Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): 10 Little Known Facts about Mary Connealy

February 27, 2017 Author Interview, Christian, giveaway, historical, Mary Connealy, romance 132

If you’ve never met Mary Connealy in person – and you ever have the chance to do so – you really must. She is as witty as you would expect after reading her books but also just as sweet.

Her newest book, Long Time Gone, releases tomorrow (Feb 28) from Bethany House Publishers!

The Boden clan thought their problems had ended with the death of a dangerous enemy, but have they truly uncovered the real plot to take their New Mexico ranch? Rancher Justin Boden is now in charge. He is normally an unshakable and rugged man, but with his brother, Cole, shot and in mortal danger, even a tough man faces doubts. And it doesn’t help that Angie DuPree, the assistant to the doctor trying to save Cole, is as distracting a woman as Justin ever laid eyes on.

With her and the doc’s timely skills, Cole looks to be on the mend, and Justin and the rest of the Bodens can turn their attention back to the dangers facing them. It’s clear now that everything that’s occurred is part of a much bigger plot that could date back to a decades-old secret. Can they uncover all the pieces before danger closes in on them, or is the threat to the ranch even bigger than any of the Bodens could imagine?

   

Mary’s here today to tell us some little-known facts about herself – and to give away a copy of Long Time Gone. Stay tuned for details!

Ten Little Known Facts about Mary Connealy

1. I’m from a family of eight kids.

2. We grew up in a three-bedroom farmhouse…unless you count the couch in one room, which is where I slept for YEARS. (Hey, I was the only one with ‘my own room.’ I loved it True everyone in the family had to walk through this room, we called it the middle room and it had four doors to other rooms in it, and not much else (well, a couch).

3. I’m the third born, and the third daughter. My two older sisters and I were born within 2 yrs and 4 months. So my oldest sister was 28 mns old, my next in line sister was 15 mns old when I was a newborn. Just take a moment and picture three kids that age. MY POOR MOM!

Carrie: Oh. My. GOODNESS. Your poor mom indeed!

4. I wrote my first book when I was twelve. It was a romance novel. Inspired by a romance novel I read. Let’s just say this. First, the book is gone. No idea where, but it is gone. Second it was about 10 pages long. Third: 12-year-olds know nothing about romance, I suspect. I wrote a little bit in college, I have a broadcast journalism degree, then I started again when my baby went to college. Do the math, I just skipped about 23 years.

Image source: Nebraska Life Magazine

5. For living quite poorly when we were young, my parents were both college graduates. We grew up with this…almost mythology about our parents love story, how Dad had gone to college almost by chance. He won a big, unexpected scholarship. They were in different colleges in the same time and met at the state fair. And we all, always thought we’d go to college. It’s wasn’t, WILL you go? It was, WHERE will you go?

6. We attended a one room country school house, think Little House on the Prairie with a furnace and a car ride on cold days. I went there through eighth grade.

7. Now, my family has eight bachelor’s degrees. Three master’s degrees. And three doctorates. Two are ministers, one’s a doctor…oh, and one published author. ME

Carrie: What a great legacy!!

8. I broke my arm when I was a kid, falling off a horse. (Yes, I got back on, but not RIGHT back on, good grief, my arm was broken) But I never liked horses much. I was at a cousin’s house will all my family (we weren’t all born yet, maybe six of us) and all of the cousins. I don’t know, five of them maybe? And my cousins had a horse and we were going to ride the horse but me, being five, everyone was very tersely scolded to NOT let Mary ride the horse. (I had a six and seven year old sister, how much better could THEY be, huh?) Anyway, I begged and whined and cried and just generally made myself a nuisance until they let me ride the horse. (the adults went inside) and then I fell off…and they all got in HUGE trouble. For some reason, I’ve always liked that story. Probably because I got attention. Pathetic middle-child stuff even before they invented that whole birth order deal.

9. I went to ‘town school’ for four years and met My Cowboy there. He was a country school kid, too, but he went to a different country school. We were good friends along with a group of others for a while then we had our first day a week before our Junior Prom.  Resisted going out with him because we were such good friends and I knew if the ‘going out’ didn’t work out, I’d lose my friend. But we finally went out on one of those Soooo High School things where a friend of mine asked me if I’d go out with him if he asked me. Pinned me to a ‘yes’, and we went to a drive-in movie on a double date.

