Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Joy, Unending on Sale

Many of the authors who wrote for the series, 
Lockets & Lace 
in 2019 have joined together to provide you this reduced price special.

These books will be on sale from at least September 16th through September 20th, although a few may stay on sale longer. 

If you have not yet read all the 2019 Lockets & Lace books, now is an excellent time to purchase them at this special price. Already read and loved these Lockets & Lace books? 
Now is a great time to buy them as a gift for someone special to you who also loves to read American historical romance.

Here's the link to my book: Joy, Unending ~ Abagail Eldan

Click here to check out the Sweet Americana blog to find links to other books in the series. Thanks so much for your support!          

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Sounding Spirit

The Literal Origins of Sounding Board

Beginning during the Renaissance, a flat wooden canopy called a sounding board was placed over church pulpits, amplifying the sound of the preacher's voice, carrying it to the farthest reaches of the church. Similarly, ideas can be spread by a figurative sounding board. A publication, for example, can be a sounding board for propaganda. That's one modern sense of the word. But when sound bounces off a literal sounding board, not only does it reach more people, it also comes across more clearly. Likewise, bouncing ideas off another person can lend clarity to one's thought processes. If someone comes to you and says "How does this sound?" and leaves with his or her mind made up (whether or not you've ventured a word), you have served as a very effective sounding board. ~from Merriam Webster

Definition of sounding (Entry 2 of 2)

3: a probe, test, or sampling of opinion or intention

~from Merriam Webster

10And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so (Acts 17 KJV).

I've been studying the role of women for the past twenty-five years. I plan to share some of my questions and thoughts soon. I have added a new portion to my tagline--Sounding spirit. This simply means I am searching for clarity of my own thought processes by searching the scriptures and commentaries. 

Look for that soon.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Giveaway for Western Historical Romance

My book, Brokken Redeemed, is included in the giveaway. Enter for a chance to win, not only great books, but a $100 gift card. Simply click the link or the picture below. Good luck!

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Freebies! Free Audiobook, Free Ebook!

Two steps forward and one step back... that's how it has felt for me this week. And that can be discouraging (although it is progress, no matter how slowly). However, people from my past continue to encourage me. Many, many years ago I taught two sisters, one in the seventh grade and the other in the eighth grade. Both were in wheelchairs and had difficulty even grasping a pencil. Yet, neither complained but diligently did the work set before them, cheerfully. 

Sweet girls, and I later learned they had a genetic disease and were not expected to live to adulthood. Their mother was amazing. She came to school with her daughters each day and wheeled them to classes and took care of their needs. 

So, in retrospect, my minor difficulties are but that--minor irritations that will last but a day. Well, in this case, a couple of days. I have been endeavoring to change the author name on the books published before I settled on a pen name. Two days of tedious, frustrating work for something that should be a relatively easy task. I am almost finished--so, make that three days of work (I am being optimistic that I will finish by tomorrow). 

At least the Audible book covers are completed even though not yet updated on the site. And guess what? I have free audiobooks to give away! I have three books up on Audible, and I am in the process of producing the fourth, Fading Thunder, with my wonderful narrator, Sarah Rogers. If you would like a free audiobook, comment below or send me a message. The first ten people to respond will receive a code to a free audiobook. You may choose from one of those pictured below.

Note that these stories form a saga. This is the continuing story of Sarah Jane Hunter, beginning during the Great Depression and ending after World War II. This series is near and dear to my heart because it is based on actual events my family lived through, although highly fictionalized. 

And the paperback covers of the series are the ones I have been struggling with. This is what I have thus far...

I am excited to be using this design since the model featured in three of the four is my beautiful granddaughter. 

And, last but not least, the Kindle version of Melly, Unyielding (click on the title or the picture below to go to the product page) is free today and tomorrow. This book is part of the Lockets & Lace series and is also a part of my Texas Triad series. Grab your free copy by Friday, May 31, 2019, 11:59 PM PDT. 
And there you have it. A free e book and free audiobooks! Hope you enjoy. Now, back to changing names...

Monday, May 20, 2019

Robbie and Taron-- Free Today and Tomorrow

A few years ago, several events shattered my little world. My mother had a stroke, I developed full-blown a-fib, and two family problems reared their ugly heads. It was a time in an emotional desert, and I withdrew from the world for a while, and that included my writing. 

Because of health issues, my brain was not hitting on all eight cylinders and my writing fell by the wayside. After a couple of years, I decided to get back to writing. It was not easy. For some reason, now lost to me, I decided to write a historical western romance novella, and I did--Robbie and Taron. It is free today and tomorrow. I hope you will claim a copy here:


I am still writing historical western romance and two more novellas in the same series are available. Also, my two Lockets and Lace books are spin-offs from Abby and Joshua. Life has settled down to a large extent. I believe I am ready to get back into the full swing of writing. 

