Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A GREAT CATCH - Lorna Seilstad - Free Book

Why do you write the kind of books you do?

I write Christian fiction because story is such a powerful avenue to help us see God’s perfect plan for us. I love sharing the stories He places in my head and heart. As for the historical romance part, I grew up going to antique auctions with my parents nearly every weekend. History was a treasure hunt for us and my dad expected us to “know” about what we buying. I’m also a romantic at heart, so combining two things I love seemed like a perfect fit.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?

This is a hard question! At each stage of my life, I’ve had days that left me thrilled. I guess I’d have to say my wedding day. It was truly magical and I enjoyed every minute of it. Of course the days each of my children were born stand out and so does the day I held my first book “baby” Making Waves in my hands.

How has being published changed your life?

When my oldest son was born, I stopped teaching and began to do daycare for teacher’s children. I did that up until last year. I didn’t stop because I was published. The two kids I had went to kindergarten and I didn’t take on any more. My whole day has changed, and I sometimes I really miss the kids!

I think one of the biggest change as a writer has been the transition from writing for pleasure to writing to fulfill a contract. Don’t get me wrong. I still love writing. It just feels a little different.

What are you reading right now?

I’m reading Dan Walsh’s The Deepest Waters and Mary Connealy’s Sharpshooter in Petticoats right now. Dan’s book is a fascinating, edge-of-your-seat read, and I had to steal Mary’s book back from my 17-year-old daughter. She claims she’s Mary’s biggest fan. I tell her to get in line.

I’m also listening to Kathryn Stockett’s The Help on CD. It is amazing. I received it as a Christmas gift and only allow myself to listen to it while I’m doing dishes. Hey, a girl needs some motivation.

I love books by Dan Walsh and Mary Connealy, too. What is your current work in progress?

Right now, I’m working on book 3 in the Lake Manawa Summer series, Taking the Plunge (working title). It’s about Lilly, who appears in the first two books, and a roller coaster designer. It’s been a real thrill ride to write. Who knew there was so much to learn about a 1906 roller coaster?

What would be your dream vacation?

This may sound cheesy, but I honestly would love any vacation where my husband and I could get away and just enjoy being with one another. We’ve never had the opportunity to travel overseas. He once worked in Thailand for two years before we met, so I know if we went there, I could see the country that so captivated his heart. I’d also love to visit the Bible lands and stand where Paul did. I’ve taught the book of Acts to 5th and 6th graders at church for years, so that would be amazing to me.

If that's cheesy, I love cheesy. How do you choose your settings for each book?

When I’m planning a book, I’m looking for something unique—either a location or a job that readers haven’t read about before. That’s why Lake Manawa has been so fascinating to me. Even though I grew up in the area, I had no idea of the rich history it held until I began researching.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?

I’d love to meet with one of the Smithsonian curators. I think any one of them could be a wealth of potential story ideas.

I've been to the Smithsonian decades ago and loved it. What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?

Lena, you mean there is more than that?  I suppose chauffeuring my girls around doesn’t count as a hobby.  I love teaching my Bible classes on Sunday and Wednesday. I enjoy baking and gardening. I’m also a wedding coordinator and wedding floral designer on occasion. That’s a lot of fun, but I’m glad I don’t do it every week.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?

I’ve found that the hardest thing for me to do is write a light hearted scene when horrible things are going on in the world. The earthquake and tsunami cost me two days of writing because I felt so overwhelmingly sad for those people. A friend’s marriage crisis cost another day. I’m learning to turn those things over to God more completely and to turn CNN off. To get back in the “romance” mood, I sometime watch a Youtube video of a favorite television couple.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?

Write. Write. Write. There are no shortcuts.You find your voice by writing a lot of material. Try on different styles and try on various genres—just like you would shoes. It may surprise you when a something you didn’t expect fits you well.

Also, learn you are not your writing. When someone says a sentence reads clunky or your black moment isn’t black enough, learn they aren’t criticizing you. They are helping you communicate your idea. It’s all about communicating the message. That’s what is most important—not your feelings. Sorry.

Tell us about the featured book?

A Great Catch is set in 1901 at Lake Manawa in Iowa. Here’s the back cover copy:

She wants to change the world.
He wants to change her mind.

It's the beginning of a new century at Lake Manawa resort in Iowa, but some things never change. When Emily Graham's meddlesome aunts and grandmother take it upon themselves to find her a husband among the resort guests, the spunky suffragist is determined to politely decline each and every suitor. She has neither the time nor the need for a man in her busy life.Carter Stockton, a recent college graduate and a pitcher for the Manawa Owls baseball team, intends to enjoy every minute of the summer before he is forced into the straitlaced business world of his father.

When their worlds collide, neither Emily nor Carter could have guessed what would come next. Will Carter strike out? Or will Emily cast her vote for a love that might cost her dreams?The perfect summer novel, A Great Catch will enchant you with its breezy setting and endearing characters.

