Tag Archives: Jan Watson

Come to the Kentucky Book Festival this SATURDAY, November 16th!!! Located in the Alltech Arena in the Kentucky Horse Park – Lexington, Kentucky: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Friends! When was the last time you had the unfathomable opportunity to meet over 150 (That’s right:  ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY) authors in the same place, featuring their books, offering to sign them personally, just for YOU?!!!

I’ve been blessed twice before to attend this event, as an attendee, never as an author, which makes this year doubly exciting and a double blessing and honor and privilege for yours truly…

The Kentucky Book Festival is at the Kentucky Horse Park, in their lovely-n-large Alltech Arena.  It’s all day long this coming Saturday, November 16th, from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Admission and parking is FREE!!!!


You do NOT want to miss this opportunity!  I call it heaven on earth, being the I-can’t-help-myself-bibliophile that I am.

My first book festival I attended was with Nancy-the-hugging-evangelist (Her name is explained in Chapter 4 of my book) Aguiar.  We not only got to attend the book festival, we also got to have lunch with Paula Deen and 1,498 others—Dare to ask us the story…

That year, I met the darling and engaging Jan Watson. I bought one of her books, immediately falling in love with her wit and wisdom, later inviting her to come and speak at one of our book club meetings.

Here are a couple of her excellent novels:

Jan then introduced me to Ann Gabhart, which led to us inviting Ann to come and speak at one of our book club meetings…

Can you see where I’m going with this?!!!

This year will be the 38th annual Kentucky Book Fair.  It’s in partnership with Joseph Beth Booksellers, one of my favorite all-time bookstores in Lexington.

You can go to Kentucky Humanities’ website to see who all will be at the book fair and strategize your mission upon arrival.  (I’ve got quite a shopping list. You can see a few I’ll be hunting for at the end of this post…)

Go to:  www.kyhumanities.org

There are so many authors, that many of us will be three to a table, shoulder to shoulder.  I cannot wait to meet these folks!  (Hot tip:  Be sure to get a good dose of caffeine before you come.)

Think Christmas gifts GALORE!!!

Just a few of the many notables include:  Wendell Berry and his wife, Tonya, Scott Pelley from CBS News and 60 Minutes, and Joe B. Hall (for all of you UK fans:  CATS! CATS! CATS!)

Fun sidebar:  I grew up around the corner from Joe B. Hall.  His son, Steve, and I went to Glendover Elementary School, and yes, we walked or rode our bikes to school.  (But not in the snow….)

This week I’m happy to report many of these authors have been visiting lots of classrooms in lots of schools.  Over 2,000 books were distributed to schoolchildren in an effort supported by the Kentucky Colonels, the Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation and Kosair Charities. Bravo!

Books at the fair will be positioned by genre:  Fiction, Non-Fiction, Children’s, and Poetry.  Books for ALL ages will be plentiful.

Kentucky Monthly magazine says it so well:

Load up your car and COME TO THE KENTUCKY BOOK FAIR!

We’re ALL excited to meet you…

‘Til next time!

P.S. These are just a few books on my radar for Saturday (The book descriptions were found in the Kentucky Book Festival catalog.).

Truth Worth Telling: A Reporter’s Search for Meaning in the Stories of Our Times
by Scott Pelley

Scott Pelley introduces us to unforgettable people who discovered the meaning of their lives in the historic events of our times. Truth Worth Telling is for readers who believe values matter, and truth is worth telling. Pelley, known for his work on 60 Minutes and the CBS Evening News, is a reporter and photographer whose work has been recognized with numerous honors, including 37 Emmy Awards. Sponsored by Campbellsville University.


A Prairie Girl’s Faith
by Stephen W. Hines

Although the faith of the Ingalls’ family pervades books in the Little House series, the more specific details of Laura’s faith have never been fully explored until now. Hines, a recognized authority on Laura Ingalls Wilder, has authored or compiled several best-selling volumes on her life.


