Meet Author Katie Clark!

Katie Clark Author Photo

I had the pleasure to get to know Katie Clark and hear about her latest book and inspiration.

About Katie Clark 

Katie Clark started reading fantastical stories in grade school and her love for books never died. Today she reads in all genres; her only requirement is an awesome story! She writes young adult speculative fiction, including her romantic fantasy novel, The Rejected Princess, a supernatural survival series including Shadowed Eden and Whispering Tower, AVAILABLE NOW, and her dystopian Enslaved Series.


About Whispering Tower

Stuck in London for one of her mom’s work trips, Skye Humphries can’t help holding a grudge when she ends up roped into a summer tour group with Philip-who-crushed-her-heart. But when Skye and Philip find themselves barreling through time after unsuspectingly opening the veil between the past and present, they’re thrust into a world where Skye’s very life is in danger. If she’d known her choices were between summering with Philip or being sacrificed to the god of the skies, Skye might have changed her attitude. Now she must figure out what’s most important to her—getting even for the past or having a future.

What Inspired You to Write this Story?

I had the idea for this book shortly after I wrote my YA mystery/survival novel, Shadowed Eden. I can’t say too much without giving it all away, though! Haha! Sorry!

I did have to do lots of special research because my characters fall through time and end up in the ancient Middle East!

What are Some of Your Previous Works?

I tend to follow my writing wherever it takes me—which means I have books for young adult readers, adult inspirational romance readers, and even the youngest of readers with nonfiction picture books!

Website, Social Media, Etc.






Thank you so much, Katie! Be sure to check out her new book, Whispering Tower, coming May 2019!



Meet Author Erin Lorence!


I had the chance to talk with Erin Lorence and hear about her newly released book, Dove Strong!


About Dove Strong

Dove Strong loves God. She loves standing chin up and fists clenched when facing Satan’s attacks. But there’s one thing she doesn’t love—other people. So when this spiritually-gifted, antisocial teenager is chosen to join other believers in a trek across Satan’s territory, rattlesnakes and evil-intentioned Heathen aren’t her biggest challenges.

But failure isn’t an option. In a month, the Christian Councils will decide the Reclaim, a vote on whether there’ll be a war between Christ’s followers and Satan’s to take back America. It is up to Dove, God’s messenger for peace, to reach her Council in time. Because if she doesn’t, things could get bloody.

Buy Links:


Pelican Book Group:



What Inspired You to Write this Story?

I sat on a church pew on the last day of a year-long Bible study. We’d studied Genesis, and the Bible study leader stood at the pulpit, reminding us of Joseph from the Bible. A favorite son. A hated brother. A servant, prisoner…and finally one of the richest, most powerful rulers of his time.

Wow, I thought. Being chosen by God is such an amazing thing!

Wow, I thought. Being chosen by God can sure lead to problems and persecution!

I gazed at the Bible study leader’s pulpit, at its engravings of vegetation in the wood. Within the etched leafiness, a couple of circular blobs—like small peas or grapes—were balanced up high on the foliage. A couple blobs were nestled low, half hidden in the vegetation.

A new thought hit. If I, as a Christian, was forced to hide to escape persecution, would I rather hunker down in the earth (in caves or tunnels)? Or would I go off the grid, making a treehouse-type shelter in some out-of-the-way forest, even if I were more likely to be discovered?

The ideas for Dove Strong started flowing. The trilogy takes place in a future American where Christians must hide—underground, in caves, in forests, and even camouflaged as nonbelievers in cities.  But my main character, Dove, can’t stay hidden. She emerges from her secluded lifestyle in the treetops to journey across Enemy territory on a life-and-death mission, naïve and clueless about what the ‘real world’ is like… but determined to survive.

Did You Conduct Any Special Research for This Book?

My husband and I took an amazing hiking trip in Oregon, the setting of Dove Strong. We visited Mount Washington, Sisters, Mount Jefferson, Steins Pillar, and Prineville so I could make the story’s setting and the heroine’s struggles in the high desert and Cascade mountains as real as possible.

We entered one hiking area, expecting a spruce forest but encountered a desolate landscape of ankle-deep grey ash and charred trees from a recent forest fire. In another wooded area, we had to deal with a herd of roaming cattle that kept popping out of the trees, spooked by our presence, to share our trail. It was an adventure we’ll never forget!

Did You Have Any Quirks While Writing this Story?

I’m not sure how quirky (or interesting) this is, but I only write when I’m alone—as in no other humans are around. Animals are okay.  So, I end up doing most of my creative writing at night. In general, I get some of my best work done between 10 pm and 2 am. This helps my story progression because I can really get into my characters and their dialogue without being interrupted.

