Deadly Communications by Lillian Duncan – Author Interview

July 19, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

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I’d like to welcome author Lillian Duncan to my blog! I found the premise to her story interesting because her heroine is a speech pathologist! My son stutters and he had to go to speech and language pathologist for over a year to help him with his stutter. Her story sounds intriguing and I encourage you to purchase a copy to read!

Deadly Communications

 

Blurb:

Improving communication skills is never easy. In this case, it could be murder!

Maven Morris is a speech-language pathologist on medical leave–or as she likes to put it: out to pasture.

When she’s offered a lucrative position by one of the community’s most powerful men to help his traumatic-brain-injured daughter improve her communication skills, Maven discovers deadly secrets behind the iron gates of the mansion.

Now, she must find the courage to seek justice no matter who gets hurt–even if it’s her.

 

BIO:

 

Lillian is a multi-published author who lives in the middle of Ohio Amish country with her husband, two parrots, one Jack Russell, and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel she’s thinking of renaming Clifford since he keeps growing and growing and….

As a speech pathologist in the public schools for over thirty years, she worked with students of all ages with a wide variety of conditions, but especially with deaf and hard-of-hearing children. Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives. especially God’s Word.

Lillian writes the types of books she loves to read—fast-paced mystery and suspense with a touch of romance that demonstrates God’s love for all of us. To learn more about Lillian and her books, you may visit her at www.lillianduncan.net or www.lillian-duncan.com. She also has a devotional blog at wwwPowerUpWithGod.com.

 

 

 

DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS INTERVIEW:

 

Tell us about DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS.

Deadly Communications features Maven Morris, a speech-language pathologist (SLP) who gets a little too involved with her clients. Okay, a lot too involved. When a client she’s working with leaves abruptly, Maven is suspicious and she won’t rest until she finds her.

 

What’s the setting for DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS?

It takes place in the city of Wooster, Ohio. Coincidently, it’s a city I’ve lived near most of my life. But, of course, the story is fictional and not based on reality!

 

How did you come up with the title for DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS?

How could that not be the title? When a speech-language pathologist (SLP) gets involved in a murder mystery, what else could you name it?

 

Is DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS the first book you published?

No, I’ve been blessed to have several books published in the past few years. My last release was BETRAYED in January of this year. It was the second in my Sisters By Choice series. The third, REDEMPTION, will be released in September.

 

Why did you write DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS?

 

Three things happened within a few days of each other to inspire DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS.

First, my brother asked why I didn’t write a story featuring a speech-language pathologist. To which my answer was that it would be difficult to come up with a suspense story and an SLP.

Secondly, a few days later I was talking with someone whose daughter had been involved in an accident and was now experiencing communication difficulties.

Thirdly, as writers are prone to do, I was sitting daydreaming and had a vision of a young woman running through the woods and into ongoing traffic.

That’s all it took! My writer mind took over from there and DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS was born.

 

So, then it sounds as if you were a speech-language pathologist. Tell us a little about that job.

I retired as an SLP from a large city school district in Ohio, then spent several more years working part-time in smaller, rural districts near where I live. Between the two jobs, I don’t think there is any type of child I haven’t worked with at least once.

I loved my job and still miss it. Mostly I miss the children, not the paper work involved. If it weren’t for serious health issues, I would still be working.

 

What do you want readers to take away from DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS?

Before the story starts Maven has experienced a series of life-changing events that have led to depression. Maven chooses to get out of bed and keep moving. It’s not easy when life throws us a curve ball or two. It may not seem fair, but how we react to those things will determine the quality of our future.

As the story moves forward we see Maven struggle with her spirituality as she faces some difficult circumstances in her life. I want readers to know they can do the same.

 

Was it difficult to write a character with communication problems?

Not at all. In fact, that was part of the fun of writing DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS. In the scenes where Maven is working with her client, all I had to do was close my eyes, imagine the interaction, then open my eyes, and write it.

 

What is your writing process?

I am not an outliner. I wish I were—it seems easier to me. But my mind doesn’t work that way. I never know what is going to happen in my story on any given writing day. It’s as if my mind is a movie screen and I watch that day’s events and then I write it.

When I start a new story I usually have a clear picture of the main character in mind and what obstacle he/she will face, but anything goes after that. If I’m writing and start to feel bored—then I kill someone or blow something up. And that way it’s a surprise to me and to my readers.

 

Do you know who the bad guy is when you begin your story?

Not usually. Most of the time I have several characters who it might be and as the story comes to a conclusion, I’m surprised right along with my readers. DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS was no exception. I wasn’t sure who the culprit was until the very end. Maven and I suspected one person, but we were wrong!

 

Most people don’t think of murder mysteries and suspense novels as Christian Fiction. What do you say to them?

