Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I'm on Novel Journey and Novel Reviews Today!

Please stop by and visit on Novel Journey today! Ane Mulligan did an inteview with me about my debut novel. It's a great blog with lots of excellent interviews and blog posts.

Also, Her Unlikely Family was reviewed on Novel Reviews. And I've even had some reviews of it posted on Amazon.com and CBD.com. It's so exciting to have people read it and spend the time to post a review! It's especially satisfying when I can tell they "get it." When they "get" the themes and messages I had in mind while writing.

I've also had more reader emails that have touched me so much. So please let me know what you thought of the book if you've read it!

Missy

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Interview with Jacquelyn Cook

I'm so pleased to welcome my friend, Jacquelyn Cook, to my blog today. She will be giving away a copy of her new release, Sunrise, to a lucky reader. So please enter a comment to be entered in the drawing. Either leave your email address or be sure to check back on Monday to see who won.


Interview with Jacquelyn Cook

Missy: I first want to tell the readers that Jacquelyn is the sweetest woman, a true southern lady. I've enjoyed knowing her over the last several years.

Welcome, Jacquelyn! I'm so glad to have you here today. I'm excited about your new release! I know it has been quite a journey for you. Can you tell us a little about the journey to the publication of Sunrise with BelleBooks?

Jacquelyn: Old houses turn me on. I can imagine the people who lived there, and I want to follow their adventures. When I toured a seven-story Italianate palazzo in the midst of Greek-Revival Macon, Georgia, I was intrigued and knew the unique story was the novel I had always wanted to write. There were lots of characters and subplots and twists. The great-grandson of the people who built the house entrusted me with his great-grandmother's journal and letters. Research was fun.

BUT---the journey got bumpy when I tried to sell it. The agent who had handled my romances for Barbour did not want to take time with something that did not fit the niche. Two other agents accepted Sunrise. I explained it was not romance, but they merely sent it out as romance and garnered rejections.

I decided to be like the Little Red Hen and do it myself. I found BelleBooks, a new publisher started by a group of Georgia Romance Writers. The editor understood what I was trying to do and liked my southern sense of place. I love the job BelleBooks has done. Their publishing and marketing plan exactly fits my book.

M: Can you tell us a bit about the story?

J: Sunrise is classed as an epic novel of love, faith, family, and war. It is inspired by the true story of Anne Tracy who married railroad baron William Butler Johnston, who was twice her age, because in 1852 there was no place for a single woman. On their three-year honeymoon in Europe, they collected art and artisans and returned to Macon to build Anne's "fairy palace."


Anne's privileged life was soon tested by tragedy and war. Her journey from bitter heartbreak to renewed faith and forgiveness created a legacy far greater than their money.


Jackie K. Cooper, host on Georgia Public Broadcasting, has been kind enough to say, "In Sunrise, Jacquelyn Cook brilliantly combines history with fiction. This makes for an enchanting love story that will grab readers' attention and win their hearts."

M: I know readers would like to get to know you better. Can you tell us a little about you?

J: My goal has been to write timeless stories of lasting values. I am pleased that books I wrote 20 years ago are still in demand. I began in journalism, moved to Christian romance, and am starting a new phase of my career with novels based on real people.

I majored in voice at Wesleyan College in Macon. The scenes in Sunrise of poet Sidney Lanier courting Mary Day are memories of my husband-to-be courting me there.

The Cook family enjoys life on the ancestral farm in the subtropical region of Southwest Georgia. Three- and-a-half dogs own me, two Shih Tzu lapdogs, an Australian Shepherd guardian, and the half dog, a huge Labrador retriever who belongs to my son's family. The minute they leave home, the sociable lab bounds across the pasture to visit grandmother.

My daughter's family lives in the city. When they visit, I enjoy gathering everyone for big family meals, ending with my homemade cake in the favorite flavor of whomever has a birthday.

M: Do you write each day? Do you have a schedule?

J: Yes, I write first thing in the morning when my mind is clear and fresh with ideas from the night. I have always stayed home to write, but the problem is that on the farm you must have the big meal at noon. Sometimes I wind up with a notebook on the stove with pen in one hand and stirring spoon in the other. That has worked except when I wrote Image In The Looking Glass, a romantic suspense. My son said it worried him a little that I was cooking and growing the poison used in the story in the back yard.

M: What are some of your hobbies? What do you do for fun?

