Thursday, November 30, 2017

Month in Review: November

  • Wrote 4859 words
  • Sculpted 0 babies
  • Tatted 0 crosses
  • Sewed 2 sock monkeys and 2 sock pigs
  • Knit 0 hats
  • Exercised 22 days
  • Read in the Bible 29 days
  • Wrote up 1 backlogged book reviews 
  • Book Review, Blog Tour, and Giveaway: "Runaway Romance" by Miralee Ferrell

    About the Book
    Name of book: Runaway Romance
    Author: Miralee Ferrell
    Genre: Contemporary romance with Amish thread
    Release Date: October, 2017
    When a reality TV star meets the reality of life, will it be her downfall or her salvation?
    Ann Stanway had it all—a starring role in a reality show, an adoring boyfriend, and a sparkling future with limitless possibilities. Until the rules changed and the life she’d thought was real no longer existed. Leaving L.A. seems like her only option, and she lands in Kentucky at a quiet Amish inn—as far removed from her past as possible. Now she knows what was missing in her life–peace, true friendship and, dare she hope, a man who accepts her for who she is–or at least who he thinks she is.
    Hunter Lewis is intrigued by the new woman staying at his friend’s Amish inn. Annie appears to be what she claims, but she’s secretive and won’t open up. He’s been burned by a woman before and can’t tolerate deception. But his interest in Annie is growing, and the attraction seems to be mutual—until something happens that makes Hunter question everything he’d thought was real. Dare he risk his heart, when he’s certain Annie is keeping secrets?
    Can their new romance withstand the pressure, or will Ann choose to run again?
    My Thoughts "Runaway Romance" was a cute story. I figured at some point, Ann's L.A. life would catch up with her and kept wondering when it was going to happen. There were twists I didn't expect which was fun for me to not have it all figured out. There were several characters that the book follows: Ann Stanway, Scott Adson, Veronica Adson, Annie Farley, Hunter Lewis, and Jimmy Snyder. It was interesting to see things from everyone's perspective. I felt Ann's frustration and confusion and the hopelessness that Annie felt when her two lives converged. I kept wondering how the movie would show a certain thought or feeling one of the characters was having. The Biblical message was sound and well placed and the growth in the characters' lives was evident. I can't wait for the next book and hope to be able to see the movie, too.

    About the Author

    miraleeI love life, love my family, love writing Christian fiction–reading, riding my horse and puttering in my garden are all ways I relax. I often have my little 7 lb Chihuahua, Lacey, on my lap when I’m working–there’s nothing like a warm ball of love on your lap to act as a stress reliever!
    First and foremost I’m a child of God and daughter of the King. I’ve been involved in women’s ministries for years, I’m married to a wonderful man, have two grown children, two cats, two dogs, 10 chickens and ride my son-in-law’s Arabian mare since my old mare passed in 2013. We live about 9 miles from the nearest town on 11 acres, in a peaceful setting surrounded by trees.
    I started writing shortly after I turned 50, and discovered I loved it so much I don’t want to stop. I have 15 novels out & a five book set of horse novels for middle-grade girls. I write both women’s contemporary fiction, historical & contemporary romance, and horse/mystery novels for girls. One of my Western romances, Love Finds You in Sundance, WY, was awarded the Will Rogers Medallion for Western Fiction, three books have been optioned as movies, and several books have been on the ECPA best seller list. You can find out more about me and my books at

    Guest Post from Miralee Ferrell

    In the spring of 2015, I received an email from a Hollywood producer, followed by a phone call. Imagine my surprise when she asked if I’d be willing to write a book for them. They were no longer producing the Love Finds You books into movies and were working on a different project for UP TV, a possible three-movie series, and she hoped I might be able to work with them. She explained that she’d optioned Love Finds You in Sundance, Wyoming, two or three years earlier, and loved it. Of the thirty-five or so titles she’d read of the line, that was her favorite. However, UP TV didn’t want to make historical or old west movies, so she’d shelved it for now.
    During that time period, I’d gotten my rights returned to all of my LFY books and had retitled them Finding Love in Last Chance, CaliforniaFinding Love in Tombstone, Arizona, and Finding Love in Bridal Veil, Oregon. Sundance became Outlaw Angel, and all four are still in print.
    Here’s the amazing part. I came very, very close to turning down that contract offer with Summerside for Sundance. I was disappointed in the advance and royalty rate, and shortly after they released it, they sold the line to Guideposts, and that company didn’t continue the line much longer. Understandably, sales waned on their final releases, and I was disappointed with my sales from that final book as my others had done quite well. For a long time, I wished I hadn’t taken that contract and instead held out for one with another company for a three-book series. However, had I done that, I doubt Runaway Romance would ever have been written. It was Sundance that grabbed Chevonne’s attention and caused her to contact me. And the rest, as they say, is history.

