourceful women who helped settled this rugged part of the country. Today, we stew about traffic jams and minor inconveniences. Those women faced life and death situations all the time.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Contest and a Featured Book: The Loner's Thanksgiving Wish by Roxanne Rustand

The Craftie Ladies say: Don't forget to sign up for our book give away! http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/16640-holiday-hideout



Nearly 300 readers have already added their names!


Also, here's a book to be thinking about.



Adopted as a baby, Mei Clayton never felt like she belonged in her family. She left tiny Clayton, Colorado, the moment she could. Now, to fulfill the terms of a will, she must move home for a year. But when she reunites with handsome Jack McCord—the mountain-rescue expert she once secretly loved—she has to keep her distance. Their relatives have feuded for years. She'll never fit in with the Claytons if she gives in to her feelings for Jack. Unless faith and love can help open hearts in time for Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 18, 2011

"Ask Elnora" Becomes "Lyn Asks"-Share Your Thanksgiving Highlights


Our sweet Lenora is away due to family matters. And she asked me to take over for today! I guess she thinks that over the 15 years we've been friends that I've absorbed all her Elnora vibes!

But did I need them? I told my husband very early in our marriage that I was practicing for when I was a grouchy old lady. One day, he told me to stop practicing, I didn't need anymore! :-)

That same sweet husband is always my Thanksgiving feast helper. He begins by dicing up the dried bread for stuffing. Then he minces the onions and celery for said stuffing. (Or do you call it "dressing?" Either's delicious to me.)

My dh does this because I am a tearer of bread and he likes it cubed the way his grandmother did it. As long as he dices, I'm good with it!

Now I'm going to share my recipe for Slow Cooker Stuffing. My husband lives for turkey and dressing and I must have plenty of leftovers. I can't stuff enough into the bird--even if I get one that weighs in over 25 lbs.

Here's the link to the recipe at allrecipes.com

Now I am constitutionally INCAPABLE of making most recipes without fiddling with them. So I don't add the parsley, mushrooms or marjoram. But the rest works well. I get raves and have tons leftover without tying up the oven.

Do you have a Thanksgiving feast helper?
Or a recipe you'd like to share?
Do you call it dressing or stuffing or both???

DO TELL!!


BTW, the link to the giveaway in the right column is http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/16640-holiday-hideout
Nearly 300 readers have already signed up for the giveaway!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Editors, Agents, Contests, and More

Today is the 1000th post here on the Craftie Ladies of Romance. One thousand! Wow.

When you've managed to post that many times, you must have a lot to say.

So, first, you need to know there's a contest that Lyn Cote and Lynette Eason are putting on over at Goodreads, and the prize happens to be Love Inspired books from authors on the blog. Please hop over there to see what's going on. Over 200 readers have already entered their names! The link is posted on the sidebar.

All month we've been doing a "What We're Thankful For..." We've done readers, writers, and today, we're doing both editors and agents. Some of our Crafties are listing their thankfulness below: others are doing it on the comment portion.




Editors

“I'm so thankful for my editor, Emily Rodmell, who pulled me out of the slush pile and gave me a chance! I'm thankful for my agent who helped me get my foot in the door with another publisher and who does her best to make sure I have the best deal possible. I'm very thankful God placed these people in my life when He did. His timing is always perfect and I'm thankful for that too!”

Lynette Eason


“I’m so grateful for editors who take the grist of our stories and help make them sing.”

Cara Putman :-)


“I'm so thankful for my editor, Emily Rodmell, who took a chance on my stories and helps to make them shine. God bless! Thanks also go to the many "hands," from line editor to copy editor, who work so hard to ensure our stories are their very best.””

Christine Johnson


“I'm thankful for the wonderful editors at Love Inspired, In particular, Emily Rodmell and Joan Marlow Golan as well as Marsha Zinberg in Toronto, Canada. This last spring, my husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer and given two months to live. I had three books and a novella under contract. As soon as the word got out about my situation my pressing deadlines vanished. I was told to take all the time off I needed and contact them when I was ready to write again. Their notes and words of encouragement showed me how much they care as people, not just as editors.”

