BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

VICKI HINZE INTERVIEWS WITH NORA - GIVE AWAY


How did you come up with the idea for your book, Forget Me Not?

It sprang from wondering if a person could ever get to a point beyond faith. If you lost everything--every single thing, including your identity--and you were a person of faith, would faith remain, or would you lose it, too? The idea intrigued me and frankly terrified, so I had to explore it to find out. In doing so I learned that even when you forget who you are, you don't forget whose you are. There is no point past faith for one who believes.

Did you have a working title for your book Forget Me Not? Or did you always have that title for your book?


Forget Me Not was my original title. It suited with the heroine's conflict, but even more so with the results of my exploration, particularly with the hero, Benjamin Brandt. As the result of a deep and personal tragedy--the loss of his family--Ben turned away from his faith. They'd believed, they acted on faith, they walked the walk, and still tragedy struck. So he turned away. But through the story, he finds his way back to God and faith, and he discovers that even when we doubt God is there or that He exists, God doesn't abandon us. He promised never to forsake us, and He doesn't--even when we fear He has, or we feel as if He's forgotten us in a dark hall. He's intimately involved in every aspect of our lives.

Could you tell me how the book cover process works for you? The cover on your book is very eye catching, just wondered if you had a say in how they turned out?

The artist, Kelly L. Howard, designed the cover. I was asked for input, and limited it to the "half-face" that is prevalent on many of my covers. I've found that artists are best at artistry and writers are best at writing. So I trust the artist's judgment because she's the expert. And look at the fantastic job she's done! I love the cover for FORGET ME NOT. Kelly is so gifted. She captured the essence and tone and character all in one fell swoop. I could never do that.

Can you give us a sneak peak into what book you are working on right now? When does it release?

I'm working on DEADLY TIES, which is Lisa Harper and Mark Taylor's story. You meet them both in FORGET ME NOT. Lisa has a difficult relationship that absolutely makes her miserable on multiple fronts. Then, when finally things should get better, they get worse. There are people who thrive on evil, and unfortunately they inflict themselves on those who try hard to avoid it. Things are never exactly as we see them, and sometimes it's hard for people who don't delve in the dark side to understand or even to imagine the thoughts and actions of those who do. I love this story, and Mark Taylor is a terrific man; perfect for Lisa. Just adore him.

Did you always know you wanted to be a writer Vicki? If not, how did you catch the writing bug?


I started writing political essays before I started grade school. I loved Marmaduke. To read him in the Sunday funnies, I had to read the front page of the paper and write or discuss it with my dad. If I did, then I got to read Marmaduke. That's how I started writing. As kids, when we played school, I was the librarian. Both my parents loved reading and so we did a lot of it. Then I moved into poetry. I liked it, still do, but fiction called to something in me that other writing didn't. So I wrote a few short stories and got frustrated at the lack of space to explore. I needed room to sprawl--a novel. So I tried one, loved it, and have kept at it. I do like writing short nonfiction very much as well on subjects that interest me. But I can't imagine my life without writing in it. It's too big a part of the whole and I'd be lost without it.


I should have picked up on that early on, but I didn't. I took the scenic route. Became a hairdresser and makeup artist to pay my way through college, then studied psychology long enough to develop an interest in business and went the corporate route for years. But books remained my passion and when my husband was deployed, I needed to write through my fears. You can't talk about those things to anyone, so I wrote through them. Writing, I guess, has always been a refuge for me. It's what I do to make sense of things, to get a better grip on them, and to escape. When the world outside is out of control, I write and immerse in a world that is more controlled. It's therapy, and I hope offers something constructive to others. Since all my books are healing books, sometimes seeing a constructive solution to a challenge offers assurance that a solution exists. And if the character can go through their challenge--which is different than ours but relatable to ours--then we can find constructive solutions, too. That's my hope for my books. My deepest desire for them: to shine a light on dark scary places so they're not so dark or scary anymore.

