Meet author Denise Weimer

Denise Weimer writes historical and contemporary romance and romantic suspense, mostly set in her home state of Georgia. She’s authored almost a dozen traditionally published novels and a number of novellas. As a managing editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, she also helps others reach their publishing dreams. A wife and mother of two daughters, Denise always pauses for coffee, chocolate, and old houses.

Tell us about your newest book.

On the verge of starting her own company—and a fling with the hot star of a TV saga—Atlanta film makeup artist Ashlyn Jennings is willed a mysterious box containing a key from her grandmother’s estate. Mamie Lou, the former Hollywood B-lister who inspired Ashlyn’s path in life, always demonstrated a flair for the dramatic. But did Mamie Lou really expect her to put everything on hold to clean out a mountain cabin no one even knew about? And right at Christmas?

When Ashlyn arrives at White Falls Lodge armed with cosmetic bags and designer shoes, little is she prepared to be stranded by a snow storm, irritated by the handsome resort owner who seems determined to peel away her facade, and redirected by a God Ashlyn wants to forget, through Mamie Lou’s real gift … the secret story of her grandmother’s past.

What inspired you to write A Holiday Heart?

The story was originally to be part of a single-volume collection about granddaughters who inherited special heirlooms from their grandmother. The collection was never picked up by a publisher, so when I was invited to join the Georgia Peaches Series, I had an aha moment. A fun, heart-warming contemporary romance set in Georgia with deeper faith themes, A Holiday Heart was a perfect fit. And seeing as how I’m a Georgia Peach myself … all I had to do was add a mention of peaches to the story. Oh, and expand it by ten thousand words. But what’s that?

I’m grateful that God never wastes anything. A manuscript may sit for years, but then, suddenly, He nudges you toward the perfect situation. Even if a story is never published, it’s served as a learning tool.

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

An Atlanta makeup artist inherits a key to her grandmother’s mysterious mountain cabin … only to have her life rerouted by the handsome lodge owner and the secrets of her grandmother’s past.

What genre do you focus on?

I’m a genre-hopper—historical and contemporary romance and romantic suspense. And time slip, naturally. However, most of my contemporary novels are seasoned with a bit history. I love to write stories where modern characters learn life lessons from the past.

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

Ashlyn Jennings. She’s a bit city-girl prissy at first, so I needed a modern name that might reflect that. (Sorry, Ashlyns out there!)

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

From my early days when I mistakenly thought writing to be a solo endeavor, I’ve realized my most prized assets are other authors. We help and support each other every day! It’s a huge blessing to have a network of friends with the same interests all over the country.

The editing training I’ve received in the years that followed my journalism degree has also greatly shaped my writing, teaching me how to write in deep point of view, by showing rather than telling, and without info dumps. I can write more tightly and efficiently as a result.

What is your favorite pastime?

Strolling through cute towns with antique malls, boutiques, and coffee shops with my mother or college-age daughters; touring historic sites; and taking long walks with my hubby and dog.

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

Redeeming Grace (late-1800s sweet romance, short novel); The Georgia Gold Series (four books, mid-1800s, literary fiction-style set in Clarkesville and Savannah); The Restoration Trilogy (time slip romantic suspense with back stories from three different centuries); Backcountry Brides (1700s novella collection); Holly, Ivy & Intrigue (contemporary holiday suspense collection); Fall Flip (award-nominated contemporary romance with Hallmark/HGTV feel); The Witness Tree (Federal-era marriage of convenience romance set in Cherokee Territory); Spring Splash (contemporary romance/sports fiction); Traces(contemporary romantic suspense); A Holiday Heart (today’s feature); and coming in April 2020, Bent Tree Bride (Frontier War of 1812 romance).

What are you working on now?

I’m getting ready for the release of my next full-length novel. So excited about it, as I feel it truly reflects my growth as an author.