10. We dated for four years before we got married, but you do that if you start dating when you’re sixteen!

Carrie: Awwww!! I’ve met your Cowboy! He’s a good man!

Mary Connealy writes romantic comedy with cowboys always with a strong suspense thread. She is a two time Carol Award winner, and a Rita, Christy and Inspirational Reader’s Choice finalist.

She is the bestselling author of 48 books and novellas.

Her most recent three book series are: Cimarron Legacy, Wild at Heart, Trouble in Texas, Kincaid Brides for Bethany House Publishing. She’s also written four other series for Barbour Publishing and many novellas and several stand-alone books for multiple publishers.

Mary will be a published author for ten years in 2017 with nearly a million books in print. She has a degree in broadcast communications with an emphasis in journalism and has worked at her local newspaper.

You can find Mary online at her website as well as Seekerville and Petticoats & Pistols.

Mary Connealy is giving away a signed copy of Long Time Gone to one of my readers. Due to shipping costs and international regulations, this giveaway is open to US mailing addresses only. Comment on this post to enter BUT confirm your entry via the Rafflecopter form below. (Otherwise it won’t count toward the giveaway) Giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found on the Disclosure and Policies page.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 What about you? What did you learn about Mary Connealy from this post?

Carrie

132 Responses to “Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): 10 Little Known Facts about Mary Connealy”

  1. Kirsten Rinehart

    I never realized that Mary came from a big family. I come from a family of 7 kids. And Mary I just love your books. The stories take me on a great adventure.

  2. MH

    I love the big family! Birth orders and personalities and how the family functions have always fascinated me.

  3. Sylvia Miller

    That one-room school house is really cool. I didn’t realize, Mary, that you attended one. That’s neat. Loved the horse story. You said you didn’t like horses. Umm…Do you now? Tell me that you like horses now when you write about so many of them in your books.:)

    • Mary Connealy

      You know, Sylvia, I do love horses. They’re beautiful. And My Cowboy and I owned horses and the girls loved riding them.

      they’re just such regal, beautiful animals.
      But my family had a Welch pony when I was growing up and the neighbors had a full sized horse and a shetland pony and we rode a LOT, me and my best friend who lived across the road with a family of NINE kids. And both of us had an older sister that was just FANATIC about horses. So when I say I don’t like horses much, I guess I’m comparing myself to a fanatic. 🙂

  4. Melissa Romine

    I didn’t realize that she came from a big family. Reminds me of my mom’s family of 12 kids in Missouri.
    I also have not read any of Mary’s books – yet!! But I loved meeting her and I have a signed copy of book one that I better start reading! 😊

  5. Debbie Clatterbuck

    I guess I am surprised Mary doesn’t like horses much. Being a horse lover, I have a hard time understanding why some people don’t agree with me that the horse is the greatest creature God ever created. LOL I am glad she got back on the horse later.

    • Mary Connealy

      Debbie, I’m more of a COW person, honestly. I really love the precious little baby calves born on our land every year. We’ve had about twenty?? (Ten at our place, but half are born on land my husband’s brother and partner in the cattle business, takes care of. So we have about 60 mama’s each and they all have a baby. The floodgates open March 1st. We, here at our place, will have about 50 babies in the next 30 days. It’s a fun time of year. I ride out with My Cowboy to check calves and take pictures of them to post on Facebook.

  6. Katherine Good

    All of it is new! I’m reading a historical right now with a one room school and I was wondering if they still existed anywhere in the US. Sound like it, or at least close to it.

    • Carrie

      Nebraska is one of the states that has had the most in existence in contemporary times! (I just learned that lol)

    • Mary Connealy

      we still have them Katherine, but there are places in Nebraska where it’s a 40 mile one way trip to get to a town. An 80 mile round trip, that’s out in Western Nebraska. We live along the bluffs in northeast Nebraska, by the mIssouri River. I knew a lady in western nebraska who moved to town every school year to get her kids to school.

