Today I’m welcoming author Cindy Loven to Wednesday Writers. Cindy will be giving away a copy of Swept Away to a lucky commentor. A print copy for a USA commentor, or an e-book outside the USA. The giveaway will run from today through noon December 2.
Cindy, please tell the readers about the book that is being showcased today.
Today I am sharing my co-authored book Swept Away, Quilts of Love. This book is a combination of a lot of research and conceptualizing by myself and the talented writing, of my co-author Laura Hilton. I had the pleasure of designing an appliqued quilt top for this story, and wrote about that design, in the book. It is a story of a grandmother wishing to pass on a family tradition. A grandmother with the what appears to be the on-set of dementia or Alzheimer’s. A young man who is broken-hearted over the death of his twin sister, and who is trying to find himself and God on the Appalachian Trail.
I love quilts! Although I’ve never done much appliqué. How did you come up with the concept for this book?
This is a fun question, my dear friend Laura mentioned that Quilts of Love had a call for proposals and wanted to know if I was interested in thinking up an idea, and I love the Appalachian setting, and this idea just blossomed.
What are you working on now? Do you have a release date for this book?
What am I working on now, I am actually more comfortable writing Children’s books, so I have several stories going at this time, none with a publishing date, but I am hoping to see one of them published in the next year.
Do you write in more than one genre? If so, why?
Yes, I do, I write children’s stories, that is my main genre, where I feel comfortable and relaxed. I do write some devotionals, and contemporary fiction, but I keep going back to my stories for kids.
Are you pen and paper writer, strictly computer, or some combo of the two?
This is a fun question, I mainly write on the computer, but I have a notebook called the Book of Lists, where I keep lists of ideas for stories. I also have a little journal I carry around where I am working on a rhyming story, those stretch my brain cells a lot, so it isn’t something I work on daily.
The Book of Lists. Interesting name. I stuff ideas in my phone and on scraps of paper, which I always plan to get around to putting in the computer. Speaking of getting around to it … are you a procrastinator or do-it-now person?
LOL, well it depends on what I am working on, with my PR work that I do, I am a do-it-now, and do it as early as possible kind of person. When it comes to editing, ICK, procrastination is my middle name.
What’s the first book you ever remember reading as a child?
Probably The Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
One of my favorite childhood books, too. What’s the book you are reading now?
The Revealing by Suzanne Woods Fisher, I am a book-reviewer so that changes daily.
How often do you read non-fiction?
Well it is not my favorite genre, I have to say, but I do occasionally read and review non- fiction books. I am doing a study right now called A Wife After God’s Own Heart by Elizabeth George.
I’m always curious about people’s names. Do you know the meaning of your name? If so, does it fit you?
Yes, my name Cindy means light, and I do think it matches my personality.
Tell us a little bit about your hobbies outside of writing?
Which ones, I love to read, and I love to sew and crochet. Making cards is one thing I enjoy doing too. I am super active with a ladies group in my church called the Dorcas Ladies, we do crafts and projects, we just finished up making draw string bags for nursing home patients. I am nearly the youngest lady in the group, but we have so much fun.
You named a couple of my favorite hobbies. Watching movies is a pastime of mine, too. Do you have an all-time favorite movie that has stuck in your mind or that you’d watch over and over?
I adore The King and I with Yul Brenner, etc etc etc.
It’s been a pleasure having you here today. As you say goodbye, can you leave the readers with an encapsulation of your life’s philosophy?
Live your life to the fullest, we are not promised tomorrow. We learned this 5 years ago with the death of our youngest son. Time is too short to fill it up doing things you don’t enjoy. Make the most of what God has given you!
He survived a life-altering event. She is facing one.
Sara Jane Morgan is trying to balance teaching with caring for her grandmother who doesn’t want to be cared for. When school lets out for the summer, the plans are for Grandma to teach Sara Jane to quilt as they finish up the Appalachian Ballad quilt Grandma started as a teenager. But things don’t always go as planned.
Andrew Stevenson is hiding from his past—and his future. He works as a handyman to pay the bills, but also as an artisan, designing homemade brooms. When Sara Jane’s grandmother hires him to renovate her home, sparks fly between him and his new employer’s granddaughter.
It doesn’t take Sara Jane long to see Drew isn’t what he seems. Questions arise, and she starts online researching him. What she discovers could change her life—and her heart—forever.
