Giveaway and Interview with Laurel Blount

Several months back, when I complained—yes, I admit it (Lol!)—about the book I’d been reading, a friend suggested I try Laurel Blount’s debut novel.

I’m more of a suspense girl, but sure, why not try a new romance author. I am so glad I did. Laurel has an amazing talent of keeping things fresh and flowing. I’m hooked! I just read her latest release, Hometown Hope!

Please welcome Laurel Blount!

Giveaway: Hometown Hope

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Hometown Hope Giveaway!!

INTERVIEW WITH LAUREL BLOUNT

Where did you get your ideas for your books? Everywhere! Usually, my stories start with an interesting character or a “what if” situation and develop from there.

How long does it take you to write a Love Inspired novel? It varies depending on how much revision I have to do, but usually about four to five months.

Who’s your all-time favorite character? Oooh–so hard to choose! If you mean a character in someone else’s book, I’d say Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird. His quiet, relentless integrity really resonates with me. If you mean a character I created, I’d say Abel Whitlock, the country-guy hero in my debut novel A Family for the Farmer has a special place in my heart. But so does building contractor Hoyt Bradley–the hero in my latest release Hometown Hope. And then there’s Jacob Stone–the kind-hearted minister in A Baby for the Minister—nope, can’t choose. I love them all! Sami: I have to say, I really loved Jacob Stone.

Tell us a bit about your new release? Hometown Hope is officially a July release for Love Inspired, but the paperback actually releases on June 18–my birthday! How sweet is that? This book started with a character–unapologetically blue-collar widower Hoyt Bradley whose little daughter Jess hasn’t spoken a word in the three years since her mom’s death. When Jess finally does speak, she asks her father to help save a beloved bookstore, owned by Hoyt’s former classmate Anna “Brainy” Delaney. Anna and Hoyt share a prickly history, but Hoyt’s willing to do anything to keep Jess talking–and Anna’s warm heart goes out to his book-loving little girl. And as they cooperate to help Jess heal, these two opposites stumble headlong into an unexpected romance! Sami: I loved little Jess!! And Happy Birthday!! 

What is your typical day like?  I get up around five a.m. and stagger to the coffee maker. Caffeine in hand, I have some quiet time, reading the Bible and praying. Then I write until about nine-thirty. I stop and jump into homeschooling my two younger kids. Once homeschooling is done, I may sneak in a second writing session in the afternoon. Then it’s housework, farm chores and cooking! I enjoy supper with my husband and kids, and I often read at night. Then I go to bed with the chickens so I can get up and do it all over again the next day.

When did you start writing? I think I was born holding a notebook! I can’t remember a time when I didn’t write stories and keep a journal. I dabbled in writing a novel when I was in my twenties, and started getting serious about my writing in 2015 when I entered Love Inspired’s Blurb 2 Book Contest.

When did you receive your first book contract? I got “the call” in  August of 2015 after finaling in Blurb 2 Book! I can show you the exact spot in my kitchen where I took that call, too! I hung up on my sister when I saw New York on my call waiting screen–but she forgave me.

What did you do with your first Advance? Attended the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference! And it was so worth it! Sami: I LOVE the ACFW conference.

What is the hardest part about being an author? I love writing! But–some parts are tough. Writing professionally means writing even when you’re not in the mood or when you’re dealing with life’s junk so that you can honor your deadlines. It also means accepting constructive criticism with humility and a commitment to improve your writing.

On a lighter note–writing means I’m chronically distracted because I’m always hashing out scenes and plots in my mind. I can be very absent-minded–and this can impact other areas of my life. Just the other day I was working out a storyline in my mind as I was tidying up. I later came across a roll of toilet paper I’d intended to put in the bathroom perched on a pile of folded clothes in my closet. This sort of thing happens a lot!

Who is your favorite author? I love so many authors–usually, it’s whoever I happen to be reading at the moment!

Now for the important questions:

Pepsi or Coke?   Pepsi (Even though I’m a Georgia girl through and through)

Candy, cookies, or cake?  Pie, darling. Pie. Buttermilk pie is a particular favorite!

Coffee or Tea? Coffee for the caffeine, tea for the company.

Favorite vacation?   Love the beach–but basically any place with people I love and lots of free time makes me happy.

Favorite TV show?  Call the Midwife and the Great British Baking Show

Favorite Movie? Probably While You Were Sleeping. Love that one!

Any hobbies? Pets? Activities? Tons! I read, go antiquing, garden and can. My sis and I recently took up pickleball, too! We have four spoiled rotten cats, three of which are rescues, dairy goats, cows, ducks and a very bossy goose.    Sami: Can I come visit?

Be sure to visit Laurel’s website at laurelblountbooks.com

Thank you, Laurel, for joining us this month!

Be sure to join me on July 18th for a Giveaway and Interview with Carrie Stuart Parks!

 

Interview with Tina Radcliffe

It’s time to changes things up a bit from Romantic Suspense to Romance authors.

Please welcome, romance author, Tina Radcliffe.  Tina Radcliffe April 2019_300dpi Smaller

I met Tina at the ACFW conference then connected on Facebook with her soon after. Tina has jumped in and helped me with a manuscript and has been one of my biggest cheerleaders. I can’t thank her enough for all she’s done. I hope you enjoy her books as much as I have.

Thank you for joining us, Tina.

Giveaways: One Grand prize plus five additional winners.

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Tina R Twitter

Where did you get your ideas for your books?  The best ideas come from observing life. An overheard conversation in the airport. People watching. Once I picked up a piece of notepaper that had someone’s entire wedding planned on it in detail. It was written in childish scrawl. That is a book waiting to be told.

I keep all swatches of ideas, clippings, sticky notes and overheard conversations in an idea box. I date the paper and occasionally, when I need inspiration, I pull them out and look them all over. Unfortunately, at this point in my life, there are more ideas than there is time to write all the stories.

Who’s your all-time favorite character?  There are no favorite characters. Each one is loved for a special reason. For example:

Will Sullivan in The Rancher’s Reunion is based on a real person from my past who dealt with the possible diagnosis of Huntington’s disease

Fireman Jake MacLaughlin in Safe in the Fireman’s Arms who at the time, was the oldest hero I’d ever written. Jake gets a second chance at love.  Oooohhhh, I loved him!! Sorry, please continue. 

Rancher Joe Gallagher in Rocky Mountain Cowboy who is based on a real cowboy who has a myoelectric prosthetic arm.

Tripp Walker in Her Last Chance Cowboy is an enigmatic loner cowboy. This man of few words finally gets his own happily ever after in book four of the Big Heart Ranch series.

Right now, I’m writing about Mitch Rainbolt, a small-town sheriff with a tragic past who doesn’t believe that he deserves the love of a lifetime.

When is your next release? Do tell!  Rebel Ranch kicks off in the spring of 2020! Here’s the blurb about this exciting new series.

Four siblings who inherit their grandfather’s ranch, work to overcome the tragedy of their past and in the process, find the forever healing power of love.

Tell us a little bit about your typical day.  I wish I had a typical day. Right now, I am letting my circadian clock do its thing and that means after years of working the graveyard shift; I am back at it again. I write during the night. Fewer interruptions.

When did you start writing?  Writing evolved from a voracious reading habit and reading from a desire to escape into another world. I wrote my first complete novel at fourteen.

When did you receive your first book contract?  January 2010

What is the hardest part about being an author?  The most difficult part of being an author is trying to pretend I am normal and that my writing job can be turned off on Friday at five until I go into the office again on Monday. I am always an author. It consumes me. This explains the sticky notes with ideas that are everywhere (see the idea box above) or the dozens of stories that are in various stages on my computer.

