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Writers’ Spaces Wednesday: Jill Kemerer

Writer Spaces Wednesday

I’ve always been fascinated by other writers’ spaces. Some of my writer friends have beautiful offices. Others frequent their favorite Starbucks, Panera, or local libraries to write. Some write at their kitchen tables or living rooms. Because I love to see where others create, I’ve started Writers’ Spaces Wednesdays.

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Jill KemererI’m super excited to have friend, agency mate, and fellow Love Inspired author Jill Kemerer sharing her writing space today. Jill Kemerer writes Christian romance novels with love, humor and faith. Her debut novel, Small-Town Bachelor, releases April 1, 2015 through Harlequin Love Inspired. Jill loves coffee, M&M’s, fluffy animals, magazines and her hilarious family. Visit her website, jillkemerer.com, and connect with Jill on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!

Jill, so excited to hang out with you today. Tell us about your writing space.

Everyone dreams about a corner office with a view, right? Well, I have it! Almost three years ago, we moved into a lovely four bedroom home. Our kids chose their bedrooms, and I was shocked when no one wanted the corner room. I happily painted it a pretty peach color and filled it with my writing essentials.

Jill Kemerer Office 2

It’s such a relaxing shade. What makes it special for you?

It’s the one spot in our house that’s all mine! I hung my favorite pictures on the walls and organized the shelves and desk the way I wanted them. I love that I can shut the door and feel professional.

I totally get the need to have a space that’s all yours. What is one element of your space that makes you smile?

My bulletin board makes me smile. I post inspirational pictures, quotes, Bible passages, writing helps and a baggie of M&M’s on that board!

Jill Kemerer Office 1

Ok, you had me at M&M’s. What are your “must-haves” when you sit down to write?

My laptop, wireless mouse and The Synonym Finder by J. I. Rodale.

Share a typical writing day.

After I send the kids off to school, I spend time reading the Bible and praying. This is when the coffee kicks in. I’m not much of a morning person, so I ease into writing with an hour of administrative work, such as checking emails and social media sites. Around 11am I’m ready to plot, write or revise, and I do this until 5pm with a few breaks in between.

If you could choose the ultimate writing space, where would it be?

I’m pretty happy where I’m at! But a little cottage on Lake Michigan would be amazing.

Tell us a little about your latest release.

Small-Town-Bachelor-Cover-smallSmall-Town Bachelor is my debut novel, published through Harlequin™ Love Inspired. After a tornado destroys her sister’s wedding, Claire Sheffield settles injured best man, Reed Hamilton, into the cottage next door. As they work together to rebuild Lake Endwell, Reed must face family issues from his past while Claire is torn between a zoo job with her beloved otters or the hero she’s grown to love.

 

Jill, your cover is gorgeous! Thanks so much for giving us a glimpse into your writing world. I’m eager to read your debut novel!

Readers, be sure to buy Jill’s debut novel! Also, what’s your favorite type of M&M’s? If you’re not an M&M’s fan, what’s your favorite snack food?

Lisa Jordan
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Writers’ Spaces: Jill Lynn

Writer Spaces Wednesday

I’ve always been fascinated by other writers’ spaces. Some of my writer friends have beautiful offices. Others frequent their favorite Starbucks, Panera, or local libraries to write. Some write at their kitchen tables or living rooms. Because I love to see where others create, I’ve started Writers’ Spaces Wednesdays.

~*~

Jill Lynn HeadshotJill Lynn is a fellow Love Inspired author whose debut novel, Falling for Texas, is on the shelves this month. Jill and I are Facebook friends, who met in person at last year’s ACFW conference. She has the most amazing smile.

Jill Lynn writes contemporary inspirational romance for Harlequin Love Inspired, with her first book, Falling for Texas, available now. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Bethel University and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. In 2013, Jill won the ACFW Genesis award. She lives in Colorado with her husband and two young children and has a penchant for great books, boots, and thrift stores. Connect with her at Jill-Lynn.com, on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and on Pinterest.

