Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Amish Witness Protection Continuity



By Debby Giusti

Love Inspired Suspense is starting 2019 with a bang…and an exciting new continuity that’s sure to please. The three stories feature heroes and heroines in the Witness Security Program who are placed in various Amish communities to keep them off the grid and away from the vile villains who have them in their cross hairs!


When my amazing editor, Emily Rodmell, asked if I wanted to take part in the Amish Witness Protection Continuity, I couldn’t say “YES!” fast enough. Plus, the opportunity meant working with talented authors Maggie K. Black and Dana R. Lynn. Both gals write fast-paced suspense that keeps me on the edge of my seat so I knew this continuity would be a hit with readers.  Maggie’s story, Amish Hideout is a January release. My story, Amish Safe House, follows in February, and Dana’s book, Amish Haven, completes the series in March.

Being part of a continuity comes with its own challenges so I thought you might enjoy learning a bit about the process and how it works.

Emily created the continuity “bible,” as it’s called, which provides a basic outline for each story and information about anything that must be revealed as the series progresses. U.S. Marshal Jonathan Mast is the hero in book one who comes up with the initial idea of hiding the heroes and heroines in various Amish communities. Jonathan also plays a role in the other stories, along with two additional U.S. Marshals, all of whom work together to create new identities for the WITSEC characters.


Here’s what Maggie K. Black said:

Writing Amish Hideout was a challenge because I’d never written an Amish book before. But my heroine, Celeste, had never visited an Amish community before—so it was something she and I had in common! 

Celeste is a computer programmer who risked everything to singlehandedly take down a criminal hacker who has been eluding the F.B.I. When he uses the power of the internet to send killers after her, the hero Jonathan will take her to the one place he knows technology can’t be used to hunt her down or hurt her—the Amish family he left behind when he became a cop.

In writing this book, I relied a lot on the wisdom and kindness of fellow authors. I listened to lectures on how to write about the Amish and also fired off questions to other writers when I was stuck or there was something I didn’t know. I also benefited from my excellent editor.

For me, Amish Hideout is a book about family, forgiveness and feeling lost. Jonathan has to reconcile with his family, overcome the damage his leaving did, and also figure out how to reconcile his faith and Amish roots with his calling to be a cop. Celeste too has to figure out where she belongs and what her future holds. It was deeply inspired by a family who came alongside me while I was going through a rough time and showed me acceptance, love and mercy.   



Debby here:

In Amish Safe House, a down-on-her-luck single-mom tries to hold her family together, but after her teenage son witnesses a gang shooting, Julia Bradford and her two children are forced into Witness Protection in hopes of eluding the street thugs who have them in their cross hairs. Three years earlier, Abraham King left law enforcement after his wife and daughter were killed and returned to his Amish roots. When his old friend, Jonathan Mast, asks Abraham to provide safe refuge for a family in danger, the reclusive former cop turned Amish farmer agrees, never suspecting that Julia and her children will upset not only his peaceful way of life but also the wall he’s built around his heart.

I had fun writing the two children into the story and fell in love with them almost immediately. Keeping the children safe while evil loomed upped the stakes and challenged me to find creative ways to outsmart the bad guys. The Amish lifestyle with its lack of electricity, cell phones, automobiles and weapons provided additional demands not found in most contemporary suspense novels.

Abraham and Julia come from opposite worlds and seem an unlikely match. Both carry guilt for mistakes they each made in the past that must be brought to light. Old wounds need to be healed with the salve of forgiveness and their faith in God reaffirmed before they can find their happily ever after.


Dana shared the following:

I am so happy to be on Seekerville again. I’m especially tickled to be here with Debby Giusti and Maggie K. Black, both of whom are authors I admire so much. This whole process was one more dream realized for me.


I have wanted to be part of a continuity ever since I started to read Love Inspired Suspense years ago. As a reader, I would wait for the next book in each series every month with anticipation. When my editor emailed me and asked me if I wanted to participate in a mini-series with Debby and Maggie, I was overjoyed. And a bit nervous. Writing a story which shares elements from other books that I didn’t write was a challenge.

