Archive for June, 2019

BLOGWORDS – 29 June 2019 – NEWSLETTER – a little birdie told me

29 June 2019                                                                                                                                                                              Edition XI



Roll Call


HALLLOOO!!! Tell me who you are and where you’re at!


The Bird House Book Club


What I am / have been reading!

The Baggage Handler by David Rawlings

The Governess of Penwythe Hall by Sarah E. Ladd

Match Me if You Can by Krista Phillips

The Memory House by Rachel Hauck

Weddings, Willows, and Revised Expectations by V. Joy Palmer

The Knight in Battered Armor by Brianna Tibbetts

The Girl Who Would Be Queen by Jane Ann McLachlan

Parhelion by Lisa Lickel

Belinda Blake and the Snake in the Grass by Heather Gilbert

Just Look Up by Courtney Walsh

The Heart Changer by Jarm Del Boccio

Uncharted Destiny by Keely Brooke Keith

The Noble Guardian by Michelle Griep

Oath of Honor by Lynette Eason

The King’s Mercy by Lori Benton

The Lost Castle by Kristy Cambron

Risking Love by Toni Shiloh

No Ocean Too Wide by Carrie Turansky

Live Without You by Sarah Grace Grzy

Until the Mountains Fall by Connilyn Cossette

The Crossing at Cypress Creek by Pam Hillman currently reading

What are you reading?


Friends of Authors Society

Who knows the best way to show your love for your favorite authors? (I’m one, right? Your favorite?) Besides the obvious of buying and reading my books, leaving a review on Amazon tickles their calculations and formulas and moves my books up in their ranks, which in turn means more peeps see my books, which means more peeps are likely to buy them.

There are other things you can do, as well. Suggest my books to your library or book club. Tell your friends, buy gift copies to give to your friends. Heck, tell ME how much you love ‘em!


Robin’s Readers Flock


Facebook group just for my reader friends!

I appreciate every one who has read or will read my books, and this group is for you!

“This group, as with my blog and website—and my writing—are all about community and family. It is a place to gather to chat and discuss my books, but also to become better acquainted and to encourage and pray for one another.”

I share snippets and tidbits that I don’t share elsewhere, as well as first previews of cover design. And when I’m stuck, I go to the Flock for help.

If you’re interested, gimme a holla! I’d love to have you as part of my Flock!


Robin’s Nest, Stories by Design

I was working hard to have the blog back to full steam with all my daily features in place. Alas, I haven’t been able to keep up with the blog—and have time (or stamina) for writing. The new series was floundering miserably, and I had to make the sad decision to suspend some blog features indefinitely. I enjoy all my features, and hope to revive the absent ones—What’s Cookin’ in Your Kitchen, Wreading Wednesday, and First Line Friday—when I’m back on my game.


FourSquare, the Series


Finally making some headway! #jumpsupanddownlikeafiveyearold Seriously, I’m ecstatic to be back in story world again. And getting to know this new cast of people.

Silly me, I thought I’d try my hand at a lighter tone, a more fun set of stories. My brain apparently, won’t let me do that. What I had thought to insert as social issues or causes that each of the main characters in some way supported has turned into trauma that they have experienced. For instance, Zach and Alex (The Author and the Gentleman, Book 4) are both teachers and they advocate against bullying, something they deal with in a regular basis. Turns out, one or both of them was bullied as a child, which prompted them to their chosen careers…


Book 1, One for the Price of Two, is well underway, nearing the half-way mark and Part II of the book. * see blurb below.


FourSquare, the Covers

I have the covers for all four books laid out; it’s how I do this series cover thing. I’ve purchased the images of the models—and a surprise for One for Two—and am working on the background images. And blurbs.


One for the Price of Two – The Blurb

            * subject to change

Twin sisters Elizabeth and Meredith Elliott are so identical their own parents can’t even tell them apart. Two halves of a whole.


Elizabeth, the more cautious of the two, reining in her sister’s impetuous side. Meredith, the more daring, urging Elizabeth to step beyond her comfort zone.


