How precious are Your thoughts to me, O LORD ... how vast is the sum of them!

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Blog Tour: Preacher on the Run


 

Today, I'm pleased that my blog is a stop on the tour for Preacher on the Run by Jayna Baas! Read on to learn more about the book, the author, the giveaway, and her guest post, Behind the Scenes of Preacher on the Run.


About the Book 

 North Carolina, 1771

Robert Boothe has spent the last four years leading the tyrant-hating Regulators in standing against North Carolina’s corrupt British government. Just being an unlicensed dissenter preacher is enough to make Robert a target, but he refuses to back down from his conscience. Aside from a sympathetic court justice, the village of Ayen Ford has no other champion for its poor and defenseless. Then Charles Drake, emissary of His Excellency William Tryon, comes to town with one ambition: winning the governor’s favor, no matter what it takes. And Robert Boothe just might be his last chance.All Robert wants is a safe place for his little Baptist church to live and worship God. But the established church wants him to shut up. The governor’s men want him dead. And that safe place is farther and farther away. You can run, but you can't hide . . .

 

Preacher on the Run is the first book (hopefully!) of the For Liberty & Conscience trilogy, which combines North Carolina Revolution-era history with Christ-centered fiction: page-turning stories of Christian people living Christian lives in the daring era of America’s beginnings.  

View the book trailer HERE.


To Purchase:

Paperback (direct from author)
eBook (Amazon)

 

About the Author


Jayna Baas (pronounced as in “baa, baa, black sheep”) lives in northern Michigan with a great family of real people and the family of pretend people who live in her head. (Yes, she does know her characters are not real. No, she does not want you to tell them she said so.) She is notorious for working on several projects at once and writing her series in the wrong order. She hones her craft amid loud southern gospel music and an embarrassing number of composition books, and is convinced God wired her to write—she can’t not write, even though she believes German writer Thomas Mann was correct in saying, “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than for other people.” She enjoys writing and reading in a wide range of genres, but her favorite story is this: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) 

 

Website: www.booksbyjayna.com

 

 



 

 Guest Post: Behind the Scenes of Preacher on the Run

I do most of my writing late at night when the house is quiet, or at my desk when I have an uninterrupted block of time. I’ve tried in-depth outlining that goes on for pages and pages, but by the time it’s done, I feel like I’ve already written the story! So I use a very basic outline, which I rearrange as my story develops. Most of my drafting happens with a pencil and composition notebook—and a lot of  blood, sweat, and tears. I do my first round of editing as I type each drafted section. Occasionally I skip scenes and draft them later, especially if they require extra research, and I keep a file of “spare parts” in case I cut a scene I want to use later. Sometimes if I feel particularly stuck, I “procrastitask” by making character profiles, playing with cover art, or designing trailers so I can pretend I’m still working on the book. (It’s definitely procrastitasking if you’re working on the trailer before you even have a storyline to work with!) I rewrite a lot, edit meticulously, send the finished product to my beta readers, rewrite again based on their recommendations, and then close my eyes and tell myself it’s time to say “good enough.” Here’s a peek at what did and didn’t make the cut in Preacher on the Run:


- In various preliminary drafts, the opening scenes included material I later used in other places: the courtroom scene, a lengthy version of Justice Sheridan’s warning to Robert, and the idea of property being auctioned to pay unjust debts. In my earliest drafts, Charles Drake was the court clerk. He worked much better as the governor’s emissary, triggering trouble by his arrival in Ayen Ford. 


- Hank Jonas was originally just a circuit-riding partner to Mitchell Boothe. When I needed a fuller storyline for Mitchell, Mom suggested I tell the story of how he and Hank met. That development added so much to Hank’s character that he’s one of my favorite supporting characters now. 


- Caleb Thurmond began as Asa Hammond, suffering from an unnamed disease. “Asa” made me picture a much older man, so I eventually changed the name and gave him an actual injury that could become part of the story. “Hammond” seemed too close to the surname of co-villain Malcolm Harmon—who became Malcolm Harrod after I discovered a prominent Regulator, Herman Husband, was also known as “Harmon.” I didn’t want any confusion if readers did further research on the Regulator Uprising. 


- Neither Alec Perry nor Jacob Chauncy were in my original outline. I added Alec when I needed a secondary Regulator leader, and Chauncy when I needed a representative of the Church of England.