Excerpt from Swept Away
Sara Jane Morgan gasped for breath, scanning the crowded pathways. Everyone showed up for the Heritage Festival, which was good for the artists and vendors, but bad for her.
Especially considering . . .
No. She couldn’t voice her concerns. At least not yet. But losing a loved one in this mob would cause anyone to panic. This was why mothers kept their toddlers locked securely in strollers and older children attached to harnesses with straps.
But one couldn’t exactly fasten a grandmother to a leash. And Sara Jane, being a grown woman, shouldn’t be having a panic attack.
She pulled in a shaking breath and forced herself to calm down. She could handle this. Stepping to the side of the paved walkway, she let a woman pushing a double stroller pass, then
a man driving a motorized wheelchair. She feigned interest in the open-air tent beside her. A display of corncob dolls. People still made them?
Well, this was the Appalachians. There were tourists here from all over the country who expected to find mountain handcrafts for sale.
She merged into the crowd and peeked into the next tent, making sure to get a look at the people inside. This one showcased CDs and DVDs by Appalachian musicians—or rather, one particular group. Pretending to shop while scanning the customers, she lifted a case off the rack by the entrance and looked at the picture. Banjos, played by guys in overalls. She
put it back.
Another booth held pocketknives, hunting, fishing, and utility knives. Grandma wouldn’t be here. Mostly men anyway.
She moved on.
The tent next to it held screen-printed t-shirts . . .
Panic filled her again. Grandma had wandered further than she expected. How long had she been missing before Sara Jane realized she’d gotten lost? She pushed her way past a few people
holding a conversation in the middle of the sidewalk. She caught a glimpse of a uniformed Boy Scout. Weren’t they supposed to help people? He disappeared into the throng before
she caught up to him.
Sara Jane went on to the next display. Oh. Wow. Brightly colored quilts. This was where she would have expected to find Grandma. She loved to quilt and belonged to the Christian Women’s group at church. But Grandma wasn’t with the women oohing and ahhing over the quilts.
Maybe. A gray-haired woman stood off to the back, head bowed as she studied the stitching. No, she wasn’t Grandma. Her hair was a different cut, and she wore a green t-shirt and a
blue jean skirt. Sara Jane would come back and check this tent again later, in case Grandma made her way here.
The next tent was completely enclosed; the canvas doors tied open with twine. Sara Jane poked her head in, ready to rush on. The tent was void of people except for two, a man and
Expelling a breath she hadn’t realized she held, Sara Jane grasped the edge of the tent door, and forced herself to look around.
Grandma was in here. With brooms. Whoever knew there were so many ways to make a broom?
The man behind the table looked as bushy as his wares. His shaggy brown beard hung down to his collar, and a rumpled button-up shirt draped over his blue jeans. His hair was
almost as long as his beard. He looked up as she entered. His eyes reminded her of dark chocolate.
Grandma stood beside the scruffy-looking man, holding a piece of paper, saying words Sara Jane couldn’t catch due to the sudden rush of blood in her ears.
She turned. “Oh, there you are, Sara Jane. I hired Andrew to do some odd jobs around my house since I’m thinking of selling. Doesn’t he have the cutest business card?” She held out the cardstock.
Sara Jane took it and gave it a cursory glance. Starving artist/ pay the bills handyman in bold, colorful print topped the card.
Andrew Stevenson. Followed by a phone number, and a picture of a bright red tool box. She handed it back to Grandma.
The adjective didn’t apply to the owner of the card.
“Grandma, don’t you think you’d rather hire someone we actually know to do the repairs?”
About the author:
Cindy Loven, an avid reader all her life, is seeing her dreams fulfilled, with the publication of her first novel, Swept Away Quilt of Love. She co-authored this novel with Laura V. Hilton. Born and raised in Arkansas, she loves her home state and is happy to live there with her husband of nearly twenty-nine years and her adult son. She and her family are very active in their local church, serving in many volunteer positions. She and her husband are very serious about informing parents about the dangers of the choking, after loosing their youngest son to this dreadful ‘game’ in 2009. When not busy with church or her job as a “pr gal” for another author, you can find Cindy in her craft room, ,sewing, crocheting or making cards.
Where to find me on the web:
Twitter handle: @cndloven