Elizabeth and Meredith walked in each other’s shadow; it’s what they did. Until the unthinkable happened—they both became uncomfortable, unfulfilled being the other’s mirror personality. They both begin to seek a world without the other. Most especially when love shows up for both of them.

But when heartbreak befalls one of them—while the other’s heart and arms are fulfilled—will it drive a wedge between them?


All in the Family

Shared this in a couple of groups on Facebook the other day—

I’ve realized a couple of things in recent weeks. First, though I was diagnosed with RA in 2010 (and have had the disease for at least 10 or 12 years) my brain is only just now accepting that I am, in fact, ill. I have tried to maintain some degree of “normal,” but my body just isn’t.
Second, it occurred to me the other day (while watching a friend’s 20 year old daughter vacuum for me… ) that I am grieving the loss of what I can no longer do…
I know, of course, that Father heals, have experienced it more than once. But He also holds us in our weakness, and uses medical science betimes in our sickness. (to wit, I’ve had total knee replacement on both knees.)
Going forward, I need physical help, but also emotional / mental and spiritual comfort to come to terms with my limitations…


I still don’t have a car. Being on Disability, it’s not in the budget to make loan payments, so I have a GoFundMe Campaign set up. Please pop over and take a look, and help if you can.



A robin with clipped wings is a sad thing indeed.


Mancub #1

Doug started a new job in May of last year, and has gotten not one, but two—count ‘em, TWO—promotions (with raises) in the past couple of months. I am so thrilled for him, and proud beyond words. This mama’s heart, however, is a wee bit torn—he is moving 400 miles away!! It’s going to take some getting used to being so far away. BUT, that gives me an excuse to travel—and visit peeps near where he will be living!!!  #WAYTOGO, Dougie!! #PROUDMAMA


Mancub #2

Russell, will be riding in the Ride for a Cure again this summer. The link for anyone who would care to donate (or share) is:






Maggie has talked about it for years, has made a couple false starts, but she is once again talking about finding a way to go back to school to pursue her dream of being a nurse.




Given my health issues of late, I am leaning on God to carry me through this haze. For answers and solutions.

Regardless of my physical limitations, my heart and my spirit abide in Him, and He sustains me.





Manifesto and Author Tag

The manifesto short version is,

“Stories for Christians to see or remember the ugly effects of the lies of the enemy, and for unbelievers to see the beauty of the Truth of the Word of God.”




And my author tag:


“the battle for identity, one story at a time.”



Chatcha’ll next time.

Got questions? Email me at robinemason212@gmail.com.

Here endeth Edition XI of

Thank you for subscribing!














“the battle for identity, one story at a time”



A Little Birdie Told Me, #newsletter, Roll Call, Bird House Book Club, Friends of Authors Society, Robin’s Readers Flock, FourSquare, the Series, One for the Price of Two, All in the Family, Devotional, Manifesto and Author Tag


Read Full Post »



“A novel place to fall in love.”





Congratulations to


Marion will be in touch with you to send your gift!

Thanks to everyone who entered!




USA Today bestselling author, Marion Ueckermann’s passion for writing was sparked when she moved to Ireland with her family. Her love of travel has influenced her contemporary inspirational romances set in novel places. Marion and her husband again live in South Africa, but with two gorgeous grandsons hanging their hats at the house next door, their empty nest’s no longer so empty.











A Time for Everything

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:

a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give  up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.”  Ecclesiastes Chapter 3


Marion is giving away an e-copy of Remember Me, book 1 of our new Chapel Cove Romances.



“Some relationships are like this pot of Gloop—the color fades and they’re just one sticky mess. And some are a sticky mess even when they’re bright and new.”


#Blogwords, Chat Thursday, Author Interview, Marion Ueckermann, Giveaway Winner, #WINNER

Read Full Post »




“Speaking and Writing From the Heart”


“I love to write devotions, to seek after the deeper side of Christ and to share the lessons He teaches me from life in the hills of East Tennessee. I am a writer. A speaker. A lover of God’s Word and friend to all.”


