Monday, July 25, 2016

Interview With Eric

It's party time!

My good friend Kendra E. Ardnek is having a blog party to celebrate five years of The Bookania Quests! It's a series full of fun fairy tale retellings you won't want to miss. And for the party, a bunch of Bookania characters are visiting blogs for interviews. Hop over to Kendra's blog to find all the rest!

I got to interview my favorite Bookania character, Eric. It was a ton of fun. Enjoy!

    I’m hiking along a trail in Bookania, when I see a man walking up ahead. He's tall and muscular, with black hair and he's wearing green. Something about him seems awfully familiar.  I squint at him. Is that who I think it is? I hesitantly approach him. “Eric?” I ask.
    “Hello fair damsel. Are you lost? Do you need any aid? I don’t believe that I’ve met you before.”
    “I...well...I’m not exactly lost. I know where I am. But you are Eric? I’m very pleased to meet you. I’m a fan of yours.” I extend my hand for him to shake.
    “A fan?” said Eric, accepting the offered hand, though he kisses it instead of shaking it. “I suppose you’ve heard of my exploits and adventures? People do love to talk.”
    “They do that,” I admit, trying not to grin at his reaction to my intended handshake. “Eric--you don’t mind if I call you by your first name, do you?--would you mind terribly if I asked you a few questions? I’d love to get to know you better, and I have friends on my...on a writing platform I have who would as well.”
    “I don’t mind,” said Eric. “Titles grow pretentious. Are you with one of those newspapers that I’ve heard rumors about?”
    “Thanks. I don’t like titles much either.” I hesitate, not sure how to explain to him about my blog. “No, I’m not with a newspaper. I’m actually from another world. I have a thing called a blog that I post on the internet for people to read.”
    “Ah, another world? Most intriguing. I’ve read books that speak of one, where this world is but a story, but I’ve never met anyone to speak of it as fact before. So what questions do you have for me? Perhaps we should find a place to sit, however?”
    “Your world is a story where I come from. I very much enjoyed reading about your adventures. But yes, a place to sit sounds very nice.” Eric leads me to a fallen tree and we both take a seat. “I’m intrigued by your quests to rescue enchanted princesses. How many have you tried to rescue?”
    “A number of them,” Eric answers. “A a good number more that I heard rumors of but could never find.”
    “You didn’t count then?”
    “Oh, I did, but the number no longer matters now that I’ve found my Robin.”
    “I see.” I’m sure I’m grinning like a silly idiot after that comment. “You knew her growing up, though. When did you realize you loved her?”
    “Five seconds after she accepted the proposal I still don’t remember giving,” Eric answers, grinning.
    I laugh. “Robin’s quite a character. What was going through your head when Robin said you needed to marry someone like her? I mean, she essentially proposed, even though you sorta kinda did without meaning to.”
    “That she is.” Eric shakes his head. “I was focusing on the battle at hand, for she’s a very fierce fighter. I was speaking without thinking, really. I don’t usually let myself do that...”
    “Well, I’m glad you did, since I doubt any other method would have worked out in an engagement.” I study the trees as I try to decide what to ask Eric next. They’re so different from Rizkaland’s trees... “Have you ever met the Doorkeeper Laura? I don’t know if she comes to Bookania much...”
    “No, the name is quite unfamiliar to me.”
    “Ah, well, it was worth asking. I suppose that means people don’t generally world travel here.” Which makes me question how I got here--but no matter. Getting to talk to Eric is worth it. “One of my favorite things about you and Robin was your collections. I think it’s kind of romantic you kept so much of each others’ stuff, though I doubt you were thinking that way then. Why did you actually keep all the stuff Robin threw at you when you were kids?”
    “She, uh, told me to.”
    “That’s the only reason?” If someone threw stuff at me and told me to keep it, I doubt that I would, but I’m not Eric.
    “Well, what else was I supposed to do with it? At least I wasn’t sneaking into her room with malicious intentions of sabotage.”
    I burst out laughing. “You two have the craziest beginning to your relationship. She picked on you mercilessly when you were kids. You don’t hold any of it against her?”
    “Well, perhaps a little,” Eric admits, leaning back. “But now that I understand what she was going through...” He shakes his head. “Besides, there were times when she was nice.”
    “Times.” I turn to look straight at Eric. “Be honest, does she ever get on your nerves? And if not, you must be a super easy going guy.”
    “Well, there are times...” he admits. “She doesn’t see the importance of always being on time - or even early - and that can be frustrating. Also, right now...” he trails off.
    “Yes?” I prompt.
    “The woman doesn’t know how to take it easy and take care of herself!” he exclaims with sudden ferocity.
    “The baby on the way.” I smile at the thought of a cute, sweet little baby. I love babies. “I suppose that even though she has frustrating faults, she wouldn’t be Robin without them, and you wouldn’t like that. I understand.” I finish off my previous thought and launch into the idea of the royal baby. “Are you excited to be a father?”
    “I don’t know,” he admits. “I really wasn’t expecting to face it quite so soon. We were going to do some adventuring first. Now ... I’m really not sure how parenthood will factor into that. And Robin ... I found her climbing a tree yesterday! The day before that ... I understand her need for freedom, I really do, but she needs to take care of herself. If something were to happen to her or the child…”
    “Wow, I didn’t think even Robin would climb a tree while pregnant! That could be a problem. But this baby, it’s, I mean the Author’s will, so it’ll work out, I’m sure. I suppose that means you don’t feel prepared for fatherhood?”
    “She’s only in her fifth month, and she’s such an energetic person,” Eric admits. “But no, I don’t feel ready. How can anyone be ready for parenthood?”
    “True,” I agree. “I’m certainly not ready for parenthood, but I’m not even in a relationship yet, so I don’t have to worry about it.” Robin, though.... I stand up and brush off my skirt. “I probably ought to let you go find Robin; make sure she’s not doing something crazy like standing on her head or running down halls like a maniac or something. But before you go, since you’re a story in my world, what’s the thing you most want readers to know about you?”
    “About myself? Hmm, I don’t know,” Eric admits. “I’m just a man, after all. I may wear the title of prince, but I’m a man all the same. And yes, I really should get back...” At that moment, there is the thunder of horse’s hooves, and the moment after that, Robin appears around the corner on the trail, riding Snow bareback. “Ah, there you are, Eric!” she exclaims. “I’ve been looking all over for you!”
    My eyes widen. Of course Robin’s doing something ridiculous that she really shouldn’t be doing.
    “They wouldn’t saddle Snow for me,” she continues, “and you’ve forbidden me to saddle her myself. Who’s your friend?”
    “I’m just a friend of the Arista. Don’t worry, I’ll let Eric get back to you.” My gaze lowers to the horse, then comes to rest back on her. “You need it. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions, Eric. I really appreciate it.”
    “No problem at all,” said Eric. “Will you be able to find your way back to your own world?”
    “I hope so.” I shrug. “And if not, there are worse places to be stuck.”
    “You could always stay for supper!” Robin hastily adds.
    “I think I’ll do that.” I grin. “Especially if it means you’ll take it easy for a little while.”

