Thursday, August 25, 2011

A HEART REVEALED - Julie Lessman - Free Book

I'm so happy to have my very good friend, Julie, on my blog again. Welcome, Julie. Tell us about your salvation experience.
Sure, but I guarantee you, you wouldn’t have liked me back then. I was a 23-year-old hardnosed agnostic from a devout but dysfunctional family of 13 kids. I was so angry at God that I actually used to say I wanted to burn Gideon Bibles in hotel rooms. As a wild child of the 60s and 70s, I tried everything to be happy—from astrology and tarot cards, to transcendental meditation and witchcraft—you name it. My vocabulary would have made a sailor blush. Suffice it to say that I was pretty angry at God. According to the world’s standards, I had everything going for me—a hunky boyfriend with a Corvette and a boat, a great job, my own apartment (at a time when other friends still lived at home), and I was acing an advanced writing course at Washington U., a prestigious college in St. Louis. But I wasn’t happy. I felt a lot like Peggy Lee singing, “Is that all there is?”

Then one day, this annoying gal at work approached me. She had a lesser job than me, was divorced with a kid and no boyfriend in sight. I hated her because she came in humming every day, happy as a lark while I was utterly miserable. And then it happened—one life-altering moment when she and I were alone—I looked up from my typewriter and said, “Just what in the heck (except my language was a bit saltier back then) makes you so happy all the time?” She said, “I’ve been praying you would ask.”

Oh, no, a Jesus freak, I thought to myself, but I found myself going to lunch with her, badgering her with questions and accusations. I don’t remember now if it was weeks or months, but either way, I met Jesus Christ through the remarkable patience of a God-sent angel by the name of Joy—pretty appropriate name, eh?

Since then, my life has been a journey of “joy,” because EVERYTHING with Jesus Christ at the center is pure joy—especially romance! A Passion Most Pure was my first love letter to a God whose love took me from the dark into His glorious light, and I hope and pray it and all of my books bring Him the glory He so richly deserves.

You’re planning a writing retreat where you can only have four other authors. Who would they be and why?
YIKES, I couldn’t do that, sorry! I have met WAY too many wonderful people in this business to limit it to just four, especially when I am part of a group blog called The Seekers (http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/) with 14 other incredible authors. But I will say that Liz Curtis Higgs and Francine Rivers have been icons to me in this business—two authors whose work I devour and who have inspired me more than I can say, so I sure wouldn’t mind sitting down with them. And, then, gosh, throw in Margaret Mitchell and Harper Lee, two authors who captured me during childhood, and I’d say that’s quite a party!

Do you have a speaking ministry? If so, tell us about that.
I have done speaking engagements, but I don’t pursue them. When I started writing, I thought public speaking would be a big part of my ministry because I have never had problems talking to people one-on-one or in crowds and, of course, I tend to be a drama queen, so I get people’s attention. In fact, when I took a speech class in college, the professor took me aside and said, “Julie, I’ve been teaching speech for a long time now, and I work hard to get people to emote, but in all the time I’ve been teaching, I have never had to tone anybody down until now. J I am happy to report that I got an “A,” but even so, today, I prefer my writing ministry to one of public speaking.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you and how did you handle it?
Oh, honey, you’re talking to a woman with “hoof-in-mouth” disease, so the examples I could give would fill your blog for a week! Probably one of the most embarrassing things for me (and certainly my sister) was when I was about thirteen years old and my dear Aunt Julie’s husband died. I tend to babble on when I’m nervous and don’t know what to say, so when my sister and I went up to the front of the casket where my Aunt Julie was standing, I remember hugging my aunt and telling her how sorry I was.

Now, my Aunt Julie was a beautiful woman in her early 40s, and to me she looked like a movie star, and since I was enamored with romance from the age of twelve after reading Gone With the Wind, naturally romance was foremost on my mind. So after I hugged her, I pulled away to give her a tender smile. “Aunt Julie,” I said with all the wisdom of a romance-crazed thirteen-year-old, “I am so sorry about Uncle Alex, but you are such a beautiful woman, men will line up to marry you, I promise—and you’ll knock ’em dead.” I can still see the shock on my sister’s face as she quietly turned around and walked to the back of the room. This is only one of the many examples of why my daughter jokes about getting me a shock collar for Christmas since, regrettably, I’m not a whole lot better now at the age of 60 than I was then!

