Wednesday, March 09, 2011

THE PROPER WIFE - Winnie Griggs - Free Book

Welcome, Winnie. I've been wanting to feature you and this book. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.

I don’t consciously put anything of myself into my characters, but of course who we are as people and the sum total of our own experiences can’t help but inform our characters.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?

Hmmmm - I’m afraid I’m a rather boring person so I can’t really think of anything particularly quirky that I’ve done. Oh, unless having a pet squirrel counts - I was about eight years old and his name was Squeaky. :-)

That counts. When did you first discover that you were a writer?

I don’t think I ever had a specific aha moment where I suddenly realized I was a writer. It’s just always seemed to be a part of who I am. I’ve always loved to read and would find myself spinning alternate endings or new adventures for some of my favorite characters, some of which I took the time to write down. And I remember scribbling original stories in grammar school.

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

Oh my goodness, my tastes are very eclectic. If you look at my bookshelves you will find that Romance dominates. In addition you’ll find Science Fiction, Fantasy, Mystery, Mainstream Women’s Fiction, and YA. I also love to read fairy tale collections.

I'm reading The Healer's Apprentic by Melanie Dickerson, which is loosely based on Sleeping Beauty. I'm loving it. How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?

Who says I do? :-) But truly, I think the secret is having a few really good friends who are always there for you, who let you vent when you need to, cry when you need to and brace you up when you need it. I’ve been blessed to have a handful of such dear people in my life.

That is so true. Actually, my two grown daughters are two of mine. How do you choose your characters’ names?

There’s not any one method. I go through baby name books to get ideas, but I mainly just let my characters try on various names until I find one that fits.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

Raising my four children to be the bright, responsible, giving adults that they’ve turned into.

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

I’d be a songbird - I just think it would be neat to be able to fly.

What is your favorite food?

Hands down it is my momma’s crawfish stew. Evokes all sorts of childhood memories and there is nothing else on earth like it. I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit I pig out on it on the rare occasions I get to eat it these days.

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

One of the things I still struggle with is pulling together a coherent, compelling synopsis before the book is complete. I normally have a clear picture of the opening scenes and a good idea of where it will end up but the middle stuff is foggy until I get there. I always want to just put ‘and lots of good stuff happens’ when I get to that part and tell the editor to just trust me :-). As far as how I overcome it, with a lot of blood, sweat and tears. I brainstorm, alone and with writer friends, until I can articulate several turning points that make up a logical story arc. And know that these may or may not be the actual scenes that make it into the final story.

Tell us about the featured book.

The Proper Wife features Sadie Lassiter as the heroine. Sadie is the younger sister of the hero from my book The Christmas Journey - she’s generous, spirited, fun-loving and anything but staid. The hero, Eli Reynolds, is desperately trying to establish himself and his young sister as prominent, respectable members of the community they’ve moved into. He’s looking for a proper wife, she’s looking for a loving family. The back cover blurb reads as follows.

Sensible, settled, steady... and not Sadie Lassiter.

Eli Reynolds knows what he wants in a wife, and the flighty Texas girl couldn’t be further from the mark. Eli has his nine-year-old sister’s welfare to consider - Penny deserves a mother who will give her proper care. But when bad weather strands Eli and Sadie together, he sees a new side to her character. She’s rash - but also resourceful. Instead of discipline, she has diligent faith. Her housekeeping skills are lacking, but she’s filled with humor and sweetness. She may not be a “proper” wife, but to save her reputation - and to take a chance on happiness he’d never expected to find - Eli will take her as his bride.

Sounds like a book I'd love to read. Please give us the first page of the book.

He needed a wife and he needed one soon.

Eli Reynolds strode through town, ignoring the intermittent drizzle as he pondered his current situation. According to the workmen he’d hired, the renovations to his newly acquired home would be ready by the end of next week. Once that was done he and Penny would no longer have a legitimate reason to remain at the boarding house.

Which meant his time was running out.

