Friday, March 29, 2013

3rd Blogoversary Party ~ Meet Me!

I've shared the three guest interviews for the 3rd Blogoversary Writers Party, and the winners of the giveaways will be announced tomorrow. (You still have until tonight to enter!) So, what do I have for you today?

Well, since this week's guests were all people who have helped me in this "season" of my editing business, and since I'm making plans to self-publish my WIP in a few months, I thought I might have a go at those questions I've been asking our guests so I can share a bit about the business and my writing. Hope you don't mind! And I hope you enjoy the Q&A between me and...me! ;)

***

Question ~ When did you start blogging? And how has your blog changed since you first created it? 

Answer ~ Well, I'm pretty sure you all can figure out that I've been blogging for three years! ;) I started blogging on March 30th, 2010. (You can read my first post HERE.) It's been such a wonderful journey so far! When I first started out I was full of energy and excitement for the new endeavor. I had a lot of fun putting together themed weeks, discovering the thrill of getting books for free in exchange for writing reviews, and, most of all, meeting new friends. Since then some blog features have come and gone, and I've settled into a less frantic blogging pace. But, also since then, the friendships I've made have only continued to deepen and expand. I'm continually blessed by the opportunities blogging has provided in terms of growing in my writing, broadening my reading horizons, making connections with like-minded people, and so much more. I love blogging!

Question ~ How would you describe the current "season" of your editing business?

Answer ~ As you can see from the wonderful guests this week, I've truly been blessed! Editing Through the Seasons was slow to get off the ground (but I suppose I should have realized that was the way of things when it comes to starting a new business!). It's still in a slow season, like I described in my guest post on Seekerville back in February. And yet, I'm actually starting to see those green shoots sprouting up out of the ground now.

This is an exciting time! I know that things might still be slow, and I know that my business might not ever become a huge success in terms of the world's standards. But I'm feeling hopeful that the word might continue to spread, and I'm going to keep fighting for the chance to do what I love in this way, Lord willing. I'm grateful for these writers who have taken a chance on me, and I'm eager to keep on working to help others in the seasons of their writing careers, while nurturing my own, so that we can share well-crafted stories to encourage and challenge and inspire others.

Question ~ You recently finished the first draft of your WIP, and you're working toward self-publishing it this summer. Can you give your readers a glimpse into the story?

Answer ~ Of course! ;) Bleeding Heart is my second manuscript, and the sequel to my first book, Forget Me Not. I don't know if I'll ever publish FMN... Maybe I can edit it to be a novella prequel someday? Not sure - it was a pretty personal story, but then, so is Bleeding Heart in its own ways.

Anyway, BH is an Inspirational Historical Romance story. It might grow (or shrink?) a tad in the editing stages over the next couple of months, but I'm guessing it will generally remain a shorter novel. Here's my current working back-cover synopsis (subject to tweaking):

***

Summer 1886 

Sally Clay’s livelihood has been snatched away – but in its place arises an opportunity to escape from her sordid past and an unrelenting, unwanted suitor. Boarding a train with a heartsick rancher and an enigmatic miner, she leaves Virginia City behind and heads to Northern California, waiting for the chance to make right what went wrong three long years before. 

When a kind-hearted Cornish miner tells Joe Clifton about potential work at a logging town in the redwoods, Joe can think of no better way to put the painful memories of a broken engagement behind him. But Sally’s schemes – and the past that trails closely behind her – might destroy the promise he made to keep his heart safe from further harm. 

A desperate soiled dove. Three men who come to care for her. One man determined to claim her. 

All on a journey that will show them what true love really involves. 

***

And here's an excerpt from Chapter 1 (first draft of BH), wherein Sally begs for help in leaving Virginia City:

Spotting a familiar face in the line at the ticket counter, she rushed to Joe’s side. “Joe,” she said softly as she touched his arm and put on her best desperate look. It wasn’t too much of a challenge at this moment. 

Recognition was quickly followed by disgust in his dirt-brown eyes as he looked down on her. “Whaddya want, Sally?” 

She countered his question with a question of her own, leaning in ever so slightly as she had been taught. “Where ya headed?” 

