Friday, April 30, 2010

LOVE FINDS YOU IN GOLDEN, NEW MEXICO - Lena Nelson Dooley - Free Book

This is the interview I meant to post on Wednesday, but I was in the hospital for monitoring and observation that day. Today we have a guest interviewer.

Hi everyone! Janice Thompson here. I'm filling in for Lena today because she's our featured author! I approached her with this idea when we were at a retreat together, and she agreed. I had the joy of reading LOVE FINDS YOU IN GOLDEN NEW MEXICO for endorsement and loved it. What a ride! Such great characterization and great plot twists. I can't wait for this book to release. I know that readers will love it. In the meantime, I've come up with a host of questions for Lena to answer, so let's get this show on the road!

Lena, what was it like, working with a new publisher (Summerside Press)?

I absolutely loved it. The people at Summerside Press welcomed me in so many warm ways. I’ve come to appreciate each of them. And the editor who did the actual work on my book was the easiest editor I’ve ever worked with. (Thank you, Ramona.) She encouraged me and helped make my words shine.

I’m so glad you had a great experience with Summerside. I’ve learned that working with a great editor can make the process much more enjoyable! How did you come up with the idea of setting your most recent story in Golden, New Mexico?

I needed a place that had gold mining and area nearby for ranching. Also, the name of the town needed to have meaning in the story. I did about two days of research to find the exact town that fit what I needed. I found out that the first gold strike west of the Mississippi was actually in Golden in New Mexico Territory in 1825, which preceded both the Colorado and California strikes.

I love the symbolism in your title/setting. I’m also crazy about your character descriptions in this story. They are beautifully layered. How did you go about choosing your characters and growing them into such complex men and women?

This was my first chance to write a long novel, so I’ve never been able to do it as I did in this book. I firmly believe that God gave me insight into each of the people, which helped the story become multi-layered. Of course, you and I both know that having a drama director background helps an author be able to dig deep into characters, revealing their feelings, desires, and regrets.

I hear ya! When you’re accustomed to working with characters on the stage, the transition to the page just seems to come naturally. Now let me ask you another question. Your story begins in one city and ends in another. Tell us about that progression.

It did make more work while I researched for the story. The heroine’s story arc takes her from Boston, where she grew up in a wealthy family to the Wild West town. The contrasting of the two cultures gave another level to the story.

As writers we're taught that our bad guys can't be all bad and our good guys can't be all good. How did you go about accomplishing this in your story?

Actually, in the beginning I planned for the bad guy to be all bad, but along the way, God showed me his motivation for being a villain. That changed some things in his part of the story.

And with the good guys, let’s face the fact, none of us are good all the time. I love to write realistic stories that show a character’s foibles as well.

Yes, it always comes back to goals, motivation and conflict, doesn’t it! Who is your favorite character. . .and why?

I get asked this a lot. It’s almost like asking, “Which of your children do you love the most?” I loved them all, because they each had something to add to the story, even the most minor characters. But if I have to choose, I’d have to say it’s. . . see, I just can’t do it.

Perfect answer. And I totally understand. What was the most intriguing thing you learned during your research for this book?

I had a quandary about how an orphan baby could be fed on a cross-country train ride. I found out a lot of interesting things about infant feeding. A Swiss doctor made an infant food formula that really gave babies what they needed. By 1890, it was available all across the United States, through the Nestle company. I found that interesting. And the baby bottles were so different from what are used today.

I always think it’s so much fun to discover “products” that were available. The Nestles formula was perfect! Now, let me switch gears. . . You did a great job of "showing" the reader the town of Golden, New Mexico. What surprised you most about Golden?

Golden was a thriving town and the center of mining in that area, even after the railroad chose to go through Los Cerrillos far to the north. But when the mining died out, the town dwindled to a ghost town.

Your story is a lovely romance, filled with a strong inspirational thread. Can you tell us a little about the role romance has played in your own life, both in your marriage and your relationship with the Lord?

