Saturday, December 18, 2010

Wanted: A Family has a cover!!


I'm so excited to have the cover of Wanted: A Family, my March 2011 release that I had to share!!! I hope you like it as much as I do!

The tag line:
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She'll stitch together a home filled with love.
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Here's a peek at the story:
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The ramshackle Victorian house is all that widowed mother-to-be Callie Mitchell has left. But she’s going to make that house into a true home—a home where she and her baby will be safe and happy…and where women in need can find refuge. And if that means trusting stranger Jacob Smith to help with the repairs, then so be it.
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Jacob came to town with a handful of old postcards and one goal in mind—to find the mother who’d abandoned him years before. He never planned to stay…and he certainly never planned to care for Callie. Yet as they rebuild the house together, Jacob and Callie also build the family they’ve always wanted.
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Leave a comment before the end of the year and I'll put your name in a drawing for a chance to win Wanted: A Family. I'll send an autographed book to the winner as soon as I receive my author copies.

Blessings, Janet

Sunday, November 7, 2010

For a chance to win a copy of Courting the Doctor's Daughter and a Barnes & Noble $10 gift card

Visit Seekerville Monday, November 8 and leave a comment on Cathy Shouse's "Show Up For Your Dreams!" post. Cathy has some savvy advice for writers or anyone pursuing their dream.

http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/


We'll have two winners. :)

Blessings, Janet

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

For a chance to win The Substitute Bride

Visit me at Pepper Basham's blog today, Wednesday, October 20 and leave a comment for a chance to win.

www.pepperbasham.wordpress.com

Hope to see you there!

Blessings, Janet

Sunday, October 10, 2010

For a chance to win a $20 Starbuck's Gift Card!

Visit Seekerville Monday, October 11 and leave a comment for a chance to win a $20 Starbuck's gift card. My post is entitled: Janet's Writing Process, Warning: Not for the faint of heart. :-) So be brave and pop over to www.seekerville.blogspot.com

Hope to see you there!

Blessings,
Janet

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Steeple Hill editor Emily Rodmell in Seekerville today

Seekerville is celebrating our third birthday the entire month of October!!!!!!

Stop by and leave a comment for a chance to win a number of prizes all month long. The grand prize at the end of the month is a Kindle with Seekers books.

Today we have Steeple Hill Editor Emily Rodmell visiting. Still time to drop by for a chance to win books! Hope to see you there!!

http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/

Blessings, Janet

Friday, September 24, 2010

A red letter day!!!


It's a red letter day when this Steeple Hill author gets her photo with her wonderful agent Karen Solem on the blog of Publisher's Weekly If you've got a minute, check it out. A huge thanks to Barbara Vey and Cathy Shouse, PW cub reporter and author of Images of America: Fairmount for sharing our picture and giving a overview of the American Christian Fiction Writers' conference held in Indianapolis last weekend where this photo was taken.
Not sure the clickable link is working. If not, copy and paste:

Blessings, Janet

Monday, September 13, 2010

For a chance to win The Substitute Bride

Visit me in Seekerville www.seekerville.blogspot.com Monday, September 13. I'm talking about Fall Favorites and especially The Johnny Appleseed Festival. Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of The Substitute Bride.

Hope to see you there!

Blessings, Janet

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Romance Writers of America conference pictures

Romance Writers of America celebrated its 30th anniversary in Orlando, Florida July 28-31. Before the conference began some of us explored Disney's Epcot using discounted tickets for conference attendees. A great option to remember if you're planning on attending a conference on Disney property. We had a great time!








Cinderella and Mary Poppins welcome Darlene, Lindi, me, Debby and Missy. Those stylish ladies kept their smiles in the hot humid weather. We had a delicious dinner in France that evening.






The Literacy signing was held the first evening of the conference. Critique partner and friend Shirley Jump and I pose for a picture. All the proceeds of this huge signing go to literacy.











I attended several excellent workshops, met with my Steeple Hill editor and hung out with Steeple Hill Love Inspired authors and writer friends. The Harlequin party is always a highlight. Missy, Ruthy, Debby and I gather for a photo Friday night.









The Awards Ceremony Saturday evening was the grand finale of the conference. A time to celebrate Rita and Golden Heart finalists and winners and those amazing thirty years. Debby, Missy, Darlene, me, Sandra, Myra, Ruthy and Anita Mae smiling for the camera.





