I am SO excited to have Julie Lessman on my blog today! I have read all five of her books that have been released and let me tell you they are my ALL-TIME favorites!!! I can hardly wait to read her THREE new ones, which are:
- A Love Surrendered (set to be released October 2012)
- A Light in the Window: A Irish Christmas Love Story (This is a prequel to her first six books about the O'Connors and is Patrick & Marcy's love story. It is set to be released November 2012)
- Love At Any Cost (set to be released April 2013 - Ugh! That is SO far away!!!)
What is a typical day like for you?
a Rafflecopter giveaway
HA! Way, WAY less interesting than my books, I assure you!! This is not etched in stone, of course, but I usually get up at 7:00 a.m., suck down hazelnut coffee while I wait for my blueberry bagel to toast (new kick; last year’s kick was peach oatmeal) and look at e-mails. Eat bagel while reading Seeker blog (be sure to check out my link this week entitled “Kiss-ology 101: Warming Up the Pages with Romantic Tension” at http://seekerville.blogspot.com/2012/08/kiss-ology-101-warming-up-pages-with.html) then sit/pray with hubby on deck swing for 20 minutes or so before heading downstairs to the treadmill for 30 minutes with worship music. Spot exercises follow along with Bible reading/prayer/devotional time. Then finish e-mails, FB comments and tackle writing, usually from about 11:00 a.m. till 8:00 p.m. or so with time out for dinner prep and enjoyment. This routine is totally thrown off if I go biking with hubby, have a blog deadline or other commitment. See? Boring!! Which is why I have to put all that angst and drama in my books, right???
Big grin here. Well, I’m quirky and crazy and just a wee bit off center, so I have a number of rituals with my writing such as the must-haves—a constant cup of hazelnut decaf with Half ‘n Half, peppermint tea or cold peach iced tea, lots and LOTS of lip gloss, Kleenex (for the soggy scenes I write), ear plugs if the squirrels or birds get too noisy, pad of paper and pen for quick notes, and a mirror handy for those facial expressions I’m trying to capture.
My biggest ritual, however, is ambiance. My family jokes that I am an “Ambiance Queen” because dim lighting with candles during dinner is a must, as well as a mainstay for my winter writing. During the summer months (basically May through October), I sit outside on my lower deck that runs the length of the house, overlooking a lush, green wooded area that has sunlight dappling through the trees. I have my feet up on this cushy lawn furniture we have at all times (like now!), and a fan gently blowing while I sit with my laptop. In the winter I’m in the hearth room with a crackling fire, all the essentials mentioned above and a picture of my husband on the table beside me for the ultimate inspiration. J
What is something that you have always wanted to do, but just haven't gotten around to it yet?
Going to Boston and Ireland. Sigh.
Do you have a favorite Bible verse? If so, what is it and why is it your favorite?
Gosh, I have so many, but one of my favorites (which I used to pray everyday) is the last paragraph in Psalm 139, verses 23-24. But a word of warning—don’t pray it unless you mean business, because God will definitely nail you to the wall on a few things! Here it is:
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
However … since I have become an author, I find that the push and pull of success (vying for sales, awards, accolades) is deadly, taking me places I do NOT want to go. So since then, my favorite Scripture has been 2 Corinthians ll:3: Do not let my mind “be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”
You recently became a grandmother, is it ever thing you expected it to be? What is the best, worst and most surprising thing about being a grandmother?
The best? Oh, without question, the giggles and smiles—on both my precious granddaughter’s face AND mine!! The worst? Babyproofing the house—yuck!!
