And the winners are…

Wow! It’s been a busy Christmas and New Year, but not it’s time to announce some winners from the past few giveaways. First of all, thank you to everyone who stopped by and showed their support for my author friends. We all appreciate you!

And now, without further ado, here are the winners:

Winds of Wyoming by Becky Lyles – Amada Chavez

Grace, Miracles, and Chocolate by Marriott Cole – Kay M.

The Love Walk by Amanda Beth – Kelly H.

A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California by Keli Gwyn – Lilly

Thank you to everyone who entered. The authors will be contacting you soon.

And thank you to Becky, Marriott, Amanda Beth, and Keli for being my guests!

If you are looking to win my book Hailee, Book #3 in my Montana Skies Historical Romance Series, check out the Christian Book Review Blog at http://christianbookreviewblog.blogspot.com/2013/01/author-interview-and-giveaway-hailee-by.html where a copy is being given away to one lucky winner. But hurry! Contest ends January 19, 2013!

 

 

 

Advertisements

Interview and Giveaway with Author Becky Lyles!

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas! I have one more giveaway for the year. I’ve been having issues with properly accessing my account, so I’ve had to delay the announcement of the winners for the past couple of giveaways, but no fear! I promise to randomly choose those winners and announce them soon.  Until then, enjoy this newest giveaway with featured guest, Becky Lyles!

Becky is the author of Winds of Wyoming. I haven’t yet read this book, but it sounds intriguing!  Below is the blurb:

RCLyles CoverFresh out of a Pennsylvania penitentiary armed with a marketing degree, Kate Neilson heads to Wyoming anticipating an anonymous new beginning as a guest-ranch employee. A typical twenty-five-year-old woman might be looking to lasso a cowboy, but her only desire is to get on with life on the outside—despite her growing interest in the ranch owner. When she discovers a violent ex-lover followed her west, she fears the past she hoped to hide will trail as close as a shadow and imprison her once again.

And now, let’s meet the author behind the book…Hello Becky! Thank you for being my guest. What was your inspiration behind your latest book? My inspiration for writing Winds of Wyoming came late one night as I drove home from team-leading a Bible study at an Arizona women’s prison. Each time I visited the prison, I was struck by the similarities between the incarcerated women and myself. In the same way I loved my family, they loved theirs and longed to see and hold them, especially their children. We also had in common everyday struggles with relationships, forgiveness, transparency, obedience, health, finances, faith, and so much more.

For several years, I’d been trying to write about a woman who left the east coast to start a new life in Wyoming, where I grew up. But I could never come up with a strong enough motive for the move to create a plausible plotline. While driving through the dark desert that night, I realized challenges ex-offenders face when they return to society could provide the basis for my heroine’s obstacles. As believers, freed prisoners have the power of Christ to help them walk the narrow road; however, past failures and corrupt friends still haunt them and fight to drag them back to their former lifestyles. Kate Neilson’s story is one of a young ex-felon learning to live a new life in a new place as a forgiven daughter of the King.

Wow! I love the inspiration behind your book, Becky! Can you expound on the Christian message contained in Winds of Wyoming? One of my favorite scriptures is Romans 15:13 – “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Hope is a key theme in the book, as are transparency and forgiveness.

becky lylesSince we’re on the topic, what is your favorite book of the Bible? Wow, choosing a favorite book of the Bible is tough! Maybe I’ll narrow it down to Esther in the Old Testament and Philippians in the New Testament. I love the story aspect of Esther, the intrigue, the twists and turns, the astounding miracles, and God’s invisible presence behind every line. Philippians is short and simple yet contains so much wisdom and guidance. I rely on many of the verses for daily living, like 4:6 – “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” and 4:13 – “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Verse six of chapter one provided hope and power to endure through an especially difficult birth process: “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

I, too, love the books of Esther and Philippians. And now, while we’re on the subject of favorites” what is your favorite Scripture Verse? Yikes, another tough choice! One verse I really like is this NLT version of Exodus 34:14: “He is a God who is passionate about His relationship with you.”

