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How to Become a (Romance) Author

Posted by Julie on October 22, 2016 in ACFW, encouragement, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, Writing |
How to Become a (Romance) Author by Julie Arduini
This is part of my Fall Book Club discussion Tuesday nights, 8pm, EDT at http://facebook.com/JulieArduini/Author. I’m going through my first contemporary romance, ENTRUSTED, and also sharing writing tips and behind-the-scenes info on the characters, chapters, plot, and the Adirondack Mountains. I just started, so feel free to grab your copy and join me!

Entrusted, from idea to tangible book, took twenty years. Don’t let that be you!
I’m not sure my journey into contemporary romance is normal, but I thought I’d share my experience into how ENTRUSTED came to be and see if you can glean anything to encourage you.
One thing I know isn’t normal but it seems to mark the authors from the rest of the world is that I was always asking questions. There was one I was constantly putting out there as an observer in life.
“What if?”
What if that goodbye in the airport is a break-up?
What if that phone call in a parking lot is the start of a reunion?
I was, and continue to ask the “what if” question everywhere I go. From there, story ideas take a life of their own. It gets the creative juices flowing. Take it a step further and journal those thoughts.
1. Ask “what if” to people you see in everyday places and let your creativity flow. Journal where your mind takes you.
I was a recent college graduate the first time I visited the village of Speculator in the Adirondack Mountains. As my friend walked me around, I pictured Ben and Jenna and asked myself, “What if Jenna moved here from somewhere else and wanted to belong?” “What if Ben owned the grocery store and had lived here forever, and resented change—including a new girl in town?” That’s the genesis of ENTRUSTED.
Years passed thanks to marriage and kids, but the desire to write never truly went away. About ten years ago I took a course from the Christian Writer’s Guild and I wrote articles and flash fiction for FaithWriters.
2. Never stop learning. Read books on the writing craft. Read books by authors in your genre. For me, I read a lot of craft books by authors associated with Writer’s Digest. I signed up for blogs that featured writing tips and read them. I joined American Christian Fiction Writers, ACFW, and joined critique groups. ENTRUSTED was more than one draft. I think it might have been five. If you truly want this, you will persevere through the red marks, suggestions, and parts you know have to go.
3. Write! It sounds easy, but this remains my biggest challenge. I let my mind get the best of me and convince myself I’m wasting my time. If you are called, you’ll be equipped. You can do it, but only if you actually write. If being at home is a problem, set office hours. Go to the library. But take yourself and your writing seriously. Your book will never be published if you don’t write it. ENTRUSTED, from idea to tangible book, took 20 years. TWENTY. YEARS. That doesn’t have to be your story.
I’d love to hear from you!

Author Julie Arduini
You can find me at http://juliearduini.com where there are free resources on the left sidebar. I’d love if you followed me on Amazon and Goodreads. I enjoy connecting on social media @JulieArduini, including Snapchat. Please find me and say, “Hey!”

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Goodreads Giveaway Winner!

Posted by Julie on August 30, 2016 in encouragement, Julie Arduini |

You guys!

I received an email letting me know that my Goodreads giveaway was over and the winner is from the US.

goodreads_icon_32x32-f8a49661f7386bd75e9926f4f302e9a3

There is a Goodreads Giveaway Winner!

The message also let me know 790 of you entered to win.

This is my first time ever doing this. I researched and decided to try one winner, but open it up to someone in either the US, Canada, UK or Australia.  For 790 of you to enter, that blesses me.

If you entered and didn’t win, no worries. I am offering ENTRUSTED and ENTANGLED as FREE ebooks September 23/24 and October 7-9. Check the price as the promotion usually starts after 12am PACIFIC time. 

You guys are amazing. If you’ve read ENTRUSTED and/or ENTANGLED and enjoyed it, would you be kind enough to leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads?

Thank you. I truly appreciate all your support.

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Love Your Spouse Challenge, Day 5

Posted by Julie on August 20, 2016 in About Me, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |

All this week I’ve been sharing my posts from the recent Facebook Love Your Spouse Challenge. My prayer is I encourage you with a realistic look at marriage. That you can choose oneness and isolation and beat the odds. I believe in you!

LOVE YOUR SPOUSE CHALLENGE, Day 5

This picture is from a cruise we took to Mexico to celebrate our 15th anniversary. From infertility to nearly losing a child to death of a parent and lots of transition, we had overcome so much that should have divided us. Anything we learned came from the FamilyLife Marriage Conference, something we attended as an engaged couple. The biggest principle we still work to apply is to choose oneness. Any relationship has two choices—isolation or oneness. Marriage has to operate in oneness. This was a celebration trip for sure.

***

Don’t Miss out! Click below to learn more about my Goodreads Giveaway.

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Entangled by Julie Arduini

Entangled

by Julie Arduini

Giveaway ends August 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

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Celebrate Summer with a FREE and .99 Read!

