Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Interview and Giveaway with Brooke Williams!!

Wow!!  What a treat! Brooke has two books just out. A Christmas novella called Backwards Christmas:
Local tour guide Noelle Richards loves everything Backwards Christmas has to offer in South Pole, Alaska. She gets wrapped up in the upside down trees, taking presents TO Santa Clause and all the festivities. Sled dog trainer Chris Furst, on the other hand, approaches the holiday with nothing but skepticism. When their history bubbles into the present, their difference of opinion comes to a head. When Chris gets himself into a dangerous situation in the snow, Noelle and the hope of Christ are his only hope for redemption.

And she has another "Dandelion" book out now as well, full of fun and Brooke's marvelous sense of humor:

Dandelions on the Road
Twelve men…one woman…plenty of dandelions. Eva Merida has her life in order. She loves her job at the Furry Friends Rescue League and has a loving, supportive family. But she’s still missing that one special person to stand by her side. When she comes in third place on the local TV version of “The Bachelor,” entitled Accept this Dandelion, she nearly loses all hope for romance. Fortunately, the TV station decides to do a second season of the dating show…and they name Eva as the Bachelorette! With a plethora of dating mishaps recorded for TV, Eva finds herself falling for several men at once…including the show’s host. Will she find love at last or simply embarrass herself in front of the entire city? 
Now that you've enjoyed a bit of a preview, let's move on to the interview! And don't forget to leave a comment for the chance to win a free copy of one of Brooke's books!!

Hi Brooke, and welcome back to The Diamond Mine. You’re a prolific writer, and a mother of small children. That’s quite a busy life! How do you manage?

One day at a time! Sometimes one hour at a time! I have priorities and I stick to them. When my daughters are awake and with me, they get my attention and that's that. Though I have to admit, sometimes I think about my novels and do a little plotting while I play. When my oldest is at school and my youngest is napping, that's when I write. I type really fast and write about as quickly as I think. I have 1-2 hours a day to get my writing in and I do my best in that amount of time. That being said, I hardly ever clean or put away laundry. :)

Good for you! I think you've got a good balance of priorities there! Tell our readers a bit about your new stories coming out this fall. 

"Dandelions on the Road" is book two in the Dandelion Series, but it can be read as a standalone as well. When I wrote "Accept this Dandelion," a book about a local TV show version of The Bachelor, I thought that was it. But some of the characters from that book kept bugging me to continue the story, so I did! I also wrote a third book called "After the Final Dandelion." It' involves a wedding and I hope to put it out this spring.

"Backwards Christmas" is a short, sweet, humorous Christmas-oriented tale. It takes place in the town of South Pole, Alaska (get it? Rather backwards, right?) in which they do the Christmas traditions backwards in order to draw tourists. There's a romance involved, a little danger, and plenty of laughs. It's a fun story and a quick, easy read.

They both sound delightful! 
Do your main characters in these stories have anything in common with you? If so, what? 

Yes, they often take traits or even stories from me. The women often don't care about hair and makeup and clothes (you've seen my picture, right?) :) They're often clumsy and don't always say the right things. Some of my background stories I get from my own experiences and some of the professions. I was in radio for a decade (the main character in Accept this Dandelion is in radio). I worked in TV news for a few months at one time (the main character in Wrong Place, Right Time is in TV news). As for what background stories are my own and what are made up, I'll let you wonder on that one!
We writers have to keep some secrets to ourselves! I'm curious: What’s the first story you remember writing? 
I actually have at least a dozen laminated, spiral bound books that I wrote in elementary school. There was a writing center at school and you could go there and "publish" your stories. The volunteers would type out a sentence or two per page and then you could draw pictures under them. They would help you pick a cover from magazine pictures and they'd laminate it and bind it for you. A full fledged book! I LOVED making those books. One in particular I remember is called "The Fuzzy Family." It's about a family of these fuzzy little creatures who live in the town dump. And they use people for chairs!? The fact that my parents weren't more worried about me as a child is beyond me! :)

I think that's awesome, that you had an opportunity like that at such an early age. And look at the fruit it's brought forth! 
So, do you have a favorite character from your stories?