Please join me in giving a feathered welcome to Cindy Sproles.



Cake or Cookies Cookies

Call or Text Call

Dogs or Cats  Both

Eggs or Pancakes Eggs

Facebook or Twitter  Facebook

Paperback or Kindle  Paperback

Thornton or Darcy  Darcy

Yoga Pants or Jeans  Jeans

rem:  Hullo Cindy, and welcome to my little nest. Tell us a little about yourself. Where were you raised? Where do you live now?

CINDY:  I’m a mountain girl. Born and raised in the mountains of East Tennessee. There’s no place like home – I’m still here.

rem:  I’m a mountain gal, too, and don’t get to go nearly enough! Tell us three random things about yourself no one knows.

CINDY:  That’s hard. I’m pretty much an open book. But hum…1) I like dumplins for breakfast  2) I love The Curse of Oak Island  3) I want to do a zipline.

rem:  I could go for dumplins for breakfast! And I’m up for a zip line—shall we go together? Do you have a favorite Bible verse? And why is it a favorite?

CINDY:  Is. 40:31 – but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

It’s my favorite because it is pure hope and faith in the Lord. He will renew my strength. I’ll soar on wings like the eagles. Imagine running and not growing weary, walking and never growing faint. What a scripture of hope. I love this.


rem:  As one who struggles with fatigue and weakness, I surely cling to that verse. What is your favourite quotation and why?

CINDY:  “I always get to where I’m going by walking away from where I have been.” Winnie the Pooh

A.A. Milne has to be one of the wisest people who has ever lived. The words he wove together for Winnie the Pooh are filled with an amazing childlike wisdom and truth. I love this quote. We can never move ahead until we move on.

rem:  Love me some Pooh Bear. What’s the most random thing in your bag or on your desk?

CINDY:  A glass nail file. It’s the best thing ever and my most random thing in my bag.

rem:  It’s certainly unusual! If you could spend an evening with a fictional character, who would it be and why?

CINDY:  Believe it or not. . .Tom Sawyer. I’d love to get inside that head of his – this sneaky, fun, mischievous kid. What fun.


rem:  Mischievous indeed! What fun to discover the why’s of what makes him tick. What do you think is significant about Christian fiction?  How has being a novelist impacted your relationship with Christ?

CINDY:  We need good wholesome writing in our world today. What we don’t need is preachy Christian writing. rem: AMEN!  I believe Christian writers need to slow down writing to the choir and start writing good, wholesome stories to the general market. The thing is, we have to put on a different hat and keep in mind, most readers in the general market don’t know Christ. Preaching is not the way to reach them, rather, wholesome characters that make good decisions and . . .well . . .bad decisions and we see how they suffer the consequence but they find that offer of hope.  rem: SO MUCH YES!!


My relationship with Christ is stronger. I’m learning to let go of what I THINK I should write and let God lead me. The result is stories that allow characters to find hope even if things don’t work out the way we think they should.


(FYI – general market readers say Christian writers are cheesy. Why do you suppose that is? Hint: One general market reader said, “Life doesn’t work out perfectly MOST of the time.” We need to learn to write life as it is and allow non-believers see we make mistakes too, but the difference is, we have hope in Christ.

rem:  Oh, Cindy, I so agree with you wholeheartedly and 100%! When reading, what makes or breaks a story for you? Your fiction pet peeve?

CINDY:  I close a book down in the first two pages if there is nothing happening. There are a lot of writers with the ability to write beautiful scenes, but all the beautiful words in the world mean nothing, if it doesn’t go somewhere.

rem:  What are you reading right now?

CINDY:  The Complete Stories of Flannery O’Conner by Flannery O’Conner; Running on Red Dog Road by Drema Berkhimer; and Ordinary Graces by Lucinda Seacrest McDowell.

rem:  I love this bit from your bio, “I am an encourager and some tell me…this is to a fault.” I am an encourager, too. What evidence do your ‘accusers’ have? And why is it a “fault?”

