Author Interview (plus a Giveaway!): Julie Lessman

October 4, 2016 Author Interview, giveaway, Julie Lessman 50

Author Interview RIMSP

Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!

Y’all.

I. Get. To. Chat. With. JULIELESSMAN today.

Right here.

On the blog.

So you can listen in.

Are you excited too?!?!

JULIE_RED SITTING ON ROCKJulie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of “Passion With a Purpose” underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. A lover of all things Irish, she enjoys writing close-knit Irish family sagas that evolve into 3-D love stories: the hero, the heroine, and the God that brings them together.

Author of The Daughters of Boston, Winds of Change, and Heart of San Francisco series, Julie Lessman was named American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Author of the Year and has garnered 17 Romance Writers of America and other awards. Voted #1 Romance Author of the year in Family Fiction magazine’s 2012 and 2011 Readers Choice Awards, Julie was also named on Booklist’s 2010 Top 10 Inspirational Fiction and Borders Best Fiction list.

Julie’s most recent novel, Isle of Hope was voted on Family Fiction magazine’s Best of 2015, and Surprised by Love appeared on Family Fiction magazine’s list of Top Ten Novels of 2014. Her independent novel A Light in the Window is an International Digital Awards winner, a 2013 Readers’ Crown Award winner, and a 2013 Book Buyers Best Award winner. Julie has also written a self-help workbook for writers entitled Romance-ology 101: Writing Romantic Tension for the Sweet and Inspirational Markets. You can contact Julie through her website and read excerpts from each of her books at www.julielessman.com.

That’s the official stuff. Unofficially … Julie is just awesome. I had the absolute privilege of meeting her in Nashville about a month ago, and I’m still smiling. (She gives the BEST hugs, by the way!)

love-everlasting-facebook-ad_on-saleI just posted my review of her newest book, Love Everlasting. Go ahead and read the review and then come back… I’ll wait.

<hums Jeopardy theme>

Are we all back? Ok – good! 🙂

JULIEEEEE!!!  Welcome back to the blog, my friend! I usually start everyone out with a fast four – but in our last interview (way back in November) I already asked you two of my usual four… so let’s mix it up a bit.

Favorite dessert?

Julie: Peach cobbler!

Carrie: Mmmm… me too! I knew I liked you 😉

Favorite flower?

Julie: Lilacs

Favorite holiday?

Julie: Christmas, of course!

Carrie: Of course!

Favorite song?

Julie: Try a Little Tenderness” by Three Dog Night for secular, “Breathe on Me” by Hillsong for Christian.

Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower.  If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?

Julie: Are you kidding?? WRITING, with READING a close second and old movies pulling up the rear. 🙂

Carrie: Honey, I’m pretty sure WRITING is definitely your superpower!! 😀

If I snuck a peek in your purse right now (which I would never do, I promise!), what would it tell me about you?

Julie: LOL, what a cute question! It would tell you I am a very dirt practical woman who drives a CRV, is very sanitary (sanitizer), very vain (lots of makeup, mirror, comb, gloss, etc.), loves to read (phone on Kindle), lots of scrunchees and clippees (to corrall flyaway hair on boat rides), and VERY handy (At all times I carry a scissor, tissues, tweezer, pens, paper pads, ibuprofen, decongestant, lotion, safety pins, ear plugs, antacids, sleep aids (for when I travel), breath mints, bandaids, Clorox Stain Stick, contact solution, eye drops, batteries, hair spray, notebook, wallet, and sunglasses). Aren’t you sorry you asked?

Carrie: Hahahahaha!!! I love it!! And until further notice, I’m sitting beside you at any baby/wedding showers we happen to attend together 😉

Until I met a bunch of authors, I honestly thought all writers wrote at a designated desk. I’ve learned that’s just not true. Writing spaces are as diverse as authors and books. Where is your favorite space to write?

Julie: On my veranda overlooking the lake with my feet up on my chaise three quarters of the year. I’ve been out there writing in as low as 39 degrees in the dead of night with a heater and as hot as 100 degrees with a fan, and ALWAYS with lip gloss, tissues, and a mirror to capture expressions. Oh, and either peach iced tea or hazelnut coffee, depending on the temperature out.

Carrie: I would think with YOUR writing, you should probably always have a fan handy 😉

Your newest novel Love Everlasting follows Shannon O’Bryen, a school teacher/ghostwriter, and Dr. Sam Cunningham, also known as Dr. Love. Using FIVE words for each character, describe Shannon and Sam.

