Let’s Chat! Author Kelly Irvin

Welcome, Readers! And Welcome, Author Kelly Irvin!

Prepare to be blessed. Multi-published author Kelly Irvin writes Amish stories that never fail to surprise and delight. Gather ’round for tidbits about her latest release, Beneath the Summer Sun.

**Kelly is offering a print copy of Beneath the Summer Sun to someone who joins our chat below. **

**Congratulations to Jackie Tessnair, winner of the drawing for a print copy of Kelly’s Beneath the Summer Sun!**

When a Character Has a Mind of Her Own by Author Kelly Irvin

Jennie Troyer, the heroine in my new release, Beneath the Summer Sun, took me by surprise. She had the audacity to have a mind of her own. I’m a seat-of-the-pants writer, so it’s not unusual for me not to know what happens between the beginning and the end of my stories. That’s part of the fun. But Beneath the Summer Sun is different. I thought I knew how Jennie’s life would go. She’s a thirty-seven-year-old widow raising seven children on her own. I thought I knew what was best for her, but Jennie had other plans.

The Birth of Author Kelly Irvin’s Every Amish Season series 


First, here’s a little backstory. This series, Every Amish Season, will encompass four books, one for each season—of the year and of life. The series had its birth in a blurb in The Budget newspaper in which an Amish scribe listed the annual statistics for her district: births, deaths, baptisms, graduations, weddings, etc. She included the number of widows and widowers with these other important statistics. She singled them out.

Author Kelly Irvin Imagines 

This made me try to imagine what life would be like as a widow in a community built around husband-wife-family. (Click to Tweet!) So from my fevered imagination came Every Amish Season. The series focuses on four widows in Jamesport, Missouri, who become close friends and support each other in this unexpected season in their lives.

Upon a Spring Breeze begins with twenty-something Bess, a pregnant newlywed who faces a terrible tragedy. I knew where the story would go when I started writing.

Same with Jennie in Beneath the Summer Sun. She would have her second chance at love. At first, she wants no part of it. That’s understandable. She harbors a terrible secret from her first marriage. (Click to Tweet!) Snake-bitten, she’s afraid and feels guilty. Jennie wants to make it on her own, even though the district elders and her family want her to marry again. She’s still young. Her children need a father. Although she understands these facts, her heart is dead-set against it.

I knew all this when I started writing. But I didn’t know how much her story would affect me. The choice she has to make is as hard for me as it is her. Both men who profess to love her have good hearts. I also see a lot of myself in Jennie. I didn’t have good role models growing up and distrusted love. As a child, I watched difficult relationships limp along on the verge of shattering, but never quite exploding. (Click to Tweet!) I didn’t want to live like that. As I wrote Beneath the Summer Sun, I found small details from my childhood slipping onto the page. They’re woven into the tapestry as Jennie’s troubled marriage is revealed.

From Beneath a Summer Sky by Author Kelly Irvin

“The kinner were afraid of him. They were always tiptoeing around him. They never knew what might set him off. A rip in their clothes, a kapp not properly starched, a chore not done to his satisfaction.” Jennie’s stomach lurched just as it used to do when the thunderclouds gathered, dark and fierce, in Atlee’s face. She put her hand to her mouth, willing her stomach to settle. She breathed and let it drop. “Too much noise at the supper table. The clicking of the fork on the plate when they cut the skin on the sliced tomatoes bothered him. I started peeling them before I served them. Chewing too loud bothered him. Cold food and food too hot or meat too tough set him off. Crumbs on the floor that didn’t get swept up.”

Author Kelly Irvin’s Own Love Story

Early memories of not so blissful matrimony colored my view of love and married life. (Click to Tweet!)  I wanted both, but I made terrible choices and they never worked out. When I turned thirty, I decided God didn’t intend for to me to marry. I should be happy in my single status. God had other plans for me. That year, 1988, I met the love of my life. Next month we’ll celebrate thirty years of marriage. The things I learned as a child about the complicated dance between men and women, I’ve applied to my marriage, to parenting, to loving, and to my stories.

