Showing posts with label Texas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Texas. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

An Interview with Award-winning Author, Lena Nelson Dooley

I'm excited to have as my guest today multi-published author and gracious mentor to many, Lena Nelson Dooley. In 2006, my first year of studying writing and submitting my work, Lena blessed me by doing a critique of my first chapter while we both attended an American Christian Fiction Writer's (ACFW) conference. I purchased one of her books and have been her fan ever since. I highly recommend her blog (  http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com ) for inspiration, knowledge, and fun. She's known for her fantastic author interviews.


Today, I get to interview her.


Tell us a little about yourself.


I'm a wife, a mom, a grandma, and a great grandma. My family is very important to me, and now they all live closeby. I've been married to the love of my life for over half a century. We'll celebrate our 51st anniversary in November. And I write Christian novels.


Tell us about your writing journey.

When I started writing novels in 1984, there were no writing groups around that I knew about. God has led me all the way. He put people in my path when I needed to know about something. It took 8 years to get my first book published, then 10 years before the second, but now there are over 30 different books out there with my name on them. 


Did you ever feel like giving up?  And how did you press through this?


Yes. During those first 8 years, and even during the next 10, I questioned if I was doing what I was supposed to do. God had used several events in May 1984 to tell me to become a professional writer. (You can read the testimony on my web site: www.lenanelsondooley.com on the About Me tab.) When I would get discouraged, I traveled in my memory to that time. It sustained me.


What gave you the idea for this book? What is the book about?


http://www.janetkbrown.com/2015/09/an-interview-with-award-winning-author.htmlThe book we're featuring is A Texas Christmas. It's a novella collection with novellas by myself and 5 other award-winning authors. My story is Charlsey's Accountant. Here are the titles with blurbs from the back of the book:


Six Romances from the Historic Lone  Star  State

Herald the Season of Love

Here Cooks the Bride by Cathy Marie Hake - Lacey Mather's delicious cooking is warming many hearts and stomachs--especially those of a closed-mouth blacksmith. But she has no plans to stay in Texas

A Christmas Chronicle by Pamela Griffin - Travis McCoy is a nomadic photographer with no time to put down roots, find a wife, and raise a family. But then he meets the unconventional Vivian Sager.

To Hear Angels Sing by Ramona Cecil - Bridget O'Keefe leaves Chicago to teach Indian orphans and quickly experiences the hostility the Comanche face from locals like Seth Krueger who blame then for the death of his parents.

The Face of Mary by Darlene Franklin - Mary "Polly" Jessup holds onto a promise of marriage made five years ago, but when Joey Carpenter returns from law school with a new outlook and a new girlfriend, her future hopes are dashed.

Charlsey’s Accountant by Lena Nelson Dooley - Charlsey Ames can rope, ride, and work the ranch with the men and never thought she's be attracted to accountant Harold Miller, III, a citified tenderfoot.

Plain Trouble by Kathleen Y’Barbo - An expert tracker, the plain Bessie Mae Ames is content unmarried, until Texas Ranger Josef Mueller tides into town, trailing a wanted man. 


How do you feel this book will encourage people in their walk with Christ, or did you have something in mind like this when you wrote it?

Every book I write I like to show people how the characters can deal with their problems with the help of the Lord. I hope the book will encourage them to seek Him in their own problems. 


What’s your favorite vacation spot?

Galveston Island on the Texas coast 


If you could be a song, what would it be?


Zach Neese, a worship pastor at Gateway Church in Texas where I'm a member, wrote a song "The More I Seek You." I've told Zach that he writes the songs my heart feels. This one especially. Here's a link to a YouTube video of Kari Jobe singing the song: https://youtu.be/NI_1YliutzA 


Where can your readers find you?

I'm on a lot of places online:


Where can your books be purchased?

Many of them can be found in Christian bookstores, some in Walmart occasionally. But all of the books I've written are on Amazon.



