Monday, January 30, 2012

Book Review Sisters: Monday Morning Musings: Don't Judge A Book By Its ...

While I'm working away at galleys for Love's Reckoning, I thought I'd share some posts from other blogs I found interesting. Thanks, Helen!

Book Review Sisters: Monday Morning Musings: Don't Judge A Book By Its ...: It's an age old saying, and everyone understands the premise behind it.  But, it's a proverb that's rarely put into practice.  Particularly...

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Before the Scarlet Dawn: At last comes the novel readers have been waiting ...

Before the Scarlet Dawn: At last comes the novel readers have been waiting ...: At last comes the novel readers have been waiting for. Book 1 in the long awaited 'Daughters of the Potomac Series' by author friend Rita Gerlach...

Please click on the link above to read more about this new release set in the 18th-century ~

Happy reading!

Friday, January 27, 2012


There is no music during a musical rest, but the rest is part of the making of the music. In the melody of our life, the music is separated here and there by rests. During those rests, we foolishly believe we have come to the end of the song. God sends us times of forced leisure by allowing sickness, disappointed plans, and frustrated efforts. He brings a sudden pause in the choral hymn of our lives, and we lament that our voices must be silent.

God does not write the music of our lives without a plan. Our part is to learn the tune and not be discouraged during the rests. If we will only look up, God Himself will count the time for us. With our eyes on Him, our next note will be full and clear. If we sorrowfully say to ourselves, "There is no music in a rest," let us not forget that the rest is part of the making of the music. The process is often slow and painful in this life, yet how patiently God works to teach us! And how long He waits for us to learn the lesson!

~John Ruskin, 1818-1900

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

oh JOY!

Funny what a mere 24 hours can bring! Things like galleys and NEW BOOK COVERS and such:) Yep, I received the final design for Love's Reckoning late yesterday and was pleasantly blown away! In fact, I was so excited I had a hard time sleeping last night, kind of like a little kid. But it was the best kind of sleep deprived to be!

I wanted to announce the news here so any serious cover spotting can begin. Don't know when it will appear, or just where, but now it will happen. Soon. And I have an Amazon gift card here for the first one who finds it online and emails me.

This morning I showed it to my mom who said, "She looks so real I keep thinking I can touch her if I just reach out my hand." But no spoilers!! I will say it's a beautiful glimpse into the heart of the book. This heroine is the most lifelike of all so far. A thousand thanks to Revell's art team and designer Brandon Hill for getting it right:)

Then today, like icing on the cake, the galleys for Love's Reckoning came. WOOT! I love reading through the editorial comments, especially when I spy a smiley face or two:) I'll be offline till February 14 or so, polishing the book to a high shine for you. Prayers appreciated. If things are going well, I'll sneak in a devotional post or two. And that cover, if you find it;)

See you soon!

Monday, January 23, 2012

lael sets sail



Here are a couple of photos for us sun-deprived folks, compliments of my friend, Hannah. She's sailing the high seas in the Caribbean right now...with Lael! We've had so much snow here of late - lots of swirling white stuff and wind and ice. So imagine my delight when she snapped these photos a few days ago and warmed me right up:)

I've been wanting to do a post on Hannah's family, the Millers, as they have the most amazing ministry. When she sent me the pics I knew the time had come. Hannah is a writer and avid reader who's just revamped her blog beautifully and somehow manages to stay on top of things while sailing with her family and sometimes making landfall in Canada and the U.S.

They have a marine-based ministry delivering vital cargo such as Bibles, clothing, food and other supplies to faithful coworkers in Christ who minister to many, often the very needy. They really are Christ's hands and feet and I love following them on their travels. Never a dull moment aboard their boat! Just read their newsletters/updates and you'll find out.

I think Lael looks quite happy at sea! Hannah has read TFD more than once so it means a lot that she cared enough to bring Lael along this time. But she's like that:) Love you, Hannah!

If you'd like to learn more about their family and ministry, please send them your email info at Prayers are so appreciated as they continue their much needed work.

Is there a missionary who has inspired you, past or present? Ever been on a missions trip? If not, where would you like to go? 

*I'm trying to implement the new Blogger comment thread today so we'll see if it works. If there are no comments, I guess it's not!

Friday, January 20, 2012


It's always fun to celebrate releases with author friends. Highland Crossings is just out and combines all the elements I love - Scotland, immigration, the 18th-century, North Carolina, kilts and lasses and more;) You have four distinct stories in one volume.