Because no matter what the cost, he was determined to be married, or at least have wedding plans, before he moved himself and his nine-year-old sister into that house. Mrs. Collins, the widow who ran the boarding house where he and Penny were staying, was doing a good job of watching over his sister for the time being. But leaving an impressionable young girl like Penny in the care of a housekeeper or governess every day while he went to his office at the bank was an unacceptable option for the long term.

Trusting a servant with such a precious duty had already resulted in one tragedy. He wouldn’t make such a costly mistake twice.

This business of finding a proper wife should have already been settled, would have already been settled, if he hadn’t so badly misjudged his field of candidates. He thought he’d found the right woman in Myra Willows. She appeared intelligent, mature, of good character, competent in the domestic arts - all the characteristics he was looking for. He’d actually been on the point of declaring his intentions yesterday when he’d been pulled up short by a bit of gossip.

I know I want to read it. How can readers find you on the Internet?

My website is and you can find me on facebook as well - as far as I know, I’m the only Winnie Griggs out there.

And thank you Lena for the opportunity to visit with you today.

You have blessed my and the readers of my blog today, Winnie.
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.


Debra Chapoton, author said...

Put me down for a chance to win. The first page set the tone. I'm in Michigan.
bigpinelodge at gmail dot com and a follower from Edge of Escape

Sarah said...

Yup I am definitely going to read this one! Please enter me!! :)

Sarah from Ohio.

Anonymous said...

Love the cover of this book. I would love to win a copy. Angela from Kentucky.

Lourdes said...

Would love to win.

Lourdes from Long Island, NY

Lourdes11743 at gmail dot com

apple blossom said...

I love love inspired books thanks

live in ND

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Linda Kish said...

Please include me

Linda in California

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Patsy said...

I would love to read this book. I really enjoy reading all Love Inspird books! They are so uplifting.
From the Bible Belt

Winnie Griggs said...

Thanks everyone for the nice comments about my book. Doing this interview was fun and I wish all of you the best of luck in the drawing.

Melissa Jagears said...

love the title

Merry said...

A Proper Wife sounds so fun, please add me to the drawing!
Merry in Texas

windycindy said...

The Love Inspired Historical
Romances are such a joy to read!
Many thanks, Cindi

Coolestmommy said...

I love the LI books. This one sounds like a winner!!

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Winnie Griggs said...

Melissa J - the title was picked by my editor but I like it too :)

Merry - Glad you like the sounds of the book - it was lots of fun to write

Windycity - thanks for stopping by!

Lorna Faith said...

Sounds like a great book! Please throw my name into the hat for a chance to win:)

Lorna from Alberta

scottsgal said...

I'd love to read this - thanks for the chance
Illinois here
msboatgal at

Unknown said...

Looks like a cute love story! Thanks for the chance to win!
Kari in Oregon

Sandy Jay said...

I'd love to win this. Thanks. I'm in Michigan.

forwhlz at gmail dot com

Winnie Griggs said...

Robyn, so glad you enjoy the LI lines - lots of great authors make their home there

Lorna & Scottsgal - Thanks for the kind words.

Norma said...

Sounds interesting - please enter me. - Norma from SK, Canada

Winnie Griggs said...

Kari, Sandy Jay & Norma, thanks for reading my post today and your supportive comments about the book.

Good luck to everyone in the drawing!

Unknown said...

Great interview! I'd love a chance to win this book.

Jordan from SC

Unknown said...

Thankyou for the interview and the chance to win,Lena and Winnie. please put me in the drawing. mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com
Marianne from Arizona

amber said...

This sounds good!!!

afren07[at]gmail[dot]com said...

I would love to win a copy of this book! It sounds great!

dancealert at aol dot com

Judy B said...

I would love to win this book.

Judy B from Indiana!

Katie Marie said...

Please include me in this giveaway! :-)

~ Katy
From Florida

Kristie said...

A pet squirrel, huh? My grandma had a pet skunk. Minus the scent sack. Your book sounds great! kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

Bakersdozen said...

I would love to read this. I live in So. California. vidomich(at)yahoo(dot)com

Judy Cooper said...

Winnie Griggs is a new author for me. I can't wait to read this new one and her others as well, add me to the list please! Judy in Louisiana.