My writer's logo is this: Pierced hearts; healed souls.

My heart has been pierced and wounded but my soul is healing with God's help. 

Hope you enjoy the free ebook! 

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Brokken Arrow--Free Until Monday

Hi everyone--

Mother's Day is a mixed blessing for many of us, and for some, a day of sorrows, and for a lucky few, a day of joy. Wherever you fall on the spectrum, I wish you peace and comfort.

I lost my mother two years ago. She was ornery, lovable, and kind-hearted in her way. She loved her grandchildren and great-grandchildren dearly. After she suffered a series of strokes, the last years of her life were full of struggles for her and for me. I miss her but know she is in a better place. 

So, it is a day of mixed blessings for me. Although I miss my mother, my sons and grandchildren are all healthy and happy and plan to spend the day with me tomorrow. I am so thankful to share the day with them.

As a Mother's Day gift to my readers, I am offering Brokken Arrow free until Monday. 

A little about Brokken Arrow: Deborah Brokken never knew her mother, who died in childbirth. Although Victoria and Abby are but a few years older, they serve as surrogate mothers to Deborah. 

Here's an excerpt:

Abby greeted her and stepped back to survey her. “Are you ill?”
Deborah loosened the bonnet strings and flung her bonnet down on the teak bar top. “Folks keep asking me that. I suppose I must look a mess.”
Miss Abby led her to the kitchen. “Lucky for you, I just made scones. A couple of those and a hot cup of coffee will do wonders for what ails you.”
Deborah sank into a chair, and Miss Abby set the scones on the table. “There’s nothing better than fresh butter and orange marmalade on a scone. Please, help yourself.”
To Deborah’s consternation, her tears burst loose. Miss Abby draped an arm over her shoulders, and Deborah turned to face her friend, lifting her tear-stained face. Miss Abby stroked her hair and pulled her close. She did not speak, and Deborah was glad of it, knew she’d not be able to answer until she gained control of her emotions.
Miss Abby smelled of lavender, and after a moment, Deborah’s tears abated. She pulled away and found her handkerchief.
Miss Abby took a seat across from her. “I remember Vic said your brothers left you a jar of orange marmalade. That must have set you off.”
Deborah traced a pattern on the tablecloth listlessly and didn’t reply.
“Is there something you want to talk about?”
She bit her lip. How could Miss Abby help her with this? Before she could form an answer, the backdoor opened and Sheriff Vic came in.
“Thought I smelled fresh scones. Thanks, Abby.”
“Who said I made them for you? And for heaven’s sake, don’t take them all. I have company, if you didn’t notice.”
“Good morning, Deborah. You look like something the cat drug in that the kittens wouldn’t have.”
Abby shot her friend a frigid look. “Vic! My goodness. Don’t you see something is troubling her?”
The sheriff took a seat at the table. “Yes, and I can guess what. Man trouble. If you want my advice, Deb, stay away from all men.”
Miss Abby frowned. “Do not listen to her. Not all men are scumbags.”
The sheriff slathered a scone with butter. “Maybe not, but they all bring heartache, in one form or another.”
Abby’s red face indicated her anger. “Vic! Maybe you need to go.”

Hope you enjoyed the excerpt! Remember it is free until Monday.

Click to get your free copy: Brokken Arrow by Abagail Eldan

Over on Facebook, I will be online at 2 Central tomorrow at Historical Western Romance Readers. Stop by for a chat and a chance to win some great prizes. Hope to see you tomorrow. 

(Note: I was going to discontinue my newsletter because of health reasons. Pauline Creeden graciously linked my blog to my newsletter to make it easier for me. Thanks, Pauline!)

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Latest Release

Joy, Unending, my latest book, releases on Tuesday, April 2nd. 

I'm happy with the end result. Although all my books differ from each other, this one has more pronounced differences. Joy, Unending follows more closely to what I consider a Christian romance novel. 

While I'm in the recovery process (and, yes, it takes me a while to recover), I thought I'd share my writing process.

It goes something like this--

1. An idea for a story begins to take shape and is not something I pursue or agonize over.  Ideas begin popping in my brain. Sometimes, several ideas for books "pop" at the same time, sometimes completely different books, or more often, several books in a series. And, so, cheerfully, I jot down the idea(s). 

