Tuesday, April 19, 2011

DELIVERED WITH LOVE - Sherry Kyle - Free Book

I'm happy to have an author we haven't featured here before. Welcome, Sherry. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.

I don’t intend to write myself into my characters but the people who know me best (my mom and sister, for example) have found gestures or dialogue that remind them of me.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?

Quirky? Hmm. I don’t typically think of myself as quirky. If you ask my friends, however, you may get a different response. LOL! Oh, I thought of something. I love to play Dance Central on Kinect. Hey, don’t laugh. I can still beat my girls!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?

I’ve always been creative—whether it be writing or making crafts out of things around my house. (I once made a doll for a social studies project.) In the fourth grade I won a fine arts award for a story I wrote titled “Friends Can Be So Mean.” And when I was in Junior High, a friend and I cut out characters from a JC Penney catalog and took turns writing stories. But it wasn’t until I took a course through the Institute for Children’s Literature that I discovered I was a writer. I ventured into women’s fiction in September 2007 when I prepared a synopsis and three chapters for a mentoring class with James Scott Bell. Delivered with Love is that novel.

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

I like to read books with happy endings—or at least hopeful endings! You can find me reading contemporary romance, historical, or suspense. I’ve also been known to read heart-wrenching books like Scared by Tom Davis.

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

I keep my sanity by making my life as simple as possible. I’m a mom of four children, three of them teenagers, so life can get hectic. I don’t believe in overloading my life nor am I the kind of person who signs up for everything. Balance is key. The highlight of my day is when my family is seated around the dinner table.

That is so important in this contemporary disconnected society, and so many families miss out. How do you choose your characters’ names?

I go to a popular baby name website and search for names depending on the age of my character and what strikes me. I’ve been known to change a name after the book is written. By the way, never name a character Rose. It will mess up your entire manuscript if you decide to change it. I’m speaking from experience!

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

The accomplishment I’m most proud of is my children. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom since the birth of my first child eighteen years ago. I love it!

I stayed home with my children during most of my childeren's lives. When they were older, I worked parttime, but I was always off to pick them up from school until they could drive. If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?

I’d be a dog. We have two dogs, Sophie and Bandit. Sophie is a black lab and Bandit is a mutt—part Chihuahua, part Terrier. They live the good life. They sleep, eat, take walks, and get a lot of love. Sounds good to me.

What is your favorite food?

Anything Italian. And chocolate, of course.

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

I don’t want to bring up the subject of money, but lets be real. Writers don’t make a whole lot unless you’re a best selling author. I’ve had to consciously make the decision to keep writing knowing I might not get paid very much. It’s a hard thing to swallow when you want to help support the family—but writing is my passion. I’m glad I have a supportive husband who inspires me to keep going. And now my dream of a published novel has come true.

Tell us about the featured book?

Delivered with Love is the story of a young woman who finds an old love letter in the glove compartment of her inherited ’72 VW Beetle. After losing her job as a waitress and kicked out of her sister’s home, Claire James leaves her life in Los Angeles and drives up the coast to the small town of Capitola, California, to find the writer of the letter and make it on her own.

Please give us the first page of the book.

Chapter 1

The hum of well-wishers’ voices swirled around Claire James as she stood numbly in front of the brick fireplace in her mother’s cramped Los Angeles apartment. Her black dress, size six and at least two years old, squeezed the oxygen out of her lungs. Claire attempted to take a deep breath and willed herself not to cry. One minute at a time. That’s how she would survive.

She looked down at her feet to avoid eye contact with the so-called friends and family who came to pay their last respects. Where were these people when Mom was sick? Claire pushed the cynical thought to the back of her mind.

The scuffs on her black sandals were a sad reminder of her life the past few years since her mother had been diagnosed with cancer. They had spent all her college money on chemo, radiation, and natural remedies to keep her mother alive. But in the end it hadn’t mattered.

She walked across the room and stood next to the small circular table in the corner that held the punch and dessert. Haley, her older sister, had insisted on a reception, saying that their mother deserved a party. Party? Yes, Mom loved parties, but today was not a day to celebrate. Claire bought the punch, while Haley baked a homemade chocolate cake with vanilla icing. The sweet smell turned her stomach. Her sister topped each of the two tiers with daisies, their mother’s favorite flower. Claire picked one off the top and held it to her chest.

“I’m sorry about your loss.” Geraldine, the elderly lady from down the hall, startled her back to the present. She patted Claire’s hand. “She suffered a long time.”

Claire nodded and blinked back tears. She hadn’t seen her neighbor in quite some time.

“Well, it’s probably time for me to go.” Geraldine straightened the pillbox hat perched on her head. “I need to feed my cats.”

Claire forced what she hoped resembled a smile. Geraldine’s cats were fed better than some humans—including her. What she would do for freshly baked salmon instead of frozen dinners. The smell permeated the hallway every Thursday evening.

“Bye, Geraldine.”

Claire glanced at the clock. Only half an hour more and she’d have the place to herself again.

Each minute was an exercise in patience. The condolences, hugs, and empty words wore on her. She rubbed her moist forehead and swallowed. Suddenly, the room spun and her hands trembled. She needed to get out of there.