 
- I planned a second book before this one, intending to write Preacher on the Run later as a prequel. When I got severely stuck in my initial project, Mom suggested I write the first book first. (Imagine that.) I’m so glad I did—a lot of things changed as I wrote Preacher on the Run, and I discovered characters and plotlines that have altered the course of the sequel. The biggest instance of that is Magdalen Boothe’s character. I originally imagined Robert Boothe as a widower, but once I got to know Magdalen’s character, I both liked and needed her too much to leave her out. 


There are more “tweaks” I could mention, but some would be definite spoilers. I’m sure there are more tweaks I could have made, too, but I had stop somewhere or the book would never have gotten  published! (It was almost a relief to send it off to press so I had to stop editing.) I hope you enjoyed this little behind-the-scenes look at my writing, and if you think I should have left well enough alone on any one of these points, please don’t tell me!



 

Prize: One signed copy of Preacher on the Run, one necklace hand-stamped with “In God I Trust,” and one bookmark with a Bible verse and book cover art. All entrants will receive free recipes from the colonial era.

 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Want to catch up with the blog tour and follow along? Here's the schedule!

Week One 

Nov 2: Leona @ Great Books for God’s Girls (http://www.greatbooksforgodsgirls.wordpress.com) Guest post, excerpt 

Nov 3: Madi @ Madi’s Musings (http://madismusingsblog.wordpress.com/) Book review, interview 

Nov 4: Kaitlyn @ Maidens for Modesty (http://www.maidensformodesty.com) Book review, guest post 

Nov 5: Laura @ Beautiful Things (https://beautifulthingsbylaura.com/

Book spotlight 

Nov 6: Malachi @ Brainstorms With Rain (http://brainstormswithrain.wordpress.com) Excerpt 

Week Two 

Nov 9: Abby Rose @ Photos by Abby Rose (https://photosbyabbyrose.com/) Book review 

Nov 10: Kelsey @ Kelsey’s Notebook (https://kelseysnotebookblog.blogspot.com/) Guest post, excerpt 

Nov 11: Lauren @ Novels That Encourage (https://www.novelsthatencourage.com.au) Book review, interview, exclusive ebook giveaway 

Nov 12: Abigail @ Read Review Rejoice (http://readreviewrejoice.com/) Excerpt, book spotlight 

Nov 13: Callie @ An Unfinished Story (https://anunfinishedstory.home.blog) Book review

Week Three 

Nov 16: Tara @ Tower in the Plains (http://www.towerintheplains.wordpress.com) Book review 

Nov 17: Kelly-Ann @ Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama 

(https://www.musingsofasassybookishmama.com/

Excerpt 

Book review, character interview

 

Nov 18: Kassie @ Soldier Girl Stories (http://soldiergirlstories.com) Book review 

Nov 19: Natalie @ Kenmore Pines 1 (https://kenmorepines.wordpress.com/) Book review, interview 

Nov 20: Michaela @ Tangled Up in Writing (https://tangledupinwriting.com) Book review, excerpt, guest post 

Tour Wrap-Up 

Nov 21: Giveaway winners announced in Rafflecopter widget and on Books by Jayna (https://www.booksbyjayna.com)

 

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

A Very Bookish Thanksgiving Blog Tour

 


It's here! Four other authors and I are excited to release our latest stories in this Thanksgiving-themed novella collection on October 26!


Five stories.
Five book-lovers.
Five Thanksgiving novellas inspired by five classics.
This is a limited-edition novella collection with contributions by five different authors.

The Promise of Acorns ~ Kelsey Bryant
Erin Moore is a nanny whose strained relationship with Thanksgiving becomes even more complicated when her new employer asks her to teach his grandchildren about the holiday. The results surprise them both.
Inspired by Jane Eyre

 


As Long as I Belong ~ Sarah Holman
Young Analise Marshall has always felt like she straddles two worlds, like Jane Austen’s Fanny Price. Yet, near Thanksgiving, she faces the fact she might soon not belong anywhere at all.
Inspired by Mansfield Park

 


The Windles and the Lost Boy ~ Rebekah Jones
All Lost Boys could find refuge with Patrick Quill. Jeremy might do the same—if he could find him and if Patrick is real.
Inspired by Peter Pan

 


Grand Intentions ~ J. Grace Pennington
Pippa has always dreamed of being a great novelist, but between her job and helping her mom raise her three younger brothers, she never seems to be able to write. So when her grandmother offers her a few months away with all the time she could wish for, she’s sure to write the story she’s always dreamed of—or does her problem run deeper than she thinks?
Inspired by Great Expectations

 


A Fine Day Tomorrow ~ Amanda Tero
Essie March never planned to do much with her life, being the sickly one of the family. And just as she starts to pursue her dream of nursing, it seems that everything stands in her way to prevent it.
Inspired by Little Women

 

Releases on October 26!