    Blog Stops

    Blogging With Carol, November 28
    Janices book review, November 29
    Books n baubles, November 30
    Inklings and notionsDecember 1
    Texas Book-aholic, December 2
    BigreadersiteDecember 4
    The Power of Words, December 4
    Reading Is My SuperPower, December 5 (Interview)
    Baker Kella, December 6
    Splashes of JoyDecember 7
    Karen Sue Hadley, December 7
    Quiet Quilter, December 8
    Red Headed Book LadyDecember 9
    Cafinated Reads, December 10
    Remembrancy, December 11
    Carpe Diem, December 11


    In honor of her tour, Miralee is giving away a grand prize of a Kindle Fire! Click the link below to enter! Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

    "Runaway Romance" is available in paperback:
    • Series: A Reality Romance
    • Paperback: 274 pages
    • Publisher: Mountain Brook Ink (October 14, 2017)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1943959412
    • ISBN-13: 978-1943959419
    • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches

    and in Kindle edition:
    • File Size: 4282 KB
    • Print Length: 276 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1943959412
    • Publisher: Mountain Brook Ink (October 25, 2017)
    • Publication Date: October 25, 2017
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B0759S234D

    I got a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and given voluntarily. No compensation was received for reviewing.

    Tuesday, November 28, 2017

    Book Review, Blog Tour: "95: The Ideas That Birthed the Reformation" by Martin Luther

    About the Book
    Author: Martin Luther
    Genre: Non-Fiction, Historical Theology
    Release Date: August 8, 2017
    In 1517, an unknown Augustinian monk, informed by his growing belief that salvation is by faith alone, published and distributed a stark criticism of papal abuses in the Catholic Church. In doing so, Martin Luther lit the spark for what would become the Protestant Reformation.
    What became known as the “95 Theses” was a series of statements expressing concern with corruption within the church, primarily the selling of “indulgences” to the people as a means of releasing them from acts of penitence.
    For the five hundredth anniversary of Luther’s revolutionary writing, This volume combines each thesis with an excerpt from one of his later works to provide a convenient way to understand the ideas and concepts that became the seeds of the Protestant Reformation.
    cahtyPrint out a fun Luther mask here.
    My Thoughts Being from a church that does not trace it's roots to the Protestant Reformation, I knew very little about Martin Luther and his 95 Theses. As a kid, I heard it incorrectly and thought they were talking about a rhyming word to 'theses' and wondered why on earth someone would put that on a church door and even more, why they'd celebrate it! 
    I was intrigued with the opportunity to review this book as it would give me the chance to see what Martin Luther was all about. I liked how the book gave each of the points that Martin Luther gave and then a corresponding piece of writing by Martin Luther that would explain what that point was about. I did find it somewhat hard to read given that they constructed their sentences somewhat differently and used language we aren't accustomed to using now. Also, being unfamiliar with the Catholic church and their doctrines and practices, it made it harder to follow. I know that Martin Luther is known for the ideas that the Bible is the sole authority for what we believe and that we are saved through faith alone, but I wasn't able to tell which of the 95 theses were the ones that corresponded to those ideas. I was surprised to realize that Martin Luther believed in purgatory. This is something I do not believe since Paul said in II Corinthians 5:8 that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, so as soon as a Christian dies, they go to Heaven. Overall, it was a interesting book to read and have in the library.

    About the Author

    Martin Luther (1483–1546) was a German monk, priest, professor of theology, and iconic figure of the Protestant Reformation. He strongly disputed the sale of indulgences, the church’s practice of selling pieces of paper that guaranteed freedom from God’s punishment for sin. In 1517, Luther directly confronted this and other papal abuses by publishing his “95 Theses.” In 1534, Luther published a complete translation of the Bible into German.

    Guest Post from Whitaker House Publishing

    In 1517, a thriving new industry was sweeping northern Germany. Begun a few centuries earlier, its reappearance in the 16th century was perhaps the cleverest abuse of church power to date. Church officials strapped for cash decided to offer remission from the punishment for sins, or “indulgence,” to German believers in return for a commensurate amount of money. The slick church salesmanship of indulgences incensed one young priest, who believed that faithful Christians were being manipulated and the Word of God misinterpreted. He wrote a pamphlet comprised of 95 claims that he hoped would inspire scholarly debate. Titled Disputation of Dr. Martin Luther Concerning Penitence and Indulgences, it went down in history as “The 95 Theses.”
    Most historians believe that Martin Luther did not intend to spark a public debate. It was written in Latin, the language of scholars, and pinned to the door of the Wittenberg Castle Church which served as a “bulletin board” of sorts, where Luther knew fellow theologians would see it and perhaps engage in a discussion on the topic.
    Luther’s pamphlet, how­ever, was not another piece of paper flapping in the wind. Someone translated into German, and distributed it to the public with the help of a recent invention—the printing press. Luther tried to retrieve his work, but the damage was done. Within weeks, the debate that began in Wittenberg spread throughout Germany, and within months, all of Europe.
    Five hundred years later, Whitaker House presents each of Luther’s 95 Theses paired with an excerpt from his many writings. Not every excerpt directly relates to the accompany­ing thesis, but we endeavored to select passages in which Luther was expounding on the same subject. Where further explanation was thought necessary to contextualize his words, a footnote is included. We hope you find 95: The Ideas That Changed the World an accessible and fascinating look into the ideas of this groundbreaking priest who stood up for God’s Word, the grace of the gospel—and made history.

    Blog Stops

    Lane Hill House, November 24
    Fiction Aficionado, November 25
    Pursuing Stacie, November 26
    The Power of Words, November 27
    A Greater YesNovember 29
    Karen Sue Hadley, November 30
    Mary Hake, December 1
    Texas Book-aholic, December 2
    BigreadersiteDecember 3
    Carpe Diem, December 4
    Multifarious, December 7
    A Reader’s Brain, December 7


    To celebrate the tour, Whitaker House is giving away
    Grand Prize: 95: The Ideas That Birthed the Reformation by Martin Luther, KJVER Sword Study Bible/Personal Size Large Print-Burgundy Genuine Leather ($60 value), Whitaker House/Anchor Coloring Book.
    First Place: 95: The Ideas That Birthed the Reformation by Martin Luther, “This is The Day” ceramic mug from Christian Arts Gifts, Whitaker House/Anchor Coloring Book
    Second Place: 95: The Ideas That Birthed the Reformation by Martin Luther, Whitaker House/Anchor Coloring Book!!
    Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

    "95: The Ideas That Birthed..." is available in paperback:
    • Paperback: 192 pages
    • Publisher: Whitaker House (August 8, 2017)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 162911961X
    • ISBN-13: 978-1629119618
    • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches

    and in Kindle edition:
    • File Size: 2261 KB
    • Print Length: 192 pages
    • Publisher: Whitaker House (August 8, 2017)
    • Publication Date: August 8, 2017
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B071DQJN5D

    I got a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and given voluntarily. No compensation was received.

    Sunday, November 26, 2017

    Temperature Blanket - Week 47

    Nov 19: 37 Snow 10:30 am - 4:00 pm
    Nov 20: 48
    Nov 21: 48
    Nov 22: 35
    Nov 23: 42 Thanksgiving
    Nov 24: 56
    Nov 25: 52

    Thursday, November 23, 2017

    Book Review, Blog Tour, and Giveaway: "21 Days of Christmas" compiled by Kathy Ide

    About the Book

    21 days of christmas
    Name of book: 21 Days of Christmas: A Fiction Lover’s Devotional
    Author: Kathy Ide
    Genre: Christian Fiction Devotional
    Release Date: September 1, 2015
    Christmas is more than just a holiday. It is a time to recapture the joy and wonder of God’s greatest gift: His Son, Jesus.
    21 Days of Christmas will warm your heart with stories about giving, loving, and family. These engaging tales celebrate the hope and joy that make this blessed season unique. At the end of each story you’ll find an insightful message that will help you discover anew the true meaning of this special time of year. So grab a cup of hot apple cider with a cinnamon stick, curl up in your favorite chair beside a picture window overlooking a serene spot, and savor the true meaning of Christmas through these inspirational and encouraging stories.
    My thoughts "21 Days of Christmas" is a compilation of 21 short stories having to do with Christmas. Some are retellings of the first Christmas with Mary and Joseph, others are contemporary, and some are historical. Each has a "life application" section that helps apply the message of the story. Most of the stories are only 3 double-sided pages so they do not take very long to read. It would be perfect for reading along with your personal devotions, in the bathroom, or while waiting in the car pick up lane. The book is only as big as my Kindle, so it is easy to stuff in a bag or purse. I was a little disappointed at how many of the stories seemed to follow the "not in the Christmas spirit...something in the Christmas spirit" theme. I don't really want to read just about how depressed people are. There is a list of the contributing authors and their stories in the back of the book so you can easily find the story you are looking for. All of the  authors were new to me, which makes it a nice way to get to know new authors.

    More About Kathy Ide

    Kathy Ide-square_300x300Kathy is the editor/compiler of the Fiction Lover’s Devotional series ( and author of “Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors” ( She has also written numerous articles, short stories, devotionals, play scripts, and Sunday school curriculum. She has ghostwritten ten nonfiction books and a five-book novel series.
    She is also a full-time freelance editor, working with aspiring, new, and experienced authors as well as publishers.
    Kathy speaks at writers’ conferences across the country.
    She is the founder and coordinator of The Christian PEN: Proofreaders and Editors Network ( and the Christian Editor Connection (
    For more about Kathy, visit

    Guest Post from Kathy Ide

    Looking for a great Christmas gift for friends and family who love fiction … or devotionals? You can give them both in one book!
    21 Days of Christmas: Stories that Celebrate God’s Greatest Gift is book two in the Fiction Lover’s Devotional series. It’s a collection of 21 fiction stories, each written by a different author—including well-known novelists such as Lena Nelson Dooley, Joanne Bischof, Jan Cline, and Lynn Kinnaman. Some stories are about the first Christmas, when Mary and Joseph brought God’s Son into the world. Others are about how we celebrate that history-changing event today. Each story is followed by a brief Life Application written by the author of that story.
    The first chapter starts out with an amusing tale of a modern-day couple in the front seat of a car, on Christmas Eve, traveling to see relatives for the holiday. They’re griping about the hassles of the season, and hollering at the the kids, who are playing with the foil on Mom’s Jell-O salad in the backseat. Then we break from that to a scene of Mary and Joseph entering Bethlehem, about to bring God’s Son into the world. It contrasts the modern-day wife, not wanting to go into a sleazy diner because it’s the only place open on Christmas Eve, with Mary hesitating to go into a smelly barnyard to give birth. When the modern-day couple decide to tell their children the Christmas story—complete with snow and a little drummer boy—the contrasts become both highly funny and very poignant.
    I wrote one of the chapters in the book. It’s about the first Christmas, from the perspective of Joseph. What he must have thought and felt when Mary was giving birth to Jesus, knowing that he had been personally given the divine responsibility to teach God’s Son about God. Based on the Old Testament teachings he’d been raised with, what did Joseph think Jesus would be like when He was born, and how did reality clash with those expectations?
    This book makes a great gift for family and friends, with its beautiful debossed hardback cover, full-color interior, and a ribbon page marker. With stories about the Nativity as well as tales of modern-day people celebrating that event, almost anyone would enjoy receiving a copy and reading it—even those who don’t believe in Christ as their Savior. It’s small enough to be a stocking stuffer (or tucked into the pocket of a Christmas-themed pot holder!) and inexpensive enough to be a practical gift for those people you’re not sure will reciprocate, or who may feel uncomfortable if they didn’t get you anything.
    This devotional would also be ideal to incorporate into an individual’s or a family’s advent celebration, reading one chapter a day during the three weeks leading up to Christmas.
    Each chapter takes only about ten minutes to read, which makes it ideal for the hectic holiday season. And since each chapter stands alone, it doesn’t matter whether you read one or two stories, half the book, or the whole thing.
    Other books in the Fiction Lover’s Devotional series are:
    21 Days of Grace: Stories that Celebrate God’s Unconditional Love
    21 Days of Love: Stories that Celebrate Treasured Relationships
    21 Days of Joy: Stories that Celebrate Motherhood