What is Your Favorite Aspect of This Story?

My favorite is definitely the hiking/nature/survival aspect of this story. I also get a kick from my main character because she’s super blunt to the point of rudeness when she speaks. She also doesn’t care what others think about her. Since I care too much about what others think, it was fun to think and speak from her perspective.

Are You Working on Any Other Projects?

I’m currently working on another adventure for young adults. It’s an idea that’s been percolating in my brain for years. To sum the whole thing up:

Rani, a rebelling, sci-fi loving teen, is on a road trip and pauses at a reclusive ocean town. While shouting from a lonely clifftop at her deadbeat dad, she’s startled by a mysterious teenage guy. He’s intense and angry…and seems to possess an unusual, supernatural power. So, of course, she’s intrigued. A rash decision results in her entrapment in the very place she fears the most. To escape, Rani faces impossible obstacles. First, she must overcome her own ocean phobia. And second, she must choose to let go of her own anger that holds her hostage.



Upcoming Dates:

Fanatic Surviving, the second book of the Dove Strong trilogy is set to be released June 7. The last book, Sent Rising, comes out August 16.

Thank you so much, Erin! Be sure to check out Dove Strong and the upcoming sequels!

Meet Author Pamela Thibodeaux!

Pamela S. Thibodeaux

I’m excited to introduce fellow author Pamela S. Thibodeaux to my blog to talk about her latest book!

About Love in SeasonLove in Season - Softcover

Anytime is the perfect time for love.

In this anthology, author Pamela S Thibodeaux brings together eight of her most beloved romance stories—one for each season plus four holidays that revolve around love and family.

Includes two brand new stories!

“Anytime is the perfect time for love. Author @psthib brings together 8 #romance stories — 1 for each season + 4 holidays that revolve around love and family. Includes two brand new stories! #christfic #mustread”

What inspired you to write this story? 

For quite some time I wanted to put together a collection of short stories that centered around the 4 seasons and 4 holidays that focus on love and family (Valentine’s Day, Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas). Since I already had several stories at PBG, I mentioned this idea to my editor, the amazing Nicola Martinez, and she loved it. I submitted two previously unpublished stories to round out the collection, along with those Pelican Book Group had already published, and voila! Love in Season was born.

Buy Love in Season on

PBG Print:

PBG Ebook:


Links to Pamela’s websites, blogs, etc. 

Award-winning author, Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.” Sign up to receive Pam’s newsletter and get a FREE short story!




Twitter: @psthib


Amazon Author Page:



Check Out Some of Pamela’s Other Works!

The Inheritance:

Tempered Series (Hearts, Dreams, Fire, Joy):

Lori’s Redemption: 

The Visionary:

Keri’s Christmas Wish:

Circles of Fate:

Love is a Rose (Devotional):

It was so nice to get to know Pamela! Make sure to check out her new book (and her old ones too)!

Meet Author Erin Unger!

I had the opportunity to talk to Erin Unger and get to know about her new book.


About Erin: 

Erin Unger was raised in the hills of Virginia, exploring abandoned houses and reading the scariest books she could find. After marrying so young it would make a great romance novel, she has enjoyed an exciting life with her hubby. But her fast-paced life sometimes rivals the suspense in her books thanks to all her mostly grown children and a couple grandkids. Her novel, Practicing Murder, releases March 29, 2019.


About Practicing Murder

Graduate student Maddie Clare is never talking to her ex-boyfriend Joze Evans or God again. Broken from her past and Joze’s betrayal, she must go home for her Aunt Lonna’s funeral. But after a run-in with a stalker, who insists Maddie knows the secret that had Aunt Lonna investigating him, she’s afraid for her life and must accept Joze’s protection.

As the stalker draws closer, how will Maddie and Joze face the past and their love that never died? And will Maddie stay out of the stalker’s grip long enough to figure out what secret he possesses?

Did You Do Any Special Research for This Book?

I had so much researching EMTs and the emergency care they provide. Joze has a great time doing his work and I really wanted my readers to like how he lets his work pervade all of his life because he really is a caring guy who wants to protect and care for those around him.

Did You Have Writing Quirks or Habits While Writing This Piece?

I set up a music playlist to go with my storyline while I was writing. It really helped me to set the tone of the story. I had more driving, scary music when the scenes where suspenseful.

What is Your Favorite Aspect of This Story and Why?

I think my most favorite thing about this book is Joze. He just makes the story fun. I love his very guy answers and thoughts. Creating realistic characters like him with real flaws and quirks is what makes my book worlds engaging.

