Thursday, April 09, 2015

WHEN THE REAL THING COMES ALONG - Faith Simone - One Free Book

Dear Readers, I’m interviewing a debut novelist today.

Bio: Faith Simone is a poet, playwright, and novelist. She is also an active blogger, sharing her personal thoughts, book reviews, and tips for writers on her website Simone is passionate about using her gift of writing as a tool to help promote humanity, understanding, and compassion.

Welcome, Faith. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Well, I think I stay pretty distant from my characters. But my close friends and family say that they see a lot of my main character, Jacelynn, in me. So I guess I’m a tad bit delusional. It seems to be a necessary character trait for most writers.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I do quirky things all the time: record YouTube videos about random subjects that I never upload, hold personal auditions for American Idol with myself, interview myself, and give my personal opinions of current events. I’m truly the most interesting person I know lol!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I was about 10 years old when I first decided I wanted to be a writer. I let practicality get in the way of pursuing it. Then I had a life changing event and decided that life is too short to not spend it the way you really want to.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I enjoy all kinds of books! From romance to chick lit to suspense (as long as it’s not too scary) to the classics to African American literature, romantic comedy, women’s fiction. I could go on and on …

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
Well, judging by my answers to the second question, I’d say I failed the sanity test a long time ago. But I try to take time to disconnect from technology, friends, and family and just sit with myself. It keeps me balanced. If I don’t I start to feel stressed and overwhelmed. Another thing I do it to practice the act of gratitude as much as possible. Being grateful has so many benefits, including helping you to slow down and appreciate the little things.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
It’s totally random. I just think about the character as a person and imagine what their name should be. Pretty easy and there’s no method to my madness on that one.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Being the kind of person who is always there for loved ones in a crisis. Those are the times when my love has the opportunity to shine the brightest.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I’d be a butterfly. They’re beautiful, they’ve been through a major transformation, and they fly!

What is your favorite food?
Anything sweet and baked. After that, pizza is close second.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Being easily distracted used to be a big problem for me. Not during the actual act of writing, but making time to slow down and actually make an effort was a problem. To overcome it, I simply channeled the bull dog determination I’m known for and committed that unless I died, I wouldn’t let anything stop me from writing. During the writing of When the Real Thing Comes Along, I made an impromptu move from Texas to Michigan to Tennessee, cared for a sick loved one, and found a new 9-5 job. Through it all, I was determined to finish and get that book out. Eventually, I did!

Tell us about the featured book.
When the Real Thing Comes Along is a mix of romance, coming of age, faith, and challenging choices. Readers who enjoy unpredictable character driven stories will love WTRTCA! Here’s the official blurb:

She loved and lost … Will faith give her the courage she needs to love again?

Jacelynn appears to have it all together: a great relationship with her boyfriend Jason who is truly a man after God’s own heart, a decent career and the love of family and friends. But when an unwelcome reminder from her past shows up, her previously uncomplicated world is turned upside down. Will she jeopardize what she has with Jason in an attempt to rewrite the mistakes of her past?

They say you never forget your first love, no matter how hard you try. So far, Jacelynn has done a pretty good job of forgetting Taylor, the boy who had her heart first. When Taylor returns several years later as a man requesting a second chance, what’s a girl to do … Especially when she already has a new man?

The hidden issues of Jacelynn’s heart come to light, and she’s forced take a hard look in the mirror while making choices that will change her future forever. Will she be able to reconcile who she was then, with who she is in Christ now?

Living and loving in faith isn’t always easy, but it’s always worth it. That’s what happens …
When the Real Thing Comes Along

Please give us the first page of the book.
At first Jacelynn actually thought that she was hallucinating. She figured that her mind must be playing tricks on her. One minute she was going through her normal church routine: making sure there were enough programs for the service, verbalizing assignments for the youth assistants, etc. The next minute she was struggling not to pass out at the sight of a blast from her past. Swaying slightly, Jacelynn leaned against the wall and signaled to one of the other ushers that she needed to be relieved from her post. Since the service hadn’t even started yet, Latonya, the little teenage girl that took her place, made it clear that she was being put out. Ten minutes later, after chugging a glass of ice water in the fellowship hall and holding her head between her knees, Jacelynn returned to her position at the rear entrance of the church.