It was also tremendous fun. I loved talking with the other authors as we brainstormed and tried to line up our stories. Connecting with friends on such a unique project was entertaining and also educational as we researched together.

I loved that while all our stories contained some similar characters, they were all very different stories. Mine is a reunion romance, which is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. I love the themes of forgiveness and second chances. I had such a blast with this project and would do it again in a heartbeat!


We hope you like the series and would love to hear your thoughts on continuities. Do you enjoy the connected stories? What about Amish reads? When you see a bonnet or buggy on the cover do you add the book to your shopping cart or search for another selection? If you read Amish stories, what draws you to the genre? Have you written an Amish story or is that something you might try in the future? We’d love to answer any questions you have about writing continuities and/or writing Amish suspense.

Leave a comment to be entered in a drawing for the entire Amish Witness Protection series. The winner will receive all three books: Amish Hideout, Amish Safe House and Amish Haven!

Happy reading! Happy writing!

Wishing you abundant blessings!
Debby Giusti


 AMISH HIDEOUT
By Maggie K. Black

She must survive to testify…
The first exciting Amish Witness Protection thriller!

With a price on his witness’s head, US Marshal Jonathan Mast can think of only one place to hide Celeste Alexander—in the Amish community he left behind. As a computer expert, leading a life off the grid isn’t easy for Celeste. But will staying in Jonathan’s childhood home save her…and convince them a future together is worth fighting for?

Order HERE!





AMISH SAFE HOUSE
By Debby Giusti

Hiding in Plain Sight
The second thrilling Amish Witness Protection novel

After Julia Bradford’s son witnesses a gang shooting, hiding in witness protection on Abraham King’s Amish farm is the only hope the Englischer and her children have. Even as danger closes in, Julia is drawn to the community’s peaceful ways—and the ex-cop turned Amish protector. But when their location is discovered, can Abraham protect her family…and possibly have a future by her side?

Pre-order HERE!




AMISH HAVEN
By Dana R. Lynn

A Refuge for His Family
An Amish Witness Protection story


When criminal lawyer Tyler Everson witnesses his boss’s murder, he becomes the killer’s next target—along with his estranged wife, Annabelle, and their daughter. Now they must enter witness protection in Amish country. But reuniting with his family isn’t easy when Annabelle doesn’t trust him. Will going into hiding keep them safe…and bring the family back together for good?

Pre-order HERE!


Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Writers in January be Like...


by Jill Lynn

In December, writers are trying to finish all the writing things and all of the Christmas things at the same time.

Writers be like…


And this…


And sometimes this…


But, things don’t always go as planned at the end of the year. All of the Christmas and New Year’s stuff takes up all of our brain space. So writing often looks a little more like this…


Or even this…

The good news is, it’s January now. January feels full of promise and butterflies and sunshine.


Okay, that's actually summer. But you know what I mean. Because suddenly, we have a fresh start. A whole new year. We start making lists of all of the things we’re going to accomplish.

We dream big, letting new ideas flow.


The words we couldn’t find at the end of the year suddenly arrive back in our heads and we start working like…


Until we get to a tough part of the book and remember that writing is always hard work.


But the good news is, we still have a lovely new year ahead of us, filled with possibilities.

So hang in there, writing friends, when the days are long and the word count is short. You can do this!

Today I’m feeling like this…


Because I’m celebrating the release of my new book, The Rancher’s Unexpected Baby! (This is the GIF that comes up when I type in my book title…haha!)




https://www.amazon.com/Ranchers-Unexpected-Baby-Colorado-Grooms-ebook/dp/B07F8RKK6T/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1546810254&sr=8-1&keywords=the+rancher%27s+unexpected+baby
I'm giving away a copy of The Rancher’s Unexpected Baby to one randomly chosen person who comments below. (Paperback for US and ebook for international.) 