People are always telling me that they’d like to write a book someday. I’m sure they do to you, too. What would you tell someone who came up to you and said that?
Well, of course I tell them to do it, and then I tell them how I did it, giving them the following list of things I did to get published:

1.) Join ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers at http://www.americanchristianfictionwriters.com/), FHL (Faith, Hope & Love at http://www.faithhopelove-rwa.org/) and RWA (Romance Writers of America at http://www.rwanational.org/), both to get connected with other like-minded writers and to learn a lot about your craft.
2.) Take a fiction-writing class or attend a writing seminar or conference.
3.) Join a critique group (you can do that through ACFW).
4.) Purchase and study writing books such as Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King or Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maas, AND invest in a great thesaurus such as The Synonym Finder by Rodale Press (my writer’s bible!!).
5.) Enter contests for invaluable feedback, growth, confidence, networking opportunities and to get your name out there.
6.) Frequent websites/blogs that deal with writing, such as The Seekers (http://seekerville.blogspot.com/), a group blog that I belong to whose theme is “On the road to publication. Writing, contests, publication and everything in between.”
7.) Go for an agent first, publisher second.
8.) Then pray your heart out and put it in God’s hands.

Tell us about the featured book.
A Heart Revealed is book 2 in “The Winds of Change” series, and it’s the love story of the oldest O’Connor brother, Sean O’Connor, a confirmed bachelor, and his sister’s best friend, Emma Malloy, a battered married woman. Here’s my own personal blurb:

The ring on her hand belongs to one man …
but her heart belongs to another.

As a battered woman, Emma Malloy fled Dublin for Boston ten years ago, seeking shelter for a heart badly bruised by both her husband and guilt. But when she falls in love with Sean O’Connor, a confirmed bachelor who wrestles with demons of his own, fear and shame almost destroy her … until she is finally set free by a heart revealed.

Since I love all your books, I know I'll love this one as well. Please give us the first page of the book.
I would like to post the prologue, but before I do, I want to point out that it’s pretty heavy and violent and not really indicative of the rest of the book. In fact in contrast, the first chapter starts very light, with an O’Connor wedding some ten years after the prologue. So that said, here is Emma Malloy’s past:

A HEART REVEALED
Prologue

Dublin, Ireland, 1916
She heard it before she felt it. Harsh air sucking through clenched teeth, the grunt of an arm raised, the soft swish of a hand slicing the air.

“I want the truth—”

And then she felt it. The crack of his knuckles when her jaw met the back of his hand, the thud of her head against the wall, the putrid rise of nausea as it climbed in her throat.

“Did you sleep with him?”

“No, I swear—”

“Liar!”

Cruel hands rattled her shoulders while the vile stench of whiskey smothered her air. The taste of blood and vomit soured her tongue, forcing the words to heave from her throat. “It was an innocent comment, I swear, from a friend and nothing more …”

He wrenched her arm and her scream pierced the night before he jerked her close, his foul breath hot against her skin. “You think I’m stupid, do ya? I see the way he looks at you, the way they all look at you …”

“It doesn’t matter, Rory—you’re the one I love—only you!” The air seized in her lungs as she waited for her words to take effect. Blood pulsing in her brain, she licked her lips and forced her gaze to his, watching as his rage slowed and simmered into lust. Her body quivered as she pressed in close, tracing his mouth with a shaky finger. The violent throb of her pulse betrayed the casual huskiness of her whisper. “You … I only want you … forever and ever.”

He stared, the crazed look in his eye finally fading into the smoldering obsession she had mistaken for love. Jerking her close, he devoured her with his mouth, his lips hard and cruel as they plumbed the depths of his desire. He shoved her to the wall, pinning her there with a possessive gaze while his hands took the liberties allowed to a husband. “Mine … you’re all mine, Emma, and no other man can ever have you—do you hear?”

