Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Interview and Giveaway with Erin Stevenson!!


Today we welcome Erin Stevenson to The Diamond Mine!! She will give one lucky winner a copy of her new book,  Sisters Ever After. It's Book One in the Canadian Meadows series! Just leave a comment by clicking the comment link at the end of the interview and include your email address so we can notify you if you're the winner!

Here's a little taste of Sisters Ever After:

Gianna Harper is living on borrowed time. Newly widowed, she’s struggling to hold things together at home and keep her business afloat while dealing with her late husband’s effects. But something’s not right and now Gianna is convinced that he was involved in something a lot more sinister than shady business dealings.

 Brock Hennessey fled California to make a fresh start in northwestern Montana. He hopes he’s put enough miles between him and danger, banking on a promised job to give his family a new start in a safe place.  

 Circumstances pit Gianna and Brock against one another, and neither one is willing to give an inch. As their professional dealings grow more acrimonious, their daughters become best friends and suddenly, the four of them are thrown into situations that have them acting, looking, and sounding like a real family.

Set against the stunning backdrop of northwestern Montana, Sisters Ever After is the first book in the Canadian Meadows series.

Sounds like an awesome read!! Hello Erin, and let's start the interview!!

When did you decide to be a writer?

I have an academic background and have penned a thesis, a dissertation, and published several articles. I turned my energies to fiction in 2014.

How interesting!
How do you get the ideas for your books?

Some of them come from real life! I always keep my eyes open for ideas. A few months ago after it had snowed about a foot, I was driving on a country road and pulled over to take a picture of the beautiful winter sunset. However, I didn’t realize that the “shoulder” was really a snowbank, and I was thoroughly stuck. While I waited for my son to come and rescue me, I wrote a scene in my head about a sweet young thing who gets stuck in a snowbank and gets rescued by a strong, handsome hero. But wait—maybe he gets stuck and she rescues him! I was also visiting relatives in south Texas in February when they lost power and water for four days. That was an adventure! I’ve already had several people ask if I’m going to work that into a book someday, and the answer is, “probably.” 😊

Oh, the mind of a writer! We see stories everywhere!

How long do you typically work on a book?

I have written a 43,000-word manuscript in 30 days, a 77,000-word manuscript in sixty days, and still have some that I started five or six years ago that are in various stages of completion. I’m usually working on at least two books at any given time.

You are so productive. And imaginative, too. Are any of the characters based on a real person?

Not completely, but yes, pieces of real people.

 Do any of the characters share traits with you?

I don’t think so, but a family member told me she thought the female lead in my first published book, Plan B, was based on me. I still don’t see it!

I always wonder if people I know will actually spot the traits I've borrowed from them!So, which character did you most enjoy writing?

That’s so hard to answer. It’s always the ones of whatever I’m currently working on, because I get as deep into their heads as I can. I really loved Morgan and Brandon from Home to You, and Ben and Vanessa from the book I just finished. I think it’s because they had more to overcome to find their happy ending.

Do you write from an outline, or wing it as you go?

I am a 100% wing-it gal! I tried to do an outline once and it was torture, LOL.

Me, too! What’s your favorite thing about being a writer?

How much time do you have? It completely feeds my soul. I love when the characters hijack the plot and take things in a different direction than I had planned—and it’s always better! I also enjoy setting books in diverse places and have had the opportunity to visit some of them for “research.”

I do so enjoy research! Is there any underlying theme in your books that you want the reader to take away?

Sometimes. In my St. Clair Family series, that wasn’t the case. I just wanted them to be clean, wholesome enjoyable reads. The main characters were believers, but there was no overt spiritual theme. For the Canadian Meadows series, I wanted a theme for each book, and prayed for God to help me define that. For Sisters, it’s learning to trust God’s timing. In my current work, Our Place of Forgiveness, well, that’s pretty obvious. That’s been quite a journey for me. Book three of the series is kind of a modern-day prodigal son story.

Sounds great! What are you working on now?

