Thursday, May 24, 2018


-- 'Cowboys of Summer' --
~Post Includes Interview with Sherri Shackelford,
Author Bios, Book Blurb & Giveaway~

Title: Cowboys of Summer 
Authors: Mary Connealy, Lorna Seilstad, Cheryl St. John, Missy Tippens, Tina Radcliffe & Sherri Shackelford 
Publisher: Self 
Release Date: May 1, 2018 
Genre: Sweet Contemporary Romance / Western
Links*: Goodreads l Amazon

JUNE: Welcome to 'Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic', Sherri. I've enjoyed reading several of your books, especially the Christmas stories. In particular, I liked 'The Rancher's Christmas Proposal' and 'Mistletoe Bride'. What kinds of research do you gather about the Christmas customs/traditions, clothing, setting, and daily life (i.e., food preparation, housekeeping, transportation, etc.) of your chosen era before you begin writing your books?

SHERRI: I’m so glad you enjoyed those books! Thank you!! I love, love, love writing books set in the winter. There’s something terribly romantic about curling up in front of a warm fire while a blizzard rages outside.

One of the best tools of research is reading. I read a lot! Although I don’t read as much as I did before I became a writer, I just don’t have as much time anymore. One of my favorite resources is discovering the diaries of pioneer women. Nothing replaces the wonderful detail and insight of people who actually lived during that time.

That being said - I’ll admit I did log a lot of hours of Little House on the Prairie and When Calls the Heart. Historical authors have to battle perception versus reality. Did you know that ketchup has been around since the pioneer days? Ketchup was invented around 1812. I wrote ketchup into a book once and got angry letters. People just couldn’t believe the condiment was around back then! I learned my lesson about perception vs. the truth.

JUNE: As a fan of historical fiction, I appreciate and admire the efforts authors in those genres to be factual within their fiction. If that makes any sense!
JUNE: When did you declare, to yourself or to others, that you wanted to be an author? What led you to want to write fiction?

SHERRI: I came to writing late in life. I know most authors knew what they wanted to do as toddlers, but I wasn’t one of them. I was an avid reader. I’d read 15-20 books a month. I used to write my out-of-town relatives letters. (On actual paper, no less!) People would tell me that I was a wonderful storyteller, and that I should write a book. One day I decided – what have I got to lose?

This is where ignorance is bliss. Thankfully, I didn’t know or understand what an impossible trip I was embarking on. I spent the next four years slogging away through rejection after rejection after rejection. Then one day, things just sort of clicked. I had an idea for the opening of a story. The rest is history…

To this day, I need to see the beginning of a story before I start putting pen to paper. (Or fingers to keyboard.) I’ll start with a grain of an idea, and then mull it around for a while. The characters come into play, and I decide on their motivation. After that, I have to see the opening scene. Once I can picture how the story starts – I’m off to the races!

I do some plotting, and some seat-of-the-pants writing, but I always have a general idea where the story is going.

JUNE: I can certainly relate to the rejection cycle. I'm so glad it all clicked for you so that your readers, including me, can enjoy your engaging stories.
JUNE: Please share whether or not you have written, or would like to write, in genres other than historical romance. Would you ever consider writing non-fiction? If yes, what would be your subject matter?

SHERRI: Funny you should ask that question…this novella series kicks of a new adventure for me. After writing historical novels for Harlequin Love Inspired for five years, the line closed unexpectedly. After much soul-searching, I’m trying my hand at contemporary romantic suspense.

Since I like my publisher and my editor, I stuck with them. My first Love Inspired Suspense novel comes out in January of 2019 – No Safe Place. Writing in a new genre has been challenging. As an author, you develop a certain rhythm in your writing. I had to start all over and learn a new rhythm!
JUNE: Do you outline your books before you begin the task of putting words on paper (or typing on your computer) or do you create the story as you write? Do you always know the ending of a book before you begin writing the manuscript?

SHERRI: Whoops! I should have read ahead. I started answering that question above. Mostly it’s a bit of both. Believe me, I sincerely wish the story came to me entirely formed. That doesn’t happen. As I get to know the characters, they often take the story in unexpected directions.

For a long time, I fought my process. I kept thinking my way wasn’t the ‘right’ way. I finally realized that whatever is working for the author is the ‘right’ way. There’s no good or bad method—whatever works for you is what’s good! (And don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.)

JUNE: That's great advice for anyone who is writing, designing, or creating anything from scratch.
JUNE: From reading the Author Bio on your website it sounds as if you are a busy woman! Assuming you have any spare time, what do you enjoy doing for pleasure?

SHERRI: I’d like to say that things are settling down these days – but I’d be lying! Just when I think things are settling down, there’s always something else to be done. These days, I Netflix and chill in winter, and Netflix and grill in the summer.

