Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Author Interview & Giveaway: Julie Lessman

By Ellie Whyte

Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of “Passion With a Purpose” underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. Winner of the 2009 ACFW Debut Author of the Year and Holt Medallion Awards of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational, Julie is also the recipient of 14 Romance Writers of America awards and was voted by readers as “Borders Best of 2009 So Far: Your Favorite Fiction.” She resides in Missouri with her husband, daughter, son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter and is the author of “The Daughters of Boston” series, the “Winds of Change” series, and the “Heart of San Francisco” series.

The following is a 2013 interview with Julie.

PLUS! ENTER THE GIVEAWAY
 Post a comment about this interview at the end of the blog post and enter the Rafflecopter draw for a copy of one of Julie's books. Commenters may enter the draw to receive either a copy of any of Julie's novels in eBook format or a copy of A Light in the Window or Romance-ology 101 in paperback format (blog contributors are only eligible to enter for a copy of Romance-ology 101). A valid comment on the blog is an entry requirement into the draw. Contest open to entrants worldwide, and ends on Friday, 13 December.

·         Tell us a little about yourself.

Well, I’m a baby boomer married to a man who makes me feel like I’m living my own personal romance novel. We have a 29-year-old son and a doctor daughter-in-law (for whom I prayed since my son was a baby) and a precious 15-month-old granddaughter. Our 25-year-old daughter, who graduated from law school and got engaged last year, hates to read so, yes, it’s true—I paid her $20 just to read the first chapter of my first book A Passion Most Pure. I’m happy to say it hooked her, and the rest of the books didn’t cost me a dime! ;)

·         How did you become a novelist, and did you always want to write?

My romance-writing career began at the tender age of twelve when I read Gone With the Wind, after which I immediately sat down to begin my own novel, a 150-page, single-spaced manuscript that is actually the basis for my debut novel, A Passion Most Pure. I was SO hooked on romance after reading GWTW, that when I was in high school, I actually dressed up as a nun to go to a free showing for the local religious and clergy. One of my friends had a sister in the convent, so she loaned us novice habits and off we went! I sat there mesmerized, shoving free popcorn into my mouth as I watched the tug-o-war between Rhett and Scarlett. It was one of the most fun times of my teens … until we ran into the nuns from our high school! Whew, we got into trouble … but it was soooo worth it!

·        
What do you think is significant about Christian fiction?

Are you kidding? It puts God smack dab where He should be—in the dead center of our lives. I am a Christian romance writer, and for me, romance is not romantic unless God is in the middle. For my tastes, there’s nothing “sexy” about sin in a romance novel or movie. I’ve had people tell me that Bridges of Madison County was one of the most romantic films they have ever seen. Come again??? Since when is adultery romantic, no matter the situation! Maybe that’s just me, but I personally can’t enjoy romance (in a movie or book) unless it is according to God’s precepts OR unless it uses sin to point the reader TO His precepts. That’s the reason I LOVE Inspirational Romance so much. And, yes, “faith” (or spiritual passion) is the key component in my novels … with romantic passion hot on its heels!

·         How do you hope your readers react to the stories you write?

The MOST important thing I pray readers take away from my books is the reality of how natural and fulfilling an intimate relationship with God can and SHOULD be. Like breathing. These books may be fiction, but this is NOT a fairy tale here. It is possible to have a living, breathing relationship with the God of the Universe. He’s crazy about us, and if most people really understood that, their lives would turn on a dime and blessings would overtake them. Believe me, I KNOW this firsthand—I used to be a hard, cynical, coarse human being before God pulled me up by the scruff of the neck and said, “Yo, Julie! Get a clue. You’re the apple of my eye!” He’s been the love of my life ever since.

·         What responses to your novels have affected you the most and why?

Deep down in the core of my being, I have a burning desire to reach women like I used to be—women who, yeah, maybe they believe in God, but they are not living for him—not in their lives or in their sexuality. So the responses that touch me the most are those that tell me my books deepened their walk with God.

Like the 15-year-old who couldn’t talk to her mom about anything, she said, until she and her mom found common ground in their mutual love of A Passion Most Pure. Or the guy who contacted me to get a signed copy for a friend he wanted as a girlfriend. When he told her he wanted a deeper relationship with her, she actually made him read A Passion Most Pure because “that was the kind of relationship she wanted, with God in the middle.” Or the woman who’d “fallen away” from Christianity and wouldn’t read Inspirational books on a dare, but picked mine up not realizing it was spiritual. She wrote that A Passion Most Pure rekindled her love for God and gave her hope again. These are stories that I treasure in my heart.One of my favorite stories, however, is the day when I was praying with my prayer partner and her 25-year-old daughter stopped by, a girl I hadn’t seen in a long time but knew that she had strayed from her Christian roots—living with her boyfriend before they got married, not going to church anymore, heavy drinking, etc. This young woman proceeded to tell me that when she read my books, she actually got angry at me. Why? Because the spiritual parts convicted her so much that she wanted to throw the books out. But she didn’t, she said, BECAUSE the intense romantic passion so grabbed her by the throat, that she was compelled to finish the books. And when she turned the last page of A Passion Redeemed, she told me it had brought her up to a whole other level with God. I had tears in my eyes when I learned she is now back at church and trying to live for Him. Call me “edgy” if you will, but for me, it just doesn’t get any better than that.

·         How has being a novelist impacted your relationship with Christ?

Oh, my, it has finally brought me to the place in my life where He has become front and center, as it should be. You see, getting published was an emotional roller-coaster that took me by surprise. Like a lot of unpublished writers, I thought all the anxiety and self-doubt would dissipate after I signed on the dotted line. I mean that would validate me, wouldn’t it? Give me confidence as a writer? But I discovered (AGAIN!) that true confidence is not in accolades from your editor or a really good review, but instead in where your heart is with God. HE is my confidence when my sales rankings on Amazon.com are high or low, which is why I CLING to the following Scripture from 2 Corinthians ll:3, praying it almost every day: Do not let my mind “be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”

·        
As a writer, what influences have inspired you the most to write, and continue writing?

That answer is actually twofold. Initially my inspiration was Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara, because from the moment I read Gone With the Wind at the age of 12, I was hooked on romance. So much so, that I immediately set out to write (along with thousands of other love-struck young girls, I’m sure), what I hoped would be “the great American novel.” Obviously my dreams of grandeur didn’t go anywhere (grin), but I did write 150 single-spaced pages of a story that is actually the basis for my debut novel, A Passion Most Pure. Unfortunately (or fortunately, however you look at it!), almost forty years passed before God breathed new life into that early attempt and inspired me to finish my childhood novel of passion—only this time the “passion” would be for Him!


·         Every writer struggles with various aspects of their writing journey. What has been the most difficult aspect of writing for you, and what come the most naturally?