This question is so much fun to ask…what charity you would found if you were suddenly given 1 million dollars? I’d like to provide homes, jobs and healthcare for families and orphans around the world who have to live in garbage dumps and scavenge through the refuse as their way of earning an income.

Wow! Excellent charity! And lastly, Becky, where readers can find you on the web?

Website:http://www.beckylyles.com

Email: beckylyles@beckylyles.com

Facebook: Rebecca Carey Lyles

Twitter: @BeckyLyles

Blog: widgetwords.wordpress.com

Is there anything else you’d like to add? I’m in the midst of edits for the Winds of Wyoming sequel titled Winds of Freedom and scheduled to release next spring. Here’s a blurb about some of the characters:

Four women fight for freedom and wholeness—for themselves and each other. Kate Neilson’s own loss and heartache during a long cold winter take a backseat to the needs of her failing great-aunt plus those of her mother-in-law and her best friend, who’ve both been ensnared by evil.

We will keep a lookout for your next release, Becky! Thank you so much for being my guest. It has been awesome connecting with you online. Thank you, Penny, for this opportunity to talk about the Winds books. I enjoyed the visit and wish you and your readers God’s very best for 2013.

And now, readers, here’s your chance to win   all you have to do is leave an encouraging comment for Becky. A winner will be chosen at random. Sorry this giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. If you are a subscriber to this blog, you will receive two entries.  The contest ends on January 10, 2013.

Interview and Giveaway with Marriott Cole!

I am honored to have Marriott Cole as my guest. She will be giving away a copy of her new book Grace, Miracles and Chocolate to one lucky winner! I haven’t yet read this book, but it sounds like a must-have for your Christmas reading list. Following is the blurb:

Marriott Cole knows that sometimes it is difficult to trust God, especially during the most challenging moments. In her memoir, Grace, Miracles, and Chocolate, Cole chronicles a life with more than  its share of difficulties while demonstrating how she overcame tragedy through the miracle of prayer, laughter, and the grace of God’s love.

cover gmc-page-001Cole shares poignant anecdotes with accompanying Scripture, tracing her life journey beginning with the details of her first conversation with her birth mother. Despite the horrifying details of her conception, Cole describes how she was eventually led to forgiveness and to accept a second family into her heart. As she retraces her complex life and reveals her unique problem solving strategies, Cole details how she learned to rely on not only her faith, but also her inner strength as she bravely faced widowhood and the terrifying thought of raising seven children on her own,.

Grace, Miracles and Chocolate challenges spiritual seekers everywhere to either develop or rekindle a relationship with Jesus Christ and to always remember that He is with us–no matter what comes our way in life.

“This is an amazing story of God’s faithfulness, love and incredible miracles in the life of His faithful child. …Marriott is a real woman with real heartaches and triumphs. Her life story will touch many, many hearts…” Amy McGuire, author of The Heart’s Discovery

And now, let’s learn a bit about Marriott…

Hello Marriott! Thank you for being my guest. Please share with my readers the inspiration behind your book:  So many people told me that I “ought to write a book” so I wrote Chapter 1 and had it published about twenty-eight years ago; Chapter 31 was written and published twenty years ago; the rest of the book are true miracles and humorous events that have happened in between and since then, along with the tragic death of my son. I wanted other people to realize that when they face tragedies, they can get through them with God’s help and the comfort afforded us through our faith in eternal life through Jesus.

nancy's portrait 007That’s one of the things I admire most about you Marriott – your strong faith in our Lord. You are such an inspiration and testimony of God’s faithfulness.  Speaking of the Lord, do you have a favorite book of the Bible? Proverbs is my favorite book. When it is the first of the month, I read Proverbs 1, the second day, Proverbs 2, and so on. I feel that I have become a wiser Christian and  have more of an ability to do the right thing based on the wisdom I have garnered from Proverbs, which was mostly written by the wisest man in the world, King Solomon, inspired by the Holy Spirit.