Journey Into Bookania
Sew, It's a Quest Free Today!
The Prior Quest Free Today!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Rainland Cover Reveal

Today I'm participating in the cover reveal for fellow author Sarah Allerding's new book Rainland. I haven't read it, but it looks pretty cool.

First, here's a little bit about Sarah.

Sarah is a homeschool graduate who enjoys using her imagination to write fiction. She is working on a degree in theology and hopes to eventually work in the church. She also enjoys umpiring baseball, writing devotions and Bible studies, reading fiction, and playing the guitar.

 And now for the cover!

When Thomas gets caught in a summer storm, he is sucked into the world of raindrops through a tornado. He learns he will not be allowed to return until he can defeat the lightning, which has been hurling raindrops from the clouds. Many adventures await him in this strange land. Is everything just as the raindrops say it will be? Is it the lightning they need to defend themselves against, or is there a much greater foe behind the disturbing disappearances?

This sounds like a fun story and Perry Elisabeth did a great job on the cover. Looks like something to look forward to!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Before You Meet Prince Charming Review young lady who is pure will shine with a radiant brightness in this world of darkness. How can a young lady stay physically and emotionally pure as she waits for God s best in marriage? This guide to radiant purity combines the thoughts and events in the life of a young princess with solid, clear teaching of Biblical convictions that young ladies today need to grasp. Through a captivating fairy tale, modern day examples, practical instruction and abundant humor, Sarah Mally challenges young ladies to turn to the Lord for fulfillment, to guard their hearts and minds, to identify and avoid the world s thinking and to shine brightly in this generation. This book offers Biblical answers to everyday questions and deep life struggles. It deals with many practical topics such as being wise in internet usage, dealing with crush, and building strong relationships with parents. Sarah Mally is a bright light in our day.


