A Love of Her Own, Heart of the West Series #3A Love of Her Own, Heart of the West Series #3
Maggie Brendan
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April McBride has suffered a broken engagement once before and fully intends to guard her heart when she travels to Lewistown, Montana, to attend her brother's wedding. One look around the small mining town convinces April that this won't be difficult--just a bunch of dusty shops, bad service, and ill-bred cowboys. But a run-in with a horse trainer named Wes Owen opens up vast possibilities for frustration, embarrassment, friendship, and . . . love? Can April and Wes see past their differences in order to envision a future together?
     

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Maggie BrendanMaggie Brendan is a member of American Christian Writers and the American Fiction Writers Association. She lives in Georgia.

Favorite Verse: Psalm 27:1b. The Lord is the strength of my life…KJV.

 Our Interview with Maggie Brendan / Brenda Lott

What is your favorite Bible verse?

“The Lord is the strength of my life.” Psalm 27:1b (KJV)

Please tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m a member of the American Christian Writers and the American Christian Fiction Writers. I won the Persistence Award for the American Christian Writers for Atlanta in 2004. I led a writer’s group in my home for six years and was quoted in Word Weavers, The Story of Successful Writer’s Critique Group by Eva Marie Everson and Janice Elsheimer. I love the West with its rich history. A screenplay was written for my first book, No Place for a Lady and is currently at Hallmark for a possible TV movie.

I enjoy interacting with other writers and meeting new people.

You can find me on my blog,
http://southernbellewriter.blogspot.com and I am a resident blogger every month for www.BustlesAndSpurs.com.

How did you get started as a Christian fiction writer? 

I’ve always wanted to write but not until I took a Bible Study, Write His Answer, did I realize that God laid it on my heart to write for Christian publication. That study guided me to commit my writing for CBA. Although our teacher said it would be hard to break into CBA, I was convicted. My brother, Jess McCreede, spoke at one of our studies and then Cecil Murphy. What greater encouragement could I have?

How did you come up with the concept for A Love of Her Own?

April McBride was a character in my first book, No Place for a Lady. She was the kind of character that you love to hate.  I knew she must be redeemed of her self-centeredness when readers asked me about her. They wanted to know what would happen to her. So I wrote the book.

What is significant about A Love of Her Own?

It shows the over reaching power of God no matter how isolated you are in your need for Him.  My heroine was isolated by her social status and financial status, and felt she had no need of God in her life.  For most of her life she thought only of herself and her needs.  In the story, she comes to realize that she does need God guidance and begins to trust in love again after a broken heart.

 

Is any part of A Love of Her Own factual?

Many of the buildings and landmarks were actual places in Lewistown, MT, along with actual street names.  Glacier National Park land was authorized by the sale of 800,000 acres to the US government from the Blackfeet for $1.5 million and White Calf, the Piegan chief was an original signer of the commission and later confirmed by Congress in June 1896; though it wasn’t until 1910 that Glacier National park was officially designated by President Taft as a national park.

What is the most interesting tidbit that you learned while writing A Love of Her Own?

While researching about how to drive a team of six horses for a stagecoach, I learned that the driver threaded the reins, or ribbons as they called them, through the fingers of his thick gloved hand, leaving the right hand free to let off the brake as needed. The right hand left the driver free to handle the whip.

What other projects do you have on the horizon?

I’m currently working on The Blue Willow Bride series. It’s about three sisters from Holland who come to America for a fresh start and looking for husbands. I’ll be book signing for LifeWay’s National Fiction Event again in May.

What are some of the challenges you face as an author?

Juggling the writing, marketing and deadlines are the hardest thing for me because it seems the are continually overlapping.

In the midst of all of that, book signings and taking care of my home and life in general factor into the equation. It takes a lot of discipline and organization in my opinion to be a successful writer.

Who was the person who most influenced you in your writing journey?

My brother Gary, whose pen name was Jess McCreede was the largest influence in my writing.  Before he died he wrote seven historical westerns.  He was my mentor and taught me to finish what I start.  He convinced me that my writing was really good and encouraged me to submit my manuscript to a publisher.  Since my father was absent, my brother tried to fill his shoes. While working he went to college at night to earn his degree in Entomology. I was so proud of him.  He was the only one in our family to receive a college education. I can never repay the debt I feel I owe to him. I still struggle a lot with his sudden death.

But my ultimate coach is God, who is there day in and day out beside me, encouraging, nurturing me with His Word to be the best that I can be and giving me direction.

What message would you like your readers to take from The A Love of Her Own?

I’d like my readers to be aware that no matter who you are or what station in life, God wants to be a part of it and cares about ever detail in one’s life.

 

What is your goal or mission as a writer?

I consider my writing a ministry and that means proclaiming the truth and causing others to think about striving for excellence in their own lives.  I want my work as a writer to be a testament to God’s grace and a reflection of the creative Spirit of the One who created me.

In a simplistic way, I want to write entertaining stories, as I weave faith into the background, while defending faith and the truth in the best way I can.

What do you do to get away from it all?

I enjoy reading, being outdoors, and being with my family and grandchildren. When I’m stressed, breaking away to attend choir practice invigorates me because of the words in most of our music are taken from scripture, and I love to sing. It’s like medicine for me and it encourages me immensely, centering me. I love brainstorming with my best friend, Kelly Long, on our latest projects. I also like listening to Christian talk shows.  I occasionally watch Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck on Fox TV, and Turner Movie Classics and the Hallmark channel.  My favorite kind of movies are comedies, and I’m a huge Tyler Perry fan.  I love to spend time learning about Apologetics.

 

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