After his marriage ended, Gage Frasier vowed he’d never remarry or have children—but now he’s guardian of an orphaned baby boy. Thankfully, his friend’s sweet sister, Emma Wilder, offers to nanny while Gage seeks a more suitable family for the child. But soon Gage finds himself bonding with his new son…and with Emma. Parenthood surprised Gage, but will love sneak up on him, too?
Order your copy here!

Thanks for stopping by to celebrate with me!



Jill Lynn is an author of inspirational romance for Love Inspired, and a recipient of the ACFW Genesis award. She has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Bethel University and lives near the beautiful Rocky Mountains with her husband and two children. Details for her latest (6 book) giveaway can be found at Jill-Lynn.com/news.
Social media links:

www.facebook.com/jilllynnauthor

www.instagram.com/jilllynnauthor


Monday, January 14, 2019

Journey to Churchill

By guest Laurie Wood



           People have asked me if Northern Deception is the “book of my heart” and it is in the sense that since I began writing for the CBA market, I’ve felt a calling to write books set in Canada. This was the hardest book I’ve ever written up till now. It’s also the first book I’ve written for the CBA market, and I’m sure that's why it was so hard to write.


            The idea for Northern Deception came in stages. I didn’t want to make my first hero the “standard” Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer–or “Mountie”–even if the red-serge uniform is a Canadian icon. I kept joking to my husband that when people think of Canadian men, they think of RCMP officers on horseback or lumberjacks in red flannel shirts!


             One weekend we took our kids to the local Zoo and their favorite part is the extensive polar bear exhibit. We have six rescued polar bears from Churchill, Manitoba which is 1000 kilometers north of Winnipeg. These bears were orphaned, or they came into a human/bear interaction and then didn’t stay away from town after being flown further up north by helicopter, so our Zoo brought them down. And as we were enjoying watching the bears, it hit me: what’s another famous Canadian icon? Our frozen Arctic with our polar bears! And my hero who owns a wilderness guiding tour company in Churchill, Manitoba stepped into my mind, full blown and ready to tell his story. 


            So, I had a hero who owned a wilderness touring company and a heroine who was a polar bear scientist - now the problem was what to do with them? Churchill is home to an international science center where scientists come from around the world, along with university and high school students, to study the arctic ecosystem, and do various research projects. It took a while for me to figure out what to do with this rich location because science is NOT my strong suit! Eventually with research I developed a suspense story based on what could go wrong with a pristine environment that’s already under stress from climate change.
             Churchill, Manitoba is just on the edge of the parallel where the sub-arctic turns into the arctic in Canada so I’m hoping people will enjoy learning about Canada. It sits on the same parallel as Juneau, Alaska and Inverness, Scotland, and yet we still have another 2,794 kilometres of partially inhabited Arctic north of it that reaches to the North Pole.


            For my love story, I did a reunion storyline because it’s one of my favorite romance tropes.I think people with some baggage deserve a second chance at working things out! I also wanted to cover a serious issue in a Christian book in a way that a non-Christian might pick it up and read it and say, “I didn’t think Christians thought that way”, or “I didn’t realize things like that happened to Christians”. And I was fortunate that Anaiah Press agreed with my take on the issue and let me run with it. 
            And the hero also has an adorable three-year-old toddler who has special needs. She’s based on my own daughter at that age. So, if you know of anyone who’s got family or friends with someone with special needs, you’ll love little Sophie. It was a joy to include a character with a disability.
            Weaving all the romance, suspense, back story, and faith threads together was challenging because my other novels were secular. They flowed out of me with ease, and yet none of them sold. I felt as though every word had to be ground out of granite with this book. And yet, I’m humbled by the positive response it’s gotten. The hard work and heartaches have paid off and I hope people will enjoy the suspense and love story and the takeaway of forgiveness for yourself and others. And I hope readers will gain an appreciation for my home country of Canada!
*****
Laurie will be giving away a PDF copy of her book today! In the comments, please let us know you'd like to be entered. Now let's celebrate Laurie's debut!


Reunions can be deadly.

After a savage attack in university, Kira Summers fled to the safety of northern Canada and her work as a polar bear scientist. But when her whistleblower brother dies in a mysterious car crash, she must return home to bury him and pack his belongings. Unaware she’s carrying explosive evidence someone’s willing to kill for, she has no choice but to rely on the one person she never thought she’d see again.