CINDY:  I believe it’s because I do believe in the good in people and sadly, encouragers are often let down or hurt when those we encourage refuse to move

rem:  Yes, it truly can be such a crushing blow. One of your speaking topics is, “Draw from the Well of Living Water.” What can you share of this topic?

CINDY:  We are offered living water by Jesus. Unfortunately, many times we never take advantage of the freedom and peace found in this living water. When I speak on this topic we delve into the reasons why we refuse the blessing of living water. Often it’s pride. . .we think we are the fix all and many times we fall hard because we can’t or won’t accept the freedom of Christ through the living water He offers. Have you accepted any lately?

rem:  I have, yes, and am continually reminding myself to look more to Him. That said, I have come to a place in my life that, with very little exception, I live in His peace. You are a speaker and an author. How much do they overlap and which do you prefer?

CINDY:  I prefer writing. But I love to speak. If you are a writer, you have to learn to be a speaker and if you are a speaker, you have to learn to be a writer. The two go hand in hand. I am a storyteller, so speaking comes very natural for me. I have tons of stories from my Appalachian childhood and our fun and sometimes quirky family. I draw from my mountain heritage to write and to speak. I prefer to craft a story and let my imagination fly. It’s freeing for me and joyful. But speaking is fun too because we get the immediate interaction.

rem:  Tell us a little about your writing journey.

CINDY:  I’m a late bloomer. I didn’t start writing seriously until my children were grown. I chose that route because I wanted my attention to be focused on my boys as they grew. I did write but not seriously. When they graduated high school, I dug in and began to learn the craft of writing. I attended writers conferences, learned what I could from those who’d walked the road ahead of me. It was six years from the time I wrote my first novel until I was traditionally published. I chose to wait for traditional publication because I knew when I finally received a contract, it would be because my hard work paid off. I’d have learned the craft well enough that a publisher said yes. Every book I write, I offer back to God. My request to God is, “Lord, please let me be a writer. The work and the glory will be yours.”  He has answered my prayers with two best selling, award-winning novels and a third on the way in June of 2020. Pray and offer your work back to the One who has gifted you and things will be successful.

rem:  What a lovely tribute to the One Who anoints us with the gift of writing in the first place. What are your biggest encouragement for new authors?

CINDY:  There’s no harm in getting bloody knees. Cheer when you receive a rejection. It’s just a rung on the ladder to publication. We need to learn to wait, to be patient. God is grooming us for a time such as this. My encouragement would be – Don’t grow discouraged. Your time will come with hard work and patience.

rem:  I’ve seen the list that goes around with familiar names—and the number of times they were rejected before finding success and becoming famous. How do you choose your characters’ names?

CINDY:  I look for good solid mountain names. Since I write Appalachian historical, names are vital. They speak to the culture. I try to match names according to the personality I see my characters have. In the first few chapters, I’ve been known to change names numerous times.

rem:  Do you think of the entire story before you start writing?

CINDY:  No. I’m a pantser. And my stories are character driven. So I have a hint in my mind where to start and how I want to end…but the in between happens as my characters come alive.

rem:  Yup, me too!! My characters start talking to me, and I know generally where the story will end up, but how it gets there is entirely up to, uh, them. Tell us a little about your latest book? What is your current project?

CINDY: My next book releases from Revell in June of 2020. It too, is Appalachian historical and it’s titled What Momma Left Behind . It’s the story of a young woman who began taking in children on the mountain after their parents died from the fever (aka the flu). Her name is Worie Dresser. (How’s that for a mountain name? rem: LOVE IT! ) Worie takes on the task of feeding and caring for the orphaned children – she in essence begins one of the first orphanages in the mountains of East Tennessee.


My current work, is a book called Coal Black Lies, it takes place in the mines of Southwest Virginia and upper East Tennessee. It’s about the lies, those little white lies, we tell ourselves to justify our wrongs. I’m excited about this because it’s my first novel from a male POV.

rem:  How intriguing is that! What is YOUR favorite part about the book or why do you love this book? Why should we read it?