The Faith-Filled Grandmother: Promises, Prayers, and Practical Advice for Today
by Teresa Kindred

Written with the help of grandmothers from across the world, this book provides a blueprint to mitigate the impact of a transient society, fragmented families, and strained relationships while sustaining Christian traditions. For 13 years, Kindred wrote a column for Kentucky Living magazine. Her blog, NanaHood, has been chosen as one of the Top Ten Grandparent blogs in the world.


Coach Hall: My Life On and Off the Court
by Joe B. Hall & Marianne Walker

Joe B. Hall was the head basketball coach at the University of Kentucky from 1972 to 1985. In this riveting memoir, Hall presents details about his life on and off the court. His record at UK was 297-100, and 373-156 over his career. Walker is a retired professor of English and philosophy.



Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the page above are “affiliate links.”

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You’re Invited to Book Club, Monday, October 26th, to Discuss “Buttermilk Sky” by Jan Watson

Friends! If you live anywhere near Louisville, Kentucky, you’re invited to join us for a lively discussion of a very lovely and lively novel, Buttermilk Sky by Jan Watson.

buttermilk-coverWe will meet at Middletown United Methodist Church (MUMC), Monday, October 26th, from 6:30-8:00 p.m.

11902 Old Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY 40243 www.middletownumc.org

11902 Old Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY 40243 http://www.middletownumc.org

While Jan lives in Lexington and cannot physically be with us next week, she’s been filling me in on what she’s up to. I’m excited to be sharing fun snippets straight from her. If only I could duplicate her accent, we’d be in business. She’s the best!

This novel, Buttermilk Sky, is my favorite so far. If any of you have read her others, be sure to either bring them or be ready to tell us some of your favorite parts, characters, etc. Needless to say, Jan offers us quite a variety for our enrichment and entertainment!








Last Fall I went to hear Jan speak to a Sunday School class at Harvey Brown Presbyterian Church. I also got to meet her sweet brother who drove her over from Lexington. She shared with us why she primarily sets her books in Eastern Kentucky.

She believes the folks from the mountains in Eastern Kentucky are strong, stalwart people. Her desire is to honor them because they are often maligned. I believe we catch some of this from Mazy who treats Cinnamon with love and respect vs. shame, disgrace, and judgment that some of Mazy’s fellow students offer her.

Foggy Morning Barn

Above and beyond admirable and less admirable character traits we’ll discuss, let’s not miss the number of Scriptures Jan includes, plus her emphasis on the urgent importance of being assured of your salvation.

One night when Mazy’s friend Ernestine is visiting her, Mazy recites a favorite Scripture after revealing it was her Mother who taught her how comforting Scripture is. “The words of Jesus were more soothing than any medicine could ever be.

Ernestine loves the sound of Scripture and asks Mazy if she can borrow her Bible sometime. Mazy answers, “The best way to remember Scripture is to write it on your heart….”

Then she probes further, “Do you know Jesus, Ernestine?”

Mazy can tell Ernestine is uncertain while procrastination to learn more tempts her. But, Mazy speaks boldly: “Don’t put it off, Ernestine. None of us knows how long we have on this earth.”

“The best way to get closer to Jesus is to read His Word. Start with the Gospels.”

Bible Study

While thinking about the Gospels, last week we talked about filling our mind with good things, especially from the Bible. Later this week, we will learn more on this most necessary-for-survival topic. Stay tuned!

Thank you, Jan, for your boldness, even in a novel. This speaks to ALL of us. May we be inspired with eyes open for people the Lord places in our paths. Hope your ears are burnin’ come Monday night!

Don’t forget to bring your book so you can share your favorite quotes with us, plus we’ll be reviewing the Discussion Questions on pages 343-345.

Please bring a Kentucky-themed treat to eat if time allows. The fact that Mark’s Feed Store is right down the street from MUMC, and they offer a delicious dessert which rhymes with Buttermilk Sky is not lost on yours truly. Now you know what I’m bringin’!!!

chess pie

Bring a friend or two or ten Monday night, October 26th! The more the merrier!!! Please call the church office to RSVP or if you have any questions : (502) 245-8839.

