After the Launch

Taking it Easy Now

After the book launch, one may think it’s time to relax. Wrong. Now, the real work begins. The launch of a new book loosely compares to the birth of a new baby. Now that it’s out, it needs constant attention for a while. Serious stuff.

I would never leave a newborn infant alone. It would die without my care and nurturing. That beautiful little bundle of deliciousness needs loving care. Same with a new book. I have to feed it by sharing it with others. I talk about it, take it out to show it off. I schedule book signings and events and parties.

If nothing else, I advertise it, market it, blog about it. Whatever I can do to help it grow. But don’t crowd friends and family, lest they run when they see you coming. 🙂 Look farther out!

But that’s enough about business. It’s a gorgeous day as summer meanders toward fall. The corn is tall, the moon is full, and they say we’ve one more night to see those three beautiful planets lined up in a row.

If you have a new baby, be it a real infant or a brand new book, I pray your journey is blessed beyond measure. As with a child, it’s more important to spend the time and enjoy the moments than to bask in the limelight. Enjoy the season and take time to see the sights.

Launching a Book

Yes, I know it’s not Thursday (tomorrow is), but it is release day for Annabelle’s Joy. It’s one of those times that authors celebrate with great trepidation—did you know you can be trepidatious? (Silly side note). Apprehension may be a better word for the way I feel.

All I know is, I’m eagerly awaiting the outcome of this one.

If you’re a regular here, you already know what the book is about. If you’re not a regular, thanks so much for stopping in. You’ll find more information at the end of this post. What I really want to do right now is introduce a few folks who helped me get to this point.

Marji Clubine is the owner of Write Integrity Press, the publisher of most of my books. Those of you who self-publish have an idea of what goes into the publishing process. Marji gives of her time and talent and I appreciate it more than I can say.

My editor this time was Lillianne Kohler. I’ve not worked with her before. She has a good eye for detail. She did an excellent job, finding my mistakes and smoothing out the rough spots. I’m the first to admit, I need all the help I can get. Which reminds me of three others, Nike Chillemi, Gail Johnson, and Kristi Robinson Horine, the members of my ACFW critique group. All my chapters have passed through them at least once. They make a great team and are some of my best cheerleaders.

I can’t keep going day after day without the encouragement and prayers of my family, my church, and my closest friends. Not only do they show up when I have a booksigning, but they urge me on during the downtimes. “When will the next book be coming out? I can’t wait to read it!”

I am so humbled and honored to be loved by a man who gives me the freedom and the time to spend staring at my computer, making up stuff. He’s been more like a coach than a cheerleader, and he inspires me to keep pressing on by showing me how. He keeps going, keeps believing in me, even when things don’t look promising.

Annabelle’s Joy is dedicated to a couple of friends I’ve known since they were in high school. Patti and her sister, Linda, lost their husbands within months of each other. In the following days, months, and years, I watched prayerfully as the two made their separate journeys through this deep sorrow and loss. Sadly, these were not the only losses they’d endure over the next few years. I was inspired by their strength (though they didn’t feel strong). But isn’t that how it usually is?

When we are weak, He is strong. God shows up in the dark times, giving us strength to continue on. Though I couldn’t begin to know what it was really like, their experience helped me flesh out Annabelle’s struggle to overcome her losses.


If you’re on Facebook, come visit the event page for the book launch! I’m giving away several prizes, and also giving opportunities for you to help with my release. There’s no purchase necessary, you just need to check in by clicking “Going” at the top. That will get you entered in the drawing. Then, feel free to read the posts and take part in any discussion.

Now, here’s how you can help: There will be a post titled: Reviews from Readers. If you’ve read one or both of the Kinsman Redeemer books, please leave a short review on the event page (I loved it! is a great review).

Here’s the link to the event page:

Facebook Event Page for the Book Launch: Annabelle’s Joy

If you’re not on Facebook, you can still enter to win prizes by leaving a comment on this post, or via my Contact Me tab on this website. Just say, “Count me in” in the message (or something similar).

Another 3 Questions! I’m also on the Inspired Prompt blog today, answering their 3 Questions. Here’s a link to the interview: 3QW at Inspired Prompt.


A 1950s Clean & Wholesome Romance

She’s waited too long. When Tom proposed last year, Annabelle wasn’t ready to open her heart to another man. Pain still held a thin crust around it. Time has healed her heart, but with a new woman in town, one who clearly has her sights set on Tom, does it matter if Annabelle’s heart is ready to love again?

Folks in town are keeping a close eye on their pharmacist, hoping to be the first to hear the good news. He’s been courting the widow Cross for nigh on two years now. Annabelle Cross better wake up and put her dancing shoes on. Mr. Tom is prime real estate.

Drift back into the simple, country life of Tennessee in 1957 with this sequel to award-winning ANNABELLE’S RUTH.

Annabelle’s Joy – Kinsman Redeemer, Book 3

Genre: historical romance

Author: Betty Thomason Owens

Release Date: August 7, 2019

Amazon Buy-Link: https://www.amzn.com/B07TXQRKG3/

Joy Comes in the Morning

For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. ~ Psalm 30:5 KJV

When troubles lay like a heavy blanket on our souls, it’s difficult to believe the pain will end. Annabelle Cross, heroine of my latest novel, endures unbelievable pain after losing her husband and both sons in a tragic boating accident. Three years after the incident, she still suffers bouts of sadness and melancholy.

But for Annabelle, life is about to take a turn.

In the third and final installment of my Kinsman Redeemer series, Annabelle will discover that happiness is not as important as joy. Happiness is a dance on the surface, but joy is a deep dive into tranquil waters.

