Monday, August 29, 2016

Hidden Gems: Regina Doman

Time for some fairy tales, my friends! Today you're going to discover some amazing, contemporary fairy tale retelling novels by the fabulous author, Regina Doman! ^_^ You don't want to miss out on these!

Enter the giveaway at the end of this post!

Reasons I Think This Author Is One You Need To Discover:

  • Books are Fairy Tale Retellings in a Contemporary Setting, making them somehow both Relatable and Magical! ^_^
  • Characters are so Awesome and Lovable! They're just Modern-day Knights and Princesses!
  • Suspense and Action! (caution: there little bits of violence/gruesomeness)
  • Thoughtful Themes and Lessons
  • Interesting and Breath-takingly Sweet Romances


Introducing ... Regina Doman

REGINA DOMAN is a Catholic wife, mother, author and editor. Currently she runs her own company, Chesterton Press, which publishes and distributes quality Catholic fiction. When she worked as the editor of Sophia Institute Press' fiction line, she launched the popular John Paul 2 High series for teens, and Rachel's Contrition became a #1 Best Seller in Amazon's Women's Fiction category, and winner of the 2011 Catholic Arts and Letters Award for best adult fiction. As an author, she has written the Fairy Tale Novels, a series of books for teens and adults that places fairy tales in modern settings with Christian themes interwoven. The fifth book in that series, Alex O'Donnell and the 40 CyberThieves, won the 2011 Catholic Arts and Letters Award for best young adult fiction. In 2013, she published her longest and most challenging fairy tale novel yet, Rapunzel Let Down. Her only picture book Angel in the Waters has sold over 120,000 copies. In 2010 she was presented with the "In Defense of Sanity" award from the American Chesterton Society. Regina and her husband Andrew live in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley on a farmstead with their children. To the question, “How do you manage to get it all done?” Regina responds, “What makes you think I get it all done?”



Once upon a time ... 

In New York City, a young, secretive street tough who calls himself, Bear, lands on the doorstep of two teenaged sisters. On the one hand Rose is delighted with his surprising knowledge of literature, poetry, and music; on the other hand Blanche is afraid of his apparent connections to drugs, murder, and a hidden treasure. Even as Blanche learns to trust him, her fears that Bear's friendship threatens their family prove terrifyingly true.

Originally published in hardcover in 1997 as Snow White and Rose Red: A Modern Fairy Tale, Bethlehem Books released The Shadow of the Bear: Snow White and Rose Red Retold in paperback in 2002.

A novel for teens based on the popular fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm

Way after midnight in New York City, a girl runs down the streets, looking for someplace to hide ... is there anywhere she can go to escape? Is there anyone who can help her ... now?

This dark but fulfilling sequel to The Shadow of the Bear is based on a familiar fairy tale "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves" from the Brothers Grimm. Circumstances have placed Blanche Brier entirely on her own this summer in New York City while Bear is wandering through Europe and her family is on vacation. Blanche is fast becoming the focus of a terrifying play of evil forces. Even the refuge she takes among some lively Franciscan friars does not protect her from dangerous attacks. Rather, they continue to escalate as she struggles to persuade a sick and aged man from killing himself. Discovering Blanche's disappearence, Bear and Fish cut short their European vacation and join up with Rose to begin scouring New York City looking for Blanche. But the same malevolence that is lurking over Blanche seems to be hunting them as well and drawing them all togther into a death trap until it seems that all hope is gone. Yet during this time, the desires of Blanche's heart are being clarified - and so are Bear's.

A black night. Tested faith. Honest love.

A novel for teens and adults based on a fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm

"I love him more than poetry ... I love him more than song."

Ever since he rescued her from Certain Death, Rose Brier has had a crush on Ben Denniston, otherwise known as Fish. But Fish, struggling with problems of his own, thinks that Rose should go looking elsewhere for a knight in shining armor. Trying to forget him, Rose goes to college, takes up with a sword-wielding band of brothers, and starts an investigation into her family's past that proves increasingly mysterious. Then a tragic accident occurs, and Fish, assisted by Rose's new friends, finds himself drawn into a search through a tangle of revenge and corruption that might be threatening Rose's very life. The climax is a crucible of fear, fight, and fire that Fish must pass through to reach Rose and conquer his dragons.

