Monday, October 11, 2010

THE PREACHER'S BRIDE - Jody Hedlund - Free Book

Bio: Jody Hedlund is a debut historical romance novelist who was a double finalist in the 2009 ACFW Genesis Contest. She received a bachelor’s degree from Taylor University and a master’s from the University of Wisconsin, both in Social Work. Currently she makes her home in Midland, Michigan, with her husband and five busy children.
She’s represented by agent Rachelle Gardner and her debut book, The Preacher’s Bride, is currently available for order on,, and other internet sites. It’s also for sale in most bookstores.

Welcome, Jody. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.

Actually, The Preacher’s Bride is inspired by real people in history. So first I learned all I could about the true lives of my characters—their looks, personalities, likes/dislikes, etc. Then whatever I didn’t know, I filled in with my imagination.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?

When I was a little girl, I once got a haircut that I hated. So, I decided to wear a towel over my head to hide the new style. Not sure why I didn’t wear a hat. But if I was going for unobtrusive, it didn’t work. I drew even more attention to myself!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?

I was born holding a pen in one hand and a piece of paper in the other. And when I was toddling, I chewed on erasers and books. :-) Seriously, it’s been a life-long aspiration.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.

I have to admit, I’m pretty much a historical romance junkie. I read exactly what I love to write.

What other books have you written, whether published or not?

Earlier in the year I finished writing the second book of my Bethany House contract. Currently, I’m researching, planning, and in the beginning stages of writing the third book.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?

Spending quality time with my family—snuggling on the couch with my youngest daughter reading books, scrapbooking with my twins, playing games with my sons.

How do you choose your characters’ names?

Since I write historicals, I look for names that were popular during the time period of my book. Then I narrow down my choices by picking names I think match the personalities of my characters.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

Giving birth to five beautiful children.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?

We have slew of pets at our house—a Golden Retriever, 2 cats, 2 hamsters, and a backyard full of birds, squirrels, and bunnies that we feed. Of all the pets, I envy my cats the most—because they get to nap whenever they want!

We had a Golden Retriever when I was in high school. They're beautiful dogs. What is your favorite food?

Isn’t the required favorite food of writers chocolate? Besides that, I indulge myself in nachos and cheese almost every night. Yep. I’m a nacho pig!

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?

One of my greatest challenges is finding uninterrupted time to write. As a mom of 5 busy children, I’ve learned to work through questions, chaos, and lots of noise. But I’ve also made a point of disciplining myself to write at the library every Saturday. The extended, concentrated writing time is important too.

 What advice would you give to an author just starting out?

Writing is like any other profession: we can’t succeed unless we achieve mastery of the subject. And how does one achieve writing mastery? We need to learn everything we can about the craft of writing and then put it into practice. In other words, learn, learn, learn. Write, write, write. Repeat ad infinitum.

Tell us about the featured book.

The Preacher’s Bride is a tale about finding true love amidst hardship, discrimination, and persecution.

This book is inspired by Elizabeth Bunyan, the second wife of John Bunyan who was author of Pilgrim’s Progress. As I was reading a biography about John Bunyan, I ran across a small excerpt about Elizabeth. I loved the brave way she defended John during one of his trials when he was under arrest for his “unlicensed” preaching. Her strength to face a court of persecutors and her determination to faithfully support her husband touched me so deeply, that I decided her little-known story needed to be told to the world.

Please give us the first page of the book.

Bedford, England

May 1659

The babe’s crying would rip her heart to shreds if she had to listen to it one more minute.

Elizabeth Whitbread shoved open the parlor door and barged inside.

“We need a wet nurse or the babe will die,” she said, meeting the startled gazes of the women surrounding the deathbed of Mary Costin.

“Exactly what do you think you are doing?” Mrs. Grew dropped the long winding sheet and started toward her. “Get out this instant. You are not permitted in here.”

“The babe’s been crying all morning. He needs help.” Elizabeth moved toward the low rocking cradle shoved into a corner of the small room. “I’ll hold him and attempt to comfort him.”

Mrs. Grew stepped in front of her, intersecting her path. She held her shoulders straight and her chin high. “No one is welcome in the parlor for the laying out. Only those of our congregation specified by Sister Costin herself before she died.”

“I won’t disturb your preparations, to besure.” Elizabeth nodded at Sister Norton and the others who had stopped washing the body to stare at her. She’d participated in laying-out rituals before—on her own mother. But the work of preparing the dead body didn’t interest her now.

“I only want to help with the babe.”

“We do not need any assistance.”

“The crying must be a distraction. I’ll take him into the other room of the cottage—”

“Sister Whitbread,” Mrs. Grew said louder, “we can do nothing more for the child. He will tire himself eventually.”

Elizabeth spotted a wooden flask on the floor next to the cradle. “I’ll try feeding him.”

“Each of these women, including myself, has already attempted to suckle him from the bottle. What makes you think you can succeed where no other has?”

“He won’t take it, the poor dear,” Sister Norton said. She clucked her tongue against the roof of her mouth. “The poor, poor dear needs his mother’s milk, and it’s long gone.”

How can readers find you on the Internet?


Question For Readers:

What’s your favorite kind of candy bar? If you’d like to sign up to win a free copy of The Preacher’s Bride, please tell us your favorite kind of candy bar (because writers must get a daily dose of chocolate!).

