Let’s Chat! Author Becky Melby

Welcome, Everyone!

Becky MelbyThis week Becky Melby is treating us with a visit. Becky writes cozy mysteries, and I just know you’re going to love her. 

Becky is offering a print copy of Family Secrets to the winner of this week’s drawing** (U.S. resident), so join the chat below to enter.

**Congrats, Lucy Reynolds, this week’s winner!

Becky Melby’s Roots

I’m a Midwest girl–born in Minneapolis. I’ve lived in Michigan, Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin. I married my high school sweetheart 46 years ago. We just celebrated 50 years since our first date! We have four sons, all married, and fifteen grandchildren.

Becky Melby
M
y writing career began at the age of eight when I started writing stories on anything I could get my hands on. In fifth grade, when my teacher put my bunny poem (with a red “A+ Very Good!” on it), on the bulletin board, I knew I wanted to grow up to be an author. In high school I had a poem published in the local newspaper. That was a huge moment.

I was married with three kids by the time my first short story was published. I still remember dancing around my kitchen like a crazy lady with the acceptance letter in my hand.

A Debut for Becky Melby 

Twenty-seven years ago I was a stay-at-home homeschooling mom. In the midst of the busyness of raising four boys, my writing dream was a fuzzy, distant memory. Then one day my friend Cathy Wienke called and told me she’d just literally thrown a book at the wall because of its trite dialogue and predictable plot. “We should write our own,” she said. And so we did.

A Surprising Turn of Events

Becky MelbyNine months from that conversation, we had a finished manuscript. This was back in the old days before the internet and email. We used Writer’s Market to find publishers that accepted unsolicited manuscripts and started sending out proposals.

Then, after a few rejections, we received a positive response from Barbour Publishing. They were interested in our story for their Heartsong Presents line. There was just one small problem: Their word count limit was 50,000 and our manuscript was 75,000! We faced the bird-in-the-hand dilemma. After a few days of prayer, we decided to go ahead and start slashing. As it turned out, what we thought would feel like lopping off body parts without anesthesia became a hilarious time of “Why did we write that?”

What’s Up With Becky Melby Now?

Becky MelbyCathy and I wrote eight other Heartsong titles and a novella together. I have also written a full-length three-book series called the Lost Sanctuary Series. (Out of print now, but watch for the series re-release later this summer.) I have two novellas in collections with Cynthia Ruchti, Rachael Phillips, and Eileen Key. A Door County Christmas and Cedar Creek Seasons are both set in my home state of Wisconsin.

Family Secrets by Becky Melby

Becky MelbyFamily Secrets, my recent release is the first in a series of Guideposts cozy mysteries called Secrets of Wayfarers Inn. In the series, three retired school teachers find an old warehouse that had once been an inn and hope to restore it to its former glory as a B&B and soup café.

In Family Secrets, someone (or something!) is out to stop them. The inn was once a stop on the Underground Railroad and each of the books in the series will contain a contemporary mystery as well as a glimpse into the life of Prudence Willard, a former slave who became a conductor on the UR and hid people escaping to freedom in the inn’s secret rooms. I am one of eight authors working on this series. One will be released every month. I just finished the manuscript for Book 9 which will come out in February.

Insight from Becky Melby

Tess, LuAnn, and Janice, the three main characters in Secrets of Wayfarers Inn have become my good buddies after all the time we’ve spent together. I love “watching” how they strive to be the hands and feet of Jesus while sleuthing around the beautiful riverside town of Marietta, OH.

Becky Melby
I
look back at the editing required for that first book as the greatest editing lesson I’ve ever had. Cathy and I basked in the joy of holding that first book baby in our hands. Back then, our readers sent actual handwritten snail mail. To know that our story was touching someone enough to motivate them to sit down and bless us with a letter was such a humbling experience.

Where to Find Becky Melby

Family Secrets can be purchased from Guideposts

You may reach me on my website is www.beckymelby.com.

