just write life · writing

Still Waters Wins Selah Awards!

My writing career launched in 2014 through the connections I made at the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference. So last week, when I was double nominated as a Selah Award finalist for First Novel and a fiction finalist for the Director’s Choice Award, I felt like I’d come full circle.

Four years ago I sat in that crowd and wondered if I’d ever cross that stage to accept a plaque with with mine and my book’s name on it.

Last week I accepted three.

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My oldest daughter, Madelynne and my husband Joshua came with me. Joshua, to be a my support. Madelynne, to fangirl over fellow writer, Kristen Hogrefe, whose book The Revisionary was also a double winner for Speculative and YA.

Still Waters won the Selah Award for First Novel and to my everlasting surprise, I also won Selah Fiction Book of the Year.

Eva Marie Everson is the contest director, but she wears many hats, and one of those is as my editor. She’s a great secret keeper.

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Then, conference directors, Edie Melson and DiAnn Mills, talented and accomplished women who trusted me enough to name me a member of their prestigious faculty in 2017, announced the Director’s Choice Award for Fiction.

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And I received another decoration for a wall I didn’t know I needed.

I’m deeply honored and humbled to have my story recognized for its merit in the very place where I first believed I could write and sell a novel.

As Cora Anne learns, there’s nothing like coming home.

Photo credits: Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference and friends.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. 

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writing

Spring Fever Promo :: Day 8 with Regina Mudd Merrick

Wow – we’re at Day 8 of the 10 Day Spring Fever Promo already! It’s been great getting to focus on such fabulous authors – Barbara Ellen Brink, Brenda S. Anderson, Johnnie Alexander, Lindsey P. Brackett, Joy DeKok, Dawn Ford, and Kimberly Rose Johnson. If you missed any of those posts, click on their name and get caught up! (And remember, each author provided a secret Word of the Day to give you additional chances to win.)

Today we’re featuring Regina Rudd Merrick. Regina is a writer, church musician, wife, mother, and grateful follower of Jesus Christ. Having lived most of her life in Western Kentucky, she dreams of the sound of crashing waves and sandy beaches. Married to her husband of 30-plus years, she is the mother of two grown daughters, and the keeper of a 100-year-old house where she lives in the small town of Marion, KY.

Regina began reading romance and thinking of book ideas as early as her teenage years when she attempted a happily-ever-after sequel to Gone With the Wind. That love of fiction parlayed into a career as a school librarian and then a public librarian, where she served as a director for thirteen years. She began attending local writing workshops and continued to hone her craft by writing several short and novel-length fan-fiction pieces published online, where she met other authors with a similar love for story, a Christian worldview, and happily-ever-after.

Her first novel, Carolina Dream, is book one in the Southern Breeze Series. Carolina Mercy, book two in the series, will be released in July 2018 by Mantle Rock Publishing, LLC.

Learn more about Regina, and the Southern Breeze series on her website. Sign up for her newsletter HERE and receive a PDF document, “Special Features From Carolina Dream,” which includes the inspiration for the story as well as pictures of the places that inspired the location.

You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Here’s a bit about Carolina Dream:


Sarah Crawford wants more from life than to attend the wedding of her ex-fiancée. An unexpected inheritance in South Carolina comes at the perfect time, just as Sarah is willing to use any excuse to get out of town. When she meets potential business partner Jared Benton and discovers that a house is part of the inheritance, she is sure that God has been preparing her for this time through a recurring dream.


But will a dream about an antebellum mansion, many rooms to be explored, and a man with dark brown eyes give her the confidence to take a leap of faith, leaving friends, family, and her job behind?

Carolina Dream is available in paperback and Kindle.

Here’s the Spring Fever Promo contest and Regina’s secret Word of the Day is BEACH.

 

writing

Spring Fever :: Day 3 with Edisto!

Welcome to Day 3 of the 2018 Spring Fever Book Promotion!

Remember – With 10 authors involved, you have at least 10 chances to win awesome prizes! Plus, extra chances to win by entering the “Word of the Day” (found within each day’s posting), answering a simple poll, or tweeting about the promo!

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Today I’m the spotlight–but if you’re a regular around here, you probably already know all these things. I bet you can guess the keyword too.

Lately I tell everyone I write southern fiction and cook big family meals, even though I complain about the dishes. Right now, my beta readers are looking over the Still Waters sequel before it goes off to my editor’s capable hands.

Fun fact about Lindsey:  Edisto Beach is our family place. My mother grew up spending summers there, and I grew up spending summers there. Now my children are getting the chance to experience this family tradition. (Hint: this just might have something to do with her debut novel!) For more about Edisto and its history visit ExploreEdisto.com.

Currently, I’m a community “star” in Dancing with the Stars for Hope, an annual fundraiser for Circle of Hope, a domestic 

violence shelter. You can vote for her team, Plot Twist, at www.dancingwiththestarsforhope.com/vote Every $1 vote goes to charity and helps them win the People’s Choice award. My partner is my friend Jeremy. They’re using their theater backgrounds to create an epic number sure to please. The performance will be showcased on March 17!

Here’s a new blurb for Still Waters. What do you think?

Cora Anne graduated from college with a plan that didn’t involve her grandmother’s ramshackle beach cottage or Tennessee Watson, a local builder dedicated to the preservation of Edisto Island—and her heart.

You can buy Still Waters on Amazon and at other booksellers.

Here’s the link for the Spring Fever Promo.

And for an extra chance to win, enter the Word of the Day:  Edisto