Posted in Interview

Interview of Julie Lessman

1)      When did you first decide to write Patrick and Marcy’s story?

Right after I wrote A Passion Denied, which had a sub-story about a love triangle in Marcy and Patrick’s past that causes BIG problems for them in APD. The tension from that sub-story was SO strong, I just knew I had to write the love story attached to it someday. Never gave it another thought until I finished writing the last book in the O’Connor family saga, A Love Surrendered. That moment was so bittersweet that I did not want to let the O’Connors go just yet, so I immediately started the prequel, basically creating—for me, at least—a full circle of love in a family to whom I was reluctant to say goodbye.

2)      How much did you have to return to your previous novels when writing this one?

Quite a bit, actually. Fortunately for me, I always reread all of my O’Connor books prior to the next release in order to be primed and ready for the next one, so I did that while I was writing A Light in the Window, which helped A LOT. Regrettably, I was tightly locked in to dates and ages as well as tiny details that didn’t always gel with the story I wanted to tell, so I really had some fancy footwork to do, but my agent said nobody would notice, so I let it fly. Wouldn’t you know I had one diehard reader call me out on a minor point and consequently gave me a 4-star rating instead of the 5-star she said she would have given me otherwise. Sigh.

3)      You have written a number of female heroines (Faith, Charity, Lizzie, Katie, Emma, Annie, and Marcy), is it easy to keep their personalities separate?

You know what? It absolutely IS easy to keep them apart because they are ALL so different, as are my heroes, which is something I truly did not expect. I especially worried that somehow all my heroes would sound the same, but these characters became like flesh and blood to me, so I was able to convey every nuance of their personalities, every quirk, every voice. Uh … I hope …

4)      Whose novel for you was the hardest to write? Which one was the easiest?

Oh, good question! The hardest book to write? Professionally, that would be the third book in the Daughters of Boston series, A Passion Denied. It was difficult to write for a number of reasons. First of all, I hit the wall on that book because I was reading another author whose incredible talent made me feel like I wanted to puke on my keyboard whenever I read my own writing. And secondly, it was difficult because I was attempting not only to tell a very complicated and dark love story about the third daughter, but also weaving in second-tier stories about the parents and each of the other daughters.

You see, whenever I read a first book in a series, I generally fall in love with the hero and heroine and don’t want to say goodbye to them. So in my Daughters of Boston series, each book continues to grow and becomes more complicated and layered. As a result, I worried that book 3 would end up seeming like a bunch of disjointed stories, but many readers have told me it’s seamless and the best of the three books, so I’m very proud of that accomplishment, especially since it’s the only one of my books that has a full 5-star rating on Amazon.

The easiest book to write? Oh, without question that would be book 2 in The Daughters of Boston series, A Passion Redeemed, which is my VERY favorite of all three books of that series. In fact, I SO loved delving into Mitch and Charity’s story that I actually wrote this nearly 500-page doorstop in two months while working my part-time job.

Why, you ask? Well, I just love, love, LOVE Charity—she is so wonderfully flawed and was SO fun to redeem! Yes, you feel like slapping her in A Passion Most Pure (I actually received an e-mail asking me to slap Charity for them and another that wanted to see her maimed or killed!) but I hope readers grow to love her or at least like and understand her before her book is done. She is SO very quirky and funny and becomes more so with each book until finally in the 5th book in the saga, A Heart Revealed, she makes me laugh out loud in almost every scene she’s in, even the sad ones. And A Passion Redeemed reminds me a lot of favorite old-time movies of mine like McClintock with John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara or It Happened One Night with Clark Cable and Claudette Colbert, where the hero and the heroine butt heads like crazy, which is something I love to both read and write. In fact, APR was so fun and easy to write, that I feel as if I hit my stride in that book, making it a very FAST read according to one reader friend who devoured it in a little over three hours!

5)      Can you tell us something about The Heart of San Francisco series?

The “Heart of San Francisco” series, which launches April 1, 2013, is kind of a poor-man, rich-man scenario among three cousins during the Irish-political landscape of 1902 San Francisco. Think Little Women meets Dynasty. J And for those too young to remember the TV show Dynasty, think family wealth and poverty in a political setting.

This series is a bit of a departure for me because it’s a lot lighter and I hope a lot more fun than the angst and high drama of my two prior series.  It will be shorter and less complicated than the O’Connor saga, which means the books will be about 400 pages rather than my usual 500+, and the plots will be two-tier instead of three- and four-tier. You’ll have the romance between the hero and heroine front and center, of course, but also a second-tier love story between the older couple in the series, just like there was with Patrick and Marcy O’Connor. Only instead of a happily married mother and father such as we had in the O’Connor saga, Caitlyn McClare is a godly widowed matriarch who butts heads (and hearts) with her rogue brother-in-law Logan McClare, with whom she was once in love. Engaged to Logan at a very young age, Cait broke the engagement when she discovered Logan’s infidelity, resulting in her marrying Logan’s brother instead. Now, twenty-seven years down the road, Cait is a widow and Logan is determined to win her back, so the romantic tension between these two undergirds the romantic tension between our heroine, Cait’s niece Cassie McClare, and the hero, Jamie MacKenna. The one-line premise for Book 1, Love at Any Cost is: “A spunky Texas heiress without a fortune falls in love with a handsome pauper looking to marry well.”

And here’s the jacket blurb:

Fooled by a pretty boy once, shame on him.

Fooled by a pretty boy twice, shame on me.

Jilted by a fortune hunter, cowgirl Cassidy McClare is a spunky Texas oil heiress without a fortune who just as soon hogtie a man as look at him … until Jamie MacKenna, a handsome pauper looking to marry well, lassoes her heart. But when Jamie discovers the woman he loves is poorer than him, Cassie finds herself bucked by love a second time, sending her back to Texas to lick her wounds and heal her heart. In her absence, Jamie discovers money can’t buy love, but love built on faith can set a heart free, a truth he discovers a little too late … or is it?

I guarantee you there’s a lot of sass and fun in this new series, so I’m really looking forward to introducing my readers to this lighter style and the San Francisco McClares!

Thanks, Embassie, for allowing me to connect with your readers. I LOVE to hear from reader friends, so if they like, they can contact me through my website at http://www.julielessman.com, either by sending an e-mail via my site or by signing up for my newsletter at http://www.julielessman.com/sign-up-for-newsletter/. Also, I have a cool blog feature on my website called “Journal Jots” at http://www.julielessman.com/journal-jots1/, which is a very laid-back Friday journal to my reader friends that will give your readers an idea as to my relaxed style of writing. Or readers can check out my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes from each of my books on the “Excerpts” tab of my website at http://www.julielessman.com/excerpts/. Finally, I can be found daily at The Seekers blog at http://seekerville.blogspot.com/, a group blog devoted to encouraging and helping aspiring writers on the road to publication.

Hugs,

Julie

 

Ms. Lessman has generously decided to give away any book of hers that you would choose. The contest rules are as follows: In order to win the copy, you must leave a comment and the winner will be randomly selected. If you are interested in participating in the contest, your comment must include your email address. If you are notified as the winner, please respond within 48 hours. Winner will be announced on 2/22!

In order to help precipitate comments: which heroine in Julie’s books do you relate to the most?

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119 thoughts on “Interview of Julie Lessman

  1. First off, I LOVED this interview! Its was really fun. And I enjoyed learning more about Love at Any Cost!
    To answer the question, I think I relate to Annie the most. She was very strong-willed, and out-spoken.
    Thank you for the giveaway!
    dymesich(at)juno(dot)com

    1. Hey, LEAH, thanks SO much for coming by, my friend, and I’m glad Annie appealed to you. I was hoping to make her a bit like Faith to bring the series full circle, so hopefully you feel I did that. 🙂 Good luck!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  2. I would love to win the second book from the first series! As a Charity myself, I’d love to read Charity’s story. I’m not sure which character I identify with most… I’ve read the first two books in Julie’s second series, and loved both of those girls. Great giveaway!

    charityu.austenite[at]gmail[dot]com

    1. Hey, CHARITY, good to see you again, girl, and YES, it would be fun to have a Charity read about Charity because it is a pretty unusual name. I actually do have another reader friend named Charity who LOVES Charity and actually looks like her too! 🙂 Good luck!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  3. I haven’t yet read all of Mrs. Lessman’s books, but I can say for sure that I LOVE Patrick and Marcy’s story (as well as characters), if they count. 🙂 Thanks for hosting this contest, and good luck to everybody!
    Callie
    genuinegagirl(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. CALLIE, you bet Marcy and Patrick count because they are the heart and soul of the two series I wrote, so I would LOVE to see you win book 1 in that series, A Passion Most Pure, so GOOD LUCK!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  4. Great interview! I have only read APMP so far but I was definitely one of those who wanted to smack Charity! I still plan on reading the rest of the O’Conner’s books but lately I have found myself faced with too little time as well as a stack of review books that must get read! Thank you for the giveaway!
    gatorade635(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. Sorry missed the question! Having only read one of the books it’s hard to know which I’ll relate too most but so far I think it will be Elizabeth! I fell in love the moment all she wanted for Christmas was books!

    2. LOL, GATORADE … get in line, girl, because I’ve had readers ask me to slap Charity for them and one wanted to see her killed or maimed!! But I gotta tell you — NOBODY turns around more than Charity in this series and by the 5th book in the saga, she is such a hoot, she makes me laugh in every scene she’s in, even the sad ones. Trust me — you will love her before you are through. Most people do. Good luck!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  5. Loved the insider’s look here, Julie. 🙂

    “First of all, I hit the wall on that book because I was reading another author whose incredible talent made me feel like I wanted to puke on my keyboard whenever I read my own writing.”

    This made me laugh! I certainly feel that way, but cannot imagine you would. You are truly one of the best writers I’ve ever found, so no more writer’s nausea, okay? 🙂

    “In order to help precipitate comments: which heroine in Julie’s books do you relate to the most?”

    Well, Katie is my favorite heroine of Julie’s so far, but I certainly don’t relate to her. I mean, I’m very shy. I would say I related the most to Faith (out of the books I’ve read), but I’m not nearly as good of a person as she is.

    Please toss my name in the hat. I’m behind on my reading and would love to win one of Julie’s books I haven’t read yet. 🙂
    road_to_avonlea_17(at)yahoo(dot)com

    Whitney

    1. WHITNEY!!! I’ve missed you, girl — where have you been??? And I would have to say that I love both Katie’s and Charity’s spunk, especially Charity because she makes me laugh and Katie because she’s a no-nonsense type of gal who’s perfect for Luke. Here’s to a win, my friend, and HAPPY writing!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

      1. I’ve been up to my ears in work. LOL. If not at one of the day jobs, the grocery, house work, taking care of the dogs, etc… But I miss you guys over at Seekerville, and was so happy to find you here! I hope you’re doing well and writing up a southern storm. 🙂

        My second favorite book (I’ve read The Daughters of Boston series and A Hope Undaunted) is Charity and Mitch’s story. 🙂

        Thanks for the happy writing line! I have books for research everywhere. I just have to find time to read them!

