author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: The Conjurer’s Curse with Stephanie Cotta

Today, In honor of her debut book launch, Stephanie Cotta and I had a fun conversation about her writing process and her debut novel entitled The Conjurer’s Curse. Gracb a cup of your favorite beverage and come join the fun.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

The Conjurer’s Curs with Stephanie Cotta

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Stephanie Cotta

WHEN?

Friday, December 9, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Stephanie Cotta…

Stephanie Cotta hails from beautiful Southern Oregon and resides in a quaint, historic mining town. Growing up, she spent much of her time delving into every new Star Wars book she could get her hands on, which all began at age nine when she bought The Courtship of Princess Leia by Dave Wolverton at a garage sale for a quarter. Her love of Star Wars and Sci-Fi/fantasy has been undying ever since. A fine arts major in college, she first embarked into the literary world as a children’s book illustrator, then leapt over to the realm of storytelling when she could no longer repress the urge to write the fantasy stories running wild in her imagination. When she’s not steeped in writing, she’s launching arrows at hay bales, drawing with pastels, reading fantasy, playing an immersive RPG, or watching the latest BBC historical drama.

Stephanie’s featured book is entitled The Conjurer’s Curse.

Description:

Seventeen-year-old Rowan is a walking, breathing curse. He just hasn’t realized it yet. 

Since birth, Rowan has been the object of scorn in his village. The reason? He’s a dikyli—an outsider with albino skin and an ominous mark blazoned on his neck. So when his fourth guardian-mother is found dead, all blame falls on him, and he is banished before his life-draining curse can strike again. The only path left to Rowan is clear: He must discover who cursed him and alter his horrible fate—or forever lose everyone he loves. 

From facing treacherous seas, soul-devouring Moonshades, and desert terrors, Rowan battles for his very survival to reach his homeland—the far-off kingdom of Shandria, a land rife with hostilities. Dark surprises and back-stabbing betrayals emerge as two devious Iron Barons—who know the scandalous origin of his curse—plot to imprison him in the Mountain of the Damned with the rest of the accursed. 

To make matters worse, Rowan’s curse threatens to claim another life when he meets Tahira, a spunky, pertly persistent Shandrian who vows to aid him in his quest despite the overwhelming odds. Their alliance of trust and necessity develops into love—a love doomed to end in death if Rowan remains cursed. With the hope of a future hanging in the balance, he must overcome the greatest challenge of his life. For the only way to end his curse is to slay the Conjurer who cast the life-draining spell.

Purchase link:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Conjurers-Curse-Stephanie-Cotta/dp/1957656018/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=the+conjurer%27s+curse&qid=1666977047&qu=eyJxc2MiOiIxLjU3IiwicXNhIjoiMC4wMCIsInFzcCI6IjAuMDAifQ%3D%3D&sr=8-1

Excerpt:

“Search for your kind. Find who cursed you. Perhaps there’s a way to break the curse. If you don’t, people will continue to die around you, and you’ll forever be alone.”

Connect with Stephani at the following links:

Website: https://sdaniellacotta.wordpress.com/

Linktree: https://linktr.ee/StephanieCotta?utm_source=linktree_profile_share&ltsid=f80c48bd-b32b-450b-9a48-4b149de0fbcf

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/s.daniellacotta

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Alaskan Christmas with Maryann Landers

In this special bonus episode, Maryann Landers and I talk about her new book entitled Alaskan Christmas. She also shares some fun facts about Alaska and the local sled dog races in her area. We also talk about our writing process and she shares some special tips and inspiration for writers of all stages in the author process.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Alaskan Christmas with Maryann Landers

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Maryann Landers

WHEN?

Thursday, December 8, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Maryann Landers…

Alaskan based author Maryann Landers writes women’s faith filled fiction based on true stories of extraordinary women of her magnificent state. She loves to showcase the unique north and give her readers a little taste of rustic Alaska.

            While writing in her log home in the woods she is also looking forward to her next adventure with her Alaskan husband, juggling mom tasks such as crafting homemade meals from moose and caribou meat, building DIY projects from scrap wood piles and guiding her teens in their homeschooling.

Maryann’s featured book is entitled, Alaskan Christmas

Description:

I’d anticipated my first Christmas as a newlywed with excitement,

Then a crisis threatens to crush the strides I’ve made in my faith. 