Author Kelly Irvin Beneath the Summer Sun

Jennie Troyer’s Time of Suffering

Jennie can’t understand why she had to suffer. Likewise, I often felt the same way. God could have given me a “normal” childhood. However, the question is whether we believe God is good. I do. Also, do we believe Scripture that says in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him? (Romans 8:28) I do. As hard as it is to go through these experiences, they give us character, empathy, and compassion.

Author Kelly Irvin
See. I have refined you. Isaiah 48:10

“See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.” Isaiah 48:10

As Jennie learns, God knows what He’s doing. I’m reminded often of the saying, “God permits what he hates to accomplish what he loves.” Because of life experiences, I know He is the God of all comfort. I’m able to give comfort to others through Jennie’s story. (Click to Tweet!) In the end Jennie makes her choice. It’s not the choice I thought she would make, but maybe she’s even more like me than I realized.

Final Thoughts from Author Kelly Irvin

Finally, I hope Jennie’s story will resonate with readers. It wasn’t an easy one to write. But Beneath the Summer Sun is a story of second chances and hope. We can use both.

Author Kelly Irvin
Taste the Lord and see that He is good. Psalm 34:8

Lord, You invite us to taste and see that You are good. Only You can blend the perfect balance of sweet, spicy, and tart that makes us Your unique creations. As readers and writers, we ask You to utilize the avenue of Christian fiction to communicate Yourself in myriad ways and to make You sweet on our tongues.
Bless each word Kelly writes for You. ~ For Jesus’ sake

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34 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Author Kelly Irvin

  1. I can so relate to the story line of this book. Trusting yourself after ending up in a bad marriage is hard, especially one that is abusive. God will lead us to the truth and Being the oldest of 7 , I can relate to big families and I have 7 of my own children, been thru divorce and remarried. Can’t wait to read this book !
    Linda Marie Finn

     
     
    1. It’s wonderful to “meet” you here, Linda! I’m sorry the deadline for the drawing for Kelly’s book had passed by the time I read your comment, but I hope you’ll be able to read Kelly’s books anyway. You’ll be blessed. Please visit again. New author every Wednesday 🙂

       
       
  2. Lucy Reynolds

    I’m so looking forward to reading this. I enjoy Kelly’s books so much. I was a single parent of two, I can’t imagine raising seven. Blessings

     
     
    1. I was also a single mother of two. In photos those years I look so thin, haggard, and worn out 🙂 I can’t imagine rearing seven by myself either. Kelly has hit the bull’s eye on this series. Thanks for dropping by. God bless you and yours!

       
       
    2. Me neither! My parents had five kids and that was tough!

       
       
      1. Lucy Reynolds

        My parents each came from families of 11 children. They were each the 10th child.

         
         
        1. Gasp! But then when I look back at the records on Ancestry.com, I’m dumbstruck by the # of kids people had. EEEEEGADS!

           
           
  3. Brenda Andrezeywski

    Enjoyed reading this post about Kelly Irving! Haven’t read this one yet; but it’s being added to my list!! Kelly, once again ya cracked me up!! So she has a mind of her own…picture popped in my head of ya sleeping & she’s sitting at your computer typing her own story!! God bless ya sweetie

     
     
    1. Love the picture you painted, Brenda. Now I’m cracking up! Thanks for stopping by. Please come again. God bless you and yours real good!

       
       
    2. Sometimes I wish that were possible–especially when I’m not sure where my story is going. Some times characters say the darndest things! LOL

       
       
  4. Ellen P

    I can’t wait to see what happens in Jenny’s life. I like that Kelly says Jenny has a mind of her own!

     
     
    1. 🙂

       
       
  5. Kelly Irwin’s comments about her character Jennie’s own idea of how to live her life made me laugh. I’m not considered a “pantser,” so I’m often surprised when one of my characters has the nerve to step outside my outline and to stand up for themselves. This series is on my list! Thanks Kelly and Linda.