I really enjoy Renee Lockhart from "Accept this Dandelion." She's also slightly in "Dandelions on the Road" and will be in "After the Final Dandelion." She's an everyday gal and she knows who she is and isn't afraid to speak her mind. I could use a little of her confidence some days! And because of the amount of terrible/funny things that happen to her, she's a hoot to write!
Tell us how your ideas come to you, and which element is first. Plot, characters, location, or dilemma? 
They come from a variety of places, but it's usually the main plot or general idea first. Then I come up with a title and forming the characters and the dilemma comes as I write. I don't plot in advance much. I simply sit down and see where the story takes me. The characters have to lead me!

Do you work from outlines, or write as you go? 

Ooh, I guess I just answered that! I never outline. I recently wrote another novel and actually TRIED to outline and miserably failed. Where the story goes depends on what mood I'm in on the very day I'm writing that scene. I honestly don't know exactly what will happen until it happens!

The same thing happens to me! The story and characters kind of take over. It's an interesting process.
How do you think your writing has changed over time? 

I feel like it's gotten better, in general. I've learned a lot about what not to do from working with editors etc. And I've grown as a reader and that always helps writing as well. It's also morphed into something much more humorous. My first novel, "Someone Always Loved You" is a serious, family drama. I also have a couple of Christian romance novels out there that are serious. But lately, I just like looking at the light-hearted side of life. I hope my romantic comedies give people a break from everyday life and stress. That's what they do for me!

And it's a very needed break these days! Tell us what you love most about being a writer. 

The actual work of writing. Doctors tell you to exercise for your health and while I agree that's important, I also feel like in order to maintain my health, I have to write. It's that important. I don't feel as good on the days I don't write! The act of writing is very important to my day. I love the way stories I dream up come alive and take a direction of their own. I feel like the stories and characters just use me to get out. I don't really have that much to do with it!

But you do! You enhance it with your personality and wit, and that makes your work special and unique. What are you working on now?
I've started editing "After the Final Dandelion," the third book in the Dandelion Series. And I just wrote a new novel called "The Leftover," which actually has nothing to do with food. I don't know what I'll do with that one yet. I need to let it sit for a bit before I revisit it!
I bet it will be wonderful, like all your other work. Thanks so much for sharing yourself with us today, Brooke!
Now here's a bit more about Brooke:
Brooke Williams is a sleep-deprived stay at home mom/freelance writer/author who has an unnatural interest in dandelions. She attributes her humor to her two young girls for keeping her in the lack of sleep state on a regular basis. She has been married to her husband Sean since 2002. Brooke has a background as a radio announcer and producer and also did a short stint as a TV traffic reporter. Brooke specializes as a freelance writer and creates blogs, articles, web content and more for clients all over the world. She has written a number of novels including: “Someone Always Loved You,” “Beyond the Bars,” “Wrong Place, Right Time,” “Accept this Dandelion,” and “Mamarazzi.”

And here are Brooke's social and purchase links:

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Interview and Giveaway with Gail Kittleson!!

Heroines that dare to Bloom!

It’s 1946. 

Dottie Kyle, an everyday Midwestern woman who lost her only son in the war and her husband soon after, takes a cooking/cleaning job at a local boarding house. But when a new employee is hired, complications arise, and when they niggle Dottie’s “justice meter”, she must decide whether to speak up or not. 
At the same time, her daughter's pregnancy goes awry and the little California grandchildren she's never met need her desperately. But an old fear blocks her way. When the widower next door shows Dottie unexpected attention, she has no idea he might hold the clue to unlocking her long-held anxieties.

