Welcome to Christian Book Review Blog, Cindy! Thank you for being here! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Here is my bio:
Cindy K. Green has worked as a middle school history & English teacher, a frozen yogurt server and a golf magazine employee. Today she's a multi-published, award-winning author, a mother, a wife, and a homeschooler too. This native Californian now resides in North Carolina with her husband, two boys, and two cats named Chloe & Kassey. Visit her website www.cindykgreen.com & her blog cindykgreen.blogspot.com. She's on Facebook (Cindy K. Green) and Twitter (@cindykgreen) too.
When did you first discover that you loved writing?
I feel like I’ve always been a writer. Even as a child, I wrote stories for my four younger brothers and sisters. I’ve just always been a storyteller. As I got into high school, writing became my passion. Any extra time I had, I spent pouring over my stories. But it wasn’t until I was almost thirty that I began writing for publication.
Why do you write the type of books that you do?
I write funny books (most of the time) because I love to laugh. The world can be so scary and overwhelming. I love to sit down and read a fun book and forget everything else going on around me. I also write Inspirational/Christian because writing is a ministry. My greatest wish is to reach others through my writing for Christ with a touch of humor and a pulling at the heartstrings.
What was your greatest obstacle in writing and how did you overcome it?
My greatest obstacle has always been time. I’m a mom, a wife, a housekeeper, and a homeschool teacher all wrapped into one. Finding the time for writing can be difficult, but when it is your goal and passion you find ways to make it work. I have to be organized (which isn’t my strong suit) about my schedule. I also have to use the time I’m given even if it is in only 15-20 minute segments.
Has writing changed your life in any way?
Sure! Writing has that way about it that is life changing. You see things differently as a writer—things that others might miss. We are people watchers. Observers. We can’t help it. And we become sensitive to others and events going on around us. It has made me more empathetic to others is many ways.
What Bible scripture has impacted your life the most?
I love this verse from Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” It is a wonderful thing to realize God has a plan for our lives. Sometimes we wish He would cue us in on the intricacies of that plan, but just knowing He is looking out for our future is a reassuring thing.
Is there a book you’ve read that has been truly spectacular?
In my twenties I was all about history. It was my major in college, and I ended up teaching middle school history. I love anything by David Hackett Fischer especially Paul Revere’s Ride. In my thirties and now entering my forties, I find that I spend a lot more time reading fiction. My all time favorite author is Jane Austen. I’ve read all her novels several times over. My favorite novel is Persuasion. I love a good love rekindled/love renewed kind of story. It reminds me how God gives us second chances.
What’s the funniest/quirkiest thing you’ve ever done?
I’ll be honest, I wouldn’t describe myself as quirky, but I love to write quirky characters. And I’m sure I do funny things all day long. Like putting my glasses in the refrigerator and telling silly jokes to my kids. My funniest things are usually of the physical comedy variety like slipping down the stairs in college in the middle of the Commons and landing at the feet of some guy I didn’t know. And he said to me: “I’d help you up if I was allowed.” (Christian college and girls and guys couldn’t touch.) Wow, I’ll never forget that moment.
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Please tell us about the featured book.
Andrea & the Five-Day Challenge (Book 1 in the Aubrey Christian Academy Series) is a Christian YA novel including a healthy dose of humor & a bit of romance too. Tagline: A Bible Study Challenge, a Prayer Journal & Homecoming. The combination just might change her life.
Andrea is a high school junior who considers herself to be the least interesting of her group of friends. In her mind, she isn't smart like Amy or artistic like Angie or beautiful and popular like Alisha. She sees herself as that girl with the plain brown hair, size nine feet, and who doesn't participate much in school activities. Now she does have this exceptional talent she likes to downplay. She's actually a wonderful pianist and her parents have all these designs to get her into a performing arts school so she can one day end up at a place like Julliard. In addition to that, Andrea has a sweet, caring spirit and this is something that Luke, our hero, notices right away. It sets her apart from every other girl at school in his eyes.
I wanted to write a book Christian teen girls would want to read. There are romantic YA novels out there that are just not God-honoring and appropriate for our girls. I wanted to fill the need in this niche of Christian fiction.
Can you please give us the first page?
“Andrea! Are you up?” It was Mom attempting to break the sound barrier again.
“Yes, Mom,” I replied through my bedroom door before pushing my comforter back and wiping the sleep from my eyes. I’d had grand plans to start my day right and even get up early. (You know what they say about the best of intentions.) Guiltily, I glanced at my desk with my journal and Bible on top, which only seemed to taunt me further.
“Well, hurry up. Breakfast is almost ready. Dad wants you to get in some piano practice before school. Your recital is Saturday.”
How could I possibly forget?
They reminded me of that fact at least ten times a day. What was the big deal about this recital? Wasn’t it just like any other? (In my parents’ minds, this will be the one that will get me noticed, and they think offers will come from all the big schools, like Julliard.)
Honestly, I didn’t even know for sure if that was the life I wanted.
After plopping my size nine feet out of bed and onto the carpeted floor, I hurried over to my desk and opened my Bible. I had a few extra minutes.
So here it is, Lord: Day 1 of the Bible Study Challenge. I, Andrea Jamison, am following through on Pastor Jace’s one-week challenge to get into God’s Word every morning and see what awesome things You do in my life—or through my life or something. (I’m not real clear on that part, yet.) I’m even utilizing the Proverbs prayer journal Mom gifted me two months ago, which has since just been collecting dust. I know she only gave it to me so that I might actually get up early every morning and do my quiet prayer and devotion time before heading to the big building where we do all the learning. So in a sense, I’m making everyone happy with me in one fell swoop.
With homecoming on the horizon at school, I have a sinking feeling I’m going to need all the help I can get. I know You can work miracles, and really I’m not asking for one, but please if I can spend one more day (or even a hundred) not making a complete fool of myself that would be great. Now I have to cut this short and get in some piano practice. Really, if I could ask for anything it would be the ability to freeze time, then I might actually get everything done.
Nugget of Truth from my reading this morning: Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Where can readers learn more information about you?
Please visit my newly designed website http://www.cindykgreen.com or my blog http://cindykgreen.blogspot.com. I’m on FaceBook under Cindy K. Green Author and Twitter as @cindykgreen. I have several more excerpts on my blog. Come by and visit me there.
(This giveaway is only open to followers of Christian Book Review Blog, so be sure you are a follower!)
Cindy has generously offered to giveaway an eBook copy of Andrea & the Five-Day Challenge (PDF, mobi, or ePub format)! Giveaway is available to everyone. Giveaway ends on Saturday May 2, 2015 at midnight (Eastern time). Thanks for coming by to enter!