Keli Gwyn's Blog
February 16, 2015
I’m thrilled to reveal the cover of Family of Her Dreams, my first Love Inspired Historical, which will be a June 2015 release.
The Harlequin design team does a wonderful job with the covers for all three Love Inspired lines of sweet, God-honoring romances: Love Inspired (contemporary), Love Inspired Suspense and Love Inspired Historical.
When creating covers for Love Inspired Historical, the designers have to find a balance between historical accuracy and modern readers’ expectations.
On occasion, historical concessions are made. Such is the case on my cover. I spotted three.
One historical concession is that my Victorian housekeeper heroine, Tess, wouldn’t have let her boss, Spencer, see her with her hair down. A proper lady wore her hair up.
Can you spot two other historical concessions? I’ll give you a hint. They involve the children’s clothing.
There are a number of historically correct details as well. Here are a few…
Tess’s dress is modest, and she’s wearing plenty of petticoats.
Like most Victorian men, Spencer is wearing a waistcoat instead of being seen in his shirtsleeves, and he’s wearing a hat. Both items were part of a gentleman’s attire, even on the hottest of days.
Little Luke is wearing suspenders, or braces, which were what men used to hold up their trousers in the days before belts became common.
The goal of the designers is to create a cover that will catch readers’ eyes and give them an idea what the story is about. The cover of Family of Her Dreams does both very well. I have a serious case of cover love!
Copyright © 2015 by Harlequin Enterprises Limited
Cover Art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited
® and ™ are trademarks owned by Harlequin Enterprises Limited
or its affiliated companies, used under license.
January 13, 2015
I’m grateful because I just signed the contract
for my second Love Inspired Historical!
James and Becky’s story takes place in 1871-72 in the
Gold Rush-era town of Diamond Springs, California.
This story is special to me, and I’m eager to share it with
my wonderful readers. The book will be dedicated to
my beloved mother-in-law, who lost her battle
with breast cancer back in 1997, leaving
a gaping hole in my heart.
Here’s a short blurb…
Desperate to escape false accusations, Becky Martin flees
Chicago and heads West to care for the ailing mother
of a reclusive apple grower who has no desire to
welcome a pretty, young nurse into his home.
The book doesn’t have an official title yet,
but it could be released early 2016.
January 5, 2015
What are your favorite ways to relax?
© Frizzantine | Dreamstime.com
I like to take a nice hot bath before bed. Add some fragrant bath salts and a good book, and I’m transported to my happy place.
Reading while soaking relaxes me like nothing else. I eagerly anticipate my nightly ritual.
In fact, my tub and a certain story are calling my name right now. See ya!
January 2, 2015
Isn’t anticipating a baby or a grandbaby fun?
© Frizzantine | Dreamstime.com
I remember well my excitement as my December 21, 1990 due date drew near.
Gwynly and I expected a Christmas baby, but our gal decided to take her time.
I finally went into labor shortly before midnight on New Year’s Eve.
We were living in Germany at the time. Since the Germans set off lots of fireworks to mark the arrival of the New Year, the drive to the German hospital in Nürnberg was memorable.
Bottle rockets whizzed into the sky. Cherry bombs burst all around us. Smoke filled the air. We felt as though we were traveling through a war zone.
By André Karwath aka Aka
By the time we arrived at the hospital, 1991 had made her appearance. We hoped our baby would soon do the same.
Alas, my contractions ceased, and the day passed s-l-o-w-l-y.
Things changed at around ten that night. Gwynly took one look at my monitors, recognized the signs that our baby was stressed and got a nurse.
The next hour flew by as the midwife examined me, made the call for an emergency Cesarean and sent for my doctor.
Two nurses wheeled me on my rolling bed down the deserted corridors of the hospital to the operating room. The clock read 11:21 p.m.
I asked the nurses in less-than-impressive German if they thought my baby would arrive on the first. They didn’t think so.
They were wrong.
Thanks to my doctor who lived not far from the hospital and made haste getting there, Adriana Kristine Gwyn was born at 11:39 p.m.
We didn’t get our Christmas baby as we’d expected. Instead we were blessed with a New Year’s baby.
Our gal has always loved her special birthday, and so do Gwynly and I. It’s easy to remember: 1-1-91.
Adri (left) celebrating with her friends in France
This year Adri celebrated her 24th birthday over in Europe. Although it was our first without her, the day was enjoyable. I did get nostalgic a time or two…or twenty.
Do you know anyone who was a New Year’s baby?
Are there any holiday birthdays in your family?
December 29, 2014
Which are you? A do it now or a for now person?
Photo: © A2bb5s | Dreamstime.com
Sadly, I’m the latter. I don’t even want to think about the number of times I’ve set something down for now, fully intending to return shortly to answer it, file it, process it, shelve it, etc.
My tendency to put things off can create more work, but eventually I must tackle the backlog.
This week I’m doing just that. I’ve got financial records from the past eight months to enter into Quicken.
Yup. You read that right. I set aside eight full months’ worth of invoices, statements and receipts…for now.
Believe it or not, I used to be a bookkeeper who prided herself of keeping a painfully clean desk.
But something happened.
I began writing.
In just a few months, my a place for everything and everything in its place mindset shifted to my present for now default mode.
And here I am paying the price once again.
You would think I’d learn.
I want to, truly I do. That’s why I’m hiring a friend who runs an organizational business to help me assess my systems–or lack of them.
Admitting I needed help has been humbling, but it’s time to call in a pro.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear your suggestions and tips on how to become a do it now person.
I’d also welcome your commiserations. Surely I’m not alone. Am I?
December 24, 2014
I wish you a joy-filled celebration of our Savior’s birth.
Christmas can be a tough time. Some of us are dealing with absent loved ones, separated either by distance or by death.
I’m facing both types of separation this season. Our daughter is over in Europe, and Gwyny and I are not. My dad passed away three days after Christmas last year. This is my first Christmas without either of them.
Although I miss my daughter and my dad and am overcome by sadness at times, I’m choosing to embrace joy. It’s a conscious decision, and it’s made a big difference.
No matter what losses, disappointments or setbacks have come your way this year, I pray you’ll experience a measure of joy this Christmas as you reflect on the precious gift we’ve been given.
Photo credit: © A41cats | Dreamstime.com – In Capital Letter Written Joy, Glitter Effect Photo
December 22, 2014
Anticipation is in the air this time of year. Can you feel it?
I looked forward to seeing which of the gifts under the tree were mine
and what they contained, as many kids do, but that wasn’t all.
I loved the sweets, the songs, the shopping, seeing my grandparents–all of it.
This year will be different since our gal is living in Europe and won’t be
coming home. Even so, I’m still looking forward to Christmas.
I anticipate the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service,
time with friends, favorite movies and a yummy meal.
As I look ahead to the New Year, I anticipate
the arrival of a new great niece or nephew,
the release of Family of Her Dreams in June,
a trip to visit our gal in Austria and more.
I’m eager to see what 2015 holds.
What are you looking forward to this Christmas?
What are you anticipating in the New Year?
December 18, 2014
Some kisses are more memorable than others.
The kiss that stands out in my mind took place December 19, 1987.
Any wedding kiss is special, but ours was unique.
Gwynly is a full foot taller than I am, so he thought it
would be fun to have me stand on a footstool for the kiss.
I was a wee bit more serious in my younger years,
so he made sure I approved of his plan. I did.
My father-in-law and his woodworker friend built
a beautiful stool, which was hidden under the piano.
When our pastor told Gwynly he could kiss his bride, he turned
to his groomsmen, who passed the stool from one to the other.
Our guests didn’t know whether to laugh, cheer or applaud.
But I knew what to do…
When Gwynly set the stool in front of me, I stepped up
and awaited the first kiss from my brand-new husband.
To this day, the joy of that particular kiss has yet to be surpassed.
What’s the most memorable kiss you’ve received or witnessed?
What’s the biggest surprise you’ve experienced at a wedding?
December 17, 2014
Do you enjoy going out to see a movie at the theater? I do.
Gwynly and I enjoyed a double date with some friends who are movie buffs.
We had a yummy dinner at In-n-Out Burger and then took advantage of five-dollar Tuesdays at our local theater.
From the smell of buttered popcorn in the air to the plush seats, there’s nothing quite like seeing a show on the big screen.
We watched Interstellar, a gripping two-and-a half-hour action-packed movie that had us holding our breath at times and hiding our eyes at others. The experience wouldn’t have been the same on a small screen.
The evening was such fun that we’ve scheduled another movie date with our friends. I’m looking forward to it.
Which do you prefer: watching movies at the theater or at home?
How often do you watch a movie at the theater?
Photo credit: © Iqoncept | Dreamstime.com
Movie Ticket Admission Pass Admit Access Cinema Film Photo
December 15, 2014
‘Tis the season for Christmas parties. I’ve attended three so far and have another coming up later this week.
Early in December I had fun with the ladies from my Bible study. We enjoyed a yummy brunch and wonderful fellowship.
This past Friday the women’s ministry at church held an Evening of Inspiration. We started with a potluck where there were so many delicious dishes that the tables groaned.
My favorite part of the evening is the ornament exchange. The women form a huge circle around the outer wall of sanctuary.
A story is read, and each time the reader says the word the, we pass our package to the right. When the story is done, we get to open the present we’re holding and see the ornament inside. I got a very pretty one.
On Saturday Gwynly and I attended our MG car club’s Christmas party. It began with more scrumptious food followed by a gift exchange. I stole this fun Santa hat from a fellow member.
I didn’t feel too badly about robbing a friend of his gift since I think I’ll enjoy it a lot more than he would have.
The party coming up this week will include more food and another gift exchange. I can’t wait to see the reaction to the items in the great big bag I’m taking. That, to me, is even more fun than seeing what’s in the package I select.
Do you enjoy attending Christmas parties?
Are you a fan of gift exchanges? If so, what do you like about them?
What’s the most interesting item you’ve received at a gift exchange?