Tea Party winners: Janet Grunst's Amazon Gift card winner is: Anne Payne, her book winner is: Sydney Anderson, Elaine Marie Cooper's winner is Karen Hadley, Carrie Fancett Pagels' Tea Cup Courtship Collection goes to: Marilyn Ridgeway , Vicki McCollum's winners are:, Gabrielle Meyer's winners are:

Monday, January 30, 2012

Interview with Gina Welborn

Gina Welborn


Gina Welborn is the author of “Sugarplum Hearts” in the Highland Crossings anthology.
Published by: Barbour Publishing
Date: February 2012

Gina, what got you interested in the colonial time period?
Fame and fortune. I’d written manuscripts in numerous other time-periods but couldn’t sell them for various reasons, so Laurie Alice asked me if I’d like to join a novella collection about Scottish immigrants. My thoughts immediately went to my name slathered in itty bitty font beneath the names of the other fabulous authors in the collection, which had been a lifelong dream of mine from the second I'd been asked me to join the collection. So I said “absolutely yes!” and totally ignored the fact I knew practically nothing about the colonial era besides what I’d learned from multiple family trips to Jamestown and Yorktown. Since the collection was to be a generational one, I immediately went about praying I would get the last story, preferably, set around 1840. Clearly God, Laurie, Pamela, and Jennifer had better things in mind for me. My novella is set 1790 in the beautiful Fayetteville, North Carolina. In fact, I’ve grown to love the early federalist era so much that I wrote “Sugarplum Hearts” with the intention of someday telling the romances of three (or more) secondary characters in the novella. Feel free to guess which ones as I await fame and fortune to come my way.

What inspired your latest colonial work?
Wikipedia. Carrie, don’t give me that “be serious” look. (CFP: I am giving Gina the Carrie "eye" right now!) Really, Wikipedia. Since what little I knew about the colonial era was from reading “A Patriot’s History of the United States” and from watching Glenn Beck when he was on Fox, I set about googling. Somehow I came across an article about candy-making that resonated with me. When the original plot idea I had wasn’t working out, I called my mentor, friend, and writing partner in this collection, Laurie Alice Eakes. She asked me of all the research I had done, what one thing stood out to me the most. Candy. Sweets. Lemon drops and toffee and marzipan figurines. Her suggestion was to make my hero the immigrant instead of my heroine. We then brainstormed a bit more until I had the basics of plot and main characters.

Do you have a favorite colonial place you like to visit and why?
Gina's mother with two of her children at Jamestown
We live a little over an hour away from Jamestown. In the last ten years we’ve been in Virginia, we’ve taken various extended family members and friends to visit sites all over the state, including Jamestown both before and after the 400th anniversary renovations. The new museum is glamazing! Plus we always have fun playing in the fort, in the native huts, and on the boat replicas. History doesn’t have to be boring. Nor should it! It’s hard to go to any of the museums and reenactment sites in Virginia and not be in awe, fall in love, and have fun no matter what time-period is the focus.



Gina, do you have a favorite colonial recipe you enjoy?  Would you care to share it with CQ readers?  Readers, you can find Gina’s Apple Pie recipe this coming Saturday on CQ.
I love desserts of any time-period. Yum-me. Many of the food items readily accessible to us, such as sugar and refined flour, were expensive and often in short supply during Colonial times so desserts were not an everyday thing. However, many foods we consider desserts were meal-time basics: fruit pies/cobblers/crisps, marmalades, jams, jellies, and candied nuts. Dried and preserved fruit helped many a colonial family through a winter when hunting and fishing were scarce. 

Here’s an overview of Highland Blessings:
Head to historic North Carolina where a brooch unites the lives and loves of four women. Dangerous accusations force Seona to leave Scotland with the brooch in tow, but will she find peace before her past is revealed? Years later, Fiona hopes to recover the brooch only to wind up on the whipping block. Can she trust the man who comes to her rescue? Seren sells the brooch to open a confectionery, but will the precious heirloom be lost to a hopeless dream? When the brooch is stolen, can Brynna reclaim it before she loses something even more valuable?

Here’s the official snippet about Gina's story:
When Scottish broker Finley Sinclair bargains he can sell Seren Cardew’s entire stock of candy for triple the selling price, she thinks he’s out of his newly-immigrated mind. But Seren is desperate to make a go of her fledgling business. With little funds left after selling a treasured family heirloom, Seren knows Finley’s proposal is what’s needed to save her dream. But on the way, he might steal her stock. . .and her heart.

