Friday, January 29, 2010

The Sweet By and By by Sara Evans & Rachel Hauck plus Inverview

I became excited about this book when Rachel mentioned it during downtime in Denver when I served on the ACFW operating board for a short time last year. She's on the advisory board and she also leads worship at the ACFW conferences. I was so excited when the book finally released. LOL!

I am reading it now and am not disappointed. I think the biggest reason I'm enjoying it so far is due to all the music-related dialogue in it. My husband is and has been in the music industry for decades and so this book has made me smile on more than one occasion.

The characters seem like people you'd know or want to. While the characters each have issues they're working through, the book doesn't seem issue-driven to me, a sure sign of the authors' careful handiwork in crafting this great story which paints a beautiful picture of how surrendering to forgiveness can transform (for good) a person's heart and life.

I highly recommend you go out and get your own copy. If someone in your family is a music buff, I think they'd enjoy this book.

Sarah and Rachel can both be found on Twitter, etc. If you enjoy the book, be sure to let them know.

Thanks all!
Cheryl Wyatt


Jade Fitzgerald left the pain of her past in the dust when she headed out for college a decade ago. Now she's thriving in her career and glowing in the light of Max Benson's love.
But then Jade's hippie mother, Beryl Hill, arrives in Whisper Hollow, Tennessee, for Jade's wedding along with Willow, her wild younger sister. Their arrival forces Jade to throw open the dark closets of her past--the insecurity of living with a restless, wandering mother, the silence of her absent father, and the heart-ripping pain of first-love's rejection.
Turns out Beryl has a secret of her own. She needs reconciliation with her oldest daughter before illness takes her life. In the final days leading to the wedding, Jade meets the One who shows her that the past has no hold on her future. With a little grace, they'll meet in the middle, maybe even before that sweet by and by.

Review blurbs:

"...heartwarming collaborative debut." - Publishers Weekly

"This Southern mother-daughter story is refreshingly well written and will easily engross readers of women's fiction." - Library Journal

Multi-platinum recording artist Sara Evans has garnered such honors as ACM's Female Vocalist of the Year, CMA's Video of the Year, named one of People Magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People," and she was the first country star to compete in ABC's Dancing with the Stars. This is her first novel. Sara has said that the redemptive message always attracts her to a given story. It's the story she's cares about most in the songs she records and sings; it's the story of her life; it's the story she looks for in the faces of those she meets.
"I've been a Believer since I was 21. My faith has been everything to me in my life since then. In my marriage, my motherhood, my career, and just dealing with everyday life, God is my constant companion and friend. I find myself praying constantly prayers of gratitude and guidance. As a mom and a career woman, my life is filled daily with choices and decisions to make that will affect lots of people. So I rely on God to guide me!"

Best selling, award winning author Rachel Hauck is known for well-written stories that paint real-life characters facing real-life challenges. She writes with depth and humor. As an author, worship and prayer leader, it's Rachel's heart to spread the love and fragrance of God to those she meets. In person or on the page. His plans for each individual are vast and good. "I have one goal in life. To seek His face. Everything has come together for me because of seeking Him. Even in my weakness, He is strong. I'd like others to know the same success."

Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband, a teacher and pastor, and their ornery pets.

Amazon link
Rachel's web site
Sara's web site

Q: How did this collaboration come about?

RH: Really? God. Thomas Nelson approached Sara about a fiction project, then approached me about writing with/for her. My career was in a place of make-it or break-it, and I'd just prayed one of my "surrender prayers" to the Lord and was ready to go anywhere, do anything. Not having children, I am pretty much 100% available to pick up and go whenever and wherever. Knowing the Lord would take my husband and current writing and worship commitments into account, I was ready to go! It was very freeing to say, "God, I have nothing. What do you want to do? I'm 100% available. You're so good, whatever it is You want for me, I'll love it."

I've loved this journey writing with Sara. I struggled in some of my weaknesses from time to time, but this was one of the easiest books I've ever written even though I'd never written women's fiction. Never written flashbacks. Never written a continuing character series.

Q: What was Sara's part of the process?