Susanna Moore can’t get him out of her mind—the learned lieutenant who delivered the commission from Andrew Jackson making her father colonel of the Cherokee Regiment. But the next time she sees Lieutenant Sam Hicks, he’s leading a string of prisoners into a frontier fort, and he’s wearing the garb of a Cherokee scout rather than the suit of a white gentleman.

As both Susanna’s father and Sam’s commanding officer, Colonel Moore couldn’t have made his directive to stay away from his daughter clearer to Sam. He wants a better match for Susanna—like the stuffy doctor who escorted her to Creek Territory. Then a suspected spy forces Moore to rely on Sam for military intelligence and Susanna’s protection, making it impossible for either to guard their heart.

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Meet author Jean Alfieri

Jean Alfieri is an author, speaker, and rescue dog advocate. She worked for almost 30 years in human resources and organizational development for public and private industries. A nomad at heart, she currently lives with her husband and fur family in Colorado Springs. Jean splits her time between writing and consulting. She also loves to volunteer at her local Humane Society, where she meets many great characters for her books – and some nice people too.

Tell us about your newest book.

We all have some memorable stories to tell, but sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. Blessed to be Me is a guided journal. It has prompts (story-starters) that assist you in capturing those great moments: the love, the laughter and maybe even the tears. With coloring pages, inspirational quotes, and plenty of lined space to write and doodle, it’s a fun experience. The bonus is that you also create a legacy to be passed on to future generations.

What inspired you to create Blessed to be Me?

I typically write short stories about my unpredictable rescue pug named Zuggy, so this was an exciting departure. Since my husband and I are advocates for adopting senior dogs, we have had our share of heartbreak when a beloved fur-family member passes away. To cope, our family has a tradition of telling our favorite stories about that dog at the dinner table. In doing this, I realized how much of our human legacy is lost within a single generation. I created Blessed to be Me to encourage people to capture their journeys.

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

It’s a fun and easy way to capture all the stories of your life and leave a treasured keepsake for your loved ones.

What genre do you focus on?

My passion is easy-reader rhymers. Poetry grabbed me at an early age and I hope to inspire another generation to be avid readers and writers. I love essays, memoirs, and short stories. It’s what God planted in my heart. I dabble in other genres to stretch my writing skills, but always return to what satisfies my soul.

What is the hardest part of being an author?

Surviving. By that, I mean, earning a regular income. There is a lot of time, energy, emotion, and money involved with writing. Then there is the extra-curricular social media and in-person work to market and promote a book. It’s an investment of love. I find it fun, but I am fortunate to have my consulting business that helps pay the bills. I’m thankful for that job so I can afford to be an author.

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

The best part is connecting with my readers. Meeting people at book-signings and receiving emails about a favorite chapter of Blessed to be Me fuels me to continue. The kids are precious too. I miss offering readings at the Colorado Children’s Hospitals, in Denver and Colorado Springs. Watching a child light up and laugh at a Zuggy story is such a joy. School visits (whether in person or virtual) always make my day.

What’s one unusual fact about you?

I never expected to have an audience on YouTube and yet, creating videos for our “Zuggy Pug” channel is such fun. To stay fashionable, the pug’s wardrobe has expanded beyond mine. My dogs regularly steal the show and rarely allow me to stay on script. I don’t do any editing. I don’t have time, and honestly, most of what I would cut are the silly pug antics that make the channel popular.

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I hope that I’m forever growing as a writer because there is always room for improvement. I take classes, attend networking meetings, and study other author’s styles to learn and appreciate different techniques. I’ve tried plotting my stories, but I still find myself flying (or writing) by the seat of my pants.

What is your favorite pastime?

There are so many. Writing and reading, of course. I enjoy scrapbooking; not the computer-generated style, but the old-school paper layered with more paper kind. Hiking, biking, and walking the dogs. Road trips with my husband on his motorcycle. I also enjoy connecting with friends and fans on different social media groups.

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

The collection of Zuggy the Rescue Pug books continues to grow. So far there are three available on Amazon: Four on the Floor, Bellyache Blues, and Six Tales

What are you working on now?