Award-winning author Lena Nelson Dooley has had more than 800,000 copies of her books sold. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and the local chapter, ACFW - DFW. She’s a member of Christian Authors’ Network and Gateway Church in Southlake , Texas .

She has been on both the CBA Bestseller list and several Amazon Bestseller lists. Her 2010 release Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico, from Summerside Press, won the 2011 Will Rogers Medallion Award for excellence in publishing Western Fiction. Her next series, McKenna’s Daughters: Maggie’s Journey appeared on a reviewers Top Ten Books of 2011 list. It also won the 2012 Selah award for Historical Novel. The second, Mary’s Blessing, was a Selah Award finalist for Romance novel. Catherine’s Pursuit released in 2013. It was the winner of the NTRWA Carolyn Reader’s Choice contest, took second place in the CAN Golden Scroll Novel of the Year award, and won the Will Rogers Medallion bronze medallion. Her blog, A Christian Writer’s World, received the Readers Choice Blog of the Year Award from the Book Club Network.

In addition to her writing, Lena is a frequent speaker at women’s groups, writers groups, and at both regional and national conferences. She has spoken in six states and internationally. She is also one of the co-hosts of the Along Came a Writer blog radio show.

Lena has an active web presence on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Linkedin and with her internationally connected blog where she interviews other authors and promotes their books.

Thank you, Lena, for stopping by for a visit on Writing with God's Hope blog.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Faith, Hope, and Love at Red River, New Mexico

 "Faith, Hope, and Love - That's what this center was built on." One woman active in Red River's Community House said this at the anniversary celebration.

We spent a week in cool Red River, New Mexico and arrived just in time to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Community House. How exciting! We learned that people from our hometown of Wichita Falls, TX. were instrumental in starting Red River's Community House.

Five people met. Two were from Enid, Okla., one was from Oklahoma City, and two were from Wichita Falls, TX. These five began a program to attract new tourists to the beautiful mountain hideaway. The flooring for the initial log cabin was made out of wood from the J.C. Penney store in Wichita Falls, after it burned. The first meeting, held on August 9, 1940 was a worship service.

Families were bound together by love of family, love of their country, love of God, and love of their adopted town, Red River. The log cabin was enlarged or improved nine times in the last seventy-five years. People flocked to the singings, the classes, and the church services. As a writer, I found it interesting that their first project was a book review. Sunday school visitors grew, often having their classes outside. These students now bring their kids and grandkids to enjoy the Community House activities.

Red River Community House today
Today, the building houses daily events that appeal to tourists and home folk alike, A banner is run across the front to let everyone know what's happening there that day. Though staff is hired to run the place, it's volunteers that make it possible to continue. Many volunteer for jobs including moving tables and chairs to create a ballroom into church seating. Volunteers teach lots of activities from boat building to quilting to Sunday school classes. Some pass around offering plates. Others clean up the kitchen. Without the hundreds of volunteers, the place could not keep going.

Young & old (me) alike learn new line dances
I line danced there on Saturday night. We went to church services there on Sunday morning. Then, Sunday night was a country music sing-along. After seventy-five years, the community center's purposes are still family fun, worshipping God, and learning more about the area.

We camped in Roadrunner RV Park





We took our RV and had a wonderful vacation in the Rocky Mountains of northern New Mexico. How neat to be a part of something begun so long ago that fosters things I believe in. I pray Red River's Community House continues for seventy-five more years.



For information on the activities at the Community House, go to: http://www.redrivercommunityhouse.org/activities/


Who of you out there have gone to the Community House in Red River, New Mexico? Did you feel the faith, hope, and love of the area?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Is Wichita Falls haunted?

This Weird Wednesday, while I'm waiting for the release of my new YA, I got to wondering if my home town, Wichita Falls, TX had a ghost legend? To my surprise, it does. Here's what I found out about it.

