To celebrate the release of Striking Gold, book two in the Romancing the Californian Cowboys series, I’ve dropped the price of Discovering Gold to just $.99 for a short time. So now, you can get both books for about the cost of a cup of coffee!
That’s right! Discovering Gold has now joined several of my other books as part of the IndieBRAG collection of well-written books by “Indie” authors. Check it out by clicking the link below.
or you can get it now, from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07Y4R2Y9T
A Chance for Snow, part of the Copperhead Creek Australian Romance series, is free, right now, but only on Amazon. This is a heartwarming story, set in Australia, in the lead up to Christmas.
Get it by clicking here.https://www.amazon.com/Chance-Snow-Copperhead-Creek-Australian-ebook/dp/B0761TVBCY
That’s right, you can get book one in my Copperhead Creek series FREE on Amazon, right now, but only for a few days. This wonderful series has been enjoyed by many readers, so if you haven’t had the chance to start it, now would be a good time.
Feel free to share this with your friends and family too!
Today I’d like to introduce my fellow CIR author, Tammy Sinclair.
Tammy Sinclair has loved writing stories from the time she was a small child. During her fifteen years of home-schooling her children, she had a non-fiction article published in Homeschool Enrichment magazine. A history buff and romantic at heart, she can be found enjoying the outdoors, cozying up with a good book or watching classic movies in her spare time. She resides in Oregon with her incredible husband and two amazing, young-adult daughters.
Welcome, Tammy! Now, before we hear about your wonderful books, let me ask you three questions so we can get to know you a bit better. First, what inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?
I think I started writing stories just as soon as I could pick up a crayon. In fact, to this day, I still have a little book I made when I was about seven! It’s just a couple folded sheets of pink paper with a story and illustrations, so it’s amazing that I managed to keep it through the decades!
I kept writing all through my life, though I didn’t always finish my stories. It wasn’t until very recently that I was finally determined to finish a complete novel and have it published. I suddenly realized that time was marching on and I needed to take action to help make my dream come true. I had stories that needed to be told!
These days, I’m inspired to write fiction that uplift and entertain, while hopefully pointing people to our loving God through the pages.
Well, I think we’re all glad you decided to take action! Now, next question, what was the inspiration for your latest book?
I have a novella soon to be launched, but my first and only novel recently published was a long-time labor of love for me! The Sentimental Journey is a Christian WWII romance with time travel.
WWII has always been my favorite era. From the fashions to the music and movies, it has always held a special charm for me. It was so much fun for me to live vicariously through Kara, the heroine in this story, as she gets to experience this special time in history.It was also a time of uncertainty and fear for the entire world. I think there is much to be learned from what the world faced during WWII, especially given our present circumstances.
I agree, absolutely. Though that era never interested me that much in the past, I’ve read a couple of books and seen a few series on television that have changed me. It was a hard time for all, indeed, and much can be learned from those times. One last question for you, what was the most challenging part of writing your recent novel?
I suppose the biggest challenge was not only engaging the reader with the characters and events, but aiming for complete historical accuracy. Because the 1940s had been my favorite era most of my life, I already knew quite a bit about this amazing era. Of course, I still had plenty to learn, though. I spent countless hours in research…ship building, overseas battles…right down to the exact dates of when specific songs and movies came out! It was actually a fun challenge, though. I think when we write about something we truly love, it tends to show through to readers in the final story.
I’ve not tried to write historical fiction, and I’m impressed that you’ve done it for your first novel! I recently read a book called Khaki Town, written by Australian novelist Judy Nunn, and I was impressed with the huge number of references she had for her research. Not an easy feat. So, let’s hear a bit more about this book of yours.
The Sentimental Journey is a Christian WWII romance with time travel. When a young woman finds herself suddenly on the American home front of 1943, a family is now residing in her house. Unaware of her secret, they take her under their wing…and soon their enlisted son returns before he’s to be shipped overseas. She finds herself instantly drawn toward him but doesn’t think their time together can possibly last.
Throughout the pages…throughout the tender romance she discovers…the theme of trusting God- no matter where we find ourselves, is woven throughout the pages.
Thank you for joining me here today, Tammy. Your book sounds wonderful. You can find The Sentimental Journey on Amazon, by clicking here.
Today I’d like to introduce my fellow CIR author, Kimberly King.
“The Trouble with Fairy Godmothers” was my first published book. This was a fun one to write, because it’s a modern-day take on my favorite fairy tale, “Cinderella.” In this book, Nikki Baker discovers she’s got a fairy godmother who’s willing to help her get her first kiss, but Nikki soon discovers her magic tends to have hilariously disastrous results.
Today I’d like to introduce my fellow CIR author, Allistar Banks.
Ms Banks was born and raised in McCormick, South Carolina and is a graduate of Lander University in Greenwood, SC .
