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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Book Drawing with Linda Windsor--Thief!!

Lisa won a copy of Andrea Boeshaar's new release on my drawing from last week. Thanks everyone for the great questions you asked and for taking part!!

We're doing a book drawing for Thief, the second book in the Brides of Alba historical series by Linda Windsor. Linda is joining us this week until Friday evening, answering your questions. Please ask about her writing, her home (we've included two pics of her lovely home decorated at Christmas), her books, etc., for a chance to win her book. Also, give me a way to contact you & let me know if you follow my blog (or are a new follower) as you'll get another entry in the drawing. (sorry, U.S. addresses only on this drawing).

Thief-----Exiled in shame and wounded in battle, Caden O’Byrne accepts a mission of penance—to search for his healer’s long-lost daughter. At worst, he’ll finally get his death wish. At best, this could be God’s second chance. But the lovely minstrel Sorcha wants no part in him, his newfound God, or the rescue. In fact, she’s robbed him blind—to help finance her work of buying young captives and returning them to their families. She’s also gone into debt and promised to marry a man she doesn’t love—all for the chidlren’s sake. But before she and Caden can sort out the situation, a treacherous murder forces them to run for their lives…together. While Caden’s rekindled faith is tested, Sorcha wonders if his God is real. If so, can a thief like her dare hope for His mercy? And do the two of them have a chance of reaching home—Sorcha’s real home—alive?

Now, let's join Linda Windsor, best selling author as she shares a bit about her life and her books.

Since so many readers have asked to see pictures of our home, here are some holiday pictures of the great room & dining room. I constantly battle soot on the walls from our love of candles! I had my web mistress recreate my big cooking fireplace on my website and we decorate it seasonally, just like I do at home. At the moment, there is a vase of colorful flowers in it, since it’s summer, and the decorations are beach motif.

The house is made up of three single room cabins ranging in age from 1790-1830. They are cobbled together with a second floor added sometime around 1900. We left many of the original beams exposed. And like the families that lived in the house before us, we added on as our family grew. I have not used the big fireplace since my husband died six years ago, but my goodness, the delicious roasts, chickens and pies we cooked and prepared for guests.

Linda’s research for the early Celtic Gleannmara series resulted in a personal mission dear to her heart: to provide Christians with an effective witness to reach their New Age and unbelieving family and friends. This knowledge of early Church history enabled Linda to reach her daughter, who became involved in Wicca after being stalked and assaulted in college and blaming the God of her childhood faith—a witness that continues to others at medieval fair signings or wherever these books take Linda.

Linda’s testimony that Christ is her Druid (Master/Teacher) opens wary hearts wounded by harsh Christian condemnation. Admitted Wiccans and pagans became intrigued by the tidbits of history and tradition pointing to the how and why Druids accepted Him. She not only sells these non-believers copies of her books, but also outsells the occult titles surrounding her inspirational ones.

When Linda isn’t writing in the late 18th century home that she and her late husband restored, she’s busy speaking and/or playing music for writing workshops, faith seminars, libraries, and civic and church groups. She and her husband were professional musicians and singers in their country and old Rock and Roll band Homespun.

Presently, she’s working on REBEL, book three of her new historical series Brides of Alba, which tells the story of three brothers finding faith and love in war torn Arthurian Scotland. But woven into the background are the little known historical traditions of the early British church, the Grail Church and its protection of the Irish Davidic kingly and the British Arimathean priestly bloodlines that allegedly survive in the British royal family today. Meanwhile, rave reviews continue to pour in for the first two of this series from her peers and industry professionals.

In Healer, Linda Windsor combines a knack for thorough research and the skill to draw from it judiciously in telling an engaging story. She weaves together a rich and detailed tapestry of sixth century life in Scotland. Her notes about Arthurian characters, the Grail Palace, and the bibliography are well worth reading. Linda has done her homework and written a fine story.

Randy Alcorn
Author of Safely Home and Deception

"I've read and loved many of Linda Windsor's novels; Thief runs away with the prize as my absolute favorite! The conflicts are real, the characters more so, with larger-than-life Caden O'Byrne fighting body and soul to win a spirited woman worthy of his warrior's heart. Stirring romance, high adventure, and genuine faith all beat like a drum from first page to last. Once you start reading, Thief is sure to steal your every waking hour!”

