Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Spot Light on Amber Miller and book giveaway

Spot Light on Amber Miller

Amber Miller is an author and freelance web site designer who lives with her husband in beautiful Colorado Springs. They don’t have any children yet, but they do have a vivacious puppy named Roxie, who is half Border Collie and half Flat-Haired Retriever. Already nearing 65 pounds, she keeps them on their toes. And with her penchant for rising at 6am on the dot, Roxie is giving Amber and her husband a good taste of what it's like to be parents.Amber has sold four books to the Heartsong Presents line of Barbour Publishing with the promise of two more before the end of the year. A born-again Christian since the age of seven, her faith in Christ has often sustained her through difficult experiences. She seeks to share that with others through her writing. She currently has two books releasing this month. I am posting a review of Promises, Promises tomorrow so be sure to stop back by. Here is a short preview of each of her new books.
1. If you could do something really over the top what would it be?

That would probably be skydiving. Something about it scares the bejeebies out of me, but something also appeals to the adventurous spirit inside of me. My husband wants to take me white water rafting before the summer is out. The Arkansas has had a lot of snow melts this year, so it's flowing high and fast. *gulp*

2. What is the best gift you have ever recieved besides the gift of salvation?

Hmm, it would have to be my engagement ring, as Stuart took me completely by surprise on the time and place he chose to propose. We were already unofficially engaged and only 10 weeks from the wedding, but he went all out for the actual proposal with the ring.

Other than that, it would be my iPod Nano Stu bought for our 9-month anniversary. :)

3. What themes do you like to explore most in your writing?

I don't know that I limit myself to any particular themes. When I write, I don't set out to convey a specific theme; rather, the themes develop as I write. Oftentimes, I don't even know the themes when I begin a book. However, trust, faith and hope would likely top the list. If readers don't feel uplifted by the end of one of my books, I don't feel I've succeeded in writing a good one.

4. With all of the roads that are traveled to reach publication was yours smooth or did you hit many pot holes before reaching your goal?

My road was probably smoother than most. I'd known for years that I wanted to write for Heartsong Presents. The opportunity presented itself in Houston in 2003 when I spoke with Jim Peterson about an idea I had for a historical series. The setting was unique and hadn't yet been pitched to the HP line, and Jim was excited about the possibilities from the books. He asked to see a proposal, which I sent about a year later after all of the research. Seven months later, he asked for the full, which I sent about 1 month after he requested it. When I went back to inquire about the status, he said he had never received it. So, I sent it again. By now, it was 2006. By the summer, he had passed on his recommendation and Barbour agreed to publish it. Only I didn't receive word until December, as the company was undergoing a change of editors at the time. So, it took about 3 years from initial pitch to contract. Perhaps a little slower than usual, but it seemed fast to me!

5. What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

To quote a great friend and fellow author, Linda Windsor, "Rejections are footprints in the sands of your career. If you're not getting them, you're not moving.” Another is, "You have to read in order to write. Immerse yourself in a wide variety of writing styles, find your own voice and stick to it. Then, write, write, write." I don’t know who it was that said that, though. Somehow, I managed to save it without jotting down the originator.

And finally, writing is not for the faint of heart. It takes a lot of hard work, determination, patience, perseverance and faith. And it won't happen overnight. You have to maintain a teachable spirit and be open to constructive criticism, no matter how far along in your writing journey you get. In the end, the rewards far outweigh all the sweat and tears you shed along the way. Most importantly, if you feel this is the path for you, never give up!

6. What is a typical day in the life of Amber Miller like?

Well, since I also run a web design business from home, I don't have a 'typical' day, per se…unless I'm on a deadline, of course! Then, almost everything else takes a back seat or gets shoved to the back burner. However, I rise early (most days) with my husband and send him off to work by 8am, sometimes earlier. Then, I sit down at my computer and go through any email, respond and take care of business, make any updates to client web sites or work on design elements that are pressing in nature, and finally get to my writing.

My primary writing time is afternoon or later at night after supper as a way to unwind after a long day. These days are usually busy until about 8pm. It all depends on the inspiration or the motivation that strikes. On days that I remain home with nowhere to go, I try to set a page count minimum and stick to it. And I usually end up doing marketing work, watching a movie or playing a computer game to break up the day as I write. My errands, email replies and client work are usually run first thing in the morning.

7. When you are not writing, what kind of books do you find yourself curled up with?

Primarily, I read historical fiction, although I also love a good contemporary romantic comedy or a romantic western setting. I don't usually go for 1st person novels, but if it's tight 3rd person POV, I might give it a try.