     
     
    1. Hi, Clarice, my friend. So good to see you in our circle today. Kelly and her writing are completely delightful. Don’t you just love the idea behind this series? You and many other women can relate. Many others of us will relate in the future. I’m grateful I can slip this series onto my bookshelf and return to it in days to come. God bless you real good!

       
       
    2. It’s so exciting when they speak up for themselves, isn’t it, Clarice? I love it when a new character shows up out of nowhere. I’m astonished and tickled pink!

       
       
  6. Ellen P

    I recently finished reading Upon A Spring Breeze and am looking forward to reading Beneath the Summer Sun! I absolutely love Kelly’s writing! I just discovered her books a month or so ago and have already read several. Makes me feel like I’m in Amish Country, my favorite people and places to visit. Thank you for all your hard work Kellie ❤️God Bless you❤️

     
     
    1. Ellen P

      I know your name is spelled Kelly, I have a friend Kellie and auto correct changed my spelling and I didn’t notice 😊

       
       
      1. 🙂

         
         
    2. Hi, Ellen P. I’m so glad you joined us today. I’m totally with you in loving Kelly’s writing–especially the idea that undergirds this series. Please visit again. New author each week, beginning on Wednesdays. God bless you!

       
       
      1. Ellen P

        Now that we’ve met, I look forward to seeing the new authors you will be hosting. See you on Wednesday 😊God Bless

         
         
    3. Thank you, Ellen. You’re so sweet. I’m so glad you’re enjoying my stories. I love hearing from happy readers! God bless you too!

       
       
  7. Donnia Duane

    This was beautiful

     
     
    1. Hi, Donnia. I agree. Kelly’s posting is beautiful. I loved working with it, adding the photos, etc. It gave me such pleasure and fulfillment. That’s the Holy Spirit at work. I know you’ll love Kelly’s latest release. God bless you!

       
       
    2. Thank you, Donnia!

       
       
  8. Jean Dixon

    This sounds like Jennie is alot like myself I would truelly love to win this book and see how God works in her!

     
     
    1. Hi, Jean. The names Jennie and Jean not only look and sound familiar, but apparently, you share even more in your hearts and minds. Isn’t it cool how God does that through a writer like Kelly? I know you’ll enjoy this latest release of Kelly’s. God bless you!

       
       
  9. Jackie Tessnair

    I loved reading this blog post.Thanks Kelly for sharing.As I was reading your words I kept thinking this is another example of it is all in God’s timing . I wanted to read this book from the beginning but now after this post I am ready to read it right now.Thanks again!

     
     
    1. Hi, Jackie. Welcome, new reader friend! So happy the post inspired you to read Kelly’s latest as soon as possible. Her books—like Kelly—are full of wonder and joy and realness. God bless you and yours!

       
       
    2. You’re right, Jackie. It’s all about God’s timing. I hope you enjoy the book!

       
       
  10. Marilyn

    Beautiful interview with Kelly Irvin with her sharing personal tidbits and behind the scenes to pen Beneath the Summer Sun.
    Thank you for sharing. Blessings to both of you.

     
     
    1. Seeing you here always makes me smile, Marilyn. We simply MUST meet someday 🙂 Thank you for joining in and encouraging Kelly and me. God bless you real good!

       
       
  11. Deana Dick

    Beneath the Summer Sun sounds so good. I can’t imagine being a widow with seven children. I love reading about second chances. I was given a second chance when I divorced my hubby and we remarried a year and a half later. Being shown what what unconditional love and forgiveness is helped me find my way home. It is now 34 years later and we are still like newlyweds. I look forward to reading your new book.

     
     
    1. Kelly Irvin is wonderful—both as a person and a writer. So glad you’re getting an opportunity to get to know her. God bless you and yours!

       
       
    2. My parents married, divorced, and remarried a year later. They’ve been married more than 60 years total now. It’s not easy for them, but they certainly show us what the meaning of the vow is. You don’t give up and walk away when it would be so much easier. I’m so glad you received your second chance at love and a beautiful marriage.

       
       

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Let’s Chat! Author Carol Moncado

Welcome, Readers! 

This week I have the pleasure of introducing you to author Carol Moncado, who writes contemporary Christian romances (often with royals :-), otherwise known as Romantic Dramedy in the Ozarks—and beyond.

Carol Moncado’s a hoot, so this should be fun! Don’t forget to comment below for a chance to win one of Carol’s books in digital format via Amazon’s gift option.

Congratulations to Paula Shreckhise, winner of this week’s drawing!

Life as Carol Moncado

Hey all! I’m so happy Linda asked me to be here today! YAY! I love Linda and her sense of humor!

I write romantic dramedy and originally set it all in the Ozarks because that’s where I live. I’ve been here almost 25 years and plan to die here (a very long time from now :).

I moved from Phoenix when I was 17 to attend college in Springfield, MO. One of the first people I met was this cute supervisor at the local Chick-fil-A where I’d be working. One thing led to another and we’ve been married over 20 years now!

Carol Moncado’s Family Circus

We claim four kids and two dogs who weigh less than many hardback books (okay – not quite, but they weigh a combined 12 lbs.).

Our sixteen-year-old daughter works for our old boss at one of the local Chick-fil-As. She plays tenor saxophone quite well and took her solo to state last year. She also plays clarinet and alto saxophone and wants to learn to play keyboard. Bandmomming is my life in the fall!

Our fourteen-year-old daughter plays flute and does color guard.

Our almost-thirteen-year-old kiddo plays trumpet and does color guard. She wants to play French horn but not yet – and got a keyboard for Christmas!

Our youngest is our only boy. He’s ten and still in elementary so we’re not sure what he’s going to play just yet :).

I’ll be a band mom until 2025. Or longer. The oldest plans to direct her high school band when she grows up and her director retires. Then I get to be band godmother!! With hubby’s acquisition of a triangle at Christmas (he’s planning to rock the triangle solo), we have 22 instruments in the house (23 if we can find his tambourine from his childhood).

Me? I play the radio. On a really good day, I can get Pandora to cooperate… 🙂

CANDID Publications Carol Moncado
We also have a Shorkie
(shih tzu/yorkie mix) named Mr. Benny who weighs 5 lbs and a Yorkie named Jett who clocks in at a whopping 7 lbs.

A Job in Another Time

I spent fifteen years teaching at a local community college, the best of both worlds. I got paid to talk to grownups but my kids were rarely in daycare more than 15 hours a week and often less than that. God also managed to orchestrate it so that when I needed the option of staying home, I was making enough from my writing that I could afford to.

Carol Moncado’s Debut Experience


The first book I ever wrote
(for real anyway) has a working title of Unbreak Her Heart. I adore the story and the characters, but it needs a major overhaul before I release it.

A whole bunch of books later …

I realized it was time to “fish or cut bait” as it were, and I made the decision to “go indie” and publish books myself. I created my own publishing company, CANDID Publications, bought stock photos, edited the best I could, and went for it.

Book 1 for Carol Moncado

CANDID Publications Carol MoncadoMy first release was Finding Mr. Write, Book 1 in the CANDID Romance series. Two authors who travel together to a writer’s conference (much like ACFW’s) find themselves accidentally married. It was so much fun to write and incorporate nods to some of my friends and favorite authors as I did.

I’d pitched it and several others over the years. I signed with ACFW’s 2017 Agent of the Year Tamela Hancock Murray with Grace to Save. We pitched it around, but no takers.

The indie thing hasn’t been easy, but it’s been totally worth it. Tamela has been incredibly supportive over the years and is still my agent even though she doesn’t really have anything to do on my behalf while I’m an indie. Perhaps if I sign a traditional contract some day and become “hybrid”…

Many of those other books have since been published. But four still languish (along with a whole bunch of half-written ones).

Book 2 for Carol Moncado

My second book released a week after the first and was set mostly in Serenity Landing with an honest-to-goodness Crown Princess as the heroine. Good Enough for a Princess took off so I’ve been writing mostly royalty books ever since. I  revamped the covers a bit because the Montevaro Monarchy series and the Brides of Belles Montagnes series kind of went together. They became the 6 novel + 1 novella series The Monarchies of Belles Montagnes.

The Serenity Landing Second Chances series of three books tells the stories of the last of the royal siblings from the three countries that make up the Commonwealth of Belles Montagnes).

Carol Moncado’s Books, Books, Books

Starting with Finding Mr. Write, I’ve published a total of 23 books, with the 24th up for preorder. In that number are two more novels in the CANDID Romance series.

My summer series, Serenity Landing Lifeguards, has two novellas.

The Christmas series, Serenity Landing Teachers, includes three novellas (though one is currently only available in a boxed set). They’re all set in Serenity Landing, MO, a fictional town near Springfield.

My one single novella is set in a bakery in Minnesota.

But one thing I love about my books is that they’re all set in the same “universe.” Characters cross over or pop up in unexpected places. I didn’t set out to write royal romance, but that’s what’s happened!

What’s Up With Carol Moncado Now?

I’m currently writing in a new series – Crowns & Courtships – involving the royal families of two fictional countries in the Atlantic Ocean/ Sargasso Sea, with two other countries on tap.

A prequel novella (Dare You) and Book 1 (Heart of a Prince) start eighteen months before the end of Book 3 in Serenity Landing Second Chances. Then there’s a sort of inbetweenie novella out as part of the super fun Out of the Blue Bouquet set. 

Book 3 (The Inadvertent Princess, the second full novel in the series), is due to release January 31.

Book 5 (mostly written) picks up immediately following Book 3 of the Serenity Landing Second Chances series, merging the two different timelines.

My very favorite book isn’t officially part of a series just yet, though Book 2 should release next year. Grace to Save opens on 9/11 then skips ahead to 2017. (Click to Tweet!) It’s a story of prodigals, redemption, forgiveness, and the incredible grace found in Christ. (Plus the teenager on the cover is my oldest daughter :). If you’ve lost track, that’s 14 novels and 9 novellas, with novel #15 releasing next month.

Clear as mud? Yeah. I have a hard time keeping up with all of it, too, which is why I’m building (with the help of a couple of dedicated friends) my own wiki site. It’s found at www.hea-tv.com (that’s the fictional version of Hallmark) and has book summaries, timelines, and a glossary of characters, etc. It’s definitely a work in progress but we’ll get there – and I’m trying to keep up with new books as they release.

Final Thoughts from Carol Moncado

I have been so incredibly blessed with readers and readers who’ve become friends and friends who’ve become my readers. I quit my (admittedly quite part time) day job to write full time and wouldn’t trade it for the world. God’s managed it so that I could. A number of other commitments eased just in time for the band mom thing to really take off. It’s allowed me to commit to being there for my band kids (and, hey, they’re all my band kids :-). I get to be a part of that in a way many parents are unable to. That has been such a huge blessing.

How to Find Carol and Her Books

My main social media is Facebook. You can “follow” my profile at www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolMoncado and like my Books page at www.facebook.com/CarolMoncadoBooks. You can join my Reader’s group at bit.ly/MoncadoReaderGroup which is great fun and has teasers and cover reveals, etc.

All of my books appear on Amazon and are in Kindle Unlimited, except Finding Mr. Write and Good Enough for a Princess which are free :).

I blog occasionally at my website www.carolmoncado.com. Check out “Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Carol Moncado’s Fictional Universe – and more” at www.hea-tv.com (though it’s still in progress)!

~ ~ ~

Lord, we’re so grateful You created the gift of story. Thank You for equipping writers like Carol Moncado, who thrills us with romance, delights us with comedy, holds us spellbound with drama, and inspires us with faith—in each story she writes. Be with Carol as she directs her Family Circus. Bring their dreams to reality. And bless every single word Carol writes for You.
~ For Jesus’ sake ~

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12 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Author Carol Moncado

  1. Becka

    I just love your (Carol’s) books. So far, I’ve only read the CANDID and Belle’s of Montagnes series. I have plans to aquire the rest in short order. Is there a master list of the order of books (since they intertwine)? Also, I find myself curious about Prince William. Are you going to write a book about him too? 😀

     
     
    1. Great to have you in our circle, Becka! Isn’t Carol a wonderful storyteller? You’ve encouraged both of us. God bless!

       
       
    2. Carol Moncado

      Hi Becka!!! I’m so glad to hear that!!!

      Yes!!! William’s story is RECLAIMING HEARTS, book 3 in Serenity Landing Secknd Chances (1 is Jonathan Langley-Cranston; 2 is Christopher Bayfield, Alexander’s twin brother).

      There’s a list on my website (that needs updated – note to self – but should be good through last summer or so). There’s also the HEA TV site that has lots of stuff on it (or in progress) including a sort of “master timeline” (that also needs updated but should also be good through last summer or so).

      You can find them at:
      http://www.carolmoncado.com/timeline
      http://www.hea-tv.com

      Message me on Facebook if you can’t get those to work.

       
       
      1. Carol Moncado

        (Actually, I’ve JUST discovered there’s an issue with my website. That first one should work… once I figure out what the issue is…)

         
         
    3. Carol Moncado

      AH! Not sure what happened, but think I figured out how to fix it. More time than I’ve got right now so the links on this page may not work, but this link itself should…

      http://www.carolmoncado.com/my-books/timelinebook-order

      🙂

       
       
      1. Becka

        😀 Thanks! I did try to access the info earlier on your site. The links worked great. Guess I’ll be buying the second chances books very soon. I want to read stories of all those characters!

         
         
  2. Becky Smith

    I enjoyed this interview with Carol. We have had 2 of our children go to college in Springfield, and we live not far from there – in Kansas City, Missouri. And we have a son who lives in the Ozark region. I actually bought 8 books (I just checked on Amazon) of Carol’s, but haven’t had time to read them yet. But I do look forward to reading them.

     
     
    1. Another reader who’s taken with Carol! I hope your TBR pile will soon diminish and you can get a taste of Carol’s personality. She’s such a joyful person! Loved having you in our circle this week, Becky. You’ve encouraged us. God bless.

       
       
    2. Carol Moncado

      Hi Becky! I moved here to go to college, too! Met a cute boy and stayed ;).

      Most of the stories have a connection to the Ozarks in one way or another, though not quite all do. (Okay, so one of the books in the current series is tied strictly by yarn sent from the Ozarks to Eyjania, a fictional country near Iceland.)

      I hope you enjoy them when you get a chance to read them!!! I understand a TBR pile that’s way too big!!!!

       
       
  3. Paula

    Wow! What a busy life you lead. We retired to Lebanon, Just 45 minutes upthe interstate from Springfield. We have travelled up to Hermitage for my husband to preach a few times( small church with no permanent pastor) . The scenery is very pretty down here. I have three of Carol’s books. Unfortunately I have yet to read them. My bookshelves are too full! I need to get to her books! Thanks for the glimpse into Carol’s life!

     
     
    1. Busy is right, Paula! Thanks for joining us. You’ve encouraged us! God bless.

       
       
    2. Carol Moncado

      Hey! I have some friends (writing friends even!) in Lebanon! In fact, I have a fictional town set in the area – Spring Meadow I think I called it that’s basically Lebanon :). I hope you enjoy the books when you get to them!

       
       

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