Why live in the light, when the night seems so irresistible?

Rachel Durham, 18, is tired of her father and stepmother’s staid morality and pristine prosperity. The summer of her senior year, she’s more than ready for a walk on the wild side, and the door opens - literally - when she and her eleven sisters and stepsisters discover a secret passageway out of their historic home on the Chesapeake Bay. At night, boys in boats and a forbidden island beckon from the shore, and Rachel and her sisters jump aboard. The night becomes Rachel’s true world, and her daytime life becomes a disposable mask. Her puzzled father tries to tow his daughters back into line by enlisting the help of Paul, a med student with a seasonal job juggling at the town festival. But Paul realizes that simply blocking the girls from their midnight parties isn’t going to solve the family’s problems. So he embarks on a risky balancing act to gain the girls’ trust – and to make Rachel see that splitting her life between night and light is a dangerous dance.

When his computer hacker dad discovers a secret website, Alex O'Donnell and his girlfriend Kateri become embroiled in a mystery that leads to sudden wealth and murder. A modern retelling of the classic Arabian Nights tale "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves."

(Caution: This final book is classified as ADULT, as opposed to the YA categorization of the rest of the series. It contains mature themes and elements that aren't appropriate for audiences under 18. 
Due to this, I have not read this book as of now, and thus can't give any recommendations.)

Hermes McCaffrey is sick and tired of sharing his life with his father’s political career and his overbearing older brothers. So during his family’s vacation in New England, when he meets Raphaela, a lovely and brilliant girl dreaming in a hidden tower, is it surprising that he wants her all to himself? But visiting Raphaela is dangerous, and not just because of her mother’s paranoia about strangers or her estate’s sinister caretaker. When Hermes decides to go too far, the results are devastating for Raphaela ... and for Hermes as well.

What happens when falling in love means falling into deep sin? Can sex destroy love? And when you do fall from grace, is there any way back?


Author Interview

What genre(s) do you write?

Regina: Young adult fiction, fairy tale retellings, Catholic fiction, romantic comedy, comic books, audio dramas, screenplays, picture books, adult novels. Currently attempting fantasy.  I have edited in most of these genres as well, including mystery and women's fiction and grade school fiction. Lots of stuff I've done can be found at

What’s one of the best things about being an author?

Regina: Doing what I was made to do. :)

What made you decide to start writing?

Regina: I'm not sure how it started. What makes me continue is the hope to give hope to others, to make sense out of life and pass it on. It's how I live.

Of all your books, do you have a favorite cover?

Regina: I have been fortunate enough to be able to create most of my own covers. Some covers have gone well: others not as well. BLACK AS NIGHT was a hard cover to make, and we did two versions of it. WAKING ROSE needed several photo shoots and I'm still not happy with it. By stark contrast, SHADOW OF THE BEAR was the easiest cover ever. My friend Alex Fedoryka (of Scythian) provided his own photo and I found the perfect picture of a church spire to go with it. The back cover was inspired by a street scene and I took a picture of a forest road in order to match it. All in all, the easiest book cover I ever made. And I love the title font, although it's a bit tough to read: Alleghieri by The Scriptorium.  

Are there any fellow authors who inspire you?

Regina: Another wonderful gift to my life is Ben Hatke and his family who live down the street from us and who are great folks to bounce stuff off of. Then there's Andrew O'Neill and Ryan Corrigan and my brother John Doman who all help write John Paul 2 High. And I enjoy texting with fellow authors Rebecca Bratten Weiss and Michelle Buckman. I could go on and on with the names: I'm grateful to have so many creative people in my life.

What do you do for fun?

ReginaMake toys for my children. Not that I've done all of the things on this Pinterest board but it's an idea of the things l like making. :)

What was your hardest book to write, and why?

Regina: The current one, if I ever finish it, will go down as the hardest one ever to write. When I figure out why it's so hard, I will probably finish writing it. ;)

What writing project are you working on right now?