Let's all welcome Gail Kittleson to The Diamond Mine today!!
Gail has written a wonderful historical romance, full of characters you'll love to spend time with. Be sure to leave a comment after the interview for a chance to win a free copy of Gail's great book! Now, let's get to the interview!

Hi Gail, Welcome to The Diamond Mine! I have some questions for you. 

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?

In my teens, I walked out in a pasture one beautiful summer day and sensed that writing ought to be a huge part of my future. But I had minus-zero confidence that anything I wrote would be important to anyone else. In ninth grade, our English teacher put a big red A+ on one of my papers, along with a note: Your writing shows real talent. That encouraged me not to give up.

That's wonderful. Good for you! What’s the first story you remember writing?

It was an essay about summer in the schoolhouse. Then in college, I recall writing a poem around a story. But to be honest, I really wasn’t much of a storywriter back then. Actually, I never thought I’d write fiction, as poetry was my first and favorite mode of expression. Teaching college expository writing brought out the essayist in me—suddenly I realized I could communicate in this way just as I did with poetry. Still, I had no dream of fiction writing. That didn’t come until I was in my fifties, when I led several groups through Julia Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way. Even now, I’m not sure what happened, or exactly how, but something loosened up inside me, and a fiction book formed in my mind.

That's so interesting. Every writer I've interviewed seems to travel a different path to novel writing. What attracted you to writing a story set just after World War II?

The era is my mother’s. In high school, she watched her two older brothers go off to war. She told us how she and the other girls would dance with each other on Saturday nights because most of the young men were fighting. WWII has always fascinated me—such a treasure trove of endless stories. My father-in-law was a bona fide war hero, and that may have affected me, too, as I learned about his service.

It certainly is an era that captures the imagination of many people. Tell us something about the characters in your book, and what they’re facing.

The heroine, Dottie, a down-to-earth Gold Star mother, lost her only son Bill at the Battle of the Kasserine Pass in North Africa, and her husband died soon after the war. So she makes do by taking a cooking and cleaning position at the local boarding house, where she tolerates her stingy boss, a curmudgeonly negative thinker. But when a new employee, Bonnie Mae, arrives on the scene, conflicts arise that niggle Dottie’s sense of injustice. Finally, she must decide whether to maintain silence or speak up for what she thinks is right.

At the same time, Dottie’s daughter Cora develops complications in her third pregnancy and needs Dottie desperately.  But she lives in California, and the thought of boarding a train for such a long trip pushes all of Dottie’s fear buttons. Though she longs to meet her precious grandbabies, relentless fear roots her to the Iowa earth.

And then Al, Dottie’s widower next-door neighbor, starts showing her unexpected attention. Oh my! What will happen next? Of course, Dottie has no inkling that Al, a World War I veteran, deals with his own haunting fears, or that he might hold the key to untangling her dilemma.

Sounds like a great read! Do any of the characters share qualities with you, or someone else in real life?

Absolutely. Most women I know are make-do folks. As Eleanor Roosevelt said, we discover our strengths like teabags—when we’re in hot water. My Grandma and Mom were like this. You don’t survive the Great Depression and a world war without making do. Mom used to tell us about walking to school with cardboard in her shoe to insulate the hole in her sole. That’s the kind of poverty most of us have never known, and yet when other sorts of trouble threaten, I think each of us reaches down—or up—for the strength we need to get through. 
Dottie is also out to please, which is my natural modus operandi. Keep everybody happy and avoid conflict at all costs. Yep, above all, be NICE!

Not so easy to do when troubles come flying at you! I think that's when we learn to really pray. 
When you imagine a story, what comes first, the characters, the storyline, the era, etc.?

The characters. Dottie came to me first, and then the guy next door—sweet, lonely Al. I believe Dottie’s boss Helene arrived in my mind next. She shoved her way right into my thoughts, and into Dottie’s knack for toleration.
People like Helene really don’t care about hurting anyone’s feelings—they don’t even notice. Their agenda matters so much to them, it’s all they can see. And people like Dottie let them run roughshod—after all, Helene’s writing out the paychecks. But when Helene hires a new, sassy young employee with a strong sense of justice, Dottie discovers her own limits.