Hope you enjoyed a peek at RWA! I'm back to routine, working on a new book.

Blessings, Janet

Monday, August 9, 2010

Giving away all three of my books in Seekerville!

I'm talking about Romance Matters in Seekerville today.

www.seekerville.blogspot.com

Stop in and leave a comment for a chance to win Courting Miss Adelaide, Courting the Doctor's Daughter and The Substitute Bride.

Blessings, Janet

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I'm at Seekerville today!

I'll be talking in Seekerville today about pitfalls of writing scene and sequel with some pointers from Jack Bickham's book Scene and Structure.

www.seekerville.blogspot.com

Stop by and leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Shirley Jump's Vegas Pregnancy Surprise.

Blessings, Janet

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Welcoming Myra Johnson


I'm delighted to have my dear friend and fellow Seeker Myra Johnson at Cup of Faith today. Myra and I met in 2005 when we were finalists, along with Julie Lessman and Tina Radcliff, also special friends, in Romance Writers of America's Golden Heart contest for unpublished writers. I asked Myra some questions that I hope will help you get to know her better.

Myra is giving away a copy of her latest book Where the Dogwoods Bloom. I love this beautiful, romantic cover. Dogwoods are a favorite tree of mine. Leave a comment for a chance to win.

Hi Myra. Describe your typical writing day.

I usually start my day having breakfast with my husband and sipping Earl Gray while we read the morning paper and catch the news on Good Morning, America. Then I spend 30 minutes or so on devotions and journaling. Then—if I’m being really good—it’s 30-45 minutes of Wii Fit, after which I get busy on e-mail, errands, etc. After lunch with my husband (he’s semi-retired and works from home—oh, joy), I settle down with my novel-in-progress. It may be writing new pages, editing what I’ve already written, doing editor-requested revisions, drafting a proposal, or whatever. I’ll put in four or five solid hours, stopping only when my husband starts nagging me about what I have planned for supper. I’m working on getting him to be a little braver in the kitchen, but he is also a “work-in-progress”—LOL!


Any tips on productivity you care to share?

Get a routine going and try to be consistent. Set office hours and stick to them. I have a laptop computer, but I rarely work anywhere besides my desk. That helps keep me in “working writer” mode. Besides, my office is where all my reference books and notes are, and I can always close the door if things going on in other parts of the house become a distraction. (As in, hubby talking loudly on his cell phone with a client.)

I’ve also become an avid spreadsheet user. I start a new Excel workbook for each book and use it to track plot turning points, goal-motivation-conflict development, character details, daily word count, etc. During the planning stages I begin by filling in what I already know. After I start writing, I use the spreadsheets to record other details as they come to me. By the way, my Novel Planning Workbook template is available for download in the Writers Helps section of my Web site.


With two books on the shelves in 2009, One Imperfect Christmas and Autumn Rains, and two more out in 2010, Romance by the Book and Where the Dogwoods Bloom, what’s been the biggest change in your life since publication?

Learning to cope with “real” deadlines, plus so many extra demands on my time! I knew marketing and PR would become essential as my books were released, but I had no idea how much time it would take. I’m continuing to learn about and experiment with a variety of promotional venues, not all of which turn out to be successful. I could and probably should be doing much more in the way of bookstore and library visits, ferreting out speaking opportunities, etc., but I would so much rather do the actual writing.


What is the hardest aspect of being a writer? The easiest?

Probably the very hardest aspect is continuing to believe in myself as a writer. Self-doubt can be such a drain on creativity, and from what I’ve heard, there are very few writers who don’t suffer from at least occasional self-doubt. Rejection, criticism, a not-so-kind review, tough edits—they all take their toll.

The easiest? Going to work in my jammies!


How do you keep from being overwhelmed with writing, promotion, family responsibility, and still have time to smell the proverbial roses?

I’m not sure I do keep from being overwhelmed!!! It would be even harder without the support and encouragement of my number-one cheerleader, my husband. At a time in our lives when he’s cutting back on his work hours and thinking toward retirement, I’m finally living my publication dreams! It isn’t always easy for him to accept that when he has time to “play,” I need to be writing. But he’s genuinely happy and excited for me, so he’s always a good sport about giving me the time and space I need to work.

Because I respect what my husband sacrifices for me, I do whatever I can to make sure we have plenty of togetherness time. I consistently make a point of shutting down the computer by 5:00 or 6:00 every evening, and only under the strictest deadlines will I do any kind of writing-related work on weekends. Even if all we do is watch TV together or tackle household chores, those hours belong to husband and family.