Julie: Shannon: Shy, serious, soft, kind, strong.

shannon-obryen_amy-adams_serious

Sam: Fun, charismatic, kind, competitive, lonely.

sam_henry-cavill-from-fan-site_white-shirt

Carrie: I’m just be here staring at “Sam” for a while in case anyone needs me, ok? “I’m just be here?” Good goobers. I can’t even talk.

Without revealing too many spoilers, what is one of your favorite elements in Love Everlasting?

Julie: The fact that Shannon, once a fragile, broken woman is now a tower of strength in the Lord.

Carrie: Yes! me too!

What do you most want readers to take away from reading Love Everlasting?

Julie: That our confidence and strength has to come from God, not people, things, or careers and that true love—the kind that lasts a forever—can only come when the God Who loves “forever” is part of the equation.

Julie – again, thank you so much for taking time to talk with me! 🙂 I so love you!! Before we say goodbye for today, tell us what‘s coming up next for you.

Julie: Right back at you, Carrie—you are unequivocally one of my favorite people!

gilead-cowboy-christmas-ad-copyOn October 14, I have a historical Christmas novella collection releasing with Mary Connealy, Ruth Logan Herne, and Anna Schmidt called Cowboy Christmas Homecoming, which is being published by Gilead.

My current WIP (work in progress) is book 1 of the Silver Lining Ranch series called Love’s Silver Lining, which comes out next year with Gilead Publishing. But first I hope to release a prequel novella to that series early next year called For Love of Liberty, and readers can find out more about that and The Silver Lining Ranch Series here.

Then I hope to tackle book 3 in the Isle of Hope Series, Unchanging Love, which will release in Fall 2017. It will be the love story of Shannon’s twin sister, Cat, and Pastor Chase Griffin, the ex-Navy Seal who woos a wayward girl back to God—and to himself. Here’s the premise: A bold and independent woman challenges the ideals and—and the morals—of a pastor who loves her no matter the mistakes that she makes.

Carrie, thank you SO much for hosting me on your blog—it’s been fun! I love to hear from readers, so they can find and contact me at www.julielessman.com, or through Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, or Pinterest or by signing up for my newsletter or my Journal Jots blog. I am also part of a group blog called Seekerville that inspires, encourages, teaches, and informs aspiring writers on the road to publication and beyond. Although Seekerville has been listed on Writers Digest 2013, 2014, and 2015 “Best 101 Websites for Writers,” it is also a blog devoted to readers as well.

Readers can also check out my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes from each of my books on the “Excerpts” tab of my website.

Finally, I have the following FREEBIE & SALE currently going on:

1_a_a-final-a-cover-for-prequel_a-glimmer-of-hope  1_A_ISLE OF HOPE FINAL COVER

  • 50% SALE ON ISLE OF HOPE, FAMILY FICTION MAGAZINE’S BEST OF 2015!”

Now’s your chance to get my 5-star, award-winning contemporary novel, Isle of Hope for half off, so check out the sale HERE!

  • FREE DOWNLOAD ON THE NOVELLA PREQUEL TO ISLE OF HOPE!

YES, there IS a prequel to my latest novel, Isle of Hope, and it’s called A Glimmer of Hope, so take advantage of this free ebook HERE!

Thanks and hugs,

Julie

giveaway RIMSP

Singing Librarian Books is doing a blog tour right now for Love Everlasting. One winner AT EACH STOP will win their choice of an ebook of Isle of Hope OR Love Everlasting. I’m not participating in this particular tour but I didn’t want y’all to miss out on this great giveaway!

Click the graphic for a list of tour stops and a rafflecopter entry form on the landing page!

love-everlasting-giveaway

What about you? What does your purse say about YOU?

Carrie

50 Responses to “Author Interview (plus a Giveaway!): Julie Lessman”

  1. Annie JC

    FABULOUS interview!! *ahem, Meez Carrie, are you there or still staring at Sam there?!

    JULIE, hahahh. I think I’ll stick with you whenever we meet up. You are one practical gal! Thanks for spilling your purse to us. We now know who we need to look for if we ever need something, tissue, getting rid of a pokey tag or some meds…

    =)

    • Julie Lessman

      ANNIE GIRL, I’ll hang with you ANYTIME, my friend, because I LOVE your sweet and calm personality — it calms this CDQ down considerably!

