Sunday, November 28, 2010



Sunday, November 21, 2010





Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Review And Give Away for Mirrored Image by Alice K. Arenz

Another great interview and give away for the month of November. I want you to welcome Alice K. Arenz as a guest on my blog. Alice has written several cozy mysteries The Case of the Bouncing Grandma and The Case of the Mystified M.D.

Today we are going to be talking about Alice's latest book Mirrored Image, a romantic suspense. First let me tell you a little bit about Alice:

A.K. Arenz.jpg

2010 ACFW Carol Award winning author, Alice K. Arenz author of October 2010 suspense Mirrored Image has been writing since she was a child. Her earliest publication was in a small, family-owned newspaper where her articles, essays, and poems were frequently included. In the mid-90s, her writing earned her a stent with a well known New York literary agency, and although it failed to produce the hoped for results, her determination to become published eventually led her to Sheaf House Publishing.

Arenz also writes cozy mysteries under A. K. Arenz. The Case of the Bouncing Grandma,was a finalist in the 2009 American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year contest. the second in the Bouncing Grandma Series, The Case of the Mystified M. D., won the 2010 ACFW Carol Award for mystery. She lives in Missouri with her husband and two Himalayan cats.

Mirrored Image Cover.jpg

Back Cover of Mirrored Image: Their faces were the same. Will their fates be as well. The uncanny resemblance between eccentric newspaper columnist Cassandra Chase and a murder victim gives Detective Jeff MacMichael's the haunting suspicion that there is a link between the two women. As he is increasingly drawn to Cassie, a rash of attacks leads him to conclude she was the murderer's real mark -- and to wonder if he can keep her alive.

My take: For those of you who have read my blog in the past you know that my favorite genre is mysteries. Out of the genre of mysteries cozies would be my favorite. Next and certainly not least would be romantic suspense. Just by reading the back cover of Mirrored Image you get a sense of tension and suspense. I think Alice did a wonderful job jumping from writing cozy mysteries to writing a fast-paced suspense. Anyone who decides to read Mirrored Image will not be disappointed.

Alice thank you so much for be a guest on Butterfly Journey.

1. I know you have written Christian Cozies in the past. What made you decide to try Suspense this time. Actually, I’d always written mystery/suspense. It was the cozies that were the “new” thing for me---and the one that got my foot in the door of Sheaf House.

2. How did you come up with your plot and your characters for "Mirrored Image"?

I don’t really have an answer for that other than God. I don’t consciously look for a plot or characters---I’m totally a seat-of-the-pants author. Um . . . that might be better explained as a listener/obeyer (is that a word?) writer. I’ve always felt that God – through the Holy Spirit – reveals bits and pieces of plot and character. After they rumble around in my head for a while, they start demanding to be let out. That’s when the writing starts – and the surprises.

I know that doesn’t answer your question, but it’s the way it happens for me.

3. What is your next novel about (and title)? An American Gothic

You told me there is a butterfly theme in your upcoming novel, can you tell us a little about this or will we just have to wait and see? I believe that butterflies are a very unique and wonderful creature. Beyond that, I wouldn’t want to spoil the story.

4. As an aspiring/struggling writer would you please give some advice to all of us with a goal of being published someday?

I always say that the best advice is to be sure this is really something you not only want to do, but that you truly feel that God is leading you to write. If the answer to both of these is “yes,” then go for it. Learn all you can, read everything in the genre(s) you want to write, attend conferences and meet authors and others waiting to be discovered, and pray. Above all, pray. It’s not an easy road. Even after you get published, there may be bumps and bruises along the way. But if this is where God is calling you to be, and you feel it deep inside, then never, ever give up. And you know what? I continue to remind myself of this every single day.

Now to enter the giveaway:

1. You must be a follower or sign up as a new follower. Also, this giveaway is limited to those living in the US. Please leave an email address.

2. Have you read sub-genres in mysteries such as cozies, romantic suspense, suspense, thriller, etc.

3. Visit Alice's website and check it out.

4. The contest will end on 11/28/2010.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Giveaway from Vicki McDonough

I am so excited to have as a guest on my blog for November, Vicki McDonough, author of Anonymous Bride and Second Chance Brides as well as many other books. I have read both of these books and throughly enjoyed them. There were many times I laughed out loud at the antics taking place. I think you will, too.