Tell us about your writing space.

I’m usually running errands or popping into school for various kid’s activities, so I often write at Panera. That way, I’m not wasting time driving home. Although, I am forced to eat food like this… and that is a hardship.

photo 1

That looks fabulous. I can see why you like to hang out here. What makes it special for you?

Panera has all the comforts of home without any of the distractions… a nice arm chair, which I prefer. A fireplace. And no temptation to do laundry or clean like I’d have at home. Okay, I probably wouldn’t really be tempted, but it’s a nice thought.

photo 2

I want to curl up in one of those chairs with a cup of tea and a good book. What is one element of your space that makes you smile?

Food, food, food. Did I mention I like food? And coffee.

Look at this…

Photo 3

It’s a virtual coffee buffet. Dark roast. Light roast. Decaf. Sometimes when I’m feeling really crazy, I mix decaf and regular. I’m a wild child.

What are your “must-haves” when you sit down to write?

Did I mention coffee? That and my laptop are pretty much the only things I need to dive in. Headphones are a plus for when I need to drown out annoying Panera conversations around me. And water. I love water. Lately, I’ve been asking for the larger water cup at Panera. They just smile at me like I’m in some kind of super cool club. Which I pretty much am. The water drinker club. With a twist. And by that I mean a lemon.

Photo 4

I’m a bottle-carrying member of the water club, too…with a twist of lemon. Share a typical writing day.

First I drive the kids to school. If I need to be out and about during the day, I head over to Panera and start working, squeezing in whatever time I can until the next activity calls me. On days I have open, I head home to write. We don’t have an office, though we’re hoping to remedy that by combining one with our guest room. If I’m home, I write in the living room. I do actually pick up the kitchen and throw in a load of laundry on these days… most of the time.

photo 5

I have a very similar chair and ottoman in my living room where I write…usually with my dog on my lap. If you could choose the ultimate writing space, where would it be?

I’d love an attic space that’s been transformed into a writing nook. Wood floors, a great comfy chair, slanted ceilings, and a nice window seat. I don’t ask for much.

My dream is to transform our attic into my writing space. It has most of those things, but it needs heat! Tell us a little about your latest release.

Cover- Falling for Texas - Jill LynnFalling for Texas is about a Colorado girl who moves to Texas hoping to leave the past behind. She agrees to tutor one of her volleyball players, and the girl’s older brother captures her attention. Despite both of their attempts to keep things at friendship level, their stubborn hearts tumble toward love.

Falling for Texas on Kindle & Nook.

Raising his orphaned teenage sister isn’t easy for Texas rancher Cash Maddox. The girl tests his parenting—and patience—at every turn! But when he asks new teacher Olivia Grayson for help with his sister’s grades and attitude, Cash realizes he’s facing the toughest trial of all. He made a promise that he wouldn’t date and get distracted from his mission of being a good father figure. Yet Olivia’s quick wit is drawing him unexpectedly closer to the caring beauty every day. Could it be time to make a new vow…one that’ll last a lifetime?

Lisa Jordan
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Why We Renewed Our Vows (+ Valentine’s Giveaway)

DSC04306This past October, Hubby and I celebrated our 25th anniversary by renewing our marriage vows in front of family & friends at our church.

We chose to renew our vows for one simple reason–we wanted to reaffirm those promises we said so many years ago…years that have been shaped, refined and molded by laughter, by tears, and by standing together to face the many challenges that came our way.

Our courtship was quite unique. We met in May 1988 when Hubby came into the family restaurant where I had been working as a waitress for the summer. The moment I saw him, I knew my life was about to change. He had a presence about him and the way he carried himself that exuded confidence…he still has it. We became friends, and we communicated long distance for a couple of months by writing letters. Then he came home on leave, and we started dating. By that time, I was so in love with this man who made my heart swoon. I knew he was the one I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.

