Monday, June 25, 2012

The Other Side of Darkness + Giveaway

Happy Monday, all!
 I'm very happy to have author Linda Rondeau here with me today.
She has her book THE OTHER SIDE OF DARKNESS an Inspirational Suspense Thriller available now from Harbourlight Books!

Please welcome Linda as she talks of her new book and her publishing story. :-)

Award-winning author, LINDA RONDEAU, writes for the reader who enjoys a little bit of everything.
Her stories of redemption and God’s mercies include romance, suspense, the ethereal, and a little bit of history into the mix, always served with a slice of humor.
Walk with her unforgettable characters as they journey paths not unlike our own. After a long career in human services, mother of three and wife of one very patient man, Linda now resides in Florida where she is active in her church and community. 


                  THE BIG YES, YES!

“Lord, I can’t do this anymore. It hurts too much,” I cried. “I wasn’t meant to be a writer.” I looked up at the wall of award certificates and thought I heard the room laughing at me.   
 Not that there haven’t been a few successes along the way.  I’ve managed to publish articles, short stories, poetry, and I write a newspaper column. I’ve even had an agent for several years. But after eight failed books, I wondered if I heard God all wrong.

 My first career had been in human services. I was a decent social worker as social workers go. But I wanted to reach people outside the government experience. Although a hobbyist writer, I hesitated to believe I could be a professional one.

 When my youngest child left the nest in 1995, I asked God to give me a passion for something. Soon after uttering that desperate plea for renewal, my office sent me to what I termed a feel good seminar, the kind of workshop that motivates a person to go home and hug all the neighbors. The speaker asked, “What do you want to do with the rest of your life?” Then he instructed us to put our answers unto a 3x5 card. I wrote, WRITE. Then the speaker told us to expand our dream. Before I could catch my breath, the speaker called on me. I found myself publically declaring the desire to write for Christ.

I let doubt rob me of that momentary passion. “God does not care about your dreams. Your job is to be a good wife, mother, and neighbor. That is true Christianity. Forget your foolish desires.”  The more the call tugged at my heart, the more I resisted.

Until June 21, 2000…the day the dream was reborn. Armed with faith lacking five years before, I started the journey. My first attempt was a poem. Not a very good one, but I felt a peace that had long eluded me. The excuses ended and the journey began.

Here I am, however, almost nine years later, still struggling with disbelief, fighting the urge to delete all my books. “I don’t understand why we haven’t been able to get you published,” my agent wrote. That’s what I’d like to know, Lord. What do I have to do? What am I missing? Why won’t you let me go back to being a hobbyist? I liked writing then.

A few weeks ago, during my devotion time, I opened my Bible to the fourteenth chapter of 1 Corinthians. I’d read the familiar passage about the harmony of the Spirits’ gifts. I had not applied the truth to my writing gift. My craft had been for my own pleasure. Oh, I used words about Christ, and my books did contain spiritual truth. But the whole of the affair was not in clear delineation of that truth. Instead, the writing drew attention to me as if shouting, “See how clever I am?” Like a room that cannot be lived in, I’d decorated my space with imagery, symbolism, and cadence that served no purpose but to edify myself.  

God’s word had perfect clarity:
           Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle?
            (I Corinthians 14:20)
I asked God to forgive my arrogance, and help me to put His message above my need.    
But the Lord had yet another, even more profound lesson in store. A few days later, I read God’s words of love as he renewed the call and once again infused me with the same passion as that day in 1995.
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come
           (2 Corinthians 1:20 – 22).

I don’t know what the road ahead will bring. But I do know that at the end of the journey God’s arms will be stretched wide to welcome me with a huge, “Yes! Yes!”
Addendum: This article was written a few years ago. On June 21, 2011, eleven years to the day He first called me, God reaffirmed His plan with the offer for my first book contract, The Other Side of Darkness. On May 23, 2012, the day before my 65th birthday, the book received the Selah Award for best first novel. God never forsakes his promises.   

Thank you, Linda! What an inspirational story!


Haven: a perfect vacation spot filled with mystery and romance except for a killer bent on revenge.
Manhattan prosecutor Samantha Knowlton is stranded in a quirky but intriguing Adirondack town. But she must return to NYC to repair the unraveling case against convicted child killer, Harlan Styles.
Teacher Zack Bordeaux fears he is doomed to a life of mediocrity if he remains in Haven but would be willing to stay if it means a life with Sam.  
Landscape artist Jonathan Gladstone feels bound to an estate he both loathes and loves, haunted by the deaths of his wife and son until he falls in love with a spirited attorney and rediscovers his artistic passion.  
These three, betrayed and betraying, must find their way from the darkness of broken hope to the light found only in Christ, our surest haven.  

Available at Amazon and Barnes &Noble   

GIVEAWAY: Linda will be awarding one $10 GC to to one randomly drawn commenter at every stop!!

For more info on her tour and other stops, please visit Goddess Fish.

Thanks,and good luck!


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting Linda today.

Em-Musing said...

You had me at "....I thought I heard the room laughing at me. SO been there. Great inspirational story. You might like, The Spontaneous Healing of Belief, by Gregg Braden.

Linda G. said...

What a great--and inspirational--journey. Thanks for sharing it! :)

Jessica R. Patch said...

Loved your honesty and encouragement, Linda! The book looks wonderful! :)

Thanks, Jennifer, for hosting her!

Old Kitty said...

Hoorah for Linda!! Thanks for sharing your writerly journey - very inspiring!!!

Hi Jennifer! Take care

Diane Estrella said...

Congrats Linda on what sounds like an exciting suspense story. I live not far from the Adirondacks and it is exciting to see it incorporated into a story.

Hugs and have a great week! :O)

Catherine Lee said...

The cover of your book is so lovely. Thanks for sharing your inspirational writing story.

I also spent a few years in human services (in FL) before moving on to librarianship--also a human service!

Gabrielle Meyer said...

This was a wonderfully inspiring story today! Congratulations, Linda! Your faithfulness and trust is encouraging. May God bless your writing.

Carol Kilgore said...

Thanks for sharing such an inspiring story :)

MomJane said...

This story sounds so wonderful. It is so difficult to find a book now that is not afraid to talk about God and Christ.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

A truly inspirational story. Just goes to show ya .... never, never, NEVER give up. Congratulations, Linda, and thanks, Jennifer, for introducing us to Linda, her story, and her first book.

Stacy Henrie said...

Beautiful post! There's so many times we can let doubt set in, but I love the reminder that the Lord does keep His promises.

Linda Rondeau said...

@ Linda G: thanks for kind words

@Jessica R: glad my ear-pinning from God helps others

@ Old Kitty: thanks for stopping by Jennifer's blog today

@ Diane E: I find the Adirondacks very inspiring, mysterious, and full of history. I hated to leave the area but health required me to move to a warmer climate.

@ Catherine: you can take the girl from social work but you can't take the social worker out of the girl. Right?

@ Gabrielle: thanks for the kind words and well wishes. Glad you stopped by today.

@ Carol: :))

@ MomJane: I agree, why so many readers are switching to Christian Fiction.

@ Susan...thanks for stopping by today

@ Stacy: God never forgets even though we often do.

Joy said...

Thanks for putting it into words for us.

Linda Rondeau said...

@ Joy...thanks for stopping by.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Jennifer! Thanks for hosting Linda on your blog.

Hi Linda! Nice to meet you. Thank you for sharing your inspirational story.

Jessica Nelson said...

What a great post! Congrats on the Selah award, Linda. :-)

Linda Rondeau said...

@Susanne D.

thanks for stopping by

Linda Rondeau said...

@ Jessica...thanks. I was surprised and very pleased.

Cheryl Klarich said...

Thank you for sharing Linda's story. How inspiring is that? Especially for those of us who are still in the early stages.

Linda Rondeau said...

@ Cheryl

The years go by quickly but they do leave us alittle wiser.

E.A. West said...

What a great reminder that God's timing isn't always what we would like. Patience and perseverance are essential for all writers. Your experience is a great reminder to Christian writers that if publication is in God's plan for you, it will happen when the time is right.

Linda Rondeau said...

@ E.A. absolutely

Sandra Cox said...

Very nice.Great cover.