Rebecca Forster marketed a world-class spa when it was still called a gym, did business in China before there were western toilettes at the Great Wall and mucked around with the sheep to find out exactly how her client’s fine wool clothing was manufactured. Then she wrote her first book and found her passion.
Now, over twenty-five books later, she is a USA Today and Amazon bestselling author and writes full-time, penning thrillers that explore the emotional impact of the justice system. She earned her B.A. at Loyola, Chicago and her MBA at Loyola, Los Angeles. Rebecca has taught the Business of Creativity at the University of California Long Beach Writers Certificate Program, UCLA and UC Irvine extension. Married to a Los Angeles Superior Court judge, she is the mother of two grown sons and spends her free time traveling, sewing, and playing tennis.
To learn more about Rebecca, check out her website.
If you saw my blog here last month, you’ll know that May was pretty busy for me. I had two new books published.
That meant I spent a lot of time letting people know about them, publicizing them mostly in social media, including a blog tour. And yes, an interview here, on A Slice of Orange.
Those two books? Well, of course I have to mention them again: BEAR WITNESS, my first Alaska Untamed Mystery for Crooked Lane Books, under my first pseudonym, Lark O. Jensen, and GUARDIAN K-9 ON CALL, the second in my Shelter of Secrets series for Harlequin Romantic Suspense.
They’re still available, in case you’re interested.
But now that it’s June? Well, guess what? I’m busy writing. I’ve got another book coming out this year, plus I’m on several deadlines.
Hey, that’s a writer’s life. Calmer days of writing? Well, yes and no. But at least I keep on going!
How about you? If you’re a writer, this will probably sound familiar: your own works being published, whether traditionally or by you, and needing to let the world know about them whichever way they get out there.
And if you’re a reader, well… enjoy what we’re doing! And that includes all writers who are undoubtedly also readers.
Happy June. I’m prepping for a new release in a week so I thought I’d modify a post from 2018. When I read it, I was reminded of the relevance of the topic. I have to be honest, I guest blogged a few days ago at Delilah Devlin and I used this post. I’m repeating it…more like updating it because it’s relevant to my upcoming release.
I want to talk about the preconceived notions people have about Christian, Inspirational or Faith based books. When someone hears a story has one of the three aforementioned tones, they immediately shut down thinking the story is going to be sweeter than cotton candy dipped in chocolate and covered with gum drops.
There’s CIF [Christian, Inspirational, Faith] fiction that falls into that description and there’s nothing wrong with it. It’s written extremely well and packs a message for the reader. However, it’s the misconception that all CIF books are like that which provokes a closed mind to experiencing some really great stories. [I swear I’m not preaching.]
When I decided to start writing, I’d dabbled a little in high school and college. Even so far as to writing a couple of plays. I found them later and felt they’d be a good base for a barbecue fire. When I read them again, I realized, although they were poorly written, they had a few things in common. The characters were all Christians in real life situations. Let me explain. In a lot of CIF books, the story centers around the church with conflict between the pastor, the board, the choir director, pastor’s family and some evil person not affiliated with the church. There’s nothing wrong with those books. I’ve read a few and like them, however, they weren’t the kinds of stories I wanted to tell.
I have always loved God, fashion and cute guys. I liked “The Devil Wears Prada,” “Bergdorf Blondes,” “Elements of Style” and “The Debutante Divorcee.” These were characters I could relate to. The books are filled with the most incredible fashion and very handsome men. The only thing they didn’t have was a faith theme. It was reading these books that it occurred to me, why not write a book with similar content, but add a little CIF to it.
My first attempt at writing a book sounded very much like ChickLit. I was fine with it until my beta readers ripped it to shreds. After a lot of re-writes, I finally had a book I was pleased with. Problem was, it wasn’t considered acceptable. Every traditional editor I approached had the same response, “Christians don’t act like that, Christians don’t care about designer clothes, Christians are happy being upper middle class at best, Christians don’t get challenged, tempted, have racy dreams or wicked thoughts, Christians only have sex for procreation and on special occasions. And there is no way a Christian would get divorced, commit adultery, fornicate, swear, drink wine or dance”.