We talked about a traditional wedding, set a date, and started making plans,. I even picked out the most beautiful wedding gown. Then we realized we didn’t want to want another six months to get married.

Wedding photo copyWe chose to elope three weeks after getting engaged. I wore peach, he wore gray, and we promised to love, honor and cherish one another in front of a judge, two friends, and the judge’s secretary. I tell people it may not have been my dream wedding, but I married the man perfect for me.

Like most married couples, our relationship hasn’t always been the fairy tale. We experienced challenges that could have broken us, but we refused to give up. Instead, we worked hard to turn those trials into triumphs. We’ve used the life lessons from our mistakes to help us to become a stronger couple and better parents to our incredible sons.

The beauty of the past twenty-five years is knowing the young love we first shared has matured into a deep-seated devotion that will outlast anything life hurls our way. Each day I spend with him is an incredible gift, and I’m so blessed.

 ~*~

I’m teaming up with fellow Love Inspired authors Jill Lynn and Jill Kemerer, fellow Books & Such client Jennifer Major, and romance author Jen Turano for a Valentine’s Giveaway.

Valentine's Giveaway finalThe giveaway includes:

  • After a Fashion by Jen Turano
  • A Recipe for Romance collection by Jill Kememer
  • Falling for Texas by Jill Lynn (her debut novel–Yay!!)
  • Lakeside Redemption by Lisa Jordan
  • Hand-stamped cards
  • Chocolate
  • $10 Starbucks gift card

Enter here for your chance to win: 

Lisa Jordan
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Creativity by Mindy Obenhaus


Mindy ObenhausI’m delighted to host my friend and fellow Love Inspired author Mindy Obenhaus as my guest blogger today. I’ve known of Mindy for a few years, but I met her in person at the 2012 ACFW conference, and we clicked. We have a lot in common, including having the privilege of sharing the same Love Inspired editor.

This year at ACFW, I will be cheering loud and proud for her at our Gala Awards because The Doctor’s Family Reunion, her debut novel, is a Carol finalist…another thing we have in common. Mindy lives in Texas with her husband and two of her five children. Her second book, Rescuing the Texan’s Heart, is a September release. When she’s not writing, Mindy enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her grandkids.

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I love to create. As a writer, I create characters and story lines from a spark of an idea. Writing is hard work, though, and sometimes I have to step away from the computer and allow myself to explore other avenues of creativity.

  • Made to create.

Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:27 tells us that, “God created mankind in His own image.” So if we were created in God’s image and He created everything, then that tells me that we were made to create. So don’t tell me you’re not creative. You might have to dig for it, but you’ve got it in you.

  • Creativity is inspired.

Inspiration is all around us. We see someone sporting a new haircut and decide that’s just the cut we’ve been looking for. Or maybe it’s a picture in a magazine that inspires you to redecorate a room in your house. Perhaps we see a story on the news about suffering animals and are motivated to help out at your local animal shelter. Even the kind act of another can inspire us to be a better person.

In 2006, my mother-in-law introduced me to the tiny town of Ouray, Colorado. Nestled in a bowl among the San Juan Mountain range, Ouray captured my heart and inspired me to write a series of stories set there.

  • Creativity comes in many forms.

Our own Lisa Jordan likes to make cards. Beautiful cards. My friend, Becky, likes to crochet. My oldest daughter enjoys repurposing furniture.

Me?

I like to create in the kitchen.

Baking

Or I might get a wild hair and decide to take something from drab…

Wicker chair

To totally fab.

Red chair

Even shopping can be creative. Ever gone clothes shopping? Paired up slacks and shirts or shoes with an outfit? Did you even realize you were expressing your creativity?

Or what about the teacher who decorates her classroom or assembles a stellar lesson plan? The mechanic who takes a car from DOA to purring like a kitten? Yes, that’s creativity in action.

  • Creativity gives us a sense of fulfillment.

