Friday, November 16, 2018

Blog Tour: Yesterday's Christmas


I have the privilege of joining a new writer friend's blog tour! I am looking forward to reading at least one of her books over this Christmas! A.M. Heath invites you to spend Christmas with the Tanners in a dual-timeline novel loosely inspired by Beauty and the Beast. You’re sure to fall in love again and again. To see the other posts in the tour, check out this link: And make sure you check out the author interview at the end of the blog post!

About the Book

During a snowstorm, Betty Tanner finds herself stuck with her estranged husband. Spending Christmas with Glenn wasn’t what she had in mind, and her thoughts reluctantly travel back three decades to their first Christmas together, when another snowstorm caused her to wreck her car outside the Tanner home …

1954: Stranded with the Tanners over Christmas, Betty is forced into the company of Glenn, who has spurned her for years. But as the snow falls outside, the walls between Betty and Glenn begin to melt, revealing a side of him she never knew existed. A side she longs to know better.

Pride and bitterness can make a beast out of anyone. And the hardships they face in their relationship are of their own making. But can following Christ’s ways lead Betty and Glenn to the reconciliation they long for?

About the Author

Besides being an Indie Author, I’m a wife, mother of four, children’s Sunday School teacher, sweet tea drinker, history fanatic, romantic, bubbly, lover of broccoli, and cake decorator who has a soft spot for Christmas trees, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.
What I’m not is a laundress (or at least not one who keeps up very well), a duster, tall, or patient in a doctor’s office. 

You can visit me online on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, and my blog. *Note: I’m most active on Facebook and my blog.

Whether you’re on social media or not, you can ensure that you never miss one of my sales, giveaways, or new releases by signing up for my newsletter. I’ll send you a direct link to your email anytime something big happens.


She also has a Facebook party coming up!

Giveaway Link:

Author Interview

1. What is your writing process? Do you outline before you start?
 Most of the ideas that I craft for a novel go into a file to be written later. So I collect as much information as I can before filing it away. Sometimes even snippets of scenes or dialogue! I’m not a heavy plotter by any means. I tend to write from my gut or by the seat of my pants. But from the early stages of story conception, I have a strong understanding of where the story is going.
I don’t formally outline but I might stop and outline if I feel stuck or if I need to clear my head. Otherwise, I begin the writing process knowing my character’s problem, clincher moment, ending, and from there I’m able to decide on the proper place to begin. Because the character’s ending and clincher scenes are so vivid early on, I usually write those scenes before I reach the quarter mark in the first draft.

2. How do you develop your characters? Do you use images found online, a Pinterest board, character sketches, or develop them as you write?
 As I’m crafting the story, I tend to visualize a scene or two, usually the clincher scene. I think there’s something about the highly emotional moment that really makes the character come to life for me. Lol As embarrassing as it might be to admit out loud, I play act with my characters. I spend time in their shoes, acting out any scene that comes to life in my mind. (I also do this from time to time during the writing process.) And it’s in those moments that I’m able to see more of their personality. I also might purposely consider the type of personality needed for the role. But the finer points of character development happens while I’m writing. But if I find myself unable to connect with them, I interview or journal as the character to better get inside their head.
I like to create a Pinterest board for the story. It helps me connect with the character when I can see their face. And pulling together pictures of their world helps inspire me as I write. Something else I really like to do is to create their wardrobe or bedroom to better pick up details of their personality. I work within their era and choose everyday clothes and a couple fancier dresses. Knowing what they’d choose in a store tells me plenty about their personality. For some of my characters, I have designed a wedding for them. I have a cast of teens in an upcoming novel and had picked out their prom dresses. In fact, it was while I was working with them that I started to do this. In the early stages, I felt like the four girls were too similar. So I had to spend time getting to know them as individuals and find those unique personalities and their style helped me to do that. One was loud and bold in her chooses and it showed how confident she was. Another went toward vintage styles and it showed her old heart and love of period dramas. Another went for neutral colors and classic pieces because she preferred to fade away and was shy. And another gravitated toward blues and greens and was a natural peacemaker. After the novel is published, these wardrobe boards become great bonus material to share with the readers.