God gave me my husband when I didn’t know that I needed him. Three months and three days later, we were married. That was almost 46 years ago. Our romance has grown stronger and deeper over the years. In the same way, my intimate love of the Lord has grown stronger and deeper. I love Jesus and James more each day.

Both of those relationships (with James and with the Lord) shine through in all you do, Lena. I love hearing your stories about your sweet hubby, and your love for the Lord is the absolutely sweetest thing about you! You are a genuinely kind and loving friend, which is why I’m so delighted this book is releasing. You deserve it! Lena, you've always done such a great job of showcasing the work of others on your blog and via other social networks (and we're eternally grateful). What is it like, to share about your own stories here? Is it harder to promote yourself. . .or others?

I love showcasing and promoting the work of others. Actually, that’s what God told me to do on my blog. It always feels awkward when I’m doing my own. I’ve answered the questions I’ve sent to other authors, but this way with you as guest interviewer is much better.

Trust me, I know! It’s always harder to promote yourself. That’s why I wanted to jump onboard with this one. Once readers have a chance to read this story, they will begin promoting for you! And speaking of promotion… If a Hollywood director called and said, "I want to turn your book into a movie!" what would you say/do? Would you have an active role in the filming of the movie? Who would star in it?

You’re kidding, right? After jumping up and down and screaming, I’d agree wholeheartedly. I do think I’d have my agent make sure there is a clause where I could have a final approval on any screenplay. I do understand the need for screenwriters to make adjustments, but I’d want to be able to say no if they changed the story in a way that is unacceptable to my principles. If we’re dreaming here, I’d love to have Sandra Bullock as Madeline and John Schneider as Jeremiah (even though his hair is the wrong color).

What other projects do you have in the works?

Right now, I’m between contracts, but my agent has several proposals with editors, and there's been some real interest in a three book series. I'm hoping it sells soon.

When you were a little girl, did you ever dream you would be a multi-published author?

It never crossed my mind.

How interesting! I pegged you to be one of those little girls who knew exactly what she wanted to be when she grew up! Is there anything you'd like to say to up-and-coming romance authors out there?

Write the stories of your heart. Network with other authors. Never stop learning about the craft. Never give up, but trust the Lord to bring about success in your writing life.

Amen, to that, sister. Those are “golden” words of advice! Thanks for letting me take on the role of emcee today, Lena! I'm tickled pink about your book. I'm sure the sales are going to be out of this world!

Janice A. Thompson
"Love, Laughter, and Happily Ever Afters!"

Thank you, Janice, for helping me promote Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico.

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

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book.

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 6 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. Here’s a link.


Coolestmommy said...

Glad to hear you're home again, Lena. I love the "Love Finds You" books and can't wait to read yours.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Yeah Lena! Sounds great. :O)


Wendy said...

I love this Love Finds You series.
wsmarple/at/gmail/dot com

Jan Cline said...

I agree with not being able to choose a favorite character, but if I really had to choose - it would be the ones with the most faults. Hmmmm. Is that because I can relate??
Book sounds great.

Mozi Esme said...

I loved the story of Lena's personal romance! Looks like a good book...

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

G.R.I.T.S. said...

What a great interview!! And another great 'Love Finds you' Book!! I can't wait to read it!

Please enter me!

A J Hawke said...

This sounds like a book I will enjoy reading. Just from your interview I learned something. I would never have guessed that gold was discovered in 1825 in New Mexico.

Lena, thanks for comparing your caring for your characters to that of your children. Now I know I'm not the only one.

Thanks for the opportunity to receive a copy of LOVE FINDS YOU IN GOLDEN, NEW MEXICO.

A J Hawke

Naasom André said...

I love this blog and I would like win a copy this book. Please enter me. Thanks.

letrassantas at hotmail dot com

Carla Gade said...

I enjoyed the interview!

PatriciaW said...

A wonderful interview, Janice and Lena. I too enjoy the "Love Finds You" Summerside series. I hope it goes on for a long time.


Katy said...

Wonderful interview! I did not know about formula being available as early as the 1890s! Interesting!