I love character-driven stories that show how people change and grow. 
So, do you write from an outline, or develop it as you go?

I don’t use an outline, and the characters develop the story. I seem to end up in their little town, walking their streets with them, and the 1946 culture creeps into my spirit. In those days, options were a bit more limited technologically, but not interpersonally. And going through something as awful as a world war changes the population. Quirky small town atmosphere and actual historical events also help develop the plot.

What would you like the reader to take away from your stories?

Even though Dottie suffered the most heart-wrenching grief—losing a child, her actions and attitudes exhibit a die-hard underlying confidence that life is good. How can that be true? That’s one of the foundational premises that weaves this story together. We may not understand it. Dottie certainly doesn’t, but in ways beyond her comprehension, comfort comes to her in her dark hours and gives her hope.
I think that’s so true to life. When I consider my most difficult experiences, this spiritual sense (that’s what I’ll call it, for lack of a better term) that life is still worth living always comes through. I hope readers see a simple, strong faith in Dottie’s ability to “make do,” a foundation that holds no matter what. And as Dottie clings to this powerful, very tangible reality, she begins to realize second chances just around the corner. Then gradually, she allows a bit of joy to seep into her soul again.
Ah, you’ll love Dottie!

You bet I will!
When you write a historical story, do you do research, listen to the music of the era, or read literature from that time?

Yes, yes, and yes. What’s fun is the folks still around who lived through the forties. What a wealth they have to offer. And the documentaries are ongoing—I learn so much from the history channel. The songs popular back then: I grew up with Mom singing them as she worked. And my mother-in-law has told me how she and my father-in-law chose one of Hoagie Carmichael’s for “their song.”

I love the research aspect of writing historicals almost as much as writing the story!
So Gail, what are you working on now?

The second in a World War II series that takes the reader from Iowa farm country to London, and then into southern France to aid the Resistance. Talk about research! The lengths to which people went to fight for their freedom amaze me—we’re so used to being free, we can forget how much liberty means. But the French Resistance laid down everything, including their lives, for this privilege. 
As always, my characters voice honest questions: how can a loving, almighty Creator allow such evil to persist? How is it that in the midst of the violent Waffen S.S. advance northward toward Normandy to squelch the Allied invasion, these characters still experience evidence of God’s loving care? Tough inquiries for almost impossible times, but in such seasons, we may find Him hiding in the questions. 

Absolutely! It's been wonderful to share this time with you. I'm looking forward to more stories from you!

Well readers, here's a bit more about Gail:

Our stories are our best gifts, and blooming late has its advantages—the novel fodder never ends. Gail writes from northern Iowa, where she and her husband enjoy gardening and grandchildren. WhiteFire Publishing released Gail’s memoir, Catching Up With Daylight in 2013, and her debut women’s historical fiction, In This Together (Wild Rose Press/Vintage Imprint) releases now. Gail also contributed to the Little Cab Press 2015 Christmas Anthology https://www.facebook.com/LittleCABpress

Please feel free to contact her—meeting new reading friends is the frosting on her cake!
And don't forget to leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of In This Together!!

Contact links:

Purchase links:

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Rachel Skatvold - Beauty Restored

Hey y'all! It's Rebekah here. I'm in L-O-V-E with this book cover!

Today we get to meet Rachel Skatvold (who's pretty awesome too).

Rachel's doing an e-copy giveaway of her latest release, Beauty Restored, the third and last in the Riley Family Legacy Novellas series. For your chance to win, leave a comment at the end of the interview.

Beauty Restored
While volunteering at a youth camp in the Ozark Mountains, Carmen Riley sponsors a challenging group of teenage girls. She longs to make a difference in their lives, but unsettling news from home rattles her confidence. When Carmen meets a charming young pastor, will his wise advice give her the courage she desperately needs?

