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Monday, September 29, 2008

Spotlight on Linda Goodnight and A Time to Heal / A Bride by Christmas


LINDA GOODNIGHT is a winner of the RITA Award for excellence in inspirational fiction, and has also won the Booksellers' Best, ACFW Book of the Year, and a Reviewers' Choice Award from Romantic Times Magazine. Linda has appeared on the Christian bestseller list and her romance novels have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Active in orphan ministry, this former nurse and teacher enjoys writing fiction that carries a message of hope and light in a sometimes dark world. She and husband Gene live in Oklahoma. Readers may contact her through her website:

by Linda Goodnight
Published by Steele Hill/Harlequin

by Linda Goodnight
Published by Barbour Publishing


A Time to Heal
Only one person knows why Kat Thatcher left her Oklahoma hometown ten years ago. Why she ran to the city and became a workaholic doctor. Why she put off marriage…indefinitely. And that person is now staring her in the face on her first day back in town! Seth Washington is as handsome as ever. Way too available. And wanting to talk about the past—which Kat prefers to leave alone. Seth insists the Lord is on their side and always was. Kat's starting to believe, but will that be enough for love?

The Cossack Bride in A Bride by Christmas
Spunky Christian heiress Anastasia Federov is on the run from a guardian who plans to marry her for her money. Hoping to choose her own husband before the forced Christmas wedding, Anastasia places a newspaper ad. Though uninterested in marriage Kansas rancher Jace Brackett hires Anna to nanny his troublesome little sister while searching for a suitable groom. And then the evil guardian gets wind of Anna's whereabouts...

Buy Your Copy of A Time to Heal and A Bride by Christmas Today!


1. What gave you the inspiration for this story?

A TIME TO HEAL came about from watching my son work so hard to become a surgeon. I got to thinking how much a doctor sacrifices in time, relationships, etc. Thus, the idea for a doctor who has simply burned herself out.

The idea for THE COSSACK BRIDE in "A Bride by Christmas" just came to me. However, I intentionally made her of Ukrainian/Cossack heritage because my husband and I are active in Ukrainian orphan ministry and have hosted a number of the kids in our home. We love the culture and the children and I was thrilled to have a place to honor that.

2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that are theirs and theirs alone?

As I mentioned in number one, both my heroines were influenced by instances in my life. I'm one who believes most of what I write comes, at least in part, from something I've experienced. I may expand on it, twist it and change it and ask the what-if questions that take me far away from real life experiences, but ultimately the characters come from within me, so they are influenced by my experiences.

In THE COSSACK BRIDE, Anna is spunky and strong like me, but unlike me she is finishing school refined. I can sing. Anna cannot but she loves to try!

In A TIME TO HEAL, Kathryn has a lot of my personal insecurities and the tendency to blame herself for anything bad that happens. It was easy for me to get inside her head and feel her hurts.

3. If one of your characters were an ice cream flavor, what he/she be and why?

I love this question!

Kathryn would be Rocky Road, no doubt about it, because she's spent her life struggling over bumps, many of her own making. But she's marshmallow soft and sweet once you get down into the inside.

Anna is Ben and Jerry's Vanilla toffee crunch. Though sweet as vanilla cream on the outside, Anna has just the right amount of grit on the inside to give her substance.

4. What themes exist in A Time to Heal and A Bride by Christmas that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the story progressed?

This is always such a hard question for me. When I write I never think about theme. I just tell the story that's inside me the best way I can and pray that God uses it to bless or help or encourage or entertain. Even after a book is finished, I don't really know the theme(s) unless I go back and analyze—which I never do unless I'm asked in interviews. :) Since you've forced me to actually think. Here goes:

A TIME TO HEAL – God's healing and redemptive power is always there for those who choose to accept it. I always, always want readers to get that from my stories. God has healed me of so many past mistakes and hurts and even of things that were beyond my control as a child. I want readers to know the peace and love and joy that come only from a relationship with Jesus.

THE COSSACK BRIDE – I hope some of my very smart readers will write and share what they think the theme is because I don't know!

5. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?

A TIME TO HEAL – The deeply emotional parts are both my favorite the most difficult parts. In order to write the emotion, I have to let myself feel it, and sometimes that hurts. I cry. My heart pounds. My throat gets tight and thick, and I ache inside. And yet, when I'm finished with the scene--which in this book is the moment when Kat and Seth face their shared past and find a tender, beautiful means of closure--I'm usually more pleased with that section than any other part of the book.

Small town America is filled with fascinating people like my 'gossip sisters.' I grew up in and still live in a small town, so I have a blast writing colorful characters, too.