Needless to say, I was stunned at the comments because I know a lot of Christians that have experienced and or faced a few of those things. So I set out to write books for “my people.”
I spoke with an author friend and told her what I had been experiencing with the traditional publishing machine and she suggested I consider going indie. I wasn’t too sure the indie world was for me, but it was. The indie publishing world allows me to tell the stories I want to tell.
It ticks me off when I hear people say no one will read books about Christians [or people of other religious or faith beliefs] in real life situations. I want to read about “my people” dating, regretting, marrying, divorcing, falling in love, wearing designer clothes, traveling and being pursued by wealthy men. I don’t want my heroine to be naive and deceived by an evil protagonist whose only objective is to steal her virginity or corrupt her. What about the sexy, fun Christian girl who works hard and falls for her boss, or divorces her cheating husband or who used to be a little slutty and is now in love with God struggling not to slip back into her old ways. These are great stories and if they’re written well, you can take the CIF elements out and they’ll still be great stories.
My next book is part five of an office romance. The Good Girl series starts out sweet and sassy and escalates to a hot romance. For those expecting a tame romance, this isn’t it. As the series moves forward, so does Gabriella and Phillippe’s relationship. The cover of Part Five reminds me of a scene from the book. Without giving too much away, I’ll say this, Gabriella and Phillippe get what they want. The question is, “What do they want?”.
Since I began writing, my books have gone from being classed as steamy, Christian fiction to Contemporary Romance with faith and heat. My books range in heat from sweet to very sensual/steamy. Personally, I don’t see where they are that hot, but some readers feel otherwise. I’ve even gotten reviews that called one of my books soft porn. Needless to say, that didn’t set well with me, but I had to consider the source. If a reader buys one of my books expecting a sweet Christian romance, they’re in for a surprise.
I recently had to amend my relationship with my editor. We have been working together since I started indie publishing. The reason had to do with the very descriptive sexual content.
Although most of my characters are Christians, I don’t want their passion or desire to be watered down. Here’s a startling fact, Christians like sex. I know it’s hard to believe. Smile. But it’s the truth and that’s why I have chosen to include open door sex in my books. Let me clarify, I only include sex scenes when I feel they are relevant to the story. I also like to share my characters thoughts and reactions to situations. If either of the protagonist are having a lustful thought or are pissed off, I include it. These little nuances make my characters appear real and relatable.…just like in traditional romance.
So back to the original question, IS THERE A DIFFERENCE? Not really, just different levels of intensity and personal preference.
Johnny Angel was a song written and composed by Lyn Duddy Pockriss. The song was originally recorded by both Laurie Loman and Georgia Lee. It became a popular hit single when it was recorded by Shelley Fabares in the fall of 1961.
It made No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart when the song was released in 1962. The American pop music duo The Carpenters recorded “Johnny Angel” in 1973 as part of a medley of oldies on side two of their album Now & Then.
The song premiered on an episode of the, The Donna Reed Show. It also has a sequel song entitled Johnny Loves Me.
Johnny Angel hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 on April 7, 1962, during a 15-week run on the chart. It charted at number one in both Canada and in New Zealand. It sold over one-million copies and was awarded a Gold Disc.
A treasure map, a treasure hunter, the Devil’s Gold, suspense, romance and a lot of twists and turns.
Abby Holland inherits a treasure from her beloved grandfather, King Farrell. Farrell was a famed explorer and treasure hunter until he allowed his obsession for the Devil’s Gold to destroy his reputation. With map in hand, Abby vows to find the gold and restore her grandfather’s good name.
Knowing she is out of her league and that others will stop at nothing to steal her treasure map, she hires another professional treasurer hunter, Gage Logan, to help her.
Gage is skeptical but still intrigued by the map and Abby. At first, he tries to dissuade her expedition. But when he realizes she’s determined to go with or without him, he reasons that the least he can do is to keep Abby safe while she uncovers the hidden messages left by her grandfather.
Heat, flash floods, winds, and a host of bad guys compound the problems Abby and Gage encounter while racing across the Superstition Mountains following King Farrell’s clues. Their growing attraction to each other doesn’t help the situation.
Abby and Gage must decide if finding the Devil’s Gold and restoring King Farrell’s reputation is worth the danger they face.
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