Back to that mechanic… How do you think he felt when he got that car running? Proud? Like he’d accomplished something?

Yep, creativity will do that for you. We just don’t want to take that pride thing too far.

  • So now it’s your turn. How are you creative? What inspires you to be creative? Or, if you’re sitting there thinking you’re not creative, what are you good at? What are some of the things that you enjoy? Creativity is not only a God-given ability, it’s inherent. Life’s too short to let anything squelch your creativity. So go forth and create.

Lisa again: Mindy, thanks so much for being here. To celebrate Mindy’s Carol final and her newest release, I’m giving away 1 of each of Mindy’s novels in ebook form! To be eligible to win, you must leave a comment with your email address.

The Doctor's Family ReunionRescuing the Texan's Heart

 

Lisa Jordan
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Lakeside Family Book Release Celebration!

Let’s Celebrate Lakeside Family!


Lakeside Family has been released by Love Inspired! To say I’m excited is an understatement. Having my first book published was a dream come true, but to have another book in less than a year–wow! I’m humbled and overwhelmed.

If you read Lakeside Reunion, you met Josie as the owner of Cuppa Josie’s. I never expected Josie to have her own story, but my friend Ginger said she enjoyed meeting Josie and wanted to know more about her. So I did some pondering about Josie–why she was a single mom, where was her child’s father, etc, and Lakeside Family was born.

I will be celebrating the release of Lakeside Family with a month-long celebration during August. I will be visiting friends’ blogs, giving away free copies of Lakeside Family, drawing random names from my Author Facebook page for Starbucks gift cards and offering other goodies.

Since Josie owns a coffee shop, I figured it was fitting to offer two giveaway baskets: Coffee Lovers Basket & Tea Lovers Basket. 

Coffee Lovers Basket

The Coffee Lovers Basket offers a coffee-themed hand towel, 6 packs of different flavors of coffee, a travel coffee mug, Nonni’s biscotti in chocolate and chocolate hazelnut, handmade cards by me, chocolates, a small coffee cup candle, a copy of The Coffee Mom’s Devotional, a copy of Margery William’s The Velveteen Rabbit and whatever else I may decide to throw in there. 

 

Tea Lovers Basket 

The Tea Lovers Basket offers a beautiful Romans 15:13 tea set with an assortment of Tazo teas, a copy of Tea Time with God devotional book, handmade notecards by me, a tea-themed memo pad, Nonni’s biscotti in chocolate and chocolate hazelnut, assorted chocolates and whatever else I may throw in there. 

 

Other Giveaways

  • In addition to these giveaways, I will be drawing 1 name every Monday during the month of August from those who “Like” my Facebook Author Page for a $10 Starbucks gift card. 
  • Also I will be participating in a blog tour and giving away copies of Lakeside Family and other goodies
  • To be entered in the Coffee Lovers Basket or Tea Lovers Basket Giveaways, simply post a comment here with your name, your email address and your coffee or tea preference. Two names will be chosen randomly for each basket–one name per basket. Be sure to leave your email address so I can notify you if you win. 

Contest Rules

  • The names for the Coffee Lovers and Tea Lovers baskets will be selected using the number generator at www.randomizer.org.
  • All contests begin at 12:01 a.m. EST on August 1, 2012 and ends at 11:59 p.m. EST on August 31, 2012. 
  • Contests participants must be at least 18 years old by August 1, 2012. 
  • Contest participation is limited to U.S. residents only.
  • No purchase necessary to participate.
  • The odds of winning are dependent on the number of participants.
  • Winners will be contacted via email by Friday, August 31. Winners have one week to respond to prize notification. If a winner has not contacted me by 11:59 p.m. EST on September 7th, 2012, another winner will be chosen. Prizes that need to be mailed will be mailed via USPS within one week of contest closing.
  • Winners will be posted on my blog on Monday, September 3, 2012. 
Lisa Jordan
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