Available for pre-order now at this link

(The price will go up from $2.99 to $4.99 on October 27, so get it now!)

Add to Goodreads

 

 

About the Authors:

Kelsey Bryant is an author, editor, and martial arts instructor from Central Texas. She loves God, her family, classic literature, and anything that transports her to the past.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Sarah Holman lives in Central Texas with her amazing family. When not working on her next novel, she can usually be found hanging out with her siblings, reading, or taking long walks. If there is anything adventuresome about her life, it’s because she serves a God with a destiny bigger than anything she could have imagined.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Rebekah Jones is first and foremost a follower of the Living God. She started writing as a little girl, seeking to glorify her King with her books and stories. Rebekah is an old soul in a young body (she’s not 12—honest!). While her exact age is classified, her interests are not. Among them are reading a variety of books, singing, playing and composing music, studying all manner of subjects, nannying an adventurous group of youngsters, and, of course, writing her books, poems, articles, and short stories. She writes a wide range of books from gentle children’s adventures to family sagas to murder mysteries.

Website | Facebook | Instagram

 

J. Grace Pennington has been telling stories since she could talk and writing them down since age five. Now she lives in the great state of Texas, where she writes as much as adult life permits. When she’s not writing she enjoys reading good books, having adventures with her husband, and looking up at the stars.

Website | Facebook | Instagram

 

Amanda Tero grew up attending a one room school with her eleven siblings—and loved it! She also fell in love with reading to the point her mom withheld her books to get her to do her chores. That love of reading turned into a love of writing YA fiction. Amanda is a music teacher by day and a literary guide by night, creating stories that whisk readers off to new eras and introduce them to heroic but flawed characters that live out their faith in astonishing ways.

Website | Facebook | Instagram

 

Giveaway!

 

Enter this giveaway for a chance to win a fun fall package!

 


 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway package includes Hello Autumn sign, Thankful jar, Fall cozy, and Autumn-themed charm necklace

 

 

 

Friday, July 17, 2020

A Very Bookish Christmas in July

Today, I’m excited to share about the release of the individual stories that were originally part of the A Very Bookish Christmas novella collection. Each story takes elements from classic books and incorporates them into the story.

This weekend, three of the four stories will now be available on Kindle! Let me share a little bit about each story:


Molly and Anna by Sarah Holman 

With the death of her sister near Christmastime, Lacie becomes the guardian of two girls of mixed heritage. Caring for them is harder than she ever imagined. She’s confronted daily with memories she would rather forget and her own prejudice. No matter what, she is determined to give her two nieces the best Christmas she can.

Classic that inspired the story: Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter

Random fun fact: Jared from this story might possibly be the same Jared featured in another of Sarah’s Christmas stories, Distorted Glass” (but he was younger in that story).

Find it on Amazon and Goodreads


 
Sincerely, Jem by Kate Willis 

Dear Reader,

My name is Jessie. I'm an expert at introversion and cheesecake eating. (#skillz) I'm trying to become a writer, but gathering inspiration = social interaction, so... no.

The world's best mail carrier suggested I get a pen pal, so this is the story of that pen pal experiment and the beautiful way it opened my eyes.

Merry Christmas and much cheesecake to you!

Sincerely,
Jem

Classic that inspired the story: Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster

Random fun fact: There are two Doctor Who references–one was intentional. See if you can spot them. 😀

Find it on Amazon and Goodreads




 

Sylvie of Amber Apartments by J. Grace Pennington 

Since she was five years old, Sylvie has been obsessed with Anne of Green Gables and trying to make her life as much like Anne Shirley's as possible. But with her black hair and her apartment-building home -- not to mention her older brother and two living parents -- she despairs of ever meeting her aspirations. But could she be more like her heroine than she believes?

Classic that inspired the story: Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

Random fun fact: Several details in the story were taken from the author's childhood, including the Anne of Green Gables playset, the yellow paperback version of the book, and getting Nancy Drew books for Christmas.

Find it on Amazon and Goodreads





 

Gingerbread Treasures by Rebekah Jones 

Missing Gingerbread Men are the Key...