After completing my fall semester, I’m desperate to join my family at my parents’ log cabin and show my new husband how Christmas in rural Alaska sparkles. Lazying in front of the woodstove, snowmaching across the frozen lake, and helping my mom make festive treats will be the perfect way to regroup before my teaching practicum) starts

Before leaving to enjoy the holidays, we attend a friend’s wedding at a Bible camp outside of Palmer, Alaska. The rustic backdrop sounds romantic and memorable until Collin and I have a fight and it threatens to ruin the holidays. 

When we face a blustery mishap will I recoil to a flurry of insecurities or will I discover God’s promised peace and a resolve to plow through? 

Purchase links:

Purchase Direct and Save: (There is some fun merc on there as well)

https://shop-mary-ann-landers-com.myshopify.com/

Amazon:

Excerpt:

“Christmas in Alaska was always the most peaceful and endearing time of year. This Christmas was especially memorable, as it was my first one as a newlywed.

Growing up on a remote lakefront property, my childhood memories of the season were filled with long sunrises and sunsets, along with ample time cuddled near the woodstove reading books. Each year, my family shared Christmas celebrations with other families in the community since many of us in Alaska lived far away from our own.

You would think no one would want to be outside in the middle of an Alaskan winter, but my family enjoyed plenty of traditional outdoor Christmas activities. Of course, I always preferred to watch from the comfort of the cozy couch, gazing out the large living room window at my brother and his friends as they snow-machined on the lake. I was more than happy to bake a pumpkin roll, find a warm blanket to cover my legs, and slide on my slippers for the rest of the afternoon.

This particular evening, I sat in our apartment in Anchorage and checked the boxes on my Day-Timer, licking a candy cane while noting the scribbles I’d etched for the weekend before Christmas. My former roommate Candice’s wedding was penciled in.

Recently married myself, back in August, I let out a sigh of understanding. A formidable amount of work went into my own quick ceremony with Collin, and I empathized with all the planning and organizing Candice was tackling.

As the radio played Randy Travis’s version of “Jingle Bell Rock,” I rubbed the embossing on the invitation. Candice’s wedding celebration to her high school sweetheart, Sean, was a bright spot I’d anticipated during these dark days of December. Candice and Sean were starting out right, though, keeping it simple: a ceremony with friends and family at a local Bible camp situated on a lake outside of Palmer, Alaska. The casual setting and snow-covered-mountain backdrop promised a peaceful memory to be followed by a wintery outdoor reception with skating, riding on toboggans behind snowmachines, and visiting by the lakeside bonfire.

“Collin?” I called out to my husband, who was making himself a cup of hot chocolate in the adjacent kitchen. “Can you help me think of a gift for the wedding next weekend?”

“Just give them money.” The clinking he made in his mug with his spoon filled the small apartment.

I crunched my candy in my mouth and rolled my eyes, knowing he wouldn’t see my unimpressed face. Giving gifts didn’t come naturally to me, unlike my mom, who thrived on timely and thoughtful gifts for each occasion. Thinking of presents was work—hard work—and I needed help. “Well, I was hoping to find something unique that someone else might not have thought to get them. Like for our wedding, what stood out to you as one of the best presents?” Tucking my legs under me, I pulled the folded afghan my mom had crocheted for my high school graduation from the arm of the couch and spread it across myself.

Collin walked into the living room and eased into the oversized beanbag chair on the floor, carefully balancing the frosted mug his mom had made him for his birthday in his hands to keep his coffee from spilling. “That’s a hard one. Ask your mom. She’s good at that sort of thing.”

I shook my head. “I didn’t inherit that trait from her.”

During my teens, I questioned what I shared in common with her. We rarely saw eye to eye until close to my senior year when I began to see her kind character more fully. I’d pushed against almost every wish she had for me, as well as her patient instruction. I’d tested the boundaries of both my parents’ love. Now, in regret, I wished for those times back so I could join my mom around the house and property and learn her many talents.

My older brother Rusty and I moved to rural Alaska from Michigan when we were only five and seven. A summer vacation to Alaska turned into a job at a roadhouse for my parents, and then ended up being a permanent move when my dad chose to go to a small Bible school in Glennallen. During his first semester, my parents purchased property over thirty miles away from the town. We lived in a little cabin with no running water for over five years, and our days were full of simple joys on the lake and in the woods.

“I’m sure you’ll think of something.” Collin added, opening a skiing magazine next to him on the floor.

My man of few words wasn’t much help in the gift-brainstorming department. However, he was gifted at meticulously fixing most anything, bore the patience of Job, and was the most handsome man I knew.