(On a side note, I endeavor to be a neat person, although at heart, I am messy. Therefore, the notes I take at this point are scribbles, often difficult for me to decipher. To give myself props, I have learned to confine them to one notebook, most of the time.) 
Ideas bring a measure of cheerfulness.

2. Next comes a rough outline for the book. I've written around twenty books and have learned I will never stick to an outline. That's why I simply sketch ideas and make a very rough, brief outline. (I can't do this neatly either--it's merely scribbled sentences.) Usually, only the finished first chapter and last chapter have any resemblance to my first outline.
Me, scribbling away.

3. And then comes the writing. And the first chapters are difficult, if not verging on the impossible. I've discovered the reason for this. As I said above, the vision for my book will not fit into the parameters I have outlined for it. I am trying to pry my vision into a container not made for it. At this point, I become discouraged. I will contemplate trashing the whole thing and starting over. 
I will never get this right.

4. But I continue writing, go back and sketch out some scenes, re-think my outline. And the book begins to come together. And, I'll begin to think, yes, I can do this!

Such a cute book!

5. And then ideas begin popping again, and my writing increases speed as if I'm going downhill, although still bumpy.

Hold on!
6. And I finish the rough draft. Finally, it is done! And, I think, it ain't too shabby. Sometimes, I even love it!

7. And then comes the editing and the doubting. I used to spend a lot of time on this. I've learned to streamline the editing process and get through it as quickly as possible.
Does this even make sense?
8. At this point, I am done with the editing, done with the book, ready to publish and to move on to something else, whether what I've just written is good or bad. 
I am done! Yay!
9. And then, depression sets in. It is not doubt, but depression. Perhaps, it's because I miss my characters. Perhaps I'm dreading the stage 3 above when I begin my next book. I don't know. So far, I have always become depressed upon the publication of a book. The reason eludes me as does the solution. 

10. But, with God's help, I pick myself up and brush myself off to begin the process again. And this time around, I plan not to become unhappy--afterall, the title of the book is Joy, Unending!

And there you have it! My writing process. Please check out my other books over on my author page on Amazon.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Brokken Tales Release

I have compiled This Brokken Road, Brokken Arrow, Brokken Brother, and Brokken Redeemed into one book, Find it here on Amazon in Kindle format, Brokken Tales, ebook, and here if you prefer print, Brokken Tales, paperback. Grab your copy today.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Under Pressure

For the past couple of years, life has battered my husband and me. We've held onto the rails and cried for relief. My creativity took a beating along with the reality me.

When we are plagued with problems and our focus is scattered, it's difficult, almost impossible to lose ourselves in our work. I read The Artist's Way many years ago and put into practice the recommendations--morning pages and Artist Dates, although not consistently and not nearly often enough. 

Sometimes we feel we're too busy to take time out for something that is not immediately productive. Martin Luther said, “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.” My morning pages are my prayer and a necessity for productivity. 

Recently, through my prayer morning pages, I realized I've been getting it wrong. Often I've heard it said God should be the center of our lives. No, not the center. God should be our lives. And that makes my words a prayer, my words a connection, my words a reflection--be it words written or spoken. God works in us, through us; he hems us in and goes before. He is our all in all. 

In The Artist's Way, Julia Cameron speaks of synchronicity or meaningful coincidences. And this happened to me. A week or so ago, my son watched a short Queen bio. I've never been a big fan of the song "Under Pressure." However, I caught an earworm watching the bio. The song played over and over in my head until I decided to download the song from Amazon Music. And yet, I still didn't pay much attention to the words.

That is until my husband and I were watching a television show and "Under Pressure" was featured. We had on Closed Captioning and I looked at hubby, who has heard me blasting the song from our stereo for a week now. He smiled at me and tears streamed down my cheeks.

These are the words I read: "And love dares you to change our way of caring about ourselves."

I realized perhaps I've been thinking too small. Perhaps there's a bigger dream for me than I've dared dream before.

And also from the song was this line: "Can't we give ourselves one more chance?" Having a stroke has brought home to me, more than ever, that our lives are short, and we must redeem the time. 

And I began to think of the title "Under Pressure," and a Bible verse came to mind. 

(G)ive, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you. ~ Luke 6:38

Pressed down? Under pressure? We will receive God's blessings that have been pressed down and continue to run over, and God will pour them into our lap. Under pressure is not such a bad thing. Perhaps when we are under pressure, we, too, will run over and fully give ourselves to others, understanding their pain and their struggles, and that ties into another line from the song--And love dares you to care for the people on the edge of the night.

Perhaps the pain of the last few years was to make me into a better artist, one who will help those people on the edge of the night, as I allow myself to be filled by the grace of God, under pressure.