I'm amazed by authors who take accounts from the Bible and expand them into unique stories. Kandi Wyatt's new release
The One Who Sees Me, is based on a chapter from the old testament. Check out her book, it promises to be wonderful page turner.
Kandi, let me start with asking you to tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a mom of five ages 26, 21, 19, 18 and 13. My 18 year old headed off for college the day The One Who Sees Me was released. My 21 year old has moved back home for a while. So, I have three at home but only really see the 13 year old. When I’m not being mom, I’m wife to my knight in shining armor. We’ve been married for 22 years. My husband is just beginning a startup business as a photographer. So part of what we do together is his photography. I am either his model or a lighting assistant. If being a mom, wife, and photographer’s assistant wasn’t enough, I also teach middle school and high school students Spanish and leadership. In my spare time I either write or draw. I prefer graphite pencils but use colored pencils as well and am learning to really enjoy pastels.
You certainly do have a busy life. Will you tell the readers about The One Who Sees me?
Teenage slave girl Faru’s life has been turned upside down when she discovers she’s been traded to a new master, forcing her to leave all she‘s ever known. Upon her arrival, Faru meets a friend, Cailean, who helps her adjust to life in the strange location. Life settles into a new pattern, and romance blossoms between the young friends. But as soon as they plan to get married, another proposal comes about – one that cannot be ignored. Being a slave means not always marrying who you love.
On a daring journey to heal her heart, Faru encounters the Existing One. Will she trust Him and do His bidding even if what He requests is so hard?
Follow Faru’s tale in author Kandi J Wyatt’s retelling of a Biblical story found in the Old Testament book of Genesis, showing that when things don’t make sense, God will guide the way.
What inspired you to write this novel?
I’ve always been intrigued by the true story behind The One Who Sees Me. When our Sunday School class started to study about the characters in my book, I wondered if I could tell the story from Faru’s point of view. I began researching the meaning of the names. So, Cwen is an old English word for Queen. The names came from the Celtic and upper England area during the medieval times. It was fun to try to recreate the characters from real life and put them into a historical fiction tale.
What is your favorite scene/chapter?
I love the second interaction between Faru and her new master. In the lead up to the scene, we get a glimpse at her budding friendship with Cailean.
Faru nodded and turned to leave. As she did, she wondered how she would ever find the lord in this huge house. She needn't have worried. As she reached the bottom of the stairs and came into the long narrow servants' hall, Cailean almost collided with her.
"Faru!" the lad exclaimed, at the same time she exhaled a large thanks.
"Cailean, you are just the person that I need. Lady Cwen wanted me to go tell Lord Cegrol that she is ready to leave. I have no idea how to find him."
"Ah, a lady in distress. Sir Cailean to the rescue."
He bowed as he changed direction and took her arm to guide her through the unnaturally crowded hallway. He led her to a door and then through it. They had come into a private chamber. It was in disarray. Drawers lay open at odd angles. A chair was leaning against the wall supported only by one leg. Cailean continued through this room into the next where a large bed dominated the middle of the chamber. The covers had been stripped from it. A lone trunk stood opened but stuffed with clothes.
"Hmmm," Cailean paused to think. "He should be here."
He turned toward another doorway.
"Lord Cegrol?" he called.
"In here, lad," the musical voice Faru remembered answered.
"Come on. I need to get back, or my dad will have my hide."
Faru nodded and swallowed trying to get her courage up. She hadn't seen Lord Cegrol since the day he dropped her off with Kadi. Timidly she rounded the doorway. There he stood in the midst of a mess of laundry. It was as if a tornado had moved through the wardrobe, leaving clothes in disarray. The two wall sconces flickered through his coppery hair and accented his muscular build. Even though he was as old as her father, Faru thought he was quite handsome. She was brought back to her place when he spoke.
"Cailean? Are you there, lad?" He didn't even look up from the tunic he held in his hands.
Faru couldn't seem to catch her voice. When no answer came, Lord Cegrol looked up. A frown crossed his face, and then a smile played across his lips.
"Well, you are not Cailean," he said, stating the obvious.
Faru shook her head. "No, he had to go help his dad. I asked him to help me find you."
Finally, she realized that she was talking to the master of the house. Her words trailed off as she lowered her face.
Lord Cegrol replied in a soft voice that almost seemed to hold a laugh. "Well, you found me. How can I help you?"
"Oh," the word came out in a whisper. "Milord, Lady Cwen asked me to go find you. She is in . . ." Faru paused, realizing she didn't know exactly where Lady Cwen was. "She is upstairs," she amended, “and is ready to leave."
"Well, at least one of us is," the lord answered.