        Hugs to you,
        Whitney

    1. Well, AMY CAMPBELL … we are just going to have to try and fix that, aren’t we?? I will tell you that the prequel to this entire series, A Light in the Window is now half price, and book 2 of The Winds of Change series will be available for a free download very soon, so keep your eyes peeled. Or better yet, sign up for my newsletter or check out my blog on my website, where I announce things like that, okay? Good luck!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  6. Well, this is a REALLY good surprise to see this friday… Hi Julie!

    This interview was reallly good. Embassie, in my opinion, you asked very creative and important questions. I enjoyed reading this post.

    And yes, please do include me in the giveaway too! Julie’s a favorite author. 🙂

    Have a nice friday, everyone! – Love you, Jules!

    Thanks.
    Ganise

    1. GANISE!!! ALWAYS a pleasure to see you, my friend — miss you!! And I agree that Embassie asked some VERY creative questions — I enjoyed this interview a lot and, of course, LOVE Embassie!! Good luck, my friend and HAPPY WEEKEND!
      HUGS,
      Julie

  7. I’ve read all of Julie’s books so far and like them very much. I’m not sure I closely relate to any of her characters, but I like Faith the most. I’m looking forward to reading Julie’s new series, though it’s kind of hard to say good bye to the O’Connors.

    1. Hey, PAM, I know what you mean about the O’Connors, which is why I wrote the prequel — because I wasn’t quite ready to say goodbye just yet. But hopefully the McClares will win your heart too, although they are a wee bit more eccentric. 🙂 Good luck, sweetie!
      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. WHOOPS … I answered you down below, Martie, instead of on your direct reply, so I’ll repeat here. Before you do read any of my books, sweetie, you may want to hop over to my website to take a look at my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes for each of my books, just to give you an idea if you would even like my “passion with a purpose” style of writing because it is a lot more romantic than most Christian romance novels. Here’s the link for you to check it out, and if you only have time for only one excerpt, I suggest scrolling down to the romantic scene for A Hope Undaunted — that’s my fave!! Here’s the link and HAPPY READING!! JULIE’S EXCERPTS

      Hugs,
      Julie

  8. I enjoyed hearing about your books Julie. It seems you have a lot of author friends who admire you. I haven’t read any of your books so don’t really have an answer to the question. Yes, I watched Dynasty every week. Loved it, especially the cat fights. LOL Would love to win one of your books. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

    1. Oh, Maxie … you like “cat fights”?? Then, girl, I am THE author for you!! 😉 I have a cat fight in my very first book, A Passion Most Pure, between the two sisters, but I have THE cat fight to end all cat fights in the 5th book in this saga, A Heart Revealed, that you won’t want to miss. I like to call myself a CDQ (caffeinated drama queen) because I absolutely LOVE drama and angst with my romance. Keep in mind I cut my teeth on Gone With the Wind at the age of 12!! 🙂

      WOW, your comment that “It seems you have a lot of author friends who admire you,” blesses the socks off me because to have the admiration of your peers is huge to a writer, so THANK YOU!! Not sure if it’s all that true, but it sure would be nice if it was.

      By the way, Maxie — LOVE your name, girl!! Sounds like you should be in Downton Abby, doesn’t it??? 😉 Good luck in the contest!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

      1. Oh Julie thanks for liking my name. I’ve NEVER been told that in my life by anyone. Guess my mom and dad must have liked it. 🙂 I want to apologize. I do have a book of yours “A Love Surrendered”, that I won, in my TBR stack. Not sure where it fits in tho. Is it part of this series? And, it IS true that I’ve heard lots of my authors say what a great person and writer you are!
        GOD bless! Maxie

      2. Well, Maxie, WordPress is foolin’ with me this morning, so I was unable to leave a comment beneath your comment below, so hopefully you will “look up” from your comment below to see my response.

        Let me say right off the bat that “Maxie” (Maxine, I presume?) sounds like the perfect heroine in a Deeanne Gist novel, you know? Kind of fun and unique and a little bit quirky.

        A Love Surrendered is actually the final book of the O’Connor family saga (#6), but it is the third book in the second series, The Winds of Change series, so it’s the last book all the way around. 🙂 I would strongly suggest reading the very first book in the saga first, Maxie, A Passion Most Pure, which won American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Book of the Year because there are a number of HUGE surprises in that book that would be ruined if read out of order. And I will tell you that I know for sure that A Passion Most Pure will be offered as a free download in the months ahead — I just don’t know when, so if you subscribe to my newsletter or my Journal Jots blog, I will keep you in the loop as to when that is happening, okay?

        Have a GREAT rest of the weekend!