Liz Curtis Higgs
Best-selling author of Here Burns My Candle

“Windsor's competent storytelling makes her tropes fresh and entertaining.”

Publishers Weekly on THIEF

“Windsor keeps us on the edge of our seats, mixing romance with early Christian testimony. An enchanting tale of intrigue and the power of compassion.

Romantic Times TOP PICK!


Connie Walsh Brown said...

I enjoyed reading this post. Wow! How did you get an endorsement from Randy Alcorn?

The question I have is what advice would you give to a writer who is writing a first novel?

Connie Walsh Brown

Connie Walsh Brown said...

I am a follower of your blog.

Connie Walsh Brown

misskallie2000 said...

Hi Linda, Beautiful pics of your home.

Why did you pick this historical series about the early British Church and Grail Church? I had not heard of the Grail Church until this post. I love anything about Scotland and know I will enjoy reading the Brides of Alba series.

misskallie2000 at yahoo to com

misskallie2000 said...

I am a GFC follower

misskallie2000 at yahoo to com

Linda Windsor said...

Callie, I felt called to write the Celtic historicals in general because of my own Scot-Irish-Welsh heritage. My first series was Irish and its research gave me much needed answers/witness to my daughter when she turned to Wicca. Of course that led me deeper into early church history and its witness to the pagan Celts and the Druids, who knw who Christ was from Magi records. When I decided to do the same era in Scotland, I stumbled on the Arthurian research and Grail Church information in Nora Lorre Goodrich's books on those legends/histories. That inspired me to use it in the Brides of Alba series.

Linda Windsor said...

I know Randy Alcorn through a writers group called ChiLibris and he was gracious enough to read and endorse Healer. He is a wonderful person and teacher/witness.

As for advice to a beginning novelist, in addition to reading extensively so that one knows the genre they are targeting, I would recommend joining American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) to learn the business as well as the craft. I know so many award-winning authors who got their first contracts as a result of their belonging to this wonderful organization and participating in the workshops and contests, not to mention getting editor/agent appointments.

Rebecca said...

What is the name of the cat in the Christmas photo? Thank you so much for the chance to win this. The book sounds great. I would love to read this. Thanks again.


Linda Windsoir said...

The cat in the photo is Gandalf White Socks or Gandalf for short. He weighs about 25lbs and his fur is so thick, I don't think he's ever been wet to the skin. He's a big baby who climbs on my desk and spreads out, belly up for attention.

Debra E. Marvin said...

Thank you Linda and Miralee!
How interesting to learn that you saw this series as a way to reach New Age readers--I guess I missed that in the past. I pray it is doing just that.

Thanks also for the photos of your home.
I'm looking forward to Thief!

debraemarvin (at) yahoo.

Salena Stormo said...

Hi Linda. I loved the interview. Thanks for sharing a glimps into your home. How long have you lived there and what was your favorite part of the restoration?

Can't wait to read your new book!

srstormo at yahoo dot com

Jeanne Dennis said...

Interesting post. I'm intrigued about how your books reach New Age and Wiccans.

I have two questions: What is it in your books that you think appeals most to New Agers and Wiccans, and how did you keep from getting burned and catching your clothes on fire cooking over an open fire?

Melissa said...

What a great tool for witnessing!

rmjagears AT gmail DOT com

Connie, I second Linda's advice to join ACFW. I'm glad I took a writer's advice several years ago to do so. Worth every penny.

Vickie McDonough said...

Hey Linda,

I'm so glad to finally get to see pictures of your home. I'd love to see one of the outside. It sounds so neat.

Most authors tend to stick with a specific genre, but you've done historical and contemporary. Do you find it hard to switch back and forth? Does one come easier than the other?

Hi Miraee! I'm a follower
fictionfan1 at me dot com

Cheryl St.John said...

Good for you, Linda! You have an amazing testimony.

Love to you.

Renee Yancy said...

Linda, my first two books take place in 5th century Ireland and Scotland. I also have Irish ancestry. It's encouraging to know that you have sold books that take place in the 6th century, as I have been told that such "ancient" history is a hard sell.