I am working on the release date for Zuggy the Rescue Pug – Adoption Day. It is Zuggy’s origin story, sharing the details of why he needed to be rescued, how he arrived at the shelter, and why the Vet put his adoption on hold. It was set to debut at the Humane Society’s annual Pawtoberfest. Last year, I split the proceeds of all Zuggy book sales to benefit the organization.

Due to Covid-19, Pawtoberfest has been moved to an on-line event. I am hopeful we will still be able to partner to best utilize Zuggy’s Adoption Day. I want to use it to raise awareness and funds to benefit shelters throughout Colorado, starting with the Humane Society.

Website:  https://jeanalfieri.com/

Link to book:

https://www.amazon.com/Blessed-Me-Celebrate-Stories-Your-ebook/dp/B0871KWBVP/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=Blessed+to+be+Me+by+Jean+Alfieri&qid=1599485369&sr=8-1

Social media links:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWQFyQLVnSoZi09XmiGuqeA

https://www.instagram.com/zuggythepug/

https://www.facebook.com/people/Jean-Alfieri/100012069644507

 

 

 

 

The Thousand Islands’ White House

Casa Blanca is one of the most well-preserved Gilded Age cottages along “Millionaire’s Row” in the Thousand Islands and the setting for my latest novella, Reagan’s Reward. Set on the downriver tip of Cherry Island, just off the mainland shore near Alexandria Bay, NY, this white house is one of the most photographed and touted mansions on the river.

I had two wonderful opportunities to stay in this historic home, and the owners are fabulous hosts. Magical was the word…especially when I got to sit and write right where the scene was taking place!

Emily and Albert Pullman built the original Melrose Lodge in 1880, and in 1897 Luis Marx bought it for $3,500. This American businessman owned tobacco and sugar plantations in Cuba. He and his wife, Eugenia, renovated and enlarged the small lodge into a three-story, twenty-five-room palatial mansion. The wrap-around veranda captures the main channel sights of passing ships and boats, spectacular sunsets, and views of other islands. Marx even installed a grand electric fountain on the front lawn that had been featured in the Chicago World’s Fair, and many enjoyed passing by the island to see it.

The work on the mansion was finished just in time for their daughter’s wedding. On June 30, 1899, Mary and Henry Bernheim were married on the island. Unfortunately, after only five years, Eugenia died at Casa Blanca in 1902. The Bernheims continued to summer on the island, with frequent visits from Luis Marx, until it was sold in 1926.

In 1962, the current owners saved the deteriorating Casa Blanca from destruction. They restored and renovated the mansion to its original grandeur, right down to the teaspoons and stained-glass transoms.

The house is a Gilded Age living museum with everything like it was nearly one hundred years ago. The reception hall/living room has pressed tin ceilings and side walls. Two player pianos and a pump organ, bentwood Thonet furniture from Vienna and Fostoria glass, a collection of blue and white Meissen china and the butler’s pull station, take visitors back to the early 1900s. The paneled staircase has a stained-glass window at the landing, with a scene depicting pheasants on the river in the morning light. On the second floor are four master suites with a total of thirteen bedrooms and screened sleeping porch. The third floor, originally the servants’ quarters, hosts several bedrooms, a bath, and a plethora of antique toys, quilts, and more. The home can sleep twenty-eight. Moreover, there are several outbuildings, including a Laundry House, Ice House, and the Boat House that has an entire apartment on the second floor and houses a fleet of boats. All of these features are a part of my story.

The family enjoys summering here and welcomes frequent guest, including me. It’s been opened to the public for fund-raising tours, teas, and weddings to benefit the Thousand Islands community. The mansion was even featured on Sweet Retreats. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bpl76DswmRM&t=60s

Watch the Reagan’s Reward book trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mc3W_tu55vE&t=4s

 

 

Meet author Becky Harling

A best-selling author, Becky Harling is a popular speaker at conferences, retreats, and other events. Authentic. Passionate. Funny and Biblical all describe Becky. She has been a guest on many radio and T.V. shows and holds a degree in Biblical Literature and is a Certified Leadership and Communications Coach. Her life experiences as a Pastor’s wife, Missionary, Women’s Ministries Director, survivor of breast cancer and childhood sexual abuse, bring depth and realism to her message.