Tell us about your next release.

Just out is Where the Dogwoods Bloom, the third and last novel in my series of three Heartsong Presents contemporary romances set in Missouri. The story is about an injured pro tennis player who must find a way to forgive the foster parents who robbed her of the one thing she wanted most—a “forever family.” From the back cover:

Who says you can’t go back home?

Jilly Gardner left Blossom Hills ten years ago with a broken heart, determined never to return. But the ache in her heart has never healed, and when Cam Lane calls to ask for her help…she finds she can’t say no.

Cameron doesn’t know what came between Jilly and her foster family, but whatever did, he feels it’s high time she set things straight. Her foster parents never recovered from her abrupt and permanent departure, and now—when her presence might encourage an ill woman’s return to health—she refuses to even see them? But how can Cam address the unforgiveness in his friends’ lives when his own is paralyzed with self-inflicted guilt and shame?

With all their striving focused on themselves and the events of their past, will Cam and Jilly ever realize that unconditional, forgiving, forever love comes only from God the Father, whose mercies are new each morning?
Thanks for the interesting, fun interview, Myra! And for giving away a copy of Where the Dogwoods Bloom to one of our lucky commenters.



Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sizzling First Encounters

I'm at Pepper Basham's blog today sharing the first encounter between Mary and Luke in Courting the Doctor's Daughter. Hope to see you there!

http://pepperbasham.wordpress.com/2010/06/22/sizzling-first-encounters-with-janet-dean/

Blessings, Janet

Thursday, June 10, 2010

We have a winner of Love on a Dime!!!

Congratulations to Pat Jeanne Davis, the winner of Cara Lynn James' debut, Love on a Dime!!!!
Cara will be in touch, Pat. Thanks everyone for your interest in Cara's book.

Blessings, Janet

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


I'm thrilled fellow Seeker and good friend Cara Lynn James is visiting Cup of Faith today. Cara's sharing some of her writing process and giving those who leave a comment a chance to win a copy of her wonderful debut, Love on a Dime. I love to read and write historicals and I find the setting of Cara's novel, Newport, RI during the Gilded era, especially intriguing. On a visit to Newport a few years ago, I was blown away by the "cottages." Mix in a heroine who is a dime novelist and a fetching cover and I'm hooked!
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Please describe your typical day. Do you need a jolt of caffeine to get going? Or are you up and at ‘em kind of gal?

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I need one or two small lattes in the morning to get going. It’s such a great way to start the day! It puts me in a good mood which is important since I’m a night owl. The morning is a beautiful, quiet time, but I always feel groggy in the a.m. Of course I have to get up early just like everyone else. I’ve noticed the every-day world seems to follow the schedule of the early birds more than the night owls. Sigh. I work for a few hours in the morning, some in the afternoon and usually in the evening as well.

