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This year’s Donut Festival in Marion is in the books and one we’ve decided we want to attend each year. This was a relatively small festival last year, but this year the organizers extended the festival area, and we were amazed at the number of people attending. We had a fantastic time meeting and talking to readers–both old and new–, signing books, listening to some really great music, seeing all the exhibits and eating some delicious food including scrumptious ice cream. And, of course, there was the lovely drive to and from Marion. You just can’t beat spring in the western North Carolina mountains!

It was wonderful to see our dear friend and awesome reader, Carole Markum, and to meet another of our beloved readers, Rita Jones. We also had the good fortune to meet the great-great-great (I think I got that right) granddaughter of Keith and Malinda Blalock, whose story we hope to include in the next Brown Mountain Lights book (don’t know why neither of us thought to get her name!). And finally, we really enjoyed chatting with readers who came just to see us and/or check to see if we had a new book this year. Thanks to all of you for your interest and support. You inspire us in so many ways and we are so blessed!

Next up, Pioneer Day in Old Fort, this Saturday, May 28, from 10 – 4. We’d love to see you if you’re in the area.

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We had a wonderful time last Saturday at the inaugural Mossy Creek Arts Festival in Jefferson City, TN near the beautiful campus of Carson-Newman College. It was a beautiful spring day and the drive to and from Jefferson City was gorgeous with dogwoods and redbuds blooming. Once we got off the interstate, the drive into town with the numerous blooming azaleas was nothing short of glorious.

Beyond all that beauty, we sold and signed a lot of books and met a bunch of new readers, including several politicians (election day’s coming up!).  The reception we received from the festival facilitators was heartwarming and we were made to feel more than welcome. We also received quite a few invitations to participate in future events in the area. I took notes but most of them look like chicken scratches. Let’s see if I can decipher them:

A lady stopped by who knew the head librarian at the Carson-Newman College Library. She took one of our cards with her to pass along because she said she was sure they’d be interested in having the books.

String art by the kids

The Mayor of New Market, TN introduced himself and invited us to participate in his city’s festival in September, which we look forward to.

Several people stopped by to invite us to participate in Jefferson City’s Old Timer’s Day in October which, from what we understand, is a really fun festival.

We were thrilled to meet Robert Tucker, candidate for Mayor of Jefferson City, who told us his son Kegan was required to read Whistling Woman in his history class at Jefferson County High School. He was kind enough to ask for a photo of us with him, with me holding the book.

Though it was the smallest festival we’ve ever attended, for us, it was a wonderful, fun day and we’re looking forward to adding the Mossy Creek Arts Festival to our permanent calendar of events.

Next up, the Donut Festival in Marion, NC on Saturday, April 21st. It’s a fun festival with lots to do and see and we’re really looking forward to it. We really enjoyed it last year and know we will this year as well.

 

We’re excited to announce that we’ve been invited to participate in the inaugural Mossy Creek Arts Festival which takes place in the historic Mossy Creek District this Saturday, April 14,  in Jefferson City, TN. This is the first festival of its kind and we are so grateful to have been asked to participate. It promises to be a fun time with local artists and crafts people, live music and food. According to the weather, it’s supposed to be a beautiful spring day in the mountains of East Tennessee, and we can’t think of a better way to spend the day. If you’re in the area, we hope you’ll stop by and say hello.

For more information, click on the link above.

Through the Brown Mountain Lights, Brown Mountain Lights Book 1 is one of four finalists in EPIC’s eBook 2018 Awards in the historical fiction category! Needless to say we’re doing happy dances here! If you’d like to see the official announcement–and join us in the happy dancing!–just click here: EPIC 2018 eBook Award Finalists.

We’re not sure when they’ll announce the winner but you can be sure we’ll let our beloved readers know. Thanks so much to all of you for your constant inspiration and encouragement!

Hello, cherished readers! We’re thrilled that our book, Seeking the Brown Mountain Lights, Book 2 of the Brown Mountain Lights series, has been selected to partake in All Author’s monthly Cover of the Month contest for February 2018. We think our cover artist, Kim Maxwell, did a fantastic job and hope you feel the same. Only the top 100 covers with the most votes will be allowed to proceed to the second stage of the competition which starts in the second week (7th). We hope those of you so inclined will go to our book’s voting page and vote. Here’s the link: https://allauthor.com/cover-of-the-month/1355/ Thanks so much for sharing this journey with us!

Thanks so much, cherished readers! Where would we be without you!

 

To all our fabulous readers! As part of the Amazon February Author Meet & Greet, we wanted to let you know about a chance to win this super cool “Reader Gift Basket” from The No. 1 Site for #Reader #Giveaways~~The Kindle Book Review.

