Wednesday, May 30, 2012

5 Easy Questions with Lisa Jordan!

Every Wednesday, I ask a writer the same five easy questions. In an effort to support and promote fellow wordsmiths, I feature authors who write a variety of genres, from sweet inspirational to mainstream thrillers. The writers themselves may be aspiring, published, or best-selling--all have made an impact on my life.

Thank you for joining me in welcoming…Lisa Jordan!!

Lisa is one of those writers I can’t wait to meet in person! We met online through mutual friends, and I’m drawn to her down-to-earth, kind spirit. Lisa is a super busy mom, small business owner, and published author. Her debut novel, Lakeside Reunion, released last November through Harlequin Love Inspired and her next book, Lakeside Family, will hit shelves this August! I’m thrilled to have her here today!

Let’s get to it!

1. Beverage of choice?

Water with lemon, skim milk, or vanilla chai tea. Will I be kicked out of the club if I admit I love the smell of coffee, but hate the taste? And I'm not much of a pop (yes, I said pop--I'm a Yankee) drinker.

2. Any pets?

Two gold fish named Erma & Gert.

3. Dream vacation?

Any place with my family that includes sand, sun, & surf. One of our favorite vacation spots is Sanibel Island, Florida.

4. What are you listening to right now?

Heavenly Lullabies on Pandora--by day I'm an early childhood educator in my in-home childcare program (no, I'm not a babysitter)--and it's nap time while I answer these questions.

5. What's for dinner?

My son is home for about a week, and he's a culinary arts student, so when he's home he does the cooking. I'm not sure what's on the menu, but I do know it will be wonderful as he's a fabulous chef-in-training.

***

Lisa, you will NOT be kicked out of the club for not liking coffee. I never drank the stuff until a few years ago, and now I’m addicted. Funny, we say “pop” here too! Love the names of your goldfish. I kind of want to say Gert all the time now. :)

Sanibel Island sounds fabulous; we’ve never been there. If the vacation spot involves the beach, I’m always in! And I didn’t realize Pandora had a station to lull children to sleep. Love it! When your son is finished cooking your dinner, send him my way. Thanks so much for being my guest today.

***

Lisa Jordan ~

Married almost 23 years to her real-life hero, Lisa Jordan knows a thing or two about romance. She and her husband have two college-aged sons. When she isn't caring for her family or her Little Darlings in her in-home childcare program, Lisa writes contemporary romance novels for Love Inspired. Her debut novel, Lakeside Reunion, came out in November 2011. Her second novel, Lakeside Family, will be released in August 2012. In her free time (ha!), Lisa enjoys good books, romantic comedies, crafting with friends and feeding her NCIS addiction. You can visit her online at www.lisajordanbooks.com, connect with her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter.

 ***
I tried a new recipe last night. It’s potato salad with bacon and a homemade blue cheese dressing. Delicious!

What new foods have you tried recently?

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day!

Today is Memorial Day--a day Americans celebrate our veterans! It's also the unofficial kick-off of summer. Whether we're camping, barbecuing, having a family picnic, or just chilling out at home, Memorial Day makes us feel good!


Memorial Day Flags
Photo by eddiecoyote

A HUGE thank you to all our veterans!

What do you do on Memorial Day?

We're taking a Monday drive and getting ice cream. :)

Happy Memorial Day!!

Friday, May 25, 2012

When God's Plans and Your Plans Don't Mesh

Almost five years ago, we purchased our current home. At the time we had four days to find a house and three weeks to move in. It narrowed our options. But God provided and we found a home that fit our needs.


We promptly painted walls and added a beautiful deck. As time wore on and we were able to save
money for other projects, we added more landscaping and finished our basement. But 18 months ago, my husband's commute grew much longer--almost double his previous commute--and we decided to put our house up for sale. We were going to build a new home in our school district but closer to my husband's job.

We had many intentions and good, solid plans, but as the months wore on of multiple house showings and no offers, I kept getting the impression God was telling me something. In January, I had a series of disappointments in life, and on top of that, my husband admitted he wanted to eliminate his commute and move much closer to his job, like minutes away.