After discovering that the camp is in danger of closing, Pastor Andrew vows to save it. With Carmen’s help, he rallies a group of sponsors to come up with a plan of action. However, the task could cost him much more than he bargains for.

In a race against time, a common goal unites them, but unforeseen circumstances threaten to tear them apart. Will their relationship and faith in God endure long enough to see Beauty Restored?

Rebekah:  What's your favorite thing about the Christian romance genre?
Rachel:     Well, I've always been a romantic at heart. I think that is why I enjoy writing Christian romance so much. I love writing stories that are sweet and suspenseful with a message of faith weaved in.
Rebekah:  Describe Restored Beauty in three separate words.
Rachel:     Charming, suspenseful and heartwarming
Rebekah:  If your book was made into a movie, what actors would you cast as your main hero and heroine?
Rachel:     Oh boy, that's a hard one. I must confess that I spend too much time on Pintrest looking for people who resemble my characters. LOL. I haven't pinned down any for the third book yet, but for the first in the series it would be Rachel Hendrix for Katherine Arnold and Dan Stevens for Ryan Hudson.
Rebekah:  How long did it take you to write this book? How do you balance writing with other responsibilities (job, family, etc.)?
Rachel:     This book took me about three months to write (but much more time to edit). It was the shortest amount of time I've ever spent on the first draft of a book. I think the storyline was so much fun that I just flew right through. It's my favorite book in the series.
Being a stay-at-home mom allows me to write for a living. However, it's often a balancing act with my kids needing me during the day. I love being a mommy/author though, and do a large amount of writing while my toddler is taking a nap or at night after both my kiddos are sleeping. Just call me a night owl I guess.
Rebekah:  When did you realize you first wanted to be a writer?
Rachel:     I think I was born with a big imagination. As a child I wrote and illustrated little story books all the time, most of which my mom still has stored in a big binder. However, I didn't really think of becoming a writer until my junior year of college. I majored in elementary education for two years until realizing it wasn't for me. I didn't like spending so much time away from my son, so I switched to an English major and pretty soon I had written a novel! Big change I know. However, I wouldn't change a thing. I think God used every life experience to lead me up to this pint and I love it.
Rebekah:  Do you stick to your TBR pile or are you an impulsive book buyer? What are you currently reading?
Rachel:     Yes, most of the time I do stick to my TBR pile these days. I've recently started doing some reviewing for other authors, so keeping up with deadlines is important. However, I love reading so it never feels like a chore. :) I'm currently reading To Honor and Cherish by Kari Trumbo. It is a historical Christian romance about a widowed woman rancher. I'm enjoying it so far.

Rebekah:  At some point an author has to torture their characters. Tell us the truth. Do you enjoy or hate it?
Rachel:     That's an interesting question. I'd like to say I don't but maybe I enjoy it just a little...LOL. As an author it's a unique experience to intentionally create problems for your characters. However, since I know there's going to be a happy ending it doesn't bother me a lot to complicate their lives for a short amount of time. I have been known to cry with my characters while writing a sad scene though. So really if I'm torturing them, I'm torturing myself too I guess.

Rebekah:  Who's your number one fictional character crush or favorite fictional couple?
Rachel:     It's hard to choose just one, but I've always enjoyed watching Disney movies...yes, even as an adult. :) Belle and the prince from the movie Beauty and the Beast would have to be my favorite fictional couple. It's heartwarming that Belle can see the good in him when everyone else just sees a monster. Also, who doesn't love the famous ballroom dance? Did I mention that I'm a hopeless romantic?

Rebekah: What's one thing readers would be surprised to know about you?
Rachel:    I can't whistle. No matter how hard I try, my attempts just sound like a windy day...LOL.

