Monday, September 15, 2014

Be Thou My Vision Cover Reveal

Today I get to be part of the cover reveal for my friend Faith Blum's upcoming book Be Thou My Vision! And isn't it just lovely? I absolutely love the way the hymn is overlaid over the sky and the way the title fits with the church steeple. Be Thou My Vision is the second book of Faith's Hymns of the West series. I had the pleasure of beta reading it and recommend it to anyone who enjoys a sweet Western romance with a good spiritual message. As part of Faith's cover reveal tour, I have her here today for a fun interview as well as an excerpt from the book. There's also a fun giveaway Faith is hosting. You can find the information at the end of the post, but first, a little about the book.
The church was empty when I dragged myself out of the pew and headed out the door.  As I opened the door, the corner of my eye caught a flicker of movement which I chose to ignore.  I walked down the steps and was nearly bowled over by two wild boys.  With arms grown strong and quick from man-handling two brothers growing up, I grabbed the two boys before they had a chance to escape me.
Anna Stuart is comfortable with her life.  She may be a 30 year old spinster, but she has her routine and enjoys taking care of her father and older brother.  One letter shatters all her routines, comfort, and enjoyment.  After learning of her brother’s death, Anna feels like her life will never be the same again.
Then she meets two motherless boys.  Did God place them in her life to lead her to a new vision of life?  Can she trust God to give her the desires of her heart before she even knows what they are?
The Kindle version of Be Thou My Vision is currently available at a special preorder price of only 99 cents, so make sure you take advantage of that!
1. What inspired you to write what you do?
Probably reading books about the time period. So far, I have mostly written Westerns and it was my love of Louis L’Amour’s books that really helped me write them. Since then, I have also found some other Western authors that I like, but Louis L’Amour will always be my Western author of choice.
2. Which of your characters would you most love to spend the day with?
In this book? Hmm… This is a hard question. I think I would most love to spend the day with Anna. We are very different, but her persistence and servant heart are inspiring.
3. Creating and working with characters is my favorite part of writing. What is yours?
The actual writing of the story and making the characters alive. I love creating the story that tells about people’s life struggles and how they get past those struggles.
4. I love it when I can find just the right “casting” choice for my characters because it helps clarify them in my mind. Do you have any casting choices for your characters? If so, who are some of the main ones?
I can’t say that I have. There have been a few characters who have similarities to me and I’ve written them that way, but otherwise, I don’t think that I have.
5. For me, actually getting my stories written is the hardest part of writing. Planning, rewriting, and editing are much easier. What is your least favorite or hardest part of the writing process?
As long as I can find the time, writing is my favorite (and the easiest) part. Rewriting and editing is my least favorite part of the writing process. Which is probably why I am procrastinating right now with my next book. :P
6. Can you tell us a little about your current work in progress or what’s next for your writing and publishing plans?
My next book follows close behind “Be Thou My Vision”. Lord willing, I hope to have “Amazing Grace” published in February. Here is my logline for it: “A doubting man agrees to wed a widowed mail-order bride, but he struggles with whether or not he can be a father to the woman's daughter who desperately wants a father's love.”
I have the rough draft written and now all I need to do is rewrite, edit, and edit some more. As I mentioned above, I have been procrastinating on that. Anybody want to get the whip out to help me move faster? 
7. What hobbies do you have outside of writing?
Reading (surprise, surprise), playing piano, and doing crafts. I love to play classical music and some soundtracks. My favorite crafts are knitting, crocheting, cross stitch, and sewing.
8. What are some of your favorite books?
The Bible, “To Win Her Heart” by Karen Witemeyer, “To Ride the River” by Louis L’Amour, “Red Rain” by Aubrey Hansen, The Shiloh Legacy trilogy by Bodie and Brock Thoene. Those are just a few I can think of right now.
9. What are three random facts about you that most people probably wouldn’t know?
Ooo! A list! Yay!
1. I live off of lists. If I don’t have something written on a list, I probably won’t remember to do it. I love making lists and crossing things off of them when they are done.
2. As much as I love historical fiction in books, I actually prefer watching science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary movies. Probably because most historical movies are about wars and get rather gory. Sci-fi and fantasy can also get gory, but it is different because that’s not real people.
3. We haven’t had a TV in our house for probably over 10 years now and I love it! The only thing I miss is watching the Green Bay Packer games. Dad did manage to get something to work, but it doesn’t always work and it is hard to watch on a computer monitor.
10. And finally, what advice would you give other authors seeking to publish?
Don’t rush through it. Set realistic goals and don’t be afraid to change those goals if you aren’t comfortable with what you have written so far.
       “Hello,” she said, sticking her hand out. “I am Wilma Gardner. I recently moved onto the neighboring farm with my husband. I heard there was a woman living here and thought we could possibly become friends. The ladies in town said not to pin my hopes up, but when have I ever listened to people like them?”
       In spite of myself, I found my lips curving up into a slight smile. First, this stranger was Southern. Second, this vivacious young woman might be my answer to getting me out of my...whatever it was I was in.
       “Anna Stuart,” I answered, returning her handshake and inviting her in. After seeing if she wanted something to drink, I continued, “I live here with my brother and father. They’re out in the fields.”
       “Maybe we could have you three over for dinner sometime this week,” Wilma offered. “I'm sure my husband would be glad for some advice from men who have farmed here for awhile.”
       I shook my head. “I doubt that would be possible. Da doesn't like visiting with people and he certainly does not like discussing farming with anybody, not even Caleb.”
About Faith
An avid reader, Faith Blum started writing at an early age. Whether it was a story about the camping trip that summer or a more creative story about fictional characters, she has always enjoyed writing. When not writing, Miss Blum enjoys reading, crafting, playing piano, leading on the Holy Worlds Christian Writing Forum and playing games with her family (canasta, anyone?). As a history enthusiast who has been fascinated for years with the Old West, Faith has endeavored to create a clean, fun, and challenging Western story. Faith lives with her family on a hobby farm in the Northern Midwest, where she enjoys the many cats they have.
Find Faith on:
To enter the giveaway for an Advanced Reader copy of Be Thou My Vision and an ebook copy of Aundy by Shanna Hatfield go to Faith’s blog and leave a comment to either ask her a question, or make a comment about what you think about the article.


  1. Thank you for hosting me, Jaye! And that is my favorite part of the book cover, too. :)

  2. I just bought the first book, so plan to start it soon. I can't wait, both sounds really good!