CINDY:  I can’t wait for What Momma Left Behind to release. There are so many children in our country without families. I know a few families who have become foster parents and then adopted. It’s such a joy to see these children find homes. Every child deserves a joyful childhood. Whether they are adopted or fostered. We can make a difference by sharing our homes and our love. READ IT! You’ll see the importance of giving of yourself.

rem:  Please give us the first page of the book.

CINDY:  What Momma Left Behind – By Cindy K. Sproles


But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.…Matthew 19:14 KJV



1877 – Sourwood Mountain, Tennessee


            “They was nothin I could do for her. Her eyes was fixed on the sky and she never moved again. Despite me shakin her, she was gone.”

            Ely slipped his worn hat from his head and pressed it hard against his chest. “Miss Worie, thangs is what they is. Ain’t nothin you coulda done.” 

            The spring breeze whipped my hair around my face brushin the clay trail of tears from my cheek.

            Just the day before Momma was hangin clothes on the line and singin. “Worie, I got something to show you.” She said.

            “Is it a surprise?”

            She stopped and run her knuckles gently across my cheek. “No, it’s a secret.” Her fingers pushed against her lips. “Shhhh, it’s a secret for you to know. Nobody else.”

            Ely shoved a flat rock into the soft clay. “This’ll mark her ‘til we can make her a cross like your daddy’s.”

            “I never knew what a chore it was to bury a person.” I dropped to my knees and gingerly swept the clots of dirt to one side, smoothin the mound that covered Momma. I wasn’t sure if I was to be angry or hurt. Either way, my heart was achin.

            Ely grunted. “Uh huh. Tis a chore. But you was smart to drop that quilt over her. Kept the buzzards away whilst we dug that hole.” He placed his hat back in its spot, pushin his dark, tight curls from beneath. I stared at Ely, skin blacker than the rock coal Daddy would bring home from time to time. He was a good friend. Stood by Momma and Daddy through thick and thin.

            The sun peeked through the newly formed leaves of the old Oak tree, castin a shine on ever one of those curls that boasted around Ely’s ears. “You’re startin to look a little shabby there Ely.” I smacked at a curl.

            He busted into a guffaw that shook ever bone in his body. “Yous always make a man laugh, Miss Worie. Even now, in the shadow of your own troubles.”

            “Lordy, Lordy. Like you said, it is what it is. Ain’t my fault. Least ways I hope not. But I don’t understand Ely. I did ever thing Momma ever told me. Never give her no reason to pull such a stunt. I thought my bein good would make up for the boys.”

            “You stop right there, girl. Ever man makes his own choices. Calvin chose his swindlin and connivin. Justice made his bed with a bottle of hooch. Them ain’t your doins. And I feel right sure Miss Louise was proud of you. Ain’t many young girls would choose stayin home to help their momma over bein a wife and mother.”

            I lay across the mound of dirt and commenced to sob. Long hard wails. Ely stood solid by me, bendin down ever once in a while to pat my shoulder.

            It wasn’t long before the buzzards went to squawlin over head. “Git way!” I hollered. “Go on. Can’t you see we buried Momma.”

rem:  Oh, Cindy, I’m crying here. What is one take-away from your book(s) that you hope readers identify with?

CINDY:  The take away is forgiveness and also that we all deserve to be loved.

rem:  Yes, we all do. Anything you’d like to add?

CINDY:  Thanks for having me. I hope your readers will dig into my Appalachian Historical books. They are unlike anything you’ve read before.

Mercy’s Rain (Kregel Publications)

Liar’s Winter  (Kregel Publications)

Coming in June 2020 – What Momma Left Behind (Revell)

rem:  I know I can’t wait to read them! Cindy, thank you so much for chatting with us at my little nest today!










Cindy is offering a copy of Liar’s Winter OR Mercy’s Rain, e-book, or a paperback copy to a US reader.

Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Giveaway will begin at 12:oo A.M. on Thursday 27 June and end at 12:oo A.M  on Thursday 4 July. Giveaway is subject to the policies found on Robin’s Nest.




