Let’s Chat! Author Dana Pratola

Welcome, Everyone! And Welcome, Dana Pratola!

This week we visit with author Dana Pratola, who writes romance, paranormal, speculative, and suspense novels. What a treat to get to know Dana. 

Comment in the Reply box below to enter the drawing for one of Dana’s books.

Congratulations, Susan Snodgrass! You’ve won one of Dana’s novels!

Dana Pratola: Her “Before”

Growing up in West Orange, New Jersey in a unique situation. I was an only child and simultaneously the youngest of five.

Three brothers made me somewhat of a tomboy (Click to Tweet), and I kept pace with my youngest brother as best I could, climbing things and busting stuff, lol.

On the other side of the coin, living in an only child home, having only myself and my imagination to occupy me, contributed to my creativity. My dad fed my passion for books and read to me every night (Click to Tweet)I could not have become anything but a writer.

It was a strange situation, designed by God in order to instill things in me He knew I’d need, such as love of reading and the ability to enjoy isolation.

Dana Pratola: the Writer

I have been writing my whole life. I finished my first novel and had it published at age 47. Unable to afford a writer’s conference and in no way savvy about other avenues to publication, I prayed. I asked God to work something out for me. (Click to Tweet)

He answered that prayer immediately. The next day a friend told me about an online writer’s conference. It could only be God. FREE and I didn’t have to leave the house! I chose which publisher I wanted to have a 5-minute online pitch session with and when it was over, Nicola Martinez, from Pelican Book Group (then White Rose), requested the entire manuscript. I had a contract signed within the month. A miracle to me, considering The Covering was my first novel. (Click to Tweet)

But GOD is AWESOME!

Writing is truly all I’ve ever wanted to do, except for a brief period I thought I might want to be an oceanographer. I’m not the best swimmer, so that’s out :/ Since my initial publication, I’ve written two other books with Pelican: Voice of Truth and The Mayweather Christmas Quest. 

Dana Pratola’s Future Plans

As for future plans, I know there is much more to come. I’m just going to keep working and see what God has in store. His plans are so much grander and eternal than anything I can imagine. (Click to Tweet)

I receive emails about how God has touched people through some of these books. Love that. I desire to continue to be an avenue for God to reach not only His children, but the lost as well, why I don’t prefer the term Christian Author. It tends to scare away the people I most want to reach, lol. He has a plan for each of us, and I’m trying to stay open to that.

I indie published several books. And I write under a pen name, as well. But that’s another interview for another day. 

Where to Find Dana Pratola and her Books

TWITTER
Facebook 
AMAZON 

~ ~ ~

Lord, You are the Author of Eternity, the Author of Life, the Author of Families, and the Author of Authors. Dana claims You as her inspiration, the source of her desire to write, and the master planner of her life. We pray You’ll smile on Dana as she writes words to draw Your people closer and to woo unbelieving readers to You.
~ For Jesus’ sake

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15 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Author Dana Pratola

  1. Marilyn R

    Hi Dana. You are a new author to me. I appreciate clean heartfelt stories by Christian authors with God’s love interwoven into the story. Thank you for sharing your life and testimony. Linda, thank you for introducing this reader to another new author.

     
     
    1. Dana

      Thanks, Marilyn 😀

       
       
    2. It’s a treat to meet new authors like Dana, isn’t it? And a privilege to introduce you to them, Marilyn.

       
       
  2. Shelly

    I loved your Descended series for the humor as well as the Devotion to God.

     
     
    1. Thanks so much, Shelly! I try to sprinkle as much humor as I can in my books, just like in my real life 😀

       
       
    2. Thanks so much for joining in, Shelly. You’re entered in the drawing! I hope you’ll return. You’re an encouragement.

       
       
  3. Debra Duncan

    Dana, thank you for sharing some of your story with us! It is so geartwarming to meet an author who loves God, believes in His plan for us and has such compassion for all mankind. You are a new author for me, but i look forward to reading your stories. I love that you dont want to be labeled . I also think we scare people who may have been hurt before by “christians” off by this label. With all the smut in life, its encouraging to find clean, wholesome stories . I pray God continues to work through you, reaching anyone who may need His Love. God Bless!!

     
     
    1. Thanks, Debra! God is so Awesome, and showing that through my work is the best way I can show that <3

       
       
    2. I so agree with you, Debra! Please visit again. You’ve encouraged Dana and me!

       
       
  4. Wilma Bates

    May God bless you and your family and I hope you continue to give us your wonderful stories.

     
     
    1. Thanks, Wilma! I’m working hard to do just that 🙂

       
       
    2. Thanks for joining the conversation, Wilma. You encourage Dana and me. I hope you’ll return.

       
       
  5. Susan Snodgrass

    I’ve never read this author but would love to win a book and give her a try.