His helpless look made Faru bold. "Do you need help organizing and packing all of this?"
His expression was one of a young child lost in the market finally seeing mom. "Oh, would you, Faru?"
"Of course, milord," she replied and then remembered something. "Oh, Lady Cwen will probably want to know where I am."
"I can take care of that," Lord Cegrol assured her. "You just get started with this final trunk.” He indicated the one flowing over with clothes. “It needs to be folded and then my things will be finished."
"Yes, milord," she answered as she picked up the tunic that he had set down on the open trunk. She wasn't even aware of his gaze on her.
* * *
Lord Cegrol watched as this newest member of his household sorted through the clothes in the trunk and the clothes strewn on the floor. She was efficient and yet graceful. Her small frame was not overly petite, but showed the life of a servant. He wondered what had prompted King Cyning to give her to him. After a while, he quietly left to go tell his wife what had transpired.
Is there a message in this book, you want readers to grasp?
The main story of The One Who Sees Me is that although life may seem bleak and terrible, there actually is some hope. There is One who watches over you and filters everything through His fingers. I’ve been there. I wondered why I had to have abuse in my life. I felt as if I had lived a lie because I had suppressed all the memories until I was twenty-six. It wasn’t until I learned that God was there through it all and had a plan that I was able to heal and gain freedom. Faru has similar experiences. She is mistreated as a servant and wonders if The Existing One can see her and care about a lowly servant. When she meets Him, life changes.
That’s a remarkable testimony. And you’re so right about God. It’s the strength we get from His presence in our lives that makes us overcomers.
Tell us what the hardest part of writing is for you?
The hardest part of writing is finding time! I am a full-time mom, wife, and teacher. Being able to sit down and just write sometimes is very difficult. When I do have time, I can write a lot of words at once. Last week, I was able to squeeze out a half-hour to an hour Monday through Wednesday and was able to feel like I was gaining on my next novel.
Are you working on a new project you can tell us about?
I am currently working on a middle grade novel. Last year I oversaw a junior high study hall. I watched three students in particular with no homework but who hated to read. I gained a rapore with them and wondered what would happen if someone wrote them into a story. Would they read it? So, that’s what happened. I was pleasantly surprised to see a fourth student pop into the story as well.
The story is about four eighth graders, three boys and a girl, who find what they are led to believe is a thunderegg on the beach. When they take it to their science teacher, he guides them through what they know about Oregon’s State rock, and they realize that it can’t be a stone. They vow to protect what it is from a professor who seems unusually interested in their actions.
That sounds exciting. You must let me know when it comes out.
What genre do you write and why?
I write a combination of middle grade fantasy and young adult to adult Christian fiction. My middle grade writing began as a way of writing for my own kids. It now is writing for my students who I view as my own kids. I love fantasy. It is a good fit for me.
My Christian fiction stems from my walk with God. I write after I have studied the Bible. My desire is to bring truths or stories from the Bible to life. I enjoy giving Bible stories a fresh look so that people who have read the story so many times they know it by heart can see the story for the first time.
Kandi J Wyatt is a wife, mother of five, teacher, artist, and author. In her free time, she enjoys writing fantasy stories and Christmas programs, and drawing with graphite and colored pencils. Portraits are her specialty. Kandi also enjoys photography, thanks to her photographer husband who has let her join his journey as both his model and apprentice, and she occasionally serves as his assistant when he needs a “light stand with feet.” To learn more, visit Kandijwyatt.wordpress.com.
Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+KandiWyatt
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Kandi-J.-Wyatt/e/B00ZTC4T10/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0
*Find the Book*
Kandi, it was awesome to have you on Behind Every Story. Best wishes on your writing journey.
Join me in welcoming Teresa Ives Lilly's holiday release,
Love Found at Harbor Inn, Maine. A delightful Christmas romance
Christmas in Harbor Inn Maine
When Penny Trent, Owner of Cake Time in Harbor Inn Maine, meets Kyle London, a famous writer who has come to to close down his Grandmother’s coffee shop Just a Cup, there is an immediate attraction between them.
Penny, busy cooking for the Mayor’s Christmas party, the town’s annual Bake Off and trying to persuade Kyle to keep Just a Cup open, doesn’t have time for holiday traditions or to embark on a new relationship, even if it is with the man of her dreams.
Will Kyle be able to convince Penny to enjoy the holidays and believe in his desire to get to know her better? Will Kyle and Penny be able to save the coffee shop by combining forces and find a lasting relationship by Christmas?