I just sent off the first completed draft of the second book in the Canadian Meadows series to my beta readers, titled Our Place of Forgiveness. It features two minor characters from Sisters Ever After, Ben and Vanessa. They and most of the characters from Sisters will continue into the third book—which is well underway, scheduled to release in early fall, 2021. I’m also finishing a fun little Christmas book set in Boston that I hope will come out later this year. And I have lots of ideas simmering…I literally have a file on my computer called “back burner ideas” and it’s chock-full!

Thanks for the interview, Erin!! It was a real pleasure to get to know you and your book! Okay, readers, here's a little more info about Erin:

Erin has been writing fiction since 2014. She has published independently and with Pelican Book Group and Winged Publications and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.

Writing is like breathing to Erin. Stories are running through her mind during most of her waking hours, and by the time she sits down at the computer, the words flow and time ceases to exist. 

Erin was raised in Illinois and has lived in many places in the U.S., including on both coasts, but is a Midwest girl at heart. She spent many years as an educator from pre-school through college levels, and currently works in training and internal communications for a global corporation.

When she’s not writing, Erin loves spending time with her children and grandchildren, and playing in the garden (which equates to mostly pulling weeds) at her central Iowa home. Her secret indulgence is plain M&Ms. 

To see Erin's books and purchase them:


Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Interview with Romance Author, Susan Tuttle

Susan L. Tuttle, Author

ACFW Carol Award finalist, Susan L. Tuttle was born and raised in the Mitten State (Michigan) where she met and married her best friend. A homeschooling mom of three, somewhere along the way she blinked and those three littles aren’t so little anymore. Now she balances their young adult years with directing the women’s ministry at her church, writing, and caring for her parents. She fully believes that God is the biggest romancer in the world and that He loves each one of us lavishly even in all our imperfections—a belief tried and tested by her own misses at perfection. Never having met a cookie she didn’t like, most days you’ll find her enjoying one for a treat between chauffeuring her kiddos around, attempting housework, contemplating exercise, or coaxing her current characters to talk.

Connect with Susan at susanltuttle.com or at susanltuttleauthor@gmail.com. 

Join Susan on social media!

Karla Akins, M. Ed., is an award-winning author and curriculum designer specializing in stories and resources for families with special needs.

When she's not writing or studying, you might find her riding her motorcycle or teaching online classes. She makes her home in Florida where she lives with her husband and adult twin sons with autism.  

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

It’s St. Patrick’s Day and Kelly Goshorn is “BACK” ON THE MINE!


I asked my church to point me toward people that might be isolated, people I could reach out to and pray for. I volunteered with the local food pantry and once a week I make deliveries with a friend from church to families in need. This helped me shift my attention away from myself and toward othersto ‘count my blessings’ as it were rather than focusing on whatever I perceived I’d lost or had changed since COVID-19 came into our lives.

RENEE: I’m grateful to the Lord that you recognized the depression and acted upon it with the Church. Our Christian Family if people would simply recognize it, are caring and loving people God places in our lives for much more than Sunday and Wednesday (and simply to be a thorn in our side as so many in this fallen world believe.)
It’s also in the hard or tough times that we take the small things for granted like the Sunday morning person who sits in the pew behind us with the ever-faithful smile for a greeting, that creek-bed we used to fish in as a child and haven’t done so for years, the mountains we see on our drive to work every way but don’t have time to bother take our children for a weekend picnic... 

Yeah, it’s times like these that we “count our blessings” and remember the things we have around us not for the first time but have had all the time and have simply taken advantage of or forgotten along the way.
That’s a lesson I learned quite a while ago when I became disabled and unable to work or do much else. Instead of the mountains I loved to run around and play in, I picked up other hobbies like painting and making soy candles!
I don’t have much time or ability to write my books, although I have been researching brainstorming on two new series involving the genres of historical and science fiction. Can you believe that, Kelly? Science fiction! That’s me, eclectic! LOL
You know me, I can’t just wilt into the bed or recliner, my mind is constantly going even if I can’t remember what I’m doing half the time. I have even begun advocating for those with Chronic Pain and Rare Diseases like mine, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome or Causalgia. So many of us are not receiving adequate pain management that I couldn’t keep silent any longer and had to say something as an educated medical provider, a pharmacist, and a patient.
So, your turn! What’s happening in your wheelhouse? Any new series, books, or exciting news for us to know about? I know you are a busy woman as well!