Lukas Tanner, a widowed single father of a special needs toddler, moved to Churchill five years ago. As the proud owner of Guiding Star Enterprises, a wilderness tour company, he and his daughter lead a simple life. But when Kira comes crashing back into his world, he realizes God has other plans. Now, Lukas and Kira must confront a merciless killer as their past and present collide in a deadly race—a race they must win if they have any hope of a future together.

About the Author:

Laurie Wood is a military wife who’s lived across Canada and visited six of its ten provinces. She and her husband have raised two wonderful children with Down Syndrome to adulthood, and their son and daughter are a wonderful blessing to their lives. Over the years, Laurie’s books have finaled in prestigious contests such as the Daphne du Maurier (twice), the TARA, the Jasmine, and the Genesis. Her family lives in central Canada with a menagerie of rescue dogs and cats. If the house were bigger, no doubt they’d have more.



Saturday, January 12, 2019

Weekend Edition


  



If you are not familiar with our giveaway rules, take a minute to read them here. It keeps us all happy! All winners should send their name, address, and phone number to claim prizes.  Note our new email address and please send your emails to Seekerville2@gmail.com







Monday: Ruthy was here rambling on about taking charge of your days and getting the job done, you know... the same thing she says all the time but with 50 novels and novellas published now, we're listening more! So that's our advice from this day: Write, write, write! 

Tuesday: Richard Mabry stopped by on Tuesday. We love Doc Mabry, and he shared with us how he's going to live more intentionally and focused and not be grumpy... and he offered a copy of his newest suspense "Emergency Case" and the winner of that is Pudy68!

Wednesday: Ruthy...again! Yes, our very own Ruth Logan Herne was back in the house on Wednesday with words of wisdom for any professional in any business... Finish the Job. This holds particularly true in writing because it's so easy to become distracted. Shiny object??? Email??? Someone messaged me??? Beware the shiny objects, stay focused and let your light shine through your efforts! Go you! Winner of a copy of "A Cowboy in Shepherd's Crossing" is Nicki Chapelway!

Friday: Mary Connealy entertained with stories of Gothic romance...her own!! The winner of an ecopy of Loving the Mysterious Texan is Vince.

                          



Monday:  Laurie Wood will be our guest! She'll be giving us a peek behind the scenes of her recent book, Northern Deception. Come celebrate the debut release with her! She'll be giving away a PDF copy.

Tuesday: Jill Lynn has a post that's guaranteed to make you giggle. She'll also be sharing some good news and celebrating with a giveaway.

Wednesday:  Debby Giusti invites Maggie Black and Dana Lynn to discuss their new  Amish Witness Protection Continuity from Love Inspired Suspense. Debby, Maggie and Dana worked together to create three exciting stories that will keep readers on the edge of their seats! Get a behind-the-scenes look at how continuities are created as well as the challenges the authors faced in writing this fast-paced series.
  
Friday: Winnie Griggs is at Disney World today, cheering on her marathon-running daughter, but she'll be here on Friday with another of her posts filled with writing tips.









Loving the Mysterious Texan

Garrison's Law enters the Gothic Romance Genre.

Click to Buy

 Amnesia, murder, treasure and ghosts. 

A woman wakes up next to a dead man with no idea how she got there, who he is.....who SHE is.
Grey Devereau drags a terrified woman out of his cousin's bed...his very dead cousin. It looks for all the world like she killed him. But then everyone who knows Victor wants to kill him eventually. Grey included.
Lanny Cole, the young woman hired to research the history of the Devereau family, can't remember a thing.
Grey steps in with an alibi and Lanny realizes that if Grey is her alibi, then she's his. She decides to trust him, but then she's suffered a head injury. So she's probably making one stupid decision after another.
And then someone else dies. And a hurricane cuts them all off from help. And then someone else dies....
And the rumors of ghosts and treasure can't be true. Sure Grey saw the ghost, in fact, he's pretty sure the ghost saved his life as a child. But he was upset at the time and he doesn't believe in ghosts.
Chills and thrills abound in an old island home built by a loathsome pirate. He's not a Garrison, but when he gets in trouble, he turns to his old friend Case Garrison for help.

