Wednesday, June 22, 2011

SHE MAKES IT LOOK EASY - MaryBeth Whalen - Free Book

Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I just follow the ideas that are placed on my heart and count them as gifts from the Creator. I plan to keep doing that as long as the ideas keep coming.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
I have found that those monumental “happiest days” are rarely what you expect them to be. Getting married and having my children were all so surreal I can honestly say I wasn’t the happiest I’ve ever been. I was also stressed and confused and overwhelmed and… a thousand other emotions. So I guess I would look to the happiest moments instead of happiest days. The moments God gives me where I look around and think “I am really happy.” Seeing my son who almost died as a baby swim across the pool, the water sloughing off him as his arms move with such force. Thinking, “We actually got to this point. Thank You God.” Being mesmerized by my youngest’s impish grin and thinking “I am so happy I followed Your leading and had this out-of-the-ordinary family.” Looking at my husband and still feeling so much love for him after 20 years of marriage. Laughing hard with my teens over something. Cuddling up with my children. Those are the happiest moments. And for those I am truly grateful.

How has being published changed your life?
I can’t tell you how much my life has been enriched by the opportunity to enter this writing community. I have been so blessed by meeting other writers—people who process life like I do, through writing. People who “get me.” That’s invaluable.

What are you reading right now?
I am doing some research for an idea that involves a WWII storyline, so I am reading books on WWII and novels that have centered around WWII, just seeing how they did it. As a contemporary novelist, I never thought I’d be doing historical research!

What is your current work in progress?
I have a novel that will be coming out in fall of 12. This one will be a follow-up (not a sequel!) to The Mailbox, my first novel. It will be set in Sunset Beach, NC again and will be another love story that centers around an inanimate object that brings two people together. I am quite excited about it!

What would be your dream vacation?
An entire summer spent at Sunset Beach, NC. One or two weeks is just not enough!

How do you choose your settings for each book?
I choose settings I am familiar with. This goes back to the old writing advice, “Write what you know.” So far that’s been Sunset Beach, NC (where we have vacationed for years) and my hometown of Charlotte, NC.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why? I would say Ann Voskamp, author of the book 1000 Gifts. That book is so inspiring, and so is she.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Running. If you can call exercising a hobby. Cooking too. I love finding and trying new recipes. 

I love reading recipe books. Does that count? What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Finding time. With six kids and a busy life, I have to make writing happen and make sacrifices to do it. That’s not always what I want… but it is necessary if I want to pursue this dream to its fullest potential.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Write the book that’s on your heart. Read authors who are similar to your style/subject matter. Learn as much as you can about writing.

Tell us about the featured book.
Ariel Baxter has just moved into the neighborhood of her dreams. The chaos of domestic life and the loneliness of motherhood, however, moved with her. Then she meets her neighbor, Justine Miller. Justine ushers Ariel into a world of clutter-free houses, fresh-baked bread, homemade crafts, neighborhood playdates, and organization techniques designed to make marriage better and parenting manageable.

Soon Ariel realizes there is hope for peace, friendship, and clean kitchen counters. But when rumors start to circulate about Justine’s real home life, Ariel must choose whether to believe the best about the friend she admires or consider the possibility that “perfection” isn’t always what it seems to be.

A novel for every woman who has looked at another woman’s life and said, “I want what she has,” She Makes It Look Easy reminds us of the danger of pedestals and the beauty of authentic friendship.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Here is a link to the first chapter of She Makes It Look Easy for your readers:

How can readers find you on the Internet?

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.


Jo said...

It looks like I am #1 to sign in here. Really enjoyed the interview and reading about your books. Defintely added your name to my wish list.


Olivia Newport said...

Thanks for a blog that consistently makes it easy to keep up with new releases and glimpse the personalities of the authors.

Marybeth said...

I will be checking in throughout the day if any of you have questions or comments for me. Would love to hear from you!

Robyn said...

This looks like a really timely book. I find that all of us are so obsessed with keeping up with the Jonses---even when we don't really know the Jonses. Can't wait to read!

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Jill Beran said...

