Tuesday, December 4, 2018

THE REST OF THE STORY by Valerie Hansen

I have always had trouble with Christmas celebrations. The people involved, not the reason for the celebration. I'm a believer and for a long time I'd wondered why half of me was so immersed in the secular side of the holiday. And then I was asked to write my first Christmas book - something I had vowed I would never do. Wow! Talk about facing my preconceived notions and prejudices. To write that book I had to look at Christmas from both sides. That was when God showed me what He'd been trying to teach me for so long. He'd been preparing me for the stories I was going to be asked to write in the future, just as he paved the road I walk now. What an epiphany. 
Because of my hang-ups I was able to explain the emotional struggle of my characters, step away from a lot of the turmoil and celebrate Jesus's birth with the right spirit. And that was only the beginning. I have since written 3 of those Christmas novellas, the most recent of which is now in stores. 
This story shows how Christmas can bring healing of the mind and heart as well as create families out of nothing. I loved writing about a former war K-9 who finally finds the perfect home - with imperfect but loving people.

Laura Scott and I each used Shepherds for our K-9s so the cover looks like this. Some stores shelved it early and others are just putting it out now. If you can't find a copy on the shelf there is always Harlequin.com or Amazon as well as other internet sources.

   I learned a lot about myself while probing the minds of my struggling characters. I learned that Christmas celebrations are not to be avoided, but embraced with the love of our Lord and the Peace he gives us. He has taken our past struggles, forgiven and forgotten. Now it's up to us - to me - to return to the joy of His birth.    

And that is the rest of the story.

6 comments:

  1. Shepherds always sell me. I have a shepherd/husky mix and she is beautiful and too smart.

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  2. Beautifully said, Valerie! I know it's true for me that each Christmas season brings something a little different. For many years, we had lots of family with us. In recent years, though, that hasn't been true. In fact, lately it's been just my husband and I (and our pets). So the way we approach the season has changed. Less shopping, less cooking, less activity overall. And a lot more reflection on Christ, each other, and the ones we love most.

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  3. What a perfect post, Val. I love how you illustrate the fact that God paves the path for us. This is true in so many ways. I love your new cover. I'm a huge dog lover and I've always thought German Shepherds were magnificent. Blessings!

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  4. Headed out today hoping to find your book on the shelf! I love GS dogs; we've had 2 in the past. Yes, each Christmas Season brings changes....now ours are health issues, but thankful to be better!
    Merry Christmas!

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  5. Val, you write such wonderful stories and I can’t wait to read this one! Love that cover. I know Laura’s story will be great, too.

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