J: I grow flowers year around.You can see a few of them on my website http://www.jacquelyncook.com/. Outdoor work eases the tension from writing. In the middle of the back yard we built a tiny Japanese garden. My husband dug the minute stream and koi pond with a tremendous backhoe. (The Shih Tzu's greatest joy is chasing the fish.) We went to the mountains and collected rocks for the waterfall. None of the garden is manicured or fancy, but our granddaughter wanted to have her wedding reception there and her picture on the arched bridge. Both of us like pink, so house and garden blossomed in rosy hues.


I love old movies. I will weep with you any day of the week over Cary Grant in "An Affair To Remember."

M: What's one thing most people don't know about you?

J: I try to keep my health problems to myself, but since the Faith, Hope, and Love group sustains me with prayers, I'll tell you. I contracted Rheumatic Fever when I was eleven. At that time, the only treatment was three months bed rest. I had been brought up Christian since cradle roll, but now I read the Bible through and accepted that "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God" included me. Jesus became my personal savior and daily guide. My mother sat by my bed and read for hours at a time. The two things together brought me to inspirational writing. Though, as you have probably guessed, my family has come first, my career has been completely fulfilling.

M: How can readers buy your book?

J: Direct from http://www.bellebooks.com/ and other online sources, in bookstores, especially Barnes and Noble, and libraries. Encourage your librarian to buy because if Sunrise does well, BelleBooks is poised to publish two more of my novels.

M: I appreciate you taking time to visit, Jacquelyn. It's been so fun to learn more about you. I can't wait to read your new book!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Coffee and Ice-cream Lovers!

If you love coffee, and you love ice cream, then you need to make a trip to Sonic and try one of the new Java Chillers. Oh my goodness, they're so yummy! I've tried the hazelnut flavor, and it's amazing. It's creamy and sweet. And you can add a shot of espresso if you want.

Word of warning. The first day I tried one, I was driving and picked up the cup too close to the domed lid. The top popped off and the whole "milkshake" dumped into the floor at my feet. Not a fun mess to clean up! So careful how you handle the Styrofoam cup.

I'm blogging over at F.A.I.T.H. on Thursday. I hope you'll stop by!
Also, I'm a guest on Myra Johnson's blog, Writer at Random, on Friday. She's including me in her True Romance stories. Please stop by a read about how my husband and I met. :)

Missy

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

We Have a Winner!

Congratulations, Kim! You won Cheryl's book, A Soldier's Promise! I'll be contacting you by email. :)

Missy

Monday, January 21, 2008

Meet Author Cheryl Wyatt! Win her book!


Cheryl Wyatt's closest friends would never dream the mayhem she plots during announcements at church. An RN-turned-SAHM, joyful chaos rules her home and she delights in the stealth moments God gives her to write. She stays active in her church and in her laundry room. She's convinced that having been born on a Naval base on Valentine's Day destined her to write military romance.
Prior to publication, Cheryl took courses through Christian Writers Guild. An active member of RWA, FHL and ACFW, she won numerous awards with multiple manuscripts. Visit her on the Web at http://www.cherylwyatt.com/. Sign up for her newsletter for news and chances to enter contests with great prizes. Hang with her on the web at http://www.scrollsquirrel.blogspot.com/. You can also find her skittering around Steeple Hill's message boards as "Squirl" at http://www.steeplehill.com/.






TOP PICK!
"Cheryl Wyatt infuses A Soldier's Promise (4.5) with kindness, compassion and love. Plus, each character in this strong story is multilayered. When young Bradley, a boy dying of cancer, writes to the Air Force Pararescue team, he gets to meet jumper Joel Montgomery, who connects with Bradley and feels an instant and shared attraction to the boy's teacher, Amber Stanton. This absolutely fantastic debut novel proves that while challenges and boundaries are not always easily resolved, they're definitely worth the work." ---Robin Taylor-Romantic Times Reviewer





I'm so excited to welcome my friend (and fellow Seeker) to visit with us on my blog today. Cheryl is a bundle of energy and fun, but is also one of the sweetest, most caring people I know. I know you'll enjoy getting to know her better. Thanks for including me in your blog tour, Cheryl!

Let me also say that I've already read A Soldier's Promise and think it was a wonderful, funny, sweet story. If you don't have it yet, be sure to buy it! You don't want to miss it.

Interview

Missy: Cheryl, can you tell us something that most people don't know about you?

Cheryl: Most people don't know that I am a huge practical joker and usually end up finding out the hard way. LOL! So.....watch out.