In THE COSSACK BRIDE, I'm almost ashamed to admit there were no difficult parts. The feisty little heroine was so much fun she carried me quickly through the novella. I especially enjoyed writing the family Christmas scene with all the unspoken meaning and undercurrents running between Anna and Jace. I hope you like it too.

6. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?

Although I have traditional romance books coming out sooner, my next inspirational book, HOME TO CROSSROADS RANCH, comes out in March '09 from Love Inspired. This is the journey of a single foster mom, her fight for her kids, and the reluctant rancher who can't seem to resist helping out--against his better judgment.

Also coming up are:

MOTHERS AND DAUGHTERS from Steeple Hill, a single title Mother's Day anthology with Deborah Bedford scheduled for April '09.

THE BABY BOND, from Love Inspired in May '09, in which a funny, footloose firefighter bonds with an infant he saves from a deadly fire, then butts heads and hearts with the baby's fire-phobic guardian.

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Thank you, Linda, for being in the spotlight with us.

Readers, leave a comment for your chance to win a FREE autographed copy of either A Time to Heal or A Bride by Christmas. There will be TWO drawings for this spotlight.

If you wish to comment but don't want to be entered, say so when you post. Make sure you also leave your email address (name at domainname Wouldn't want you to miss out on winning a book. :)

And if you want to make certain you don't miss anything, check the box that says 'email follow-up comments to:' when you leave a comment and they'll be sent to the email address associated with your blogging account. That way you'll be notified of any comments and will know when I announce the winner.

This week, the contest is open to US/Canada residents only.

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Cherie J said...

Wonderful spotlight! Both of these books sound great!

windycindy said...

Thanks for the author interview and a note about each book! Please enter me in your wonderful book drawings. Many thanks.....Cindi

Mary Connealy said...

Great interview. Fun questions, Tiff and great answers Linda.
I'd love to win a copy of your books.
maryconnealy at hotmail dot com

cheryl c said...

Linda, I have always enjoyed your writing, and these 2 new books sound really wonderful. I love stories that touch the heart. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to win these books.

Cheryl (aka Cheri)

Vickie McDonough said...


A Time to Heal sounds wonderful. I already know that The Cossack Bride is. I might venture to say the theme is that God is guiding our steps even when we can't see that He is.

I'd love a chance to win A Time to Heal, but count me out on A Bride by Christmas, since I have a box of them. :)


Maureen said...

Both the stories sound great but so different. I do enjoy reunion stories like A Time To Heal.

Linda Goodnight said...

Hi Everyone, thanks for stopping in. Vickie, I appreciate the
'theme' clarification. Theme is always a mystery to me!

Keli Gwyn said...

Both stories sound good, but The Cossack Bride in the anthology really appeals to me since I love marriage by convenience/necessity and mail order bride stories. I have a Bride by Christmas on my wish list for that very reason.

Keli Gwyn said...

Oops. I forgot to leave my address for the drawing.

keligwyn [at] earthlink [ dot] net

Anonymous said...

I love Linda's stories. They are so real and keep you turning the page to find out more. I'm always on the lookout for new releases from please enter me!

ldneuhof at hotmail dot com

Linda Goodnight said...

Keli, glad to hear you have "Bride" on your list! Enjoy it.

Lisa, oh my. I clicked on your website and was deeply moved by your dedication to the orphans of Africa. My husband and I are involved in orphan ministry too, most particularly with Ukrainian orphans, so this is a topic near and dear to my heart. Thank you for the hands-on work you've done for children. I truly believe this is the heart of Christ. God bless you tremendously!

Melissa said...

Please enter me into the contest for a bride for christmas. I already have the other book. thanks

Linda Goodnight said...

Hi Melissa,

Hope you enjoyed A Time to Heal! Thanks so much.

Linda g

Linda Goodnight said...

Hi Cheri2628/Cheryl,

How nice of you to say you like my books! I hope you enjoy these two as well.

Good luck!

Linda g

Linda Goodnight said...

Hey Mary,

Glad to see you here. With your writing schedule, I'm sure you stay busy!

Carolynn said...

These books sound great!! I would love to read them...thanks for the chance to win!

Linda Goodnight said...

Hi Carolyn,
Thanks for posting.

Linda g

Tiffany Amber Stockton said...

We have our winners from this drawing and they are:

MARY CONNEALY for A Time to Heal
KELI GWYN for A Bride by Christmas

Congratulations! I've sent you both an email for your mailing information so Linda can send out your books.

Others, check out the interviews on Camy Tang, A.K. Arenz, Cathy Gohlke, Siri Mitchell and Leeanna Ellis to see if you've won.

As always, thanks to everyone for your continued support.

Keli Gwyn said...

Thanks so much. I look forward to reading A Bride by Christmas. Just the thing to curl up with in front of the pellet stove during on a chilly December day.