Sandra here posting from Anaheim, California where the RWA National Conference is being held.
Are there any Seeker Friends here? We met several at the FHL meeting Wednesday. What a joy. Check out this weekends WE for some fun photos and sightings.
Yesterday the Faith Hope and Love chapter of RWA met and announced the winners of the Inspirational Readers Choice Award (IRCA) contest. Check out their website for the list.
CONGRATULATIONS to the winners.
While they were still finalists, I asked them how it felt to be an IRCA finalist and most importantly what inspired them to write their novel. All of course were delighted to be finalists in a contest that reflects the market for their books. Please enjoy all of the wonderful responses from some terrific inspirational authors. (PS I featured these in the order I received their responses.)
Some of these authors are offering a copy of their award winning novel to a lucky winner here at Seekerville. Check out the WE for winners and thanks to these generous authors.
MAGGIE BRENDAN wrote about her entry Deeply Devoted : I starting thinking about what some of my favorite things were and then happen to glance at my dining room hutch where I have Blue Willow dishes. I thought about the story of the tragic lovers in the plate’s design and wondered what would happen if I had a mail-order bride from Holland arrive in America with a tragic past, bringing only her mother’s Blue Willow china and Bible and two sisters. In real life what is broken, cracked and even lost, can be ransomed and redeemed by God’s eternal love. In Deeply Devoted, I relate this to the Blue Willow china in that just as china must be fired to become a durable piece in order to have a delicate pattern, we too, are also tested by fire to refine our character that can result in becoming purified as God’s works in us to be in a more resilient follower of Christ. Maggie won third place in Long Historical.
|Eva Marie's Facebook|
EVA MARIE EVERSON says: When I wrote Chasing Sunsets, my purpose was to show the importance of the father's role in the lives of his children. However, what I received the most email on was that I addressed the issue of divorce within the church. I thought I was doing one thing, God knew I was doing something else ... because He knows the need of our readers. Being a finalist tells me more than just "I did a good job in writing." It also tells me I allowed God to work through me, even when I didn't know what He was doing. Which, by the way, is most of the time! First place in Long Contemporary.
CARLA STEWART shares: The origins of the book are in a short story set in the Great Depression. I couldn't get the characters out of my head, and I knew one of the children in particular had a story to tell. I explored that and discovered she became a famous jazz singer, who, in the twilight of her life, befriends a young woman in the throes of abuse. I liked the idea of a dual timeline and having the present day story mirror the past so Broken Wings evolved. At its heart, it's the story of unlikely friendships and God's providence in our lives. First Place Women's Fiction.
LOUISE GOUGE writes: I love this contest because the judges are the very people we write for. So when my book was chosen as a finalist, I considered it a special honor. This was my first Regency. I had just completed a three-book series that took place during the Revolutionary War, so my last hero and heroine would likely have children during the Regency. It was easy and fun to "spin-off" a story of the next generation, especially when I could have my previous hero act as a mentor to my next hero. Second Place Novella.
LINDA GOODNIGHT says: It's common for most of us to make regrettable mistakes in early adulthood, and unfortunately some errors in judgement are life altering. In A Place to Belong, I wanted to explore the ramifications of such a mistake - the guilt, the shame and the long term effects. I also wanted to share the hope and forgiveness found in our Heavenly Father no matter what we've done. If you enjoyed Jace's story, you might like my current release, a Love Inspired classic duo, A SEASON FOR GRACE/THE HEART OF GRACE. To whet your appetite, I'm giving away a copy of that award winning duo right here at Seekerville! Visit me on Facebook, Twitter @Lindagoodnight Third Place short contemp.
DOROTHY CLARK wrote: Two ideas came together to produce Frontier Father---the adopted children in my first two historicals, and my fascination with the settling of America. I thought it would be interesting and fun to write the stories of the four adult daughters, moving each of them farther along on the journey west via the different modes of transportation available at the time. Frontier Father is the story of the fourth daughter. It takes place on a mission in Oregon territory and thus ends the westward journey. Dorothy Clark second place.
Dorothy is donating a book to a lucky winner.
GAYLE ROPER states: I wrote Shadows in the Sand for all sorts of disconnected reasons. I wanted to return to Seaside. I wanted to tell Greg's story after he was a secondary character in all the previous Seaside books. I wanted to show how Christ redeems broken lives like his and Carrie's. I wanted to bring Clooney closer to the point of salvation. I wanted to write about the corruption in cults. And since my husband died in the middle of the writing, I got to share the pain of loss through the character of Greg. First Place in Suspense.
JODY HEDLUND answered: I'm honored and grateful to be an IRCA finalist but also realize there are numerous other historical romances that easily could have finaled in my place. The inspirational market is full of many, many talented authors and fantastic books that are equally deserving of contest finals. The Doctor's Lady is inspired by the real life story of Narcissa Whitman, the first American woman to cross the Continental Divide. She became an inspiration for all of the many women who would travel after her on what would become known as the Oregon Trail. It was my hope to bring this courageous woman to life and retell her heroic story. Jody is offering a copy of her book also. Second Place long Historical.
DEBORAH RANEY says, "I'm so honored to be a finalist. It's kind of a pinch-me feeling to realize I'm on the list with so many writers I look up to and admire. My husband put a newspaper clipping by my place at the breakfast table a few years ago––the story of nine firefighters killed in a tragic fire. we talked about how the tragedy would affect that community and the families who'd lost a loved one, I knew I wanted to explore a similar, fictional story in my next series. It was a fun series to write, but very sobering, too, knowing that so many deal with, in real life, the things my characters went through in the stories."
It was great at the FHL meeting to meet Linda Goodnight and watch her receive her award.
|Sandra and Linda Goodnight|
Nancy Farrier led the meeting and she was the coordinator for the IRCA award. Thank you Nancy for all the hard work.
Congratulations again to all the winners and thank you finalists for commenting on Seekerville.
Don't forget that some of these finalists offered copies of their books so check out the weekend edition for winners and send us your snail mail addresses.
Because Debby and I went to the beach yesterday we ordered the Jolly Roger to set up a lovely table of seafood salads. Shrimp, scallops, mahi mahi, salmon, etc. Enjoy the refreshing delights from the sea.
We also have some yummy pastries and breads from Paradise Bakery. Enjoy and let us know if you've read any of these award winning authors and what you thought of their books.
Or what books would you have picked for the award? And why?