Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas!





This will be my last post to The Woodlands chapter of ACFW. I've enjoyed serving the chapter, but I'm really looking forward to the fresh ideas our new vice president brings to this site.

Love you all, and hope to see you in January!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Special Announcement from Sharon K. Connell



The His Perfect Love virtual book launch party soon. Don’t miss it!


Thursday, December 8, 2016, 6:00 p.m. through 10:00 p.m. Central Time.

This will be a costume party. Dress up as your favorite character from your favorite book, sign in, and be read to post a picture of yourself in costume so we can guess which character you’re dressed as. (Don’t worry if you can’t get a costume…come as you are…even in your PJs). Bring lots of virtual food and drink, and be ready to post a picture of what you’ve brought too, with a recipe, if you have one.

During the party, there will be giveaways chosen at random. I’ll be giving away an autographed copy of my book during the first hour and autographed copies of books from other authors, and gift cards throughout the evening. We’ll also have author guest spots where you can interact with some very good writers, a writing prompt at which you can try your own hand and skill, recipes, and fun, fun, fun.

Amongst all the other activities, I’ll be posting some segments to the first chapter of His Perfect Love.

Looking forward to seeing you!









Monday, December 5, 2016

New Release by Cynthia Toney!

I missed one when I posted the new releases Saturday, so here ya go:


When her family has money problems, Wendy must find a way on her own to see Mrs. V and Sam again—but will she lose David forever in the process?

For her mom’s birthday, Wendy finds an old jewelry box at a flea market—the perfect gift for someone who loves salvaged junk. But inside the box is a cryptic note that appears to have been written recently. Who wrote the note, and did the intended recipient ever see it?

Wendy’s curiosity leads her on a search with boyfriend David at her side and eager to help.

But Wendy needs more personal and urgent help—the financial kind—because her stepfather has lost his job. The family’s plan to visit Alaska on vacation is headed down the sewer like a hard Louisiana rain. How will Wendy ever see Mrs. V or Sam again?

When an opportunity arrives in the form of tutoring Melissa, one of the Sticks, Wendy’s money problems appear to be solved. Until the arrangement takes a turn that gets Wendy into trouble like never before.

And in the final months of ninth grade, she might lose everything she counted on for the
future.

6 Dates to Disaster: Bird Face, Book Three

Saturday, December 3, 2016

New Titles for December!

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Contemporary Romance:

bella-natale Bella Natale! by Marianne Evans -- An aspiring American artist and the widowed, Italian owner of a premier art gallery meet and fall in love in Florence when he champions her work, but there are her American family's expectations and his five-year-old son to consider. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])



with-this-kissWith this Kiss by Marianne Evans -- A kiss stolen in a midnight snow. A jealous colleague at Jonathan's firm is bent on revenge...revenge that puts Isabella's store into legal peril. Will love be enough to see them through? (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])



mistletoe-daddyMistletoe Daddy by Deb Kastner -- Bubbly Vivian Grainger bids on gruff Nick McKenna at Serendipity Texas's annual Bachelors and Baskets for one reason--to help her build her hair salon; but once Nick finds out she's pregnant, he does his best to build a path to Vivian's heart. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])



a-hero-for-heatherA Hero for Heather by Marion Ueckermann -- When a "homeless" man she's been helping rescues social worker Heather Blume from a vicious attack, she's so grateful she violates one of the most important rules in her profession--she takes him home to tend his wounds. But the mysterious Paxton Rathbone is no homeless man…he's a gentleman. When feelings grow, and Paxton's past beckons, both he and Heather discover there's a fine line between gratitude and love. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)



a-husband-for-hollyA Husband for Holly by Marion Ueckermann -- Holly Blume loves decorating people's homes, but that doesn't mean she's ready to play house. Believing a house is not a home without a woman's touch, Reverend Christopher Stewart is in the market for a wife. What woman would consider him marriage material, though, with an aging widowed father to look after, especially one who suffers from Alzheimer's? Despite their differences, Holly resolves to finish her job of redesigning the Stewart home, while Christopher determines to re-form Holly's heart. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)



rocky-mountain-cowboyRocky Mountain Cowboy by Tina Radcliffe -- Twelve years after she married another man, Rebecca Anshaw Simpson is back at Joe Gallagher's ranch as his physical therapist. But healing his body is nothing compared to guarding his heart from the woman he never forgot. Becca won't let regret and a surly rancher get in the way of her job and the chance to start over with her little girl. But Becca never expected she'd fall all over again for her first love. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])



Cozy Mystery:


christmas-cookie-mysteryChristmas Cookie Mystery by Naomi Miller -- With Christmas right around the corner, Katie Chupp and The Sweet Shop get involved in a mystery when a certain dear family finds an unexpected package at their door. (Cozy Mystery from S&G Publishing)







Historical:


michelMichel: The Fourth Wise Man by Katheryn Maddox Haddad -- This descendant of Daniel, also a wise man, sacrifices everything - his wife, his father, his home - to do what he is convinced God needs him to do, then finds out he was wrong (Historical from Northern Lights Publishing House)


five-nights-with-pharaohFive Nights with Pharaoh by Kristen Reed -- Shortly after entering Egypt with her husband, Sarai is taken into Pharaoh’s harem as his newest, most favored concubine. The breathtaking, ageless beauty is forced to cling to her faith in God as she prays for the strength to accept her new position and endures a series of mysterious plagues that can only be indicative of a wrathful deity’s divine judgment. Discover a remarkable reimagining of Sarai’s plight in Egypt, where she humbly set aside her own honor to protect the man through whom all the nations of the earth would be blessed. (Historical - Independently Published)



Historical Romance:


seven-brides-for-seven-texansSeven Brides for Seven Texans Romance Collection by Amanda Barratt, Susan Page Davis, Keli Gwyn, Vickie McDonough, Gabrielle Meyer, Lorna Leslie Seilstad, Erica Vetsch -- Meet the seven Hart brothers of the 7-Heart ranch in central Texas. Each man is content in his independent life, without the responsibilities of a wife and children--until their father decides 1874 will be the year his grown sons finally marry, or they will be cut from his will. How will each man who values his freedom respond to the ultimatum? Can love develop on a timeline, or will it be sacrificed for the sake of an inheritance? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)



a-pony-express-romanceA Pony Express Romance by Misty M. Beller -- Pony Express rider Josiah English and the station master's sister, Mara Reid, fall in love, but when the Express shuts down and Mara's family home is in peril, the danger looming over Mara's life may not be half as destructive as that threatening her heart. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)




Military Suspense:


conspiracy-of-silenceConspiracy of Silence by Ronie Kendig -- A former Green Beret is confronted by past mistakes as he and his team battle a centuries-old plague and the terrorists bent on rewriting history. (Military Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])



Romantic Suspense:


hazardous-holidayHazardous Holiday by Liz Johnson -- Just in time for the holidays, navy SEAL Zach McCloud returns home from deployment--and discovers someone wants his family dead. When he married his cousin's struggling widow, he vowed to help her and her seriously ill son, and now he'll risk everything to protect them. Even if their arrangement is only temporary. Kristi's certain an unhappy client from the law firm where she works is determined to hunt her down. But when a sniper bullet wildly misses its target, they begin to question whether it's really her someone wants dead. Working together, can they figure out why they've been attacked…and keep little Cody from the nefarious forces dead set on making this Christmas their last? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])



christmas-conspiracyChristmas Conspiracy by Susan Sleeman -- When Commander Jake Marsh loses control of a hostage situation and Tessa Long is injured, guilt eats at him. He blurs the line between the professional and personal, and visits Tessa at the hospital. But when a man tries to kill her in her hospital room, Jake disregards all of the rules and regulations that have allowed him to control his world and vows to keep her safe no matter what. Trouble is, the situation brings back memories from his childhood of the loss of his entire family, and for the first time in twenty years, he fears he's no longer in charge of his life, and knows when he's out of control bad things happen. Very bad things. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Saturday, November 26, 2016

News and Reminders

Officer Election is Coming Up


Time for a changing of the guard. You up for it? Ready to hold an office, or at least have someone in mind to nominate? Be in prayer about officers for 2017-2019.

Don't Miss the Christmas Party!




Our annual Christmas Party is again at Linda Kozar's house on Saturday, December 3rd , 11:00-2:00. If you need directions, you can DM her on Facebook or shoot an email to zarcom1@aol.com. The White Elephant Book Exchange is always a hoot. Bring a book with an unusual title or odd subject and prepare to swap it out for something even more unusual. Get ready to giggle!


An invitation from Sharon Connell:


Writers and Authors…and Readers is a group forum for Christian writers, authors and readers.  It’s is a place where you can ask questions, get answers, try your hand at daily writing prompts, read reviews on books that our reader members have read, learn about and post your own book launches, receive information on writing, and so much more.

Our friendly membership is comprised of not only readers and writers, but editors, proofreaders, and others connected with the world of books. We’d like to invite you to check us out. The more, the merrier. We love to have fun, so you never know what some of us will say or post, but it’s all in good clean fun.

No foul language, obscene comments, or adult-rated anything is allowed. This is a family friendly group devoted to learning about good writing and good reads. Join us.

News and Reminders

Officer Election is Coming Up


Time for a changing of the guard. You up for it? Ready to hold an office, or at least have someone in mind to nominate? Be in prayer about officers for 2017-2019.

Don't Miss the Christmas Party!




Our annual Christmas Party is again at Linda Kozar's house on Saturday, December 3rd. If you need directions, you can DM her on Facebook or shoot an email to zarcom1@aol.com. The White Elephant Book Exchange is always a hoot. Bring a book with an unusual title or odd subject and prepare to swap it out for something even more unusual. Get ready to giggle!

Watch your email for the invitation!


An invitation from Sharon Connell:


Writers and Authors…and Readers is a group forum for Christian writers, authors and readers.  It’s is a place where you can ask questions, get answers, try your hand at daily writing prompts, read reviews on books that our reader members have read, learn about and post your own book launches, receive information on writing, and so much more.

Our friendly membership is comprised of not only readers and writers, but editors, proofreaders, and others connected with the world of books. We’d like to invite you to check us out. The more, the merrier. We love to have fun, so you never know what some of us will say or post, but it’s all in good clean fun.

No foul language, obscene comments, or adult-rated anything is allowed. This is a family friendly group devoted to learning about good writing and good reads. Join us.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Deep Characterization: The Antagonist

I got pulled aside at a recent conference by someone who was agonizing over her story idea. We talked about it---she had a great idea, just didn't quite know how to execute it. We discussed plot, ending, characters. The way she discussed her antagonist prompted this post. He's a bad guy. Evil. Horrible. Awful.

She forgot that he's a hero.



Everyone has a back story. Everyone. Even the antagonist. And you not only have to know the back story, you have to be able to climb under his skin and justify his actions based on his back story. To present a convincing bad guy, you have to be the bad guy for awhile.

How bad of a bad guy is he?


  • He's not really bad, he just doesn't agree with the protagonist.
  • He's definitely a bad guy, and he's deranged.
  • He's a bad guy retrospectively, like in the story I discussed with the young author.


In the historical plot we discussed, the bad guy captained a slave ship. I'm not sure there are too many things worse than that. We discussed who this guy was, though, and humanized him:


  • He's a guy with a ship and a crew, doing a job in an era when slavery was controversial, but not illegal. In the South at the time, it was a way of life, and no one thought anything of it.
  • He did his job at a time when slaves were chattel, and the commonly held opinion was that they were inferior. Evil idea to us now, but just a way of life then.
  • He probably had a wife and family at home to whom he was very loving. Probably had friends all over the world with whom he hoisted a pint when he was in port. He probably tithed to his church.

Because, after all, he was just a regular guy with a distasteful job. The only thing making our antagonist a bad guy is his job, a job that financially supported his crew and family.

When things are "just a way of life," no one looks at them as evil---few give the status quo a second thought. Eventually, more people came to their senses and fought a war to bring the South in line and end slavery, but in the era of the story we're discussing, there might have been a few folks shaking their heads, a few denouncing the practice, but it was still "just a way of life."

So, you can present your antagonist as just a regular guy with a despicable job. Or, if you want to make him really bad, you can also illustrate how he treats his "cargo," which is also how you turn him from a bad guy to a good guy, because now we're talking about motive and integrity. If he's the protagonist, he finds his job revolting.

But, keeping him a bad guy and to illustrate him as being totally despicable, we'd have to alter him a bit. With my scenario above---loving wife and kids, friends, church attendance---we'd have a fairly likeable guy that shocks readers once they discover his job. That would be fine if we wanted to turn a good guy with a bad job into a good guy activist trying to abolish that job. But it's not fine if we want to keep him bad.

So, how do you round him out? Make the monster human? You don't want to have him too sympathetic, so what do you do?

Here's where the "save the cat" idea comes in. Give him one thing he loves, one act of kindness, one moral tenet he adheres to, and you've changed him from a 1920's silent movie villain to an interesting antagonist.


  • While they're loading the "cargo" onto the ship, he can let a little boy play at the wheel.
  • He can carry his scruffy dog because it's afraid to go down the ramp to the dock.
  • He can tip his cap respectfully at older ladies because they remind him of his precious ma.

Or, you can illustrate why he believes what he's doing is right. It'll be warped, to our minds, but it'll fit the era:

  • There aren't enough workers in the South to harvest the cotton necessary for clothing.
  • The slave trade is legal, and it feeds my family and crew.
  • My children deserve a better lifestyle, and my income guarantees they'll have one.

Who is your bad guy? How well do you know him? Is he a bad just for the sake of being bad? How does he justify himself? How does his situation/setting/era help justify him? How bad to you want him to be? How sympathetic?

It's okay to make him bad, but you also have to make him human. Obvious, mustache-twirlin' villains are for the '20s.


(Linda Yezak  © 2016)






Saturday, November 12, 2016

Traci Hilton is Our Next Guest!


How can you not love Traci? She plays the spoons! Of course, if that's not talent enough, she's also an award winning author of cozy mysteries and mystery suspense.

And she's going to be featured at our next meeting, Nov. 19th!

Traci will be speaking about making and marketing audio books. Wherever you are in the publication process, from just writing to getting your rights back, this is something all of us need to know and consider. The more products you have to author---print, digital, and audio books---the more you can sell and the better your bottom line will be.

Now that audio books are offered on a variety of devices, their popularity has grown. Join us to learn how to get in on a hot deal!


















Saturday, November 5, 2016

October-November 2016 Releases

New Releases from WOTS members!


Unseen Love: She has an uncertain future. He has a hidden past. Can a forbidden romance set them free? In the shadows of pagan Rome, Laelia Ricarri’s recent blindness destroys her hopes of a betrothal to escape her abusive father. For Drusus, his new mistress is more capable, and beautiful, than she knows. Still tormented by the sins of his past, the only thing he fears more than falling in love with his mistress is failing her in his task. But his newfound faith has made him an enemy of Rome, and the reemergence of an old feud with a calculating rival threatens to ensnare Laelia within its dark grasp. As Drusus reawakens Laelia’s inner strength, his patient encouragement is awakening her heart. She’s learning to trust, as Drusus must also learn to trust in his God. When the indiscriminate tide of tragedy sweeps through Rome, Drusus and Laelia will have to put their faith in each other to survive. Even if that means being parted forever.




Southbound Birds:  Continuing the saga in this Early Birds sequel. This Christian comedy has Rose and Larry Wilford hitting the highway on their next RV adventure. Ben and Betsy Stevenson are right behind them in their 5th wheel. Filled with fun, fellowship and a few fiascoes!




The Bucket List Dare: a Christian Romance Novella Collection: Four best friends—Texas A&M grads—challenge each other to revisit the bucket lists they made in college and tackle one daring item before they turn thirty. Living in different parts of the country and with birthdays on the horizon, the Aggie girls choose their adventure and work toward making it happen . . . with wonderful, unexpected results. Her Impossible Dream, by Angela Breidenbach, Save the Groom, by Jessica Ferguson, What Lies Ahead, by Pamela S. Meyers, and Skydiving to Love,by Linda W. Yezak


ACFW November 2016 New Releases


Biblical:

Slender Reeds: Jochebed's Hope by Texie Susan Gregory -- In a deadly race to save her son, a young slave woman dares defy the most powerful man in the world. (Biblical from Barbour Publishing)


Contemporary Romance:


Crazy Woman Christmas by Renee Blare -- A quiet cowboy whisks Bianca to his ranch to ride out the Christmas blizzard where she discovers life is cold but also beautiful in the “Cowboy” state. (Contemporary Romance from Inspired [Prism Book Group])

Other Than a Halo by Valerie Comer -- Even though she’s a new woman in Christ, single mom Bren Haddock was no angel as a teen. Now managing the Hiller Farm for a CSA, life is good until a friend offers to enter her daughter into the Little Miss Snowflake Pageant. Old insecurities flare when she meets the intriguing head of marketing the pageant. Rob Santoro isn’t so sure about handling the pageant portfolio until he meets Bren. Soon he’s fallen for her and her two kids. When a Thanksgiving adventure goes awry, he’s left wondering how to love a woman who refuses to be loved. What will it take for Bren to retire her tarnished halo and move into the future God has for her? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Do You Know What I Know? by Becky Melby -- What if a phone call from the obstetrician’s office went to the wrong person? Elizabeth Schmidt can’t figure out why her husband doesn’t seem excited about the news she’s sure he heard. Is he unhappy? Or is James cheating on her? Pastor Jay Davidson is in shock. Bethany Schmidt, the woman he’s in love with, is pregnant. Should he walk away, or is God asking him to play the part of Joseph in real life and not just in the church Christmas program? Bethany can’t figure out why Jay is acting so weird. Has he figured out one of the two secrets she’s keeping until after Christmas? Can a ponytailed itinerant carpenter with a pet chicken help unravel the confusion? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

How to Charm a Beekeeper's Heart by Candice Sue Patterson -- Weddings are the last thing beekeeper Huck Anderson wants to be associated with, considering his past. So when he inherits a building occupied by a bridal boutique, he aims to evict the failing business and open a sporting goods store. That is until his tenant ends up being Arianne Winters, a woman he’s indebted to from a mistake made years ago. When a life-threatening injury derails Huck entirely, Arianne offers to aid in his lengthy recovery if he’ll allow her to remain in his building. But nursing her adversary proves challenging when her adolescent crush resurfaces. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

A Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay -- After a whirlwind romance and marriage, Emily Price returns home to Italy with her new husband and learns that life at its richest is only found when she accepts its chaotic beauty. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing [Thomas Nelson and Zondervan])


Contemporary Women's Fiction:

Forgiveness by Marianne Evans -- Country music bad boy, Chase Bradington is on the comeback trail. Fresh from rehab for alcohol addiction and transformed by the power of Christ, Chase is battling to rediscover the music he loves and a career he nearly ruined. Then he meets up-and-comer, Pyper Brock and instantly sparks ignite. Despite her rampant attraction to the handsome and talented icon, Pyper knows of Chase’s reputation and soundly dismisses his romantic overtures. No way will Pyper repeat the mistake of trusting a man whose done battle with the bottle. Can a sin-damaged past be released in favor of forgiveness? (Women’s Fiction from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])



Historical:

Beneath a Golden Veil by Melanie Dobson -- As elegant as the Sacramento residence she operates, Isabelle Labrie keeps her past concealed, like the treasure she hides under the Golden Hotel. Then, unexpected guests—fugitive slaves seeking safe passage to the North—force her to confront her past and reconsider her path. (Historical from Waterfall Press)

Forest Child by Heather Day Gilbert -- Historically based on the Icelandic Sagas, Forest Child brings the memorable, conflicted persona of Freydis Eiriksdottir to life. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)

The Lost Generation by Erica Marie Hogan -- On August 5th 1914, the world changed forever. For John and Beth Young, it meant the happiness they finally achieved was snatched out from under them. For Emma Cote, it meant that her husband Jared would do his duty, despite her feelings. For Christy Simmons it meant an uncertain future with the boy she loved. The lives of six people, spread across the British Empire to America were changed forever. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)


Historical Romance:

The Blue Ribbon Brides Collection by Jennifer AlLee, Angela Breidenbach, Darlene Franklin, Cynthia Hickey, Carrie Fancett Pagels, Amber Stockton, Niki Turner, Gina Welborn, and Becca Whitham -- Meet nine men and women whose competitive goals take them to state and county fairs between 1889 and 1930. From baking pie to polishing pigs, from sculpting butter to stitching quilts, everyone has something to prove to themselves and their communities. But in going for the blue ribbon, will nine women miss the greatest prize of all—the devoted heart of a godly man? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Left at the Altar by Margaret Brownley -- In the wild and untamed West, time is set by the local jeweler...but Two-Time Texas has two: two feuding jewelers and two wildly conflicting time zones. Meg Lockwood's marriage was supposed to unite the families and finally bring peace until she's left at the altar by her no-good fiancé. Hired to defend the groom against a breach of promise lawsuit, Grant Garrison quickly realizes that the only thing worse than small-town trouble is falling for the jilted bride. But there's something about Meg's sweet smile and determined grit that draws him in...even as the whole crazy town seems set on keeping them apart. (Historical Romance from Sourcebooks)

Mail Order Mommy by Christine Johnson -- Nursing a broken heart, Amanda Porter had answered a frontier mail-order bride ad placed by Garrett Decker's children—only to find the groom-to-be didn't want a wife. But his adorable children are determined she'll be their mother by Christmas… His wife's betrayal and tragic death demolished Garrett's life. Now he can't even look at another woman, let alone marry Amanda, who resembles his first love. But with his daughter convinced Amanda is the perfect mother, will Garrett realize she's also his perfect match? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Hope's Design by Dawn Kinzer -- An independent city girl aspiring to be a fashion designer falls for a stubborn artist from the country who wants to keep his talent a secret. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)

Brides of Wyoming by S. Dionne Moore -- Roam the Wyoming range alongside three couples who meet under danger from bands of outlaws. Renee escapes a gang of outlaws and lands in the arms of a sheepherder. Olivia’s sleuthing upturns secrets key to solving the murder of a reluctant rancher’s father. Maira is trying to keep her ranch running alone when a drifting cowboy offers a hand. Can love develop where suspicion and greed roam the range? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

The Negotiated Marriage by Christina Rich -- When the railroad pushes to buy her land, orphaned Cameron Sims will do anything to keep the only home she and her sisters have ever known. Even if she must marry a stranger. Duncan Murray doesn’t want a wife. He wants Sims Creek, a sanctuary that can help him forget a troubled childhood. But his reluctant, and captivating, bride-to-be is key to making his dreams a reality. And despite their business arrangement, Camy and Duncan might be signing on the dotted line for true love… (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Love in the Seams by Jodie Wolfe -- A little girl on a quest for a new mama has the local seamstress in her sights. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)


Romantic Suspense:

His Perfect Love by Sharon K. Connell -- On the run from a hit man, Patricia Campbell is unaware of the FBI’s search for her to learn what information she might hold, so she continues to hide out. Then she meets a persistent computer technician, a charming philanthropist, and a handsome, wealthy businessman who wants to marry her. But her fears resurface, and she wonders if she can trust any of them. Can she survive long enough to find peace…and perfect love? (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Counter Point by Marji Laine -- Her dad's gone, her diner's closing, and her car's in the lake. Cat McPherson has nothing left to lose ... except her life. And a madman, bent on revenge, is determined to take that, as well. Her former boyfriend, Ray Alexander, returns as a hero from his foreign mission, bringing back souvenirs in the form of death-threats. When several attempts are made on Cat’s life, she must find a way to trust Ray, the man who broke her heart. (Romantic Suspense from Write Integrity Press)


Speculative:

The Flaming Sword by Heather L.L. FitzGerald -- When evil joins forces in the Tethered World, Sadie Larcen must risk all to protect the Flaming Sword and her family...even if it takes her life. (Speculative Young Adult from Mountain Brook Ink)

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Double Your Word Count in Two Weeks

I put a hiatus on editing jobs for the rest of the year so I could finally start writing. I haven't written anything longer than a blog post since I finished Skydiving to Love back in February. My goals for 2017 are to write a novella, Kayla's Challenge for my writing group's Tiny House collection, write and release the third novel in The Circle Bar Ranch series, and write the first in the new Challenge series.

So when I found this post of Janice Thompson's, I paid attention. Who wouldn't want to increase their word count in two weeks?

Just in case this is something you want to do too, I pasted it for you here.


Writers are not all cut from the same cloth. Some race toward the goal, writing five, ten, or even fifteen thousand words a day. Others would think it miraculous to write that many words in a week, or even a month.

No, we’re not all alike, but we all have the same goal in mind: to write the best possible piece and get it into an editor’s capable hands. And we long to do this in a timely manner so that we can move on to the next piece.

So, how can we improve our word count? How can we zip-a-dee-doo-dah toward the goal? Here are a few ideas to speed up the writing process:

1). Give yourself a deadline. If you’re not writing against an editor-induced deadline, give yourself a personal one. You might consider upping the ante a little bit by entering the book in a contest with a very real deadline or by promising your critique partners a certain number of chapters by the end of the week. These self-imposed deadlines become even more real when you write them down. Add them to your calendar.

2). Set a timer. This sounds so simple, but it really works. Set a timer for an hour (or whatever length of time you have to write) and don’t get up out of the chair, no matter what.

3). Set word goals. Tell yourself that you’re not going to get up from the chair until you’ve written a thousand words.

4). Write in chunks of time. When I’m under the gun, I’ll write three times a day, setting a word goal of two thousand words per sitting. For you, it might be five hundred words per sitting. Doesn’t matter. You will get more done if you tell yourself you can do it and if you divide your workday into segments (with downtime in-between).

5). Don’t edit as you go. I know, I know. . .it’s tough! Turn off that internal editor and let the words flow. Write anything that comes to mind, even gibberish. It can be edited out later.

6). If you’re stuck, use word and phrase association. Look at the chapter you’ve just written and pull out words or phrases that refer to some event in the future. Maybe you’ve written that Susie has just learned she’s expecting a baby boy. Instead of pondering what comes next in the story, jump ahead and write the scene where Susie gives birth to her baby boy. Chances are pretty good that scene will pour out of you and will inspire you to write other future scenes.

7). Use writing prompts or other creative writing exercises. Consider a course on creativity. There’s nothing like stirring the imagination to speed up the process.

Above all, value your writing time. Cherish it. Protect it. Don’t give in to the temptation to check your email, browse facebook or do a video chat with a friend. Focus, focus, focus! Write, write, write.

Then, two weeks from now, you can pause to look back over the distance you’ve traveled. I’d be willing to bet you’ll blow yourself away with how much faster you’re writing.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Doors Closed on WOTS First Conference


Our very first conference, "Taking the Indie World by Storm," was a smashing success! We had twenty-one attendees--not too shabby for a first time--along with five presenters, and spent every minute of our time in fellowship, fun, and learning. Special thanks to Anthea Kotlan for setting us up in St. Timothy's Anglican Church. The conference room and kitchen facilities were wonderful. It was perfect setting!

Here's what you missed if you weren't there:

Linda Kozar informed us of the differences between traditional and indie publishing, and provided some useful information about distributors and formats: ebooks, print, and audible. Her speech about ACX (Audiobook Creation Exchange) was worth the price of admission right there. Looking forward to learning more about that.

Kathrese McKee gave a super-informative overview about the kinds of resources writers need in their toolboxes. She covered everything from writing aids like Scrivener and Windows Office to the major digital retailers like Amazon, Apple iBook, and Kobo.

Crystal Barnes took us through some basics of book formatting and cover design, highlighting some of the more technical aspects of creating a book--both print and digital. She covered fonts, page set-up, quarter-cover design vs tri-design. Actually, I think she could've taught for the entire six hours without hitting the same topic twice.

Janice Thompson spurred our creative sides with great tips on how to market our books, reiterating the fact that successful marketing has more to do with creating and maintaining relationships with our readers than it does pushing our works all the time.

Linda Yezak explained why authors suffer from sticker-shock when they see the price of an edit and how to keep the price down a bit with the help of critique groups/partners, self-editing, and revisions. I gave some tips and tricks of how to find many of your own mistakes before sending your manuscript for an edit.

Add to the list devotionals from both Anthea and Janice, a wonderful breakfast provided by Linda Kozar and Janice, and a good lunch from a deli that knows what they're doing.

Even now, though, we're doing some analytics--what worked great, what could be improved, what we hope to do next year. Our 2017 mini-conference will be even better. If you did attend, be sure to let us know what you thought---the good and the bad. We would truly value your input.



I didn't make it in time for this pic, so they improvised. Such cut-ups!


Reminder:

The conference took the place of our October meeting, so for those we didn't get to see this past Saturday, we'll see you November 19th. Traci Hilton is joining us to discuss creating and marketing the audio book. 








Saturday, October 1, 2016

News and New Releases

Don't forget the WOTS Mini-Conference--one week from today! Click *here* for more info!





New Releases from WOTS Members:




Due for release October 4.

Christmas at Stoney CreekWhen newspaper reporter Tom Whiteman befriends a homeless man named Joe, Tom decides to bring him home to Stoney Creek, Texas. Joe begins to work odd jobs around town and make new friends, but contradictions in the man’s manner and speech cause Tom to believe there’s more to the old man than meets the eye.

As Tom and his childhood friend Faith Delmont set out to learn the truth about the old man with the kind, sad eyes, Christmas in Stoney Creek becomes one they will never forget as they discover that God’s love can turn tragedy and loss to triumph and that true love comes to those who wait.

*~*~*




Janice's New Novella

Return to Sender: A Christmas Love Letter NovellaHolly O’Brien’s plans are flipped upside-down when she receives what she believes to be a Christmas letter in the mail. Turns out, the letter is from a complete stranger, and is intended for someone else. The passionate note—written with shaky handwriting—clues Holly in to the fact that the writer wants to reconcile with her estranged family. Holly flies into action to find the sender of the letter. Getting it into the right hands is critical. Her journey leads her to the Shady Acres nursing home, where she meets Gertie, the writer of the cryptic letter. Only one problem: Gertie, who has Alzheimer’s, has no memory of writing it. Enter Liam, Gertie’s handsome grandson. Does he have to key to unraveling this mystery? When Liam and Holly come together, sparks fly, but not all of them in the right direction. Can they work together to solve the mystery behind the letter? And will Holly witness a Christmas miracle as she gets to know this wonderful family?

*~*~*


October 2016 New Releases

ACFW Authors


More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Biblical Fiction:

Providence: Hannah's Journey by Barbara M. Britton -- When the prophet of Israel refuses to heal her, Hannah flees Jerusalem and is captured by an enemy with a curse all his own. (Biblical from Harbourlight [Pelican])

Shadow of the Storm by Connilyn Cossette -- In defiance of her mother, Shira pursues her heart's calling to become an apprentice midwife. When a delivery goes horribly wrong, Shira finds herself bound to a man who betrayed her, the caretaker of three young children, and the target of a vengeful woman whose husband was killed by Shira's people, the Levites. As contention between the Hebrew tribes and the foreigners fans the flames of another dangerous rebellion, Shira will come face-to-face with the heartbreak of her past that she has kept hidden for so long. How can she let go of all that has defined her to accept the love she's denied herself and embrace who she truly is? (Biblical from Bethany House [Baker])


Christmas Novella:

Christmas Lights by Chautona Havig, Vikki Kestell, Cathe Swanson, and April Hayman -- From historical romance to contemporary cozy mysteries and Christmas wonder, these four "light" reads will warm your heart and ignite your Christmas spirit! (Christmas Novella, Mixed Genres, Independently Published)


Contemporary Romance:

Risking Love by Brenda S. Anderson -- Can cautious bank employee Lissa Morgan risk falling in love with a former thrill-seeker, a widowed single dad, when she may have to foreclose on his house? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

A Mom for Christmas by Lorraine Beatty -- Noah's dream of a happy family and Beth's dream of a continuing ballet career are both dashed, but when they come together they discover that the Lord might have a new dream for both of them. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Sleigh Bells Ring by Sandra D. Bricker, Barbara J. Scott, Lynette Sowell, and Lenora Worth -- Santa Claus is coming to town, and so are the Tucker sisters. The girls have inherited their father's run-down horse farm for Christmas. It needs some serious TLC in order to make it sell-ready. Joanna knows that by recruiting her sisters and one handsome ranch hand they can fix up the place and even celebrate one last Christmas while they're at it. However, to Isabella, returning to their home in Kentucky bluegrass country for Christmas seems like an impossible hurdle. Can her Chicago boyfriend make life merry and bright again? One thing's for sure: nothing is peace on earth for Sophia as a new beau brings up old wounds. And when the fate of the horse farm is put in jeopardy because Amy accidentally fraternizes with the enemy, tensions rise. But it's not like the land developer stole Christmas . . . just her heart. Can the Tucker sisters have themselves a merry little Christmas? (Contemporary Romance from Gilead Publishing)

Do You Hear What I Hear? by Margaret Brownley -- Stranded at the old Star Inn until the road back to his cabin reopens, lumber mill owner Rick Talbot suddenly comes face to face with the past. The only woman he's ever loved is standing in front of the inn's blazing fire trying to get warm. Both Rick and Sally regret what happened between them years ago, but his family lumberyard clashes with her tree-hugging ways and neither are willing to try again. It will take the storm of the century, one stage-struck young boy, a certain meddling "angel"--and even a cranky cat--to convince them that in matters of the heart, sometimes the second time around is best. (Contemporary Romance from St. Martin Press)

More Than a Tiara by Valerie Comer -- Marisa Hiller abandoned her modeling career to nurse a broken heart in Montana, far from the photographer who ruined everything. Her family farm is now part of a CSA program teaching gardening and cooking to single moms, but when the coordinator begs her to represent the program in the Miss Snowflake Pageant, Marisa balks. God has forgiven Jase Mackie but hasn't answered his prayer to bring Marisa back into his life… until Jase finds himself out West as the official photographer for a beauty pageant, face to face with the woman he's never forgotten. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Room at the Inn for Christmas by Mary Connealy -- Ambitious hotel executive Amanda Star's has got her sights set on the CEO job at the multi-national Halston hotel chain. But then she inherits the Star Inn, a place her father had always wanted her to run alongside him. With no time to be away from her job, she rushes home to put the inn up for sale. Once there, she's struggles against keen regret, sweet memories, and the longing to return, which grows stronger when she is reunited with an old classmate: Anthony Carter, a handyman with a guarded heart. (Contemporary Romance from St. Martin Press)

Can't Help Falling by Kara Isaac -- A funny, heartfelt romance about how an antique shop, a wardrobe, and a mysterious tea cup bring two C.S. Lewis fans together in a snowy and picturesque Oxford, England. (Contemporary Romance from Howard [Simon & Schuster])

A Christmas Homecoming by Kimberly Rose Johnson -- Interior design assistant Bailey Calderwood suspects the mysterious admirer sending her cards and flowers is none other than the son of her unpleasable, bed-ridden boss. When Stephen Belafonte's mom demands he fire Bailey, can he find a way to heal the rift in his family as well his own heart, or will he be forced to let Bailey go? (Contemporary Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)

Where Two Hearts Meet by Liz Johnson -- When Caden Holt's boss asks her to show off their own beautiful Prince Edward Island to impress a visiting travel writer and save the Red Door Inn, the reclusive executive chef is forced to face a world much bigger than her kitchen--and a man who makes her wish she was beautiful. (Contemporary Romance from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])

Trust My Heart by Carol J. Post -- Grant McAllister, a jaded big-city lawyer and small-town reporter Jami Carlisle have no hope of finding true love--except for a zany old matchmaker who won't give up. In the unspoiled beauty of the Smoky Mountains, there's healing and forgiveness to be found. And for Grant, this unplanned detour may be just what's needed to finally guide him home. (Contemporary Romance from Waterfall Press)

Insight by Deborah Raney -- She's having a baby. It's a blessing that brings comfort to newly widowed Olivia Cline. Yet with no insurance, no job, and precious little money, how will Olivia care for herself and her child? The answer is a handsome and brooding artist seeking an assistant. Reed Vincent has recently regained his eyesight thanks to a donor. And through his eyes, Olivia begins to see all the possibilities before her. Before them. Until, in a flash of insight, she knows why his signature is so hauntingly familiar. (Contemporary Romance from Raney Day Press)

Silver Bells by Deborah Raney -- As Elvis croons from the radio and Christmas descends upon a small Kansas town, two people find the miracle of love. (Contemporary Romance from Raney Day Press)

A Family Under the Christmas Tree by Terri Reed -- In this heartwarming tale set during the Christmas season, a single father and a fashion photographer are brought together by a young boy and a mischievous Bernese mountain dog--but first they must learn to set aside their differences if they are willing to let their relationship bloom. (Contemporary Romance from Howard [Simon & Schuster])

Third Strand of the Cord by Catherine Richmond -- Caroline will do anything to keep her ex-husband from putting her son with Down syndrome in an institution--even enroll the boy in a class taught by a know-it-all karate instructor. Lee Marivaux is an expert at reading people. He knows his feisty new student will thrive with firm guidance - and he's right. He pegs the boy's mother as a clueless socialite who loafs at the country club - and he's never been so wrong. When Caroline's abusive ex shows up, demanding custody, Lee and Caroline must join forces to keep the boy safe. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Buying Love by Toni Shiloh -- Impatient for marriage, Nina Warrenton places an ad in the newspaper for a husband--attaching a monetary reward. But when she begins to fall for the small-town chef who answers her ad, she realizes how much she wants him to love her and not her money. Dwight Williams needs fast cash to save the family restaurant, but can he let it go to prove his love for Nina? (Contemporary Romance from Celebrate Lit)

Moonlight Over Manhattan by Carrie Turansky -- Professional organizer Sarah Montgomery is hired to organize her elderly neighbor's cluttered apartment by Justin Latimer, her neighbor's grandson. Sarah believes free-spirited Justin is a lazy, unemployed poet who is taking advantage of his grandmother's generosity. Though attracted to him, she guards her heart against her growing feelings. As Sarah and Justin work together to help his grandmother and enjoy Christmas events in NYC, romantic sparks fly. When Sarah discovers who Justin really is, she must decide if she will continue to hide behind her protective wall or open her heart and embrace love. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Love Bears All Things by Beth Wiseman -- Charlotte Dolinsky needs time to recover after breaking up with her boyfriend, Ryan. But when a surprise visitor shows up on her doorstep in Texas, she's forced to put aside her own worries to help her Amish friends in Lancaster County. Daniel Byler struggles each day in his Amish community to heal from his fiancée's betrayal. When he discovers that a member of his family is in danger of being shunned, his pain turns to fear. His only way to help is by partnering with Charlotte, a woman he barely knows who has already deceived them all before. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)


General Contemporary (includes Women's Fiction):

Paint The Storm by Dawn V. Cahill -- When Meg is challenged to love her lesbian daughter as Christ would, she struggles to live out God's command, and when her daughter goes missing, she finds herself joined with the unlikeliest of allies in her search for Linzee, and finally learns of God's unconditional grace for sinners. (Contemporary Women's Fiction from Spring Mountain Publishing)


Restoration Road by Elise Phillips -- Mallory Andrews's short trip back to Texas for her mother's funeral quickly becomes a move home to help her grieving father with his contracting business. When her old crush, Tres, hires them for a restoration project Mallory falls in love with the crumbling old house. And when feelings bloom between her and Tres, she finds herself on the road to a brand new, unexpected life filled with faith, sweet tea, and fresh paint. (General Contemporary from Desert Breeze Publishing)

Above All Things by Deborah Raney -- Expecting their first baby, Judd and Evette McGlin are thrilled to become parents. But the couple faces the ultimate test when Judd learns he already has a child: a six-year-old mixed-race girl born amid secrets and lies. Now, Evette must decide if she can accept the child. She thought she was open-minded--until hidden prejudices threaten the future of an innocent little girl, Evette's marriage and the very notion of who she thinks she is. (Contemporary Women's Fiction from Raney Day Press)

Restoring Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti -- Alexis set out to restore a fieldstone farmhouse in need of repair. She didn't expect to restore a life in the process. (General Contemporary from Worthy Inspired)

Strings of Faith by Terry Stafford -- Darcy is a classically trained violinist who dreams of playing bluegrass and winning The National Oldtime Fiddle Contest in Weiser, Idaho. When tragedy strikes, Darcy lays her gift aside for her family and faces unimaginable pain and loss, leading to dissension with her husband, disappointing judgment from her church, and anger with God Himself. Can her gift of music survive when her life is turned upside down? (General Contemporary, Independently Published)

Historical:


The Lost Generation by Erica Marie Hogan -- On August 5th, 1914, the world changed forever. For John and Beth Young, it meant the happiness they finally achieved was snatched out from under them. For Emma Cote, it meant that her husband Jared would do his duty, despite her feelings. For Christy Simmons, it meant an uncertain future with the boy she loved. The lives of six people, spread across the British Empire to America were changed forever. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)

Aboard Providence by Keely Brooke Keith -- When an accident forces Jonah Ashton to serve as a ship's physician, he boards the Providence with the plan to escort a group of families to their new settlement in South America and then return to Pennsylvania to finish medical school before rumors of Southern rebellion erupt into all-out war. What he doesn't count on is getting lost at sea... and Marian Foster. When the settlers finally reach land, Jonah makes a startling discovery that changes everything, but will it change his heart? (Historical from Crossriver Media Group)


Historical Romance:

The Rails to Love Romance Collection by Diana Lesire Brandmeyer, Amanda Cabot, Lisa Carter, Ramona K. Cecil, Lynn A. Coleman, Susanne Dietze, Kim Vogel Sawyer, Connie Stevens, and Liz Tolsma -- Journey the Transcontinental Railroad along with nine unlikely couples who encounter all the dangers and disappointments of traveling the rails in the late 1800s. From sight-seeing excursions to transports toward new lives, from orphan trains to circus trains, can romances develop into blazing love in a world of cold, hard steel? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Cowboy Christmas Homecoming by Mary Connealy, Ruth Logan Herne, Julie Lessman, and Anna Schmidt -- For widow June Harper, another cold front is about to hit. Most call him Hugh. She'd call him Scrooge, except as the man ensures her needs are met, June can't help but wonder how to meet the needs of his heart. Netty Lewis can take care of herself, has for a while now. And even if Roy, her hired help for the holidays, does take care of her, that doesn't mean he cares for her or that he'll stay past Christmas. Pastor Colton McCabe is not sure he'll make it through the holidays with his new housekeeper. Grace can't seem to do anything right but love. Perhaps being a homekeeper will earn her a permanent residence in his heart. Connie Lancaster is determined to return to St. Louis, and no cowboy can change her mind. But if Isaac can change her heart, maybe Connie will see the homecoming she's been longing for isn't to a place but a person. (Historical Romance from Gilead Publishing)

The Captive Heart by Michelle Griep -- Stranded in a strange land, Eleanor Morgan faces starvation or marriage . . . but who wants to marry a murderer? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

The Rightful Heir by Angel Moore -- Cowboy Jared Ivy must work with stranger Mary Lou Ellison until a judge comes to town and determines which one of them is the rightful heir to his family's Texas newspaper. Intrepid reporter Mary Lou won't lose the Pine Haven Record--the legacy he left her--without a fight. But when she and Jared stop sparring long enough to investigate a story together, they become a force to be reckoned with. Will they let their battle over the Record get in the way of something even more newsworthy: true love? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Christmas at Stoney Creek by Martha Rogers -- When newspaper reporter Tom Whiteman befriends a homeless man named Joe, Tom decides to bring him home to Stoney Creek, Texas for Christmas. As Tom and his childhood friend Faith Delmont set out to learn the truth about the mysterious old man with the kind, sad eyes, they discover that God's love can turn tragedy and loss to triumph, and that true love comes to those who wait. (Historical Romance from Realms [Charisma Media])


Mystery:

Another Day, Another Dali by Sandra Orchard -- In order to regain her grandmother's favor FBI Special Agent Serena Jones agrees to investigate a missing Salvador Dali painting. But when the evidence points to members of the owner's own household, it becomes clear that Serena won't be winning any popularity contests. Then Serena stumbles upon links to her grandfather's unsolved murder. (Mystery from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])



Romantic Suspense:

Tangled Webs by Irene Hannon -- After a disastrous Middle East mission ends his six-year Army Ranger career, Finn McGregor needs some downtime in the woods. But when someone threatens his neighbor, publishing executive Dana Lewis, Finn and Dana must work together to discover who wants her to leave her lakeside cabin before it costs both their lives. (Romantic Suspense from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])

Identity Unknown by Terri Reed -- When a John Doe washes up on the shores of Calico Bay, no one knows who he is—including him. But one thing's instantly clear to deputy sheriff Audrey Martin: the man's marked for murder. And she's the only one who can protect him from the assassins who lurk at every turn. The arrival of a team of men claiming he's Canadian Border Services officer Nathanial Longhorn only further complicates the matter. As his memories slowly start drifting back, Nathanial and Audrey work to uncover who wants him dead and why. If they don't, this Christmas might be their last. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Speculative:

A Time to Rise by Nadine Brandes -- What more can you sacrifice than your life? Parvin Blackwater is dead. At least that's what the Council and the world thinks. But her sacrifice tore down part of the Wall long enough to stir up hope and rebellion in the people. Parvin and Solomon must uncover the mysterious clues that Jude left behind in order to destroy the projected Wall once and for all. Meanwhile, the Council schemes to new levels of technology in its attempts to keep the people contained. Can a one-handed Radical and a scarred ex-Enforcer really bring shalom to the world? (Speculative Young Adult from Enclave Publishing)

Unblemished by Sara Ella -- Eliyana can't bear to look at her own reflection. But what if that were only one Reflection—one world? What if another world exists where her blemish could become her strength? (Speculative Young Adult from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

Beast by Chawna Schroeder -- For as long as Beast can remember, she has lived among her master's dogs. With them, she sleeps. With them, she eats. With them, she fights and struggles to survive. But through hunger and cold, she dreams of one day becoming her master's favorite, earning bones with meat and a place beside the fire. When her pack scatters after a surprise raid, Beast must defend herself against slavers, hunting down the loners. They are so strong, and she is only a beast . . . or is she? (Speculative Allegory from Enclave Publishing)

Accelerant by Ronie Kendig -- He'll destroy the world. But he must save it first. As the only able-bodied heir to the Fire Throne, Haegan, Prince of Seultrie must return to the Nine Kingdoms and fight for his people. But there are insidious forces at work. When reality itself falls into question, Haegan struggles to know where to fight, who to trust. Caught between duty to his country and duty to the world, Haegan must see clearly enough to choose the right path to save his devastated world. (Speculative High Fantasy from Enclave Publishing)


Thriller/Suspense:

Death in the Mind's Eye by Rick Acker -- It knows what you're thinking. It knows when you're lying. Does it know how to kill? San Francisco attorney Mike Webster and Dr. Johanna Anderson, a brilliant and beautiful psychologist, must clear Jo's name of a malpractice case before the controversial, technologically-assisted Mind's Eye therapy is seized by a shadowy finance firm and used as a weapon. (Thriller/Suspense from Waterfall Press)

The Warrior's Seal by Ronie Kendig -- A Special Forces team is thrust into a war with the past to save the president after an artifact unleashes a deadly toxin. Special Forces operative Cole "Tox" Russell and his team are tasked in a search-and-rescue--the U.S. president has been kidnapped during a goodwill tour. The mission nosedives when an ancient biblical artifact and a deadly toxin wipe out villages. Tox must stop the terrorists and the toxin to save the president. This is a free e-novella prequel! (Thriller/Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])

Deadly Infiltration by W. Richard Lawrence -- Infiltrators inside the American government are betraying undercover agents while helping sneak weapons of mass destruction across our borders. To keep their work hidden, they are willing to murder anyone who gets in their way. Sara, a brilliant computer expert working for the FBI, finds herself caught in the middle. Sara's young faith in God is gravely tested when she is framed for the murder of an FBI agent, forcing her to go into hiding. Meanwhile, Sara's fiancé Derry lives up to a promise he made to her and gives up his future to save her and hopefully the country. (Thriller/Suspense from Boarding House Publishing)

Western Historical:

Refining Fire by Carol Cox -- Meet the Arizona Territory Brides. Four strong, independent women--each determined to stand on her own two feet, and not one of them looking for romance. But sometimes love shows up when you least expect it... (Western, Pioneer/Prairie, Independently Published)