The book trailer follows here so I'll hush and let it happen;)

Have a wonderful weekend!

And happy reading...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

more whitefield...

I lose nothing by being quiet and leaving all to Him.

True and undefiled religion does not take away but greatly enhances the comforts of life.

I have no thoughts of settling till I settle in glory.

When a soul is turned to God, every day is a Sabbath, every meal is a spiritual refreshment, and every sentence he speaks should be a sermon.

~George Whitefield 1714~1770

Monday, January 16, 2012

book bliss

I'd love to hear what state of book bliss you're in;) Feel free to tell what you last read, what you're reading now, and what's next, if you like. We all benefit!

Guess I'll begin...

I just finished HEIRESS by Susan May Warren. Am now reading THE ROSE GARDEN by Susanna Kearsley. I hope to read GIVING by Melissa Lester (non-fiction) and A MOST UNSUITABLE MATCH by Stephanie Grace Whitson next. I won't bore you with research books!

Your turn!

And happy reading to you!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

the joy of courtship

I think courtship is so very important, even between the pages of a novel. It's critical not to rush things of the heart. Here's a quote I love from the 18th-century author of Tristam Shandy (remember Colonel McLinn recommending this book to Roxanna and her raised brows?) - well, Laurence Sterne wrote, "Courtship consists in a number of quiet attentions, not so pointed as to alarm, nor so vague as not to be understood."

Why courtship is so important is explored a bit by an author in the general market on a blog I recently came across. See if you agree:) I believe it's worth pondering...The Heroine Addicts: Getting to Know You

Happy writing!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Comfort, comfort, my people, says your God. ~Isaiah 40:1

Store up comfort. The world is full of hurting and comfortless hearts. But before you will be competent for this lofty ministry, you must be trained. And your training is extremely costly, for to make it complete, you too must endure the same afflictions that are wringing countless hearts of tears and blood. Consequently your own life becomes the hospital ward where you are taught the divine art of comfort. You will be wounded so that in the binding up of your wounds by the Great Physician, you may learn how to render first aid to the wounded everywhere...God comforts us not to make us comfortable but to make us comforters.

~Streams in the Desert

Monday, January 9, 2012

a book begins...

A book begins with falling in love. You lose your heart to a place, a house, an avenue of trees, or with a character who walks in and takes complete possession of you. Imagination glows and there is the seed of your book.
~Elizabeth Goudge

I'm in the midst of writing book 2 of The Ballantyne Legacy and it's quite a thrill:) Yesterday I scribbled down all the characters filling my head and heart. Hmmm. This new cast has 20 and I'm not done counting! Some are minor but necessary. When you move from the frontier to more civilized locales, more people pop up. More of them to love, I guess...

I think this image by Brandon Hill, photographer/designer is so beautiful and evocative. It's on the back cover of Rose's Pledge, a colonial novel that released this month. He's also the designer for Love's Reckoning. I hope you're still looking for that cover! I certainly am:)

Recently someone asked me the impetus or "seed" behind the books I've published. Here goes...

The Frontiersman's Daughter - Growing up in Kentucky, I often wondered what it would have been like being the daughter of Daniel Boone. He had several children, including adopted children, but his favorite daughter was said to be Jemima. My cousins and I used to dress up colonial-style and pretend to be Boone and his family, right down to the turkey shoot (the turkey was my little brother;)

Courting Morrow Little - I've read countless captivity stories since childhood and have always been especially intrigued by the tales of captives who didn't want to return to the white world but remained with the Indians. Some of the most interesting, heartfelt reader mail I've received since Morrow released is from descendants of captives.

The Colonel's Lady - If you've read the author note at the beginning of the book, you'll know it was infatuation with George Rogers Clark that led me to write this novel. George was the brother of William who was a leader of the famed Lewis & Clark expedition. Those Clark boys were natural heroes! And that flame-red hair didn't hurt;)

Love's Reckoning - There was a custom among 18th-century gunsmith apprentices to marry into the master gunsmith's family in America. This also extended to other trades during that time period. Marrying for love was still considered a novel concept. My gunsmith had to switch to another trade but I won't tell you which one he finds himself in - you'll just have to read the book!

If you're writing a book, what led you to write your story? If you've ever thought about writing a book, what would you write and why?