“God first, family second and career third (Thank you Mary Kay Ash for such wisdom.)”

“I am an encourager and some tell me…this is to a fault.”


#Blogwords, Chat Thursday, Author Interview and Giveaway, Cindy Sproles

Read Full Post »





Between the years of 1869 to 1939 more than 100,000 poor British children were sent across the ocean to Canada with the promise of a better life. Those who took them in to work as farm laborers or household servants were told they were orphans–but was that the truth?

After the tragic loss of their father, the McAlister family is living at the edge of the poorhouse in London in 1908, leaving their mother to scrape by for her three younger children, while oldest daughter, Laura, works on a large estate more than an hour away. When Edna McAlister falls gravely ill and is hospitalized, twins Katie and Garth and eight-year-old Grace are forced into an orphans’ home before Laura is notified about her family’s unfortunate turn of events in London. With hundreds of British children sent on ships to Canada, whether truly orphans or not, Laura knows she must act quickly. But finding her siblings and taking care of her family may cost her everything.
Andrew Fraser, a wealthy young British lawyer and heir to the estate where Laura is in service, discovers that this common practice of finding new homes for penniless children might not be all that it seems. Together Laura and Andrew form an unlikely partnership. Will they arrive in time? Will their friendship blossom into something more?
Inspired by true events, this moving novel follows Laura as she seeks to reunite her family and her siblings who, in their darkest hours, must cling to the words from Isaiah: “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God”.




Bestselling Inspirational Romance Author Carrie Turansky writes historical and contemporary novels and novellas set in England and the US. She has won the ACFW Carol Award, the Holt Medallion, and the International Digital Award. Readers say her stories are: “Heartwarming and inspiring! I couldn’t put it down!” . . . “Touching love story. It captured me from the first page! Rich characters, beautifully written” . . . “My new favorite author!” Visit her website and sign up for her email newsletter at Carrie Turansky.com. Follow Carrie on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.







This right here is why I love historical fiction for!

Ms. Turansky has pulled pages from history and wrapped them in a poignant and heartrending story! I have known about orphans of the era from the likes of Oliver Twist and Sara Crewe (one of my favorite childhood stories) but I had never heard of British children’s homes sending children to Canada.

The rigidness of the homes, the indifference of the matrons, the inflexibility of the rules—all worked against the welfare and better interest of the children.

Ms. Turansky’s storyline was most revealing and disheartening. That Katie and Garth and Grace were not orphaned had no bearing on their treatment or their plight. The obstacles their sister, Laura, faced at every turn broke my heart—and infuriated me.

Some of the dialogue didn’t seem true to the era, but the details—letters sent via post (no text messages and phone calls) the constraints of society, the broad gap between aristocracy and the lower class—made this story authentic and pulled this reader in.

I look forward to Garth and Grace’s stories.







I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.



#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, No Ocean Too Wide, Carrie Turansky

Read Full Post »








Congratulations to


Sarah will be in touch with you to send your gift!

Thanks to everyone who entered!





Sarah Sundin is a bestselling author of historical novels, including The Sky Above Us and The Sea Before Us. Her novel The Sea Before Us is a finalist for the 2019 Reader’s Choice Award from Faith, Hope, and Love, When Tides Turn and Through Waters Deep were named to Booklist’s “101 Best Romance Novels of the Last 10 Years,” and Through Waters Deep was a finalist for the 2016 Carol Award and won the INSPY Award. A mother of three, Sarah lives in California and enjoys speaking for church, community, and writers’ groups.










Sarah is offering a copy of her novel, The Sky Above Us, winner’s choice of paperback or CD audiobook.



#Blogwords, New Week New Face, Guest Post, Sarah Sundin, Giveaway Winner, #WINNER

Read Full Post »




Genre—Why You Write What You Write


Everything in the room, from the stiffly starched crocheted doilies on the side tables, to the ancient iron used as a doorstop, reminded me of Grandma’s house. If I concentrated really hard, I could almost hear the tick of the grandfather clock; the contented cluck of hens; the stamp of horses’ hooves in their stalls.

