I had just parked in the lot of Turkey Hill Experience when I saw that I'd missed a call from Oregon. Since my grandma (in-law) lives in OR I thought maybe she was calling me to discuss plans for her visit and was using a number I didn't have stored in my phone. I texted her to ask her and to tell her that I was just ready to head into a field trip. She said she hadn't texted.
Just then the call comes through again.
In the time it took me to slide the strip on the bottom of my smart phone I realize what day it is...the 26th...RITA announcement day.
It couldn't be.
My heart was pounding when the lady on the other end told me that my novel Promise to Return was a RITA finalist! I nearly dropped the phone when she said it was a double finalist! Best First Book and Inspirational Romance.
She congratulated me, gave me a few instructions, and then we hung up. I instantly turned around in my van and told my 2 daughters (6 & 3) Mama's big news. They instantly started celebrating and telling me how proud they were...no, they didn't. They looked at me like I was crazy and asked "what's a RITA?"
With shaky hands I called my husband and then my mom. Then I realized I was late to the homeschool field trip I'd traveled that morning to attend! I needed to go!
The rest of the day was just a daze...but I did have ice cream and when I talked to my amazing agent Natasha Kern, she screamed with excitement at the news. I love her.
Sometime during the day I sneaked away to check on my iPhone what other books were finalist in my categories. Four other debut authors for Best First Book and only one other in Inspirational Romance. The common denominator was Carla Laureano. She is also a double finalist!
Carla and I met this fall at the annual ACFW conference. Since then, I've just heard such amazing things about her book Five Days in Skye that I'm completely humbled to be finalists along side her. I have her book in my kindle and I cannot wait to read it. It's contemporary romance and mine is historical amish romance...yeah, the books couldn't be more opposite. But that's the great part about inspirational romance...you can find whatever you're looking for.
I am truly thankful to God, the AUTHOR of the Great Romance, for giving me this opportunity. I want to glorify HIS name through it all.
Speaking of Carla...how would you like to read her book...and mine!?
BOTH BOOKS are up for grabs here in this giveaway. Both will come directly from Amazon so they will not be signed...or you can choose to receive an ebook version instead of the paperback. If you're the lucky winner, let me know how you prefer to read!
Then you can enjoy both books! And...with this giveaway underway I promise not to constantly talk about the RITAs! The winners are announced in July in sunny San Antonio.
For a complete listing of 2014 RITA Finalists—click HERE!