Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Cover Reveal: THE CALL TO DUTY by #Christian #Author C.J. Peterson! @authoress_cj

I'm so excited to share with you the cover for Christian author C.J. Peterson's latest release, THE CALL TO DUTY, the first book in The Holy Flame Trilogy!

Check out the book's summary below to see just how well this cover fits the story, then take a minute to get to know C.J. as she answers a few questions about her writing.


“We all know emergencies never take a day off. We all know for each one of us claimed, another has to step up to continue taking care of our fellow citizens. Our job is to protect and to serve. Our job is to care for the injured, to help those who need it, and to take down the beast known to us as fire. This beast tries to claim whatever and whomever it can. We all have a call to duty, which we have sworn to perform."

Courageous. Brave. Fearless. Valiant. These synonyms are often used to describe firefighters/paramedics, police officers, and military personnel. They face danger and lay their lives on the line when they leave for work. What are their struggles? Could that hinder their job proficiency? Who is taking care of those who are taking care of the citizens of this country?

Casey Carter is a 'newbie' to the firefighting family of Engine Company 15. Not only does she have to prove herself as a probationary firefighter, but she also has to battle misconceptions of females within her newly chosen profession. As situations begin to arise, can she count on the firefighter brotherhood to have her back? Will she be able to pass the tests placed before her, or are there aspects that she was not even aware existed?

 Often in life there are two realms in play. There is the physical realm - what is right before you; the other is the spiritual realm - what is unseen. Each can directly affect you, whether you believe they exist or not. Can Casey keep them in balance when she is not exactly sure what she is fighting? Can a group of men help her see what cannot be readily seen, hear what cannot be readily heard, and be able to overcome what she never knew existed? Will they be able to show Casey her true Call To Duty?

Ephesians 6:12-13:
 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Get your paperback copy of THE CALL TO DUTY at Booklocker, Barnes&, or Amazon!


C.J. Peterson

Where did you find inspiration to write THE CALL TO DUTY?

I have had many jobs through my lifetime, and quite a few were in male dominated fields. Being a female in a ‘male world’ is not an easy task, unless you learn to take things with a grain of salt. I was also an EMT ten to fifteen years ago, and heard quite a lot of the struggles that the firefighters had to put up with and endure. I knew there was a story to tell, I just had to figure out a creative way of doing it.

My other inspiration comes from my beliefs. There is a spiritual realm out there that does affect the physical realm. There are unexplainable things that occur daily – some people call them coincidences. I don’t believe in coincidences though, I believe in God. I also believe that He takes us through things and will guide us every step of the way if we let Him.

Did you have a particular woman in mind when you developed your main character, Casey Carter?

Casey is a little like me. I grew up in a military family, and worked in firehouses as an EMT. While her looks are far from mine, I always write a little of me into each of my heroines. In growing up the way I did, I have been exposed to many types of people, places, and situations. Those experiences have provided me with a myriad of perspectives with which to draw from and shape my characters.

Why do your characters face such hardships?

Life is not easy. There are twists and turns, there are ups and downs, and there are walls we run into throughout our lifetimes. My characters go through such tough situations to show others that God can make peace out of chaos, and can bring order to pandemonium.

Most Christian books fit into this nice, neat little package, but I keep it real. My characters go through it all, to show others that they can relate, and also show them that there is a way out. It also shows the world that Christians aren’t perfect. It shows them that God is a God of love, and He adopts them into His family as one of His, no matter their past.

The scriptures you quote relating to THE CALL TO DUTY, Ephesians 6:12-13, are intense. Is there a message in the story that you think will come through?

There is always a message in my books that is evident. I don’t hide anything or pull any punches. Through the trilogy, it is evident that someone has it in for Casey. Even though she doesn’t think she is that important, she plays a pivotal role in the lives of the Angels (an elitist force that rights the wrongs in the physical realm throughout the world under the direct supervision of an Archangel). The Bible says we entertain Angels daily. While it may not be to the extent that this cast of characters play, we are given a purpose, and it’s up to us to discover what it is. It is also our responsibility to take care of those who can’t take care of themselves – to assist where we can, and potentially help guide them to their purpose. Sometimes we need that help ourselves. Know that God already has people in place to help you if you pay attention and listen.