Links to buy Highland Crossings:




Author bio:  Years—okay, eons—ago, Gina Welborn worked in news radio scripting copy until she realized how depressing human tragedy was, so she took up writing romances and now only thinks “It is time for a dead body?” when she’s at a lull in her newest manuscript. This Oklahoma-raised gal now lives in Richmond, Virginia with her youth-pastor husband, their five Okie-Hokie children, and a Sharpador Retriever who doesn’t retrieve much of anything (but he can sit really well). Her first novella, “Sugarplum Hearts,” part of the HIGHLAND CROSSINGS anthology, will be released by Barbour in February 2012. Her second novella, “All Ye Faithful,” in A CASCADES CHRISTMAS release later in 2012. Gina likes to put a spiritual spin on her rambling at www.ginawelborn.com or at www.inkwellinspirations.com, a team blog with eleven other inspirational authors.

Giveaway:  Gina is giving away a copy of Highland Crossings this week.  Leave a comment and your email address to enter in the drawing (next Sunday).

32 comments:

  1. WOW! Carrie and Gina what a fun interview. Gina you are GREAT! I love your honesty, the answer about Fame and Fortune was too cute. LOL!

    I have read "Sugarplum Hearts" and it was an amazingly "sweet" read. (YES! Sorry it WAS pun intended) :) I confess I too use wikipedia, and after reading about all the yummy sweet treats you mentioned, I looked them up. Now I REALLY want to taste one.

    Gina. I am looking forward to reading your next novella.

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    1. Yay, Teresa, I'm so glad you enjoyed Finley and Seren's romance! Since you mentioned my next novella, my second one comes out this fall in A Cascades Christmas.

      "All Ye Faithful"
      Every month for the last two years, E.V. Renier has petitioned the local brewery magnate for permission to marry his daughter. Despite receiving a sound rejection each time, E.V. continues in hopes of proving the faithfulness of his character. Heiress Larkin Whitworth has no idea of the quiet yet charming sawmiller’s devotion. Not until awful rumors about her rip through the town. As the Whitworth annual Christmas party approaches, Larkin fears E.V.'s love might not be as strong as the shameful truth she's trying to hide.

      So since I really ought to be talking about Sugarplum, what was your favorite scene (not giving any spoilers)?

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    2. I loved so many parts of it, but I guess one of my favorite's was when he gave Miss Keen a dress and then he explains to Seren what he had to do to be able to afford it. :) It was so precious, what a man! ~sigh~ lol!

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  2. This sounds interesting...I like the idea of a confectionary! Its interesting also....all things Scottish. The author biography is really nice, it gives a personal note as if we are really meeting Gina. I like that. =) Thanks for entering me in your drawing for a copy of 'Highland Crossings'...here's hoping....

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    1. Maggie Ann, I like the idea of a confectionary too. Yum. Thanks for enjoying my bio. Yep, that's the real me. I don't have an online persona, although sometimes I wish for one because then I could let her take care of all the things I tend to forget to do.

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    2. Or a personal assistant. I need to become a best-selling author not for the sake of being a best-selling author but that so I'd have an assistant. Or I could just make my kids work for me. Probably easier.

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  3. What a great interview! Congratulations, Gina, on your debut novella! I'm thrilled for you and look forward to reading this and your second. Who'd of known that you started your colonial research in your childhood on family outings that someday you'd be writing about it. How much fun, and I think many of us have similar memories. :)

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    1. Oh, Carla, you are so sweet! I look forward to reading your novella. Doesn't Colonial Courtship release this September? Just in time for ACFW conference, right?

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  4. Oh, by the way, that is one of the prettiest book covers ever!

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    1. Oh, thank you! I worked real hard on the cover. *snort* Okay, only in my creative memories. Actually, when Pamela, Laurie, Jennifer, and I were discussing our characters and showing character images, Pamela found this gorgeous picture of a red-headed girl that she used. The Barbour cover artists did a fabulous job matching Pamela's picture.

      Of course, what my heroine looked like was pretty much determined by Laurie's descriptions of her leads. Which I didn't mind because Owain and Fiona couldn't help but create a beautiful daughter.

      So how do you go about choosing the coloring for your leads?

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  5. Sounds deliciously wonderful! Looking forward to learning more on the Romancing America blog in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, I'd love to be entered.

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    1. Valerie, thank you again for hosting us on the Romancing America blog. I had such fun writing those blog posts for you.

      Maggie Ann, if you thought my bio here gave you a glimpse at who I really am, then be sure to read the authorized mini autobiography I wrote for Valerie to share. Yes, I can be weird at times, which my children happily like to remind me.