Do You Have Any Previous Writing Projects?

I wrote and completed nine books before the first one got published! Yes, nine. That’s a testament to not giving up if ever I saw one. I released my first book, Desolate Paths, in January. And there are three more books scheduled for release this year. Next year is looking pretty busy too.

Do You Have Any Projects You’re Working On Now?

I’m currently editing a novella called The Cabin which is scheduled to release on June 16. It was a full-length novel that I decided to cut down. And it’s another fun book full of suspense and great characters.

Website, Social Media, Etc.





Thanks for having me, Kimberly!

I’m hosting an eBook giveaway for everyone who answers the question below and leaves their email address. What is your favorite swag to get from an author?

It was so nice to have Erin with me today! Make sure you check out her book and don’t forget to answer her question in the comments for a free eBook!

Meet Author Carol James!

Carol James Rocks Twitter small (1)

I had the pleasure to get to know Carol and hear about her latest novel.


About The Waiting

When Katherine Herrington was a teenager, she made “The List” and believed God would bring her the husband she desired. That faith helped her to keep life under control just the way she likes it. But then Katherine loses her mother, her job, and her boyfriend, and after years of praying, she accepts the probability that God’s answer is, “No.”

A professional soccer player, Sam Tucker has lived the life of a celebrity in the UK only to discover that, despite all the wealth and fame he has acquired, his life is empty. He returns to the one place where life last had meaning and goes in search of the one woman he’s loved since he was a teenager—Katherine. He wonders if she’ll remember him after all these years… And fears she just might.

As God weaves together a rejected proposal, a mission trip, and a devastating storm to turn their hearts toward Him and toward each other, Katherine and Sam will have to let go of their fears, find forgiveness and trust, and realize that their future together was worth the wait.

Buy On:


Barnes & Noble:


Pelican Book Group:

What Inspired You to Write this Story?

The inspiration for this story was my observation of young women I worked with or knew personally who were in a season of waiting for their “One.” Several were frustrated, wondering if “He” would ever come. We all have seasons of waiting in our lives, but the important thing to remember is that even though we may not be able to see it, God is always working during our times of waiting. So we should, too.

Any Special Research You Had to Conduct?

I didn’t have to do much real research for this book. My hero is a professional soccer player who lives in the UK. I am a HUGE soccer fan, and I lived for several years in England when I was growing up.

Did You Have Any Interesting Writing Quirks/Habits While Writing this Piece?

I always like to listen to music while I write, and I like to pair my manuscript with a song or two. My songs for The Waiting were Oceans by Hillsong and Sovereign Over Us by Aaron Keyes.

What is Your Favorite Aspect of this Story and Why?

My favorite part of the story is watching both Katherine and Sam finally learn to trust God for their futures, whatever they may be. “We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps.” Proverbs 16:9

What Are Some of Your Previous Writing Experiences?

I began writing rather late in life. My debut novel, Rescuing Faith, was released in 2014. It reached number one on Amazon. Shortly afterward, I was at a season in my life where continuing to pursue publication was frustrating, so I stopped. But I kept writing until the season of my life changed.

The Waiting was my first venture back into the world of publication. My only short story, “Promises,” was featured in an anthology, Cup of Love. And my Christmas Novella, Mary’s Christmas Surprise, was released this past December.

I have another book under contract, but I don’t have a release date for it yet. The working title is Seasons of Hope.

What Projects Are You Working on Now?

Like all writers, I am always working on something. But unlike some writers, I find it challenging to work on numerous pieces at the same time. I’m afraid I’ll get my characters mixed up. Ha, ha! Currently, I have two other pieces in various states of completion. A Christmas novella I hope to have released for Christmas 2019 and a novel about overcoming childhood abuse entitled No Longer Captive.

Anything Else You Want to Add?

For me, writing is a ministry. and my prayer is that my work will speak to and encourage those who read it.

Links to Websites, Blogs, Social Media:


Facebook Page:



Thank you, Carol, for sharing about your new book! Check out The Waiting and her other projects!

Read the Excerpt Here:

“You have a question you want to ask me,” Sam whispered.

“Oh, I do? And what would that be?”

“You’re wondering why I haven’t tried to kiss you.”

Katherine’s face was on fire as she stepped away. There’s no way he could have possibly known her thoughts.

“And you think it might be because I’m not attracted to you.” He entwined his fingers with hers and then raised their clasped hands to draw her back to him. “But you’re wrong.”

“Why haven’t you tried to kiss me then? Every other man I’ve ever dated would have at least tried by now.”

“I’m not every other man.”

Meet Author Kathleen Neely!


