BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

(3) GIVEWAYS - POSSESSION by RENE GUTTERIDGE



ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rene Gutteridge is the author of seventeen novels, including four suspense novels from Tyndale House Publishers (The Splitting Storm, Storm Gathering, Storm Surge, and Listen). She is also known for her Christian comedy novels and sketches. She studied screenwriting while earning a mass communications degree, graduating magna cum laude from Oklahoma City University and earning the Excellence in Mass Communication Award. She served as the full-time director of drama for First United Methodist Church for five years. She now writes full-time and enjoys instructing at writers conferences and in college classrooms. She lives with her husband, Sean, a musician, and their children in Oklahoma City.


An Interview with Rene Gutteridge (thanks to Tyndale Publishers for allowing me to post this interview and have this giveaway)

Many readers are familiar with your comedies, but how many suspense novels have you written, and what made you decide to write another one?

This is my sixth pure suspense. Suspense is actually my favorite genre in which to write. When I was a kid, the very first novel I attempted was a ghost story. Suspense lets me explore good and evil and all the fears that I sometimes don’t want to admit are there. It lets me believe that there are still heroes in the world. It helps me gain perspective on my life. And I can relax a bit in the writing process. To be a great comedy writer, you have to have suffered a bit. Many comedy writers are intense and dark, like you’d expect a suspense writer to be. Suspense writers are usually very witty and engaging, like you’d expect a comedy writer to be. Thankfully, my split personality allows me to toggle between both.

How did the idea for Possession come to you?

It sort of came from two different places. I’d read a magazine article about people whose possessions were being held for ransom by illegitimate moving companies. And that was about the time we were watching people lose all their belongings when the economy crashed. I read news stories about dads killing themselves and their entire families because they lost their jobs or lost their homes. So I wanted to explore the idea of losing everything and what that means and how to gain perspective on life . . . on what really matters.

The story opens with Lindy at the police station. Why did you start there? Were you worried about giving too much away?

I always like to start stories with a little mystery, a small amount of information that readers can carry with them. I like the opening because it casts a tiny shadow of doubt over every chapter until the end.
A lot of the spiritual content in the story comes through Conner, and the innocence of his faith is so powerful. Where did you come up with the idea of Conner’s becoming a Christian by watching a televangelist?
I got the idea from my own son, who’d somehow gotten to a televangelist one morning while surfing for cartoons. For days after that he would talk to me about what he heard in that sermon. I had this funny picture in my head of Conner watching this evangelist, his white hair slicked to his head, his hands shooting in the air, and Conner just totally picking up on that, not a thought about denomination or what’s comfortable or uncomfortable for him. Since I wasn’t raised charismatic, I thought it’d be fun to explore how a mom would react to her kid acting like a little charismatic televangelist. And how, in the end, she finds her own faith through something that used to embarrass her.

Vance suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. How did you research this? And what made you decide to give Vance this illness? Are hallucinations like Vance’s conversations with Doug Cantella common to PTSD?


I’ve been interested in PTSD since my experience with the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995. I was there for the whole thing and saw a lot of disturbing things but never had any PTSD symptoms—no flashbacks or anything else—except my eyes water every time I hear sirens, fifteen years later. It’s just this weird physiological reaction that happens every time I hear a siren. And that was one of the things that made such an impression on me that day: the sirens never ended. They just kept coming and coming, all through the city. All through the night. I feel fortunate that I was able to come through that without psychological damage. But it gave me a small glimpse into Vance’s struggle with PTSD.

In my research on PTSD, I found a lot of interesting symptoms that coincide with the disorder, including the flashbacks that he experiences, the sounds of the bullets and shattering glass. Hallucinations, however, are extremely uncommon, and there you’re actually bordering on psychosis. But for the story, I wanted Vance to really struggle with reality and delusion and then find faith in between. It fit well for what he’d been through with the D.C. sniper case, which is a case I’d been fascinated with since it happened. I always wondered what it was like for those cops, trying to hunt down what must’ve seemed like a ghost.

Lindy’s mother, Joan, is an intriguing character. She is the proverbial ice queen, yet we see that she truly loves her daughter. How did you develop this character?

Joan was a lot of fun to write. It’s always fun to play with the mother-in-law/son-in-law relationship. I saw Joan clearly from the moment I decided to put her in the story. But what I really enjoyed was ice-picking my way through her coldness, to find her humanity underneath.

Where did you get the motivation for Erin’s character?

She’s a whole lot of badness wrapped into one! She’s misguided, selfish, living for all the wrong things. Rarely does one get this extreme, but I think the thing that makes the bad guy (or gal) so chilling is when we get a little glimpse of ourselves in that character. Erin and Vance both lost their way, but her pride and her own desires kept her from finding the healing that Vance eventually finds.

What do you hope the reader takes away from this story?


The first and most obvious thing is that I want readers to examine what really matters in their lives. It’s so easy to get caught up in the extras of life that were intended as blessings but become harmful when we elevate them over what truly matters. But I also love the story between Vance and Lindy, and how through utter material devastation, they find the compassion and truth they need to restore their marriage. There can be so many obstacles that stand in the way of a marriage thriving, but it is sometimes those very things that cause all the layers to be peeled away so that healing can begin. Lastly, always, always read the fine print!