      My own four daughters attended a one room country school, too. I loved it.

  7. Yvette-Bookworlder

    I didn’t know she was one of eight children – I was the middle of 5 (and also the third daughter) & would have loved a “room of my own!” That didn’t happen until both of my older sisters had moved out.

    In first grade I went to the only school in our school district, not technically a one-room schoolhouse (two classrooms and a gym) but 1st-6th grade were all taught in one room by one teacher. The school district now regularly employs two teachers and I was tempted, for about 2 seconds, to apply back when I was teaching.

  8. Joy Chattin Hannabass

    I love Mary’s books and have read them all except the last series. I’m on her FB so I enjoy keeping up with her and her farmer husband. Thanks for the interview. I enjoyed getting to know more about Mary Comnealy!
    Blessings Joy
    ibjoy1953@yahoo(dot)com

  9. Janice Moore

    I learned that Mary appreciated sleeping on her sofa!
    I appreciate the twists Mary gives her stories!
    Janice

  10. Julia Buzard

    I love Mary’s stories! I had the pleasure of meeting her at the CFFR last August and she is a wonderful lady as well!

    • Mary Connealy

      Hi Julia. I got to sit by you at CFFR. It was so fun to get to visit just a bit more with you. I loved meeting everyone–but with you, I got a little more time and we really got to visit. It was a really unique and wonderful day.

  11. Winnie Thomas

    That’s interesting that Mary is from a family of 8 children. I’m from a family of 9. I was #2 sandwiched in between an older sister and one of my 2 brothers. Then came 5 girls and the youngest is a boy. I was always the quiet, unassuming one (still am, LOL). My aunt lived up the street a block and had 8 kids, so we always had someone to play with! We’re all still very close. One of my sisters is named Mary, too.

    My husband went to a 2 room schoolhouse. The big room, grades 4-6 and the little room 1-3. A husband and wife team taught the classes.

    I haven’t met Mary yet, but I love her sense of humor. Thanks for the post, Carrie and Mary.

    • Mary Connealy

      Hi Winnie! I will say that the one room country school house I went to did open up a ‘gym’ room into a classroom for a few years. There were at least 24 kids in eight grades. That got to be too much for our teacher. Then it got smaller again.

  12. Joy Ellis

    Awesome post! I have loved everything that Mary Connealy has written. She is truly a gifted writer.

  13. Valerie Stoj

    Great fun to learn more about Mary, my fellow Nebraskan! I also went to a one-room school through 7th grade (and then “town school” for grades 8 – 12) in northeast NE. No running water, sweeping compound to clean the wood floors, etc. I’m “only” age 51 so rural schools were quickly declining during my era. In kindergarten, there were 3 other students in my grade; by 7th grade I was the only one left. I so admire rural school teachers who had to handle all the subjects, grade levels, and students on their own.

    • Mary Connealy

      Valerie we had that sweeping compound stuff, too. What is that???
      (I know, I could Google it)
      I started with four Kindergarteners….of course Kindergarten was two weeks of half days back then!
      I was alone in my grade. We went all the way through 8th grade at my school.

  14. Kim

    Everything about Mary was new to me! I have never read her books but I am looking forward to reading them. I love humor in books. I wish we had small schools like that here in Texas! Our high schools (well elementary and middle too) are out of control – way too many students.

          • Mary Connealy

            KIM AND SUSAN. Try my free novella, The Boden Birthright. If you like it, it’s the novella prequel for my current series. The book that’s in the drawing is bk #2 in the series.

          • Carrie

            agreed! 😀 And when you’re caught up on this current series, head over to Trouble in Texas … and then Kincaid Brides … and then Wild at Heart.. and then .. etc 😉

    • Mary Connealy

      Hi Kim. I think my books are a lot of fun. And here’s some good news. My FIFTIETH BOOK is coming out this year (I’m counting about 20 novellas). So if you like my books, I can keep you entertained for a LONG, LONG TIME!!!!!

      • Kim

        Wow! Congratulations on your 50th book! That’s impressive! I will definitely check out that novella. Love the large backlist too!