I had the opportunity to get to know Kathleen and the latest projects that she has been working on!

I’m pleased to have the opportunity to join you today. Thank you, Kimberly, for the invitation. I love writing, so it’s a pleasure to talk about it.


About The Street Singer

Trisha Mills, a student in her final semester of law school, has fond memories of listening to the music of Adaline, a once famous recording artist. She learns that Adaline, now Adda
Marsh, is a street singer in Asheville, NC. Adda’s sole means of support in her senior years comes from the donation box. Along with her meager possessions, Adda has a box labeled, “Things to Remember.” Adda agrees to show Trisha the contents. With it comes her story. Adda reveals her journey by sharing a few items at a time, beginning as a sharecropper’s daughter in Mississippi, to fame in Nashville, and to poverty in her old age.

Trisha is busy cleaning out the home of her deceased grandfather, preparing to sit for the bar exam, and planning her wedding to Grant Ramsey. However, she cannot overlook the
injustices that Adda has experienced. Aided by Rusty Bergstrom, an attorney who will work pro bono, Trisha convinces Adda to seek restitution. Will her growing friendship with Rusty Bergstrom affect her engagement to Grant?

What Inspired You to Write this Story?

I love novels that focus on relationships, particularly inter-generational. I also enjoy reading stories that involve the legal system—lawsuits, court cases, attorneys. The Street Singer is actually my second novel, although the first to reach publication. When I finished my first novel and breathed a big sigh of relief, my mind went to work weaving storylines, building and discarding ideas, until I decided on what eventually became The Street Singer. It’s about Trisha, a final-year law student, and Adda, a once famous recording artist known as Adaline. Although it’s their story, everyone loves a little romance. That keeps things interesting.

Most people know a little bit about the legal system. I knew enough to get myself in trouble if I hadn’t consulted an expert. Actually, two experts. I reached out to an attorney who read the legal portions of my manuscript and provided feedback on my misunderstandings, then passed it along to her husband whose area of law was more closely compatible.

An interesting sub-theme shows the renovation of an older home. That research was easy for me. My husband has worked for decades in every area of home building. He walked me through each phase of the work.

What is Your Favorite Part About This Story?

My favorite aspect of The Street Singer is watching the transformation in Trisha. She set out on a mission to help Adda, but the experience changed her more than Adda.

What Projects are You Working on Now?

I have two more releases scheduled. Beauty for Ashes will be available on April 26. It’s a story of guilt, consequences, and forgiveness. Nathan, a mystery writer, attempts to deal with his guilt by writing a parallel novel. I can’t wait for you to read it.

Website, Social Media, Etc.  

Kathleen Neely resides in Greenville, SC with her husband, two cats, and one dog. She enjoys time with family, visiting her two grandsons, traveling, and reading. She is a retired elementary principal.

Among her writing accomplishments, Kathleen won second place in a short story contest through ACFW-VA for her short story “The Missing Piece” and an honorable mention for her story “The Dance”. Both were published in a Christmas anthology. Her first novel, The Least of These, was awarded first place in the 2015 Fresh Voices contest through Almost an Author. She has numerous devotions published through Christian Devotions.

Kathleen continues to speak to students about writing and publication processes. She is a member of Association of Christian Fiction Writers.



Twitter: www.Twitter@NeelyKneely3628

For a glimpse at two of my novels, visit




Welcome Back Lisa Lickel!

lisa lickel pic

I have the joy to bring back Lisa to talk about her newest book Parhelion, Book 3 in the Forces of Nature series!

What’s your background in writing?

When I first became published, I was in awe of the process. I still am to a certain extent. About the tenth or so time I was edited by various large and small publishers and had experience as an editor of magazines and book projects, I took a leap of faith to open my own doors as a freelance editor. I didn’t take on the role lightly and have made plenty of errors along the way, but the opportunity has benefitted my own work as well. I have a grand collection of editing books and even teach workshops on editing. Learning those ropes led me to learn more about publishing, and I have stepped over that line as well to publish a few of my own previously published and now, new works, and a few for other authors.

cropped parhelion cover

About Parhelion 

Parhelion—prisms dogging the sun. It’s to preserve life.

Maeve Michels hit earth hard, falling in love with a former Air Force test pilot. No longer in the military, Harry Kane’s mysterious work as a consultant for a space engineering company piques Maeve’s interest. Maeve’s sixth sense says there’s more to Harry than he’s telling her, but with the world about to fall apart, she must decide to trust him with her future. Harry is keeping a secret from Maeve—he has to, or his one chance at being a real hero goes up in flames with the rest of the planet. His assignment: get her to join the program, and him. Hopefully willingly.