MT: If you couldn't write, what creative thing would you be doing?

CW: Crafty type things that I did before I started writing fiction. Working with clay and building miniatures. Working with wood burning or learning how to use my scroll saw without cutting the tip of my finger off. LOL! Making home made cards and scrap booking. Leather work, all sorts of craft-type things. Learning how to weld from my dad. I'd love to have time to do that.

MT: Since most of us love all things having to do with romance, could you describe what you consider an an ideal date with your husband? :)

CW: Going on a romantic cruise with lots of good fun and laughter and food...unpoisoned preferably. LOL! He has always wanted to go to Hawaii, so I'd be totally up for that. Yeah, to be trapped on a boat alone in the middle of the ocean with him for five days where he can't escape and there's no work to be done except adjust his shades to keep the sun out of his eyes on deck...THAT's what I'm talkin' about......!

MT: What's your favorite book or movie?

CW: This question is so hard because I don't really have a favorite book. Not one stands out in my mind that I can remember. Movies are the same way. I have a cluster of favorites that I equally love though. Books: anything by Max Lucado. Passion for Jesus by Mike Bickle. Only Love Can Make a Miracle by Mahesh Chavda. Anything by Graham Cooke. Fiction-wise...anything action and romance, secular or Christian. I also love historicals, and western romance....any kind of romance actually.

Favorite movies: The Green Mile, Raising Helen (closet scene..boo-hoo!), Schindler's List. The kinds of movies that leave you speechless after watching them. Movies you remember for years.

MT: My daughter bought this great book called "Coke or Pepsi?" It has all kinds of questionnaires to use with your friends. So in the spirit of that book, do you prefer Coke or Pepsi? :)

CW: That's a loaded question. LOL! I actually like both equally. But if I drink diet...I'd rather have Coke. And if Lee is listening, I like Pepsi better. LOL! (I have to say that because we're old friends and his family owns it. I took a diet coke into their house once many years ago and thought his dad Harry Crisp might evict me from the premises. LOL!) Neat family though. His mom, Rosemary Crisp, did a lot for the community before she recently passed away. So needless to say, there are a lot of Pepsi products in our area. If we want to get technical....I like Dr. Pepper best. LOL!

Putting vanilla in either of them ruins it for me though. That's the worst feeling, to take a big swig thinking you're drinking straight Coke or Pepsi, and you get vanilla....ick. LOL!

MT: I so agree on the vanilla! :)

I'll be giving away a copy of Cheryl's book by drawing names from those who comment today. So please leave a comment and leave a way to contact you (email addy). If you don't leave it, then check back tomorrow to see if you won the book! You can always contact me through my website: http://www.missytippens.com/.


Missy



Friday, January 18, 2008

Feeling the Prayer

My daughter had her tonsils taken out today. I had posted a prayer request to several writers loops, and I felt those prayers so strongly today. Especially as she's done so well! Still, if you'd remember her for the next few days, I'd really appreciate it. Thanks!


Coming Monday, January 21

I'll be posting on the Seekerville blog. Please stop by! Also check out our contests while you're there. And if you didn't see it, look at Tina Russo's post from January 1st for some writing challenges.

I'll also be hosting Cheryl Wyatt here on my blog as part of her blog tour. She's done a fun interview, and I can't wait for you to get to know her better. Cheryl's debut novel is out now: A Soldier's Promise. It's a great story. I enjoyed it so much!

Missy

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Snow! Blogs and Blog Guests

Hi! We actually had snow in Georgia last night! My daughter was so excited. She was outside describing the flakes, so thrilled at how 3-D they were. :) That's a snow-deprived child speaking! So those of you further north, you need to try to appreciate the stuff. :)

I'm posting on the F.A.I.T.H. blog today. Please stop by to say hello! I talk about the current Bible study I'm doing at church right now.

Coming Monday, January 21!
I'll be posting on the Seekerville blog. I'm not sure of the topic yet. I guess I need to start thinking!

I'll also be hosting Cheryl Wyatt here on my blog as part of her blog tour. She's done a fun interview, and I can't wait for you to get to know her better. Cheryl's deubt novel is out now: A Soldier's Promise. It's a great story. I enjoyed it so much!

Hope to see you again, soon.

Missy

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Win Prizes Today!

Today is the one-year anniversary of the F.A.I.T.H. girls blog!! To celebrate, we're doing a contest drawing for a basket giveaway. Included will be an Amazon gift card, Starbucks gift card, chocolate (of course!), and a copy of my February Love Inspired release, Her Unlikely Family.

