Meet author Kimberly Rose Johnson

Award-winning author Kimberly Rose Johnson married her college sweetheart and lives in the Pacific Northwest. From a young child Kimberly has been an avid reader. That love of reading fostered a creative mind and led to her passion for writing. She especially loves romance and writes contemporary romantic mystery and suspense that warms the heart and feeds the soul. Kimberly holds a degree in Behavioral and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.

 

Tell us about your newest book.

The Sleuth’s Surprise is a romantic mystery set in a fictional town in Oregon. This book wraps up the series. Here is the back-cover blurb: Mary Daley has been the sheriff of Tipton County for more than two decades, but someone wants her job. When it seems circumstances can’t get more complicated, a murder happens on her watch. Had she been the intended victim?

Deputy Chief Lyle Griffin only wants Mary to be happy, but when he asks her if she’d consider retiring, it sets off a string of events and emotions that muddy their friendship. Nancy Daley-Malone can’t believe anyone would run for sheriff against her mom. She is onboard to help run the best campaign Tipton County has ever seen until the sheriff’s opponent is murdered and Nancy’s husband joins the race. On top of that, it appears someone is out to kill her mother as well. Can Nancy, along with the sheriff’s department, find the murderer before it’s too late? Will Lyle and Mary be able to admit their feelings for one another or will the status quo remain?

What inspired you to write The Sleuth’s Surprise?

I knew since book two that I wanted to write Mary and Lyle’s story. Their story had been forming in my mind for quite sometime as I was writing the books that come before it.

How would you describe this book to someone in a 30-second blurb?

The Sleuth’s Surprise is a cozy-feeling romantic mystery with a little suspense woven in. Think Hallmark Movies and Mysteries.

What genre do you focus on and why?

Currently I’m focused on writing romantic suspense with mystery, which is the reverse of The Sleuth’s Surprise.

Why do you write?

I write because I love writing. My mind is always coming up with story ideas. I like to feel successful and completing a project give me that sense of accomplishment.

Who is your main character, and how did you choose that name?

Mary Daley is the main character in this book. When I started the series, I didn’t actually know her first name. I called her Sheriff Daley. I knew her last name since her daughter, who is the star of all the books, had that last name. I’m not sure how I came up with the name Mary, other than it seemed to fit.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing a book?

It really depends on what’s going on in my life. With my husband working from home and my son home again since his university moved all classes to online, it’s been different than what it used to be. Pre-COVID I would awaken at 5:20 and by 6:20 I was on the computer posting in book groups, then I break for breakfast and reading my Bible. After that, I’d work on the business side of writing and blog posts, then I would exercise. Lunch would follow and then I’d get in two to three hours of productive writing.

Now the only thing I still am regimented about is my social media early in the morning. With my husband working from home and my son living here again, it’s really messed my schedule up. I am easily distracted and have a very hard time focusing. I usually get some solid writing in during the early afternoon hours but that’s about it.

What is the hardest part of being an author?  

For me it’s putting myself out there on social media. I’d much rather write my books and not do anything else. However, I do enjoy Instagram. I love looking at all the pictures on my feed.

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

Writing and even though I indicated that I don’t particularly enjoy social media, I really enjoy visiting with readers on Facebook. It’s fun to find out what’s going on in their lives. I also enjoy running things by them and asking for suggestions.

What’s one thing your readers should know about you?

I’m an introvert. I love being at home and keeping to myself. I have to make a conscious effort to be social.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I am a lot more open about sharing my faith in my work as well as sharing pieces of me. In the early days of my writing (pre-published), I was closed. If you really want to know me, read my books. A piece of my heart and me are in each and every one.

What is your favorite pastime?

Walking. I love being outdoors and it makes me feel good to walk.

Do you have other books? We’d love to know.

Yes, I have a several series out as well as a few stand-alone novellas. I have the third book in my Protection Inc. series releasing in October. You can find my list of books on my website https://kimberlyrjohnson.com/books/ .

What are you working on now?

Currently I’m writing a screenplay. I’m taking screenwriting intensive this summer, so that has consumed my writing time. As far as what’s next with my books, I’m not sure. I’m toying around with writing either the fourth and possibly final book in the Protection Inc. series or writing the next book in my Law Enforcement Heroes series. Wherever the Lord leads is where I will spend my time. I can’t wait to see where He leads me next!

 

Website: https://kimberlyrjohnson.com/

Link to book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08DCRSHRH

Social media links: Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kimberlyrosejohnsonauthor/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KimberlyRoseJohnson

Twitter: https://twitter.com/kimberlyrosejoh

 

 

 

Author Sherri Stewart

Sherri Stewart loves a clean novel, sprinkled with romance and a strong message that challenges her faith. Her passion is traveling to the settings of her books, sampling the food, and visiting the sites. Sadly, her trip for this book to Wales and London was cancelled due to COVID. A recent widow, Sherri lives in the Orlando area with her dog, Lily. She shares recipes, tidbits of the book’s locations, and pix in her newsletter.

Tell us about your newest book.

Meadow meets Jonathan by chance when they end up with the same seat ticket to a concert in London. Serendipity or the providence of God? They fall in love. But all good things must end when Meadow returns to Atlanta and Jonathan heads back to law school in New York. They promise to keep in touch. Jonathan believes God has brought them together. Meadow’s not so sure, but they promise to meet at Christmas on the rooftop of Cardiff Castle in Wales in two years if they’re not already spoken for. Will Jonathan keep his promise? Fans of Serendipity and Sleepless in Seattle will enjoy this novella.

What inspired you to write The Promise Keeper?

Watching the movie Serendipity, which is a fancy word for destiny or coincidence. It’s a heartwarming story, but we believers have something better—the providence of God—His sovereignty. I started thinking—what if the basic story of two people’s destiny was not a matter of chance but of God’s plan?

What genre do you focus on and why?

Mostly, I write romance with something else—suspense, contemporary, historical, and my next book is a time-travel romance.

Why do you write?

It’s my way of fulfilling the great commission. People may not read the Bible, but they may read a novel and meet God for the first time.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing a book?

Once I sign a contract, I write 500 words a day six days a week. (I’m an editor so I don’t have the time for more than that.)

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

Traveling to the settings in my books. My next book, The Roosevelt Key, coming out in February takes place in LA. I’ll be spending a lot of time in the famous Forest Lawn Cemetery and staying at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood.

What’s one unusual fact about you?

I like to work my way through a recipe book—making recipes in order, even if I know I won’t like them. I do the same thing with menus at restaurants.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I’ve grown a tougher skin. Belonging to critique groups and attending meetings with agents at conferences have helped me learn to make the most of criticism.

Do you have other books? We’d love to know.

I’ve written about sixteen books. They’re available on Amazon.

 

Website: www.stewartwriting.com

Link to book: https://amzn.to/2Y07QP0

Social media links:

https://www.amazon.com/author/sherristewart/ 

https://www.facebook.com/sherristewartauthor/

https://twitter.com/machere

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/758893.Sherri_Stewart

www.stewartwriting.com

https://www.instagram.com/stewart_sherri/

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/sherri-stewart

 

 

 

 

 

Historical Author Marilyn Turk

Marilyn Turk sees the miraculous creation of God in everyday life. As a writer, she tries to capture His truths through her historical novels and heartfelt devotions. She loves to encourage people to find their strengths and develop their God-given gifts, a message she shares when she speaks to audiences. She and her husband, avid lighthouse enthusiasts, have visited over 100, and her popular lighthouse blog features true lighthouse stories. In her spare time, she enjoys boating and fishing, taking walks or playing tennis.

 

Tell us about your newest book.

In Abigail’s Secret, newly widowed young mother Abby Baker goes home to Hope Harbor to help her ailing mother and restart her life. Weighed down by grief and fear of failure, she wishes she had the strength of her grandmother, who raised a young child alone while taking on the role of lighthouse keeper after her husband drowned. What was the secret of Granny Abigail’s strength? Carson Stevens is a lighthouse enthusiast who has bought the deteriorating Hope Island lighthouse to restore it and turn it into a bed-and-breakfast. When he meets Abby, he wants the attractive granddaughter of the former keepers to be part of the restoration. As Abby and Carson work together, they uncover clues to a family secret that threatens to change Abby’s life forever. But someone is trying to sabotage their efforts at restoration. Is the saboteur trying to keep something from being found? Renovating the old lighthouse is Abby and Carson’s goal, but as they grow closer, they discover that what they’ve really needed is a renovation of their hearts.

What inspired you to write Abigail’s Secret?

Several years ago I surveyed more than 100 women about strength. To the question, ‘who is the strongest woman you know or have known?’ the overwhelming majority said that woman was their mother and especially, their grandmother. In my book, a young woman believes she doesn’t have the strength to handle her responsibilities but remembers her late grandmother, a lighthouse keeper, as having extraordinary strength. I wanted to show how often we doubt our own strength, but we have just as much as God gave our ancestors.

How would you describe this book to someone in a 30-second blurb?

Abby Baker, a young widow with a small child, goes home to help her ailing mother and start life over. When she meets Carson Stevens, the man who bought the lighthouse where her grandmother was a keeper, she gets involved in its restoration and discovers some surprising family history.

What genre do you focus on and why?

I usually write historical novels with romance and a little suspense.

Why do you write?

I write because I believe God gave me the stories to write and I’m obligated to write them.

Who is your main character?

My main character is Abby Baker who was named after her grandmother, Abigail Martin.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing a book?

Although I try to start on it in the morning, it’s often after lunch before I get going, even though I’ve been sitting at the computer for hours already.

What is the hardest part of being an author?

Consistency. So much about writing is based on self-control and self-imposed deadlines, and I lack the discipline.

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

Freedom and discovery. I never liked sitting under the scrutiny of a boss, which is why I was in sales for 30 years. Writing gives me the freedom to write when I want to, what I want to write, and as much as I want to write. I love the discovery of interesting historical facts I can weave into my stories and I love seeing how the stories turn out.

What’s one thing your readers should know about you?

I never dreamed of writing books. I thought I’d only write devotionals until I went to writers’ conferences that started my mind down story trails.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I don’t worry about whether I’ll get published or not, and I’ve learned my method is what works for me. I used to try to do everything everyone else did which stressed me out.

What is your favorite pastime?

Hard to pinpoint, but I love tennis, (although I started playing late and am not very good), and I love being near water, which is why I live in Florida.

Do you have other books?

Yes, I have a four-book series set in Florida from 1861-1883 called Coastal Lights Legacy, featuring four different lighthouse settings. I also have a two-book series called Suspicious Shores which consists of The Gilded Curse andShadowed by a Spy and are set in 1942 on the East Coast.

What are you working on now?

I’m currently working on a standalone historical romance called Love’s Saving Light, based on the true story of Maine’s traveling lighthouse schoolteacher.

 

Website: marilynturk.com, pathwayheart.com

Link to book: https://www.amazon.com/Abigails-Secret-Marilyn-Turk/dp/1645262626/

Social media links: Facebook.com/Marilyn.turk.9

Twitter: @MarilynTurk

Pinterest: pinterest.com/bluewaterbayou

 

 

Meet author Buck Storm

Buck Storm is a critically acclaimed author and musician. His books and songs have made friends around the world. Buck and his wife, Michelle, have been married for thirty-one years and have two married children.

Tell us about your newest book.

The Beautiful Ashes of Gomez Gomez is a literary novel about a man who’s lost his wife in a head on collision. He decides to leave everything, move into the bushes near the crash site, and basically drink himself to death so he can be with her again. The book obviously deals with a grief theme but, believe it or not, still manages romance, mystery, and humor. Part of it also takes place on a Greek Island in the sixties (so fun to write). I don’t think readers familiar with my previous books will be disappointed. Out of all my work, this was probably the most enjoyable book to write.

What inspired you to write?

I was riding in a car once with a wonderful elderly friend of mine. She told me a story of picking up the wrong suitcase at the airport one time and finding someone’s ashes inside when she got home. For some reason she found the whole thing hilarious. Granted, my book has absolutely nothing to do with that event, but I remember coming up with the title and general outline that day.

How would you describe this book to someone in a 30-second blurb?

Literary Americana fiction filled with humor and heart. The Beautiful Ashes of Gomez Gomez is quirky, heartfelt, and deeply human. Lives and hopes collide in the town of Paradise, stretching across decades and continents in this epic story of forgiveness, redemption, and love.

What genre do you focus on and why?

I write literary fiction, although I’ve taken a couple side trails—a nonfiction book about some off the beaten path Israel adventures, and a couple biblical fiction novels. I come back to literary fiction because I like the freedom. It’s not quite as structured as genre fiction. And I’m more of a stream of consciousness (pantser) writer so it works well for me. Also, as a longtime songwriter, I really enjoy leaning back into the language of literary fiction.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing a book?

I pretty much write every day. Grab a cup of coffee in the morning and have at it for at least six hours. Although, if there’s a deadline looming, that time multiplies quite a bit.

What is the hardest part of being an author?

I think the hardest thing about writing is disappearing into your settings and characters for months on end without any real feedback. Am I headed in the right direction? Does any of it make any sense? What if it’s plain old horrible? Or, even worse, boring? The whole thing by nature is a very solitary business. Somewhere down deep, a writer has to have a pretty big reserve of confidence in his or her ability to keep pressing on (either that or be delusional ).

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

The same as the hardest part. Writing challenges me every day. Every hour, really. I’m a bit of an introvert, so, settling into my writing chair with a whole day of creativity in front of me is one of the best feelings in the world.

What’s one unusual fact about you?

I’m probably best known as a singer/songwriter (and hopefully an author) but I worked for ten years or so as a commercial diver (not driver) and fisherman.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

For a long, long time I was afraid the other shoe would drop, and everyone from my agent to publishers to readers would realize I’m basically making the whole thing up and have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. I still have moments of that, but I like to think I’m learning the craft a bit more. Still it’s a bottomless well. Always so much to improve on!

What is your favorite pastime?

Anything to do with my family. I have two married children and a new granddaughter. We’re a very close family and do things together almost every day. I’m so blessed it that way. Not only do I have a wonderful family but built in friends. I just love it. (Especially if we’re on a beach somewhere in the world!)

Do you have other books? We’d love to know.

The Miracle Man (Iron Stream Media)

Truck Stop Jesus (Iron Stream Media)

Finding Jesus in Israel, Through the Holy Land on the Road Less Traveled (Hachette Book Group)

The List (Compass Publishing)

The Light (Humphrey House Books)

 

What are you working on now?

At the moment I’m working on a follow up to Gomez Gomez—The Sound the Sun Makes. Right after that I’ll be starting a third book called Venus Sings the Blues. Kregel will be releasing these as a three-book series called The Ballads of Paradise.

 

Website: www.buckstorm.com

Link to book: https://www.kregel.com/fiction/beautiful-ashes-of-gomez-gomez/

Social media links:

www.facebook.com/buck.storm

www.facebook.com/buckstormauthor

www.instagram.com/buckstorm

 

Meet YA author Carrie Looper Stephens

Carrie Looper Stephens first created the Vickland Trilogy when she was 13 and she’s loved telling stories ever since.  She also loves gardening, hiking, reading, and rescuing cats. She lives in South Carolina with her husband Daniel, daughter Elanor, and two cats, Chrono and Marle. The Zenia Wood is the first book in the trilogy.

Tell us about your newest book.

Gwyn has always been focused on fitting in with the popular girls in her idyllic seaside town. But when a hooded stranger alerts her to her parents’ danger, survival becomes her goal. After finding her parents murdered in their own home, Gwyn and her brother scramble to escape the killer—the notorious Black Wizard.

