My theme is It’s all about choices! I work to prepare teens to make wise decisions before they find themselves in pressure-filled situations. I do this through YA fiction as well as some teen and parenting non-fiction. I’m also the host of Teen Talk Radio where special guests and I talk about the tough issues—and some fun things, too.
What other books of yours are coming out soon?
Let’s see…THE WISHING PEARL releases on 10/1. GIRL TALK (an advice book I wrote with my two daughters) releases on 2/1/12. THE EMBITTERED RUBY, book two in the Diamond Estates Series, releases on 4/1/12. HOT BUTTONS: INTERNET EDITION and HOT BUTTONS: DATING EDITION (books one and two in a series to help parents talk about the issues) both release on 5/1/12. And RAINBOW’S END, an anthology about geo-caching in the Ozarks also releases on 5/1/12. There are more book releases later in the year, but that’s enough to list for now. J
If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?
One evening? Hmm. I’m not all that enamored by anyone famous that I’d like to spend a special evening alone with just that person. I’m going to pick Frank and Pam Smith. They are two of my dearest friends and were the directors of the Teen Challenge center I lived at for a year as a teen. They don’t live nearby, and I don’t get to see them nearly enough. A few hours at a kitchen table with them would do my heart good. J
What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?
At this point in our country’s history, I’d really like to sit down with the framers of the constitution and get some confirmation on their original intent. Believe me, I’d record the meeting.
How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?
I think all of the sage advice has been given about the famous people who received hundreds of rejections before being published. Wasn’t it Steven King who nailed his rejection letters to a railroad tie, which he hung on his wall? I have no idea why he did that, but it is interesting.
Have you received a lot of rejection letters?
All kidding aside, I think the best thing an author can do is to spend some time in prayer. Ask the Lord for reminders of why you’re doing what you’re doing. If you feel His urge to continue, then rejection letters shouldn’t matter because you’ve already received the best book deal imaginable in the form of the Lord’s calling and blessing.
Tell us about the featured book.
The Diamond Estates Series. Three girls are on a journey to find hope and healing. Each coming to Diamond Estates seeking solace… Each with her own unique set of struggles… And each capturing hearts and challenging the faith of teen girls.
In book one, THE WISHING
sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield dreams of a land far, far away. . . PEARL
A land far away from her stepfather’s abuse and torment.
A land far away from her mother’s blind eye.
A land far away from the haunting memories of her past.
But then reality sets in, and Olivia knows she must make the best of her dire situation—at least until her high-school graduation. But when poor choices lead Olivia to the brink of a complete breakdown and she finds herself dealing with the unexpected death of her best friend, she comes to a crossroads.
Will Olivia find the path to ultimate hope and healing that her heart longs for?
Or will the demons from her past prove too much to bear?
Please give us the first page of the book.
Even the happiest of songs could sound mournful on the oboe when they’re played just right. Olivia Mansfield pulled the instrument from between her lips and traced her fingers along the silver tracks and keys that reminded her of the braces she wore on her teeth last year. The oboe understood her. It sang her somber song. Melancholy and forlorn, her band director once called it. Perfect words to describe its cry and Olivia.
Buzz. Olivia jumped as the intercom in her bedroom suite intruded. “Are you almost done with that incessant noise?” barked a crackling voice. Five more minutes had been the plan—but not anymore.
She hurried to the wall and jabbed the TALK button. “I’ll be at least another half hour, Chuck.” Charles hated when Olivia called him that, almost as much as he hated the sound of the oboe. Which wasn’t nearly as much as he hated her.
“Well, hurry up.” The speaker clicked and fell silent.
Olivia tipped the bell of her instrument in the direction of the door and blew a long, angry note, loud enough to make her stepfather's acne-scarred skin crawl just like he made hers every
time he came near. She could wait and practice later when he wasn’t home, but why should she? Only two more years of high-school band and then, hopefully, a prestigious music school somewhere very far away. Making that dream come true required practice—lots of it. It wasn’t her fault Charles couldn’t tolerate the sound.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website and the home of Choose NOW Minstries is located at either www.choose-now.com or www.nicoleodell.com. I have two blogs there—one for teens and one for parents—and links to all the fun social stuff as well as a newsletter sign up. You can also learn more about Teen Talk Radio at www.choicesradio.com or on iTunes.
Also, I have to let you in on a little secret. On October 1st, I’ll be launching THE WISHING PEARL EXTRAVAGANZA on my site. Here’s a direct link that will be active that morning: http://nicoleodell.com/?p=3976 You won’t believe the giveaways that will be happening all month long including the grand prize of a Kindle pre-loaded with all of my books!
It is my pleasure, Nicole. You are doing a marvelous thing with your books.
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