Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Over the week-end I finished Attracted to Fire by DiAnn Mills. I've read one of her Call to Duty series, but this one is not in that series. It could very well be because it's about the Secret Service. Very thrilling. I call these "chair clinchers". You are kept in that chair reading till the very end. I didn't want to stop because I was afraid I would miss something. This is what the blurb says.

Special Agent Meghan Connors’ dream of one day protecting the president of the United States is about to come true. Only one assignment stands in her way. After the vice president’s rebellious daughter is threatened, Meghan is assigned to her protective detail on a secluded ranch in West Texas. Unfortunately, working with Special Agent in Charge Ash Zinders may be as tough as controlling her charge. Ash has a reputation for being critical and exacting, and he’s also after the same promotion as Meghan. But when the threats escalate and security on the ranch is breached, it becomes clear this isn’t the work of a single suspect—it’s part of a sophisticated plan that reaches deeper and higher than anyone imagined. And only Ash and Meghan can put the pieces together before it’s too late.

Here's the cover. Attracted to Fire

If you like suspense, this is the book for you. It's full of twists and turns. As always, DiAnn does a good job. I love suspense. I also love historical romance, but I like to read something different after several historical romances. I'm reading and advanced copy of a book about Muslims in the US. It is interesting.

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Colonel's Lady

Sometime ago, I told Laura Franz I would read one of her books. It seemed there were other books that got in the way. That's the way it usually is. Someone will want me to read their book, and what I want to read will be put on the back burner.

When I received my Kindle for Christmas, I looked on Amazon and saw The Colonel's Lady. I grabbed it in a hurry. I do not regret purchasing it. It's set in Kentucky, where Laura is originally from. Kentucky is now my adopted state. I love living here.

It's set in the Kentucky Territory in 1779. Roxanna Rowan is traveling by boat to a wilderness outpost where her father is stationed. There are Indian attacks, battles with the British, spies, and a lot of difficulties. I loved the time setting. That is not the most popular time to write about, but Laura makes it come to life.

There was a lot of research in writing this book. It shows through in the detail of the story. I've found writing in that era to be more difficult, than in a later time period. I still love to learn about it. Here's a clip and a picture, if I can get it all on. This is a good book.

Product Details     In 1779, when genteel Virginia spinster Roxanna Rowan arrives at the Kentucky fort commanded by Colonel Cassius McLinn, she finds that her officer father has died. Penniless and destitute, Roxanna is forced to take her father's place as scrivener. Before long, it's clear that the colonel himself is attracted to her. But she soon realizes the colonel has grave secrets of his own--some of which have to do with her father's sudden death. Can she ever truly love him?

Readers will be enchanted by this powerful story of love, faith, and forgiveness from reader favorite Laura Frantz. Her solid research and deft writing immerse readers in the world of the early frontier while her realistic characters become intimate friends.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. Have a good day reading.

Monday, February 20, 2012


Let me confess, I am an avid reader! I love reading. I will read anything but sci-fi and paranormal. Everything else is my favorite. I love suspense and historical. I love to let my mind wonder on the what if's. My doctor asked me Wednesday who were my favorite Christian authors. I spouted off a long list. Every author I read is my favorite. I have new favorites and old favorites.

My first introduction to Christian fiction were books by Yvonne Lehman and Colleen Reece. Later I found DiAnn Mills. I love her books, even the suspense that she writes now. She is very articulate and clean. I love a clean book. It seems now some authors are seeing how far they can go and not step out of bounds in the Christian market. 

Lately, my favorites have extended to several old and new authors. My own writing is historical romance. I read a lot of those books. After I read several historical romances, I'm ready for a good suspense or mystery. I'm ready for that now. I have several I want to read, but I can't decide which one to read next. I've never read a book that's kept me from sleeping. They're never that scary for me. I've even read Steven James before I went to bed, and all of his blood and guts doesn't bother me. 

Right now I'm finishing up Tamera Alexander's A Lasting Impression. I have about fifty more pages to read. It is good, so very good. I've read four or five historical romances in a row. I'm ready for something different. I have a DiAnn Mills and a T erri Blackstock that I want to read. Which one will it be? I may have decided by Friday. I won't be able to write Wednesday. I'll be at the hospital with a friend's family. She is having a knee replacement. Please remember Debra Miller in your prayers.

Friday, February 17, 2012


Product Details

The latest of Mary Connealy's hilarious books has hit the shelves. Read the blurb below

In 1866 Colorado, Ethan Kincaid agrees to a marriage of convenience with the same casual disregard he gives every decision. Audra Gilliland, young mother of two, accepts his proposal because she wants to stop being a burden to her newly married stepdaughter.

