Let’s Give a Big Welcome to Darlene Franklin!

Please give a warm welcome to Darlene Franklin, our gem of the week.

Darlene Franklin | Author

Darlene Franklin | Author

MR: We’re so happy to have you here this week, Darlene. 🙂

You’re one busy lady. Could you tell us how you manage to juggle such a busy home life, a full-time writing career, and a cat?

DF: Do I still mention a cat in my bio? Uh-oh. I miss Talia greatly. Actually, lately, I’ve had to struggle with slowing down. I live in a nursing home, and my health doesn’t allow me such an aggressive writing schedule. I do still spend plenty of time with my grandkids, friends here at the home, and online.

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V.B. Tenery: A Diamond of Christian Suspense

 
 
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Welcome to the Diamond Mine, Virginia. I’m so happy you’re here! As you know, the Mine digs into the wells of Christian Fiction and searches for those gems. I already know you write awesome suspense. And I see you’ve had a new release this year. Can you tell a little bit about it?
Dead Ringer was released in May and is an inspirational romantic suspense. The story follows Mercy Lawrence who is identified as a notorious missing model, Traci Wallace, by airport facial identification software. Traci’s husband is convinced she is his missing wife who deserted him and their ill son. He takes Mercy to a private island to care for the boy, and that’s when the action begins.
I remember tasting a bit of your stories on the crit loop for ACFW. Talk about suspense and intrigue. It makes me want to dig into this one right now! Do you think we can give the readers a bit of a peek?
1
Hamilton, Bermuda Friday, May 5 
Mercy Lawrence wouldn’t have noticed the large man standing by the silver Mercedes except for the way he was dressed. Unlike the tourists on the sidewalk, he wore a light gray business suit and tie. Sunglasses hid the upper portion of his face, and the grim set of his mouth detracted from his otherwise handsome appearance. He stood beside the car’s open back door, arms crossed as if waiting for someone.
Not wanting to stare, she tore her gaze away. In jeans, T-shirt, and sandals, she blended easily into the vacationers along the boulevard. She’d spent the last five months in this wonderful country, recuperating from a head injury. Most of her memory remained intact after the accident, but dark recesses still refused to reveal their mystery.
But tomorrow, like a good soldier, she would return to Houston and report to her new job at Sabine Oil, the fulfillment of a goal she’d worked towards for the past six years.
The city’s main drag ran four lanes wide with a palm-tree-lined median, the sea on one side, shops and hotels on the other. A soft wind filled the air with the scent of sea kelp and brine, mixed with a light floral fragrance from the purple bougainvilleas hanging on the walls along the walkway. Seagulls swept low over the water, looking out past the rolling surf for lunch.
She shook her hair loose from the confines of its ponytail clip and turned her face to the balmy sunshine—mainlining vitamin D. Her path took her within four feet of the parked car.
The man moved onto the sidewalk and grabbed her arm. “Having fun, are we?‛
He spoke with a slight Scottish burr, the strange question more an accusation than a greeting.
She tried to jerk her arm away. “Let go of my arm.”
 His grip tightened. “I’ll just bet you’ve been living it up.” His voice was harsh, his jaw tight. No one intervened. Casual observers would think she knew him. One hand locked on her arm, he shoved her into the backseat, slid in beside her, and slammed the door. His movements were so quick, so smooth, she had no time to struggle, no time to scream or put up a fight.
She swallowed the lump in her throat choking off oxygen. Women disappeared all too often on foreign soil, never seen or heard from again. “Who are you? What do you think you’re doing? Let me out. Now!”
 He ignored her protests and leaned forward in the seat. “Airport, Fergus.”
 Blood pounded a persistent rhythm in her ears. He couldn’t be police. They had to tell one the charges before making an arrest. Besides, she’d done nothing wrong. Her heart skipped a beat. She wanted to run, but it was too late for that. Pivoting towards him, she drew back her arm and aimed the heel of her hand for an upward thrust under his nose. The move from a seated position lacked the needed momentum.
He blocked the blow, slamming her back against the seat with a forearm of steel across her chest. “You dropped off the map six months ago. To do what, find yourself?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” She squeezed her eyes shut. This couldn’t be happening. “This is kidnapping. My name is Mercy Lawrence and people are expecting me back at my bungalow.” She struggled against the vise-like grip, slapping at his hand.
“Stop it, and cut the crap, Traci, or I’ll slap you back. Taking a wife, a mother, home to the son she abandoned is not kidnapping.  Besides, you’re not a kid.”
See what I mean, folks? I love it, V! This one will have to join my collection. Anyone else agree? It may inspire me to write a story about kidnapping a bride. Just kidding.
Speaking of that…how do you find inspiration for your stories?
I’m never sure where my story inspirations come from. Some from new headlines, some from observing human nature, good and bad.
Is there anything in particular you wish someone to receive from your writing?
I write to inspire and entertain readers. When the reader finishes one of my novels I would like them to feel it was time well spent and feel good about the experience.
Your books are full of twists and intrigue. I love to read them and they entertain me. In fact, a person would love to read them for the excitement alone! But what’s unique about them? What’s one thing all of your books have in common?
There’s a thread of forgiveness in most of my stories not only of others but of one’s self, and of staying strong in the face of adversity. I also use biblical symbolism in some of my stories. 
That’s awesome. I think I love that the most about your books. You truly are a terrific person and author. Do you have special events planned surrounding the release of your title?
Since this was published earlier in the year most of my promotions have been done. But I still buy advertising and promote on Facebook from time to time.
And a few blogs here and there, huh? I guess every little thing helps! What’s your biggest challenge in writing?
At the moment its finding time to write. Promotion is a big part of a writer’s life today. I once thought when I became published I could sit back and relax. Wrong. I’m busier than I’ve ever been.
I have to agree with you and I haven’t even published my book yet! Of course, my job takes up a lot of my time too. As a reader, what do we have to look forward to? What’s in the works?
I have just published an Indie novel this month, the second book in the Matt Foley/Sara Bradford romantic suspense series. I also have another novel with the Pelican book group, The Watchman that releases in a couple of weeks on October 3rd.
Awesome! I can’t wait. Anyone else agree? Well, I believe we have another diamond to add to our collection…V.B. Tenery!
 