My breath is bated as I read the words on the page, igniting still more memories. I love to read historical novels. I enjoy researching days gone by, but most of all, I love remembering my childhood. Those days, lived among some of the sweetest folks on earth, who’d endured things like world wars, the Great Depression, and the dustbowl years. They went from horse-drawn buggies to Cadillac convertibles, or maybe something less imposing, like a Plymouth Fury.


Conversations sweep through my memories, of hardship and near defeat. Losses that made me wonder how they had ever gone on living. My grandma told of standing over her husband’s grave, four small children clinging to her, after losing him to a gunshot wound. She seldom spoke of the circumstances of that event, but I relive it whenever I read a similar scene in a novel.


This is the reason I write historical fiction. I’m recreating conversations and events of my growing-up years. I like to craft a scene that steals your breath for the ache of unrequited love and settling for someone who was there rather than live the rest of her life alone. Or, better yet, finding that perfect someone who almost seems too good to be true and couldn’t possibly love me…umm…I mean, my main character, of course.

Oh, the beauty of such a scene. Oh, the pure joy of writing it. Overcome with emotion, I’m swiping tears as I type with shaky fingers. Yes, that kind of scene. When I read an old letter, or hear a story told, my imagination kicks into gear. Sometimes, all it takes is a page from a census record as I read the names of those living in a household. Why were their surnames different? Were they lodgers, in-laws, or a married son or daughter and their spouse?


Inspiration comes at the oddest moments. I’m standing in the buffet line at a meeting and a fellow member mentions a name I hadn’t heard in years. “Whatever happened to him?” The speaker was eager to tell the tale, complete with embellishments, I’m sure. I smile as I listen, but my curiosity is piqued. I must go home and google it. Research is in order.


In my quest for knowledge, I stumbled upon an interesting tidbit. One of my great-great grandfathers (or was it great-great-great?) was a Union sympathizer, living in Missouri during the Civil War. Don’t you know his life was out of the comfort zone? I found a picture of him. He had black hair and a black beard shot through with wide streaks of white or silver. The beard extended to his beltline. His son looked like a cowboy. He wore a ten-gallon hat. The facts told junior left Missouri and settled in the Texas Panhandle.


Oh, the tales they could tell if they could still talk. My research left a lot of blank spaces. I wanted to know, so of course, my writer’s mind kicked into gear and created a fantastic story between those blanks. Someday, I really must write that one.


In the meantime, I’ve written the historical Legacy series, three books set in subsequent eras. Amelia’s Legacy takes place in the 1920’s, Carlotta’s Legacy, the 1930’s, and Rebecca’s Legacy, the 1940’s (personal favorite at this point). I’ve recently finished the Kinsman Redeemer series, also historical. Annabelle’s Ruth tells a “Ruth-like” story, set in the 1950’s. Sutter’s Landing is the sequel, and the final book is Annabelle’s Joy. This series is set in West Tennessee, where I spent a good bit of my childhood. Annabelle’s Joy is set for release in August 2019.


As the August release approaches, I’m pretty sure my publisher will lower prices on the first two books in the Kinsman Redeemer series. If you’ve never read them, leave me a comment here for a chance to win the Kindle version of both books (Annabelle’s Ruth & Sutter’s Landing).


If you’d like to stay up with my latest news, you can sign up for my newsletter on my blog—I love to give away stuff there. You may also “like” my Facebook author page or follow me at the usual places to keep up with my releases. You’ll find all the details in my bio.



Betty Thomason Owens loves being outdoors. Her favorite season is spring, when she can work in the yard or take long walks while thinking through a troublesome scene in one of her stories. She considers herself a word-weaver, writing stories that touch the heart. She leads the Louisville Area ACFW group, serves on the board of the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference, and is a co-founder of the multi-author Inspired Prompt blog. Married forty-four years, she’s a mother of three, and a grandmother of eight. A part-time bookkeeper at her day-job, she writes for Write Integrity Press, and has eight novels in publication. You can learn more about her at BettyThomasonOwens.com.