His breathing quickened as taut arms swallowed her up. “Don’t you know how much I love you?” he whispered, his voice pleading as the dark bristle of his late-day beard ground against her cheek. He jerked away to cup her face in his hands, all of his fury suddenly chased away by the lovesick look in his eyes. A gentle smile lifted the corners of his mouth, transforming his handsome face into the lost, little boy she’d fallen in love with. “Emma, my beautiful, beautiful Emma, I’m sorry for hitting you, love, and I swear from now on, I’ll give you all the love you deserve.”

His kiss was gentler this time, and her eyes fluttered closed. Mrs. Rory Malloy—the envy of every girl on O’Connell Street. Her sweat-soaked blouse shivered against her skin. Every lass’s dream … and one woman’s nightmare. Rory’s whispers of love tickled her ear, but all she could hear was her father’s curse, ricocheting off the battered walls of her mind.

I pray to God you get what you deserve …

With a gentle stroke of her cheek, Rory carried her into their bedroom. He closed the door with the tip of his shoe, severing the light as surely as he’d severed the hope from her soul.

Not to worry, Da … I did.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
Thank you, Lena, for the opportunity to connect with your readers! I LOVE to hear from reader friends, so they can contact me through my Web site at www.julielessman.com, either by sending an e-mail via my site or by signing up for my newsletter at http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/. My newsletter is chock-full of fun info on my books and there’s always a contest featuring signed book giveaways including one right now to have a character named after you or a loved one in my next book. Also, I have a cool feature on my website called “Journal Jots” (http://www.julielessman.com/journal-jots/), which is a very laid-back, Friday journal to my reader friends that would give your readers an idea as to my relaxed style of writing. Then finally, I can be found daily at The Seekers blog (http://seekerville.blogspot.com/), a group blog devoted to encouraging and helping aspiring writers on the road to publication.


Thank you so much, Julie, for the intimate look into your life both BC (Before Christ) and after.



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.
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

102 comments:

Ausjenny said...

Hi Julie, wondering do you still have contact with Joy? Thanks for sharing your conversion story. I am still laughing at your comments to Aunt Julie!
Please enter me I love Julies books.

Ausjenny said...

Woops forgot to say im from South Australia

Michelle said...

I cannot wait to read this one. Please enter me.

mchapman (at) windstream (dot) net

Kentucky

Rebecca said...

I would love to win this. This looks like an amazing book. I would love to read this. Thanks for the chance to win this.

I am from Oklahoma.
agent_beckster(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jo said...

This sounds like a great book. Please enter me.

Blessings,
Jo from Southern Arizona

Tammi said...

Please enter my name into the drawing for A Hearth Revealed by Julie Lessman.

Blessings,

~Tammi in Maine

dandtdearing [at] earthlink [dot] net

Jillian Kent said...

Julie,
I just love you girl! Can't wait to see you at ACFW.
Hugs,
Jill
Cincinnati, Ohio

Anonymous said...

Please enter me in the drawing.

Angela from KY

Nise' said...

Oh dear, I almost lost my drink all over the computer screen while reading what Julie said to her Aunt! I look forward to this book!

I live in West Michigan.

Melissa Jagears said...

Great conversion story, I got to be one of those angels to a bad boy at work once, too--then I married the man. :)

KS

Marianne said...

i have read a couple of books by Julie and would love to win this one! Thanks for the post, Lena. i'll ahop over to Julie's website. Thanks for the chance to win,
mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com from Peace River Country, Alberta

Casey said...

I have friends and family that love Julie's books and I would love to gift them a copy. :))

Thanks for the enter! I live in Oregon.

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, JENNY, you bet -- she's still one of my dearest friends, although she lives in another state, so I don't get to see her much.

Yeah, fortunately for me, my Aunt Julie remembers NOTHING of the incident, so I'm guessing she was in so much shock, she didn't even register it, thank God! :)

Good luck in the contest, sweetie. :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

MICHELLE!!! Oh, girl, I can't WAIT either!!! So far about three of my reader friends have read it (two found it on Borders.com via e-book) and they LOVED it, so I am realllllly excited. AND ... it has two 5-star reviews on CBD.com from two other people, so that's at least five people that have given it a thumbs-up!

I'm anxious to see what you think, so let me know, okay? Good luck!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

REBECCA ... diligence is SUCH a virtue, my friend, so hopefully it will pay off for you in winning my book. Good luck, sweetie, and thanks for following my blog giveaways -- I hope you won't be sorry!

