Thursday, April 23, 2009

Marcia Gruver - CHASING CHARITY - Free Book

Marcia is back with the second book in her historical series set in Texas. Welcome, Marcia. Why do you write the kind of books you do?

I once said I’d never write a historical novel. All the required research! It seemed so hard, and I figured I didn’t have the credentials. Convinced I was an author of women’s fiction, I had plans to crank out tomes of profound prose with intense, multilayered characters waltzing through thoroughly modern settings. I never consciously made the switch to writing historicals. Looking back, I believe my first historical novel was an offspring born of my fascination with the past and the origin of my own roots.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?

I’m glad you prefaced the question the way you did, because accepting Jesus Christ’s offer of eternal life is hands down the happiest event of my life. Besides that day, there are two more that stand out in flashing neon. One: The birth of my daughter, though I was too young and stupid at the time to appreciate the incredible gift she is. Of course, I know it now. Two: Meeting my wonderful husband at a time when I didn’t believe myself worthy of love. Every day of our lives, he is the flesh and blood picture of God’s unconditional love.

How has being published changed your life?

I gave up my life of leisure, that’s for sure! After working most of my life, we had finally reached a place where I could afford to quit work and stay home. With no little ones underfoot, after a bit of housework, my hands were idle all day. That lasted until I took up writing as a "hobby" that soon became a beloved obsession. Until I contracted with Barbour, it was an obsession I could pick up and lay down at will. Well, those days are gone! No more TV and bonbons for me, and that’s okay. You know what they say about idle hands.

I’ve also had to make peace with my fifteen minutes of fame. For someone like me, it’s a humbling experience indeed to suddenly be signing autographs and corresponding with "fans." Crazy! But quite nice.

What are you reading right now?

Funny you should ask. Not fifteen minutes ago, Amazon delivered my copy of Susan Meissner’s The Shape of Mercy. There’s been so much buzz about it, I couldn’t resist. I’ll be cracking the cover tonight.

What is your current work in progress?

I’m pushing to complete Emmy’s Equal, the last installment of Texas Fortunes, and my favorite so far. It features Emily Dane, the best friend of Charity Bloom, the heroine in Chasing Charity. Emmy is a mischievous rascal who keeps Charity’s life interesting, to say the least. She stood out so vividly while writing book two, I had to give her the final story. Actually, she insisted.

What would be your dream vacation?

I’m partial to mountainous regions and love Colorado, but since I’m lately prone to altitude sickness, the gorgeous Texas hill country provides a nice alternative. I’ve been an Anglophile since the early sixties, about the same time I became a Beatlemaniac, so a trip to England is at the top of my "bucket list." Of course, after watching Under The Tuscan Sun, I longed to visit Italy. But wouldn’t it be amazing to tour Africa?

I can’t decide! There’s too much of this beautiful planet I’ve yet to see.

How do you choose your settings for each book?

A historic event will catch my attention, like the murder of Diamond Bessie in Jefferson, Texas, or the oil boom in Humble, and the seed of the story grows. The setting becomes part of the package. Emmy’s Equal is a little different. While living for a few months in the South Texas town of Carrizo Springs, I fell in love with the beauty and history of the place, as well as its people and local legends. A region filled with cactus and cattle ranches; it seemed the perfect setting for feisty Emmy Dane with her prickly personality and personal aversion to being lassoed or branded by any man.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?

President George Bush. I’d love to ask how the negative media has affected his life and his family. I’d ask him what he prays for these days and if he has forgiven his enemies and detractors.

I'm sure he has. He iss a brave man who ran because he felt he should and stuck to his beliefs, no matter what detractors said. What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?

I talk a lot about my favorite avenue of escape. . .playing games on my Playstation3. People laugh and some make fun of me a little. My son’s friends are amazed that I have more games in my collection than they have. But I’m not such a dumb old broad. Recent studies proved the importance of using our cognitive skills as we age in order to keep our minds sharp and focused. This granny spends her free time helping Laura Croft break into tombs and solving puzzles for Lego Indiana Jones. While I de-stress, I’m exercising my mental muscles with a few cranial calisthenics. Pretty smart, huh? I plan to stay that way.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?

These days, it’s time management. Writing the first book, you don’t have the added time expenditure of marketing. I wasn’t prepared for the amount of time needed for blog tours, interviews, traveling to signings, etc. Don’t get me wrong, this is the fun part. But it can bite a sizable chunk out of twenty-four hours. To be honest, I haven’t overcome it yet. Do you happen to know of a good deal on juggling lessons?

Tell us about the featured book.

Chasing Charity started out as book one of the Texas Fortunes series. When I decided to write the story of Bertha Bloom, Charity’s quirky little mama, Barbour liked the idea, but made the call to release the books in chronological order. Book two became book one and Diamond Duo was born. So actually, all of the characters in the series sprang from the pages of Chasing Charity.

I had so much fun writing this book. In it, Charity Bloom’s childhood friend, Emily Dane, follows Charity’s fiancé from the church when he spins on his heels and leaves Charity stranded at the alter. This leaves the whole town buzzing about the three of them, and Charity has nowhere to hide from her disgrace. After a handsome oilman named Buddy Pierce discovers oil seeping onto her property, Charity reacts with anger and fear. Despite Buddy’s confusion about her response, he soon realizes the real treasure is above ground in the form of Charity herself. While Charity wonders how she’s so attracted to another man just days after her failed wedding, her rogue ex-fiancé decides he wants her back. Suddenly the wrong man wants to marry her after all, and the right one leaves town just when she needs him most. Charity decides it’s up to her to save her mama’s land from a scheming, land-grabbing neighbor, so she makes a decision that is bound to ruin her life.

I am totally intrigued. This book now moves to the top of my to-be-read pile. How can readers find you on the Internet?

My website URL is
My blog is
I’m also a contributor to The Internal Monoblog at

Thank you, Marcia, for spending this time with us.

Readers, if you can't wait to get your hands on a copy, here's a link where you can order it:

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy. The winner announcement posts on this blog will be the only notification you will receive. So check back a week from Saturday to see if you're the winner. Or you can sign up for FeedBlitz so you won't miss any posts.


CarlybirdK said...

Oh, this sounds like such a good book. Great interview.

Janelle said...

My dear Marcia. There's not enough room to be able to tell everyone how great you and your writing are. Readers need to know you have an awesome voice. Um, writing voice. I can't speak for your singing voice. LOL. But seriously, Marcia's writing is completely unique. Whether or not Marcia can sing, her writing certainly does. Perfectly harmonizes with her great stories. Congrats and much love, Marcia.

Renee (BlacknGoldGirlsBookSpot) said...

Haha sounds great! Don't feel bad Marica, I'm up on all those gamess too, I play Xbox 360 with my little brother all the time! So he tells me all the games, when they're coming out, the best techniques to beat the bad guy etc. Fun stuff! The book sounds like "fun" too so please enter me!


Wendy said...

That is awesome!!! I admire you for being able to write all three books...I could never do

Mary Connealy said...

Hi, Marcia?

I already have Chasing Charity so don't put me in the drawing.

Great interview. Laura Croft? Really? Wow, I really didn't have that great a clear vision of you in my head, even though I feel like we really know each other, but now, it's all black leather and gunfire, darlin'.

I'm very confused.

I've got Chasing Charity in my TBR pile. For the sake of honesty I have to admit it's not really a PILE, it's more like a TBR recliner, the seat of which is loaded with books. A steady irritant to my orderly husband.

There are also some clothes and a bath towel in the chair. There could be more but I'm kind of afraid to look close.

But your book is there, near the top. I promise it's coming soon because I've heard such great things about it.

Eileen Key said...