A hang-out for a group of boys fifty years ago, brought about the ghost legend of Pinky's Cave. The spooky tunnel is actually a three-mile concrete drainage ditch that snakes under neighborhood streets between Ardath and Kell Boulevard. Running clear under Kell, it was built by the city of Wichita Falls in the 1960s to prevent flooding in the Brook Village area. A teenager by the name of Robin Pinkman lived near there then and claimed the tunnel as his own, forever branding it as Pinky's Cave.
Photo by Claire Kowalick was featured in the Wichita Falls Times Record News on 4/10/2010

Reading about that reminded me of two things. One: As a teenager along with my cousins, I explored a concrete drainage ditch in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas. What fun, what mystery, what carelessness. Two: one of my favorite authors, Bonnie Lanthripe, wrote the middle-grade book, The Ringleader, about teen boys who solve the mystery of the drainage ditch in their home town. I could envision ghosts in a tunnel like the one where I played.

Pinkman, who is now a local teacher and rancher, says he remembers the ditch as being his and his neighbor friend's private clubhouse. They often spent the night there and told ghost stories. Now, I never had the nerve to do that. Of course, my aunt wouldn't have let us, anyway.

The boys told one tale of a man who lived in the cave and would "get you" if he found out that you doubted. The roar of the wind and the rumblings of cars overhead created echoes and thumps that complemented the made-up stories. Sometimes, the boys hid in the drain pipes built into the tunnel and would jump out and scare the girls.

In the tornado of 1979 that blew away much of Wichita Falls, many people were saved by hiding in the ditch. My husband and I moved to the city two years after this storm. I still remember the fear exhibited by the residents every time a strange cloud would form.

Nowadays, the entrance to Pinky's Cave is heavily spray-painted. Lewd words and drawings sprawl across the walls belying the early-time innocence. In the days of drugs and gangs, neighbors worry about what goes on in the under-the-street cave.

Still, many Wichitans remember the days of ghost tales and harmless fun and wonder if the ghost of Pinky's Cave is real.



Wednesday, February 4, 2015

A Ghost for Shelley

How would you react if you experienced ghostly happenings?

On Weird Wednesdays at Writing with God's Hope blog, we learn that a lot of people have stories to tell. In my upcoming young adult book, A Ghost for Shelley, Shelley refuses to believe in ghosts until so many scary things happen to her while working to clean the old McKinney, Texas courthouse, that she must face her fear.

Here's a excerpt from the book:

     Shelley scooted the washbasin on wheels from one room to the next. When she opened the dark room, she fumbled to find a light switch. The side wall was smooth and cold. She dropped her hand. She opened the door wider and felt against the wall on the other side. Something touched her. “Yow!” She flinched.

     “What’s wrong?” Dad called from the next room. “Are you okay?”

     When she yanked back her hand, a cobweb draped each finger. She wiped it on a rag hanging from her pocket. A cold sweat gave her a strange Saturday bath. Staring into the room’s blackness, she couldn’t see nor retreat. No sound escaped her closed throat

     Before she could relax, a squawk from the dark room sawed off her last nerve. She bolted and didn’t stop until she reached the elevator. She punched the button.

     Cranking from below, the elevator made its slow ascent.

     Dad came up beside her “Stop it, Shelley. Where do you think you’re going?”

     Bending at the waist, she panted and labored to calm her body and mind.

     Dad put his hand on her shoulder. “What happened?”

     “A … cob … web … squeak … scare …” Finally, her panting lessened. She gulped for oxygen. “When I tried to turn on the light in that room, I got cob webs on my hand. Then, I heard a squeak and got scared.”

     “You jump at everything. I never knew you to be a scaredy-cat.”

 
Are you a scaredy-cat?
A scoffer?
Or, a believer?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Ghosts at Denton, Texas?

Who knew?

I searched for new ghost tales.

Who knew I'd learn about one less than two hours from my home. Denton, Texas (just north of Dallas) boasts its own ghost tour of the courthouse that has a gravesite on the property. Author, Shelly Cumbie Tucker conducts tours at 8 p.m. every Friday and Saturday nights throughout the year, weather permitting. Ones interested are asked to meet her at Jupiter House Coffee to the east of the haunted courthouse. She tells us there are so many ghosts stories in Denton that she tells a different tale each tour.