With war no longer empty threats and posturing, Maeve and Harry are about to take part in the most important experiment in human history. Bigger secrets threaten not only their survival but their fragile co-existence with the cosmos.

If you could choose, what kind of a world do you want to live in?

Buy On: 


Barnes and Noble:



What Inspired You to Write this Story?

Ever since I wrote Meander Scar, published in 2010, I loved the idea of using uncommon natural phenomena to describe life events. In my family drama series, Meander Scar has to do with the ground, and the second story, Centrifugal Force, has to do with an unseen force driven by gravity. The third story, Parhelion, reaches beyond the sky, a natural progression.

Ever since I wrote Meander Scar, published in 2010, I loved the idea of using uncommon natural phenomena to describe life events. In my family drama series, Meander Scar has to do with the ground, and the second story, Centrifugal Force, has to do with an unseen force driven by gravity. The third story, Parhelion, reaches beyond the sky, a natural progression.

What Special Research Did You Do?

Okay, so I’m a nerd historian but a science fiction fan. Neither subject is something I’d ever thought I’d write as a genre because I enjoy them too much. After getting a children’s historical series and the historical pro and epilogues of one of my mystery books off the list of “nevers” what was left…seriously, it wasn’t my idea to venture off the planet. The special research I did involved living in outer space, the ramifications of travel, and a few other surprises.

What Were Some Quirks or Habits You Developing While Writing This Piece?

I’ve used DNA research heavily in a couple of other stories, and a natural plot twist at the end of Centrifugal Force ended up leading me directly into the conflict of Parhelion. I was able to pull pieces of information from the oddest sources, like unrelated books in two different book clubs—one about octopuses of all things—and from polling fellow writers at a week-long writer’s retreat where I teach each year. In fact, one of the new author attendees stopped to ask if I was all right when apparently my inner plotting looked like an expression of pain.

What is Your Favorite Aspect of This Story and Why?

I realized when I got to “the end” this story followed a pattern I’d unwittingly created in the series, which is to not quite get to the wedding. This allowed me the fun of creating a companion booklet called The Michels Girls Wedding Album which is free on my website. I wrote the missing weddings for each of the couples and included pictures of flowers, dresses, suits, rings, cakes, vows, and a link to the processional music. That was fun!

What Projects Are You Working On Now?

I am working hard to complete cozy mystery #4 in the Fancy Cat series, then will complete a short novella for next Christmas. I plan to work on UnderCut this summer and fall, a sequel to UnderStory (soon to be available as an audiobook!), about prejudice, the sex-trafficking trade, and a cold-case murder. UnderCut will deal with the human organ trade, which will need a lot of research. The books are not contracted, so no special release dates.

What Do You Enjoy Most About Writing?

I have an office! Even though I write everywhere and anywhere, even outside, on my laptop, it’s still totally cool to have an office with a desk and a twirly chair and a door.

What Do You Find To be the Most Frustrating About Writing?

I am frustrated about the aspect of marketing, as I’m sure many of us are. Even if you have a publisher who arranges publicity, there is still a lot of work to do to prepare material. I enjoy interacting with readers, but I don’t enjoy feeling like I have to badger an audience.

How Did You Overcome This?

I tell myself not to get bent out of shape about feeling like I have to ask people to give me money for work they haven’t requested. It’s entertainment, and people like to be entertained in different ways. In many ways, providing reading material is much like any other vendor who creates art hoping it will appeal to someone.

Links to Website and Social Media:

Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin author who loves books, collects dragons, and writes inspiring fiction. She also writes short stories, feature articles, and radio theater, and loves to encourage new authors through mentoring, speaking, and leading workshops. Lisa is a member of the Wisconsin Writer’s Association, the Chicago Writer’s Association, and vice president/instructor for Novel-In-Progress Bookcamp and Writing Retreat, Inc. She is an avid book reviewer and blogger, and a freelance editor. Find more at




Amazon author page:

Thank you, Kimberly, for hosting me and letting me talk about writing.

It was so nice to host Lisa, don’t forget to check out her newest book Parhelion!

Read a short excerpt of it here!

Harry cupped his hands around Maeve’s shoulders. In her sandals she was the perfect height to rest his chin on her head, but he resisted the urge tonight in front of her parents. She might get annoyed if he messed up her glossy hairdo, after claiming how long she’d had to sit for the woman who tried to make it curl. He liked it silky, flowing through his fingers.

