Christina Rich

Inspirational Romance… Weaving a Threefold Strand


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The Negotiated Marriage ~ Back Cover Blurb

I’ve just finished up what I believe is my last round of edits for The Negotiated Marriage and I have to say that after writing it, and reading over it multiple times, and editing it several more, I’m not sick of this story.

I still love it. I love Camy and I love Duncan. And I love the secondary characters, too.

I have really enjoyed the writing process this time around. Not that I didn’t before, but for some reason this one was special.  It’s my first contracted Western/Frontier story, which I’m super excited about. It’s my first contracted story set in my beautiful home state, which is a funny thing since I had declared when I first started writing that I would never write a story set in Kansas.  It’s my first contracted story after a two year hiatus (sometimes life interrupts), which was frightening in itself, because there were those thoughts running through my head that maybe my first three books were just a fluke and maybe I can’t really do this again. Let me say, when God puts a call on your life and you’re obedient, He blesses it.

But, I think I’ve enjoyed the process more this round because I wasn’t as uptight and solely focused on my part and trying to get everything just right and worried I wouldn’t. There was no nail biting and wearing holes in the tile as I fretted over each step. This time I was able to release the story, trusting that if something didn’t quite work my wonderful editor would let me know and she’d give me suggestions on how to fix it. And it wasn’t just her but a team of editors. I don’t know how many people have combed over The Negotiated Marriage, I know of at least three, possibly four. Each editor has blessed me with their hard work to help create a book I’m proud to have my name on.

Thank you, LI Editors. You’re work is appreciated.

Are you ready for the blurb?

A Business Arrangement 

When the railroad pushes to buy her land, orphaned Cameron Sims will do anything to keep the only home she and her sisters have ever known. Even if she must marry a stranger. But she’s determined her agreement with the mysterious, dashing man—who’s unlike anything the Kansas railroad town has ever seen—will remain simply business.

Duncan Murray doesn’t want a wife. He wants Sims Creek, a sanctuary that can help him forget a troubled childhood. But his reluctant, and captivating, bride-to-be is key to making his dreams a reality. And despite their business arrangement, Camy and Duncan might be signing on the dotted line for true love…

 


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Crimson Thread

I was blessed with a new bible this morning. Some of you have probably seen them advertised for the last several months, others of you might have been admiring the unique journal bible as readers posted their artistic pages on facebook. I know I had been. Waiting patiently. Longingly. As an author, an artist, and a student of God’s Word I couldn’t wait to discover the details of this journal, and so far, I’m not disappointed.

I know, I know. Who needs coloring pages in their bible to help them study? Not me, but check this out….

Sometimes after reading passages of scripture I’ll find an activity that doesn’t require my too much of my mind to be involved, like dishes, driving, or playing a game on my phone, and then I’ll contemplate what I’ve just read, what God is saying to me, and how it applies to my life. Having these (coloring) pages is fun. They require me to think too much, which gives me the ability to meditate on what I’ve just read. AND, I’m able to use my creative cells, which makes me one happy human.

I try to read Psalms everyday and I had intended on studying the Gospel of John this week, not just reading but Verse Mapping, too. However, when I first opened my bible it fell on the first page of Ruth. By the way, I watched the movie Ruth last night (unexpectedly), so I’m taking the hint given by Holy Spirit. Being thirsty and ravenous for God’s goodness, I decided to read the first chapters of all three and discovered a crimson thread woven between them.

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Did you know that Moab was the son of Lot and one of his daughters? Gen 19:30-38

Ruth broke ties with her family, her country, her gods. She broke ties with all she knew, choosing instead to follow her mother-in-law to a foreign land binding herself to a new family, a new country, and, most importantly to God, Elohim (the true God).

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Blessed is the man
Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.

Psalm 1:1-3

Ruth chose to cling to what is good. She left the worship of Chemosh (destroyer, subduer Judges 11:24), the god of the Moabites and traveled with Naomi to Bethlehem (house of bread).
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And you know, because she honored God, because she chose Him, she became the mother of Obed (serving), the grandmother of Jesse (I possess), the great-grandmother of David (beloved). She received one blessing after another and became an ancestor of the Word, ancestor to the One who was before her. She gave life to a man whose blood would give life to the One who would gave life to all of creation. Her bloodline brought light to the darkness. Ruth (friendship) a Moabitess, brought Moab (son of Lot) and Judah (praise, son of Jacob, son of Isaac, son of Abraham) together. Ruth delivered the man who would become the grandfather of the King of Israel (David) and the great grandfather of the (through many generations) King of Kings–Yeshua ha Mashiach.

