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Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing gardens—aka their books.

This week’s guest is Christa MacDonald, who’ll be sharing a bit about her New England garden. Welcome, Christa!

Lettuce

I love this season of the garden. The days are getting shorter and after dark there’s a bit of a nip in the air. Summer is drawing to a close. It’s time to reflect on which plants were successful this year, what worked and what didn’t. Right off I know that I started too late. I thought I could get the seeds going at eight weeks prior to last frost and be fine, but it was late in August before I had a ripe tomato crop. That’s not what I had in mind when I decided to grow from seed this year. I’m asking for a portable greenhouse as a Christmas present and I plan to make good use of it next Spring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunflower bed                                                                   Tomato

After watching my clematis underperform for the third year in a row I’ve decided to move it. The oak tree in the front yard was small when I first planted the clematis, but now it towers above, shading it completely. The plant is not happy and neither am I, so it’s got to be moved. I’m not going to tackle that until Spring though. I want to give it the best chance possible and even though it’s possible to move it in late Autumn, it’s not the best time.

  Zapotec Tomato

September and October in New England have a special kind of urgency. It’s harvest time and we all know winter is coming. For now we get to enjoy the fruits of our labor while storing what we can for the cold months ahead. The farmers markets are full and every meal has garden goodness in it. I wish I was better at canning so I could take advantage of all the bounty available. It’s not in my skill set, instead I’ve made batches of sauce, pies, and have frozen the fruits that can take it.

Writing has its seasons just like gardening. In August the final installment of my contemporary Christian romance series was published. The fruit of my labor is now out there for people to read. It’s time for me to sit back and assess what worked and what didn’t and plan the next book. This series was the debut of my first full-length novel which went on to be a finalist in the ACFW’s Carol award for contemporary fiction. I learned a lot about myself as an author and about the publishing world. There were times I struggled with meeting deadlines, with learning how to promote a book, with figuring out the balance between life’s demands and my writing career.

I don’t have it all figured out. Just like gardening, I try new things and hope they work. And also like gardening, I’m taking what I’ve learned and plotting out the road ahead. Spring is coming and I’m excited to see what I can create. There’s fertile ground and I can’t wait to make use of it.

 

About the Writer/Gardener:

Christa MacDonald is a lifelong gardener and writer living in New England despite its terribly short growing season. She’s the author of the Sweet River Redemption contemporary Christian romance series. The final book in the series, The Redemption Road, is now available. Connect with Christa at  www.christamacdonald.com

 

The Redemption Road

by Christa MacDonald

It’s redemption that he needs, and she’ll pay any price to help him find it.

As the new game warden in Sweet River, Alex Moretti is focused on enforcing Maine’s wildlife laws and little else. Moving from tragedy to a fresh start, all he wants is a way to fix his life in the tranquility of the north woods. Until he meets Annie Caldwell at Coffee by the Book. But his own bitter, dark life is a threat to Annie’s sweetness and light. It’s better for him to stay away.

Annie doesn’t know how to label her relationship with Alex, but she is determined to figure it out. After a few false starts and a kiss under the Christmas lights, their romance goes from fiction to fact. Annie has fallen hard. Then trouble shows up. Someone is stalking Alex, seeking to punish him for a mistake which ended in deadly consequences. When Annie becomes a target, he tries to push her away, but she won’t abandon him. Alex is desperate to keep Annie safe while he attempts to reconcile the past, but what he really needs is redemption. And she will risk her life to help him find it.

Look for The Redemption Road at Amazon