She has been featured in the Index-Journal, The Press and Banner, McCormick Messenger, Lander University’s magazine, and interviewed on WZLA 92.9FM, and was recently a featured author at the Palmetto State Literacy Association Conference in Hilton Head Island, SC. Ms Banks is best known for her personal development books that teach young women how to have healthy relationships with others and food and also children’s books that teach new concepts and kindness. She is now honoured to be on a future broadcast with the CBS Sunday Morning Show for her children’s book called A Colorful Balloon Ride, which teaches one to five-year-old’s their colors by using objects of carnival food and nature on Mary and Emily’s hot air balloon ride around the County Fair with Mr. John.
Besides writing, Ms Banks loves to read, hike, do yoga and Pilates, hike, go bowling, watch comedy movies, see plays, go to the mountains, and spend time with family and friends.
Welcome Allistar. We’re anxious to hear all about your books, but first, three questions. What inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?
I was in the fourth grade and I was nine-years-old. Our school had a story contest and my fourth-grade teacher Mrs. Jones at the time saw my ability to do storytelling and loved my fun and wild imagination I had for story book characters. I decided to write a picture book at the time called The Sorcerer and the Magic Pond where Henry learned to use his powers for good and not for evil. I loved fairy tale books at the time and how magic in Cinderella was used for good when Cinderella was given the chance to fall in love with prince charming.
I think I might have started writing a little older than that … perhaps ninth grade, but yes, the teachers who inspired us are worth their weight in gold. Next, what was the inspiration for your latest book?
The inspiration for my latest two books Girl Rise and Cracking the Happy Weight Code was I struggled with self-worth and body image and weight and insecurity. In Girl Rise, I found myself placing my identity in academics, extra-curricular activities, leisure things, and the societal status quo that was loved and accepted by my family being you have to go to school and make good grades and go to college and have the 9-5 job and be married by the time you’re thirty with children and have the house with the white picket fence and the dog. When I got older, I had four toxic love relationships that taught me valuable lessons at the time which were I can’t change who I am for someone else, I can’t fix somebody, you have to stand your ground and not allow someone to take advantage of your kindness, and know when to walk away from someone when they don’t value your time.
I tell my story through Alli Billings’ perspective and I use biblical principles to help and encourage women to take back control over food and life.
Many women have faced those same challenges, and I applaud you for weaving what worked for you into your stories. Now, one last question–what are your favourite books?
My favorite books are Sunday’s at Tiffany’s by James Patterson and The Help. I like how in Sunday’s at Tiffany’s Jane keeps a friend named Michael who only she can see and makes her feel less alone being single. The Help is absolutely hilarious as it tells a story creates three women named Skeeter, Minny, and Abileen who are determined to start a movement about the way women think about one another during the 1960s.
Okay–now lets hear a little more about your books.
The five books I have now published are Girl Rise, Cracking the Happy Weight Code, Spring Brings Summer, A Colorful Balloon Ride, and Lenny the Lizard and His Green Scarf. I am now honored to be on a future broadcast with the CBS Sunday Morning Show for my children’s book called A Colorful Balloon Ride, which teaches one to five-year-old’s their colors by using objects of carnival food and nature on Mary and Emily’s hot air balloon ride around the County Fair with Mr. John.
You can find A Colorful Balloon Ride, and all of Allistar’s other books on Amazon by clicking here.
Today I’d like to introduce my fellow CIR author, Dawn Cahill. Author Dawn V. Cahill writes “Stories of Victorious Faith for the 21st Century,” nearly always with a crossword puzzle, sudoku, or dark chocolate nearby. “The characters in my stories face situations that would have been unthinkable even 20 years ago. We live in a vastly different world than our parents did, and that’s the world I write about.”
Ms Cahill also blogs about single parenting, substance abuse, and puppies…sometimes all in the same day. She’s going to finish that novel she started at age 11 called Mitch and the Martians…someday. She has written several newspaper articles, five Christian contemporary novels, and more limericks than she can count.
You lead a very interesting life, Dawn, but before we learn about your books, I have 3 questions for you. First, where are your books set, and have you been there, or spent significant time there?
My books are set in places I’ve lived, and have a certain familiarity with. For instance, I lived for five years in a town north of Seattle in the late 80s to early 90s, just before the explosion of grunge, Microsoft, and Starbucks.
My Golden State Trilogy is set in Marin County, across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. I lived in the northeast Bay Area during part of my childhood, and I still think San Francisco is the most dramatically scenic city on the West Coast, and even in the US. I attempt to capture some of the stark beauty of the area in my books.
Well, you’ve certainly got my attention! I was born in San Francisco, and while I love living in Australia, there’s a part of my heart that will always reside in the San Francisco Bay Area! Next question, what inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?