Tucker has released a book called Ghosts of Denton. It is available on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Ghosts-Denton-history-mysteries-small/dp/1500190020/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1407858037&sr=8-1&keywords=ghosts+of+denton

Of course, you can buy a copy of the book when you take the scary but historical tour of downtown Denton in the dark.

Shelley Cumbie Tucker will be the featured speaker this year at the North Texas Book Festival in April. Now, that would be a good time for a ghost tour and look at books on the same day. A win-win.

I'm busy editing my latest YA in the ghost series, and researching other tales for a third book. I'm still looking for ghost stories. If you know one, leave me a comment, or e-mail me at Janet.hope@att.net



Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Welcome to Author Brandy Herr

On Weird Wednesday today, I welcome Brandy Herr, an author I met recently while visiting Granbury, Texas. This lovely, quaint town southwest of Fort Worth teems with history and ghost legends. (See my previous post on the ghost tour I took in Granbury on another visit).

The town was hosting an arts and crafts festival. My friend and I stopped by Brandy's booth, and I purchased her book. (Authors must support each other) Besides, the book tells of many strange happenings in Brandy's hometown.

I asked Brandy if I could interview her today, and she accepted. First something about Brandy for those who have not made her acquaintance.

Brandy Herr is the co-founder of the Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour and the annual Granbury Paranormal Expo.  In February 2014, her book, "Haunted Granbury," was released by The History Press as part of their Haunted America series.  She is a member of Research and Investigation of the Paranormal and has participated in several ghost hunt investigations in the Granbury area.  Born in the Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas area, Brandy attended the Pennsylvania State University where she received her Bachelor's degree in public relations.  She currently lives in Granbury with her husband, their rescued dog, and two rescued cats.

Now, to my questions for Brandy:

  1. Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever had a ghost experience? If so, tell us about it.


  1. I absolutely believe in ghosts.  Growing up, my family always had ghostly experiences occur to them, especially my grandmother.  She would see my granddaddy and other past relatives, she would get feelings about things that would turn out to be true, things like that.  I never started having experiences until I started getting older, which is unusual, since it's often more common for children to be susceptible to spirits.  I guess I just started noticing it more.  


The first real encounter I can think of was a few years back.  I was walking into a pizza restaurant while my mother waited in the car at the curb just a few feet away.  The restaurant was in a deserted strip mall, so no one was around.  The front wall was entirely made up of windows, and as I walked up to the door, I saw in the reflection behind me a woman about my age with her hair pulled back in a messy pony tail.  She was carrying a little girl with pig tails, around two years old, who was passed out asleep on her shoulder.  They were walking right behind me, obviously intending to enter the same restaurant I was.  So I reached the door, opened it, and stepped back to let them through first... only to find not a single person behind me.  I looked all around, but everything was empty.  For good measure, I went back to the car and asked my mother if she had seen the two walking behind me.  She said, "There is no one in this strip mall at all!"  

 
That was my first notable contact with a ghost.  Of course, since then I have had tons of experiences with my work on the Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour and with my ghost hunt investigations as a member of the team Research and Investigation of the Paranormal.
 
  • What caused you to write your book, Haunted Granbury?
 
My mother and I started the Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour in 2010.  We were working at a restaurant together located on Granbury's historic square.  We had numerous experiences with the ghost there, and people would come in asking to hear our stories.  One time, we were chatting with a couple of ladies, and they asked, "Does Granbury have a ghost tour here?"  That gave us the idea to start researching.  

 
Since we started doing the tour, I had toyed with the idea of making it into a book, but it kept fading to the back of my mind.  Then, I saw an ad from a publishing company saying they were looking for people to write books about local ghost stories.  Excitedly, I sent them an email, sure they were going to accept my idea.  Their response was, "Ehh... we don't think Granbury is a very good market for the book."  I wrote back and explained, "Granbury may be a small town, but it's a great tourist destination!  We are only about an hour from the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, and we have people coming from all over the country and joining us on our tour!"  The email replied, "Well, you can go ahead and write up a proposal and I will pitch it, but they are probably going to say no."  
 