My brain could not process this. Moving would mean putting our kids in new schools. It would mean leaving my dear, dear friends from church. It would mean giving up the volunteer duties at school that I love.

It would mean starting over. Again.

I wasn't ready to even consider it. My insides sobbed--we've lived in 9 homes in the last 14 years--but I prayed about it and told my husband I would at least think about it. My stubborn little heart could barely touch on the subject at that point. Shortly after, my prayer sessions made me realize God kept calling me to put my dreams--all of them, including my publishing and personal dreams--into His hands. And I did.

Some days I doubted. Many days I couldn't even think about any of it. Twelve hours before our realty contract expired (we were going to take the house off the market and stay in our current home if the house didn't sell in 6 months), we received the house offer that changed everything.

The tough shell around my heart cracked open. I finally was ready to hear God's plan.

The last month has been wonderful, challenging, terrifying, and stressful. My beautiful daughter made vows before God in a confirmation ceremony. My son continues to impress me with his empathy and athletic skills. My friends have helped me over and over. My family has kept me from going over the edge (thanks Sarah and Mom!). And my relationship with my husband is stronger than ever.

It's funny how God works. We've put offers on three homes. The first sold the day before we made our offer. The second was truly my dream home, but we didn't get it.  We're still waiting to hear on the third, which needs a ton of TLC.

Yesterday, a beautiful lot on the street we originally wanted to build right here in our school district came on the market. I knew exactly why it came up. It was God's way of asking, "Do you still want it your way? If you do, it's available. But if you're willing to do it My way, you won't be sorry."

I don't know where we're going to live. I don't know how this adventure will end. But I do know that God opened my heart to embrace His plan, and there is peace in not knowing what my future holds. All that matters is that God's the One holding it.

I'll keep you posted on what's happening in my life. It's going to be an exciting summer, that's for sure!

Have you ever had different plans than God's? How did you get through it? Did anything surprise you about the process?

Have an amazing weekend!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

5 Easy Questions with Elana Johnson!

Every Wednesday, I ask a writer the same five easy questions. In an effort to support and promote fellow wordsmiths, I feature authors who write a variety of genres, from sweet inspirational to mainstream thrillers. The writers themselves may be aspiring, published, or best-selling--all have made an impact on my life.

Thank you for joining me in welcoming…Elana Johnson!!

The first thing I thought when I started writing this introduction was doesn’t everyone know Elana Johnson? She’s such a generous, smart, and savvy writer. Along with her excellent blog, you may know Elana from her work with WriteOnCon, an online writer’s conference. She tirelessly shares her publishing knowledge in addition to writing dystopian YA novels. Last year, Elana’s debut novel, Possession, was released, and the sequel to it, Surrender, comes out on June 5!

Let’s get to it!

1. Beverage of choice?

Grape soda. I love the gas station Squirt mixed with the grape flavor blast.

2. Any pets?

Nope. I am terrified of all animals with more legs than I have, all snakes and fish, and most ducks and geese.

3. Dream vacation?

I love going to San Diego. I also want to travel to England and Australia.

4. What are you listening to right now?

Pandora, Maroon 5 station. Weezer is on right now.

5. What's for dinner?

We’re going out tonight! I don’t know where, but I don’t have to plan, cook, or clean, so I don’t care.

*** 

Ooo, grape soda. I used to live on grape Slurpees from 7-11, and I must say, bacon and Oreos are two of my fave foods also. Our family could survive quite well on bacon alone. I love your vacation choice of San Diego. What a fun place! I haven’t been there in years, and now I want to go. :)

I’m laughing at your terror of animals. I’m the opposite. I love animals, fish, and birds. Insects, however, terrify me! No thank you on any kind of creepy-crawly or slithery pet.

Don’t you love going out to eat? I’m with you. No planning, cooking, or cleaning rank high on my list. Thanks so much for being my guest, Elana!