Desperate to break away from his father’s scrutiny and criticism, the prince of Vickland—Heron Oakheart—escapes into the mysterious Zenia Wood. There, he meets Bromlin. The eccentric old man tells the prince a dark secret about his father and forces him to question everything he knows.

Thrown together by chance, Heron and Gwyn begin to unravel the dark plots surrounding them. Facing dragons, witches, and dark magic, Gwyn and Heron have no choice but to cling to their courage if they are to survive. Can they outwit their cunning opponents and rescue Gwyn’s brother from a castle prison before it’s too late?

What inspired you to write The Zenia Wood?

Growing up, I read voraciously and had an active imagination. The Zenia Wood began as a story I told my siblings on rainy days and long road trips, or when I was supposed to be doing homework. As I grew up and started writing down the series, many teachers and parents told me they found it difficult to find clean fiction for their students and children. I realized I had found my calling: writing a well-told, clean, adventure story.

How would you describe this book to someone in a 30-second blurb?

Two siblings, Gwyn and Martin, are on the run from their parents’ murderer, the Black Wizard. When Martin is kidnapped, Gwyn must find her way to the Uziel Mountain to rescue him. A runaway prince, Heron, comes face to face with a dark side to his father, the king of Vickland. He and Gwyn are forced to work together to survive, and try to rescue Martin from the clutches of the Blood Witch.

What genre do you focus on and why?

My genre is Young Adult Fantasy. I enjoy this genre because I used to imagine I could escape to magical worlds. I often wanted to run away and retreat into my daydreams, where I created different worlds, worlds where I could be free to be me. Worlds where I was the strong hero, esteemed and popular, and loved and admired.

Why do you write?

I know it’s cliché to say I write to express myself, but it’s true. During periods in my life when I couldn’t make the time to write, I felt bottled up on the inside, words, confusion, and stress swirling in my heart. But when I finally had a chance to write (either through my journal or the Vickland Trilogy), the words poured out on the page, as if they had a mind of their own. After I write, peace and satisfaction fill me. I am so grateful God has given me an outlet to express myself.

Who is your main character, and how did you choose that name?

Gwyn is my main character in the Vickland Trilogy. I have always had a fascination with names and their meanings. My parents had a baby name book, which I often poured over. I kept coming back to the name Gwyn. It sounded strong, mystical, and feminine, but not frilly. Which is Gwyn in a nutshell.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing a book?

I like to think of my title as “Mom by day, Writer by nap time.” I write during Elanor’s nap times, and sometimes in the evenings after she goes to bed. My husband is also kind to have daddy daughter dates with Elanor some Saturdays, which gives me time to write. I will admit, it is really hard for me to get into what I call “the writing zone” now days. The writing zone is when I get tunnel vision, my fingers flying furiously over the keyboard as I enter the magical world of Alastar. I usually only get about 30-60 minute chunks of time throughout the day, so entering the writing zone is difficult. But I keep reminding myself that my husband and daughter are more important than my book. The writing will get done eventually, but my time with my family is more important.

What is the hardest part of being an author?

Promotion. I know some authors enjoy this, but I am not a salesperson personality. I also do not like social media, because it can suck away time that would be better spent with my family or writing.

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

Writing and editing. I love falling into Alastar and interacting with the characters, watching them develop on their own. I do not create my characters. They create themselves. I have tried to control and manipulate them, but they only rebel and become who they want to be.

What’s one unusual fact about you?

I love rescuing cats. Throughout my life time, I have rescued 4 cats. We currently only have two cats, one whom Daniel and I rescued in 2018. Someone had just thrown her out on the side of the road as a teeny kitten. I have a dream of starting a cat rescue mission someday. I wish all the kitties in the world could have loving, safe homes.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I used to be so proud of my writing that I would get defensive when I received critique. But all that changed when I joined a writers’ group. In writers’ group, a group of people read their stories out loud, and then we comment on the writing pieces. It was quite intimidating, and at least once I cried after I left. But through the loving criticism of my friends, I grew as a writer. I would not be where I am today without being part of my writers’ group. A writer cannot write alone. We need input from others.