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

Readers can find me here:
Website: http://www.sherrykyle.com/
Blog: http://web.mac.com/dkyle/Site/Blog/Blog.html
Tween Girl’s Blog: http://www.funfaith4girls.blogspot.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1484449185
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/sherrykyle

Thank you, Sherry, for the special time with you.

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 if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.



Kari Linder said...

Sounds like a super cute book! I love old VW bugs so I'm excited to read this! Thanks for the chance to win!
Kari in Oregon

Ariel said...

I would like to win this book! I already read it and loved it, but I would like my own copy :) And I'm from Oregon.

windycindy said...

I am with Sherry ~ I also love to read most books that have happy
Thanks, Cindi

Linda Kish said...

Probably my most loved car was my '57 bug that the driver's door didn't latch and the wing windows didn't close. I had to padlock the spare into the trunk. I loved that car. My sister had a '74 bug convertible when she passed away. So this brings back some memories. I hope I get lucky.


lkish77123 at gmail dot com

fredamans said...

Sounds like a fun story! Please enter me. Thanks!

Freda from Ontario, Canada

FunFaith4girls said...

Hi Friends!

I just walked in the door from being away at a writer's conference for five days!

I'm so glad to hear from each of you. Kari, I love old VW bugs too! I've never owned one, but had a chance with Claire (my character) to ride along. LOL! Ariel, I've been to Oregon. Beautiful state. Cindi, I'm so glad to hear you love happy ending too! You won't be disappointed. Linda, a convertible bug would be the BEST! Fredamins, I'm glad you entered.


Sherry said...

Oh, I didn't realize I posted on my Funfaith4girls account! (The Christian Girl's Guide to Style is my book for tween girls 8-12.)


Lorna Faith said...

I love your first page...you drew me in:) Now I'm curious to read the rest! Thanks also for the encouragement to keep writing especially when it's a passion inside you. I'm discovering the ups and downs of the writing journey:)

I love the cover of your book and would adore being entered for a chance to win.

Lorna from Alberta

lornafaith at gmail dot com

Molly said...

I would love a chance to win this. I have heard great things about it!

Molly from North Carolina

Sherry said...

Hi Lorna! I'm glad the book drew you in. That's what every author wants to hear. Thanks, Molly. So glad you've heard positive things! Blessings!

Judy Cooper said...

This sounds like a goody. I've never owned a VW but drove my boss's daily, many years ago. It was a fun experience, since there was no gas gauge, when I ran out of gas I had to flip a lever to continue. So there was a little mystery to driving it. Thanks, I'm Judy C. in Louisiana.

Judy said...

I enjoyed the interview with Sherry very much. She is a new author to me and I'd love to win her book Delivered With Love.

Judy in Indiana

apple blossom said...

please add my name to the list thanks
i live in ND

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Wendy said...

Sounds like a really good book.
Wendy from Buffalo, MN

Anna W. said...

I love vw bugs! Please enter me in the giveaway!

Anna W. from GA

kylady717 said...

Wow!just reading the first page was a tear jerker for me....looking forward to winning this one.....Thanks

Mona G./Ohio

Claire Koenig said...

I love Jane Austen too - would love to read this story! Please enter my name in the drawing. Thanks!
Claire Koenig, SF Bay Area, CA

Claire Koenig said...

Apologies - my post is on the wrong entry but I would also love a chance to read this one!
Claire Koenig

Sherry said...

Hi Judy! The only time I drove a VW bug was in college. A friend of mine owned an old orange one. It was so much fun.

Hi Applebossom, Wendy and Anna! So glad you've commented for a chance to win the book.

Mona, I'm happy to read that you've connected with Claire in the story. It's so hard to lose someone we love.

And Claire, I love Jane Austin too! Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite movies!

rbooth43 said...

By the cover and the review, Delivered With Love sounds like an amazing funny summer read.
Thanks for the giveaway!
Rebecca in NC

Abigail said...

enter me in the contest.
sounds interesting.
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Courtney said...

This sounds so cute! I would really love to read it! Thanks for a chance to win!

from Washington

clayfanonamission said...

This looks great!


Anonymous said...

This sounds like a wonderful book and I would be glad to win it....Thanks

Angela C./Ohio

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a good book. Thank You for the chance to win. Allie from KY!!!

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this novel :)

karenk (from PA)
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

Please enter me for the contest for this book, would love to win it....

Shirley T./Illinois

Cindy W. said...

Oh my gosh! I absolutely love the cover of the book! I love VW Bugs. The story line has me hooked and I would love to win a copy of Delivered with Love. Thank you for the chance.

Cindy W. from Indiana


Ann Lee Miller said...

Thanks for the chance to win Sherry's book!
Ann Lee Miller
Gilbert AZ

Brenda said...

Would love to win the book. Thanks for the contest.
I'm from Michigan.

dancealert at aol dot com

amber said...

I want to be entered!!

afren07[at]gmail[dot]com in TN

misskallie2000 said...

This story grabbed me and now I just have to read your book. Thanks for stopping by to chat and share with us.
I have been an avid reader for over 60 yrs.

Thanks for this opportunity to enter giveaway Lena.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

Robyn said...

Sounds like a really fun read. Looking forward to it.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

peachykath said...

The first page of this book really drew me in. It sounds very interesting and adventurous. Please enter me in the drawing.


Katherine from Northern California

Bakersdozen said...

I would love to read this. It sounds like a fun read. I live in S. California.