Let’s close with a beautiful Scripture Jan signs on all of her books, Isaiah 43:1-2:

“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.  I have called you by name; you are mine.  When you go thru’ deep waters, I will be with you.  When you go thru’ rivers of difficulty, you will not drown.  When you walk thru’ the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.”  (NLT)

‘Til next time!

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Filed under Bible Studies, Book Reviews, Speaking Engagements

You’re Invited to Join Us for Book Club at Middletown United Methodist Church next Monday September 28th!!! Featured Book: The Inn at Ocean’s Edge by Colleen Coble

Hi friends! I’m excited to report Book Club at Middletown United Methodist Church (MUMC) is resuming next Monday night! (September 28th from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.) Bring a friend and come hear Nancy Tinnell lead discussion on an eye-opening novel.

We’ll be discussing The Inn at Ocean’s Edge (A Sunset Cove Novel) by Colleen Coble. It’s certainly a book which keeps the reader on the edge of her seat!  


I’ve never known a book to have so many twists and turns to the plot right up to the very end. It’s full of suspense, who-done-its, mysterious disappearances, a blossoming romance, and surprises which make you say, “Oh, you’ve got to be kidding me!”

It’s also a welcome relief to see one of the characters rely on prayer so much. It’s a good lesson for us all straight from I Thessalonians 5:17 which says, “Pray continually.”

Claire’s Grandmother gives us another lesson:  “…take the trauma you’ve gone thru’ and let it make you stronger and more compassionate.”

Beth Moore says, “Allow your misery to become your MINISTRY.”

God says it best in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5, “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  God is our merciful father and the source of all comfort.  He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others.  When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.  For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort thru’ Christ. ” (NLT)

This was a first for me to read a book by Colleen Coble. This book is called a “Sunset Cove Novel” with the second in the series due out this December. Some of you may be familiar with Colleen as she’s written dozens of books, several in different series. (www.colleencoble.com )


Some of the characters in this novel are involved in a family-run cranberry bog business. Nancy found it only fitting to encourage us to bring a dish with cranberries in it to snack on Monday night.

I’m on the hunt for something with CHOCOLATE and cranberries, of course. (Rumor has it there will be door prizes along with some chocolate. Certainly a motivator for yours truly!)

Heart shaped pancakes with chocolate sauce and red cranberries on white porcelain plate. Celebration dessert. Indoors closeup.

Even if you haven’t read the book yet, come and hear the discussion! In meetings past, we’ve had friends come to hear the discussion and then decide if they’ll read the book or not!

Please RSVP to Nancy Tinnell at 1(502)245-8839 or you may email her at: Ntinnell@middletownumc.org

Be sure to mark your calendars for our very fun October 26th meeting! I will be leading the discussion over a wonderful book by Jan Watson called Buttermilk Sky. Many of you join me in being huge fans of Jan’s. There’s nobody like her.


‘Til next time!

(Get ready to read our final of four parts later this week in our Back-to-School-Survival series with the infamous Liz Curtis Higgs as Guest Author!)

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Why Can’t Anyone See I’m Still Mourning??? GUEST AUTHOR Angela Correll Teaches About Grace While Mourning… PLUS FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY!


Our gracious God orchestrated a connection with Stanford, Kentucky author, Angela Correll recently. Thanks to several friends, Jan Watson being one of them, our paths began to cross. (Jan was recently interviewed and featured here and here)

Additionally, Angela and I were connected via Nancy Sleeth as their husbands are friends and they share many interests. (Nancy also recently wrote a challenging article on Sabbath)

Next up, my buddy Judy Russell, (Hoping to hear from Judy in the next few weeks for you readers!) of the notorious Butter Babes, got to meet Angela when she was in Louisville doing a book signing at Carmichael’s for her novel GroundedJudy said, “You have GOT to meet Angela!”


 (***IF you comment at the end, you’ll be entered to win a copy of Angela’s book!***)

We (The Butter Babes) took it upon ourselves to take a road trip over to Stanford, become acquainted with Angela, and check out the farm-to-table restaurant she’s co-owner of, The Bluebird Café.   (www.bluebirdnatural.com )  Angela met us for a scrumptious lunch, even graciously treating us(!!!).  During lunch she and Fay realized they were at Georgetown College together, just a few years ago.  Can the world be any smaller?