I can certainly understand their point of view. And for some readers my stories might be a bit too graphic or edgy and that’s okay, I would say my readers are those who like traditional suspense and mystery novels but are tired of all the explicit language and sex scenes that aren’t necessary to a good story.

I don’t promote or glorify violence in my stories and show characters experiencing the natural consequences of their bad choices and bad actions. My characters are usually on a spiritual journey as well—but some are further along than others.

 

Then what makes your stories Christian Fiction?

I don’t promote or glorify violence in my stories in any way. My characters experience the natural consequences of their bad choices and bad actions.

My stories always have an element of faith in them. How that plays out depends on the individual plots of each specific story. My main characters are always on a spiritual journey, though some may be further along than others.

One more word about Christian Fiction, it has changed dramatically over the past ten years. Other than erotica, readers can find their favorite genre as Christian Fiction as well as mainstream fiction. There are Christian Fiction books out there for every book lover—historical; romance; regency; science fiction; even horror novels.

 

What are you working on now?

I have a devotional blog POWER UP WITH GOD’S WORD: Secrets For a Better Life at: www.PowerUpWithGod.com. I was diagnosed with bilateral brain tumors two years ago and so many of the devotions focus help others who are facing a crisis—physical or spiritual.

The third book in The Sisters By Choice series (REDEMPTION) will be released in September. Along with that that I’m working on the second in the Deadly Communications series. As of now, its title is Nowhere to Belong.

 

HOW CAN READERS FIND YOU ON THE INTERNET?

My website is www.lillianduncan.net and I have a devotional blog at www.PowerUpWithGod.com My blog is TIARAS & TENNIS SHOES at www.lillian-duncan.com.  I’m also on Twitter as @LillianDuncan and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/lillian.k.duncan

Thanks for being on my blog, Lillian! I’ve enjoyed this!

 

Tempest’s Course

July 18, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

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Tempest’s Course

When Kelly Frost, a textile conservator, is hired to restore an old quilt, she’s surprised when she’s gets the bid for the project. Having to temporarily relocate to a new town, she meets Tom Pereira, the groundskeeper for her new home. Tom has been discharged from the military, and he’s dealing with a lot of problems. He makes a living tending the gardens and doing odd jobs, but his father thinks he’d do better by getting a college education. He is attracted to Kelly and Kelly is attracted to Tom. A foster kid, she can barely recall having a real family. Kelly’s on her own as she attempts to restore the quilt, however, spooky things are happening in her temporary house. She’s not sure why someone is lurking around, causing trouble.

I enjoyed this romance. I also liked reading about the heroine’s occupation as a textile conservator. It’s not a profession that I read about often. I’d recommend this book as a nice, heartwarming read.

 

Sunday Brunch – The Tower Of Babel!

July 13, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Can you imagine, building a tower that stretches all the way to heaven?

I’m doing my Sunday Brunch post a little differently today. I’m posting a Bible verse, with my random thoughts and questions. My random thoughts/questions are in parenthesis.

Genesis 11:1-9 NIV:

The Tower of Babel

11 Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As people moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there.

They said to each other, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.”

(I find it hard to imagine grown people actually thinking they can build a tower that reaches to the heavens! I’m wondering if, back then, people weren’t conscious of boundaries since they didn’t have the luxury of science and technology? Did they look in the sky, see the clouds and not fathom how far away those clouds were? Did they think building to the clouds was the same as building to the heavens? Were the clouds much closer back then? Was heaven closer? If somebody, today, were to say they were building a tower to reach the moon – we’d be like, NO WAY! Just wondering what was going through people’s minds back then when they decided to build this tower.)

But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower the people were building. The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”

(I’m assuming the Lord confused their language first, before they scattered? Did they wake up one morning and nobody understood one another? I’m wondering if families were broken, separated, because of a sudden language barrier? I guess the Lord did not want them to build this tower because the entire task was impossible, and besides, that would take massive attention from the Lord, people would be more focused on building this impossible tower, instead of focusing on God. )

So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city. (I’m wondering how the Lord managed to scatter everybody. I’m assuming the people who spoke the same language, gathered together and migrated to a different part of the world?) That is why it was called Babel—because there the Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth.

So, can you imagine, waking up one morning, and a whole city of people not understanding one another?

Sunday Brunch – Noah’s Ark!

July 6, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Did Noah take two of each kind of bird, or did he take seven of each kind of bird into the ark?

In Genesis 6:20, the Lord told Noah that two of every kind of animal would come to him to be kept alive:

Genesis 6:20

New King James Version (NKJV)

20 Of the birds after their kind, of animals after their kind, and of every creeping thing of the earth after its kind, two of every kind will come to you to keep them alive.

Later, in chapter seven, the Lord states that Noah should take seven of every kind of clean animal and two of every unclean animal. The clean animals included the birds:

Genesis 7:2-3

New King James Version (NKJV)

You shall take with you seven each of every clean animal, a male and his female; two each of animals that are unclean, a male and his female; 3 also seven each of birds of the air, male and female, to keep the species alive on the face of all the earth.