Patricia Davids


Agents

“For my agents, Nalini Akolekar and Karen Solem, I hold the deepest gratitude. Your encouragement has meant the world to me. When my spirits dip, you lift them up. When I ask silly questions, you answer with great patience. Thank you!”

Christine Johnson

My agent, Michelle Grajkowski, has been a true blessing in my life. Alternately cheerleader, taskmaster, career counselor, bulldog advocate and dear friend, she is always squarely in my corner. When I went through a three and a half year dry spell in my career, she never once made me feel as if she had lost faith in either me or my writing. I’m not sure I could have kept going through that scary time if she had not been there, encouraging and adamantly believing in me.

Winnie Griggs

“One of the literary agents I had queried, Pam Hopkins, called me and asked for a 'revise and resubmit' about an hour before an editor from Harlequin called and offered to buy the book. I knew right then I wanted Pam to represent me. Why? Because she was right. The pieces of the story Pam wanted tweaked where identical to the pieces the editor wanted revised. Also, anyone can deliver good news. Delivering bad news is an art. Pam was encouraging without being unrealistic and tough without being unkind. I am thankful for her support and encouragement every day. I call her my, 'crazy buffer.' Believe me, she doesn't get paid nearly enough!”

Sherri Shackelford


Regina Scott is incredibly thankful for her agent, Emily Sylvan Kim of Prospect Agency. Publishing can be a challenging business, and Emily is always in Regina’s corner, encouraging and helping her envision new ways to go forward.


Both Editors and Agents

“I'm thanksful for being able to write for Love Inspired Suspense and work with my wonderful editor Emily Rodmell. She always makes my stories better. I'm also grateful for Deidre Knight, my agent, who believes in me and in my writing.”

Debby Giusti

“I want to thank my editors for all their hard work. Your input is invaluable and appreciated.I'm a better writer because of you. I also want to thank my agent, Steve Laube. I appreciate all your wisdom and support over the years.”

Margaret Daley

“I'm so thankful for my wonderful editor, Emily Rodmell, who makes all my books better--and makes me proud to see them on the shelf. And I'm thankful for my amazing agent, Natasha Kern, for believing in me and my work, and for being my cheerleader.”
Missy Tippens

“I’m so glad to have agent like Steve Luabe in my corner to remind me of all I can do and all I have time to do and to reign me in when my ideas go amuck. I’m also glad to have an editor like Tina James to guide me so my stories are the best they can be.

Pamela Tracy

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Road Trip!

Hi readers. Christine Johnson here for my very first post. Woohoo! I'm excited to be here with the other Love Inspired Craftie Ladies. Hugs and waves, everyone!



Montana mountainsNow for today's post. Nothing got me more excited as a kid than the prospect of a road trip. It could take me as close as the nearest park or many states away, but each time I expected a new adventure. What treasures would I discover? What new sight would inspire me? How would I conquer the danger that lurked around every corner? (Yes, the writer in me was already at work.)


We took several camping vacations when I was young, many to Kentucky. One year we toured Mammoth Cave, where I pestered the tour guide and constantly ran ahead of the group. Poor guy! But like a hero, he indulged my adventurous spirit and even encouraged my brother and I to scout ahead. Years later when I became a tour guide on a museum ship, kids on tour did exactly the same thing to me. Ah, paybacks!



My husband and I love road trips. Sometimes we fly or take a train or ship rather than drive, but adventure always awaits us. One of our favorite places is Glacier National Park in northwest Montana. We love to hike the mountains and thus far have escaped calamity, though we've had our close calls with grizzlies.



These photos are from our last trip to Glacier National Park in 2010. The sheer beauty always leaves me breathless, and I wanted to share my love of this place with all of you in my upcoming book. All Roads Lead Home (January 2012) takes my fearless heroine to the edge of the Rocky Mountains to save an orphaned boy. Moreover, she drives there...in 1922!




After settling in with a cup of coffee or tea and a cinnamon roll, let's chat about our favorite road trips. Where did you go and what made it memorable? Where would you like to travel if you had the opportunity? And how would you prefer to get there - by car, plane, train or ship?

Monday, November 14, 2011

What are You Reading?