 ***

SURRENDER: Forbidden love, intoxicating power, and the terror of control…


Raine has always been a good girl. She lives by the rules in Freedom. After all, they are her father’s rules: He’s the Director. It’s because of him that Raine is willing to use her talent—a power so dangerous, no one else is allowed to know about it. Not even her roommate, Vi.

All of that changes when Raine falls for Gunner. Raine’s got every reason in the world to stay away from Gunn, but she just can’t. Especially when she discovers his connection to Vi’s boyfriend, Zenn.

Raine has never known anyone as heavily brainwashed as Vi. Raine’s father expects her to spy on Vi and report back to him. But Raine is beginning to wonder what Vi knows that her father is so anxious to keep hidden, and what might happen if she helps Vi remember it. She’s even starting to suspect Vi’s secrets might involve Freedom’s newest prisoner, the rebel Jag Barque….

***
Intrigued? Check out the trailer for Surrender!




About Elana:

In Elana Johnson's world, Oreos and bacon would be the only food groups. Everyone would drive 10 over the speed limit, and winter would be eliminated as a season. As it is, she lives with her husband and two kids along the Wasatch Front in Utah, gets cited when she drives too fast and eats Oreos only on special occasions.

She maintains a personal writing blog and contributes to a debut YA science fiction/dystopian blog, both of which can be found through her website at elanajohnson.com. For more information about Elana’s books, head to her blog, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter.


What are you reading right now?

Have a fantastic day!

Monday, May 21, 2012

WSG 12: When the Journey Is Long

Writer's Survival Guide 12: When the Journey Is Long

Aspiring writers hope for a short path to publication, but for many, the journey drags on...and on.

Road
Photo by geodesic

A long journey can make the strongest writer turn into a limp pile of spaghetti noodles. If we're going to survive, we need to realize every writer has a different journey. Some are short, some are long. We can't choose; all we can do is meet each new challenge with as much strength as possible.

Think of it as a car ride across the country. We know our destination; we have maps and a vehicle to help get us there; we just don't know how far we'll have to travel or how long it will take.

Long writer journeys consist of:

1. Initial excitement. We're doing it! We've dreamt about this trip for a long time, and we've finally buckled up and we're on our way.

2. Ooo, shiny things! There's so much to see. We're trying plotting techniques, considering blogging, meeting other writers, having fun putting words down--it's all fun and exhilarating!

3. Oops, wrong way. We thought we were on Route 59, but we accidentally made a left turn on Nowhere Highway. Maybe we realize the genre we're writing doesn't suit us. Maybe we enter a few contests or get a critique partner and find out we have more work ahead of us than we thought. Regardless, we have to backtrack and figure out the right way to continue our journey.

4. Phew, on the main drag again. We've adjusted, we're making steady progress, and our writing is improving. Yay!

5. Out of gas. Something happens--maybe our laptop crashes and we lose 100 pages of a novel. Or we query agents and get all rejections. At this point, there's a catalyst that halts us and keeps us from making any progress.

6. Triple A arrives and we're on our way, but hobbling. Whatever stopped us no longer feels as devastating as it initially did. We decide to forge ahead, but we're not as strong, not as excited, not as hopeful.

7. A trio of brand-new sports cars zoom past, leaving us choking on their fumes. This is the point where we start to see our friends get ahead. They're announcing agent contracts, book deals, contest wins. We're happy for them, but we start to wonder what we're doing wrong--and what they're doing right.

8. A service station. Successes keep us in shape. Maybe we final in a contest, or our blog gains momentum, or we're getting interest from agents. We've gotten the push to keep us moving.

9. Bald tires. We've written more than one, maybe several books at this point, and while we know our writing has improved, we still don't have a contract. Our confidence thins, and there's a strong possibility it will pop if we hit one more bump.

10. We hop on the toll road. Toll roads are well kept and they get us to our destination quicker and with less wear-and-tear. This is the point where we pay for professional help, either by hiring a freelance editor or paying big bucks to attend a conference where we can pitch to publishing professionals in person. It doesn't guarantee a faster ride, but we feel better, knowing we're doing everything we can to speed things up.