    Blog Stops

    Reader’s Cozy CornerNovember 22
    Blossoms and BlessingsNovember 23
    Carpe Diem, November 23
    Multifarious, November 25
    A Reader’s Brain, November 25
    A Greater YesNovember 26
    Lane Hill House, November 26
    Texas Book -aholic, November 27
    Jeanette’s Thoughts, November 27
    Karen Sue Hadley, November 28
    By The Book, November 29
    Mary Hake, November 30
    Remebrancy, December 2


    To celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away a grand prize of a set of 21 days devotional books!!
    Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
    "21 Days of Christmas" is available in hardcover:
    • Series: A Fiction Lover's Devotional
    • Hardcover: 160 pages
    • Publisher: Broadstreet Publishing Group, LLC (September 1, 2015)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1424550513
    • ISBN-13: 978-1424550517
    • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 7 inches

    and in Kindle edition:
    • File Size: 2518 KB
    • Print Length: 160 pages
    • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
    • Publisher: BroadStreet Publishing Group LLC (September 1, 2015)
    • Publication Date: September 1, 2015
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B011EZLQIO

    I got a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and given voluntarily. No compensation was received. 

    Tuesday, November 21, 2017

    Book Review, Blog Tour, and Giveaway: "Out of the Ordinary" by Jen Turano

    About the Book

    out of the ordinary
    Name of book: Out of the Ordinary
    Author: Jen Turano
    Genre: Christian historical
    Release Date: November 7, 2017
    “With all the charm of a Regency romance, the humor of a drawing room farce, and the swoonworthy delight of a fairy tale, Turano’s first Apart from the Crowd historical absolutely sparkles.”–Publishers Weekly on Behind the Scenes
    Working as a paid companion may be quite commonplace, but Miss Gertrude Cadwalader’s eccentric employer makes her job unpredictable, to say the least. She finds herself carrying out an array of highly unusual tasks, including wearing peculiar outfits and returning items the woman pilfered. But when the wealthy Mrs. Sinclair catches Gertrude sneaking around the Sinclair yacht with some of the missing items in her possession, she immediately jumps to the wrong conclusion.
    Shipping magnate Harrison Sinclair is caught in the middle of a misunderstanding between his mother and Gertrude, but he can’t help coming to his friend’s defense. Even as he hopes their friendship might become something more, Harrison is unprepared for the outlandish escapades that seem to follow the lovely, anything-but-ordinary Gertrude at every turn.
    “The second installment of Turano’s Apart from the Crowd series is laugh-out-loud enjoyable. The foibles of the characters, balanced out with a light-hearted yet meaningful love story, is a true treat. . . . All of the threads are tied together in the end, even the small mysteries and side stories. It makes for a very satisfying read when the last page is turned.”–RT Book Reviews
    My Thoughts "Out of the Ordinary" is the 2nd book in the "Apart from the Crowd" series and while it does fill you in on the happenings of the first book in the series, I believe it would be best to read "Behind the Scenes" before reading this book. Having met Harrison Sinclair and Gertrude Cadwalader in the first book, I was thrilled to be able to read their story. I loved Harrison and his unique sense of fashion. He knew what he liked and didn't mind standing out from the fashionable set. Gertrude was also endearing and you want to see her get her happily ever after. There were mysteries and intrigues that kept you guessing as to what exactly was happening. It took me a little bit to get into the language of the book as it is written as if it truly were 1883, but then I didn't want to put it down (even staying up late and neglecting to put away my groceries for a couple of hours--yes refrigerator things, too--because I got so into the story!) I am looking forward to reading Temperance's story. 