Rachel Skatvold is a Christian author and stay-at-home mom from the Midwest. She enjoys writing Christian romance, devotions and encouraging blogs. Rachel has just finished her first series, the Riley Family Legacy Novellas and is now working on her first full length novel, Enduring the Flames. Other than writing, some of her hobbies include singing, reading and camping in the great outdoors with her husband and two young sons.

Connect with Rachel here:
Website:  www.rachelskatvold.com
Facebook:  www.facebook.com/rachelskatvoldauthor
Twitter:  www.twitter.com/rachelskatvold
Pintrest:  www.pintrest.com/rachelskatvold
Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8577315.Rachel_Skatvold
Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Rachel-Skatvold/e/B00NMSJTUO/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Meet Debut Author Jessica Alyse

I "met" Jessica Alyse in the large critque group for the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers). While I only got to read a few chapters of her book, she wowed me with her description. At the beginning of October, she released her first novella, The Trust Charm, on amazon. I am excited for you to get to know this woman who loves the Lord, Texas, and writing.

I'm so pleased to welcome Jessica to the Diamond Mine today. I know you will enjoy getting to know her a little more as much as I did.

     Suzie:  Congratulations on the release of your first debut novel. What one lesson did you learn from your first official release?

    Jessica: First, I’d like to thank you for having me, Suzie. This is an honor and a privilege.
Incidentally, the biggest lesson I’ve learned with my first release is to trust. When I first thought of the title The Trust Charm, I’d chosen it as a reflection of the character theme. I had no idea that I would be learning the same message that Liam and Avery was learning. When God opens a door, it’s our job to trust. Even when it looks to us like it won’t work out, He knows better than we do. So when I found myself doubting the talents He gave me, I realized I needed to spend more time trusting Him in His plan rather than questioning Him.

Suzie: In order to become better writers, we’re told to read, read, and read some more. Who are three of your favorite authors?

Jessica: I would say Karen Witemeyer, Karen Witemeyer, and Karen Witemeyer. But that probably wouldn’t be fair. Second to her amazing historical fiction, I pretty much grew up reading Cathy Marie Hake and Deeanne Gist. Ironically, I don’t read a lot of contemporary romance.

Suzie: Avery, your main character in The Trust Charm is headstrong and more than a little stubborn. Do you struggle with the same traits? If not, what do you consider your character flaws or what would you most like to change about yourself?

Jessica: I think my family would agree that Avery and I share those very traits. I’ll admit writing Avery was easy because her snappy comebacks and determined opinions came natural to me. Avery is a little more relaxed where I’m more optimistic, but we are both strong-willed about our beliefs.

Suzie: Did you have people in mind (such as actors or musicians) when you created your characters?

Jessica: For Avery specifically, yes. I’d recently discovered Christian singer, Moriah Peters, in an interview on YouTube where she talked about saving her first kiss for her wedding day (a quality that Moriah and I share) and in this particular video, her image and personality practically created Avery’s character. As for all the other characters I got my inspiration from Pinterest. You can find my bookshelf for The Trust Charm here.

Suzie: How does a Louisiana girl who loves all things Texas become a Green Bay Packers fan?

Jessica: Two words: Aaron Rodgers. ;) But seriously, I think it all began with the books I read as a teen about Texas and the adventures that started there. I think I fell in love with the land. Now, I visit Texas every chance I get. As for being a Packers fan, I got into pro football six years ago and I wanted a team to root for. Aaron Rodgers was doing great at the time, so Green Bay caught my attention and I liked how down-to-earth they seemed. I’ve been a faithful fan ever since, through Superbowl wins to broken collarbones.

        Suzie: Tell us a little more about your family farm.

      Jessica: It’s just a humble place. We have typical, run-of-the-mill animals: cows, a horse, goats, ducks, cats, dogs, and chickens, including one named Alice. We make the rounds twice a day to make sure everybody is fed and healthy. I didn’t grow up on a farm, but when we moved out here I discovered a love for it that I didn’t know I had. There’s something stunningly refreshing about waking up at sunrise to watch a set of triplet goats being born. And then there’s the man in my life...a black Labrador named Axel. He’s a handful.

