When you leave a
comment on THIS post by 6 p.m. CT Sunday, December 30, 2012 you'll be entered
in the DRAWING for a copy of the book shown below. If you mention in your comment that you’re a follower (see in the left
column “Join This Site” and “Follow by Email”), I’ll add your name a extra time in the drawing. You must be eighteen, have a U.S. mailing address,
void where prohibited. You can read details about my book giveaways here. Cracks in the Ice by Deanna Klingel
Deanna lives and writes in
the mountains of western North Carolina where she lives with her husband Dave,
and golden retriever Buddy. Deanna and Dave raised seven children and now enjoy
eleven grands and a new great-grand. She's a member of SCBWI, ACFW, NCWN, and
CWG. Her other works include Avery's Battlefield and Avery's
Crossroad, both middle grade award-winning historical fiction, Bread
Upon the Water, a YA nonfiction, Just for the Moment: The
Remarkable Gift of the Therapy Dog, a non-fiction.
JO: Let’s visit with Deanna
with some questions. Please tell us a little about
DEANNA: I live in the mountains of Western
North Carolina, now. I’ve lived in New York, Ohio, Maryland, Georgia, and
Raleigh. I started in Michigan, and moved every two years for twenty years,
adding children in each new place. We finally settled in Atlanta for nineteen
years. We’ve retired now.
JO: What fun or unique
things can you tell us about yourself that we don’t know?
DEANNA: Did you know I have seven children
all married, and eleven grands and one great-grand? I’ll bet you don’t know
about canine freestyle. It means dancing with your dog. I competed in this
sport for several years with two golden retrievers, who recently passed on. Now
I have a new retriever, who’s definitely an athlete, but not into dancing. I
quilt, sew, knit, read, and play golf; but since taking my writing seriously, I
don’t really have time to do any of those things.
JO: Please describe
yourself with three words.
I’m happy, grateful, healthy.
JO: What do you enjoy doing when
you’re not writing?
DEANNA: Well, as I said earlier, I like to
quilt, sew, knit, read, and play golf. But now when I’m not actually writing,
I’m traveling about selling my books.
JO: How did you become
involved in writing?
DEANNA: I’ve always been a writer. I never
took it seriously until our children were raised and the house got quiet. I won
a contest. I haven’t looked back.
JO: Where do you write? Do you have a dedicated office or a corner or
nook in a room?
have a wonderful room. We live in a log house and the loft upstairs is mostly
window. I have a built in desk that looks out at a slope of rhododendron. My
husband added French doors so I can close out the noise from the TV downstairs.
JO: Do you always know
the title of your books before you write them?
DEANNA: Sometimes. But the title usually works
itself out of the manuscript.
JO: Please tell us about Cracks
in the Ice.
DEANNA: Cracks in the Ice is a YA (Young Adult) novel, especially for teens, but crosses over into
women’s Christian fiction, published by Write Integrity Press in October. This
is the story of Gina, the niece of a mafia don. She has a dream of Olympic
stardom as a figure skater. Tragedy interrupts her quest. Without a support
system in place, a faith on the back burner, she spirals into lonely despair
and alcoholism. Through a long dark
time, Gina is bitter and angry. It is the love of two people who never give up
on her that shows her she is still worthwhile, even off the ice; she is still a
child of God, still lovable. Returning to the faith of her childhood, Gina is
resurrected from despair and restores her family.
JO: What takeaway value do you hope your readers
receive after reading this book?
I hope young readers will see the importance of having family support, of
being able to talk about their hurts, frustrations, disappointments. How
important it can be to have a plan: where will I go, who will I talk to? I hope
they can relate to Gina’s discovery that there are other kinds of victories in
life, that aren’t gold.
JO: Where did you get the idea for your
DEANNA: I haven’t
any idea. Book ideas for me sort of grow inside my head. I don’t set out
looking for them. They just simmer and bubble, and soon the characters have
names and I know them. Then they tell me their story.
JO: Did you have to do any research for
DEANNA: Yes, I did
do some research for this book. The story covers a period of about twenty
years, 50s, 60s, 70s, during which important things were happening in the ice
skating world. I needed to get the historical parts right. I also needed to
learn about the ice skating and alcoholism.
JO: How long have you been writing?When did
you sell your first book?
I started writing as a child, but I never really thought about
publishing anything until Avery’s Battlefield, which was published in
2011. While I worked on that, I began another book, nonfiction, Just for the
Moment: The Remarkable Gift of the Therapy Dog, which was published in
JO: What advice would you give to writers who have been writing a few
years but still haven’t interested an agent or publisher in their novel?
DEANNA: Be open to change. There are dozens of
ways to say the same thing. If someone suggests a change, try it, even if it
doesn’t at first appeal to you. In the end, it may surprise you. It doesn’t
change the story, it only changes the way you’ve said something. Perhaps the
change is for the better. Never quit trying.
JO: What are you working on now?
I’m always working on something! I’m marketing the two Avery books,
Bread Upon the Water, and I’m just starting to move Cracks in the
Ice. I’ve got two other works I’m still trying to get published, and
one other being read and considered. I’ve recently done some research at the
Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, VA, and am ready to begin working on my
next middle grade historical fiction.
JO: What advice would you give to writers just starting out?
DEANNA: Learn all you can. Take some classes.
Then write. Just write. Rewrite it. Take your time. Let
the work rest, forget about it. Then go read it as a reader. Then rewrite it
JO: Please tell our readers where they can get your book.
DEANNA: Cracks in the Ice is available through your indie
booksellers, on my website, and at Amazon. It is also available as a Kindle
JO: Please tell our readers where they can find you online.
DEANNA: You can find me on facebook, and my website
is www.BooksByDeanna.com. I’d love to have you visit.
JO: Deanna, thanks for
spending time with us today. One of my readers will win a copy of Cracks in the Ice that you so graciously
Remember:leave a comment on THIS post by 6 p.m. CT
Sunday, December 30, 2012 and you'll be
entered in the drawing for a copy ofCracks
in the Ice by Deanna Klingel.
Please, pleaseremember to
leaveyour email address so that should you
be the winner I can get in touch with you for your mailing address. I’ll announce
the winner in Monday’s blog.
As soon as they can write, children delight in
making out lists of what they want for Christmas. Many times those lists get
longer or get changed every day.
We adults make mental lists and drop hints to our
“Santa.” Along with the children, we begin to feel the Christmas Spirit as
the time draws nearer for opening presents resting under the tree.
We’re quickly lured by the tempting goodies we
think we just can’t live without. We make our lists for Christmas—things we’re
hoping to find wrapped and underneath the tree.
But many things could appear on our Christmas list
that can’t be wrapped. Neither can they be purchased. Indeed, they
usually can be no more that a wish.
The list of things that can’t be packaged occupies
our minds and is good all year, not just for December.
Have you ever wished TV cable wouldn’t go off in
the middle of something good; shots to make us well didn’t come in a needle; we
still had service stations instead of self-serve pumps?
Don’t you wish you’d bought stock early on in Coca
Cola, IBM, or Levi Strauss; newborns slept through the night; paper cuts didn’t hurt so much; opportunity
would knock more often, or louder; experience wasn’t sometimes the best
teacher; all sports were still just a game?
Do you ever wish the arena of politics wasn’t so
ruthless; more money than month occurred instead of the opposite; someone would
invent windshield wipers for eye glasses; our mistakes weren’t so
Don’t you wish light bulbs didn’t burn out right
when you turned them on; you could go back and do some things differently;
appliances wouldn’t break down two months after their warranty expires; the
checkout line you’re in didn’t move the slowest; shoe strings didn’t break?
