Latest Free Read at White Rose Publishing

What is it about your childhood that captures your imagination? For me, it’s been a small bay town called Barnegat. Why? Well, growing up, my mom told me about my great-aunt, who lived in Barnegat, NJ. She had a dream where a huge wave came and swallowed up their home situated right on the coast of the bay.

But the dream didn’t stop there. For many nights in a row, she had the same dream. After sharing her nightmare with my great-uncle, would you believe he put their home up on the market? The day they moved out, a rare hurricane hit the NJ coast, and their beautiful home was taken into the bay. When this happened, my aunt insisted that God had given her that dream to protect them from the harm that would have befallen them.

In my latest "free read" release, Finder’s Keepers, you won’t find my great-aunts story-- or even a house-- but you will find yourselves in current day BARNEGAT . (The photos above are the actual lighthouse that my parents took for me when I told them about my idea for this story.)

I also learned this week that Cindy Green will soon be releasing a
short historical Western Inspy with White Rose over the July 4th weekend. This is a FREE READ as well.

Here is the blurb:
Second Chances
Ellie Westin has waited two years for cowhand Joe Cameron to make her his wife. When he returns from the latest cattle drive, he finds her engaged to another man and about ready to join a wagon train to the Nevada silver mines…unless God gives him a second chance to right his wrongs and ask her the question she’s been waiting so long to hear.
I hope you all get the chance to enjoy these short stories.

Summer Reading at White Rose Press

Summer is here and I'm dreaming of those lazy afternoons spent relaxing with a good book. I don't know how many afternoons like that I'll get - probably not many - so I want to make the most of the ones I get. I recently searched the Kindle store for some romances that I believe will make great summer reads. (And remember you can get download the Kindle software on your computer, iphone, blackberry or ipad. You don't need to own a Kindle to read on Kindle. I have it on my netbook.) You can see my list here:

I've also checked the White Rose Publishing store and there are a few new releases and upcoming releases I'd like to add:

New Releases 

White Water Preacher by Carolyn Bravo
Faith by Merry Stahel
A Time for Healing by Tamelia Tumlin
Snow Angels by Wendy Davy
Hearts Crossing Ranch by Tanya Hanson

Coming Soon!
In His Sight by Pamela S. Thibodeaux
 Rodeo Royalty Series by Teri Wilson
  • Rodeo Resurection
  • Rodeo Rescue
  • Rodeo Redemption

Happy Reading!


Advice to Young Writers

At the library where I work, I've recently seen a number of teens who are interested in writing. My daughter and some of her friends are included in this group. This generation of "digital natives" have some interesting ways to pursue this hobby.  They write stories on their cell phones, online, and in blogs.  Fortunately, they still know how to function with pen and paper as well.

I'd like to find a way to encourage them and perhaps give them a bit of guidance. But they are a skittish group, not ready for criticism and not interested in being taught.  This is their outside-of-school hobby, after all.

I've been thinking of holding a "workshop" for teen writers.  All who sign up for it can come into the library after hours to work on individual projects. They can share if they wish or they can just work alone.  I, and maybe one or two other local authors if I can get them, would be available if they had questions.

I am a bit unique in that I work in a library and have teen daughters, so maybe I see more beginning writers than most authors do. But I think all authors get asked sometimes for advice on writing. Like me, right now, asking you for help. I really need to know:

What sort of advice would you give to budding teen writers?

The Two Men in Susan's life

This week White Rose Publishing released the latest installment in my Orchard Hill Romance series, Susan's 4th of July Fireworks. In past weeks I've showcased the heroine, Susan. Today I'd like to talk about the two men in Susan's life.

The first is her father, Hal. He was a single parent from the time that Susan was 12.  He's a very involved parent - maybe too involved. Susan has reached a point in her life where she'd like to be in control of her life, but she doesn't know how to tell her father to butt out.

Susan recognized that her contrasting feelings toward her father were tearing her apart but she didn’t know how to resolve things between them.
He was the guy who picked her up off the ground when she was a child and fell off her bike. He was also the guy who forced her to sit at the kitchen table every night and study—whether she had homework or not. He was the one who took care of her when she was sick and the one who made her go to basketball practice after she’d sprained her wrist because “winners don’t let things like that stop them.” He was both the reason for her successes in life and for the feeling that she could never stop competing because not to win would mean not to be loved.