Who is your favorite author or favorite book?  I have 1,368 books on my Kindle and at least six dozen physical books in my office. Can there be one favorite author or one favorite book? Should there be? There is a book for every mood and every stage of life. This explains why I am a big fan of keepers.

However, in the nonfiction realm, my favorite memoir is by Mary Higgins Clark’s. It’s called Kitchen Privileges. Ms. Clark is 91 years old, and she is still publishing. I want to be her when I grow up.

Anything you want to brag about?  Oh, yes. I am a collector of useless trivia. I also have somewhat of a photographic memory in small bites. This makes me a good person to bring along to a party for meaningless chit-chat.

Now for the important questions:

Pepsi or Coke?   Sorry, neither. I drink sparkling water. I am, in fact, a sparkling water addict.

Candy, cookies, or cake?    Is this really a fair question? All of the above. I didn’t get this round figure by limiting my intake choices.

Coffee or Tea?  Interesting question. I used to bring my own carafe of coffee to work for years to ensure I received enough of the good stuff. I never drank tea. Now, I am an equal opportunity caffeinated beverage imbiber. I love coffee, especially Arbuckle brand with a splash of half-and-half. However, I also love dirty chai and a good matcha.

Favorite vacation?   I don’t vacation. I go to conferences and visit my kids. The ideal decadence, which I have only experienced a few times in my life, is a hotel room with lots of books and room service.

 Favorite TV show?  Too many to count. But I don’t like to be held hostage by a weekly show. I prefer binging a season as a writing reward. Currently, I am binging In Plain Sight, which is free for Amazon Prime. It’s about a sarcastic female WITSEC Inspector with a dysfunctional family. I love this show.

Any hobbies? Pets? Hobbies?  I collect cookbooks and don’t cook. I am fascinated with chefs. Current obsessions include Flynn McGarry who is a culinary prodigy and Christina Tosi, the owner of Milk Bar.

Ask me about my cat. Or better yet, follow me on Instagram and I will tell you. @tinaradcliffe

Tina Radcliffe:  A freelance writer for over twenty years, Tina Radcliffe is an RWA and ACFW Honor Roll member, a two-time RWA Golden Heart finalist, and a three-time ACFW Carol Award nominee.  She is a 2018 ACFW Mentor of the Year recipient and a 2014 Carol Award winner. Her 11th book for Harlequin Love Inspired, Her Last Chance Cowboy, released in February 2019.  In addition to novel-length fiction, Tina has sold over three dozen short stories to Woman’s World Magazine. A former library cataloger, Tina is a frequent presenter on writing topics and an online instructor. She currently resides in Arizona, where she writes fun, heartwarming romance. Visit her on the web at https://www.tinaradcliffe.com/

Twitter   https://twitter.com/TMRadcliffe

Facebook   https://www.facebook.com/tinaradcliffeauthor/

Instagram  https://www.instagram.com/tinaradcliffe/

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/tinamradcliffe/

Webpage  http://www.tinaradcliffe.com/

Check out Tina’s latest: A Cowboy’s Second Chance

The last person cowboy Joe Gallagher thought he’d see on his ranch was high school sweetheart Rebecca Anshaw Simpson. Twelve years after she married another man, she’s back as his physical therapist. But healing his body is nothing compared to guarding his heart from the woman he never forgot. There’s much the single mom would rather forget, but Becca won’t let regret and a surly rancher get in the way of her job and the chance to start over with her little girl. She has only a few weeks to make peace with her past. But Becca never expected she’d fall all over again for her first love.

 

Tina, thank you so much for joining us and for all the fun giveaways.

Join me next month for a giveaway and interview with Laurel Blount.

Interview with Patricia Bradley

Patricia's memePlease welcome Patricia Bradley!!

TO ENTER GIVEAWAY:  Sign-up for my newsletter or follow my blog. Already signed up? Leave a message for Patricia.