I love the idea of reading Proverbs throughout the month! It truly is a great book and so full of wisdom. Do you have a favorite Scripture verse? John 1:1 because it is through this verse I learned that Jesus is God in the flesh; He sacrificed Himself so that we  wouldn’t have to suffer eternal death for our sins. He took our punishment, as horrible as it was, upon Himself! I love Him so much because of it!

I agree and share your great love for our Savior.  I’m going to switch topics now and ask one of my favorite questions: What charity you would found if you were suddenly given one million dollars?

My heart’s passion is for evangelism in hard-to-reach countries. Since indiginous missionaries already know the native language, they can readily deliver the gospel to those who haven’t heard as long as they are able to have their daily needs met, which are minimal compared to the needs of foreign missionaries. Since Christian Aid Mission does just that, I would write them a million dollar check instead of reinventing the wheel!

I love your answer! So many have not yet heard of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. And lastly, Marriott, where readers can find you on the web?

My blog is www.marriottcole.com. You can also read a preview of Grace, Miracles, and Chocolate here and here  and wherever books are sold.

Than you for being my guest, Marriott. It was an honor to have you here!

And now, readers, here’s your chance to win   all you have to do is leave an encouraging comment for Marriott. A winner will be chosen at random. Sorry this giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. If you are a subscriber to this blog, you will receive two entries.  The contest ends on January 10, 2013.

**Stay tuned for the announcement of several winners of some past giveaways after Christmas. Until then, have a blessed and wonderful Christmas season!

Giveaways Galore!

Need a Christmas gift idea? Books make fantastic gifts and there are several giveaways going on this week…win one for you or one for your wife, mom, sister,  or friend!

First off, I’m giving away a copy of Kaydie, book #2 in my Montana Skies Historical Romance Series on Diane Estrella’s blog at http://dianeestrella.com/kaydie-by-penny-zeller-book-giveaway/

kaydie

I’m also giving away a copy of Kaydie on The Christian Book Review Blog at http://christianbookreviewblog.blogspot.com/2012/12/author-interview-and-giveaway-kaydie-by.html

If you love devotionals, you won’t want to miss a chance to win Amanda Beth’s newest book The LOVE Walk A 15 – Week Devotional on 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 here on this blog at https://pennyzeller.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/giveaway-with-author-amanda-beth/

The LOVE Walk-coverpic

and finally, Keli Gwyn is offering a copy of her historical romance A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California also on this blog at https://pennyzeller.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/interview-and-giveaway-with-author-keli-gwyn/

BrideOpensShop-Small-Web-196x300

As always, thanks for stopping by! Have a wonderful rest of your week and a Merry Christmas!

Giveaway with Author Amanda Beth!!!

I’m thrilled to have my friend, Author Amanda Beth, as my guest this week. Amanda Beth is giving away a signed copy of her fantastic new book The LOVE Walk: A 15 – Week Devotional on 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Here’s a bit about the book:

 The LOVE Walk-coverpicThe LOVE Walk is a fifteen week devotional created to encourage and support you in your love walk. Each devotional focuses on a different characteristic of love as described in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails….”

Each chapter includes an encouragement, a prayer, verses to meditate on, and one verse to memorize to support you in your love walk. Additionally, at the end of each chapter there are questions to reflect on for personal evaluation or group study.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

—1 Corinthians 13:13

 

Amanda is also the author of the book You Can Have a Happy Family: Steps to Enjoying Your Marriage and Children, which I have read and highly recommend. You can find information about that book here.

Where to Purchase:

Amazon, Barnes & Noble (paperback version only) and Amanda’s website (discounts for multiple copies purchased).

Additional Info:

To hear a recorded interview about “The LOVE Walk” and Amanda’s publishing experience, call 605-475-3229 and enter access code: 860983# and then # again.

Author Bio:

Amanda is a wife of sixteen years, mother of four children, and author of You Can Have a Happy Family and The LOVE Walk. God has done an amazing work in her and her family since He rescued her twelve years ago. Because of His unfailing love, she is passionate about sharing His love with others. Every Monday she shares the wonderful benefits behind the truths in God’s Word on her blog. Every Wednesday she shares the Word of God over prayer requests on her Facebook page. And every Sunday she is a guest contributor for Christian Blessings. She also shares messages on marriage and parenting on her website.