When in college, Rusty made friends with Collin. I met him when Rusty took up an offer to room in Collin’s parents’ basement while he studied at the university. I relied on my older brother for rides around the city when it was my turn to attend the same university a couple of years later, and soon, Collin was offering to drive me instead. His shy smile and tender ways drew me to him. The enduring care he had for his folks was admirable for a young man. Now, having been married for a few months, I hoped and prayed that one day we’d have a family with a whole brood of little ones just like their daddy.

“That’s just it. I can’t think.” I rubbed my temples with my hands. “Now that classes are done, I’m having trouble focusing on much of anything.”

I was studying to be a teacher and wrapping up my last year of college. I had one last semester in the new year—as a student teacher.

Collin moved next to me and pulled me in close. “With finals done, Candice’s wedding, and time at your parents’ place, I’m certain you’ll find the time to clear your head.”

An inch under five feet tall, I felt like a miniature doe next to a broad-shouldered, muscular moose. Sheltered within his presence, my vulnerabilities faded.

“Maybe money really is the best gift. Then they can decide how to use it to get something they might need.” I reached up and stroked his chin, and he smiled and tilted his head to read his magazine. 

He spent many hours outside, and the reflection of the sun off the snow had given his face a brazen glow. He’d grown up in the city of Anchorage, and his family entertained the Alaskan lifestyle in their own way: with hiking and skiing. He’d taken cycling more seriously the last couple of years, until he crashed his bike shortly after we were married. The quick-release wheel had come unclasped and sent him hurtling to the pavement. He’d shrugged it off and planned to get a new bike in the spring.

“Ha, I can hardly believe he did that hill so fast,” Collin commented to himself about the article he was reading as he turned the page. “Which reminds me, I’m going to ask Rusty if he’s bringing his sled this weekend.” He walked over to the cordless phone on the counter.

“What?” I pulled my legs in closer. “C’mon. You’re not going to ski behind the snowmachine, are you?”

“Yah, why not?” shrugging his shoulders, Collin dialed my brother’s number.

Determined to make my point, I talked louder as he listened to the receiver. “Because”—I moved close to the edge of the seat and raised my voice—”it’s really dangerous. Even for you. I’ve heard of skiers getting injured at competitions in the spring on the mountains outside of Valdez, and I don’t want you getting hurt.”

He waved me off. “Oh, hey Rusty, it’s Collin. Just wondering if you’re bringing your sled to the reception this weekend. Talk to you later.” He turned off the phone and picked up his mug. “He must not be home yet.”

I pictured Collin racing behind Rusty’s new snowmachine. “We can’t afford to have any mishaps.” Blurting out another pivotal point, I crossed my arms. As newlywed college kids, medical bills would ruin us financially. The days of security on our parents’ insurance plans were over.

“You’re assuming something horrible is going to happen.” His back turned to me, he picked up his ski goggles from a hook by the entryway door and placed them in a duffle bag. “I’ve taught skiing for years, navigating the hills of Alyeska Ski Resort, and now you’re telling me I shouldn’t ride behind a sled across a little lake?” He turned to face me narrowing his eyes and crossed his arms. “I’m not one of your students who has to ask permission to get a drink at the water fountain.”

I bit at my top lip, and heat pulsated from the top of my head down to my toes. I kicked my blanket off and sifted through memories of my parents. How did they communicate when tempers flared? I longed to dart for our room and wait out the brewing storm to stew over the disappointment I’d stirred up like I’d done countless times as a teen when I acted before thinking.

Collin stuffed his ski pants in the oversized duffle bag where he kept his other winter gear and tossed the bag toward the door.

In silent protest, I stood up tossed my half eaten candy cane on the coffee table and hurried to the bathroom. Masking my shaking hands, I pressed them under my eyes, hoping to blanket the emotion threatening to erupt from my tiny frame.”

Connect with Maryann at the following links:

Website: https://www.mary-ann-landers.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MaryannLandersAUTHOR

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/writealaska/

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Easy Walks with Marjorie Turner Hollman

In This week’s episode, Marjory Turner Hollman and I talk about writing, editing, the story behind her Easy Walks series and how she coaches authors and helps them write their stories. Make sure you have a method for taking notes handy as you join in this conversation, because Marjory has some tips sprinkled into this conversation.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Easy Walks with Marjorie Turner Hollman

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Marjorie Turner Hollman

WHEN?

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Marjorie Turner Hollman…

Marjorie Turner Hollman is a writer/editor who loves the outdoors, and is the author of Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd editionMore Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd edition, editor of Easy Walks and Paddles in the Ten Mile River WatershedFinding Easy Walks Wherever You Are offers guidance and encouragement to those of differing abilities to gain access to the outdoors. Her latest book, a memoir, My Liturgy of Easy Walks, shares her stories of surviving and thriving in the face of chronic illness. She has been a freelance writer for numerous local, regional, and national publications for the past 20+ years. Authors obtaining developmental editing and book coaching from Marjorie have published their own stories as compelling books. She is a co-author of the recent community history, Bellingham Now and Then.

