I'm excited to announce that Amanda Cabot has agreed to take part in a giveaway on my blog! I've had the privilege of meeting Amanda in person, and not only is she a talented author who comes up with wonderful titles for her books, she is a generous person who sacrifices much of her time to encourage aspiring authors.
If you leave a comment below, you will be entered into a drawing to win a signed copy of her latest release SCATTERED PETALS!
Amanda Cabot has always been a dreamer, and so it’s no coincidence that her first books for the CBA market are called Texas Dreams. Set in the Hill Country beginning in 1856, these deeply emotional historical romances showcase God’s love as well as that between a man and a woman. The first in the trilogy, Paper Roses, is in its second printing, and Scattered Petals was a March 1 release.
A former director of Information Technology, Amanda has written everything from technical books and articles for IT professionals to mysteries for teenagers and romances for all ages. She’s delighted to now be a fulltime writer living in Cheyenne, WY with her high school sweetheart/ husband of many years.
Amanda enjoys hearing from readers and encourages them to reach her through her web site: http://www.amandacabot.com/.
Longing for adventure, Priscilla Morton leaves Boston in 1856 and heads for the Texas Hill Country, never dreaming that the adventure she seeks could have heartbreaking consequences. Although attracted to her, ranch foreman Zachary Webster knows Priscilla deserves a cultured East Coast gentleman, not a cowboy who’s haunted by memories of his mistakes.
When necessity draws them together, Priscilla and Zach begin to forge a life filled with promise. But then the past intrudes.
Book 2 of the Texas Dreams series, Scattered Petals weaves a tale of drama, love and second chances as beautiful as the Hill Country itself.
Amanda, thank you for joining us!
So, tell us. How long have you been writing? How did you get your start?
I’ve been writing for almost as long as I can remember. Fortunately for the world, my first attempts, including a play called “All About Thermometers” that I wrote for my fifth grade class, had a very short shelf life. Even though I somehow knew (and don’t ask how I knew this, because I can’t answer it) that it would be a difficult way to earn a living, being a writer was always my dream. The dream came true right before my thirtieth birthday with the sale of a short contemporary romance to Dell Publishing Company’s Candlelight Romance line. I learned two things from that sale: first, that writing was not the way to pay the mortgage but, more importantly, that it was something I truly loved doing. From then until about five years ago, I wrote part-time while I worked fulltime. Other than the long hours, it was a perfect blend of practicality (the day job) and dreams (the writing). Now I’m a fulltime writer.
What made you decide to write fiction?
It’s what I love to read. I have written non-fiction, specifically four technical books and what I describe as “enough technical articles to cure insomnia in a medium-sized city,” but my first love is fiction.
What made you choose this particular genre?
I write romances because I love happy endings, historical romances because I’m fascinated by what life was like in earlier times, and Christian romances because I believe in the power of God’s love to change our lives. In today’s world with all the economic uncertainty and political divisions, I think it’s more important than ever to tell stories that affirm positive values, and what could be more positive than love and the promise of eternal life?
How did things change once you became a published author? Did you lose friends? Make friends? How did it affect your family?
The most important change is that being published has brought me many new friends – both readers and other writers. I find it energizing to be surrounded by people who love books as much as I do.
Where do you spend your time writing? Do you have a favorite place? A favorite time of day?
I am extremely fortunate. Since we moved to Cheyenne, I’ve had my own office, so that’s where I write. My normal schedule is to write weekday mornings, but if I’m behind schedule on my allotted two chapters for the week, you’ll find me in the office during the afternoon.
How did you come up with the story for Scattered Petals?
I knew I wanted Zach, who was introduced in Paper Roses, to have his own story, so I asked myself who would be the perfect woman for him. The answer came as a bit of a surprise. Who would have thought that a quintessential Texas cowboy like Zach would need a sophisticated East Coast lady? And who would have thought that Priscilla’s craving for adventure would bring her first tragedy, then healing and happiness?
What are you working on now?
I’m about halfway through the first draft the first of a new trilogy. All of these books will take place in Wyoming in the late eighteen hundreds, right before Wyoming became a state. (Shameless promotion for my new home: Wyoming was the first state to grant women the right to vote, and it had the first woman judge, first women on a jury and first woman governor.) Now, back to my WIP. The Wyoming Winds trilogy features three sisters, each of whom has her own story. The first book, tentatively titled When Summer Ends, is set at Fort Laramie, the Army post where all the wagon trains stopped on their way West. Since I’ve been intrigued by the journey west ever since I watched westerns on TV, Fort Laramie was one of the first places my husband and I visited after we moved to Cheyenne. From the moment I stepped inside the parade ground, I knew this would be the setting for a book. There’s so much history there – material for many, many stories. For this trilogy, though, only one book will be set there. The second and third take place in Cheyenne.
Scattered Petals sounds intriguing! I can't wait to get my hands on it.
I hope you enjoy it. Like most authors, I’m never sure how good a book is until I get readers’ reactions. I was afraid they wouldn’t like it as well as Paper Roses, but I’ve already had several readers tell me that they think Petals is by far the better book. You should have heard my sigh of relief!
What do you see in your future as an author?
I am blessed. For the immediate future (and that means through 2017), I’ll be writing historical romances for Revell. The third of the Texas Dreams books, Tomorrow’s Garden, is scheduled for release in March 2011. After that, I’m contracted to write the three Wyoming books, and that will be followed by a trilogy set in New Jersey during World War One. And – breaking news here – I’ve just accepted an offer to write a Christmas novella to be published in the fall of 2012. I am absolutely thrilled by the continued sales, because Revell is a fabulous publisher. I cannot say enough wonderful things about their staff. They’re incredibly talented and do everything they can to make each book the best it can be. In short, they’re the perfect publisher for me, truly an answer to prayer.
Sandi, thanks so much for inviting me to participate in your blog. I’ve enjoyed our conversation.
No, thank you for allowing us to get to know you a little better and for being willing to give away a signed copy of your book! For those that would like to be entered into the drawing, leave a comment with your email address like so: sandirog7 at aol dot com.
For those that don't win, if you click on her books to the right or the one in this post, you'll be taken to a place where you can purchase her books online.
Good luck to those who enter! I'll announce the winner on Friday. Contest is open to US residents only.