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Who Wrote Whom: Meet the Authors of Unlikely Merger: Fay Lamb

Fay LambToday’s guest on Inner Source is me: Fay Lamb. I bet that until you learned Pat Dyer created Gabe Miller, the alligator farmer, that you might have wondered if it was me–unless you know both of us. That’s because Pat and I are both crazy Titusvillians who aren’t too afraid of gators, and we even attend the same church. How’s that for small town?

Here’s a little about me. It’s from my bio, so please excuse the self-promotion.

I’m an editor, writing coach, and author, and it is my desire that my emotionally charged stories remind the reader that God is always in the details. I’ve contracted two series. Stalking Willow and Better than Revenge, Books 1 and 2 in the Amazing Grace romantic suspense series are currently available for purchase. Charisse and Libby the first two novels in my The Ties That Bind contemporary romance series have been released. I have also collaborated on five romance novellas: The Christmas Three Treasure Hunt, A Ruby Christmas, A Dozen Apologies, The Love Boat Bachelor. and this our latest, Unlikely Merger. I am also the author of The Art of Characterization: How to Use the Elements of Storytelling to Connect Readers to an Unforgettable Cast.

I truly love to meet readers, and you can find me on my personal Facebook page, my Facebook Author page, and at The Tactical Editor on Facebook. Yes, I’m the Tactical Editor. I’m also active on Twitter. Then there are my blogs: On the Ledge, Inner Source, and the Tactical Editor. And, yes, there’s one more: Goodreads.

I wrote Digger Grant’s portion of the story, and here’s how he came to life for me:

The creation of Digger Grant is an unusual story. He started out as one of the older kids in the Fourteen Quarters Repertory Company, whom I sent to the airport to provide a ride back to the hotel. The entire concept of the story was much different when I began. You see, I wanted Mercy to think horribly of the hero at first without understanding why she felt that way. After all, she’d never met him. He was a stranger. Digger was to be the one innocently giving Mercy that vibe–since the repertory company was putting on an actual Broadway play based upon Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. The hero was to play the villain, and Digger was in character as one of the kids in the play, practicing for the performance, unable to shake off the persona of an innocent kid mistreated by the villain’s ilk.

That was the plan.

Then Digger spotted Mercy, and he began to act older than his nearly eighteen years. He began to take up Mercy’s time. They had unforgettable moments that made me laugh, and based upon my relationship with my husband, if a  man can make you laugh at yourself and with him, he’s a keeper. For me, the original hero couldn’t follow up Digger’s act, and the story just didn’t hold up without putting Digger in the hero’s spot. Old hero was written out. Digger was made an adult, put in the lead, and he pretty much became one of my favorite characters that I’ve written in any of the Write Integrity novellas in which I’ve been blessed to take part.

Well, Digger and Jonathan, my surfing cowboy from A Ruby Christmas.

Unlikely Merger Cover

More About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Be sure to check out Jennifer Hallmark’s blog today where I write about Collaborative Projects.

 

 

Who Wrote Whom: Meet Authors of Unlikely Merger: Jennifer Hallmark

IMG_6297-5x7-100resToday, I’d like you to meet my friend, Jennifer Hallmark: writer by nature, artist at heart, and daughter of God by His grace. With over 200 articles and interviews on the internet, her attention has moved to southern fiction and YA fantasy.

Her first book published in early 2014, a multi-authored romantic comedy novella, called A Dozen Apologies. She is currently shopping her YA series, Journey of Grace: Realm of Ecclesia, and a contemporary southern fiction novel, When Wedding and Weather Collide.

She is also part of two compilation projects to be released later this year. Unlikely Merger is a romantic novella, a sequel to A Dozen Apologies. She’s also contributed to the anthology: Not Alone: A Literary and Spiritual Companion for those Confronted with Infertility and Miscarriage.

Jennifer shares a writer’s reference blog, Writing Prompts & Thoughts & Ideas…Oh My! with friends, Betty, Tammy, Allison, Karen, Cari, Holly, Anne, Robin, and Betty B.