FINDING HOPE Book Club is reading POSSESSION for this month's book club pick. I'll be posting my ladies reactions to the book here after out Sept. 26th Meeting. We will be talking with Rene via telephone.

We had read LISTEN by Rene last year as a book club and talked to her. Powerful, thought provoking book about our WORDS and how they Affected a whole town and the people that lived there! Wow!

Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network
www.bookfun.org 




CONGRATS TO THE WINNERS OF POSSESSION


THANKS EVERYONE for encouraging Rene Gutteridge. I'm glad to hear about her other books. I might have to check them out.


HERE ARE THE THREE WINNERS


Sheryl Barnes
Shirley Strait
Linda Wagner


THANKS AGAIN for stopping by. Do so again!! As I'll have other drawings this month. Oh, REMEMBER that on October 17th at 9p.m. EST. We'll have lots of Giveaways. It's a "Live" Event. Must be present to win. The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org






MANDATORY TO ENTER - ANSWER ONE OF THE THREE QUESTIONS BELOW!!


DRAWING OCTOBER 3rd.


1. If you've read Rene Gutteridge books before, which was your favorite and why?


2. What are your thoughts when Rene talks about our possessions and how she got the idea to write this story?


3. After watching people lose everything they own in sunamis, hurricanes and earth quakes, do you have a different out look on stuff? If so what have you gleaned from all this?


4. Make A Comment about the interview! Something that struck you!





For EXTRA CHANCES to win this book you can

1. Become a FOLLOWER of my blog (1) entry - please make a separate comment
2. Twitter about this interview and give away!! (1) entry - please make a separate comment
Enter to win (3) Book Giveaway POSSESSION by Rene Gutteridge from@http://ning.it/qcep4b Please RT
3. Grab a button on my site and add it to yours (Finding Hope Through Fiction's Button or The Book Club Network's Button (1)entry - please make a separate comment for each entry
4. Make a post on your blog about this drawing (2) entries - please make a separate comment for each entry

PLEASE REMEMBER to leave your email address so that I can contact you if you win (Use (At) and (dot) so that people won't be able to spam your email address) - I will contact the winner and need to hear from them within 48 hours to claim their prize! Winners chosen using Randomnumber.org.

ALL THE BEST TO YOU

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 *****

37 comments:

  1. I've read many of Rene's books and she is such a talented writer. I loved the Boo series; however, the first book I read by Rene was Ghost Writer and I was hooked, so I guess that would be my favorite because it introduced me to her writing. Haven't been disappointed in anything she's written.
    We had the privilege of meeting her several years ago and she is such a gem!
    Look forward to reading this book too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Having seen the destruction brought about by hurricanes and tornadoes up close, I have been made deeply aware that the only things that really matter are the things you can't buy. The love of God, the place you hold in a circle of family and friends, and the peace that passes all understanding. Even mementos and heirlooms though very special cannot take the place of a dear one who is no longer there.
    Shirley
    beekeeper5@bellsouth.net

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  3. I follow your blog.
    Shirley
    beekeeper5(at)bellsouth(dot0net

    ReplyDelete
  4. I loved the books Skid and Scoop. I am excited to read more of her books.
    I thought it was interesting how she linked suspense and comedy writers together.
    wsmarple/at/gmail/dot/com

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  5. I am a follower.
    wsmarple/at/gmail/dot/com

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  6. to me, possessions are just things that we are fortunate to have here on earth...as the saying goes, 'you can't take it with you.'

    thanks for the chance to read renee's latest novel :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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  7. i'm a follower :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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  8. Loved Listen and am now reading Possession for book club. Great books. In Possession when their stuff was taken, I thought about what I would do without all my stuff (I love my stuff by the way). I wondered how I would react. I got a little nervous thinking about it just like I do when I think of a fire. And then I thought, that "stuff" can be replaced!

    Well, all I can do is just hope that nothing happens! Am loving the book and can't wait to finish.

    Gail Mundy

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  9. PTSD is a difficult issue to overcome. Just the fact that tears come when you hear sirens might be your (Renee's) PTSD response. Usually it much more severe.

    I love to hear your theme for writing this story and what you hope readers take away from the story. That's why I read Christian books.

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

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  10. I'm a follower.

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  11. I have your button on my blog.

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  12. I Tweeted at onedesertrose.

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

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  13. I haven't read any of her books but I want to comment on the fact that she likes to jump into the story with little background. That sounds like a great idea. I'm from Canada so I don't qualify for the draw. BTW, awesome interview.

