I do not read every book/author I spotlight or book tour I host!
Readers, Please research and use wisdom before buying

Thursday, December 29, 2011


Good Morning Friends!

Today I head out to my favorite place in the whole world.... Silver Spur Guest Ranch in Bandera, TX.

This is the time of year we reflect on goals & resolutions made and kept or forgotten ~ a time when we give special Thanks for the year past and set forth prayers, hopes & dreams for the year to come.

So I'd like to start by THANKING everyone who takes the time to read my work -- whether that is my blog, novels, short stories or articles -- May you be blessed and God glorified!

When I left the corporate world at the end of 2009 I figured if I put all of the passion, devotion and energy into my writing that I did into my marriage/family life, I could really move my career into that next level -- Little did I know I was emotionally incapable of doing so.

Oh, I stayed busy -- editing & promoting for others - even had a couple of new releases of my own (In His Sight 2010) and (The Visionary in 2011). I've partnered up with a couple of friends to implement The Wordsmith Journal, and wrote an online course on promotion.

I started several projects, finished & submitted one that was rejected (twice!). Both big accomplishments considering my mental & emotional state and the fact I still had a hard time focusing and feeling enough to write my best and to seek out speaking engagements.

Now we're on the cusp of a new year and, for the first time since my husband's death in August 2009 I TRULY feel inspired to write and to focus on my career!

My goal for 2012 is to accomplish what I set out to do in 2010 -- write more and better & to finish those WIP's, speak more often and God willing, minister to others through both.

Now...to get settled and organized LOL!

What did you accomplish in 2011? What are your goals for 2012? I'd love to hear from you!


May your celebrations be safe, your dreams fruitful & your days prosperous.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

COTT's Christmas Cover Images Winner

*by COTT Sr. Editor, April W Gardner

Cover Images Clashes are becoming hugely popular at the literary contest site, Clash of the Titles. Voters have been turning out by the droves to give their opinion about which cover they find most eye-catching.

Their latest Clash featured three Christmas cover images, all of which would have been worthy winners. There’s just something about holiday décor that warms the heart! A book cover with Christmas dressings is no different.

Here’s what hostess Gail Pallotta had to say about the three covers. “The mountain scene in A Log Cabin Christmas took away my breath and sent a peaceful feeling over me.  The lovely smile on the young lady on the cover of Christmas Belles of Georgia brightened my day and spoke to me of Christmas joy. Christmas Pearl stood out and proclaimed this holy season.”

But the voters decided, and the winner of the 
Christmas Cover Images Clash is:


This is what voters said about Christmas Pearl:

*'Christmas Pearl' simply struck me as beautiful & I sank right in as I read the blurb.
*I think all three are charming, but 'Christmas Pearl' does it for me!
*"Christmas Pearl" is just plain lovely. I love the way the pearl imitates a tree ornament. Very well done cover and quite evocative of Christmas.

Well said!

COTT  is currently taking a Christmas break, but please visit  January 9 for a new clash that will – literally – take your breath away! If you're an author, don’t forget to check upcoming open clashes and submit.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Clash of the Titles!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Good Morning Friends,

Since today is Christmas Eve I decided to take a break from the usual Saturday Spotlight and focus on the holiday, however I will let you know that Pelican Book Group's Holiday Extravaganza comes to a close with a FREE read - Kisses from Heaven by Clare Revell and for a limited time, you can still get the Holiday bundle which includes 13 stories for only $12!

On a personal note, the month long blog tour with The Visionary ended on Dec 17th ~ winners were announced here. Also, on Dec 21st I had an interview with Sudie Landry on Louisiana Heartbeats - Acadiana's Open Channel (Cox Cable channel 16) - you can watch it here. And that's my life in a nutshell LOL!

As we settle in for the excitement of the days ahead, let us stop and reflect on the greatest gift of all: Jesus - HE is more that the reason for this season - HE is the reason for every season!

Here's wishing each and everyone a Blessed & Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Good Morning Friends,

Today is a special spotlight with friend and fellow author, Carol Ann Erhardt with her latest book, Trapped.

Inspirational romantic suspense writer, Carol Ann Erhardt, touches the hearts and emotions of her readers. Fans categorize her books as emotional, suspenseful and inspirational. Carol Ann spent her early writing years working at a corporate job and writing late at night. Her first novels, contemporary romantic suspense, sold well, but she didn’t feel fulfilled—in fact, felt as if she’d compromised on what her heart wanted to write. She began praying for God’s guidance in her writing. In the quiet solitude of prayer, God showed her the path He wanted her to take. Her third novel was an inspirational romantic suspense. Now she writes each and every day hoping to bring messages of hope, happiness, and inspiration to those who read her novels. She gives all the glory to God. Find out more about Carol Ann by visiting her website.