I love the statement "Christ is my druid now" - originally spoken by St. Columba and I took the liberty of having the main character in my first book speak that line after her conversion to Christ.

Now after all these centuries, you are using that to reach people into New Age and Wicca. Wonderful and amazing.

Linda Windsor said...

Debra, I have lived in this house for 27 years! Wow, time flies. The restoration involved stripping all the plaster and lathing. We'd been told there were beaded beams, meaning dressed beams intended to be exposed. Only the wealthy could afford that and it was an 18th century marker. We poked holes in every room in the house looking for those beams. We found beaded siding in the attic, reused for flooring. We found a small window enclosed where cabins #1 and #2 to the site had been joined. It was only when we looked at the very last room/cabin to be added to the house that we found the beams. Yes, the last cabin added to the house was the oldest building, dating 1790. But the owners had pieced the house together so well, it had been almost impossible to find until everything was stripped. But that one day, as we searched for proof of the age of the dwelling, we felt like Sherlock Holmes. The siding-turned-flooring in the attic, sooty from a smokey kitchen, sent us to the only room left in the house that we'd not poked holes in yet. The last room added to the place. And there they were, unfinished and sooty as the attic floor, indicative of it being the plantation kitchen, which was all that survived of Forest Necke. Meanwhile my dad is saying, tear that thing down and built a real house! He changed his tune, but not many saw the possibilities my hubby and I had. Most thought we'd lost our minds to be thrilled with the old place.

Linda Windsor said...

Salina, I meant that last post for your question about a favorite moment in the restoration. There were several good memories and just as many bad ones--bad because we did most of it ourselves and were utterly exhausted of energy and patience.
I would never do it again, but I'm glad we did it when we were young enough to survive it.

LInda Windsor said...

Regarding a witness to New Age-ers, this never ceases to fascinate them and make they hungry for more.
The druids knew who Christ was and accepted Him as their Druid, meaning master. Magus/Magi, wise man, master, or teacher were synonymous with druid. (Christians need to know this to witness effectively to New Age'ers. The druids were the educated elite. The Magi of Scripture recorded the astrological events associated with Christ's birth and death. Later, when Christianity officially arrived, most of the druids accepted Christianity because they already knew that the heavens themselves had declared Christ was Son of God, King of Kings in the universal language of the stars. Peter referred to the same astrological signs at Pentacost predicted by Joel. The druid thought was that man might have made up the Jesus stories, but only the Creator God could have hung that star to announce Christ's birth and darkened the sun at mid day on his death. Therefore Christ was the king of kings, God's son. But until they heard the good news of the Resurrection, they thought the birth and death were the end of the story. Most druids, those who sought the truth and the light, became Christian priests. Those druids who would not accept Christ were akin to nonbelieving intellectuals of today or self-serving men who used their knowledge of proto-science and the common man's superstition for their own gain, producing bad fruit--soothsayers, fortune-tellers, conjurers of spirits and the like.
That most druids accepted Him and became priests because of their own record of the star and darkness at mid day was a BIG DEAL back then and to New Age'ers today, who do not know this. I send them to for further historical and scientific proof of the CReator God using the heavens as His CNN.
A little anecdote: the serpent was a symbol of knowledge, hence the medical serpent. Druids were referred to as serpents. So when St. Patty drove the serpents from Ireland, he drove the druids who would not accept and serve Christ. MAIRE, of my first Irish series Fires of Gleannmara, shows the showdown between the good druids and the self-serving dark ones. It also demonstrates the effective witness of the early Christians to the pagan world.

Linda Windsor said...

Vickie, good to "see" you dear friend. I wrote a novella in a collection set in Ireland a few years ago and it was such fun. We had 3 historical stories tied together by my modern day account of a couple delving into the past to find the origin of a Pledging Stone. One wanted to prove the legend that promises made over the stone could never be broken while the other was determined to show it was all fake. Love wins.

Vickie, I find it easy to switch genres. Writing romantic comedy is a break for me. My humor is in my romcoms, but my heart is in my historicals. Okay, my humor does show up in the Dark Ages as well.

Linda Windsor said...

