And I Quote… Plus Win a Copy of Concealed Identity!

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Ya’ll another book baby has been born. Concealed Identity released in Kindle on January 1 and in paperback on January 3. It’s surreal. Like for real. 

Here are just a few quotes from the book. Feel free to check out my Pinterest board to see who I cast as the characters and get a picture of the fictional small town of Hope, Tennessee. 

Holt McKnight is definitely one of my favorite characters! I hope you’ll think so too!

Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book!

And here is a meme one of my readers created on her own! 
Stay tuned…Friday I’m teaming up with my author pal, Jodie Bailey and we’re giving away some super sweet prizes! I’d love for you to swing by and enter for a chance to win. Let’s say there are gift cards, fuzzy slippers, books, Burts Bees, and much more to drool over! 
Do you have a favorite quote or a line from a song? I’d love for you to share it. 

Comment below (and add your email address) and I’ll draw a random winner for one signed paperback copy of Concealed Identity! U.S. Only on Friday, January 6th at NOON CST.

Real Talk with the Cast of Protective Duty

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Hey ya’ll! I can’t believe Protective Duty is out in the world! So many of you who read Fatal Reunion asked about Eric Hale and I’m so excited to share his story with you. I decided to get chummy with my cast of characters and get some real talk. But I’m not asking the questions. Nope. Instead, my Patch Pack team who helps me spread the word about my books through word of mouth, reviews, and other cool ways asked most of these babies and they were so fun. 

Shout out to my Patch Pack! I love ya’ll so much. Thank you for all your support, the laughs, the conversations on our facebook page, and the prayers. I treasure each one of you. 

So let’s get on with the show, shall we? 

This first question comes from Susan Snodgrass and it’s for Eric.

Eric: Awesome. I love being first. Susan, thanks! 

Me: You don’t even know the question yet.

Eric: So.

Me: Susan asks why you think you’re a Jedi.

Eric: Maybe you should ask Luke Ransom. I don’t want to seem all puffed up….Okay, I’ll tell you. I have this thing I do where I give a suspect the look. I stare him down and will him to speak and he does. I can make just about anyone talk. But I kind of get Luke. Not Ransom. Skywalker. I mean he had a pretty intimidating father. Like mine. Of course, my dad never cut my arm off, but then he wanted me to use it play pro golf so there’s that. Also, when I was five, I was vicious with a light saber. Just sayin’. 

Me: Susan, I don’t know if that answers your question or not, but there ya go. The next question comes from Gayle Adams and it’s for Newton! Yes, the puppy. Aw. Newt, were you scared when the truck tried to run ya’ll over?

Newton: I peed a little. A lot really. I’m a pup. I have a hard time holding it in. Just ask Bryn. Sorry about the kitchen…and the carpet. Really. I’ll get better. 

The next two questions come from Charissa Kerley.

Bryn, do you watch Star Wars movies with Eric?

Bryn: I have seen Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi–the original trilogy with him when we dated ten years ago. I have seen them multiple times. By multiple I mean too many to count. When I found out Eric’s partner at the precinct was Luke Ransom I thought, “How many times has Eric said, ‘Luke, I am your father.'”

Eric: Actually, that’s the first thing I said when I met him.

Me: How did he respond?

Eric: I got the eyebrow raise and, “So about this case…” 

Bryn: As far as the new movies…truth is I didn’t see them because seeing them without Eric hurt too much.

Eric: Well guess what we’re doing Friday night, babe?

Bryn: Thanks, Charissa, you’re a real peach. *inserts heavy sarcasm*

Charissa: Eric, what is your favorite Star Wars movie? 

Eric: Empire Strikes Back. Hands down. One hand if you’re Luke. Hey wasn’t that a movie? One Hand Luke.

Bryn: That was Cool Hand Luke. With Newman. 

Eric: Riiiight. Yeah. 

Me: Okay, moving right along. The next question comes from Denise Hershberger. It’s for Bryn. When did you start swimming?

Bryn: I was probably two. I always loved the water. We were in Florida, I think. And I just jumped in and of course my dad jumped in, panicked…but I rose to the top and just swam. All by myself. After that, my parents put in a pool and I did take lessons. After that it was history. 

Eric: I was twelve if anyone wants to know when I started swimming. 

Bryn: Nobody does. 

Eric: Harsh, babe.

Me: Susan Tuttle asks Eric, if there was a worldwide licorice shortage what would be your next vice?

Eric: I can tell you it won’t be Kale. Oh man, I couldn’t imagine that. I’m totally stumped. Meatloaf, maybe.

Bryn: Oh jeez! How about Dum Dums?

Eric: I’m feeling some subtext here. 

Bryn: Must be your Jedi senses.

Eric: Probably so. Good call, babe.

Me: Susan also wants to know if you’d fall for Bryn if she has an allergy to licorice. 

Eric: I’d give it up cold turkey. Because I like kissing Bryn way more than eating licorice. And she can make meatloaf…now.

Bryn: *rolls eyes*

Okay, ya’ll thanks for joining real talk! I hope you’ll buy the book and check out this fun and crazy cast! 

Gone without a Trace Giveaway!

Welcome back Patricia
Bradley to the blog today. She and her characters are playing Would You Rather
and she’s giving away a copy of her newest Logan Point series book: Gone without
a Trace! Yay! You can enter to win below.
Would You Rather…  
…be shot or stabbed? (Hey it’s suspense so…)
Alex: Uh, neither? But
if I have to choose…I guess be stabbed.
Livy: I’m with Alex for
once—neither. But I’d rather be shot.
Patricia: I can’t stand
the thought of a knife slicing me, so to be shot.
…be happy because you’ve been lied to or feel emotional pain
knowing the truth?
Alex: Since I don’t like
to be lied to, I’d rather feel emotional pain knowing the truth.
Livy: Hmmm. I can’t
believe I’m going to agree with him again.
Patricia: Lie to me.
…fall in love but lose it or never fall in love?
Alex: Where do you get
these questions? I want to fall in love and keep it.
Livy: Why does he always
get to go first? He stole my answer.
Patricia: For once, I
agree with both of them.
Thanks for playing! Tell
us what you’re working on right now.
I’m working on a
Christmas anthology with several Harlequin Heartwarming authors and at the same
time I’m laying out the plot of my next series, Cold Cases set in Memphis. The
first book is due October 1.
Here is Gone
without a Trace back cover blurb:

The past is
repeating itself—and time is running out
It’s been more than two years since
homicide detective Livy Reynolds’s cousin disappeared from Logan Point. Unlike
most people in her hometown, Livy has never believed that Robyn left
voluntarily. When Dallas private investigator Alex Jennings contacts her
concerning a senator’s missing granddaughter who was last seen in Logan Point,
Livy notices eerie similarities between the two disappearances. With self-doubt
plaguing her after killing a teenager in the line of duty and an almost instant
dislike of the self-assured PI, she’s finding this investigation an uphill
battle. But with the prospect of finding her cousin on the horizon, she’ll have
to find a way to work with Alex—before it’s too late.
Patricia Bradley lives in North
Mississippi and is a former abstinence educator and co-author of RISE To
Your Dreams,
an abstinence curriculum. But her heart is tuned to suspense.
Patricia’s romantic suspense books include the Logan Point series—Shadows of
the Past,
A Promise to Protect, and Gone Without a Trace. Her
workshops on writing include an online course with American Christian Fiction
Writers and workshops at the Mid-South Christian Writer’s Conference in
Collierville, TN. When she’s not writing, she likes to throw mud on a wheel and
see what happens.
Connect
with Patricia:
More books by Patricia Bradley:
Shadows of the Past: CBD; Amazon; B&N; Books A
Million
A Promise to Protect: B&N; CBD; Amazon; Books A Million
Gone Without a Trace: Amazon;
CBD; B&N; Books A Million
Matthew’s Choice:  to buy a paperback—Harlequin: http://www.harlequin.com/storeitem.html?iid=53665
For an e-book: B&N, Kobo Amazon
Shadows of the Past, A Promise to Protect
and Matthew’s Choice can be found at my Author Page on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00FFR8T1U

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Of All The…NERVE!