        Hugs,
        Julie

  9. Hey, Martie, before you do, sweetie, you may want to hop over to my website to take a look at my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes for each of my books, just to give you an idea if you would even like my “passion with a purpose” style of writing because it is a lot more romantic than most Christian romance novels. Here’s the link for you to check it out, and if you only have time for only one excerpt, I suggest scrolling down to the romantic scene for A Hope Undaunted — that’s my fave!! Here’s the link and HAPPY READING!! JULIE’S EXCERPTS

    Hugs,
    Julie

    1. Hey, CAROL, “Elizabeth” or “Beth” or “Lizzie” as she is called in the later books is such a sweet character, so that tells me right off that I would probably like you A LOT if your personality is closest to hers!! Here’s hoping you pull out a win, my friend!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  10. My favorite is A Passion Most Pure probably because I can relate to it more than the others.Waiting for ‘Mr.Right’ is hard but through that book I realized when one waits on God’s timing everything will jus fall into place. Although I am torn by all the men in Julie Lessmans’s books..that is hard to choose 🙂

    1. Hey, Allysia, that reminds me of an expression a nonChristian friend used to say to me, that always made me sad. She said,”I’ll settle for Mr. Right Now till Mr. Right comes along,” which typifies today’s morality of forging on without God, and I am SO glad that APMP helped you to see that waiting on God is the only way to win in love. It was for me, and I’m praying it will be for you too, my friend. Good luck in the contest, sweetie!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  11. Charity.
    I am on the limb for A Hope Undaunted, Book 1 of the Winds of Change series. That’s my pick for the drawing of ANY of your books, Julie. Kathleen
    lanehillhouse[at]centurylink[dot]net

    1. KATHLEEN!!! Boy, oh boy — do I have good news for you, sweetie pie!! A Hope Undaunted is going on FREE DOWNLOAD on THIS Monday, so be sure to check Amazon or B&N or wherever because it’s coming!!! Then if you win here, I can send you the next book in the set, okay? 😉
      Hugs,
      Julie

  12. I’m so glad to hear that your “shorter, less complicated” new series will still be closer to 400 pages and have all those tiers to the stories! You know my heart’s a thumping already just in anticipation! I loved hearing about your favorite and most difficult books to write. And I CANNOT beleive that YOU wanted to puke on your keyboard comparing your writing to another author’s! Sure, I value the talent of a few other authors close to as much as I adore what you’re able to produce out of that wonderfully creative mind of yours…. but your first six books will always be the first six books I suggest to anyone if they’re not sure what to read next. 😀

    1. Hey, DAWN, SO great to see you here, my friend!! Still have you on my prayer hit list for publication, you sweet thing, so I’m expecting good news down the road, okay??

      And, yes, the new series will be shorter, but also less complicated, which means there will be only 1 subplot per book, and that will always be the ongoing love story between the widowed matriarch and the rogue brother-in-law she was once engaged too. But I think that will be more than enough to keep you reading because Caitlyn and Logan McClare have quite a tumultuous relationship — she shares his name (she married his brother), but nothing else, and he is determined to change that before the end of the series. Only time will tell if she does … 🙂

      Thank you SO very much for your ongoing word of mouth on my books — you will soon find out for yourself just how important that is to an author, my friend. Here’s to a win … and the day that I can be entering a contest to win one of YOUR books!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. Hey, JULES, it ALWAYS brightens my day to see you pop up in the comments, my friend, so THANK YOU!! And to be honest, funny as that statement sounds, it was the God’s truth at the time!! I was 3/4 of the way through APD at the time and literally could not finish, I thought it was so bad. So I fasted both food and that author and asked my sister (my crit partner at the time) to read APD and tell me if I needed to start over. Imagine my shock when she said, “Julie, it’s the best thing you’ve ever written.” And there must be some credence to that because it’s the only one of my books that has five stars on Amazon … the rest all have 4-1/2 stars, so go figure! 🙂 Good luck, Jules, and see you on the Web, my friend.
      Hugs,
      Julie

  13. I went from a hate relationship (well, maybe NOT hate, more like spoiled brat) with Charity to a love relationship! I love Julie’s writing and how she brings out the character’s personalities. We’re back in Nicaragua & your books help me on the lloonngg bus rides!

    1. MEL!!! Back on the road again, eh? You are something, girl, and I SO admire you and your family for your missionary efforts. Now, let’s see if we can’t get you a copy of Love at Any Cost for those “llooongg bus rides”!! GOOD LUCK!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  14. I think I liked Faith the best out of all Julie’s characters. She is so sincere and has a heart for God that I found encouraging. I’d love to win one of her books!!!

    1. Hey, KATE — Faith is a definite favorite of my readers, and understandably so. Hers is the bedrock faith — along with Marcy’s — upon which this family is built, so you might say Faith is the soul of this saga. I would LOVE to send you one of my books, my friend, so here’s to a win!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. Oh, BONNIE, you are JUST the type of reader I am looking for — new blood!! 😉 To give you an idea if you would even like my type of “passion with a purpose” writing, I invite you to head on over to my EXCERPTS tab of my website where I have posted my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes for each of my books. That will give you a pretty good idea if you will like my style or not. So here’s the link and GOOD LUCK in the contest!! JULIE’S EXCERPTS
      Hugs,
      Julie

  15. Sat Feb 9th ….
    Morning, Julie.
    Well, I’ve already read ‘A Passion Most Pure’, which I loved …. and yes, Faith is my favourite character. And, I’m now on page 462 of ‘A Passion Redeemed’, which I am also thoroughly enjoying. Although I must admit, I have wanted to ‘smack some sense’ into Charity, myself — on WAY more than once occasion ! And sometimes, even Mitch !!!
    I would love the chance to win “Love At Any Cost”, your newest book coming out … looks and sounds like a great story ! Have enjoyed your writing so much.
    Thank-you for this opportunity.
    Take care, and, God Bless, In Him, Brenda Hurley
    brennie7@hotmail.com

    1. Hey, BRENDA, thanks for giving Charity a chance because most people do not want to, but I promise that if you continue on with this series and the next, you will see a child of God blossom before your eyes and trust me, you’ll get quite a few laughs along with it. She is a proverbial hoot and simply one of my favorite characters in the end, so I hope you will continue reading to find out. Good luck in the contest and here’s to a win!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  16. I have read all of Julie’s books. I am presently reading A Love Surrendered (the third of the Winds of Change series). This morning I bought A Light in the Window (it was half price for Valentine’s Day). Each time I finish one of Julie’s books I think it is my favorite until I complete the next and then that one is my favorite. Love all of Julie’s characters and look forward to the new series Heart of San Francisco.
    Sue Hamilton
    suehamilton3@earthlink.net

    1. SUZI-Q!!! Sooooo fun to see you throw your hat in the ring on this one, my friend, and I am hoping you are enjoying Steven and Annie’s story too. Keep in mind that Marcy and Patrick’s prequel is a simpler, sweeter romance without the more intense passion for which I am known. It was originally meant to be a sweet Christmas novella, but it grew into more than that and is really a love story for all seasons, especially since it takes place May through May. HAPPY READING and GOOD LUCK!!
      Hugs,
      Julie

  17. Agh so hard to choose! While Katie is my favorite heroine (she’s just so opinionated!) I think I actually identify with Mitch the most. He’s not perfect, but he wants to do what’s right. He’s attracted to Charity, but he wants someone with a heart for God. His struggle to figure out what to do with Charity (Is she sincere or just putting on a front? Surely she hasn’t really changed…has she?) really hit home for me. I think lots of us girls can relate to his quandary! I really want to read Marcy and Patrick’s story!

    1. Hi, CLAIRE, and I’m with you on Mitch being one of my favorite heroes, along with Cluny McGee, that is. Charity puts poor Mitch SO through the paces in all of the books, that it’s no wonder that he keeps her (or tries to) under his thumb, a situation that backfires on him and Charity in book 2 of the Winds of Change Series, A Heart Revealed. It’s a great sub story if you haven’t read that book yet, so GOOD LUCK in the contest, and I’ll be happy to send it to you.
      Hugs,
      Julie

  18. Loved this interview! Thanks for taking the time to share with us all! I haven’t read any of your books yet but look forward to getting my hands on some of them. I especially loved reading about Charity. You know it’s going to be a good read if someone would actually write to have you slap the main character!! LOL!! Love that!! Thanks again.
    kristie(at)connectiolifechurch(dot)org

  19. I so enjoyed this interview! Authors are like celebrities in my world lol. I love to read so much and really find it so interesting to hear about and from these wonderful writers. It is interesting to see both the struggle and ease of writing.
    I honestly have not read one of Julie’s books. I recently won A love Surrendered
    which is book 3 in the Winds of Change series and now I am saving to get the first 2 books of the series!
    I sure would love to be entered in this drawing. My e-mail is :sunydey26@aol.com.
    And Julie..I am praying for you and hope you feel better soon!

  20. Oh, my goodness! Another Julie Lessman series? How exciting! I think I like Faith the best…Thanks for the giveaway!
    kandrajane at bell south dot net

    1. Hey, KANDRA … yeah, I’m actually pulling away from doing interviews/giveaways this year except for a small handful because I have tighter writing deadlines, so you’re smart to hit this one, girl, and here’s to a win!
      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. LOL, MAXIE, we are two peas in a pod, then, because I’ve done the same thing twice now, I think. These “reply” right after the comment type responses throw me off a lot, so you’re not alone. And I answered you up above beneath YOUR comment, so be sure to look for it, okay?

      Hugs,
      Julie

  21. Hi Julie, I hate to say but I have never read any of your books but they sound good . Would love to win one of your book on this contest thanks . I seen this on MaryLu Tyndall site & she said you was having a contest .

    1. Oh, ELIZABETH, if you are a MaryLu fan (and who isn’t??!!), then you are entering the right contest. Not only is MaryLu one of my dearest friends, but our writing is similar somewhat in that we are both a wee bit more “passionate” in the romance area of our books. If you would like to get an idea of what I mean, you can check out the “Excerpts” tab of my website below, where I have posted my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes from each of my books. If you only have time to read one excerpt, I’d recommend scrolling down to the romantic scene for A Hope Undaunted — it’s my fave!! Here’s the link and GOOD LUCK in the contest: JULIE’S EXCERPTS

      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. Hey, WENDY, how have you been, girl?? If I’m not mistaken, you have read at least A Passion Most Pure, right? If so, then you can pretty much choose whichever you want after that one because the major surprises are really in that first book. If just depends upon your favorite O’Connor — there’s a book for each of them, you know, or you can just play it safe with the prequel, A Light in the Window! 🙂 Either way, GOOD LUCK!!

      HUGS,
      Julie

  22. I love Julie’s books! The heroine that I relate to the most is Annie from A Love Surrendered because we are at the same stage in life. 🙂

    1. MARISSA!!! Hey, sweetie — good to see you here!! And I’m glad Annie resonated with you so much because I was actually hoping to end the entire saga with a girl like Faith to kind of bring the saga full circle, so it just made sense to make Faith Annie’s mentor. 🙂 I hope you enjoy the McClares — they are a bit quirky, but lovable, I hope!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  23. Hi Julie! This was such a fun interview. LOVE hearing you talk about your characters. I feel like the O’Conner’s are family now, and I’m not quite ready to let them go. I think I can relate to two of your heroines: Emma and Marcy. Really excited about the release of LAAC! Please enter me in the drawing. Thanks!

    bookwarp(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. ANG!!! ALWAYS love to see you here, my friend — brightens my day!! And I really do see you as an Emma and a Marcy and maybe a tad Lizzie, Ang, because you have their same sweet natures, which I LOVE!! Here’s to a win, girl — would LOVE to send you a book!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  24. Oh I loved all of her books and characters! Charity holds a special place in my heart because APR was the first of Julie’s books I read. But the character I feel I am most like…maybe Faith (though I love books like Lizzie, I could never be considered shy or quiet). I love journaling and writing poetry as she does, and I have a twin!

    jesusfreak4ever(at)juno(dot)com

    1. YAY, MARIE!!! Charity holds a special place in my heart, too, ESPECIALLY in A Heart Revealed — she made me laugh in almost every scene she was in — did she you, I hope? And you are a twin? How fun!! Are you the outgoing twin, then, I presume?

      Here’s pulling for a win, girl, so GOOD LUCK!!

      HUGS,
      Julie

    1. Hey, SARAH, well, girl — we’re just going to have to remedy that, now aren’t we?? I like to encourage people who have never read me before to check out the “Excerpts” tab of my website at the link below to read samples of my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes for each of my books, because that will give you a good idea of my style of “passion with a purpose” writing. If you only have time for one excerpt, I suggest scrolling down for the romantic scene from A Hope Undaunted because that’s my fave!! And also, Sarah, A Light in the Window (in this interview above) is now on sale for Valentine’s Day for almost half off ($3.99), so I encourage you to check it out.

      THEN … book 1 in the 2nd series, A Hope Undaunted, will be available for free download beginning TOMORROW!! Then book 1 in the entire saga, A Passion Most Pure, which won American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut book of the year, will be available for free download in the upcoming months. The only problem with that is that this is a saga best read in order due to a number of BIG surprises in the first book, A Passion Most Pure, so I’d read that one or A Light in the Window first, okay? GOOD LUCK!!

      Here’s the “Excerpts” link: JULIE’S EXCERPTS

      Hugs,
      Julie

      1. LOL, LIZ … my kind of gal because I am the SAME way, so nothing wrong with that as long as the “big romantic notions” involve God too, eh? GOOD LUCK IN THE CONTEST, SWEETIE!!

        Hugs,
        Julie

  25. I really enjoyed the fun interview! I have read several of Julie’s books and she never fails to entertain me to the very last page of each book especially Daughters of Boston series. I still have the series saving them for my daughters to read. I would love to win one of her books.

    mamaw1050(at)att(dot)net

  26. Aw, PATRICIA, thank you SO much, sweetie, and what a compliment that you are saving them for your daughter to read — that blesses me to no end!! Here’s hoping we pull you out a win, okay?

    Hugs,
    Julie

  27. Hmmm… which character do I most relate to? Well, I wish I had the confidence and spunk that Katie has, and a stronger faith like Faith. But I’d say I mostly relate to Lizzie and Annie. I pretty much am always reading, which is one of my favorite things to do. 😉 I’m also quiet when I’m in public. Get me on a subject that I love, though, and I can talk to you! I also am usually looked at as the little sister (I’m the youngest) that’s so much younger than my sister (who is only 2 years older). And I’m also short, so I can relate to the girls that have that problem. lol!

    Thanks for the great giveaway! I can’t wait to read Love at Any Cost… Julie’s books are all amazing! =D

    lubell1106(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. ELYSSA!!! You — quiet in public??? For some reason I did not get that about you! I see you as a fun gal, but VERY cautious about the books you read … (wink). But I am SO glad we won you over (your friend and me!!). Here’s to a win, girl — I think you’re gonna LOVE Jamie MacKenna in Love at Any Cost … AND Cassie, of course. 🙂

      Hugs,
      Julie

  28. Oh, Julie! I’m so excited for your upcoming books! My heart so misses your characters and I just am on the edge of my seat with wonder at what you have in store for your readers!

    I definitely can relate to Annie the most! I’m so quiet that people often think I’m much younger than I actually am. I can only pray that my story will end in a similar way. Steven is, surprisingly, my favorite O’Connor boy….and I wish we could see more of him. 😉

    Emreilly303(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. EMILY … I swear, my face lights up whenever I see your name in comments, girl!! And the O’Connors DO feel like family, don’t they??? I still plan on rereading the books every year because they are like family to me, and I miss them. BUT … I’m hoping the McClares will win your heart as well. I’ll tell you what, hopefully you’ll smile a lot more. 🙂 Here’s to a win, my friend, and only a MONTH AND A HALF TO GO!!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. Oh, JAMIE, JAMIE!!! Are you my kind of gal or what??? The saga of the passionately close O’Connor family begins with book 1 of The Daughters of Boston series, A Passion Most Pure, which actually won American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Book of the Year. You can either read that one first or start with my new e-book prequel, A Light in the Window, which is now on a Valentine’s Day sale for half price at $3,99. It’s the love story of the parents in my two series. Whatever you do, read either of those first since this is a series best read in order due to a number of HUGE surprises in book 1. And if you would like to get just a glimpse of my “passion with a purpose” style of writing, check out the “Excerpts” tab of my website, where I post my favorite romantic and spiritual scenes from each of my books. Here’s the link and GOOD LUCK!! JULIE’S EXCERPTS

      Hugs,
      Julie

    1. Hey, VERONICA, soooo good to see you here, my friend!! I hope you will like the new series because San Francisco is actually a realllllly fun place to write about in 1902 and the McClares are a fun and quirky family, so hopefully they will make you smile. 🙂 Good luck in the contest!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  29. I finally got here….having trouble sitting at computer (painful spinal injection)…I have read ALL of Julie’s books and loved them all…..fantastic! Can’t pick a fave! I am so ready to read her newest one coming out! Thanks for the chance!