She’s a woman who doesn’t trust cops. He’s a cop. She’s determined to keep her past a secret. He’s determined to find out what she’s hiding.

High school bus driver, Summer Grant, flees from death threats and winds up trapped in Havens Creek, a small town not far enough away from danger. With a broken leg and no transportation, she is forced to accept the hospitality of strangers. Staying with the police chief’s sister and five-year-old daughter in an isolated mountain home might be the ideal place for her to hide until she can get back on her feet, but if the man she’s hiding from learns her whereabouts, no one will be safe.

Havens Creek Police Chief, Jake Taylor, always protects his own. He feels duty-bound to help Summer when she ends up in his small town claiming she has no family. He has a soft spot for strays, but this two-legged one is hiding something, and he’s determined to solve the mystery. An unwanted attraction draws them together. Evil threatens to rip them apart.

Trapped, Book One in Havens Creek Series can be purchased at Amazon.com.

Now....a word from Carol Ann.....

I’m often asked where I get ideas for my books or characters. Every author’s process is different. Some are great plotters who spend months outlining and character sketching prior to beginning the actual writing process.

There are places you can learn about various plotting and organizing tactics, programs which will do this for you as you fill in the basics…none of these work for me.

When writing TRAPPED, my first vision was of a woman who loved animals and spent her days caring for the ones others had abandoned. Slowly this idea turned into a man with these characters, a man who had another profession which required him to be strong and protective. Thus, Jake Taylor was born. Jake is the Chief of Police in Havens Creek, a small mountain community in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains. He was once married and his wife died in a car accident after they had a bitter argument. Now he carries the burden of guilt even though he couldn’t have prevented what happened.

He has a sister and niece he loves and feels extremely protective of…sometimes too much. And he is a man who rescues abandoned animals and cares for them.

So I had a main character and some secondary characters. Now I needed a good plot and a heroine. In reading a newspaper article about a tragic school bus accident, the plot for TRAPPED was born. Summer Grant, a lonely woman with a lot of baggage, became the school bus driver. The accident was not her fault…the death of the high school football star was not her fault…but the angry father of the boy needed someone to blame.

Thus began the intricate weaving of plot to bring Summer and Jake together. Jake’s sister, Becca, was a big part of this story and as TRAPPED drew to a end, I knew I had to write another book and feature Becca to give her a happily ever after as well.

The second book in the Havens Creek series will be published in June 2012 and the third book in December 2012.

God has also laid on my heart to write a very difficult series on forgiveness around a tragedy that would destroy a “forever” kind of friendship. This three book series hopefully will be out in 2013. There is no great blessing than being an author who is employed by God!

Hope you enjoyed this spotlight!

Until later...take care & God Bless.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

COTT Blog Alliance Guest Post by Gail Pallotta

Thank you to our blog alliance partners

Jessica Keller works from an office her husband set up for her in their Chicago home. Using a bright orange laptop she posts five days a week. She blogged big-time in college, garnering a huge following. She says, “It got to the point where people I didn’t know would walk up to me and start talking…about my life because they were addicted to my blog.” 

After graduation she ended that blog and went to work in the records department of law enforcement. She figured her blogging days were over, but she started writing novels. She thought about author blogs she loved and wanted to “create a place like that so…someday when a novel-length piece is published…” she’ll already have a blog.
Her blog reflects her love of baking, her communications and Biblical studies degree and her enthusiasm for books. She’ll read over one hundred this year. On Mondays she muses about life in general. Tasty Tuesdays give cooking advice and recipes. On Writing Wednesdays she shares her writing struggles and advice or hosts experts. Thick-of-it-Thursdays feature a spiritual message, and Fridays for Readers introduces new writers. At least once a month there’s a cookie give away. Yum.

During the past nine years she’s written articles, short stories and a novella and recently made the finals in three contests. When she isn’t writing she runs in 5K’s and mentors college-aged women. When asked for a random fact about herself she said, “I have two cats named for super heroes, Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent.”
Visit Jessica's blog here.

Carol Moncado blogs about life and writing from a big cushy chair in a basement in the Ozarks. She says the area “is slowly becoming my office/library.” She’s written on and off ever since she was a kid, seriously for the last two years. She blogs everyday attracting readers, other writers and friends who want to know a little more about her, her writing and the authors she likes. She says, “I try to have humor – and we all know laughter is the best medicine!I love to get comments.”