Fay Bloyd, Angela Correll, Bonnie Johnson, Nancy Aguiar, Judy Russell and Yours Truly

Fay Bloyd, Angela Correll, Bonnie Johnson, Nancy Aguiar, Judy Russell and Yours Truly

bluebird salad

After lunch, Angela took us across the street to her darling store, Kentucky Soaps and Such.  We did some feverish shopping, including snagging some of her wonderful goat’s milk soaps and lotions and made-in-Kentucky gifts. (www.kentuckysoapsandsuch.com) Sidebar:  After running out of what I’d bought,  I ordered more products for myself and have given countless others away for gifts.  These have been a huge hit among my friends. My favorite is the body cream with the “summer rain” scent.

Kentucky soaps and such

A woman of many talents, Angela gave us tours of some of their newly renovated guest houses which are lovely. One of my friends booked one during Centre College’s graduation as they’re only ten miles from Danville.  These would be perfect for retreats, weddings, a romantic getaway, etc.  (www.wildernessroadguest.com )


Pictured here in the front row are: Nancy Aguiar and Bonnie Johnson. Back row, left to right is: Judy Russell, Fay Bloyd and Yours Truly

Pictured here in the front row are: Nancy Aguiar and Bonnie Johnson. Back row, left to right is: Judy Russell, Fay Bloyd and Yours Truly

The Butter Babes are pictured above on Angela’s front porch.  We loved seeing the goats wandering around whose milk they use to make the soaps and lotions.  Angela lives on this beautiful, rolling farm with her husband, Jess.  They raise grass-fed cattle, horses, goats and chickens.  (The Proverbs 31 Woman comes to mind.)


 A Time For Everything - Sunpic

by Angela Correll

There is a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Ecclesiastes 3:4

A season of mourning used to be practiced in our country as a time set aside for people to show the signs of grief outwardly.

Most of us are only able to picture that kind of grieving because we’ve seen a movie like “Gone with the Wind,” where proper society demanded the bereaved wear black for a year and turn down social engagements.

But well into the last century, a time of mourning was still common practice, with department stores having entire sections devoted to mourning clothes. A bereaved person was given the time and space to properly mourn and heal the loss of a loved one.

Everyone who came in contact with a person in mourning understood that something quite devastating had happened. They were given a little extra understanding, more time to be out of a normal routine, and more patience in everyday expectations. The time periods allotted could be anywhere from a six months to a year.

We lost our son-in-law two years ago in April. We loved him as a person, but he was also husband to our daughter and father to our dear grandchildren, only three and five years old. It was unexpected and it was shocking.

For about two weeks, we were able to grieve and stop our normal routine, but work demands gradually pulled us back in, and we made the attempt to continue life as we had before since it seemed that was what was expected of us.

But that’s like walking out of the hospital after your foot has been amputated and having everyone expect you to start running again in two weeks. No one thinks that though, because the bandages are a visible reminder of the surgery. That’s where mourning clothes would come in handy. It’s that outward sign that says to the world, “Give this person some room. They are not whole yet.”

Just as when a person heals from surgery, the whole of their physical strength is working to heal the injured place. This means they’re left with very little energy to do anything else. It’s the very same with an emotional injury like grief.

By the end of that first summer, the smallest of tasks exhausted us. I realized we made a mistake by trying to get back to normal far too soon. Yet it seemed everyone around us expected life to go on as before, although it would never be quite the same for us again. I longed for the culture of mourning so I could wear a reminder to others that things weren’t quite right yet and to please give us a little extra grace.

Truthfully, I have done the same to others by carrying on with unrealistic expectations. And it’s unlikely our society will go back to the mourning period anytime soon. But, it did make me think about others who have suffered losses. Since they aren’t wearing black, I don’t always know, but maybe it’s the store clerk who was a little short with me when I asked a question; maybe it’s the church member who didn’t smile and greet me; or maybe it’s someone I do know is grieving.