And suddenly both of them are in far deeper than they'd planned.

Ethan doesn't expect Audra to affect him so profoundly, and when she begins to, he's terrified of the pain he's felt before when someone he loved was seriously injured on his watch. He's determined that his new wife will do as he says so he can keep her safe from the dangers that lurk on their ranch.

Audra has been cared for all her life by one man or another--and they've done a poor job of it. Now she's planning to stand up for herself. And her new husband had better agree or get out of her way! 

What will it take to transform two wayward hearts fearful of getting in too deep into two trusting hearts ready to risk falling deeply in love?

This is by far the best of all the books I've read by Mary. I thought Petticoat Ranch and The Husband Tree were the best, but I believe I like this one better. All of Mary's books are good. She has a way with humor, and I can say I laughed out loud reading this book. 

There are serious moments that lets you mind rest from all the funny stuff. It shows how families work together and the love for each family member. I am anxious to read the next one, Over the Edge. It comes out August 1, 2012. I'm getting ready to pre-order it for my Kindle. 

Mary, you make my day when I read one of your books. I am pulled out of everyday life and dwell on the antics of your characters. They have become friends to me. Thank you so much for writing these books.

Monday, February 13, 2012


The winner of Words Spoken True is Marissa. Congratulations, Marissa. I will contact you for your snail mail address and send it to Ann.

I'm sorry everyone could not be a winner. I do appreciate you coming to the blog and leaving a comment. There will be other guests and books, so stay tuned. Have a wonderful day.


Last week was a wonderful week with Ann Gabhart. She was a perfect guest. Thank you so much, Ann, for your part in the week. I appreciate the times you went on and commented on the comments. That makes the week more enjoyable.

At noon today, I will draw the winner. I will post the winner's name at that time. I'm looking forward to that. Your comments made the week shine. Most people love reading the comments. I hope you will look forward to more on my Scribbles.

What did I do while Ann was a guest? I was writing and reading. I finished a couple of good books, and I've almost finished another one. One I finished was The Outsider by Ann Gabhart. I really like Ann's writing style. It's calm and peaceful, even in a crisis. Maybe it was just that book, being about the Shakers. The more I read about her and her books, the more I'm anxious to read more.

Valentine Day is tomorrow, and one of her books would make a good present from hubby. The Kindle or Nook makes it so easy. It's there in seconds.

This is a short blog today. I'll be back as soon as I draw a name and announce the winner. The excitement is growing. You still have until noon, CST to make a comment.

Friday, February 10, 2012


This week has flown by, but I've enjoyed reading the comments and learning more about Ann. You will have until noon CST to make a comment. I will draw a name then from the comments to receive Ann's latest book, Words Spoken True. I wish everyone could win a book. We've had some good comments and I'm looking forward to more over the week-end.

Ann, you have been the perfect guest. Thank you so much for your patience. It's been a wonderful time for me, and I hope others have enjoyed reading more about you. You are a great storyteller. Now, you're tire of me, so let's hear more about Ann.