 

Tell us about your newest book.

Psalms for the Anxious Heart is a 30-day devotional that helps the reader find comfort for their anxiety. Each day includes a verse or two from the Psalms, a short devotional targeting the felt need of anxiety/fear, a section called, Selah, that includes a reflective question, a truth for each day, suggested worship song and a closing prayer.

 

What inspired you to write this book?

I realized during the COVID-19 crisis anxiety and fear were at an all-time high. Moody Publishers asked if I had any ideas for a quick book that would bring comfort to people. Because I have wrestled with anxiety and know how comforting the Psalms were to me, I thought they would be a blessing to others.

 

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

A short devotional that will bring comfort when you’re wrestling with anxiety.

 

What genre do you focus on and why?

Non-fiction because the Lord has called me to be a teacher of the Word.

 

Why do you write?

I felt called to write about 20 years ago. I realized it was a great method to reach more people with truth from God’s Word.

 

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

It varies from book to book because I travel extensively speaking and also teaching with my husband both nationally and internationally. Over the last four years we’ve been in over 70 countries. That meant I had to learn to write everywhere and anywhere.

 

What is the hardest part of being an author?

Marketing because I love the message of Christ and want to get it out there but it feels like marketing is always changing.

 

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

I have a flexible schedule and can write in my jammies!

 

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

I love coffee and hiking with my husband.

 

How have you changed or grown as a writer?

I’m now able to write much more quickly than when I first started.

 

What is your favorite pastime?

Hanging out with family and grandkids.

 

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

Yes, Rewriting Your Emotional Script, Freedom From Performing, The 30 Day Praise Challenge, The 30 Day Praise Challenge for Parents, How to Listen so People Will Talk, Who Do You Say That I Am?, Listen Well, Lead Better, Psalms for the Anxious Heart, How to Listen so Your Kids Will Talk (Coming January 2021).

 

What are you working on now?

A Bible study called, The Extraordinary Power of Praise (Coming June 2021).

 

Website: www.beckyharling.com    www.harlingleadership.com

 

Link to book:  https://www.amazon.com/Psalms-Anxious-Heart-Devotional-Uncertain/dp/0802423388/ref=sr_1_1?crid=YE2I0GGX7OSQ&dchild=1&keywords=psalms+for+the+anxious+heart+becky+harling&qid=1598202601&sprefix=Psalms+for+the+%2Caps%2C194&sr=8-1

 

Social media links: https://www.facebook.com/becky.harling/

https://www.facebook.com/beckyharlingministries

Twitter: @beckyharling

Instagram: BeckyHarling

 

 

Happy Birthday Thousand Islands Brides!

Happy Birthday Thousand Islands Brides!

The Thousand Islands Brides novellas were birthed just three years ago, and book three is coming out next week. Each of these Christmas novellas features a woman who you met in the previous novels—The Fabric of Hope, Katelyn’s Choice, and Devyn’s Dilemma. She eventually finds love and hope in her journey around the Thousand Islands.

Check them out, and enjoy a warm and inspiring holiday read.

Christmas Charity—an Irish Brides novella, book 1

Susan Hawkins and Patrick O’Neill find that an arranged marriage is much harder than they think, especially when they emigrate from Wolfe Island, Canada, to Cape Vincent, New York, in 1864, just a week after they marry—with Patrick’s nine-year-old daughter, Lizzy, in tow. Can twenty-three-year-old Susan Hawkins learn to love her forty-nine-year-old husband and find charity for her angry stepdaughter? With Christmas coming, she hopes so.