      Also, during the middle of the month, my team blog INKWELL INSPIRATIONS will be doing a focus on me. I confessed I thought the Week of's were a great idea when we were spotlighting other Inkies and their new releases. Now that it's me, I'm planning on note saying anything too embarrassing. Might even try not to have any typos in my responses. :D

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    2. VALERIE!!! So good to see you here! Will have to go check out what Gina spills over at your blog!

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    3. I'm sure it'll be my deepest, darkest secrets. One added benefit to decluttering a house to put it on the market is one realizes she doesn't need to keep those skeletons in the closet. Off to Goodwill they go!

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  6. I'd like to be entered for the drawing. It was a wonderful interview.
    slc925@yahoo.com

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    1. Hi, Sandi! What I forgot to say in my response to Valerie is I'm doing an Ultimate Sugarplum Hearts giveaway on Inkwell Inspirations. So if you don't win the free copy here, there's another opportunity over there. :D

      So what's your favorite thing about Colonial fiction?

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  7. The ladies in my church library would love this.

    Librarybooks at religious dot com

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    1. Reluvbe, you a sweet lady for wanting to win this to add to your church library. Since the church I attend doesn't have a library that carries much inspy fiction, I donate various inspy books I buy or get judging contests to my local public library. Warms my heart to peruse the shelves and see copies of books I donated now with curved edges on the covers. You never know who checks out the books.

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  8. Thanks for your interview with Gina, I like the sound of this book. She sounds like a young woman that can take care of herself. thanks for sharing your book.
    Paula O(kyflo130@yahoo.com)

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    1. Paula, one of the misperceptions modern-day readers often have is that pre-feminist revolution women were nothing more than house elves. (Yes, I finally know what a house elf is.) But in colonial days here in American, many women owned businesses. I love my country because of the opportunites she provided for women to become more than what their mothers were. Would be rather corny at the moment for me to break into a rendition of "God bless the U.S.A," wouldn't it?

      Thank you for enjoying Colonial fiction!

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  9. Congrats, Gina, on a stellar debut! Love the interview, too. I know we'll be reading lots more from you in future and I look forward to that very much. Pls. exempt me in the drawing as my copy is on the way:) Bless you and your precious family.

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    1. Laura, Laura, Laura, you are such a sweetie!

      Dear readers, if you ever have a chance to meet Laura in person, do so. I got to chat with Laura at the ACFW conference last year in St. Louis. Her character truly reflects Jesus in her. Plus I can't help but say COURTING MORROW LITTLE is one of my favorite historical inspys of all time. I cried numerous times reading it, and at least one of those tear-fests was out of yearing to write as well as Laura. Yes, I'm clearly a fan.

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  10. loved this posting...thanks for the chance to read this fabulous nove :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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    1. Thanks, Karen, for reading Carrie's interview of me. Dare I confess Carrie said I am the second most sane person she knows? #2 right after her husband.

      Obviously I am a fan of Carrie's psycho-analytical skills.

      I say this to Karen and everyone else, after you read Highland Crossings, I'd love to know what you thought about the collection. Working with Pamela, Laurie, and Jennifer was such a blessing and I hope our readers can see that comraderie in how our stories connect.

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    2. Thank you for adding analytical after psycho, lol! Having had the privilege of working with Laurie Alice Eakes, Pamela Griffin, and Joan Hochstetler on a novella proposal I have to agree that when you are with creative people who love what they do and who encourage you to do your best - well, there is nothing quite like it!

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  11. You guys never disappoint! Another great interview. Hey, I mentioned CQ on my blog today http://thesheepishscribe.blogspot.com/2012/01/liebster-blog-award.html and gave you special kudos. :)

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    1. Pegg, you rock! First for raving about Colonial Quills. Second because of your sheep header. Several years ago when I was revising my 1840 Victorian manuscript, I spent a day researching various sheep breeds. Your photo reminded me of the fun I had learning about sheep.

      And now that I've caught up on my responses (my apologies for taking so long to comment), I am happy to report I have proven numerous times that I am not a robot.

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  12. Carrie, thank you so much for hosting me on Colonial Quills. I hope your readers will enjoy my favorite apple pie recipe later this week.

    xoxoxo
    g

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  13. sounds like a really good book. I look forward to reading it.
    kelly_mann@hotmail.com

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    1. Thanks, Kelly! I hope you enjoy the anthology. :-)

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  14. Gina, I'm honored to be part of this novella collection with you. You are a delight to work with and I enjoy how God works through you, especially in HisWriters. d

    Blessings,

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