I'd love to win a copy. :)

Unknown said...

Thanks for the interview! The book sounds great! Please enter me in the draw! :)

Anonymous said...

would love to read this one...thanks for the chance

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Sheila Deeth said...

Fun to see you as the interviewee. Nice interview. Thanks.

Merry said...

I've been looking forward to your book, Lena. The trailer for it is wonderful. Please toss my name in the drawing. Thanks!

runner10 said...

Hope you are feeling better.
Sounds like a great book. I would love to read it.

Lena Nelson Dooley said...

Wow! While I'm trying to catch up from being away from my desktop for almost three days, so many friends have dropped by. Thanks. You make me feel loved.

For those who wonder, I'm healthier now than I've been in a while. And I'll be fine for the Book Release Party tomorrow. Wish all of you could come.

Marla said...

Good interview. Thanks, Lena for sharing with us. Thanks for the giveaway.

Cherie J said...

Wonderful interview! Would love to read this book. Please enter me. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Lena, hope you are much better! Please count me for your book.

Anonymous said...

Please enter me.

ebeandebe at gmail dot com

Megan (Inspired by Fiction) said...

I'm so glad we got to hear more about you, Lena! I'm excited that the giveaway is your own book!

We posted about it at Winning Readings.

Carole said...

Lena is always interviewing other authors, so it was a treat to read her answers! I look forward to reading her book and appreciate the chance to win a copy.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

Linda Kish said...

This book sounds terrific.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

grannyvon said...

I would love to read and win this book. It's so nice to read a book without cussing and dirty language. Thanks

Anonymous said...

I would love to read this book.

rbooth43 said...

Glad you are feeling better! God Bless, Lena! I enjoyed the interview.

Esther Wysong said...

Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico sounds amazing, and I would love to read it!! I've read a couple of other Love Finds You books, and I absolutely LOVED them! Thanks for a great interview, Janice and Lena! Please do enter me in the giveaway!
Thanks again!


Esther Wysong said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Desiree said...

Sounds like a book I would enjoy!

davidndes at comcast dot net

Lena Nelson Dooley said...

What fun to have so many people commenting on my blog. Glad you're here. Come back whenever you can.

Carla said...

Sign me up. Thanks, Carla

Edna said...

Lena I love the book sure hope I can win it.


Anna W. said...

I would love to read this one! Please enter me in the giveaway!

Carman said...

Oh! Please enter me!

Simply Stacie said...

Please count me in.

RoseMillsOhio said...

Your new book sounds very interesting. Stories set in the Old West have always appealed to me, and for the past two weeks I've been playing a review game with my 5th grade Sunday Schoolers called "The Lost Dutchman." (The game is based on the true story of the Dutch prospector who had a "secret" gold mine.)

Ashley E said...

Oh, this is a cool interview! Thanks for putting it out there Lena! said...

Would love to read the book, the cover art is great!

dancealert at aol dot com

Nancye said...

Glad you are back home from the hospital! I spent a week there my self! Congrats on your new book! I would love to win it!!

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

misskallie2000 said...

Hi Lena, I really enjoyed your interview. I find it interesting to learn little facts about the authors. I love the title of the series, Love Finds You.. Thanks for the opportunity to enter this awesome giveaway. Pls count me in.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

Ashley (Ibreath2read) said...

I don't know if it's to late to enter but, I'd love to be entered in this giveaway.
Ashley W.

Anonymous said...

would love to win this book thanks trishbazin(at)

Sandee61 said...

Please add me to the list for your book giveaway. I really enjoy the "Love" books and your books so I know it will be a great read. Nice cover too! Thank you!



MaureenT said...

This book sounds wonderful! Great interview! Thank you! Maureen

Sarah said...

Looking forward to reading this book. Love the whole series. Please enter me in the drawing.

Megan said...

Lena - I hope your are recovered from the hospital and it wasn't anything major! -- I now see the comment, glad to see you are healthier now than ever! And I would love to read your book, it sounds fantastic!