      • Winnie Thomas

        Wow! That is amazing Mary! That’s a heap of books. That will keep us all busy for a while! 😀 Congratulations on your new one!

  15. Bonnie Roof

    Loved this post about Mary – she was such fun to talk to at CFRR last year, I loved meeting her gracious “Cowboy” also. I fell backwards off a horse when I was in elementary school – however, unlike Mary, I never got back on one afterward even though I was raised on a farm on which we had horses, ponies, and mules. What an accomplishment that Mary, each of her brothers and sisters, and her parents, are college graduates!!

    Congrats on ‘Long Time Gone’, Mary!! Looking forward to reading it – thanks for the giveaway opportunity!!

    • Mary Connealy

      HI BONNIE!!!!!!!!! I did get back on that time, but I fell off a horse once as an adult and a mom, one of the horses My Cowboy and I owned. I was trying to DISMOUNT!!! I fell off, landed flat on my back, with the horse’s hooves all stompy waaaaaaay to close to my FACE. And as I lay there I thought, “When you fall off a horse you need to get right back on.”

      And my next thought was, “You know what? I’m okay with never getting back on.”
      And I’ve never ridden since.

        • Dianne Casey

          Very interesting learning about Mary. I was surprised that she came from a family of eight and they lived in a three bedroom house. Also, she began writing at an early age.

  16. Pam K.

    Though I’m a long time Mary Connealy fan, quite a bit of these facts were new to me. I was amused about the sleeping on the couch. My middle brother (must have been a middle child thing) had to do this for awhile in our tiny house. There were six of us kids but I don’t remember if the youngest were born when he had to do this or how long it lasted. I do remember that he was young enough that he was very uncomfortable with the idea of Santa coming in that room to leave presents, since the Christmas tree was also in the room. Mom had some explaining to do.
    I have quite a few of Mary’s books and am looking forward to reading Long Time Gone.

  17. Ramona Lowder

    I didn’t realize Mary wasn’t very fond of horses and she went to a 1 room school house. I love that her humor comes through in her books. I enjoy them immensely over and over again.
    My children went to a 1 house school room……Home! I home schooled my three children from kindergarten to 12th grade. Plus 1 year I taught 3 other kids from our church. I have a new respect for those teachers!!!!!!

  18. Judy Sheridan Smith

    I’ve learned a lot about Mary during the years of watching her postings on FB. Today I learned she met Her Cowboy at an early age, they became good friends and waited to marry. I so enjoy Mary’s good humor and every one of her books I’ve read to date! Looking forward to reading her next book! (Keep writing, Mary; you do it so well!!!!!!)

    • Mary Connealy

      Judy, though it would’ve been ridiculous, I kinda wish I’d just gone ahead and married My Cowboy right away. We were sixteen. And now all these OLD CHILDREN and I could honestly say, “I was a child bride. We had kids right away.”

      But nope. And now here I am OLD. (I suppose I’d be the same age but my kids would be in their forties and my grandchildren would be inching toward highschool

  19. Lynna Reed

    Oh! I loved hearing all this! And I s’pose your cowboy went to Elm Creek grade school? You’re both such sweeties and I love your books – and your humor! Enjoy every moment, Mary!

    • Mary Connealy

      Lynna he most certainly did. My kids too. Also My Cowboy’s father, his grandfather and his GREAT grandfather. (I maybe be able to go back one more generation, I can’t remember right now)

  20. Kay Garrett

    Everything 🙂 New to this author but you showed me not only how interested the author is but also that her book sounds like one I need to read. Thanks!

  21. Sherry Welch

    I couoldn’t leave a comment on the blog, hoping this will do. I have LOVED every one of Mary’s books, especially the Calico Canyon series and all that followed. Her humor is right in tune with mine, and I always laugh out loud while reading.

  22. Arletta

    Yeah! another Mary Connealy book! Your mother will have been super busy with three little girls that close together. Instant friends for all three of you! Sisters rule.

  23. Marilyn

    I learned that Mary cane from a big family. Big families are super nice. You are never lonely.
    Marilyn

  24. Amy Tyner

    Mary you crack me up 😂! Wow you have an amazing and interesting life story, it explains your wonderful stories!