Woohoo! Charity finally makes her debut. I LOVE this character, folks. Seriously! Marcia, you "done good." Keep writing those intriguing plots and we'll search out juggling lessons soon.

Marcia Gruver said...

Thanks, Carly! Lena always asks such great interview questions.

Little Janelle! You're such a sweetie. Thank you for your kind words. If my writing voice sings, it's to compensate for my vocal cords. I only sing in church and in the shower. I sure hope God runs my sour notes through a filter.

Renee, you sound like my kind of gal! I have lots of gamer boys in my family. Sons and grandsons who keep me up-to-date on the latest game releases. It’s fun, huh?

Wendy Lou, you'd be so surprised by what you're capable of accomplishing. I see great potential in you, sugar.

Mary C, don't let the mousey exterior fool you. Oops, sorry! I used the word "mousey" to a known musophobic. Is that the right term? I hope Chasing Charity surfaces from your recliner soon. And I hope you like it, when it does.

Ah, Eileen. . .the lady who helped me to tweak Charity and the gang. Without your input, we might not be discussing Chasing Charity here today. Thank you, darlin'!

Unknown said...

Loved the interview, Marcia! I'm so proud of you and I KNOW this book is going to sail to the top of the charts!

Marcia Gruver said...

(I'm posting the following at the request of my friend Jerry. He's having trouble getting it posted and will tell you himself he's not much of a blogger. Thanks, Jerry, for your gracious words!)

I've known Marcia for over ten years; back when she was "Dreaming" of being a writer. I remember the first "Writer's Conference" in Estes Park, Colorado. I'm not much of a reader but have read "Chasing Charity" and find her ability with words is great. In addition, she exhibits strong Chrisitan beliefs in her daily life all the time. She is a quiet, gracious woman. My interest in Chasing Charity also stems from one of the characters in the book. I'm looking forward to the final edition of this series. Very interested in what happens with Emmy. Hopefully, these three books are only the first of many for Marcia. Jerry Ritter

Marcia Gruver said...

Thank you Janice! I KNOW how busy you are, so I'm honored you took the time to pop in.

Anonymous said...

I have the first one, and really enjoyed it!

Aaron McCarver said...

As an editor for this book, I can tell you how great it is! Marcia is able to take the typical historical romance and add her unique twists. Her stories are always powerful, always entertaining, and always pointing the reader to the One who inspires them. Great job, Marcia. Looking forward to working on "Emmy's Equal" in the coming days!

Sheila Deeth said...

Lovely to meet you. I've read those studies about keeping the brain busy too, though I'm sure writing and researching keeps yours pretty well-toned. Maybe one day the guys will let me play their computer games (but would I have the patience...)

Marcia Gruver said...

Hi, Aaron! I'm so glad you dropped by and left a note. I'm overwhelmed by the wonderful things you said (especially the part about my Inspiration). And thrilled that you'll be editing Emmy's Equal!

Marcia Gruver said...

Butterfly, didn't you win Diamond Duo on Cara Putman's blog? See? I keep up with these things. :)

Sheila, you're right about the research. A few days spent buried in books and combing the web leaves my head throbbing. In a good way, of course.

Thanks for stopping by, ladies.

Megan said...

I love how she answered the happiest day question. So cool. Glad to hear your husband is out of ICU!

megan.nadalet at gmail dot com

Keli Gwyn said...


My copy of Chasing Charity arrived just a few days ago. I've moved it to the top of my TBR mountain. Since I loved Diamond Duo and your incredible storytelling abilities so much that you became one of my must-read authors, I couldn't wait to read it. Looking forward to immersing myself in Charity's story.

Lena - Please don't enter me in the drawing.

Amber Holcomb said...

That was a lovely interview! This book sounds really interesting, and I love the genre, historical fiction romance. I'd love a chance to win Chasing Charity. I hope all goes well with the next book!

Terrie Coleman said...

Hello, Marcia. This is a wonderful interview. It's inspiring to see your success! You go girl! God's blessings on you.

