Sunday, October 23, 2011

Recommending Christmas Gifts (the book) from Love Inspired plus Excerpt

Hi all!

Recommending Christmas Gifts...two stories in one from Love Inspired authors Brenda Minto and Gayle Gaymer Martin. The title is actually Christmas Gifts, fitting since this book would make a nice one! Go out and get your copy today.

Cheryl Wyatt

About the book:

CHRISTMAS GIFTS--including Small Town Christmas

Love Inspired Duet - November 2011

Mini-Matchmakers And An Old Fashion Christmas

About the book:When the new second grade teacher, Amy Carroll, meets the precocious twin sisters, she knows she has her hands full, but when she learns they live on the street where she is staying with her grandmother and they have a single father who is handsome and needs help, Amy’s hands are beyond full. But Amy’s from Chicago and falling in love with a small town man is not part of her plan. Can God waylay Amy’s desire to return to the big city? Can Mike Russett open his heart to love?

Martin’s story contains strong characters and touching scenes - Romantic Times

About the author:Multi-award-winning novelist, Gail Gaymer Martin writes Christian fiction for Love Inspired and Barbour Publishing, where she was honored by Heartsong readers as their Favorite Author of 2008. Gail has forty-nine contracted novels with over three million books in print. She is the author of Writers Digest’s Writing the Christian Romance. Gail is a co-founder of American Christian Fiction Writers, a keynote speaker at churches, libraries and civic organizations and presents workshops at conference across the US. She was recently named one of the four best novelists in the Detroit area by CBS local news.

Available online and in all stores where books are sold.

To Purchase online click link.

Excerpt Chapter 1

“Mrs. Fredericks.” The office secretary leaned into the room. “Mr. Russet is here to see you.”

“The twins father.” A heavy sigh whisked the air. “Ask him to wait a moment.”

Amy took another step toward the door. No doubt the sigh signaled trouble.

“Please wait a moment, Miss Carroll. “The twins will be in your class. It might help you to meet the girls. They have a propensity for getting into trouble.” She motioned. “They’re right across the hall in the cafeteria. It’ll give you a heads-up for Monday.”

Trouble. Amy swallowed. “I suppose that would be. . .practical.”

“Yes, and you’ll keep an eye on them while I talk with their father.” She chuckled and motioned her to follow.

Amy followed her across the hall and spotted the girls seated on each side of a cafeteria bench, cuter and sweeter looking than she’d imagined. Though not identical twins, their features were similar with bright Caribbean blue eyes.

The child with a tawny ponytail swung her legs over the bench. “It wasn’t me, Mrs. Fredericks.”

“Yes, it was.” The blonder twin slipped from her seat, her hair gathered into a ponytail on each side of her head. “Holly tore up my drawing in art class.”

“Please sit for a moment.” She gestured to the benches. “I want you to meet someone.”
They scrutinized Amy with a mix of speculation and determination. “Miss Carroll. This young lady is Holly.” She rested her hand on the one with honey brown hair and the deep frown. “And this is Ivy.”

Ivy gazed at her, curiosity written on her face.

Holly and Ivy? Amy wondered. She stepped closer. “It’s nice to meet you.”

Neither responded.

Mrs. Fredericks eyed them. “Miss Carroll will be your new teacher on Monday.”

Holly’s ponytail flipped as she swivelled toward Amy while Ivy stared at her wide-eyed.

“I’ll leave you with Miss Carroll, and you can have a nice talk.” She turned to Amy. “I’ll be back shortly.” She strode away but paused before exiting. “When I return, I’ll introduce you to the girl’s father. I’m sure you’d like that.”

“Our dad?” Two voices rang in unison.

Amy wasn’t sure she wanted her first parental contact to be with an irritated father, but she offered a nod. When she turned, the twins were peering at her again, Holly with her arms crossed at her chest and Ivy with her fist jammed into her waist.

She slipped around the end of the bench and sat at the table. Behind those sweet faces, Amy sensed sadness. She looked from one girl to the other. “What are you doing in the cafeteria.”

Holly looked away. “Mrs. Fredericks made us sit here.”

“Hmm?” Amy tapped her finger against her cheek. “I wonder why?”

Ivy bit her lip. “Kids who misbehave have to sit in here and wait.”

Holly’s frown deepened. “I didn’t do anything bad.”

Ivy pressed her face closer to Holly’s, her look searing through her sister. “You tore up my drawing.”

“But you said it wasn’t any good.”

Ivy fell back to her seat. “If I wanted to tear it up, I would have done it.”

“That’s right, Ivy.” Amy focused on Holly, monitoring her tone. “What kind of pictures were you drawing?”

Holly’s shoulders relaxed. “Pictures of Pilgrims and Indians for our social studies.”

Amy nodded. “For Thanksgiving.” Blending learning with fun was good classroom planning.

“Uh-huh, and. . .” A movement by the door caught her attention.

“Daddy.” The girls shot from the bench and ran to a harried looking man who stood inside the doorway, his hands tucked in his jacket pockets.

