Category Archives: my books

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Merry Christmas!

christmas2016
As I sat down to write this to you, I took a deep breath in and let it out slowly. That’s how I feel about 2016. It’s been a year of change for our family. In so many ways. There were happy moments and sad ones, too. Busy times and times of rest. Cherished traditions and new experiences. Endings and beginnings. New job. Drivers ed. Middle school drama. It’s been interesting and tough at times, but we’ve seen God work through it all.

This year really stretched me as far as my writing goes, too. I released two books – one in May, the other in November. I’ve been a one-book-a-year girl until now, so writing, editing, formatting, releasing, and marketing two books required me to push myself more than I ever have before. I came out of all that a little stressed but happy to have two more books in my series, stories that I absolutely loved writing and felt God wanted me to tell.

Until Then, the second book in my Cornerstone series, is Michelle’s story of finding love after a rough upbringing while also searching for God’s purpose for her life, and Hello, Forever is a novella that takes place just after the events of Goodbye, Magnolia and gives more of Maggie & Simon’s love story. You can start reading the series for FREE with the first book, Goodbye, Magnolia today.

I hope 2016 has treated you well. I don’t know where you’re at this Christmas, how you’re feeling, if you’re surrounded by loved ones or on your own, but just know that you are thought about and prayed for. From my heart, I wish you so much happiness and peace this holiday.

Thank you for being a part of my writing journey.
Merry Christmas!

wonderful chaos

drewad
“Being a part of the Gilbert family Thanksgiving, complete with several guests of the Bed and Breakfast, was absolutely joyful. There were so many different conversations going on all at once, it was hard to keep track. Claire soaked it all in. Thanksgiving at her grandparents’ house was always a little more subdued. Her family had a good time together, but this was a completely different experience, a wonderful chaos that made her feel warm and happy.”

THE TRUTH ABOUT DREW is on SALE for just 99¢ thru Monday.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KDLTMQY/

I hope your time with family this holiday season is filled with good conversation, laughter, wonderful chaos, and so much love. Hold those you love close, savor your time with them. Don’t let the days go by without letting those you love know it!

Hello, Forever is HERE!


Well, after eight months of writing the first draft, editing, and putting the finishing touches on this baby, HELLO, FOREVER is finally ready and releasing into the world today. I’m so excited to share it with you, and I hope you will find it to be a sweet addition to Maggie and Simon’s story.

HELLO, FOREVER is available on the following sites:

eBooks
Kindle
Apple iBooks
B&N Nook
Kobo

Paperback
Createspace
** the paperback will be available on Amazon (should be later today or tomorrow), but for now it can still be ordered direct from my Createspace storefront.

What’s it about?
Maggie James spent years all-consumed by her wedding photography business, hiding out from love after a painful breakup. When fellow photographer and consummate rogue Simon Walker came into her life, she held him at arms length to protect her fragile heart from being broken again. But after discovering how he selflessly helped her business in a very big way and admitting her mistaken assumptions about him, she is finally ready to give him a chance. Will fear keep her from truly opening her heart to him? Or will secrets tear them apart?

From small town Michigan to the sunny shores of Malibu, California, Maggie and Simon must navigate their budding relationship, survive family drama, and come face to face with the past to see if their faith and ever growing love are enough to get them to forever.

NOTE:
This novella is the sequel to GOODBYE, MAGNOLIA, so I highly recommend reading that one first. ;)

Happy reading!

Hello, Forever has a release date!

preorder
So excited to announce that Hello, Forever has a release date of November 15th and is now available to pre-order for your Kindle for the special release price of just $1.99. HERE is the link or click the image above to order your copy and it will be automatically delivered to your Kindle on release day. :)

My little family spent a week camping in the upper peninsula of Michigan last week, so I’m getting back to work this week editing the book before I send it off to a few people to read. Then it will be more editing, editing, editing then formatting, formatting, formatting for the next two months leading up to the release. I love this part really. It’s where the story really fills in and comes together.

Plus, this one is all about Maggie and Simon and their relationship. We get to know Simon and where he comes from and why he is the way he is. We get to see them together while they deal with family, exes, etc. It’s a sweet little story with such a happy ending moment that it makes me grin just thinking about it. Can’t wait for you to read it.

camping 2016


Just returned from a weekend away with my dear friend, Jen. We traveled to the thumb of Michigan this year (our 12th year of doing a camping trip together), which is a place neither of us had ever been. It was lovely there. Really pretty. The campground at Port Crescent was nice. The small towns we visited (Port Austin and Caseville) were both so quaint with that wonderful old town feeling – cute shops, farm markets, etc. It was a wonderful trip and it flew by too quickly.

Before I left for this getaway, I had been feeling very antsy, kind of stuck when it came to my writing, spending too much time online and not enough time getting progress made on editing the novella. This weekend was exactly what I needed to recharge and reset my brain. A little fresh air is so good for that.