 
 
So I got a bit discouraged.  Then, not even a month later, I got an email out of the blue from The History Press (a completely different publisher) saying, "Hello!  Would you like to write a book about the ghosts of Granbury?"  I said, "Well, as a matter of fact, I would!"  It turns out that a friend of the scout had joined us on a tour one evening, and she had suggested to her friend that she contact us.  I still had to draw up a formal proposal and get it approved, but luckily they said yes!  I am very happy with The History Press; they turned my book into a beautiful product and have been wonderful to work with, so it was quite the blessing that the first publisher turned me down!
 
 
  • Oh, I think all we authors understand about rejection, and you're right, sometimes it's a gift from God. Is this your first book? 
 
I have a children's book out, but am working on getting the rights back from the publisher, so I am not really pushing that one right now.
 
 
  •  I understand you run a tour for tourists in GranburyTexas. Tell us about it.
 
 
The Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour was started by my mother and me in April of 2010.  It's an hour-long walking tour around Granbury's historic downtown square.  We tell you the ghost stories, legends, and history of the different buildings.  Tours are Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:00 and at 9:15, or we can do private tours as available.  Tickets are $10 per adult and $7 for children 12 and under.  So far we have been featured on FOX 4's "Lone Star Adventures" and on NBC 5.  You can visit http://www.granburytours.com/ for more information.
 
  •  How did you research the history of your area?
 
 
  • When my mother and I got the idea from those ladies at the restaurant to start our tour, we immediately started researching, first by going door to door along the square asking the employees and business owners about their experiences.  We were amazed at what we found!  A common question I get when I promote the tour or the book is, "What buildings on the square are haunted?"  I reply, "Pretty much all of them!"  I then did supplemental research by looking in old newspaper and magazine articles as well as historical books of the area.  That's where I got the historical background, along with some added ghost stories as well!
 
  •  Do you plan on writing another book? If not, what lies ahead for you?
I have other books in the works, though so far not another ghost book.  Once I get the rights back to the one children's book, I hope to get that re-published, and I have several more in the series already written.  I have another children's book series started, and I'm hoping to get that one published soon.  There is another idea bouncing around in my head for a narrative non-fiction book, I just need to buckle down and start researching it.  So I really hope to further my writing career while continuing to build up the Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour.  I have also had numerous speaking engagements at various venues and conventions, so I'm hoping to increase my exposure in that manner as well.
 
  • Wow, another children's book writer that has a penchant for ghosts. I love it.
 
  •  What other career interests or hobbies do you enjoy?
As far as hobbies go, reading of course tops the list.  I also love anything nerdy; my husband and I collect old video game consoles and memorabilia, we love going to museums, and really just exploring anything we find unusual.  My other passion is animal rescue, and I am a huge supporter of the local rescues here in Granbury.  That's actually what the new children's book series is about.  For careers, I am quite happy doing what I am already doing.
 
  •  If your life was a song, what would be the song title
 
If you are looking for an existing song, my choice would be "Daydream Believer" by The Monkees.  For one thing, it's my absolute favorite song of all time (and favorite band!).  The title is perfect for me, though, since I come up with my best ideas during daydreams.  That's how I write most of my books, by laying in bed trying to fall asleep, and the words start coming.  Plus, I have always been encouraged to follow my dreams and pursue what I love.  I graduated with a public relations degree from Penn State.  The logical path I should have taken would be to get a job with a PR firm and hold down a steady paycheck with a 401k.  Who would have thought I would wind up running a ghost tour and writing books?  Life takes you on some random twists and turns, and the important thing is to believe in your daydreams to ultimately do what is right for you.
 
  •  Anything else you’d like to share?
 
Thank you so much for inviting me to be a part of your blog!  I really enjoyed answering your questions.