While Susan is struggling with this problem, her high school crush, Cal Wensloff moves back to Orchard Hill and takes a job with her father.  Susan's father declares him off limits because he doesn't think Cal has enough ambition. But Susan agrees to go with Cal to see the float his sister and brother-in-law of Thorsen's Orchard have constructed for the 4th of July parade.

It was getting dark by the time they pulled into the farm yard. The last traces of pink and orange were fading from the sky. “I wish we’d gotten here in time to see the sun set,” Susan lamented. “It must be so beautiful up here on the hill.”
“We can come back another time, if you want,” Cal told her, raising hope in her heart again.
“That would be nice.”
“The float and stuff is in here.” Cal took her hand and led her to a shed. He slid back the heavy wooden door and felt around for a light switch.
Light burst from a bare bulb and the shadows retreated a bit.
“My sister is in charge of the float,” Cal explained as they approached the half -finished structure. “She came up with the theme.”
“It’s a little orchard,” exclaimed Susan.
“Right. Originally my sister wanted it to be the Garden of Eden and then you and I would be…”
“Adam and Eve? No way.”
“She wanted us to wear flesh colored unitards with fake leaves sewn on in strategic places.” Cal grinned. “I absolutely refused. I pointed out that the apples were what got Adam and Eve in trouble, so it wouldn’t make very good advertising.”
“What’s the theme now?”
“Snow White.”
“Snow White? But in that story the apple was…”
“Poisoned. I know. But dressing up as Prince Charming didn’t seem too bad compared to playing Adam, so I didn’t say anything.”
Susan chuckled. “You have a point.”
Cal took her hand again and looked into her eyes. His face was serious, but his eyes were dancing with laughter as he bowed and took her hand. “Susan, will you be my Snow White?”
She sank into a curtsy and replied “I’d be honored, Cal.”
When she straightened he didn’t let go of her hand.

I hope you'll be able to visit Orchard Hill soon and get to know Cal and Susan better.

When one door closes...another door opens

Those were the opening words of the speech I gave Friday evening at the BVRS fundraiser. After reading my book Echo of a Raven, the prolific book  about my struggles with diabetic retinopathy, my challenging 16 week stay at the agency BVRS (Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services) of Pittsburgh, the chairman invited me to be the guest speaker for the auction fundraiser on June 11th. Overwhelmed, and by no means, a public speaker, I just kept thinking how much the agency changed my life by teaching me how to use a computer with adaptive software, converting texxt to synthesized speech. Without their help, I would not have found the courage to face a sighted world I was once part of. Part of the reason I was reluctent to enroll in a program for the blind was because I felt clients would be uneducated. I was a professional, after all. What could I possibly have in common with those people? I was wrong. I met doctors and nurses, teachers and engineers, all with one common thread. We were all losing sight due to circumstances beyond our control. Some had the added burden of facing a marital crisis because a spouse could not accept the blindness. We laughed and we cried. We bonded in a way words cannot express.  I was one of the lucky ones. What didn't kill me made me stronger.

When I left the program, I enrolled in creative writing classes, searching for a new way to channel my creative muse of painting. Slowly but surely, doors to publishing houses opened. At a conference, I met Liana Laverentz and she introduced me to The Wild Rose Press. My first three stories are published through them, now with White Rose Publishing, all edited by my wonderful editor Lori Graham. Doors have continued to open for me, all due to my faith and strong will to never give up on a dream.

Friday night was like Cinderella. They treated me like a queen. The second I walked in with my family, a photographer was there from the Tribune-Review snapping photos left and right. The newspaper did a full-blown article on me which will be featured soon. I had my picture taken with the Pitt Panther coach after my speech and brought the house down and earned a hug from him when I ended my speech with "Go Pitt!" The auction was held in the practice field where the college team and pro team (Pitt Panthers and Pittsburgh Steelers) practice. Local celebrities were there and sports shirts and so much more was auctioned off. Thirty copies of my book Echo of a Raven were auctioned. Oh, what a night. The photographer asked me if any of my books had ever been reviewed by them. I said no and he asked for my business card and said he would see that the reviewer got in touch with me. Doors continue to open. I lost my sight but gained a bigger and more compassionate heart. BVRS has asked me to help promote them and have added my photo and story to their website. Here it is below. I feel truly blessed and have learned that God never lets one door close without opening another...