Can you tell me of two “Wow” moments you’ve had since you’ve been published? What made it a “Wow” for you?

WOW Moment #1: Putting my first copy of my first book in my mother's hands. That was one of the all-time thrills of my life. You have to know her to appreciate it. She grew up poor. Her mother left her dad (an alcoholic) to raise six kids, which meant my mother had to do it. She was sixteen, loved reading then enough to walk miles to the library to get books. They were dirt poor and though she had the highest grades in the class and was to graduate in weeks, when her mother left, her dad took off, and so she had to quit school to go to work so the kids wouldn't starve and be homeless. She did it with dignity and grace. She read widely--studied everything--and she learned life skills from people in books. Books meant the world to her, and when I put that book in her hands and she saw it dedicated to her, she was so moved that she burst into tears. I'll never forget what that meant to her, or all it represented. Ever.

WOW Moment #2: A reader’s response to MAYBE THIS TIME. It’s a reincarnation theme book I wrote in 1988 right after my dad died, and explores that. In it, time after time, you see you don’t always get what you want, but God always gives you what you need. How little of the life tapestery we see, even when it’s our own. Most editors thought it was too risky, but one wanted to buy it. Her boss shot her down. In 1994, I won an award on another book. This editor came up to me after and recalled the book by title and asked who’d bought it. I said no one. I had never sent it anywhere; it was on the shelf in a closet at home. She asked me to overnight it to her. It had stayed with her and she was thrilled it was still available. I sent it and got a 2-book contract. There was a publishing delay and that book came out in 1996—8 years after I wrote it. Reviews were great on it—it was a very unusual book at the time, and that surprised me.

A few months later, a reader contacted me and said her nephew, a pseduo-son, had commmitted suicide and she felt so guilty because she hadn’t seen any signs of anything being wrong. She just didn’t see how she could go on living. She and her 7-year old daughter were in the grocery store and walked down the book aisle. The child pulled the book off the shelf and told her mother she needed to read it. Mom asked why, and the child said it would help her. So the mom bought it and read it, and she wanted to thank me for helping her find her way back to life. Seeing a bigger picture and how things connect helped her, and now, she could go on.

This was before I turned to writing Christian fiction (Forget Me Not is my first book since then), but it was very moving and humbling to see God's hand at work in this way. If the book had sold immediately, if there had been no publishing delay, if the child hadn't told her mother to read that book, then she wouldn't have gotten what she needed when she needed it. Not through the book, anyway. It just so strongly affirmed trusting God's timing to me. When He knows it's time, things happen. I learned a lot about God's timing and His investment in our lives through this.



And I have to say that there have been many, many cases where a reader will write about a single sentence in a book that impacted them deeply, that they felt had been written just for them. It awes me every time I get such a note because it's affirmation and confirmation of God being front and center in all things. I just love that. It so moves me.

What was your favorite scene to write in Forget Me Not? What was your hardest?

My favorite was the first one, because it was me embarking on a grand adventure. Finally, God front and center in my books in an overt way. I could write the way I think and not have to tamp down the spiritual element. That was exciting and liberating and frightening too because I had no idea how the book would be received.

The scene with Kelly being carjacked was hard. The hardest, though, was the last one. Because I'd really attached to these people and I didn't want to let go. I loved the center and I just wanted to stay put and see what happened next. So closing out that book, particularly not seeing Ben and the heroine committed to each other for all time, was hardest. But considering their circumstances, they needed time. Time with each other and without crisis. So it was definitely hardest.

Why write Christian Fiction when you could write any other market? What’s the draw?

I wrote in the secular market for many years and loved it. But then I had an experience, a misdiagnosis that was actually a clerical error where I thought I was terminal for an extended period of time. It made me think. Hard. About all of my life. The bottom line I reached was that I had loved well and been loved well, and real life doesn't get much better than that. I also came to understand that I was writing secular books because I didn't feel wise enough or holy enough to write Christian ones. But during this life review process, I had many heart to heart talks with God, and it became clear to me that He crafted me as I am. I am acceptable to Him, and that I didn't have to wise enough or holy enough. I just had to be obedient and trust Him. I had to have a willing heart. That, I thought, I can do. And I knew that if I did, then He would do the rest.

