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Hi, reader friends!!! If you haven’t met today’s featured author, it is my immense pleasure to introduce you! She has kicked off her authorly career with a flirty fun yet heartfelt debut novel plus y’all have a chance to win it!!!
About the Author
Joy Palmer is an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions.
She is a youth leader at her church, and loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens.
When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.
Five Favorite Places to Read & Write
Joy: I’m an avid reader and book blogger, but I’m also an author. While there are definite moments where these two sides grab their pitchforks and go at it, most of the time they live in peaceful comradery.
So it shouldn’t have surprised me that there was some overlap in this area. Or maybe that’s just the two sides bickering again. I do wish they’d be quiet. I get it. You want more time to read, and you want more time to write.
Beth: I can relate! Although, my reading side is usually shaking my blogging side
gently urgently and begging, “for the love of books! swoof and publish! no tweaking!” My reading side has no regard for things like capitalization and proper punctuation 😊
Joy: Ahem. Anyways, they grudgingly love to share these reading/writing spots.
1) My Bed
Who doesn’t love a lazy morning (or day) spent reading in bed? I love to read or write in bed because of the stunning view outside my window. It makes me feel all dreamy, providing perfect inspiration or clarity.
Some mornings I think I could reach into the mountains and touch God… Plus, it’s super comfy. 😉 I don’t get these days a lot, but when my husband has the day off, I occasionally get a little lazy productive time. In my pajamas.
Beth: Yes! Oh, I love the peace and quiet of my bedroom (plus the bathroom is nearby, I could stay for days!) and YAY for jammies!
Joy: 2) My Couch
As a reader, I seem to get most of my reading time on the couch while Baby Girl is sacked out on top of me. As a writer, I spend many a late night plugging away on the couch and then passing out on top of my laptop only to awaken to a bunch of gibberish. Kind of like now. I’m desperately hoping this is making sense. 😉
Beth: Makes sense to me! I’m on my couch right now, too!
Joy: 3) My Personal Library
Ever since I got married, we’ve always had a library area set up. When we moved earlier this year, I finally got a room dedicated to all my books, bookish things, and desks! (Insert spastic fist pumps here.)
I love this room! I love to read and write in it, though it can be distracting with all those amazing stories begging me to look between their pages. Bookish problems, guys.
Beth: That sounds delightful, Joy! #libraryenvy
Joy: 4) A Local Coffeeshop
There is just something so beautiful about reading in a coffee shop, and I’ll be honest, it makes me feel cool. (Where did my cool youth go? Oh, right. Nevermind.) And I actually get a lot of work done when I go to a coffee shop to write.
Believe it or not, it’s not as distracting as being in a room full of books that I’m desperate to read. LOL! And it’s close to coffee and yummy treats! The only drawback is that the wrong chair can make my rear go painfully numb.
But by then I’ve usually felt like I’ve worn out my welcome with the staff. I’m guessing based on those looks they’ve given me…
Beth: I was not a cool youth and still don’t drink coffee BUT I do love the new little coffee shop in my hometown, they have the best treats and yummy hot chocolate too!
Joy: 5) Outside
I love, love, love to read or write outside! Capital L, O, V, E. Especially at sunset. There’s just something about the air at that time of day that is just so intoxicating and yummy.
Hermon, my porch swing, happens to be very helpful as well. He’s never dropped me. 😉
Beth: Here is where we must part ways… bugs, sunburn, humidity… these are reasons why I usually prefer my climate controlled interior spaces with a view!
Joy: Bonus! My Kitchen Counter
Since I’m terrible at sticking to a number, I thought I’d throw this into the mix. This is not one of my favorite places, but these days I seem to end up writing and even reading while standing at the kitchen counter. Everything is high and safe. Such is life with tiny, grabby humans. 😉
Beth: Do what you gotta do, mama!!!
Tell us about your latest release
Joy: I’d love to! 🙂 Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations is my debut novel, and the story is set in my home state of New Hampshire. I’ve always been obsessed with weddings, and when I first started writing this story, I was single and frustrated with the man who is now my husband. I started venting writing, and all of a sudden, I just heard Izze in my head. Think Gilmore Girls meets Say Yes to the Dress meets Pride and Prejudice.
I started working on the first draft seven years ago. It took me awhile to finish writing the first draft, rewrites, and edits. Then I went to the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference in 2014 and pitched it. As I look back over the last seven years, I can vividly see the lessons God taught me through Izze. He really does give us beauty from ashes! I really hope that readers know one thing all the way to the core of their souls when they finish Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations: they can trust God.
And that chocolate is essential to life. 😉
Beth: Win-win… you got the book and the man! Amen to chocolate!
Isabel “Izze” Vez, bridal consultant extraordinaire, has been helping brides find The Dress for years. She loves nothing more than helping make wedding dreams come true…but sometimes the happy endings grate on her. How many times can a girl discover someone else’s gown without dreaming of the day it’ll be her turn to wear one?
When James Miles Clayton walks into her life, he represents everything Izze can’t handle: change. He’s determined to bring the Ever After Bridal Boutique into the black…and to prove to Izze that she should give him a chance.
But if there’s anything Izze handles worse than change, it’s trust. She may have a few issues—fine, she knows she does. But will they keep getting in the way of any chance of her own Happily Ever After? She wants to trust God to give her those dreams of love and lace, but that’s going to require some…minor alterations.
Beth: Readers, you need this book in your life! Check out my review where I gush over how much I love this story!
Tell us about your next release
Joy: I can’t tell you a lot about my current project. Still very hush-hush. (Sometimes being a writer is a little like being a spy. LOL!)
I can tell you that I wasn’t on speaking terms with these characters for a long time. Oh, the drama! But now I understand them, and oh, I love them so much!
God’s been teaching me a lot about our worth, and that journey is very much reflected in this story.
Beth: That’s okay, you keep your secrets for now 😉
Joy: I wanted to share a short excerpt of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations with you guys. This is right after Miles and Izze’s first date. I shared this scene because…well, I really wanted to share a kissing scene! ; ) Enjoy!
“Are you ready to go?”
Not really. That would mean this day is about to end. “Yeah.” I hop off my stool and grab my purse. Miles holds the door open for me, and I hop into his car like I’ve been a fixture in that front seat for years instead of just hours.
The drive back to my house goes much too quickly. I chitchat nervously the entire time, and, bless his soul, he doesn’t act like I’m being really weird.
The end of the date is and always will be the most classic moment for a first kiss. I am very nervous. I haven’t kissed anybody since…
I blink harshly as the face of my past comes into my vision.
I am very nervous. The fact that I just polished off two coffees is not helping matters either.
Miles pulls into the driveway and turns off the engine. Silence fills the car.
What do I do now?
More importantly, do you think he’ll notice if I check my breath?
“I’ll walk you to your door.” His breath forms a huge cloud in front of him. “I had a lot of fun tonight.”
“Me too.” I smile at him. Even though it’s dark, I know he can see it.
“So she admits it? Give it up for Miles everybody. The victor!” He raises his arms like he’s a rock star greeting his fan base of screaming teenage girls.
I don’t say anything. Anything I could say would ruin all this day has been.
The snow crunches underneath us. The porch light is still on, and that could mean my friends were thoughtful of me. Or, and most likely, they are watching from one of the windows and wanted to be able to see what was happening.
“I had a really fun time.”
I stand there unsure of what to do. How long do you wait before it becomes silly?
I’ve reached my limit. “Well”—I try to keep my voice light and breezy—“I should be heading inside. Good night.”
I turn away from him very slowly, moving to go inside, knowing what I’m doing, but my eyes have never left his face.
“Wait.” His voice stops me. In one smooth motion, he frames my face with his big, warm hands, and his lips meet mine in one sweet, sweet good night kiss. Brief, yet lingering and dizzying. Time stands still, yet his touch fades in an instant when he pulls away. His face is still close to mine, and I can feel his breath on my cheek. “Good night, Izze.”
I nod. He lets go and, after flashing me one more smile, bounds down the walkway to his car. I give a little wave before heading inside.
Courtney, Kaylee, and Apryl are all sitting nonchalantly on the couches. Too nonchalantly. They saw, and they know that I know that they saw.
I know this because none of them can wipe the huge smiles off their faces.
“So.” Apryl bats her eyes innocently. “Have fun?”
“Good night, guys.” I make a run for my bedroom, but I’m not quick enough. They start throwing the couch pillows at me, laughing and whistling their approval.
Oh, yeah. I had fun.
Beth: Awwww, I love these characters! Thank you so much, Joy for sharing that sweet kissing scene, your favorite places for reading and writing, and your bookish news!!!
winners choice of ebook or paperback for US and Canada.
Where is YOUR favorite place to read or write?