Meet Pitt Football Coach Dave Wannstedt, pictured left, and tour the Pitt/Steelers Practice Facility at BVRS’ For Your Eyes Only 2010 Tailgate Party on the Southside from 7-10 p.m. Friday, June 11.

Enjoy a delicious buffet dinner, cocktails, and dance the night away to live music by the classic rock and roll band “Truth Be Told.” Reservations are required. Tickets are $75, with $35 of that amount tax deductable. For additional information, contact Blind & Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh’s Development Department at 412-368-4400 or email inquiries to:

With Coach Wannstedt serving as auctioneer, you’ll have the chance to bid on autographed sports items, Pitt Panther Football Box Seats, a catered dinner in your home by celebrity Chef Bob Malone, a weekend at Seven Springs Mountain Resort and more.

And that's not all!

Pittsburgh author Sharon Donovan, pictured below, will be the guest speaker. At the tender age of 6, Ms. Donovan was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes and told by her doctor that she would be blind by the age of 25.

Those words haunted the Avalon resident all of her life and when the doctor’s prediction came true, Ms. Donovan came to BVRS where she learned how to manage her life independently with blindness.

Ms. Donovan has told her story in her nonfiction book, “Echoes of a Raven.” Once an artist who painted on canvas, Ms. Donovan is now an author of several books of fiction.

On her website,, Ms. Donovan talks about her transformation in a poem titled ‘Yesterday.’

It says, in part: “From the maze of mayhem and rubble a new dream resurrected renewing hope and inspiration for a brighter tomorrow. Today, motivated by new insight, instead of painting pictures on canvas, I paint my pictures with words.”

Ms. Donovan’s most recent work, “Mask of the Betrayer,” is a psychological thriller and is available at this link:

BVRS appreciates the hard work and dedication of the For Your Eyes Only 2010 Committee: Michele Antonelli, Chair, and members Bonnie Anton, Peg Fitchwell-Hill, Denise Gipson, Julia Gleason, Virginia Goebel, Terry Jancisin, Marsha Kirley, Elizabeth McCarthy, Patti McKee, Joan Martin Siebart, Pert Pivirotto, Peggy Snavely, Julia Unitas Giba, and Jan Wannstedt.

What I Love About White Rose Publishing

As Editor-in-Chief, you might think I love everything about White Rose, and the truth is, you'd be mostly right, but two things stand out in my mind from time-to-time, and today, I was thinking about it and thought I'd share...

Besides being wonderful storytellers, our authors are wonderful people. The support each gives to the company and to one another is, I would guess, the best in the biz...and not just when it pertains to the publishing world, but on a more personal, prayerful level. The camaraderie is amazing. When one needs prayer, many more than two gather in His Name to lift that person. When one has a new release or some other excitement to share, all rejoice. We're a business, but business is made up of people, and people...we have some pretty cool people around here.

We're small--growing, but small.--And, as much as I know we are going to grow, and, of  course, am not opposed to it, there's a special something to being small that I hope I don't lose. And that's the fact that I know every author. Maybe I didn't edit their work, but name a title and I can tell you who penned it. The majority of authors have had direct conversations with me, and I like that. I like knowing whose part of this grand adventure in publishing for the Lord. It makes for a great working environment and gives a familial feel to our interaction.

So, there you have it, my ramblings on the day. Let me take this opporunity to say how much I appreciate our authors and staff. Together, I think we make an ab fab team.

A chat with Clare Revell

This week we have the opportunity to have Clare Revell with us. She is a new, talented author to White Rose Publishing. Won’t you please extend a warm welcome her?

Clare, I’m so glad you could be here with us today. Can you tell us where were you born?

I was born in Southampton, England, and am the oldest of four. We live in various parts of the UK now, and my brother lives in Sydney. We moved to Reading when I was 16 and it was in Reading I met and married my husband and our three children were born.