So stop by and leave a comment to be included in a the drawing!!

www.writingbyfaith.blogspot.com

Missy

Monday, January 14, 2008

Great Inspirational Website

I was visiting a web design website today and they had a link to a really great, inspirational website. It's called Write Attitude. It's put together by writers to encourage other writers.

http://www.writeattitude.net/index.php

Enjoy!

Missy

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Kicking off Seekerville

Head on over to the Seeker sisters' blog for our kickoff celebration. Over the next several weeks, we'll be giving away books, $10 Amazon gift cards and critiques. For writers: The focus of the blog is on writing contests--the way we all met in the first place. And we also talk about related topics having to do with getting published. We'd love for you to join us! The conversation is always lively, and I can just about guarantee a good laugh. :)

For Readers: Of course, you're welcome to come to the Seekerville blog to learn a little about how crazy a bunch of writers from all over the United States can be. :) And I'm sure you'd appreciate winning books and gift cards. Also, if you're a closet writer, maybe winning a critique will be that little nudge to help you start your own writing journey.

Here's the link: http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/

And speaking of readers... I've been so blessed to have heard from several people who've read Her Unlikely Family! I love to hear from you. I've been very touched to hear how God has used the story. Keep the feedback coming.

Also, check out my website over the next couple of weeks. I'll be holding some contests!

Have a great week!

Missy

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Free Online Read!

I wanted to add another link to my last post. I just saw that Harlequin is hosting a Valentine's site with fun things to do (like send email Valentine card) as well as online reads. Linda Goodnight has a Steeple Hill Love Inspired story going right now. I hope you'll check it out!

http://www.harlequinspecialtreat.com/onlinereads.html

Missy

Coming soon! Barbour Heartsong Presents Mysteries!

My fellow Seeker, Mary Connealy, just sent out a link to the ACFW Book Club for Barbour's new Heartsong Presents Mystery line. They're offering a free 4-book trial. Mary's book will be out later this year. But for now, you may want to try out this new series! I bet it's going to be great.

Click here for the page to enroll online for the free trial.

Missy

Thursday, January 03, 2008

I've been tagged!

Myra Johnson tagged me to tell 8 random things about myself. Be sure to check hers out, too. She tells of one terribly traumatic event--at least I assume it was traumatic!

So here goes:
1. My husband and I each get to "own" the remote control for half the year. His time starts with the pro football pre-season and goes through the Pro Bowl. I get control of the remote the rest of the year. I can't wait til it's my turn again!! I'm so sick of football.

2. I love Taco Bell taquitos.

3. I always order a cheeseburger kids meal at McDonald's.

3. Okay, I'll vary from the food pattern. My cholesterol level is 169. (I just had it tested.)

4. I was a baton twirler in high school and we wore white go-go boots!

5. My first car was a blue Honda Civic hatchback--one of the really tiny ones. I think it was probably a 1977 or 78 model.

6. I was in Bye-Bye Birdie in junior high. I played the Ann Margaret part.

7. Okay, enough going down memory lane. Let's see... Something more recent... When I turned 40, my husband and the church staff came to pick me up in the local retirement home limo to take me out for lunch. They brought a wheelchair, Depends, and several meds that seniors tend to use (you can imagine). I fell flat out on the porch laughing so hard that I was crying. It was one of my most fun birthdays.

8. My Christmas tree is still up! (And I usually take it down on the 1st.)

Okay. I'm going to pick on a couple of people and tag them...
Lindi Peterson and Jane at the Cozy Reader. I hope they'll play!

Posting on the F.A.I.T.H. blog Thursday--check it out!

Hi, all. I'm posting on the FAITH blog today. Please stop by and check it out. I had some fun writing about helping my son with his science fair project. If you'd like to know how four different brands of batteries compare in battery life, hop on over. You may be surprised at the results! :)

Missy

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Challenges for 2008

If you're an unpublished writer, be sure to visit the Seeker blog and check out Tina Russo's post for January 1, 2008. She's offering some great contests to encourage writers to write and submit for 2008. Be sure to take advantage of her generous offers!!

If happen to be a reader and have read my upcoming release, Her Unlikely Family, I would love to hear from you! Let me know how you found the book (was it the Steeple Hill Book Club?). Let me know what you thought of it. I appreciate any feedback!

Happy New Year everyone!

Missy