    Suzie: Where is your favorite place to write? Do you have a favorite beverage or snack while you write?

    Jessica: I pretty much write wherever I find myself whether I’m on the couch or on the road. As far as snacks and beverages go, I try not to talk about my Dr. Pepper addiction, but in this case it’s okay.  I’m a Dr. Pepper-aholic. They’re my favorite thing when writing, but truth be told…they’re bad for your health.

Suzie: As an author, do you have several stories in various stages or do you prefer to work on one thing at a time?

Jessica: The Trust Charm was my first experience as an Indie, so when I got serious about writing it then I only worked on one project. Now that I know what goes into the business, I’m planning to work on more than one project at a time. However, I’m always outlining and coming up with new ideas, so I have, like, a hundred notes on a flash drive just waiting to be explored.

   Suzie: Can you give us a taste of what’s coming next?

Jessica: Of course. The Road to Austin is a sequel to The Trust Charm. It focuses on Austin Brooks, who you might know as the daring, shoot-from-the-hip partner of Liam Reed. We’ll go on a cross country adventure with him and a young woman who happens to be his enemy’s daughter. It’s a dramatic comedy coming this Valentine’s Day!

Suzie: What are your top 5 (or 10) favorite things about Texas?

Jessica: I should start by saying that my publishing company, Bluebonnets and Barbed Wire Publishing House, was inspired by Texas, and therefore each of my books has some degree of Texas charm in it, whether in tone or setting.

   My top five favorite things about Texas…

   5. Dr. Pepper. I said I wouldn’t talk about this, but I lied. Dr. Pepper originated in Texas, is bottled and stored in Texas, and even has a place called Dr. Pepper, Texas, population 1024. So, what’s not to love about Texas?
   4. History. Besides historical fiction being my favorite go-to read, the truth about Texas history still holds strong in the streets today.

   3. People. Texans are some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet. I assume it’s because they’re just happy to be a Texan.

   2. Pride. Texas pride is almost stronger than their coffee.

   1. Beauty. There’s no place on earth more beautiful than the rugged soul of Texas. Whether it’s bluebonnets toiling in the sunshine that spills through the clouds or skyscrapers that can be seen for miles down a wide open, Texas highway, there’s beauty in every aspect. Blue skies and green hills. Sweeping ocean waves and towering canyons. Swamps and sand dunes. Gleaming wintry nights in the panhandle and blistering summer days in the plains. Texas is definitely the home of my heart.

        A little more about Jessica:

     Jessica Alyse was born a dreamer. She used to tell stories about a bicycle that traveled to the moon and back. Her imagination has always soared beyond the expectations of reality and has brought her to a career in creative fiction. A storyteller, hopeless romantic, and follower of Christ, she encompasses the appropriate traits to create romantic Christian fiction, embellishing every story with southern charm and wholesome love. Her dreams of becoming a professional screenwriter dance through her head each time she sits down to tie together characters and plot.

A Louisiana girl with a heart for Texas, when she's not writing--or reading the latest thing from Karen Witemeyer--you can find her working on the family farm with her black lab, Axel, practicing for her would-be singing career, or in the event of a football game, cheering for the Green Bay Packers.

    Follow Jessica Alyse on Twitter
   Keep up with her on Facebook
    Visit her website

    Be sure to pick up your copy of The Trust Charm

       Avery Sanders decides it isn't in the cards for her to marry a man with a self-sacrificing job. When Liam Reed, a youth center volunteer, walks into her life, she knows she's found "the one." Until the career he kept secret is uncovered and now Avery has to decide if she can love him for who he is before time runs out.

The Trust Charm is available for $0.99 on Kindle until Thursday, Nov 4. Don't miss out on this one.

       Enter to win a digital copy of The Trust Charm here.