I’m also on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/becky.f.melby and my author page, https://www.facebook.com/Becky-Melby-Author-Page-147542291976020/

~ ~ ~

Lord, what a privilege and blessing it is as authors to realize our words encourage others and bring them closer to You, the Word. From all points in our great country and across the world readers are finding Your messages of hope and encouragement in stories you’ve given authors like Becky Melby. Please bless every word she writes for You.
~ For Jesus’ Sake

11 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Author Becky Melby

  1. Terri Buchholz

    Hi Becky. I am really excited to eventually read your new series. I read between 2 to 5 Christian fiction books a week. Sometimes I read so long into the night I start seeing double (then I just close one eye and keep on !) Historical fiction is my favorite ,, I collect those I like, loaning them out with subtle threats if not returned. I’m also blessed by a good mystery that is not gory. Bless you and thanks!

     
     
  2. Marilyn

    Hi Becky, nice to meet you here on Linda’s blog. I’m in Illinois and heat index is over 100 today.
    Your books are ones I know I’ll enjoy so they are going on My that never ending TBR list. Blessings as you continue to write.
    Linda, thank you for introducing new authors who write Christian genres right here in your blog. Hugs and blessings.

     
     
    1. Introducing authors to readers is so much fun! PS: You’re feeling south Texas heat, girl!

       
       
  3. Perrianne Askew

    Thank you for the chat. It’s always good to know an authors roots. I would love to be where you are right now, it’s just so HOT here in central Texas. And it’s too soon in the summer to be this hot. Stay cool!

     
     
    1. I’m visiting my son and family in central Illinois where it’s 93 today, but I imagine you are in three digit weather in central Texas, Perrianne!

       
       
  4. Faith Creech

    I lived in Wisconsin as a very young girl. Thanks for the chat and also a chance at the giveaway!

     
     
    1. Happy to meet a former Wisconsinite, Faith!

       
       
    2. Hi, Faith. So good to see you in our circle this week. This South Texas girl would love to visit Wisconsin. Thank you for supporting this blog—and Becky. God bless you!

       
       
  5. We are about an hour and a half south of Oostburg, Lucy. Beautiful area up there.

     
     
  6. Lucy Reynolds

    Loved reading this. Exciting journey. I lived in central WI for twenty years and am in Oostburg now visiting my daughter and family. Have a blessed day.

     
     
    1. Thanks for dropping by, Lucy. I love these connections among writers and readers of faith-based fiction. Thank you for your faithful support of this blog and Becky. Bless you!

       
       

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Let’s Chat! Author Ruth Trippy

Welcome, Readers!

Authors Ruth Trippy and Linda Brooks Davis
Ruth and I at ACFW’s 2016 Awards Gala

I‘m delighted to introduce you to author Ruth Trippy this week. Ruth lives near Atlanta and views cattle and goats—and her favorite store: Barnes & Noble—on her way to church.

met Ruth at the 2016 ACFW Conference. We sat next to one another at the Awards Gala and discovered a soul kinship. I’m very grateful for that preordained meeting, and now I want you to know this delightful friend.

Ruth is giving away a print copy of A Western Beauty, Colorado – 1879 to one person who joins our chat below.

Congratulations to SANDY BRINKS, winner of Ruth’s A Western Beauty!

Ruth Trippy’s Life Before Publishing

Writing historical romance began years ago with a question a good-looking guy asked: “Will you marry me?”

Reared in a stable Christian family in Michigan, I had been teaching music and language arts in Ft. Lauderdale for two years. I had dated this man regularly, but considered him only a friend, and I told him so. Later, before I left for France on a summer mission trip, he asked me a second time. But my answer was the same. He exclaimed, “You’re going to meet some Frenchman and marry him!”

Thus, we parted. Little did I know that on arrival I would soon become ill. While sick in bed, God, figuratively, took a 2 x 4 board and hit me over the head. “He’s the ONE!” He said.

Looking back, I needed such a dramatic word from the Lord. This man and his family proved to be a catalyst in so much of my spiritual growth—the painful way. After we had been married about seven years, I’d become so discouraged in the marriage that I cried to the Lord for relief. He responded in an unusual way. While rereading a 19th century romance, I was so uplifted that I felt the Lord leading me to encourage others in their marriages and relationships by writing in this same genre. (Click to Tweet!) 

Ruth Trippy: Historical Romance Author

I felt so privileged to write historical romance to show how the love between a man and woman is an earthly picture of Christ’s love for His bride the church! (Click to Tweet!)

When I finally told my husband about this call on my life, he laughed. “You don’t have enough imagination!” But one day, two years later, while reading a book on psychology, he looked up and said, “You’re supposed to write, aren’t you?” The Lord had spoken to him through a secular book!

casserole_Ruth Trippy
The Mighty Casserole

From then on, my husband became an ardent supporter. In fact, when I was bringing a casserole to church for a ministerial dinner, my husband caught me on the way to the car. He all but grabbed the casserole out of my hands to throw it onto the ground. He shouted, “You’re supposed to write, not make casseroles!” Did I tell you my husband was not only dark and handsome, but volatile—the perfect alpha male for romance?

Ruth Trippy’s Debut

I continued to write faithfully—for 30 years—and finally, Abingdon Press published The Soul of the Rose, a story about a young woman, starting life afresh working in a Massachusetts bookstore. Two men become attracted to her, a Harvard law student and a scholarly town hermit. She becomes fascinated with one, but he holds different religious beliefs, and she agonizes what to do. Then he is accused of murder—

More Novels for Ruth Trippy

Two years after The Soul of the Rose, I published The Language of Music, a story drawing on my background in music. Publishers Weekly termed it a “musical, lyrical novel (that) will please fans of inspirational and historical romances alike.” Both books were set in the East in the 1870s.

I traveled in the West as a teenager, but my interest grew after marriage when I discovered my father-in-law was a cowboy on the famous King Ranch in Texas. (Click to Tweet!) His grandfather had scouted out West for General Crook after the Civil War.

Here’s a bit about my newly released novel—A Western Beauty, Colorado – 1879—that’s set in the West: Before finalizing her engagement to a Philadelphian attorney, socialite Sarah Whittington travels west to paint. However, she is confronted with the arresting mission of a Civil War veteran and the sometimes dangerous Ute Indians he aids. Now she questions her ambition to live the life of a highbrow Philadelphian.

Fine Tuning Research, Ruth Trippy Style

Although I had carefully researched A Western Beauty, because it contained so many historical people and settings in 1879, I felt I needed a trip to the area to fine tune my research. My husband agreed to drive me from Georgia to Colorado in what proved to be an Experience! I was never so hot (sleeping in a closed van in Oklahoma because of the bugs) or so cold (sleeping in a tent at 9,000 ft. elevation in Colorado)! The old saying goes, “The Canadian Mountie always got his man!” Well, “I finally got my Western!”

A Final Word From Ruth

I hope everyone had a blessed holiday season! Please feel free to contact me on my website or Facebook.  Print and eBooks are available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Apple iBooks

~ ~ ~

Lord, You are faithful. You honor faithfulness in others. Decades now, your daughter Ruth has remained steadfastly devoted to You, her husband, and her calling. Now she’s reaching out to others with the message of Your faithfulness through fictional stories that spotlight Christ’s devotion to his bride, the Church. Bless each and every word Ruth writes for You, Lord. We’ll all be blessed.
~ For Jesus’ sake

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27 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Author Ruth Trippy

  1. Hi, Linda! I sat at the table with you and Ruth at ACFW that year as well, and you are a blessing to know.

    Ruth is one of my critique group, and she has been such a great help to me in my writing journey! I enjoyed reading this interview with her. Thank you for sharing Ruth and her wonderful books with your audience!

     
     
    1. And I certainly remember YOU, Hope. I could tell then that you’re someone I’d love to know better. If I could live anywhere but near my children, I’d choose living near you two. I loved seeing your name here on the blog. I hope you’ll sign up and visit again. God bless you.

       
       
    2. YES! What a big happy night that was for the 3 of us! I wasn’t up for an award, but felt like I won one, I had so much fun. Hope is one of most natural writers I know. (Of course, to sound that “smooth” takes a good deal of work, as we all know!) Yet, as most writers of fiction know, there are so many “balls” to juggle to get a scene, a chapter, a book, RIGHT. And Hope is a GOOD JUGGLER!

       
       
  2. How exciting! Ruth and Ernie have been family friends for years. I loved The Soul of the Rose. Ruth’s writing is so good and her characters are very believable. She has inspired and encouraged me as a fellow writer. I’m reading The Language of Music now and I look forward to her new book. Congrats Ruth!

     
     
    1. I love “meeting” Ruth’s long-time friends who know her in ways I wish I did. But I’m grateful for God’s blessing me with a hint of the long-term relationship you’ve had. I’m so glad I count her as a long-distance friend. It’s great to have you in our circle. Please come again. God bless you and all those you love.

       
       
    2. How nice to hear from Bonnie! She not only writes Children’s books, but she is also wonderfully fit–like my husband and daughter. I’m so glad I’ve encouraged her in her writing; now, I need her to encourage me to be more fit! Thank you, Bonnie, for responding to this blog. We all miss your grandmother.

       
       
  3. Candace Menedis

    Hi Linda,
    Ruthie and I have been prayer partners since my son, who is now 48,
    was 6 years old. Needless to say, we have been through much together,
    with the Lord always there walking with us and carrying us often. Her
    books are like her, thoughtful, inspiring, intelligent and one feels her
    love for Jesus. The gospel always shines through in her novels, how I
    appreciate that! Bless Ernie for his encouragement and his love.
    Together they have raised two truly great kids, who have a heart for God
    like their parents. Their story would make a great romance story all
    on its own. I am grateful daily for her in my life. Her steadfastness is
    a blessing to all who know her. This latest novel is, I must say, my
    favorite. (I grew up in Arizona for my teen years, so a good western
    is a delight.)

     
     
    1. Oh, Candace. I would so love to have the privilege of the kind of relationship you have with Ruth. Just one evening with her and then a year and a half of keeping in touch from Texas have convinced me of everything you say about her. I’m blessed to know her. Thank you for joining the conversation. I hope you’ll return for other Christian authors’ interviews and blogs. God bless you.

       
       
    2. It is humbling to read Candy’s email. We have truly been through a lot together in different cities and states. My daughter said she doesn’t know of any two people who have kept such a close friendship going through email and text–due to one reason or another, it’s been quite a while since we’ve visited face to face. Candy put her finger on something: I think it’s the first time someone has said our story as a couple would make a great romance. In my novels, each male protagonist is his “own man,” yet a little of Ernie has crept into each one. After 43 years of marriage, I’m still trying to figure out this alpha male! 🙂 I have seen God make such changes in this man–with the wild background–that I would be a fool not to believe in God. Thank you, Candy, for being that friend who has prayed faithfully for us.

       
       
  4. Anita Van Wyk

    Hi Linda,
    What fun it was for me to read this blog! Much of this I knew before, but written in such an informative but entertaining way about my very lovable niece Ruth, and her fascinating life experiences. Her husband Ernie has truly been a part of the success of her novels since he himself is an interesting man and has often told added to the intrigue of her story lines. I can’t wait to read her fourth book when it comes out! Everyone of Ruth’s novels carries a profound Christian message!

     
     
    1. Hi, Anita! Your comments brought a smile to my face. How blessed you both are to be aunt and niece. I’m glad you enjoyed the interview and hope you’ll come again.

       
       
    2. This lady, my Aunt Anita, is a fascinating woman. She is a great reader, like my grandfather Rynbrandt was, and reads all kinds of authors, both deep and entertaining. I’m always blessed and challenged by her “take on life.” She has unusual wisdom and has been granted by God with a clear mind in her 80’s. She has counseled and helped many people over the years. I hope I have the same mind (and heart) when I reach her age!

       
       
  5. Hi there! Thank you for publishing this wonderful post about Ruth! I’ve “adopted” her as a spiritual and writing mentor in the last couple years. I love her and her books. I’m about half way through “A Western Beauty.” She’s been so helpful and encouraging to me in many ways. Ruth has been there for me when I struggled with illnesses and a darker spiritual time. I’m so thankful the Lord placed her in my path! Blessings to both of you in the New Year!

     
     
    1. Welcome, Myrna! You are a highly favored one to have Ruth as a mentor and writing buddy. Your comments blessed me! Please visit again.

       
       
    2. My maiden name is Folkert, but I didn’t know Myrna was part of the greater family (lots of us in western Michigan), until a few years ago. She has a tender, discerning heart.—Thank you, Myrna, for your kind words and I’m so glad we’re part of the same “family!”

       
       
  6. Ruth’s first two books are great! I can’t wait to read this one. I only met Ruth and Ernie a couple of years ago, but they are so sweet and such faithful servants of the Lord! God bless you, Ruth.

     
     
    1. Teresa, I love that you joined our chat and that you can add a personal touch. Thank you. You’ve encourage Ruth and me both. God bless and please visit again.

       
       
    2. Teresa, I appreciate your encouragement about my first two books. It’s especially great to hear this from another author! Only another writer knows what really goes into completing a book and then getting it out the door to be published. 🙂 Thanks for your very kind words.

       
       
  7. Sandy Brinks

    Hi! What a wonderful and interesting interview with Ruth . We go way back …like high school 50 years ago, my husband and I were in Ruth’s class. She and I did not get much a chance to talk in October at our class reunion ,but loved her sparkling personality that has not changed . I would have loved to sit down with a cup of tea so we could catch up. May you have a blessed year as God shines His face upon you and inspires you.

     
     
    1. What a delight your comment is, Sandy. I know Ruth will love it. Thank you for joining us and for your sweet blessing over Ruth.

       
       
    2. Sandy, thank you so much for leaving a note after reading this interview. I, too, would have loved sitting down with you and sharing more than we did for our few brief minutes at the reunion, a reunion that I wouldn’t have missed for anything! Living “away from home my home in Michigan” I appreciate the old times and old friends so very much. At the reunion, I saw that you have an especially empathetic heart, a gift from God. Blessings to you and Mike!

       
       
  8. Lucy Reynolds

    Ruth is a new author to me and her books look very interesting to me. Thank you for sharing. Have a blessed and Happy New Year 🎈.

     
     
    1. Hello, Lucy! Thanks for checking in on Linda’s post and meeting me and my books. I love reading, particularly novels with not only romance, but ones that give me a real feel of the era in which they happen. So, this is one aspect of my research I really work on and love! Blessings!

       
       
    2. Hi, Lucy. Welcome to our circle! Thank you for taking the time to join the conversation. Have a blessed and joyous 2018!

       
       
  9. Marilyn R

    A lovely interview with Ruth Trippy, a new author to this reader. I always enjoy reading inspirational historical romances. Trippy’s books will fit perfect for this avid reader. Thank you for the giveaway opportunity. Blessings to both of you in this new year, 2018. May you see the favor of the Lord in all you do and His amazing gifts of peace, joy, love, grace and faith that only He can give.

     
     
    1. Great to see you in our circle, Marilyn! I hope your Christmas was the best ever and that 2018 will be packed with God’s richest blessings. I count Ruth as one of my best 2016 blessings 🙂

       
       
    2. Hi Marilyn. You sound exactly like me, someone looking for that next great book to read. Before I retire for the night, I spend an hour or two reading. This is not only pleasurable, but also “fills” the emotional well, so that I am better able to write the next morning. Blessings to you!

       
       

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