Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Marian Merritt's "Deep Freeze Christmas

Tell us a little about Deep Freeze Christmas 

Deep Freeze Christmas is a Christmas romance novella set near Steamboat Springs, Colorado. In keeping with my tagline, Where the Bayous Meet the Mountains, a young gourmet chef and her mentor from New Orleans venture to the mountains to cook for a movie producer's holiday guests in his mountain lodge at Christmas. 

Here's the book blurb:

Louisiana Chef Leona Buquet agrees to cook for CG Fleming Jr, movie producer at his mountain lodge in the Colorado Mountains during the Christmas holiday. When Leona meets handsome Cameron, CG's son, she is taken by his striking good looks and warm personality, but with the glamorous actress, Marissa Madison, clamoring for his attention will he even notice Leona?

Cameron struggles with being in a career he hates only to please his father. When he meets Leona he feels he's known her all his life. He wants an opportunity to get to know her, but she keeps avoiding him. When they become stranded in a hunter's cabin, will she lower her guard and open her heart to Cameron? 

Briefly describe one of your typical writing days? 

A typical day starts with quiet time with the Lord then I do a quick pass through my emails. Once that's done, I open my writing program, read a few paragraphs of what I wrote the day before. I set my timer for 45 minutes then start writing. The timer helps me to stay in the writing mode even when I don't feel like writing. Once the timer goes off, if it's a good place to stop, I'll take a break for fifteen or twenty minutes. Maybe let the dog out, transfer laundry, or something else that doesn't require creativity or reading. Many times, when I return to the story, an idea is triggered or problem solved. Repeat with the timer. I usually do two or three 45-minute sessions.  

What led you to choose the genre in which you write?

I love reading stories about women in difficult situations and how they use their faith to overcome. It was a natural path that I would write those types of stories.

What do you enjoy doing when you are not writing?

I love photography and gardening.  

What author's books do you enjoy reading?

I have many favorites, but right now Sarah Jio, Kristen Hannah, Susan May Warren, and Lisa Wingate, are at the top of my list.

What can we expect from you in the future?
My first Women's Fiction full-length novel, The Vigil, is releasing soon with Harbourlight an imprint of Pelican Book Group.
When thirty-one year-old, hospice nurse, Cheryl Broussard flees an abusive boyfriend to return to the Louisiana hometown she vowed she'd never return to, she learns two never–say-never lessons. She also vowed she'd never allow anyone to abuse her. 

In Bijou Bayou, Cheryl confronts her broken relationship with her mother and the long-held resentment toward her for staying in an abusive relationship. 

She deals with awakening feelings for her first love, Beau. At eighteen, determined to leave, she refused his marriage proposal. Now with his wife in a coma, is his friendship enough? 

While reading a dying patient's Korean War love letters, revealed family secrets shatter Cheryl's belief about herself and her family.

Through forgiveness, honesty, and self-discovery, Cheryl is blessed with a second chance at relationship with her family, her first love, and with the God she never really knew.

I'm current writing a women's fiction story set in Mandeville, Louisiana and Tuscany, Italy called, Four Weeks in Tuscany.

I'm plotting my next Bijou Bayou book, The Eagle.

Thank you for having me here!

Elizabeth Maddrey's "Love Defined"

The Story Behind the Story…continued

I talked a little about the story behind the Remnants Series (Faith Departed, Hope Deferred, and my December release, Love Defined) when I was here in July and I’m grateful to have a chance to come back again this month to talk a little about the end of the story. As much as I love the happily ever after that I typically get to put into my novels (mostly I write contemporary romance – you have to have that!), this last installment in this women’s fiction isn’t the happily ever after that people are expecting. Which isn’t to say they aren’t happy – they all are! But my characters have had to reshape their own expectations over the course of their journeys, so happily ever after isn’t looking quite the way they’d imagined it would.

This is the way so many couples live their lives. We tend to have our future mapped out, and when you hit those bumps in the road, it can be a struggle to adjust to the new normal. But I’ve never personally experienced anything that shook me as much as infertility did. Whereas the usual bumps call for tiny adjustments on the path of your life, infertility often sends you careening down roads you didn’t even know existed, let alone plan on traveling. And so you have to adjust. And adjust. And adjust. But, if you’re willing to do the work and cry out to God in the midst of it, He is faithful to see you through. Maybe the end you reach isn’t the one you planned on, but He’ll make it your happily ever after if you’ll let Him.

Despite the fact that this is the last book in the series, and at this point the last time I plan to write about these sisters and their families, I continue to pray that women and men struggling with infertility will find comfort, hope, and peace in these pages. And if infertility isn’t something that has afflicted you personally, I hope these books will give you a little insight into the heartbreak that so many couples face, and with that insight, renewed compassion.


Dreams Change. Plans Fail.

July and Gareth have reached the end of their infertility treatment options.  With conflicting feelings on adoption, they struggle to discover common ground in their marriage. Meanwhile, July's twin sister, June, and her husband, Toby, are navigating the uncertainties of adoption and the challenges of new parenthood.

How much stretching can their relationships endure before they snap?

Elizabeth Maddrey began writing stories as soon as she could form the letters properly and has never looked back. Though her practical nature and love of math and organization steered her into computer science for college and graduate school, she has always had one or more stories in progress to occupy her free time. When she isn’t writing, Elizabeth is a voracious consumer of books and has mastered the art of reading while undertaking just about any other activity. She loves to write about Christians who struggle through their lives, dealing with sin and receiving God’s grace.
Elizabeth lives in the suburbs of Washington D.C. with her husband and their two incredibly active little boys. She invites you to interact with her at her website www.ElizabethMaddrey.com or on Facebook:

Social Media:
Twitter: @elizabethmaddre
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