Jennifer and her husband, Danny, have spent their married life in Alabama and have a basset hound, Max. Their daughter Mandy is married to Tim, and has given them two beautiful granddaughters, Ava and Sadie. Their son, Jonathan, is currently working in the food industry and trying to complete his degree in business.

She loves to read detective fiction from the Golden Age, watch movies like LOTR, and play with her two precious granddaughters. At times, she writes.

You can find Jennifer on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Jennifer shares her inspiration behind her hero, Talon Hawthorne:

When I agreed to create a character, the strong masculine hero, for Unlikely Merger, I just poured out my thoughts on the computer. I do very little outlining when I create. I go with my gut feeling and let the character write his or her own biography

Talon Hawthorne is patterned after my son. Why? I’m not sure. He’s been going through a rough patch in his personal life and nothing hurts a mother’s heart more. Besides, my son is good-looking, loves the work he does, and is charismatic. What more do you need in a good hero? So Jonathan, this story is for you.

After I chose the basic characteristics for Talon, I decided to incorporate the town and business the same as my son’s, but I made his physical appearance a little different. I kept seeing him with a surfboard, so I created surfer dude. I had some help with his clothing from my daughter, who is up-to-date on all such things.

In all, my chapter in Unlikely Merger was a family project. Everyone had a little input and we all had fun with it.

Jennifer has been a collaborator on two of the three novellas that make up this compilation. She is also the author of my favorite short stories, The Game, published in Harpstring. (Blog host notes again: This wonderful story is well worth the subscription price).

Unlikely Merger Cover

More About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Who Wrote Whom: Meet the Authors of Unlikely Merger: Patricia M. Dyer

PatPatricia M. Dyer  is our guest today.  Pat was transplanted from Upstate New York to Florida at the tender age of five. Now married to a Georgia cracker (that’s a proud nickname for folks from Georgia–or Florida) for over fifty years and retired from a public service job, she enjoys writing and spending time with her children, grandchildren, and ten great-grandchildren. 
A member of American Christian Fiction Writers and ACFW Central Florida Chapter, Pat has served as past secretary and publicity chairperson. Writing inspirational stories from the heart, she strives to provide encouragement and light through Jesus to those who read them.

Pat has reviewed many books she has read and invites you to “Meet the Characters” at her website: www.patsydyer.com. She is a book review columnist for the new IMAGINATE magazine, and has co-authored two books, A Dozen Apologies and soon to be released Unlikely Merger.

Pat is the creator of Gabriel “Gabe” Mann from Chapter 5 of Unlikely  Merger.

My characters tend to invade my consciousness as if they’d been hiding in the back of my brain all along. Perhaps they have. Gabriel Mann first appeared to me at Orlando International Airport as he stood waiting for the Lacewells to arrive from Denver. Since he didn’t even know what Mercy looked like, he decided to do something to get her attention as she and her uncle maneuvered their way through the crowd and into the terminal; hence, the sign with the gator on it along with Mercy’s name.

An outdoorsy type, Gabe is ruggedly handsome with his year around tan and sparkling eyes. But his best qualities include his thoughtfulness, compassion, and strong values. When He and Mercy  exchanged their first words, (the banter about the Gators and Seminoles), he knew this was someone he’d like to know better—in more than a business context.

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Other great multi-author collaborative novellas from Write Integrity Press: A Dozen Apologies and The Love Boat Bachelorand great Christmas reads: The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt and A Ruby ChristmasHeart Bouquets, romantic short stories is also available.

 

Who Wrote Whom: Meet the Authors of Unlikely Merger: Carole Towriss

ctowriss-5Carole Towriss wrote one of the two winning entries in the Unlikely Merger contest. Carole grew up in beautiful San Diego, California. Now she and her husband live just north of Washington, DC. In between making tacos and telling her four children to pick up their shoes for the third time, she reads, writes, watches chick flicks and waits for summertime to return to the beach. She is the author of biblical novels In the Shadow of Sinai and By the Waters of Kadesh. She also writes for Christ to the World Ministries. You can find her at www.CaroleTowriss.com as well as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Here’s what Carole has to say about the creation of her hero, Ric Montoya.