11. Driving through the desert. Anyone stuck on the LONG journey will have what feels like a never-ending jag through a desert. There will be no gas stations. No scenery. No vegetation. No change in view. There will be nothing but dry, endless sand, and you can either keep driving or stop and wait for the buzzards to pick at your corpse. Some writers skip this hell-ish portion of the trip. They are blessed. If you are not one of the lucky ones, have no fear. There are many other writers stuck on this nightmare of a road with you. You just can't see them because you're dying of thirst.

12. Signs of life. You made it through the desert. Trees appear. This might be the point where you get an agent, or if you have an agent, you're getting requests from editors. There's hope yet.

13. Finally, the beautiful, shimmering ocean! You made it! Through all the ups, downs, wrong turns, right turns and everything else you endured, you finally reach your destination! Congratulations!

If your journey feels long, do not get discouraged. Many of us have long journeys. If other writers' journeys seem short and this makes you insecure and sad, do not get discouraged. Every writer's journey is different. If you are in the desert and you just want a doggone glass of water, e-mail me. I will give you a glass of water. :)

Did I miss any points on the journey?

Have a wonderful Monday!!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Hosting a Large Gathering? Party Tips!

We're having a big party this weekend to celebrate our daughter's confirmation, and--get this--the weather forecast is 81 degrees and zero percent chance of rain! Woo-hoo!

Party Decorations
Photo by n8photoblog

I've learned many things from my extended family over the years, and because my aunts and mom are so good at hosting large gatherings, I know I'll be able to handle this one too.

Here are some of my tips:

- About 6 weeks before, prepare your guest list.

-  4-6 weeks before, purchase invitations and thank you notes. Send the invitations 3-4 weeks in advance.

- Write down a sample menu. Avoid the urge to go overboard on variety. If you're comfortable asking family or friends to bring a dish, call them a few weeks prior to verify what they're bringing.

- Plan easy, hearty food. Our menu consists of ham, baked beans, macaroni & cheese, a few cold salads, corn bread, and a sheet cake for dessert (my talented niece is creating the cake for us!). We'll be cooking most of the food on Saturday and warming it up on Sunday.

- Spread out the preparations. I shopped for beverages two weeks ahead. I purchased non-perishables the week before. Fresher foods are bought a day or two before the party.

- Your refrigerator will be stuffed with food, so rely on coolers for beverages. Fill the coolers with sodas, water, and beer (if you're serving alcohol), and place the coolers close to the main party area. Since the weather forecast is calling for a gorgeous day, we're keeping most of the party outdoors. The coolers will be on our deck.

- Your close loved ones want to help during the party. There's no reason you have to do it all! Ask them to keep an eye on the food so you can mingle. Also, ask your spouse, an older child, a nephew, or friend to take plenty of pictures. You'll probably be too busy to take pictures and you're going to want photos.

- If the party is an open house style where people can drop in at any time and no RSVP is required, keep the time short. Two to three hours is plenty. Or if you're having a graduation party where the fun will continue well into the night, start the party later.

- If at all possible, do not plan anything for the next day. Reserve it for yourself. Throwing a big party is tons of fun, but it's also a lot of work. Go ahead and spend the following day in your pajamas. You deserve it!

What are your party tips for hosting a large gathering?

Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

5 Easy Questions with Kelly Polark!

Every Wednesday, I ask a writer the same five easy questions. In an effort to support and promote fellow wordsmiths, I feature authors who write a variety of genres, from sweet inspirational to mainstream thrillers. The writers themselves may be aspiring, published, or best-selling--all have made an impact on my life.

Thank you for joining me in welcoming…Kelly Polark!!

I found Kelly through a Twitter recommendation, and her hilarious blog lured me in. She’s a huge music fan and goes to concerts often--which I like since I can enjoy them vicariously. Lucky for us, she shares pictures too. Just this week, Kelly shared a snapshot of her with Chris Daughtry. Pretty cool!

Let’s get to it!

1. Beverage of choice?

Fountain Coca Cola from McDonald's. I'm addicted. Though I show restraint and have about 3-4 a week. I also love chocolate milk.