“If you think you can come back here and throw yourself on my mercy, you are quite wrong.”

After their husbands perish in a fishing boat accident, Connie Cross determines to follow her mother-in-law, Annabelle, from Southern California to Tennessee. Her misgivings begin as they cross the bridge over the muddy Mississippi River. In their new town, where living conditions are far below their previous expectations, they must set up a household and hunt for work to survive. Thanks to the kindness of Annabelle’s handsome, young cousin, life begins to settle down. But Connie has a secret that could uproot them once again.

Inspired by the Book of Ruth, Annabelle’s Ruth is a 1950’s era “Ruth” story, set in western Tennessee.  How will Connie adapt to her new life amid the cotton farms, racial tension, and culture shock?



Betty is giving away ebook copies (Kindle version) of Annabelle’s Ruth and Sutter’s Landing to one winner.

Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Giveaway will begin at 12:00 A.M. on Monday 24 June and end at 12:00 A.M. on Monday I July. Giveaway is subject to the policies found on Robin’s Nest.




#Blogwords, New Week New Face, #NWNF, Guest Post and Giveaway, Betty Thomason Owens

Read Full Post »





Nikki lives with a perfect trifecta of noes. No guys. No dates. No way. After years of keeping men at bay, Nikki Gordon has it down to a science. No one, not even the sweet, hunky Shorty Smalls can change her mind. Period. So if she’s got it all figured out, why does her heart sink to her toes when she sees Shorty with another woman? Read Risking Love today and see what happens when you risk your heart to the care of a good man.




Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and Christian fiction writer. Once she understood the powerful saving grace thanks to the love of Christ, she was moved to honor her Savior. She writes to bring Him glory and to learn more about His goodness.

She spends her days hanging out with her husband and their two boys. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the president of the ACFW Virginia Chapter.

You can find her at http://tonishiloh.wordpress.com






I don’t do pushy, and I don’t do confrontation, and I have an issue with people who are and do. That said, Nikki‘s mom only has her best interest at heart, but I still bristled when she got ALL up in Nikki’s business!

Nikki’s got her reasons for her trifecta rule, and she doesn’t need anybody challenging her on it. But it seems her own heart is the loudest challenger. And Shorty Smalls is the object of the challenge. The louder her heart is, the more patient—and perfect—Shorty seems to her wounded soul.

Ms. Shiloh handles the delicate topic of Nikki’s past in the best possible way—prayer. While keeping the tone of the book light, neither does she gloss over what happened, bringing Nikki through the maze of healing and recovery. Nikki’s actions—running away, building a protective wall, even to the exclusion of those she loved, denying herself the love she craves—are all true to the mind of a victim.

Nikki’s journey to healing was authentic, if forced sometimes for the sake of the story. But the patience Shorty showed gave her the safety net she needed.

This reviewer appreciated Ms. Shiloh’s handling of the subject, and Nikki’s honest and real feelings after the fact.






I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.


#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Risking Love, Toni Shiloh,  

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

Brett Armstrong

It's about writing and doing good with the inspiration God gives me.

All-of-a-kind Mom

Just some thoughts from my daily life...

Angela K Couch

making history and fiction fall in love

R.M. Almeida

A Writer's Story

Wholehearted Women

Come and let Jesus awaken the warrior within you!

Code Crispy Blog

Immerse~ Enlighten~ Inspire

Kayla Lowe

Christian romance author/Editor/Freelance writer


a blog for books

The Tales of Missus P.

little adventures of me


just a gal doing life, a step at a time, with hope, love and faith

Zoe M. McCarthy

Distraction to Attraction, Magnetic Romances Between Opposites

Cover To Cover Cafe

Feed Your Need To Read

Author Kari Trumbo

Swoony heroes and heartfelt romance

It's a Buzz World

The Crazy Story of our Life

Fiction Aficionado

The power of fiction, the beauty of words, and the God who made us to wield them for His glory.

Inspired by Life ... and Fiction

Novelists bound by the pen, sisterhood, & more


Keeping Things Simple with Jesus