Excited to see yet another chance to win a book I am excitedly waiting to read here in Iowa!! I was touched by your comment about happy moments - I am a bit overwhelmed right now as we are weeks away from delivering child number 5! I never thought or planned on having a family of this size, but obviously God did - MaryBeth your words reminded me to look at the big picture and trust in HIS perfect plan!! Thank you!!! Blessings, Jill

Marianne said...

Thanks for the great postand chance to win She Makes It Look Easy! i loved the interview, MaryBeth and Lena. mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com from Peace River Country, Alberta

Marybeth said...

Robyn, my pastor just said this past weekend that we are all concerned with keeping up with the Joneses, and yet the Joneses have been foreclosed on and have moved out of the neighborhood! It certainly doesn't work to set our sights on anything save what God has uniquely designed us for. And Jill, you will be a wonderful mom of five! Happy days are overrated, I've found. Happy moments, underrated. We forget to savor the moments and I am trying so hard to remember.

fredamans said...

I would love to read this story of friendship! Please enter this gal from Ontario, Canada. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

This sounds like an interesting and truly worthwhile read!!

I'm from Missouri. :-)

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

Sounds like a book with lots of truth to it. I'll put it on my to-read list for sure. *smile*
kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you. I'm from Ohio.

peachykath said...

I have had those moments of I wish my life was like someone else's. Sounds like an interesting book. Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you.


Katherine from Northern California

Pam K. said...

Though we know we shouldn't covet anything, it is not uncommon to sometimes wish we had the "perfect life" we think someone else has. I would like to read MaryBeth's book to see how she handles this issue.
Thanks from a reader in Kansas,


misskallie2000 said...

Enjoyed the interview and love this story line. Can't wait to read "She Makes It Look Easy".
Remember: The grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence...
Thanks for the opportunity to enter giveaway.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com


Paula Vince said...

Sounds like a fascinating plot. The domestic front seems so straightforward on the surface, but the comparison game is so easy and I'm sure there'd be many ripples when you did deep. As another fiction author of teenagers, I really enjoyed this interview too and remind myself daily to remember the true blessings, just as MaryBeth does.
Paula V

Marybeth said...

Thanks to all of you who commented that you'd like to read the book or were intrigued by the storyline. I hope that you'll check it out and good luck to one of you who will win!!

Sarah said...

Looks like a great read!
Sarah H.

Judy said...

I loved the interview with MaryBeth. The fact that she is so God center is so uplifting. She is still so in love with her Husband after more than 20 years of marriage says a lot about her too. She values her family! I love it! I would love to win a copy of "She Makes It Look Easy". MaryBeth is a new author to me and I'm looking forward to reading this book and others that she has written.

God Bless You MaryBeth!

Judy from IN

Patsy said...

I enjoy cooking also - baking mostly. I love trying new cake recipes. Your book sounds great. Would love to read it.

From the Bible Belt


EJ said...

Love the comment about Happy Moments - those are so important to savor instead of trying to do grandiose birthday parties, vacations, house decorating, etc. to keep up with the Jones. Looking forward to reading this book since I think most of us have been there. Elaine in Iowa

Kari Linder said...

What a great book! Looks like a great read. thanks for the chance to win!
Kari in ORegon

Abigail said...

Would love to win this book.
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Krista said...

Sounds good. Please enter me!

Krista from Gresham, OR

karenk said...

would love to read your latest masterpiece, marybeth....thanks for the opportunity :)

karenk...from PA
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Cindy W. said...

Enjoyed the interview and would love to read She Makes it Look Easy. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

I am from Indiana.

Cindy W


holdenj said...

She Makes It Look Easy looks like a good novel. Very true that sometimes the grass always seems greener. Thanks!
Julie in MN

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

Thank you so much for the chance to win this. Would love to read. Thanks again.

I am from Oklahoma.
Rebecca H.


Sarah said...

Marybeth is a great writer. I would love a chance to win.

Brenda said...

Great interview. Please enter me.
I'm a follower and a subscriber.

dancealert at aol dot com

Angela C./Ohio said...

I would love this book.We all want what we do not have....

Angela C.