  1. While researching your books, have you learned anything that particularly touched your heart?
I have researched so many different time periods for my books. Of course I had to do a lot of research into how the Shakers lived for the Shaker books, but I think the research I’ve done on wars has opened my eyes to the courage of the average man and woman in the face of tremendous danger and hardships. Perhaps most touching was the personal research into my mother’s background that became the setting for my novel, Angel Sister, that takes place during the Great Depression. Walking down memory lane with her brought her childhood to life for me. Then with Words Spoken True, I went back to a point in time I knew nothing about. That’s one of the most interesting things about research – discovering events in history you’ve never known about and then it can be discouraging to see that we, as people, make the same mistakes over and over.
  1. How do you spend your writing days?  Do you set goals to reach a certain number of words per day? Can you give us a general idea of how long it takes you to write a novel?
I want to write every day, but sometimes life intrudes. And sometimes, even though I want to write, I sharpen pencils. That is, I put off the hard work of creating by checking e-mails, Facebook, or gosh, my birdfeeder is empty. I mean who can work when the birdfeeder is empty! But once I get the delaying tactics out of the way, I settle in to work. I treat my writing like a job and spend a lot of time at my desk. I do like to set goals, but instead of words I usually think in pages. That’s because I started writing on a typewriter and not a word processor. Back then, you watched the pile of pages grow. I have always set goals even before I had deadlines, but with deadlines, I have to get more serious about meeting my goals in a timely manner.
  1.  Do you ever feel like giving up? Can you share some some of those discouraging times you’ve gone through? 
I have never felt like giving up. I have had times when I felt perhaps I should give up. That I was wasting my time and energy writing stories nobody wanted to read. At least stories that no editor or publisher thought anyone would want to read. But I never quit writing. Sometimes I slowed down. At times I worked a part time job to help pay the bills and had limited writing hours. Other times, discouragement made the writing difficult. But I never quit completely. I am a writer and so I want to write down stories.
I’ve had several dry periods in my writing career. Not writing dry spells, but selling my writing dry spells. I had two historical romances published in 1978 and 1980, but then I didn’t keep up with market trends and was told my books were “too clean.” So I switched over to the young adult market and was able to publish eleven novels for young teens and middle readers. I liked writing for young adults, but my market dried up there too. I suffered through several years of writing but getting nothing but reject after reject. Suffered is an apt word. My stories were never quite right. So I decided to forget the market and write a story I loved. That turned out to be The Scent of Lilacs and the story did find a loving editor in the inspirational market. A couple of my much rejected stories have now been published after some rewriting. So if you want to write, keep on believing in your stories and write. 
  1. What makes you happy?
Grandkid hugs. Walks with my dogs. Listening to my husband’s Southern gospel quartet. Holding a new book in my hands that has by Ann H. Gabhart on the front. Writing a good scene. Laughing with my sisters. A nice cup of hot tea and time to read a new book. Just to name a few things.
  1. Tell us something surprising about yourself that readers may not know.
I’m a pretty dull person so there’s not that much surprising about me. But you might be interested in my first writing income such as it was. When I was eleven or twelve I wrote an essay and won the prize of 100 baby chicks. I didn’t eat a bite of fried chicken that year after I’d fed and watered those babies for weeks. I told that story at a writers’ retreat and got the biggest laugh of the night. 
  1. How does your faith play into your writing?
I would hope my faith plays into everything I do. So naturally its part of my writing since that fountain inside me that bubbles up new stories is fed by everything within me. What I’ve read. What I believe. What I see. What I can imagine. My first thirteen books were published in the general market but even then I think my personal beliefs influenced the way I wrote. I wanted my stories to be upbeat and encouraging – especially the stories I wrote for young people.

For a long time I would peek over at the inspirational market and wonder about it, but I thought I wouldn’t be able to write for that market because I just wanted to tell a story and not preach. Share my faith perhaps, but not be preachy. I just hadn’t explored the market well enough to know how wrong I was. I still simply want to tell my stories and not preach, but I really like being able to include my characters’ faith journeys in their stories. I think it makes my characters richer and better. 

  1.  Anything else you would like to add?

I do enjoy hearing from readers and I do my best to respond to each person who contacts me by e-mail from my website, www.annhgabhart.com, Twitter (AnnHGabhart), or leaves a comment on my Facebook author’s page, https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ann-H-Gabhart/132862247566 or my blog, One Writer’s Journal, www.annhgabhart.blogspot.com. I’m also having a fun Words Spoken True Contest Giveaway. Just look for the button on my website to enter for the chance to win some great Louisville themed prizes.  

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


Before we begin to talk to Ann, I wanted to thank you for all the comments made Monday and Tuesday. You can enter more than once, it may increase your chances of winning. Remember when you do leave a comment to leave your name and enail address.

I've learned some things about Ann that we have in common. We both live in Kentucky, but on different ends of the state. We're both farm girls. We both do or have lived on our family farms. I still own part of mine in Tennessee, and I was the fifth generation to own the farm.

I know you don't want to hear about me, so we'll talk more to Ann.

1.      How much time does it usually take you to write a book?

My best schedule would be a year. That’s a good rhythm for me. I like having plenty of time for research and pre-writing to allow my characters to come to life and also time at the end of writing to polish and pare to make my story the best I can make it before anybody reads it. However, I have written books in six months when I had deadlines pushing me.
2.      What do you find is the hardest part of writing?

The hardest part is getting the story out of my head down on paper or computer screen. Especially when I hit those doldrums I talked about earlier. That nearly always happens at some point in every story. But then the hardest part is also the best part – spilling out the story and having my characters leap to life in my mind.

3.      If you could be one of your characters for a day which character would it be? Why?

Definitely Kate Merritt in Angel Sister. That would be like going back in time and walking in my mother’s shoes for a while. Kate’s not Mom, but she lived in Mom’s world.