To find out more information about what I do, check out the following links:

Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour
Twitter: @GranburyGhosts

Haunted Granbury

Granbury Paranormal Expo (an annual event hosted by the Granbury Ghosts and Legends Tour)

Research and Investigation of the Paranormal (my ghost hunting team)
 
And now, about your book . . .
 
 
 
Established after the Civil War, the small town of Granbury has had time to stock its streets and historic buildings with ghastly tales and haunting stories. Legend has it that the notorious John Wilkes Booth escaped to Granbury after assassinating President Lincoln and that his spirit now haunts the Opera House, living out his dastardly crime day after day. On Houston Street, passersby may encounter the little faceless girl who met her maker after falling from a window watching a traveling circus. In Granbury’s old jailhouse, past inmates haunt their cells and leave messages for unwitting intruders. Author Brandy Herr delves into the devilish history of Granbury’s most haunted locations and delivers a healthy dose of a frightening and mysterious past.

 
Thank you for telling us about your experiences. I know some of you that frequent Writing with God's Hope blog don't believe in ghosts. Any comments?
 
 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Ghost Tour of Granbury, Texas

In honor of Weird Wednesday, here's a story about a recent experience I had and the strange tales I heard.



Map showing Granbury, TX marked with the G

My husband and I took a fascinating ghost legend tour. The setting was historic Granbury southwest of Fort Worth. (See map. FYI I live in Wichita Falls to the north) Downtown consists of a square around a beautiful court house. Gift shops and snack places line one side. An opera house and restaurant holds down another side. A theatre with exciting music is the focus on yet another side. The fourth includes the Nut House Hotel.
The Nut House Hotel

 

Our guide is dressed in period costume to set the mood. His knowledge of Granbury’s history and ghosts is phenomenal. He keeps us enthralled for about an hour.

 

The Nut House Hotel is of particular interest. A long-ago cook, named Mary Lou Watkins lived in room four. Ask anyone who has stayed there. She’s still there in spirit.

 

On the right front corner looking from the court house, we learned about a ghost that leaves playing cards to remind others that he’s still around.

 

Our guide told us about John Wilkes Booth. He lived for awhile in Granbury. His ghost still shows up at the opera house.

 

The ghost of Indian Joe makes appearances at the jail on the back right corner. We shudder as we watch him swing from the noose.

 

A girl lost her life leaning too far over a balcony. We look up at that balcony. The tension is strong. We almost hear the circus that she wanted so badly to see. Often, this faceless girl appears in the window.

 

If you’re interested, here’s the link about the ghost tour.


 

They don’t guarantee you’ll see a ghost, but not many that walk that square with the guide, Boots Hubbard, miss spotting some spooky sites.

 

Don’t forget to get your ghost sucker when you leave.

 
Have any of you went on a ghost tour before? Heard a ghost? Remember a local legend? If so, please contact me. Weird Wednesday on the Writing with God's Hope blog is always looking for new stories.
 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Traveling Texas

I live in Texas, a big state with various terrains. Experts break it into seven distinct regions. Each builds on advantages. Each gives challenges. Each has beauty. I got this map from a site online which points out the boundaries.
How many of you have traveled all 7 areas?

I have, and I've lived in two.


I was born and raised in and around Dallas. Dallas and Fort Worth are both located in the Prairies and Lakes region. Down through the center of Texas cuts  a swath of rolling green land with sparkling lakes, and pastoral scenes.

Along with my husband and three daughters, I moved years ago northwest to Wichita Falls. We loved the kind people and business friendly community, so we stayed. As you can tell on the map, I live in the eastern and northern edge of the Panhandle Plains. We're lower in elevation than cities Lubbock and Amarillo on the high plains, but our land is flat, dry, with gorgeous sunsets.

A popular vacation spot is the Texas' hill country including Austin and points west until you drop to the desert.


This month, my husband and I took our travel trailer to between Johnson City (home of LBJ) and Blanco in the hill country. Miller's Creek makes a delightful camping spot. Five miles away the Blanco River winds through the country and gives lovely waterfalls. The Guadalupe River invites summer-time water rafting less than an hour away..