Hugs,
Julie

karenk said...

Julie...an awesome posting...i do learn a little more about you all the time :)

Can't wait to read Sean & Emma's story, too.

karenk...from PA
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Julie Lessman said...

JO ... well, sweetie, that's half the battle if you think it "sounds" like a good book, right? You may want to check out Amazon.com on A Passion Most Pure, the first book in this family saga which also won American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Book of the Year. It has 106 5-star reviews, so hopefully that will help sway you to not only "think" that it "sounds like a good book," but motivate you to see for yourself.

So, good luck in this contest, and if you don't win here, PLEASE check out my website calendar for additional giveaways, okay?

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

TAMMI!!! LOL ... how 'bout we enter you in the contest for A Heart Revealed instead of "A Hearth Revealed," although I have to admit, that's not a bad name either ... :)

Just teasing you, sweetie, and I appreciate you following my blog giveaways -- you could win a book that way if you're not careful, you know! :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

JILL!!!! Right back at you, my friend, and BIG hugs coming your way at ACFW!! Thanks for coming by to say "hey," and I hope the new book is going gangbusters, girl, and that you're on the fast track for another one soon. :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

ANGELA FROM KY ... consider yourself entered, sweetie, and good luck in the contest!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Ooops, NISE' ... sorry 'bout that, but you'll be doing a LOT of that if you read my books (as well as laughing, crying and possibly throwing the book across the room), so it's best to read it AWAY from a computer! ;) I'm pretty much a surprise a minute -- both to my poor hubby and in my books. :)

Here's to a win!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Oooo, MELISSA -- LOVE that story, girlfriend!! Sounds like it could be a romance novel in the making ... uh, that is, if your hubby doesn't mind being in a book. :)

Good luck in the contest, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

MARIANNE ... only a couple??? Oh, girl, we need to get you caught up, don't we? :)

Seriously, if you win this contest, I will be happy to supply you with the next book from where you left off if you like ... or you can go for this one, whatever! Either way, I'm pulling for you to win a book, whether on this blog, or on one of the several other giveaways I have listed on my website calendar. Good luck!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

CASE!!! Didn't I just "see" you over on your blog where another of my interviews went live today??? Busy day for us both, I guess, eh? Too bad you can't enter your own contest, but there's plenty more going on, so GOOD LUCK!!

And anybody who wants to enter Casey's contest for a signed book, PLEASE check out my website calendar for Casey's link and others, okay?

Love you, girl!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

KAREN ... yep, that's what my hubby says every day of my life ... :)

Here's to a win, my friend!

Hugs,
Julie

Salena Stormo said...

I would love to win this book! Sign me up! :)

Salena
Texas

Patsy said...

I love Julie's writing. Looking forward to reading A Heart Revealed. Count me in!
from Mississippi

plhouston(at)bellsouth(dot)net

scottsgal said...

Sounds like a wonderful story - enjoyed the interview. This would be a new author for me
cheryl in IL
msboatgal at aol.com

Carol Moncado said...

Please enter me!!!!!!!

Skipped the prologue because it would just make me want MORE ;).

And I'm in SW Missouri. Where it's kind of sort of nice today.

Love ya!

Kassidy said...

I would absolutely LOVE to win this book!!!
-kassidy

Kassidy said...

Oh, I live in MICHIGAN!!! go blue!:))

Catia Santos said...

I can hardly wait to read this book I just adore the O'Connors.

I have also read Julie's Journal Jots for August 12, 2011 and I must say that I am happily anticipating The Cousins McClare books, especially since seeing the pictures of who Julie imagines Jamie MacKenna to be!

Please add me to the contest. Thanks

Catia Santos
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Cindy W. said...

I am from Indiana and I would absolutely love to win a copy of A Heart Revealed. Thank you for the wonderful interview.

Smiles & Blessings,
Cindy W.

countrybear52[at]yahoo[dot]com

Julie Lessman said...