Several factors went into making Ric the hero he became. First, I wanted to set my chapter in San Diego, since that’s where I grew up.

Second, my own family history isn’t necessarily one to be proud of. I wanted my hero to have a rich heritage, centuries old, full of faith and love—the kind of family any girl would dream about being part of.

Third, Mercy is an only child, and I thought throwing her into a big family gathering might be fun.

My high school was 85% Mexican-American, so I decided to make my hero tall, dark, and handsome! Mexico has a fabulous culture that I thought would make for a fascinating protagonist. Mexicans traditionally have large, close families, and deep faith. Though Ric’s the oldest, he’s the only one not married, which puts him puts him against tradition and keeps his siblings on his case. He’s been concentrating on the company, so like Mercy, he’s not been dating.

I searched long and hard for an industry unique to San Diego. The big businesses there are the US Navy and tourism, and I couldn’t think of a way to translate those to this novella. After a lot of googling, I stumbled on the olive oil industry and learned more about olives than I could ever want to know! The Mission Olive is the only variety in the world found solely in America. They were brought here by the Spanish monks who founded missions all along the coast of California on El Camino Real, the King’s Highway. The Mission Olive nearly died out, but has recently experienced a resurgence.

I had the Montoyas come to California with Father Serra, the founder of San Diego in 1796, and then I had Ric be a part of this resurgence. This gave him a rich heritage tied to both San Diego and Mexico, the monks and the missions.

Who can resist that?

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Other great multi-author collaborative novellas from Write Integrity Press: A Dozen Apologies and The Love Boat Bachelorand great Christmas reads: The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt and A Ruby ChristmasHeart Bouquets, romantic short stories is also available. As a special note: Marji Laine is the only author to have collaborated in each of the Write Integrity novellas.

Carole is also the author of two Biblical historical novels:

ISOS Front Cover HQaIn the Shadow of Sinai:

Bezalel is a Hebrew slave to Ramses II. An artisan of the highest order, Ramses has kept him in the palace even when all other Israelites have been banned. Bezalel blames El Shaddai for isolating him from his people.

When Moses and Aaron appear one summer, and El Shaddai shakes Egypt to its core, Bezalel must reexamine his anger. Over the course of the next year, Bezalel’s life becomes intertwined with those of an Egyptian child-slave, the captain of the guard, and especially a beautiful, young concubine.

When spring arrives, all of them escape with the young nation of Israel. But that’s only the beginning…

By the waters of KadeshBy the Waters of Kadesh:

A displaced soldier anticipates only empty tomorrows. A young widow knows nothing but yesterdays filled with abuse and neglect. A spy sees only a today he can manipulate to gain the power he craves. Will they allow Yahweh to give them what they need? Kamose, once Egypt’s most trusted soldier, no longer has a country to serve or king to protect. Moses insists God has a plan for him, but Kamose is not so sure. Tirzah’s cruel husband died shortly after they left Egypt. She escaped his brutality, but now she’s alone, and once they reach their new land, how will she survive? Gaddiel, Tirzah’s brother-in-law, is chosen as one of the twelve spies sent to scout out Canaan. He’s supposed to go in, get information and come back, but all he really wants is to bring down Joshua.

Who Wrote Whom: Meet the Authors of Unlikely Merger: Julie Arduini

May2015KeptconferenceOur author of the day is Julie Arduini.

Julie  loves to encourage readers to find freedom in Christ through surrender. She’s the author of the Amazon bestseller, Entrusted and co-author of the international bestseller The Love Boat Bachelor. She also shared her story in the Amazon bestseller infertility devotional, A Walk in the Valley. She’s the fiction contributing editor for the digital magazine, Imaginate, and blogs every other Wednesday for Christians Read. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children. Learn more by visiting her website at http://juliearduini.com. Readers can also connect with Julie on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, Goodreads, and Amazon Central.