The most difficult? Research and promotion—YUCK!! For pity’s sake, I just want to WRITE, not comb websites for historical facts or promote a book when it’s finally out on the shelves. I do love connecting with readers in comments, of course, but I’ve had to limit blog interviews because of some pretty tight deadlines lately, which makes me sad, but very necessary if the next book is going to get written!

What comes the most naturally?? Oh, that’s a no-brainer—writing love scenes, of course! I like tension, lots and LOTS of romantic tension, so when I write those scenes, my keyboard is smoking because my fingers fly. In fact, one of my friends wanted to know why I couldn’t just write a nice, “sweet” love scene. Duh, because I would fall asleep! J Even my husband noticed the fast and furious pace of my love scenes—he said he would be meandering along in a nice, easy passage and then, BAM! A love scene would hit, and before he knew it, he was 20 pages down the road!


·         What is one piece of advice you would like to give to aspiring writers - either something you adhere to, or something you wish you had known when you started writing?

Oh, man, the #1 thing I wished I’d known was what an emotional roller-coaster it is AFTER you get published. Like a lot of unpublished writers, I thought all the anxiety and self-doubt would dissipate after I signed on the dotted line. I mean that would validate me, wouldn’t it? Give me confidence as a writer? But I discovered (AGAIN!) that true confidence is not in accolades from your editor or a really good review, but instead in where your heart is with God. HE is my confidence when my sales rankings on Amazon.com are high or low, which is why I CLING to the following Scripture from 2 Corinthians ll:3: Do not let my mind “be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”


·         As a reader, which stories excite you the most to read, and do you have any favourite novelists?

Romance, Romance, ROMANCE!! Call me a boy-crazy juvenile delinquent who was stunted in my teens if you will, but I dearly LOVE romance!! Believe it or not, before I started writing A Passion Most Pure in my 50s, I was a romance snob—one of those professional women who wouldn’t be caught dead reading a romance novel because I didn’t consider it “serious” reading. And then God set me free from my bias when He dropped the bomb on me that the actual desire of my heart was to write romance for Him. What a shocker! Now I wouldn’t be caught dead without a romance novel in my purse or powder room at ALL times!

And favourite authors?? Mmm … now that’s a very dicey subject when there are SO many wonderful authors in the CBA today, many of whom are my good friends. BUT … I will mention two authors whose writing I feel is closest to my own “passionate” style, and they are Laura Frantz and MaryLu Tyndall. Both are very dear friends and prayer partners, but I absolutely love their writing and pretty much have them on auto-buy! J


·         What are some of your most favourite places on the internet to visit, that help challenge you as a writer, and encourage you as a reader?

Well there’s a reallllly great website that I swing by quite a bit called Soul Inspirationz … ever hear of it?? ;)

I would have to say that the #1 website that challenges me as a writer and encourages me as a reader is Seekerville, a group blog to which I belong that is devoted to encouraging, inspiring, teaching, informing, and praying for writers on the road to publication and beyond. Hailed by Writer’s Digest as one of the “101 Best Websites for Writers,” Seekerville is a tight-knit family group of over 1,080 subscribers. We started over six years ago when 13 contest divas kept butting heads in various contests, so much so that we actually recognized each other’s names. Then Ruth Logan Herne and Tina Radcliffe came up with bright idea of joining forces to support each other (and eventually our readers) on the road to publication. When we started none of us were published, although two of us had been contracted. Today, all 13 of us are published and anxious to see our Seekerville friends close behind!


·         What can you tell us about your most recent and upcoming novels?

Well, I actually have three very recent/upcoming releases, so I’ll list them in order if that’s okay:


—My Irish Christmas love story A Light in the Window released last November in ebook and is currently on CHRISTMAS SALE for $ .99. However, I just released the paperback version last month, and let me tell you—it’s gorgeous!! And to prove it, I invite you to check out the fabulous video my artist husband did for A Light in the Window at the link below. AND if you do, you automatically can enter yourself into my VIDEO CONTEST, where you can win having a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy of that book, and a $50 gift card. Here’s the jacket blurb and the contest link:

One Woman. Two Men.
One stirs her pulse and the other her faith.
But who will win her heart?

Marceline Murphy, a gentle beauty with a well-founded aversion to rogues, catches the eye of two of Boston’s most notorious. Patrick O’Connor and Sam O’Rourke are best friends with a bond like brothers … until they meet one woman neither can have.

Overseeing St. Mary’s Christmas play—A Light in the Window—Marcy wrestles with her attraction to both. But when disaster strikes, she’s destined to discover the play’s message firsthand. For although two men have professed their love, only one has responded to the light in the window.



—Book 2 in the Heart of San Francisco series, DARE TO LOVE AGAIN, releases January 1st, so get ready to meet spunky Allison McClare, a woman who has had her heart broken three times and is determined it will not happen again. She’s seeing red and wielding a stick, a dangerous combination when she meets a crotchety Italian police detective whose temper is as loose as hers. Here’s the jacket blurb for this sweet and funny love story that I will warn you, is the sweetest, least passionate of all my books, which means there are very few kisses, but LOTS of romantic tension! ;)

She’s a sassy socialite burned by love.
He’s a jaded cop burned by the upper class.
When sparks fly … will love catch fire again?

Spunky Allison McClare is determined to be a fearless, independent woman. But when she takes a notion to explore the wild Barbary Coast, she quickly discovers she’s no match for the unsavory characters that haunt the dark streets.

Detective Nick Barone would rather do almost anything than teach this petite socialite self-defense, but it seems he has little choice. Sparks fly every time the two meet until a grudging friendship develops into something deeper. But is he just a fraud like all the rest of the men Allison’s cared for? Or the one man she can dare to love again?

—Then finally, I just released a workbook for writers entitled ROMANCE-OLOGY 101: Writing Romantic Tension for the Inspirational and Sweet Markets in both ebook and paperback. Here’s the jacket blurb:

A Kiss Is Not Just a Kiss … Nor is a Sigh Just a Sigh.

Award-winning “Passion Most Pure” expert Julie Lessman tackles the subject of romantic tension in today’s inspirational/sweet markets with humor and heart. Offering tips for ramping up the WOW factor with romance that is both sweet and swoonworthy, Lessman offers tried-and-true methods with before-and-after examples to illustrate the following points:

l Getting Inside the Hero’s Head with Internal Monologue
l  Maximizing Use of Beats in Dialogue
l  Effectively Using Dialogue to Escalate Tension
l  Utilizing Dual Point of View
l  Escalating Romantic Tension with Anger
l  Using All Five Senses For Heightened Effect
l  Cashing in on the Kid and Pet Factor
l  Enhance Mood with Emotionally Charged Words/Verbs
l  Capitalizing on the Element of Surprise
l  Exposing Desire in an Unwilling Character
l  Immediate Hero/Heroine Confrontation
l  Making the Most of Touch and Response
l  Implementing the Concept of Forbidden Fruit
l  Words With a Hint of Taboo
l  Derogatory Words/Exclamations for Inspirational Romance
l  KISS-ology 101: The Many Faces of a Kiss


·         Do you have any parting words?

