Sunday, April 25, 2010
I write mostly historical Christian romances, although I do have two contemporary books published. I love stories set on the prairie or in the Old West and stories with cowboys. Not all of my books have these settings, but a number of them do.
Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
That’s really hard. Of course, there’s the day I got married, and the days my four sons were born, then the day my granddaughter was born, and the day I got my first book contract. I guess I don’t have just one happiest day. :-)
How has being published changed your life?
The biggest change is that I now have this huge world of friends I didn’t have before. I’ve met so many people in the writing word, and a number of them are very dear friends. That’s been a perk I never expected. The other change is that I’ve gotten to travel a lot. I always wanted to travel, but when we were raising our four boys, we couldn’t afford it very often. I’ve gotten to travel to places for research, for conferences, and book festivals. I love that!
What are you reading right now?
You actually caught me in between books, which is a very rare thing. The last two books I read were Angel’s Den by Jamie Carie and A Lady Like Sarah by Margaret Brownley. Both were good books.
What is your current work in progress?
I’m currently working on the sequel to The Anonymous Bride. It’s book two in my Texas Boardinghouse Brides series and is titled Second Chance Brides. It’s the story of two women who were the losers in a bride contest.
What would be your dream vacation?
Since I’m dreaming, I’ll dream big. I’d love to take a trip around the world with stops in New Zealand, Australia, Fiji, Scotland, Ireland, Rome, Austria and Africa. Wouldn’t that be some trip!
I'd love to come along on that one. How do you choose your settings for each book?
In different ways. I tend to write a lot of books set in Texas because they’re popular, but also because I live next door to it in Oklahoma and have visited there many times. Again, it goes back to my love of prairie and Old West settings. Other settings I’ve used have been after researching and finding something that interested me about the area.
If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
Ugh, that’s hard. It would have to be Harrison Ford or Tracie Peterson. Tracie would win out, though, because I have no idea what to say to Mr. Ford. I’d love to pick Tracie’s brain and learn how she researches her books and how she finds such interesting places and topics to write about. I’ve been reading her books for over twenty years, I think.
I love Tracie's books, too. What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Playing with my granddaughter Hailey, watching movies and my favorite TV show(NCIS, Chuck, Numbers, & Castle), traveling, and gardening.
What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Don’t expect to have your first book published. It happens, but most of us need to write a few practice books and learn the craft of writing before we’re ready to be published. The first book I sold was actually the fourth one I’d written. I doubt the first three will ever be published. Study the craft of writing, attend writing conferences if you can, join a critique group, and keep writing, even if you get rejections. If you write Christian fiction, I highly recommend that you join ACFW. http://www.acfw.com/
Tell us about the featured book?
The Anonymous Bride is the first book in my Texas Boardinghouse Brides series. It’s the story of a town marshal who suddenly has three mail-order brides show up in to town, each expecting to marry him. The thing is—he didn’t order a bride. After much debate, it’s decided a contest will be held to see which bride would make the best wife. But instead of three entries, there are four—the fourth being from an anonymous bride. It’s a fun, light-hearted book that I hope readers will enjoy.
Please give us the first page of the book.
(Here it is, but since this isn’t the final version, keep in mind it could change some.)
Luke Davis reined his horse to a halt atop the ridge and gazed down at the town half a mile away. Lookout, Texas—the place where his dreams were birthed and had died. He wasn’t ready to return—to face the two people he’d tried so hard to forget. But sometimes God asked hard things of a man.
“I’d rather face a band of Sioux warriors, Lord, than to ride into that town again.” He sighed and rubbed the back of his neck.
Alamo, his black gelding, snorted, as if sensing they’d reached the end of their long journey. Luke reined his horse down the path to the small river that ran south and west of town. A healthy dose of spring rains had filled the crater dug out by past floods where the river made a sharp turn. Local kids used it for a swimming hole, and a new rope had been added for them to swing on. Memories of afternoons spent there were some of Luke’s favorite, but those carefree days were over.
He glanced heavenward at the brilliant blue sky, halfway hoping God would give him leave to ride away. When no such reprieve came, he dismounted at the water’s edge and allowed his horse to drink while he rinsed three days’ worth of dust off his face.
Alamo suddenly jerked his head up and flicked his ears forward. The horse backed away from the bank and turned, looking off to the right. Luke scooped up a handful of water and sipped it, watching to see what had stirred up his horse. Tall trees lined the life-giving river, and thigh-high grasses and shrubs made good hiding places. He knew that for a fact. How many times as a boy had he and his two cousins hidden there, watching the older kids swimming and sometimes spooning?
“Must have been some critter, ’Mo.” He stood and patted his horse, finally ready to ride into Lookout and see up close how much the town had changed. How she’d changed.
Suddenly, three heads popped up from behind a nearby bush. “Hey, mister,” a skinny kid yelled, “that’s our swimming hole, not a horse trough.”
Rocks flew toward him, and he ducked, turning his back to the kids. Alamo squealed and sidestepped into Luke, sending him flying straight into the river. Hoots of laughter rose up behind him as cool water seeped down into his boots and soaked his clothing. His boots slipped on the moss-covered rocks as he scrambled for a foothold.
“Foolish kids.” He trudged out of the river, dripping from every inch of his clothing. His socks sloshed in his water-logged boots. Dropping to the bank, he yanked them off and dumped the water and wrung out his socks. With his boots back on, he checked Alamo, making sure the horse wasn’t injured, then he mounted, determined to find those kids and teach them a lesson. Playing childish pranks was one thing, and he’d done his share of them, but throwing rocks at an animal was something else altogether.
“Heyah!” Alamo lurched forward. Luke hunkered low against the horse’s neck until he cleared the tree line then he sat up, scanning the rolling hills. He didn’t see any movement at first, but when he topped the closest hill, he found the rowdy trio racing for the edge of town. Luke hunched down and let his horse out in a full canter, quickly closing the distance between him and the kids.
All three glanced back, no longer ornery but scared. He’d never harm a child, but instilling a little fear for the law couldn’t hurt anything.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website is: http://www.vickiemcdonough.com/
I’m a regular contributor on the Bustles and Spurs blog: http://www.bustlesandspurs.com/
Thank you for allowing me to be a guest on your blog and to tell you some information about The Anonymous Bride.
We are thrilled to have you, Vickie.
Readers, I've read and reviewed The Anonymous Bride. You can read my review by clicking on the Book Review link at the top of the blog.
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