The draw is service. Doing His will, not mine, his way, not mine, for His reasons, not mine. His will, His way for His reasons. If I come to understand them, great. If not, I'm just fine with that, too.

QUESTIONS I JUST HAD TO ASK VICKI!!

1. What are your THREE Favorite books of all time?
A)The Bible. I'm not being hokey, I'm serious. Every time I read it, no matter how many times I've read parts of it before, I have these "I can't believe I didn't see that before!" moments. I love that. It's like these layers and when we're ready to receive them, the next layer is revealed. It's just majestic.

B)I'm not going to name titles because there are too many, but I am a loon for a good Cinderella story. I just love them.

C)You're going to groan, but truth is truth. Encyclopedias. When I was a kid, my mom's idea of a fun afternoon was to pull out the encyclopedia, and we'd read and spin stories around people and events. We'd have the best time. So while many look at them and see dry reading, I remember all those times with my mother and they were anything but dry. We'd laugh and cry and learn all kinds of things about all kinds of things. It was wonderful. And a lot of fun.

2. What THREE things would you rather not live without?

Chocolate, coffee, and books.

3. What THREE movies could you watch over and over again?











The American President (a Cinderella story), Fireproof (loved it!) and Winds of War.

4. If you had the opportunity to hang out with any two people in the history of the world—alive or dead; who would you pick and what would you do? (someone other than Jesus)











Can I please have three? Solomon, I'd ask to share all his insights on wisdom. Benjamin Franklin because he was brilliant and balanced. A diplomat, a wit, a writer, an inventor--he was so gifted in so many ways, and he cared about people--first lending library, eyeglasses. Admire his sense and his compassion. I'd study him, pick his brain and learn as much as I could. My grandmother. She died when my dad was three. Maybe we could have tea in a garden and she would share things about her life. I would like to know her--her hopes and dreams.

If I got super lucky and could hang out with a fourth, it'd be Robert the Bruce. Far from perfect, but his courage and bravery fascinate me.

5. A friend of yours has a time machine that they are letting you use. But you can only witness two events in this history of the world. What to events would you experience? Why?









A) When Christ raised Lazarus from the dead. Can you imagine? To witness that, knowing all it proves, just leaves me breathless.

B)The crafting of the Declaration of Independence. To see the founders, understand the process they went through--brilliant minds at work. I'd love to have seen that.





6. What foods do you dislike? What is your favorite?











I  dislike brussel sprouts, snails by any name, and exotics like chocolate covered ants. No way am I eating any of that.

My favorite is chocolate. Hands down. And I love, love, love hot and crusty breads and cheeses.

7. Where would you visit if you had a chance to? Why?

The Scottish Highlands. They speak to something in me I've never been able to explain.

ANY FINAL COMMENTS--THOUGHTS FOR MY READERS?

Just a thank you for being interested enough to call these questions and visit with me. I've enjoyed it immensely. I love hearing from readers, and can always be reached through my website, http://www.vickihinze.com/ I hope they'll drop by, and wish all of them and you much joy and many blessings.

Thank you, Nora. I very much appreciate it. :)
Blessings,
Vicki

Thanks so much Vicki for stopping by and letting us get to know you and your books. I’m very excited to be running the discussion of your book Forget Me Know on the ACFW On-Line Book Club loop starting July 21st. I’m also looking forward to the “Live” author chat for ACFW book club on Monday night, August 2nd. EVERYONE is welcome to join ACFW book club. It’s free. All you have to do is go to www.acfw.com and on the left hand side click acfw book clubs. It’s easy to join. You too can look forward to the discussion and live chat with Vicki Hinze.