Sara’s Surprisean Irish Brides novella, book 2

Katelyn’s best friend, Sara O’Neill, works as an assistant pastry chef at the magnificent Thousand Islands Crossmon Hotel where she meets precocious, seven-year-old Madison and her charming father and hotel manager, Sean Graham. But Jacque LaFleur, the pastry chef Sara works under, makes her dream job a nightmare. Sean has trouble keeping Madison out of mischief and his mind off Sara. Though he finds Sara captivating, he’s jealous of LaFleur and misreads Sara’s desire to learn from the pastry chef as love. Can Sean learn to trust her and can Sara trust him—and herself to be an instant mother?

Coming November 13th!
Reagan’s Reward—an Irish Brides novella, book 3

Reagan Kennedy assumes the position of governess to the Bernheim family’s twin nephews, and her life at Cherry Island’s Casa Blanca becomes frustratingly complicated. Service to a Jewish family and tending to eight-year-old mischievous boys brings trouble galore. Daniel Lovitz serves as the island’s caretaker and boatman. When he tries to help the alluring Reagan make sense of her new world, her insecurities mount as her confidence is shaken―especially when she crosses the faith divide and when Etta Damsky makes her life miserable. As trouble brews, Daniel sees another side of the woman he’s come to love.

If you’ve read the previous stories, I’d love to hear your thoughts on them. Leave me a message, and I’d love to connect!

 

Meet author Jodi Artzberger

Jodi Artzberger writes inspirational romantic suspense stories that are Gospel centered and intertwined with God’s love and plan of redemption. She has a passion for the Word and loves to study the Bible, especially with her kids. She’s also a homeschool mom and loves most minutes of it. She lives in beautiful Colorado with her wonderful husband, two awesome boys, and rescue dogs. In her spare time, you can find her playing with her latest kitchen gadget and exploring where God has graciously placed her in Colorado.

 

Tell us about your newest book.

Don’t Give Up on Me is a romantic suspense story about God’s redemption and a second chance at love. Amanda is left for dead. She’s found by the man who walked away eight years ago. As the threats continue, Amanda has to decide if she will accept help from the only man she’s ever loved and who left Otter Bay without explanation. Ryker’s going to have to use his skills as a trained Army Ranger if he’s going to keep the only woman he’s ever loved alive. It’s a Gospel-centered story about the power of God’s love and redemption.

 

What inspired you to write “Don’t Give Up on Me”?

A contest. I entered a contest with a publishing house. They didn’t take my title but asked me to submit again. They liked what I wrote but said it wasn’t a good fit for them. So, I finished the book myself and published it.

 

What genre do you focus on?

Christian Romantic Suspense. It’s my all-time favorite. I love strong heroes. And I love strong heroines. And I’m a sucker for a happily ever after! The world we live in is crazy enough so when I escape (or help someone else escape), I want to enjoy the ride and know the happy ending is coming.

 

Why do you write?

God. We all need the gospel. My prayer is that I convey that in my writing. Jesus does change lives.

 

What is the hardest part of being an author?

Never enough time! There seems to always be more I could do and want to do. I just need more time and a lot of it.

 

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

It’s fun, it’s flexible, and you’re always meeting other wonderful writers and readers!

 

What’s one unusual fact about you?

When I was in the eighth grade, I wrote a book for my best friend. She wanted to star in a popular horror movie of the time. So, I wrote it for her! She loved it!

 

How have you changed or grown as a writer.

This is one of the craziest most fun careers I have ever had! And that’s saying a lot since I had my own wedding business in Las Vegas a number of years ago. But I love it! This business has allowed me to use my creative side and my analytical side. It has taught me to be flexible and I’m always learning.

 

What is your favorite pastime?

Reading. But I homeschool and love that! I also enjoy studying with my sons and playing around in the kitchen – everything from my Instant Pot to canning!

 

Do you have other books?

I have a novelette available, for free, that can be found on my website. It’s a prequel to Don’t Give Up on Me.

 

What are you working on now?

I am working on the next book in my Otter Bay series and planning out a new series. I’m excited about both!

 

Website: www.JodiArtzberger.com

Link to book: www.JodiArtzberger.com

Social media links:

Facebook.com/JodiArtzberger

Instagram.com/JodiArtzberger