It’s the holiday edition of Author Wednesday, and what better way to celebrate this season than to feature an author with a sweet Christmas romance! Welcome to Nancy Radke who’s going to tell us about her novella, Christmas on Cougar Mountain, which is on sale for $0.99 through the whole month of December.
May you be blessed with peace and love during the holiday season.
Christmas on Cougar Mountain and How It Came To Be
By Nancy Radke
A lot of folks can’t believe that anyone can help a person with dyslexia in just a week. This skepticism furnished the conflict for this romance, as the heroine is a Davis Facilitator, and the hero’s son is dyslexic. The hero, Kellen, thinks that Zoey is running a scam, and he only agrees to let her help his son because they are stuck on the mountain at her home (road washed out). He resists falling in love with her, not wanting to love a scam artist.
This book was a lot of fun to write. My favorite scene was when Kellen, an electrician who claimed that ladders liked him, had a ladder tip over and drop him upside down in a holly tree. His dog, Sam, is an escape artist, who never stays where he is put. It also required a lot of research into dyslexia, some of which I knew about as I had already helped children using the Davis method. A Davis employee read my rough draft and made suggestions to keep the story accurate. The message for this book is about giving someone a second chance.
A one-sentence pitch for this book: An escape artist collie brings a lonely woman and a troubled man together on Christmas.
I changed the title as my first few tries were not interesting enough. I usually don’t get a title until my book is almost finished, as then I can see what it is about. I start a story and build on it as I go, so usually don’t know where it is headed. When I first started writing, I plotted everything, but now I find plotted stories boring to write, as I know where they are headed. I much prefer to start and enjoy the adventure along the way. When I re-write, I drop in the items needed to foreshadow events and link it all together. Christmas on Cougar Mountain started with a stray dog on the freeway, rescued by the heroine. I had no idea where it was going from there, and spent a week at a loss, until I thought of the dyslexia angle. Then it almost wrote itself.
This book took around four months to write. I am currently writing one western historical and one mystery thriller. I write on the one that I happen to be interested in that day. As a child, I used to read three to four books at a time, so guess it works to write several at a time, too.
I self-publish books, as it gives me complete control. My first book, Turnagain Love, was published by a traditional publisher. They got the cover all wrong, as it took place in the San Juans (islands in Washington state), where the tidal change is over five feet, and the docks are built to float. The cover artist had a lake with a regular dock. The dock and the tides made up a large part of the humor of that book. I like being able to choose my cover and title. They wanted more of my stories, but they also wanted sex scenes in them, and I told them I didn’t write that way, and got my rights back.
I use my son as my proofreader, and I proofread his novels. Both of us were English majors, and we wrote one thriller together, Height of Danger, and are working on a second one, Terminal Pursuit, which is about halfway written.
Here’s a review of Christmas on Cougar Mountain.
“Besides just enjoying the story I was impressed with how much I learned. It isn’t just fluff. I don’t want to give away the plot. I’m hoping I can get it in book form someday to share with many friends who would benefit from the wisdom that is shared in the story!”
After seeing the feedback on Christmas on Cougar Mountain, I asked if anyone was interested in teaching a four-year-old how to read, as I had taught all my children and grandchildren at that age. They all were reading at first- and second-grade level when entering kindergarten. I had a huge response, so am taking a month away from writing to put together a reading program. It will also have some home school help on different subjects.
The website for this project is under construction at www.raisinggiants.net. If interested, write to me at romauthorN@yahoo.com. Put RAISING GIANTS in the subject line, so I don’t delete you. It is taking me some time to put it all together, as I am putting the first part on video, and I keep thinking of things to add. So it will probably take longer than a month, as I have gathered an impressive inventory of ideas and techniques over the years.
During my down time I watch sport–football and baseball–and I do math and logic puzzles. Right now, I have no real down time.
Thank you, Nancy, for stopping by and sharing. I’m very impressed with the way the book led you to your worthwhile project. My best to you and this new endeavor.
Author Wednesday will be on hiatus until January, when I return with Diane Rapp and her new book. Happy New 2016!
About Nancy: Author Nancy Radke, started out writing full-length, modern romance and suspense stories, then switched to novella length for her western series, The Traherns, and now writes both, usually two or three books at the same time. She has published ten Sisters of Spirit books, including Christmas on Cougar Mountain, thirteen Trahern books, and one book of a new Brothers of Spirit series. A former special education teacher, her teaching background shows when she includes history in her books, or in the case of Christmas on Cougar Mountain––reading problems. Her books are G-rated, no sex, no swearing.
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