Thanks again. I’ll be talking to you real soon--on-line that is!! Grin!
Blessings
Nora :D

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT ABOUT THE INTERVIEW FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A COPY OF THIS BOOK.

THANKS TO EVERYONE THAT STOPPED BY and left a comment. I appreciate you taking the time to encourage Vicki and making good comments!! CONGRATS goes to Benita Glickman! You've won a coy of Forget Me Not. THANKS Vicki for giving away a copy of this book. It's been fun to get to know you better through this interview. (Winner picked using http://www.random.org/)

Blessings

Nora

For EXTRA CHANCES to win this book you can

1. Become a FOLLOWER of my blog
2. Follow me on Twitter http://twitter.com/NoraStlaurent
3. Twitter about this interview and give away!!
4. If you want to join The Book Club Network here is the link for your extra chance
http://www.bookfun.org/
5. If you are a member of The Book Club Network you get an extra chance

Contest will end JULY 15th -- PLEASE REMEMBER to leave your email address so that I can contact you (Use (At) and (dot) so that peole won't be able to spam your email address)


ALL THE BEST TO YOU!! I hope you can join us for the Discussion on the ACFW Book Club Loop!
Blessings

Nora :D

********DISCLAIMER: Entering the give away is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws. Void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents, odds of winning depend on number of entrants *****

40 comments:

  1. I love hearing how your start an story and about your family life, too. I also likr that you read the Bible, for I try and read it everyday, its such amazing book, I gave both my kids a bible, its important for me to try and live my life like a good christian. I would like to see Jesus, the last suppper, and signing of the Independence, and President Lincoln signing freeing the slaves. I love choc. and coffee. I like your books and I want to get your new one but at the moment, I'm not working full-time so money is tight. But going to try and win, but if not I'll save a few dollars and buy it. thanks, for being a writer.carole

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  2. Hi, Nora! I don't need to be entered in the drawing since I already own this book - just stopped by to visit and wanted to let you and Vicki know how much I enjoyed this interview. It was so informative and I enjoyed the unique questions and responses.

    Not that it matters for this drawing, but I am a follower of your blog and also a member of the Book Club Network. Keep up the good work!

    Jan Marie

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  3. I love finding new authors and would love to give this book a try. You asked the questions I would have asked and the answers were very interesting. Christian Fiction is my favorate and I always find the stories entertaining.

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  4. Great interview, and I'm with you Vickie, I don't want to think about life without chocolate. The moment I saw your cover, I thought, I want to read this. Then when I read the blurb, I knew I wanted to read it. Would love to win it here and have the chance to read it.

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  5. I enjoyed getting to know Vicki Heinz and her novel Forget Me Not very much. I see a lot of myself in both. Being a novelist, a Christian novelist in particular, must be a calling.

    I'm a new author and my first novel is Christian fiction, so I guess I'm a Christian novelist.

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  6. This book sounds great! The cover is so mysterious and intriguing!!

    I definitely want to visit the
    Scottish Highlands as well! It seems like such a beautiful, intriguing place!

    hehe, I also really really like chocolate!! :)

    Fireproof is also one of my favourite movies. SUCH an amazing movie!!!! :)

    I am a follower of this blog via RSS feed.

    Kim
    lonebanana(at)msn(dot)com

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  7. Oh, I LOVED that story about the little girl telling her mom she had to read your book. Gave me chills!

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  8. I enjoyed the interview with Vicki. Forget Me Not sounds so intriguing. I know I am so glad God is forever faithful and it is wonderful to be reminded of it in a heart felt story.

    I joined The Book Club Network.
    worthy2bpraised[at]gmail[dot]com

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  9. I love to read Vicki Hinze's books.
    As always this review sounds like I would enjoy reading this book.
    I am a follower and email subscriber and I just put in application to join The Book Club Network. I am waiting for approval.
    Thanks!

    rbooth43(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  10. I teared up when I read about Vicki's placing her first book in her mother's hands. Thanks so much for sharing that story.