Hey everyone and welcome
to Friday. Today, Bethany Macmanus is hanging out and playing a round of Would
You Rather with us as well as sharing about her new novel, NERVE!
Would You Rather…
…be super strong or super fast?
Bethany: Super fast! I’ve always struggled with time management, so it
seems like being super fast, by default, would help me with that.
Justin: Super strong. If I could cheat out of my nightly gym workouts,
it would really be a time-saver. Having buff cardiac muscles would be awesome
when I’m chasing down a hoodlum.
Wren: I agree with Bethany. Not so much on the time management thing,
but getting my pictures back to my editor faster than the other journalists
would be great. Then I would get first pickings!
… never
touch another human again or never touch a computer powered device again?
Bethany: The computer thing sounds great,
though I’m not sure how I’d do my job? Maybe write in notebooks and make
copies…but I think Xerox machines are computer-powered…doh.
Justin: Never touch another human again? I’d
die.
Wren: Yeah, I’d pretty much shrivel up,
especially knowing how my arms respond to touch.
… be
ignorant and happy or be knowledgeable and never fully content?
Bethany: Too much knowledge can be a painful
thing, anyway. Give me stupidity.
Justin: If that would mean I could solve my
cases when first presented with them, it would make my job very boring.
Ignorance sounds good to me, too.
Wren: Oh, but I’d know what was wrong with
my arms! Surely that would make me content. Okay, not to be super-spiritual,
but aren’t we never supposed to be fully content until we reach heaven, anyway?
Hmmm. I’m liking the knowledge thing.
Bethany, tell us about your book!  Okay!
It was created to save lives.

Now someone is using it to take them.
When Lauren
“Wren” Masterson discovers her deceased father’s medical invention
has been stolen from her childhood home in Florida, she never expects the officer
assigned to the case will be Justin Breck, who asked her out two years ago.
He’s changed
since then, seems like he’s hiding something. What happened to his openness,
his no-holds-barred, carefree attitude? She wonders how this new Justin could
possibly accept her imperfections, namely the persistent nerve disorder her
father’s missing invention might cure.
Justin is
learning the darker side of Doctor Masterson’s past life. The hard part?
Proving it to Doc’s adoring daughter, while attempting to win her heart. He
might have some history with her, but Doc’s lawyer, Connor Radcliffe, has more.
As bodies begin to drop around them, will
Justin and Lauren find the invention before the thief uses it to kill Lauren?
(Jess) Whoa! This sounds so great! What are you working on next?
(Bethany) The goal is to release the next suspense
novel in my Habitations series, Seven Sentinel’s Gate, this August. Wish me the
best! 😀 I’ve already revealed the cover on my website, if you’d like to check
over there.
(Jess) I do wish you the best! And, everyone, you can
connect with Bethany in several different ways:
Answer one or more of the questions in the comments! 

Would You Rather w/ Sandra Orchard & the Cast of Identity Withheld!

 Today, Sandra Orchard is
in the house and playing a few fun rounds of WYR with her characters. And she’s
giving away a copy of her newest release, Identity
Withheld
.
Would You Rather…
…feel pain or feel nothing at all?
Sandra: Are we talking emotionally or physically? Emotionally, I’d
say feel pain, because I wouldn’t want to miss out on feeling all the other
great emotions, too. Physically…not so sure.
Jake: I’m probably the opposite to Sandra. Losing my wife was the
worst pain I’ve ever known.
Kara: Neither!
…be the hero or the sidekick?
Sandra: Hero. It’s a great feeling to “save the day” … I imagine.
😉
Jake: Definitely the hero. My wife always told me I had a hero
complex. Probably a lot of firefighters do.
Kara: Sidekick. Playing the hero for that poor baby I saw sold
has landed me in a heap of trouble, not that I’d choose differently if I had to
do it again.
…be invisible or read minds?
Sandra: Be invisible. I think being able to read minds could be
harder on the emotions than reading 2 star book reviews! At least being
invisible, I can leave the room if I don’t like what someone’s saying about me,
or…I could spook him so badly that he’d think twice before he ever said a nasty
word about anyone ever again. 😀
Jake: Read minds. I know Kara is hiding something and if she
would trust me with her secrets, I’m sure I could help her.
Kara: Be invisible. With a crooked adoption ring, likely
connected to organized crime, out to silence me, being invisible would come in
very handy. Although…reading minds would help me know who I can trust and who I
can’t. Then again, neither would have helped me escape my house being torched.
Love these answers, ladies
and gentleman! Sandra, tell us what’s on the horizon for your books? What are
you working on? When can we expect your next book?
I have two books coming
out next year that I’m currently awaiting copy edits and line edits on,
respectively. Desperate Measures is the final book in my Port Aster Secrets
mystery series with Revell, releasing June 2015. Emergency Reunion is my next
Love Inspired Suspense. The heroine of that one, a paramedic, is the cousin of
the hero in my current release. The release date hasn’t been set yet.
In the meantime, I’m
writing the first novel in my next Revell series. The heroine is an FBI agent in
St. Louis. I had great fun last month touring her hometown and place of work. J
Sherri! Whoop! Can’t
wait to read your new stuff. Thanks so much for being here. Sandra is
graciously giving away a copy of Identity Withheld. Enter below!
Buy the Book! 
WITNESS IN HIDING 
After exposing an illegal adoption ring, newly named “Kara Grant” is promised safety in Witness Protection. But someone has found her—and wants her dead. If only she could trust the handsome firefighter who catches her fleeing from a suspicious fire. Jake Steele seems to think she’s guilty of burning her own home. But how can she tell him who she really is and what she’s been through without bringing danger to the widowed single father’s door? Yet with the criminals quickly closing in, taking such a risk might be her only chance at survival. Because the price she’ll pay for her silence could be her life.