2. Any pets?

We have two dogs. One 15 year old blind miniature pinscher named Goofy and a 3 year old rescue dachshund/spaniel mix named Daisy. Daisy adores Goofy. And we adore them both.

3. Dream vacation?

I'm a homebody, so my favorite place to be is home. I enjoy going to the Wisconsin family cabins on both sides of the family, and my favorite tropical place is Atlantis at the Bahamas!

4. What are you listening to right now?

The bands I'm listening to the most right now are Papa Roach, New Medicine, and Bush. I also can’t stop listening to Neon Trees’ new single, “Everybody Talks.” I love SO many rock bands though, and many are on shuffle on my iPod.

5. What's for dinner?

Our evenings are hectic. I have three children all in activities so I am usually picking up two around 5pm then driving straight to a baseball game or track meet. So sandwiches or cheese roll ups in the car with fruit is our usual weekday dinner! Boring, but true.

***

Kelly, you’re not alone in your McDonald’s Coke addiction. There’s something in their formula that’s magical. I can’t get enough! Your puppies sound so cute, and I LOVE their names. Vacation--yum. Wisconsin is so pretty, and Atlantis speaks to my beach-loving soul. :)

I haven’t heard Neon Trees, so I am going to look them up. It’s fun finding new-to-me artists! Your evenings have me nodding. We just wrapped up track season, and baseball is going strong. We’ll be having many similar dinners until August. Thanks so much for being my guest today!

***

Kelly Polark writes picture books, children's poetry, and middle grade novels. She is an educator and married mother of three. Her publications include poetry, short stories, and word puzzles in Highlights Puzzlemania, Ladybug, Nature Friend and Stories for Children magazine. Her first picture book app will be published by Meegenius by summer of this year.

Besides her family, her passion is music. She loves rock concerts and finding out what her favorite musicians are reading. You can find out too at www.bookrecsthatrock.blogspot.com.

To learn more about Kelly, head to her blog and follow her on Twitter.

What song are you really tired of hearing on the radio? (For me, it's "Stronger" by Kelly Clarkson.)

Have a fantastic Wednesday!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Why Wendy P. Miller Rocks: Random Act of Kindness BLITZ!

A smile. An encouraging word. A thoughtful gesture. Each day people interact with us, help, and make our day a bit brighter and full. This is especially true in the Writing Community

Take a second to think about writers you know, like the critique partner who works with you to improve your manuscript. The writing friend who listens, supports and keeps you strong when times are tough. The author who generously offers council, advice and inspiration when asked.

So many people take the time to make us feel special, don't they? They comment on our blogs, re-tweet our posts, chat with us on forums and wish us Happy Birthday on Facebook.


Kindness ROCKS!

To commemorate the release of their book The Emotion Thesaurus, Becca and Angela at The Bookshelf Muse are hosting a TITANIC Random Act Of Kindness BLITZ. And because I think KINDNESS is contagious, I'm participating too!

(I can't wait to get my copy of The Emotion Thesaurus! I use The Bookshelf Muse all the time!!)


I am randomly choosing Wendy P. Miller, my dear friend, critique partner, and sanity keeper. Wendy, for my RAOK gift, I'm sending you a special package of pink and green gumballs and a Bon Apetit Celebration Recipe Card Set!

2012 has been exciting but challenging for me, and it isn't letting up. Wendy has held my hand through all of the ups and downs and continues to do so. I can't stress enough what a wonderful person she is. She's hilarious, generous, an amazingly talented writer, and she's real. If I can pay anyone a high compliment--it's for being real. I hope you'll stop by Wendy's blog, Thoughts That Move, and tell her how awesome she is!

Do you know someone special that you'd like to randomly acknowledge? Don't be shy--come join us and celebrate! Send them an email, give them a shout out, or show your appreciation in another way. Kindness makes the world go round. :)
Becca and Angela have a special RAOK gift waiting for you as well, so hop on over to The Bookshelf Muse to pick it up.

Have you ever participated in or been the recipient of a Random Act Of Kindness?  Let me know in the comments!

