I’m thrilled to welcome friend and fellow Pelican Book Group author, Carol James to Romancing History this week. Carol’s latest release, Season of Hope, takes place during the years immediately following the Veitnam War. Usually I read books set in World War 2 or earlier, so this is very unusual for me, but I’m very excited to see fiction set during this time period beginning to appear.
I haven’t finished Season of Hope so I cannot link you to my review at this time, but if you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll see the link to my review within the next week. I can tell you that I am enjoying this well-written story of hope, faith, and second chances very much.
Season of Hope is available now in Ebook format but soft cover is available for pre-order and will be delivered September 1, 2020. Links for purchase are available below.
Carol has also offered a giveaway so make sure you enter the drawing at the bottom of the post.
Before Carol shares “The Story Behind the Story,” Here’s a little bit about Season of Hope
About the Book
Hope Stockton’s life is dead, frozen in a winter of guilt, deceit, and fear. When handsome young pastor, Josh Lewis, comes to serve in her church, she wonders if she can trust him with her past. Will he be able to help her answer the questions that have been buried in her heart for years? Or will his own secrets drive them apart and prevent him from helping Hope find her spring of forgiveness?
Set in small town Texas in the years during and following the Vietnam war, Season of Hope is a story of forgiveness and restoration.
The Story Behind the Story
Kelly, thanks so much for letting me visit today. I’m honored to be able to share the story behind the story of my newest release, Season of Hope. Although it is the fifth novel I’ve had published, it is the first story I ever wrote.
I began writing late in life. I was an English major who loved grammar. And unlike most authors, I never aspired or desired to be a writer.
I’d always felt called to teach and considered that my personal ministry. But due to a family health crisis, I had to leave teaching, and I took a job in the world of international business. All along I believed God would provide another ministry. So I looked and waited…and waited and looked.
In my new position, I quickly gained the much-deserved title of “Grammar Police.” Mine were often the last set of eyes that scanned the company’s promotional and training materials. One day, my boss came into my office and closed the door. “I do a little writing,” Laura whispered, “and I wonder if you would proofread some pieces for me.”
That moment changed my life. A voice deep in my heart said, “You are in this place for this purpose. Writing inspirational romance is your new ministry.”
But how does someone who’d never been interested in writing craft an entire novel? My boss became my mentor, my critic, my encourager. “Write what you know,” she said.
I was in high school and college during the time of the Vietnam war. I met, dated, and married my husband in that era. That is what I knew, that’s what I could write about. The loss, the love, the fear, the unrest. All those emotions birthed Season of Hope.
I remember the first appointments I had to pitch my freshly-completed novel to some publishers and agents. Of course, they would love it as much as I did!
The first agent was kind and even gave me her business card. The first publisher asked one question. “Why in the world did you choose that time frame?”
I wrote what I knew.
“No one wants to read about that era. It’s no man’s land. Not old enough to be nostalgic, and not recent enough to be current.”
I felt as if she’d drawn back the blanket, looked at my newborn, and said, “What an ugly baby!” It was all I could do to hold back the tears.
But my wise friend, Laura, said “Put it away, and start on something else. In a few years, it’ll be considered a historical novel.”
I did. And between other manuscripts, I’d pick up Hope and Josh’s story and rewrite and revise it. And improve it. And wait. I love Hope and Josh. They’re my firstborns. In fact Josh is the only character that appears in my other novels.
So, I wrote what I knew. I wrote that all of us have seasons of life. Some good, some bad. That God’s love is faithful. That His timing is perfect. And whatever your season of life, He’s right there with you.
Carol James is an author of inspirational fiction, in particular redemptive romance. She lives in a small town outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, Jim, and a perky Jack Russell “Terrorist,” Zoe.
Having always loved intriguing stories with happy endings, she was moved to begin writing to encourage others as she’d been encouraged by the works of other authors of inspirational fiction.
Carol enjoys spending time with her husband, children, and grandchildren, traveling with friends, and serving in the production department at her church. She’s a Frappuccino and soccer aficionado.
Carol has graciously offered an Ebook copy of Season of Hope to one lucky Romancing History reader. To be entered in the drawing, leave a comment about the season of life you find yourself planted in right now. Does Christian fiction help you bloom where you’re planted?
**Giveaway ends midnight, July 29, 2020.