Yes, thank you SO much, Ellie, for this wonderful opportunity! I LOVE to hear from reader friends, so if they like, they can contact me through my website at http://www.julielessman.com, either by sending an e-mail via my site or by signing up for my newsletter at http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/.

Also, I have a cool blog feature on my website called “Journal Jots” at http://www.julielessman.com/journal-jots1/, which is a very laid-back Friday journal to my reader friends that will give your readers an idea as to my relaxed style of writing. Or readers can check out my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes from each of my books on the “Excerpts” tab of my website at http://www.julielessman.com/excerpts/. Finally, I can be found daily at The Seekers blog at http://seekerville.blogspot.com/, a group blog devoted to encouraging and helping aspiring writers on the road to publication.

And just as an FYI for your readers:

CURRENT GIVEAWAYS/SALES/CONTESTS GOING ON RIGHT NOW: For those interested in reading my books, I have a number of fun things going on, so I hope you’ll take advantage of these opportunities:

l  FREE Download of my debut novel A Passion Most Pure! American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Book of the Year, A Passion Most Pure has 270 five-star reviews on Amazon and some of my readers have actually read it more than 20 times! Here are the links for your free download!  AMAZON, BARNES & NOBLE, iBOOKSTORE, CHRISTIANBOOKSTORE.COM

l  JULIE’S CHRISTMAS VIDEO CONTEST!! Want to have a character named after you in Julie Lessman’s next book, a signed copy of that book, and a $50 gift card? Or maybe your choice of any of Julie’s books, including her new paperback release of A Light in the Window OR her January 1st release of Dare to Love Again? Well now you can, AND get to ogle some rogues in the process, choosing your favorite from Julie’s brand-new video for A Light in the Window. And then, of course, she’s also celebrating the Christmas SALE of her 99-cent ebook for A Light in the Window as well [pricing may differ for readers outside the USA, but the book is still value-priced], so head on over and give it a shot — you’ll be glad you did! Here’s the link:  http://www.julielessman.com/journal-jots1/



PLUS! ENTER THE GIVEAWAY
Post a comment about this interview and enter the Rafflecopter draw for a copy of one of Julie's books. Commenters may enter the draw to receive either a copy of any of Julie's novels in eBook format or a copy of A Light in the Window or Romance-ology 101 in paperback format (blog contributors are only eligible to enter for a copy of Romance-ology 101). A valid comment on the blog is an entry requirement into the draw. Contest open to entrants worldwide, and ends on Friday, 13 December at 10pm AEST/11:59pm NZST

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Visit Julie's Author Portfolio Page at Soul Inspirationz // Christian Fiction Site to find links to her website and other online hangouts, as well as her list of books and a Featured Author Interview.



ELLIE WHYTE is a long-time supporter of Christian fiction and is the founder and owner/operator of Soul Inspirationz // The Christian Fiction Site which relaunched after a 5-year hiatus in January 2013. Ellie also has aspirations for her own writing career, and has begun working on a project set in New Zealand in the 1850s.  http://soulinspirationz.blogspot.com

Website: http://www.christianfictionsite.com
Blog: http://soulinspirationz.blogspot.com 
Facebook: Soul Inspirationz http://www.facebook.com/soulinspirationz
Twitter: @SoulInspiredNZ http://twitter.com/SoulInspiredNZ

118 comments:

  1. "Well, I’m a baby boomer married to a man who makes me feel like I’m living my own personal romance novel." LOVE THIS. I read all of your books as soon as I can get my hands on them. Can't wait to read Dare to Love Again.

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    1. HEATHER, thank you SOOO much, sweetie!! And I JUST got a phone call from a friend saying she's already gotten her copy of Dare to Love Again, and another reader friend said Amazon is shipping them out already, so NOT LONG TO WAIT NOW!!! Hope you enjoy the fun feuding between Alli and Nick.

      And just FYI -- I am currently running a newsletter contest soon where even one review posted on Amazon enters you for a random drawing to have a character named after you in book 3 of the Heart of San Francisco series and a signed copy of that book. PLUS … the top poster also wins a $50 gift card, so if you do post any reviews, DO let me know, okay? The good news is if you haven't posted a review on any of my books in one of my contests before, YOU have a distinct advantage in that you may post a review for all eight books, upping your chances. And you can even post the same 2- or 3-line generic review for each of the books, which makes it easy-peasy! BUT ... if you are not comfortable posting reviews, NO WORRIES!! I am just SO grateful that you read my books in the first place, okay?

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!

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  2. I have just discovered Julie Lessman's books this year so I would love to win another one.
    Thanks so much for the opportunity.

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    1. YAY, SHARON!!! It's SO good to be "discovered"!! And here's hoping we can get another one in your hot, little hands, okay?

      GOOD LUCK!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  3. Hi Julie, welcome to our blog :) It's great to have you visiting with us today. Ellie, thanks for sharing your interview with Julie. I first met Julie online many years ago through the Faith, Hope and Love chapter of RWAmerica. Julie's writing journey is very inspiring because she stuck to her guns, knew her target audience of readers, and didn't remove the romantic tension in 'A Passion Most Pure' (a great read) to make it easier to sell to a Christian publisher. At that time I was writing Aussie contemporary inspirational romances and being told there were limited, if any, market opportunities in the US for my stories. Julie's story encouraged me to keep going and to continue writing my Aussie stories. Thank you, Julie :)

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    1. Oh, WOW, Narelle, that blesses the socks off of me, girlfriend!! Yeah, for better or for worse, I did stick to my guns, although there have been times those guns were knocking against my knees. More than once, I prayed about quitting the Inspy market to give it a shot in the ABA since my brand of "Passion with a Purpose" didn't set well with some readers in the market. But just like the Bible says -- there are many parts to the human body AND the Body of Christ, too, so I may be a stinky foot to some, but a foot that hopefully can jump a ways to extend the circle of Christian readers.

      God bless you, my friend, and thanks for encouraging me too!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    2. Julie, I'm glad you hung in there in the Inspy market because you're blessing the socks off your readers who love your books! We can't please everyone, but if we're writing the stories God has put on our hearts and we have our focus on him, we can't go wrong. Blessings to you, my friend, and thank you for stopping by and chatting with all our reader friends :)

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    3. NO WAY are you a stinky foot, Julie!! Maybe some consider you their Achilles heel, perhaps? Haha! I for one am grateful for your "brand" of romance, and dearly wish it had been in existence back when I was a young adult. I might have made much wiser decisions, perhaps. So who knows how your books are influencing the decisions of other young people these days. Regardless of which part of the Body of Christ you are, you are definitely NEEDED!