Sounds like family must keep you pretty busy. What hidden talent do you possess outside of writing... something you do for fun, but are good at?

I used to do a lot of cross-stitch. Not so much now as I have problems seeing to do it. The pieces I’ve done are on line at
I have seen some of your beautiful work. Speaking of art, what’s your favorite color?

Lilac. Hence the color I’m typing in and the color I had my bridesmaids in.

Ah, shades of purple seem to be a favorite of many WRP authors. Okay, now let’s move into some questions about your writing…What or who inspires you to write?

It began with Mrs Johnson, my year four teacher. (School in the UK is done differently. We start the kids at 4 in foundation. So they are 8-9 by the time they get to year four). I wrote a story about a horse. She loved it and wrote on it, ‘keep this to read to your parents grandchildren.’ It’s still around somewhere.
So I kept writing. Usually rewrites of Red Riding Hood, each from a different POV
In year 10, I wrote my first novel. It was an English assignment and is now typed up and sat on the hard drive. It weighs in at 150k having been edited and added to over the years. It really is huge lol. 3 kids books in one really.
From there I switched to fan fic - Blake’s Seven, Dr Who, Stargate.
Then to my own original characters, who started out appearing in my fan fic. And here I am now.
What music groups/artists blast from your CD player while you write?

Stuart Townend or Hillsong. I do have to watch I don’t start singing though. If that happens I suddenly have a page of lyrics typed out rather than story line. So I have a lot of instrumental music too. Usually Scottish.

What was your favorite book growing up that inspired you to try your hand at writing?
I can’t remember the title of one, but it was about a young girl who was run over and had to stay in bed for months and how she recovered and used her faith to affect the people around her.
The other was ‘Hollow Tree House’ by Enid Blyton. It was mums when she was little and I still have it today.

Have you experienced writer’s block? And if so, how did you cure it?
Too many times. I finish one novel and then can’t write for several weeks. My hubby will tell you I go nuts if I can’t write. So I pick up pencil and narrow feint paper and sit there. Pick a name at random and write out a description and go from there. Or I watch one of my favorite programs and think well if my character was in that situation, what would she do.

About Your upcoming release:
How did you come up with your premise?
It was based on a writing prompt from an online writers group on LJ. The prompt was ‘Why do they call it falling in love.’ The original idea was to write something different from the usual romantic suspense, but the muse though otherwise and along came the serial killer. I’m a registrar and therefore attended several weddings. I thought setting the story around a wedding would be fun. The chief bridesmaid decided she was wearing red velvet and it went from there.

For those who are not familiar with this story, would you please give us the blurb?
A Killer lurks in Headley Cross…

…And Holly Carmichael is the only woman to survive his attack. Now she lives in fear, searching for normalcy and trying to put her life back together. When she meets Kyle Stevens, he turns her world upside-down. He’s as exasperating as he is appealing. How can Holly make sense of her awakening feelings when she’s so unsure of Kyle? His voice is familiar, he’s left-handed, and he wears the serial killer’s cologne. Who is he…really? As Holly struggles to restore her damaged faith, she must find the strength to trust once again-in Kyle and in God.

Kyle Stevens isn’t ready to live again. Racked by guilt, he’s afraid to feel. His sole focus is finding the Headley Cross serial killer-his girlfriend's murderer. That is, until he meets Holly Carmichael. He’s drawn to Holly, vows to protect her where he failed to protect his former love. But Holly makes him feel again, emotions quickly morphing into something much more dangerous to his hardened heart.
When the serial killer returns to finish what he started, only a miracle can save them…but then, it's the Season for Miracles.
Are there any fun tid-bits about this story you can share with us?

I actually broke the clutch cable on my car the way Holly does at the start of the story twice. The first time, was Boxing Day and we had to wait two hours for a tow truck. The first scene I wrote was Holly sitting in the church, desperately wanting to pull out her headdress and scratch her head. And the name of the doctor, should be familiar to anyone whose done nanowrimo.

How did you decide on the setting?