Tons of people are participating in Angela and Becca's fabulous Random Act of Kindness day. If you'd like to help spread the word, share this on Facebook or use the #RAOKBlitz hashtag on Twitter to join the fun! Thanks!!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Dream House Wish List

One of my favorite television stations is HGTV, and my go-to show is House Hunters. Every episode features someone, usually a couple, narrow their search to three properties until they make a decision and purchase one.


The wife's dream house
Photo by rs7388

I'm fascinated by the wish lists everyone has. Something unimportant to me is vital to someone else, while a room I couldn't live without is so-so for them.

I started thinking about my own wish list for a dream house. I would want a large kitchen with walk-in pantry, a separate office with tons of natural light, a big wooded yard, and plenty of windows throughout to trap the sunshine.

What is on your dream house wish list? If you could have anything you wanted, what would you include?

I'm at a track meet today (and it's supposed to be 72 degrees and sunny--a rare thing for our annual track meet!!) and won't be responding to comments, but please leave one. I love to hear from you!!

Happy almost Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

5 Easy Questions with Beth K. Vogt!

Every Wednesday, I ask a writer the same five easy questions. In an effort to support and promote fellow wordsmiths, I feature authors who write a variety of genres, from sweet inspirational to mainstream thrillers. The writers themselves may be aspiring, published, or best-selling--all have made an impact on my life.

Thank you for joining me in welcoming…Beth K. Vogt!!

I found Beth through the blogs of mutual friends, and when I saw the cover of her debut novel, Wish You Were Here, I had to have her on 5 Easy Questions! Her book looks right up my alley, and I’m happy she agreed to stop by!

Let’s get to it!

1. Beverage of choice?

Coke – fully leaded and with lots of ice. I could drink that all day long, but I don’t. Second favorite beverage: SOBE Lifewater. Yum! I stock my fridge with those so that I don’t drink Coke all day long.

2. Any pets?

We are down to only one dog, my daughter’s mini-dachshund, Twister. Earlier this spring, we lost our 90 pound lab, Midas, to cancer.  But here’s the advantage of being a writer: The heroine in my second novel has a dog and I endowed him with Midas’ never-met-a-person-he-didn’t-like personality. He also flunked all attempts at obedience training, which made life frustrating… I mean, interesting.

3. Dream vacation?

Venice. Me. My husband. And a gondola.

4. What are you listening to right now?

The rare silence of a quiet house when I am the only person awake. Ve-ery nice. If I was listening to music? My “Favorites” list on my iPod, which is a compilation of oldies, country, and praise and worship.  And, yes, I’d be singing along.

5. What's for dinner?

Reservations? Take out? Or more likely something my husband cooked on the grill accompanied with a salad and baked sweet potatoes.

***

Beth, I love Coke and Sobe Lifewater. I have Strawberry Dragonfruit in my fridge as we speak! I’m sorry about poor Midas. I’m sure he was a sweetheart. Twister and my mini-dachshund, Sophie, would get along great!

Your dream vacation sounds perfect, and I am a huge fan of silence. And now that you mention a salad and sweet potato…both are making me hungry! Thanks so much for being my guest!
***

Wish You Were Here:

Allison Denman is supposed to get married in five days, but everything is all wrong. The huge wedding. The frothy dress. And the groom.

Still, kissing the groom’s brother in an unguarded moment is decidedly not the right thing to do. How could she have made such a mistake? It seems Allison’s life is nothing but mistakes at this point. And pulling a “Runaway Bride” complete with stealing, er, borrowing her best friend’s car doesn’t seem to solve her problems.

Can Allison find her way out of this mess? Maybe she just needs to stop orchestrating everything. Allison prefers being the one in control, and giving it up is not going to be easy. But to find her way again, she will have to believe that God has a plan for her and find the strength to let Him lead.
***

Beth K. Vogt is a non-fiction author and editor who said she’d never write fiction. She’s the wife of an Air Force family physician (now in solo practice) who said she’d never marry a doctor—or anyone in the military. She’s a mom of four who said she’d never have kids. She’s discovered that God’s best often waits behind the doors marked “Never.”