KELLYI’m so proud of you for getting involved and advocating for Chronic Pain and Rare Diseases. I think it’s wonderful that you’re working hard to improve life for yourself and others, some of whom may not be able to advocate on their own behalf.
As for me, I’ve been working on a three-book series set locally in historic Loudoun County, Virginia, where I grew up and which also provides the setting for my debut novel, A Love Restored.
KELLY-GOSHORN-PET-DOG-DIAMOND-MINE-BLOGLoudoun was a border county in a border state. While the county as a whole voted for secession, the western part of the county that borders what would become the state of West Virginia, was home to many Quakers. As you may have guessed, they voted to remain in the Union. This gives a historical romance writer like myself plenty of tension-filled scenario opportunities including the historic Burning Raids which will be featured in book one of the series.
In late November and early December 1864, Union cavalry troops tore through the area burning barns, confiscating crops and livestock, and slaughtering what they couldn’t take with them—anything they thought could be used to aid the enemy whether the civilians were Confederate sympathizers or not.
Writing historical romance requires a lot of research and if the procrastination bug bites, my faithful Welsh corgi, Levi, always manages to herd me toward the computer again.
He helps me keep my website in order though. Oh, and if you and the folks want to learn more about my upcoming releases or follow the ups and downs of my writing journey, you can subscribe to my quarterly newsletter at https://KellyGoshorn.com/mywriting/newsletter.

RENEE: I can see why you love historical if you have things like that spurring you along! Not the bugs, but Levi! He’s a great research buddy to have along. LOL I do have one question for you and may sound a little “controversial” but since I want to write historical and our readers love it as well, I’m going to go for broke!

Life in the USA Today

As you know, life isn’t easy for me or many people lately. I could list the things wrong, but one things that’s always been right has been the Lord.  He remains my strength and guiding Light.
In today’s environment of “cancel culture” and freedom of eliminating, rewriting, or simply ignoring whatever incidents in the present, or past that we don’t like, how do you see His Light affecting the world and in essence, you?
Sin is consuming this world like it did with Sodom and Gomorra in the Bible. Please tell the fans and readers your opinion of the future of this country amidst the decadence around it and us. Is there reason to retain hope?

Is Love and Hope Still Around Us?

KELLY: While I do have serious reservations about the direction our country is headed with the current level of political discord and what I consider a dangerous trend toward curtailing free speech, we need to remember that our hope isn’t found in the latest social or political movement nor is it found in government mandated policies. I think our culture places too much value on the opinions of trending celebrities, political movements, and even men and women in elected office. These things, these people won’t save us. Who are they but sinful human beings, just like us, but most of whom are not connected to the source of truth? The enemy will use anything or anyone to stir up fearso we turn our eyes, and eventually our hearts, away from God—our only source of lasting peace and joy no matter our circumstances. 

Instead, I find hope in the knowledge that God is working behind the scenes for our good and His glory. Nothing that happens takes Him by surprise. And despite the upheaval of the last yearI see that His people are resilient because our lives are built on a firm foundation, one that doesn’t shift and can’t get “canceled” no matter how unpopular our views become in our culture. His Word is that foundation and the only source of peace and truth I know. “Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him.” Psalm 62:5 (NIV)

RENEE: Thank you, Kelly. Even though we know it in our hearts, it’s good to hear someone else say the words aloud. We may not see God working. The enemy’s actions are evident for all to see because he is pompous and arrogant . . . Loves attention and hates God. And oh, yes, our hope does come for the Almighty Lord Jesus. Thank you for the words. I needed to hear them touch my ears.
Before we go, is there something you would like to say to the Mine about you and your life? Writing? After all, you are an awesome Christian author and don’t want anyone to miss out on the chance to become a fan, Kelly!

KELLYI’d sum up my life as a work in progress. Although I’ve been a Believer for over 40 years, I’m still learning whatit means to walk with God faithfully, to fully submit my desires to His will. As God reveals those areas of my life that I need to surrender to Him, I’ve often found that my personal journey unfolds in my books.