Oliver Breckenridge has a case — one he’s willing to fly all the way across the pond at Christmastime to look into.

Emily Willis says it all started with the gingerbread men. Then came the dognapping. And then the email…

Despite mounting clues, Oliver and his ad hoc team of investigators aren’t getting anywhere. Add in a man Oliver hoped never to see again, a few rumors, and even more inconsistencies, and matters aren't clearing up.

Finding the “gingerbread treasure” might turn out to be more than they bargained for.

Classic that inspired the story: Sherlock Holmes, The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Random fun fact: Gingerbread Treasures is just the beginning. I have 18 more books planned that stem off of this story.

Find it on Amazon and Goodreads



Doesn’t this sound like fun! And the same group is putting out an all-new collection this fall! You can add it to Goodreads now.



To celebrate the release of the three Christmas stories, the authors are giving away an Amazon gift card!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

The Road to Bremen Audiobook!

I break my long blogging silence to make a special announcement ... which I already spilled in the post's title. But I will repeat because I'm so thrilled to see the news in print:

The Road to Bremen is now an audiobook!



Available on Audible at this link.

Their lives are saved by a dream. But only friendship can make that dream a reality.
Once upon a time...
Etzel the donkey is getting old, but he works hard on his farm - until the day Herr Hoffman decides he is no longer worth keeping. With no choice but to escape, Etzel sets off on the road to Bremen to seek his fortune as a musician.
On the way, he rescues three other animals - a dog, a cat, and a rooster - who are also old and destined for death. Will these four new friends find their success and worth as musicians in Bremen? Or, does the road hold something better?



I couldn't be happier with the narrator, B. E. Berhow. With a warm, natural storyteller's voice and cadence, he skillfully brings each of the characters to life. Enjoyable for all ages, but especially for kids, this audiobook will provide two and a half hours of fun and heart-warming entertainment.



Interested in the illustrated paperback or e-book? Find them on Amazon.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Blog Tour: Winter Spell

I'm thrilled to be participating in the blog tour for Claire M. Banschbach's latest fantasy novel, Winter Spell.


A half-breed faery. A war-weary princess. A quest to free three kingdoms from the deadly winter spell. 
Constantly doubted by her ocean faery kindred, Tonya Freyr-dottir only wants to untangle the dormant ice and water magic within her. Then a strange attack makes her unleash a fierce winter on the land and sea. And she has no idea how to stop it.
Princess Diane serves faithfully at her brother’s side, trying to restore their kingdom of Myrnius after the devastating Dark War. Now with brutal winter wreaking havoc, everything they have worked for might be lost to famine and destruction.
Desperate to help, Tonya travels to the far north to unlock her magic, aided by Diane, as well as two land faeries: Dorian, a reckless healer and August, a mischievous warrior. But the north brings fresh dangers, unearths old wounds, and offers more questions than answers.
With doom threatening human and faery alike, Tonya must find a way to trust her new friends and release her magic before all fall to the fury of winter’s spell.

Available for pre-order now! Releases on 4/23!






Winter Spell is book 3 in the Faeries of Myrnius series, but can be read as a standalone. However, series is best enjoyed in chronological order.


Preorder Info and Link!
Pre-order goodies include a character art postcard of four characters from Winter Spell done by @h.s.j._williams, a series bookmark, and northern lights sticker! Submit receipt to campitorpress@gmail.com
Pre-order packets will also be available to those who buy the book in ebook or paperback up to 5/7 and submit receipt to campitorpress@gmail.com
(This info is also here - https://clairembanschbach.com/winter-spell-pre-order-swag-pack/ - so feel free just to direct followers to it if you don’t want to post all of the above!)


Giveaway:
Rafflecopter link for giveaway including Ebooks and swag pack!



Claire M. Banschbach is a native Texan and would make an excellent hobbit if she wasn’t so tall. She’s an overall dork, pizza addict, and fangirl. When not writing fantasy stories packed full of adventure and snark, she works as a pediatric Physical Therapist where she happily embraces the fact that she never actually has to grow up.
She writes New Adult/Adult fantasy as C.M. Banschbach.


