Category Archives: Writing

Goodreads Book Giveaway of The Trojan Horse Traitor

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Trojan Horse Traitor by Amy C. Blake

The Trojan Horse Traitor

by Amy C. Blake

Giveaway ends December 14, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Congratulations, Ray & Tressie, for winning copies of The Trojan Horse Traitor on Goodreads!

Release Day! The Trojan Horse Traitor Is Now Available

The Trojan Horse Traitor is now available in both e-book and paperback formats!

Click HERE to order!

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Left on Castle Island to attend Camp Classic, thirteen-year-old, scrawny, redheaded, homeschooler Levi Prince finds himself at the center of an enchanted world of amazing abilities, cloudy motives, and wicked beings that will challenge his very spirit. He begins to form friendships, but life at camp becomes more confusing as questionable activities and uncertain agendas bring about conflict that tests his character in ways he never expected. Finally, faced with a friend’s betrayal, Levi is forced to confront true evil. Will he find the courage to stand his ground, and to become the hero he was always meant to be?

I’m hosting a giveaway of two paperback copies of The Trojan Horse Traitor on Goodreads. You can enter now through December 14th.

Also available at Books A Million and Barnes and Noble!

Cover Reveal: The Trojan Horse Traitor

I’m excited to unveil the cover for The Trojan Horse Traitor, my YA fantasy novel about homeschooler Levi Prince, set to release in late 2015 from Hallway Publishing.

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Here’s the blurb for The Trojan Horse Traitor:

Left on Castle Island by his parents to attend Camp Classic, Levi Prince finds himself at the center of an enchanted world of amazing abilities, cloudy motives, and wicked beings that will challenge his very spirit. He begins to form friendships, but life at camp becomes more confusing as questionable activities and uncertain agendas bring about conflict that tests his character in ways he never expected. Finally, faced with a friend’s betrayal, Levi is forced to confront true evil. Will he find the courage to stand his ground, and to become the hero he was always meant to be?

Annabelle’s Ruth by Betty Thomason Owens

 

 

My author friend Betty Thomason Owens just released her historical novel, Annabelle’s Ruth, a 1950s era story set in Tennessee and inspired by the biblical book of Ruth. It’s a heartwarming story of hope and renewal. I know you’ll want to check it out!Annabelle's Ruth FRONT Cover

Back cover blurb:

If you think you can come back here and throw yourself on my mercy, you are quite wrong.

After their husbands perish in a fishing boat accident, Connie Cross determines to follow her mother-in-law, Annabelle, from Southern California to Tennessee. Her misgivings begin as they cross the bridge over the muddy Mississippi River. In their new town, where living conditions are far below their previous expectations, they must set up a household and hunt for work to survive. Thanks to the kindness of Annabelle’s handsome, young cousin, life begins to settle down. But Connie has a secret that could change everything once again.

Inspired by the Book of Ruth, Annabelle’s Ruth is a 1950’s era “Ruth” story, set in western Tennessee. How will Connie adapt to her new life amid the cotton farms, racial tension, and culture shock?

Here’s the Amazon link to buy Annabelle’s Ruth.

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Betty Thomason Owens writes romantic comedy, historical fiction, and fantasy-adventure. She has contributed hundreds of articles and interviews to various blogs around the Internet and is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), where she leads a critique group. She’s also a mentor, assisting other writers. She is a co-founder of a blog dedicated to inspiring writers, and a contributing editor for the soon-to-be launched online magazine, Imaginate.

Annabelle’s Ruth, a 1950’s historical novel based on the Book of Ruth, is the first book in the Kinsman Redeemer Series (Write Integrity Press). Her 20’s era romance, Amelia’s Legacy, Book 1, Legacy Series, released October, 2014 (Write Integrity Press). She also writes contemporary stories as a co-author of A Dozen Apologies and its sequels, The Love Boat Bachelor and Unlikely Merger. She has two fantasy-adventure novels, The Lady of the Haven and A Gathering of Eagles, in a second edition published by Sign of the Whale BooksTM, an imprint of Olivia Kimbrell PressTM.

Here’s the link to Betty’s “Book o’ My Heart” site.

Whitewashed Giveaway

I’m giving away 3 paperback copies of Whitewashed, my Christian suspense novel about 18-year-old homeschooler Patience McDonough. For more information about Whitewashed, please visit my On the Brink page.FC---Whitewashed (3)

While you’re here, please take a minute to check out my blogs. On the Homeschool page, you’ll find information about my other novels and some free study guide downloads. On the Pastor’s Wife page, you’ll find my tips for the rookie pastor’s wife.