In fact, that is the very idea
 behind the working title for the series I mentioned above, Surrendered Hearts. Through themes of surrender and sacrifice, I examine what happens when God calls us to lay down those things we hold most dear—our dreams and ambitions, our pride, a relationship, and ultimately our hearts as God recklessly pursues each of us.
My characters discover, just like I have, that this journey with God that we call life has the potential to transform us and to restore our relationship with othersand with Him if we are brave enough to submit our stubborn will to His.
My deepest hope is that God will carve a similar path for those readers who take the journey with me in the pages of my stories.



RENEE: Kelly, it has been a true pleasure interviewing you for the Diamond Mine and I pray that your new book and series is a success. Thank you for all that you are and do for Christian Fiction. Once again, you show the world what having a relationship with Jesus Christ means.

KELLY: Thanks so much for chatting with me today. Perhaps those who are interested in entering the giveaway for a paperback copy of A Love Restored, could share a verse that has been a comfort to them during the past year.


§§§ GIVEAWAY §§§


Kelly asks that you enter this contest
 by sharing a verse that has given you particular comfort
during the last year of the Pandemic’s isolation and trial.
(All entries must include a valid email address and name
to facilitate contact if it is drawn as the winner
seven days from 03/17/2021 by random selection.)


Giveaway Ends 03/24/2021

About the Author, Kelly Goshorn:

Kelly Goshorn weaves her affinity for history and her passion for God into uplifting stories of love, faith, and family set in nineteenth century America. Her debut novel, A

Love Restored, won the Director’s Choice Award for Adult/YA fiction at the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference in 2019 and earned recognition as both a Selah Award finalist in the Historical Romance category and as a Maggie Award Finalist for Inspirational Fiction

Kelly earned her B.A. in Social Studies Education from Messiah College and her M.Ed. in History from The Pennsylvania State University. She has been enjoying her own happily-ever-after with her husband and best friend, Mike, for 3years. When she is not writing, Kelly enjoys spending time with her young adult children, binge-watching BBC period dramas, board gaming with her husband, and spoiling her Welsh corgi, Levi. 


About the Miner, Renee Blare, RPh

Best-selling author Renee Blare has hung her hat in several states but only calls home to one . . . Wyoming.  A bookworm by nature, she began her

writing journey late in life, but her first book, Beast of Stratton became a semi-finalist in the 2015 ACFW Genesis Contest before publication and after publication, a best-seller on Amazon. Her second and third books joined it with the same high ranks.

With five books now in publication and all best-sellers, Renee is known as an inspirational writer who paints the page with words, pictures, and real life.

A pharmacist of over twenty-four years, she has served veterans, Native Americans as well as well as those who lived around her every day. Now disabled with the most painful disease known to man, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Type 2 or Causalgia, Renee survives excruciating pain and advocates for those with her same plight and that of her husband— Chronic Pain and Rare Disease in a world insensitive to both.

To relax and find what joy she can from life, she’s a die-hard fisherman (woman), hunter, and loves to explore the history of her country and family. When she’s able to does all of the above and teaches herself to paint, learn new crafts such as making soy candles, and learning to diamond paint. Renee also enjoys to learn new and exciting skills which don’t invite pain but knows life without pain is unavoidable. Even picking away on her old classical guitar is not without a twinge or two.

Discover what life with this special person, living with the pain of life, and disability produces at her website and blog, Inyan Kara Studio. You may even want to take a piece home with you.

Inyan Kara Studio Website: https://www.InyanKaraStudio.com/
The Diamond Mine of Christian Fiction: https://DiamondsinFiction.blogspot.com/

Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him.” Psalm 62:5 (NIV)

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Writing and Life with Sara Beth Williams + a Pre-Order Giveaway

 Welcome back to the Diamond Mine!! We are so grateful for our visitors and hope you have discovered some new authors through us. 

Let's give a warm welcome for our guest this week. Sara Beth Williams is here!

About the Author

Sara Beth Williams is a wife, mother of two daughters, and temporary caretaker of a lovable old lady pit and a spunky Pomeranian-Shih Tzu mix. She lives in Northern California. When she's not held hostage by the keyboard, she enjoys music, teaching, reading and spending time with her family. She is all about connecting with readers! Find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads and Bookbub.