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Do you have a word count you try to fulfill each day? Any tips on productivity you care to share?
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1,000 words a day is my minimum word count. My optimum word count is 1,500 words. I usually get it done or at least come close. Since I’m a rather slow writer I try to write every single day. Occasionally I take a day off, but not often. I’m also trying hard to increase my productivity and I’m making some progress. The terror of missing a deadline is a strong motivator! I can’t whip out a great book in a matter of a few months. I sure wish I could.
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How do you keep from being overwhelmed with writing, promotion, family responsibility, and still have time to smell the proverbial roses?
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Sometimes I am overwhelmed. Then I take a deep breath, pray for serenity, and buckle down to work. If I let myself really think of all the things I have to do in too short a time, then I have the tendency to panic. I have to settle down and take one thing at a time. I’m sure taking a walk would be healthy and relaxing, but I’d rather read a chapter or two in a great novel than torture myself with exercise. (I do try to take a walk several times a week. But I can find excuses—it’s too hot and humid, it’s raining, we might have a thunderstorm etc.) Eating dark chocolate also improves my state of mind.
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Some writers love plotting, some like writing that first draft, and others enjoy researching or digging into the revisions. What's your favorite part about writing a book?
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I enjoy researching. I can get lost in research and won’t surface for hours. I also like to plot, but it doesn’t come naturally to me. Plotting takes a lot of thought and planning. If I plot in too much detail I lose interest in the story. But I do need some sort of a road map. Getting lost or veering down rabbit trails scares me. I hate to write and toss all those wonderful words. But I’m frugal and save them for another story. Still, it’s much faster to get the story right the first time—but it’s not always easy.
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If I’m ‘in the zone’ I love to write without editing. But sometimes the words won’t come. That’s when I find writing a first draft to be frustrating and oh so slow. I also enjoy editing. At least the words are already on the screen. Finding exactly the right word is fun and satisfying, but sometimes time consuming.
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When starting a new project, do you tend to begin with a time period or event and create the characters to live it, or do you start with characters and then find their story?
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I start with a time period, location, character types and a situation or hook. Then I flesh out the characters as I find their story. A story never comes to me without a lot of thought. I develop it as I start to take notes. The characters tell me their story as I write about them, but before I begin the actual manuscript. As I write the book the characters become clearer and more real to me, so I’ll have to revise and change my original plans somewhat. I outline although not in great detail.
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How much of yourself you write into your characters?
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I try to keep myself out of the story. I don’t think I’d come across as sympathetic enough for a heroine. Maybe I could be the sardonic sidekick or quirky old aunt.
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How do you choose your characters’ names?
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Since I write historicals I have lots of fun with names. Many turn-of-the-century names are funny sounding to our modern ears and I like to use them, but not for my heroes and heroines. I looked up baby names popular during the 1890s and 1900s and the girls’ names especially seem old fashioned now and not very appealing. But there are a few I like such as Alice, Elizabeth, Lilly, and Charlotte. I wouldn’t name my heroine Bertha, Hazel, or Edna, but they were popular back then too. I usually choose the first name first and then try to match it with a last name. I keep a chart so I don’t have more than one or two names beginning with the same letter.
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What’s your favorite way to spend leisure time?
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Reading is my favorite hobby. I don’t have much time for any other hobbies, although I used to crochet and quilt and sew. If I had a lot of time and money, I’d travel. Reading is so much cheaper. I also love to try out new restaurants, go camping and lounge on the beach.
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How can readers find you on the Internet?
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Thanks for giving us a peek at your writing process, Cara! Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Love on a Dime.
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Janet

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Persistence post prizes in Seekerville

My friend Ruth Kaufman is our guest in Seekerville Monday, May 10.

www.seekerville.blogspot.com

Ruth is talking about Persistence: Profits, Perils and Plans. From those leaving a comment, she's giving away a 20 minute "discuss your writing with confidence" session at a mutually agreed upon time during the RWA conference in Orlando. This includes pitching tips and suggestions for authors at all stages of their careers on how to best present projects to readers/friends/contacts.

I’m giving away a bag of chocolate covered turtles. What could be more fitting than that slow moving, hard-shelled icon of persistence? When we reach the finish line, we'll find it sweet indeed, just like this yummy candy.

For a chance to win either or both prizes, leave a comment with your e-mail address. Thanks!

Blessings, Janet

Thursday, April 15, 2010

I have a title!

I'm very excited to have a title for my upcoming Steeple Hill Love Inspired Historical!!

Wanted: A Family

Pregnant widow Callie Mitchell and falsely accused ex-con Jacob “Jake” Smith, a bitter orphan searching for his birth mother, stand against the disapproving town when Callie turns her house into a home for unwed mothers.

The story will release March 15, 2011. I'll keep you posted as soon as I have a cover.

Blessings, Janet

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Francine Rivers is at Seekerville March 30!!!


The Seekers are thrilled to have Francine Rivers at Seekerville today!! In her inspiring, chock full of wisdom interview, Francine talks about writing for God, her life and her latest book, Her Mother's Hope. And she's giving away a copy!
To enter the drawing leave a comment at http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com/

Blessings, Janet

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Let's Celebrate with Renee Chaw!!!!!

To celebrate Renee Chaw's first year of blogging, she's holding a Blogaversary celebration, March 15-19th at http://www.steelergirl83.blogspot.com/ To visit Renee's Black 'n Gold Girl's Book Spot, click on the blogaversary to the right of this post.

I'm one of five authors blessed to help Renee celebrate! I'm thrilled to be in the company of wonderful authors Candace Calvert, Cerella Sechrist, Laura Frantz, and fellow Seeker Julie Lessman! I'll be giving away a copy of The Subsitute Bride on Monday March 15. Each day one of these author will give away a copy of her book. Renee has other surprises in store for those visiting her site and leaving a comment. Don't miss this chance to win some wonderful books!