Well, my prayer partner kept telling me that being a grandmother was THE BEST thing ever, but to be honest, I didn’t buy it. When I used to work at a large company as a travel writer, women would bring their babies in and while all the other ladies would crowd around, I’d head for the ladies’ room because I am just not one to fawn over babies or kids. But … I will say that this little gal (Rory) has made me eat my words and then some. I still remember the day my daughter came home and found me on all fours, gooing and fawning in a high-pitched chipmunk voice over my granddaughter on a blanket, making a royal fool out of myself. “Never thought I’d see the day,” she said with a shake of her head, then promptly got down on all fours and joined me. J
If you were stranded on a deserted island, other than basic necessities, what three items would you hope to find in your suitcase to help make your time there more bearable?
Oh, that’s easy—BOOKS, including the Bible and tons of Inspy romance novels, a laptop and LOTS of lip gloss.
If you had the opportunity to go anywhere you wanted, at anytime in history, where would you go and why?
I would go to Golgotha in a heartbeat on the day that Jesus died because if His death has radically changed my life for the better through mere faith, I can’t even imagine the impact of seeing Him carry that cross for me in person.
If you could spend the day with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional - excluding Jesus, family, and friends), who would you choose and how would you spend the day?
Oh, I would definitely spend the day with the O’Connors because they have become family to me and are, quite frankly, the family I always longed to have growing up—full of faith, passion and love for everyone within their ranks, no matter the conflicts or hurts endured. We would sit outside around the picnic table talking while Marcy sewed, having a ball laughing at Charity and Katie or praying with Faith, Lizzie and Emma while the wonderful smells and sounds of summer surrounded us with horseshoes clanging, children laughing and barbecue grilling.
I LOVE the O'Connor family SO much and would love to see another series with them. Do you have any plans of continuing this family's story - maybe with the next generation? I am REALLY hoping you do:)
Thanks, Meg, I love them too, so you just KNOW I won’t be able to say goodbye to them forever, right?? Yes, I do hope to write a series for each of the cousins beginning with a trilogy for Faith’s girls, a trilogy for Charity’s Henry, Hope and then Gabe and on down the line, each series taking place during the WWII period and definitely including a 2nd-tier love story for the parents. J Don’t know when and don’t know how, but I definitely plan to do that someday.
Thank you, Megan, for allowing me to connect with your readers. I LOVE to hear from reader friends, so they can feel free to contact me through my website at www.julielessman.com, either by sending an e-mail via my site or by signing up for my newsletter at http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/. My newsletter is chock-full of fun info on my books and there’s always a contest featuring signed book giveaways including one to have a character named after you in my next book. Also, I have a cool feature on my website called “Journal Jots” at http://www.julielessman.com/journal-jots1/, which is a very laid-back, Friday journal to my reader friends that would give your readers an idea as to my relaxed style of writing. Finally, I can be found daily at The Seekers blog (http://seekerville.blogspot.com/), a group blog devoted to encouraging and helping aspiring writers on the road to publication.
Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of “Passion With a Purpose” underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. Winner of the 2009 ACFW Debut Author of the Year and Holt Medallion Awards of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational, Julie is also the recipient of 14 Romance Writers of America awards and was voted by readers as “Borders Best of 2009 So Far: Your Favorite Fiction.” Chosen as the #1 Romance Fiction Author of the Year in the Family Fiction magazine 2012 and 2011 Readers Choice Awards, Julie was also awarded #1 Historical Fiction Author of the Year in that same poll and #3 Author of the Year, #4 Novel of the Year and #3 Series of the year. She resides in Missouri with her husband, daughter, son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter and is the author of “The Daughters of Boston” series—A Passion Most Pure, A Passion Redeemed, and A Passion Denied. Book 1 in her “Winds of Change” series A Hope Undaunted ranked #5 on Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational Fiction for 2010 and is followed by A Heart Revealed and A Love Surrendered.
Julie has graciously offered to give away the winner's choice of one of her books - including A Light in the Window (ebook only) and A Love Surrendered!!! To be entered, just complete the mandatory entries in the Rafflecopter form below and then you can complete whichever other entries you want. The giveaway is open internationally and will end on August 22 at 11:59p.m. (EST). Gook luck:)