Monday, November 22, 2010

WOUNDED SPIRITS - April Gardner - Free Book

Special note: Tuesday, December 7, marks the official Amazon Launch of Wounded Spirits.Purchase the book that day and receive tons of free e-gifts including the first chapter of the sequel.

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

I try not to put any of my major personality traits into my characters, but in Wounded Spirits, I did include several Spanish characters. I grew up as a missionary kid in Spain, so those details of the book are near to my heart.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?

While I lived in England, I customarily wore bright, knee-highs with Crocs. Besides being fun, it was a survival mechanism against the cold and the arthritis in my feet. Sadly, fuzzy knee-highs don’t go over so well in Georgia.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?

I first discovered the love of writing in my 11th grade English class. Mr. Hicks introduced me to expository writing. Most of the class hated it, but I couldn’t get enough. In 12th, Miss Davy opened to me the world of creative writing, and that’s where I found my passion. Ten years later, I finally got the nerve up to write the novel in my heart—Wounded Spirits.

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

I read few contemporary books. There’s just something about a foreign place and time that lures me in. Historical fiction is my all time fave, but through my awesome crit group, Christian Young Adult Writers, I’ve discovered that fantasy and speculative fiction are just as thrilling.

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

Keep it? I thought I’d lost it long ago!

Actually, I try not to add too much to my plate. My mom always says to pray about a new idea or venture for a week or two then if you’re still just as thrilled about it, consider taking the first steps toward it. Her wise council has saved me a time or two from jumping on impulse toward something shiny and new only to regret my decision.

How do you choose your characters’ names?

I hate choosing character names!! It’s the one thing I loathe about writing. I’m known to switch them out several times while I write a manuscript. Maybe if I had a better method, I wouldn’t be so wishy-washy about it.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

My kids. It’s not easy homeschooling, but we’ve survived four years and are better and closer for it.

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

Whenever I see a field of grass or wheat or wild flower, I’m accosted with the insane urge to roll in it, run through it, or glide over it and feel the blades brushing against my skin. If only I were a horse. Or better yet, a unicorn!

What is your favorite food?

Coffee. I know it’s not a “food”, but it’s the one thing I can put in my mouth that I absolutely must have every day. It must a sin to derive such pleasure from a drink.

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

My greatest roadblock was not joining a critique group. I didn’t think I had the time to work on other people’s writing, but now that I’m part of one (although for my children’s fiction), I sigh at all the wasted time. I could learned so much and saved myself so much hassle! And my work would have been better for it. Lesson learned. Roadblock overcome. Crit groups are essential!

Tell us about the featured book.

Wounded Spirits takes place during the little known Creek War of 1813. It’s based on the true story of a family torn apart during the massacre at Fort Mims. The romance is my invention. An assaulting Creek warrior is tasked with protecting his enemy. The task of caring for the White women brings more challenges than he bargained for, as well as a love he cannot resist.

Please give us the first page of the book.

Adela shifted her body to allow blood flow to her legs. The mossy ground had long grown hard against her tailbone, and the rough tree trunk dug into her back.

A refreshing breeze blew through the pines lining the northwestern border of her father’s land. It rustled the needles and created a comforting, familiar whistle.

A small meadow lay vacant before her. On the opposite side, the evening sun cast its last rays through the treetops. Squinting, she thought for an instant she saw the form of a man. No, it was just a bush moving with the current of the wind.

Surely, she had been waiting nigh on two hours. Her family would be worrying. Just north, civil war raged among the Creeks and threatened to involve the vulnerable Americans in the Tensaw and Bigby settlements. Her parents’ constant fear of danger was well placed.

Soon Mama would call Adela’s father in from the barn and send one of the servants looking for her. Worry was never good for Mama.

Mama’s attacks were rare these days, but Adela never knew what might set her to wheezing and coughing.

Adela’s stomach twittered and flipped. She stood then rubbed her lower back. “Please, hurry, Phillip. Please,” she murmured, not sure she could stay much longer.

Unheeding, the sun’s beams continued down the length of the trees then dissolved, leaving only their orange and purple reflection in the sky.

Not wanting to create undue stress on her parents, she gave up waiting and set out toward home. She lifted her skirt to avoid the prickly blackberry bushes and berated herself for not having thought to bring a lantern. How foolish of me!

“Adela…Adela…” Her name rode on the breeze.

Sounds intriguing. How can readers find you on the Internet?

I’d love for you to visit me at my webpage:  or on my blog .

Thank you, April, for visiting with us
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. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (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.


Jan Cline said...

Yay! Another Historical fiction lover! Blessings for this book to be a great success! Enter me to win.
Jan from Washington state

A J Hawke said...

I have never read anything abiut the Creek War of 1813. Sounds intriguing.

Please enter me in the giveaway.

A J Hawke

Merry said...

I was captured by the excerpt, please include me for Wounded Spirits. Thanks!

April Gardner said...

Thank you, Jan! AJ, the Creek War is the forgotten war of the pioneer days. No many know about it. Merry, glad you liked the excerpt!

Sarah said...

I have been follwing the release of this book and cannot wait to read it:) Please enter me!

Sarah from Washington State


Dianne P. said...

Thanks for the opportunity to win! I love this era. Dianne in SE MO

Linda Kish said...

Please include me.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Molly said...

Sounds wonderful! Please include me!

Molly in North Carolina

Mollydedwards AT yahoo DOT com

Lisa Lickel said...

I can see you as a unicorn. Nice job!

Cindy W. said...

Sounds like an interesting read. Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of Wounded Spirits.

I live in Indiana.

Cindy W.


April Gardner said...

Thanks for having me today, Lena!

Ann Lee Miller said...

I'd love to read April's book.
Ann Lee Miller
Gilbert, Arizona

Nancye said...

Sounds like a great book! Thanks for the chance.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Coolestmommy said...

Great opening page. Can't wait to read more.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com
I'm in the midwest

Julia M. Reffner said...

This is a period I have never read about. I would love to read it.


Elaine Marie Cooper said...

Can't wait to read "Wounded Spirits"! Even the first page draws you in... Many Blessings to you and your success with this novel, April!

Anonymous said...

I would love to win this book.

Angela from KY

Wendy said...

I would love to read this book.
I am in Mpls, MN

kristen said...

I've never heard of the Creek War. That would be very interesting to read about. Please enter me.
Kristen from Washington State

grannyvon said...

I love the historical Christian books. I would love to win it. Thanks for the chance.

Lourdes said...

Sounds like a book I would really love. Thanks for the chance to win.


Charlotte Kay said...

Please enter me in this giveaway!

I'm from OHIO:)

chakasa58 at gmail dot com said...

I would love to win the book!!

dancealert at aol dot com

Anonymous said...

Love to read historical fiction. Miriam from Ohio

karenk said...

please count me in...thanks :)

karenk (from pa)
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Carman said...

Please enter me! I live in the miswest.

I was intrigued (sp) by the first page of the book. I would like to read this book now! :)

I have been homeschooled all my life, and I love it! I am in my senior year right now and feel very blessed to have been able to do this. :)


apple blossom said...

thanks for the chance to win this book

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

wmmahaney said...

I love historical fiction. What a great sounding story.

Bakersdozen said...

I love these interviews. I am so with her on the coffee comment. I live in S. California

Esther Wysong said...

I would absolutely love to read Wounded Spirits! Definitely toss my name in the hat for it.