Julie wrote chapter three of Unlikely Merger. Julie’s hero was Landon Gates of Watkin’s Glen, New York. Here’s what she has to say about the process of creating Landon:

Landon Gates was a fun hero to create. I wanted to showcase someone who represented the area well and I believe Landon is someone you’d find in Upstate NY. Hard-working. Even as the owner, he’s still the one getting dirty. Working all hours. Making sure the staff is taken care of before he is. A family man. With his parents gone, Landon has taken it seriously to not only caregive for his sister, but also has committed to mentoring her peers.

He’s not a fancy guy. When Mercy meets him he’s wearing a Carhartt jacket and a baseball cap. He decided to buy Mercy dinner from local places rather than make the chef work extra hours. What you see with Landon is what you get.

My hope was that readers would connect with him as easily as Mercy did. He’s a man of faith and loyal to everyone. He’s a good steward of the property his parents left him. More than anything, he’s an excellent caregiver for his special needs sister.

I came up with Landon as a tip of the hat to my nephew. Gates is a name that might trigger thoughts of Bill Gates but Landon isn’t wealthy because he owns Lakeview Inn. His wealth comes from his faith and core values.

He was an absolute pleasure to write.

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Other great multi-author collaborative novellas from Write Integrity Press: A Dozen Apologies and The Love Boat Bachelorand great Christmas reads: The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt and A Ruby ChristmasHeart Bouquets, romantic short stories is also available.

Entrusted FRONT Cover_editedJulie is the author of Entrustedthe first book in her Adirondack Surrender series:

Jenna Anderson, sassy city-girl, plows—literally—into Speculator Falls with a busted GPS, arriving in town as the new senior center director. She has only one goal—that of belonging no matter how out of place she appears and how angry she makes town councilman and grocer Ben Regan. Her new life is so rural there are no traffic lights, and when she learns her car isn’t equipped to handle the mountain terrain, Ben’s grandmother offers her late husband’s vehicle, further alienating the local businessman.

As she endears herself to the seniors at the center and creates a vision full of ideas, programs, and equipment, she ruffles Ben’s plans to keep Speculator Falls void of change, including the store his grandfather built.  The two work through community events and shared heartbreak only to face off in a town council meeting where Ben publically rejects her proposal for the senior center, causing Jenna to react out of her fears about belonging.  She returns to Ohio where she realizes she needs to surrender her plans for the center and fears about belonging and trust her Heavenly Father when facing fear, change, loss, and love.

Who Wrote Whom: Meet the Authors of Unlikely Merger: Marji Laine

Marji LaineToday’s guest is the one who started us all on Mercy’s adventurer. Marji Laine is a wife and homeschooling mom with teenage twins left in the nest. Having just released her debut novella Grime Beat, she spends her non-writing time transporting to and from volleyball, directing high school classes at a local coop, and leading the children’s music program at her church. From suburban Dallas, she loves to create scintillating suspense with a side of Texas sassy. She invites readers to unravel their inspiration, seeking a deeper knowledge of the Lord’s Great Mystery that invites us all.

Mercy Lacewell is/was Marji Lane’s heroine in The Love Boat Bachelor, and having been the runner -up for the hero’s affections in that story, Marji did a great job of getting Mercy out in the business world to meet people–especially some mighty fine heroes.

Marji is the author who brought us Dustin Rogers. Here’s what she says about creating Dustin:

It’s funny, he sort of came about as I wrote the chapter. I’d expected him to be a little more on the ambitious, competitive side, but he didn’t turn out that way. As I focused on his goals, sheer money initiative didn’t seem to be enough. He wanted to prove something.

And that’s when I was inspired by NASCAR racer, Carl Edwards. I couldn’t tell you Carl’s personal motive for racing, though I expect it’s because he loves the strategy and speed. But I imagine that a racer or athlete of any sort might very well want to prove something. So I used a younger version of the driver as my visual motivation for Dustin’s character.

