A new year is upon us, and that means new books to add to our already toppling TBR piles. Here are the three I’m most looking forward to in 2021.
3. Three Missing Days– Colleen Coble
The first two books in this series have been amazing, so I’m waiting on tenterhooks for book three of the Pelican Harbor Series. April 6, 2021
2. Network of Deceit– Tom Threadgill
Tom Threadgill’s books are thrilling and completely wonderful. I feel like I’ve been waiting for Network of Deceit forever. Maybe because I can barely remember a time before 2020… February 2, 2021
Night Fall– Nancy Mehl
Nancy Mehl’s books are so good that once I get my hands on them, they don’t last as long as I’d like them to. I’m beyond excited for the first book in the Quantico Files series. And isn’t the cover amazing? March 30, 2021
So, the whole Thanksgiving week got a little nutty, and I failed to post November’s Author Spotlight in a timely manner. As penance, I will be gifting three copies of my friend Jennifer’s book Gifting Grace to lucky commenters on this post. But I guess it’s not penance when it’s something I actually enjoy doing… Guess I’m going to have to work on that. I’ll draw names on 12/15. Now let’s get down to the nitty-gritty, shall we?
Jennifer currently lives in Arkansas with her husband and two children. Her debut novel, Hidden Danger, is a 2019 Selah Award winner, and her second novel, Expecting Danger is a 2019 Selah award finalist. Her third novel, Deadly Connection released on October 20, 2020. Giving Grace, a contemporary romance Christmas novella will release on November 13, 2020. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and River Valley Writers.
What unfinished writing projects do you have gathering dust in a drawer? Do you think you’ll ever try to publish them, or were they just part of the learning process?
Oh my goodness, I have so many. I’ve got several started that I’d love to see through to publication. But I tend to have something shiny syndrome. I’ll work on something a little while and then move to something else. I have a novel that started as a writing prompt for a blog I read. It was “Your one night stand from last night turns out to be your new boss.” I write Christian fiction and didn’t want to have the actual one night stand happen so I changed it to an intellectual one night stand. My characters meet at a club, where they are the designated drivers. They decide to get to know each other better at the diner down the road while their friends party. The female lead has just lost out on a promotion to someone outside the company. She commiserates during their conversation. Unbeknownst to either of them, the male lead is the one that has taken the job. There’s snarky banter thrown through out what I’ve gotten written so far. I have ideas for a couple more romantic suspense novels, a couple YA novels, and a couple contemporary romance novels. Now if I could just choose one and finish it.
2. What do you love about the genre in which you write?
I love suspense and mystery. I personally like to try to guess who the bad guy is when reading a book or watching a movie or show. Writing it lets me try to stump the reader. It’s fun being on the opposite side of it.
3. Do you keep a diary or journal? Do you find this practice helps you be a better writer or process character emotions more deeply?
I do not keep a diary or journal. I’m a paralegal by trade and love crime shows, movies, and books (true crime and fiction). Never put anything down in writing that can be used against you. Lol.
4. In the Bible, do you have a “life verse” that’s significant to you? Do you find yourself exploring this theme often in your work?
My favorite verse is Proverbs 18:10-The name of the Lord is a strong tower. The righteous run to it and are safe. I write that verse any time I sign one of my books. I did include the verse in my debut novel, Hidden Danger.
5. Which part of the book creation process do you like best– brainstorming, writing, editing, marketing?
I love brainstorming. I like getting random ideas and thoughts thrown out and then organizing them into a story. Making each piece fit together like a puzzle.
And there you have it! I can personally attest to the awesomeness of Jennifer’s books, and hope you’ll check them out. Here’s the cover image and blurb for her latest book along with the ways and means to connect with Jennifer on social media. Drop a comment below for a chance to win an e-book copy of Giving Grace!
Nothing is more embarrassing than Grace Dixon’s dog peeing on the new mailman. Except maybe when she thinks she’s hit the handsome man with her SUV.
When he’s assigned to cover an injured co-worker’s route, Evan McDonald assumes it will be like any other mail route he’s done. But then he meets Grace Dixon, and he’s thrust into total Christmas chaos.
