Friday, January 29, 2010

My Friend Margaret - Interview and Giveaway

Today we get to welcome Margaret Brownley to talk about her new historical, A Lady Like Sarah. (Doesn't the title just grab you?)

As usual, leave a comment below between now and next Thursday for a chance to win a copy of this book! (Giveaway available to U.S. addressees only.)


About A Lady Like Sarah

She’s an outlaw: he’s a preacher. Both are in need of a miracle.

Preacher JUSTIN WELLS leaves Boston in disgrace, heading out alone on the dusty trail to Texas. But when the once-respected clergyman encounters a feisty redhead in handcuffs with a dying U.S. Marshal at her side, his journey takes a dramatic turn. When he promises the injured lawman to take his prisoner to Texas, Justin has no idea the trouble that lies ahead. The slightly-built prisoner turns out to be SARAH PRESCOTT—sister of the notorious Prescott brothers—and she’s determined to miss the hanging party waiting for her in Texas.

But escaping proves to be tougher than she thought. Justin doesn’t own a gun and hasn’t the foggiest idea how to survive the wilderness. How can she leave him alone with the injured marshal?

Nothing is more sacred to Justin than a promise made to a dying man, but how can he turn the blue-eyed beauty over to the hangmen? She’s tough as leather, but there’s something about her that is pure and good.

Justin can’t bear to lose her, but how can a simple preacher fight an entire town? And how can either one of them know that miracles come in many guises—including love?

About Margaret

Thrills, mystery, suspense, romance: Margaret penned it all. Nothing wrong with this—except Margaret happened to be writing for the church newsletter. After making the church picnic read like a Grisham novel, her former pastor took her aside and said, "Maybe God's calling you to write fiction."

So that’s what Margaret did. She now has more than 20 novels to her credit and has been published in 15 languages. In addition, she's written a non-fiction book. Still, it took a long time before Margaret tried her hand at writing inspirational fiction which led to her Rocky Creek series.

"I love writing about characters at different stages of faith," she says of the new direction her writing career has taken, "and I'm here to stay."

Happily married to her real life hero, Margaret and her husband live in Southern California.

What's your latest book?

A Lady Like Sarah is my latest release and is in bookstores now. The publisher is Thomas Nelson. It takes place in 1879. He’s a preacher; she’s an outlaw—and they’re both in a heap of trouble.

A fabulous hook! Intriguing to say the least. What's your favorite part of the story?

This is a hard question to answer. I like different parts for different reasons. The part I found most surprising was the end. I’m a pantser which means I write by the seat of my pants. I never know where the characters are going to take me until I get there. In this case, I had no idea how the story would end. I didn’t even know what Justin Wells would find on that dusty trail until he found it. Writing is a constant surprise. Of all the heroines I’ve written, Sarah is my favorite. She’s one tough lady and it took a very special man to see into her heart.

Sounds like they took you on quite the adventure. What was the hardest part to write?

Though I’ve published more than 20 books, this was my first inspirational. As I said earlier, Sarah is an outlaw and Justin a preacher. He finds her on the dusty road to Texas handcuffed to a dying marshal. Justin promises the marshal to deliver his prisoner to Texas unaware that there’s a hanging party waiting for her there. Justin is tested in every way a man can be tested. They spend a lot of time alone on that trail and the hardest part was keeping up the sexual tension without crossing the line.

Oh, but tension can go a long way! Sounds fabulous. What do you hope your readers will get out of the story?
My hope is that the story touches readers’ hearts. If it succeeds then readers might have a good laugh and maybe even shed a tear or two. hope that one of the themes that readers see is that it’s still possible today as it was more than a hundred years ago for goodness to triumph against all odds. An overt theme that developed during the writing of the book was that God always sends the right people in our lives when we most need them. This certainly has been true in my life.

Yes, and I've forever grateful for that. What's your favorite genre to write? To read?

I love reading and writing historical romances, especially stories that take place in the nineteenth century. I’m fascinated by the similarities. There were bank failures, recessions and depressions in the 1800s. There was just as much fraud in politics and business as there is today. I just finished reading The Victorian Internetby Tom Standage, which offers a fascinating history of the telegraph and what he calls on-line pioneers. Old movies always show telegrams delivering serious or important news. Never did I imagine until reading this book that telegrams were also used to send advertisements and perpetuate fraud. That Prince whatever his name is from Nigeria who bombards me with emails asking for money apparently comes from a long line of shysters. The telegram also had its own customs, vocabulary and encryptions. Sound familiar?

LOL, indeed it does. Times might change, but humanity sure doesn't. So what are you reading right now—and what do you want to read next?
You’ll regret asking this question, I’m sure. I read all over the board—four, five, six books at a time. I’m currently reading Photography and the American Scene for research; Tribes, for business expertise (I have to keep reminding myself that writing isn’t just art, it’s a business), My Heart Remembers Kim Vogel Sawyer for, and Lee Child’s Gone Tomorrow a change of pace. I recently read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society because one simply must read a book with a title like that.

Next on my reading list: The Elegance of the Hedgehog. As a child, I was held captive by a hedgehog. A strange animal sat by the door of my playhouse and I was too afraid to venture outside. At the time, I had no idea what it was. Years later, I learned it was a hedgehog. Now I want know what makes a hedgehog elegant.

You are a busy reader! I can only imagine what your shelf looks like. So while we're on the subject . . . What would your dream office look like—and what does your REAL writing environment look like?
I pretty much have my dream office. It’s not fancy but it’s serviceable and it looks out over my pool and waterfall. I call it my Monet room so naturally it’s painted Monet purple. Purple is a great color for stimulating creativity and Monet is my favorite artist. The room includes floor to ceiling bookshelves stuffed with my favorite research books, and a vertical paper file that practically reaches the ceiling.

Insert Roseanna the Purple Lover going green with envy. Someday, I will have a dream office like that. Maybe after I have twenty books out. =) Do you remember where you were when you got your first or most important call about a book contract?

Ha, ha! I sure do. No drum rolls. No bugles. I was cleaning the bathroom when I got the call. That’s not exactly how I had imagined it.

What, it didn't capture the glam? At least it makes for a great memory. Any other funny family stories about living with a writer?

This question reminds me of the early days of my writing career: I sold an article for $5 and my husband took me out to dinner to celebrate. A short time later, I sold another article, this time for $7, and again, my husband took me out to celebrate. By the third sell my husband announced that we couldn’t afford any more success.

Then there was the time I almost got arrested. My first book was published and I madly dashed from store to store doing fly-by signings. I was in Walmart’s autographing books when two policemen showed up. A customer saw me “defacing“ books and called the cops. Anxious to prove that I was, indeed, the author of the book, I pulled out my driver’s license. The problem was, the book was under a pen name which did not correspond with the name on my ID. We were finally able to track down the manager who saved the day.

I can so see that! (Both of them actually.) So what are you writing right now?

I just finished the 2ndbook in my Rocky Creek series, A Suitor for Jenny. It’s schedule for publication September 2010. I’m now writing the third and final book in the series.


Thanks for chatting with us, Margaret! Readers, be sure and check out Margaret's website and her blog, Petticoats and Pistols.

You can purchase A Lady Like Sarah from Thomas Nelson, Amazon, and CrossPurposes .

Again, readers with a U.S. address can leave a comment below with contact info for a chance to win a signed copy of A Lady Like Sarah.

(Giveaway ends 2/4/10. Void where prohibited. Winner will have two weeks to claim the book before another winner is selected.)


  1. I have been so anxious to read this one; please enter me. Thanks!!!!

  2. Great review! Count me in!

    Michelle V

  3. LOL! I meant interview! LOL. It's been a LONG day!

  4. Ohhh I have been reading wonderful reviews for this everywhere and would love to be entered to win! Thank you!

    xoxo~ Renee

  5. Great interview--Thanks for the chance to win!
    june_spirit2628 at hotmail dot com

  6. Great interview! I would love to win this book! I work at a bookstore, and just put it out on the shelf Saturday evening. It looks wonderful!

  7. A Lady Like Sarah sounds like an interesting historical set in the west. Please include me in the drawing. Thanks!


  8. The interview was a great introduction to the book. Enter me in the drawing. I'd like to read it.
    robinribbit at yahoo dot com

  9. Got a note on Facebook from Dianne H., who would like to be entered.

  10. This book sounds so good. I really liked the book trailer as well. Please enter me in the drawing. BTW, Carman sent me.
    Blessings and Thanks,

  11. I have been hearing a lot about this books lately and I would love to read it.


  12. please enter me!

    carman sent me!


  13. Greetings,
    Please enter me in this drawing.
    Sounds like a wonderful book.
    Thanks for the interview.
    Many blessings,
    Wanda Chamberlain
    wandaelaine AT gmail DOT com

  14. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the chance.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  15. Please enter me I would love to win this book,

  16. Sounds like a great book. Love that the badboy is a girl!

    estrella8888 at roadrunner dot com

  17. Loved reading the interview... it sounds like a great book!


  18. Hey!
    Please enter me in the contest. I want to read this book soo bad! :)

  19. Thank you for entering me!

    scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

  20. I would love to read the book. Thanks for the chance!

    sdouglas3 at hvc(dot)rr(dot)com

  21. This looks so good! I'd love to enter the contest!!

    inthehammockblog (at) gmail (dot) com


  22. This sounds fantastic!! Thanks, Roseanna!
    kristengjohnson [at] gmail [dot] com

  23. Oh, I'd like to win this book! I loved the trailer and the book sounds great!


  24. I forgot to add that Carman sent me to this blog!

  25. I would love to win this.
    Thank you for the opportunity.
    ~Jen Unsell

  26. Thank you for the chance to enter into this contest! Carman sent me.


  27. sounds like a fantastic read.