There is also a spiritual battle that is around us daily, so we need to be on our guard. We need to be able to discern what is around us. Some people choose to ignore it, but I choose to expose it for what it is. We need to be grounded in our faith in order to do battle on even footing. The battle builds up through the trilogy, and it comes to a head in book three. I believe my motto fits in perfectly with this series, and in all of the books I write: ‘While the story is fiction, the journey is real.’ It gets real, and allows you to travel through the journey in all three books.

THE CALL TO DUTY is the first book in The Holy Flame Trilogy. How long do we have to wait for the second book?

I have all three written. And to ease your minds, I have already started polishing book two in hopes of getting it out in three or four months. I know it seems like a long time, but trust me, as the story builds, those months of waiting will be worth it!


THE CALL TO DUTY will be out soon! But if you just can't wait to read her work, check out C.J.'s young adult Christian novel, STRENGTH FROM WITHIN, available in paperback and for e-readers (click the cover below to get to Amazon).

Be sure to connect with C.J. here:

Web Site
Twitter - @authoress_cj

Email -

Sunday, July 14, 2013

In Praise of the Library

Who else loves the library? Go on, raise your hand.

Some of my warmest childhood memories revolve around the impatience involved in waiting to go to the library on Saturday. (This was in Dayton, Ohio, eons ago.) The anticipation, the waiting, were sheer torture. All the books from last week were long read and re-read. I agonized because they were my friends but I'd have to slip them through that ominous 'return' slot in the front desk. My mind was in turmoil, trying to decide what to read next. No wonder I bit my fingernails!

Does anybody else remember the feeling of walking through those doors? The smell of dusty books yet unread, the hush even more reverential than that of a church? The excitement of story time? Don't even get me started on the Bookmobile. Man, I loved it, and still do.

Library? you scoff. I haven't been inside a library since, well, I can't remember when. Isn't that the stinky place where all the homeless people go to cool down in the summer, or warm up in the winter?

Ahh, you're one of those who think the library is just for kids and blue-haired book club members who drive Buicks and wear SAS shoes to check out the large-print editions.


Join us in the 21st century.

Even the libraries nearest to our slice of Redneck Paradise have modern facilities like broadband internet access through desktop computers and Wi-Fi; inter-library loans; ebook lending; newspapers; magazines; DVDs and, dare I say it, audio books! (I'm a total junkie when it comes to audio books. No point denying it. I'll follow you anywhere for a good audio book.) And yes, even in East Texas libraries have electricity and indoor plumbing, just to enhance your overall visiting experience.

Seriously, there's nothing like a library. A bookstore comes close, but it's missing the whole frisson of 'free', 'due date', and 'late charge'. And while bookstore clerks are helpful - if you can find a bookstore anymore - the library ladies remember your name, have the scoop on new arrivals, and if you ask nicely, will hold one of your favorites until you can run by to grab it. Bliss!

(And no, I'm not being sexist because in my libraries, then and now, the librarians are all ladies.)

Doubt that this much glory can exist in one place? Stop by your local library and check it out. I'll bet it, too, has a great selection of current fiction and non-fiction, along with nice library ladies who will help you discover a host of other services.

Yes, I am a writer, and yes, I'm pimping my books like mad, hoping you'll buy them. So why would I encourage you to visit the library? Well, where do you think I got hooked? I still love checking out books from the library, but I also spend the GNP of a small nation on physical books, ebooks, and audio books.

Like all the best drug dealers say, "The first one's free, little girl."

What's your fondest memory of the library?

(If you're in Panola County, stop by the new location of the Sammy Brown Library at 319 South Market Street in Carthage. For their website, click here.)

photo credit: Super Furry Librarian via photopin cc
photo credit: ciro@tokyo via photopin cc

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Want to go to New Zealand? Come visit @KarenMcMillanNZ 's Blog with Me!

For the month of July, I'm New Zealand author Karen McMillan's Guest of the Month!

It was quite exciting making the visit to Karen's, first trekking through Central America and down to Brazil, then swimming to Africa and walking across The Congo and Tanzania, making the short swim to Madagascar (had to stop for the spices), then swimming to Austrailia and trekking again (at least it's winter there), then finally making the swim to New Zealand! What a trip, but it was well worth the effort.

(Yes, yes, I could've trekked down through Central America and hopped into the Pacific Ocean from Peru, or maybe Chile, but going the long way around was much more fun!)

Haven't met Karen yet? She writes both non-fiction and fiction, does freelance work, and takes on the occasional ghost-writing gig. Stop by for our chat, and while you're there, say hello and check out her books!

Click HERE for our interview.