And Dustin does have something to prove. He wants to succeed as an executive with his integrity and faith intact. Not unlike “Jesus Loves You” hat-wearing Henry Lacewell. I can certainly see Dustin as the next president of Lacewell Limited, even if he doesn’t win the hand of the current president’s daughter.

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Other great multi-author collaborative novellas from Write Integrity Press: A Dozen Apologies and The Love Boat Bachelorand great Christmas reads: The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt and A Ruby ChristmasHeart Bouquets, romantic short stories is also available. As a special note: Marji Laine is the only author to have collaborated in each of the Write Integrity novellas.

Grime Beat cover5a (1)Marji’s new release is Grime Beat:

Her best friend missing, every cell in Dani Foster’s body screams something is wrong.

Crime scene cleaning is the perfect job for neat-nick Dani Foster. But her orders to maintain a low profile and stay out of trouble mean little when her friend goes missing. Suspicions point to the handsome crime scene specialist, Jay Hunter, but he’s also the only person willing to help Dani. Dare she trust him even when lies seem to surround him?

Dani amuses Jay. Her penchant for speaking and acting without regard to the consequences land her in the funniest situations. But her latest moves have thrust her into serious danger. As he learns more about her circumstances, her risk rises until her very life is on the line. He has no time or inclination for romance, but this girl needs him and she seems to have no one else. How can he turn his back?

The voting for favorite hero is over, but if you want to know a little more about them pending the free release of the novella on Kindle, which will reveal the winning hero and show us how he might win Mercy’s heart, you can read their interviews: : Dustin Rogers, Landon Gates, Ric Montoya, Gabriel “Gabe” Mann, Talon Hawthorne. Douglas “Digger” Grant, Levi Shepherd, Steve Leclerc, Reuben “Rube” Miller and Daniel Knight.

Here are some more posts of interest from out authors:

Jennifer Hallmark: Why I Keep Saying Yes to The Proposal by Julie Arduini and Traveling with Others by Phee Paradise

Meet the Heroes of Unlikely Merger: Daniel Knight

Lexington, KYToday, we’re putting out last hero on the spot. Please meet Daniel Knight who is moonlighting for Knight-Link & Associates while working on one of his favorite type of projects. 

Daniel, tell us about yourself. Where are you from? What do you do when you’re not working?

I was born in Lexington, Kentucky and spent my childhood on a farm in Versailles, Kentucky. I moved to Boulder, Colorado to pursue my degree in architectural engineering and fell in love with the area. That’s now my full-time home, but I travel back to Kentucky whenever my uncle needs me on a project. When I’m at home in Colorado, I’m always outdoors. On my days off, I love to hike and ride horseback or mountain bike. In the winter, I ski and snowboard. When I’m in Kentucky, my off days are usually spent working on my grandparents’ horse farm, fishing, or horseback riding.

You recently met with Mercy Lacewell of Lacewell Limited regarding a merger or a buyout of your company. Tell me what immediately came to mind when you first met Ms. Lacewell.

I laugh every time I think of my first encounter with Mercy, I’m not sure which one of us was more surprised. But what I remember most about that meeting is her startling blue eyes. As blue as the Colorado skies. A guy could go into cardiac arrest caught in her gaze.

What do you remember most about Mercy as a result of that meeting?

Her gentle spirit. Mercy is a nurturer. She walked into an uncomfortable situation at my uncle’s firm, but she turned it around in no time, and when she finished, they knew she cared about them and their situation. The girl’s got spunk. She reminds me a lot of UK basketball’s most famous fan—Ashley Judd—when she was younger, of course.

Tell us how you really feel about Mercy Lacewell. Don’t be shy.

No one ever accused me of being shy. Mercy’s a thoroughbred. She’s beautiful, she’s real, and she’s tougher than she looks. But like a thoroughbred, she’s a little skittish at first. I knew to keep my distance and take it easy with her. She was only in town for a couple of days, but after those few hours with her, I definitely wanted to get to know her better.

Do you think that you and Mercy could have a future together? If so, tell us why you think you’re the man for Mercy.