8. What are you currently working on? Can readers expect any other books in the near future?

Right now, I'm finishing up my 4th book for a July 15th deadline. It's the first in another 3-book series, only this one is set in Detroit, Michigan during the Industrial Revolution. All 3 are scheduled to release in 2009, along with the repackaging of the first 3 books in an anthology entitled, Delaware Brides. Other than that, I have 2 full-length historical novels and 2 contemporaries that I'm attempting to sell.

9. Where can readers reach you?

You can always reach me through my web site. I have a contact form there as well as a blog on the main page, where you can comment on any post to leave me a message.

Thank you, Donna, for having me on your blog. It's great having you as part of the tour.

Promises, Promises:

Has God forsaken Raelene?

What kind of God would take a girl's family and leave her alone in a wild land where women have no voice? When Gustaf Hanssen promises Raelene's dying father that he will take care of her, he finds himself bound to her happiness, her success, and her well-being in ways he never imagined. To keep his word, must Gustaf really oversee all of Raelene's affairs, find her a husband, and maintain her farm, while she does nothing but scorn him? Can God reach through Raelene's pain and self-centeredness and give her the love that awaits, if only she will accept His will?

Quills & Promises

Innocence paired with wisdom beyond her years--

With these traits, Elanna Hanssen unwittingly captures the attentions of Major Madison Scott. Her honest desire to understand the war fascinates him, and he resolves to get to know this perspicacious young lady better. When he is called away to fight the French and the Indians, they begin a correspondence, cautiously baring their hearts to one another. Elanna has never known emotions like these before, but she is drawn to the integrity she sees in her major. When a writer for the first newspaper in the colony questions the major's credentials and activities, however, will she allow her heart or her head to rule? Can true love grow over such distance and around such obstacles?
To order one of Amber's books click here: www.ambermiller.com/books.html
Check out Amber Miller's Blog Tour for other places to learn more about her books at any of the following sites. If you would like to win a copy of Amber Miller's book please leave a comment and be sure to leave an addy but put a costume on your addy to keep web tollers from getting it ie... yourname[at]address[dot]com. Since Amber has a lively puppy tell us about your pet if you have one. I have two dogs, Foxy and Red and a bearded dragon named Blaze.
Catch more of Amber Miller:
Shirley Connolly (July month-long feature) - http://apenforyourthoughts.blogspot.com/

July 7 - Margaret Daley (bio) http://margaretdaly.blogspot.com/
July 7 - Dawn Kinzer at From Dawn til Dusk, Musings of a Night Owl http://dawnkinzer.blogspot.com/
July 8 - Donna Moore at Write by Faith http://writebyfaith.blogspot.com/
July 8 - Kim Woodhouse at God's Grace, Love & Forgiveness http://www.kimberleywoodhouse.com/
July 9 - Margaret Daley (interview) http://margaretdaley.blogspot.com/
July 9 - Amy Riley at The Friendly Book Nook http://thefriendlybooknook.com/
July 10 - Jenny Blake at Come Meet AusJenny http://ausjenny.blogspot.com/
July 11 - Rose McCauley http://rosemccauley.blogspot.com/
July 11 - Shauna Sturge at The Coffee Stop http://shaunasturge.blogspot.com/; Long and Short Reviews http://longandshortreviews.blogspot.com/
July 12 - Carolyn Strawder at Quiet Time with Carolyn http://www.quiettimewithcarolyn.com/Serenity
July 14-19 - CAN! blog spotlight http://canblog.typepad.com/canbookmarketing
July 14 - Martha Rogers at Martha Writes http://marthasbooks.blogspot.com/
July 15 - Leslie Sowell at A Little Bit of Sunlight http://www.footprintsinthesand.us/blog
July 16 - Novel Journey / Novel Reviews http://noveljourney.blogspot.com/ / http://novelreviews.blogspot.com/
July 17 - Eileen Astels at A Christian Romance Writer's Journey http://eileenastels.blogspot.com/
July 17 - Cheryl Wyatt at Squirrel's Treehouse http://scrollsquirrel.blogspot.com/
July 18 - Cara Putman at Cara's Musings http://carasmusings.blogspot.com/
July 18 - Tyora Moody at CB Reviews http://www.faithwebbin.net/cbreviews
July 19 - Stacy Johnson at Vader's Mom http://jeffstacyandvader.blogspot.com
July 21 - CFBA blog tour date (various blogs) http://christianfictionblogalliance.blogspot.com
July 21 - Camy Tang at Camy's Loft http://camytang.blogspot.com/
July 21 - Jennifer AlLee at Musings on This, That & The Other Thing - http://jenniferallee.blogspot.com/
July 21 - Trish Perry (interview) http://www.trishperry.com
July 22 - CFBA blog tour date (various blogs) http://christianfictionblogalliance.blogspot.com
July 22 - Cindy Woodsmall at the Plain Talk Blog http://www.cindywoodsmall.com/category/plain-talk/
July 23 - CFBA blog tour date (various blogs) http://christianfictionblogalliance.blogspot.com/
July 23 - Delia Latham at The Melody Within (review/interview) http://themelodywithin.blogspot.com
24 - Margaret Chind at Creative Madness http://cherryblossommj.blogspot.com/
July 25 - Delia Latham at The Melody Within (guest blogger) http://themelodywithin.blogspot.com/
July 25 - Christa Allan at Fictionary http://cballan.wordpress.com/
July 26 - Paula Moldenhauer at Grace Reign http://gracereign.blogspot.com/