There was a calendar mix up for the post today. So I'm just popping in to share my upcoming book cover, which I recently saw was up on Amazon (I LOVE it!!) and to ask...

What are you reading? Do you have any big plans to read over the Thanksgiving holiday (once your cooking and cleaning up is done, of course!)? :)

Missy

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Christmas Haven by Hope White

Today we're welcoming Julie Burns, the heroine of "Christmas Haven" written by Hope White, a November 2011 release by Love Inspired Suspense.

Wow, you've just had quite an adventure.

1. Tell us a little about yourself and how you came to be in the midst of such suspense.

I work with teenage street kids in Seattle to help them get off the streets and live safe and healthy lives. I witnessed one of my boys being kidnapped, and ever since, I felt like someone's been following me. I headed back to my hometown and got an anonymous call threatening my life. It's a good thing I listened to my instincts.

2. So, during the book you ran into Morgan Wright. Tell us a bit about him.

Morgan and I dated in high school. We both thought it was forever, but after my best friend died, my view of the world changed. I felt like I wanted to be more than someone's wife in a small town, so I left for the city, went to college and became a social worker.

When did you know it was love?

On our third date. I just knew. The irony is, it never stopped being love, even after our 10 year separation. The first time I saw him my heart leapt into my throat, both from regret of having broken his heart, and from letting go of my one true love. There will never be another love like Morgan. I haven't even bothered looking.

3. What strengths/skills do you have?

My determination, for sure. That and my analytical brain.

What is your greatest weakness? Guilt. It drives me in ways that aren't healthy.

4. What scares you?

Failure. If I fail these kids, they could die. They don't deserve to die.

5. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I'd invest less of myself in my cases because it hurts so much when a street kid doesn't make it, when he's found dead or he's locked up for dealing drugs.

6. Where are you in your faith at the start of your story?

I'd given up. After everything I've seen with these kids, I just couldn't understand how God could abandon them.

7. Where are you in your faith at the end of the story?

Seeing Morgan's strong faith changed me somehow. I was able to understand that faith gives us strength to walk through the worst challenges and come out the other side at peace.

8. You've got a scripture at the beginning of the story. Tell us why this scripture is significant.

It's about about compassion and forgiveness. That's my interpretation. Accepting others for who they are and forgiving people for their mistakes is so incredibly important. Condemning others by judging them, being angry or resentful, only keeps us in emotional pain. Forgiveness is key, that's what I've learned.

9. If you could be a dessert what would you be and why?

Strawberry Shortcake. It's got a little of everything. It's spongy, soft, cold, sweet. I like variety in my desserts!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

FEATURED BOOK: CHRISTMAS HAVEN BY HOPE WHITE



Shock is police captain Morgan Wright's first reaction to seeing his former sweetheart, Julie Burns. But concern soon follows. The lovely social worker left Port Whisper behind years ago. Why is she back…and what's got her so scared?Her hometown was the only safe place Julie could turn to after witnessing a kidnapping. She didn't count on trouble following her. And she certainly didn't expect to run into Morgan, or to feel that old love rekindle. Morgan wants to help her, and she wants to let him—but now that danger has intruded on her safe haven, everyone's at risk….

Friday, November 11, 2011

Ask Elnora--about Veterans???? Lenora Worth

Darlings, this will be short and sweet. Elnora is on the road again. We are headed to Georgia to visit a family member who is having surgery. Then we'll be back in Florida for a few days. I hope to post during the day, depending on where I might be and if I can find wifi somewhere. But I couldn't let this time of year get by without saluting our dear veterans who have served our country. As romance writers, we all appreciate a man in uniform. As Americans, we appreciate both men and women who have served in order to protect us and keep us free. What could be more romantic than that? But we realize wars are not romantic at all, are they? They are big and dirty and chaotic and stressful and dangerous and ... going to fight in a war is the only job I know of that you go into knowing you might not come out. So, thank you Veterans. We won't forget you, ever. And dear bloggers, let's discuss any veterans we might have in our lives. I'll start. I had an Uncle Harry who served in the Air Force and a brother who served in the Navy. My late father-in-law was an Army veteran and I had a nephew who also served. It takes a lot of courage to offer up your life for your country. But then, there is no greater love ..... Tell us about your veterans. They are all heroes, of course. But we also realize they sometimes suffer greatly after coming home. Elnora wishes we could have a nation-wide group hug to salute our veterans and let them know we care about them. Happy Veterans Day to all the heroes out there. We will tell your stories in our stories. Okay, beautiful bloggers--do you have a special person in uniform you'd like to mention or remember?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