As for her writing, she’s currently blogging her way through NaNoWriMo. When she isn’t blogging or working on her own writing projects, she takes care of four children, reads and watches television. Her all time favorite show – NCIS.

When asked to share a random fact about herself she said, “When we moved into our first house, we moved on Friday the 13th to a house on Elm Street. We found and put an offer on our second [current] house on 06/06/06.”  Visit Carol’s blog here.

Marianne Evans started her blog, A Minute with Marianne, a little over two years ago. She says, “I loved the idea of chronicling my thoughts and expanding my writing platform…Call it ‘keeping up with the times.’” An added bonus. “It’s a blast…”

She posts almost once a week. A Minute with Marianne introduces readers to writers and books they may not otherwise hear about. Marianne says, “There are so many wonderful inspirational, Christian themed books out there. I love shining a light on them and getting the word out on new and exciting authors.” Her blog also covers writing inspirations, motivational tidbits, reviews and publishing news.

She keeps her blog casual with highlights on having fun, getting to know people and sharing a passion for great writing. When Marianne isn’t blogging, she writes.  She’s A Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence winner for Hearts Crossing. She was a 2011 finalist for Christian Small Publisher Book of the Year for Hearts Surrender. Marianne says she made the jump from secular romance to Christian Inspirational romance/fiction when “the call on her heart matched the ideas in her head.” Visit her blog here.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Blog Tour Winners!

Good Morning Friends,

Well the month-long blog tour with The Visionary is over and I'm pleased to announce the 4 winners of an autographed copy.....

Jacqueline Seewald
Sharon Lavay
Shelia Deeth
Joanne Reynolds

Congratulations to each of the winners and THANK YOU to each and every one of you who participated in the tour.

Today The Visionary is featured at the RomCon blog and I'll be giving away another autographed copy to one lucky person so hop on over there and leave a comment!


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Saturday Spotlight ~ Unfinished by Suzanne Gravelle

Happy Saturday!

Today's spotlight is Suzanne Gravelle with her book, Unfinished which is on virtual book tour through Nikki Leigh Promotions.

About Suzanne Gravelle
Suzanne Gravelle is 49 Years old and has 3 children, 2 grandchildren who live in Nova Scotia. At the time this book goes to print she is single and homeless by choice, still travelling, seeking that place of comfort she will eventually call home.

She spent most of her life living in Nova Scotia but her formidable years aged 10-25, were spent living on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. She resigned as a Real Estate Agent in Nova Scotia, to embark upon this most incredible journey, driving, exploring Canada and writing this book.

To read Suzanne’s extended bio, visit http://bookpromotionservices.com/2011/11/10/suzanne-gravelle-bio/

Eventually it became apparent to me and to everyone around me I was detaching and I could not stand the impression I was leaving, it was dark, sad and consuming and no one wants to stay in that environment for very long, I was sending my friends running. I was just waiting for some one to say to me, “Enough Suzanne! Get over it already!” And those were words I never wanted to hear. So I made a decision, I was going to take some time to be alone, truly alone to get over, come to terms with and accept the demise of my relationship.

Not everyone is in a position to be alone for extended periods but almost everyone is in control of their own thoughts enough to make the decision to explore their emotions and decide they are no longer going to feel so sad anymore. Once that concrete decision is made, and it has to be a true desire or it will take longer, it will take conscious effort to keep working on that decision until one day you realize you have woken up and that you actually slept longer than you did the night before and the pain is less, it is suddenly bearable.

From that moment of awareness, every day after that you become stronger, more in tune, more in control of your emotions, and you will find you do not want to pick up the phone just to say “hi.” That is the moment we think will never come but it does, I promise, it does come.

I equate my recovery like I am an alcoholic and he is my drink of choice. Everyday that goes by and I do not have contact with him is like one day with out a drink. Every now and then he will text me or calls me and to me it is like being handed a drink. Now it is my choice whether I take the drink or not and some times I do take the drink but like all addicts, I have remorse and guilt and I start all over the next day…day one. Soon many days will pass and I am proud of the fact that I have not poured myself a drink by contacting him or accepted one when he contacts me. I hope that makes sense.

I have no doubt the feelings I have had since day one of no drinking, no contact is withdrawal, the emotions are wild, out of control at times, but I get through the day and I thank “What Ever Gods May Be” for my strength not to drink because I know I am better with out it.