What is your favorite pastime?

Spending time with my family. I am such a homebody. I love taking walks with Daniel and Elanor, reading books, playing with Elanor, and spending time with Daniel once Elanor is in bed.

What are you working on now?

I am currently working on rewrites and edits for Book 2 in the Trilogy! Of the whole trilogy, Book 2 is my favorite. I love the story, the character interactions, and the journey.

Website: https://www.carrielooperstephens.com/

Link to book: https://www.amazon.com/Zenia-Wood-Carrie-Looper-Stephens/dp/1645262340

Social media links:

https://www.facebook.com/carrielooperstephens/
https://www.instagram.com/thetaleofvickland/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19655477.Carrie_Looper_Stephens

 

 

 

 

Meet author Renea Winchester

Renea Winchester is a first-place winner of the North Carolina Press Association Award, the recipient of the Wilma Dykeman Award, and a two-time winner of the Appalachian Writer’s Award. She which was nominated for the SIBA award and received the endorsement from The Pulpwood Queens, the largest book club in the country. Renea has served on the Atlanta Writers Board, Georgia Writers Association, and judges multiple literary awards. Set in her hometown of Bryson City, North Carolina, Outbound Train is nominated for the Crook’s Corner Prize and Best New Fiction (American Book Fest).

Tell us about your newest book.

Outbound Train is a Southern fiction title, set in my hometown of Bryson City, North Carolina. It is the story of three generations of Parker women: Granny Pearlene, her daughter Barbara, and Carole Anne – age sixteen. These three ladies have known their fair share of hardship, but they are “make do” women. Women who can take a little scrap of nothing and create a work of art.

What inspired you to write Outbound Train?

I love to tell the story about Outbound Train during the infancy stage. My brother actually encouraged me to write this story after we traveled past a trailer park where mobile homes sat end-to-end. There, I saw my Carole Anne, a young girl peering outside the window dreaming of more. “That’s your book,” my brother said. “You need to write about Bryson City and the way it was when we were growing up. Only you can tell people about the way things once were, before the tourists came and land became so expensive the locals could no longer afford to live here.” After seeing the young girl, I just couldn’t get Carole Anne out of my heart. Wedged up against the train tracks, close enough to almost touch the cars as they passed, I knew Carole Anne’s story deserved to be told.

How would you describe this book to someone in a 30-second blurb?

A triumphant story of women overcoming tragedy, fear, and poverty.

What genre do you focus on and why?

Having transitioned from non-fiction stories based in the South, I now write Southern fiction.

Why do you write?

I write with a fierce determination to tell the stories of my people, those who are misunderstood, unseen, underrepresented and often mocked. I write to show the humanity of blue-collar workers, especially women who have a long history of being able to take a whole lot of nothing and turn it into something beautiful.

What’s the best part of your author’s life?

The absolute best part of a writer’s life is meeting readers. I do not write for myself. I write for them. I want words to open a window that readers can look through.

What’s one unusual fact about you?

During my life, I have rescued hundreds of thousands of daffodils from certain death due to development.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I believe if you aren’t learning, you are essentially stagnating. This is my philosophy about writing, and life. I have an insatiable hunger to learn, and this hunger allows me to grow as a writer. Also, one of the best words of advice I can offer any writer is to read outside of your genre. Support lesser-known-authors. Tell others what you are reading. Don’t be on your cell phone all the time. Get caught reading while waiting in the doctor’s office or at the airport.

Do you have other books? We’d love to know.

Outbound Train is my debut novel. My first book, In the Garden with Billy, and its sequel, Farming, Friends & Fried Bologna Sandwiches are still available.

What are you working on now?

Thank you for asking about my latest work. I’m currently working on another Southern fiction title called, The Mountains Remember based on my grandmother’s displacement from her land in order to form the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Website: http://reneawinchester.wordpress.com/

Link to book: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1645262413/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0

Social media links:

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/reneawinchesterauthor/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Renea-Winchester-Author-162590877104288/