“I don’t see how that’s any of yer business.” 

Peering around his tall frame, she saw another familiar face. For the first time since the day she found herself begging Jacob for a job, she felt shame burn through her. It was a rare day when she blushed with embarrassment anymore. 

The red-headed, rail-thin Cornish miner didn’t say a word, but she saw suppressed anger, and perhaps a hint of pity, glaring back at her. She nodded in acknowledgement, and turned her pleading gaze back to Joe. 

“I know you don’t owe me any favors. But you and Jacob were friends for a long time. And with Jacob leavin’ and all… Well, I’m out of a job.” She swallowed, longing for some water and a moment to plan the rest of her speech. 

“So?” 

She flinched. It shouldn’t cut her anymore, these rejections. But they did. Tears welled up in her eyes – real ones, if anyone here at the train station could believe that. “Please – I’m bein’ pursued by a cruel man and I need some help to get out of this two-bit town. Just a little bit of money and some company for as far as yer headed.” 

She knew the word “company” was a mistake as soon as the word slipped past her lips. Joe’s eyes turned rock-hard and he shook his head vehemently. 

Grasping his arm tighter, she let the tears flow down her cheeks, not caring at the scene she was making. It hadn’t taken long to get over the desire to please society. They had rejected her, and so she rejected them by refusing to follow their unspoken rules. 

“I don’t mean it that way, Joe. Please! I won’t be any trouble.” 

And then he had the nerve to laugh. 

Pushing him away, she spun on her heel and marched out of the station. She still had some pride. 

But as she forced her way through the crowd and out the door, her heart sank. Rufus O’Daniel was across the street, staring right at her with eyes that promised retribution and enslavement – a frightening look that had haunted her dreams for far too long.

###

Question ~ Your favorite season?

Answer ~ Probably fall. I love summer, especially because it generally means family vacations and fun outings and the like. But as far as nature goes, I love the colors of fall...the occasional warm autumn day...the Apple Harvest Festival and trips to the pumpkin patch/corn maze...the feeling of change and release and new beginnings following the time of "letting go"...the anticipation of the holidays to come... I just love it all!

Question ~ Two quirky dreams (small or big) that you have?

Answer ~ I would love to own a Bed & Breakfast someday. Don't know how that would really work out in reality, but I dream of having a beautiful little place out in the country, where I can design historical-themed rooms and meet new people all the time who will share stories about their adventures over shared meals. This is probably a strange dream for me to have, as I don't really cook that much and I'm introverted. But still... It just seems so romantic!

Second dream? I really want to go to Prince Edward Island, Canada - preferably in the spring or fall. And yes, this has everything to do with Anne of Green Gables, along with the Road to Avonlea show!

Question ~ Three blogs you love to visit?

Answer ~ Only three? Who came up with these questions?? ;) 

Well, there are so many blogs that are fun to visit. It's especially fun comparing thoughts with fellow book bloggers on our latest reads! As for naming three blogs, though, I'll go with StoryMonster, Tours Departing Daily, and Best Reads (2010-2013). The first is by the extremely talented Heather Dixon, whose book Entwined was one of my favorite reads of 2012! Her book is amazing, her art is wonderful, and her posts are usually pretty stinkin' hilarious. You can spend hours just browsing all of her posts... The second is one I found via Heather's blog. If you love all things Disneyland and wish you could be there, their beautiful photos capture the atmosphere of Disneyland so well! And the third is by Kav, a dear blogging friend who is also super generous. It's fun to read her great reviews, and it's awesome to have so many chances to win new books to read!

Question ~ Four Twitter friends you enjoy following?

Answer ~ Again, too many to name! But I'll note that I love talking books with Rissi (@scriptsandsuch) and Rel (@Relz) and Charity (@CharityUAusten), and I love doing #1K1Hrs with Krissi (@KrissiDallas) and Gale (@GaleRWordsmith). Yes, that was 5 (I majored in English, but I can still do basic math - oh, well!).

Question ~  Five different themes for a party that would be fun to attend or host?