Carolynn said...

Sounds wonderful, thanks for the chance to win!

ladybug said...

The first one is wonderful! I loved it and have passed it on to friends. Please enter me for this!

Elizabeth Ludwig said...

What a wonderful interview, from a sweet and wonderful woman.

Marcia, your characters are a reflection of you...sweet, smart, spunky, and wholly in love with the Lord. Bless you in your writing ministry!

Marcia Gruver said...

Megan, thanks for loving how I answered the happiest day question. :) I'm happy you came by to visit.

Hey, Keli! Great to "see" you here. Let me tell you, I’m honored to be on your TBR mountain, much less one of your must-read authors. Thank you for checking in and leaving a comment.

Marcia Gruver said...

Amber, thanks for wishing me well on book three. Good luck on the drawing.

Hi, Terry. It’s been a long time since we connected. I receive that blessing, girl!

Thank you, Carolyn. I’ve decided to double your chance to win. I’m officially announcing a second book up for grabs. So if Lena will draw two names, I’ll make sure both winners receive an autographed copy. How about that, Lena?

Bless you, Ladybug! I’m thrilled you liked Diamond Duo. I pray you’ll enjoy Chasing Charity just as much.

Marcia Gruver said...

Oh, Lisa! My goodness, you brought me to tears. You write a mean blog post comment sister. I feel unworthy--but grateful. :)

Anonymous said...

Commenting again :)
wow marcia! you are GOOD! I did win from Cara's blog!

Linda Kozar said...

Marcia, the next best thing to reading your books is reading more about you!

windycindy said...

Love the sound of this story line and the characters. Thanks, Cindi

Merry said...

Chasing Charity sounds wonderfully engaging. I loved Diamond Duo. Please include me in the drawing, thanks!


Simply Stacie said...

Thanks for the interview and chance to win.

Melanie said...

Marcia has been and still is sometimes the best inspiration that I have besides the Lord himself. She tapped into her creative side and used a gift that God gave her to serve him, something that many people ignore or don't realize they have themselves. I'm one of her many nieces so I might sound a little biased lol, but seeing the support she has from her readers everywhere is truly amazing! ~Mellie~

Marcia Gruver said...

Gosh, it’s nice to have supportive friends. Hugs, Linda.

Cindi, I hope you’ll get the chance to read Chasing Charity. If so, you’ll have to contact me at my website and let me know what you think.

Thrilled to hear people say they enjoyed reading Diamond Duo. My “first born,” you know. Good luck in the drawing, Mez. You, too, Stacie.

Marcia Gruver said...

Awwww! Look who showed up to lend her support. Heartfelt thanks, little Mellie. You're the one who's amazing.

My final thanks to all who participated, with a special blessing aimed toward Lena for hosting me. I hope to run into you guys again very soon.

Norma said...

This sounds intriguing - I would love to win it.

Debs Desk said...

Please include me in your giveaway.

My Wish said...

“It may take courage to embrace the possibilities of your own potential, but once you've flown past the summit of your fears, nothing will seem impossible. ”

Remember to always..."DREAM BIG!!!"

Carole said...

This is going to be a great series! I have Diamond Duo, but wanted to wait until the other books were published before beginning to read. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

Linda said...

Anything historical! With romance/suspence is better! Please enter me for the contest.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Edna said...

I love any book, please enter me into the contest.


Marla said...

This sounds like a real good book. Thank you so much for the giveaway.

adrienne said...

Sounds like a good book, please enter me for the drawing. Thanks.

Dolly Sanders said...

Marcia,Thanks for Chasing Charity. Just as I started on the first chapter, I layed it down and my daughter picked it up and took it home with her. She said its wonderful, and refuses to give me any details. She promised to bring it back soon. I can't wait to finish it. She described it as "Captivating".
I'm so proud of you Marcia.

Jo said...

Would love to get entered in the drawing. This sounds great.