Friday, January 6, 2012

Seriously Write: Ask O: How Do I Give My Manuscript that Special Zi...

As we move into the new year, I thought I'd post some articles about writing that I find especially savvy or helpful for those of you who read this blog and are writers. I'll keep comments closed here in case you want to comment over there. Or just read and enjoy! Bless you!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

a little loveliness

I think the best thing about being an author is meeting people you wouldn't know otherwise. And sometimes the people are so lovely you can't keep them to yourself:) Melissa Lester is one of them. Not long ago she read Courting Morrow Little which she's hosting for her winter book club selection. When I found this out I visited her website and blog and oh my!

She's an author, too, and has written a wonderful book that embodies her ministry, Giving for All It's Worth. Melissa is all about giving. If you spend even a few minutes at her site you'll discover the Lord has given her the gift of hospitality. Four beautiful children. And oodles of creativity!

Another reader said to me recently, "I'm inspired and made glad when I look at beautiful things." Me, too. This wonderful book and handmade velvet bookmark came at a time when I needed them most. I was in want of a little loveliness as there had been some things happening in my world that weren't so lovely. I felt the Lord reminding me He can create beauty from ashes and the oil of joy from mourning. And He has!

I hope you'll be inspired and made glad if you visit Melissa, too.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

a good and blessed year

The land you are to take possession of is a land of mountains and valleys that drinks rain from heaven. It is a land the Lord your God cares for; the eyes of the Lord your God are continually on it from the beginning of the year to its end. (Deuteronomy 11: 11-12)

We stand at the threshold of the unknown. Before us lies a new year, and we are going forward to take possession of it. Who knows what we will find? What new experiences or changes will come our way? What new needs will arise? In spite of the uncertainty before us, we have a cheerful and comforting message from our heavenly Father.

Yet the land we are to possess is a land of valleys and hills. It is not all flat or downhill. If life were always smooth and level, the boring sameness would weigh us down. We need the valleys and the hills. It is the difficulty encountered on the hills that drives us to the throne of grace and brings the showers of blessing.

We cannot see what loss, sorrow, and trials are accomplishing. We need only to trust. The Father comes to take our hand and lead us on our way today. It will be a good and blessed new year!

~Streams in the Desert

Sunday, January 1, 2012

happy new year!

Another year!

I love the word JOYFUL in the image here. That's certainly my wish for all of us as the days of 2012 unfold.

2011 was a bit of a blur -mostly a blessing - with some challenges thrown in for equal measure. Sometimes I feel like this this... Beth Moore always says it best:

Do you ever feel your life has been a frazzled string of highs and lows? I've lived so much of my life in the extremes. I seem to find myself in the valley or on the mountain as often as in between. Sometimes I feel like I'm doing the splits...!" (Beth Moore: David/Seeking a Heart Like His).

I'm not sure what the coming year holds but it's begun very quietly with a little southern flair. I ushered the New Year in with a double batch of Hopping John and am reading Heiress by Susan May Warren. OH MY! What a book! Never a wasted word. And it's quite true to life which I like very much. No sugarcoated history for me;)

For now I'm expecting galleys for Love's Reckoning along with that new cover. And, as I turn the corner on another year and mark 4 years of blogging, I honestly feel like I don't have anything left to say! Some of you blog beautifully and faithfully and I'm just amazed and touched by your commitment. I think I'm going to have less of an online presence as my plate gets a bit fuller in future.

Several of you have asked when my new website will be up and running. I'd hoped to have it in place by now but my web designer has been overwhelmed so it's been delayed. The new design is beautiful and dovetails beautifully with my upcoming series so it will be worth the wait, or so I hope! Having a new look (with several pages instead of just one) is something I'm looking forward to very much and I hope you like the finished product when it's...well, finished.

Anyway, I've been thinking of some of the things I wish I could do this year, aside from books, that is...

Here's my wish list:

*Learn to play the harp or violin
*Read as many books as my friend, Becky, at her wonderful blog(s).
*Run a 10k instead of walking a few measly miles a day
*Return to England and visit Scotland, the land of my upcoming hero's birth

Notice I said wish;)!

Actually, my heart's wish is to know Him better and better, lay my writing at His feet, and trust Him more. As Susie May says in the dedication of Heiress, "For your glory, Lord." Amen.

What's your heart's wish/resolution(s) for 2012?