We're Thankful for New Authors

Here at the Craftie Ladies of Romance, we have so much to be grateful for. Last Wednesday, we highlighted Julie, one of our beloved readers. Today we’re honoring the two newest additions to the blog:




They’re here to tell you about themselves and how they traversed the road to publication. So, without further ado, let’s see what these two ladies have to say.

They’ve done it like an interview, how cool!

Rhonda Gibson

Sherri: So, Rhonda, when did you sell your first book, and to whom?

Rhonda: My first book sold in 2003, to Barbour Publishing. Mine was the first novella to receive a contract at the Annual ACFW Writer’s conference.

Sherri: Wow! (For those of you who might not know, Barbour, in order to support new authors, grants a contract each year at the ACFW conference. It’s a BIG DEAL to win this award!) What an honor. How many books have you sold since then?

Rhonda: I am blessed to have three publishers so at this time, and I’ve sold 10 books. A Biltmore Christmas is out now, The Marshal’s Promise will be released May 2012 and The Midwife’s Apprentice releases in June of 2012.

Sherri: You are one busy author! Can you give us a brief description of your May release from Harlequin Historical?

Rhonda: Yes! I’m thrilled to be a Love Inspired Historical author. The title is: The Marshal’s Promise. Rebecca is a mail order bride who, when she arrives, discovers that her intended has been killed during a bank robbery. Seth is the Marshal who has to deliver the news to her.

Sherri: Sounds awesome! Tell us about ‘The Call’ from Harlequin.

Rhonda: I’m blessed to have an agent who called several times while I was in the movies... I knew it was important and my heart was beating out of my chest because I knew we were waiting to hear from LIH. So when I called her back I was hopeful but when she didn’t immediately say LIH wants this book, I was disappointed. But then she gave me a few more details and I realized that yes! They did want the book! I screamed like the girl I am and sputtered to my DH and anyone else who would listen that I was finally a LIH author. To celebrate my sweet husband took me to my favorite ice-cream shop. I have to confess the girls were a little confused at all the dancing and squealing that filled their shop.

Sherri: I like your agent already! You have several wonderful ‘call’ stories. Not many people can pull that off.


Sherri Shackelford
Rhonda: How about you, Sherri, when did you learn you wanted to be a writer?



Sherri: The summer of 2007. I liked to read, and my youngest was a year old. I knew once he went to kindergarten, I'd have to have at least a hobby to make people think I did more than eat bon bons and take bubble baths. I joined my local RWA chapter in August 2007. I almost fainted I was so nervous.



Rhonda: Laughing, yes I understand that nervous feeling of starting a new adventure. So for the readers out there who want to be writers - Be brave and do what Sherri did, join a writers group and get busy! So Sherri, How did you come up with the idea for the book you sold to LIH?



Sherri: In December 2010, Harlequin sponsored So You Think You Can Write - and they wanted something you hadn't shopped around before. I kept seeing this winter scene with a woman in labor. So I sent it off. And four weeks later they rejected it. But I loved those characters, and I knew I had to write their story. I'd never written a western or an inspirational, but it 'felt' right.



Rhonda: So did you rewrite and resubmit?



Sherri: Sort of. I tweaked the opening scene – but not much. I decided to enter a few contests and get some feedback. See if I could figure out what Harlequin didn’t like. I ended up finaling in a few.



Rhonda: And they bought it?



Sherri: Long story short, yes. But there were many ups and downs along the way.



Rhonda: I’m happy that you stuck to it and can’t wait to read your book! So tell us, what does your family think of your writing?



Sherri: Great question! I have the most supportive husband/family/extended family you can imagine. My husband fully supports my efforts, and always makes sure I have enough 'quality time' to write. He's amazing. What about you? Does your family support your writing?