There are many threads in these passages, many I could pull on, and I’m sure many you can see as well. What threads do you see?


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Update

For those of you who’ve been wondering, yes, I’m still writing. I turned in my Kansas set Western Romance last week and I know feel as though I can breathe and begin to think about the next story. I haven’t really experienced a hard deadline crunch prior to this one, so I never fully understood the late nights and crossed eyes I’ve heard so much about. Now I do, which has given me a better understanding of myself as an author.

During the time since I signed the contract for this latest book, mid Novemberish, a lot has happened. A lot of things that probably would have kept me from writing. BUT GOD, but God granted me the determination to keeping pounding out the words. He also gave me an awesome, wonderful group of supporters who helped me through and an kept telling me I could do it. Thank you!!!!

I am now determined to become that full-time author, traditionally and independently. I have several pieces in the works, one just needs the edits to be added to the computer, others are in various stages of the writing process, and I’m really excited to get them polished and published.

Before I started writing this bog post, I read over a prayer sent to me some time ago and it gave a wonderful feeling inside knowing that there are readers actively praying for me. I covet your prayer.So if you think about it, please pray for me, as a human, as a minister, as a wife, as a mother, as an author. And please feel free to send me your prayers. It bring joy and comfort to my spirit and it increases my faith.

Blessings,

Christina

 


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Coming Soon

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Captive on the High Seas will be available in large print February 2016.


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Winners!

20150609_135129Thank you to each of you who commented. I love each era mentioned within the comments, but I do have my favorites. When I started writing several years ago, I wrote a Regency, with a Scottish hero, of course. Then I wrote a Border story, with a Scottish hero. A MacGregor. So, as you can tell I love Scottish heroes!!!

I remember a friend asking me once if I’d ever write stories set in Kansas. No way, absolutely not. And guess what? In 2009 I plotted a Western/Americana story set right in my backyard.

And obviously y’all know I love ancient history. I wouldn’t write it if I didn’t.

As you can imagine it wasn’t easy for me to choose a winner, so I ended up using random.org. Anna Weaver Hurtt, your story idea has won!!!

However, the rest of you aren’t going away empty handed. If you didn’t leave me email address, please do so here or contact me at christinainspirationals @ gmail dot com with your snail mail and the name you’d like Captive on the High Seas signed to and I’ll get those out in the mail.

The rest of you, I love your ideas. However, I don’t think I’ll be able to complete six stories by July 7, especially since I have a few (self-imposed) writing deadlines to meet. Keep watching this blog, as I come up with blurbs for the various era-inspired story lines, I will post them here.

I already have several ideas running wild in my head, so who knows, maybe I’ll surprise myself and get them all done.

Again, thank you for participating. Support means everything to an author.


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Contest!!!!!

Captain of the High Seas CoverI can hardly believe that Captive on the High Seas will be released in a month. I’m super excited as I received a 4.5 and some fantastic words from a reviewer at Romantic Times. I’d love you all to help me celebrate.

You can check out the review here.

Do you love history? I do. I love many different eras. Have you ever had an idea pop in your head and thought, wow, that’d make an awesome story? I do all the time.

How would you like to inspire a story? Well here’s your chance. Oh, and you have an opportunity to receive a copy of Captive on the High Seas.

 

 
1. Leave me a comment, either here, or on one of my Facebook pages, telling me your favorite historical era and why.
2. One winner, maybe two… who knows maybe even five will receive a copy of Captive on the High Seas AS well as a short story inspired by their answer.
** Deadline June 5, 2015 11:59 p.m. central
** US residents only, please
** Short story will be approximately 5000 words

** Story will be completed no later than July 7, 2015 (my birthday)
** Dedication will be given to winner
** publication depends on publisher/self-publishing

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Blurb

Captain of Her Heart 

Sold into slavery by her jealous sisters, Ada finds herself captive on the ship of a Greek merchant. Expecting a harsh new master, she’s surprised to find the captain compassionate—and attractive. Yet she can’t fall for the man who owns her—not when she watched her enslaved mother pine after her unyielding father.

Nicolaus only wants to rescue the beautiful, mistreated woman from the auction block. He plans to free Ada, just as soon as he secures his inheritance. Which means racing the ship back to his homeland to best his brother. If he loses, all his cargo will be forfeited—including Ada. But as perilous storms reveal her courage and grace, the question becomes, can his heart stand to let her go?