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

Lake Manawa, Iowa, 1901

Three blind mice.
Three little pigs.
Three days in the belly of a whale.
Emily Graham stifled a moan. Some of the worst things in life came in threes, and she was facing her favorite meddlesome trio right now.
“The right to vote won’t warm your bed at night, dear.” Aunt Millie poured fresh lemonade from a crystal pitcher into four glasses, then blotted her round face with a handkerchief. Even though the table, complete with an heirloom lace tablecloth, sat in the shade of the Grahams’ cabin at Lake Manawa, the late May heat brought a sheen to her aunt’s crinkled brow.
Emily pressed the glass of lemonade to her cheek and watched the sailboats on the lake lazily glide across the rippling surface. “As hot as it is, the last thing I want is a warm bed.”
“Honestly, what are we going to do with you?” Aunt Ethel, rail thin, stiffened in her chair, and Emily imagined her aunt would launch into a tirade concerning Emily’s faults at any minute.
Aunt Ethel turned toward her older silvery-haired sister, Emily’s grandmother. “It’s your fault, Kate. You filled her head with all those ridiculous notions of changing the world, women voting, and all that other nonsense. Now look at her. She’s twenty-three years old, and she’s still not married.”
“I’m twenty-two, Aunt Ethel.”
“But your birthday’s just around the corner.”
Emily rolled her eyes. “It’s six months away.”
“So sad. Almost a spinster.” Aunt Millie shook her head and smoothed her apron. “If we don’t do something soon, no man is going to want a woman that advanced in years.”
“I guess it’s up to us.” Aunt Ethel tsked and patted Emily’s hand. “Even though you’re no great catch, don’t worry, dear. With the three of us on the job, we’ll have a man on your arm in no time.”
“Three?” Emily felt a millstone sink to the pit of her stomach. She turned to her grandmother. “I thought you were on my side.”
Grandma Kate smiled. “I am. That’s why I’m going to help. If I leave it up to your aunts, they’ll have you married off to some spineless simpleton you’d have henpecked in a matter of days, or some bald, solid member of the community that every other bright girl has already discarded.”
“Do I even want to know what these two have in mind?”
The corners of Grandma Kate’s crinkly mouth bowed. “Probably not.”
“Trust us, dear. We have your best interests at heart.” Aunt Millie held out a plate. “Prune cake?”

I love it. Give me more. How can readers find you on the Internet?

I love to connect with readers and can be reached through my webpage:
I’m also part of a 10-writer blog
I can also be found on Facebook and on Twitter.

Lena, thank you so much for having me as a guest on your blog today. You are such a blessing to so many and I pray the blessings come back to you tenfold.

Lorna, the pleasure is all mine. You'll have to come back when book three releases.

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.


karenk said...

oooops...forgot to mention that i'm from pennslyvania...sorry

karenk...from pa
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this wonderful novel :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Sue said...

I loved Making Waves and would love the chance to read her second one. THank you for the chance!

I live in Oregon

scottsgal said...

this is a new author to me - I enjoyed reading the interview and the book sounds wonderful

Cheryl in Illinois
msboatgal at

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a GREAT summer read! Sign me up!

Lana Packer from AZ
lanapacker at me dot com

Jackie S. said...

Would love to read Lorna's book; have her first one (about to begin reading it)! Thanks for the chance! From GA

Lorna Faith said...

Lorna, how great is that...we have the same 1st name! I really loved 'Making Waves' have a distinct voice and a great way giving just enough detail with humor:)
I am trying to learn all I can from you as a beginning writer myself:) Thanks for all your words of wisdom.

please throw my name in the hat...can't wait to read this next one:)

Lorna from Alberta
lornafaith at gmail dot com

Jackie S. said...

I would love to win Lorna's book!!! I have Making Waves and am about to read it. Thanks for entering me. From GA

amber said...

this is on my "to read" list!

afren07[at]gmail[dot]com from TN

Coolestmommy said...

Big Shout out for Lake Manawa!! I live 'across the border' in NE. Would love to read a regional book. :-)

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Michelle said...

Can't wait to read this one! Thanks for entering me!

Michelle in CA

Bakersdozen said...

This sounds like a good read. By the way, my dad collected antiques, so I can relate to Lorna in that way. I live in S. California.

Unknown said...

oh I'd love to win this book! Sounds so good!
Kari in Oregon

Cindy W. said...

Oh my, what a BEAUTIFUL cover! I love it and would love to win a copy of A Great Catch! Thank you for the chance.

I live in Norteast Indiana.

Smiles & Blessings,
Cindy W.


Anonymous said...

I love the cover and name of this book. From the first chapter it sounds like a book I would like to read. Thank You for the chance.

scottsgal said...

sounds wonderful - new author I will have to add to my list
cheryl in Illinois
msboatgal at

cynthia said...

Thank you for the interesting interview and the chance to win a copy of your book. I look forward to reading it.
I live in the San Francisco bay area.

Jo said...

I would love to read this book. I'm in Southern Arizona


Anonymous said...


This looks and sounds like the best book and story line that i'd love to read and win.

peachykath said...

This book sounds really uplifting and very enjoyable. Please enter me in the drawing for this book.


Katherine from Northern California

Abigail Mitchell said...

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

Kristie said...

Wow! Your book sounds great! Historical fiction is so interesting. Especially the suffrage movement. Attitudes were a lot different then. So suffocating and confining. Or did women have to be more conniving? I'm from Ohio. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

rbooth43 said...

I would love to read a perfect summer novel such as A Great Catch and let the book enchant me with its breezy setting and endearing characters.

Ann Lee Miller said...

Thanks for the chance to win!
Ann Lee Miller