Regina: A Biblical fantasy trilogy and a projected five-volume follow-up. It'll be awesome, if I ever finish it.

What does your writing process look like?

Regina: Snatched and stolen from moments when I should be doing something else. Particularly sleeping. So it can look very odd, and it changes.

Where do you usually write?

Regina: On a computer. I can't do longhand, except for taking notes.

When do you usually write?

Regina: Currently at 4 AM till 7 AM. But it's summer and I've got a wee bit more time. I resume teaching English in the fall.

Thanks for the opportunity!!

You're welcome, Regina! Thanks so much for being on my blog! I enjoyed getting to know you a bit, and I hope this post will help more readers discover your books! ^_^

Connect Further With Regina Doman:

Additional Blog Stops:

Thurs. ~ Claire Banschbach @ The Overactive Imagination: Book Review for the first five novels in A FAIRY TALE RETOLD series


Enter to win an e-book copy of one of Regina Doman's books! Reader's choice!

I (Regina Doman) will give a free eBook to the person who asks me the most interesting question (in the comments below), particularly one I haven't been asked before. The question needs to be topically-appropriate (ie: not something random like "Have you ever lassoed a walrus?" but something to do with writing and books), in good taste, and not-privacy-invading. ;) ~

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Covers of Novels ...

By now you should be familiar with the routine ... a blog post full of book covers every now and again! Hope you enjoy this fun, pretty post amidst my Hidden Gems: Authors You Need to Discover series! ^_^

Shine Like the Dawn by Carrie Turansky

When English inventor and industrialist William Harcourt dies, his son Nathaniel inherits Morningside Manor, with its elaborate gardens, grounds, and inventions. Nate also gains partial control of his father's company, Clifton Engineering. His father's dying request to repay an old debt reunites Nate with Margaret Lounsbury, a childhood friend he deeply admired.

Four years earlier, Maggie lost much of her family when their boat sank during an outing. Maggie wonders if the tragedy was truly an accident, and if the Harcourts hold any responsibility. Can Maggie let go of the resentment in her heart that keeps her from forgiving Nate and reconciling with God?"

The Rose and the Balloon: A Beauty and the Beast Story {Once Upon a Twist Tales #1} by Kirsten Fichter

In a kingdom where fauna and flora are held in higher esteem than breakfast, Dmitri is a prince who yearns for change and plans it in a single daring act that will alter his life forever. However, when his demented mother accidentally causes the destruction of a prized garden of roses, Dmitri is horrified when she proposes his hand in marriage to make up for it. Not only will a wife hamper his glorious plans, he doesn't even want one.

Janelle has spent her whole life on her father's rose farm, tending the roses and staying simple. But she really yearns for something greater than the flower beds. But now there's a wrench thrown in the works – the crazy Queen Maeva wants her to marry the prince, and all for ruining her father's beloved roses.

This is Beauty and the Beast with a twist like you've never seen it before.

Lady Dragon, Tela Du {Rizkaland Legends #2} by Kendra E. Ardnek

Two girls with one face
Two girls with twisted fate
One in purple, one in red
One shall speak the other’s death
Who shall win their final war?
Lady Dragon or Tela Du?

Amber, the Lady Dragon, has been promised a fifty-year reign over Rizkaland and nothing can stop her from claiming it. But when you've lived six thousand years, fifty is such a pitiful number. Only one person can keep her from making this reign permanent - the Tela Du, a girl who shall share Amber's face.

The last thing Petra wants is a magical world interrupting her plans for a normal life, let alone an ultimate battle against the Lady Dragon with only one prophesied survivor. She has her childhood best friend, Reuben, at her side, but she's not sure if he's more of a help or a hindrance right now. Though she'd much prefer to just return home and forget about this whole crazy affair, things change when she discovers that the world has surprising connections to her own family - including her sister who disappeared without a trace two years before. Still, Rizkaland can't possibly expect her to risk her very life, can it?

Forest Child {Vikings of the New World Saga #2} by Heather Day Gilbert

Viking warrior. Dauntless leader. Protective mother.