Her contemporary romance novel, Wish You Were Here, debuts in May 2012 (Howard Books.) Beth also wrote a book on late-in-life motherhood, Baby Changes Everything: Embracing and Preparing for Motherhood After 35 (Revell 2007), and is an established magazine writer and former editor of Connections, the leadership magazine for MOPS International.

For more information about Beth’s books, Like her on Facebook, be friends with her on Twitter, and head to her website.

What do you look forward to most this time of year?

Have a fabulous Wednesday!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Party Time!! Katie Ganshert's Debut: Wildflowers from Winter!!

Welcome everyone, I'm thrilled to host Katie Ganshert today. Her debut novel, Wildflowers from Winter, releases tomorrow!! Naturally, we are celebrating it up! Woo-hoo!!


Grab a drink and a snack, and continue down for my video presentation on why you should read Wildflowers from Winter!

Cakes
Photo by matt_gibson

Beverages!
Photo by joebeone

Did you have a bite of that scrumptious cake? I want a slice of that! Yum....
Here is why I'm recommending Katie's book:



Hope I convinced you!
Wildflowers from Winter ~

A young architect at a prestigious Chicago firm, Bethany Quinn has built a life far removed from her trailer park teen years. Until an interruption from her estranged mother reveals that tragedy has struck in her hometown and a reluctant Bethany is called back to rural Iowa. Determined to pay her respects while avoiding any emotional entanglements, she vows not to stay long. But the unexpected inheritance of farmland and a startling turn of events in Chicago forces Bethany to come up with a new plan.
Handsome farmhand Evan Price has taken care of the Quinn farm for years. So when Bethany is left the land, he must fight her decisions to realize his dreams. But even as he disagrees with Bethany’s vision, Evan feels drawn to her and the pain she keeps so carefully locked away.

For Bethany, making peace with her past and the God of her childhood doesn’t seem like the path to freedom. Is letting go the only way to new life, love and a peace she’s not even sure exists?

***

About Katie Ganshert:

I’m a slightly-frazzled, ever-inquisitive Midwest gal who’s passionate about Jesus, my family, writing, and all things romance, which is exactly what I write. Stories about flawed, broken characters who find faith and fall in love. When I’m not plotting ways to get my hero and heroine to cross paths, I enjoy watching movies with my hunk of a husband, playing make-believe with my wild-child of a son, hanging out with the crazy but lovable junior high students at my church, and chatting with my girlfriends at Panera®. I could talk books all day and am often spotted around town pushing a stroller, walking my dog, and reading—all at the same time

For more information about Katie and Wildflowers from Winter, head to Katie's website, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter!

Thank you SO much for joining the party!!

Did you do anything fun over the weekend?
Have a wonderful Monday!!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Synopsis Tips with Jill Kemerer Vlog

It's the first Friday in May, and that means it's time for another webisode of "...with Jill Kemerer." This month, I'm sharing a few of my synopsis tips.

Synopsis Tips with Jill Kemerer: May 2012



Synopsis writing can be pretty stressful. I've written quite a few of them, though, and I've found a system that works well for me. If you're interested in a handy-dandy print-out of my synopsis tips, check out my article, "Writing the Synopsis," always available on the For Writers page of my website.

Do you have any synopsis tips? Anything you can share with us will be greatly appreciated!!

Past webisodes of "... with Jill Kemerer" are all available on my YouTube channel which is linked! You can always catch the previous month's webisode on my Home page too. :)

What makes synopsis writing less horrible for you?

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Wiener Dog Wednesday!

Sophie, our mini-dachshund, is my puppy partner in crime. We have a daily routine, and she helps me stay healthy. She's very affectionate, always looking for a lap to sit on, preferably under a blanket. :)




When I've sat at the computer too long, she urges me to take a walk.


When I'm tired, she's always ready to snuggle up for a nap.



She even helps with dishes.



I could use a little less barking when other dogs pass our house, but she seems to feel bad about it--well, sometimes she does. Hey, no one is perfect. :)


Do you have a special furry someone who helps you get through your day?

Have a terrific Wednesday!