 
About the Book:
 
Bermuda airport facial recognition software has identified her as missing runway star, Traci Wallace. Despite Mercy’s protests, Traci’s husband, ex-CIA agent Thomas Wallace, is convinced Mercy is the mother of his ill six-year-old son. With only his son’s welfare in mind, he abducts Mercy and takes her to a private island to care for the boy.
But Mercy soon discovers there are men much more dangerous than a father desperate to save his son. Her doppelganger has made deadly enemies—a relentless team of killers who now want her dead.
When Thomas is lured into a covert mission to rescue a CIA asset and uncover a government mole, Mercy is left isolated and alone—and Thomas finds himself stranded on foreign soil with a compromised mission and a wounded agent. Fighting against a rogue nation’s timetable for launching a nuclear strike, he has to escape Saudi Arabia alive and rescue Mercy and his son before assassins finish the job they started.
 
About the Author:
 
Author V. B. Tenery lives with her family in East Texas. Her passion is writing books with shining characters and settings with plots so exciting readers come away feeling delighted with the experience. Not content to stay in one genre, her novels range from contemporary suspense and supernatural suspense, to an upcoming historical suspense set in WWII England. When not writing she enjoys reading, hiking, and tube-floating down rivers in the beautiful Texas Hill Country   

Legacy and Love: More than Romance with Paula Mowery


Hello, readers! Please welcome Paula Mowery to the Mine. Once again, we’re digging for diamonds in Christian fiction, and I believe we have quite the gem among us today.
Hello, Paula, thanks for joining us at the Mine. I noticed you have a new release.
Legacy and Love released in March. It contains two romance stories which both have a godly legacy passed through a grandmother on to the main character.
Two stories in one, and the premise is amazing. Can you tell us a little more about it? Like… what’s the message you wish the readers to receive from them?
Most of all, I pray my readers will be prompted, as I have recently, to think about the godly legacy they are passing on to those around them.
In The Prayer Shawl, I would hope that additionally the reader would understand that the world will try every way to pull you away from God and your Christian beliefs, but God will always take you back. Through Inheritance, I wish the reader would understand that God has a plan for each of His children, but you must seek Him to find it.
Although you have two distinct stories, the faith and hope interwoven in your book sounds wonderful. I can’t wait to read it. Now I know you’re a busy lady. For those who may not know how busy, what’s a day in the life of Paula Mowery like?
During the school year, I go to work at 7:10 as an assistant in the Pre-K program at a local public elementary school. I get off at 12:15, come home, eat lunch with my daughter then begin my writing and editing jobs. Normally I write, promote, update blogs and Facebook, and send emails in the afternoon. Then, later I work on edits for my authors through my job as an acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group. Not a moment to spare.
Sounds like it! Your day’s packed from morning to night. When do you find time to eat? Or sleep for that matter? I don’t see how you find time to write! By the way, what other types of books do you write?
My first two books were considered women’s fiction. The second two were both romance. I have also been included in several collaborative nonfiction books including Join the Insanity, a book for pastors’ wives. I have contributed to several devotional books as well.
Busy isn’t the word for you. I’m going to have to come up with another one. I have to say it though. I’m so excited for you especially with this book. Did you have special events surrounding the release of Legacy and Love?