In a few short days, Annabelle’s Joy releases. I’m nervous and excited at the same time. I hope my readers will love where the journey ends.

If you’re on Facebook, I have started an event page for the release. It will be live for the week of August 7 (the release day) through August 14. You’ll find fun facts posted there, along with a couple of Annabelle’s favorite cookie recipes and maybe a quick game or two.

And of course, there will be prizes. You don’t have to buy anything to enter. You don’t even have to sign up for a newsletter. Just check in and leave a comment or two.

If you’ve read Annabelle’s Ruth and/or Sutter’s Landing (books 1 & 2), I hope you’ll stop by the event page and leave a short comment about the book.

This all begins on August 7, but before that time, my other books will be on sale–maybe even free on Kindle. So keep an eye on my Amazon author page!


Wandering Through the Garden – Today, you can find me on Catherine Castle’s beautiful blog, talking about gardens. Here’s a shortlink to the post: https://wp.me/p2dBDK-1PN

Goodbye July Thoughts

Can you believe it? This is my final post for July! It seems summer only just arrived. In two or three weeks, depending on where you’re from, school will open and summer will officially end for families with children. I need to get busy having fun!

Hello, Thursday Morning readers! Thanks so much for stopping by.

I’m getting ready for a book launch! Amid all the work and excitement, I tend to turn retrospective. It’s not always a bad thing. I’ve read a lot of posts lately about self-esteem and self-image. Writers releasing books often have to put on their “happy in my skin” masks so they can market themselves with a positive image. After all, who wants to buy a book written by a depressed hermit? Not me.

Not that I’m depressed, or a hermit. My teen years were spent trying to hide the fact that an emotional trainwreck lived in my body. I had such low self-esteem, I wouldn’t even attend my senior prom. The real reason for that? All my friends would show up looking gorgeous, and I would look dowdy and ridiculous. You see, my opinion of myself did not match the image in the mirror.

I look back at photos taken of me in those days, and I wonder why I thought I was fat. Why could I not enjoy those years? What blocked my joy? Self image. Low self esteem.

I can’t blame my parents. I now know my mother’s lot was not much better. To this day, she tends to pick at herself. Too-big ears, ugly feet, unattractive legs, and unruly hair. Looking at her, I see none of those things. She is only twenty years my senior. In grade school, my teachers assumed she was my sister.

She was slender and beautiful and attracted attention everywhere we went, mostly because of her smile. Okay, maybe she IS the reason I felt so dowdy. I did not inherit her body type. I was not slender. I have normal ears and straight hair that was never difficult to arrange, but that wasn’t really enough to make me feel beautiful. I realize this is normal among teens in general and in teen girls especially. Over the years, I’ve come to accept those parts of myself that I can’t change. Even so, there are still times when I look in the mirror and cringe.

How do we overcome a negative self-image?

Maybe by moving our attention to others. Be a friend/wife/mother/etc., who loves at all times. Shoulder their burdens, be in the present with them. Laugh with them, cry with them. Maybe by not caring so much what others think about things like clothing choices or our ability with the comb and makeup brush. Or, how high that little needle points on the bathroom scale.

I mentioned above that I need to accept the things I can’t change but I do need to change the things I can.

I need to make good decisions when it comes to my health and what I take into my body.

I need to make sure I drink plenty of water and get the exercise I need.

Another thing I can change is my stress level. Sometimes I just need to breathe. I need to back away from things and take my hands off the steering wheel (but only when I’m not the driver!). Laugh and enjoy life in the moment (as in the above photo!).

I know I’m not alone in this, and things that work for me may not work for others. So, how do you cope with self image? What are your favorite scriptures to bolster those low times?

Sometimes I just need to breathe. I need to back away from things and take my hands off the steering wheel (but only when I’m not the driver!). Laugh and enjoy life in the moment–Click to Tweet


The official release date for Annabelle’s Joy is August 7, 2019. Meanwhile, join me on Facebook for the pre-release fun, activities and giveaways!

– AND –

You still have a few more days to enter to win a free year of reading from Kindle Unlimited. You can enter here: https://www.writeintegrity.com/sweepstakes

Beautiful Hands – A Devotion

Welcome to Hello Thursday Morning‘s devotion. As promised, every third Thursday will feature a devotional writing by one of my friends.

Beautiful Hands

By Harriet E. Michael 

Read: Isaiah 52:6-9

“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’” Isaiah 52:7(NIV)

“You have beautiful hands. Are you a hand model or something?” The question came from a lady working at Wal-Mart’s Money Center. I was there to wire money to a pastor friend in Africa.

The recipient of the money is a native pastor who lives and works amid adversity the likes of which I have never experienced. The money I was wiring was a gift from my mother’s women’s mission group. My role was nothing more than errand boy. I wired the money simply to help my mother. But as I handed the money across the counter, this woman paid me a compliment.

I looked down at my hands. They used to be pretty – long slender fingers with strong nails. But that was many years ago. In the past few years, I have developed arthritis in my fingers. And though I still try to make my hands attractive by painting the nails, my joints are swollen and two of the fingers bend quite noticeably.

I held my hands up and commented on my arthritis as I thanked the lady just the same. She said she had not even noticed until I pointed it out to her. I remembered God’s word, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.” I smiled as I left Wal-Mart, because I knew the reason my hands looked pretty today.

Prayer: Oh Lord, make our hands and feet beautiful in your sight. Make them to eagerly work to bring the good news of your salvation to the nations. In Your Son’s name, Amen.

Thought for the day: God makes everything beautiful in its time.