Headley Cross is actually a fictional Woodley, the village I live in. Headley Baptist is the church I go to and am a registrar at, although Pastor Jack is definitely not Pastor James lol. It’s easier to write about places you know.

When will Season for Miracles be released?
We are working towards a December release as the novel is set the week before Christmas.
*If you’d like to see the book trailer, it can be found at:
I’ve read an early version of this book and it was great! I can’t wait to see the finished product.
Clare, I wish you the best of success with your soon-to-be released book as well as your writing career.
If you’d like more information about Clare please feel free to visit:

Introducing Susan

This week, on June 10, White Rose Publishing will release a new Orchard Hill story - Susan's 4th of July Fireworks.  It features Susan from Entertaining Angel as the heroine.  Unfortunately, she didn't seem to be heroine material in that story.  It was only fair to give her a chance to redeem herself.  Her first appearance is on a date with Jeff, the hero of Entertaining Angel. Jeff has agreed to keep an eye on his friend's sister while she's in Orchard Hill.  He's only known her for a couple of days, but she's already caused a lot of trouble for him. This includes sending Jeff to the emergency room after he eats muffins that she bakes. The muffins contain peanuts, which he is allergic to.

From Entertaining Angel -
He picked up Susan at five thirty on the dot. Susan liked to go out early. She was a morning person, like him, so it didn’t bother him.
“Hi Jeff,” she said when she let him into her house. “I heard you had some bad luck today.”
“A little. Nothing to worry about.”
“Who’s the new girl at your place? I didn’t know you’d hired someone.”
“I haven’t.” Jeff explained the whole humiliating episode to her as briefly as possible.
“Oh, too funny dear,” she laughed. “That’s what you get for being so nice.”
“Tony is a good friend. He’s done lots of favors for me.”
Her eyes narrowed. “What does this sister look like? Is she pretty?”
Susan had many good qualities, Jeff told himself. Unfortunately, the one glaring fault she did have was jealousy. Perhaps it was because of her fiercely competitive nature.
“How she looks has nothing to do with it.”
“If she needs a keeper she must be either gorgeous or completely incompetent.”
“She’s nice. Just sort of—”
Susan snorted. “Lethal?”

In Susan's 4th of July Fireworks, she attempts some big changes in her life - including conquering her jealousy before it sabotages her latest relationship.

I've talked a lot about Susan.  Next week I promise I'll introduce you to Susan's sweetheart, Cal and you can decide for yourself if he is the type of person that would bring out the best in her.

Time, Talent & Treasure

'Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth,
where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven,
where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.'

Matthew 6:19-21, KJV

You've been there, I'm sure. You know the place. It's that time and circumstance in your life where you ask God: "Am I doing what You want?" or perhaps: "Is the calling You've placed on my heart really from You, or is it my own wants and desires pushing through?"

Sometimes, like now, those questions crowd my spirit. Sometimes, like now, I find myself in that dreaded land known as Limbo. A disclaimer here: I don't do well with Limbo...which is probably why God uses it to teach me and mold me - but that's a blog post for another day!

Anyway, Limbo makes me question things. Limbo sometimes puts me in a place where I think: "You're not making progress. There's no forward motion. Since that's the case, then you're not doing what God wants. If God wanted this from you, you'd be leaping forward, with his power and might behind you. You'd be beating those swords into plowshares!" Couple that thinking with the success I see others achieve and doubts try to take root - like:

"You're not good enough." "Your message doesn't get through." "You don't reach people as well as that best selling Molly Author." And then there's the worst one: "What's all the effort for, anyway?"

Since that type of logic sounds suspiciously like the Devil talking, these are the times when I step back, and consider and my life, and its path. In other words, I explore 'The Big Three' - my Time, Talent and Treasure.

TIME: I dedicate whatever time I possibly can to the craft of writing. It brings me such joy to create a story! Especially a romance, because there's no better emotion to celebrate than love. For me, James Michener said it best: 'I love writing. I love the swirl and swing of words as they tangle with human emotions.'

TALENT: As Christians, we're challenged by God to make good use of the talents, and circumstances He gives us. I've been blessed to see my works in print and electronic formats - yet I refuse to be secure in myself as a writer. Maybe it's because I fear being prideful and 'me' centered instead of accomplishing my work as a disciple. It's something to keep in mind during my journey, as a writer and a member of God's family...but it's a talent. A talent of which I try to make good, Godly use.