Posted by Julie on June 19, 2016 in About Me, Julie Arduini |

Oneday_editedNOTE: If you receive this blog via email, the sale might already have started.

Although Ohio has seen 90+ temps already (and snow in May,) it is now summer. One of my favorite things to do is watch our daughter swim and have a book on the deck.

And now, I want to put a couple books in YOUR hands.

If you enjoy the feel of a “real” book, I priced ENTRUSTED and ENTANGLED so you could buy both and spend less than $20. Typically, you would see a full length novel sell for $15 each. I believe that much in these stories getting to people and changing lives.

If you have a Kindle, or a tablet, laptop, desktop or phone that you use for reading, I am having a sale on the ebook versions of ENTRUSTED and ENTANGLED Monday, June 20 and Tuesday, June 21. Remember, if you don’t have a Kindle, download the FREE Kindle app to your device and start reading!

ENTRUSTED will be FREE. Yep, no cost at all.

ENTANGLED will be .99. You can purchase both books in the Surrendering Time Series (book 3, ENGAGED, due later this year) for .99 ebooks. That’s how to say hello to summer!

About ENTRUSTED:

ENTRUSTED will be FREE (ebook/Kindle version) Monday, June 20 and Tuesday, June 21.

ENTRUSTED will be FREE (ebook/Kindle version) Monday, June 20 and Tuesday, June 21.

Purchase Link: http://ow.ly/RGOs301mVag (Please check to make sure you’ve selected preferred format, and that the ebook sale started. It is slated to begin Monday, June 20, approximately 12am Pacific.)

“You need to go home, city-girl. You don’t belong.”

Jenna Anderson, sassy city-girl from Youngstown, Ohio, plows–literally–into Adirondack village, Speculator Falls, with a busted GPS and a determination to fit in as the newest resident. She wants to live a life without regret and make a difference. Moving to become the senior center director is the biggest risk she’s ever taken, and she believes her ideas are worth investing in. The senior citizens have been hurt by the last director, so Jenna has to work hard to earn their trust. When they embrace her, she thinks it’s time to show the seniors she intends to stay and make the center beautiful for them.

Town councilman and grocer Ben Regan is as broken as the flower box Jenna demolished. He’s grieving from the double loss of his grandfather’s passing and his former girlfriend leaving town without saying goodbye. His grief is so strong he wants to shut down the senior center before there’s too much change and heartbreak. Re opening the senior center and hiring a new director was never his plan. Jenna isn’t a Speculator Falls local and she has too many plans that will cost money the village doesn’t have. She’s too excited about his dream to expand the store his grandfather built. The harder he tries to keep Jenna at a distance, the more they are thrown together to work on community projects. They build a slow relationship, but the council needs to vote on the senior center’s future. Can Jenna show Ben both her and the center are worth trusting?

About ENTANGLED:

ENTANGLED will be .99 ebook Monday and Tuesday.

ENTANGLED will be .99 ebook Monday and Tuesday.

Purchase Link: http://ow.ly/1ryi301mVyX (Please check to make sure you’ve selected preferred format, and that the ebook sale started. It is slated to begin Monday, June 20, approximately 12am Pacific.)
“You need to leave me alone. It’s the least you can do.”

Carla Rowling has been given her dream of attending cosmetology school. The gift is so generous she feels unworthy because of choices she made as a teen. The pressure mounts as Carla juggles school, is a single mom, helps her best friend Jenna plan her wedding, spends time with boyfriend Will Marshall, and deals with the fact that her son’s father is back in their lives.

Will Marshall is the one Speculator Falls resident everyone can count on. His truck deliveries are reliable. He’s the first to help friends like Ben Regan with boat work or be a card partner with Bart Davis. Will’s ready to settle down with Carla, loving her is natural. He’s bonded with her son, Noah. But when Carla starts cosmetology school, she puts emotional distance between her and Will.

Can Carla release her past and create a future full of highlights, or, will she burn her options worse than a bad perm?

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Books for the Readers on Your Christmas List

Posted by Julie on December 5, 2015 in About Me, Book Review, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, surrender, Writing |

If you’re looking for ideas for the readers on your Christmas list, I thought I’d give you some inspiration.

 

  1. The Heart Seekers Series. This includes A Dozen Apologies, The Love Boat Bachelor, and Unlikely Merger. It’s now all in one volume and for the first time, in print. If you’d like to indulge for yourself, the Kindle version is FREE through Sunday, December 6th.

    The Heart Seekers Series contains 3 books +character updates + #1 bestseller, The Christmas Tree Treasure.

    The Heart Seekers Series contains 3 books +character updates + #1 bestseller, The Christmas Tree Treasure.

Not only do you receive those novellas in one place, we wrote character updates (find out what happened to my characters, Nora Laing and Landon Gates.) We also included the #1 bestseller, A Christmas Tree Treasure.
I’m proud of this series and it’s a great deal.

