Wednesday, July 20, 2011

OUT OF CONTROL - Mary Connealy - Free Book

If you've been reading this blog long, you know I love this author. Welcome, Mary. Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
I’m third born of 8 kids. I’m married to my high-school sweetheart for 34 years now. I was a stay at home mom for 27 years. I started writing when my baby, the youngest of four daughters, went to Kindergarten and my first book released the year she graduated from high school. I had twenty finished books on my computer when I made my first sale.

How did you become interested in writing?
The real “event” that kicked off my writing was my second of four daughter writing a book in about sixth or seventh grade. It was short of course, but it had a really great idea in it. I asked her if I could steal the nugget of her story and write my own. She said, “Write your own darned book and leave mine alone.” (or words to that effect)

So I did.                     

What compelled you to write a book on this subject?
Out of Control is set in and around a huge cavern in Colorado. I visited Carlsbad Cavern as a young bride and was absolutely captured by it. This was long before I was writing, but the story was there. The first explorers to find that cavern. It was all safe when we went there, trails carefully marked, railings to keep you away from dangerous stuff. But what if????

Isn’t that the writer’s game, Lena? What if I was the first person in there? What if I only had lantern light? You couldn’t begin to see to the end of it, but you’d glimpse the stunning beauty and you’d be in terrible danger from the pits and floors that looked broken off, as thin as glass in places. What made those floor break? Had someone fallen through? I loved that place and I’ve wanted to set a story in there for a long time. But the history of Carlsbad Cavern is really well known and I’d have had to trample it to really set my book there and I didn’t want to. So I created my own cavern, there are several really cool ones in Colorado. And then I sent three little boys down there to explore.

Mary, I really love books set in caverns. I worked in Longhorn Cavern in the summer when I was in college and became an amateur spelunker. What is the main theme or point that you want readers to understand from reading your book? Are there any other themes present in the book?
The main theme is giving control of your life over to God. The cavern represents losing control to the oldest brother and he is bent on protecting his younger brothers from that cavern. Rafe then meets Julia, who LOVES the cavern and wants to explore, believes it’s God’s will she explore. And then they clash….and fall in love.
Are there some specific lessons you hope readers will learn and apply to their lives after reading your book?
I just hope they have a really fun time watching two bossy people fall in love.

What makes your book different than any other books similar to yours that are in circulation today?
Well, gosh, Lena. I write inspirational, suspenseful, historical-western, romantic comedy. There aren’t any other books like that are there?           
No. That’s why I love your unique books. How does the book intertwine with God’s call on your life and how you are currently serving Him?
I tell people who occasionally say to me, “I think I’ve got a book in me….but I’ve never found the time to sit down and write it…” To not feel bad if their idea of a fun pastime isn’t sitting by yourself for countless hours having conversations with imaginary friends, then sending your work out into the world to be rejected, abused and insulted….for years….for no money.

Writing a book isn’t a very normal way to behave and I think it’s just something a bit different that makes us do it. We could call it being a sociopath. Being a trouble loner. Having voices in our heads….or….we can call it a gift from God.  So writing, including this book, intertwines with God’s call because he made me love it. So here I sit typing.
Do you have a favorite Scripture verse?
When I read my Bible I am forever finding a new “favorite.” I think God touches our hearts through the Bible in different ways depending on what we need in our lives. One story I’m currently in love with is one that is in three books of the Bible Matt 9:2; Mark 2:3; Luke 5:18 When Jesus heals the paralyzed man who is lowered down from the roof by his friends. And Jesus says to the man, “Your sins are forgiven.”

His friends are angry at Jesus because they want their friend to be healed not forgiven. I think there is so much wisdom and power in this story. I think this story shows the heart and mind of Jesus more clearly than nearly any story in the Bible. And that’s me saying that because the story is striking me, only me, right now today, in that way. Another story will take its place another time, as God reveals it. But think about all that goes on here.

Men who believe Jesus can heal their friend but are angry about forgiveness. What are they thinking anyway? They think a man can do miracles but then turn on him when he doesn’t produce.

Jesus saying, “Because I want you to know I have the right to forgive sins, I’ll heal him.” Jesus is using miracles to draw attention to His words, to say forgiveness is more important than walking. To respond to anger with love. The levels of this story, or maybe the layers of it, is so rich.

The fact that Jesus does perform this miracle before the crowd that surrounded this house…since the men had to lower their friend through the roof, we know there was a mob. A paralyzed man who stands up and goes home---praising God. Another voice proclaiming Jesus is doing God’s work. In fact most of that crowd would have done the same thing.

Anyway, I’m going on too long, but I love everything about this story, most importantly that Jesus says forgiveness is more important than health.

I so agree with you. When you are not writing, what do you like to do? Do you have any hobbies?
Reading. Crossword puzzles. Yeah, I know, like it’d kill me to take a walk once in a while.          

As we close, is there anything else you would like to add?
I love doing your blog interviews, Lena. You’re usually scary but fun with your questions. Keep it up.

Where can my readers find you on the Internet?

Petticoats & Pistols
My Blog
My Website

Mary, thanks for once again dropping by.

Readers, here's a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.


Merry said...

Mary your books make me smile and I have to add so do your amazing interviews! To set Out of Control in a cavern is an invitation for an exciting story, I can't wait. :) Add me please!
Merry in TX

Judy said...

I think this book will be a lot of fun! I will enjoy reading about two bossy people falling in love! Thanks for the giveaway!

God Bless!