    About the Author

    jen turanoJen Turano, author of nine books and two novellas, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in clothing and textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at

    Q & A with Jen Turano

    What Readers Want to Know from Jen
    Hey Everyone! Thank you so much for stopping by today. Because I’m in the midst of a first draft, and in case you don’t know, I don’t actually care for first drafts – all those pesky blank pages, but…I’m getting off track…where was I? Oh yes, why I brought up first drafts in the first place. You see, I’m a little scattered when I’m doing a draft, and because of that, and because my mind is a scary place to visit while filling up those already-mentioned blank pages, I was having a tough time coming up with a post for Celebrate Lit. That’s why I reached out to my fabulous readers, and…here are some of the questions their inquiring minds wanted to know about me or my books. I hope you enjoy them!
    Why write in the Gilded Age?
    When I started writing historical romance after experimenting with other genres, I didn’t write Gilded age but Regency pieces. However, when I ran across the book “The Court of Mrs. Astor in Gilded Age New York” by Greg King, I was intrigued, and a little baffled about how it came to be that I was so unfamiliar with that riveting time in history. It’s an era where unprecedented fortunes were made at a remarkable rate, those fortunes responsible for so many scandals that I’ll have enough fodder for stories to last me for years. The antics of the members of high society are vastly intriguing, as are the fashions of the day, which is exactly why I’ve never had second thoughts about choosing to write Gilded Age romances.
    How do you come up with such unusual names for your characters?
    I get asked this a lot. And, contrary to popular belief, I don’t make up the names of my characters. I search through obituaries from the 1800’s, peruse books on the New York Four-Hundred (those were members of high society – chosen by Mr. Ward McAllister, the social arbiter of the day,) and I also scour old census records. I do occasionally pair a first name with a different surname so that my main characters aren’t real historic figures because that can get tricky. Not long ago, while reading through Memoirs of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania: Person and Genealogical, Volume 1, I found a bit on my great-grandfather, which was cool – not that I’ll be using him, but I might have a character modeled after him at some point in time. Another interesting tidbit about choosing names is this – names only work for me if the characters decide they like the names I select for them. If they don’t like the name, they simply stop cooperating. I can’t write their stories until I choose another name. An example – I was recently going to name a heroine Georgianna – but it was like trying to write through mud. As soon as I changed her name to Myrtle, I was back in business.
    What is the most ordinary thing you enjoy doing?
    I love to shovel snow.
    Who is responsible for your book covers? Do you choose the model/setting?
    Bethany House’s design team does all of my covers, and occasionally they hire out the job to other design houses. The only input I give is when I send in a character/setting sheet, describing my heroine and listing a few scenes that I feel might be good for the background. In “Out of the Ordinary,” I suggested having Gertrude on or near a boat, and the design team then hired a model who resembled my character sketch and put her on a boat.
    Which character has been the most difficult to write?
    All of my characters give me trouble at some point in time, but recently, Mrs. Davenport was the character who was being incredibly difficult. For the first three edits of “Out of the Ordinary,” she was too complicated and a bit on the dark side, but after I changed her backstory, and remembered she was supposed to be eccentric, not deranged, she turned into a delightful lady, one I enjoyed writing.
    What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever Googled while doing research for a book?
    I don’t know if this is crazy, more on the lines of idiotic, but I once googled Gentleman’s Clubs when I was looking for an all-male club my hero would want to join. That was a definite mistake, especially since I didn’t include a very important word – historic. Well, the next thing you know, all sorts of naughty sites were flashing in front of my eyes, and to this day, I still get advertisements for singles looking for a good time and all sorts of other interesting…offers.
    Have you always wanted to be a writer?
    Nope, it never entered my head to pursue a career in writing, nor was I ever a person to even keep a diary or a journal. I’m pretty sure I wanted to be a movie star when I was younger, but when that didn’t pan out, I majored in fashion and spent quite a few years working for department stores. It wasn’t until my son was in third grade and we wrote a book together just for fun that I began entertaining the thought of trying to see my stories in print.
    How long did it take you to break into the publishing world, and how many books did you write before that happened?
    What everyone needs to understand is that publishing is a cut-throat business. I had no idea when I decided to try and get published what the competition was like, and if I had, well, I might have nipped the whole idea of getting a book into print right in the bud. But, because I knew I only wanted to go the traditional route, it soon became clear, what with all the suggestions I was getting about the work I was sending out to agents, that I needed to up my game…a lot. I experimented with quite a few different genres – middle grade, YA, contemporary women’s fiction, Regency romance, and then Gilded Age, getting really proficient with query letters in the process. It wasn’t until I started writing historical romance, though, that I really began getting requests for full manuscript. After I’d been writing for about three years, I finally signed with an agent. She never sold the book she signed on to represent, but after I wrote “A Change of Fortune,” she sold that within two months. Long story short – it took me about seven years to get published from the time I wrote my first book, and…I have seven manuscripts that will never see the light of day because they’re awful.
    Is there a reason you include so many animals in your stories?
    I’ve always been an animal lover, and as such, I really enjoy writing different animals into my scenes. Dogs are my favorites, followed by pigs, and most of the characteristics my animals have are traits I’ve seen in real life. Matilda, the pig in “A Match of Wits,” was inspired by a pig I used to see in New York. She was so quirky, as well as intelligent, that I knew I would have to write a pig in at least one of my stories. This current series does not have as many animals because I do want to keep my stories fresh. But, having said that, my next series finds my heroine visiting a farm, and well, I don’t know many farms that don’t have animals, especially adorable cows by the name of Buttercup that may or may not have the odd tendency of moseying into the house to eat pie whenever the urge strikes.
    Last question – Have any of the crazy antics in your books been inspired by real-life events???
    I seem to be a magnet for weird things happening, so…yes, quite a few of those antics were inspired by real life events. I’ll share just one since I do need to get back to that first draft. I live near Denver, and when my son was little, we used to visit the Denver Zoo. That zoo just happens to have a very large flock of peacocks – peacocks that took one look at me one day – and I must add that I wasn’t doing anything except pulling my son in a wagon, and the next thing I knew, I was being chased through the zoo by what seemed to me to be the entire flock of peacocks – all seemingly intent on trying to murder me. Funny how fast a mom can run while pulling a wagon when in fear for her life. My son thought it was fabulous fun, and bless those members of the staff who came to my rescue. They were almost successful in not laughing, and…I received a free lunch after the dastardly peacocks were chased away. That event is what inspired me to write a mad flock of peacocks in “In Good Company.”
    Thank you so much for visiting me today. Hope I answered a few questions you may have about me!
    All the best,
    ~ Jen ~

    Blog Stops

    Vicky sluiter, November 11
    Bookworm Mama, November 11
    cherylbbookblog, November 11
    Book by Book, November 11
    Lane Hill House, November 12
    C Jane Read, November 12
    The Power of Words, November 12
    Smiling Book Reviews, November 13
    Moments Dipped in Ink, November 13
    Faithfully Bookish, November 14
    BigreadersiteNovember 14
    Mommynificent, November 14
    All 4 and About Books, November 14
    Just the Write Escape, November 15
    allofakindmom, November 15
    Pause for Tales, November 16
    D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, November 16
    Neverending Stories, November 17
    Have A Wonderful Day, November 17
    Christian Bookaholic, November 17
    A Reader’s Brain, November 18
    Karen Sue Hadley, November 18
    The April JournalNovember 18
    Cafinated Reads, November 18
    Bibliophile ReviewsNovember 19
    Blogging With CarolNovember 19
    Mary Hake, November 19
    Baker Kella, November 20
    Rachel’s Back Talk, November 20
    Texas Book-aholic, November 20
    Joy of ReadingNovember 21
    Remembrancy, November 21
    Splashes of JoyNovember 22
    amandainpa, November 22
    A Greater YesNovember 23
    Radiant Light, November 24


    To celebrate the tour, Bethany House is giving away a grand prize of Two Jen Turano Novels and a $20 Starbucks Gift Card!!
    Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

    "Out of the Ordinary" is available in paperback:
    • Series: Apart From the Crowd
    • Paperback: 352 pages
    • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (November 7, 2017)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 076421795X
    • ISBN-13: 978-0764217951
    • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.9 x 8.3 inches

    and in Kindle edition:
    • File Size: 7447 KB
    • Print Length: 354 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 076421795X
    • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (November 7, 2017)
    • Publication Date: November 7, 2017
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B0727RWF82

    I got a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and given voluntarily. No compensation was received.