Determined to rise above her rank as the illegitimate "forest child" of Eirik the Red, Freydis launches a second voyage to Vinland to solidify her power and to demand the respect she deserves. She will return home with enough plunder to force her brother, Leif, to sell her the family farm in Greenland.

But nothing can prepare her for the horrors she must confront in Vinland ... and nothing can stand in her way when her family is threatened.

In her race to outrun the truths that might destroy her, Freydis ultimately collides with the only enemy she cannot silence—her own heart. 

Historically based on the Icelandic Sagas, Forest Child brings the memorable, conflicted persona of Freydis Eiriksdottir to life. This immersive tale is Book Two in the bestselling Vikings of the New World Saga.

The One True Love of Alice-Ann by Eva Marie Everson

Living in rural Georgia in 1941, sixteen-year-old Alice-Ann has her heart set on her brother's friend Mack; despite their five-year age gap, Alice-Ann knows she can make Mack see her for the woman she'll become. But when they receive news of the attack on Pearl Harbor and Mack decides to enlist, Alice-Ann realizes she must declare her love before he leaves.Though promising to write, Mack leaves without confirmation that her love is returned. But Alice-Ann is determined to wear the wedding dress her maiden aunt never had a chance to wear - having lost her fiance in the Great War. As their correspondence continues over the next three years, Mack and Alice-Ann are drawn closer together. But then Mack's letters cease altogether, leaving Alice-Ann to fear history repeating itself.Dreading the war will leave her with a beautiful dress and no happily ever after, Alice-Ann fills her days with work and caring for her best friend's war-torn brother, Carlton. As time passes and their friendship develops into something more, Alice-Ann wonders if she'll ever be prepared to say good-bye to her one true love and embrace the future God has in store with a newfound love. Or will a sudden call from overseas change everything?

The Elusive Miss Ellison {Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace #1} by Carolyn Miller

Expected Publication: February 2017

The Returning {Seer #3} by Rachelle Dekker

Twenty years have passed since Carrington and Remko Brant's baby, Elise, was kidnapped and they were forced to leave her captive in the Authority City. Though they fled with the Seers far from Authority reach, they've never given up hope of rescuing their daughter from the man who betrayed them. Now Authority President, he's ushered the city into a new era of "peace" - one where the Scientist Roth Reynard's Genesis Serum has eradicated all memory of emotion or rebellion. But the mysterious Aaron and his Seers are once again on the move, threatening the illusion the Authority has worked so hard to build. As the Seers send seven chosen warriors to rescue Elise and bring restoration to the Authority City, the lines are drawn for a final battle between light and darkness. The key to ultimate victory may rest within the strangely powerful girl who has felt forgotten but was never abandoned - a truth she'll need to wage war against the powerful forces of evil.

Violet's Daybreak {Regency Silhouettes #2} by Sarah Baughman

Lord Reymes, Earl of Bainscroft, has been driven by duty his entire life. Even in his dealings with his unscrupulous brother, he feels honor-bound to right the other man’s wrongs. When a young woman is compromised indirectly by his brother’s appalling actions, Reymes marries the girl to salvage her reputation.

Violet Windham’s wishes have ever been disregarded. With parents who favored her siblings, she has never had someone to care for her, to listen and to encourage her to blossom.

Now swept into marriage with a stranger, she must learn to forge a place for herself in his household, to befriend the people of the new community in which she finds herself, and to establish herself as Lady Reymes, Countess of Bainscroft.

Will her faith in the Lord give her strength to accomplish all that is set before her? Or will her timidity cause her to retreat even further within herself, missing the great blessings God has in store for both her and her new husband?

And, in case you missed this gorgeousness (which is releasing in less than 50 days!!!!! P.S. And you can pre-order!!!) ...

A Time to Rise {Out of Time #3} by Nadine Brandes

What more can you sacrifice than your life?

Parvin Blackwater is dead.

At least … that’s what the Council—and the world—thinks. But her sacrifice tore down part of the Wall long enough to stir up hope and rebellion in the people. Now she will rise again. Strong, free, and fearless.

Parvin and Solomon must uncover the mysterious clues that Jude left behind in order to destroy the projected Wall once and for all. Meanwhile, the Council schemes to new levels of technology in its attempts to keep the people contained. Can a one-handed Radical and a scarred ex-Enforcer really bring shalom to the world?