I've wanted to read this book for years, but I had never been very active about tracking down a copy. When I saw that they sold it at the Creation Museum, I naturally picked up a copy, but I was thinking "I'm twenty, I've pretty much defined my ideas on relationships. I doubt I really need this." But as I flipped through, I went, "Yep, I still need this." Luckily I remembered I still had a good bit left on the Visa gift card I got from my grandma for Christmas, or I never would have bought it. Because while it's true that I already knew a lot that was in the book, I did need it and I still managed to get a lot out of it.

Now, I've come across things in the Bright Lights handouts that indicate the Mallys seem to lean a bit towards legalism, but I didn't come across much if anything in this book that seemed overly legalistic. At least, nothing I hadn't already read in Bright Lights materials. (Honestly, the thing I most disagreed with was the implication in the bonus material that online friendships are fake. Because while you absolutely have to be super careful, it is possible to make good friends online. It's like a modern version of a pen pal.)

Essentially, what the book is about is staying truly pure and trusting God in relationships. It seems like basic stuff, but unfortunately, it's not really very common. I don't want to rehash the entire book, you need to read it for yourself, but I want to touch on the chapters that stood out to me the most.

Guard Your Heart

I honestly tend to have the opposite problem from what this chapter is really written to help you with. I tend more to hide from guys than to be overly familiar with them. But whether you're boy crazy or anti boy, this chapter helps. It talks about how to have friendships with guys without becoming emotionally attached in a romantic way. Things like keeping the friendship casual and focusing on the other person, not yourself. It's not bad to be friends with guys, but you absolutely need to protect your heart and keep it for the right one.

Could He Be The One?

Despite being a girl who was never interested in guys and never really developed any crushes, I do want to get married someday, and I want to know...How do you know if he's the one? Unfortunately, there's no hard and fast rule, and every situation is different. What this chapter does do is give you an idea of essential qualifications to look for in a spouse. Things like the essentials of marrying a strong Christian, and things like considering if your life missions are the same. But a bigger thing is: Are YOU ready for marriage? And if not, what things do you need to work on to get there? Because you can't expect a guy to be ready to be your husband if you aren't making yourself ready to be a wife.

When God Says Wait

This really stuck out to me because, well, I'm not in a relationship, don't see the possibility of one anytime soon, and I know I'm not really ready for one anyway. God is saying wait. Waiting is important. There are so many things we miss if we refuse to wait on God. God's timing is rarely the same as ours, but His is infinitely better. Still, waiting doesn't mean sitting around just...waiting. It means serving. There are many opportunities for ministry we have while we're single that we won't have once we're married. The morning after I read this chapter, I talked to my mom about the subject, and then immediately after when I got in the car to go to work, "While I'm Waiting" was playing on the radio. I guess it's a message I needed to hear!

Have a Life Purpose Bigger Than Marriage

Despite the fact that I don't even want to get married for at least a few more years, I still tend to think of my single years as filler. The years in between graduation and marriage. I think that's why this chapter stood out to me. It tells me not to hold back because, well, it's probably something I'll have to give up once I get married and start having kids because I won't have the time anymore. Use your single years wisely. I don't want to be thirty and unmarried, looking back and saying, "I should have tried harder at the things I was doing. I gave up opportunities I should have taken advantage of because I was afraid it would keep me from getting married or something." Because my life purpose, your life purpose, should be far bigger than marriage. It's about serving God in everything, surrendering to Him, and working for His kingdom, regardless of whether it's something you'll have to give up or put on hold should you get married.

Reserved For One

This chapter was really exciting to me. For a lot of girls, what they care about is how far they can go while technically remaining pure. But what it should be about is how much we can save for our future spouse. And that is immensely exciting to me. It's really amazing to think of saving as many firsts as I can for my future husband, more than just my first kiss. Sarah provides a list to get you thinking, things like first expression of interest, first words of affection or love, first special song, place, event or memory...How much more special will it be if we have all these firsts of a romantic relationship with the right one? I don't want to have any special romantic moment with some other girl's husband. As I told a friend the day after reading this chapter, I want to be able to tell my husband someday that "there was only ever you." And that thought excites me.

This book taught me a lot, as well as better defining and reinforcing beliefs I already held. Because while I don't agree with the Mallys on everything (I do think completely getting rid of your TV is a bit extreme), they teach a lot that is of value. Before You Meet Prince Charming is well written, informative, and biblically based, containing many scripture quotes and references. This book is well worth the read for any single girl or woman.