Monday, March 14, 2011

Interview with Janice Hanna Thompson

~Tell us a little about yourself. [Or give your “author bio”]
Award-winning author Janice Thompson also writes under the pseudonym Janice Hanna. She got her start in the industry writing screenplays and musical comedies for the stage. Janice has published nearly seventy books for the Christian market, crossing genre lines to write cozy mysteries, historicals, romances, nonfiction books, devotionals, children’s books and more. In addition, she enjoys editing, ghost-writing, public speaking, and mentoring young writers. Janice formerly served as Vice-President of CAN (Christian Authors Network) and was named the 2008 Mentor of the year for ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers).  She was thrilled to be named the 2010 Barbour/Heartsong Author of the Year, with three books on the top ten list for that house. Janice is active in her local writing group, where she regularly teaches on the craft of writing. Her online writing courses have been helpful to many who want to earn a living with their writing. Janice is passionate about her faith and does all she can to share the joy of the Lord with others, which is why she particularly enjoys writing. She lives in Spring, Texas, where she leads a rich life with her family, a host of writing friends, and two mischievous dachshunds. She does her best to keep the Lord at the center of it all. You can find out more about Janice at or

~How do you handle disasters/BIG problems? Do you have a funny or interesting story showcasing how you handle them?
I try to laugh my way through every situation. It doesn’t always happen, but I try. When I went through a particularly difficult season several years ago (multiple deaths in the family, all in a row) I found myself turning to Robin Jones Gunn’s light-hearted books. There’s something about comedy (or light-hearted stories) that really lifts my spirits.

Is there something about you that readers might be surprised to learn?
I bake wedding cakes on the side. It’s true! I’m not the best decorator in the world, but I can bake a mean cake. Here’s a picture of one I did for my best friend, Kathleen Y’Barbo.

~What is one book that you recently read and would recommend to your readers?
I loved One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. Her beautiful literary style blew me away, but the content of the book is really what sealed the deal. The book is a personal expose on living life with an attitude of gratitude, no matter what you’re going through.

~What is your favorite time of day to write?
I write all day long, but my best time of day is in the late hours of the night. I’m a night owl, so this just seems to work best for me.

~If you compared your writing style to any other Christian Fiction author, who would it be? Also, how would you rate the romance in your books?
Hmm. I’ve been told my writing is a bit like Lisa Wingate’s. I think it could also be compared to Kristin Billerbeck and/or Robin Jones Gunn. I write light-hearted romance that’s definitely G rated!

~What are you working on now or going to write next?
I’m writing Love Finds You in Daisy Oklahoma, while marketing Love Finds You in Camelot, Tennessee, (which just released).

Which book are you offering as a free giveaway at this time?
I’m excited to give away a copy of Love Finds You in Camelot, Tennessee.

~Book’s back cover blurb please-
Steve Garrison is the newly elected mayor of the tiny town of Camelot, Tennessee. When his childhood friend Amy Hart comes up with a plan to revive the town’s economy, he jumps onboard. The townspeople will perform the musical “Camelot” in the city’s park, drawing in nightly crowds. While excitement is high, talent is lacking. Amy casts several of the parts but is stumped when it comes to the role of King Arthur. In desperation, she turns to Steve. Will he pull the sword from the stone and save the day? Steve reluctantly agrees—on one condition. In exchange for his willingness to wear tights, Amy must play the role of Guinevere. And when a handsome newcomer cast as Lancelot takes an interest in Amy, the stage is set for a little tension—and perhaps love.

~What research did you have to do for this book?
I went to college in East Tennessee, so I was pretty familiar with the Knoxville area. The story is close to my heart, because I performed in the musical “Camelot” while in college (less than two hours away from the area where this story takes place).

~Who would you pick to play the lead roles if this book was made into a movie? 
I would choose Reese Witherspoon for Amy and Hugh Jackman for Steve.

~Is there anything you would like to add, or tell your readers?
I love writing romantic comedies and I love musical theater, so combining both of these elements in Love Finds You in Camelot Tennessee was such a blast. The story was especially dear to me since I attended college in Tennessee.

~How can readers get in contact with you?

Follow Janice at:
Writing Courses Website:

One more question: I see that you teach online writing courses. Can you tell my readers a little more about that, in case any of them want to become writers? 
Thanks for asking. I love to share about my writing courses. Your readers can check out my "Becoming a Successful Freelancer Writer" course here: My courses were created with one goal in mind – To help freelance writers hone their craft and learn how to make money with their writing. These unique courses will help you succeed as a freelance writer. In addition to writing professionals, our teachers also include marketing, public relations, and business professionals who are ready to help you learn how to organize your writing business, promote yourself, build your brand, and sell more books. New courses are being added to our website every month. Our goal is to provide a comprehensive library of courses, resources, and other learning materials that will help freelance writers succeed.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

He Said, She Said

He Said, She Said: A Devotional Guide to Cultivating a Life of Passion

By Eddie Jones and Cindy Sproles

Do you sense something vital missing from you relationship with your spouse, children and God?