    Wyndy
    wynsbooks.blogspot.com

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  14. I haven't read any of Rene's books but have "Boo" in my tbr books. I love suspense and mystery, throw in romance, and I can't wait to read that book. Because of the terrible natural disasters in the last few yrs I have wondered what I would do if I lost all my possessions. I am a Sr citizen so I have so many memories involved with my possessions and I just don't know what I would do. The first would be to ask God to help me through this lost. Then I would was start over with him by my side. I would write down my memories even if I no longer have that item to jog my memory. Just take one day at a time.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  15. Old GFC follower and email subscriber

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Twitter follower and tweeted giveaway
    http://twitter.com/#!/misskallie2000/status/114769445871812609

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  17. Your button here
    http://ibooksbooksandmorebooks.blogspot.com/

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  18. I've read several of Rene's books and had the privilege of meeting her with my book club. We read and discussed "Boo." I then had to read the whole series since I enjoyed it so much. I've also read several of her other humorous books; that is one big reason I enjoy Rene's books: the humor. I've not yet read any of her suspenseful books but would like to read "Possession."
    pmk56[at]sbcglobal[dot]net

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  19. I'm a follower of your blog.
    pmk56[at]sbcglobal[dot]net

    ReplyDelete
  20. I haven't read any of Rene's books yet but definitely plan on doing so. The interview was great and I really enjoyed it.

    After living in Florida for so many years and trying to get back to Florida since our family lives there when Katrina hit LA so badly, we have seen the devastation caused by hurricanes. Possessions can be replaced but lives can not.

    Blessings,
    Jo
    ladijo40@aol(dot)com

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  21. I'm a follower.

    Blessings,
    Jo
    ladijo40(at)aol(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  22. I love all that I've read by Rene but my favorites are The Storm Series books. Great suspense and spiritual concepts!

    homesteading[at]charter[dot]net

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  23. I'm a follower.

    homesteading[at]charter[dot]net

    ReplyDelete
  24. I have your Finding Hope Through Fiction button on my blog.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I have The Book Club button on my blog.

    homesteading[at]charter[dot]net

    ReplyDelete
  26. I've read most of Rene's books and loved them! I liked what she said in the interview about her split personality and writing different books.....she is truly a great writer.
    Please enter me for this book. Thanks
    jackie.smith[at]dishmail[dot]net

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  27. I subscribe via E mail.
    jackie.smith[at]dishmail[dot]net

    ReplyDelete
  28. You know possessions do mean a lot to most people. There are things that I thought I could never let go of, but reading about people losing everything in a tornado, hurricane, fire, etc., had me thinking just what is so important about possessions as long as you still have your life? Through my faith in God I have come to realize that possessions can get in the way of my walk with God. All I need to do is completely turn my life over and let God take care of what I truly need.

    Blessings!

    Judy B

    judyjohn2004[at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  29. You know possessions do mean a lot to most people. There are things that I thought I could never let go of, but reading about people losing everything in a tornado, hurricane, fire, etc., had me thinking just what is so important about possessions as long as you still have your life? Through my faith in God I have come to realize that possessions can get in the way of my walk with God. All I need to do is completely turn my life over and let God take care of what I truly need.

    Blessings!
    Judy B
    judyjohn2004[at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  30. You know possessions do mean a lot to most people. There are things that I thought I could never let go of, but reading about people losing everything in a tornado, hurricane, fire, etc., had me thinking just what is so important about possessions as long as you still have your life? Through my faith in God I have come to realize that possessions can get in the way of my walk with God. All I need to do is completely turn my life over and let God take care of what I truly need.

    Blessings!
    Judy B
    judyjohn2004[at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  31. You know possessions do mean a lot to most people. There are things that I thought I could never let go of, but reading about people losing everything in a tornado, hurricane, fire, etc., had me thinking just what is so important about possessions as long as you still have your life? Through my faith in God I have come to realize that possessions can get in the way of my walk with God. All I need to do is completely turn my life over and let God take care of what I truly need.

    Blessings!
    Judy B

    judyjohn2004[at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  32. I read Rene's Ghost Writer a number of years ago and thought she was a man because her male character was so strong. I walked by her at ACFW at the second Dallas conference a few years ago, saw her name tag and did a double take. I hadn't seen anything else by her until that conference and then I bought the Boo series and couldn't get enough. I've loved everything I've read by her.

    I agree with her assessment of Suspense writers.

    I'm also a blog follower.

    ReplyDelete
  33. I'm also a blog follower.
    Kassy P

    kpedits(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  34. Thank you ladies for this interesting interview. And I would love to win a copy of the book and I loved the adorable story of your son and the TV show.
    Blessings.....Joy
    ibjoy1953{at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  35. Thanks ladies for the interesting interview. And I loved the story about Rene's son and the TV!
    Blessings.....Joy
    ibjoy1953{at]yahoo[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  36. THANKS TO EVERYONE for encouraging Rene Gutteridge and I'm glad to hear about her other books.

    The THREE WINNERS ARE
    Sheryl Barnes
    Shirley Strait
    Linda Wagner

    THANKS AGAIN for stopping by. do so again. As I'll have other drawings this month. Oh, REMEMBER that on OCTOBER 17th at 9p.m. Eastern Standard time We'll have Lots of Giveaways. It's a "Live" Event. Must be present to win.

    ReplyDelete