    Ann

    Ann_Lee_Miller@msn.com

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  11. Wonderful interview and this new book sounds to be a best seller! Can't wait to read it!

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  12. I would love to read Vicki's book....sounds fantastic! Please enter me. Thanks!!
    jackie.smithATdishmailDOTnet

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  13. Already have the book, but wanted to say I really enjoyed the interview. Love to hear about author's lives before writing and then getting glimpses into the stories they write. Thanks for sharing.

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  14. Loved WOW Moment #2!

    janemaritz at yahoo dot com

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  15. Enjoyed the interview very much. I like the entire story line of this book and would probably buy it if I don't win a copy. I'd really prefer to win a copy - it would be much more special to me. Thanks for aa chance to win.

    Blessing Be in Christ,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10@tx.rr.com

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  16. I thought I left a comment earlier, then I reread the instructions, and realized it might not have appeared because I made a mistake on my email address. I enjoyed this interview very much and would like to be added to the giveaway. The book seems very deep and read worthy. Thank you, I appreciate the chance.

    Blessed Be in Christ,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10(At)tx(dot)rr(dot)com

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  17. What a great interview- I am always interested in getting inside an authors head:-)
    I really liked that your parents encouraged reading and writing and storytelling. We have an 1800 version of Websters Dictionary (HUGE) sitting on an old pulpit of my Fathers and we still reference it often even with Google and wiki available.
    I belong to the Book club network and would love a chance to win your book! Sounds like a great summer read!

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  18. "even when you forget who you are, you don't forget whose you are"--I love this.

    Vicki, you shared a lot of inspiration in this interview. Thanks and God bless.

    I would love to read Forget Me Not because it's definitely on my wish list.

    And one of your older books, I don't remember the title but it was about a man with PSTDD and the main female character had a lot of trouble trusting him. The way you showed this reminded me of a Christian's struggle to actually trust Jesus, and I wondered then if you were a person of faith.

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  19. Great interview, Vicki. Your memories of your mom remind me a lot of my own mom who learned to read from the newspaper her grandmother had pasted all over the walls in lieu of wallpaper. She is 89 and still reads voraciously. You certainly know how to inspire.

    Elainebach(At)aol(dot)com

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  20. I loved this book! Fabulous interview with Vicki! Thank you!

    Not an entry...I have it. :)

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  21. I loved this book. Thanks for the interview!

    Gail Mundy

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  22. I agree with the list of dislikes but am not so fond of chocolate due to allergy.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

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  23. Hi! I really dislike brussel sprouts as well! And chocolate covered ants? Um, ewww.... Snails too. :P Yeah, none of that sounds to wonderfully delicious. Haha. Anyway, wonderful interview! Please enter me into the giveaway! The book sounds wonderful!

    God bless!
    ~Katie G.

    katiegalyean (@) yahoo (.) com

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  24. I don't know if I'd want to live in the Highlands, but I'd certainly love to visit!
    Kel
    betweenthelines-kam@hotmail.com

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  25. I've always wanted to read a book written by Vicki Hinze. Now after reading your interview I want to do so even more. Well, today may be my lucky day. Thanks for the lovely post, and for sponsoring this giveaway.

    bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  26. New follower - GFC.

    bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  27. Great interview! I'd love to read this.

    mj.coward[at]gmail.com

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  28. Hi Vicki, I really enjoyed your interview. I already have Forget Her Not and have on the top of my TBR stack. I have fallen in love with Christian fiction, romance and mystery and can't get enough. So nice to not have to skim or skip parts I don't want to read and the foul language in some books.
    Looking forward to your new book.