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  4. Hi Julie! Welcome from all of us down this end of the earth. I hear you on the research - NOT my favorite thing to do. Mainly because I struggle to find what I'm looking for and like you I want to get into the writing part, bury myself in my characters heads!
    I love that scripture you mentioned - we are the apple of His eye. I pray your readers will continue to grasp this through your writing. Many blessings to you Julie.

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    1. Thanks, CATHERINE ... I love that Scripture about the apple of His eye SO MUCH that I've used it in several of my books. And, yes, research at times can suck pond water, but SO necessary for a historical author, eh? ;)

      Blessings right back, my friend!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  5. I love Julie Lessman, she's now one of my favorite authors. I can't believe she's great friends with Mary lu Tyndal...she's also my favorite authors. Wow, such a small world we live in. You're a great inspiration Mrs. Lessman. I love your work.

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    1. Aw, ANGELICA, thank you SO much. And, YES, YES, YES ... love, Love, LOVE MaryLu Tyndall, so much so that when we first met a few years back, we felt an INSTANT connection and have referred to each other as "sisters" ever since. Ahem ... except I was born WAY first, which kind of ticks me off. :) And if you like my writing and MaryLu's, girl, I sure hope you check out Laura Frantz, because she is AWESOME too!! In fact, the three of us are actually prayer partners, albeit long distance. :)

      Hugs and happy reading!!
      Julie

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    2. Jules, I joined the Motley Crew last night when MaryLu was on TCBN, I just had to go get her book to review, after all I only have the kindle version of it that I will listen to, but I had to get it as you raved so much and I had to hold the real book in my hands !!!!

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    3. Love love LOVE Laura Frantz! I hope to one day write just like her! :-)

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  6. What a wonderful interview. Thank you for sharing a bit of your life and journey as a writer with us! I just read "A Light in the Window" and truly enjoyed it. I just couldn't put it down till I had turned the last page. *happy sigh*.

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    1. YAY, LOUISE ... SOOO glad you enjoyed ALITW and I sure hope you entered my video contest because you get extra points for buying/reviewing it PLUS I also have a newsletter contest going on now, too, where one short review enters you to have a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy, and maybe a $50 gift card, so you go, girl!!

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK in the contest!!
      Julie

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  7. Julie, I loved reading about the responses that you have gotten, especially the story about your prayer partner's daughter. Love how God uses us and our stories!!! :)

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    1. Oh, AMANDA, thank you!! I know -- that is one of my favorite stories because it was SO close to home, you know?

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK in the contest, my friend!

      Julie

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  8. Hi Julie,

    I know about living your own romance novel. ;) I just love you to pieces my friend, and this is another wonderful interview.
    May God continue to bless you and your family!

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    1. I'll tell you what, ANDIE, every single time I see that sweet pic of you and your cowboy, I get a big ole smile on my face because I KNOW just how much your life changed on a prayer!! I love you to pieces too, you sweet thing, and am SO glad our paths have crossed!!

      Hugs and thanks for coming by!!
      Julie

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  9. You know the best part of your interview in my opinion?
    It puts God smack dab where He should be—in the dead center of our lives. I am a Christian romance writer, and for me, romance is not romantic unless God is in the middle.
    God bless you Have a terrific God blessed Christmas
    Chris Granville

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    1. Oh, CHRIS -- AMEN TO THAT!! I seriously cannot read a secular novels hardly at all anymore because God HAS to be FRONT AND CENTER!! He is, after all, the Author of Romance as attested to in Song of Solomon, and I simply am NOT going there -- to romance or anything else -- without Him!!

      Hugs and happy reading!!
      Julie

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  10. I love Julie!!!!!!! and then her books..which led me to Julie!!!!!!! and I love her story about paying her daughter to read....oh man if I got to read, I'd be rich.....but I agree with Julie, about putting God smack in the middle, front and center...anyone who hasn't read Julie's books need to....come away touched by her but mostly by the God whom she loves...

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    1. forgot to enter email..vrush729@aol.com

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    2. VIRGINIA!!!! Girl, you KNOW I love you too, my friend, so THANK YOU for always coming by to support and encourage me. You ROCK, girlfriend!!

      Hugs and Happy Winning!
      Julie

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  11. JULIE JULIE JULIE just when I thought I couldn't love you more you give us more insight into your wonderful heart for GOD! Thank you so much!! I am waiting patiently...well maybe not TOO patiently for Dare to Love Again! lol Thanks for this fantastic giveaway!!

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    1. LOL, TERESA ... do you have any idea just HOW big my smile gets when I see your sweet face in the comments section?? Love you to pieces, my friend, and always appreciate your and the other OWG gals' support. And WHOO-HOO ... a reader friend just called me to tell me she got Dare to Love Again in the mail, so YES, they're on their way!!! Can't wait to see what you think of Alli and Nick!!

      Hugs and thanks for by, girlfriend!
      Julie

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  12. Hi Julie - I love your books. I've been looking for a Christian/inspirational writer that could grab my attention and you certainly do that. I can't wait for Dare to Love Again. I just never know what is going to happen in your books. You always throw some shocking thing in there. You give me inspiration to become the writer God wants me to be. Thanks! :) Peggy

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    1. Aw, PEG, thank you SO much!! And, yeah, I do like those surprises, don't I? I think it stems from when I was a little girl and used to hide around corners for a long, LONG time in my family, just to be able to shock one of them by jumping out to hear them scream. I was a little dickens back then (and still am, only now I put all my dickens-ness into Charity ... ;)).

      Thanks, Peggy, for reading my books, and just FYI -- I am currently running a newsletter contest soon where even one review posted on Amazon enters you for a random drawing to have a character named after you in book 3 of the Heart of San Francisco series and a signed copy of that book. PLUS … the top poster also wins a $50 gift card, so if you do post any reviews, DO let me know, okay? The good news is if you haven't posted a review on any of my books in one of my contests before, YOU have a distinct advantage in that you may post a review for all eight books, upping your chances. And you can even post the same 2- or 3-line generic review for each of the books, which makes it easy-peasy! BUT ... if you are not comfortable posting reviews, NO WORRIES!! I am just SO grateful that you read my books in the first place, okay?

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  13. OH Jules, I know you so well already ! I found this listed on my G+ and well I had to hurry right on over here and ha, here you are with Ellie ! Now see I don't know everything about Ellie yet other then I will be sharing reviews of books with her and she has the most awesome site arround !
    Well just have to say " I love you both " !!!!! and You GO Girls !!!!!
    Blessings
    Linda
    faithfulacresbooks@gmail.com
    Faithful Acres Books
    http://www.faithfulacresbooks.wordpress.com

    PS: Ellie if there is one thing i can say about this and your site, I know my email address and my names for different things I use !!!! wish there was a save feature ! Hint Hint
    And Goodday to all our Aussie Friends !