      And yes, all three of us — Carrie, DeAnna, and I are all still staring at Sam … 😉

      Hugs and more hugs!
      Julie

  2. Katy C.

    That is an awesome purse list! Mine would tell you what I had for lunch and that I’m pretty disorganized. =)

  3. Bonnie Roof

    You don’t want to know what my purse says about me, LOL!! Actually, it would probably tell you I have somewhat of a problem discarding things – I’m also one of those people, like Julie, that has lots of those “just in case” items in my purse. However, less organized than hers, I’m sure. I’ve probably always been known for being arm/shoulder-laden (not just purse-laden), it goes back to my elementary school days when I’d carry a glass jar full of flowers to my school teacher.

    Always love interviews with the fabulous Julie – loved her sweetness, graciousness to her readers, and love for God before I ever read one of her books. Her writing is just the icing on the cake – and some of my very fave icing too, LOL!!

      • Bonnie Roof

        That you have, as well as my luggage that you’ve carried – what can I say?? Unfortunately, it’s one of the less enjoyable elements of friendship with me, and you still like me, LOL?? I’m doubly blessed, my friend!! Hugs!!

        • Carrie

          I still LOVE you as a matter of fact – and like you too haha!

    • Julie Lessman

      BONNIE!! I’ve seen your purse, sweetie, and I think you may just give me a run for my money! 😉

      I remember when I first “met” you through several interviews, my friend. I knew right off the bat we were like-minded people with equal emotional depth, so I am forever grateful that God allowed our paths to cross. You have become one of my dearest friends, and I love you to pieces.

      And that doesn’t surprise me one bit that you carried flowers to your teacher — you’re one of the most giving people I know, Bonnie, bar none.

      Hugs and more hugs,
      Julie

  4. JJ

    My purse is like a dark pit that I have to dig through every time I want to find something. I keep everything in separate pouches that I can identify by touch, which makes finding things easier. Sometimes. Lol.

    • Carrie

      LOL! And why does exactly what we need always go to the bottom?!?

    • Julie Lessman

      I admire you, JJ, because I try to go by touch and for the life of me, I can’t do it. I end up taking a lot of things out to try to find what the heck I’m looking for. And I have things in separate pouches, too, and I still have problems. Sigh. But that’s because I can’t seem to find the right size see-through pouches. Ah, the trials of women! 😉

      Hugs,
      Julie

  5. Rebecca Maney

    My pocketbook is actually pretty well organized, it’s my work satchel that has everything from an umbrella to eye class cleaner to screw driver, to my iPad to . . . . . . you get the picture.

    Great interview! And I loved meeting this sweet lady in Nashville as well. Looking forward to catching up on these books!

    • Carrie

      hahaha!! You never know when you’ll need a screwdriver!

    • Julie Lessman

      REBECCA!!! Yes, I LOVED meeting you, my friend, and so many others who I have met online, but not in person.

      And, WHOA, I’m pretty impressed by your work satchel, girl, AND that you have an organized purse!!

      Thanks for coming by and here’s to a win!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  6. carylkane

    FANTASTIC interview with the INCREDIBLE JULIE!

    As for my purse, I travel light with the bare necessities. 😉

    • Julie Lessman

      Hey, CARYL, so you travel light, eh? Uh, how about when you go to the Bahamas?? 😉 (Wink-wink … that’s a clue to your character in LE!)

      HUGS and MORE HUGS!
      Julie

  7. Beth Erin

    Fabulous interview, ladies!!! So much fun!
    My purse has the bare necessities: wallet, hand sanitizer, lip balm, lotion, colored ink pens (mostly for the kids), Kindle, cell phone (with Bible, Kindle, Audible apps), and ear buds (for audiobooks)!
    OH and my CFRR mini notepad/sticky flags thingy… I haven’t used it yet but knowing it’s there makes me all warm and fuzzy. My purse and my bookshelves are the only places I can keep organized.

    • Carrie

      oooo i keep mine notepad/sticky flags thingy handy too 😀

    • Julie Lessman

      BETH, YES!!! Don’t you just LOVE that mini notepad/sticky flags thing??? I’m one up on you because I HAVE used it, just last weekend when I needed to write a note and sticky something. I remember frantically tearing through my purse, looking for a scrap of paper — receipt, old note, whatever — when my fingers lighted upon THE MINI NOTEPAD, and I literally exhaled a sigh of pure contentment!! I have to admit, it was one of my favorite things in the goody bag.

      And OH MY GOSH … my purse and my bookshelves are the only thing I can keep organized too! Oh, and maybe my new cutlery drawer — SOOOOO easy!!