And that's that! Comment which books you can't wait to read! And favorite covers! *grins*

Book Review: Guide Me Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Purchase HERE

Title: Guide Me Home

Author: Kim Vogel Sawyer

Series: Standalone

Genre: Historical

Audience: Adult


Working in the massive cave might allow Rebekah the chance to bring joy back to her family.

But will it claim more than it gives?

After tragedy leaves its mark on Rebekah Hardin s family, she plans to help her parents and six siblings honor her beloved brother s memory and alleviate their poverty by working as a guide in the dangerous cave system. Kentucky's renowned Mammoth Cave presents profitable opportunities in for hardworking, capable "men." But Rebekah is determined and if it means presenting herself as a"himself," then she's up to the job.

Under the wing of experienced guide Tolly Sanford, Reb begins to learn the complexities of the cave and the two are joined by an aspiring young cartographer, Devlin Bale. The university student has traveled to the hill country to map tunnels not to fall for a girl in disguise. Can the God who designed miles of underground astonishment shape Devlin s ambitious plans and free Reb from the weight from the past?

**5 stars**

Guide Me Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer was such a wonderful novel! Faith, family, romance, and adventure deep in the belly of the Mammoth Caves of Kentucky ... 1907. I thoroughly enjoyed it! ^_^

Rebekah Hardin, oldest daughter in a family of nine, hopes to partially make up for a tragedy that befell her family two years back, by working as a tour guide through the Mammoth Caves. Along the way, she meets dear old Tully Sanford, and a handsome city boy named Devlin Bale. While she grows accustomed to her new job and makes friends, her sister Cissy is planning something that may well ruin Rebekah's plan for healing.

It was homey, thoughtful, and sweet ... an endearing historical tale about the Hardin family's lives and one young woman's journey to grace and love. I really enjoyed learning more about the history of the Mammoth Caves; some of my relatives have visited there before, so it was definitely cool reading about it, set in the year 1907!

It was fun to read the exchanges between Rebekah and all her younger sisters! So cute! I know a little bit about what that's like, being the oldest girl in my family. *smiles* Cissy was a piece of work, but by and by, you come to understand her a little more; and I was happy to get parts of her story! I really liked Tully; he was a superb character! *hugs him* And Devlin was wonderful too. These characters each had their own personalities and were real in my mind. I had a great time reading about them.

Guide Me Home had a little bit of slower pace, but that's perfectly alright. It suited the story. It's a little more along the lines of Janette Oke's novels. The romance was simply beautiful. I loved it. ^_^ And the family growing together, and the church, and ... yes. It was a simply, country, beautiful story. With a dash of suspense and action! *grins*

This is my first time reading by Kim Vogel Sawyer in quite awhile, and I must say, I so enjoyed this latest release of hers! ^_^

I received a copy of Guide Me Home from Blogging For Books review program in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Hidden Gems: Julia Erickson

Who likes Christian Contemporary/Suspense novels? Because I have an author to introduce to you today who writes just that! For the fourth Monday of the Hidden Gems blog event, I have Julia Erickson on my blog with an absolutely fabulous interview! Thrilled to show off this sweet lady's super awesome books!

Stay tuned for giveaways! *smiles*

Reasons I Think This Author Is One You Need To Discover

  • Books are both Sweet Romance and Suspenseful Action
  • Characters are Great - Relatable and Fun, they seem like Real People *grins*
  • Christian, Wholesome, and Clean!
  • Secret Agents, Action, Wild Adventures, Traveling in Europe ... Non-Stop Epic-ness!


Introducing ... Julia Erickson

JULIA ERICKSON has always adored reading. As a little girl, she even read while rollerblading, floating in the pool, and climbing trees. Her love of words and expressive personality naturally flowed into writing her own stories. Off the pages, Julia is also a budding graphic designer, photographer, and blogger. She loves to sing and dance and has her own handcrafted-jewelry business. Sparkle and style and colors are some of her favorite things. Growing up homeschooled all the way (Thanks, Mom!) allowed her to nurture her many hobbies. She loves her Lord and Savior, and believes the Bible is the best and truest story ever told.