Rhonda: My family is wonderful as well. My husband has supported me since the beginning.
[There’s a short little aside here where Rhonda gives me some more publishing tips, and we discover we have the same wonderful editor!]



Sherri: Are you working on your next book?



Rhonda: I set up The Marshal’s Promise as a series and am currently working on the proposals for the next two books. What about you?



Sherri: I have a proposal in for the next book, but it’s completely separate. While I’m finishing up the second book, I’m working on a proposal for a for a 3-book series.



Rhonda: Wait! You forgot to tell us about ‘The Call.’



Sherri: Okay, this is funny. The editor from Harlequin introduced herself and started off by telling me how much she liked the book and enjoyed the characters...and I'm thinking, blah, blah..next she’s going to say, “But you’re not quite ready. Revise and resubmit.”
Instead she says, "So we'd like to buy it." I couldn't wrap my head around the news! I kept giving her tidbits about the book to make sure she was calling the right person. (This must be a mistake, right?) She finally said, “Do you want me to call back later?” “No!”



Rhonda: Too funny! I think that is wonderful, before we stop and allow our readers to ask us their own questions, what is the title of your book? And when is it being released?

Sherri: Winning the Widow’s Heart releases in June of 2012 from Harlequin Love Inspired Historical. Widowed Elizabeth Cole is alone and in labor when a relentless Texas Ranger searching for an outlaw barges into her life. Forced to rely on the handsome lawman, Elizabeth fears she holds the key to solving the ranger’s case, and the truth threatens to tear apart her fragile security. We’d like to thank the Craftie Ladies of Romance for allowing us to do this fun interview together. God has truly blessed our careers and lives by bringing us into the LI family!



Visit us at:
sherrishackelford.com
http://rhondagibson.blogspot.com/





Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Furry Friends Who Steal the Show

Hi, friends! Regina Scott here. I was looking back over the last few weeks of posts and smiled at Leann’s story about babysitting Ollie, her son and daughter-in-law’s slobbering dog. Our dog doesn’t slobber. He doesn’t shed either. That was a requirement for getting him. My husband and oldest son are allergic to animal hair, so the only way for us to have a pet is to get one that’s hypoallergenic.

We looked at a number of breeds, like Portugese water dogs (think of Bo, the First Dog), poodles, and some terriers. Irish terriers intrigued my younger son and me because they were called the daredevils of the dog world. That turned out to be the understatement of a lifetime!

Meet Fergus. He’s three-quarters Irish terrior, one-quarter German wire-haired pointer, but he has the terrier coat we needed. The pointer part of him comes out when he looks out the back door. He tends to point at whatever interests him. Unfortunately, one of the things that interests him most is jumping. He can hit four feet straight up from a stand, more than six foot at a run. He was over our six-foot solid-wood fence within hours of coming home. After several such escapes, my husband added three more boards to the top of the corner Fergus went over most often. He backflipped over it. No lie. He just jumped onto one side of the corner, and did the Flosbury flop over the other.

My husband added chicken wire. Fergus scrambled over it. My husband built a lip. Fergus went after a different corner of the yard. Finally, after much research, my husband strung a stout wire about three inches from the wood and about six inches from the top of the fence. It isn’t electrified, but the idea is that Fergus will hit it on the way up and be so startled it will break his concentration and make him drop back into the yard. It actually worked!

And then he learned to dig.

For the first year and half, our lives revolved around outwitting Fergus. In the process, we learned to love our determined escape artist. He’s much less likely to try to get out these days, which is a blessing! Although some days it's hard to find him among the pillows and stuffed animals on my son's bed. I also learned to understand why my friends are so devoted to their pets. That’s one of the reasons I included a dog in my November release from Love Inspired Historical, An Honorable Gentleman. Dolly is the largest mastiff ever bred in the Evendale Valley of England’s Lake District. She was meant to guard the Blackcliff Estate and its treasures, but she’s become a good friend to my heroine Gwen Allbridge. RT Book Reviews claimed, in fact, that Dolly nearly steals the show. Just like Fergus.

So what about your pets? Any other escape artists out there? Or other furry friends who like to steal the show?