      Hugs and more hugs!
      Julie

  8. Winnie Thomas

    How, may I ask, did I miss this blog post and Carrie’s interview with the fabulous Julie Lessman? I must have been incoherent or in la-la land or something! Or maybe Carrie was so busy looking at a certain picture that she forgot to post it. I know I would have remember THE PICTURE! if I’d seen it. Anyway, I’ve seen the post now and I must say thanks for the funtastic interview! Julie, your book sounds absolutely amazing, and I can’t wait to read it! I hope I can win a copy to hurry that process along. 😀

    I am ignoring the purse question as it would tend to incriminate me (or maybe embarrass is a better word), however, I’m thinking that I’d be a loser in a purse-whomping contest with some of the people who’ve commented!

      • Winnie Thomas

        Well, it’s been a little crazy here with a new granddaughter making her appearance last week, and my hubby’s mother having a stroke. She actually just passed away this morning. Sad–although she’s had health problems for some time and was nearing 93 years old. So I guess it’s not too surprising that I missed it the day you posted. Also senility is setting in here!

        • Julie Lessman

          Oh my goodness, WINNIE, I am so very sorry about your MIL passing away, my friend, but 93 is longer than most of us can hope for, so I hope she had a good life. And, goodness, she ushered in a new granddaughter, so God is at work!!

          Hugs and more hugs!
          Julie

        • Carrie

          Oh Winnie, I’m so sorry – just now seeing this <3

    • Julie Lessman

      WINNIE!!! We’ve got to stop meeting like this, girlfriend!! 😉 “Incoherent or in la-la land”? Uh-oh, you’re starting to sound like me … 😉

      LOL … yes, Carrie (and DeAnna and I) have all been delinquents in our drooling over the pic of Sam, but far as I know, “Thou shalt not be boy-crazy” is not one of the Ten Commandments … 😉

      LOL … I’d rather win a book than a purse contest anyway, Winnie, so GOOD LUCK!!

      And quick question: Have you read either The Daughters of Boston or Winds of Change series? I’m asking because I have a Christmas novella about Charity and Mitch (it was part of a Seeker collection that disbanded) where Charity befriends a little orphan called Winnie. You, Winnie Griggs, and little orphan Winnie are the only Winnies I know, but I sure love the name!

      Hugs,
      Julie

      • Winnie Thomas

        Hi Julie. Sometime I hope to meet you in person, sweet lady! It was so nice of you to quite drooling long enough to reply to my comment. LOL I’m sorry to say I haven’t read those books–yet. Winnie isn’t a common name (I was named after my aunt), but in the last year, I’ve either read about or have had authors tell me about characters in books named Winnie. I’ve “met” Winnie Griggs on Facebook, and we chatted about our similarities a few months ago. That was fun!

        I’m hoping to get your new book read sometime soon, then start on some of your earlier books. Since I’ve been doing a bunch of read/reviewing, I’m getting woefully behind in my other reading. 🙁 But at least I’m not running out of reading material. It’s much better to have too many books to read, than none, right? Thanks so much for sharing your time and talents!

        Hugs back!!
        Winnie

        • Julie Lessman

          LOL … yes, the drool is contained, and I am ready to focus on other things. 😉

          So may I assume you haven’t my books yet? If not, boy oh boy, do I have some reading for you, girlfriend!! Shoot me FB message if you don’t win in one of my 18 giveaways you’ll find on the link below, and we’ll talk.

          JULIE’S JOURNAL JOTS BLOG

          Hugs!
          Julie

          • Winnie Thomas

            Will do Julie! Thanks a bunch! Yes, I do have a lot more reading to do. So many books, so little time. (sigh)

  9. Lynne M Feuerstein

    Thank you Carrie for this fun interview! Always love reading about my favorite author! (Someday would love to sit and eat a dish of peach cobbler with her or maybe even give her a big hug) The love you show through your stories and to your readers mean a lot to us Julie, Bless you!

  10. Julie Lessman

    Thank you, LYNNE, and my readers mean a lot to me, especially dear reader friends like you!

    And I would LOVE to sit down over coffee and peach cobbler with you as well, my friend, and am praying God gives us the opportunity some day.

    Hugs and more hugs!
    Julie

  11. Connie Saunders

    Great interview Carrie and Julie. My purse, most of the time, is filled with sales slips, gum and gum wrappers, lots of loose change, multiple ink pens, a small notepad, my checkbook and wallet and crayons and handwipes for my 2 1/2 year old granddaughter to use. I DO clean it out but it never stays clean very long!

    • Julie Lessman

      LOL … move over, CONNIE, because I doubt there’s a gal on this blog who has a clean purse, ESPECIALLY me, so no worries that it doesn’t stay clean very long, ESPECIALLY with a 2-1/2-year old to keep busy!! 😉

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK in the contest!
      Julie