~ I.C.E AGENCY Series ~

Cara Stephenson, a talented graphic designer at Silver Strand Technologies, never thought she'd see her childhood best friend again ... but when he suddenly reenters her life ten years later, he's a completely different man. What is he hiding, and why should she trust him? 

Bryce Reynolds is a man on a mission- a top-secret one at that! He never dreamed the girl down the street would one day become his link to the destruction of Ravenmeister, Inc.- a front for black-market arms and ammunition. Will he crumble underneath the burden of all his secrets? 

When the hunt for a missing technology developer in possession of a priceless prototype drags Cara and Bryce on a high-adrenaline ride through the streets of Paris, Venice, and Munich, they must work together to find what they're looking for ... and survive the trip!

Penny’s last love story ended tragically, so she hides among her paints and brushes while keeping a bubbly fa├žade firmly in place. Could a dashing realtor with a sidesplitting sense of humor be the first step of her fresh start?

Blake has always lived in the shadow of his older brother, using jokes to mask his insecurities and uncertainty. Searching for purpose and direction, he runs into a red-headed stop sign, and wonders if she might be the key to open his locked doors.

When calamity hits Cara, Penny’s best friend, and Bryce, Blake’s brother, they’ll have to lean on each other and race to the rescue, and a bitter billionaire planning a major terrorist attack on America might turn out to be the smallest of their problems.

~ Standalone Novel ~

What if a young woman who’d never gone anywhere and a young man who was a wandering traveler fell in love?
A story that’s wistful and dreamy. 
A tale of woods and mountains, 
fireflies and campfires, 
streams and cascading waterfalls, 
the wind blowing through the pines and the chestnut trees, 
of love songs and traveling and the open road, 
of family and hearth and home, 
of longing and hopes…
 of friendship and adventure.

Coming Soon ... !


Author Interview

What genre(s) do you write?

Julia: I write contemporary christian fiction, usually with a hint of romance, but I also have a historical fiction story inspired by the works of Jane Austen that I hope will someday see the light of publishing. :D My first two books (Ashburn and Diamond) fall under the "suspense" category, packed with action and high-stakes adventure, while my next book (Smoky Mountain Serenade) is a cozy outdoorsy romance with a totally different feel. 

Do you have a release date for your next book?

Julia: Smoky Mountain Serenade doesn't have an actual release date per se, but I'm pushing myself to finish writing it over the summer, edit it in September, and hopefully release it near the end of October. (If all goes well) :D 

What impact do you hope your books will have on readers?

Julia: Well, I hope they walk away going "I absolutely LOVED that book!", but I really hope that in some way, my stories draw people a little closer to the love of Christ Jesus. Missing out on a relationship with Him is a devastating thought! I hope readers are inspired by my character's struggles and faith to turn towards the Lord. 

What’s one of the best things about being an author?

Julia: Getting positive reactions from a reader. Hearing how a scene tickled someone's sense of humor, how much someone loved a character, how an action scene made their heart pound, how the love my characters share touched a real-life heart. THAT makes everything worth it. 

What made you decide to start writing?

Julia: I'm not sure if it was a conscious decision. More like - "These stories are bursting out of my mind and I have to write it down because this stuff is good!" ... But my spy novels were partly a frustration that there wasn't enough clean spy fiction out there, so I decided to write some because secret agents are just. so. cool. :) 

Which one of your books would you call the ‘story of your heart’ (or are they all)?

Julia: I am attached big-time to each story that comes out of my head, but I think the true "story of my heart" has yet to be written. Smoky Mountain Serenade comes the closest, and it isn't even out yet! I have other novels brewing as well that really resonate with my soul ... perhaps a little piece of my heart is in every book. :) 

Why do you write?

Julia: Short answer? Because I love it. And I can. Hard work is 55% of it (ok, maybe more) but you have to have at least a glimmer of talent before you even get started. Writing a book isn't for everyone - although at the same time I think everyone has a story of their own to tell. But I write because I find it exhilarating. And there's nothing like holding a copy of your own book in your hands. :D

Of all your books, do you have a favorite cover?