Try He Said, She Said: A Devotional Guide to Cultivating a Life of Passion. This compilation of 54 devotions includes scripture verses, space for journaling, individual prayers and words of wisdom from two of today's funniest and insightful Christian authors. This heart-warming collection of stories will inspire you to reach for the true source of joy: a life lived for and through God. These deeply personal devotions offer biblical insights and spiritual truths from the perspective of one man and one woman.

Perfect for your quiet time. No matter if you are newlyweds or newly retired, this book of devotions will help you put the spark back into your love life and explore the precious relationships God desires for you. Begin this new year committed to spending a few moments each day connected to God. He Said, She Said: A Devotional Guide to Cultivating a Life of Passion touches the heart, tickles the funny bone and brings you to your knees in worship.

The concept of He Said, She Said devotions introduces the readers to looking at one scripture, from two perspectives—his and hers. The beauty in this unique type of devotion come when a man reads the perspective of a woman suddenly grasping a new outlook on the scripture; likewise the same for a woman to read the thoughts and views from a man’s perspective. The reader can then mesh the two together for a deeper and more intimate learning experience.

Eddie Jones and Cindy Sproles have captured the essence of scripture through the heart of a man and a woman, addressing the passions of loving your spouse, your children and ultimately loving the Father deeper than ever before.

He Said, She Said: A Devotional Guide to Cultivating a Life of Passion is available on Amazon Kindle now!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Highest

The Fort Stockton Critique Cafe was born last night.  We had our first meeting with an awesome guest speaker.  Lisa Hannon, who writes for our Pioneer and is the former 1st Vice President of the DFW Writer's group, gave us excellent tips and advice for running our group.  If you are 18 years of age or older and are interested in our critique group, leave me a message here.

We discussed the reasons we wanted to be a part of our group.  Accountability and improvement were some of the motives expressed.  The discussion reminded me of one of the reasons that I write and so I thought I would post a devotional I wrote about  it here:

The Highest

Matthew 5:14a (NIV) You are the light of the world.

The word ‘inspiration’ always makes me take a slow, deep breath. My eyes close and a smile warms my face. The word always reminds me of the reason I became a writer.

I am a great fan of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series. The third novel, Anne of the Island, finds Anne and her young adult friends facing life’s challenges. Ruby Gillis is a chum who had never given any thought but to her day to day pleasures. Unhappily, Ruby is now dying of consumption. Anne pays her a visit and finds Ruby terrified of death. Ruby’s “soul clung, in blind helplessness, to the only things she knew and loved”. Anne left that meeting a different young woman. I was changed as I read Montgomery’s prose of Anne’s thoughts: “The little things of life, sweet and excellent in their place, must not be the things lived for; the highest must be sought and followed; the life of heaven must be begun here on earth.”

That sentence first inspired me to “the highest” and reinforced my faith. Second, I was consumed with the desire to write in a way that would make people aspire the way I did at that moment. The notion began as a desire and has blossomed over the years into a full blown passion and calling. I will never forget it. Over time I have reread and highlighted many such inspirations in Montgomery’s work as well as many of the Masters and Christian authors.

Keeping that goal in my heart and mind has gotten me over many a writer’s block. I just close my eyes and remember that moment and then ask the Father to help me take my readers to that place of inspiration; the highest.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Words I Did Not Say

I'm a fan of Lucy Maud Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables).  I like this poem that was posted somewhere today:

A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver. Ps. 25:11

The Words I Did Not Say
Many a word my tongue has uttered
Has brought me sorrow at eventide,
And I have grieved with a grieving bitter
Over speech of anger and scorn and pride,
But never a word in my heart remembered
As I sit with myself at the close of day,
Has pierced with repentance more unavailing
Than have the words I did not say.

The word of cheer that I might have whispered
To a heart that was breaking with weight of woe,
The word of hope that I might have given
To one whose courage was ebbing low,
The word of warning I should have spoken
In the ear of one who walked astray.
Oh, how they come with a sad rebuking
Those helpful words that I did not say;

So many and sweet: If I had but said them
How glad my heart then would have been;
What a dew of blessing would fall upon it
As the day’s remembrances gather in;
But I said them not and the chance forever
Is gone with the moments of yesterday,
And I sit alone with a spirit burdened
By all the words that I did not say.

The morrow will come with its new beginning,
Glad and grand, through the morning’s gates –
Shall I not then with this thought beside me
Go bravely forth to the work that waits?
Giving a message of cheer and kindness
To all I meet on the world’s highway,
So that I never will grieve at twilight
Over the words that I did not say.

Source: The Poetry of Lucy Maud Montgomery