Whatever the case, I hope I can give out an extra measure of grace, just in case.

Angela Correll is the author of Grounded and the upcoming novel, Guarded. www.angelacorrell.com

——————————————–THANK YOU, ANGELA!————————

From Elizabeth now:

What wonderful words to live by!  It’s a shame we grievers don’t still wear black beyond the funeral!  May we all be in tune to those around us who are grieving while extending more grace.

Angela, we cannot wait for your NEXT NOVEL, Guarded, to hit the stores!!!  Coming December 1st!!!  (By the way dear readers, if you’ve not read Grounded yet, be sure to do that before Guarded hits the bookshelves!  It’s a wonderful page-turner full of blessings and surprises.)

Here’s what we have to look forward to in Guarded:

“When restoration of the old stone house uncovers a family secret, Annie must travel to Italy to search out the answer, leaving her grandmother with a disruptive houseguest, and dealing with her own paralyzing fears about her relationship with Jake.  Guarded is the sequel to Grounded, a bestseller on Amazon in Christian fiction and contemporary romance.”

(Favorite four words in the above paragraph: must travel to Italy.  Mamma Mia.  You’ve got my attention!!!)

Blessings to you, Angela, and we hope to make another road trip your way real soon!

Seems we are all on the same page over mourning this week… Please read more words of encouragement from Kurt Sauter.

‘Til next time!



Filed under Book Reviews, Friends, Guest Post

More Marvelous Minutes with Author Jan Watson, And FREE Book GIVEWAY of Buttermilk Sky!!! (Part 2 of Interview)

Welcome back!  Please join me for the second half of my interview with Jan.  Go fetch a cup of coffee or tea and join us: (If you missed last week’s interview, here’s the link to catch up…….) a cup of coffee with a heart shape toned with a retro vintage in Question #6:  Tell us something you enjoyed while writing Buttermilk Sky

Answer:  I enjoyed Mazy and her story.  She is so fun and innocent. buttermilk-cover Question #7:  Who’s your favorite character in Buttermilk Sky?

Answer:  I dearly love Chanis Clay.  I borrowed his name from a boy from Robertson County.  When I had a signing in the library there, he came and brought his Dad, Chanis and his Grandpa, Chanis.

Question #8:  What’s your favorite story from when you were a nurse?

Answer:  Once I wheeled a bouncing baby boy to his parents’ room for their first bonding visit.  The new dad took one of the little towelettes from the end of the crib and asked what it was for.

“It’s for hand-washing,” I said.

The dad nodded seriously before he ever-so-gently began to wipe the baby’s hands.

I didn’t say a word.  I wouldn’t have dared to spoil that sweet moment.

Question #9:  Tell us about your family…

Answer:  I have three sons and two close-as-daughters.  They are all nearby.   Also, I have three grand-cats.

Question #10:  Do you have an all-time favorite character from all of your books?

Answer:  Copper Brown is my all-time favorite character. She allowed me to indulge my desire to bring the lost, long-ago baby to life.

Question #11:  Which was the easiest novel to write and which was the most difficult?

Answer:  Troublesome Creek was the easiest to write because I didn’t know how hard it is to write a book.  The second, Willow Springs, was probably the hardest because how do you top the first? Willow-Springs-200x300 Question #12:  When you get stuck, what inspires you or helps get you unstuck?  Please say chocolate….

Answer:  I just listen for the story and write as it unfolds.  (Chocolate gets me into trouble.)

Question #13:  Will you please share with us why you inscribe Isaiah 43:1-2 on each of your novels when you sign them?

Answer:  Sometimes when I am writing, a whisper of Scripture will come to mind.  When  it does, I stop and get out my concordance and look up the Scripture and ponder on it.  The first time this happened, I was twenty-four pages in on my first book, Troublesome Creek. Troublesome-Creek-cover2-199x300 This book is based on the wisp of a story my Granny told me when I was a girl.  It’s about a baby who drowned in a flash flood up a holler in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky.