Now, you answer on or more the questions in the comments (it’s
an entry, too.

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Would You Rather with Patricia Bradley & the Cast of A Promise to Protect

Hey everyone! It’s always a privilege to have Patricia
Bradley on the blog. Today we’re celebrating her newest release, the 2nd
book in her Logan Point series, A Promise
to Protect
. I loved this book! Let’s play a few rounds of Would You Rather?
with Pat and her characters.
Would You Rather…
…feel pain or feel nothing at all?
Pat: I can remember after my husband died that I was
absolutely numb for months. Couldn’t feel any type of emotion. So, I think even
feeling pain would be better than feeling nothing
Ben: Oh, no. 
Since Tommy Ray drowned, I’ve had enough pain to last me a lifetime.
Feeling nothing would be better than the panic attacks I have.
Leigh: I’m not going to let anyone close enough to
cause me pain…well, except for TJ. My friend Sarah told me once that when your babies
are little they step on your feet, but when they get older, they step on your
heartstrings.
…be the hero or the sidekick?
Pat: Everyone wants to be the hero. J
Ben: Definitely would like a second chance at being
the hero.
Leigh: Ben, you are a hero whether you believe it or
not. I’m content being the sidekick.
…eat the cream or cookie part of the oreo?
Pat: Cream…if I ate Oreo’s.
Ben: The whole thing.
Leigh: That figures. I like the cream.
Thanks for sharing you guys. Pat, tell us what’s on
the horizon for your books? What are you working on? When can we expect your
next book?
Pat: The next book in the Logan Point Series is Livy
Reynolds’ story. Readers will get to find out what happened to her cousin
Robyn.
Me: Well, woohoo! I’ve been wanting to know what
happens to me! (Just kidding. Pat had it in her head my name was Robyn and so I
answer to it. Ha!)
Pat: Right now, I’m working on a follow-up to the gun
running operation in A Promise to Protect.
It’s Danny Maxwell’s story—the son of the owner of Maxwell Industries. In A
Promise to Protect, his fiancé, Bailey Adams, broke their engagement and fled
to Mexico, and somehow he ends up south of the border (not telling why) where
he finds Bailey in a lot of trouble.
Ooooh! Readers, do you see this? This is why you need
to be reading Pat’s books! Thanks so much for hanging out today.
A peek at A
Promise to Protect

Buy the Book! 
Acting Sheriff Ben Logan hasn’t heard from Leigh
Somerall in a very long time, but it doesn’t mean he can get her–or their
whirlwind romance of ten years ago–out of his head. When she calls out of the
blue, it is with a strange request to protect her brother, Tony. When Tony dies
just days later, Ben is charged with a different task–protecting Leigh and her
nine-year-old son, TJ, from the killers. But how can Ben keep an eye on Leigh
if she’s doing everything in her power to avoid him? And could the secret that
Leigh is keeping change Ben’s life forever?

Suspense, intrigue, and a touch of romance make A
Promise to Protect
 perfect for readers who like their stories with a
hearty dose of mystery.

Your turn: Answer one or more of the WYR questions in the
comments!

Sarah Varland and the Cast of Tundra Threat

Hey everyone! Welcome author Sarah Varland to the blog today. Sarah’s newest book, Tundra Threat has just released and we’re going to play a few rounds of WYR with her and the cast as well as discover what inspired the book, and as an extra bonus Sarah is giving away one copy! 
Let’s get started.