3. What is your best advice for getting rid of writer’s block?
 Prayer is an obvious answer but one that I think is often overlooked. Think about it. If the Lord has crafted you with the ability to write, don’t you think He cares whether or not you reach the finish line? He’s invested in the project too, assuming that you’re working inside the will of God.
While I’m praying for guidance and wisdom, I may be doing some of these things as well:
a) Taking a break. I feel like sometimes when I’m hitting a wall, it’s God’s way of calling me either to rest or to spend more quality time with Him.
b) Talk out loud. It’s almost as old-fashioned as prayer, but talking about the problem either to yourself or a friend has a way of clearing the mind and making the answer visible.
c) Examine the problem. I like to trace the roots back if I can. What’s causing the block? Am I stressed at home? Have I heaped too much writing work on my shoulders at once? Have I lost connection with my character? Do I understand the direction of my story? Am I being lazy? Has it been too long since I’ve had a writing break? Once I have an idea of what’s causing the problem, I address the root problem and it clears up the block.

4. If you could share one piece of advice that you wish someone else had told you to an aspiring writer, what would it be?
 There are two words of advice and it depends on which side of the fence you’re on. Either loosen up or tighten up.

I was so concerned about breaking a sacred writing rule that I was afraid to become the writer God wanted me to be. There were two quotes that came across my desk:
“You have permission.”
“There are 3 rules to writing, but no one knows what they are.”
The Lord used both of these to help me write as an individual without fear of going against the trend.

But I’m seeing so many rush through the writing process and send out work that hasn’t been through the refining fire yet. I was even guilty of publishing something that I thought was ready but had later revised and re-released. So for those who feel no restraint, I’d recommend putting some restraint in your life. Don’t rush the process and expect to get your story out by such and such time. Instead, focus on getting your early drafts into as many hands as possible and don’t publish unless it’s gone through the hands of a professional author. They will pick up more than your nanny will and you’ll be grateful you took your time in the end. Even after a number of publications, I never publish without at least two authors reading my work. Always remember: the excitement of a release is short-lived but bad reviews live on forever.

5. What is your favorite genre?
 Christian Historical Romance

Fun Questions: 

Pizza or Pasta?

Favorite movie?
 So many, many favorites! As a history lover, I adore the period dramas, so Austen’s movies and North and South are high on that list. But I also adore clean romantic comedies and You’ve Got Mail is one of my top favorites.

Favorite Bible Verse?
 Then I sent to him, saying, “No such things as you say have been done, for you are inventing them out of your own mind.” For they all wanted to frighten us, thinking, “Their hands will drop from the work, and it will not be done.” But now, O God, strengthen my hands. ~Nehemiah 6:8,9

The Lord has used those lines multiple times in my life. The first half always convicts me about worrying about things that aren’t even happening. We can allow our imaginations to make us fearful and sidetrack us from the Lord and His will.
There are times when the enemy is strong and my only prayer is that of Nehemiah, “Lord, strengthen my hands.” I can’t work beyond His filling so I better be asking for it!

Coffee, tea, or water?
 I like hot tea but I’m a purebred Southerner and sweet tea is often my choice. I equally love coffee.

Favorite movie adaption?
 Ahh! Who can pick a favorite? As an author and avid reader, I’m supposed to say that there is no adaption equal to a book. But I don’t feel this way. Sure, there are differences. But the history lover in me is just thrilled to get to experience the historic settings and favorite stories. But since it’s Christmas time, I’m gonna say The Christmas Carol. And I don’t think I’ve seen one I didn’t appreciate, including Mickey’s version.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for featuring Yesterday's Christmas! And I enjoyed the interview!
    I hope you find time to enjoy Christmas with the Tanners. :)


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