There was one point when Jen was out swimming and jumping some big 2-3 ft waves that I just stayed on the shore wading in the waves. Wading is one of my favorite things to do – just listening to the sounds of the water, the smell of fresh air, the beauty of the lake, while the water splashes over my feet and ankles again and again. My mind started wandering to Simon and Maggie in Hello, Forever when they travel to California to visit Simon’s parents. There is a scene where he is teaching her to surf and I just stood there in the cool lake water thinking about those scenes, about the sheer power of the ocean and the waves. I ended up pulling my phone out of my back pocket and typing up some lines I had for the book while I stood in the lake just hoping a wave didn’t knock me off balance and make me drop my phone in the water. ;) It didn’t! hehe!

Getting away from the usual routine and even just taking a little time for yourself is so healthy and restorative, and I’m thankful that Jake doesn’t mind me doing this every year. I’m blessed to have such a supportive husband.

While I was glad to get away for the weekend, I’m so looking forward to another camping trip later this summer with Jake and the kids, Mom + Dad O, and possibly more family. It’s been far too long since we took the kids camping and I’m excited to show them a few of my favorite campgrounds that Jen and I have visited over the years.

Drew is FREE!

The Truth About Drew, my first published novel, came out in 2014. It’s a sweet story of 14 yr. old Claire, who has a quirky best friend, Drew. He’s different than her other friends. He talks differently, speaking only in quotes and clichés and Bible verses. He disappears all the time. Sometimes she turns around and he’s gone. It isn’t until she’s a freshman in high school that it really starts to bother her. Her friends and family have never met him, yet he’s always been there. So she becomes determined to find out who he really is or if she’s going a little crazy, wondering if he’s real. It’s a wonderful story of friendship, family, first love, and Claire’s journey to faith, as well as her finding out who Drew really is.

Today (July 9th) is the first time The Truth About Drew has ever been FREE on Amazon. If you haven’t read it yet, I hope you’ll pick up a copy today.

THEN check out the two books in my Cornerstone series, which are only $2.99 each. :)

a summer giveaway

It’s officially summer break here and I’m in the mood to celebrate! It has been a loooooong year and I’m looking forward to a break from the routine and all the relaxing summer fun ahead of us.

So this week (thru the 28th actually), I am giving away FIVE Kindle ebook copies of UNTIL THEN over on Amazon.

our Memorial Day weekend


We had such a nice weekend visiting with Jake’s mom on the east side of the state. Jake’s aunt passed away this past week, so Mom really needed to be surrounded by family after losing her sister. It was much needed for all of us, I think.

It was relaxing … and hot. Summer is here, for sure. The kids had a great time running around in the sprinklers and shooting each other with water guns. We enjoyed watching a couple of storms with crazy awesome clouds roll through. Delicious meals on the grill were enjoyed. It was just a wonderful Memorial Day weekend overall.

After a busy week of launching my book, my brain was totally fried. I needed to step away from all of that, do nothing much at all, let my mind rest. It’s sort of that let down feeling you get after you’ve planned a big event, like a wedding or a party, for a really long time and the day has come and gone, and you just sit and think back on it and you just want to cry. I did cry actually. Especially from all of the support I got from friends, family, launch team, and even strangers online who have already read the book and posted nice reviews.

“I like how well the author depicted what it’s like when someone has past hurts and has accepted Christ, but hasn’t fully let go. … Kudos on a well written book about redemption and grace!” – Nina Y, Amazon Customer

Isn’t that the sweetest? Thank you, Nina.

Check out the NEW PAGE I put together specifically for UNTIL THEN. There is a link to purchase the book there as well as more reviews.

And if you ordered a paperback, I’d love to see a picture of you with the book. Happy reading, friends!

a huge THANK YOU

Self-publishing can be an overwhelming experience at times. Especially the marketing side of things. One of the best decisions I made was starting a LAUNCH TEAM to help spread the word about my books. Our group is small, but just having them there to share things with as I go through the editing and promoting process is such a comfort to me. It’s much more fun being able to have that support system behind the scenes.
myteam
Some members are friends and family, some are online friends, fellow authors, book bloggers. They range in age from high school all the way up to women in their 60s, and it’s wonderful to know that women of all ages enjoy my books. Above are just a few of the wonderful ladies on my team.

So I just wanted to publicly say THANK YOU, TEAM! You all know how much I appreciate what you do.

“A friend loves at all times …”
Proverbs 17:17

A GIVEAWAY

As part of my BOOK LAUNCH celebration, I’m running a little giveaway for a $15 Amazon Gift Card thru midnight on Friday, May 27th. It’s easy to enter.

Option 1:
This is the only mandatory entry. Go to my Facebook Author Page and click “LIKE” and make sure you enter what your name is on Facebook so the entry can be verified. If this entry can’t be verified, then the other two won’t count. Thanks!

Option 2: (extra entries)
Follow me on Bookbub. What is Bookbub? It’s a wonderful email subscription service that sends you a list of free and discounted ebooks daily. And if you follow an author (like me!), they will notify you when there is a new release or if the author’s book is a featured deal on their site. Yesterday, Bookbub sent out this email to my followers to let them know it was release day for Until Then.

Option 3: (extra entries)
Twitter. Tweet about the giveaway. You can do this once per day for extra entries, too.

ENTER for your chance to win! No purchase necessary.

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

AJAXed with AWP