Judy from Indiana

joyanne said...

Sounds like a wonderful book.

Joyce in TN

Anonymous said...

Please enter me in the drawing. Thank You for the chance.

angela from KY

Rose said...

Mary love your books! This one sounds as fantastic as the others.
Rose from WA

Marianne said...

Thanks Lena and Mary for another interesting post/interview. This book sounds great, though personally i prefer to read about rather than go into a cavern. Thanks,too, for the giveaway. mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com from Peace River Country, Alberta

Mary Connealy said...

I can so clearly remember that cavern and looking out from our very safe trail at this hole in the ground and the edges of that hole, not very far from where my feet were, looked broken off. Like the floor had crumbled, broken away and it was thin. Below that broken off floor it dropped a long way, and the depths were all lit up so we could see how far it dropped.
The solid rock floor under me was suddenly frightening. How did THEY know this floor was solid when that wasn't? What if the floor I was standing on, which looked like solid rock, suddenly broke.

That was so real to me. I was a writer even then wasn't I? With that knack for letting my imagination run wild and making everything into a story.

Jo said...

This sounds like a fun read as Mary's books tend to be. Please enter me.

Jo in Southern Arizona

scottsgal said...

Caverns kind of make me nervous but sounds like a fun book
cheryl in IL
msboatgal at

Salena Stormo said...

Mary I can't wait to read your new book! It sounds wonderful!

srstormo at yahoo dot com

Melissa Jagears said...

I remember often visiting Marvel cave when I was a kid and wishing I could get married and live in the cave. Ha!


Mary Connealy said...

scottsgal, they make you nervous? That's perfect because I'm trying to put that clash in the book. The beauty and lure, the danger and fear. Those two things pull against each other in everyone close to that cavern, and different characters focus on one or the other too much.

Emma said...

Great interview.Out of Control sound wonderful. Please enter me in the giveaway.Thanks for the giveaway.PA

Caiti said...

Mary- your books are my favorite :) looking forward to your new series!

Pam K. said...

I absolutely love Mary's books! The first I read was "Doctor in Petticoats." I've shared it with several friends and talked about it so much that it is our book club selection for October. Besides the great stories, I think what I like most about Mary's books is that they make me laugh out loud (which is accomplishing a lot since I'm rather a reserved person). I would be quite excited to win a copy of "Out of Control."

Patsy said...

Wow, I bet you had lots of fun with that many children being in your family. Like you I am also married to my high sweetheart. We've been married for 35 years. Got married at 19. I don't know how our parents agreed to that! I don't know if I could have let my girls marry that young. My mom got married at 16 but back then a lot of girls married really young. I really enjoy reading your books. Looking forward to this one too.

From: Mississippi


Courtney said...

I'm a huge fan of yours Mary. Your books always are great, I love that the heroines are always strong and sometimes a bit stubborn! They always make me smile and I've been wanting to read this book. Thanks for the chance to win!
Courtney from WA state

Mary Connealy said...

Pam K, you picked Doctor in Petticoats for your bookclub?
I am so honored. Thank you.
email me at and I'll send some bookmarks for the club, tell me how many to send.

Mary Connealy said...

Patsy, that is SO YOUNG TO GET MARRIED. You're so reckless.

I waited until I was TWENTY!!!


Krista said...

Oh my... I just LOVE Mary's books!!!!!!! :) I'm reading "Deep Trouble" right now and it's amazing!

Krista from Gresham, OR

Kari Linder said...

I can't wait to read this book! I'd love to win a copy! Thanks!
Kari in Oregon

Abigail said...

Looks interesting, Thanks for the chance to win.
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Mary Connealy said...

Krista you are such a sweet girl. Thank you.
Thanks to all of you for all the kind words about my books and for wanting to win one.

Cyndi said...

I haven't read any of Mary's books but this looks like a good one! I'm our church's librarian so I'm always on the lookout for a new author! :)

Tina Radcliffe said...

Write your own darn book and leave mine alone? I love this. But I just spewed all over my keyboard.

Emily Stewart said...

I love! Mary Connealy's books!! I've read almost every one (haven't read Deep Trouble, I can't find it, and one of the Maxie Mouse books) and can't wait to read this one!!!

Judy Cooper said...

I always enjoy Mary's books. Please include me in the drawing. Judy C. Louisiana.

Sarah said...

I love Mary's writing style!

Would love to win!

Sarah H

Jillian Kent said...

Hi Mary,
I enjoyed reading this post. You said,"I started writing when my baby, the youngest of four daughters, went to Kindergarten and my first book released the year she graduated from high school."

I decided I wanted to write when my oldest child was born in 1989. My first book was published in May this year after years of studying the craft, attending conferences, etc.

I love talking about writer's journeys. I haven't read this book yet and look forward to it.

Cyndi said...

Oops! I forgot to say that I'm from Alabama! :)

wmmahaney said...

I love hearing about how you started writing. Your stories sound amazing.

Wendy M
Grand Rapids, MI

Robyn said...

Another winner of a story from Mary! I've been hooked on your stories ever since I traveled with you and Cheryl to the booksigning in MO.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Kristie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kristie said...

It's hard to let God have total control in my life. I always think I know best. That's because I can't see the big picture like He can. I'm from Ohio. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

Bakersdozen said...

I so love these interviews. I would really love to read this book. I live in S. CA.

peachykath said...

Sounds like a great book and I love Mary Connealy's books. I've read several and have never been dissappointed. Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you.

Katherine from Nothern California