Tuesday, April 10, 2018

CHRISTINE'S PROMISE - Kay Moser - One Free Book


Welcome, Kay. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters. 
A great deal sometimes. For example, in the Aspiring Hearts Series, I created Sarah, a poverty-stricken Czech immigrant girl who is determined to get an education and become a teacher. Almost everyone opposes her efforts because she is female. I wasn’t poverty-stricken, but I was the first woman to earn a Ph.D. from Baylor University, and I had to fight my way into the doctoral program and all the way through it because the English Department opposed the idea of women earning doctoral degrees.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done? 
Rollerblade to my British Literature class to teach Hamlet on my 50th birthday. I think Shakespeare would have approved, but my Dean did not!

When did you first discover that you were a writer? 
My Freshman English professor assigned a short story. I had no idea how to write one, so I procrastinated until three hours before it was due. In desperation I sat down and just typed something up. Several days later the professor summoned me to his office. I figured I was in big trouble, but he just shook my story at me and demanded, “Who are these people?” I shrugged and answered, “I just made them up.” He stared at me for what seemed like an eternity, then quietly asked, “You do know you’re a creative writer, don’t you, Kay?” That was the moment I understood that I was not crazy, that all the stories running like a film in my head were there for a purpose. It took another fourteen years of life experience to teach me that they were there for God’s purpose.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading. 
I am most drawn to literary fiction about human relationships, but it has to be beautifully written. I also enjoy biography and history.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world? 
I refuse to run. Many, if not most of the “demands” of life are really choices, and I learned to say “No” decades ago. I keep my environment quiet. I don’t text and severely limit other technology that might disrupt my peace. Most important, I keep a constant conversation going with God. When I do slip into feeling frantic or stressed, God reminds me that He is in charge of everything (I’m not!). He also reminds me that He made me worthy, and consequently, I don’t have to earn my worth by rushing around or pleasing other people.

How do you choose your characters’ names? 
The psychology of the character suggests a particular kind of name to me. Of course, one has to consider the ethnicity and socio-economic position of the character, as well as the timeframe of the story. Minor characters I name according to their dominant traits. For example, in Skirting Tradition, the reader will meet Fanny Sharp and Louise Proper.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Earning a Ph.D in English

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A lark because it shoots straight up from the ground when it takes off, because it flies higher than most birds, and because it sings its most beautiful song when it is soaring at its greatest height.

Interesting. I didn’t know that. What is your favorite food?
Hot tea with milk and sugar. Yes, I do consider that a food! An essential food, in fact.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it? 
I hate writing first drafts. If my mind is immersed in a scene, I want to write it beautifully, not hurry through it. I don’t have an answer to this problem other than to apply discipline to myself. I just make myself write the first draft, so I can have the pleasure of rewrites.

Tell us about the featured book.
Christine Boyd is the envy of all the ladies in Riverford, Texas, in 1885. She is, after all, the daughter of a revered Confederate general and the wife of wealthy banker, Richard Boyd.

Beautiful, accomplished and elegant, she exhibits the exquisite manners she was taught in antebellum Charleston. She is the perfect southern lady.

Or is she?

Christine’s genteel demeanor hides a revolutionary spirit. When she was ten years old and fleeing the Union soldiers in Charleston, Christine promised God that she would help the downtrodden and bring needed changes to her world.

She is an adult now and determined to keep that promise.

Riverford, Texas, will never be the same!

Please give us the first page of the book.
“There has to be a better way!” Mrs. Christine Boyd insisted as she crossed the railroad tracks that divided Riverford, Texas, into two vastly different worlds. When she did so, she left behind the dusty, unpaved roads of the slums and the hodgepodge shacks that were considered homes by the poor. “Delivering a few loaves of bread and some ham is simply not enough. And that poor child in the Jones family! His leg….” She straightened her spine and pursed her lips. “It’s 1885, for heaven’s sake. Things have to change.”

Billows of red dust floated around her as she stopped and stamped her feet on the beginning of the sidewalk of the “quality” side of town. Straight ahead of her stretched an orderly, tree-lined, brick-paved street filled with neat cottages, their flower gardens proudly displaying the tired blooms of late September. To her left, however, she saw dark clouds of smoke and knew that one of the landowners nearby was burning his fields. She cringed at the thought of the choking smoke further adulterating the hot air that refused to give up its hold on East Texas. “Those poor sharecroppers,” she murmured. “They will be standing all day in the glaring sun tending a blazing fire!”
 
Hollyhocks, their leaves yellowed and their flowers nearly spent, and sweet-scented honeysuckle greeted her over the white picket fences as she resolutely started down the first block. She was eager to reach an oak tree that offered her a brief respite from the broiling sun. When she reached the shade of the tree, she gratefully stopped and lowered her basket to the ground. She untied the netting which she had used to cup her wide-brimmed straw hat around her face and shook it thoroughly.

“Sakes alive!” A chocolate-brown face, surrounded by white hair and beard, popped up from the flowerbed next to the fence. “Miz Boyd, what you doin’ down here so early in the morning?”