2.

More Christmas Moments

More Christmas Moments

More Christmas Moments. Last year I wrote a blog post over at Christians Read about how to manage When the Most Wonderful Time of Year Isn’t. My CR colleague, Yvonne Lehman, asked if she could use the post in her book, More Christmas Moments. Not only is my contribution in there, but there are so many heartwarming and inspirational stories.
It’s  one to buy for yourself and also purchase for others.

3.

Entrusted is a perfect Christmas read.

Entrusted is a perfect Christmas read.

Entrusted. This is my baby, the bestselling Adirondack romance that explores surrendering fear through grief, loss, and change.

Entrusted is the first of three books and features a village of characters, laugh out loud moments, and inspiration to find freedom through surrender.

To purchase Entrusted, click here.

4. A Walk in the Valley. I wish I could tell you that no one struggles at Christmas.

A Walk in the Valley could help a loved one this Christmas.

A Walk in the Valley could help a loved one this Christmas.

A Walk in the Valley is a workbook designed to help you with healing through infertility. It’s the book I wish I could have had when I was hurting and angry.

To purchase A Walk in the Valley, click here.

If you want to keep informed of my writing so you can buy for Christmas, follow my Amazon page.

PS
Beyond purchasing, the best gift you can give an author is if you liked the book, leave a review. It makes a BIG difference!

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Kelly Tough, Part One

81g0HcX146L._SL1500_I’m going to take two days to cover and review Kelly Tough by Erin and Jill Kelly. Today I want to give the backstory on why I wanted to review this book.

Most everyone knows I’m from Upstate NY. Although my hometown is Corning, I received my BA from the State University of New York at Geneseo. It was 1990-92 when I was there.

The school for the most part was divided into two categories: Upstate NY and NYC/Long Island. Now remember the time frame. Come Superbowl time, it was the Buffalo Bills and NY Giants. Talk about a battle. No, not the football teams. My friends.

When it came down to that one kick that unfortunately didn’t give the Bills a win, my dorm shook. No lie. The uproar between upstate and downstate probably scored on the Reichter scale.

Those were the Jim Kelly years and Geneseo was close enough to Buffalo somehow as an Upstate-er I felt a connection. There were times we heard the players used our track or were on their way to party at the exact places we were at. We had friends of friends of friends who had been to parties. He was part of my college scene by association and again, with that Superbowl moment, embedded into my college memories for life.

It seemed fitting as I graduated and moved on, the Bills kind of faded as well, at least as far Superbowl invitations and national fanfare. I’d hear Jim Kelly news here and there but I was busy carving out my place in Upstate NY.

The next phase where I felt a connection was after college, after marriage, after children. I was evolving as a woman of faith—not as tied to approval as I once was, but still not where I am today. It was the darkest time of my life. My dad was dying. My husband was on the precipice of moving to Ohio for a new job. Our baby was still sick with multiple breathing issues that often had her hospitalized. I wasn’t healed from her near death and how it came at a doctor’s hand. I heard about a women’s luncheon at our local radio station where Jill Kelly would be sharing. I knew Jill was married to Jim and that they had the little boy, Hunter. I thought it would be a nice break to see what she had to say.

Jill’s testimony remains a spiritual marker in my life. As she shared life with Hunter she talked about how each ER visit to them could mean his last. Our situations were different yet I knew that fear she spoke of. How many ER trips we’d endured. Our pede even gave me his personal cell in case I needed it. He had to convince me she was going to live to see her first birthday. When Jill spoke, the grief imploded and I sobbed as she spoke. She was so honest about her past and where her faith was at that moment. Where Jim was at spiritually. Then she shared a verse that was helping her through it all—the therapies, the ER visits, caring for her daughters, encouraging Jim.

 The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deuteronomy 31:8

I grabbed that verse and held on for dear life as we navigated more grief, sickness and change. I followed the headlines as Hunter left this world. I never forgot that verse. As our daughter stabilized I prayed for the Kelly family. I couldn’t even fathom the depth of their grief.

Fast forward and I then read about Jim’s cancer. I lifted up prayers and continued to follow headlines. When I read the cancer came back, I felt my gut drop. I wanted to do something for them, still remembering how Jill’s talk gave me the courage to move forward in faith. How so many great college memories were intertwined with Jim and the Bills. The only thing I could think of was to pray. I wrote one out on the Facebook page, returning that same verse to them in their great time of need.

During this time I saw Erin’s posts on social media. As difficult as her situation was, a young woman already fluent in grief, sharing their journey to encourage others. I saw such a gift in her writing and a maturity in her faith.

And here we are. Kelly Tough is Erin’s account of her life and faith and I want to say more than that, but I’ll wait for my review tomorrow. But for a family I’ve never met, somehow when I read the Kelly name, I always perked up.

And I think I always will.



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