Because Fiction Magazine

EACH MONTH I WRITE AN ARTICLE FOR THIS MAGAZINE. THIS MONTH I WRITE ABOUT MY SECOND NOVEL, SURROUND ME. THERE IS A GIVEAWAY TOO. FOLLOW THE LINKS….

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September Historical Fiction Edition
Welcome to September’s Historical Edition! We hope you enjoy!Visit the #BecauseFiction Website

From Marguerite Martin Gray –Last month, I shared about the birth of my first novel, Hold Me Close. It will always hold a special place in my heart, returning me to a whirlwind of newness. But the process must continue. I have more to explore with an unfinished journey. Enters Book Two,  Surround Me. The original title hovered as Let Your Love Surround Me. A bit wordy for this series so I shortened it. As I mapped out the series, I latched on to the thread of God as the center of each life, wrapping Himself in the struggles, joys, cares of His people. The titles have dual meanings. With Hold Me Close, the title depicts a desire for God to hold the characters in His arms of love and protection and a desire for the characters to live with human love and relationships. In Surround Me through the struggles and decisions of the pending battles, the protagonists need to let God’s purpose and love surround and penetrate their lives as well as allowing physical and emotional love of family sustain them. The back-cover text of Surround Me gives input to the continuing saga of a family and friends thriving in tumultuous circumstances: Read More and Enter Giveaway

Summer Book Lovers Day Multi-Author Giveaway August 9-15!

summer book lovers 5
Readers, Book Lover’s Day is coming up on August 9th and we are celebrating you with a HUGE giveaway!
summer book lovers 4Don’t miss your chance to enter to win a $350 Amazon gift card and 45 books in our Celebrate Lit Multi-Author Giveaway.
The event and giveaway is going on now through August 15.

April Giveaway

April Giveaway (1) 2020For my April giveaway, I’ve purchased The Scarlet Coat by Angela Couch–I love this book. Also, I’ll giveaway a copy of Surround Me (Book 2) in the Revolutionary Faith series. Both are set in the American Revolution!

Comment for your chance to win! Good luck!

Surround Me Recap

IMG_3694Do you have more time to read while under stay at home or shelter in place mandate? Things are crazy, far from normal for most of us. As I wrote my Revolutionary Series, I could only imagine the abnormalities, inconveniences, awkward, scary, and disruptive day to day life. Although, I don’t feel threatened by war with fighting, bullets, and cannon, I do face, as you do, a physical threat. And, a threat to my way of life. The good is that I have slowed down, enjoying my garden, reading more, writing more, eating better, and cherishing my loved ones (without touching them.)

In Surround Me, Elizabeth and Louis are facing something on the horizon that they have not experienced before. Sound familiar? There were no answers, just preparation for what might happen. “Battles rage in Elizabeth Elliott’s heart as the threat of war invades her hometown.”Surround Me front (1)

Purchase Surround Me here

An excerpt from the first page of the novel:

Bordeaux, France, June 1773

     His hands tightly gripped the railing, turning his knuckles a startling white compared to his wind-chapped and tanned skin. The pressure in his grasp mimicked the turmoil in his head. Louis Lestarjette’s gaze lifted to a sea of deep-blue waves. Charles Town and any semblance of land had disappeared weeks ago. Why the upheaval now when he had already had weeks to prepare for his journey and his family reunion? Could a prodigal son truly go back home? How would he be received? The same questions rolled over and over in his head.

     If he had made a mistake, he would never forgive himself. All the what-ifs jumbled in his mind, tumbling into compartments he thought he’d closed in order to keep away doubts and insecurities. Where was the peace he had claimed? The voyage was a necessity for business, for the colony of South Carolina, and for his family. He had determined even after the first five weeks on the ocean that his love for Elizabeth Elliott would only increase with time.

So, they enter a period with a crazy new normal. Sound familiar? One reviewer for Draw Me to Your Side remarks about the eerie similarities to what we are going through now–a revolution of sorts.

4 togetherHave time to read? Try this series and tell me what you think.

End of Year Insights

cup of teaIt has happened again. The end of the year is here, giving me a chance to look back as I look forward. Do you do the same thing? I find it is an opportunity to slow down for a few days, but only a few.  I have deadlines looming, just out of reach. So, I’m taking a few blessed days to contemplate my next moves.

Hold me Close front (1)I’m excited about my next book being released sometime in February or March 2020. But for now, I want to remember how far the Revolutionary Series has come in two years. The characters are close to my heart as are the stories they live through the pages. The titles of each book have a duel meaning and carry through the series. The title of Book One–Hold Me Close, conjures images of a romance. Although that is not the number one theme of the book, a romance is present. The sentimental elements of love and affection appear in the pages of the historical novel. But Hold Me Close has a spiritual significance as God is the one holding the characters close in His plans, in His arms, in His sight.