Heat through the thin fabric of the green thing she wore soaked into his palms. So beautiful in anything he’d seen her wear. So independent, so giving. He loved watching her with the kids in the family, separated through crazy circumstances by a generation. They were all fiercely loyal to each other. And so, he respected Maeve’s need to be sure before committing to him, to the institution of marriage and their foreverness, like Werner and his bride. Harry had spent two years of watching, then wondering, and now waiting for her. He’d even met privately with Gervas and Rachel to ask their blessing. Gervas had understood and appreciated Harry’s challenging personal and professional dilemma. Maeve was the only holdup.

He hadn’t meant to love her.

The least he could do while he waited and watched was be her wall to lean on. He squeezed gently and let her go. He loved her enough to be there, yet not there, as he’d been the past two years while he finished his commitment to Uncle Sam. Twelve years for school and active duty. If that didn’t prove he was able to commit, nothing else could. Not even the secrets they’d shared of her past alternate lifestyle and his daughter bound them yet. Once he was able to share his biggest secret, the truth behind the future, would she run to or from him?

Harry watched Gervas kiss Katrine, convulsively, but gently, clutching her hands, facing working to dam tears behind his lids. Werner told him Katrine’s dad wasn’t crazy over letting Katrine out of his sight again for long, especially not moving from base to base around the world with her delicate health.

Werner was a lifer, career German military. Harry’s adjusted career path led him into the even wilder beyond and he was eager for Maeve to join him and his new life.

What did Gervas think about how far away Harry planned to take Maeve?

The old man had been called to consult on the project, of course, although Dr. Professor Gervas Friedemann, world-renown socio-economic expert, only knew part of the scope. They’d just have to deal with the distance factor when they got to it.

Harry rubbed his chin over the crown of Maeve’s head and twirled her to face him. If he and Maeve couldn’t talk to each other about the immediate future in this time and place, at least they could dance. He pulled her back out on the floor and held on as if he meant it.

Author interview: Susan Baganz

Susan Baganz is a writer and editor who is well-versed in the Christian publishing industry. Please enjoy this week’s interview with her and check out her lasusantest book, Bratwurst and Bridges.


Susan M. Baganz chases after three Hobbits and is a native of Wisconsin. Susan writes adventurous romances.

Susan speaks, teaches and encourages others to follow God in being all He has created them to be. She understands the complexities and pain of life as well as its craziness. She likes snuggling with her dog while reading a good book, or sitting with a friend chatting over a cup of spiced chai latte.

You can learn more by following her blog, her twitter feed @susanbaganz or her fan page,

Writing background, education (if applicable/ relevant)

I have a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Il. My undergrad was a double major of graduate prep psych and philosophy. Let me just say that my brains aren’t what got me through school – it was my ability to write well. That was also what enabled me to work well as a Case Manager for a Community Support Program as well as Admissions and Discharge Coordinator. We supervised chronically mentally ill adults living in the community. Again, good writing skills helped me do my job.

I started writing fiction in 2009 through National Novel Writing Month ( Fell in love and have won it eight years running (anyone who finishes 50,000 words in 30 days in November wins

Latest project- give a brief synopsis (200 words or less)

Bratwurst & Bridges


Pastor Dan Wink has suffered his greatest loss. His best friend, Sharon, died a year ago. He’s ready to walk away from ministry…and life. But the men he’s ministered to over the years won’t let him. Sometimes accountability sucks. And the redhead next door with her precocious children brings up desires he thought had died with his wife.


Sometimes, God uses our deepest pain to build bridges to His blessings.



Book excerpt

Skye agreed to meet him at a ski resort not far from Milwaukee. Old habits were sometimes good ones and for the sake of appearances, he would not ride in a car with a woman alone. Sure it might start out as nothing…but gossip and also opportunity for any kind of slip up were to be avoided. He rented boots, skis, and poles. The gal working the shop helped him get wax on the skis that was right for the snow they made. It had been a cold winter and while there was snow on the ground, fresh powder was nice, and this resort aimed to please.

Skye met him in her lavender ski outfit. “Looking good, Dan.”

“You didn’t need to go to any extra expense.”

She shook her head. “No. I was pleasantly surprised that my gear still fit after all these years. Guess that Zumba helped. How do you feel?”

“I was sore the first day, but better now. Shall we hit the bunny trail?”

“Bunny trail? Is it Easter already?” She let out a full belly laugh. She wiped a tear and grinned. “How about a beginner trail. There’s one over there with a tow lift to the top, but before I do that I should show you some basics, like how to stop, steer, and avoid getting your skis crossed.”

“Can you help me avoid hitting a tree or careening off a cliff?”

“You really don’t have to worry about cliffs on this section so we can skip that for now. As for trees? If you don’t head in their direction they will generally leave you alone.”