    1. Oh, JACKIE, I am SO sorry to hear about the painful spinal injection, my friend — saying one for you RIGHT NOW!!

      Thanks for your kind words AND your support — you are a blessing, and I hope the new series will be the same to you. Only A MONTH AND A HALF TO GO, so GOOD LUCK!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  30. I’m a huge fan, having read all of your books so far–I’m looking forward to your latest release and would love to win a copy!
    Thank you for the opportunity!

  31. Looking through the past comments I have a good idea I’m in for something good. I just saw on MaryLu Tyndall’s facebook page that you are one of her favorite authors .. so I came here to see your books… I haven’t read your books yet but will definitely get on that Now! =D I see that A Passion Most Pure is one that you recommended .. I will go to Amazon and get that for my kindle and start it right after work! Thanks for the opportunity to get to know you through your writing!

    1. HOLY COW, KIM … you are MY kind of no-nonsense gal!!! Talk about taking the bull by the horns, girl — I am VERY impressed!! PLEASE let me know if you like it, okay? And if you don’t … uh, never mind. 😐

      GOOD NEWS!!! I do want to let you know that the 1st book in my second series, A HOPE UNDAUNTED (I have two series that are about the same family, so it’s very good for you to start with A Passion Most Pure first because that’s book #1 in this family saga) is available RIGHT NOW as a free download, so do pick that one up too. It’s my fave of all my books I’ve written, so you can read it after APMP if you want, although I would recommend reading the books in order.

      I am SO excited to meet someone like you, my friend, and just so you know, MaryLu and I are dear friends who claim to be sisters, except she’s younger than me, the brat! 😉 MaryLu is one of my favorite authors, too, because I like passion in my books, and she tends that way like I do. 🙂 So if you like ML, there’s a good chance you’ll like her sis … 😉

      HAPPY READING AND GOOD LUCK IN THE CONTEST!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  32. Thanks so much for the giveaway, Julie! I’ll be honest and say I’m entering for my daughter. She absolutely loves your books, so I figured I could help her out a little.
    Since I’ve never read your books I can’t really say which character I relate to most, but I’ve enjoyed reading some of the other answers.

    Jreilly316(at)verizon(dot)net

    1. LOL, Debbie … I just LOVE how you Reilly’s pull together because I think even Dad has gotten in on a drawing or two in the past!! You have one special daughter, I will tell you that — Em is one of my very favorite reader friends and you have done something awfully right in raising such a precious young lady who loves God like she does!! Go, Mom!!

      Hugs and GOOD LUCK!!
      Julie

  33. Julie, As I said before you are my favorite author. I love the O’Conners – all of them. Several of them I have read twice. I have taken notes from ‘A Passion Denied’ about the “fourfold” and also the “love and respect”. I am using those notes to apply to my own marriage. Thank you for the wisdom. My favorite books are A Passion Most Pure and A Hope Undaunted. I also love how you tied everything together buy sharing ‘A Light in the Window’. I am sad to that there will be no more O’Conner books – I guess I’ll just have to read all of them again.
    Blessings, Deana Dougherty

    1. Aw, DEANA, you sure know how to make a sick gal feel better!! Thank you SO much for your very kind comment, my friend — it made my day!! Especially the part that the lessons I’ve learned in my own marriage have helped you — that blesses the socks off of me!! Someday I will write more about the O’Connors, I hope, because I miss them too … 😐

      GOOD LUCK, my sweet friend, and Hugs,
      Julie

  34. What a refreshing interview! 🙂 Each time I get the chance to follow you on a blog tour, I notice that I get to find new bits and bobbles about how the O’ Connors began on the page, and how they keep inspiring you to continue their legacy! I, personally am thrilled, as like you, its hard to let go of a family that has wrapped you up in their heart and home! I do agree, that it appears that Charity is misunderstood, but what I loved about her is her willingness to always triumph through her muddlements, and stubbornly learn through her trials! She has a good heart, she simply goes about things the wrong way at times! Laughs.

    I am entering for a chance to win “A Light in the Window” as I am forever more curious about Marcy + Patrick’s beginning years! I’d love to read how this wonderful family came to be,…

    I have to agree with you too, as I always thought O’ Connor sisters were such dyanmically written women, that their personalities could never be confused for each other! You wrote them as I would have presumed any larger family’s siblings might interact with each other! I thought it was one of the things that made them feel more real!

    On a personal note, I hope your flu leaves you as easily as my cold! I haven’t had a cold in ages, so it took me by surprise! Blessedly, with a bit of natural medicine I think I scared it back from whence it came! Cheers!