Even tho’ the novel I penned was fiction, Isaiah 43:1-2 was a comfort to me as I wrote the character of Julie, a young mother who gave her life to save her baby. In my heart, I wrote the book to save the baby whom I unwittingly named Laura Grace.

Years later, I discovered the connection between my story and the real story when a reader sent me the biography of Nettie Alberta Myers.  Mrs. Nettie Myers, along with her husband, ministered at a Bible College in Van Cleve, Kentucky. On July 5, 1939, Frozen Creek flooded taking the lives of many residents of Van Cleve including Mrs. Myers’ husband, her two sons, and her baby girl. Little creek flooding When I opened the biography of that sainted woman, the Scripture from Isaiah fairly leaped from the page:

Isaiah 43:1b-2, says, “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

I’ve since been honored to visit the grave of Mrs. Myers and lay copper-colored roses by the stone commemorating Lela Grace, her swept away baby.

God truly works in mysterious ways.


Wow!  Did you catch that amazing story? Go back and look at the babies’ names!!!  God is good.

Last fall, Jan had a book signing in Louisville.  Yes, I crashed the party for three reasons.  One:  if Jan is anywhere nearby, I don’t want to miss her, Two:  I’d ordered several copies of Buttermilk Sky, deeming them perfect Christmas gifts which she most graciously signed for some friends, and Three:  if you ever get a chance to hear her read from her books, it’s a priceless experience you do not want to miss. (You’ll never read her books the same without hearing her voice speaking to you. )

Jan reminded us she hails from Robertson County, and was raised on a tobacco and dairy farm.  She frequently got to visit her Granny in Breathitt County.

Her Granny had thirteen children, two of which died.  Her Pawpaw was a coal miner.  You may remember Skip Rock Shallows is set around a coal mine  and the eye-opening mishaps that can make or break you. Skip-Rock-Shallows-200x300 One consistent thread in all of her books is the presence of Eastern Kentucky culture.  She always honors these “strong and stalwart faithful people” because she feels they’re so often maligned. She also tries to make things fair in her novels since “too much is unfair in this world.” Amen and amen…

Finally, a teensy teaser from Jan’s most recent novel, Buttermilk Sky:  You’ve already heard from Jan of her fondness for Sherriff Chanis Clay and Mazy Pelfrey. (Pelfrey is Jan’s Mother’s maiden name.)

A mind boggling romance is already in place between Mazy and Chanis, complicated by a rather rich young man in Lexington, where Mazy is attending secretarial school.  Irony’s not lost on this fellow’s name, “Loyal”.  Chanis seems a tad more smitten than Mazy which complicates the Lexington locale.

Chanis travels back and forth from Skip Rock.  We readers begin wishing he were living in Lexington. Which suitor will Mazy choose?

Map Of Lexington Kentucky Will she uncover Loyal’s disloyalty?  Will she survive the frightening river episode?   Oh, dear friends, so many challenges.  How will Jan wrap this up? You know the answer…You must read Buttermilk Sky to find out!!!

One of many favorite parts where Jan incorporates God’s Word is found on page 171: “When Mazy was a girl, she had dreaded bedtime.  The darkness seemed to rush at her, trying to pull her under its monstrous wings and carry her away.  Her mother had taught her to recite a comforting Scripture when she was scared…

The words of Jesus were more soothing than any medicine could ever be.”  Old Holy BibleWithout realizing it, Mazy began reciting John 14:2-4,In my Father’s house are many mansions:  if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.”

Mazy’s friend Ernestine, listening said, “That’s so pretty…I like the way they sound.  Can I borrow your Bible sometime so I can copy them?”  Don’t you LOVE that???

I mustn’t give any more pearls away.  Run, don’t walk to your nearest bookstore and grab Buttermilk Sky.

Or, try your chances first to WIN A FREE COPY!  Post a comment and my sweet husband will draw one of your names next Thursday.  I’ll contact you by email to find out where to mail the book.

‘Til next time!

Don’t forget to post a comment!!! 


