We are extremely honored to have one of my favorite inspirational authors with us today, the talented Tracie Peterson. What an awesome career accomplishment to have published 100 novels, and with the promise of more to come! I also appreciate that Tracie's novels always have a strong spiritual theme.
Tracie is graciously sharing a copy of A Sensible Arrangement with one of you (details at the bottom of this post). This is a story with good character depth, romance, and the beautiful message of redemption. Please see my review here. Now let's enjoy Tracie . . .
Q: What an awesome achievement to have published your 100th novel, Tracie! Do you have any writing dreams that haven't yet been fulfilled?
Hmmm, haven’t hit the New York Times list or been on the Tonight Show. Just kidding I really don’t have the goal for either of those things. I guess my current goal is just to write the next book in the best form possible and share the Gospel. Writing for me is a ministry and my desire is to keep focused on the Lord and listen for His direction.
Q: Do you have a favorite Bible verse, or one that is especially meaningful at this time in your life?
Right now I’m really blessed by Ephesians 2:8&9: "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast."
Q: If you had a "bucket list," name two things that would be on it.
I don’t really have a bucket list. I guess I still want to see Ireland and of course there are friends and family I would love to spend time with, but that isn’t really a bucket list kind of thing.
Q: Please tell us a little about the Lone Star Brides series and the book we're featuring today, A Sensible Arrangement.
The Lone Star Brides series ties together (loosely) 2 other previous series – Striking a Match and Land of the Lone Star. People kept asking for more on Jake Wythe and Marty Dandridge and it just worked out that I could put those two together in a new series. There will be intrigue and romance in Texas and Colorado.
Q: Marty is a character who seemed to find it easy to tell lies, or at least exaggerate the truth. How does she become a character that readers care about?
Marty had appeared as a lovable little girl who exaggerated a great deal in Chasing the Sun. Readers wrote to say how much they liked her and wanted to see her grown up. But for those who didn’t have that experience to tie to her, I wanted to show a woman whose fear caused her to lie and do what she felt she had to in order to survive. I think there are a great many folks out there who will relate to that.
Q: I loved these words of Alice, Marty's maid: "God isn't in the business of doing things without them having a purpose that will lead to His glory." Do you ever struggle with understanding or accepting God's purpose in difficult times?
Absolutely – I’m human. There are often things that go on in my life that really confuse me as to why. I’ve learned over the years, however, to take my wounded heart to God. He always offers great comfort and in time shows me the reason for the things that have happened. And, even when those answers don’t come, I know the best thing is to trust Him and wait for His direction.
Q: What do you hope readers will take away from this story?
That lies never work in the long run and will only hurt both the one lying and the one to whom they lie. Also that God has already made provision for our needs. Folks seem to like to assign weight to sin and while the consequences have greater weight for some sin than others, sin is sin whether it’s lying, stealing or committing murder. We need to take serious the danger of that “little white lie.”
Q: Have any readers' responses had an impact on you, Tracie?
Oh all the time. I had a recent letter from a woman who said she read the book and while she wasn’t a Christian the book really made her ask questions about her life and the direction she’d chosen. I love things like that.
Q: What is the most significant change that you've seen in the publishing industry over the span of your career? Any concerns?
Ebooks. I think it’s an amazing tool and can really be a blessing to readers. It can also be a real mind boggle and curse as we see so many books published in the ebook form that have had no editor’s touch. I’m not foolish enough to think that my books are perfect. My editing team are such a blessing and when you publish without one, I think it really puts you at a disadvantage. The other significant thing is a sad one – So many of the Christian publishing houses are now owned by major secular publishing houses. I’ve see it take a toll in content and acceptable topics and that’s been really hard. I believe we are called to be in this world, but not of it and that there is a hard line we have to draw when it comes to why we as Christians get into writing in the first place and what we will write.
Q: What books can we look for over the next year or so?
A MATTER OF HEART is out now – it’s the second book in the Lone Star Brides series and A MOMENT IN TIME is out in October. Kimberley Woodhouse and I will be doing a book tour in Alaska in September so keep checking my website at traciepeterson.com for updates on the places and times if you live in Alaska. A brand new series, one I’m really enjoying working on, is coming out next spring. Book one is A STEADFAST HEART and is set in 1888 Seattle. It has a cast that include three zany matchmakers and their unpredictable ward.
Q: What are some ways we can support and encourage you, both personally and as an author, Tracie?
I really appreciate prayer first and foremost. My writing is a ministry and the enemy is constantly attacking my health, my peace of mind, my household and loved ones. Prayer has kept me strong and standing firm and I appreciate that my readers take time to pray for me. I also love that they share their love of my books with their friends and family. Word of mouth is always the best way to get the word out. Like with this interview for example. I really appreciate the opportunity to share with you and want to thank you for having me.
To enter the drawing for A Sensible Arrangement, answer ONE of the following questions and leave your e-mail in a safe format. If you're willing, it's also helpful to share about this giveaway on Facebook.
1) Have you read Tracie's books before? If so, what is one of your favorite series?
2) What do you think about Tracie's words, based on Marty's character, that we need to "take serious the danger of that 'little white lie'"?
3) Simply leave a comment or question for Tracie based on this interview.
Please "like" my Facebook page, ThePowerofWordsBookReviews, if you haven't already. And new followers of this blog are always welcome!
- E-mail required, one entry per person. Odds of winning are based on number of entries.
- Contest ends at midnight on Sunday, July 6. No purchase necessary.
- Winner will be chosen by Random.org and contacted by e-mail by Tuesday, July 8. Respond within 48 hours of notification or another winner will be chosen.
- Eligibility: US residents, 18 and older