Thursday, March 28, 2013

Women's History Month

Did you know that March is Women's History Month? 

It is, and Jennifer Brown Banks of Pen and Prosper is here to share her fabulous insight on the topic.

7 Ways to Honor Women’s History Month 

By Jennifer Brown Banks 

“The best thing about being a woman is the prerogative to have a little fun,” sings Shania Twain, in a popular feel-good song. 

And, in true fashion, this month, I invite you to explore and embrace all the positive aspects of being fabulously female! 


Because our collective contributions, strides, and strengths are worth celebrating, “girlfriend”! 

So fabulous, in fact, that Congress established Women’s History Month in 1987 to highlight the historical and social impact women have had through month-long events, programs, and awareness activities every March. 

Let’s face it: no matter what age, stage, or walk of life, women are the backbones of strong families. We are pillars in the church, caretakers, political decision makers, authors, efficiency experts, “help mates” to our men and more. True? 

If you’re on board, let’s examine a few ways to make the most of this month, and the array of opportunities to show support. 


  • Interview your favorite author or blogger on your site and provide her with “15 minutes of fame.” 
  • Write a post with links to your favorite sites hosted by women. You could even devote it to different categories and niches. For instance, you could feature 3 links on cooking, 3 links on writing, 3 links on parenting. Get the idea? 
  • Post a book review on your favorite female author to 
  • Throw a “Girls’ Night In” party. Invite a few close friends, watch chick flicks, talk about guys, share recipes, or whatever suits your fancy. Or make it a “Pot’s Luck” night, where everyone can bring her best dish. End the evening with gift bags given in pink. So far, I’ve participated in two this month, and both were a blast!  
  • Pay another female a compliment. You’d be surprised how affirming this can truly be for some. 
  • If you’re a guy, give your gal a day off by doing the chores for a day. Or treat her to a day of shopping. 
  • Leave a comment on your favorite female hosted blog to let the writer know that you appreciate her efforts. 

Even with just a little time left, there are ways to make this month have long reaching impact. Why not be a “s(hero)” to others? Or simply give due to a fellow diva who‘s deserving. It’s empowering, calorie free, and it’s fun!  

Jennifer Brown Banks is a veteran freelance writer, ghost writer and pro blogger. Her Blog, Pen and Prosper, was recently recognized by, among “The Power 100”---the best sites for modern writers in 2013.   


Thank you, Jennifer, for inspiring us. You are "fellow diva who's deserving", and I appreciate you!

I don't see why we couldn't extend the Women's History Month celebration into April - what do you think? Do Jennifer's thoughts give you any ideas?

What women have been an influence in your life? 

Happy weekend,


P.S. If you missed Monday's post, I invite you to stop by! The giveaway for Annie Jones' book, Bundle of Joy, runs through Friday, 3/29 at noon.

Photo credit: Stock Exchange

Monday, March 25, 2013

Interview and Giveway with Author Annie Jones

Annie Jones is an award winning author who has dozens of books to her credit. She has a knack for creating heartwarming stories with fun and memorable characters.  I've had the privilege of meeting Annie, as she lives in north central Kentucky too. She is one smart and talented writer! :)

Annie's newest book, Bundle of Joy, just hit the shelves. In addition to graciously answering my questions, she's offered a copy for a giveaway, so be sure and check out the details below.

Welcome to Write Now, Annie. Congratulations on the release of Bundle of Joy!  

Thank you!

The cover is so cute! How much input do you have in the design of your covers?
Actually none. We do fill out forms giving details of characters and scenes for the art department but the rest is out of the author’s hands.
I was reviewing your book titles on Amazon. You are one prolific and inspiring writer. What's your secret for coming up with so many great story ideas? Do you keep a specific writing schedule?
I have so many stories in my head I actually have to keep track of them in notebooks. Most of my ideas come from situations that grow. I think of something  - like what if there was a baby on left at a public place, (as in Bundle of Joy) then ask who would be the two people who would be least likely to want to help but who would benefit the most from getting involved?
I used to have a schedule but now I’ve started working with my family business full time and I tend to write whenever I can grab a minute.
In addition to being a fan of your writing blog, I enjoy your other blog, Dear Helen Hartman. I like how Helen offers "Timeless Advice for Modern Problems with a Vintage Twist". She has such a great sense of humor! How did this modern and vintage combo originate? 
Thanks! I had wanted to write a story about an advice maven called Helen Hartman for years. When I started it and some editors were interested I started a blog to give Helen a presence. I discovered that many other people loved vintage style and images as much as I do. I was having so much fun, and it just took off with a life of its own. That book is half done and I do plan to finish and epub it…when I get the time!
I hope you epub it soon. :) Will we see Helen in future books? I'd love to see her in a series.
I have one book about Helen herself that’s more of a ‘drama-dy’ and one that’s a set up for a series set in the 60s. At least one of them will be showing up in ebook form.
Sounds great! Keep us posted, okay? When you aren't writing, what do you like to read?
I read nonfiction to relax. When I read fiction all I can think is how I would have done it, or why it’s so much better than mine or why did this book get so much more support than mine or…you get it. So non-fiction takes me away from all that. I do read fiction but not as much as I wish I could. 

Yeah, I do get it. For the record though, I've read a good handful of your books and they were great. They stand up to everything else I've read. You're a wonderful storyteller. Thanks so much for stopping by, Annie. Wishing you much success! 