JuliaI'm delighted with how each of my self-done graphic designed covers look, but I don't have a favorite just yet. Ask me when I have ten books published. :D 

Are there any fellow authors who inspire you?

Julia: Indeed! My good friend Rachel Heffington, Jan Karon, Jane Austen, Davis Bunn, Mindy Starns Clark, Dee Henderson, and my as-yet-unpublished (but-soon-to-be-I'm-sure) friend Victoria Grzybowski. :D (And I have to laugh because I think between all of those people I've covered nearly every single genre from romance to murder mysteries to historical fiction to action/suspense ... etc ... I read widely in many different themes!) 

What do you do for fun?

Julia: Well, I have too many hobbies for my own good. While I love devouring a good book or movie, my favorite things to do are spend time with friends, (having a party? I'm there) sing on our church's worship team, crochet afghans, dance ballet, play Ultimate Frisbee or volleyball, and I also love interior design, graphic design, photography, cooking and baking, making handcrafted jewelry, thrift-store shopping, and ... wait for it ... writing novels. :D In short, there aren't enough hours in the day nor days in the week. 

What was your hardest book to write, and why?

Julia: I think I labored most over Ashburn. It was the first book I was sure I wanted to publish and I wanted to get it JUST RIGHT. :D (I did a ton of research on my foreign locations, wanting the reader to feel like they were actually there.) Not sure I completely succeeded ... but there's always next time. :)

What writing project are you working on right now?

Julia: Smoky Mountain Serenade, a wistful romance set in the smokies, starring a girl (Avalon) who has always lived with her father at their creekside campground and never left their small town, and a guy (Eric) who grew up in foster homes and now tours the country in his refurbished van blogging about his travels, having never set down roots anywhere in his life. When their two viewpoints collide, it gets interesting, real fast. :D I love the setting of this book and I can't wait to share it with the wide, wide world. :D 

What are some of your favorite books (not your own)?

Julia: Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen (actually, everything she wrote), The At Home in Mitford series by Jan Karon, The Million-Dollar Mysteries series by Mindy Starns Clark, and ... a multitude of others!

What does your writing process look like?

Julia: - Come up with BRILLIANT idea ;) (haha or at least the beginnings of one)
- Write down bare bones of idea
- OUTLINE like mad and write intricate backstory that never makes it into the final novel
- Start writing the book on a creative high and get three chapters in
- take about a year to get over the midpoint and hope it doesn't sag
- finish the last two-fifths of the book on a crazy madcap downhill rush to the climax and satisfying ending
- Edit the first draft of the story
- Edit again
- Editing 
- Completely rewrite the first chapter
- Make the ending even more glorious
- Find ten mysterious typos that can't possibly have been there the whole time
- Finish formatting and fix issues with the cover and, and,  
- Sit back and wait for reader's reactions
- Glow :D ..... get another glimmer of an idea ...
- Repeat the entire cycle all over again

Where do you usually write?

Julia: At my large white IKEA desk, on my aqua laptop with white dandelions on it. In my room, which has warm vanilla-y walls, one which I have stenciled with a crisp white moroccan pattern. On one side is a tall bookshelf crammed with books, on the other side a deep closet even more crammed with clothes, organized by color. The books are also organized by color. :D Color is important. 

When do you usually write?

Julia: I either cram it in between everything else in my busy life (writing for an hour at a time) or I spend all day on it and write 5 or 6,000 words, there is no in between. Most of my best writing happens in the evening when the house is quiet and I can concentrate. Once in a while I can make myself get up early and write ... but I'm more of a night owl by nature.

This was tons of fun, thanks for having me!

Thanks for being here, Julia! I loved reading your answers and getting to know you more! ^_^ I hope this helps your amazing books find more readers!

Connect Further With Julia Erickson:

Website: Buy At ~ Warfare By Duct Tape

Blog ~ Jewels By Julia

Facebook ~ Julia Erickson

Additional Blog Stops:

Mon. ~ Deborah O'Carroll @ The Page Dreamer: Book Review of Ashburn


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