Have you ever wished Washington would spend all
that money like it was theirs instead of ours; someone would turn off the junk
mail faucet; you didn’t need a vacation to get rested from the vacation you
On a more serious note, I wish violence would be
replaced by kindness; paying health care premiums guaranteed good health; words
could adequately express the feeling of love; hearts couldn’t break; it didn’t
I wish responsibility wasn’t so heavy; the world
was really a kinder, gentler place; television programming was more wholesome;
good outweighed bad; children didn’t have to be sick; grandparents lived
I wish all good dreams came true.
As we compile our wish lists each Christmas, may we
remember the words of Dr. Norman Vincent Peale: “The magic message of Christmas
is that God gives us so much more than we can possibly give back. He gave the
world the greatest gift of all time. ‘For unto us a child is born, unto us a
Son is given (Isaiah 9:6).’”
The winner of last week’s blog post for eBook copies of Cinderella Texas and Bedtime Stories for Believers by Molly Noble Bull is Pxxxam K.I'll email you to get your
mailing address and get the book out to you. Thanks all for commenting. Watch
for more book giveaways.
you leave a comment on THIS post by 6 p.m. CT Sunday, December 23,
2012 you'll be entered in the DRAWING for two winners for an eBook of the two books I review below.
you mention in your comment that you’re a follower (see in the left
column “Join This Site” and “Follow by Email”), I’ll add
your name a second time in the drawing.
You can read details about my book giveaways here.
by Molly Noble Bull
Stories for Believers by
Molly Noble Bull
Molly Noble Bull is a multi-published author. Her long
historical novel, Sanctuary,
won the 2008 Gayle Wilson award and tied for first place in the 2008
Winter Rose Contest, both for published authors in the inspirational
category. Molly is married, the mother of three grown sons, and a
grandmother. She was born in Kingsville, Texas, home of the famous
King Ranch. Her father and maternal grandfather were real Texas
cowboys and managed the Santa Rosa, a sixty thousand acre cattle
ranch where Molly spent part of her growing up years. If
anybody knows about Texas, cowboys, and ranches—first hand—it's
Molly. All three of her grown sons are involved in ranching in Texas
visit Molly Noble Bull with some questions. Molly, tell us a little more about
yourself, with three things not many people know about you.
Christian, wife, mother.
JO: What do
you enjoy doing when you’re not writing?
enjoy being with my family and I enjoy reading and studying the
Bible, especially Bible Prophecy. I also like really old movies.
JO: Where do
you write? Do you have a dedicated office or a corner or nook in a
write in a spare bedroom, and I write all my novel, stories, and
articles on my computer—no long yellow pads for me. I print copies
of everything I write then read and revise off line.
tell us about Cinderella
Texas is what I call a romantic western. Set in Texas in modern
was published by Helping Hand Press on November 11, 2012.
good look at the cover of the book. The house on the cover is very
important to the story, which I hope will make readers
smile—maybe even laugh.
When Alyson Spencer, a
citified young woman from Dallas, moves to a huge ranch in South
Texas in the middle of nowhere in order to home-school Quatro
Greene’s children, sparks fly. Both are Christians and committed to
the Lord, but that is about the only thing the two have in common. Quatro means four in
Spanish and he is a widower. His real name is Robert Lee Greene IV
and he is a real Texas cowboy. Though Quatro and his family are
billionaires, they live on very little, insisting that modern
conveniences corrupt. The big old ranch house where they all live is
without electricity. Alyson doesn’t think she can live without air
conditioning, a hair dryer, TV, radio, and a way to recharge her cell
phone. In fact, she thinks Quatro and his family are downright
strange, especially since the family business offices are full
equipped with electricity, air conditioning, computers and other
please tell us about BedtimeStoriesforBelievers.
is a collection of eight short stories I wrote at various times
during my writing career. It was published on December 17, 2012.