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    1. LINDA!!! A blog interview would just NOT be complete without you, girlfriend, so thanks for popping by and here's hoping your lucky streak continues ... ;)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  14. A great interview! So much fun to read about authors you love to read. Thanks for sharing your life with us Julie!

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    1. Oh, you bet, JULIE ... I LOVE connecting with reader friends because it's always like one big gabfest, you know? Only I do the most "gabbing," which certainly stands to reason given the length of my books! ;)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      JULIE

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  15. What a fantastic interview, Ellie, thank you... and a big welcome to our part of the 'world,' Julie. We're thrilled you're chatting with us today. I'm so inspired by your prayerful clinging to scripture... "To not let my mind “be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.” I have your Romance-ology 101 on my Kindle, ready for beach reading in a few weeks when we take off for our summer break. Looking forward to sinking in. :)

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    1. Aw, thanks, Dorothy, for taking me to the beach in a few weeks -- that's the only way I'll get there for a while, unfortunately. And I'm beyond THRILLED to be here on this fabulous blog because my Aussie pals are some of my VERY favorites, I assure you!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  16. Enjoyed learning more about you, Julie. Looking forward to reading your novels. Thanks for sharing your story. Blessings!

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    1. Thanks, TINA, and I sure hope you download A Passion Most Pure for free because that's the best way to get started -- either that or A Light in the Window for 99 cents. Both have a good number of 5-star reviews and both have won awards, so they don't bay at the moon, thank God!! :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  17. Hey Ellie and Julie great interview. I loved A light in the Window. Great Christmas book (and shorter than Julies normal epics ;) )
    I love that you prayed for your children's future spouses from birth. I have to say APMP showed that waiting for the right person is important and gave me hope.

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    1. JENNY!!!!!! One of my VERY favorite Aussies!!! Hope things are improving down under, my friend, and THANK YOU for reading ALITW!! I hope you will consider posting a short review so that I can enter you in my newsletter contest to have a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy, and a $50 gift card. Oh, and a review will also give you extra points in my video contest as well, so GOOD LUCK!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    2. Julie I posted a review on amazon etc last year when I read it. (and on my blog).

      Delete
    3. ps I am a baby boomer just by a year.

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  18. I am not a baby boomer. I am 4 years away from it.
    I loved the interview with Julie.
    I would love to win Julie's books
    A LIGHT IN THE WINDOW or ROMANCE-OLOGY 101!
    CherylB1987@Hotmail.com

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    1. AH, CHERYL ..."Generation X"!! Yeah, WAY younger than those Boomers, but I won't hold that against you, my friend. :)

      And like I told Tina above, I sure hope you download A Passion Most Pure for free because that's the best way to get started -- either that or A Light in the Window for 99 cents. Both have a good number of 5-star reviews and both have won awards, so they don't bay at the moon, thank God!! :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  19. I'm reading Love at any Cost right now and loving it, which is no big surprise. I love all your books! I'm excited to read more about Allison in the next book. Laura Frantz and MaryLu Tyndall are two of my favorite authors too!

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    1. Aw, THANK YOU, Tamara -- SO appreciate you reading my books!! And, OH BOY, Alli and Nick's story was SO fun to write, but then I tend to realllllly enjoy the head-butting stories like John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in McClintock and ... ahem ... Mitch and Charity in A Passion Redeemed and pretty much every book they're in! ;) So I hope you enjoy it too.

      Oh, don't get me started on MaryLu and Laura -- LOVE those two gals!! I wish we lived closer so we could coffee klatch. :)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  20. Since when is adultery romantic, no matter the situation! I've read this comment from Julie before and it has struck me as being so counter cultural, but so very true. Julie Lessman is one of my favorite authors. I hope she keeps writting those great blessed books!

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    1. Oh, LINDA, thank you SO much for your sweet comment, and I hope to keep writing those books as long as I can too, so if you'll read 'em, I'll write 'em. :)

      Hugs and happy reading!
      Julie

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  21. Hi Julie, good to see you again, Hope you are ready for Santa Claus because I am thinking that wonderful hubby of yours probably has a special gift in mind....enjoyed seeing this interview, did n't realize that your children were that old...Oh my you must have married very young.
    I would like to read A light in the window if I should win...thanks for sharing

    Paula O(kyflo130@yahoo.com)

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    1. Hey, PAULA ... I am not quite "ready" for Christmas yet, but I'm close. We are big believers in something called Advent Conspiracy, a worldwide movement for which our church was one of the founders. It's about giving "presence" instead of "presents," cutting back to give more of your time to others rather than materialism, so we've cut WAY back on the gift-giving this year, and I am SO glad, opting to spend the extra money on wells in Africa and other pretty important charities. It really helps to put Jesus back into the season since He's the reason, after all. Here's the link if you want to check it out -- it's REALLLY cool!! http://www.adventconspiracy.org/

      LOL ... I try to forget my children are that old because time is moving WAY too fast!! And married young? I wish!! I didn't think I would EVER find someone to love because I was the only one of 13 kids not married until I was 28. Didn't have my first baby till 32 and my second at 37, so you do the math. :)

      I would LOVE for you to read ALITW, Paula, so GOOD LUCK!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  22. Hi, Ellie, & Julie!

    ELLIE - I am SO enjoying visiting this blog, for the first time, & the opportunity to meet so many Australian Christian writers! Your interviews are ALWAYS excellent! I have, also, followed Soul Inspirationz, for some time, & it is one of my very favorite blogs! It is so beautiful, so professionally put together, & offers so much info on Christian fiction authors, & their books - absolutely, love it!

    And speaking of love, don't know anyone I love anymore than you, JULIE! I'm always trying to think of new ways to help promote your books - because when I do, I am promoting the God who gave you that unbelievably, magnificent writing talent, & thanking Him for using you to bless, & inspire, EVERYONE with whom you, & your books, come in contact.

    When I read your books in public (as I was, while in the hospital surgery waiting room, this a.m.) - I am thrilled when someone expresses an interest in what I am reading. It gives me an opportunity to invite them to read your books, tell them all about the Godly woman who writes them, the love she shows to ALL her readers, & most importantly, to give God the opportunity to use your books to change a reader's life by inspiring them to have a deeper spiritual relationship with Him!

    THANK YOU, Julie - your books touch my heart, & reach the depth of my emotions! I pray God blesses you beyond your wildest literary imagination - because of the way you, & your books, bless others!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. BONNIE!!! The page lights up when I see your sweet name, girlfriend, so THANK YOU for always being such an advocate and supporter of of me and my books!! You blow me away with your diligence in sharing, posting, and just lifting me up in prayer. This is not my ministry alone, my sweet friend, but yours as well as a prayer warrior on my behalf.