Garrison's Law just got spooky.
The Ebook is up, the print book should appear when the ebook goes live! But is not available for preorder!

AND





Ruthy has a couple of things to share!!!!

FIRST: BOTH WISHING BRIDGE STORIES ARE ON SALE RIGHT NOW FOR $1.99 KINDLE EDITION!!!!! CLICK RIGHT HERE TO GO GRAB THESE TWO BESTSELLERS!!!!! 



AND SAVE THE DATE IF YOU CAN! The nice folks at Harlequin and Love Inspired Books are daring to let Ruthy speak live on facebook on January 28th... at 1:00. Like the meme says below. What were they thinking???? Gadzooks, we know it's not safe to let Ruthy have a microphone, ever, but clearly THEY DON'T KNOW THAT....  :) Join me there, let's talk faith, hope, love, romance, smokin' hot heroes and the women they have to work to impress!




AMISH SAFE HOUSE
By Debby Giusti
Hiding in Plain Sight
The second thrilling Amish Witness Protection novel

After Julia Bradford’s son witnesses a gang shooting, hiding in witness protection on Abraham King’s Amish farm is the only hope the Englischerand her children have. Even as danger closes in, Julia is drawn to the community’s peaceful ways—and the ex-cop turned Amish protector. But when their location is discovered, can Abraham protect her family…and possibly have a future by her side?
 Pre-order HERE!




Rest for Success & Why Busy is Seriously Overrated by Kristen Lamb


Did God Really Ask You to Write? (podcast with transcript) at Write From the Deep by Karen Ball and Erin Taylor Young.

Writers Beware of the Legal Pitfalls - Defamation, Privacy and Publicity by Karen Van Den Heuvel at Thyme For Writers

Want Authorly Superpowers? Build A Street Team! by Angela Ackerman at Writers In The Storm

4 Things You Should Know Before You Quit Writing Your Novel by Jerry B Jenkins at Helping Writers Become Authors

A Nest of Words: What Kind of Writer-Bird Are You? by Gayle Brandeis at Writer's Digest

The Different Types of Editing Explained by Jim Dempsey at Writer UnBoxed



Friday, January 11, 2019

Hello from Insanity Central!



Mary Connealy checking in from the mad center of my universe
I've got a sweet 90-year-old mama who's ailing.

A new granddaughter who is just precious--but seems to think crying and eating are all there is to life! C'mon kid, Grandma's old and tired--you're six weeks old, time to start playing with us--and sleeping--and listening to sweet reason when Grandma begs you to settle down!

Add in Christmas, New Years, a book to write, a book to revise and a book to release...and...well...I am full of excuses for why I am scrambling madly through life these days.

The book to release is what I'm talking about today.

I wrote a gothic romance! Yikes.

This is the most fun I've ever had writing a book...and I've had many, many great times writing, so that's saying something.

Click to Buy
But I wrote this book YEARS AGO called The Devil's Nest.
I would sit in my computer room just off the living room and write and LAUGH OUT LOUD. I mean I was CACKLING!
And the children, would come and look in the computer room with such weird expressions, like they're thinking, "Just checking to see if you need us to get a net, Mom."

The title has been changed to Loving the Mysterious Texas (Garrison's Law book #5).
Think.........Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier meets And Then There Were None by Agatha Christy
Now how could that not be fun???
But the spooky old pirate's lair is called The Devil's' Nest.
Click to Buy
Enter the sweet, innocent maiden hired to gather and make order out of the old family papers that fill the attic....for historical reasons, she's told. But the truth is, an evil family KNOWS the pirate who built the monstrosity hid his treasure somewhere in this gothic mansion.
The search is over 200 years old ever since the wife he betrayed and battered, cast herself off the roof of the house, taking her secret to the grave.