Some of the stories are true. Others are fiction. Some are new while
others are reprints. One of the stories, “Getting It Right,” might be familiar to readers. It
appeared in the Chicken Soup for the Soul books several times.
takeaway value do you hope your readers receive after reading these
Some non-Believers have a misconception about what Christians and
the Christian life are all about, assuming that Christians are grim
people that never say anything amusing or have any fun. I hope
will cause readers to come to new conclusions—realize that while
true Christians follow the Lord and His teachings, they also have fun
and enjoy life to the fullest.
JO: How long
have you been writing? When did you sell your first book?
I am really telling my age here. I sold ForAlways,
a modern story and my first novel, to Zondervan in 1986. I also sold
to Zondervan that same year. Rogue
was a historical western set in Texas.
advice would you give to writers just starting out?
and never give up. It takes a long time to learn to write a novel and
longer still to sell it.
you working on now?
MOLLY:Cinderella Texas was Volume 1 in The Cattlemen Series of western
romance novels. I am working on Volume 2. It should be out in early
JO: Is there
anything else you would like us to know?
Well, since CinderellaTexasand BedtimeStoriesforBelievers
were published in November and December 2012 and thus very new, I
need book reviews for Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobe. Those who
promise to read one of my books and write a review (even if they
don’t like the book) will be at the top of the list when I choose winners of the book contest.
tell our readers where they can get your books.
find my e-books, write Molly Noble Bull in the search slot at online
bookstores like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobe. To order my
paperback novels at online or walk-in bookstore, write in my name
again—Molly Noble Bull.
find my Christian non-fiction articles at the blogs below.
JO: Molly, thanks for this interesting interview and for spending time with my readers. Also, thanks for giving two of my commenters one eBook each of Cinderella Texas and Bedtime Stories for Believers.
a comment on THIS post by 6 pm CT Sunday, December 23, 2012 and
you'll be entered in the drawing for an eBook copy ofTexas
Stories for Believers by
Molly Noble Bull.You
must be eighteen, have a U.S. mailing address, void where
email address so
that should you be the winner I can get in touch with you for your
mailing address. I’ll announce the winner in Monday’s blog.
apologize for not blogging with you on Monday—my computer quit on
Friday Dec 14 and I just got it back from the repairman this
afternoon (Dec 19). The winner from last Thursday's blog for a copy
of K. Dawn Byrd's novel, Amazing Love,
I'll email you. I'll TRY to get
Thursday's regular blog
posted on Friday, Dec 21 if my computer doesn't decide to quit again. Thanks for understanding.
When you leave a comment on THIS post by 6 p.m. CT Sunday,
December 16, 2012 you'll be entered in the DRAWING for a copy of the book I
review below. The winner will have a choice of either a paperback or eBook format of the book.If you mention in your
comment that you’re a follower (see in the left column “Join This Site” and
“Follow by Email”), I’ll add your name a second time in the drawing. You
can read details about my book giveaways here.
Amazing Love by K. Dawn Byrd
K. Dawn Byrd is an author of
inspirational novels in several genres, including, historical, suspense,
romance, and young adult. Some of her favorite things are chocolate, cars, and
her pets. Her hobbies include reading, writing, and riding down country roads
in the passenger seat of her husband's Corvette Stingray. When asked why she
writes, her response is, "For the simple joy of placing words on the
the modern-day story of Hosea and Gomer from the Bible, speaks of God's
unconditional love, mercy, and grace and how much loving someone that much can
Gabe Knight, a
pastor in a small coastal town, finds his life is turned upside down when Dee
Dillow arrives and hires him to remodel an estate she's inherited from her
aunt. Dee dashes his plans for wedded bless when on a drunken binge, she
divulges that she's the highest paid call girl in Nevada and part-owner of the
ritziest brothel in the state.
Gabe falls in love
with her, but can't believe he's hearing the voice of God when a still, small
voice tells him to marry her. After much questioning, they marry and he is
deliriously happy. Until Dee betrays him.