RH: She cast the vision. We sat down and talked about what she wanted in the book, what kind of story she wanted to tell, and hashed out an overview. I went home and added the details and did the writing. If I was unsure about something, I'd email her and ask for her input. For example, we ended up dealing with a controversial social issue in this book and I wanted to know she was ready to assign her name to it.

Q. What do you want readers to take away from this story?

RH: God is good. There is always hope and redemption. While our past can impact our present, we don't have to carry the burden of pain and sin into the future. God truly does work all things together for our good.

Q. What's next for you and Sara?

RH: The second book, Softly and Tenderly, is written and releases January 2011. We are collaborating on two more books to be released January 2012 and 2013. They will be a continuation of the series. Book two is really exciting. Hit's the ground running.

Q. As an author, how did this book impact you and your work?

RH: I learned a lot about myself. Going back to the original prayer of surrender, I had to see that when God brought something to me to do it might not center around me! Maybe He wanted me to use my gifts and talents for others. At the same time, what amazing grace and peace He gave me.

My writing had to take on a different flavor and tone. I learned to write about two women instead of a romance with a hero and heroine. I had to develop back story that worked on stage instead of through dialog. This project forced me to work on a much deeper emotional level. I was exhausted when it was done. But I loved the process.

Q. Who is your favorite character?

RH: Well, Jade, the protagonist, of course. But her sister Willow really captured me. We had to back her up a bit or she'd steal the show! I also really had an affection for the character Dustin.

Q. What's next for you? Any solo projects.

RH: Yes! I have a late 2010 release from Thomas Nelson, Dining With Joy, about a cooking show host who can't cook.

I'm looking forward to that one!

Later taters,


Friday, January 15, 2010

In Seekerville Today

I'm blogging in Seekerville today.

Zip on over and join in the fun. We're chatting with Dave Fessenden, Managing Editor for CLC Publications. Come wish him a happy birthday!

See ya there,

Cheryl Wyatt

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

How to help Haiti now

My heart is broken for Haiti. I know many of you feel the same. Most of you know that I have a heart for orphans and the impoverished and that I went to India on media and humanitarian missions following the great tsunami. My affiliation for missions is Hopegivers International and I KNOW this charity is 100% legit.

They have set up a Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund which will be used to provide assistance in the aftermath of this tragedy. Haiti is already one of the most impoverished countries in the World, and they will need our help and care now more than ever. I encourage you to stand with us during this time and give whatever you can to assist with the relief efforts.

The Hopegivers International Staff thank you with all of their hearts for your ongoing prayers and generous support.

Hopegivers Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund

These are other ministries that I know are legit and who actively reach out to Haiti. Some of them have staffers who haven't been heard from since the quake. Please consider helping by offering your prayers at the very least. If you can, please assist financially as well.
Compassion International. There is a Haiti link.

World Vision

Finally, Michelle Cushatt, a writing friend who is becoming very dear to me because she has a heart like mine posted a beautiful note regarding Haiti. Her family went there in June and she offers these words: "If you’re aching to do something, contribute to what must be a world-wide effort to rescue and rebuild this country and her people, please go to the New Missions website. One of the best ways you can help is by partnering with an organization that has been there for decades. It’s the only way to insure your contribution makes it past the corruption to the people who truly need it.

And, of course, don’t underestimate the value of your consistent, heart-felt prayers. They will be needed long after these first few days of crisis."
New Missions

There are many, many other legit ministries and charities out there, but there are also many scammers who are out to take advantage of this horrific tragedy and those who would seek to give. Please make sure that the organization you choose is legit. You can rest assured that the aforementioned ones are.

Thank you for your prayers for Haiti. Please continue to lift them up in the following hours, days and weeks.


Cheryl Wyatt

Blogging at Novel Journey today

Blogging at Novel Journey today. Would love it if you stopped by and said hey! Hope to see you there.

Have a great day,

Cheryl Wyatt

Monday, January 11, 2010

Blogging with the Inkies today

Blogging here today about a million missing facts. Hope you will join me and leave comments. Inkwell Inspirations blog

Cheryl Wyatt

Thursday, January 07, 2010