Receive a FREE short story when you sign up for her newsletter.

Connect with Sara Beth at: Amazon / Goodreads / Bookbub / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Website / MeWe 

Suzie: Welcome Sarah Beth, and thank you for taking time out of your busy pre-release schedule to sit with us today. Let's ease right into things with a couple of Would You Rather questions.

Would you rather lose your sense of taste or your sense of smell?

Sara Beth: I like my sense of taste :D 

Suzie: I'm right there with you. Besides, there are a few things I'd rather not smell. Would you rather vacation in the mountains or at the beach?

Sara Beth: I love the beach. I don’t go enough. I visit the mountains more often. 

Suzie: What do you when you aren’t writing?

Sara Beth: I love to play guitar, hang out with my family or visit with friends. 

Suzie: How fun that you play guitar, and friends and family are necessary for our sanity. Name three books on your current tbr.

Sara Beth: I am currently looking forward to The Art of Rivers by Janet W. Ferguson, Always you by Jennifer Rodewald, and On a Summer Tide by Suzanne Woods Fisher. All of them sound AMAZING. 

Suzie: Oh, some good choices there. And your next book is coming out next week for the rest of us to add to our TBR lists. How did you connect with your publisher?

Sara Beth: I participated in #faithpitch on Twitter several years ago, (2017?) and from there, an editor contacted me, requested my first manuscript, and fell in love with it. I’m forever grateful! 

Suzie: I've followed #faithpitch for a couple years. There have been a few success stories coming out of it. It's exciting how many avenues there are for authors now. 

Anchor My Heart, your third full-length book, is set to release March 16. What have you learned about writing and/or the publishing industry from your first book to your third?

I sincerely hope I have greatly improved my writing mechanics. I’ve learned quite a bit about how to tighten everything in a story. I’ve also learned about the editing process, and how editing is not simply looking through incorrect words or phrases, but it begins with looking at the story as a whole, then continues to narrow its focus. It’s a fascinating process really. 

Suzie: Writing is a continuous learning curve, isn't it? So many elements come together to create that reader experience. 

Last but certainly never least, how can we pray for you?

Sara Beth: Thanks so much for asking! 

I am going to be losing my main income in a few weeks as the school I work at goes into hybrid learning. I cannot continue to work on campus because my youngest daughter who is in kinder will be remaining in distance learning through the rest of this year. So it’s a bit nerve-wracking but my husband and I are as prepared as we can be. I currently work as a freelance publicist and am hoping to expand more into freelance marketing and publicity, so if you know anyone interested in hiring someone, please visit my website for more information which is listed in my bio. I would greatly appreciate prayers for financial stability and God’s guidance and direction. 

Suzie: We will certainly keep you in our prayers. Thank you so much for sharing with us this week. I am looking forward to reading Anchor My Heart. 

Readers, keep scrolling for more about the book as well as how you can enter Sara Beth's pre-order giveaway, and be sure to give her a warm welcome to the mine.

More About Anchor My Heart

In the aftermath of tragic loss, worship leader Matt Lawson is grappling debilitating anxiety. The blessings he’d taken for granted—a dream job, a woman he couldn’t wait to spend the rest of his life with, and his God-given musical talent—have crumbled at his feet, leaving him reeling in despair, unable to face the wreckage of the life he’d envisioned for himself.

 Tara Pierce is ready to put past hurts behind her as she prepares to graduate college and take a leap of faith in her career. When Matt’s grief causes him to isolate himself from everyone he knows, she refuses to stand idly by and do nothing. She has traversed similar terrain before. No one deserves to travel that road alone.

 Unexpected attraction flares as Tara reaches into the sea of Matt’s grief and helps ground him in reality. But Matt’s not ready to give himself away again. Can Tara risk her heart and their friendship and let God step in to heal where she can’t?

Amazon | Goodreads | Print | BookBub

Pre-Order Giveaway

Enter to win a grand prize pack full of books and bookish swag. THREE winners will be chosen in all. All chosen winners will be invited to join me on a Zoom coffee or tea date

Pre Order Anchor My Heart HERE

Click here to find out all the info you need to enter to Win