On the left-hand column, you’ll find a spot to sign up to receive my latest blogs straight to your inbox. You can also follow me on Facebook  and on Twitter.

Enter below for your chance to win a copy of Whitewashed! This giveaway runs from May 25th through June 22nd. After you visit my Facebook page and/or follow me on Twitter, be sure to return to this page and mark “I visited” on the Rafflecopter box to complete your entry!

Or, if you want your copy of Whitewashed now, follow this link to Amazon. Whitewashed is available in both print and ebook.

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Coming in February: Colorblind

 

 

Guess what? I just signed the contract for Colorblind, the second book in my On the Brink Christian suspense series!

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Here’s a blurb about Colorblind:

Eighteen-year-old homeschooler Christy Kane has always been her daddy’s princess, and her dream has long been to use her musical talents as children’s music leader for his nationally known mega-church. Her first day on the job as music intern, the media shatter her world with news of her daddy’s affair with the church preschool director. Christy feels like God betrayed her as surely as her daddy did.

When her mom sends her to Buckeye Lake, Ohio, to help Aunt Jo, a relative Christy didn’t know existed, with her School of Music and Dance, Christy’s problems only increase. She’s expected to spend every day in the rebuilt Pier Ball Room, which sits on Buckeye Lake itself, and Christy is terrified of water. In addition, she and a handful of semi-talented volunteers who have underlying antagonisms she doesn’t understand are expected to prepare a professional-quality performance for the Grand Reopening of the Pier Ball Room on August 7th, with the added pressure of knowing Aunt Jo will lose the ball room if they fail.

Christy finds a diary written by Lillian, a girl who lived in Buckeye Lake ninety years earlier. Christy is intrigued by Lillian’s world in 1920s Buckeye Lake, when thousands came to play at the amusement parks and dance in the ball rooms. But soon Christy’s interest turns to concern as events from Lillian’s diary happen in Christy’s world, ninety years to the day after they occurred the first time.

Between her shattered family, her uncertain future, and her bizarre present, Christy doesn’t know where to turn. Will God rescue her?

 

If you haven’t yet read Whitewashed, the first On the Brink book, pick up your copy on Amazon today. FC---Whitewashed (3)

 

 

How You Can Help with Sofia’s Tune by Cindy Thomson

Here’s an article by my new writer friend Cindy Thomson. Please read it and prayerfully consider how you can help.

It’s tough to get traditionally published today by a large publisher. It’s even tougher to keep publishing. That’s the cold, hard fact I have been faced with. I have been publishing fiction and non-fiction, articles and books, for over ten years now. I have enjoyed my journey, met wonderful editors, literary agents, and fellow authors. I don’t regret the long, sometimes lonely hours writing my heart out (and sometimes banging my head on my desk when inspiration fails me.)

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I often talk about my seven years spent in a writing desert, the time between my first novel, Brigid of Ireland, and my second Grace’s Pictures. Historical fiction has always been favorite genre to write and it took seven years from the first publication to the second. That is why when I landed a three-book contract with a large publisher I felt as though I’d emerged from that trial.

But then that cold, hard reality hit. There is a vast sea of books published in the English language every year. So many that mine ended up as a speck on the radar. Why? It’s hard to tell. My covers were great. The response to my books has been overwhelmingly positive. I had wonderful reviews in some of the better known journals. I worked really, really, really hard getting attention. I did radio interviews, tons of guest posts on blogs, sent out a boatload of review copies in addition to the vast number my publisher sent out. I gave away books in contests, did Facebook parties, book signings, talks, and probably a hundred other things I’ve now forgotten. Still, my books did not sell well and the publisher, making a business decision, decided to cancel book three in the series. The cold, hard truth is readers mostly buy books by authors they recognize.AS cover

I know I’m not the only the author this has happened to. I have lots of friends who have been dropped from their publishers. Some of them were publishing for years with the same house when their new proposals were rejected. I believe it’s more commonplace now than in years past. But knowing I’m not alone only softened the blow a bit.

HOWEVER, I did not want to throw in the towel. Today authors have more options than ever before. Readers have more say than ever before. I decided that the readers who said they enjoyed my first two books should be able to get the third one despite my publisher’s decision. It’s the wrap up of the series, a promise I felt I made to readers that I should fulfill even if I have to do it on my own.