Why did the Lord specify two, and then seven later, for some of the animals. I’m thinking that initially, two of every kind of animal, regardless of clean or unclean, came to Noah to get onto the ark. Later, somehow, he obtained five more of each clean animal to take onto the ark as the Lord commanded. I’m not sure if Noah had to catch these other five unclean animals, or, if they came to him freely.

Why do you think the Lord initially specified two of each kind of creature? Why is Noah later told to bring seven of each of the clean animals?

My Author Interview!

July 4, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Check out my interview and book giveaway on Elaine Stock’s blog!

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Sunday Brunch – Cain And Abel

June 29, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Why did God accept Abel’s offering? Why did the Lord reject Cain’s offering?

That’s a question that’s always puzzled me. The scriptures do not really give us a reason as to why this happened. Someone in my Bible study group pointed out that Cain’s offering was not the right kind of offering. However, there are other agricultural offerings in the Bible. I know they mention agricultural offerings in Deuteronomy.

Cain became enraged that the Lord rejected his offering, he became so mad that he killed his brother Abel. I was thinking that it was Cain’s bad attitude that cause the Lord to reject his offering.

So, why do you think God rejected Cain’s offering?

Genesis 4:2-5

New King James Version (NKJV)

Then she bore again, this time his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

Congrats To The Christy Award Winners! :-)

June 27, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Join me in granting a hearty congratulations to the 2014 Christy Award winners!

 CONTEMPORARY/

17657648

Stones for Bread
by Christa Parrish (Thomas Nelson, Harper Collins Christian Publishing)

CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE/SUSPENSE

17384597

Dangerous Passage
by Lisa Harris (Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group)

CONTEMPORARY SERIES

17253180

Take a Chance on Me
by Susan May Warren (Tyndale House Publishers)

FIRST NOVEL

16142057

Burning Sky
by Lori Benton (WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group)

HISTORICAL

16142057

Burning Sky
by Lori Benton(WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group)

Burning Sky also won Novel of the Year.

HISTORICAL ROMANCE

17239362

Harvest of Gold
by Tessa Afshar (River North, from Moody Publishing)

SUSPENSE

17333533

Outlaw
by Ted Dekker (FaithWords, a division of Hachette Book Group)

VISIONARY

16110382

Dragonwitch
by Anne Elisabeth Stengl (Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group)

Congrats To The Carol Award Finalists!

June 25, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Congrats to the 2014 Carol Award Finalists! The Carol Award is given by ACFW. The winners will be announced at the ACFW conference in September.

Debut Novel

15760508

The Heiress of Winterwood by Sarah Ladd (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editor Natalie Hanemann)

16281225

Jasmine by April McGowan (WhiteFire Publishing, editor Roseanna White)

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Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Becky Monds, Natalie Hanneman, L.B. Norton)

Contemporary

18877667

The Language of Sparrows by Rachel Phifer (David C. Cook, editor Tonya Osterhouse)

17657649

Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Becky Monds, Natalie Hanneman, L.B. Norton)
15863529

The Dance by Gary Smalley and Dan Walsh (Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editor Andrea Doering)

Historical

16280977

When Mountains Move by Julie Cantrell (David C. Cook, editors Ingrid Beck, John Blase)

16122787

Snow on the Tulips by Liz Tolsma (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Becky Philpott, Julee Schwarzburg, Jodi Hughes)
16113005

Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate by Diana Wallis Taylor (Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editor Lonnie Hull Dupont)

Historical Romance

16109788

Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden (Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editor Raela Schoenherr)

15726461

A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund (Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editor Dave Long)

17288762

The Governess of Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky (Waterbrook Multnomah [Random House], editors Shannon Marchese, Karen Ball)

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

15739201

Truth Stained Lies by Terri Blackstock (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Dave Lambert, Sue Brower, Ellen Tarver)

17414656

Dark Justice by Brandilyn Collins (B&H Publishing, editors Karen Ball, Julie Gwinn)
15815078

Fear Has a Name by Creston Mapes (David C. Cook, editors L.B. Norton, Jack Campbell)

Novella

19246360

An Ever After Summer from A Bride for all Seasons by Debra Clopton (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editor Ami McConnell)

18401516

Love by the Letter by Melissa Jagears (Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editor Raela Schoenherr)
18801738

A Christmas Prayer by Linda Wood Rondeau (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editor Amberlynn Noelle)

Romance

17569763

Silver Bells by Deborah Raney (Summerside Press [Guideposts], editor Rachel Meisel)

15802375

Catch a Falling Star by Beth K. Vogt (Howard [Simon & Schuster], editor Jessica Wong)