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Surrending the Past for A Bright Future ~ Lisa Belcastro

Please welcome Lisa Belcastro back to Threefold Strand!! Welcome, Lisa!!!!

DSC_0036_1belacastroBetrayal and loss. Pain and grief. Is there anyone alive who hasn’t experienced loss? Or Betrayal? And the pain and grief that follows? How do we go on after a husband’s affair, the death of a spouse, a friend’s backstabbing, a child’s rebellion, a pink slip at work, or a failed relationship?

If we are blessed to have faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, then we know that God can and does heal our hurts and sorrows if we surrender our sufferings to Him. Healing may not be instantaneous, and more often than not takes longer than we’d like, but God’s grace and compassion are available to all who call on the Lord.

Melissa Smith, the heroine in my latest novel, Shenandoah Dreams, felt the sting of betrayal when her husband cheated on her and left her for the other woman. Melissa surrendered her anguish to God, and in Him she found peace. In time, she forgave her ex-husband and released the bitterness in her heart. Through her family, friends and teaching job, Melissa experienced happiness and a good life.

Isaiah Reed lost his wife to scarlet fever. He mourned her death, and as Melissa had, Isaiah also released his pain to the Lord. He, too, treasured his family, friends and his profession that allowed him to sail at sea. If anyone had asked Isaiah, he would have said he was pleased with his life.

When a twist of fate brings Melissa and Isaiah together, they each come face to face with the pieces of hurt they have held onto. Though each would have told you that they were happy with the lives they were leading, Melissa and Isaiah both have built walls around their hearts. Melissa loves many people, but she has closed her heart to romance. Isaiah is no different, having sworn off women and marriage for twenty years.

As Melissa and Isaiah are forced to spend time together, they discover an undeniable attraction for one another. But the walls around their hearts are high and thick, and each is afraid to topple their defenses. They want more, holding their desires close as they cling to their fears.

From the earliest pages of Genesis (2:18), we see that God destined our hearts to be part of a three-part cord – man, woman, and God tied together in holy matrimony. God created Adam in His likeness and desired fellowship with him. But God saw that Adam needed a spouse, a partner, a helpmate, and so He created Eve. The best life for Adam revolved around relationship with God and relationship with Eve.

To receive God’s best for their lives, Melissa and Isaiah will have choices to make and fears to face. Will they trust that God has brought them to this place in time for a purpose and that the purpose is for their good? Will they seek God’s will for their lives? Will they surrender the remainder of their hurt, deconstruct the walls they have so carefully built, and allow God to give them a new heart?

Writing the conflict scenes in the later part of Shenandoah Dreams, allowed me to reflect on my life, and examine places in my heart where I had unresolved hurt and anger. I identified with some of Melissa’s anguish as well as Isaiah’s. As my characters prayed for healing, I asked God to cleanse and restore my heart, to make me new as only He can.

Have you felt the sting of betrayal? Has death shaken your world and left you on rocky ground? Has the end of relationship torn your heart in two? God is there, in the midst of your pain. He wants to dry your tears, heal your heart, and give you a new life. No matter how great or small your heartache, will you join me and Melissa in surrendering the past to the One who wipes away all our tears and brings joy to our futures?

Shenandoah_Dreams_FRONTBack Cover:

“It’s just a dream. It’s just a dream,” Melissa Smith whispers as her eyes focus on the two men standing before her. She lives in the twenty-first century. She is chaperoning her sixth-grade students on an educational sailing trip. They are not visiting Plimoth Plantation, or the Boston Tea Party Museum, or the Concord Bridge reenactment. They are sailing over the waters of the Vineyard Sound around the island of Martha’s Vineyard. So the men before her, dressed as though they’ve stepped off the set of a movie about the American Revolutionary War, cannot possibly be real. She’s dreaming. She will wake up.

But can a dream man touch her and send bolts of electricity through her veins and ignite a fire in her heart the likes of which she’s never felt before? Can a dream man serve her food that tastes divine? Can a dream lasts for weeks on end?

And if she’s not dreaming, then she’s traveled back in time, which is impossible. But here she is, in 1770, uncertain how she arrived, how she’ll get home, and if her heart could bare to be parted from Captain Isaiah Reed. Only time will tell if Melissa is given a chance at love with Isaiah or swept forward once again to her previous life.

 

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