As Grace spreads the love of God and Christmas cheer to her community, she encourages Evan to join her. The two grow close as Evan learns about giving of not just possessions but of time and grace, setting him back on the path to God. Grace is a force to be reckoned with, though, and when she shows compassion in a situation that Evan disagrees with, he realizes he might not be the right man for her. Will Grace’s lifestyle of giving overwhelm him, or can he muster some of that grace and compassion she so easily spreads?
Since romantic suspense is one of my favorite genres, I thought I’d share some of my favorite authors with you. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. Along with each author, I’ll include a link to my favorite book they wrote.
3. Patricia Bradley
I love the perfect balance between romance and suspense that Ms. Bradley brings to the table. She’s got so much skill and her stories suck me from the first sentence.
2. Terri Blackstock
Not only are Terri Blackstock’s stories intriguing in the extreme, they deal with difficult topics and make me reevaluate life and my relationship with God and others. I can’t recommend the Restoration Series enough. It’s wonderful on so many levels.
How Ms. Coble can come up with so many unique story ideas baffles me, but each one has such exciting twists that I can honestly say I’ve never been disappointed by one of her books. Check her out! You’ll thank me later.
Who are your favorites? What good books have you read lately?
I’m thrilled to introduce you to my friend, Virginia Vaughan! Just last week I finished her newest release, Texas Twin Abduction, and I enjoyed it so much. There were twists and turns until the very end!
Let’s get right into the interview, then I’ll let you know how you can connect with Virginia and win your very own copy of Texas Twin Abduction.
What are your favorite books from childhood and why?
When I was a child, I fell in love with Gothic romances and authors like Phyllis A. Whitney and Willo Davis Roberts. For me, the combination of romance with danger and suspense was so exciting! It was the beginning of my love affair with romantic suspense.
2. Do you have any quirky writing habits?
I have a couple of quirky writing habits. I love to listen to 70s disco music when I write and you might even catch me dancing along to it, too, lol. My writing process is also kind of wacky. I write my books completely out of order. Sometimes when I’m writing a scene, I don’t even know where it will go in the book. Once I finish writing, I then have to put all the pieces together like a giant jigsaw puzzle. It’s a crazy process, but it works for me.
3. What do you love about the genre in which you write?
I am a fan of true crime and obsessed with digging into unsolved murder cases and mysteries. I love knowing that I can combine that passion into the stories I write and even draw ideas and create my own mysteries. Also, I get to kill people with little or no consequences. What could be better than that, lol?
4. In the Bible, do you have a life verse that is significant to you? Do you find yourself exploring this theme often in your work?
My go-to Bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” There have been so many times in my life when circumstances have knocked me to the ground and I didn’t know if I even wanted to get back up. But when I think on this verse and realize that God has plans (plural!) for my life, it gives everything meaning. It gives me a reason to continue on despite the difficult times. I cling to this verse whenever things go wrong and am reminded that I’m supposed to be living for God’s will and not my own. Because many of my characters are like me and have made mistakes, they often also need this reminder.
5. Which part of the book creation process do you like best– brainstorming, writing, editing, or marketing?
I love brainstorming new ideas! My favorite thing is to wipe my whiteboard clean and start with a fresh, new story. I get as excited about starting to plan out a new story and imagining scenes in my head as I do plunging into a good story to read. I also enjoy the actual writing process. I’m a pantser at heart so this is the time when I really get to know my characters.
Comment below to win a copy of Texas Twin Abduction! I’ll be drawing on Monday, August 10th.
This twin’s past is a blank…
And she might not have a future.
Waking up in a bullet-ridden car with a bag of cash and a deputy insisting she’s his ex-fiancée, Ashlee Taylor has no memory of what happened—or of Lawson Avery. But with her twin missing and someone hunting her down, she must trust him with her life. Can Lawson save her and her sister—even as Ashlee’s forgotten secrets become an inescapable trap?
Virginia Vaughan is a multi-published author of inspirational romantic suspense. Blessed to come from a large, southern family, her fondest memories include listening to stories recounted by family and friends around the large dinner table. She was a lover of books even from a young age, devouring gothic romance novels and stories of romance, danger, and love. She soon started writing them herself. A former investigator for the State of Mississippi, Virginia utilizes her criminal justice background with her love of writing to transform words into powerful stories of romance and danger. Connect with Virginia through her website www.virginiavaughanonline.com or her email list at http://eepurl.com/dtFeVP.