Thursday, June 10, 2021

Get Real with Your Favorite Author

 The Virtual Chat with Liz Bradford

Welcome to the Diamond Mine, everyone and I apologize for posting this late! As all of you know I am never one to be on time these days! LOL

Hi, it’s Renee Blare, your friendly Miner! Let me first say that this will be the LAST INTERVIEW ON THE DIAMOND MINE for me at least for a long while. I will be devoting my time to writing, advocating, and first and foremost, my husband. Life is taking more than I can balance at the moment and I finally feel like writing again.

That being said, I know I am handing over this blog into good hands. I trust Peggy and those under her wing to keep it about the ONE who keeps us all writing— The LORD.

And now let me introduce you to an amazing author who has helped me return my interviews to where I want them to be, Liz Bradford. I know you will love her and her books as much as I do, especially after this Diamond Mine Experience.

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

The Misfit Bride, Author Life, and More with Peggy Trotter (Plus a Giveaway)

It's my delight to introduce (or re-introduce) you to one of the Diamond Mine's founders. Peggy Trotter does a lot behind the scenes to keep us up and running, so it's a privilege to spend some time with her as she gets the spotlight as we celebrate her new book release.

About the Author

When Peggy Trotter’s not crafting or DIY-ing, she’s immersed in a story scene of some sort, always pushing toward that sigh-worthy, happily-ever-after ending. Two kids, two in-law kids, and three grandchildren (and one on the way!) are the delight her life, as well as her Batman of 37 years whose cape is much worn from rescuing his wife from one predicament or another.

On a dusty shelf lies a couple of writing honors like the prestigious ACFW Genesis Award, Novella category, even though she writes full-length historical and contemporary Ransomed-Ever-After Fiction. She strives to bring characters and storylines alive to reveal God’s guiding providence and unending love.

Always on a search to find one of her many pairs of glasses, Peggy’s a smoldering pot of determined discombobulation who, by the grace of God, occasionally pulls it together to appear in public as a normal, confident woman while privately craving a few hermit hours to woo the printed word.

Connect with Peggy: Website | Blog | Diamonds in Fiction Blog | Twitter | Facebook | GoodreadsAmazon | Instagram | Pinterest | LinkedIn | BookBub | MeWe | Parler | USA Life | Gab

SW: Welcome, Peggy, and congratulations on another book release.

Just for fun and as a quick introduction, let’s start with a few rounds of “Would You Rather.”

Would you rather be stuck on a broken ski lift or in a broken elevator?

PT: Elevator. It would be scary, but at least I wouldn’t be dangling thirty feet in the air in the freezing cold!

SW: I'm with you there. Would you rather go to dinner or a movie alone?

PT: Movie. I think I would just get lost in the story and forget about being alone.

SW: Plus it's dark in the theater so no worries about people watching you. Finally, would you rather explore space or the ocean?

PT: Ocean. I love the ocean and love snorkeling. I would love to learn scuba diving.

SW: Fun!

Ok, now tell us more about Peggy. This is your fifth book release. Can you share about what your writing journey has looked like?

PT: Sure. I’ve always wanted to write since I was a young girl and wrote sporadically since I was fourteen. Then school/kids/jobs/life/church took the main focus for a long time. I joined ACFW in 2012 to learn more about writing and head toward publishing. It was my “university” of sorts. Through crit groups/contests/networking/reading/writing I learned a lot about what I needed to do to sew a story together. I won the ACFW Genesis in 2014 and got my first contract shortly after. Now, I write full time and look forward to getting my newest series Society of Outcasts’ three books out there!

SW: Fantastic! And what about life outside of writing? Family? Hobbies? What fun facts can you tell us about Peggy?

PT: Oh, my. I am a DIY-er to my very roots! Right now, I’ve just finished painting the living and dining room a new color, torn down wallpaper and replaced it, patched, sanded, painted, spray painted base boards, and getting ready to do the crown molding. Then it will be on to the kitchen to do the same thing. Sometime this summer, I plan on re-staining our 2 decks. That will be a hot job! But, I am also a bit of a hobby junkie. I crochet, paint (on canvas), build, craft, sew, knit, sketch, etc. I love trying new hobbies. I guess I like working with my hands, LOL. But I also enjoy spending time with my family. We just got back from a family vacation to the beach. (I LOVE THE BEACH!) I crocheted two washcloths while I was there because our rental house didn’t have any. I guess my hobbies can come in handy!

SW: Yes, sometimes they can. Plus, it has been too long since I've visited the beach!