Marjorie’s featured book is entitled My Liturgy of Easy Walks

Description:

My Liturgy of Easy Walks is a memoir of learning to thrive in the face of life-changing events. Writing has helped the author make peace with her experiences. The Easy Walks book series shares information about how to get outdoors safely. This latest book in the Easy Walks collection inspires hope for those facing lives altered by illness or injury.

A Liturgy of Easy Walks tells the personal side of the author’s story. Readers will learn how a simple childhood game becomes a portal for spiritual awakening. A walk in the woods brings moments of insight. Encounters with strangers foster understanding and joy. Emotional, physical and spiritual struggles are all part of living with chronic illness, out of the mainstream. Adjusting to changed life circumstances can be difficult, isolating, and lonely. The author shares her own challenges, ponderings, and triumphs, discovering unexpected healing along the way.

Purchase link:

Excerpt:

Letting go: Well-intentioned people offer varied strategies intended to short-circuit the difficult process of “letting go,” whether it be of worries, pain, hurt, relationships, the past in general, or even prolonged grieving. The list of life challenges is endless, and suggestions for how to cope are endless too, yet have been useless in my own experience. I have learned that letting go is something that happens on its own time schedule, not because of trying harder.

There was a time when I watched in amazement as my right side began the process of learning how to function again, after being deprived of movement as a side effect of life-saving brain surgery. At first, my fingers began wiggling just slightly, nothing that I could control, and not to hold anything of weight. After a few days I was offered plastic drinking straws to grasp. Waving them in the air, I greeted my visitors with the news: “Hey look, I’m lifting straws!” as though I was in a weight-lifting competition. I took any ability to move as a win.

After a few weeks, I was able to clasp my fingers into a fist with some relative strength. Unclasping was difficult and laborious. The holding on came first, the letting go much later. Each instance of healing felt euphoric, even as the big picture of how I could manage my life remained a great unknown. I took every positive development as it came, rejoicing when I could. I still had plenty to be concerned about.

Six weeks after my surgery, I was traveling around the halls of the rehabilitation hospital where I was staying in the early days of my recovery. I sailed along the hall in a wheelchair, using my left leg since my right leg was still paralyzed. I used my left hand to turn the wheel of the chair. A staff person at the hospital chastised me, insisting I should be using both hands to push, not favoring my weaker hand.

I did not bother to respond. Her words took me back to a time when I sat in front of my parents’ television set on a Saturday morning, watching cartoons with my siblings. A cartoon character grabbed a spinning wheel and suddenly his hand stretched like a rubber band as the wheel spun round and round. I pictured my hand, which only knew how to grasp strongly, taking hold of the spinning wheel rim as my wheelchair rolled along at a good. As in the cartoon, I watched in horror, in my imagination, as my arm stretched, rubber-like, all the way to the bottom of the wheel.

I knew better than to listen to the misguided scolding of someone who had no idea of my abilities. I shook my head in wonder at such foolishness and continued on my way. My reflexes were not yet able function, allowing my hand to release itself from the wheel in time to avoid injury.

This image of my arm turning to rubber and stretching out of shape provided me with a tangible picture, an understanding of why “letting go” might be so difficult for some of us. Perhaps, like me, there has not been enough time for holding on, for strengthening that part of us that must hold on tightly before we can move on to letting go. To insist that one “should” let go when our muscles, physical or emotional, are not ready can cause more harm than the holding on was doing.

When we find the strength, the letting go will happen. Not because of a conscious decision, or from being shamed into taking this step, or for any other reason than that we have held on enough, tightly enough, strongly enough, long enough. Only then will letting go be possible. Not only possible, it will be exactly the right step to take. It will be time.

Connect with Marjorie at the following links:

FB Easy Walks, Massachusetts, RI and Beyond (private group)—request to join https://www.facebook.com/groups/616401235386068

Easy Walks  book page

https://www.facebook.com/Easywalksinmassachusetts

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents An Irish Christmas Heart with Jennifer Sienes

Today on Inspirational Journeys: Stories that Matter, Jenifer Sienes and I talk about her story in the second volume of the Keeping Christmas collection, entitled An Irish Christmas Heart. She shares the story of her writing process and how suggestions from the editor were instrumental for enhancing her story. Grab your favorite Christmas beverage and enjoy the conversation

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

An Irish Christmas Heart with Jennifer Sienes

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Jennifer Sienes

WHEN?

