Let’s Chat! Donna L.H. Smith

Welcome, everyone!

Donna L.H. Smith is our honored author guest this week. Donna writes historical western romance and is one of the dearest of the dear. I met this wonderful Christian writer at a retreat in North Carolina a few years ago and was immediately smitten. 

Donna is offering a print copy of one of her books to someone who joins our circle. That’s a terrific opportunity, so join in the conversation below, and you might win the drawing. Winner announced here on the blog and on Facebook Wednesday morning, February 6

Here’s author Donna L.H. Smith in her own words.

Pre-Author Life of Donna L.H. Smith

Donna L.H. SmithI was born and raised in Newton, Kansas. I have two college degrees in mass communications. I’ve been everything from secretary, to a radio reporter, to a certified balloon decorating artist, to a marketing assistant to a freelance writer of magazine and newspaper articles.

A Debut for Donna L.H. Smith

Donna L.H. SmithWell, you know a bit of the story about my first book, Meghan’s Choice. We were both semi-finalists in the last Operation First Novel — and then you WON IT! We were both students of DiAnn Mills in the CWG Craftsman program, except you completed it first. I was in the last Craftsman class DiAnn mentored.

I’ve had a couple of weird rejections (which I blogged about) from an agent and a contest I’d entered. For those wanting the gory details, they can go to my blog: Writing Emotional Pain—Without Bleeding Too Much on Your Readers” and “Please—Get Your Facts Straight.” Writing about those experiences healed me quicker.

An Agent for Donna L.H. Smith

But I will tell you my God story — of how I got my agent. As you know, DiAnn Mills started our Facebook group—ANN. She asked me to ask Cyle Young. Then a couple months later, he started a website called Almost an Author. He recruited me to be a part of A3 — and now I’m the managing editor! And the website is only 3-1/2 years old!

A few months after A3 started, in the fall, we were all at the Advanced Novelist Retreat in Asheville. I saw Cyle in intense discussions with Diana Flegal—you know, the kind you don’t interrupt. Later, he announced to all his A3 columnists, “I’m being recruited to be an agent! What do you all think of that? We’re all like: YAY! He signed me a week later.

Book One: Meghan’s Choice by Donna L.H. Smith

Donna L.H. SmithIt’s through a special Amazon program because I have an agent, that I’m published. It’s called Amazon White Glove. I’d given up being published and was ready to throw Meghan in the trash can. But another Hartline client encouraged me to ask them about White Glove. I received word two years ago, while having the flu, that Meghan’s Choice would be published.

Book Two: Rose’s Redemption by Donna L.H. Smith

Donna L.H. SmithThere’s nothing like getting those books in your hands for the first time. When I got my second book a couple months ago, I couldn’t wait to put Rose’s Redemption side by side with Meghan’s Choice. Now I can’t wait to get Hannah’s Hope done, so that later this year I can put all three together!

What’s up With Donna L.H. Smith now?

I’m currently writing Hannah’s Hope, serving as Managing Editor of A3, and taking classes on inner healing so that I can help people overcome emotional issues that could hold them back from God’s plan—in the form of weekend retreats. I may be retirement age, (yikes, I’ll be 65 this summer), but I’m just gettin’ started! And I’ve got so many more stories to write!

How to Find Donna L.H. Smith (She’s not in Kansas anymore)

Website

Facebook: Donna L.H. Smith—Stories Are My Passion

Twitter: @donnalshmith

Meghan’s Choice links: Kindle or Paperback

Rose’s Redemption link:  Kindle and Paperback 

FYI: Meghan’s Choice released as a paperback through CreateSpace before it joined with KDP. So there’s a kindle link and a paperback link. Rose’s Redemption is through KDP, and they also printed the paperback. 😊

~ ~ ~

Lord, we bow before You in humility and gratitude for Your love and provision. We thank You for the way You guide us to our callings and bring together Your children with similar passions and callings. Donna’s writing journey is one example.
Please bless each word she writes for You.
~ For Jesus’ sake

22 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Donna L.H. Smith

  1. SARAH TAYLOR

    Thank you so much Following on FB and signed up already for your newsletter Beautiful cover’s on these books sounds like great reads!

     
     
    1. Welcome, Sarah! You are such an encourager. Thank you.

       
       
  2. Alicia Haney

    Your books sound amazing and the covers are Beautiful! I am looking forward to reading your books. Oh yes, sometimes it takes a long time but God Always answers our prayers! God is Good , All of the time. 🙂

     
     
    1. Ditto to everything you said, Alicia! Thanks for stopping by. Please come again. God bless!

       
       
  3. Jane,
    Thank you so much! I am definitely blessed. I am pursuing the Lord and His plans for me – and I encourage others to do the same. Sometimes, we have to wait a LONG time – but if we’re faithful – He IS. I’m just beginning!
    Blessings!

     
     
  4. Perrianne Askew

    It sounds like it was a roller coaster ride getting published. Congrats that you have 2 published books and one in the works!

     
     
    1. Perianne,

      Roller coaster – yes! But I think a lot of authors have that. Very few get published quickly. It usually takes a few years, and it depends on your story, your writing ability, and what you’ve learned.

      Then, God takes all that and puts you where He wants you! 🙂
      Blessings and thank you for your comment!

       
       
  5. Sounds like another exciting author. I love the western novels as my family were early pioneers of this wonderful country. I like to image how difficult their lives were as they traveled through this great land.Thank you for not forsaking your dreams.

     
     
    1. Hi Jane.
      Thank you for your kind words. I love westerns, too. I didn’t actually talk about how I came to tell the story of Meghan’s Choice, my first book.

      I asked the Lord what on earth I could write about. After some time in prayer, I heard in my spirit, “Gunfight at Hyde Park.” I remembered it had something to do with my hometown in Kansas. I had to Google it in order to relearn about it.

      Pieces of an author always make it into their stories.

       
       
    2. Hi, Jane! Seeing your name always puts a smile on my face. 🙂 You encourage me and Donna both. Thank you!

       
       
  6. Tammy

    What a great story. This sounds like a great series.

    Tighefan42atgmail dotcom

     
     
    1. Hi, Tammy. Welcome to our chat circle. You’ve encouraged Donna and me both. You’re entered in the drawing 🙂

       
       
    2. Tammy,

      Thank you. I hope readers will be blessed and challenged in their faith when they read my books. We all go through things, and God is with us – do we recognize Him?

      Blessings!

       
       
  7. JANE QUAIL

    Donna, you are blessed indeed. Our great God and Savior, just to speak His Name is an honor. May He continue to energize your author path. So many of us who follow Linda’s blog are author’s too and we are thrilled for your success!

     
     
    1. Welcome, Jane. It’s always so uplifting to see you in Comments. Be blessed today!

       
       
    2. Jane,
      I left a different comment for you. That’s before I figured out the reply button. 🙂

      I am blessed indeed. 🙂

       
       
  8. Alicia,
    Thank you so much!
    Blessings, Donna L.H. Smith

     
     
  9. Alicia Haney

    Your books sound amazing and the cover pages are Beautiful! I am following you on FB . I will have to look for your books, as they sound and look Awesome!

     
     
    1. Welcome, Alicia! Love having new visitors. Please come back.

       
       
  10. Shonda Fischer

    Following you on Facebook and Twitter also signed up for newsletter. Looking forward to getting to know you better.

     
     
    1. Welcome to our chat circle, Shonda! You’re entered in the drawing. 🙂

       
       
    2. Shonda,
      I am adding you to my mailing list. Thank you so much!
      Blessings, Donna L.H. Smith

       
       

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Let’s Chat! Linda Brooks Davis


Christmas
Welcome, Everyone! Have a “Mary” Christmas!

I’m grateful for a couple of open slots on my blog calendar because I get to chat with you about Christmas. My novellas. And the word remember.

Numerous readers of The Calling of Ella McFarland commented that they wanted to hear more about Ella’s and Andrew’s love story. So in 2016 I wrote A Christmas to Remember as a sequel. 

A Christmas to Remember and A Christmas Measure of Love, two novellas tucked between two novels, The Calling of Ella McFarland and The Mending of Lillian Cathleen. Together they comprise the first four components of The Women of Rock Creek series.  

Both novellas transport readers back to Oklahoma and the banks of Rock Creek. Yes, we take a peek into the Evans cottage and learn a bit about six darling girls. But mainly these stories do what we celebrants invariably do at Christmas time—remember.

A Christmas to Remember

Christmas is coming to Oklahoma, and expectations are knocking on Ella Evans’s front door.

She and Andrew married three years ago. They took 5 orphaned sisters, ages 2 to 6, into their home and hearts. Celebrated the birth of their own daughter two years past and grieved at the grave of their infant son. They have experienced great joy and deep heartache that challenge their assumptions about life and love.

Determined to care for her family with help from no one, Ella is worn to a frazzle. From the kitchen to the school room, chores are piling up. Yet Christmas won’t wait.

What set Ella’s feet onto the path of perfection? How is her pursuit affecting her husband, children, and calling? And what will it take to redirect Ella to the way of grace?

It’s Christmas, 1908, and Ella’s life is about to be transformed. Again.

A Time for Remembering

Christmas
I
i
dentify with Ella. Unfortunately, I can remember some nights of no more than two or three hours sleep in my days of mothering and housekeeping and holiday celebrating—while working full time as a special education teacher. I recall dragging myself to work in a daze many mornings and arriving home with zero energy for my family.

Why I thought I had to keep a perfect home and make Christmas “perfect” (whatever that is) and assure my kids were perfect too I’ll never know. If I could do it again, I’d cut my To-Do List in half. And enjoy my family  more.

I‘d sift through my decorations and decide which five or six main items I’d use and set the others aside for the following year. I’d ask my children to join in the decorating and let them do it the way they want. Who cares if the ornaments are all on the lower half of the tree? Or the garland hangs uneven everywhere I look? Why did I care more about the fluff than the substance of Christmas? 

The answer sort of hurts.

A Word From Jesus

Christmas
T
his subject brings my thoughts to a passage in Mark 2 where Pharisees criticized Jesus for allowing his disciples to pick grain on the Sabbath. His answer in verse 27 returns to me nowadays at Christmas time. “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”

For purposes of making my point, I’m taking some liberty with that sacred verse and switching it up a bit and pray the Lord approves: “Christmas was made for Christians, not Christians for Christmas.”

When I lay that verse over my Christmas To-Do List, I have to tell you: I’m convicted. Oh, I know Christmas isn’t an ordained day you’ll find chapter and verse for, but I believe the principle of Christian freedom Paul teaches in 1 Corinthians 10 fits Christmas. “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it” (including the days we celebrate) and “Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (that includes Christmas.)

So . . . Back to my original question to myself: Why did I think I had to make things  perfect for Christmas? Was it for the glory of God? Ouch! I have to admit it was more for my own … if not glory, then self-satisfaction and a bit of pride.

A “Mary” Christmas

christmas
T
here’s so much evil in this world. It takes many shapes. At times it’s as plain as day. But at other times, it hides behind masks of goodness, slips in the back door, through cracks in our walls, and down our perfectly adorned chimneys. In a way, isn’t that the worst kind of evil—the kind that slips in unnoticed?

I‘m trying now to take more of a “Mary” approach to Christmas. Not Mary, the mother of Jesus. But Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus. I confess I’ve lived my life a whole lot closer to ever-busy Martha than to sitting-at-Jesus’-feet Mary. But I’m trying to do better.

want Christmas to bring God glory. This year that means foregoing the garland, outside lights, and seven course meal. And a long list of other “have-to”s from long ago. And I hope with every ornament hung, batch of cookies baked, string of lights strung, I’ll offer my labor to Jesus and place them at His feet.

May you and yours will have the most joyous and blessed Christmas in a month o’ Sundays.

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary chose what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Luke 10:41-42

Share your thoughts on overdoing it at Christmas—or anytime. I’m giving away both novellas in ebook format in A Rock Creek Christmas Novella Collection to someone who joins our chat. 

“Mary” Christmas, ya’ll!

19 thoughts on “Let’s Chat! Linda Brooks Davis

  1. Marilyn R

    Linda, your post is beautiful about “Mary Christmas.” I’ve kept my decorations simple for several years and not over doing with baking. I want to honor the Savior we celebrate on the day Know as Christmas. The wonder of his birth and sacrifice for me, you and all mankind.
    A blessed Christmas to you.

     
     
    1. Good for you, Marilyn. I didn’t learn this lesson for many years. I meant to add that we can have a “Mary” mindset as we go about our Christmas tasks too. Have a beautiful day tomorrow. May it be filled with love and joy.

       
       
  2. Deanne Patterson

    I have enjoyed reading your thoughts, Linda. I used to be a Martha but have I now notice the smaller things and their importance. I take more time to talk and really listen to what people say
    I am now more of a caring Mary. Mary Christmas to you, Linda.

     
     
    1. Thank you, Deanne. May you be filled with the light of the glory in the face of Christ.

       
       
  3. Barbara Raymond

    I love this idea. Right now I feel more like Mary as I get to sit and watch my husband and daughter do most of the work around the house. I can help with some things but tire easily. But I don’t want to forget to sit at Jesus feet when things are going great.

     
     
    1. Bless you, Barbara. May you be filled with the light of the glory in the face of Christ.

       
       
  4. Luanna Lane

    Love u Cousin! Can’t wait to read your books!

     
     
    1. Consider yourself hugged, Cousin! So glad we share DNA 🙂 May God bless you real good!

       
       
  5. Pat

    I am enjoying reading your blog. Thank you for inviting me! This means I not getting anything done but oh well!!

     
     
    1. Busy bees deserve time to reflect. (Just ask Mary) May you be filled with the light of the glory in the face of Christ.

       
       
  6. I love your idea of “Mary” Christmas. It will surely be the best way to celebrate it. I too used to be a “Martha” type but now in my older years I have slowed down and try to enjoy every moment of every day the Lord gives me. Blessings and “Mary” Christmas to you.

     
     
    1. Thank you, Leona. (I love your name. My mother was Goldie Leona. She said she always felt like her mother had given her a dancehall girl’s name – but I didn’t agree. I love both names.) May you be filled with the light of the glory in the face of Christ.

       
       
  7. Love your thoughts and books. I have all that you have written and have enjoyed them thoroughly. Keep up the great writing and love of our Lord.

     
     
    1. Thank you, Jane! “Mary” Christmas to you and your family!

       
       
  8. Linda I loved reading your blog and we all need that reminder about the Sabbath
    I also loved the Christmas pictures you added
    I would love to meet Ella.
    Have a Merry Christmas!!

     
     
    1. Thank you, Lori. “Mary” Christmas to you and yours!

       
       
  9. Patricia Bennett Barber

    Love your comments..my daughter is 23 now and sometimes I wish I did things different at Christmas for her. I was a single parent and always worried about the money for her presents. But as I look at her today, she is a person who is not looking at the lable, but the bargain..

     
     
  10. Susan Wallace

    Linda I enjoyed reading your blog. You are on the right track. Keep it more simple and focused on Jesus. I wish you a peaceful, memorable Christmas. Love ya cuz

     
     
    1. Love you! Merry, joyous, love-filled Christmas to you and your loved ones!

       
       

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