Gabe soon discovers
just how hard it is to have the unconditional love God calls him to have for
his wife, the kind of love God has for his children. When faced with losing
her, Gabe realizes what true love is, how much it hurts, and just how much God
loves and is willing to sacrifice for his children.
visit K. Dawn Byrd with some questions. Dawn, tell us a little more about
yourself, with three things not many people know about you.
DAWN: I have
a master's degree in professional counseling from Liberty University. I'm an
animal lover. I own two hairless Chinese Crested dogs, an African Gray parrot,
three ferrets, and several aquariums in my home. I love sour foods. I'd rather
have olives, pickles, or dilly beans than something sweet sometimes.
JO: What do
you do for fun when not writing?
not writing, I love to read. Romantic suspense or young adult novels are
JO: Tell us
about your latest release and what you think readers will enjoy about it.
latest release, Amazing Love, is the modern story of Hosea and Gomer. It was a
tough story to write because my heroine suffers severe consequences for her
sins, but it was necessary to portray how low we can go and how much God still
loves us through it all. I hope readers will take away the fact that no matter
what we do God loves us with an unconditional love and is ready to accept us
back into His loving arms.
JO: Why do
write because I can't stop. It's more than a hobby, it's a passion. It's the
most fun I've ever had in my life!
JO: What are
you working on right now?
working on a thriller about a serial killer. It's a difficult story because
there are several twists and turns and I have to be careful how I write it for
everything to fall into place correctly.
next for you?
DAWN: I have
three releases in 2012, all young adult. Something
Beautiful in January. The Hot Line
Girl in June. Luck of the Draw in
It will be available soon at Amazon,
B&N, CBD, and other places in print and eBook formats.
JO: Dawn, thank you for an interesting interview.
I appreciate the time you spent with us and especially for giving a copy of Amazing
Love to one of my readers.
Remember:leave a comment on THIS post by 6 p.m. CT
Sunday, December 16, 2012 and you'll be entered in the drawing for a copy ofAmazing Love by K. Dawn Byrd.You must be eighteen,
have a U.S. mailing address, void where prohibited. Please, pleaseremember to leave your email address so that should you be the winner I
can get in touch with you for your mailing address. I’ll announce the winner in
P.S. Oh, I'll be posting a devotional on my Monday blogs for a while. Please visit with me on Mondays.
"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands." --Psalm 19:1 (NIV)
A brand-new Christian at age
fifteen, I’d never attended a sunrise church service. Indeed, I’d never seen a
sunrise. The Great Smoky Mountains provided me the opportunity.
Our group of sleepy pilgrims met an
hour before the sun’s scheduled appearance. In the predawn haze we hiked a
short distance down the road before crossing an open field. We left an
irregular path of footprints on its dew-bathed grass. The group followed our
guide as the terrain steepened.
Making our way up the narrow trail,
we reached a clearing on the hilltop. After a short time of devotion, we
silently awaited God’s colorful creativity. I’d heard others praise this moment
as a unique, transforming adventure. I waited expectantly. I wasn’t
God’s paint brush moved with
flawless perfection. He streaked the sky with flaming reds
to announce the day’s impending arrival. Yellow and orange spilled from His
palette and flooded the landscape. The regal fireball peeked above the distant
Instantly my worldly concerns
vanished and I experienced genuine renewing of the mind. I keenly felt the
Lord’s presence and identified with John when he wrote “The word became flesh
and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory.”
I witnessed one of God’s great and
glorious miracles of renewal that early morning long ago. Since then I’ve been
privileged to enjoy other sunrises from mountains to seashores. But if I’m
never blessed with the sight of another one, I won’t feel deprived. The memory
of seeing my very first sunrise remains as detailed as if it happened this
morning. Recalling that memory draws me closer to God and the knowledge of His
omnipresence to sustain me.
The winner of last Thursday's blog post drawing for a copy of Callie's Mountain by Katt Anderson is Maxie.I'll email you to get your
mailing address and Katt will get the book out to you. Thanks all for commenting. Watch
for more book giveaways.