Teresa Ives Lilly lives in Texas with her husband, near her grown children. She loves to write Christian Historical Novellas, although she dabbles in contemporary as well. You can see all her books at www.teresalilly.wordpress.com. She loves to hear from her readers at firstname.lastname@example.org
Purchase Love Found at Harbor Inn, Maine
See other books in the Love Found series
Love Found in Bandera, Texas
Love Found in Boerne, Texas
Love Found in Shamrock, Texas
Love Found At Harbor Inn, Maine
It's a pleasure to once again highlight Tracy Wainwright on Behind Every story. She's a Prism Book Group author, a remarkable lady and talented writier.
Tracy, tell the readers about Counting from Creation.
Counting from Creation is a fun book that uses rhymes to tell biblical stories for young children. The stories start with creation and end with a picture of heaven given in Revelation. The short rhyming poems engage children, encourage them to learn new vocabulary, and entertain them as they learn numbers and truths about God, with a little added bonus surprise hidden inside.
What inspired you to write this non-fiction children's book?
Counting from Creation began one night at the dinner table with my children. We were talking, laughing, and making up silly songs. The first couple of numbered rhymes popped in my head. I ran from the table, got a sheet of paper and pencil and wrote them down. It was probably about over the next month that I finished writing the book.
What is your favorite scene/chapter?
My favorite rhyme from the book is:
Nine men happy with the healing,
never came to gratitude express;
Only one returned praising God,
his gratefulness to loudly profess.
An example is he for us,
always remembering to give thanks;
Lest we forget, grumble, and complain,
thus becoming all around cranks.
That’s awesome Tracy. Will you tell us about the illustrator of your childrens' novella?
I was so blessed to be introduced to my illustrator, Angie Satterfield, by a mutual friend. She was a pleasure to work with and I hope to work with her more in the future. I love that she's local and we got to meet face-to-face several times during the work process and have kept in touch after. Angie is an elementary school teacher's assistant, wife, and mom of 2 wonderful boys.
Are you working on a new project you can tell us about?
I am working on a handful of projects right now. I'm in the editing process of my first traditionally published novel with Prism Book Group and am working on a non-fiction adult book called A Closer Walk. As much as I enjoy working on both of these manuscripts, I have to admit the most fun thing on my plate right now is a book called Broccoli for President. This is a middle grade novel about a 6th grade girl name Broccoli (you'll have to wait for publication to find out why). She's very shy, but gets bamboozled into running for class president by her out-going best friend, which leads to many ups and downs for her first year of middle school.
Tracy, that sounds like a wonderful book. Thanks for being on my blog. You're an awesome lady.
Mary, thank you so much for having me on your blog once again! It's such an honor and I'm blessed to get to know you through sharing love for the written word.
Here’s a couple social links for Tracy
Tracy Wainwright (@TracyWrites4Him) | Twitter
Behind Every Story is honored to highlight fellow Prism Book Group author, and cyber friend Julie Cosgove.
A big applause for Julie. She gracefully created Freed to Forgive, a book that tears at your heart strings and also makes you smile.
Shackled by her past, can she be freed to forgive? Abused in her Mexican village, Marisol’s anger is her ticket to freedom in America or so she thinks. But her temper lands her in worse and worse situations. Trafficked and pregnant, she gives up her baby so it can have a better life. Now, ten years later her past returns to haunt her, just when she has caught the eye of Jesse, the one man who wants to know her…and not just her body. Marisol has struggled hard to disguise her past, but will the unforgiving spirit she harbors prevent her from embracing her future?
Though delicately worded with veiled descriptions, this faith-based novel does depict some disturbing, yet unfortunately all too common, sex trafficking scenes necessary for the plot.
Disclaimer: Though veiled in description, this novel portrays realistic incidences of human trafficking necessary for the plot's development.
What others have to say:
This is a sequel to Julie B. Cosgrove’s other two books, Hush in the Storm and Legitimate Lies. Julie has done an excellent job of showing the hopelessness and pervasiveness of sex trafficking. And she does so without going into explicit detail. This is not a book to read for a warm fuzzy feeling, although it does have a happy ending. Read it instead to educate yourself, to stir up righteous anger, and for motivation to join the fight against human trafficking.
Mary L. Hamilton, Author Rustic Knoll Bible Camp Series
Freed to Forgive by Julie B. Cosgrove is an excellent weaving together of a heart-wrenching story line with a promise of hope and restoration. Marisol is a young woman who has endured more than anyone should have to—abuse and betrayal of the worst kind. She is also millions of other women throughout the centuries and around the world, even today, who are still held against their will in sex trafficking. For that very reason, the message of Freed to Forgive can speak to any heart, however broken or crushed, that is willing to listen…and let go.