Beginning February 1st, just click the link and follow the instructions. It’s easy & fun. If you love #reading, enter from February 1st to the end of the giveaway on Feb. 28, 2018. Click here and enter every day ~> https://wp.me/P2H01p-aU9

We are moving ever closer to the second book in our Brown Mountain Lights series, tentatively titled Seeking the Brown Mountain Lights, and that means our cover designer, Kim Maxwell, has started working on the cover. I met her for lunch Tuesday to talk about the design. This one is proving to be a challenge but I’m sure Kim will overcome any and all obstacles and create another gorgeous cover like she always has in the past.

This will be the sixth cover she’s designed for us. It all started with Beloved Woman, the third book in our Appalachian Journey series. And we were so impressed, we asked her to do or re-do all of our books.

 

Next, we asked her to re-design the cover of the second book,  Moonfixer , because we weren’t satisfied with the one we had which we made. It was just too dull and though it had the picture of Aunt Bessie and Uncle Fletcher taken on their wedding day we didn’t like it very much. It just didn’t feel like it fit the book so … enter Kim.

We liked what she did with the other two so much we asked her to re-design Whistling Woman, the first book in the series. She changed that one by photographing the picture of Miss Cordy, adding the picture of Mama and Papa with Bessie as a baby and a few sprigs of cedar. I had the pleasure of watching her set it all up using my husband’s grandmother’s old cedar chest as the base. It was fascinating all the things she checked and double checked before she was satisfied with the picture.

The next one she did was the final book of the series, Wise Woman. For this one, Kim and I met for lunch then drove around till we found a place we could pick some of the beautiful purple asters that bloom here in the late summer/early fall so she could use them on the cover. After she put it all together, it was beautiful and ended up being my favorite cover.

When Christy and I decided to write another series we knew right away we wanted Kim to do the covers. The first book in our Brown Mountain Lights series, Through the Brown Mountain Lights, added a few extra hurdles for Kim. First, she would need to go to Morganton and shoot a picture of Brown Mountain and also, she would be designing this one without much if any help from us. For the Appalachian Journey series, we had numerous pictures of Aunt Bessie and pretty much  knew which one we wanted to use for each book but for this one we really didn’t have any idea of what to use. No worries, Kim to the rescue.

The writing of the second book in the series is finished which means the hard part for us pretty much done. All we have left is the editing, polishing, and formatting it for e-book and print. While we do that, Kim’s working on the cover which I know will be gorgeous like all her other ones have been. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with!

If you would like to read more about how Kim creates our beautiful covers, check out her blog: Covers, Cats and Clicks. That will take you to a page that lists all the posts she’s done about our books.

 

Wise Woman Audible 3And you know what that means, don’t you? Well, if you’re one of our wonderful, amazing readers of this blog and/or one of our awesome, inspiring followers on Facebook, you do …it means we’re having a giveaway! Yay!

But wait, what are we celebrating? Wise Woman, the final book in our Appalachian Journey series, was released a little over 2 months ago in ebook and it’s been on 3 bestseller lists since then. Not only that, the other three books, Whistling Woman (or as we call it “the book that started it all”), Moonfixer, and Beloved Woman are right up there on the same lists. Yahoo! And we can’t leave out the French and German translations of Whistling Woman, they’re on bestseller lists, too!

Plus, the print version has just been released and is up on Amazon … if you search for it. For some reason it’s not showing up on the Kindle page but if you’re interested, here’s the link for the paperback of Wise Woman. The audio version (narrated by the lovely Carol Herman who absolutely nails Aunt Bessie’s voice) is available now and is linked on the Kindle page.

And, of course, we have our faithful readers to thank for our good fortune so we have 20 copies of the audio version of Wise Woman to give away. That’s right, 20! So, if you’d like to hear Aunt Bessie’s story, all you have to do is comment to this post on the blog or on the corresponding post on our Facebook page. First come, first served so don’t delay!

A side note to all our readers who are interested in our next project, the Brown Mountain Lights Series: we spent the weekend in Morganton, NC researching, researching, researching! We should have a post up about our trip and the new series later this week!

Seeking the Brown Mountain Lights

Through the Brown Mountain Lightss

Brown Mountain Lights Book 1

Wise Woman

Appalachian Journey Book 4

Beloved Woman

Appalachian Journey Book 3

Moonfixer

Appalachian Journey Book 2

Whistling Woman

Appalachian Journey Book 1

Madchen, die pfeifen

Whistling Woman (German)

Les deces arrivant toujours par trois

Whistling Woman (French)

Christy Tillery French Cynthia Tillery Hodges

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