windycindy said...

Hello! Thanks for the interesting interview with Amber. I love historical fiction books. Please enter me in your book drawing. Many thanks, Cindi

Golden Keyes Parsons said...

Historical fiction is my passion. Sign me up!

luv2read said...

I have a 8pd yorkie named Spunky. Yep, he fits his name. When he was 6 months old I left him in the car to run in to the gas store to get a coffee. As I'm getting my coffee all the sudden I look up and he is at my feet. He had hit the automatic unlock and sliding door got out then came on in the store. This last year he locked me out of the car when I was in carpool line to pick up kids. I have 4 girls and he has been more difficult then any of them when they were toddlers.
Enter me in the drawing for Promises.

ForstRose said...


Thanks for the drawing. Please enter me for Amber's book. I love historicals. I don't have any pets but want to get a lapdog some day.


Tiff (Amber Miller) Stockton said...

LOL! Shellie, your yorkie sounds like our Roxie. She's rolled down the windows of the car when we've forgotten to place the child-lock on them, and she's sometimes weaved around our legs with her leash, effectively trapping us. Oh, and if we aren't out of bed when SHE thinks we should be, she plops her front paws on our bellies or backs and gives us a big lick in the face.

She's a big dog with aspirations to be a lap dog, but even with her size, she manages to success halfway. :)

Glad having y'all along on the tour. Love seeing familiar faces. Good luck in the drawings!

Cherie J said...

Enjoyed the interview and would love to be entered in the drawing. I don't have any pets at this time. Our 5 year old son and 20 nmonth old daughter keeps hubby and I plenty busy enough without adding a pet into the mix.


Lucie said...

Hello, thank you for the nice interview. Please enter me for Amber's book. Let me tell you about our pets:
1. We have 1 bird (a finch) we need another one to keep him company.
2. We have 6 fish which we have had for 4 years now! They are fun to watch!
3. Milo, our little chiwawa, who we love very much! He is the best dog that we have ever had so far (out of 3). He looks like he is part miniature greyhound mixed, although we were told that he was a purebred...



bigguysmama said...

What a fun interview. I liked the different questions! I would love a chance to win Amber's book! It sounds great!

In Christ,
Mimi B

mnjesusfreak at gmail dot com

Cheryl said...

It sounds like a great book. Please sign me up for the drawing. My email address is shryackmom[@]charter[.]net

Cheryl said...

I have 2 dogs. Lucky and Penny. They are both black lab and german shephard mixes. I also have 2 cats. I would love to win a copy of this book. Please enter me in the contest. My email address is shryackmom[@]charter[.]net

Theresa N. said...

Great interview. We have 4 cats in the house ranging from 10 to 4 years old. They were all strays at one time now they're all very pampered.
Theresa N

Tiff (Amber Miller) Stockton said...

Golden, Cindi and Melissa, I love historical fiction too -- obviously. :) Sometimes, writers of a genre aren't full readers of a genre. It all depends. I am though. Helps me get a feel for different time periods.

Cherie, I can imagine how those two tykes would keep you busy. Hubby and I are trying for a baby too. We'll see how Roxie reacts then!

Wow, Lucie! 1 bird, 6 fish and a chihuahua. Life must be exciting around your place.

Mimi, I loved the unique questions too. Interviews are great, but when they're repetitive, it can get boring. This one wasn't.

Cheryl, for most of my life, we had black labs mixed with something else. Roxie resembles a lab with her retriever, but her snout and head is all Collie!

Theresa, I applaud you with the 4 cats. Great that you rescued them, but I'd never handle that many in the house. I love cats, but I've just never wanted them full-time.

Good luck to everyone and thanks for dropping by.

pat jeanne said...

I enjoyed the interview with Amber. I read and write historicals, too. Please enter me in the drawing for Amber's novel. Pat

Becky C. said...

This looks like a great book. I would love to read it. I enjoyed reading the interview also.

Please enter me in the contest.

Becky C.