TREASURE: Matthew's Gospel verse at the top of this post says it all when it comes to what we should (and shouldn't!) treasure. It's so simple, yet so complicated in today's results-driven, materialistic culture. Additionally, so much begs for our attention. Friends, family, careers, goals and the fulfilment of our dreams. So what about Treasure? What does 'Treasure' mean to me? I believe it lies in creating Christ-centered romances that help readers feel uplifted and affirmed.

Some day I may be a New York Times best seller. Or not. Regardless, writing has given me the opportunity to touch people, and show them God's unending, unconditional love. So, if my Time and Talent enable me to touch but one life, or turn just one soul toward Christ's love, I've attained Treasure beyond knowing, and beyond price.

That, to me, sounds like a God thing. And from there, I know I'm on the right path, and I can rest much easier - even when I'm in the Land of Limbo.


In conjunction with this post, I have a contest going on at my personal blog: A Minute With Marianne. The prize is an autographed, print edition of Hearts Crossing, and entering is as easy as leaving a comment. Winner to be announced on Friday June 11th, so drop by and check it out!

Until next time, be blessed, and be well!


Summer Break

I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. ---1 Corinthians 7:7

Do you enjoy hot coffee in the morning? I do, in fact I often bribe myself with the hot beverage to get myself out of bed on a cold winter day. I’m sipping a fresh cup now as I write this, feeling the warmth flow through me. But what about those hot summer dawns, when the last thing one wants is to pour something hot? Isn’t iced coffee a great substitute? Just add a cup of ice to coffee brewed a bit stronger, and I'm all set. The same is true with tea. By the time autumn rolls around, I'll be ready for that piping hot brew again.

Do you ever feel that way with what's in your TBR (to be read) pile? Your reading life can be refreshed when you aren't in the mood for your usual fare. If you are spending too much time reading romance or mystery novels, put them on ice for a while. Use the summer days to read your Bible or some meaningful devotionals. Try an inspirational action or historical novel. Try an author new to you.

Use the days to seek out your spiritual gifts--maybe try your hand at writing something this summer. Or have a cup of iced coffee and rifle through a catalog of gift books. Later, when you're refreshed mentally, physically and spiritually, seek out your favorite reading again. It will seem new and fresh.

So what will you be reading, and drinking, this summer?

Are Reviews Important?

As a reader, I don’t always rely on reviews or word-of-mouth in order to buy a book. After all, reading is subjective and not every book someone recommends is something I enjoy. Besides, I’ve been disappointed too many times.

But as an author, I love to receive those glowing 4 or 5 star reviews! This validates my work and builds confidence that I truly AM a writer. Even in a not-so-glowing review, I can normally find something positive to focus on.

Recently I found out just how important reviews are to an author’s recognition.

I heard through the grapevine that the more reviews a book or story on Amazon has, the more potential it has to become a “recommended read” when people do searches for specific genres, thereby increasing exposure. In researching I discovered that White Rose Publishing titles were not very easy to find while searching Amazon unless you knew the title and/or author. And then, the book(s) were buried so far in pages of other similar titles and authors, most folks would get tired looking for them.

So some of the White Rose authors banded together and began reviewing each other’s work.

Within days of this happening, most of the authors had 10 or more reviews. A few actually reached higher than twenty reviews before a week was up. But that’s not the best part.

The best part is, within days of us posting reviews of the books we’d already read and tagging each one with terms like White Rose Publishing, Inspirational Romance, and other identical words, White Rose titles began moving up in the ranks and were listed as an “also reviewed” or a “suggested product” similar book to some well known publications! If a search is done in the Kindle Store for “Christian Romance” about a 1/3 is WR titles where before you'd only get bonnet books and ones written by people whose last name was Christian.

This means that Amazon is automatically showing WR books to people who search, which may encourage them to buy our books!

So do your favorite author a favor and review his or her book on Amazon.

Pamela S Thibodeaux
“Inspirational with an Edge!” TM

Coming Soon from White Rose Publishing!