I want to take this opportunity to thank Reading, Writing and Stitch-Metic for hosting me today! Authors couldn’t survive without bloggers spreading the word about good books. We appreciate the time and effort it takes to write a review. Your contributions make a difference!

Thank you!

JUNE: You are entirely welcome, Sherri. It was my pleasure to chat with you and learn more about your writing process. Please join me again when your new book comes out in January, 2019. Then we can talk about the differences between the historical and suspense genres!

--Sherri Shackelford
is an award-winning author of inspirational, Christian romance novels for Harlequin/HarperCollins Publishers.

A wife and mother of three, Sherri’s hobbies include collecting mismatched socks, discovering new ways to avoid cleaning, and standing in the middle of the room while thinking, “Why did I just come in here?” A reformed pessimist and recent hopeful romantic, Sherri has a passion for writing. Her books are fun and fast-paced, with plenty of heart and soul. Look for her new adventure in Love Inspired Suspense, No Safe Place, in stores January of 2019.

CONNECT WITH SHERRI: website, facebook, twitter
--Mary Connealy writes "romantic comedies with cowboys" and is celebrated for her fun, zany, action-packed style. She has more than half a million books in print. She is the author of the popular series Wild at Heart, Kincaid Brides, Trouble in Texas, Lassoed in Texas, Sophie's Daughters, and many other books. Mary lives on a ranch in eastern Nebraska with her very own romantic cowboy hero.
Photo Courtesy of Ginger Murray Photography

CONNECT WITH MARY: website, facebook, twitter, instagram
 You can also find Mary at these sites: Seekerville and Petticoats & Pistols
--Lorna Seilstad has called Iowa home her whole life. She received her B.S. in education from Lubbock Christian University. After her first child was born, she stopped teaching and became a professional wiper. “I wiped noses, tears, skinned knees, baby’s bottoms, and countertops every day. But at naptime, I wrote.” Today, she writes historical fiction with a generous dash of humor.

CONNECT WITH LORNA: websitefacebook
--Cheryl St. John is the award-winning author of more than fifty Harlequin and Silhouette books, as well as several independently published books. Her book Writing With Emotion, Tension & Conflict by Writer's Digest is a popular seller. Cheryl has always loved the exciting and diverse worlds available between the covers of books. As a child Cheryl wrote stories and drew covers, then stapled them into little books. She cut all the tiny book images from the book club advertisements in the Sunday paper and glued them to bits of cardboard so Barbie® had a full library.

Cheryl believes in paying it forward, and her some of her most rewarding experiences have been sharing in the successes of writers she has coached over the years.

Cheryl loves hearing from readers. You can email her at StJohn[at]aol[dot]com.

CONNECT WITH CHERYL: website, facebook, pinterest

--Born and raised in Kentucky, Missy Tippens has lived in Georgia for the last 25+ years. She is a pastor's wife and mom of three. A former microbiologist and teacher, she now focuses on her writing.

After more than ten years of working toward publication, Missy finally made her first sale of a novel in 2007. She feels very blessed to be working at home in her dream job!

CONNECT WITH MISSY: website, facebook 
You can also find Missy at these sites: Seekerville and Yankee Belle Cafe

--Tina Radcliffe is a two-time RWA Golden Heart finalist, a 2012 ACFW Carol Award finalist, a 2014 ACFW Mentor of the Year finalist, a 2014 Golden Quill finalist and a 2014 ACFW Carol Award winner. She has won first place in over twenty RWA chapter affiliated contests in her career. Tina is also a short story writer and has sold over twenty-five short stories to Woman’s World Magazine. She currently resides in Arizona where she writes fun, heartwarming romance. Find her at where you can sign up for her newsletter so you don’t miss her fun giveaways and bad jokes.
CONNECT WITH TINA: website, facebook, twitter, pinterest, instagram

As the summer weather sizzles, relax by the pool with stirring tales of handsome cowboys and the spirited ladies who wrangle them into romance. Six of Christian fiction’s most beloved authors join forces to bring you a collection of humorous, romantic and heartfelt novellas set against the sultry heat of summer.

In Mary Connealy’s, “Dr. Tess and the Cowboy”, sparks fly when Dr. Tessa Rhoades discovers dinosaur bones on Joe Holt’s ranch and decides to excavate—even if that means kicking Joe off his own land.

In “Hometown Girl” by Cheryl St.John, injured rodeo champion Justin Cooper returns to the sleepy Oklahoma town he escaped for fame and fortune--and takes his biggest tumble yet--straight into the arms of Stevie Marshall, his first love who soon has him questioning his life choices.

In Tina Radcliffe’s, “Lake Effect”, cynical cowboy Tucker Jackson knows he’s in trouble when he starts counting the days until the end of summer and praying ‘summer girl’ Jessica Richards will find a home for her heart in Paradise.