From the time my older sister taught me to read (I was five), the fantastical worlds that books created in my mind captured me. Even at such a young age, I wondered if I could write a book as compelling as the ones I was reading. So I started small, with short stories—some okay, some embarrassingly bad—, then in college took a year of journalism before switching to the more lucrative business major.
But before I could get serious about writing that first novel, I had to finish raising my kids. It wasn’t until 2015 that I uploaded my first book, the novelette When Lyric Met Limerick, to Amazon Kindle.
Ah, yes, you had a job (raising kids) and I had a job (in the corporate world) to do before writing took precedence, but now that we’re there, there is no stopping us! Last question for you, if you could trade places with any one of your characters, who would it be and why?
I would be Meg, my protagonist in Golden State trilogy. She was a single mom (like myself) who found a wonderful, godly man that offered her a second chance at happy marriage (unlike myself.) Meg can paint and draw, two things I’m woefully bad at, but wish I could do. She has to endure some terrible trials, but her faith in the Lord shines bright through it all.
It’s fun to think we could be one of our characters … I’d like some aspects of many of mine, but we all have our own paths to follow, don’t we. Now, let’s hear about these books of yours.
My books: Seattle Trilogy is my suspense/mystery series. These books feature identical twins Livy and DeeDee using their ingenuity to solve mysterious deaths/unsolved crimes/attempted murders. Threads of clean romance add spice!
My Golden Gate Trilogy I like to call Hot Topic fiction. These books feature modern-day, controversial issues that didn’t exist 30 years ago, proving gritty and clean can co-exist in the same book. If you prefer your clean stories gritty, not pretty, these are for you.
- Book 1, Paint the Storm, centers on same-sex marriage, yet with no sex scenes.
- Book 2, Paint the Desert, involves a school shooting, yet contains no explicit violence.
- Book 3, Paint the Sunrise, is currently under construction. It’s about the opioid/homeless crisis that has exploded in recent years.
You can find all of Dawn’s books on Amazon by clicking here.
Thanks for joining me today, Dawn. I look forward to checking out the series set in the San Francisco Bay Area!
Today I’d like to introduce my fellow CIR author, Jessica White.
Jessica, would you like to tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a hobbit. I love nature, but don’t like venturing far from home. My office is filled with books, blue and green glass, and llamas. I’m a first-generation Texan married to a sixth-generation Texan, but we recently moved to Oklahoma City with our two daughters for my husband’s career. I have a degree in education, but my spiritual calling is to teach people how to create safe space for the hurting and lost and show them how to stand firm for equality, diversity, and justice.
That’s quite a noble career, but I’m guessing you also find time to write books! But before we hear about your books, I’ve got three questions for you. Firstly, what are three things you’d tell aspiring authors?
The three things I tell aspiring authors all the time are: To become an author you have to learn the craft, learn to finish, and never stop growing. Take your first few works and learn the basics of story structure, character arc, and point of view. Then learn to finish by starting with a strong premise and knowing where the story ends. Discipline in finishing is what makes a writer an author. Third, never stop growing. Writing is an art. You don’t want to be an apprentice your entire career. Study and learn from the masters, but find your own style, brand, and audience.
Great advice, Jessica. Now, next question, do you read the reviews that others leave for your books?
I love reading reviews, even the bad ones. Great reviews tell me how the story affected or changed them as a reader. Good reviews remind me that I have an audience. That gets me through the days when my word faucet dries up. Bad reviews often show me who my reader isn’t. For example, my historicals are very spiritually deep. So my friends who are less spiritual often left reviews that said, a little heavy handed. Bad reviews also tell you where you’re falling short on reader expectation. Sometimes a bad review is actually a great review. For example, for clean fiction, sometimes reviewers will say “great romance but I wish they’d been more physical”. Obviously they didn’t get what they expected, but as a clean fiction author your still being validated that your work is clean.
Yes, as gratifying as it is to get great reviews, I also try to learn from bad reviews–and sometimes it’s because we are reaching the wrong readers and need to change something in the book’s description. Now, one more question, are you indie published, traditionally published, or hybrid? And what are your thoughts on the whole indie vs. traditional topic?
I’m now officially a hybrid author. I started with Indie publishing because I knew my stories crossed the Catholic-Protestant lines in the traditional publishing world. Some characters convert, some lose their faith, while others are wholly devoted to their chosen path. While this fits my ideal reader in that I write for people of diverse backgrounds who believe that God calls different people to different walks, it does not work well in traditional markets that are niching their marketing to a specific audience.
But my critique group leader (who is multi-published) challenged me to write something contemporary. So I wrote what I love to read, a romantic suspense. I’d been reading through the Percy Jackson series and wished there was something with those iconic Greek myth personas for those of us who are now married mothers who love visceral real life stories. So I started plotting and praying and creating who I imagined the twelve Olympian gods and goddesses to be.