What does your writing space look like?

PT: Currently, it’s a mess! Ha! I have been working on my office for a while now. I have my own little space under the rafters upstairs. It’s painted in a dark color (I like things to be darkish when I write) and will eventually have a little loveseat (that I plan on making myself, of course!) and maybe a fireplace. (That I am dreaming to build as well.) That is, when I get it all organized. But, for now, I often write on my recliner downstairs on my laptop. (oftentimes with a DVD of a fireplace on the TV.)

SW: Do you have any words of encouragement or wisdom for new authors or those considering writing?

PT: A successful writer is one who didn’t quit. This is my personal mantra, and I’m sure a paraphrase of someone else, but I claim it as my own. I say that to myself all the time. Because there are so many times when I, and many other writers that I’ve spoken to, want so bad to just chuck it all in. A writer’s life is fanaticized as exciting, exotic, and amazing. And, it is! But it’s also lonely, discouraging, and extremely difficult. It very much is a “job.” There is very little support when things go awry. You have to be very determined. You better be prayed up and you’d better be willing to learn, grow, change, and deflect certain opinions. But I absolutely love it.

SW: Well said! The author life is not for the feint of heart, for sure!

Share about your newest release and how the story came about.

PT: Well, once upon a time Peggy wrote a first novel that was so horrendous, even she gags when she reads it! And it will never see the light of day except in my dark office. But—it has spawned forth four books. My first book Year of Jubilee came from this first manuscript. And the other characters wouldn’t go to sleep. Boy, they nagged me to death! So, I wrote them into the next three books, my newest series. The bad thing is, two more from the first book are whispering to me now. Perhaps there will be two more books in this series?

The full blurb for the book is below.

SW: Oh, The Misfit Bride sounds intriguing and hurray for the other books (and possibly more) in the series.

I’d like to end with the most important question. How can we pray for you?

PT: I love this question! I’m trying to figure out the marketing equation for my books. It’s a strategic area, and I am not a strategic sort of person. I’m more the “creative, doing” sort of person. So, keeping track of numbers and the business side of writing has always been a challenge.

I also, if I could, like to ask one other request of prayer. My message. I always want to put forth God’s message. I want to clearly imbue a Biblical concept that entertains or helps a fellow Christian on their journey through life. Sometimes that gets lost in the details until I get finished and then I realize, oh, it highlights this precept. And that is wholly a God thing.

In my new series, Cora, Rhapsody, and Sissy (main female characters in my next three books) became representations of people being left out, being odd, or misplaced. Or, at least feeling that way. And we, as people, often feel like an outcast—rejected, hated, scorned. Especially in today’s world of social media. I wanted to tell people that just because you feel like an outcast doesn’t mean God thinks you are. He loves the weirdest of weird, the oddest of odd, the squarest of all pegs because He made you that way! And He died for you, no matter how kooky or out-of-place you feel.

That is my message that I want to keep as the center of my books. God loves you. He sent His Son Jesus to die for you. It’s my whole point of writing. Thanks for praying!

SW: With so many hurting people in the world, your message is a needed one, too.

Thank you so much for visiting with us this week, Peggy. We will be praying for your marketing and that your books get in the hands of readers who need to hear that God loves them just as they are.

About the Book

Zero. That’s how many suitors Cora “Too Tall” Taggart’s entertained in her nineteen years. That is, until her father corrals a man nearly twice her age needing a mother for his children. However, Cora’s heart aches to find true love with a man who would embrace all of her misfit qualities.

When Trigg Gentry discovers Cora in a back alley, using his horse as her own personal writing desk, sparks fly between them. While he searches for his runaway sister, Trigg crosses paths once again with Cora on a steamer bound for St. Louis, and neither Trigg nor Cora can deny their blossoming relationship.

But Trigg’s unexpected exit from Cora’s debutante cotillion comes under suspicion. The guests’ jewelry is missing, and he’s linked to a murder case. Cora fears these accusations will make it impossible to avoid her father’s arranged marriage. And to make matters worse, her heart belongs to the man now pegged as a criminal. How can Cora convince her father that Trigg isn’t involved in either crime when all the proof points straight at him?


Peggy is giving one of our visitors an autographed copy of The Misfit Bride, a bookmark, and a trio of crocheted dishrags. To enter, tell us in the comments what most interests you about The Misfit Bride.
*Giveaway ends Tuesday, 6/8/21 at 11:59 PM EST and is open to US mailing addresses only.