SALENA ... Thanks for coming by, sweetie, and good luck in the contest!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

PATSY ... thank you SO much for your kind words -- it's SO nice to hear when someone enjoys what I write. Here's hoping AHR will be no exception! Good luck!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Oh boy, oh boy -- SCOTTSGAL ... it's ALWAYS so nice to meet a prospective reader!!! We definitely need to get a book in your hands, my friend, so if you don't win here, PLEASE check out my website calendar for more opportunities, okay? Good luck!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

CAROL ... it WAS gorgeous today, wasn't it, though??? One of the best days I've had so far outside --80s, low humidity, breezy and LOTS of beautiful dappled sunlight. Sigh.

Don't blame you for not reading the prologue, girl, I actually do not like prologues generally, but I put this one in after my agent took a look at the final ms. I think it really sets the story up well, or at least I hope it does.

Good luck, sweetie!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

KASSIDY, LOL!!! Can you tell I'm not a sports nut --- not sure what "blue" stands for, but GO BLUE!! Unless, of course, they're going up against red (the Cardinals), then I might have to rescind that.

Good luck in the contest, sweetie!

Hugs,
Julie

Carol Moncado said...

Oh I don't mind prologues - just didn't want to read it and then have nothing else and then I'd have to cry and I was at school... it woulda been a mess...

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, CATIA, great to see you here, girl!! And, oh boy, did I have fun with the McClares today!! Jamie MacKenna is fast becoming a fav of mine, so that's always a good thing since I have to infuse passion into the story, right???

Here's hoping there's a win in your future, sweetie, if not here, than on one of the other blog giveaways listed on my website calendar.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, CINDY, you're making the rounds today, girlfriend, so GOOD FOR YOU!! Here's hoping it nets you a win, okay? Good luck!

Hugs,
Julie

Pam K. said...

No matter how many interviews with Julie I read, I always find out something new. The embarrassing moment. . .oh, my!
I hadn't read the prologue either, though I've read other excerpts. I can hardly wait to read the whole book! Can you tell I'd be thrilled to win a copy of "A Heart Revealed?"
Thanks!
A devoted fan from Kansas,
pmk56[at]sbcglobal[dot]net

Robyn said...

I love your 'hoof in mouth' description. I fear I suffer from the same malady. :-)

Can't wait to read this book.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com
NE

cynthia said...

Thanks for the great interview. I wonder how the main characters are going to be able to
Get together if the husband is still around.

I'm in the San Francisco bay area.

Diana Flowers said...

What can I say? I love Julie...I love her books!! I have read them all and am looking forward to A Heart Revealed! Thank you for the opportunity to win it!

(Diana from SC)

dianalflowers@aol.com

Mona said...

Wow! Julie, this book sounds wonderful and I also loved "Gone With The Wind" hoping to win this book. Thanks Mona /Oh

Julie Lessman said...

PAM!!! Yeah, I try really hard to throw something new into every interview I do because I sure wouldn't want to read the same interview OVER and OVER, so I know my readers don't either. BUT, after having done over 200 interviews and answered over 1,500 questions over five books, IT AIN'T EASY, trust me!! :)

And, gosh, sometimes I feel I post so many excerpts, some people will feel like they don't need to read the book, but hopefully most will! :)

Good luck, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

ROBYN!! LOVE your addy -- "coolestmommy2000" -- VERY cute!

And, OH girl, I feel for you with the "hoof-in-mouth disease"!!! I sure wish I could take medication for it, but I don't suppose they have pills for "stupidity"!! :)

Good luck in the contest, my friend!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

CYNTHIA!!! You do, huh? Well, you are just going to have to wait to find out, but suffice it to say that the "surprise ending" I came up with was a TOTAL inspiration from God. I SOOO like ending my books with some way to surprise the reader, but I knew the only way I could end this book would be SO obvious, that I started praying about it, and WHOA, I got an idea that very day that put a slant to the obvious that just may catch you off-guard ... or at least I hope so, so let me know when you read it, okay?

Oh, and it will be fun for you to read The Cousins McClare, since it's set in your home city of S.F.!!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

DIANA!!! Aw, girl, you made me smile with that comment, so THANK YOU for your sweet words. I feel the same way about you -- love you and love the reviews you've been kind enough to write for my books. You've been very good to me with them, so I am hoping that you will like AHR as well. But ... time will tell!!

