Welcome back, Maggie. Tell us about your salvation experience.
My mother was a huge influence on my faith, so at an early age, I knew who Jesus was. Her Bible was always open on the coffee table. I gave my heart to the Lord when I was nine years old. I memorized all the books of the Bible too, and later had to recite them and was awarded a Bible that I still have to this day. When I was sixteen, I followed with a recommitment and baptism at a little country church in
at the urging of my older
sister who was a fine Christian lady. Lyman,
You’re planning a writing retreat where you can only have four other authors. Who would they be and why?
I’d want my critique partner, Kelly Marie Long, Rick Bragg (dreaming here!), Lavyrle Spencer and my brother, Jess McCreede. Kelly because we are very compatible at brainstorming and we’re soul mate friends. Rick Bragg, because I admire his writing, and his family background is similar to mine—without the Pulitzer Prize, of course! Although, she’s retired, I’d give anything to spend some time with Lavyrle Spencer. I devoured all her books many years ago. Jess McCreede—my brother, who passed away suddenly in 2004. He was my true mentor, urging me to finish what I start and submit! He wrote seven books and had a keen wit and his own special brand of storytelling.
Do you have a speaking ministry? If so, tell us about that.
Not really, however, I was asked to speak about the value of Christian fiction at a Southeast Bookstore and Librarians conference, at my daughter’s church for a Bible study class and I’ll be speaking to my granddaughter advance literature class in October. I also spoke at the formation of the new chapter of ACFW in
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you and how did you handle it?
The only thing that comes to mind is when I missed my first critique appointment with DiAnn Mills at my first conference in
Denver. I didn’t know a
soul at the conference and was horrified that I’d missed this important
critique with her. Allison Wilson just calmly called DiAnn who was napping at
the time, but graciously agreed to come down meet me five minutes later. I’ll
never forget that because she told me that my book, No Place For A Lady, was close to being ready to submit for
publication. She’s such a lady and great mentor to writers.
People are always telling me that they’d like to write a book someday. I’m sure they do to you, too. What would you tell someone who came up to you and said that?
Yes, they certainly do that at book signings. I begin by telling them to join a writer’s critique group because it’s so valuable to get input on their writing. Then I tell them to go to writer’s conferences whenever possible and read as much as they can. I also tell them they’ll never write a book by talking about it. Writing is hard work! If they would only write a page every day—very little—then they’d have an entire book written by the end of the year. Last, but not least, connecting with other writers is vital.
Tell us about the featured book.
Greta Olsen arrives in Central City,
as a mail-order bride, expecting to marry Jess Gifford, the man she’s come to
know through his tender letters. But when the dust clears, she meets Cora
Johnson and discovers she’s not the only bride waiting at the train station for
Jess. Already shocked to find they must compete for Jess’s affection, the young
women can hardly believe it when not Jess but his brother Zach picks them up
from the station—and reveals that Jess knows nothing about any mail-order bride, let alone two. Will either bride make the
match she hopes for? Two beautiful brides. One unsuspecting groom. Three weeks
to figure it all out.
I love the cover. Please give us the first page of the book.
August 1888 Colorado
Greta perched primly on her seat clutching her Bible on the train headed to Central City, and stared out smudged window at the moving landscape along the mountain ridges and canyons, where snow capped the distant purple peaks. The ride was somewhat thrilling, and frightening on The Colorado Central that chugged up its winding tracks around the
Rocky Mountains and the sparkling Clear
Creek. Greta held her breath at their incredible beauty wincing as her ears
popped with the changed in altitude. The further up the mountains they
traveled, the chillier and drier the air became, so she pulled her woolen cape
tighter about her shoulders, thankful that she hadn’t packed it since the coach
She contemplated the new venture she’d thrust herself into. The mail order bride ad was tucked safely into her reticule. Greta had hated leaving the crowded farmhouse on the prairie outside of
Cheyenne where she’d lived since coming to America. After
saying goodbye to her only family, she’d watch as the wheat fields, already
ripe with promise, was soon a distant memory. Her eyes flooded with hot tears
and an ache planted inside her chest.
But that was yesterday and today there would be no tears. In fact, she was excited about living this deep in the mountains, even after the rumors of the cold and snow, and rugged life where miners, she was informed by Peter, were as thick as fleas on a dog’s back. But that hadn’t deterred her. Greta wanted adventure, and had closed the door to her heart on love once and for all. She had no illusions when it came to love. It may have finally worked for her sister and Peter, but just look what happen to Clara, Peter’s mother! Greta decided when she wed, her marriage would be a marriage of convenience more or less, and if she had to perform her wifely duty, then she must. She twitched her nose in distaste at the very thought.
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Thank you, Maggie, for sharing this book with us. I love mail-order-bride stories.
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Twice Promised: A Novel (The Blue Willow Brides) - paperback
Twice Promised: A Novel (The Blue Willow Brides) - Kindle
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