Friday, December 9, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Jennifer Sienes…

Jennifer Sienes holds a bachelor’s in psychology and a master’s in education but discovered life-experience is the best teacher. She loves Jesus, romance and writing—and puts it altogether in inspirational contemporary fiction. Her daughter’s TBI and brother’s suicide inspired two of her Apple Hill novels. California born and raised, she took a step of faith in 2018 with her real-life hero (and husband) and relocated to Tennessee. Her new Bedford County Series—Southern Fiction—infuses the charm and culture of the South to bring romance, intrigue, and humor to her readers.

An Irish Christmas Heart is Jennifer’s featured story in Keeping Christmas, Volume II See the details for the entire collection below.

Description:

In castles far and near, long ago and yesterday, find happily ever-afters wrapped in love and tied with Christmas joy.

Escape to Greenaway (by Chautona Havig): She just wanted to escape another holly, jolly family holiday. Because snowbound in a castle B&B with one of Santa’s elves (or as good as) is so much better. With the help of the castle’s owner, Tonya plays matchmaker in a bid to get that Christmas-loving girl out of her hair.

The King’s Promise (by Tabitha Bouldin): In a world of airships and kings, a prince makes a promise that tears him away from his love. An ordinary baker’s daughter finds herself caught in the middle of a game where the winner earns the queen’s crown. They both want what they can’t have as they struggle toward a seemingly impossible happily ever after.

A Castle for Christmas (by Susan K. Beatty): Sadie Foster abhors wealth. Will Randolph, on the other hand, works for the uber-wealthy owner of an over-the-top castle on the California coast—Sadie’s father. When Christopher Foster leaves the castle to her, Sadie doesn’t want anything to do with it or his money. But what if Sadie and Will use the castle and her inheritance for the good of others—together?

An Irish Christmas Heart (by Jennifer Sienes): Will she choose love or an arranged marriage? In the midst of post-famine unrest, Eleanor Blake, daughter of an English nobleman, is thrown into a maelstrom of emotions. How will she escape the duty for which she was born and the confines of the ill-fated Menlo Castle of Galway, Ireland to find her true love?

Christmas at Curwood’s Castle (by Melissa Wardwell): A Christmas party at Curwood Castle should have been Angel Davis’ Cinderella moment. Especially when her dear friend Jimmy arrives. Instead, one obstacle after another threatens to break any chance at a happily-ever-after.

Christmas in the Cotswolds (by Stacy T. Simmons): She’s a paleontologist and ardent Jane Austen fan. He’s enmeshed in the exactitude of mathematics, can they find common ground? Do opposites attract, will the romantic castle, and dashing duke be the undoing of Victoria’s plans?

Grab a mug of something hot and delicious and curl up somewhere comfy. Your literary chariots await to take you on a journey from an early twentieth-century castle in the San Gabriel Mountains of California all the way across the pond to the beautiful Cotswolds of England. These six novellas, all set in castles real and fictional, celebrate the heart and joy of Christmas in this second volume of castle Christmas novellas.

Purchase link:

Excerpt:

County Galway, Ireland—November 1910

Eleanor

The fog lay heavy as a damp wool blanket over the River Corrib. If not for the coming of Christmas, Eleanor Blake would have not a thing to look forward to until spring would once again color the hills of her beloved Ireland in emerald green. It helped not at all that she lived what most might consider a grand fashion within the walls of Menlo Castle. The summer months were comfortable enough, but winter altogether different. Dank and moldy, it was, and the cold seeped into her small bones.

Bundled in layer upon layer of her brother Geoffrey’s castoffs, Eleanor made her way through the underground tunnel to escape notice. Aside from Mother, no one would care that she gallivanted about, for she had been labeled dimwitted by her own father, a man who abhorred anything less than perfect. And a daughter in her mid-twenties with no marital prospects was a sure disappointment. Most especially one unable to read a word. For all Eleanor knew, he’d take it as a sign from the Lord if she were to slip into the river and be washed through Galway Bay.

Eleanor had nearly reached the thick wooden door beneath the low arch when her name reverberated down the corridor. Her heart leapt, and she bit back a startled squeal before turning to face her younger sister Emma.

“You about scared me senseless, Em.” She eased the cumbersome basket she carried behind her. Maybe Father was right—she was dimwitted, at least of late. Years of slipping away twice weekly, this was the first she’d been caught. “What are you doing lurking about?”