Would You Rather…
…do the laundry or do the dishes?
Sarah: Laundry. It’s pretty
much my favorite chore ever. If you’re washing/drying clothes you can listen to
the machines working while you read, which is awesome. And if you’re folding
clothes, you can watch your favorite TV show (mine happens to be Gilmore Girls)
and still be productive and not feel guilty!
Will: Washing and drying
clothes is easy. And I have no problem pulling clean clothes straight out of
the laundry basket to wear, so that’s no problem.
McKenna: Dishes. If I have to
pick. Housework in general isn’t my thing.
…change something about your past or see what your future
holds?
Sarah: I’m with McKenna on
this one. It’d be nice to see the future, unless I didn’t like parts of it and
then I think that would be hard. But I don’t have much about my past I’d care
to change.
Will: There are things I wish
I could go back and change. Things I wish I had said and done differently. But
I’m learning that God really is in control and the past isn’t worth changing—He
still works out our future.
McKenna: I’d love seeing the
future. Although that’s because I like to try to prepare for things and control
things, which you can’t always do…but I’m happy with my past for the most part,
so I’m going with see the future.
…fly or read minds?
Sarah: I’m not really big into
heights, so probably read minds. But I’d want it to be selective, since
sometimes you really don’t want to
know what other people are thinking. If there was an option to be able to swim
and breathe underwater without any kind of scuba equipment, I’d take that one
for sure. Swimming is a lot like flying…right?
Will: Since I’m a pilot, I’m
guessing my answer is obvious here. I’ve wanted to fly as long as I can
remember.
McKenna: Read minds! Imagine how
much easier all of life would be if we could do this. And my job? It would save
me so much time questioning suspects…
…feel emotional pain or nothing at all?
Sarah: Wow, this is a hard
one! I think emotional pain. I think sometimes I pretend like I’d rather pick
the other answer, but God made us people with passionate emotions and I think
I’d rather feel something than
nothing. That’s living, right?
Will: I’ve been through times
where I felt intense sadness and times when I couldn’t feel anything even
though I felt like I should. Pain if I had to pick, but if I get a vote here,
I’d really like a few years of happiness.
McKenna: I have to be feeling something. I can’t even imagine feeling
nothing at all. (I can just hear Will
laughing in the background now. He knows how well I demonstrate my emotions.
Poor man.)
Sarah, Will, McKenna,
I love your answers. And I think you’re right, Sarah. Pain is a part of living
for sure. Now, tell us what inspired this incredible story!
What inspired this story:
It’s funny because all
of my stories seem to start differently. For Tundra Threat, I wanted to write about an Alaska Wildlife Trooper
and I could just picture the character who would become McKenna, doing her job
and kicking at the snow when she got upset (she’s always had a temper!). The
scene I originally “saw” her in got deleted, but that’s where her character
started. From there I wanted to find someone it didn’t seem logical for her to
fall in love with, so I called my dad and he said “how about a hunting guide?”
and it was the perfect (well, imperfect) match. From there everything else
developed out of the characters.
Wow! My stories usually
start with a scene too and it’s never an opening one. Ha! Thanks so much for
being here, Sarah! It’s been the coolest. And because YOU guys have stopped by,
you have the chance to enter below and receive Sarah’s book! There are all
sorts of ways to win.
Here’s a peek at Sarah’s
book: 

Buy the book! 

DEADLY TERRAIN 
Two murdered men are the
last thing wildlife trooper McKenna Clark expected to find in the stark Alaskan
wilderness. As the only law enforcement in the area, the responsibility for the
case rests on her shoulders—along with the danger. Hunting guide and pilot Will
Harrison wants to ease the load, but McKenna balks at the thought of letting
him close enough to break her heart again. When McKenna’s investigations put
her in harm’s way, Will must race against the clock to save his second chance
at love from becoming the killer’s final victim.



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Jodie Bailey and the Cast of Crossfire!

@JodieBailey
Website
Hey everyone! Guess who’s in the house today?
That’s right the amazing, fabulous, wonderful Jodie Bailey! I am so glad I know
her. And I’m so glad she writes wonderful books I can enjoy. She’s about to
play a few rounds of Would You Rather with us, along with her main characters
in her newest Love Inspired Suspense, Crossfire. Doesn’t that sound awesome?
Well it is. I’ve read it!
Thanks for being here today, Jodie!
Would You Rather…
…feel pain (emotional) or nothing at all?
Jodie: At one time, I would
have said “nothing,” but I’ve learned that nothing is far worse than something,
even when something is hard.
Andrea: Nothing. It would be
amazing to wipe away the hurt and go numb.
Josh:  Until I crossed paths with Andrea again, I’d
have told you nothing. That’s a battle I’ve fought far too long, but now… I’m
starting to think it’s worth facing the pain if it means feeling so much more.
…change something about your past or see what your future
holds?
Jodie:  Am I allowed to say neither?  My past has made me who I am today, and I’m
finally able to say that. People say all the time they want to know the future,
but I’m pretty sure they don’t. I guess if I could change one thing it would be
how I handled a particular family relationship early on so that maybe it would
be more healed today.
Andrea: I’d save my
brother.  Knowing what I know now, I’d
have paid a lot more attention back then and he’d still be alive today.
Josh: When Andrea’s brother
came knocking on my door that day, I’d have dropped everything for him.  It would have saved two lives and changed
everything about mine too. Worst decision I ever made was telling him I’d talk
to him “tomorrow.” It cost all of use everything.
…sing every word you speak or always speak in rhymes?
Jodie:  Trust me, you don’t want to hear me sing.
Andrea:  Uhm, this question has me a little bit
concerned. I have an opening two days from now and we could talk about this.
Josh:  Neither. I’d be out of the Army so fast or on
a psych profile so fast I wouldn’t know what hit me. Not to mention, my guys
would have zero respect for me. I can’t imagine how that would play out in
battle. You’ve got to be kidding me.
(Jess here! Josh, you’re so breaking the rules.
And for a military man…tsk! ;))
…be able to fly or read minds?
Jodie:  Fly. 
I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know what people really think all of the
time. And I could get to the beach even quicker!
Andrea:  Read minds. It would help so much in a
counseling session to know what a patient was not confronting. Wow. Do you know
how much faster my patients would be healed if we could get to the bottom of
things in session one?
Josh: Fly. No doubt. That
would be awesome.  Man, no one could ever
hit a home run over an outfielder who can fly.
…rather
run out of oxygen on Mount Everest (slowly but surely) or underwater?
Jodie:  Mt. Everest. 
I’d feel totally trapped underwater. 
At least on Everest it would be wide open with a great view.
Andrea:  Do you think about death a lot? I still have
that appointment open in two days. Maybe I can clear something this afternoon
for you instead.

Josh:  On Mt. Everest.  It’d be like that movie where Tommy Lee Jones
played an astronaut and ran out of oxygen on the moon.  At least he finally made it to the moon and
died with a smile on his face. But, honestly, if I knew my oxygen was running
out, I’m pretty sure I’d turn around and head down. Definitely not going to
take a seat and wait for it to happen. 
Oh my goodness, that was so much fun! Loved your answers, Jodie. Thanks to you, Andrea, and Josh for playing!
Here’s a peek at Crossfire!
Buy the book! 

A DANGEROUS REUNION 
After he couldn’t save her brother, army first sergeant Josh Walker isn’t about to let anything happen to Andrea Donovan. Josh may have saved her from one attack, but drug smugglers are desperate to get information about one of Andrea’s patients—a patient who’s disappeared without a trace. Despite the danger, the beautiful counselor refuses to hand over confidential files. Now Josh and Andrea have no choice but to battle on for their lives—and their love—or they’ll be the latest casualty to get caught in the crossfire.

So, answer one or all in the comments! 

Taken Down!

 

Okay, we should all do this to at least one person today! Isn’t that great?! Some of my heroes are pretty bad to the bone and can pull this stuff off. However, I’ve never tried. But my daughter gets out of school at 2:30-ish so…

Also, if it were a bad guy I was doing this to, I wouldn’t stick around to ask him, “How did that feel? Did you see a white light?” I mean I’m not the six-fingered man, right?

 

 
 
Do you love heroes who have these certain skill sets? Think Liam Neeson. And will you try this on someone? Please say yes!

Do You Enjoy Murdering People?