Fairly soon after the book came out, I spoke at a women’s event, sharing about leaving a godly legacy. I signed copies there and at the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference.
Blue Ridge… I’d like to go to that conference. Well, any conference. I’d love to meet you in person. Not happening this year though. Until then… what do we have to look forward to? Do you have something in the works?
I have a book I’m finishing up tentatively called Lamp Unto Her Feet. This is yet another example of a heroine being influenced by a grandmother’s godly legacy. Right after that, I have a romantic suspense. I also am working on a nonfiction book about being intentional about leaving a godly legacy. Another project I’m working on is a Christian writer’s creative spark book.
Innovative, creative…awesome! A true gem.
 
Thanks, Paula. I believe we have a diamond, folks. Questions for Paula, anyone?
 
 
 
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About the Book: Love and Legacy
 
The Prayer Shawl
Sean Holland is a magazine reporter always looking for the next story. Hope Weaver is a pediatric nurse who shares Christ through making prayer shawls. The shawls are just the touchy-feely story Sean needs, even though he’ll have to endure Hope’s strong Christian beliefs to get it. An unexpected connection brings them together as a couple. But, can they find love if they don’t share their faith?
Inheritance
Alex Lyndon’s life has been a series of fits and starts with no finishes. She finds herself jobless and divorced. Now her only family, Granny Olivia, is critically ill.
Chase Carson had to step into running the family business when his father died. The time is past due to visit Miss Olivia.
Alex and Chase must go on a treasure hunt. Will each find purpose and love for their lives in the process?
 
 
About the Author:
Paula Mowery is a published author, acquisitions editor, and speaker. Her first two published works were The Blessing Seer and Be The Blessing from Pelican Book Group. Both are women’s fiction, and their themes have been the topics of speaking engagements. Be The Blessing won the Selah Award in 2014 in the novella category. In November of 2013, her first romance released in the anthology, Brave New Century, from Prism Book Group. This book went to number five on Amazon’s bestseller category, historical Christian romance. Legacy and Love is her first solo romance.
Reviewers of her writing characterize it as “thundering with emotion.” Her articles have appeared in Woman’s World, The Christian Online Magazine, and the multi-author devotional blog, Full Flavored Living. She wrote a section for Join the Insanity by Rhonda Rhea. She has devotionals included in several collaborative books.
As an acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group, Paula particularly looks for romance stories with Christian values at its core. She’s especially attracted to those manuscripts that leave the reader mulling over the story long after turning the last page.
Having been an avid reader of Christian fiction, she now puts that love to use by writing book reviews. She is a member of ACFW and is on the author interview team. She was a member of the 2014 Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference faculty.
Paula is a pastor’s wife and mom to a college student. She homeschooled her daughter through all twelve years, and they both lived to tell about it. Before educating her daughter at home, she was an English teacher in public school.
You can follow Paula at www.facebook.com/pages/Paula-Mowery/175869562589187. Learn more about Paula at her blog at www.paulamowery.blogspot.comor enjoy her monthly columns on www.christianonlinemagazine.com. You can also check out her blog for Christian writers at www.ccwcu.blogspot.com.