Good luck in the contest, my friend.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

MONA!!! YAY, another GWTW fan!!! Gosh, I'm tempted to just send you a book for that alone, but then my husband would ban me from the post office ... :)

Good luck in the contest, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Melissa said...

Oh yea! A wonderful author. Can't wait to read this book! Would love to win!

Edwina said...

Hi Julie,
Wonderful interview except there was a typo under the "embarassing moments" - there is no way you are 60!! That '6' should have been a 5.
As you khow, I loved the Daughters of Boston series and "Hope Undaunted." Can't wait to read your newest one!

edwina(dot)cowgill(at)yahoo(dot)com
from GEORGIA

Linnette R Mullin said...

Hi, Lena! Thanks for having Julie here today. We're sisters in that we're both from Missouri, though I now live in South Carolina.

Julie, thanks for sharing your testimony. God's grace has certainly transformed you! He's so good!

Ingrid said...

Hi Julie, I loved your interview and I still giggle to myself about Aunt Joy. (smile)
I love reading your books and would like for you to enter me in your contest.
I live in Illinois

ingrids62448(at)yahoo(dot)com

Marissa :) said...

I would absolutely love to win Julie's book! I love them so much! God bless you, Julie!

Colorado :)

Beth Reinke said...

Oh my goodness, what you said to your aunt gave me a giggle, Julie. I hope it made her smile, too. Congratulations on your writing success!

Please enter me, the opening already drew me in.

Beth from PA

Megan @ Inspired by Fiction said...

I'm so excited about this book. I am a follower of Julie's, ever since we chatted thru another blog a couple of years ago. It was wonderful to read more about her. I especially loved hearing her salvation story! Thanks for the interview!!

Megan (from PA)

Sharon Richmond said...

Sounds very interesting, Please enter me in the drawing.
Sharon Richmond
Blanch, NC.

Patty said...

Just finished the first book in this seriesm would love to win the second!

Patty in SC

Julie Lessman said...

MELISSA ... thank you SO much for dropping by to leave a comment. I wish you the best in the contest, sweetie, and here's to a win!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

EDWINA!!! Oh, honey, I just KNEW I liked you!!! Thanks for the kind words and sweet mother of Job, don't I wish it were a typo. Come November, it WILL be ... because I'll need to add a one to it. YUCK!!!

Anyway, I just got my shipment of author copies of A Heart Revealed, so that means CBD, Amazon and everyone else did too, so I am PUMPED!! Good luck in the contest, my friend, and I miss seeing you in Seekerville -- hope things are going well.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

LINNETTE!!! Sisters from the Show-Me state, indeed, so why did you have to go and move away??? And, YES, my friend, God's grace DID transform me, for which I am "eternally" grateful!
Good luck in the contest, girl.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, INGRID, thanks SO much for coming by to leave a comment, and I'm giggling now, but I sure wasn't then, I can tell you that!! Good luck in the contest, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Aw, MARISSA, you are SO sweet to say that, and God's blessings right back at you, my friend. AND ... good luck in this contest, sweetie. :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Thanks, BETH, and I'm glad I could give you a laugh. Hopefully, I will be giving you even more laughs if you win in this contest because Charity O'Connor (the heroine's best friend) is a real hoot!! She makes me laugh in almost every scene she's in, even the serious ones. So good luck in the contest!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

MEGAN!!! Hey, girl, how the heck are you??? You know, that's one of the really great things for me about a book release is that I get to reconnect with those wonderful reader friends I've made along the way. I'd love to hear what you think of AHR when you're done, my friend, so let me know if you like it, okay? If not, well ... never mind. :)

Good luck in the contest, sweetie!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

SHARON ... thanks for coming by to leave a comment, and if you win, I hope "interesting" will only be the beginning of your love affair with the O'Connors!! Good luck in the contest!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

PATTY!!! Good for you, girl, and I'd love for you to win the second too, so here's to a win!! Thanks for your support, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Lady DragonKeeper said...

