Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Interview with author of Espionage, A.L. Sowards

Welcome to author A. L. Sowards--Yes, another Sowards in the writing world! Our husbands are not too distant cousins and from the same small southern Colorado town. 

Amanda's recently released debut novel Espionage is making splashes. I am happy she agreed to this short interview, and I hope you all enjoyed getting to know her better.

When did you seriously start writing novels?

I started Espionage in high school. The first chapter was a project for my junior English class. I started working on it again in 2004, when I was finished with college and didn’t have to write research papers all the time. I rewrote the first chapter a few times, and then kept writing. Now I’m addicted [to writing] and I doubt I’ll ever stop.

What authors have influenced you the most?

My sister put her copy of Espionage in between her Jack Higgins and Alistair Maclean collections, and those two authors were among my favorites when I began writing. It’s hard to pick who has influenced me the most, but lately I’ve really been impressed with Stephen Ambrose and Cornelius Ryan. They both write nonfiction military history.

Every writer has a pet aspect about writing. What do you feel is your strongpoint?
Probably plotting, although I feel like I do a good job with characters too. I know just enough about grammar to know when I need to look something up. 

Give us an account of your road to publication.

I started looking for an agent or a publisher in 2007. I didn’t have much luck at first, so I kept reworking the book and making it better. The first time I submitted to Covenant, they didn’t take it, but it had gone far enough along in the process that they gave me some of the feedback they’d gotten from their test readers and let me rework the book and submit it again. 

What has surprised you about being published?

Covenant accepted Espionage in spring 2010. I guess I’ve been surprised by how far in advance Covenant (and most other publishers) accept manuscripts and how long it takes a book to hit the bookshelves once it’s been accepted.

What is the next novel you hope to publish?

I’m just calling it Book 2 for now, because I’m sure my publisher will come up with a title other than the one I have. It’s another WWII spy novel involving some of the same characters, but I tried to write it so it can be read and enjoyed even it you haven’t read Espionage. It will take place in the summer of 1944 and involve a commando mission to Romania and some spy work along the French Riviera in preparation for the Allied liberation there.

What is something about you that most people don’t know that you wouldn’t mind sharing?

I don’t like deviled eggs. When one of my sisters was younger, she liked to make them. My mom told her she couldn’t make any more until the ones made were eaten. So she followed me around the back yard and fed them to me until I threw up. I was 3 or 4, so I don’t remember it happening, but I still hate the smell.

Ha, ha! Funny how those things happen. Thank you so much for the interview and best wishes with Espionage's success!

Read the first chapter of Espionage here.
Visit Amanda's blog here.
Buy Espionage here.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Interview on A.L. Sowards' blog

Author A.L. Sowards author of Espionage interviews me on her blog. Come visit!

Surviving Denmark, a fun travel book by Tina Scott

Friend Tina Scott and her sister traveled to Denmark where their father had served as a missionary many years ago. Now Tina wants to share what she learned about traveling in that unique country in an ebook titled Surviving Denmark.

So, Tina, why did you write a travel book about Denmark?

Surviving Denmark has three purposes. I wanted to entertain readers with some of my experiences, share things I learned about being prepared when traveling, and rate the places we stayed and the sites we visited.

How exciting that you had the opportunity to travel to Denmark. I was there  thirty-eight years ago. That's before you were born! ;-) I bet it has changed since then. Give some good reasons why a person should buy Surviving Denmark instead of a more popular travel guide?

Surviving Denmark isn’t intended to replace books such as The Rough Guide to Denmark. I wrote it as a personal accompaniment. The Rough Guide is full of useful information, but there are hundreds of places listed, and all un-objectively. It’s like reading a textbook, and because none of the places are rated, it’s hard for a novice to know which sites to choose for a vacation.

What if I’m going on vacation somewhere other than Denmark? Would your book still help me?

I believe that many of the travel tips in Surviving Denmark can be used for any vacation. Some, of course are specific to Europe.

As we all know, the economy is pretty tight right now. What if readers can’t go on an expensive vacation?

Because of the travel experiences and the pictures are included, I think readers will enjoy Surviving Denmark even if they aren’t traveling to Denmark or Europe. Plus, I’ve heard that cyber-vacations are becoming more popular these days.

Thank you, Tina!

Here’s the link to buy this great travel book for a reasonable price. Bon voyage! I hope to see you all in Denmark!

Visit Tina's blog!

Friday, May 18, 2012

The Switch by Heather Justesen

You can get another great novel by Heather Justesen on Amazon!

Tia Riverton never thought cooking on the noon news would land her in the hospital, but a severe allergic reaction does just that. Her mom’s hysterics over her brush with death lead to blood tests that reveal Tia is not her parents’ biological daughter after all.

When paramedic firefighter Danny Tullis responds to Tia’s allergic reaction, he feels a tug of attraction right away. When he keeps running into her and her little girls, he can’t get Tia out of his mind. Despite their mutual attraction, the war widow isn’t ready to fall into his arms, but he’s not about to give up. 

Facing the fact that the family she grew up in is not her own, Tia searches for her real family, and for answers to how the switch happened in the first place.

As Tia and Danny keep searching, the truth about Tia’s past is revealed, and Danny shows Tia that life, and love, are better when they work together.

Buy  here. Buy The Switch here.

Visit Heather's blog here.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Three of My Dearest Blessings

There is no greater joy than family
Gathered together on this special day
All united in love, hope, and purpose
All valiant in the Faith and
Holding to His eternal promises.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Great Writers Conference

LDStorymakers Conference was this weekend in Provo, UT. Fantastic! Great classes, good food, good company. Thank you to all who made it such a success.