After writing Song in the Dark I knew the book had all the elements to be marketable. I took it to American Christian Fiction Writers’ Conference and decided to practice pitching to agents. I walked away with a request for a proposal and a month later had an agent contract. It took a year to sell the manuscript to a small but established publisher, and another year to get it out on the market.
Having experienced both sides, there are definitely perks to both. If you have strong business skills and can network and find your own editor who can challenge you to grow, a cover designer who knows the current market, a formatter that can put it all together professionally, and can afford to hire them, going Indie will allow you to make more money and have more freedom in what you put out and when. But if you don’t have the time to run a business, can’t afford that upfront cost, or just don’t have the connections, a traditional publishing path is better.
The biggest downside to being fully traditional is time. Most readers don’t want to wait a year for a book much less two or three if you change publishers or only get single book deals. Personally, I’ll probably stay hybrid to have the flexibility to put out books between my traditional books.
It’s great to hear of someone with hybrid experience. There’s a path for everyone who wants to write, they just have to find the path that works best for them so I’m glad you’ve found yours. Now, about your books.
I have a historical series set in the 1920’s called The Healing Seasons. The first two books are out and the third will be available this summer. The story centers around Abigail Morgan, heiress to a West Virginia coal fortune, and her struggle to honor her parents’ legacy to “do what is right no matter the cost” despite the injustices she experiences and witnesses. The ripple effects of her decisions bring her and her brother into the care of a rural doctor in Montana who is grieving the loss of his wife and failing at raising their son on his own. God brings these characters together to heal them and the communities they serve over the four book series. It’s available exclusively on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback as well as on Kindle Unlimited.
*The first book does have flashback scenes of physical abuse.
My latest book, Song in the Dark, is based on the Greek myth of Hades and Persephone. This book explores what it means to overcome our darkest struggles.
All of Jessica’s books can be found on Amazon, by clicking here.
Today I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Hannah Ross.
Hannah enjoys a quiet life in the country with her husband, four children, two cats and a flock of chickens.
So, Hannah, we’re dying to hear about your books, but first I have three questions so we can get to know you a bit better. Here goes. First, you have written over a dozen books in the fantasy, sci-fi, historical fiction genres. That is quite a range! What attracts you to write in all of these genres?
I think that, as widely as my writing ranges, what all my books have in common is the element of escapism, of moving to a different reality for a bit, be it a modern research station in Antarctica, a village in medieval Ethiopia, or an entirely imaginary fantasy world. This creation and exploration of different worlds is what I love most about writing.
My books are clean of explicit scenes, but they do include violence and mild swearing.
Well, I think a bit of escapism is good for everyone, at least from time to time! Now, for the next question. What books most influenced your life or your writing?
That’s a tough one; there are so many books I love and admire, so many authors, both classic and contemporary, who have become mentors and friends. From Thomas Hardy to all the Russian classics, Ray Bradbury to J.R.R. Tolkien, and the more modern works of fantasy such as Harry Potter and A Song of Ice and Fire, I am thankful for these great minds and great books. But if you were to ask which books I reread most often, the answer would probably be everything by Jane Austen.
Wow, I have to agree with all those. I grew up on Ray Bradbury and Tolkien, and have read all the Harry Potter books at least once, and although the Game of Thrones books were toooooo thick for me, I watched the entire series … more than once! Now, one last question before we learn about your books. What do you like to do when you are not writing?
Apart from writing and, of course, reading, I like to express my creativity in practical ways. Namely, I crochet clothes, toys, baskets, and home décor. I make soap, candles, and natural body care products. There’s nothing more satisfying than using a unique, quality product I have made myself. I love my garden and animals – we have two cats and a flock of chickens, which never fail to entertain us with their antics. I also enjoy taking nature walks with my children whenever I have the chance. All these low-tech activities help me decompress and reconnect with an island of inner peace within me. And I enjoy teaching my children in the process, too!
Sounds like you lead an ideal life. So, let’s hear about your books.
The Breath of Earth (the third instalment in The Frozen World series) is my most recent book.
The entire Frozen World series is in the sub-genre of what can be defined as environmental science fiction. It tells about a near-utopian society of the Anai, an isolated tribe living in a warm microclimate pocket in Antarctica. The themes, the universal questions of these stories revolve around humankind and its relations with nature. Namely, can people coexist with nature without despoiling it? Can the desire to do right and preserve the world we live in overcome greed and power struggles? What are some things one is never justified in doing, not even in the name of survival?
Sounds awesome, Hannah. Now, you can find this book, and all Hannah’s books, on Amazon. Click here to be taken to her author page.