It Is Well

I’ve received a few messages from readers looking forward to my next book. Thank you for your encouragement. It’s been a little harder than I believed it would be to write, but I’m pushing through life, the lack of motivation and time constraints. Even if I only type 50 new words, it’s progress, and each day it’s getting easier. Yesterday, I even spent an hour writing.

One thing that helps me write is listening to music. It sort of drowns out all other noises and the tyranny of the urgent calls from household chores.

I’m currently working on Dr. Benjamin Northrop and Ellie Sims’ story, supporting characters from The Negotiated Marriage. They’re both a hot mess, and it’s been a bit of a challenge to figure out the right balance. They’ve both experienced the joys of young love, but they’ve suffered pain, rejection, and loss. They’ve been disappointed by life. They not only fear, but also expect even greater disappointment. I want to torment them until they reach their happily-ever-after, but I don’t want them depressing, if you know what I mean.

I will never leave you nor forsake you.

Joshua 1:5 (NIV)

I playing different scenarios around in my head, trying to figure it out when the song, It Is Well came on. I recalled the story behind the original hymn written by Horatio Spafford and the earthly tragedy that plagued his life. This song  sums up my season, it has helped me remember that no matter my circumstances, God’s goodness and grace abounds, and that when I fully trust in God I find rest and perfect shalom, the peace the surpasses all understanding, a place of nothing missing and nothing broken. I’ve been resting in and seeking to maintain this peace. But when the song began to play, it flipped on a light bulb where my story is concerned. It’s the victory and happily-ever-after I want to give Ellie and Ben. By the end of the story, I want my characters to be able to stand in the middle of a torrential life-storm, lift their face to the heavens and sing. I want them to know with assurance that no matter what they face, it is well with their soul. I want them to know God has them in all their circumstances, that He covers them and He will never leave them or forsake them.

For Horatio Spafford’s story, go here.

Cover Reveal!!!

For an author there is nothing more exciting than… well, several things. Getting the call, signing a contract, receiving edits, reading reviews (sometimes), and of course seeing the art department bring your book to life.

I love every cover Love Inspired has created for my stories, and here is the latest, due out November 8, 2016!

What do you all think?

The Negotiated Marriage

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…

 

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.

Cover Reveal~The Guardian’s Promise

There are several milestones an author waits for, and then celebrates.

The first ‘The End‘.

The first contest.

The first conference.

The first pitch.

The first query.

The first request.

The Call.

The contract signing.

The first round of edits.

The official title.

And…. as of today I’ve been waiting to see my book cover for a little over a year from the time of the call. AND today, I’m celebrating, not only with the cover reveal, but with the official blurb.

9780373282579 Official

A Kingdom in Jeopardy

An evil queen and her royal guards will stop at nothing to find—and kill—the rightful heir to the throne of Judah. When their pursuit leads them to Mira’s village, only her father’s bond servant, Ari, a man shrouded in secrets, can keep Mira safe.

Abandoning his life as a temple guard and becoming an indentured servant was the only way Ari could protect young Joash, the true King of Judah, from Queen Athaliah. But his sacred duty prevents him from confessing his feelings for his master’s daughter. With the future of their nation on the line, Ari and Mira will risk everything to save their people.

 

Celebrate with me. Leave a comment before midnight (central) on Thanksgiving and be entered into a drawing for a 25.00 Amazon gift card. Winner will be announced Friday, November 29, 2013.  Winner will be chosen using Random.org.

Love Inspired Historical Line

Yesterday, Seekerville’s guest was Love Inspired’s Associate Editor Emily Rodmell. The post centered around the Love Inspired Historical line, what kinds of books are out there and what editors are looking for. An opportunity was also given to pitch, which I took advantage of so,  prayers are appreciated.

In the course of yesterday’s conversation I remembered just how much I love reading LIH books. Yes, there are some that are difficult to read. I recall one that took me well over a month to read. I should have given up on it but my curiosity as to how the story would end got the best of me. Plus, as a writer interested in targeting LIH I wanted to know what exactly didn’t work for me. The problem with that particular book was a mega sagging middle. No, I won’t mention the name.

Then there are times, a lot of times, when I pick up a book and just can’t put it down.  Christine Johnson’s Soaring Home and Renee Ryan’s Dangerous Allies are two that come to mind. The there is Karen Kirst’s The Reluctant Outlaw, which released in September, but you can still purchase it through Love Inspired here. The three mentioned are all on my keeper shelf and each for their own reasons. Were they perfect, not completely. There were a few minor issues but I’m not one of those readers who throws a book away for a typo or for a tiny missing piece of the puzzle. These authors are also an automatic buy during those months when finances are a little tight and I have to pick and choose between the four LIH releases each month.

Last night I picked up a new author to LIH. Noelle Marchand. Twenty-two year old Noelle Marchand to be exact. And I finished it in just a few hours. One sitting, which says something for this slightly ADD reader who tends to juggle six books at a time. Even though there is a scene or two that I could have done without and felt it was more a filler than anything it didn’t detract from the story and the main characters. I definitely look forward to more stories from this young author.

A few things I really like about LIH as a reader is they are affordable and they are usually quick reads, which is good for someone like me who doesn’t always have the time to read.

As a writer and a reader I’m praying they’ll pick up more Biblical Romance.  By the way, if you’re a writer and interested in targeting Love Inspired they are currently looking for new historical authors. You can even check out Seekerville’s LIH Pitch Contest here.