“Just running errands, Cal, but I’m glad I ran into you.”

“But ma’am, you ain’t been ’cross them tracks, has you? That ain’t no place for a lady like you. What Mr. Boyd gonna say when he hear ’bout it?”

Christine smiled as she shrugged her shoulders. “Time will tell, but that’s not what I want to talk to you about.”

“Miz Boyd, you look powerful hot. I better get you some cool well water.”

“No, thank you, Cal, but I haven’t time. I want to talk to you about that boy they call Nobo. Who is he related to?”

“Ain’t related to nobody far as I knows. Old Nessy take care of him. I ’spect she think he be her son, but she ain’t never been right in the head since the War.”

“He has a badly infected leg that needs attention.”

“Yes’m. He done had that a long time. Ain’t likely to heal, I figure.”

“I am going to send Moses down with some ointment, and I want you to put it on his leg twice a day.”

“You wants me to do it?”

“Yes, I do. As you said, Nessy is not reliable. Will you help the boy?”

“Yes’m, I be glad to.” He leaned closer. “I already borrowed some of Miz Johnson’s yams for the boy—“ Christine heard the screen door slam, and Cal suddenly fell on his knees and started pulling weeds.

Cal! Who you talking to? I ain’t paying you to stand around and—“ Mrs. Johnson limped down the steps, shaking a broom at Cal. “Oh gracious me!” She stopped in her tracks when she saw Christine Boyd. “Why, Mrs. Boyd, I had no idea….” The gray-haired, severe-looking woman dropped the broom, brushed off her apron and hurried forward.

“Good morning, Mrs. Johnson,” Christine smiled as she retied the netting around her hat. “It is already a hot morning, isn’t it?”

“Yes, and it don’t help that Mr. Pritchard just gotta burn his fields today.”

“Yes, I was just thinking about the poor sharecroppers—“

“Oh, they’re used to it, I figure.” Mrs. Johnson waved her hand contemptuously. “If they ain’t, they can just go back to where they came from.”

“To Czechoslovakia and Germany? That’s quite a distance.”

“No one asked them to come here in the first place. I ain’t gonna worry about the likes of them, but you, Mrs. Hodges, you shouldn’t be out in this heat. I’ll send Cal to fetch a bucket of cold water from the well for you. Cal!”

How can readers find you on the Internet?
Join me on my FB personal Timeline and enjoy the photos I post daily of my garden, teatime, and all things beautiful. My website is www.kaymoser.com. I also post on Instagram and Goodreads. My Twitter handle is @KayMoserBooks

Thank you, Kay, for sharing this book with us. I know I’m going to enjoy reading it. So will my blog readers.

Readers, here are links to the book.
Christine's Promise - Paperback
Christine’s Promise - 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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13 comments:

Montz Myers said...

Christine's Promise is the first of Kay Moser's books I have read. Her characters are well developed. The story lines are very thought-provoking. I highly recommend this and her other books.

Diana Flegal said...

Rereading this first chapter reminds me how much I enjoy the characters in your Aspiring Hearts Series, Kay. I too can highly recommend Kay's well-crafted page-turning novels.

Lane Hill House said...

"... they were there for God’s purpose." Love this so much! His design and heart for us to achieve all He has purposed for ourselves and basically, more for others!!

Would like to read this story and hope to win a print copy here! Thank you for offering. Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House in Missouri

Melanie Backus said...

I am intrigued by Kay's book. She is a new author to me and I would love to read Christine's Promise. Melanie Backus, TX

Chris aka Nana said...

I love Kay's books and absolutely love this series. I can't wait for Ruffling Society. I already have a copy of this book so skip me if I should win and pick someone else. I just wanted to say how awesome Kay's writing is.

Kay Garrett said...

Thank you for the information on CHRISTINE'S PROMISE and author Kay Moser. I enjoyed reading the interview and learn about both. Loved and greatly agree with her answer about dealing with the run, run world. I, too, have found great comfort is just being able to say no.

CHRISTINE'S PROMISE sounds like an amazing book and one that I'd love the opportunity to read. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.
Kay Garrett from Mountain View, AR
2clowns at arkansas dot net

Memory Keeper In Ky said...

Great interview Kay! Love her writing and her posts. She reminded me through her words that I am indeed worthy in God's eyes right when I needed it. I try to do the same for others. Her books are appropriate for all.. but truly think teens and 20s would be encouraged to go after dreams and don't be afraid especially if God places something on your heart. Keep writing Kay! Stephanie from Kentucky

Abigail Mitchell said...

This looks good! Would love to read it!
Abigail in Clarksville VA

Vivian Furbay said...

Love historical fiction and would enjoy reading this book. Vivian Furbay of CO

Connie said...

This sounds very intriguing.
Connie from Kentucky
cps1950(at)gmail(com)

Connie said...

Connie from Kentucky
cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

rubynreba said...

I always books set in the South! Love to read this.
Beth from IA

Sharon Bryant said...

Enter me in your awesome giveaway!!
Conway SC.