“Ha. Ha. Ha. Well, let’s get this done. I’m eager to try these out.”

Skye guided Dan through the basics and up the hill for the first run. “I’ll go down and you follow.”

“Are you sure I shouldn’t go first so you can pick me up?”

“I’ve already shown you how to get up if you fall down. I think you’ll be fine.”

“You’re mean.”

Skye grinned. “Good. Maybe it will keep you from getting hurt.”

“Why did you ever stop skiing?”

“I fell for a boy and got sucked into the wrong crowd. Doing anything healthy became a thing of my past. Recreation became about sex and drugs…not skiing, art, reading, or even Zumba.”

“You consider Zumba recreation?”

“I get to go dancing a few days a week without someone trying to buy me a drink or proposition me, so, yeah, I do.”

“And you get paid for it.”

“Right, without it being a strip club.” She winked at him. “Catch you at the bottom.”

What inspired you to write this story?

Pastor Dan Wink pops in and out of previous stories in the Orchard Hill series and I wanted to explore what it would be like for the attractive pastor to not only grieve his losses, but find new love—and give him an attraction from someone who might not fit the normal “pastor’s wife” image.

Any special research you had to conduct?

I didn’t have to do much research for this as I’ve served in ministry in the church and worked closely as an administrative assistant to a Senior Pastor in the past. While I haven’t lived the life of a pastor, I’m aware of how challenging it can be to be serving others when you’re limping yourself.

Interesting writing quirks/ habits while writing this piece? How did these help the story progress or increase your investment in your narrative or characters?

The hardest part of this, and one that I asked for prayer about, was wanting to be honest about the messiness and beauty of the church. I didn’t want it to be painted as a place with perfect people, but we are all at different places in our growth. But I also didn’t want the troubles that can crop up from imperfect people, to make a reader, perhaps who is not involved in a church fellowship, never want to participate.  The ultimate romance is between us and Jesus anyway.

What is your favorite aspect of this story and why?

I love how Skye is honest about her struggle to believe in God and isn’t afraid to “poke the bear” as it were, calling the handsome pastor out on his own internal hypocrisy. She’s not awed by his “title” or position – and that it even extends beyond him to call it out on someone else from church who doesn’t act in a manner that reflects Christ well. It’s fun to see how this challenge to Pastor Dan is part of what develops an attraction between the two of them.

What previous works have you done?

This is book five in The Orchard Hill series. Each book stands alone, but are even better read in order. They all take place against the backdrop of a fictional church called Orchard Hill. The stories in order are: Pesto & Potholes, Salsa & Speed Bumps, Feta & Freeways, Root Beer & Roadblocks. After Bratwurst & Bridges is Donuts & Detours (May 2018) and Truffles & Traffic (Nov. 2018). I’m working on ideas for more in the series.

What projects are you working on now?

I have another series, historical (not hysterical) called The Black Diamond Christian Gothic Regencies. Whew. Who knew the early 1800’s were not all as sweet as Jane Austin painted it? The series has a novella prequel that is currently out but will get a new cover, called The Baron’s Blunder. It will re-release with the new cover in October as will book #1 in the series, The Virtuous Viscount, to be followed quickly with Lord Phillip’s Folly. Subsequent titles due to release in 2018 are: Sir Michael’s Mayhem, Lord Harrow’s Heart and The Captain’s Conquest. While each book stands alone—there is an overarching storyline that weaves through the books and culminates in the final novel. There is a sweet Christmas Regency novella, Gabriel’s Gift, releasing this December as part of Pelican Book Group’s Christmas Extravaganza.

Any special thoughts or insights on this current process?

Sometimes I feel like a juggler – and the biggest challenge is juggling the revisions for my own stories with editing for authors I work with as part of Pelican Book Group’s imprint: Prism Book Group. Well, that and trying to get my mind in or out of the 1800’s so that the language doesn’t get mixed up. You’ll never hear someone say, “I’m OK.” In 1812!

What do you enjoy most about writing?

I’m a “panster.” I start with an inciting incident and two main characters and some idea of where I want them to be—obviously a happily-ever-after ending. I just never know exactly how they are going to get there. The process is like riding a rollercoaster for me. Once the characters take over I just write as fast as I can and buckle in for a wild ride. Writing that first draft is equally thrilling and terrifying.

What do you find to be the most frustrating about writing?

I don’t get writer’s block. I hit what I call a wall of fear. In a full-length novel there always comes a point where I’m bored. I don’t know where the story is going and my mind starts telling me things like: This is the stupidest thing you’ve ever written. It’s crap. No one is ever going to want to read this. I’ll feel like I’ve written myself into a corner. Once I acknowledge the fear, I pray and force myself to just write—even if I don’t’ know where I’m going—I’m fine. I cannot tell you, in the 18 manuscripts I’ve completed, where that spot was.