Filed under Author Interviews, Book Reviews

Please Join Me for An Insightful Interview with Author Jan Watson, Part 1 of 2

God was most gracious to cross my path with author Jan Watson several years ago. He did this in my hometown of Lexington, Kentucky in Rupp Arena, no less. (GO CATS!!!) main-header1 My friend Nancy Aguiar and I had road tripped it over to attend a Book Fair and have lunch with Paula Deen. Yes, the Butter Queen. Lest you be impressed, Nancy and I, and one thousand five hundred and ninety-eight others joined Paula for lunch.

Prior to our going downstairs for lunch, Nancy and I wound our way around countless tables, with countless authors, with countless books at the Book Fair. Heaven comes to mind. Stacks Of Books The very last table we came to beheld the cutest lady named Jan Watson. We were immediately drawn to her. Turns out her book was her first-ever published book! She had won a publishing contract with Tyndale publishers from a contest she’d entered! Troublesome-Creek-cover2-199x300 Oh, this gets better. The contest Jan entered was one the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writer’s Guild First Novel Contest sponsors. Jan’s husband encouraged her to enter. She’s a retired nurse and had been writing away since her retirement, with prodding from her husband.

The best part? Jan turned sixty years old the year her book published! Isn’t that a light to hang your hat on for all of us writers out there???

The worst part? Tragedy quickly struck. When Jan went to Colorado to accept the award, her husband died suddenly back in Lexington. Can you imagine?

The silver lining lesson for us all? She had a little conversation with God on the airplane home that night, rushing back to Lexington.

She told God she was mad and didn’t care if she made it back home or not. He quickly spoke to her spirit, “Jan, remember….YOU are not the only person on this plane.” In other words, “There are plenty of other people also hurting in this world and your mission is to continue to do what you’ve been doing.”

And the Lord’s been with her every step of the way.  We praise you, Lord.

Troublesome Creek is Jan’s first novel. The book I’ll be telling you about next week, Buttermilk Sky, is her eighth novel!!! Whichever one of hers I’m reading becomes my current favorite. Her style is so dear, so encouraging, laugh out loud funny, crazy suspenseful, very visual, and always full of God’s grace and lessons. buttermilk-cover This week, please enjoy the first half of my interview with Jan. You’ll love her candid sense of humor and determination. Go make a cup of coffee or tea and sit with us… a cup of coffee with a heart shape toned with a retro vintage in INTERVIEW: Question #1: What’s in your frig? (This question was Jan’s idea!)

Answer: Red grapes, diet Coca-Cola and Colby cheese. Red Grapes On White Question #2: Are you a dog or a cat person?

Answer: I love both. I have a Jack Russell terrier, Maggie, and a domestic short-haired cat, Willy. (I once closed Willy up in my fridge. He is a cool cat.) Maggie Question #3: What is the toughest season you’ve had to endure?

Answer: I suppose being a widow is one of the most difficult seasons. It is a season of sorrow that doesn’t end.

Question #4: What lesson did God reveal to you on the other side?

Answer: During the summer following my husband’s sudden death, I began to hear strange sounds emanating from the thick hedges under the windows of my ranch-style house. It was a reptilian sound and reminded me of those prehistoric raptor birds in Jurassic park. Errr-errr-errr-errr…

I would hear it whenever I went outside to get the mail or to walk Maggie. After a lady up the street found a large lizard in her swimming pool, I began to imagine that one of those slithery things was nesting in my hedge. brown Lizard, asian lizard or tree lizard I figured when it got hungry enough, Maggie might become a tasty treat. After several days of this, curiosity overcame my fear. My common sense told me to call Critter Control.

Instead, I prayed for protection before I carried a large flashlight and a broom handle into the bedroom at the end of the house where the sounds were the most pronounced. Vector flashlight on dark striped background I closed the door (to protect Maggie), took the screen and the lower storm window out, and sat down on the ledge, keeping my feet well inside the house. I shone the light into the overgrown bushes and poked around with the broom handle. My heart lept to my throat when my efforts were rewarded with an intensified errr-errr-errr-errr!

