Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Spotlight shines on Jill Eileen Smith and a free book.

Jill has graciously offered one of her books to a lucky reader so be sure to follow the instructions at the bottom of this post to be included. This giveaway is part of Book Blog Carnival

Jill Eileen Smith has been writing for over twenty years. Her experience includes articles and one published novel, although she has several under contract. Her research on David's wives has taken her from the Bible to Israel. She says "Put succinctly, I’m a wife, mom, novelist, cat owner, aspiring Bible scholar, lover of history, musician, dark chocolate connoisseur, and first and foremost a follower of Jesus. "

I have to confess, I am not one who really reads the Old Testament very often. I know I am missing some great wisdom. I love that there are authors out their like Smith who are tackling the retelling of these stories. I know after reading this and Havah by Tosca Lee and Michal it has led me to delve into the Old Testament.
What is your novel about?

The daughter of King Saul, Michal lives a life of privilege-but one that is haunted by her father's unpredictable moods and competition from her beautiful older sister. As a girl, Michal quickly falls for the young handsome harpist David. But soon after their romance begins, David must flee for his life, leaving Michal at her father's mercy in the prison that is King Saul's palace. Will Michal ever be reunited with David? Or is she doomed to remain separate from him forever?

What do you want your readers to take away from your novel?

I want readers to see Michal as a woman who learned the hard way that our lives are in God’s hands, that He loves us even when we think everything is going wrong and everyone is out to get us. I pray her story gives hope to women who live with challenging circumstances and wonder if they’ll make it through. Most of all, I want my readers to see that each one of us has to come to God in complete surrender of our wills to His. Peace with Him won’t happen apart from repentance.

Beside salvation, what is the best gift you have ever received?
My husband and my children.

Who is the most important influence in your life besides God?

My husband and my children – I know it’s the same answer as above, but my guys shape my world. I thank God for them.

Let’s pretend money is not a factor, if you could go anywhere is the world where would you go?

I would go back to Israel and live there for a while. I would explore from Dan to Beersheba (the Bible’s way of saying the whole land God promised to the people of Israel.) I would learn the Hebrew language and spend time on an archaeological dig and walk where Jesus and David and Abraham walked, but only if my husband were with me and we had a great tour guide. (It would be no fun alone.) Such a trip would be amazing!

What book are you reading now? What books are found lying around your home?
I’m finishing Ginny (Virginia) Smith’s Stuck in the Middle. Enjoyable story – poignant and touching moments with some great insight. Reminds me of some of the things I’ve experienced.

What books can you find around my house? LOL! There are book shelves in every room in my house – minus the bathrooms. We have shelves of reference books, commentaries, Bible encyclopedias and dictionaries, books on writing and on theological issues, books on web and graphic design, health issues, and tons of fiction – mostly Christian fiction. Books I have recently read and loved are: My Sister Dilly by Maureen Lang, The Apothecary’s Daughter by Julie Klassen, and Demon: A Memoir by Tosca Lee.

What is your favorite children’s book?
The series Stories Jesus Told by Nick Butterworth and Mick Inkpen – especially The Little Gate. They’re out of print but I’ve saved my copies for grandchildren someday. LOVE the artwork and the writing is great too!

What do you find most challenging about writing?
Getting the first draft down.
What do you find most rewarding?

Polishing each scene, rereading it over and over again until it flows smoothly.

Tell us a little about your road to publication?

The short version is that it was a 20-year journey with a lot of dips in the road. Rejection in any form hurts, but I was just stubborn enough to keep going, keep trying, until about six months before my first sale. I almost quit. I was truly at the end of all I could do and wasn’t sure I could continue. My prayers put it all in God’s hands with some specific requests for direction. God met those requests and answered beyond what I had imagined.

What are you working on next?
Bathsheba’s story is in the works. Abigail is on my editor’s desk. When I finish The Wives of King David, I will begin work on The Wives of the Patriarchs – first planned book is about Sarai.

What would you like your readers to say about your writing?
Well, I hope they like it! Positive comments are always welcome! J

What is your favorite verse from the Bible? Why?
My favorite verse changes periodically. I have way too many favorites to pick one and stick to it. It really depends on my need at the time. God’s Word is my greatest comfort.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Write what you love, not what you know. Learn the craft well because competition is steep. Don’t write strictly in the hopes of being published. And surrender your desires for success of any kind to the Lord. His will is not ours, His timing is perfect, and we will be happiest when we’re walking with Him wherever He leads.

Where can readers find you on the Web? or

If you would like to win a copy of Michal by Jill Eileen Smith be sure to leave a comment and answer the silly daily question: Name three places you would like to travel to. I would love to go to Ireland, Alaska and Australia. At least that's what I think today.

Extra Entries:
Three ways to gain extra entries (Maximum total entries is 4):
1st extra entry: Follow Me! or subscribe by email or RSS reader
2nd extra entry: Blog about this contest then post your link in the comment section.
3rd extra entry: Follow me on twitter (writebyfaith) and tweet about the contest.

For contact purposes, if you are a non-blogger or your email is not accessible in your blog profile, please leave a valid email address within the comment section.
• Contest is open to US only
• Contest ends on Monday, March 18th, 2008
• Winner will be chosen at random


Anonymous said...

I would love to go see the petrified forest. I'm Irish so Ireland, and maybe a european tour.

livingmyhappilyeverafter at yahoo

Anonymous said...

I am following...
livingmyhappilyeverafter at yahoo

Anonymous said...

following on twitter and tweeted.

user: livingmyhappily

Rue said...

Three places I'd like to visit:
New Zealand
Egypt - mostly I want to see the pyramids
Disney World - a favorite vacation spot for my family. But we haven't been in a few years and I want to go back.

ruthann (dot) francis (at) gmail (dot) com

mindy said...

alaska scotland and japan thanks for the giveaway

Marie said...

The three places that I would like to visit -- Ireland, England and Scotland.

Jody Hedlund said...

I read Jill's interview on the Novel Journey blog today. Your interview with her is great too! Hearing about her writing journey is so encouraging. And I'm sure if I don't win a copy of her book here, I will definitely go buy it at some point!

I'd love to travel to Germany (the setting of my WIP); I'd love to travel to rural England (the setting of my previous WIP); and I'd love love to visit the monasteries and castles and cathedrals of France.

Marta said...

oh my goodness this sounds really good. I'd really love to win this book.

Marta Hoelscher

btw...I follow you on twitter and I'm also subscribed to your blog

Valerie said...

2) Russia
3) England
KawaiiNeko2008 (at) aol (dot) com

katie said...

I would love to see Africa. I have always dreamed of it. Jamacia for sure! and I'd love to see Alaska and stay with Karen (French). It would be cool seeing Alaska with Karen as my guide :)

windycindy said...

My three choices would be New
Zealand, Scotland ( I want to stay in a castle ) and England! Thanks for a fascinating author interview and book giveaway drawing. Cindi

windycindy said...

I subscribed to your email.
Thanks, