Monday, March 7, 2011

ASK A QUESTION to be entered in a Giveaway for Miralee Ferrell's LOVE FINDS YOU IN TOMBSTONE, ARIZONA


ASK A QUESTION



Welcome Miralee Ferrell. Today Miralee is doing a question and answer forum. Ask a question to be entered into a drawing for her new book Love Finds You in Tombstone Arizona.

I'm reading Love Finds You in Tombstone, Arizona, now. Miralee starts the book off with a bang...literally. And it continues to keep you intrigued and turning the pages. She does a beautiful job developing the characters and exploring their flaws. The setting and descriptions are done with such expertise you feel like you are there in Tombstone. I know because we just recently visited the town. If you're looking for a great book to read be sure to pick this one up. You won't want to miss it!

Miralee serves as president of the Portland, Oregon, chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers and belongs to a number of writer’s groups. She also speaks at women’s groups, libraries, and churches about her writing journey. When she started writing fiction Miralee believed that she’d always stay with women’s contemporary, but has since branched out to historical romance. Exploring family and marriage issues, The Other Daughter follows a family of four who receive a shock in the form of a 13-year-old girl who lands on their doorstep, claiming to be the daughter of the husband/father of the family—a girl they didn’t know existed. Finding Jeena features a secondary character from the first book and explores socioeconomic issues through a single woman’s sudden job-loss and ensuing struggle for survival.

Her third historical romance with Summerside Press in their Love Finds You series, is set in Tombstone, Arizona, and released Feb. 1st. All the Love Finds You books are stand-alone novels, and take place in a real town in America. Miralee’s first two are set in 1877, Love Finds You in Last Chance, CA, and 1902, Love Finds You in Bridal Veil, Oregon. Her next release is in Aug., this year, with Love Finds You in Sundance, WY.

Miralee and her husband Allen have been married 36 yrs. They live on 11 acres in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge in southern Washington State, where they love to garden, play with their dogs, take walks, and go sailing. Miralee also rides her horse on the wooded trails near their home with her grown daughter who lives nearby.



Love and second chances aren’t easy to come by in a town named Tombstone. When Christy Grey receives an urgent summons to Tombstone, Arizona, she reluctantly leaves her new life in California. The trip goes from bad to worse when three masked men hold up Christy’s stage. She finally arrives in
Tombstone to find her mother ill and her brother trapped in a life of gambling. Desperate for money to support her family, will Christy bow to pressure from the local saloon owners and return to the life she thought she’d given up for good?

Nevada Keene has problems of his own. He’s been dodging bullets for years and wants nothing more than to settle down and get married. But he’s on the run from outlaws bent on revenge, and the one woman who captures his interest recognizes him from the stagecoach holdup. Will Christy turn Nevada in to the authorities, or will the outlaws on his trail catch him first?



CONGRATULATIONS SAMANTHA ON WINNING-WHEN ALL MY DREAMS COME TRUE!


Be sure to leave your email address. Please check your junk mail on and the day after the drawing. I've had to redraw because of no responses. Subject box will have: winner of (book title). I'll email the winner and they'll have seven days to respond. If I don't hear back I'll draw another name. USA shipping only. Thanks so much and please stop back again! Drawing will be held Monday, March 21st. Offer void where prohibited. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

58 comments:

  1. Hi, Miralee! What a beautiful book cover. This one looks fantastic.
    How old were you when you started writing? You don't have to be too specific, as I know ladies don't like discussing age, but were you always a writer? Or did you begin when the kids were all in school, or . . .?

    Thanks for being on Debbie Lynne's blog.

    mahereenie at yahoo dot com

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  2. Hi Kathleen, Thanks for visiting and for the sweet compliment on my cover. I love it too!

    I actually started writing in 2005, just 6 yrs ago. I started with a few magazine articles in the spring, and in the fall wrote my first novel. I spent the winter and following spring revising it, then starting submitting it. I landed an agent early that summer, pitched it at a conference late in the summer, and signed a contract in Dec. to Kregel (who I'd pitched it to at the conference). It released the following fall (2007), and 4 more have followed with my 6th releasing in August.

    I had no desire to write fiction prior to this, (or really anything much beyond journaling, emails, etc) and only started out of obedience to what I believed the Lord directed me to do. He's had His hand on me the entire journey and I'm so blessed!

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  3. Looks like a great book!! What is the hardest part about writing this type of story?
    Tori
    vrtheriot@gmail.com

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  4. I'm really looking forward to reading this book!

    pepsi324[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  5. Can't wait to read this book! It looks really good! Thanks for the chance to win
    kari_linder at hotmail dot com

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  6. Hi Tori,
    I'd have to say setting up the initial plot. I love the research phase, have no problem with creating strong characters or setting, but coming up with a believable plot is always a struggle for me. I'd love it if readers would send me what they'd like to read about (as in a story line, LOL!) Wouldn't that be great!

    Miralee

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  7. Collett and Kari--did you have a question for me? We've set this up as a Q&A between the blog readers and myself to enter to win a book, so ask away!

    Miralee

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  8. Hi! I would love to write, but currently my kids take up my life, but I am happy with that!
    Did you always want to be a writer?
    What do you like writing more, contemporary or historical?

    Sara

    Threeboys1gift at yahoo dot com

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  9. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the chance to win!
    Jennifer

    jmschwindt0306 at gmail dot come

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  10. HI Miralee, I love your books....and Can't wait to read this latest Love Finds You book! They just keep coming? How many of the Love Finds You books will there be? I'm trying to purchase them all....and have most of them. Just wondering how many they plan to publish.
    Joy Hannabass
    ibjoy1953[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  11. I'd love to win a copy of this book! Thank you for a chance to win.

    seizethebookblog(at)gmail(dot)com

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  12. Hey! What is your favorite part about writing?

    This book looks awesome, and I can't wait to read it!

    booklovercb at yahoo dot com

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  13. Miralee I love LFY books please include me. Have they decided to make a movie of the other daughter yet? Sure do hope so...I enjoyed that book and left a review for you on my blog!


    alekee02[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  14. I have really enjoyed the "Love Finds You" books and would love to win this one.
    wsmarple/at/gmail/dot/com

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  15. What are you writing next, Miralee? I love your books - and can't wait to read this one! Pick me! Or keep me in mind to influence & pass out bookmarks... you know me. :)

    vernetlh(at)yahoo(dot)com

    Laura Hilton

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  16. I'd love to win Miralee's book. I live in Arizona. :)
    Ann_Lee_Miller@msn.com

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  17. Please enter me in the giveaway!

    Doreen
    priviesandprims[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  18. Hi, Miralee. I've read the other two LFY books and loved them. I'm looking forward to this one. What has been the most difficult part of your research for these towns? Some of them seem pretty remote or not well known.
    marthalrogers(at)sbcglobal(dot)com

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  19. Great review of this book. I also think the cover is very striking. I really enjoy all the Love Finds You books and I look forward to reading this one.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  20. Hi, Miralee,

    What does a day of writing look like in your world? Do you go back and forth between writing the story and doing the research? Do certain hours or write until you drop? Inquiring minds wants to know.

    A J Hawke
    ajhawkeauthor at aol dot com

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  21. Do you have any tips for new writers? I'm always looking for help!

    julesreffner(at)gmail(dot)com

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  22. I haven't read any of the "Love Finds You" books yet... but I want to! Thanks for entering me.

    twinwillowsfarm at gmail dot com

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  23. Hi Miralee! This book is set in that time of history I love - not sure what it is about the West, but I truly love to read books set in that era. It sounds like a book I would enjoy reading. Do you get inspiration from the characters you create from people you presently know or do these characters just come about in your mind as you put them on paper? I long to be a writer and just am unsure as to where to start, but I love words and hope to one day be putting them onto paper for others to read and enjoy!

    Blessings,
    Lori Lochner
    triplel@evertek.net

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  24. Hi Miralee! I also want to know what book ideas you have lined up in the future. What do we have to look forward to?
    Our group just finished "Loves Finds You in Bridal Veil, Oregon" LOVED IT!!
    Thanks for the chance to win, but I will buy this book even if I don't. (duh!)
    Deborah

    dleathers36(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  25. My mom loves Love Finds You books and historicals. I hope I winn it for her.

    amyholbrook2003[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  26. Hi. I would like to be entered in the drawing for this book. It looks great. And Carman sent me.

    arsmelser6(at)gmail(dot)com

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  27. I've started reading some of these and I love them!

    hnwhitlock2000atgmaildotcom.

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  28. I really enjoy reading historical fiction so I know I'd enjoy this book.
    lgm52(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  29. Hi Sara,
    I haven't always wanted to be a writer--in fact, writing fiction never occurred to me until 6 yrs ago when the Lord laid it on my heart to do so. I started out publishing two contemporary books and thinking I'd never write anything but...until I was handed a title with my first Love Finds You book & discovered it's a ghost town, so the story had to be a historical, LOL! I LOVE writing historical set in the old west. I've truly found my niche. Yes, I'll probably write contemporary again someday, but I only have historical plotted at this point.

    Hi Joy,
    I don't think Summerside has any particular number in mind as a place to stop with the series. I can't say for sure, but I imagine that as long as they keep selling well, they'll keep putting them out. I know they haven't covered even close to all the states yet, and since they have at least 2 cities in a number of states already, it's very possible they could end up with a min. of 100 books...or more!

    Hi Carman,
    My favorite part of writing is definitely the research since I try to visit the area I'm writing about if at all possible. As I mentioned before, the hardest part for me is fleshing out the story idea (or even getting a new idea, period)...after that, I'd have to say I enjoy the editing phase, and like writing the book when the ideas are flowing.

    Maureen,
    Thanks for the comment and for leaving a review of The Other Daughter on your blog...I'll go take a look! No, Universal decided against making the movie, as my book has strong faith/God elements and they didn't feel comfortable including those. But another agency is looking at the summary of the book right now to determine if they might be interested in 'shopping it' to any other studios. God is in charge, and I'm leaving all of that up to Him!

    Hi Laura,
    Good to see you here!! Next on my publishing schedule is Love Finds You in Sundance, WY, set to release Aug. 1st, and it's another old west romance with a lot of action and adventure. I love writing this type of book and hope Westerns really catch on. I'll put you down as an influencer for that one, but be sure you send me an email and remind me!!


    Martha,
    You're so right, traveling to the different towns has not always been easy, especially with Last Chance, CA, which is now nonexistent. We flew into Sacramento, drove an hour to Auburn, then another hour to Forest Hill and stayed about 15 minutes from there at a B&B. The next day we drove 2 more hours up into the Sierra Nevada Mtns to find the old town of Last Chance. It was quite the drive with super rugged area, steep canyons and hills, and some rough roads near the end. Well worth it when we arrived, however, as it gave me a wonderful sense of the terrain and the town.


    I'm seeing a lot of people stopping by to say hi and hope they can win a book....I'm not going to try to reply individually to all of those, as this is set up to be a Q&A...so I'll reserve my time to answer the specific questions that are asked. Thanks everyone, for taking the time to stop by and ask so many great questions. I'm heading to church in a bit, so will try to get to more of these when I return.

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  30. Hi Miralee,
    You haven't mentioned that you also have a wonderful ministry praying for women and being a fabulous listener! (Yes, I know this first-hand.)
    OK, you've only been writing for six years and are already an amazing success. So tell us, what do you still want to accomplish before you feel like you've "succeeded"?
    The book looks and sounds wonderful, btw!

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  31. HI Miralee,

    I would LOVE to read your latest novel...thanks for the opportunity...you're the best :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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  32. Hi AJ,
    There's no real set schedule with my writing. I'm much more disciplined when I'm under a deadline and have to write a certain number of words per day. In fact, the tighter the deadline, the more revved up I get and the more productive I am. I tend to drift a bit more when there's no pressure. Not a good thing, but the way I am.

    As for research, I typically do it throughout the first 1/3 of the novel, as I often find new things I need to know about. By the time I hit that point I've usually found all I need to know and can simply refer back to notes I've taken as a reminder.

    Julia,
    One of the most important things you can do for yourself as a new writer is to hangout with more mature writers whenever possible. That might be a writer's conference, online writer's group, a critique group (VERY important) or a small group in your hometown. We learn from others--the writer's life is often a solitary one, as we spend so much time at our computers--so it's important you take time to interact with people who are a little further along on the journey than you.

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  33. Hi Lori,
    Most of my characters just come from my head--yeah, scary, I know! My pastor's wife teased me one time saying she had no idea I had so many strange people lurking inside, LOL! Occasionally though, I do draw from a real person I know. The heroine in Last Chance, CA was loosely patterned after my grown daughter, the grandmother in Finding Jeena was similar in some ways to my own grandmother, a character in Bridal Veil (Art Gibbs) was a fairly accurate depiction of the real Art Gibbs (my great grandfather) who lived and worked in Bridal Veil during that time period.

    If you long to write, start small. Don't try a novel, start with some real life stories or short fiction stories, just for fun. Don't worry about getting them perfect. The key is just to write. Get it down first, then think about rewriting or editing later. Have FUN with writing. Don't look at it like a chore or something you have to get published. You might only write for your own enjoyment for years, but it will be some of the best practice you can have. Go for it!!

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  34. I would love a chance to read this book..I have never read a book by Miralee!

    Stacie

    smgerathy@gmail.com

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  35. Hi Deborah,
    I'm so glad you and your book club have enjoyed Bridal Veil!! Did you read LFY in Last Chance, CA yet? This book is a spin off of that title, using a secondary character and carrying her forward into Tombstone.

    Next on the slate is LFY in Sundance, WY, releasing Aug. 1st. It's also a historical set in the old west, with a lot of action, adventure, romance and handsome cowboys, LOL! A lot of horse stuff too, for the avid horse lover!

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  36. Debbie Lynne....I'm wondering if you need to go up and put the words 'Ask a question to be entered into the drawing' in bold and underline, and a different color? Seriously. We're getting about half of the comments with no questions and I HATE that these gals won't be entered in the drawing. Anyway of increasing the chance of them reading it might be a good idea.

    If anyone reads this comment who has ONLY left a comment and not a question, be sure you come back again with a ??? so you can be entered.

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  37. I love these kinds of books. I know this will be a great read. Thanks for the giveaway.
    plhouston(at)bellsouth(dot)net

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  38. Hi Debbie Lynne and Marilee. It looks like an interesting book, though I can't imagine actually living in a town named Tombstone. That's worse than Deadwood, SD or Hell, MI.

    snowboundintheup(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  39. It looks likes an intersting book!! I've heard a lot of authors get the inspiration for their books from their personal life experiences, where do you get most of your inspiration from?
    Thank you for the giveaway.

    kcmelone[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  40. Oooo this sounds great! Count me in for the drawing! Thanks so much for the chance to win!

    sarah45431@hotmail.com

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  41. Greetings! Do you do historical research before
    writing for various time Periods? Where to you begin the process?
    Many thanks, Cindi
    jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  42. I was wondering how long it takes you to write a book? I know some authors write very quickly and others do not. I feel like if I were a writer, it would take me forever!
    plhouston(at)bellsouth(dot)net

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  43. How do you come up with your ideas or subjects to write your books? All authors have a different method to their madness when writing, do you start your story at the beginning, middle or end? Where do you get your characters names? I know it's 3 questions but just had to ask. lol.. Thanks..
    Would love to win this book..

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  44. Hey! this looks great! Please enter me! Miralee, what is your favorite fiction book?

    emily.kreger2@gmail.com

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  45. Would love to win this book!!! I read The Other Daughter and loved it; do you plan to do a sequel to it???
    jackie.smithATdishmailDOTnet

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  46. I'm an avid book reader (with the help of my local librarian) I have discovered many new Christian (and non Christian) book series' that are just awesome. I have not seen yours yet, but have no fear, we will be looking for it! We are on Spring break right at this moment and when I get back I have it all written down so my gal can see if she can get your books. My question to you is, What inspires you to write? I know you said God has his hands layed on you to write, but is there an outside source (although sometimes He can be enough). How does your husband deal with your writing? I would love to write one day, even if it's just small articles for our local newspaper or magazines, I just do not know where to begin! Thanks for the awesome giveaway and my apologies for the many questions I just posed!

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  47. Lady DragonKeeperMarch 17, 2011 at 2:32 AM

    Hi Mrs. Ferrell! Thank you for taking the time to answer all these questions! It's very interesting. =) I have to ask --how and why did you come up with the name "Nevada" for (I'm assuming) your hero? It seems like an unusual name ... thank you for the chance to win!

    jafuchi7[at]hawaii[dot]edu

    (P.S. Sent by Carman).

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  48. Hi! Your book sounds so interesting!! What is your favorite place to go and work on your stories?

    americangurl05(at)gmail(dot)com

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  49. Thanks for the chance to win your book!!!!!!
    I was wondering, did you have a favorite teacher who encouraged you to write? Or did you have another person in your life who encouraged you to write?
    Many Blessings and Smiles:)
    Charlotte Kay
    charlovesmark at gmail dot com

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  50. Always been curious, have you ever had a time in your life where you didn't read or write for a few years? (You know, put it all on the back burner.)

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  51. Beautiful cover! Do you travel to all the places you write about? Thanks for the giveaway.

    homesteading[at]charter[dot]net

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  52. I love historical fiction! Looks like a great book I'll have to read if I win or not. :)

    I think I read where you've only been writing for 6 years and you didn't always desire to write fiction. How did this new career come about? Did you decide to go to school to become a fiction writer... or did that just come naturally to you?

    Thanks and God bless! :)
    amomwithablog(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  53. When do you do most of your research? When you first get your idea or while you are involved with the writing? Thanks. Carmen sent me.

    true_sheila at yahoo dot com

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  54. Hey gals, I'm so sorry!!! I didn't realize there were more questions waiting for me. I thought I signed up to get notices but it must not have worked. I'll go to work right now and get these answered, so if I didn't get yours yet, please stop back by and check for the answers. I appreciate you all!!!


    Hi Deborah,
    Your book club has been so supportive of me and my writing--I wish I could hug you all! You're what makes a writer successful. I have several irons in the fire besides LFY in Sundance, WY releasing next Aug. I have a proposal for a series of girls/horse books (contemporary) being reviewed now. I'm working on two other adult historical romances that my agent will be pitching, and have a novella proposal out there, as well. I'm hoping at least one of those generate some interest so I'll have another contract after Sundance releases.

    Linore,
    Thank you for stopping by, my friend, it was so nice to see your name here! I'd like to sign a contract for a series of historical romances, as well as one for a series of contemporary women's fiction in the future (when it starts selling again). Of course, I'd love to hit ANY best seller list, LOL--but I don't expect it to be the NY Times--even the one that CBD does would be great. And I think it would be fun if some of my books were made into audio books. And of course, there's the coveted Carol Award, Rita Award, or Christy award. You never know, anything can happen!


    Hi Courtney,
    Where do I get my inspiration or story ideas? Only one from real life, and that was my first book, The Other Daughter. The rest come straight from my head. I've garnered ideas from brainstorming with other authors, from watching the news, from researching history, and from having vivid dreams....or when I take walks with my dog. I will say that new story ideas do NOT come easy. That's probably the hardest part of writing for me.


    Hi Naomi,
    LOL! I agree with you! Tombstone isn't a very inviting sounding name for a town, huh!

    Hi Stacie,
    I'd love to have you read one of my books, and of course, after you do I hope you'll be hooked and read them all!

    Hi Cindi,
    I choose a story line first, then decide what time period I want to set it in. With Tombstone, it needed to be after 1877, as that's when LFY in Last Chance, CA (the book before Tombstone) took place. I wanted it to be the same year as the gunfight at the OK Corral, so I could use Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp (mentions of them) in the story, so that pretty much narrowed it down. Then I start the research, checking out books at the library, searching the internet, and when possible, visiting the town where the book will be set.

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  55. Hi Patsy,
    Great question...and it's not a simple answer. My first book took 5 wk for the rough draft but about 3-4 months to revise and rewrite. I basically just threw the story onto the page the first time, then went back to make a LOT of corrections later. Since then I've done a minimum of plotting beforehand and have a better handle on getting a book finished. I can typically complete a book in 3 months now, then give myself a wk to step away from it, then 2-3 wks to make any final revisions it might need. Six months is a really comfortable timeline for me, but that's just because I tend to put things off, LOL!

    Hi misskallie--since I just answered your first question a couple of questions ago, I'll concentrate on your other two. I always start at the beginning. I put a lot of thought into where I want the story to start. What's most important for the reader to see first, then write the best opening scene I can. I rarely know ahead of time what's going to happen in the middle or at the end, LOL! I kind of find out as I go along.

    I name my characters what I feel really suits their personality. I typically pick what I believe are strong names for my hero and heroine, and sometimes ones that have special meaning for me.

    Hi Emily,
    That's a super hard question for me to answer. I'd probably have to narrow it down to two different series...The Mark of the Lion (biblical setting) by Francine Rivers, and The Mitford series by Jan Karon. Totally different, but both powerful in their own way.

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  56. Hi Jackie,
    I'm so glad you enjoyed The Other Daughter, thank you!! There is a sequel, called Finding Jeena that released a year ago. I'm not sure if there will be another after that or not, it's up to Kregel.


    Hi Shawna,
    I'm posting parts of your message below in snippets so I can make sure I answer it all.

    I have not seen yours yet, but have no fear, we will be looking for it!
    Thank you!! I'd love that!! If you're going to read the one set in Tombstone, be sure you find the one set in Last Chance, CA first, so you'll meet Christy Grey and know her background before you pick up Tombstone.

    My question to you is, What inspires you to write? I know you said God has his hands layed on you to write, but is there an outside source (although sometimes He can be enough).

    I had no desire to write before a pastor prayed for me and told me he felt that God was asking me to write. That truly put me on this path. Since then, I write because I've come to truly love what I do, and know I'm walking in the center of God's will for my life. It's an amazing feeling!

    How does your husband deal with your writing?
    He's SO supportive! When I'm under deadline and pushing to get my word count for the day he always asks how I've done and how I feel about it. He's my biggest cheerleader, goes on research trips with me, as well as when I'm speaking and need help with carting in boxes of books.

    I would love to write one day, even if it's just small articles for our local newspaper or magazines, I just do not know where to begin!

    Just start!!! Write some short stories first about things you're comfortable with...it might be a piece on gardening or cooking, or a true story that happened to your family. Find someone who knows something about editing to run it by, then consider sending it out to a few magazines or your local paper or local magazine. You'll never know what will happen until you try! Blessings!!!

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  57. Hi LadyDragon Keeper (cute handle!)
    I have to admit I borrowed the name from one of the heroes in one of my all time favorite old novels by Zane Grey. I've never forgotten it. I LOVE his books and they heavily influenced my writing, so I thought it would be fun to use it. A future novel will feature a character called Arizona (if it lands a contract!)

    Hi Regina,
    I'm afraid I'm pretty boring when it comes to where I work, LOL! I do use a laptop, but I need my comfortable chair with good back support so I'm pretty much tied to my office. However, I have a nice window right by my desk, a lot of space, and when I close the door it's very quiet, so it's the perfect spot for me.

    Hi Charlotte,
    No one has ever asked me this question before, cool! In fact, I'm getting several I've never answered before, so it's been very fun.

    Yes, my high school English teacher (Mr. Frownfelter) motivated me. I'm not sure he ever came right out and said 'you should write' but he often made positive comments on my term papers and other written work I turned in. He recommended me to the Honors English department in college as he saw potential in my writing. I sent him a signed copy and a thank you card when my first book released over 30 years later.

    Hi Mom's Pace,
    Well, I only started writing in 2005, so I haven't been doing it long enough to put it on the back burner or to get burned out yet. And as for reading, I've been an avid reader all my life. Now that I'm writing I don't have near as much time to read and miss it. I have to work reading time into my schedule now, since my writing often has deadlines and my reading is just for fun.

    Hi Anne,
    I've traveled to all the places in my books to do research except for my one set in Sundance, WY, that releases in August. That contract came quite suddenly with a very tight release window, so I didn't have a chance to go there and had to depend on internet and library research instead. I MUCH prefer to visit an area if at all possible and was disappointed I didn't in this case, but thankfully I don't feel it had a negative impact on the story.

    Hi Mary Ann,
    Actually, after I felt the Lord prompting me to write I just jumped in and started. First I wrote several short (true) stories and had three of them picked up by magazines, then decided to try writing a novel.

    I'd never gone to a writer's conference, never read a book about the craft of writing, didn't have a mentor, I just started. I had a story in mind and felt driven to finish it. Once I got it all down I did start studying (three one-day writer's conferences) and a book on characterizations, and I had the help of two people with some editing experience who gave me some helpful pointers along the way. Mostly, I've just stumbled my way through the process trying to tell the best story I can. Now I study and learn whenever I can, and continue to attend 1-2 writer's conferences a year (that span 3-4 days each).

    Hi Sheila,
    Most of my research is done during the first 1/3 of my book. I do the brunt of it before I start, but am still checking on facts and adding more details as I go along. Also, sometimes I'm not able to visit the area until I'm about 1/2 way finished writing the book, so I go back and fill in spots of description or other facts I might have missed.

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