Everyone’s Story welcomes Christian Western Fiction author Heather Blanton. This is Heather’s first guest appearance on this blog and I hope not the last! Please join Heather this week as she shares from experience why it’s essential to stand up to negativity. Also check out Heather’s excerpt from A Promise In Defiance, her newest release that is Book 3 of the Romance in the Rockies Series. Heather’s offering a great BookGiveaway to 2 commenters so settle back and enjoy! We’re both looking forward to hearing from you.
***Plus, I have exciting news! From August 1-5, my novel Always With You is FREE on Kindle. Help yourself to what reviewers are calling an exciting read! Details on the bottom of Heather’s blog feature.
Heather is offering 1 print or ebook of any 1 of her novels to 2 randomly chosen commenters. The winners will be announced here on Friday, August 5th between 5-6 PM EST.
** Please note regarding BookGiveaways: email contact information within comments are no longer required. However, if I have a question regarding yours I’ll leave a comment for you to forward it in order for you to chance winning.
Excerpt from A Promise in Defiance, Book 3 in the Romance in the Rockies series:
Don’t Listen to Negative Nellie by Heather Blanton
I hate it when I hear a parent tell a child, “Stop dreaming. You’ll never make a living at that. You should be more practical.”
Once, my mother was embarrassed I sent a manuscript to the editor of Tiger Beat Magazine—because I shouldn’t bother the person. When I had a shot at an internship with the Dallas Morning News, she voiced concerned about the cost of sending the Fed Ex package. What she was really saying, of course, was I didn’t have a shot at it and I was wasting our money.
My mom has never been much for holding onto her dreams. She didn’t exactly come through the Depression unscathed—her father was an abusive alcoholic who couldn’t hold a job. Later on, she married a mechanic who never made a lot of money. She scrimped and saved and worried about paying the bills her whole life. She’s also buried three children. Hope has always been in short supply for Momma.
My daddy was also the son of an abusive alcoholic. In the 30’s, he bounced around from orphanage to foster family and back again. He was a mechanic who never made much money and had to provide for us six kids and a wife. He was there when those three children were laid to rest. But for Daddy, hope always overflowed. I wish I had a dime for every time he said to me, “You can accomplish anything if you put your mind to it.”
All I’ve ever wanted was to be a writer.
More specifically, I wanted to be a published author. In 2012, I got so close I could smell the ink on the offer. My book, A Lady in Defiance, made it all the way to the contract meeting at a major Christian publisher. This means that every editor at that company endorsed my book. At the same time, I had self-published A Lady with the goal of selling 200 copies for my Relay for Life team.
The publisher turned me down; the marketing department said my sales projections were too low. Talk about a punch to the gut. When I got the email at work, I went into the bathroom, looked up at Heaven and said, “God, this really hurts … but I know you have a plan for me. I trust you.”
I couldn’t see over the hill, but God could. My book went on to sell more than 4000 copies that year. No marketing, no pr, no publisher. To date, it has sold over 40,000 copies. I made enough money to quit my job and start writing full time. I have written five books since then. I have highs and lows in sales, feast and famine, but I also have a husband who believes in me as a writer. God has allowed us to keep the bills paid. There’s not a lot of feasting, but there is never famine.
My point is, if you have a dream and it’s God’s plan for you, he will make a way for it to come to pass; it just may not be exactly what you were expecting. Either way, don’t listen to the Negative Nellies. Listen for God’s voice and keep reaching for the stars until or unless he closes that door. Then be ready for the new path.
If you know someone who is chasing a dream and it seems ridiculous to you, don’t be an Eeyore. Pray for that person, and pray you can be wise counsel. Keep your negative, spirit-crushing comments to yourself. And if the dream slips away, be ready with a hug. God is probably about to do something awesome and if you’re focused on the I-told-you-so, you’ll miss it.
Heather’s Ah-hahs To Tweet:
@HeatherFBlanton: Don’t Listen to Negative Nellie! #BookGiveaway (Tweet This)
Like #ChristianWesternFiction? Visit with author @HeatherFBlanton (Tweet This)
#BookGiveaway of #ChristianWesternFiction by @HeatherFBlanton (Tweet This)
Heather Blanton is the independent bestselling author of several Christian Westerns, including the Romance in the Rockies series, which has sold over 40,000 copies. Intrigued by the concept of three good sisters stranded in a lawless Colorado mining town, a few notable Hollywood producers have requested the script for her first book in that series, A Lady in Defiance. Heather’s writing is gritty and realistic. In fact, her books have been compared to AMC’s Hell on Wheels series, as well as the legendary Francine Rivers book, Redeeming Love.
A former journalist, Heather is an avid researcher and skillfully weaves truth in among the fictional story lines. She loves exploring the American West, especially ghost towns and museums. She has walked parts of the Oregon Trail, ridden horses through the Rockies, climbed to the top of Independence Rock, and even held an outlaw’s note in her hand.
She writes Westerns because she grew up on a steady diet of Bonanza, Gunsmoke, and John Wayne movies. Her most fond childhood memory is of sitting next to her father, munching on popcorn, and watching Lucas McCain unload that Winchester!
Places to connect with Heather:
Always With You is FREE on Kindle from August 1-5th! Please share the news—thanks ❤ May Isabelle and Tyler’s story bless you with hope: