Hi friends! JoAnn Durgin here. If you haven’t been introduced to author Christina Coryell (yet), grab a cup of your favorite beverage and visit with us today! I had the pleasure of getting to know Christina recently, and she’s a warm, lovely, talented, and truly funny writer! Christina is an Amazon bestselling author of Christian women’s fiction who lives in southwest Missouri with her husband and two children. She is rarely alone when she does her writing, which leads to lots of creative situations. She’s written with kids climbing on her, loud guitar riffs playing in the background, and while cheering on her favorite baseball players (most often in the back hatch of her SUV while her kids ride their bikes).
Her books include A Reason to Run, A Reason to Be Alone, A Reason to Forget, and For No Reason, the four books in her popular, highly rated The Camdyn Series. The first book of the Girls of Wonder Lane series, Simply Mad, will be available in late June. The link to Christina’s author page on Amazon is below. If you click the yellow/gold FOLLOW button, you will receive notification of her new releases! Here’s that link: http://amzn.to/1AAEG9K.
Be sure and check out her generous giveaway below, but you must leave a comment to qualify! I asked Christina what she loves, and here are her answers:
*Music–nearly every kind. The main character in The Camdyn Series is crazy about Michael Bublé. I listened to him for a while for “research” and wound up in love with his voice. I also adore loud rock guitars and soft piano music, and most everything in between. I went to state competition for piano every year of high school, and I seriously considered majoring in songwriting in college. I still write songs for fun; I wrote one just last week, in fact.
*Anne of Greene Gables movies. The looks Gilbert Blythe gives Anne, and her poetic tendencies…sigh. When I find new friends like Gilbert and Anne (in fiction, movies, or in my life), I still consider them kindred spirits.
*Rain. Something about it makes me feel comfortable and safe…as long as I’m not driving.
Without further ado, here’s Christina to share some more with us!
Just a Coincidence?
When I made the decision early last year to begin writing, it wasn’t because I suddenly had a desire to pluck the stories from my head. Writing has been in my blood for as long as I can remember, and I still have samples from as far back as the fifth grade to prove that fact. Even when I was in college, when people would wonder what I was going to do with degrees in English and History, my internal response was, “I want to write great books.” One can hardly say that out loud, though, and be taken seriously.
As long as writing had been my passion, there was also an innate sense that I wasn’t really free to do so–that the timing wasn’t right. When I say that, I’m not talking about my timing, because that is never right–there’s always something pressing to steal time away. Last year, for the first time, I felt free to write. It wasn’t because I suddenly had loads of spare hours on my hands. Let’s be real. I’ve got two kids and a job and a massive mountain of laundry that won’t go away. I managed to find the time, though. When you’re on God’s timetable, things have a way of falling into place.
In my first novel, there is a running theme about coincidence and whether or not everything happens for a reason. About three-quarters of the way through writing, I was naming some unimportant characters, and I basically just threw in some monikers without even considering them much. When they lined up a short time later to create a major plot point that I wasn’t expecting, I immediately had goose bumps. It was in that moment, looking at those accidental names, that I really knew that God was right there with me, and I understood why He wanted me to wait for this particular story.
You see, I had never planned to write a romance. I had toyed with the ideas of many novels, but the two that I absolutely longed to write were about a specific historical time period and about a crushing life event, not love stories. When I began daydreaming about Camdyn Taylor and Cole Parker, with all the feelings and hopes that go into meeting that special person, their lives tumbled out of my mind as though the book was already written.
I knew at the end of the first book about Camdyn that her story wasn’t ending, and I had to continue it into a second novel, but the realization that I received when I considered that fact was even more stunning: Those two books that I wanted to write all along were absolutely Camdyn’s story, and they fit perfectly as the third and fourth books in the series. Not only did God walk through the process with me, but He even sent me the perfect characters and the backstory to share the topics that were on my heart. That doesn’t feel like a coincidence – that feels like a divine blessing.
Perhaps that’s why I am so in love with my friends from The Camdyn Series back in that small town in Tennessee. They were really never mine; I just got to borrow them for a little while so I could share them with you. The very night they meet each other in A Reason to Run, Camdyn and Cole discuss coincidence with Cole’s Aunt Rosalie. Here’s the scene so you can get a taste:
“It’s a good thing Cole came across you,” Rosalie said, taking a sip of hot chocolate where she leaned against the kitchen counter. “There’s a low water area just a couple miles up, and who knows how that would be in this storm!”
“Well, you have no idea how happy I was to see him!” I told her. “I had all but given up. I was sitting there praying for an angel to come rescue me, and all of a sudden there he was. It was a very lucky coincidence.”
“Sorry, can’t agree with you there,” Cole interjected, gazing over at me. “I don’t believe in that stuff.”
“What, angels?” I asked.
“No, coincidence,” he explained. “I think everything happens for a reason.”
QUESTION FOR READERS (please answer in the comments section for the opportunity to win one of Christina’s books–paperback or eBook, winner’s choice!): Have you had a “coincidence” that you knew was the hand of God at work?
I would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks for letting me share my own thoughts with all of you. ~Christina Coryell