But there is still reality to deal with. The fact that it’s expensive to publish a book—a book of quality that I would want my name on. Cover design costs money. Editing costs money. And to do it right it takes thousands of dollars. I used to make money freelance writing. I put that aside to work on my series—something that involved far more work than I had realized it would. I was still mentoring with the Christian Writers Guild, but as some of you know, it went under this year. I have one student I’m still mentoring until her course finishes later this year, but that only brings in a tiny, tiny amount each month. I’m working on freelancing articles again, but it takes time to build up. So I decided to ask for help and crowd fund my next book. There is only a week left in the campaign, and I’m so very grateful for those who have supported it. If you’d like to check it out, and read the first two chapters of Sofia’s Tune for free, go to https://pubslush.com/project/5010.

Prayers and rooting me to the finish line are hugely appreciated. If you’d like to keep up with my new adventure, sign up for my newsletter at www.cindyswriting.com.

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About Cindy:

Cindy Thomson’s newest novel is Annies Stories (Tyndale House Publishers, July 2014,) the second in her Ellis Island series. She is also the author of Brigid of Ireland, Celtic Wisdom: Treasures From Ireland, and co-author of a baseball hall of famer biography Three Finger: The Mordecai Brown Story. She has written numerous magazine articles mostly on Irish genealogy, and blogs at www.cindyswriting.com.

Discussion Questions for Whitewashed

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  1. Have you ever made plans you refused to give up even when it became clear they were not what God wanted for you? What were the consequences?
  2. Can you pinpoint problems in your life/your family that are a direct result of the sins of your (or your family’s) past?
  3. As Patience learned, truth and mercy go hand-in-hand to make the way to forgiveness (Proverbs 16:6). Have you ever erred on the side of speaking the truth without mercy? Or on the side of showing mercy to the neglect of the truth? What were the consequences?
  4. Have you ever wondered, like Patience, if the people you loved were lying to you? How did you react? How should you react?
  5. Patience is totally impatient and plowed ahead with things when she, at times, shouldn’t. Would you categorize yourself as a patient or impatient person? Think of a time when you acted with impatience. What did your impatience get you? Think of a time when you acted with patience instead. What was the result of your patient attitude?
  6. Responsibility is a minor theme in the book illustrated through the two dogs in Whitewashed. Compare and contrast Honor’s dachshund Chigger with Poppa’s coon dog Keynes. What do the two dogs show you about their masters’ views on responsibility?
  7. The biblical story of Esther is interwoven throughout the plot. What does Patience learn from Esther? Compare/contrast the two women.
  8. The book’s title, Whitewashed, has reference to Jesus’ indictment against the scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23:27 when he calls them whitewashed tombs. How does that label play out in the novel?
  9. Does Patience ever live up to her name? If so, when? When have you had trouble living up to your name (or calling)?
  10. What do you know about the Underground Railway movement? How would you feel being historical Simon, Peter, Abe, or Sadie? If you are a mother, can you imagine being in Hannah or Eve’s shoes?
  11. What are the implications of the Underground Railway movement for human trafficking today?
  12. I implied in Whitewashed that Hannah and Eve poisoned both Simon’s grandfather and uncle because of the way they devoured innocence. Do you think the women were justified in their actions? Why or why not?
  13. Racism is a sin of our nation, including the church. How can you, as a Christian, repent of that national/church sin? What ways can you root seeds of racism from your own heart?
  14. Vengeance is a big issue in the book. The Bible states in Romans 12:19 that vengeance belongs to the LORD. In what way did the Vengeance character misuse that verse? What in the person’s past led to that behavior?
  15. Are there sins/crimes a professing Christian would never commit? Consider the Vengeance character.
  16. In college life today, the emphasis on academics versus athletics is often glaringly unbalanced. Do you think that’s a problem? Why or why not? Why did the Vengeance character have such a problem with it?
  17. Have you (or anybody you know) ever embraced darkness as Lily Rose did, i.e. struck rose and manacle tattoos, countless piercings, goth makeup, abusive boyfriend, disdain of school, family, church, etc.? Why did Lily Rose behave as she did? How should Christians respond to people like her?
  18. Have you ever known anyone caught in the agonies of Alzheimer’s? If the person was a Christian, you may have noticed a marked calm when the Bible was read and/or hymns were sung. Why do you think that is?