If God is in it, yes, I know we can have a future together. I don’t go anywhere He doesn’t lead, and I know Mercy feels the same way. I’m a Colorado transplant, but I love it there. I’ve no intention of leaving. And Mercy needs to be near her family. We have a lot in common—our faith, our mutual love of the great outdoors—skiing, running, hiking. And she’s a carnivore. She prefers a good slab of prime rib to a bowl of vegetables. Now that, my friend, is a woman I could spend the rest of my life with.

Unlikely Merger Cover

More About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?.

You can meet Daniel today by reading his chapter of Unlikely Merger at Write Integrity Press.

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Meet the heroes from previous chapters: Dustin Rogers, Landon Gates, Ric Montoya, Gabriel “Gabe” Mann, Talon Hawthorne. Douglas “Digger” Grant, Levi Shepherd, Steve Leclerc, and Reuben “Rube” Miller.

Remember, voting for your favorite hero starts tomorrow.

More from our authors:

Marji Laine: A Horse of a Different Color

Julie Arduini: Our Business Influences Part 5

Meet the Heroes of Unlikely Merger: Reuben Miller

Los Angeles City Skyline At Night

Today, I’d like to introduce Reuben “Rube” Miller, today’s hero from Unlikely Merger.

Reuben, please tell us about yourself. Where are you from? What do you do when you’re not working?

I was born right at Cedars Sinai and raised around the L.A. Metro. When I got into the music industry and all that, next door to Hollywood was a good place for me to stay planted. While I’ve traveled around the world for my work, the City of Angels has always been my home base. At this point, though, I could go anywhere. Colorado, maybe?

When I’m not working, my life isn’t nearly as exciting as people expect. My clubbing days are over, and I’m not a big spender. Most of my extended family is still in the area. We’re close and get together as much as we can. I’ve found a good church where I can be involved behind the scenes. And I spend a lot of time hiding out around my house. I try to attract as little attention as possible, honestly, because it always turns into too much, and it’s almost never good.

You recently met with Mercy Lacewell of Lacewell Limited regarding a merger or a buyout of your company. Tell me what immediately came to mind when you first met Ms. Lacewell.

Mercy is a lovely lady. Sweet, smart, and real. I loved that she didn’t recognize the “rock star” me. That doesn’t happen often, and it was charming.

What do you remember most about Mercy as a result of that meeting?

How she held onto my hand so tightly during the earthquake. It was electric.

Tell us how you really feel about Mercy Lacewell. Don’t be shy.

I’ve never met anyone quite like Mercy. I meet a lot of people in my line of work, but she stands out. She’s smart, clever, conscientious, helpful, and—sometimes—vulnerable. She’s willing to face her fears and insecurities and grow as a person.

My life is changing a lot right now. I want the chance to focus on others instead of whatever Hollywood and the world-at-large thinks of me. I want to follow Jesus wherever he takes me. Mercy is the sort of person I’d want by my side in the future I dream about and pray for.

Do you think that you and Mercy could have a future together? If so, tell us why you think you’re the man for Mercy.

I kept her calm during an earthquake, so I think she’d feel safe with me. I see her strength and her beauty, and I value what she has to offer not only to a husband but to others who need a kind heart, a smile, or an open ear. I’d make sure she had opportunities to share that with people who needed it.

I could give her a life where she’ll always be able dream, grow, take on challenges, and go on adventures. I share her values of following Jesus, staying close with family, and being active, so I think we’re a good match, lifestyle-wise. Besides, we’d have a lot of fun together. Who doesn’t want that?

In case you haven’t been reading the hero’s interviews, and you’d like to know more about Unlikely Merger, you can read Reuben’s chapter, and all of the hero’s chapters at Write Integrity Press.

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

Reuben’s story can be read at Write Integrity Press today.

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Meet the heroes from previous chapters: Dustin Rogers, Landon Gates, Ric Montoya, Gabriel “Gabe” Mann, Talon Hawthorne. Douglas “Digger” Grant, Levi Shepherd, and Steve Leclerc.