Renee, best of luck with your Irish series. I belief there is a great witness in the early church. They recognized what Christianity and Druidism had in common and built on that. They allowed the seasonal celebrations, adapted them, but changed the focus from creation worship to Creator worship. Their biggest witness was living their faith so that the pagans wanted to be like them. They did not force their faith on their nonbelieving members, but lived in harmony with them until the pagans wanted some of that Christian "fruit." A theme in all my books is that Christ was never a dictator. He was a teacher who was the way, the truth and the life.

Miralee Ferrell said...

Linda, I'm so impressed with the time and passion you're pouring into your shines through even in the answers you've posted here. I know that's why I loved this book SO much--I saw your heart throughout the story and the characters and their plights came alive to me. I'm so honored to host you on my blog and get to introduce my readers to you who haven't read you before. They won't be disappointed if they decide to purchase a copy of this book!

Pam Hillman said...

Ugh. Blogger ate my comment.


Linda, your new series sounds awesome, and I enjoyed the peek into your home. It looks lovely, soot and all!

Hi Miralee! Please enter me in the drawing, Thief sounds like MY kind of book. Of course all of Linda's are wonderful.

phillman64 at gmail dot com

Linda Windsor said...

I appreciate the chance to "talk" to fellow readers and writers.

Pam, Great to "see" you. I hope you and all the ACFW gals have a great conference. Will be thinking of you.

Pam Hillman said...

Aw, Linda, I wish you could be there! It's always a blast.

Quick question for you? What's your writing space like in that wonderful old house of yours? I can just imagine the fun you have writing your books. Hmmm, I think I would have my office in that room from the 1700's! That would be so cool.

A J Hawke said...

I'm intrigued by the history of the church in those first centuries after Christ. I look forward to reading your series and learning more of what the church was like in that part of the world in the 6th century.

How many hours of research did you have to put in for each of the books?

A J hawke
ajhawkeauthor at aol dot com

Miralee Ferrell said...

Congratulations to misskallie2000 for being the winner of Linda's book!

Debra E. Marvin said...

I'm sorry to be late with a question for Linda but I've been thinking about this a lot lately and I'd like to ask more on your ideas of marketing.

Some authors of Christian fiction have a Christian reader in mind when writing while others hope to reach the 'unchurched' (or at least those who don't have a personal relationship) yet Christian fiction is very isolated in its marketing.

Can you share some thoughts on how you broaden your marketing into this wider area of New Agers?

Linda Windsor said...

Pam, my office is central control. Liv room, fam room/kitchen and mom's wing all pass through my space. It is in the newer section with a double window looking out into the side yard. Not much of a view, but it lets the sun in and I'm solar powered, I think, like my cats.

LInda Windsor said...

Debra, the way I've reached New Age-ers is mostly through booksignings. The Celtic theme attracts them. Conversations are struck up and usually they will buy the books. The rest is up to God.
That said, I also recommend to Christian audiences that these make great gifts to their teens as they provide a solid foundation of history to underscore their faith/Scripture.
Christians needs as much education as to early history as nonbelievers do. Most Christians would have a heart failure if one said the three Magi were druids. That is because we only know a part of history and Scripture. There were the dark druids, but there were also those who earnest sought truth and light and followed that star. Druid simply meant educated or professional, not black-robed/hooded blood sacrifices. So both sides need to be educated. Nonbelievers blame Jesus for attrocities committed in his name the same way Christians condemn all druids for blood sacrifices and fortune telling. In reality, it was only a small segment of Christians and druids who were the misguided and sometimes simply evil men that colored history against Christ and druid alike.
But I drift from marketing... the Celtic books market themselves and I pitch them wherever I can. I've often thought about doing a blog on these things, trying to separate wheat from chaff in both factions. My passion comes from love of my own Celtic roots, my fascination with early church history and its witness to pagan peoples, and certainly, how this information helped bring my daughter back to Christ. That's how I know it is effective. Not instant, mind you, but effective.

Debra E. Marvin said...

Thank you Linda, and I am happy to hear about your daughter. I have a few people in mind when I write with the hope of publication. All these hours (and years) spent are worth it if a book can change even one heart!

I often go to Celtic festivals as well, so I can see where you book could be a great draw. Thank you so much for sharing your story and answering my question.

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