Friday, January 06, 2017

SOMEBODY SOMEWHERE IN TEXAS - Connie Leonard - One Free Book

Dear Readers, Connie is a long-time friend. I’m so glad to introduce you to her new book. She lives not too far from me, and we attend the same ACFW local chapter, so we’re often together.

Welcome back, Connie. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I didn’t plan it that way, but everything I have written has a strong redemption thread. Accepting Christ as our Savior is only the beginning of our journey. Many people are led astray by the sins and lusts of the world. Many people are wounded by the church and fall away. Many people are beat up by life, become discouraged, and lose heart. We all need to know that wherever we are or whatever we’ve done, Christ is ready to reclaim and redeem us. He is in the redemption business.

Amen to that. Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
I have experienced so many blessings, it’s hard to pick just one. The day I accepted Christ was exhilarating. I know many people say their wedding day, but as wonderful as that was, it was also a day filled with stress and anxiety. It was only the beginning of life’s adventure, which is going stronger than ever after 46 years. The days our children were born were exciting days full of wonder and hope.

How has being published changed your life?
Being a published writer is a dream I’ve had since I was thirteen. I have published a Master’s thesis, two novels, and a devotional as well as numerous magazine articles, so it feels good to say I am a “real” writer. It is rewarding to hear how my writing has touched someone. The only way it has changed my life is that I am more in awe of God and His goodness and grace, giving us dreams and bringing them to fruition.

You have been a “real” writer all along. God knit you together in your mother’s womb to be a writer, and I’m glad He did. What are you reading right now?
I just downloaded and began reading The Heart of Thornton Creek, by Bonnie Leon.

I’ve read a lot of Bonnie’s books, but not that one. I’ll look for it. What is your current work in progress?
I’ve have started the sequel to Somebody Somewhere in Texas. It is about Brooks’s younger sister Andrea after she finishes veterinarian school. It is titled Light up my Life in Texas. I’m excited about it!

I’ll want to feature it on the blog when it releases. What would be your dream vacation?
I would love to go on an Alaskan cruise.

James spent time in Alaska when he was in the army before we met. He’s wanted to take me to Alaska, but it hasn’t happened yet. Now we’d love to do an Alaskan cruise, too. How do you choose your settings for each book?
I choose to write about someplace I am familiar with. My two published novels take place in Texas. The first two novels I wrote, which are unpublished at this time, are set in the Santa Fe Wilderness where my family vacationed many times.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
I would like to meet and talk with President George Bush and his lovely wife Laura. They led our country through a very dark tragedy, and they seem like good, honest, approachable people.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
I love to cook and bake.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
I am not a time-oriented person, so managing my time is always difficult.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Study the craft, attend conferences, and join a critique group. Pray continuously. Write what you love, what you feel passionate about, what God called you to do. Don’t hide your talent under a bushel. The traditional publishing industry is shrinking, but Indy publishing is an open door of opportunities. Write, rewrite, edit, and then have a professional editor or other qualified people edit your writing before you publish. Then get a professional cover design. I made my first book cover, and it shows. For this novel, I had Jackie Castle of Castle Designs make the cover, and I love it! Don’t worry about numbers. Pray and trust God to use your work to touch someone in some way.

Tell us about the featured book.
Here is the back cover copy:
Secrets can’t be hidden forever. Maybe it’s time to pay the fiddler.

Katie Kane fell in love with Brooks Travis at age six. She fell in love with symphony at sixteen. She can’t have both. After the unthinkable happens, she follows her dream to Chicago, vowing never to return to Texas. Now her dad wants her to come home. Mom has cancer, and he needs her.

Brooks loves two things above all else: Katie and country music. Together their talent could have taken them to the top of the charts, but she chose Chicago. He heard she got married, probably to some citified, symphony sissy. Brooks is singing for the Lord in the cowboy church when Katie comes home with a son—a son with the same violet blue eyes he sees in the mirror every day. God has redeemed him, but is there any hope Katie can forgive him and their love be rekindled?

Katie’s life and dreams are in Chicago. Brooks was her first and only love, but he broke her heart. She can’t let her guard down, can’t open the gate and let him back into her life. Everything is different now. Well, maybe not everything. . . 

Please give us the first page of the book.
“The Yellow Rose of Texas” ringtone shattered the silence in the efficiency kitchen. Katie’s pulse raced two beats faster than the song. How long had it been since he’d called? As she picked up the cell phone, the pulsating vibration jarred her entire body. “Hel—hello.”
“Katie, this is Dad.”

Hearing his voice after all those years made her heart do a belly flop.

“Katie, are you there?”

She swallowed hard, closed her eyes, and pictured his brown eyes buried beneath bronzed, weather-beaten skin. Old before his time, working in the wind and rain, the blistering heat, the frigid cold, trying to make a living on the small family ranch. She inhaled. “Yes, Dad, I’m here.”

A prolonged pause before she heard his voice. “I know it’s been a long time since we talked—too long.”

“Six years.” She leaned her head on the doorframe, trying to keep the pain and anger out of her voice.

“That’s what happens when two people are so stubborn.”

“Two people? Which two people, Dad?”

Thank you, Connie, for sharing this book with me and my readers. I know they'll love it.

I am so eager to read this book. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My books are available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle version.
I write a devotional blog on my website at http://connielewisleonard.webs.com/
I have an author Facebook page: Connie Lewis Leonard, author
You can also visit the Somebody Somewhere in Texas Book Launch Facebook page to find out more about the book, reviews, and updates on the sequel. I set it up as a page instead of an event so people can check in at their leisure.

Here is the Amazon link to Somebody Somewhere in Texas

Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (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 Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

I look forward to talking with you about my new book. I have been pleased with the responses I've received so far.
Connie Leonard

Julie from TX said...

Congratulations, Connie! By the way, I'd like to go on that Alaskan cruise with you. Just give me the date. ;)
-J.A.

Lee Carver said...

I enjoyed reading "Somebody somewhere in Texas," Connie. Just when I thought I knew how it would end, it didn't! I wish you much success on this novel.
(Don't put me in the drawing for a free copy.)

Susan Johnson said...

I would love to read this book. Thank you for the chance to win a copy. BTW, I love the title.
Susan in Texas

Anonymous said...

It looks like you have a good chance to win.
Conni Leonard

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Lee Carver.

Anonymous said...

I'll start saving my pennies.
Connie Leonard

Connie said...

This sounds like a heart warming and soul searching book. Thank you for the chance to win it.
Connie from KY
cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

Melanie Backus said...

Connie is new to me and her book sounds like one I would enjoy.

Melanie Backus, TX

Anonymous said...

If you don't win, I hope you'll look for the book on Amazon. They are offering the first few chapters as a preview.
Connie Leonard

Patty said...

Sounds like a good book, cute cover too!

Patty in SC

Lourdes said...

What a great giveaway thank you!

Lourdes in Long Island, New York.

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me in your awesome giveaway!!
Conway SC.

rubynreba said...

Texas is such a neat state. Love books set there.
Beth from Iowa

Anonymous said...

Patty in SC, I'm glad you like the cover. It was taken on an actual ranch in Texas. The horses are the right colors, too.
Connie Leonard

ablst nlki I said...

Now I wonder why she hasn't talked to her dad in so many years.
I'm in TN

Anonymous said...

Isn't it sad that families sometimes allow conflict to keep them apart? Somebody Somewhere in Texas is a redemption story, so their relationship will be restored and renewed.
Connie Leonard