Amy’s heart gave a twinge. A five o’clock shadow encompassed his lean jaw, his chestnut hair tousled as if he’d run his fingers through it many times. His straight eyebrows stretched above his caramel brown eyes, flashing with emotion.

He rocked on his heels. “You must be Miss Carroll, the new teacher.” He strode toward her. “I’m the girls’ father, Mr. Russet. It’s nice to met you.” Frustration winked behind his pleasant grin.

Amy met him halfway while the twins hovered at his side. She dropped her palm into his, aware of his warm grip. “Good to meet you, too.”

Behind him Mrs. Fredericks grinned. “I’ll see you on Monday, Miss Carroll.” She gave her a wave and vanished.

When she looked back, the man studied her with curiosity. “I’m sure we’ve met.”

Amy drew back. “Met?”

“Years ago at Ellie Carroll on Lake Street.”

“Yes, that’s it.” Amy’s memory gave a tug.

“We live across the street.” The twins voices melded together.

She stood bewildered.

His grin widened. “Maybe eleven years ago.”

“I don’t think so.” Yet a memory shimmered in her mind. “I was eighteen then.”

“I was twenty-three, working as a handyman.” He grinned. “Maybe you’ll remember me as Mike.”

“Mike?” The recollection jarred her. “You dug out Grams old shrubbery and planted new ones.” She pictured him in the summer sun, his muscles flexing while his shirt hung on a deer ornament in the tree-sheltered yard.

“The same.”

Amy studied his face. His unruly hair hadn’t changed. She remembered how it ruffled in the breeze, his lean handsome face taut with concentration. She’d flirted with him. But when she went inside, her grandmother notified her he was newly married. Heat rose up Amy’s neck with the recollection. She hoped he didn’t remember she’d toyed with him.


Friday, October 21, 2011

Devotions for Writers #1 Building a Platform

Hey all, there are devotions for moms, devotions for kids, devotions for dads, pastors, etc., etc.

How about some devotions for writers?

Nowadays one thing writers of all levels hear is how we must build platforms in able for our books to be successful. While the "religious" response might be that we don't want to be successful, the truth is that sales numbers matter to publishers when they go to consider a newish author.

Why build a platform?

I think the better question is why not. If you are targeting a traditional publisher, know that if they sign you as an unknown, unpublished, unproven author, they are taking a great financial risk. It's a great extension of unproven trust that publishers take on debut authors. So I think it's an extension of honor to do everything we can to build our platforms.

Building a platform equates to building a readership. If no one is reading your books, I hate to say this, but publishers won't be likely to offer a second contract.

How do we build a platform? Ask God. He'll give you creative ideas. He'll tell you how much time and dime to put into marketing, etc. Then don't spend one less second or one more cent than what He tells you. Ask God to draw people to your books. I promise, if you have honored Him with your work, He will.

In building a platform, don't be fake. Don't reach out to readers simply to get books sales. Nothing is more annoying than an agenda-driven blog post or someone on Facebook constantly talking about themselves. I know this because I've made the mistake in my not understanding how to go about things. We are told to market yet not shown really how.

In asking God about marketing, wanna know what He told me? He told me, "Don't market, Cheryl. Just love your readers. Love them like I love them."

Wow. Will that sell books? Who cares. It's not about selling books. It's about loving people. Books should encourage people, make them laugh and hopefully draw them to God. That encouragement is an extension of love.

The best way to market is to write darn good books. Aim for excellence with virtue. In marketing, let your motivation be to care about people. To really get to know them and know what you have to offer them, not seek friendship dependant on what they can do for you.

Matthew 7 teaches us how to treat each other. Verse 24 (NIV) says, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock..."

Platform=foundation. Build it on Him. He is love.

Happy writing!
Cheryl Wyatt

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Recommending Building a Family by Lyn Cote

I have a new book by the delightful Lyn Cote to tell you about from Love Inspired. Check it out!


Cheryl Wyatt

About the book:


Lawyer Eleanor Washburn defends wayward teenagers and supervises volunteers for Habitat for Humanity without missing a beat. But she is unnerved by fascinating single dad Pete Beck—especially since his chaotic life includes a little girl wishing for a mother. Sweet Cassie has Eleanor yearning for what's been missing from her lonely existence. Soon, both dad and daughter are chipping away at Eleanor's defenses. Can she find the courage to risk losing her heart to this ready-made family?

About the author: When Lyn Cote became a mother, she gave up teaching, and while raising a son and a daughter, she began working on her first novel. Rejection followed. Finally in 1997, Lyn got "the call." Her first book, Never Alone, was chosen for the brand new Love Inspired romance line. Since then, Lyn has had over thirty-five novels published. In 2006 Lyn's book, Chloe, was a finalist for the RITA, and her book Her Patchwork Family and Her Healing Ways were finalists for the Carol Award in 2010 & 2011,, two of the highest awards in romance. Lyn also features stories of strong women both from real life and true to life fiction on her blog Writing books at her lake cottage in northern Wisconsin, Lyn hopes her books show the power of divine and human love.

Learn more at
Lyn's Website.

For the latest Christian Fiction Market Update go to Lyn's publisher updates here.