4.      Who is your favorite hero that you've written? Why?

That is such a difficult question to answer. I get close to each of my heroes while I’m telling his story, so it’s sort of like this one now and that one then. I did like Victor in Angel Sister because he loved Nadine so much and yet he stumbled in trying to be the husband he thought she needed. I suppose I identified with his desire to be better than he was able to be. And I really like Blake Garrett in Words Spoken True. He is such a strong character he practically leaps off the page. He’s a man who has a lot of confidence in who he is and what he’s doing and yet he’s vulnerable when it comes to love. He’s also very handsome. Then there’s Ethan in The Believer. I open that story with Ethan as a little boy so very young and innocent. His world is turned upside down after a series of events lands him in the Shaker village and then again years later when he meets Elizabeth.

5.      What do you think makes a good hero?

I suppose when I’m reading about that hero, I want one who makes me smile. And that’s not a bad thing when I’m writing about a hero too. But I also want my heroes to be strong characters who are willing to fight for what they believe. At the same time I want them to be vulnerable in some way and to need to love and be loved.

6.      What do you enjoy reading?

I read all kinds of books. I like mysteries, historical stories, character stories, really all kinds of fiction. I also enjoy first person historical accounts when I’m researching an era. I feel blessed when I run across a journal or diary of someone who lived through whatever historical event I want to include in my book. I also like inspirational reading. You know what? I’m the type of person who reads cereal boxes or whatever is handy that has print on it. Words pull at me and I always want to know what they going to tell me.

7.      What is the one question you never get asked at interviews, but wish you did?

How are those grandchildren? Just kidding. I might have to write a book to tell you about all nine of them.

How does it feel to have your book on the New York Times bestseller list? Oops, I guess that might be a nice dream, but not a question I could answer – yet. (She added with a large measure of hope.)

How about those Cats? I’m a huge University of Kentucky basketball fan, but I know not everybody is. (Sigh)

Think writing related questions, Ann.

Okay, this is the question I’m picking. Seriously. What are the two most important things a person can do to continue to improve as a writer?

Oh, I suppose you want me to answer it too. All right. My answer is to keep writing and keep reading.

Thanks Ann, we look forward to hearing more on Friday. Be sure to leave your comments by noon CST, Monday, February 13.

Monday, February 6, 2012


It is my pleasure to have Ann Gabhart as my special guest this week. Next Monday, a name will be drawn from the comments for a free autographed book. Ann will be sending you her latest book, Words Spoken True. I haven't read it, but I'm anxious to. I like Ann's writing style. Here's the blurb from the back of the book. Just be sure to put your name and email address on the comment.Words Spoken True: A Novel

Adriane Darcy was practically raised in her father's newspaper offices. She can't imagine life without the clatter of the press and the push to be first to write the news that matters. Their Tribune is the leading paper in Louisville in 1855. Then Blake Garrett, a brash young editor from the North with a controversial new style of reporting, takes over failing competitor the Herald, and the battle for readers gets fierce.

When Adriane and Blake meet at a benefit tea, their surprising mutual attraction is hard to ignore. Still, Blake is the enemy, and Adriane is engaged to the son of a powerful businessman who holds the keys to the Tribune's future. Blake will stop at almost nothing to get the story--and the girl. Can he do both before it's too late?

Set against the volatile backdrop of political and civil unrest in 1850s Louisville, this exciting story of love and loyalty will hold readers in its grip until the very last page. Bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart once again delivers an enthralling and enduring tale for her loyal and ever-expanding fan base.

Now you know what the book is like, so here are some answers to what Ann H. Gabhart is like. I think you'll like meeting her.

1.      First, tell us a bit about yourself – your personal and writing background. The usual bio stuff.

I’m a country girl, born and raised in Kentucky. I grew up on a farm, one of three sisters, no brothers. That meant Dad had to make do with us girls helping him with the crops. I married very young and picked a farm boy. So, of course, the first thing we did when we could afford it was buy a farm. We still live on that farm but our farming these days is limited to a few beef cows. I’ve known I wanted to write since I first discovered storybooks, so that’s always been my focus along with raising my family and being a farmer’s wife. Always, always I was writing that next story. I have worked some temporary secretarial jobs along the way, but only until the need to write overpowered the need for the extra income. Our three children are all married now. They’ve blessed us with nine beautiful grandchildren.

I’ve published twenty-two books with four more contracted to come out in the next few years. My first Shaker book, The Outsider, was a finalist in the fiction category for ECPA Book of the Year.  The Scent of Lilacs was selected as one of Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational novels for 2006. The Believer and Summer of Joy were ACFW Carol Book Award finalists. Angel Sister is a RT Book Reviews Magazine nominee for best inspirational novel of 2011.