What do we need to do to recover? I am not a therapist or an expert of any kind to be able to give professional advice but what I am is an expert at experiencing heartbreak, I have allowed too many to affect me for profound periods of time, believing it was going to work out, he would come back and all will be fine. Well even when they do come back, often it is too late, the damage has been done to us and we are rarely the same again.

For more information about Unfinished by Suzanne Gravelle, visit http://www.amazon.com/Unfinished-Suzanne-Gravelle/dp/192700506X and you can follow her journey on her blog – http://ontourwithsuzanne.blogspot.com. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Virtual Book Tour ~ Cheryl C Malandrinos & Little Shepherd

Hello Friends, it is my pleasure to bring to you this very special virtual book tour from my guest, Cheryl C Malandrinos.

It’s hard to believe Christmas is right around the corner. Where did this year go? Christmas is my favorite holiday. This time of year it’s easier to be a little nicer; easier to smile, and to think of others.

In the Gospel of John, Chapter 13, Jesus washes his disciples’ feet. In verses 15 – 17 he says to them, “For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him.  If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.” (NKJV) As a mother and Sunday school teacher, I have discussed this part of Scripture numerous times. But what does it mean to a child? How do you get them to understand it, and more importantly, how do you get them to live a life of service?

The best way we can nurture a servant’s heart in our children is to do what Jesus did—lead by example. Be a parent of action, not only words. Bring your children along when you volunteer within your community. Our church’s largest outreach is vacation Bible school (VBS). We spend months preparing for it, and whether we have 10 kids or 100 kids, we feel blessed by the time it’s over. My girls are old enough now that they help contribute to VBS. They paint scenery. They come up with game ideas. They help us put craft kits together.

Draw upon their God-given talents. Is your child gifted in math or reading? Perhaps he can tutor a classmate or younger student who is struggling? Is your child creative and crafty? Discuss ways she can use that talent to help others. Our oldest daughter wants to make blankets for the local animal shelter this year.

Adopt a charity. Last year, our girls decided on their own that they would collect money for Toys for Tots. A mission of the United States Marine Corps Reserve, this campaign collects new, unwrapped toys during October, November and December, and distributes those toys as Christmas gifts to needy children. The girls put all their spare change into a box and asked others to donate as well. Imagine how proud they were when their father sent a check off to Toys for Tots in December.

Being good servants is what God calls us to do. As it says in 1 Corinthians 4:1, “Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.” (NKJV)  What can each of us teach our children about living a life of service this Christmas season?

Cheryl Malandrinos is a freelance writer, children’s author and editor. Her first children’s book, Little Shepherd, was released in August 2010 by Guardian Angel Publishing. She is also a member of the SCBWI.

Cheryl is a Tour Coordinator for Pump Up Your Book, a book reviewer, and blogger. Ms. Malandrinos lives in Western Massachusetts with her husband and two children. She also has a son who is married.

Visit Cheryl at her newly redesigned website http://ccmalandrinos.com or visit the Little Shepherd book blog at http://littleshepherdchildrensbook.blogspot.com.

 The book is available at:

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Judging A Book By Its Cover

Guest Post by

Last week Clash of the Titles held their first ever Clash of the Covers. This fast-paced clash was different than their usual fare, because instead of judging the author's story, we judged how well their cover designs matched their theme or made us want to pick up the book. There were four books to vote on, from authors Cathy, Erica, Lacy, and Maggie. The books were Marrying Miss Marshal, Spring For Susannah, A Bride's Portrait, and Deeply Devoted.

It was a VERY CLOSE race and it saw enough voter participation to max out the scoreboards!

Some of the comments included:
Spring for Susannah - Susannah is aware of the man but she looks as though she could turn away, or turn towards him.
Marrying Miss Marshall seems to speak volumes about the heroine--just in her position.
The cover of A Brides Portrait, really sells the title by having the woman with a camera on it. Caught my attention.
I love cover C...looks like the "old west"!!!
Marrying Miss Marshal. Hmm, with that rifle laid across her lap, one wonders who's daring enough to approach her, much less marry her. Intriguing.
I loved A Bride's Portrait of Dodge City - it added so many components of the story into the cover besides just a profile :)
Love this (A) - it's intriguing. I'm not sure from the picture whether she's toting for justice, revenge, or protection. Makes me curious.

The Champion Book that was voted
Springtime For Susanna, by Catherine Richmond

This week, COTT is sporting a holiday/winter theme with host Gail Pallotta. We expect it to be another huge turn-out so please join us. We'll cozy up to the virtual fireplace, egg nog in hand, and browse for books. In this case, it's okay to judge the cover. =)

We’ll be taking a break December 26 – January 6
And then come right back on January 9 with a new clash that will – literally – take your breath away! If you're an author, don’t forget to check upcoming open clashes and submit

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas Extravaganza Continues @ Pelican Book Group

Hey Friends,

It's that time again - time when I spotlight another great book. This week I'm continuing to spotlight the latest in Pelican Book Group's Christmas Extravaganza with Christmas in Coyote County by Mary L. Briggs.

 In Coyote County, Christmas means festive lights, the town parade, hot coffee and cinnamon rolls...not creatures from another planet. While a glowing green Peeping Tom with two antennae is a little hard to buy, Libby Hawkins doesn’t believe her former school teacher suffers from either dementia or a runaway imagination. There’s a logical explanation, and she intends to discover it before older woman is placed in a nursing home.

After a twelve year absence, Sheriff Jackson Carter returns to Coyote County to clear his father’s name. He never expected to be waylaid in his quest by alien sightings, and it doesn’t help that stubborn Libby Hawkins--his former girlfriend--is determined to meddle in the investigation. He hurt Libby when he left town after his father’s death, but it was for her protection. Now Libby’s stumbled on something dangerous. Can he keep her from harm this time? He doesn’t know, but one thing is certain Christmas in Coyote County has never been so interesting.

Want all of the Christmas stories + a special free book? Check out the Extravaganza Bundle and while you're at it, check out the other Holiday Specials from Pelican Book Group.

Well friends, if you're like me, a great short read is the perfect break from all the holiday madness so enjoy!

Until later...take care & God Bless.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Special Spotlight~Mary Manners & Tessa's Teacakes!

Well friends it is with great pleasure I spotlight my friend Mary Manners and book 3 in her "Sweet Treats Bakery" series, Tessa's Teacakes  but first a little about Mary.....

Mary Manners is an award-winning romance writer who lives in the beautiful foothills of East Tennessee with her husband, Tim, their daughter, Danni, and the cherished cats they've rescued from local animal shelters...Lucky and Gus. Both of Mary’s sons, Tyler and Brad, serve our country in the United States Air Force.
Mary’s debut novel, Mended Heart, was nominated ‘Best Inspirational Romance 2010’, and a finalist for the Bookseller’s Best Award and her follow-up, Tender Mercies, was awarded an outstanding 4 ½ star rating from The Romantic Times Book Reviews and was also a finalist for the Readers Choice Award. Mary writes romances of all lengths, from short stories to novels—something for everyone. To date, Mary has eleven books in print, with a half-dozen more under contract with White Rose Publishing.
You can meet up with Mary at the Romantic Times Booklover’s Convention April 11-15 in Chicago, where she will be presenting the workshop, Beyond the Bodice…Lacing Together Faith and Romance. Learn more about Mary Manners at her website: www.MaryMannersRomance.com and at her author pages at www.WhiteRosePublishing.com and www.Amazon.com

Tessa, the youngest Spencer sister--and the most impulsive--rushes into the Mount Ridge crisis center bent on saving her brother-in-law. She's ready to handle Brent's abductor, with or without help. What she's not ready to handle is the effect policeman, Colin Phillips, has on her. Romance is the last thing on Tessa's mind. She longs for the adventure and fast-pace of New York City, not being tied to Mount Ridge and a man who insists she shouldn't be so impetuous. After all "independent spirit" is what Tessa does best! Colin transferred from the police force in Atlanta in order to find closure after the brutal murder of his younger sister. He wants a nice, safe future, not one filled with caring and worrying about another impulsive woman. His sister was naïve and unpredictable, and while Colin is drawn to Tessa's spunk and vitality, her willingness to rush into danger scares him. No way could he cope with another devastating loss. His heart must remain closed where Tessa is concerned. But God has His own plans...and His own way of changing hearts and cultivating love.

And don't forget book 1 & 2; Kate's Kisses & Grace's Gold!

I've read Kate's Kisses and Grace's Gold and can't wait to read Tessa's Teacakes too!

And Look for book 4 ~ Mattie's Meltaways coming Jan 27th 2012!

Hope you've enjoyed this special spotlight.

Until next time....take care & God bless.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

COTT Blog Alliance Partners!

Christine and Pamela!
A huge welcome to blogger and author Christine Lindsay! Christine is another extraordinary member of the COTT Blog Alliance. On Wednesdays she posts the COTT weekly article, and on Fridays she posts either an editorial/devotional or a review on a book.
What's her blog like? Christine wants her blog to be somewhere a reader can find a true inspirational story to encourage their faith. For example, on her blog she has in book-length the entire story of her experience as a birthmother. From the moment she found out she was pregnant, to the relinquishment of her child, and to their reunion 20 years later.

Do not miss this testimony. Her birth-daughter, Sarah, modeled for the cover of Shadowed in Silk. Take a look at how it all came together—it's well worth the read.

I asked Christine who she is outside the realm of writing and publication and all that jazz.
"I am so ordinary, it's hilarious. I used to be an administrative assistant, going off to work in suits, high heels and makeup. Now that I'm following the labor of my heart (writing) I work in my home office and wear the closest thing I can get to pajamas—sweat pants and a sweat shirt.
"But there are times I have to go out and leave my beloved laptop behind along with my cat. Then I slap on some mascara, whip a comb through my hair, put on some decent slacks and head out the door with a cup of tea in my hands. I can drive with one hand and drink my tea with the other."
What "ordinary"? That's multi-tasking!
Why is she willing to give COTT space on her blog every other week?

I find the COTT alliance an energetic group of writers that inspire me. I love the fun and camaraderie with the clashes," she said. "And it gets the word out to readers of all the great Christian fiction that's available. They are a great group of people to be affiliated with. I consider it an honor."
The feeling is entirely mutual!

Book trailer

Meet Pamela S. Thibodeaux:

Award-winning author, Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.”

A great big welcome to Blog Alliance Partner Pamela S. Thibodeau. We're so pleased to have her aboard.

I asked this author and blogger where she finds inspiration for her blog, Pamela S. Thibodeaux—Blog.

"I must admit that, personally, I'm pretty burned out on topics…but I love showcasing other authors on Saturday Spotlight and hosting their virtual book tours. This helps me fill in when I can think of nothing to talk about. LOL!"

Honesty…I love it! (Also really glad to know I'm not the only blogger with this kind of problem…)

I'm always interested in why our Blog Alliance members choose to be members. Here's Pam's reason:

"I believe in what COTT is doing and frankly, any website that helps promote Christian authors—especially those who are new, unknown, small press or independently published—is a place I try to support. Doing regular posts for COTT helps me do just that."

Pamela's newest release, The Visionary, is an absolutely wonderful book, one I can whole-heartedly recommend. Without being offensively graphic, it deals with some pretty heavy issues of child abuse and its aftermath.

What are some of the challenges you face as an author?

The biggest challenge I face is not having my work accepted by the “Christian” publishers. As one reviewer said, “Though undeniably Christian, it is never dogmatic or insular; offering faith rather than religion.” (From Elizabeth Burton's review of Tempered Dreams for Blue Iris Journal) My books deal with issues in a way that is unacceptable in the traditional CBA market. Now that is not saying that my books are better than those published through traditional CBA publishers, only different. As I’ve said many times, everything that gives God glory deserves to be praised!

So true. And all I can think to say in response is a very sincere, "Amen!"

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Saturday Spotlight - Pelican Book Group Christmas Extravaganza!

Good Morning Friends,

It is with Great Pleasure I bring to you Pelican Book Group's Holiday Extravaganza!

Check the site often for new Christmas stories all month long!

Visit us all month for new Christmas-themed stories.

SPECIALLY-PRICED at $1.00 through December.

Savanna's Gift by Camille Eide

Forced to return to the ski lodge where she once worked, Savanna Holt is reminded of one special Christmas and how ambition led her to make the worst mistake of her life: Leaving Luke Nelson.

Stunned to discover Luke never left, but worked his way up from lift operator to manager, Savanna sees the opportunity as a gift from God. She’s determined to win Luke back. But Luke wants no reminders of his past hurt, or a relationship with the woman who put ambition before love. 

Can Savanna convince Luke she’s changed and her interest isn't because of his position? And when her dream job beckons, will she sacrifice her dream for a second chance at love?

Be sure and check out the Holiday Extravaganza Bundle -- 13 great stories for only $12.00!

Enjoy & remember...Jesus is the reason for every season.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Virtual Book Tour - Benny's Angel

Good Morning Friends,

It is my pleasure to bring to you today, a wonderful children's book, Benny's Angel, by Laura Allen Nonemaker which is on tour with Kathy Carlton Willis Communications today!