Thank you, and thanks so much for having me! 

Here is Amazon's description of Bundle of Joy:  

Never, Ever Trust A Cowboy...Like the wind, Jackson Stroud plans to blow through Texas ranch country and never look back…proving Shelby Grace Lockhart's motto correct. But the former Dallas detective doesn't walk away from ladies—or infants—in distress. So when he discovers an abandoned newborn and a woman looking for a fresh start, Jax knows he came to this special town for a reason. Shelby Grace is just as determined to learn why someone left a baby on her doorstep. As their quest leads in surprising directions, Jax starts to believe he's finally found a place to belong. What will it take to convince Shelby that this is one cowboy she can count on? 

Bundle of Joy is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other book sellers.

Stop by and visit Annie at the following links; she'd love to see you!

The Giveaway 

Annie's giving away a copy of Bundle of Joy to one of my followers. Here are the details:
  • You must be a Google Friend Connect follower and leave your email address with your comment. 
  • Gain bonus entries (+1 each) by posting this on Facebook, your blog, and/or Twitter. Please total your entries and include links with your comment.
  • Open to residents of the United States.
  • Deadline to enter is noon EST Friday, March 29, 2013. Winner will be chosen by, notified via email, and will have 36 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen. Winner will be announced Monday, April 1, 2013.

Do you have any questions for Annie? Do you have any famous writers in your writing group?

Happy writing,


P.S. Congratulations to last week's giveaway winners! Gift #1 went to Barb Snyder and Gift #2 went to Jeanette Levellie. Thanks to all who participated!

Monday, March 18, 2013

The Moses Conspiracy & Blogoversary Giveaway

Congratulations to Susan J. Reinhardt! Her novel, The Moses Conspiracy has made its debut! Susan will join us in the coming weeks for an interview, but I couldn't resist sharing the good news. :)

Here's the summary of this long awaited book: 

A trip to post-terrorized Washington, D.C. in 2025 and a buggy accident in Bird-in-Hand, PA set in motion events that expose a diabolical plan to destroy the Christian community. Ellie and John Zimmerman find themselves embroiled in a life-threatening investigation, fighting a shadowy enemy.

Convinced it's now safe to visit D.C., Ellie and her firstborn, 8-year-old Peter, travel to the nation's capital. Both mother and child make an effort to enjoy the sights, but they're unprepared for the challenges they face. Her nightmares come true when she and Peter are separated.

Back home, John witnesses a neighbor's buggy accident. The suspicious circumstances and law enforcement's refusal to take them seriously prompt him to take on the role of detective. He and a tenacious reporter band together and vow to find out what's happening in Bird-in-Hand.

Extended family squabbles erupt when John's sister, Annaliese, faces off with Ellie for blowing her D.C. experiences out of proportion. She'd rather ignore the warnings than deal with the growing danger.

John and Ellie can't decide whether her trip and his involvement with the accident were such a good idea. People are getting hurt, and their own family receives ominous warnings. Turning back the clock is not an option, but going forward could initiate more violence.

The small community is shattered when the unthinkable occurs. Will family, friends, and neighbors band together or allow fear to prevent them from taking action? Caught between strained family relationships and a faceless enemy, the couple rely on God for wisdom and protection. Little do they know that He's working on their behalf each step of the way. The scabs of a past tragedy get ripped open, and the truth of their second child's death is revealed. While they may expose the culprits, will they survive the heartache it brings?

Sounds like a winner, doesn't it? I've read a bit, but am looking forward to reading the entire book. I am SO excited for Susan. It's been a long and interesting adventure, and her persistence paid off. 

About Susan
Susan J. Reinhardt's journey to publication began as a non-fiction writer. She's been published in The RevWriter Resource, Devotions Magazine, A Secret Place, Vista, Live, and numerous other compilations and periodicals. Her appreciation for using fiction techniques inspired her to use fiction as a vehicle for truth. A widow, stepmom, and active church member, Susan enjoys reading, couponing, gardening, and searching for small treasures in antique shops. 

The Moses Conspiracy is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, & Kobo.

Visit Susan at her Blog, Facebook page, and on Twitter.

Another Blogoversary Giveaway 

Thank you for your amazing support! :) Although I cannot give you all a gift, I can offer another giveaway to express my appreciation.
Gift #1 - A copy of The Moses Conspiracy ebookThe winner will be among the first to have the privilege of reading Susan's book!  

Note: Don't have a Kindle or Tablet with an e-reader? No worries! The Kindle for PC feature allows you to download a free Kindle reading app for your computer and other mobile devices. Click here for details.

Gift #2 - A Dove Chocolate Bar, a red journal and coordinating pens. Every writer needs a journal and chocolate, right?


Giveaway Details 

  • You must be a GFC follower and leave your email address with your comment.
  • Gain bonus entries (+1 each) by posting this on Facebook, your blog, and/or Twitter. Please total your entries and include links with your comment.
  • Open to residents of the United States.
  • Deadline to enter is noon EST Friday, March 22, 2013. Winners will be chosen by, (the first name will receive #1, the second, #2), be notified via email, and have 36 hours to respond or another name will be chosen. Winners will be announced Monday, March 25, 2013.

Have you read any books by debut authors lately? Where do your writing dreams take you?

Happy writing,