More from our authors:

Marji Laine: Shake It Up

Julie Arduini: Our Business Influences Part 4

Jennifer Hallmark: Your Comfort Zone by Raelee May Carpenter

Meet the Heroes of Unlikely Merger: Steve Leclerc

New Volvo FH Tank Truck By A WarehouseToday’s hero taking center stage is Steve Leclerc.

Tell us about yourself. Where are you from? What do you do when you’re not working?

I’m blessed to have a little farm in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. It’s one of God’s special places. Oh, and I drive a truck to support the farm, so I guess I’m a farmer when I’m not working.

You recently met with Mercy Lacewell of Lacewell Limited regarding a merger or a buyout of your company. Tell me what immediately came to mind when you first met Ms. Lacewell.

Actually, she’s financing my brother’s trucking firm. She’s cute and funny. At first I thought she was there because she was Daddy’s little girl, but she not only knew a lot about trucks, she was interested in my dreams for my farm. I liked her.

What do you remember most about Mercy as a result of that meeting?

Her ability to laugh at herself. And she had a lot to laugh at. Oh and not getting mad. After all, the mud puddle was really my fault. But I guess what I like most was that she really listened like she cared about me.

Tell us how you really feel about Mercy Lacewell. Don’t be shy.

Wow. I really liked her. No, it goes deeper than that. I really want to spend more time with her. She’s got an inner spirit that just lights up when she talks to you.

Do you think that you and Mercy could have a future together? If so, tell us why you think you’re the man for Mercy.

Oh yeah. I think she’s looking for a way to serve God so we would just click. She’s got a tender heart with an empty place and I’m just aching to fill that up with love.

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

You can read Steve’s chapter in Unlikely Merger today at Write Integrity Press.

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Meet the heroes from previous chapters: Dustin Rogers, Landon Gates, Ric Montoya, Gabriel “Gabe” Mann, Talon Hawthorne. Douglas “Digger” Grant, and Levi Shepherd.

The authors of Unlikely Merger are continuing to provide more insight:

Marji Laine: No Joy in Mudville

Julie Arduini: Our Business Influences Part 3

Meet the Heroes of Unlikely Merger: Levi Shepherd

City of St. Louis skyline.Today’s hero, Levi Shepherd comes to us from St. Louis, Missouri. Levi, please tell us about yourself. Where are you from? What do you do when you’re not working?

I live in St. Louis Missouri now, but I grew up in a small town in central Missouri. I didn’t necessarily appreciate it when I was growing up, we’d all kind of complain about it being so boring, but being from a small town and practically growing up outdoors in God’s creation has taught me all kinds of valuable lessons and really shaped who I am today. I attended college at Mizzou (Go Tigers!) and while there were plenty of guys there like me, I was surprised at all of the city boys that grew up right here in Missouri but didn’t know the first thing about all there is to enjoy about rural life. There is so much to learn about God by knowing how to live close to His creation.

I love city life, don’t get me wrong. Living in a city with so much to do and take advantage of is amazing. Going to restaurants, museums, professional sports (Go Cards!) and a really vibrant church are all things I get to take part in because St. Louis is such a remarkable city. But within less than an hour’s drive I can be in the great outdoors. I love a good day of hunting or fishing or canoeing. I guess you could say I have the best of both worlds. I love every minute of it!

You recently met with Mercy Lacewell of Lacewell Limited regarding a merger or a buyout of your company. Tell me what immediately came to mind when you first met Ms. Lacewell.

Well, of course, the first thing that comes to mind any time you meet a woman like Mercy is her beauty. She’s a knockout, but in such a sweet, special kind of way. I couldn’t stop stealing glances at her. I wanted to stare, but that wouldn’t have been gentlemanly. The first thing I thought when I saw her was that I wanted to know more about her!

What do you remember most about Mercy as a result of that meeting?

She’s just a kind, genuine person. I was impressed with her selflessness. To choose to become a nurse in the first place, then to put all of that on hold to serve her Dad … well, not a lot of twenty-somethings today would make that kind of sacrifice, even temporarily.