      Love you!!!
      Julie

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  23. What a wonderful story of your life. How awesome is it to live the love story. You found your prince charming. I to found mine almost 36 years. I now if you treat your mate as he is a king he will treat you as his queen.
    Blessings
    joeym11@frontier.com

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    1. LOL, DIANA ... LOVE THAT!! "If you treat your mate as he is a king he will treat you as his queen." And soooooo very true!! And 36 years??? Well, then, you and I have been married just about the same amount of time, my friend, so you obviously have a "prince" of a hubby as do I!! Oh, WOW, if we could only clone them for others who need the sweet touch of a godly man in their lives!!

      Thanks for taking the time to read my story and GOOD LUCK in the contest!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  24. It's surprising that your daughter isn't a reader! My 2 daughters would probably be knocking down my door to read mine - if I could write!

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    1. LOL, NONNA ... I'm not sure what went wrong because I read and read and read to my kids from babies on, and I myself am a huge reader. And the reallllly weird thing? Both my son and daughter are two of the best writers I've ever come across among young people before, but NEITHER of them likes to read or write. Sigh. BUT ... it's GREAT consolation that my hubby reads every single one of my books, sometimes twice, and absolutely LOVES them!! I'll never forget looking for him one day in the house, only to find him tucked away in our bedroom reading A Passion Most Pure with TEARS in his eyes!! Talk about ROMANTIC!! When your hubby feels the emotions that you do in writing or reading those books, well, I'm sorry, but he's a keeper!! :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  25. What a great interview! I love your point that romance isn't romantic if there's sin involved (adultery, etc.) and am so blessed by Christian fiction! I love to read, but for a while it was hard to find something "good" to read that didn't have a lot of objectionable content. Thanks for your novels (which I'm still discovering--I have a lot to catch up on!) and for the giveaway, too! danandlyndaedwards(at)msn(dot)com.

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    1. Hey, LYNDA, I am so THRILLED you are discovering my novels -- THANK YOU!! And I hope you took advantage of the FREE DOWNLOAD that's going on for A Passion Most Pure right now because that's the best book to get started with, along with A Light in the Window. :)

      Hugs and happy reading!!
      Julie

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  26. I never tire of all you have to share with us, Julie! You caught my attention with the GWTW connection years ago when you were publicizing your first book, because I live in a small town south of Atlanta that tries to claim that it's the home of Tara. Of course, we know that's fiction, but still . . . Actually, it's the site of the Battle of Jonesboro, which is reinacted every fall.

    Loved your interview with Ellie, she asked some great questions. And I'll always love your kind of "edgy" fiction, if that's the term for it. Completely agree that romance is not romance when it's outside of the beautiful way that God intended.

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    1. CAROLE!!! ALWAYS great to see you, my friend, and YES ... that GWTW connection is VERY strong, isn't it?? ;)

      I would definitely say my books are "edgy" fiction, which as we've discussed before, is not for everyone. But there is a definite need for edgy in today's WAY-OVER-THE-TOP edgy world, so this is where God put me. :)

      Hope all is well with you and yours, my sweet friend, and I wish you a happy, healthy, and holy holiday season. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  27. Great interview and excellent questions asked. Had a chuckle though Gone with the Wind is a movie I have never seen. Just never a fan of Clark Gable.

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    1. Oh, DALE ... I forgive you!! ;) But you want to know what? I've never been a fan of Clark Gabe either EXCEPT in GWTW and It Happened One Night. But you really should give GWTW a shot. I mean, come on ... how many romance novels win the Pulitzer Prize for literature???

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK, my friend!

      Julie

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  28. Meant to add Thanks for telling us about Seekerville

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    1. Oh, you are MORE than welcome, DALE ... you will LOVE it, truly, because it's a family environment for writers on the road to publication and beyond. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  29. Julie-
    Thank you for sharing your gift of writing. I recently read "Love at Any Cost" because of my mom's recommendation. I loved it so much I already have #2 pre-ordered! I'd love to read your new Christmas one! Thank you for your commitment to your readers too. It's so nice to see an author who really seems to care about what her fans think!

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    1. Oh, KATHRYN ... BLESS YOU AND BLESS YOUR MAMA!! :) I sooooo appreciate both of you even taking time to read my books when there are so many excellent Christian books on the market. I hope you like Alli's story -- she's a real pistol, so it was a lot of fun to write. Her story is the sweetest, lightest and funniest of the books I've written, so hopefully it will make you smile. :)

      And, Kath, if you or your mom are prone to posting reviews, keep in mind that I am currently running a newsletter contest soon where even one short review posted on Amazon enters you for a random drawing to have a character named after you in book 3 of the Heart of San Francisco series and a signed copy of that book. PLUS … the top poster also wins a $50 gift card, so if you do post any reviews, DO let me know, okay? The good news is if you haven't posted a review on any of my books in one of my contests before, YOU have a distinct advantage in that you may post a review for all eight books, upping your chances. And you can even post the same 2- or 3-line generic review for each of the books, which makes it easy-peasy! BUT ... if you are not comfortable posting reviews, NO WORRIES!! I am just SO grateful that you read my books in the first place, okay?

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  30. Love reading your books and love the interview. Hope I can add some of your values in my own life.

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    1. Aw, thanks SO MUCH, VIRGINIA!! I'll tell you one thing -- every spiritual lesson in my books is something I had to learn the HARD WAY, so I'm glad if I can share the knowledge from my school of hard knocks with you, hopefully to spare you any of the pain I incurred in the learning process. :)

      Hugs!
      Julie

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  31. Love the interview . I love reading your books . I would love to win this book . Thanks
    lizd225(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. LOL ... and I LOVE you for reading my books, you sweet thing, so THANK YOU!! Here's hoping I can send you a signed copy through this contest. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  32. Cant wait to read your books, love it that you put God right in the middle! roseblackard@gmail.com

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    1. Thanks, UNKNOWN, but guess what??? You don't HAVE to wait to read my books because my very first book, A Passion Most Pure, which won American Christian Fiction Writers Debut Book of the Year in 2009 and has 300 five-star reviews, is NOW available for FREE DOWNLOAD on Amazon, B&N, and CBD, so I hope you take advantage, okay?

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  33. I love reading Julie's books and I am sooooo excited for Dare to Love Again's release in January! I got my friend to read Love at Any Cost and she is excited for Dare to Love Again as well :D

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    1. YAY, STARLIGHT ... thank you SO much for reading my books AND hooking your friend in too!! GOOD JOB!! ;)

      I just got my first review on Dare to Love Again on Amazon, and it's WONDERFUL, so I'm really excited to see what you think. And don't forget I have a review-posting newsletter contest going on where even one good review posted enters you to win having a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy, and even a $50 gift card!!