Here's Renee explaining her plans in her own words:

Some of my very favorite Christian fiction authors will be stopping by during the week to help me celebrate and I would love for you to stop by too! Not only will there be great posts featuring some great books but there will be giveaways as well! How awesome is that?! After all what is a party without presents? ;-) On top of all that I will also be giving a gift to one lucky person who comments during the week! Below is a list of my Blogaversary VIPs who will be guest posting throughout the week! Be sure to click on each authors name to visit their terrific websites! Trust me, they're beautiful and feature a lot of great info about each author and their books plus links to Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc!

Monday, March 15- Janet Dean

Tuesday, March 16- Candace Calvert

Wednesday, March 17- Cerella Sechrist

Thursday, March 18- Laura Frantz

Friday, March 19- Julie Lessman

Be sure to stop by March 15th for all of the details! I look forward to seeing you all!!!!!
If you would like to help spread the word you can grab my "Blogaversary" button located on the top right sidebar of this blog at http://www.http//steelergirl83.blogspot.com

Hoping to see you at the celebration!!

Blessings, Janet

Sunday, March 7, 2010

SHARING MY FAVORITES

Monday, March 8, I'm at Seekerville talking about my favorites.

www.seekerville.blogspot.com

I'll be giving away a copy of The Substitute Bride. My critiquer partner will also give away The Other Wife. Two free books so two winners! Share your favorites for a chance to win.

Blessings, Janet

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Interview at Sherry Dyke's blog on Wednesday, March 3


Time flies, doesn't it? I can't believe March has slipped in under my radar. That means my deadline for Wanted: A Family, Love Inspired Historical, is one month closer. I'm making progress. And getting to know Callie and Jake. Not that you'll be surprised to hear it, but trouble is brewing in Peaceful, Indiana. :-)

If you enjoy my books, I hope you've gotten a chance to read The Substitute Bride, a mail-order bride story you won't want to miss. Ted and Elizabeth's story was such fun to write. I'm hearing from some readers that this is their favorite book so far.

Tomorrow, Wednesday, March 3, PST, I'm a guest at Sherry Dyke's blog. I enjoyed answering her interview questions. Stop by to see which scene in The Substitute Bride, on shelves now, was my favorite. Leave a comment on Sherry's blog along with your e-mail address for a chance to win a signed copy.

Sherry's blog:

http://web.mac.com/dkyle/Site/Blog/Blog.html

Blessings, Janet

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

For a chance to win The Substitute Bride

Visit Pepper Basham's blog Wednesday, February 17. I'm sharing a kissing scene from The Substitute Bride. Leave a comment for a chance to win.

www.pepperbasham.wordpress.com

Blessings, Janet

Thursday, February 11, 2010

For another chance to win The Substitute Bride

For a chance to win a copy of The Substitute Bride, my mail-order bride story out now, visit Trish Perry's blog between now and February 17 and leave a comment after my interview.




Thanks for your interest in my book!


Blessings, Janet

Monday, February 8, 2010

Another chance to win The Substitute Bride


The Substitute Bride, Steeple Hill Love Inspired Historical, releases tomorrow. I'm celebrating in Seekerville today.




And giving away a copy of The Substitute Bride. The drawing will take place from those commenting in Seekerville, not on this blog. Hope you'll stop and share in the fun.

Blessings, Janet

Friday, February 5, 2010

For a chance to win a copy of The Substitute Bride


I'm a guest blogger at Petticoats and Pistols Saturday and Sunday, February 6 and 7. Stop by at www.petticoatsandpistols.com and say hello. We'll be talking about mail-order brides and weddings in general. Leave a comment to enter the drawing for a copy of my February release, The Substitute Bride. Hope to see you there!

Blessings, Janet

Sunday, January 24, 2010

For a chance to win The Substitute Bride

I'm at a Christian Writer's World, Lena Dooley's blog this week, talking about writing and The Substitute Bride, my February 9 release. Stop by and leave a comment for a chance to win a copy.

Blessings, Janet

Sunday, January 17, 2010

For a chance to win The Substitute Bride


For a chance to win The Substitute Bride, my February release, visit Goodreads at http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/2442-the-substitute-bride. I'm giving away three copies of this fun to write mail-order bride story. You may enter between now and March 1.

If you enjoy historical romances and want to hook up with others who do, visit the Love Inspired Historical Discussions at Goodreads.
Blessings, Janet