In "His Lone Star Heart" by Missy Tippens, rancher Zeb West tries hard not to fall for Beecher Brown, the feisty but off-limits sister of his best friend. As she tries to prove she's capable of running her family's ranch--the one he's trying to buy--he might just find he's met his match...for life.

Will Lorna Seilstad’s characters make “Great Strides” when Dana Etherton, the owner of a horse therapy ranch, must choose between the kids she serves and Adam Malone, the embezzler who’s been assigned to do community service there?

When Paige Monroe agrees to draw the press away from a country star’s wedding by pretending to be the look-alike bride, she wasn’t counting on having very real feeling for her decoy fiancΓ©, Sterling Tanner. In Sherri Shackelford’s, “The Decoy Bride”, two people feigning love forget they’re acting.



The authors of Cowboys of Summer are giving (1) winner:
(1) $25 Amazon Gift Card
(1) 'I Trust in God's Unfailing' Mug
(1) Reading at the Cafe Candle from Frostbeard Studios

Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight May 21, 2018 and last through 11:59 PM on May 28, 2018. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize.
Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.  
ENTER HERE or use the Entry Form below 
Be sure to stop at a stop each day for extra entries!

TOUR SCHEDULE For the full schedule, head to the
JustRead launch page or Just Commonly blog.

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
-- Saturday, May 26th: Blitz for 'Loving Grace'. Event hosted by JustRead Publicity.

-- Monday, May 28th: Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday Memorial Day Feature honoring Memorial Day. I will feature a non-fiction book entitled, 'Arlington National Cemetery'.

-- Tuesday, May 29th: Book Blast for 'A Gentle Heart'. Blast includes a $50 giveaway. Event hosted by I Am A Reader.

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  1. Replies
    1. Hi, Kim ~ So glad to hear you enjoyed the interview! Thanks for stopping by my blog. Best, June

  2. thank you for hosting today. what a great interview. i too love to curl up with a book on a cold winters day. my husband and i both read the books When Calls The Heart and saw the series on tv. I appreciate the fact that authors do research. I learn a lot this way. wow how cool that ketchup was made that long ago. Sherri good luck on writing contemporary.

    1. When Calls the Heart is 'must see' viewing!!! Great show :)

    2. Hi, Lori ~ Thank you for sharing your thoughts here. I love reading historical fiction because it feels like I'm learning at the same time I'm enjoying the story. I appreciate your stopping by my blog again. Best wishes, June

  3. June, what a lovely virtual home you have! Thanks for supporting this collection!

    1. Oh, Tina ~ Your compliment about my virtual home made me smile--broadly! Thank you so much for your kind words. It was my pleasure to feature this collection here as I have enjoyed the work of each of you talented authors in the past. Warmest regards, June

  4. Thank you both for the interview! Thanks for joining the tour!

    1. Hi, Annie & Carrie ~ It was my pleasure to be on the tour as this was a fun post. I liked getting to know more about Sherri since I've enjoyed several of her Love Inspired historicals in the past. All my best, June

  5. Replies
    1. Hello, Sherri ~ You are entirely welcome. Thank you for stopping by to post your appreciation. Hope you liked the feature! Warmest regards, June

  6. June, thanks for taking part in our tour! I really enjoyed the interview. Sherri, I, too, was first encouraged to write after sending out a Christmas newsletter. :)

    1. Welcome, Missy ~ You're welcome for my participation in this tour, and I'm so happy you enjoyed our interview. Funny how those newsletters, blog posts, and correspondence to friends and family work to refine our writing skills. Sincerely, June

  7. I'm so sad the Love Inspired Historical line was shut down! I'm looking forward to seeing where my favorite authors from there go with their writing and publishing.

    1. Welcome, Heidi ~ I was so surprised when this imprint was closed. I'll be on the look-out for my favorite authors to see where they land because I just don't want to give up reading their great stories. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Best, June

  8. This looks really good; ty for the giveaway.

    1. Hello, Kara ~ Isn't the cover on this book stunning? I hope you get a chance to read 'Cowboys of Summer' soon. You're welcome for the giveaway--good luck! Sincerely, June

  9. Replies
    1. Hi, Caryl ~ Thanks so much! I'm glad you enjoyed the interview. Sherri was so gracious and forthcoming with her responses. Thanks for visiting my blog; I hope you come back again soon. Best, June

  10. Thank you for being part of the book tour for 'Cowboys of Summer'. Enjoyed reading the interview with Sherri Shackelford. I would love the opportunity to read this book.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

    1. Welcome back, Kay ~ You're welcome; it's always fun to promote books by awesome authors whose writing I've enjoyed over the years. I'm glad you enjoyed the interview with Sherri. Regards, June


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