    Don't enter me just wanted to make comment.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  29. I liked the interview. Vicki Hinze is an interesting lady.
    I am a huge mystery/suspense reader and would love to win this prize

    rhondastruthers atyahoo.ca

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  30. I follow through network blogs

    rhondastruthers at yahoo.ca

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  31. Great interview. The "QUESTIONS I JUST HAD TO ASK" is very nice. Congratulations and God bless!
    Thanks for the chance to win a copy of this book.

    letrassantas[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  32. Several times I've been haunted by the little girl that told her mother to buy that book. My 20 year old grandson committed suicide just over one year ago. Unexpected, it left us shattered and full of questions. Particularly difficult for his mother and fiance. He was the father of two baby girls and had many friends. This is a late post, I've made another, I just wanted to share my grief. Thank you.

    Grace and Peace,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10(at)tx(dot)rr(dot)com

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  33. I always love your interviews. They always are a joy to read.
    wmmahaney(at)att(dot)net

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  34. Great interview. Can't wait to read the book.

    wyndyc at gmail dot com

    http://wynsbooks.blogspot.com

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  35. As always a great interview Nora! I've read "Forget Me Not" and it was nice to learn more about the author.
    Deborah M.

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  36. Very interesting interview with Vickie. I found that I agreed with much of what she said, and her tastes are similar to mine! I wonder if that will aid me in becoming as popular a writer as she is?
    From wanting to visit the Scottish Highlands (but then I have Scottish background), to disliking Brussel Sprouts (but I do like snails when they are 'escargots', but not chocolate ants), I do love chocolate and simply adore and can't resist hot crusty bread....oh!!!, and especially with a variety of cheeses!

    Great interview....it allows us to see her as a regular person that we can really identify with.

    terrymac1a at hotmail dot com

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  37. I am a new follower of your blog, and from this interview think that I will really enjoy reading your posts.

    terrymac1a at hotmail dot com

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  38. I have just joined The Book Club Network too, on your suggestion.

    terrymac1a at hotmail dot com

    Would really like to be chosen your lucky winner of Forget Me Not by Vicki Hinze! It sounds like it is a summer must read!

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  39. THANKS TO EVERYONE THAT STOPPED BY and left a comment. I appreciate you taking the time to encourage Vicki and making good comments!! CONGRATS goes to Benita Glickman! You've won a coy of Forget Me Not.

    THANKS Vicki for giving away a copy of this book. It's been fun to get to know you better through this interview. I'm excited about the Live Author chat and the book discussion on the ACFW Book Club loop.

    Blessings

    Nora :D

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  40. Carolfiore54; We have so much in common! Thanks for your kind words and encouragement. I appreciate it.

    Jan Marie: Thank you so much. I'm glad you enjoyed the interview and I'm grateful that you read FORGET ME NOT.

    Nancylee: Appreciate the interest in the interview very much!

    Martha W. Rogers: LOL. Life without chocolate is just too much, isn't it? :) I love the cover too. The artist did a wonderful job. I hope you do have the chance to read FORGET ME NOT.

    RONALD LOUIS PETERSON: I believe you're right about the calling, and I wish you all the luck in the world with your novel! Do keep me posted on your progress with it.

    K: Thank you, K. The Scottish Highlands have that same appeal for me--as does chocolate. LOL! And I could watch FIREPROOF at least once a week. Just loved it.

    Roseanna M. White: It still gives me chills, too, every time I think of it. Reader's comments have such a profound impact on a writer. I'm so grateful for them all.

    Merry: Thank you, Merry. I'm glad, too! God is good, to be sure.

    rbooth43: Bless you. And thank you for sharing my books with me. Your note meant a lot.

    Ann Lee Miller: I cried too on giving Mom that book. Get a lump in my throat just thinking about it.

    Nancy CL: Thank you, Nancy. I know God will see to it that those He wants to read it do. I appreciate your support so much.


    Jackie: Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    Linda: Thank you for reading FORGET ME NOT and for taking the time to comment. I treasure your feedback.

    Mozi: Wow #2 knocked me to my knees. :)

    Barbjan10: Thank you so much for your kind words.

    I have to say, you guys have just overwhelmed me. I am so moved by all your kindnesses, and yours, Nora.

    Blessings,

    Vicki

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