Vicki has graciously donated one of her books A Bride by Christmas as a giveaway. With Christmas just around the corner this will be a great read. Lets get started with the interview:

1. Can you tell me how you decided on this series? I was trying to come up with an idea for a new book and started asking "what if" questions. The one that stuck in my mind was: What if a mail-order bride arrives in town to marry a man who never ordered a bride? Then I wondered how I could take that situation and make it worse, so I ask myself: What if three mail-order brides showed up in town expecting to marry the same man, only he hadn't ordered a bride. I wondered how something like that could happen and if it did, what would the man do about it? The wheels of my mind kept turning--and I brainstormed ideas with my critique partners--and that's how The Anonymous Bride was born.

What about the characters and plot? I knew that there would need to be some "sidekick" characters in this book--the ones who actually ordered the brides and decided they would be my hero's cousins, two men who grew up with him in the same small Texas town. I wanted a hurting hero who'd been jilted big time and was now skittish toward women. And then I set up the poor guy with more brides than he could use. It was a lot of fun. :)

2. Is there going to be another book in the series after "Second Chance Brides"? Yes, Finally A Bride is the third and final book in the Texas Boardinghouse Brides series. It tells the story of Jack, the tomboy girl whose story thread runs through the first two books. She is now grown up but that doesn't keep her from making impulsive choices that backfire and get her into all kinds of weird circumstances. Enter the man who has the guts and where-with-all to tame her. Readers will also see the return of a past character or two from previous books. Finally A Bride releases in April.

Are you working on anything else? Yes, I'm currently writing the second book in a historical series set in South Carolina. The first book, Mutiny of the Heart, releases in December. It's the story of a woman who travels from Canada to deliver a young boy(after the boy's mother has died) to his father--a wealthy Charleston ship builder--but the man never knew of the boy and claims it's impossible for the child to be his.

Also, here's some exciting new news--I'll be writing a prairie romance series for Guideposts called Whispers on the Prairie. This will be for a new line of books, and the first book, Light of a Silent Dawn, will release next fall.

3. I love the humor in your books. What made you decide to use humor? Humor comes natural to me. My dad was a big joker and loved to tease and pull pranks on people. He loved to laugh, and I'm glad that I inherited part of his funny bone. I think it's taken me a while to catch my stride in writing and learning to use humor. It's a hard thing to write, because humor is very selective. What one person sees as funny might just offend someone else. But I love to read funny things in books and try to give my readers something to laugh at in each story I write.

4. As an aspiring author I always like to ask guest authors what advice they have for us still plugging along on our manuscripts. Take the time you need to develop your craft and don't be in a rush to get published. I'm using parts of the third book I ever wrote in a story I'm now working on. It's roughly the same concept--a story about a man who has been raised to believe that family is the most important thing next to God. It's so important to him that he would deny himself the love of his life because he fell for the woman his brother is engaged to. When I first wrote this book, I thought it was fabulous I just knew an editor was going to scoop it up the minute it came across his/her desk. Well, not so. It got rejected and never found a home. Six years later, I realize this plot is perfect for the story I'm now wanting to write. So, I thought I'd polish it up a bit and viola! I have an easy book. Not so. My stomach is turning as I re-read it. The romance is so gushy, the dialogue so immature, the descriptions so over-the-top. It was a real eye-opener. I've grown so much as a writer since I wrote this that my own story was nauseating. If I judged this book in a contest, it would have gotten a mediocre score. The plot was good, but the writing definitely needed work. Looking back, I can see how God protected me in not letting this book get published back then, but at the time, I was heart broken. It's interesting how our perspective can change over time. What I though was the next great novel--wasn't. Only writing and more writing and studying the craft can make you a better writer. You only got one shot to pitch your book to an editor, so don't get in a hurry and take the time you need to develop your craft.

Thanks so much for having me as a guest today!

Vickie McDonough

Thank you Vicki for being our guest. Now here are a few housekeeping things you need to do to enter for the book:

1. Be a follower or sign up as a follower. Please leave an email address so I can contact you if you win.

2. What time period do you like to read about the most?

3. Do you enjoy humor in the books you read?

4. Now, go on over to Vicki's website and check out all of the fantastic books she has written and learn a little more about Vicki.

The giveaway will end on November 20th.
Thank you to all of my followers. I appreciate your support more than you know!



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