“Hiding, to be sure, but not lurking.” Emma crossed her arms over her ample chest. “And you’re one to speak dressed like a street urchin. What are you about, dear sister? If Father catches you he’ll cover you in tar and feathers.” She leaned to the left as if to peer behind Eleanor. “And what is it you’ve got tucked away behind you?”

Eleanor grasped the basket handle so tightly her fingers began to cramp while her addled mind searched for a plausible excuse. To lie was a sin, but to put Emma in a position of secrecy…well, that wasn’t all the better. “You have no need to worry about me. You’d best mind your own affairs. I can only assume you’re hiding down here to escape Father’s heavy-handed plans for your matrimony. You’ll not escape them so easily.”

Emma stomped one foot as if she were five rather than twenty. It nearly broke Eleanor’s heart to see the tears well in her little sister’s eyes, and with the knowing that she put them there on purpose, guilt washed over her. “What am I to do, Eleanor?” She slumped against a damp wall, and Eleanor winced at the thought of what fate her dress might meet. For Emma to be so careless was a sure sign of her distraught emotions.

Eleanor slipped the basket into the shadows of the corner near the door and moved to comfort Emma. “I’m sorry, but no one, least of all Father, will listen to anything I have to say on the subject.” It might be better after all to be labeled a dim wit, or it would be Eleanor facing such a fate. The idea of marriage to a man nearly as old as Father was enough to make her retch. Poor Emma.

Connect with Jennifer at the following links:

Website:

Facebook Reader’s Group:https://www.facebook.com/groups/201300277587024

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Jennifer-Sienes-Writer-186643172596/

Instagram:

instagram.com/Jennifer_Sienes

Goodreads:

goodreads.com/Jennifer_Sienes

Pinterest:

Twitter:

Amazon Author:

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Live for a Living with Jamal Jivanjee

This week, my special guest and I had a fabulous conversation about what it means to live for a living. I even learned that Yoga actually means unity toward the end of this episode. Pull up a chair, grab some refreshments, and hang out with us as we take a deep dive into this concept..

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Living for a Living with Jamal Jivanjee

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Jamal Jivanjee

WHEN?

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Jamal Jivanjee …

Jamal Jivanjee is an Amazon best-selling author, podcaster, and full-time life coach. Jamal is an author with over twenty years of experience working with people in various stages of personal struggle and challenges. After traveling to many cultures around the globe, and now as a full-time life coach, Jamal has discovered the common roots of human suffering along with the sustainable solutions required to help people become liberated and empowered. Jamal is passionate about serving individuals, couples, and groups on the path toward enlightenment, wholeness, and liberation. 

With his book, “Living for a Living: Moving From a Mindset of Survival to An Economy of Love,” Jamal continues his quest to help people set a clear intention for their lives. By helping to identify and clear systems of belief that create fear, disharmony, and disease, Jamal seeks to restore awareness of the unitive divine flow of abundance.

Description:

From boutique Christian publisher Quoir, Jamal Jivanjee’s latest book, “Living for a Living,” explores the essence of what it means to transition beyond a survival based focus in life to actually living for a living. Jamal insightfully breaks us out of the enslaving mindset of survival and lack, and enlightens us with the liberating economy of love and service. “Living for a Living” strives to serve as an invitation into a world where living for a living isn’t the exception, it’s the rule.

Purchase link:

Living for a Living: Moving from a Mindset of Survival to an Economy of Love: Jivanjee, Jamal, Palmer, Jim: 9781938480386: Amazon.com: Books

Connect with Jamal at the following links:

www.jamaljivanjee.com
https://www.facebook.com/jamal.jivanjee

https://twitter.com/JamalJivanjee
https://www.youtube.com/user/Jamaljivanjee1

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: The Story Behind John Alexander’s Lyrical Rendition of The Velveteen Rabbit

This week, John Alexander and I talk about his love of writing, and his inspiration for creating his lyrical rendition of The Velveteen Rabbit. Come along for this incredible journey and make sure to pick up your copy of this new book today.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

The Story Behind John Alexander’s Lyrical Rendition of The Velveteen Rabbit

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

John Alexander

WHEN?

Friday, November 25, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR John Alexander…

John lives in Frisco, Texas with his beautiful wife and his Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

John spent his childhood in Rusk, Texas. He attended college at the University of Texas earning degrees in Physics and Math, then spent many years developing innovative communications systems. While still working, he began writing fiction in his spare time and published The Enclave, a mystery/suspense novel, in 2010.