Surround Me front (1)Book Two–Surround Me has the dual meaning also. The full title could have been Let Your Love Surround Me. Whose love? Well, the love between the couple with all the ends and outs of a romance, but also God’s love, as ultimately the characters need His love and presence to face their future together.

Bring Me Near rough (2)By now the pattern is set for the other novels in the series. Book Three–Bring Me Near carries the dual meaning onward with the human element of longing to be close for protection, support, and love. God’s role is every-present as He is there to provide the answers, comfort, protection outside of the human capabilities.

In the new year, I will pass on the title and information about Book Four. For now, I intend to relax and contemplate how I can allow God to hold me close, surround me, and bring me near.

What insights do you have from 2019? 

 

Beginnings…Part Two

IMG_0336…remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father…                                   Thessalonians 1:3

Beginning can be a commencement of something new or different, a complete break from the norm like the beginning of summer or a new job. But sometimes, beginnings are a pause as you reevaluate your position in life. I like these moments for I allow myself to adjust some items that might be causing me to feel smothered or unproductive. I will admit stopping or quitting are not normally a part of my personality. Ask my children remembering when I encouraged them to finish what they committed to until the end. No, quit is not a word I employ often.

IMG_8778Yet, there is a time to reset which might involve a pause in the journey. During this time, I tend to reevaluate my situation. This could involve my words, my actions, my thoughts, asking if they are on track to complete my purpose. After the evaluation, I continue in whatever direction this time of reflection and prayer advises. It could mean starting over, but most likely it shifts my emphasis to realign me to what God wants me to do. Usually, I’ve asked many questions during this interim period, receiving the “yes,” “no,” or “wait” answers.

Surround Me front (1)In my novel Surround Me (Surround Me Link), Book Two in the Revolutionary Faith series , Louis faces a beginning with questions that second-guess his choices.

Bordeaux, France

June 1773

His hands tightly gripped the railing, turning his knuckles a startling white compared to his wind-chapped and tanned skin. The pressure in his grasp mimicked the turmoil in his head. Louis Lestarjette’s gaze lifted to a sea o deep-blue waves. Charles Town and any semblance of land had disappeared weeks ago. Why the upheaval now when he had already had weeks to prepare for his journey and his family reunion? Could a prodigal son truly go back home? How would he be received? The same questions rolled over and over in his head.

If he had made a mistake, he would never forgive himself. All the what-ifs jumbled in his mind, tumbling into compartments he thought he’d closed in order to keep away doubts and insecurities. Where was the peace he had claimed? The voyage was a necessity for business, for the colony of South Carolina, and for his family. He had determined even after the first five weeks on the ocean that his love for Elizabeth Elliott would only increase with time.

IMG_8781

Time–have you ever been given a long period of time to make a decision? I try to grab or schedule time to evaluate my current direction.

 

Surround Me Giveaway on Goodreads!

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/289826-surround-me

Surround Me front (1)Please enter the Goodreads giveaway for a chance to win one of five print copies of Surround Me, Book Two in my Revolutionary Faith Series.

Don’t forget the release date for Bring Me Near is February 26! I personally can’t wait since I haven’t held the new book in my hands yet. If you want to purchase an autographed copy, let me know.

Happy reading.

What’s in a Cover?

Do you buy a book because of the cover? Or does it influence you only a little bit? I love covers, but all book covers do not have to have the same style for me to like them or to buy them. Here are the latest two covers for my Revolutionary Faith books. The cover artist is Roseanna White. I think she does an awesome job bringing my heroine to life. What do you think?

Of course, I am going to admire my own covers! Yet, there are so many more than I can study and appreciate for their own beauty. I do like an idea of what the author wants to portray about the heroine or the hero, as in Keely Brooke Keith’s Uncharted series or Tamara Leigh in her Middle Ages novels. The colors, costumes, houses, flowers, hair styles all draw me to participate in a visual image. Also, I can formulate my own picture through the author’s words.

Here are two other favorites: one takes me into the fairy tale world in Melanie Dickerson’s The Orphan’s Wish and another into the 2nd century in Lynne Gentry’s Healer of Carthage. In both I obtain a glimpse of the foreign worlds and times.

Does the cover have to be a photograph or realistic drawing with a person or people for you to enjoy the cover? Not for me. An example is Kristy Cambron’s Lost Castle novel with a view from an old stone window. Diana Gabaldon’s early covers for her Outlander series did not have the photo of Jaime on the cover for them to sell. I would buy anything by her no matter what was on the cover.

Other books, especially older ones or ones focused on an image the reader would conjure in his/her imagination, include Jane Austen’s novels and C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia.

I love a nice aesthetic cover, but the words are what truly mesmerizes me.

What do you like to see in a cover?