Schedule:
Monday 4/20:
Abigail Leskey – book spotlight - makerofrunevests.tumblr.com
Rachael Ritchey – book review - rachaelritchey.com
MH Elrich – author interview - www.mhelrich.com
Tuesday 4/21:
Rachael Ritchey – author interview - rachaelritchey.com
E Paige Burkes – book spotlight - www.epaigeburks.com
Kelsey Bryant – book spotlight - https://kelseysnotebookblog.blogspot.com/
Claire B – Winter Spell as gifs – www.clairembanschbach.com
Wednesday 4/22:
E Rawls – book spotlight - https://rawlse.wordpress.com/
Hazel West – character interview/book spotlight - hazelwest.blogspot.com
MH Elrich – character interview – Diane - www.mhelrich.com
Claire B – meet the characters! - www.clairembanschbach.com
Thursday 4/23 – RELEASE DAY!
CB Cook – book spotlight - Theworldofthewriter.wordpress.com
Marlene Simonette – book spotlight - https://marlenesimonetteauthor.blogspot.com
Claire B – Release Day! - www.clairembanschbach.com
IG LIVE Q&A WITH HAZEL WEST – 7:30 PM CST on @cmbanschbach
Friday 4/24
Marlene Simonette – author interview - https://marlenesimonetteauthor.blogspot.com
Deborah O’Carroll – book review - https://thepagedreamer.wordpress.com/
Claire B – tour wrapup - www.clairembanschbach.com

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Cover Reveal: Resting Life by Erika Mathews

Hey everyone! A gorgeous cover for an encouraging Christian living non-fiction book is being revealed today! Resting Life: Jesus' Rest for the Busy or Burdened Believer is an upcoming release by Erika Mathews.

mock-00209

But first, all the details.

RELEASE DATE: March 20, 2020! Mark your calendars!
...but you can skip the calendar part if you preorder the ebook on Amazon. You'll automatically get the best price, and the book will appear right on your device bright and early on release day! (And Amazon is kind enough to notify you, so you can be among the very first to read the book if you wish!)
But do you actually want to preorder already? What is this new book about? Is it worth your time?

ABOUT THE BOOK
Can your busy, stressful reality truly transform into the abundant, restful reality of the kingdom of God? The Bible says yes. Through rest in Christ, your life can be fulfilled, productive, peaceful, and free to give and receive love. But just what is Biblical rest, and how can it seamlessly fuse with your modern life? In Resting Life: Jesus’ Rest for the Busy or Burdened Believer, Bible teacher Erika Mathews addresses this question. Discover the unification of rest with practical daily life, relationships with others, spiritual warfare, ministry, witnessing, prayer, meditation, fruitfulness, and personal abiding. Through understanding and embracing God’s rest, you too will be uplifted, challenged, encouraged, and freed to live life as He intended—within Him.
Now go preorder. :)
But why preorder at all? Why not wait until the book is released? Besides the fact that you'll automatically get the lowest price, and besides the fact that you won't have to actually remember to order the book later, did you know that preorders stack up and count as sales on release day? Multiple preorders alert Amazon that this book is popular, and the more popular Amazon's system sees the book is, the more people Amazon will suggest and show it to, and the higher it will rank in what people see. This means this book - and the message of this book - will be able to reach many more people. This is immensely helpful for visibility in the thousands of books for sale. So if you'd like the ebook, preordering is the way to go.
You don't want the ebook?
There's a place to preorder a paperback too!
You want to know more about the author first?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Erika Mathews (square) - Copy-min Erika Mathews is an author and editor who lives in the farm country of Minnesota with her husband and children. She’s a homeschool graduate with a Bachelor’s in Communications, a Master’s in Biblical Ministries, and a passion for sharing Jesus Christ and His truth. She wrote Resting Life out of meditations and prayers during her three years at Bible School. When she’s not working with books, she enjoys reading, outdoor activities, piano and violin, organizing, and using the Oxford comma. You can connect with Erika at restinglife.com.
Ready to preorder (Kindle) (Paperback) now?
Of course not. You came here for the cover...and so the cover you shall have.

ISN'T IT GORGEOUS?
Resting Life Front Cover 2.8.20

Design credit goes to Sarah Grace Grzy.

And enjoy the back cover, since back covers don't often get as much love:
Resting Life Back Cover

*Applause! Cheering! Throwing of confetti! Cookies for all!*
*Deep sigh of contentment*

mock-00415

Thank you so much for attending this reveal party. Watch Erika's Instagram this month for release celebrations, Bible studies based on Resting Life, and giveaways. May the blessings of the Lord be upon you today!
And now you can safely preorder. :)