I felt really comfortable talking to Mercy that first day. Without even trying she got me to open up and yammer on about things I’d been keeping to myself, or only sharing with close friends and family. I was surprised by how much I wanted to share with her about myself. It was as if she knew things about me already, and I just needed to fill in the blanks.

Tell us how you really feel about Mercy Lacewell. Don’t be shy.

She is … super special. Not someone you come across every day. I truly am blessed to have met Mercy. She makes me think about the future in a new way. I’ve had some lofty dreams about the kind of career I want to make for myself, but so far haven’t had the courage to act on those dreams. Mercy made me see my future in a different light. I appreciate her vision. And her listening ear. And her amazing hair, and beautiful smile, and those dazzling eyes … I definitely like the person I can see myself becoming when I’m around Mercy.

Do you think that you and Mercy could have a future together? If so, tell us why you think you’re the man for Mercy.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think about a future with Mercy. But things are a little complicated right now. Her father’s company is considering investing in, or outright buying, my employer. I don’t want to be responsible in any way for influencing that decision one way or the other. Then there’s the whole issue of what our professional relationship would be if Lacewell Limited does become my employer. Very complicated.

There are a lot of obstacles to overcome, but I can definitely picture a future for us. Mercy and I have a lot in common. We complement each other. I think we’d make a great team. Those dreams I have for my future have kind of evolved since I met Mercy. When I dream those dreams, there she is, right in the middle of it all. I’d love to be the man to show her the future. To love and serve and protect her. She deserves a wonderful life. And I want to be there to provide it.

I’m just trusting that if it’s part of God’s plan, He’ll make a way for us to be together. Yes, I’m definitely hoping that is His plan!

Unlikely Merger CoverMore About Unlikely Merger:

No longer needed as her father’s nurse, Mercy Lacewell attempts to step into his shoes at his acquisitions firm. That means travel, engaging strangers, and making final decisions—nothing she feels equipped to do. If her best friend has her way, Mercy will simply marry one of the single, available men she meets, but they overwhelm her. So handsome and kind. And so many. Even if she felt obliged, how could she ever choose?

Should she shove all attraction aside and focus on her father’s business, or is God warming her heart with the possibility of forever?

You can read Ric’s chapter today at Write Integrity Press.

Our authors at Write Integrity Press love collaborating on novellas. Here are a few of our other works:

A Dozen Apologies:

Mara Adkins, a promising fashion designer, has fallen off the ladder of success, and she can’t seem to get up.In college, Mara and her sorority sisters played an ugly game, and Mara was usually the winner. She’d date men she considered geeks, win their confidence, and then she’d dump them publicly. When Mara begins work for a prestigious clothing designer in New York, she gets her comeuppance. Her boyfriend steals her designs and wins a A DOZEN APOLOGIES FINAL FRONT COVER (282x425)coveted position. He fires her, and she returns in shame to her home in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where life for others has changed for the better.

Mara’s parents, always seemingly one step from a divorce, have rediscovered their love for each other, but more importantly they have placed Christ in the center of that love. The changes Mara sees in their lives cause her to seek Christ. Mara’s heart is pierced by her actions toward the twelve men she’d wronged in college, and she sets out to apologize to each of them. A girl with that many amends to make, though, needs money for travel, and Mara finds more ways to lose a job than she ever thought possible.

Mara stumbles, bumbles, and humbles her way toward employment and toward possible reconciliation with the twelve men she humiliated to find that God truly does look upon the heart, and that He has chosen the heart of one of the men for her to have and to hold.

LOVE BOAT BACHELOR CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too. Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry? Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise. As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Meet the heroes from previous chapters: Dustin Rogers, Landon Gates, Ric Montoya, Gabriel “Gabe” Mann, Talon Hawthorne. and Douglas “Digger” Grant.

Catch up with our other authors:

Marji Laine: Eat Your Heart Out, Uncle Thomas

Julie Arduini: Our Business Influences Part 2

Jennifer Hallmark: Working with Family by Betty Thomason Owens