Answer ~
  1. Murder Mystery. I've had such fun hosting these types of parties with some friends from high school! Plus, my dad has a dummy that he uses for homicide investigation scenarios at a local community college. Enough said.
  2. Mardi Gras. That was actually the theme for my 10th birthday. I love the color scheme (purple, gold, and green), along with the jazz music. (Think Princess and the Frog.)
  3. Old West. It would be super fun to set up a book-signing party here on the North Coast of California, or in Virginia City (Nevada), where Bleeding Heart is set. I love day-dreaming!
  4. Hallmark. Hallmark-movies marathon, anyone? And we could exchange Hallmark greeting cards, LOL! Rissi, you're totally for this, right? 
  5. Jane Austen. Charity, this one's for you! ;) English country dancing, dressing up, watching movies based on Jane Austen's books... Sounds good to me!
***

It was a lot of fun to answer these questions! Please feel free to answer any or all of them yourself in the comments section (or you can link to a blog post), if you'd like. It's always great to get to know one another better! =)

And don't forget to check out the interviews with Lena Goldfinch, Rachelle Rea, and Sandra Leesmith, if you haven't already! The winners of the book giveaways will be announced tomorrow!

20 comments:

Julie said...

How fun Amber! It is always nice to get a little peak into the life of one of my blogger friends! We have some things in common besides books. Oh to visit Prince Edward Island to see where Anne of Green Gables was set. One of my favorite series growing up. And love your theme party ideas! A friend of mine and I would do "Jane Days" during our breaks(she a librarian and me an assistant). We would pick a couple of Jane Austen movies to watch and spend the day wrapped in blankets, sharing laughs and of course snacks. Fun times but I need to find a new fan of Jane since my friend moved :(

Loved the excerpt from you WIP! Looking forward to you publishing it so I can read it all!

I had lunch with a friend yesterday and she mentioned that one of HER dreams was to open a B&B! How fun would that be? So many possible themes eh?

Great interview of YOU girl!!

Ganise said...

Just one question : Amber, how is it that your book is not published yet? O.MY. WORD. Girl, you've got talent with a capital T. So good! Thanks for sharing.

Your dream of owning a Bed and Breakfast one day sounds LOVELY. Bless your heart. :)

Hmm. Now to answer some of the questions:

Favorite season : The blessed and glorious summer, no less. Goodbye cold and hello vibrant colors! (Although Fall has gorgeous colors too :) Did you know that I live in Canada? So your dream of visiting Prince Edward Island made me smile. (Haven't been there yet.) Summers are literally the best in Canada, in my opinion... beautiful country.

People I enjoy following on Twitter: @KatieGanshert! She is so sweet and funny. @Beckywade, @Rel @Tameraalexander

Thank you and good day to you :)

Charity U said...

I enjoyed learning more about you here, Amber! Love the party ideas -- and yes, the Jane Austen one appeals to me most, though the Old West one sounds like a ton of fun too. Actually, they all do -- but those especially. ;)
Also, thanks SO much for listing me as a favorite twitter account! I love all our book talks so much...and the hilarious things that come up are awesome too. :) Looking forward to many more in the future. :D
<3

Amber S. said...

Julie,

Thank you!! That's so fun that we share so much in common! :) My grandparents have been to Prince Edward Island, and I really hope I get the chance to go someday. Doesn't it seem like such a beautiful place?

Those "Jane Days" sound fantastic! Although I'm sorry to hear that your friend moved. :( I wish we lived closer, because I would totally enjoy celebrating "Jane Days" with you! :)

I'm so glad you enjoyed the excerpt - I can't wait to share the rest with everyone!

That's so cool that someone else you know just mentioned that they dreamed of owning their own B&B! Definitely lots of possibilities for themes! Don't know how plausible a dream it is for me, but it's fun to think about for "someday." :)

Thank you for taking the time to read the interview, and for leaving such a sweet comment!

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Ganise,

Oh, you have totally just made my day with your kind words!! Thank you so much for the encouragement and compliment! I'm thrilled you liked the excerpt. :) If it's the Lord's will, I really hope I can share the rest of the story with you all in a few months!