She stood there, confident that the dim lighting in the sanctuary had caused her to see something, or rather someone, that wasn’t there. She tried to smile and greet people as they walked through the church doors but her nerves were so shaken that she gave up. Finally, she worked up the courage to look for him in the crowd of people already seated. She recognized him instantly. She would know the back of that head anywhere.

The minister of music fired up the organ and the praise leaders took their places at the front of the church. Jacelynn’s heart dropped and her lungs felt like they were about to collapse. This time she didn’t bother to signal Latonya. She simply walked over to the first pew she saw and sagged onto it.

Taking slow shallow breaths, she continued to sit there as people sung, shouted, fell out and recovered. All she could see was the back of that head in a sea of heads. An hour and forty-five minutes later she still hadn’t moved. But, she knew that she had to get out of there before that head turned around.

The door to her freedom was about sixty feet away. If she moved quickly she could easily make it out of the church and into the sanctuary of her car in one minute flat. Her heart beat fast against her rib cage as Pastor Greer finished up the benediction, “In the precious name of your holy Son … ” Jacelynn grabbed her purse and took a shallow breath. By the time “amen” drifted from the lips of fellow worshipers she was pushing the plexiglass doors open while disgracefully sprinting across the parking lot.

With shaking hands she turned the ignition of her 2011 Honda Civic. She exited the parking lot with little regard for oncoming traffic, barely noticing the screeching brakes that echoed in her wake. On autopilot Jacelynn mashed the gas pedal and merged onto the 91 Freeway. She ignored the indignant honks and focused on trying to regulate her breathing as she deftly changed lanes in the light Sunday afternoon traffic. Ten minutes later, she jerked her car into the underground garage of her apartment, threw the gear shift into park, and ran through the courtyard. She was completely oblivious to the snickers from the teenage boys admiring the sight of her behind bouncing slightly as she bounded up the stairs. Once she was safely inside, she locked the door and closed her curtains to the blinding Southern California sun. Slumping onto the couch she kicked off her stilettos.

He’d finally found her. Not that she’d been hiding; he simply hadn’t been looking in the right places.

Until now.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I’m everywhere! I love hearing from readers, so don’t hesitate to contact me.

Author Faith Simone


Faith Simone


Amazon Author Page
Faith Simone

Thank you, Faith, for sharing your new book with us. I know my readers will love it. I can hardly wait to read it myself.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
When the Real Thing Comes Along - Paperback
When the Real Thing Comes Along - Kindle

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 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

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Faith Simone said...

Thanks so much for hosting me! This was such a fun interview and I'm available to answer any more questions from your readers.

Anonymous said...

would love love love to win. Angela in KY

Caryl Kane said...

WHEN THE REAL THING COMES ALONG sounds like a must read! Lena, thank you for hosting Faith.

Caryl in TEXAS

Mary Preston said...

A very interesting first page thank you.

Mary P


Melanie Backus said...

Thank you for a great interview, Miss Lena!

Melanie Backus, TX

Faith Simone said...

Thanks for the positive feedback ladies! Let me know if you have any questions about WTRTCA. I'd love to answer them. :)

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me in your awesome giveaway!!
Conway, SC.

Beth Gillihan said...

Love the first page! Sounds like a great read! Thanks for the chance to win.

Beth in Montana

Unknown said...


This sounds like it will be a great read! I am interested in reading more of this book by Faith Simone. :) Thank you for the chance!
~Sabrina/Mippy :)
Northern Utah

Patty Camp said...

Wow this looks like an Awesome read! Looks like it will be on my Must Read List! Thank you for gifting us with your writings! God Bless!

rubynreba said...

Great interview and enjoyed the first page!
Beth from IA