      Hugs and Happy Reading!!
      Julie

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  34. A great interview--always so much fun to learn more about the authors we enjoy reading as well as authors who may be new to us. I am getting close to finishing A Passion Most Pure (I got side-tracked by a couple children's books I needed to read and review....) and I intend to write a review for it--I'm hoping for a win on that "having a character named after you" contest. Thanks Julie for sharing with us and giving us the opportunities to win your contests...
    Vicki

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    1. WHOO-HOO, VICKI .... SO glad you plan to enter my newsletter contest, my friend!! And I'm anxious to see what you think of APMP when you are through, but I do understand having other books you have to read first -- that happens to me ALL the time!! :|

      Well, I wish you GOOD LUCK in this contest AND the newsletter contest, and I assume you've entered the video contest as well, so GOOD LUCK there too!! :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  35. LOVE this interview! Thank you. "Since when is adultery romantic, no matter the situation!" YES - exactly my thoughts. I have a few of your books in my TBR pile, and they just went straight to the top. Looking foward to reading them, and hearing your heart for godly romance come through. Blessings, Amanda.

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    1. YAY, AMANDA!!! SO glad you plan to get to my books sooner rather than later. Just make sure you read A Passion Most Pure first (it's available for free download right now, so I am assuming you have it) since this is a series best read in order due to a number of big surprises, okay?

      Hugs and HAPPY READING!!
      Julie

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  36. Great interview Ellie and Julie. Thanks for sharing. No need to enter me in contest as I have all of Julie's books and love them. As she mentioned her friends are on auto-buy, she is on my auto buy. I really love her writing style and passionate stories.

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    1. SANDRA!!! ALWAYS puts a HUGE smile on my face when I see a fellow Seeker, you sweet thing, so THANK YOU for coming by!! I just bought your new book a while ago, too, -- LOVE'S REFUGE -- and am waiting to get through all the Christmas books I need to review first, but CANNOT WAIT to dive in to yours, my friend!!

      Hugs and more hugs,
      Julie

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  37. Love the interview ! And Julie is so nice person (she was graciously kind to answer my question sent via her page and I was deeply moved by the care she has shown). God bless you ! Janka

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    1. JANKA!!!!! (LOVE that it means Jane ... ;))

      Are you kidding??? I'm "deeply moved" by reader friends like YOU who take the time to read my books AND encourage me through comments and contact. Readers like YOU make all the hard work worth it, I assure you!!

      Good luck, my friend, and here's to a win!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  38. I really enjoyed your interview, Julie. I love how you were able to convince your daughter to read your first novel. It is funny how many times things go like that with our kids.
    All the best,
    Becky

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    1. Thanks SO much, BECKY ... and, YES, it is funny how things go like that with our kids. I have SO many incredible young reader friends (and older ones like myself as well!) with whom I have gotten SO close (some even travel from five states away to come see me because our friendships have developed THAT much!), that they feel like 2nd daughters to me. I laugh because they are CRAZY about my books, and yet my daughter is not a reader AT ALL, nor is my son, so that's the way it goes, I guess. All my sisters and sisters-in-law do read my books, however, which is very nice. :)

      Good luck in the contest!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  39. Love this interview! Julie, I grinned when you said a girl made a boy interested in her read "A Passion Most Pure"! Wow, that must be some book! I'm glad I have it on my Kindle and I can't wait to read it. :-) P.S. I like GWTW too.

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    1. LOL, GWEN ... yep, it definitely made me smile ... especially when he said he enjoyed it even though it wasn't his typical read ... ;)

      Oh, I hope you read it soon, Gwen, because it just got its 302 five-star review, of which I'm very proud because that's hard to do with a such a controversial book (regarding its passion level in the CBA). Uh, not that it doesn't have its fair share of nasty 1-stars because it does, but WAY, WAY fewer, thank God!!

      Hugs!!
      Julie

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  40. Thank you so much for the really interesting review! Believe it or not, I am a Religious Sister and enjoyed the part about dressing as novices! I would so love to win this contest! What really touched my heart was when you wrote several times about God being the center of your life - the center of everything - whether through good times or bad times, etc. I love Christian fiction and do not like books with graphic sexual scenes. And I love God in the center! I am so glad to finally make your acquaintance. Hoping to win.! Sincerely , Sr. Mary Lou K
    flowersmarylou85@gmail.com
    Love the picture your husband provided too!

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    1. WOW, Sr. Mary Lou!!!! It is SOOOO fun to have you comment here, my friend, because so many of my books have priests and nuns in them, which I feel adds SOOOO much depth and richness to the stories in which they appear.

      Sister, I don't know if you have had a chance to get the FREE DOWNLOAD of A Passion Most Pure or not, but I hope you do because I would LOVE to have you read my books! Of course, Father Mac doesn't appear until book three in my Irish-Catholic family saga, but it's worth the wait because I just LOVE HIM!!

      AND right now the best example of great Catholic characters in my books is in my Christmas book, A Light in the Window, which has both a lovable priest and cantankerous but lovable nun who wields a mean ruler. The good news is that ALITW is on sale now for 99 cents, so I hope you consider purchasing it. It's the sweetest of all my books (except for my new one that just came out, which is even sweeter). Here's the video link in case you want to check it out, but that's really the book I hope you start with AND the one I hope you win here today!!

      Here's the link and GOD BLESS YOU for coming by!!

      JULIE'S VIDEO FOR A LIGHT IN THE WINDOW

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  41. Hi Miss Julie! I have to say that you wouldn't have to pay me a dime to read your books so anytime you need an honest opinion or feedback just give me a shout! LOL

    I have to agree with Gone With The Wind. It has always been one of my favorite movies. I'll never forget the line "I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no babies". The sequel was good too but they'll never be another GWTW. I always enjoy reading about you in your own words because you are so REAL and I love that. You always remind me that authors are just normal people with the ability to paint a picture with words. Thank you for the giveaway. You know I'm all about winning a Julie Lessman book! Have a Merry Christmas my friend!

    Wanda Barefoot
    flghtlss1(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. WANDA!!! LOVE that line in GWTW too!! I just read some fun facts on GWTW the other day, and did you know that Scarlett was originally called Pansy in Margaret Mitchell's ms.??? The publisher convinced her to change it, which was one of the smartest moves ever!! She is SO a Scarlett, not a pansy!!

      Wanda -- I have a question for you. Have you read any of my books yet? Because if not, we need to rectify that, so let me know, okay?

      HUGS!!
      Julie

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  42. Julie, what an interview! I so enjoyed getting to know you better through this interview - I love your books, now I know the author behind them better! Keep writing inspirational romances for God, Julie!

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    1. Aw, thanks SO much, THEGREENMOCKINGBIRD ... although I'm pretty sure that's not the short version of your name!! ;)

      I cannot thank you enough for even reading my books in the first place, girl, and for your kind comment. It IS fun getting to know the person behind the books ... AND fun getting to know the person behind the comments, such as you!! That's why I hate the word FAN and NEVER use it because as far as I am concerned, I have "reader friends" instead, who are just women like me that love God, family, and romance. :)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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    2. Thank you, Julie!

