Jean Gordon here, having an exciting month so far as a debut Love Inspired author. I’ve been to all of my local stores to see which ones have stocked Small-Town Sweethearts and put Local Author stickers on all of the copies. An unexpected perk of my “celebrity” was a photo of me holding my book in my day job's employee newsletter. It got me lots of congratulations and a common question from many of the well-wishers: Where do you find ideas for your stories. The short answer is everywhere.
I got the idea for Small-Town Sweethearts when a family member told me she liked her new church because the members were more standoffish and private. From that conversation, the story evolved: With the help of God and the love of Drew Stacey, a down-sized Wall Street analyst turned church camp manager, NYC assistant art director and former town misfit Emily, ne Jinx, Hazard finds the thing she wants most in the place she least wants to be — Paradox Lake. Through having to be responsible for her niece, interaction with the towns’ people, and falling in love with Drew, she learns the meaning of Christian fellowship.
The idea for the book I’m just finishing came from my daughter. She’s gone back to graduate school to become a Nurse Practitioner/Midwife, and when she started she was concerned about finishing college herself before her daughter is old enough to go to college. She’ll make it by three and a half years. So, I have a 35-year-old single-father (Emily’s brother from Small-Town Sweethearts) who’s starting college himself now that his daughter is in college. He wants to recapture the life he lost by choosing to raise his now-college-age daughter alone. But a woman from the past, Anne Howard, and a precocious toddler interfere and show him that God has another plan for them all. I’m calling the book Small-Town Dad.
My very first book Bachelor Father from Avalon Books (which I expect to have out as an ebook this year) is very loosely based on a situation another adoptive family was facing when we were adopting our son from Korea. The Korean adoption agency limited adoptions to married couples. Sadly, the mother in a local adoption died of cancer before the adoption was finalized and the father was fighting to keep his child.
The idea for my second Avalon Book Love Undercover (which I also expect to have out as an ebook this year) came from an article the The Wall Street Journal that I read while doing research at work. The article was about a financial planner who was scamming elderly people. In my story, the hero is investigating a scam against his grandmother and the heroine appears to have been involved.
So, what’s your story?