Since leaving high tech in 2014, he now spends full time pursuing his writing passion. John writes children’s books to capture their imagination and help them discover the love of reading early in life. He especially loves writing books that help elementary school children discover that reading is a fun adventure. The chapter books in the Amber-Autumn mystery series, including Christmas Garden, Grandfather’s Blessing, Golden Campout, and The Secret Room appeal to elementary school children. His first picture book, Words That Soar, won first place at the 2019 North Texas Book Festival. The Christmas Gift, published by Elk Lake Publishing, Inc, came out in 2019 and also won an award in the 2020 North Texas Book Festival.

John discovered his love for rhyme and released his debut book of poetry, Timeless Tales, in 2018. His next book of poetry, Quiet Time Rhymes: Peace in the Pandemic, released August 2020, contains poems written during the pandemic offering prayers of hope and encouragement, heartfelt cries to God, and words of encouragement. He continued to write poems and Quiet Time Rhymes Volume II: Into the Light released March 2021. The books won first and second place awards in the 2021 North Texas Book Festival. As the poems kept coming, he combined them into a daily book of poems, Daily Reflections: 365 Lyrical Poems.

John continues to write and records his poems on his website: QuietTimeRhymes.com as a ministry to share his poems with others.

John’s latest book is entitled The Velveteen Rabbit Lyrical Rendition.

Description:

This book is a new lyrical rendition of the 100-year-old classic, The Velveteen Rabbit. If you love classical poetry with meter and rhyme, you’ll enjoy this poetic retelling of the story loved by so many generations. Here’s the introduction to John Alexander’s poetic rendition …

In her story, beloved, ten decades ago
The Velveteen Rabbit, so many now know,
By Margery Williams, a classical tale,
Still tugs at our heartstrings each time without fail.

I’m compelled to adapt it, convert it to rhyme.

I’ll maintain the essence, the beauty sublime,

The heart and the soul with each line that I pen.

The story is lovely, it’s time to begin.

Purchase link: Will be available on Amazon hardback and paperback on November 18th.

Connect with John at the following links:

Quiet Time Rhymes | Lyrical poems that I write during my quiet time most mornings.

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100086016323985

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

This is John Alexander’s author photo

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Leadership, Inspiration and Motivation with Jeff Tomaszewski

This week, my special guest shares his views on Leadership, Inspiration, and Motivation and he shares the story of how the sudden loss of his wife changed his life.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Leadership, Inspiration, and Motivation with Jeff Tomaszewski

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Jeff Tomaszewski

WHEN?

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST ENTREPRENEUR Jeff Tomaszewski (in his own words)…

Our training methodology has been featured on CNN, ESPN Radio, NPR, and Vogue, to name a few.

I’m an exercise specialist, or a life changer, to some.  My mission is to help as many people as possible to live a high-quality life into their golden years.I’ve spent the last 17 years asking the question: “What’s the least amount of time I can spend exercising and still achieve amazing results?” As a certified athletic trainer and strength and conditioning specialist, I’ve been testing and refining the most efficient, effective, and safe way to exercise that yields me and my clients the biggest ROI on our time with regard to our health and fitness. I have discovered that it is the quality, more importantly, the intensity of the time spent exercising rather than the quantity of the time that truly produces results – the end result was the creation of a very special program that has helped hundreds of greater Cleveland high achievers transform their lives with.

Connect with Jeff at the following links:

Jeff’s youTube channel

https://www.facebook.com/maxstrengthfit

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

#amwriting, #WritingTips, author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: A conversation about Writing Routines, Ghostwriting and Author Collaborations with Kent Sanders

On today’s episode, Kent Sanders and I talk about writing routines, ghost writing, and the story of how he and Billy Stanley collaborated on the book entitled The Faith of Elvis. Be sure to have a method for taking notes while listening to this conversation, because there are some tips and nuggets of inspiration you won’t want to miss.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

A Conversation about Writing Routines, Ghostwriting and Author collaborations with Kent Sanders

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Kent Sanders

WHEN?

Friday, November 18, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Kent Sanders and his coauthor Billy Stanley…

Billy Stanley is a New York Times bestselling author and the stepbrother of Elvis Presley. As one of the singer’s trusted confidants, Stanley witnessed Elvis’s faith in action firsthand. A successful salesman and former airplane mechanic, Stanley and his wife, Liz, live in Memphis, Tennessee, just a few miles from Graceland.

Kent Sanders is the founder of Inkwell Ghostwriting, which helps leaders grow their business through books and other content. He is also the author and co-author of numerous books, including 18 Words to Live By: A Father’s Wisdom on What Matters Most and co-author of The Faith of Elvis: A Story Only a Brother Can Tell with Billy Stanley, Elvis Presley’s stepbrother.