Where did you get the idea for Justice Delivered? A volunteer from Advocates for Freedom came to our church and spoke about human trafficking. I had no idea it was so prevalent and knew right then and there I had to write about it.

How long does it take you to write a novel? Usually about four to six months.

Who’s your all-time favorite character? That’s like asking me which one of my children I like the best! I usually like the character I’ve just finished writing about best. So that means I like Carly best…oh, wait! I just finished the first book in the Natchez Park Rangers…so maybe I like Brooke best!

I heard you had a new release on April 5th. Do tell!: Ah, yes. Justice Delivered just released!

Carly Smith came by her trust issues honestly. A victim of sex trafficking, she’s been at the mercy of merciless men, ignored by law enforcement officers who should have helped her, and seemingly rejected by her family. She can’t even trust herself to do the right thing. Though she escaped her captors and is working hard on building a new life, the past continues to haunt her when she discovers that the man she couldn’t bring herself to report to police for fear of reliving her captivity is still out there, luring vulnerable girls under the guise of being a modeling agent.

When her own niece is kidnapped, Carly must overcome her fears and come forward with the information she has before it’s too late. When that proves to be not enough, she’ll have to go after the perpetrators herself.

Tell us a little bit about your typical day. I usually get up between five-thirty and six and grab a cup of coffee on my way to the computer. After I’ve written 500 words, I stop for breakfast and my quiet time, usually around 8:30. Then it’s back to the computer until I have my word count for the day. That varies, depending on where I am in the story. At the beginning, I’m happy if I get a 1000 words. But once I have the beginning, I shoot for 2000 words a day…or 10,000 words a week. I usually break around five to go to Pilates or water aerobics, then come home and make supper. If I’ve reached my word count, then I take it easy until bedtime. If not I go back work. The next day I start all over again.

When did you start writing? When I was thirty-five. These people came to live in my head and wouldn’t go away until I told their stories.

When did you receive your first book contract? October 12, 2012.

What is the hardest part about being an author? How long it takes! Publishing is so slow. From the time I turn my book in, it’s another 12 months before it comes out.

Who is your favorite author? You’re trying to get me in trouble, aren’t you? Any of the great suspense writers.

What is your favorite book? Exodus by Leon Uris

Anything you want to brag about? God has blessed me more than I could have ever imagined. All I wanted was one book published, but He had other ideas!

Now for the important questions:

Pepsi or Coke?   Depends on whether I’m craving something extra sweet. If I am it’s Pepsi, if not it’s Coke.

Candy, cookies, or cake?  Candy

Favorite food? Other than Brussels Sprouts, I haven’t met a food I didn’t like.

Coffee or Tea? Both. Coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon.

Favorite vacation?   What’s that?

Favorite TV show?  Right now it would be Broadchurch—the BBC version.

Favorite Movie?.  I Can Only Imagine

Any hobbies or pets? I’m a potter and love to throw mud on a wheel and see what happens. I also like to make jewelry from my porcelain clay. And I have two rescue kitties—Suzy and Tux. And maybe another one if we don’t find a home for her.

THANK YOU, PATRICIA!!

Patricia Bradley is a 2018 Carol finalist and winner of an Inspirational Readers’ Choice Award in Suspense, she lives in North Mississippi with her rescue kitties, Suzy and Tux. Her romantic suspense books include the Logan Point series and the Memphis Cold Case Novels. Justice Delivered, her fourth Cold Case Novel releases April 5, 2019. When she has time she likes to throw mud on a wheel and see what happens.

Follow Patricia:

Blog: http://www.patriciabradleyauthor.com/blog

Twitter: @ptbradley1

FaceBook: www.facebook.com/patriciabradleyauthor

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/ptbradley/

Follow me on BookBub for the latest releases and specials:

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/patricia-bradley

Thanks again, Patricia, for joining us!

Please join me in May for a Giveaway and Interview with Tina Radcliffe!