 Who stole the flowers in God’s Secret Garden?
When Ella Eagle discovers that the flowers in God’s Secret Garden have wilted, she alerts Mayor Benny Bunny. The main suspect in the case is evil Count Slime, who is jealous of the joy the animals have in the garden. Mayor Benny calls in Oliver Owl, the captain of the Owl Force Wisdom Watchers, but the owls have not seen Count Slime during their patrols of the garden. Mayor Benny suggests the animals pray for an answer. God hears their prayer and sends Marietta the angel to help them solve the mystery.
This delightful tale uses animals, nature, and a visit from an angel to teach children the importance of prayer and the value of trusting God.

Laura Allen Nonemaker’s desire to write took root as a child in Bermuda. Since then, Laura has written in a variety of genres and her work has appeared in Essence Treasury: Celebrating the SeasonAlive! and Kentucky Monthly Magazine.
Laura has been involved in short-term missions, including trips to Russia, Poland, and the University of the Nations in Kailua Kona, Hawaii. Three years ago, her interest in the arts motivated her to join the planning team for Artful Missions, which conducts juried art shows and donates to outreaches in the U.S. and India to rescue women and children from human trafficking.
Feel free to contact Laura at lauranonemaker@gmail.com
Connect with Laura at These Social Networking Sites:

Q & A with Laura:
Why did you write Benny’s Angel?
Benny’s Angel was the result of an occurrence in my “secret garden.” While seated on my garden bench praying, I noticed a rabbit hopping through the garden. The Benny’s Angelscenario came to me. I sensed it was significant and in about ten minutes, I developed the basic storyline.
Why do you think reading is important for parents to emphasize with children, both by reading to them and fostering a healthy reading appetite as they develop their own reading skills? 
I believe the time to instill a love for reading in children is when they are toddlers and beginning to experience the power of communication in their relationships. Children are ready to absorb whatever they see and hear going on around them, whether it is good or bad. It is important to read them stories that ignite their imagination and plant the seeds of sound moral principles.
What issues do you address in Benny’s Angel, and why do children need these sorts of stories to help them through life? 
In the story of Benny’s Angel, the animals in God’s Secret Garden encounter a problem. They are unable to solve it themselves and pray to God for an answer. God answers their prayer by means of an angel. Benny’s Angel teaches the importance of prayer and of trusting God to answer our prayers. These principles filter naturally through the storyline and without the need for sermonizing. Children will face all kinds of problems and challenges as they grow up and stories based on sound biblical principles lay a strong foundation for their future.
Tell us about the next book you have coming out after Benny’s Angel.
The next book in the God’s Secret Garden Adventure Series is about a little frog. Through some misadventures, he learns the importance of obedience.

Grand Prize Giveaway
$85.87 Value
  • 1 Vivitar Camcorder with Camera and 2X Zoom
  • 1 Benny's Angel Picture Book
  • 1 Benny's Angel 3-D Book
  • 1 Benny's Angel Coloring Book
  • 1 Benny's Angel Audio Book
  • 1 Benny's Angel T Shirt 
  • 1 Benny Christmas Ornament
  • 1 Marietta Christmas Ornament
  • 1 96-Count Crayola Crayons

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    COTT Blog Alliance Guest Post by Michelle Massaro

    *guest post by Michelle Massaro, Asst. Editor at COTT

    Can you believe it's almost December? I love the holidays, but I always struggle this time of year. My heart aches for the Thomas Kinkade paintings, for smiles and laughter and goodwill toward man (especially between siblings in the house!), for snuggling by the fire, kisses under the mistletoe, all that good stuff.

    Real life is not a painting. Or an old black-and-white movie. (That's often why we love escaping into our novels.)

    Nope. Real life finds too many dust bunnies when it's time to move furniture to make room for the tree. Real life has pouting kids who don't want to help lug in the decoration box or be pulled away from their video games in order to just sit by the fire with mom. Husbands who tolerate, but don't enjoy, watching White Christmas, and who grimace and sweat--and possibly even swear--while wrestling with the Christmas lights.
    Add to that the fact that I never got around to shedding that extra five pounds--and now feel it's too late to try--the constant pain in my neck, the myriad bills we aren't sure how to pay, a toddler in the throes of the "terrible two's" (to be fair, he's the sweetest boy in the world, just extremely rambunctious), and homeschool pressures...and each day starts to feel overwhelming. Beyond my ability. Sucking me under. Life does not meet my expectations. I'm failing.

    And sometimes "failing" at something as simple and earthly as creating the "right" home atmosphere can lead to a depression that slips into spiritual darkness. Lies. All lies. But too often, I believe them.

    Maybe you can relate. Or maybe your set of challenges lies elsewhere. Regardless, we all have seasons, or areas of our life, where we don't feel up to the task. And we grieve that ineptitude.