In addition to writing books for himself and his clients, Kent loves to help other writers. He is the host of the Daily Writer podcast, which helps writers cultivate the habits for creative success, and the founder of the Daily Writer membership community. He lives just outside of St. Louis and enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife and teenage son.

The Faith of Elvis was written by Billy Stanley with Kent Sanders, which is today’s featured book.

Description:

Behind the glamour and the crowds. Beyond the movies and the records.

Apart from all who knew him, wanted to know him, or just wanted to be near him.

Billy Stanley knew Elvis Presley as a brother—and as a man of deep faith.

From the day Billy Stanley arrived at Graceland and received a bear hug from the King of Rock and Roll to the last conversation they ever had, one thing stayed the same: Elvis’s passion for sharing God’s love with as many people he could.

In The Faith of Elvis,Billy illuminates Elvis’s Christian journey—from the notes Elvis made in his beloved Bible to his struggles with sin as his fame increased to his remarkable generosity toward fans and movie stars alike.

Through this first-hand account, you will find

  • touching family stories of the Elvis that pop culture doesn’t know;
  • a keen look into how Elvis intricately wove his faith into every part of his life;
  • insights into the ups-and-downs the four brothers experienced while at home and on the road together; and
  • examples of Elvis’s profound influence on others—from those closest to him to his cherished fans and, ultimately, the world at large.

Here you will find your own faith strengthened and your heart turned more toward heaven—or as Elvis would say, toward the only true King.

Purchase link:

Connect with Billy Stanley and Kent Sanders at the following links:

https://www.facebook.com/billy.stanley.900

https://kentsanders.net

https://dailywriterlife.com

https://facebook.com/kent.sanders

https://instagram.com/kentsanders

https://instagram.com/dailywriterlife

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

This is a photo of Kent Shaders, Ghostwriter, author and host of The Daily Writer Podcast
author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Take a Soul Selfie with Heather Carter

This week, I had an amazing interview with a special guest whom I inadvertently met by listening to the Where Did You See God podcast with previous guest Paul Granger. Grab a snack and your favorite beverage and come join us as we talk about how she started writing her blogs and unpack some of these lessons you can learn while taking your own soul selfie.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Take a Soul Selfie with Heather Carter

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Heather Carter

WHEN?

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Heather Carter…

Heather Carter’s battle with Leukemia in 2015 prompted her to capture what she refers to as “soul-selfies” — candid reflections on life that are raw, poignant, and unfiltered. She began writing a reflective series of blog posts while in the hospital.

Connect with Heather at the following links:

www.heathercarterwrites.com

https://www.facebook.com/heathercarterwrites

https://www.instagram.com/soulselfieblog

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1

author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Path of Totality Book Launch with Heather Kreke

In today’s episode, Heather Kreke and I talk about her writing process and her debut novel entitled Path of Totality, which launched on November ninth. Come hang out with us as we celebrate her debut book launch.

INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS PRESENTS!

Path of Totality with Heather Kreke

Hello:

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.

Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.

Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

WHO?

Heather Kreke

WHEN?

Friday, November 11, 2022

WHERE?

YouTube video

Podcast episode

MORE ABOUT GUEST AUTHOR Heather Kreke…

Heather Kreke is passionate about showing teens and young adults they can find hope in God’s plan for their lives—even through the darkest times. She is the Blog Manager for Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, and a Coordinator for the Blue Ridge Readers Connection. In her spare time, she teaches writing classes, shoots archery, and camps with her family. Married since 2004, Heather has three daughters. She loves connecting with readers on her website heatherkreke.com, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Heather’s debut novel is entitled Path of Totality.

Description:

Jadzia Mills never wanted to become a killer, but when World War III comes to American soil, Jadzia is torn from her family. Forced to join the military, she fights alongside her best friend. When he is killed by a Zealot, Jadzia disappears to reunite with her mother and brother.

Alone, she embarks on a perilous cross-country journey trying to stay ahead of those desperately trying to find her.

Help comes in an unexpected way when she meets Ryker and his group of survivors. When Ryker insists upon helping her, Jadzia’s mixed feelings toward him only complicate her goals.

Can they work together despite the odds between them when sacrifice seems the only way to survive?

Purchase link:

Connect with Heather at the following links:

Website: https://www.heatherkreke.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hkreke

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HKreke

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com heather_kreke

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/hkre1003 @hkre1003

BE A GUEST…

As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to annwrites75@gmail.com with Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email, so I can send you my featured book questionnaire.

 Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

Follow me on Social media:

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

https://www.youtube.com/user/annsmusic1