16110337

Undeniably Yours by Becky Wade, Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editors Sarah Long, Charlene Patterson)

Romantic Suspense

17384592

Trapped by Irene Hannon (Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editor Jennifer Leep)

15863526

Vanished by Irene Hannon (Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editor Jennifer Leep)

16100927

Jungle Fire by Dana Mentink (River North [Moody Publishers], editor Deb Keiser)

Short Novel

17164230

Seaside Blessings by Irene Hannon (Love Inspired [Harlequin], editor Melissa Endlich)

17570310

The Doctor’s Family Reunion by Mindy Obenhaus (Love Inspired [Harlequin], editor Melissa Endlich)

16116256

Mending the Doctor’s Heart by Tina Radcliffe (Love Inspired [Harlequin], editor Rachel Burkot)

Speculative

15781726

A Cast of Stones by Patrick W. Carr (Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editors Dave Long, Karen Schurrer)

16234269

The Hero’s Lot by Patrick W. Carr (Bethany House [Baker] Publishing, editors Dave Long, Karen Schurrer)

17657644

The Sinners’ Garden by William Sirls (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Natalie Hanemann, Lisa Bergren)

Young Adult

16153439

A Simple Song by Melody Carlson (Revell – A Divison of Baker Publishing Group, editors Lonnie Hull Dupont, Wendy Wetzel)

16103816

Captives by Jill Williamson (HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Jacque Alberta, Jeff Gerke)

18040375

Project Gemini by Jill Williamson (Marcher Lord Press, editor Jeff Gerke)

- See more at: http://www.acfw.com/carol/2014_carol_finalists#sthash.3RiYktjs.dpuf

Sunday Brunch – Mandrakes!

June 22, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Do you know anybody who has eaten a mandrake?

According to my research, mandrakes are poisonous. They are a root plant, but, produces berry-like fruit. The only part of the mandrake that is not poisonous is the fruit. Supposedly, it’s an ancient remedy to help barren women produce children. This plant has also been used in magic and witchcraft practices.

I’m assuming, in the Bible, when Rachel barters with Leah, wanting some of Reuben’s (Leah’s son) mandrakes, that she was aware of the supposed remedy since Rachel was barren. I also assume that Leah and Rachel ate the berries, not the root since it’s poisonous. But, as I think about it, perhaps Rachel was NOT going to consume the mandrakes – perhaps she wanted to keep them as a symbol of fertility since she was a barren woman?

So, other than the biblical references, have you ever heard anybody talk about mandrakes? Have you ever known anybody who’s eaten the fruit of a mandrake? If so, how did it taste? Do you think Rachel and Leah consumed the berries of the mandrakes, or, did they keep the plants for another reason?

The reason why I’m writing this blog post is because, when I think of mandrakes, I think about the Bible. Then I’m led to wonder – why don’t I ever see mandrakes in the grocery store? Why don’t people ever mention eating them? For the longest time, I’d just assumed that they were a foreign plant, only sparingly available in the states, and that’s why I never saw them offered for consumption. But, now it makes sense as to why I don’t see them. They’re poisonous plants, and knowing this, I would not want to eat the berries even if they were offered. I guess you could call me paranoid, but, although the berries are not poisonous, I’d still be hesitant to eat them!

If somebody offered you a mandrake berry, would you eat it?

Genesis 30:14-16

New King James Version (NKJV)

14 Now Reuben went in the days of wheat harvest and found mandrakes in the field, and brought them to his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.”

15 But she said to her, “Is it a small matter that you have taken away my husband? Would you take away my son’s mandrakes also?”

And Rachel said, “Therefore he will lie with you tonight for your son’s mandrakes.”

16 When Jacob came out of the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, “You must come in to me, for I have surely hired you with my son’s mandrakes.” And he lay with her that night.

Sunday Brunch – The Animals!

June 15, 2014 Posted by novelistcd

Were animals domesticated before the flood? After the flood, God told Noah and his family that they could eat the animals, and that the animals would fear them:

Genesis 9:2-3 New King James Version (NKJV)

And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast of the earth, on every bird of the air, on all that move on the earth, and on all the fish of the sea. They are given into your hand. Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. I have given you all things, even as the green herbs.

When Noah took the animals onto the ark, I’m assuming the animals came willingly. He was able to easily capture the animals and lead them onto the ark.

If all animals were domesticated, then, I wonder about Abel. Abel was a keeper of sheep – I’m assuming the sheep were used for their wool and for their milk? If animals were not allowed to be eaten before the flood, then I doubt Abel (or anybody else) consumed any of his flock? Abel only killed his sheep as sacrifices to God?

Genesis 4:2 New King James Version (NKJV)

Then she bore again, this time his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.

I guess it’s possible that the wool may have been used to make clothing for the few people living on the earth at that time?

These are just random ramblings that have been going through my head lately! Comment if you wish!