Thank you, Jody, for the interesting interview.

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. Remember to answer Jody's question.(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 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.


collettakay said...

This book looks so interesting!

I love Reese Cups. My absolute favorite.


holdenj said...

I think The Preacher's Bride looks very interesting, especially since it's loosely based on real people.

Wendy said...

Thanks for offering this book. It looks good.

Anne Payne said...

The book sounds great. Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy. Cadbury Fruit & Nut all the way, with coffee :)

grannyvon said...

The interview is great and you look so young. Imagine a life of future writting and I will benefit from it. Thanks for the chance to win this book.

Linda Henderson said...

This sounds like a really good story. My favorite kind of candy bar is Heath. I love toffee.

seriousreader at live dot com

K said...

Please enter me in the draw! This book looks so good!

Keli Gwyn said...

I thoroughly enjoyed The Preacher's Bride. Jody is a great storyteller. Readers are in for another treat when her second book, The Doctor's Lady releases. (As her CP, I got to read an early version of the manuscript. =)

Please don't enter me in the drawing. I have an autographed copy of Jody's book.

TraciB said...

Great interview and excerpt. I don't normally read historical fiction, but this grabbed my attention and won't let go. I'd love to win a copy for my church library.

My favorite candy bar is Baby Ruth. The combination of sweet and salty is the perfect antidote to my cravings. :)

Bonnie said...

Great giveaway! I don't know what my favorite candy is....but I do like Almond Joy bars. :D

Katey said...

Loved this interview. The book sounds great. I love Reese cups. So so good.


Lourdes said...

Three Musketeers is my ultimate favorite. But I do love nacho's too :-). Thanks for the chance to win a copy loved the interview.


Anonymous said...

I really want to read this book!
My favorite kind of candy bar is Cadbury's fruit and nut chocolate, or maybe a rasberry-filled chocolate bar.


Terri said...

I would love to win a copy. It sounds really good!

scottsgal said...

My fave candy bar is a frozen milky way love them!

msboatgal at

Renee Ann said...

This looks like a great read! Please enter me . . . reneeasmith61 [at] yahoo [dot] com

Cindy W. said...

Oh, I just have to read this one...I'm a Preacher's Bride myself! :) Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy.

Smiles & Blessings,
Cindy W.


Pam K. said...

This book sounds a bit out of the ordinary because of the time period and being based on real people. Please enter me in the book drawing.
My favorite candy bar is Symphony.


Jody Hedlund said...

Thank you for having me today, Lena! I've enjoyed sharing the day with you here on your blog!

And thank you, too, to all you readers for your kind comments! Hope you'll all eventually have the chance to read my book! :-)


Anonymous said...

The book looks interesting. Thanks for the chance to win and my favorite candy bar is a Hershey with almonds.

Bakersdozen said...

I love historical romance, so I would love to win. vidomich(at)yahoo(dot)com

Simply Stacie said...

Please count me in.

Robyn said...

Sounds like one I'd love to read.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

EJ said...

I love historical books - and this one sounds really good since its based on a real person. My fav candy bar is Almond Joy (or anything with Dark Chocolate)!

The Herd said...

Love Historical romance!

Patsy said...

Oh, I've seen this book before but have not read it. I love these kinds of books. Thanks for giving away a copy. Looking forward to reading this one!

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this fabulous novel :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Carman said...

Oh, I *love* twix bars! I can go through those like nobody's business. It's kinda scary. ;)

Please enter me!


Anonymous said...

I like Almond Joy or Milky Way candy bars. Yum!

This book looks really interesting. It's hard to beat a good historical and I'm always looking for more authors to follow! :-)

Ann Lee Miller said...

I'm a preacher's bride and would LOVE to read this book!

Cherie J said...

My current favorite candy bar is butterfinger. Enjoyed the interview. Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you!

Brenda said...

The book looks like a good read.

dancealert at aol dot com

MJ said...

Twix. Even named my cat that since she had the chocolate, caramel cake coloring. :)

I've been following your blog and happy for you the book is out!

rmjagears AT gmail DOT com

Carole said...

I love to read historical fiction that's based on a true story. I'm glad to see a new author's debut and I look forward to reading Elizabeth Bunyan's story. Thank you for the chance to win The Preacher's Bride.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

A J Hawke said...

The book sounds very interesting.
Love to receive a copy.

My favorite candy is Lindt white chocolate with nuts.

A J Hawke
ajhawkeauthor at aol dot com

misskallie2000 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
misskallie2000 said...

would love to read this book as it does sound like a great story. The Preacher's Bride is a book I would love to win. Thanks for the great interview.

I love snickers and butterfingers.

Thanks for the opportunity to enter this giveaway.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

Maureen said...

You are a busy lady with 5 children. I love the cover of the this book. Please include me!

Amber said...

I read a review for THE PREACHER'S BRIDE and would love to be entered into the drawing to win a copy, please! I am not able to eat candy bars because of an intolerance to a couple of food groups (dairy being one of them), but I used to enjoy Pay Day and Snickers before I cut out all of those yummy foods from my diet! :)



Nancye said...

Let's see, my favorite candy bar? I think it would be easier to list what I don't like!! LOL! I LOVE all chocolate! I have to have some form of it every day! I love peanut butter Twix, Reese's Cup, Hershey Bar with Almonds, etc. etc.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net