Cause like, that’s a crazy
question, right?
That’s a
question that comes with two answers: Yes. And no.
Before I
get the police called on me, I’m talking about writing inspirational romantic
suspense.
Does that
even go together? Inspiration and murder? You might ask the question (and yes,
I’ve been asked this before) why do you write about murder and mayhem since
you’re a Christian?
Good
question. One I asked myself. Why do I do this? (I also write contemporary
romance.)
I think
it’s complex but I’m going to try and break it down like this.
Romance:
I can’t
write a single book without including romance. It’s not an after thought. Or a
sub plot. I love romance! We’re built each and
every one of us to love romance. It comes from God. You may disagree. I
think the entire Bible is God’s love for us. He speaks to us as his Bride. He
is the Groom. It’s page after page of him pursuing us. A divine romance. Love that song by Phil Wicka-wicka-Wickham!
I love the
dance of romance. From the first flutters to the first kiss to the
hope-ever-after. Romance. Easy enough.
Suspense:
Here’s few
questions: How can we entertain ourselves with serial killers, abductions,
heinous evil–whether in books, movies or TV? Seems wrong.
Agreed.
When we find the thrill in the evil side of life. When we glorify evil.
I believe
we, humans as a whole, love puzzles. Love to figure things out. By nature we’re curious to seek things out.
Truth. Answers. We want to solve things. That’s why my stories never give up
the killer/villain right off the bat. They’re more of a mystery. Because I like
to solve puzzles. I’m not a box puzzle kind of person, but I do love to answer
riddles, go on scavenger hunts…discover answers. Discover truth.
I love the
Word of God because it can be very much like a treasure hunt. Read, dig,
search…find answers. Truth.
Shows like
Criminal Minds, Law & Order, Insert favorite crime show here __________ are
all about solving a puzzle. Finding truth. We find it entertaining, engaging.
Our minds
are curious. How could someone be that demented? So far gone? Completely
depraved? We cover our eyes then peek through spaces between our fingers. We
gape. We cringe. Sometimes we even turn off the TV or toss books that cover
hard subject matter. We want to pretend evil doesn’t really exist. Innocent
people do not die. Revenge, power, greed do not motivate people to take drastic
and frightening measures. And monsters aren’t really lurking in the darkness or
the broad daylight.
If we can’t see it or hear about it, we can live in our happy bubble.
Yet it
does exist.
Tragedy,
death, despair, pain, torture. Abuse, assault, the list goes on. Every day it
gets worse. We can’t turn blind eyes. Can’t wish it away.
But there is hope. Even amidst the evil. There is good. God is good.
As a
Christian writer, I want to take that evil, create a puzzle to solve and bring
readers along with me. Let’s solve this. And while we’re at it, let’s throw in
some really flawed characters we can relate to, identify with– who are also
searching for answers. For some truth. For some hope.
It’s not
just about good conquering evil. It’s about God saving, rescuing, loving,
holding, guiding, loving, touching, healing, blessing, showing grace, showing
mercy and compassion, loving, strengthening, renewing, restoring, directing,
teaching, comforting, loving…it’s about a God we can’t always understand, but
we can trust.
In green
pastures where the sun shines and still waters beckon us to rest. And in the
valley of the shadow of death.
Do I love
to create a sick, twisted villain–yet crafty and smart? Yes. The grittier the
villain, the more depraved the better.
Why?
Because no matter how big and swallowing the villain is. God is bigger.
God is greater. God is stronger. God is an all-consuming fire.
 I’m a Christian writing from a Christian point
of view (not in every character! And not in a Bible-thumping manner). I can’t
write without hope. Sorry. No. Can. Do. Because I’ve experienced it (Him!) in
my life. Every day. Over and over.
So when
you find me hunting down ways, or doing research, to make things bad or
terrifying for a character/s, I’m doing it so I can show God bringing good,
administering peace and hope.
Because he
does. He will. It’s who he is. And my prayer is that readers, who are
experiencing some of the same feelings as my characters, will discover that the
same hope in the pages of the story, is available and real to them and that
they will grab hold of Him, our anchor in this evil temporary place called the
world, our Hope for better things to come.
*I just created a suspense and romance board on Pinterest! It’s in the early stages but I’d love for you to come and follow where it leads…muwahahahaha. 

Click here to hang with me on Pinterest!

Do read romantic suspense or watch suspenseful shows/movies? What’s
favorite of yours?