    A dear friend recently gave me a gift--a daily devotional--and the first day's reading hit its mark in my heart. In essence, it reminded me that the measure of God's strength given to me on a daily basis is determined by two things: The difficulty of my circumstances, and my willingness to depend on Him for help.


    This concept completely changed my thinking when it came to facing challenges. Demons. I don't need to assess the situation and measure it against my usual ability and strength. I need to depend on Him and believe that He can and will empower me that much more in order to handle the task. And tomorrow, when the challenge is not so great, He will give me just the strength I need for that day.

    Today it might be preparing the house, encouraging generousity in my kids, and finding ways to trim the grocery budget so that we can get that tail light replaced.  Tomorrow it could be the death of a loved one, a falling away of a brother or sister, or the loss of a job. But the degree of His power available to me will match whatever circumstance comes my way.

    And the same goes for you, too. So if there's any chance that one of you share this struggle of mine at this time of year, I pray this truth shines like a beacon in your heart and gives you hope. It did for me.
    If you're interested in the devotional I mentioned, it's called Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. The entry I referenced was November 11th. :-)

    And if you want some great Christian novels to dive into or pick up as gifts, you always know where to find some winners. (There's always a contest going on at COTT, so I hope you'll join us this week for a look at a couple great cover images.)

    Have a blessed week!

    Thursday, November 24, 2011

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Well today is the one day set aside as a nation to show our thanks to the Lord for His bountiful blessings - and a great day it is--although I'm a firm believer Thanksgiving should be expressed every day!

    Anyone who has suffered the loss of a loved one knows the holidays are most bittersweet; the joy of living tempered by sorrow of living without that/those special one(s). This is the third Thanksgiving without my husband  and yet, I have a LOT to be thankful for!

    One thing I am eternally grateful for (besides the love & support of my family) is the love and support of you, my dear reader friends and I pray God's richest blessings upon each and every one of you!

    Since today is one in the month-long blog tour for The Visionary, I decided to not interrupt any of my hosts' holiday with their family, but to mention it here.

    Previous stops:

    Nov 16th: Amber Stockton: http://amberstockton.blogspot.com
    Nov 17th: Karen Kelly  http://www.authorkarenkelley.com/blog.html  --Cancelled due unforseen problems - but Karen will reschedule!
    Nov 18th: Interview up @ Author Expressions blog http://authorexpressions.blogspot.com/
    Nov 19th: Chat @ Coffeetime Romance! 7-8pm CST: http://groups.yahoo.com/adultconf?dest=%2Fgroup%2Fkarenfindoutaboutnewbooks%2F
    Nov. 20th: Jessica Ferguson http://jessyferguson.blogspot.com
    Nov. 21st: Guest @ LASR blog http://lasrguest.blogspot.com/
    Nov. 23rd: Clare Revell http://telscha.blogspot.com/

    Upcoming Stops:

    Nov 25th: Tanya Hanson   http://www.tanyahanson.com/Blog.html
    Nov. 26th: Delia Latham   http://delialatham.blogspot.com
    Nov 28th: Raquel Byrnes   http://nitewriter6.blogspot.com/
    Nov 29th: Marianne Evans  www.marianneevans.blogspot.com 
    Nov 30th: Shawna Williams http://inspirationalebooks.blogspot.com/
    Dec 1st: Jan Riter Newman  janridernewman.blogspot.com
    Dec 3rd: Justin Lugbill http://christian-book-review.com
    Dec 4th: Curt Iles http://creekbank.net  
    Dec 5th: Dana Pratola  www.danapratola.webs.com
    Dec 7th: Shonell Bacon http://chicklitgurrl.blogspot.com/ 
    Dec 9th: Nona Cross http://winonacross.blogspot.com
    Dec. 10th: JoAnn Carter   http://home.comcast.net/~jo.glenncarter/site/  
    Dec 11th: Donna Basinow  http://donnabsnow.blogspot.com/
    Dec 12th: Guest Post/Edgy Inspirational Romance  www.edgyinspirationalromance.com
    Dec 14th: blog post up @ Pen Talk Community  http://pentalkcommunity.blogspot.com/
    Dec. 15th: Judy Leger:  http://judithleger.blogspot.com/
    Dec 16th: Janet K Brown http://www.writingwithhope.blogspot.com

    Remember, every time you leave a comment, your name is put in the drawing for an autographed copy!

    Take care, God Bless, and remember...Jesus is the reason for EVERY season!