This region gives us magnificent hills, drop-off cliffs, huge oaks, peaches, wine country, and the ever favorite spring wildflowers. I couldn't resist stopping several times for shots of bluebonnets (the Texas flower) and Indian paintbrushes.

My middle daughter's favorite vacation spot is the Gulf Coast shown on the map above in blue all along the curve of the state and also including a long Padre Island. Who doesn't like the beach in the summer? Cities include Houston, Galveston, and Beaumont-Port Arthur.

A trip to Jefferson, Texas gives a history lesson, a ghost tour, and gorgeous homes deep in the Piney Woods of east Texas. Named for its many huge pine trees, the traveler also finds cypress trees, dogwood, and azaleas with lakes and streams plentiful. Texarkana tops off this area, but most towns are picturesque, smaller, and nestled in woods.

Texas begins with our Panhandle plains where I live and ends with the southern plains west of the gulf coast. The biggest city in the area is San Antonio. Wide-open land gives rise to big ranches and areas that stays warm even in the winter. Snowbirds (campers who travel south to escape the snow) love the South Texas plain climate and openness. Their favorite stop is McAllen, Texas near the Mexican border.

One last region remains; the Big Bend Country, Texas' version of desert with colorful rocks, unusual plants, summits or rugged drop-off grandeur. The biggest city is El Paso with the second largest being Midland. In the bottom half called Big Bend, population is sparse, cities few, but the beauty spectacular.

Since our recent trip across Texas, my pride swells once again, and I desire to share on my blog.

Sunday is Easter. My gratitude to God expands with travel. The sacrifice of God's son, Jesus, for my sin gives me freedom to love, to enjoy earth's beauty, and to look forward to eternal life in a place a hundred times more beautiful than my home state.

HAPPY EASTER TO YOU ALL.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

An Inspirational Interview with Christine Lindsay

How exciting! I have the privilege of having another multi-published author to interview today. Welcome to Writing with God's Hope blog, Christine Lindsay.  I find her story fascinating and inspiring. I believe others will, also.
 
Christine, tell us something about your writing journey.

 
My journey began shortly after I was reunited with my birth-daughter--the child I relinquished to adoption when she was 3 days old. Sarah and I were reunited 20 years later. This was wonderful, seeing my heart's desire at long last. However, seeing Sarah again renewed my original loss of her and sent me into an emotional tailspin for a few years. One day when I was crying over Sarah, my husband gave me a brand new pen and journal, and said, "Here, honey, write it." That was the start. God turned that journalling into a writing ministry where I use fiction to help others know how much the Lord loves them. A fuller story is on my blog http://shadowedinsilk--chapterone.blogspot.ca/2013/02/story-behind-covers.html  And I've attached a photo of my first two books that have as the cover models, my two daughters, Sarah and Lana.
 
 
What motivation! Do you write in more than one genre?
 
My first love is Inspirational Historical novels. My series Twilight of the British Raj has its first 2 books out. SHADOWED IN SILK has won several awards, Book 2 is CAPTURED BY MOONLIGHT, and  I am currently writing Book 3 VEILED AT MIDNIGHT. But this past February I wrote my first contemporary romance. Pelican Book Group was looking for stories in international settings for their Passport to Romance line. One of those cities was Londonderry which is not far from where I was born in N. Ireland. I simply had to write that book, which is called LONDONDERRY DREAMING.

Well, of course, you did. Tell us something more about Londonderry Dreaming.

Acclaimed New York artist, Naomi Boyd, and music therapist, Keith Wilson, loved one another five years ago, until her grandfather with his influence over Naomi separated them.
That root of bitterness keeps them apart until a letter from Keith’s grandmother, Ruth, draws Naomi to Londonderry to find she’s too late. Ruth has passed on. After the death of his beloved grandmother, Keith has also come to Londonderry only to open the door to his past…Naomi...beautiful as ever, the girl who broke his heart.
 