  25. Regina Merrick

    I have loved Mary since I got my hands on “The Husband Tree.” When I saw her at my first ACFW, I simply hugged her, and I’m pretty sure she thought I was crazy. Lol!

  26. DeAnna Dodson

    Awww, what a sweet life story. So charming. 😀

    Mary probably doesn’t remember we met at a Bethany House dinner at ACFW in Dallas five or six years ago. :::waves:::

    Just got Long Time Gone a couple of days ago. Can’t wait to read!

    Julianna Deering/DeAnna Dodson

  27. Beth Erin

    Yay! Mary & Carrie!!! 😍 I just had to come by and say hi… HI!!!
    I also slept on the couch for a time as a teenager. My younger sister was a complete slob and eventually, I just got sick of looking at the mess. Plus, I was usually the first person up in the morning and the last to go to bed at night.
    BUT there were only four of us (all girls), sounds like a walk in the park compared to 7 or 8.

    • Mary Connealy

      Amy………well, I could either laugh or cry!!!
      Honestly I did NOT stalwartly cling to a positive attitude. I really loved it.
      I think one of the reasons I write is because I had so much going on in my head back then and I real love of PRIVACY. And the only way to be private in that house was inside your head.
      So a daydreamer was born!!!!!!!!!

  28. Angela Couch

    What fun! Thanks for sharing! We only had to fit seven kids in our two bedroom house growing up, but what a blessing it was to move to a four bedroom before bodies started getting big. 😉 Lots of room to run outside, though, so that’s what matters!

  29. Deana Dick

    I learned that she attended school in a one room building. It was just like Littke Hoise on the Prairie. That must have been so much fun. I love the way you met your “Cowboy” you hsve a very interesting life which makes your books so much fun to read.

    • Mary Connealy

      Jan, my children went to a one room country school house. Nebraska is a very RURAL state and we still have a few rural schools. I think you’d find them in Wyoming and Nevada and who knows where else? Sometimes a town is just TOO FAR AWAY.

  30. Donna B

    Almost all of this was new information to me about Mary. I haven’t read any of her books yet but am looking forward to doing so soon. I love all of the humor!

  31. Cathy

    Always love Mary’s books and so enjoyed learning more about her. Interesting… some parallels with my childhood and marriage, including the small country schoolhouse and then the first date and marriage!

  32. Charlene Cohn

    Mary has been my favorite since I read the first chapter of The husband tree. Now I mourn between book releases. I keep asking her to write faster but apparently she has a whole other life beyond writing. hehehe

  33. Lucy Reynolds

    How impressive that the family is so well educated. Thank you for sharing this interview. Have enjoyed her books for a while.

  34. Rachael

    I’m glad to know I’m not the only country girl who doesn’t like horses much (having badly sprained my arm falling off at age 11, only Mom made me get back on the horse right away). Horses are lovely to look at, with very soft noses for petting, but I’d just as soon we both keep our feet on the ground and generally maintain our own personal space (ideally on opposite sides of a fence). Then we get along fine.

  35. Patty

    It has been a while since I have read any of Mary’s books, but they always make me laugh!

    What did I learn about Mary? I learned that she is one of eight kids, wow!

  36. Becky Smith

    I’ve learned that we are very much alike in several things: I grew up in a small “sorta” 3-bedroom house (the porch was inclosed and had room only for a bed and the deep freeze, which was a tight squeeze). My sister & I slept on a fold-down couch in the living room. I am the 3rd born, and the 3rd daughter. My oldest sister was 23 3/4 months older, and my next sister was 12 months, 1 week when I was born. There were only 6 children in my family. I was thrown from a horse into a rose bush while riding at my cousin’s house. However, I again rode a horse later on in life. I love small beginnings and that our past doesn’t limit us!

  37. Pam Graber

    I love that Mary attended a one-room schoolhouse and that, almost as soon as she transferred to a bigger town school, she met her future husband. God definitely ordered their steps…

  38. Connie Saunders

    I just learned that I would enjoy being friends with Mary. I love it when humble beginnings lead to such amazing successes. Thank you for sharing Mary’s thoughts and this giveaway.
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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