      -and it's Courtney :)

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  43. Julie it is so cool to learn more about you and your writing. I love the part about romance and the responses you have gotten from others especially the story about the boyfriend. How cool!

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    1. Hey, BETH, I love that story, too, because it just made me laugh!

      Another favorite story was from a young girl who said she and her mother had a bad relationship and couldn't talk about anything UNTIL they both read my books, and BOOM ... she said that was the beginning of closeness because they could now talk about the stories and lessons within. WOW!!

      Finally, one of my favorite stories is when a pastor dad once contacted me, asking if he could pay for me to come to his daughter's birthday party, which happened to be on the other side of my state since she was on a mission trip of some sort with her church group. I laughed and told him no, I would not accept his money because the look on that girl's face when I walked into that restaurant party was SO worth driving four hours to surprise her. Today, she and I are the dearest of friends, and she drives from five or so states away almost every summer to come see me and stay with me. Other than bringing glory to God with my writing, THAT's one of the greatest things about being an author, and I wouldn't trade it for the world!!

      Hugs and here's to a win, my friend!!
      Julie

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  44. would love to win this giveaway, love your books
    Shirley B jcisforme@aol.com

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    1. Thanks, SHIRLEY, and here's hoping you pull out a win for Christmas, my friend! GOOD LUCK and HAPPY READING!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  45. I love Julie's books. They are fun, enriching, lively, and filled with God. I just reread A Light in the Window and came away with more than last year. I cannot wait to read more of your books, Julie! Many blessings to you!

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    1. REGINA, BLESS YOU!! I just LOVE it when people reread my books because I do too -- once a year right before or after my most recent book comes, starting with the first one. After all, these people are like family to me!!

      And I sure hope you read the DOB and WOC series with the O'Connors, my friend, because if you haven't, you need to download book 1, A Passion Most Pure, for free right now, okay?

      Blessings right back at ya and Hugs!!
      Julie

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  46. I would be ecstatic if I won this book!!!!!! I am anxiously waiting for you, Julie, to begin a series of Southern books!!!!!!!!!!!!! Your love of GWTW makes you the perfect author to place your characters on plantations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Think about that! Then you could write about the conflict of a woman having two love interests, one who is fighting for the north and one who is fighting for the south just as I suggested long ago!!!!!!! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, at least write a single book letting your husband design the cover and create the video for this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Love you so much, dear author friend of mine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Many Blessings and Smiles:)
    Charlotte

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    1. I'm with you, Charlotte--that sounds fascinating! Julie could DEFINITELY bring that to life with her romantic style! ;)

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    2. LOL, CHARLOTTE!! You are like a dog with a bone, girlfriend, but I appreciate that because I really do want to write a book set in Savannah or Charleston someday, so when I do, YOU will get the credit, okay? :) And double LOL ... I think my hubby just got a chest pain over that video remark ... ;)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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    3. And thank YOU, MICAELA, for your confidence in me. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  47. I have recently finished reading A Passion Most Pure (The Daughters of Boston Book #1) and loved it would love to read more by Julie Lessman.

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    1. YAY, MARILYN ... SO thrilled to hear that and I sure hope you consider entering my newsletter contest where one short review enters you to have a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy, and maybe a $50 gift card! Here's the link if you're interested, my friend!! http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  48. I love how Julie mentioned that she is a reformed romance snob! :) I work in a profession that prides itself on its snobby attitude but I proudly read my Christian fiction books! They are a breath of fresh air!

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    1. YAY, KELLY ... you go, girl!!! I am SO glad God changed my heart because romance for Him and in romance novels is what I was meant to do, and I LOVE it ... AND Him!! :)

      Hugs and Happy Reading!
      Julie

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  49. Would LOVE to win another of your books, Julie!! They are so full of faith and plot twists and love...real love. I just love them!
    { HUGS }

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    1. Aw, thanks, MICAELA!! Yep, I am definitely a CDQ (caffeinated drama queen) who likes LOTS of twists and love in my books, so I'm glad you like them too. :)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  50. My favorite thing you said, Julie: "romance is not romantic unless God is in the middle". It's SO true and I love that you use what God gave you to create such impacting and moving stories! Thanks for putting your hand to that. I pray everyone who picks up one of your novels has a God-moment in the midst of reading it. :) I still have a couple of your books I haven't read yet...and I'm most excitedly waiting for book 2 to release in your Hearts of SF series!

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    1. Oh, JO ... thank you SO much, not only for your kind words, but for your PRAYERS as well -- that's what keeps me going, my friend!! And did you know that Amazon is already shipping DTLA??? It's release date is still Jan. 1 for the ebook, though. :(

      Hugs and Happy Reading!!
      Julie

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  51. Loved the interview! :) That is too funny that your daughter is not a reader and you had to pay her to read your first chapter! Wow.... I will cry if my daughters decide they don't want to read books the way I do.
    I have just begun reading your books. I've been reading so many other authors that I just haven't taken the time to read your books. I did read your last book that came out and just loved it! I plan on reading the rest of your books as well. So far I love your work and plan on enjoying every book. I love Marylu Tyndall and Laura Frantz as well. I love the romantic tension in your books and other Christian fiction! It's wonderful to read love stories that aren't dirty. :)

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    1. Hey, BIANCA, thanks SO much for reading my books -- that blesses me! And I sure hope you'll consider entering my newsletter contest where one short review posted enters you to win having a character named after you in my next book, a signed copy, and maybe a $50 gift card, so here's the link if you're interested, but if not, NO WORRIES!! I'm just grateful you read my books in the first place!! :) http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      JULIE

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  52. This interview was great and I related to much of it myself. Except I'm glad my daughters like to read (my granddaughters too)! Oh and the video is outstanding--high quality, just like your books!

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    1. Aw, LAURIE ... what a really sweet thing to say ... THANK YOU!! I have to admit, anything my husband puts his hand to (and he did the video, my website, my ads, etc.) is VERY high quality. He's a very talented artist and I'm blessed to me married to him. :)

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

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  53. I've just started reading and finding out about the author Julie Lessman. Enjoyed the interview. I would love to win The Light In The Window. I've loved what I'm reading about her and what she's written. Thank you for the chance to win this giveaway and please enter my name.
    Barbara Thompson
    barbmaci61(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. Hey, BARBARA, thanks SO much for taking the time to read about me and see my heart. I do write a wee more passionately in my romance novels -- both spiritually and romantically -- but my heart truly is to glorify God, so I hope you will see that when you read my books.

      GOOD LUCK in the contest, and here's to a win. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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  54. I just finished "Love At Any Cost" and was blown away by the ending. Julie you are such an artist at scripting a story but this one is the best yet. I love your work and your passion for people to hear about Jesus as you thread Him through the book. Thank you. Blessings! Darlene

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