2.      What do you write?

I’ve written a lot of different kinds of books. My first published books back in 1978 and 1980 were historical romances for the general market. Then I published eleven books for young people. These were mostly coming of age stories with maybe something a little spooky or mysterious and a dollop of romance. Now I’m writing for the inspirational market, but I’m still writing different types of books. I’ve written family dramas, such as Angel Sister, and historical stories set in a Shaker village, most recently The Blessed, and novels with other historical backgrounds. My new book, Words Spoken True, February 2012, is a historical romance with some suspenseful elements. So you can see I like to keep my writing options open. My goal is to claim the genre of a good story, but I do enjoy writing for the inspirational market where I can explore my characters’ faith journeys no matter which type story I’m writing. What we believe or do not believe is such an important motivator in our lives.

Tell us about your new book, Words Spoken True.

I’m excited about this new story that isn’t all that new to me since I actually wrote the first version of it years ago. After many rejections, I rewrote it, shortened it, and added the suspense thread. After many more rejections, I stored it away until a couple of years ago when I decided to rewrite it for the inspirational market. It’s so much fun to take a book that hasn’t quite hit the mark and to rewrite it until it does finally become a story that readers are ready to read.
Words Spoken True is the most romantic book I’ve written for the inspirational market. My other books have romance in them. The Shaker books are definitely historical romances, but because of the beliefs of the Shakers – they didn’t believe in romance or marriage – I had to sneak romance into those stories without much opportunity for romantic scenes. Angel Sister is a family story with a romantic thread but it’s only one of the ingredients in the whole. The Hollyhill books are about a family in a small town with a romance thread throughout, but the romance is not the most important element of the story. Oh, but in Words Spoken True, romance jumps up on the center stage and demands the floodlights. The background history is eventful and has some timely themes that relate to some of our issues in America today, but it’s the romance that lights up every scene. 

Here’s the back cover copy.
Adriane Darcy was practically raised in her father’s newspaper offices. She can’t imagine life without the clatter of the press and the push to be first to write the news that matters. Their Tribune is the leading paper in Louisville in 1855. Then Blake Garrett, a brash young editor from the North with a controversial new style of reporting, takes over a competing paper and the battle for readers gets fierce. When Adriane and Blake meet at a benefit tea, their surprising mutual attraction is hard to ignore. Still, Blake is the enemy, and Adriane is engaged to the son of a powerful businessman who holds the keys to the Tribune’s future.

I hope readers will like Adriane and Blake and will be cheering for them to figure out a way to overcome the many obstacles in the way of them having a happily ever after ending. You’ll have to read it to see if they succeed.

4.      Who has been the most difficult character for you to write?

I don’t know that I’ve had one particular character who was difficult, but when I first began writing Angel Sister with a background lifted from the stories my mother told about growing up during the Great Depression, I had to find a way to separate my fictional characters from the real people in her stories. While I did base much of the background on Mom’s memories and even gave one of my main characters Mom’s can-do attitude, my characters and their actions had to rise up out of my imagination. I left just the whisper of the actual people in my fictional characters.

5.      What characters are lying on your "office floor"? Why didn't they come to life on the page and do you think they ever will? Or why not?

I’m sure I have had characters who didn’t come to life for me, but if so, they’ve not hung around in my memory. I think I’m more likely to have story ideas that fail to come to life on the page and a few that are still lurking in my computer saying maybe someday. Most of the time, I’m so stubborn that if I think up an idea I stick with it and work through the times when I seem to be in the doldrums. And eventually the wind of storytelling starts up again and the characters get on with their stories. That’s a good answer for me to remember right now as I try to dig a new story out of my reluctant mind.


Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Deep Point of View is one thing I struggle with. When I first started writing, someone told me to use more conversation, so I did. It still wasn't enough to push my characters forward. I finally found out I should go into the character's head. That has been difficult for me, because I had to learn the difference from telling and showing.

I have had great help from an author friend in the past year. She has finally helped me get through the telling vs showing. I think I'm better at that now. I do need to go deeper in the characters head. I feel I don't show deep thoughts, what's behind what their thinking. I'm trying, and little by little I feel it's coming together.

In my current WIP, my main character wants to go to where her grandparents lived. She wants to "walk on the same ground they did." So how do I go about it without telling? It is hard, but I'm getting there.

I signed up to take a Deep POV course with Camy Tang. It's a worksheet, and I think I do it all myself. I ordered it yesterday, but I haven't received it yet. I hope I receive it today and can get something going that will make this book fly along.

Writing is a good form of escape for me. Sometimes I escape too much and other things don't get done. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do.