Keli Gwyn
Friday Fun Book Launch Style

A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California is coming soon! Very soon in fact. The official release day is Sunday, July 1.

Because so many wonderful people have helped me reach this milestone, I’m eager have you all share in the celebration. One way I’m doing that is to launch my Five Weeks of Fun drawings.

Every Friday, from today until the end of July, I’ll start a new drawing for one bushel basket filled with a copy of my book and five fun items from the story, a prize package worth $40. Each drawing will run through the following Thursday, and the winner will be announced in the Friday post the next day.

 

The story-related items, as seen above, are: an autographed copy of A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California, a French-milled lavender soap bar, a bag of lemon drops, a bag of peppermint sticks, a bag of rose potpourri, and a package of violet seeds. The winner gets the bushel, too.

All of the items in the basket were available in the year 1870, when the story takes place. Each Friday, I’ll share a passage or two showing why one of the items the bushel plays a part in the story.

Peppermint Sticks

Tildy is the precocious nine-year-old daughter of the heroine, Elenora Watkins. Readers learn early in the story that Tildy likes candy. Peppermint sticks are her favorite.

In this first passage, the hero, Miles Rutledge, has just met the stagecoach that’s brought his new partner to town. Before he can speak to the person, he and Tildy talk. Here they are in the midst of that conversation.

     “Do you sell candy?”

     Miles started. He’d forgotten about the girl. He leaned forward with his hands on his knees. “Yes, Miss Watkins, I sell some candy.”

     She giggled. “I’m not even ten yet. That’s not old enough to be Miss Watkins. I’m just Tildy. My real name’s Matilda.” She made a face. “It was my grandmother’s name, but I can’t stand it. Mama calls me Tildy, but Grandpa calls me Matilda, even though I asked him not to.”

After Miles meets his prospective partner, he leads Tildy and Elenora to his mercantile. Here’s another snippet of conversation between Miles and Tildy.

      “Look, Mama. He has toys.” Tildy darted over two rows and dropped to her knees in front of a case housing an iron bank, two wooden tops, and a bowl of marbles.

     Mr. Rutledge sauntered up to Tildy and tapped her on the shoulder. “I think you forgot something.”

     She followed his hand to where he gestured. “Oh! The candy. And look. You have my favorite. Peppermint sticks. Do you like them, too?”

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A Question for You

Do you like the taste of peppermint? If so, what’s your favorite way to enjoy it: peppermint candies, peppermint ice cream, peppermint tea, or something else?

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The Drawing

I’m being brave and using Rafflecopter to hold the drawing. Doing so gives you the opportunity to earn bonus entry points. I’ve not used this service before, so here’s hoping all goes well.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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 Book Release Blog Tour Appearances

The official release of A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California is July 1. Many wonderful bloggers have offered to help me get the word out by hosting me on their blogs. I’ll be sharing the links to those posts at the bottom of mine throughout the tour, which runs the last week of June and all of July.

June 29

A Christian Writer’s World ~ Interview and
Book Giveaway with Lena Nelson Dooley

Jill Kemerer ~ Virtual Release Party
and Book Giveaway

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Keli Gwyn
Romantic Proposals: The Firefighter and His Flame

I have a huge heart for firefighters. I’m the proud daughter of a retired firefighter, one who worked for the U.S. Forest Service and fought wildfires all over the West. My dad is one of my heroes.

Firefighters are heavy on my heart as a number of fires ravage the western U.S. One in particular has me watching the news reports with trepidation.

My agent, Rachelle Gardner, lives near Colorado Springs. Her husband is one of the firefighters on the front lines of the Waldo Canyon fire. Another of Rachelle’s clients, Beth Vogt, a dear friend of mine, lives in Colorado Springs and was evacuated from her home yesterday.

I ask you to join me in praying for those whose homes and businesses are threatened by the fires as well as for those battling the blazes.

In honor of the brave men and women fighting to contain the raging infernos, I’m sharing a special memory involving a firefighter in my post today.

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One Valentine’s Day a number of years ago, my family and I went out to dinner at a favorite Mexican food restaurant in a small town nearby. As you might expect, the place was packed. We were led past a large table on one side of the entrance to one of the many tables on the other.

Halfway through our meal, the wail of sirens startled me. They were close and getting closer with each passing moment. When the town’s two fire engines, the fire chief, and the paramedics pulled up outside the plate glass windows with lights flashing, I was sure someone was having a heart attack or something, since there was no sign of a fire anywhere.

All eyes were on the door as the flood of firefighters burst into the restaurant in a florescent yellow flurry. Clearly I wasn’t the only one curious about what had brought the town’s entire fire department rushing to the place.

The firefighters congregated in the entry. None looked to be in a hurry. In fact, they appeared to be in a jovial mood.

I was seated facing the large table we’d passed on our way in. One of the firefighters approached the group as his colleagues watched from a distance.

When that firefighter dropped to one knee in front of a woman who seemed surprised to see him and took her hand in his, my mush meter went crazy. On that most romantic day of the year, the firefighter proposed to his flame.

An audible sigh filled the restaurant at the site. Can you say romantic? That proposal is one of the most memorable I’ve ever witnessed.

And what did the lady say? Judging by the number of smiles and hugs I saw, she said a very enthusiastic “yes.”

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What’s the most romantic proposal you’ve witnessed–other than your own?

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 Book Release Blog Tour Appearances

The official release of A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado ,California is July 1. Many wonderful bloggers have offered to help me get the word out by hosting me on their blogs. I’ll be sharing the links to those posts at the bottom of mine throughout the tour, which runs the last week of June and all of July.

June 27

Black ‘n Gold Girl’s Book Spot
Interview and Book Giveaway with Renee Chaw

Ruby Slippered Sisterhood ~ Guest Post and Book Giveaway

June 28

Along the Way ~ Guest Post and Book Giveaway with Janet Hovis

Susan Hollaway: Journeys of Love. . .Inspired by Faith
Interview and Book Giveaway

Image from Wikimedia Commons

Comment Link 29 Comments
Keli Gwyn
Reading Book Dedications

I love reading dedications.

Some dedications are short; some are long. Some are funny; some are serious. Some are written for a family member, some for a friend, and some for a person who provided technical expertise or research assistance.

All are special.

What makes a dedication a must-read for me? I like seeing who has played a pivotal role in the author’s life or provided much-appreciated help in getting the book on the shelf.

Today the shipment of my debut novel is scheduled to arrive. One of the things I’m most looking forward to is cracking open a copy so Gwynly can read the dedication. He knows the book is dedicated to him. I couldn’t keep that secret, but with tremendous effort, I managed to keep from showing him the words I wrote just for him.

I don’t know who will be more moved by the dedication, me or my guy. Naw. That’s not true. I’m sure to go all weepy as I shed tears of joy, whereas Gwynly will probably just grin. That’s OK by me. His Gwyn grin is pretty special.

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Do you enjoy reading dedications? Why or why not?

If you could dedicate a book to someone, who would it be?

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 Book Release Blog Tour Appearances

The official release of A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado ,California is July 1. Many wonderful bloggers have offered to help me get the word out by hosting me on their blogs. I’ll be sharing the links to those posts at the bottom of mine throughout the tour, which runs the last week of June and all of July.

June 26

Writing for Christ ~ Interview and Book Giveaway with Casey Herringshaw

Christian Book Review Blog ~ Interview and Book Giveaway with Aizess

June 27

Stuff & Nonsense II ~ Interview and Book Giveaway with Anne Payne

Comment Link 26 Comments
Keli Gwyn
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