Kathi Macias (www.kathimacias.com) is a multi-award-winning author of more than 50 books.
Freed to Forgive is the third book in Julie B Cosgrove's powerful series on human sex trafficking. The book is heart wrenching with raw emotions and a serious case of a poor self image. Following Marisol's life from the very beginning until she is a responsible adult opens the readers eyes to the total devastation in the lives of girls who are imprisoned in sex trafficking. This book is hard to put down. I highly recommend it.
--Lena Nelson Dooley, multi-award-winning author of the McKenna's Daughters series and most recent books 8 Weddings and a Miracle and A Texas Christmas
In Julie's novel, Freed to Forgive, the evil of human trafficking abusing girls is novelized. Julie connects our hearts to victims and reminds us that through God there is hope and redemption.
Peggy Sue Wells, author of The Slave Across the Street, a true story of a trafficked upscale Detroit teen.
"Julie B. Cosgrove's new novel "Freed to Forgive" captures the struggle of survivors as they face the past and move forward to the future through forgiveness. Through beautiful writing it captures the heart of true freedom and is a must read for all who need to forgive." Joy Brooks, Executive Director for Prayer For Freedom Ministry to Combat Human Trafficking
Excerpt from Freed to Forgive
Marisol Hernández did a double take. An icy tingle slithered down her arms. She recognized the woman’s face. One she never thought she’d see again. Jen Westlaw. Except now her name read Wilson?
She back-stepped a few paces to peer into Jen’s pixilated bluish-green eyes displayed on the Abundant Life Church’s marquee as it flashed the latest posts from their social media site. The face beckoned her—once again. Yes, definitely the same woman.
They met in 2013. The year Marisol’s life changed. Hadn’t the news reported she’d disappeared without a trace and was presumed dead years ago? Yet there she gleamed in 3D color.
A man with a handsome smile stood next to Jen in the photo. Tom, it read. She’d never learned his name, but she recognized him all right. He’d helped Jen escape. He had appeared again at the shelter on that horrid day—held Marisol’s hand, whispered she could trust him. She had, and part of her still regretted the decision.
Vivid memories flooded her thoughts, pressing against the emotional dam which she’d carefully constructed over the past decade. The hurt, once pooled deep inside, rushed from its stagnant state through cracks in her psyche. Waves of her secret torment rolled and crashed within the walls of her heart, threatening to drag her under. She gasped for breath.
“Watch it. Other people use this sidewalk.” A sharp male voice jolted Marisol back to the present. She’d absent-mindedly edged into the passenger’s path.
She dashed her gaze to the concrete. An old habit. Never look a man in the eyes. That had been pounded into her brain. And her back. Her last jefé once beat her with a belt for doing it. Ten lashes. Obey, or suffer. A tough lesson learned for a spirited, angry teenager who’d fought so hard to survive. She twitched her shoulder blade, the old pain jabbing her once again. Some scars never heal.
In a low voice she apologized to the stranger. “Lo siento. Um, sorry.”
“Yeah. Well, this isn’t Mexico.” Disgust vibrated through his words. “Give them some help and they think they deserve the world.” His grumbling faded with his footsteps.
Her eyes lifted back to the photo of the woman who had changed her destiny. Marisol should be grateful. But she wasn’t. The lady also represented every ugly, vile, and hurtful thing which happened to Marisol that year. Too many remembrances. So much shame. A tear trickled down her cheek. Oh, why did she have to see that face again? When could she finally forget?
With arms tight around her torso, the twenty-three-year-old Hispanic woman gulped back the emotions ebbing in her chest. That was not her life now. She spoke excellent English, carried a permanent green card, and held a good job…for which she’d be late if she didn’t pull it together. So why couldn’t she break her stare? As if the eyes…
Freelance writer, author and speaker Julie B Cosgrove leads retreats, workshops, and Bible studies. She writes regularly for several Christian websites and publications and has been published in the Chicken Soup for the Soul, Faith Filled Family Magazine, Upper Room's Devozine and Alive Now, The Secret Place, Light from the Word,The Journey and Good News Daily.
Besides ghostwriting and editing for clients, Julie has personally published three Bible studies,an inspirational, a devotional and several novels - Focused (2012), Hush in the Storm (2014) and Legitimate Lies (2015), Freed to Forgive (2015) and Navy Blues (2015).
She is a member of North Texas Christian Writers, Advanced Writers and Speakers, American Christian Fiction Writers, Toastmasters International, Daughters of the King and several web-based groups Julie has one grown son and lives in Fort Worth, TX with two cats.
Visit her website at www.juliebcosgrove.com
Julie, thank you for allowing me to host Freed to Forgive this week.
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