     
     
    1. So happy to have introduced you to Dana, Susan. Thank you fir joining our circle. You’re entered!

       
       
    2. Good luck, Susan!!

       
       

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Join Our Author Chat With Carlene Havel

Hello and Welcome

Welcome, readers. Today we’re circling our wagons around author Carlene Havel, recipient of the Readers’ Choice and EPIC Awards. Carlene havel_carlenewrites stories of faith, hope, and love. How refreshing is that!

Who is Carlene from my perspective?

First, I‘m honored to participate in the same writers’ group as Carlene. More importantly, I know Carlene to be a woman of reader-favorite-award_badgefaith who exudes a sense of peace. She’s an individual you’ll want to know better. And you’ll want to read her inspirational novels. 

*Now join our chat by making comments at the end of this piece. You’ll be included in a drawing for a free print or ebook copy of one of Carlene’s books. 

*Congratulations to Debra Duncan, winner of the drawing for one of Carlene’s books! Tune in next week for another opportunity, ya’ll.

~ ~ ~

Welcome, Carlene Havel 

Tell us about yourself, Carlene. What was your pre-author life? Your books? Have any tidbits of wisdom you gleaned along the way? Take it away, Carlene …

Carlene Havel’s Pre-author Life

I grew up in a deeply religious home. Daddy preached and Mama handled music, Sunday school, vacation Bible school, and potluck dinners. We attended visitation on Tuesday, prayer meeting on Wednesday, piano-623189_1280and church services at least twice on Sunday. 

When a revival took place, we listened to a full-length sermon every evening for two weeks straight, homework notwithstanding. I could honestly say, “I don’t drink, dance, cuss, nor chew; and I don’t go with the boys that do!”

On my Own

Thus prepared, I enrolled in a college away from home. Life became all about me and making up for lost time. I relegated God to my rear view mirror. Things turned nasty with my “anything goes” attitude.

That’s not to say my life was all gloom and doom. Not at all, but something significant was missing. Honestly, I didn’t want to figure out what it was. Severe adversity forced me to admit how empty I felt inside.

cross-sun-background_god-1772560_1280When I finally came to the end of myself, I found Someone willing to clean up the mess and help me start over. This rebellious preacher’s kid came running back into the arms of a patient, loving God.

Carlene Havel’s Debut Experience

I majored in English yet had no plans to write the great American novel.

While I was sitting in church one Sunday in 2005, an alien thought bible-1245795_1280interrupted my concentration. “You should write a romance.” You? Second person? Is He talking to me?

I tuned back in to the sermon. My pastor spoke of a woman who wanted to contribute to a mission. Having little money, she wrote a poem and gave it to the cause. A musician set the words to music. It became popular, and greatly benefitted the mission. (Tweet That!)

Oh. I couldn’t type fast enough to capture the romance novel pouring out of my mind. When it was finished, the first publisher I contacted offered me a contract.

A Word of Caution …

It was all so easy, until the publisher put the bite on me to fund “some of the publishing costs.” My advice? Never do this. 

  • First, RUN from anyone who wants you to pay for anything associated with publication.
  • Then, block their phone calls 
  • Delete their emails, and
  • Never ever sign a contract with them!

What Came Next for Carlene Havel

While writing the next book, I beat my head against the wall with this publisher. When they started offering erotica, I asked them to return the rights to my book. To my surprise, they agreed. I still don’t know which one of us was more relieved to sever our relationship.

I wrote another book. A magazine took a poem, and another printed a short article. But nothing happened with full-length novels. Many of the places where I pitched them didn’t bother to reply.

A Time of Discouragement and Renewal

Later–three chapters into book number three–I reached a point of total discouragement. Someone on an email group I was about to opt out of mentioned a new publisher was seeking submissions. Assuming I was wasting my time, I sent one manuscript to Inspired Romance Novels (now Prism Book Group). Prism has now published seven of my books.

Now I feel as if I’m doing what I was meant to do, creating stories of faith, hope, and love. (Tweet That!)

~ ~ ~

Readers,
Here’s how you can find Carlene Havel:
Website: www.chavelbooks.com
Facebook: bit.ly/2fydfFE
Purchase link: http://amzn.to/2fSdZcA

The Scarlet Cord

havel_the-scarlet-threadWhen confession and sacrifice are done, it is as if the wrongdoing never occurred. Rahab, a resourceful beauty, struggles to survive in the pagan culture of ancient Jericho. As years of harsh labor begin to lift her and her family from poverty, a foreign army threatens the well-fortified city. Rahab is forced to make an immediate decision. Will she put her faith in the fabled walls of Jericho or the powerful God of the Hebrews? Either choice may cost her life. By Carlene Havel and Karen Faucheaux

havel_daughter-of-the-king_coverDaughter of the King 

A heartwarming story about the resilience of true love, inspired by a biblical account of greatness, courage, and foretold prophecy… Princess Michal was the youngest daughter of Saul, the first king of Israel. In an age when fathers arranged marriages, Michal dared to fall in love with a handsome young musician named David, from the little town of Bethlehem. By Carlene Havel and Karen Faucheaux

A Hero’s Homecoming

Colonel Rich Martino returns havel_a-hero-homecoming_coverrhome from overseas to find everything has changed and nothing makes sense. His wife Rita has disappeared. His credit cards are invalid. A stranger is living in his house and he keeps running into people who are convinced he was killed in action months ago. Worst of all, his wealthy father has suffered a stroke. By Carlene Havel

Here Today Gone Tomorrow

Disappointed, dumped, heretoday-gonetomorrow-coverdivorced. Everything Casey Slaughter counted on is gone. While contemporaries start their families, Casey works two jobs to haul herself out of debt. Friends and family recommend a new husband to solve all her problems, but Casey resists all well-intentioned advice. By Carlene Havel

Baxter Road Miracle: 

Can faith move mountains? The Youngbloods are about to find out. Henry Youngblood is determined to plant a new church in Buffalo Creek, havel_baxter-road-miracle_coverdespite seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Meanwhile, his pregnant wife worries about paying the bills. One daughter dreams of a college education she cannot afford, and the other wants nothing more than popularity. It will take a miracle for the Youngblood family’s dreams to come true. By Carlene Havel

Evidence not Seen 

Although attorney Jeff Galloway’s career is in high gear, his personal life is a mess. Just before his father returns home from a 27-year stretch in havel_evidence-not-seen_coverprison, his girlfriend dumps him. When a chance encounter begins to blossom into new romance, soft-hearted Melanie Clark encourages Jeff to find a way to forgive his father’s long absence. By Carlene Havel

A Sharecropper Christmas 

What kind of Christmas will her children have? The Great Depression left the Shoemaker family hungry and homeless. Their desperate prayers are finally answered when Herbert Shoemaker finds work as a sharecropper. Alice makes havel_a-sharecropper-christmas_coverthe best of the hard times without complaint, though she dreams of giving her little family a special Christmas. By Carlene Havel

Dried Flowers 

These and twelve more sweet, clean historical and contemporary short stories will keep you entertained, amused, and surprised. By two inspirational authors who typically write full-length fiction. (By Carlene Havel and Karen Faucheaux)

Christmas Blessings 

For the true magic of Christmas cannot be found in a wrapped gift under the tree…Three touching stories of Christmas blessings to warm the heart. (By Carlene Havel, Claire Sanders, and Kimberly B. Jackson)

Love Is

An anthology of three love stories (By Carlene Havel, Julie B. Cosgrove, and Gail Pallotta)

~ ~ ~

Lord, we are in awe at Your kindness. You have stooped to call us into your vineyard–some into offices, others into classrooms, and still others to writing desks. We offer to You our work and our sacrifices of praise. ~ For Jesus’ sake.

 

 

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14 thoughts on “Join Our Author Chat With Carlene Havel

  1. Debra Duncan

    Thank you Carlene for being so open with us. I havent read any yet but after reading this and the brief description of them i am certainly going to get them. Great interview!!

     
     
    1. So glad you joined the chat, Debra. You’re entered!

       
       
    2. Thank you for the kinds words, Debra.

       
       
  2. Mary Beth Cook

    I haven’t had the privilege of reading Carmen’s books yet, but from everything I’ve read here tonight I can’t wait to start!

     
     
    1. Mary Beth Cook

      Carlene’s books. My apologies. My autocorrect thought it knew better. 🙂

       
       
      1. Oh, the perils of autocorrect! We’ve all been there.

         
         
        1. We all get bitten by that auto-correct grinch now and then. It’s even worse on my phone than on the computer. Woo Hoo somehow got changed to Woo Hop, which makes no sense at all.

           
           
    2. You’ll be glad you did. 🙂 And you’re entered, by the way!

       
       
    3. Thank you for considering my books, Mary Beth!

       
       
  3. Carlene is a lovely story-teller. Thank you for sharing your inspiring advice!

     
     
    1. Thanks for joining our circle, Lisa. You’re entered!

       
       
    2. What a nice comment, Lisa. Thank you very much.

       
       
  4. Thanks for the interview, Linda!

     
     
    1. My honor and pleasure, Carlene.

       
       

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