As I wrote--back then--I would think, I have to make her go into the attic while she KNOWS a murder roams the spooky old house.
Add to that, I couldn't bear to have her be an idiot.
Why would she do that? Why would she go up there alone?
Only an idiot would go up there alone? If she goes up there alone she deserves to die just so she doesn't have children and weaken the herd!
Did I mention the hero was called away from the house?
Did I mention the hero might be the killer?
How about...the electricity is off? I don't think the idiot even had a candle!
Click to Buy
No reason to even deal, at this point, with her amnesia and waking up next to a dead guy. A dead guy who everyone thinks SHE KILLED. She can't remember but she doesn't think she killed him. Except the hero assures her most people want to kill Victor so she might have.
There might be a ghost.
Here's an interesting fact about amnesia in a character.
You don't realize it but, as someone who is a big believer in weaving in backstory a bit at a time, a person with amnesia...……...has no backstory in her own head.
Other people can tell her about herself.
But she can never have the constant small thoughts like, When the lightning struck it was terrifying, she'd been afraid of storms since the night her parents died.
Click to Buy
You can't do that.
Because she DOESN'T REMEMBER HER PARENTS.
She can't say, "I'm doing this because I've loved history all my life."
She can't think, "I took this job because I was desperate for the money because--"
Anyway, I found it so frustrating that I finally just had her get her memory back waaaay ahead of schedule just so I could STOP STUMBLING OVER THE STUPID AMNESIA!
If you want to write an amnesia story (and who doesn't) be warned. But also, if you do it, HAVE FUN!

Let's talk FUN.
What's the most fun you've ever had writing a book.
What made you laugh, what sent chills up and down your spine.
Do you make yourself cry? That can be fun!
Or heartbreaking...tricky.

Tell me about the most fun you've ever had writing a book and every comment gets your name in a drawing for an ebook copy of Loving the Mysterious Texan

Loving the Mysterious Texas

The ebook is up and will release in a week. The paperback will be there, too, but no pre-order available on ebooks. Weird!
Garrison's Law goes gothic.

Amnesia, murder, treasure and ghosts.
A woman wakes up next to a dead man with no idea how she got there, who he is.....who SHE is.
Grey Devereau drags a terrified woman out of his cousin's bed...his very dead cousin. It looks for all the world like she killed him. But then everyone who knows Victor wants to kill him eventually. Grey included.
Lanny Cole, the young woman hired to research the history of the Devereau family, can't remember a thing.
Grey steps in with an alibi and Lanny realizes that if Grey is her alibi, then she's his. She decides to trust him, but then she's suffered a head injury. So she's probably making one stupid decision after another.
And then someone else dies. And a hurricane cuts them all off from help. And then someone else dies....
And the rumors of ghosts and treasure can't be true. Sure Grey saw the ghost, in fact, he's pretty sure the ghost saved his life as a child. But he was upset at the time and he doesn't believe in ghosts.
Chills and thrills abound in an old island home built by a loathsome pirate. He's not a Garrison, but when he gets in trouble, he turns to his old friend Case Garrison for help.
Garrison's Law just got spooky.

And just to be thorough, let me include a mention of my MARCH release, book #3 of the High Sierra Sweethearts series

The Unexpected Champion


The City Man and the Wild West Woman take turns saving each other's lives in the high stakes conclusion to the High Sierra Sweethearts Series.
City dweller John McCall never expected to be out in the High Sierras of 1868 on a wild-goose chase to find the Chiltons' supposedly lost grandson. But now that he's out here, things have gotten complicated, mostly due to wildcat Penny Scott. She's not like any woman he's ever met--comfortable in the woods, with a horse, and with a gun.

When Penny and John are taken against their will by a shadowy figure looking for evidence they don't have, both realize they've stumbled into something dangerous and complicated. With their friends and family desperately searching for them, Penny and John must make a daring escape.

When they emerge back into the real world, they are confronted with a kidnapper who just won't stop. They must bring a powerful, ruthless man to justice, even as this city man and country woman fight a very inconvenient attraction to each other.

http://www.maryconnealy.com