Then I heard that still small voice, “Look up, daughter. Look up.” From over my head, I saw a long nail sawing back and forth in the metal gutter. Errr-errr-errr-err.

And now whenever I am fearful or dismayed, I remember and LOOK UP. Looking Up Question #5: What’s your current project you’re working on?

Answer: Perhaps a Christmas novella featuring Copper.


We can’t wait for a novella about Copper! She’s one of my favorite characters!!!

Next week, we’ll finish the interview, which includes an only-God-could-pull-this-off-incident as well as pearls Jan shared at a recent book signing I attended. We’ll also touch on Buttermilk Sky . IF you comment, you’ll be entered in a drawing to WIN a copy!!!


Meanwhile, you can find out more about Jan’s other novels (See covers below) on her website: www.janwatson.net Skip-Rock-Shallows-200x300 StillHousePond-200x300 SweetwaterRun-198x300 tattlers-branch-200x300 TorrentFalls-200x300 Willow-Springs-200x300 ‘Til next time!


Filed under Author Interviews, Book Reviews

Fantastic Opportunity to Meet and Hear Author Jan Watson, Monday, April 28th

Those of you anywhere near Louisville, please mark your calendars for next Monday, April 28th, from 6:30-8:00 p.m.!!! You will have the opportunity to meet and greet Author Jan Watson. Call all your friends and head to Middletown United Methodist Church for an evening of fun, encouragement, and blessings.


11902 Old Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY 40243 www.middletownumc.org

11902 Old Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY 40243 http://www.middletownumc.org

If you don’t know Jan, you’ll immediately fall in love with her, her humor, sincerity and writing. She is some kind of an amazing gal.

I first met Jan (totally believing to this day the Lord orchestrated our meeting) in Lexington at a huge Book Fair. She has an only-God-could-pull-this-off kind of story.

A retired nurse, she’d always had it in her heart to write.   Jan jumped at the chance to enter a writing contest. Not just any writing contest….Jerry Jenkins’ Christian Writer’s Guild Writing Contest! Without further suspense, she WON.

Jan Watson

Her winning entitled her to a publishing contract with Tyndale. She was a mere sixty years of age when her first book released. I’m even happier to report, she’s still writing and after just celebrating her seventieth birthday, book number eight is complete, due out in the Fall. Be sure to ask her about it!

Branches Book Club will be hosting Jan Monday the 28th. We’ll be discussing her seventh novel, Tattler’s Branch. Jan grips you in the beginning and takes you on many twists and turns full of surprises, moments of fun, and some tear-filled ones requiring a nearby Kleenex.

You’ll fall in love with some of her characters, and then one or two others make you want to take justice in your own hands. A gripping and visual writer, you’ll agree you’re more than ready for Jan’s next book when you finish this one!

She is also gifted at bringing in the importance of reading and applying (and memorizing!) God’s Word for future peace and comfort in trying situations. How she comes up with some of these “situations” in her books is beyond me.

Tattler's Branch

Bring your book with you and Jan will sign it for you. Be thinking of questions for her too. She loves to answer them, as well as hear comments from you, her readers.

Last fall I had the opportunity to connect Jan with Nancy Sleeth and Kelsey Ach. (For more information, click here. This post also includes the story of how Jan and I met. Crazy fun.)

Lexington authors need to know one another, don’t you think?!!! We had a ton of fun that day. I’ve spoken of Angela Correll from Stanford, KY before, too, and she and Jan met in a writer’s class years ago. Thumbs’ up to all these girls’ books:

Almost Amish Sleeth

grounded cover

Try your hardest to get to this meeting as this is the last Book Club meeting of the school year. Branches will resume in the Fall.

To RSVP for the meeting or if you have any questions, please call Kelly or Nancy at (502) 245-8839.

See you Monday, April 28th, from 6:30-8:00 p.m.!!!

Next month we’ll tackle a tough subject I keep returning to: Margin. Be ready for some R & R, fresh from God’s Word.

‘Til next time!

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Filed under Author Interviews, Book Clubs