    Have you seen Claudette Corbet in Since you Went Away in 1944!? It is a landmark story that takes place during World War II. I just read that its based on a book: Since You Went Away: Letters to a Soldier from His Wife by Margaret Buell Wilder. I’d love to see if I can get a copy, as this film stays with you long after you see it! If you’ve seen it you’ll understand why I mention it, but if you haven’t, you will see another strong family that can survive anything that comes their way!

    inkand-blogaways(at)usa.net
    Florida

    1. JOY, thank you SO much for doing that, and if you would like to read my favorite romantic and spiritual excerpts from each of my books, I invite you to hope on over to the EXCERPTS tab of my website to check out my “passion with a purpose” style of writing. Here’s the link and GOOD LUCK!!

      JULIE’S EXCERPTS

      Hugs,
      Julie

  35. Good interview of Julie, love to read her books. always interested in being in a drawing when I hear one has her books. thanks for sharing..
    first time to your blog, I like the name. found out about the give-a-way on seekerville.

    Paula O(kyflo130@yahoo.com)

  36. Being that I’ve only had the proper chance to read through books 1 and 2,… I’m betwixt Faith and Charity! However, I despite personally being able to relate to Faith, I would have to say that Charity stands out!! 🙂 Charity is misunderstood, but what I loved about her is her willingness to always triumph through her muddlements, and stubbornly learn through her trials! She has a good heart, she simply goes about things the wrong way at times! Laughs. She tends to make it despite herself, and is someone who needs a lot patience, because she takes a bit longer to accept and understand the same things that her sister Faith already knew.

    What is brilliant about the O’Connor sisters, is like in real life, each sister has her strengths and each sister has her weaknesses, by which she needs to draw out a lesson and overcome.

    I am entering for a chance to win “A Light in the Window” as I am forever more curious about Marcy + Patrick’s beginning years! I’d love to read how this wonderful family came to be,…

    inkand-blogaways(at)usa.net
    Florida

    1. JORIE! Good girl — THIS is the way to win a free book, my sweet friend, so good for you!! And I am SO thrilled that you like Charity. So many people do not, but truly she is a gem, as you will find out as you continue on in the O’Connor journey!! I didn’t realize that you had only read books 1 & 2 of The Daughters of Boston series — boy, oh boy — do you have stories ahead of you, my friend — you’re going to LOVE them, so GOOD LUCK in the contest!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  37. I read A Hope Undaunted by Julie Lessman and may I just say that book was a emotion whirlwind for me. I hope to read more from this author. 🙂

    1. SALYNA … LOL, yes, I am wee bit of a CDQ — caffeinated drama queen — so I tend to put a lot of drama and angst in my books, thus the emotional whirlwind. BUT … rest assured, it will ALWAYS end up happily, okay?? My guarantee. 🙂

      Hugs,
      Julie

  38. I’ve read every book, and even bought a Kindle just to read her ebook “A Light in the Window, And Irish Christmas Love Story”. There are two characters I’d say I relate to the most. Charity for one, because I relate to her past in the same way. And two, Katie, because I, too, am a driven and independent woman focused on my career in law. I am a paralegal graduate and working toward my certification while working full time for two attorneys. I cannot wait to start her next series!

    1. DESI!!! You sweet thing, you — THANK YOU for the wonderful review you put on Amazon for A Hope Undaunted — that blessed the socks off of me!! And I can hardly believe that you bought a Kindle JUST to read ALITW — SOOO cool!! And you and I must be a lot alike because Charity and Katie are my faves, probably because they are the most like me, so that mean YOU and I are alike too — you poor thing!! 🙂 And a paralegal is SO cool — good for you!! Thanks again for your incredible support and GOOD LUCK in the contest!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  39. While I love all of Julie’s heroines, particularly Charity’s spunk and feistiness, I am most like Beth/Lizzie, as I am shy, bookish, and just realized how much like her story my life is at the moment, as I have had a major interest in a very good guy friend for quite some time, but he doesn’t seem to be interested in me like that (I also found out a couple weeks ago he is in a long distance relationship), yet continues to want to hang out with me, etc. Definitely driving me nuts and bruising my heart, much like Lizzie.

    Holly
    oceandreamerfla(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. Hey, HOLLY, thanks for coming by, my friend! And, WOW, that is a tough situation to be in with a guy you like. I will say one for your for supernatural wisdom as to what you should do and for God’s best in the situation. Good luck in the contest — and in this situation, sweetie.

      Hugs,
      Julie

  40. I’m not sure which character I am most similar to, but my favorite character is Charity. She always makes me laugh with her crazy plans and antics (and I like her son Henry – he’s a little firecracker too!)

    1. Hey, TIFF … YAY!!! Charity is my favorite character, too, because I think she is a royal hoot … Henry too!! Glad she makes you laugh because I’d hate to be the only one who thinks she’s funny!! Thanks for coming by and here’s to a win!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

  41. Too hard! I can relate to all of them: I’m responsible and the oldest girl like Faith. I have a (weird?) sense of humor similar to Charity. I’m a book-loving romantic just like Lizzy. I’m trying to navigate my imposed expectations of college/career and love as Katie did. Like Emma, sometimes I feel that no one will ever love me (in a romantic way). I often feel tired of being “the good girl” like Annie does. And (last but not least) similar to Marcy, I enjoy serving and making others happy. But if I had to choose, I probably relate most to Faith, Annie or Katie. I think most people can find something to relate to in all of Julie Lessman’s heroines.

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    jafuchi7[at]hawaii[dot]edu

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