Links for Susan’s blog, website, etc.

Final thoughts?

Writing and editing is exceptionally difficult work as it is a long process and requires more time and concentration than you can imagine (if you’ve not done it). If you purchase a book you’ve helped an author tremendously. An extra blessing is if you take the time to write a review on Amazon. Even a short one helps and blesses that author. And tell others about it. Word of mouth is the best advertising we can get.


An interview with the author… Meet Mary L. Ball!

Today’s ‘Author Interview’ is with Mary L. Ball.mary ball

Mary’s latest work, Sparks of Love is available now- check it out via one of the following links:;jsessionid=EC4AC62C027E19D7A7CABB9ED827F69C.prodny_store01-atgap05?ean=2940153793764

Here’s a brief synopsis of Sparks of Love (and read on to the excerpt that follows!)

Misjudged and accused, Lynette Cunningham walks away from God and everything she loves.

Ten years later, a phone call from father offers hope when he announces he may have a clue to the unsolved crime that forced her to run. She’s scared, but encouraged. Maybe this will clear her name from slander in her small North Carolina hometown.

Before Lynette returns tragedy strikes. A fire destroys her childhood home and kills her father. While she sorts through the ruins and hopes to find the clue, Lynette meets the new pastor, Price Fletcher. She must face the two things that scare her most. The past and a man of God.

The past wants to stay buried. Will Lynette stay alive long enough to prove her innocence and accept the love that is offered?

Book exmary bookcerpt:

Footsteps crunching gravel got her attention. A man with a clipboard stepped forward from the direction of the burnt chimney. “Ms. Cunningham, name’s Bill Walter, from the fire department.”

“Yes, the sheriff told me you were coming.”

“I’ll give my final report to the sheriff.” The man studied her for a second. “You used to live in Freedom, didn’t you?”

“Yes, this is my hometown.” Another condemnation. More finger pointing. Her body tightened, and her navy canvas shoes dug into the hard earth.

“I don’t think we ran in the same circles, but we were in high school together.” Bill nodded. “I’m afraid back in school I was a bit rowdy. I did a lot of street racing.”

Lynette let out a grin as liquid relief ran through her. “I remember.  You had a black Road Runner.”

“Yep, I finally quit racing and settled down.”

“We’ve all grown, Bill.”

“I guess so.” He eyed the ground for a minute and then looked at Lynette. “Ms. Cunningham, may I talk to you?”

“Sure, but you should call me Lynette.”

Bill scuffed his foot on the ground. “I was one of the first to the scene the night of the accident. I carried your dad to safety.” He eyed the perimeter of the area. “The smoke had already done its damage, but he managed to speak.”

Bill ran his hand through his thick black hair. His work boots made him seem tall, but her five-foot-seven height evened out with him. He seemed hesitant to speak.

“Please, what did my father say?”

“Didn’t make much sense. Max uttered the words, ‘Lynette needs to find.’ Then your dad’s voice faded.”


What previous works have you done?

Escape to Big Fork Lake, Redemption in Big Fork Lake, Stone of Destiny, A Love Valley Christmas, and four more titles. All of my novellas are on my Amazon  page.

What projects are you working on now?

I’m in the process of fine tuning a Thanksgiving story for my publisher.

Any special thoughts or insights on this current process?

I’d like to share the blurb with your readers.

                                                                          Thanksgiving Secret

 A secret has a life of its own.

 Matthew Blake left home in search of fame. Years later, writer’s block threatens his career. He returns to his roots hoping to rejuvenate his creative juices and meets Lucinda Wise. Unknown to Matt, he’s involved in a mystery, that is soon to be unearthed.

 Lucinda rents her tiny house to Matt. Despite his self-centered ways, she finds herself enjoying his company and sharing her faith with him, but timing is everything. She’s dedicated her life to her five-year-old daughter and will do anything to keep her safe.

Matt discovers that Lucinda is the partaker of a secret that will change his life forever. Can he accept that God’s plan for his future is the right one?

Release date set?

Yes, Nov.2017

Links for Mary’s blog, website, etc.

Final thoughts…

Kimberly, thank you for having me on your blog. It’s my prayer that everyone has a wonderful summer.

Thanks for joining us on the blog, Mary L. Ball! We’re all excited about your latest works and wish you the best of success!

If you enjoyed this ‘Author Interview’, stay tuned! We’ll have more interviews in the future.