And now, readers, here’s your chance to win   all you have to do is leave an encouraging comment for Amanda. A winner will be chosen at random. Sorry this giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. If you are a subscriber to this blog, you will receive two entries.  The contest ends on December 20, 2012.

Interview and Giveaway with Author Keli Gwyn!

I am honored to have Author Keli Gwyn as my guest this week. Keli is offering a copy of her new release A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California to one lucky winner!

I have personally read this book and very much enjoyed it. Following is the back cover blurb…

Love Is Gold in El Dorado, California

Widow Elenora Watkins heads to California with her nine-year-old daughter, Tildy, eager to become a partner in a mercantile. When the mulish owner withdraws his offer because she’s a woman, she opens her own shop. She’s determined to prove herself capable of running a successful business without the help of anyone—including her controlling father, her seemingly distant heavenly Father, and one Miles Rutledge.

Widower Miles Rutledge is not about to get involved with another willful woman like his late wife, especially when she’s his competition. But the beautiful Elenora may be too hard to resist. When another man appears out to claim Elenora’s heart, Miles searches for a way to win her back. . .while putting her out of business.

Meanwhile, Maude Rutledge, Miles’s meddling mother, longs to see her son make a good match. And Tildy is just as bent on gaining a loving papa.

The battle of wills begins, but can anyone win when the competition is more than they bargained for?

And now, let’s take a minute to meet Keli…

Hello Keli! Thank you for being my guest. What was the inspiration behind your book? I’m a California native and love the historic Gold Country where I live. I wanted to bring the area to life in my stories. While El Dorado is a sleepy suburb now, it was a thriving town in its heyday. When I read about the town’s leading merchant, a mercantile owner named James B. Wetherwax, I was intrigued and wanted to know more about him. However, I couldn’t find much information, but being a writer, I could imagine such a man—and I created the hero of my story.

Widower Miles Rutledge has the most successful business in town, the most impressive building, and is well liked, but he doesn’t have a woman in his life. Along comes Elenora Watkins with her shop across the street.

I love that! Isn’t it awesome how we, as authors, can imagine our characters and then create them on paper? Switching topics now – what is one silly thing about you that most people probably don’t know? I’m not sure if this qualifies as silly. It might be considered weird, surprising, or downright un-American, but I don’t like pie. Apple, pumpkin, lemon meringue? Nope. No pie, no matter what kind it is. I do, however, like piecrust, which is probably why I like shortbread so much.

And lest you feel sorry for me and think I’m missing out because of my pie-less state, let me assure you, I don’t feel that way at all. The way I see it, I’m just leaving more for everyone else to enjoy.

What is your favorite book in the Bible and why? I’m partial to the book of James. I like the way he gives us so many practical tips for living the Christian life.

I agree, James is an excellent book of the Bible! And now, for one of my favorite questions…what charity/organization is very close to your heart and why? This is a great question, one I’ve not been asked before. My husband and I contribute to a number of Christian organizations, but if I were to come into serious money all my own, I would make a donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. I lost my beloved mother-in-law to breast cancer a number of years ago and would love to spare other families this heartbreak.

I was sorry to hear about your mother-in-law, Keli.

And last, but not least, where can readers find you? To learn more about me, you can visit my Victorian-style cyber home at www.keligwyn.com, where you’ll find my parlor, study, carriage house, and more, along with my blog and social media links.

In closing, do you have a fun question you’d like to ask my readers? What’s your favorite kind of pie? Or are you, like me, one of those rare people who doesn’t care for pie?

Thanks so much for hosting me, Penny. It’s a pleasure to spend time with you and your blog’s visitors.

Thank you for being my guest, Keli. It is an honor to have you here!

And now, readers, here’s your chance to win A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California.  All you have to do is answer Keli’s question in a comment. A winner will be chosen at random. Sorry this giveaway is open to U.S. and Canadian residents only. If you are a subscriber to this blog, you will receive two entries.  The contest ends on December 13, 2012.

5 Ways to Bless Others and a Giveaway!

Penny Zeller, Christian Author

This week, I’m giving away a signed copy of my book 77 Ways Your Family Can Make a DifferenceIdeas and Activities for Serving Others

Resolve every day to make a difference in the life of someone else…

Simply telling our kids to love their neighbor isn’t enough. They need to see and experience love in action. This was the springboard for my book 77 Ways, which includes practical service ideas for a variety of budgets, Bible verses to help children connect God’s truth to their lives, and interactive discussion questions to help families understand the importance of each activity and correlate it to God’s Word.

In addition to families, these ideas and activities can be easily adapted to use with youth groups, Sunday School classes, home school curriculums, small-groups, and church-wide community projects.

Entering to win is super easy, and I’ll explain that in a few moments at the end of this post. In the meantime, here are some easy ways you and your family can bless others:

1. Clothing – experts say if you haven’t worn something in the past two years, pass it on.

  • Check your community for places that take used clothing. Homeless shelters and the Salvation Army or Goodwill are just a few suggestions.
  • Dress for Success accepts nice women’s clothing that can be given to disadvantaged women, those exiting the prison system in search of employment, or those in need of clothing for a job interview. God has used this organization to bless those seeking a second chance. For more information, see the website for Dress for Success.

2. Toys – why not bless a needy child with a gently loved toy?

  • Know a foster parent? Might their foster child(ren) need toys or clothes?
  • You can also check with your community Department of Social Services to see if there is someone in need.
  • The Salvation Army/Goodwill are good choices as well.

3. Books  -If you have extra Bibles or other books in your home, there are plenty of places to donate them:

  • Love Packages accepts Bibles, Christian books and magazines, tracts, and hymnals. They distribute these items to numerous countries and into the hands of those who are hungry for the Word of God.  Be sure to check their website for a detailed list on what Love Packages does and does not accept.
  • Send your books to Hands for Christ. They found Lending Libraries in other countries and lend out Christian items to new believers. More information can be found here.
  • Why not donate some of your items to your church library? Be sure to check (and double-check!) your items for content. The Bible warns us in 1 Corinthians 10:32 of causing others to stumble. Make sure your donated books, DVDs, and videos are clean and wholesome family-oriented material.

4. Other items –

  • Have some clean plastic cottage cheese or butter containers? Check to see if your church needs these containers for leftover meals at funerals, etc. Also, if you have other clean “Glad” or “Tupperware” containers you aren’t using, these can be donated as well.
  • What to do with all those Christmas cards (as well as other occasion cards) you receive this year? Donate cards to St. Jude’s Ranch for Children at their Card Recycling Program.
  • Could your local Habit for Humanity use your gently used household items, such as ceiling fans or doors?

Feeling inspired to help others? Before you get started please check out these rules of thumb:

  • Always ask someone in your family, immediate and extended, if they need the item first. First Timothy 5:8 tells us to first provide for our relatives.
  • Do you know any widows or single moms who could use the items? James 1:27 instructs us to take care of the widows and orphans.
  • Do NOT pass on anything you wouldn’t use or wear yourself (i.e., junk). Clothes with stains and holes, books with pages ripped out of them, scratched DVDs, or expired food that doesn’t have a place in your home certainly won’t be welcome (or appreciated) in someone else’s.
  • Always call first to see if donations are being accepted. Some places are inundated with items and are therefore not accepting donations at this time. Please be respectful of their donation criteria.
  • Most importantly, pray for God’s guidance as you seek to find who could use your gently used items.

And now, to win a copy of  77 Ways Your Family Can Make a Difference all you have to do is leave a comment about your favorite way to bless someone else. For example, how do you and your family encourage others? 

A winner will be chosen at random. Sorry, this giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. For an extra entry, please “like” my Facebook author page. Giveaway ends on November 8, 2012.

Stay tuned for the details on who won Deb Raney’s three-book Hanover Falls Series coming soon!