Thursday, February 15, 2018

THE EMBERS SERIES - Carrie Daws - One Free Book

Welcome, Carrie. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
A piece of me can be seen in every book, even though I work to create characters who are different from each other. If a character needs a favorite food or color, I tend to pick something I’d like, or if a character has a bad habit or struggle, I also tend to pick things from my own life or those close to me.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
One time, I kidnapped a friend and her two young children. It sounds fun and we laugh about it now, but at the time it was an intervention of sorts. She desperately needed to talk to our pastor’s wife but was hesitant to go, so I pre-arranged both childcare and the meeting, then showed up at her house unannounced and ordered them all into my car.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I can be very slow to realize truth, and I think part of my difficulty with assuming the title of writer was because I didn’t want the burden of responsibility that comes with readers ready to hear more. Readers ready for my next story. So it’s only been within the last two years that I accepted my calling as writer and storyteller—five long years after my first book hit the store shelves.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I read all kinds of books! My favorite is probably historical romantic comedy, but I also enjoy historical fiction and fiction based on Bible stories or Bible times. I read some action and adventure, mystery, and young adult, and I aim for one or two classics per year. Additionally, I read a bunch of nonfiction, mostly Christian living and books on writing/publishing, but also some history, biography, and health books.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’ve worked hard the past three or four years to build solid, healthy boundaries and to say, “No,” or “Let me check my schedule,” before agreeing to anything. I actively protect my calendar, make things I love a priority (from family to reading to doing puzzles), and schedule in adequate time for sleep and exercise.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
I always start with a birthdate then I’ll search online for popular baby names from that birth year. I’ll scroll through, rarely picking any in the top ten, and trying to pick names different from any I’ve used in my other books. I also keep a list of names I’ve used in each book, purposely trying to pick names that start with different letters of the alphabet, which regularly forces me out of my favorites. For last names, I use a similar process except I start with the character’s family heritage or surnames common to the area where they are born.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Learning perseverance. The publishing world is tough, and authors have a constantly changing barrage of information to learn and adapt to. Besides getting better at writing, we must learn marketing, social media, websites, and publishing, consider speaking, book clubs, and book signings, and don’t even get me started on how the grammar rules change! It all can be very overwhelming. God gently led me into these waters, and He’s gradually increased His expectations over time, always providing exactly what I needed to prod me another step deeper. I’m most proud and thankful that I’ve persisted in spite of the difficulties, obstacles, and uncertainties.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I’m horrible at these questions! But, I can tell you that I’d love to be my Chihuahua. The spoiled pup spends her time sleeping on pillows underneath blankets or in laps getting regular back rubs. The most stressful part of her day is waiting until dinner is served.

What is your favorite food?
Oh, hands down, pizza. Deep dish and thin crust. New York style and Chicago. Restaurant bought and homemade with my fresh milled flour. I love it all! Just go easy on the sauce, add some pepperoni and mozzarella, and I’m in a happy place.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
My greatest roadblock to writing is fear: fear that no one would want to read my stories and fear that my stories truly were not worth reading. This fear kept me from asking for reviews, or even letting people know that I had books for sale! I still fight this tendency, but enough readers have left encouragement through emails or reviews that I’m more likely to reach out and try.

Tell us about the featured book.
The Embers Series is currently my favorite fiction book I’ve written so far. The stories are full of intrigue, provide a look inside a fire marshal’s life, and add a touch of both romance and fun. The two main characters are modeled after friends, both of whom knew and approved of what I was writing. And the stories tackle fear head on: Does God know when danger lurks around us? Is He in the business of actively protecting His children? And can we grow in our trust in Him when circumstances threaten to overwhelm us?

Please give us the first page of the book.
Friday, October 9th
White billows replaced the dark, ominous clouds that still drifted over the tops of the loblolly pine trees along the North Carolina roadside. Inspector Cassandra McCarthy released her breath, knowing the color change meant the firefighters had water on the blaze. Those who were returning to nearby homes at the end of the workday should be safe.

Her phone on the console beside her buzzed with an incoming text message. “On the scene yet?”

Showing her identification card from the Silver Heights Fire Marshal’s office, Cassandra pulled her white Chevy Tahoe around the sheriff’s barricade shutting down the country road to all nonemergency traffic. Stopping in the grass near the last tanker truck, she grabbed her phone and responded to the text. “Just arrived. Beaver Creek and Black Branch Fire Departments both on scene. Flames still visible.”

She knew her boss wouldn’t be satisfied with that answer, but before she could give him more details, she had to get her mind on her job. Her heart ached with memories of today, of the anniversary she should be celebrating. Releasing her seat belt, she grabbed the camera from the passenger seat. She could at least start taking pictures for the report she’d have to file later. Her phone buzzed again.

“Contained? Any woods burning?”

How can readers find you on the Internet?
The best place to find me is at However, I also like to hang out at:

Thank you, Carrie, for sharing this book with me and my readers.

Readers, here are links to the book.
The Embers Series - Paperback
Embers series - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

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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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Anonymous said...

Thanks for profiling another author I want to explore. This blog can be expensive reading ;). Embers series looks fun.

Becca from New York

Vivian Furbay said...

Wow, with all the fires in the past year and two devastating ones here in Colorado Springs within the last 5-7 years, this is a book I would like to read. Vivian Furbay of CO

Carrie Daws said...

Thanks, ladies! The Embers series was a lot of fun for me to write--and, I got to follow a real deputy fire marshal around for a couple of days, shadowing her in her daily job!

Kay Garrett said...

Thanks for introducing me to Carrie Daws, a new to me author. I'd love to get to know her better through her book "THE EMBERS SERIES" which sounds like a book I'd love to read.

Thank you for the chance to win a copy!
Kay from Mountain View, AR
2clowns at arkansaas dot net

VanG said...

Carrie is a new author to me, and I would love to win a copy of her book. Thanks for introducing her and for giving me a chance to win a copy of this book. 😍😍
VanG in NC

Melanie Backus said...

Would love to read this one! Carrie is new to me and I love finding new authors.

Melanie Backus, TX

Danielle H. said...

I want to know what happened and why she can't celebrate today. Thanks for the post today. Danielle from MI

Carrie Daws said...

Wow! So many of you haven't heard of me. I'm so happy to "meet" you all!

Connie said...

Thanks for the introduction to Carrie and her book. It sounds really good!
Connie from KY

Sharon Bryant said...

Enter me in your awesome giveaway!!
Conway SC.

Lourdes said...

The Ember Series sounds great, thanks for the chance to win a copy.

Lourdes Long Island, NY

rubynreba said...

Great interview. I know I'd enjoy this book a lot!
Beth from IA

Carrie Daws said...

I'm really enjoying seeing all the places all over the US you ladies are from! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I can't wait to ship one of you a book!