A mysterious painting in Ruth’s attic brings up questions about their grandparents’ entwined past and their own broken romance. But more comfortable with the unspoken languages of art and music, Naomi and Keith find it difficult to share their old hurts and true feelings.
 
Will the majestic coastline of Northern Ireland inspire them to speak the words to bring peace to their grandparents’ memory and to rekindle love?

WATCH THE FUN AND FAST BOOK TRAILER FOR LONDONDERRY DREAMING

Love the trailer. Great authentic scenes.
 
Christine, I'm a Texan, born and bred on the flat plains of North Texas. Canada fascinates me. Tell us what your part of Canada looks like.
 
I live in a truly beautiful part of the world. Best state I can compare British Columbia to is Colorado. I live in a valley surrounded by mountains. Within 6 hours drive from here, we are in the Canadian Rockies, which are stupendous. I've attached a photo of a mountain lake near where I live. 

That is beautiful. Thanks for the picture. We love to go to Colorado and last summer went, for the first time, to Wyoming and Idaho. Mountains and rivers entice us every year. I'm jealous you actually live near this scene.
 
What occupies your time besides writing?
 
Last summer my husband and I bought a tiny little travel tailer, big enough for only 2 to go camping in. It has a cute little gas stove, sink, countertop, bathroom and cozy bed. Also, in the summer I love to garden. Working with God's nature and enjoying it, our the ways I relax as a busy writer and also give me inspiration.
 
I can identify with the camping. We have a travel trailer. That's what we take to the mountains or the Texas hill country or seaside.

Most writers have good times and bad. Have you ever felt like giving up? If so, how did you press through that?
 
I've thought of giving up many times. Each time I do though, God does something to encourage me. The biggest time I was really going to quit was in 2009. After writing for 6 years by that point nothing was happening. Then I won the Genesis that year for Historical novel. That was SHADOWED IN SILK, which was titled Unveiled at the time.

What gave you the idea for your newest release?
 
  As I mentioned I have been to Londonderry. But while visiting St. Augustine's Chapel in Londonderry, I was also struggling with my emotions over Sarah, and over some of my daughter Lana's heartaches. This was when I saw the lovely stained glass windows of the biblical Ruth and Naomi. Here were 2 women brought together by heartache and loss, and a mother-daughter relationship grew between them. I wanted this sort of relationship with both of my daughters. I've attached a photo of that stained glass window, and it sort of forshadows the photo of my 2 daughters as my very own bookends.

The window is gorgeous. What an inspiring thought. With my having three daughters, I can sure understand wanting that special relationship. I love the story of Naomi and Ruth.

Do you write every day? If so, what does that process look like?
 
I must write every day just to keep up on all my committments. However, I do try to take time to rest. Sometimes the Lord forces me to take a rest though. 

I love music. If you were a song, what would that song be?
When Irish Eyes are Smiling.

 
Oh, I like that. Tell us something more about yourself. 
 
Christine Lindsay was born in Ireland, and is proud of the fact that she was once patted on the head by Prince Philip when she was a baby. Her great grandfather, and her grandfather—yes father and son—were both riveters on the building of the Titanic. Tongue in cheek, Christine states that as a family they accept no responsibility for the sinking of that great ship.
It was stories of her ancestors who served in the British Cavalry in Colonial India that inspired her Multi-award-winning, historical series Twilight of the British Raj. Aside from being a busy writer and speaker, Christine is also VP of Christian Authors’ Network. She makes her home in British Columbia, on the west coast of Canada.

CONNECT WITH CHRISTINE:
Please drop by Christine’s website http://www.christinelindsay.com/ or follow her on Twitter and be her friend on Pinterest , Facebook  and  Goodreads
 

Christine, it has been a pleasure getting acquainted with you. Thanks for answering all my tedious questions and sending such wonderful pictures. I know my viewers will enjoy getting acquainted, and I'm sure many, like me, are anxious to purchase one or more of your books.

Does anyone else have a question or comment?

Thanks for stopping by today to visit, Christine.