Jodie's latest book, Quilted by Christmas, is one of my favorite stories in Abingdon's Quilts of Love Series. I loved everything about this character-driven story that pulls at the heartstrings and believe everyone who reads it will be blessed. Please see my review here.
Jodie is graciously sharing a copy with one of our readers, details at the end of this post. Now enjoy getting to know a little about Jodie and her writing . . .
Q: Please share a little about Jodie Bailey - both personally and as a writer.
That question opens you up to a long answer! I’m a Carolina girl, a sweet-tea-drinking Southerner who has lived all over the country, courtesy to my now-retired Army husband. I love to read, fish at the beach, and simply sit in the backyard with Jesus. As a writer, I’m all about stories of deliverance and redemption, of grace and freedom. That’s my story, and I want others to experience Jesus as that amazing freedom and love!
Q: What is one of your favorite family Christmas traditions, past or present?
Every Christmas Eve, my family gets together for oyster stew and tons of appetizers. (The appetizers were my idea because, as much as I love the ocean, I’m not a seafood girl.) There’s so much laughter and warmth and love. All we do is eat and hang out together, but it’s my favorite evening of the whole year.
Q: Tell us about the book we're featuring today, Quilted by Christmas.
Quilted by Christmas deals with family, forgiveness and unconditional love. Taryn McKenna has been hiding from the man she once loved, the man she’s keeping a huge secret from. When he comes back into her life and starts working on an heirloom quilt with her, it becomes harder for her to deny she still loves him and to hide the past from him. It doesn’t help that her grandmother is all up in their business, either.
Q: Are you a quilter, Jodie?
Sadly, no. But my grandmothers both quilted.
Q: I would suspect that many readers can relate to having a feisty grandmother like Jemma, who was such a key part of the story and who I loved. Are certain aspects of this story inspired by personal experience or people in your life?
My grandmother died the year before I started writing the book. It was never my intention for Jemma to have such a huge role, but as she showed up, she started to sound more and more like my grandmother. Her “feisty” side is my grandmother all over again, and I think I grieved her, spent one last period of time with her, as I wrote. Jemma’s softer side is a reflection of my other grandmother, who is still living. Both of those women, who had such an impact on my life, showed up. There are a few family stories that crop up too, such as the dents in the ceiling at Jemma’s house, the story of the fall from the attic, and the snake in the sleeping bag. It was fun to work them in.
Q: I think this quote from the book can minister to a lot of people: "Real love is freely given, not taken away because you trip and fall." What spiritual insights do you hope readers will take away from their reading experience?
I think unconditional love is something we all struggle with. In a world where love has been cheapened by the media in a lot of ways, where divorce is easy and it seems like everything is disposable, unconditional love is almost a foreign concept. Love is a choice every day, and when it’s real, it’s not a conditional emotion. “I’ll love you until you don’t do what I want.” It’s “I’ll love you no matter what.” God loves us like that, and I think his ideal is for us to love like He does. It’s tough to do that as humans though!
Q: What stories can readers expect from you in the days ahead?
I’m working on a suspense series about a military unit that deals with cyberterrorism. Book one has been turned in, and I’m currently about 1/3 of the way through book two. I’m also preparing to release two novels set in NASCAR early next year. I’m very excited about those! They are two of my favorite books I’ve ever written. The grace theme is central in both of those.
Q: How can we support and/or pray for you, Jodie?
Pray that the words come and that they are the words God wants them to be. Some days, it is hard to sit still at the computer. As a former teacher, I miss my students and the laughter and craziness they could put into a day, but I definitely don’t miss the hours of work! It’s a tough transition for a people person like me to go from kids all day to just me, the two dogs, and a screen. J
Thank you so much! This was fun!
To enter the drawing for Quilted by Christmas, simply answer the following question that I asked Jodie:
What is one of your favorite family Christmas traditions,
past or present?
E-mail addresses are required for the drawing and be sure to leave them in a safe format - [at] and [dot]. If you're willing, it's also helpful to share about this giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter.
"Likes" on my Facebook page, ThePowerofWordsBookReviews, are greatly appreciated, as are followers on Google+, Pinterest, Twitter, and this blog.
- E-mail required, one entry per person. Odds of winning are based on number of entries.
- Contest ends at midnight PST on Wednesday, December 17.
- Winner will be chosen by Random.org and contacted by e-mail. Respond within 48 hours of notification or another winner will be chosen.
- Eligibility: US or Canadian residents, 18 and older