Ms. Julie, have you ever considered writing a book loosely based on your life? (Or instead of fiction, write an autobiography!) I'm serious. It would be a total "God-story". Just an idea, anyway. =)

I just went to Revell Publishing's website and you can read a 32 page PDF excerpt of "A Heart Revealed (you know you want to read it)! =D OMGoodness! We get to see part of an O'Connor wedding reception! And, and, and I have to stop typing before I give away "spoilers". =D

jafuchi7[at]hawaii[dot]edu

(As my e-mail suggests, I'm from Hawaii). =)

Livvie said...

Oho! I wonder if that Prologue..... hm. I'll hush in case not a lot of people read the first 4 books. I'll be silent, twill! :)

I'm Livvie from Canada!

rainytuesdays at hotmail dot com

Mary Hawkins said...

Julie, so many friends both other writers as well as readers have asked me if I've read any of Julie Lessman's books and sigh at me when to my shame I have to still confess, "No, not yet." My pile of books to read is still high but I do want to read yours too - especially after reading this blog!
As well as how you came to Christ, I liked your points you share with anyone thinking of writing a book -something I too have had to answer many times over the years.

Mary Hawkins said...

Oops, sorry. I live in Tasmania, Australia. mary@mary-hawkins.com

Abigail said...

Sounds very interesting, Please enter me in the drawing. Thanks!
I have not read any of Julie's books yet, but have wanted to for some time, again thanks for the chance.
God Bless!
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Megan said...

Julie~
I read your story about "Matthew" hugs on your blog today and it made me teary-eyed. And now, you made me laugh with what you said to your Aunt. Also, thanks for sharing the prologue - it made me see just how terrible her husband was. I can't wait to read this book. Hugs, Megan

Lena~
I would love to win a copy of 'A Heart Revealed'. I LOVE all of Julie's other books and I am sure that this one will be a favorite of mine as well. Thanks for the opportunity.

lovetoread205 [at] gmail [dot] com

Illinois

Abigail said...

By the way I am one of those people who have a dream to write!
Abigail

Krista said...

Wow... what an amazing testimony into what God can do in a persons life. Thank you so much for sharing!
And please... enter me to win this book. I can hardly wait to read it!

Krista from Gresham, OR

Sarah said...

Would love to win!

Sarah H
Oklahoma

Julie Lessman said...

LDK!!! You are SOOO sweet to make the rounds on these blogs, ESPECIALLY when you have already won a signed copy of AHR, WHICH, is on its way to you now as we speak!!

And, oh girl, one of my nine sisters has been after me to write our family story for YEARS now, but it's too slice-of-life for me and not all that happy. But I plan to someday -- maybe I can make it into a Cheaper By the Baker's Dozen type story (we had 13 kids), because there were lots of neat things that went on (i.e. I used to watch my older sisters come down the staircase on prom night to greet their dates. There were five of them at the same high school, so heck, we could have held the prom at our house!! :)

And, gosh, I had NO idea that Revell posted those pages on their website. WOW ... that's very cool!!

I simply cannot wait to see what you and your sis think of this one, my friend, so PLEASE let me know, okay?

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

LIVVIE!!! Mum's the word, girlfriend!!! And I was worried the prologue would be too "heavy" for romance readers, but I think it makes a nice contrast to the first chapter, which is celeabratory and fun.

Good luck, sweetie!

And OMIGOSH ... the blogger word verification is "BLESS," so I wonder if that's a good sign for you, girl!! :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

Gosh, MARY, that blesses me to hear. Are you sure they weren't warning you instead??? :) My books get prettttttttty passionate, if I must say so myself, although AHR is the least romantically passionate and most spiritually passionate book in the lot.

And I totally relate about the TBR list -- I could be a CBD outlet!! :)

Good luck, my friend.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

ABIGAIL!!!! Oh, honey, you are JUST the type of reader I am looking for -- one who hasn't read my books yet!! We simply MUST get one into your hot, little hands, so be sure to check out my website calendar for additional giveways if you don't win here, okay? Good luck, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

MEGAN!!! Gosh, girl, you ARE making the rounds -- good for you!! There's sure to be a win in your future. :)

And thank you SO much, not only for your kind words, but for reading my Journal Jots blog!! Sorry I made you cry ... NOT!! And happy to make you laugh, BOTH of which I hope you will be doing quite a bit when you read AHR, so get ready!! Good luck, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

ABIGAIL!!! Well, if you are one of those looking to write, then I STRONGLY suggest you check out my group blog, Seekerville, at:

http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/

It's a blog devoted to helping aspiring writers on the road to publication and beyond. We are 15 contest divas who joined forces to pray and support each other into publication. When we started, only one of us had a contract. Now ALL of us are published, so we must be doing something right! Hope to see you there.

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

KRISTA, thank you, sweetie!! And, YES, it is amazing what our God can do!! I'd be lost without Him -- literally and figuratively!! Good luck in the contest, girl. :)

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

SARAH ... thank you for stopping by, and I wish you the very best in this contest, sweetie.

Hugs,
Julie

Charity U said...

Julie! You see me yet again. :) Lena, thanks so much for offering this giveaway! I'd love to win!

photographer4ever832[at]gmail[dot]com

Julie Lessman said...

CHARITY!!! Good girl ... you are bound to win a book this way, sweetie, so GOOD LUCK and THANK YOU for your interest!

HUGS,
JULIE

Helen said...

Loved learning more about you Julie! And I love your enthusiasm with everything :)

helenblogspot[at]gmail[dot]com

Helen said...

Oh and I'm from New South Wales, Australia

Julie Lessman said...

HELEN!!! Another dear reader friend from Down Under -- I LOVE it!! Fortunately, I asked my publisher if we could include my Aussie and other international friends in the contest, and they said yes, although that is not their normal policy. So GOOD LUCK in the contest, my friend!

Hugs,
Julie

Helen said...

Yay! Thanks so much Julie! So hard for us Aussies, often left out of these comps.

Amanda said...

Julie,

Wonderful post! You are such a great author and I LOVE your novels! Looking forward to reading this one!

Please enter me in the drawing.

Amanda Barratt
Michigan

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

oh yes, count me in for this please! lovely ~ frm CA

Sarah'sWhimsicalNotions said...

I'm starting to feel like a Julie Lessman interview stalker. But I love getting to read all these fun tidbits as well as excerpts from the new book. And of course, I would LOVE to win a copy! :)

Sarah

fireflies_n_stardust(at)yahoo dot com

Julie Lessman said...

Aw, AMANDA, thank you SO much, my friend -- music to my ears!! God bless you in this contest, sweetie, and here's to a win!

Hugs,
Julie

P.S. FREE DOWNLOAD OF A HOPE UNDAUNTED ON AMAZON AND B&N, SO SPREAD THE WORD!!!

Julie Lessman said...

FAITH, HOPE & CHERRY TEA!!!! Oh, honey, you need to win for that addy alone -- LOVE IT!! And, surprisingly, I now I have a craving for cherry tea ... :)

Good luck in the contest, sweetie, and if you have never read my books, the first book in this series, A Hope Undaunted, is now FREE on Amazon Kindle and B&N Nook!! AND you can download it on anything -- PC, MAC, DROID, I-PHONE, I-PAD, you name it, so SPREAD THE WORD!!

Hugs,
Julie

Julie Lessman said...

SARAH!!! Stalk away, my friend -- that's what these giveaways are all about and I do it myself. I usually win 2 or more books a year by stalking the authors I want to read ... :)

So GOOD LUCK!!

Hugs,
Julie

sarahw said...

another great auther with a grgeat interview. would love to be entered in the contest. thanks,
sarahw- MN

Julie Lessman said...

SARAH ... thanks for coming by, sweetie, and here's to a win in the contest!

Hugs,
Julie

P.S. The first book in this series, A Hope Undaunted, is FREE as an e-book on CBD.com, Amazon Kindle, Sony e-reader and B&N Nook for a limited time, all of which you can download on PCs, Macs, Droids, i-pads, i-phones, etc., so please pass the word!!

Chellb said...

I've just found Julie Lessman's books and have enjoyed the ones I've read. Enter me please. Thanks for the chance to win the book.

Michelle in Texas.

Julie Lessman said...

Hey, MICHELLE IN TEXAS, thank you SO much for finding my books AND for stopping by to leave a comment -- MUCH appreciated!! I hope it nets you a win, my friend -- GOOD LUCK!!

Hugs,
Julie