And thank you for the sweet comment about my quirky dream. :)

Love that you answered some of the questions! Summer is a great season, no question about it. :) And how cool that you live in Canada! My family and I used to go to Victoria a lot, and I loved our trips there. A beautiful place! Now I just want to go see the eastern portion of the country. :) If we're talking big dreams here, I would love to take a train trip across Canada someday!! I LOVE trains. :)

Those are awesome Twitter friends! Thank YOU for your friendship!

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Charity,

Thank you, my friend! I wish we could all get together and put together some of these parties. :) That would be so much fun!

And of course! You know I love talking books with you! :) And yes, some hilarious things do come up... Like that fake beard conversation, LOL! ;) I'm looking to many more book convos, too! <3

~Amber

Ganise said...

THANK YOU, AMBER!!

Amber S. said...

Ganise,

:D

Thank YOU!!

~Amber

Rissi said...

Hey, Amber - what a fun post. :) You, my friend are wonderful and kind.

Aw! What neat party ideas. Love that Hallmark one, yes! You know me too well - who doesn't like a fun Hallmark flick. :)

BIG Congrats on your novel releasing this summer! I am so excited for you and will be on the look out for further news about that - it sounds like a keeper. :)

...and I am one of your fave Tweeters to chat books with!? Wow, thank you, Amber. Again... you are too kind. :)

Charity U said...

Amber, do let me know if you need help with anything JA related! :) And yes...the fake beard conversation was top conversation I had in mind. ;)

Amber S. said...

Rissi,

Aww! YOU are wonderful and kind, as well! So glad you found the post to be fun. :)

I love Hallmark movies - so emotionally stirring!

Thank you so much for sharing my excitement regarding BH! And you know I love being Twitter pals with you! :)

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Charity,

Will do! :) And I loved how you all were so sweet and made that conversation so fun, as I was worried I might have been too harsh on the cover. Love that it turned into a humorous, memorable conversation! ;)

~Amber

Carissa said...

Amber,

Your Novel is something I look forward to reading someday. I think I may have to finally break down and read the Anne of Green Gables series. I have to say that fall is my favorite season.

Carissa

Amber S. said...

Carissa,

That's so sweet of you to say! I really appreciate your interest in my writing, and I hope the story will bless you. :)

I think I read through the Anne of Green Gables series when I was younger...? But I'm mostly familiar with the movies (and the Avonlea TV series), which I grew up with and love. :)

And yay for another fan of fall! Isn't it a great season?

Thank you so much for stopping by!

~Amber

Rachelle Rea said...

How fun, Amber! It was neat getting to know you even better. :)

A bed-and-breakfast. *sweet sigh* When you open one, invite me, 'k? Love 'em!

Amber S. said...

Rachelle,

Aww, thank you! :) I totally agree with that sweet sigh - I love Bed & Breakfasts, too! If I ever open one, you can totally consider yourself invited. ;)

~Amber

Renee (SteelerGirl83) said...

Ummm girlfriend, I'm with Ganise I kinda want to read your book NOW! Wow. I loved that except. I love your dream. I'd really love to open a B & B too. I'd love to set up bookthemed rooms. There's a huge Victorian with 5 bedrooms, a huge finished attic, and finished basement in my hometown that has so much potential! Sigh...Maybe someday!

Xoxo,
Renee C.

Amber S. said...

Renee,

Awwww! ((Hugs)) So happy you loved the excerpt, and so grateful for your kind words! I hope you get to read the book very soon. :)

And that's awesome that we share the B&B dream! I remember you mentioning your love for Victorian homes - that one does sounds like it has a ton of potential! That would be so much fun to design book-themed rooms. :) Well, I guess we're like on Tangled - maybe this will be one of our "new dreams" to strive for when we've fulfilled other ones. ;)

~Amber

Joy Tamsin David said...

Amber!! How exciting about your book!

I do love a historical romance.

You will make sure to come promote it at Edgy Inpsirational Romance won't you?

Amber S. said...

Joy,

Thank you so much!! I love historical romance, too - reading it and writing it. :)

And of course I would love to be a guest at Edgy Inspirational Romance! Thank you for the offer!! :)

~Amber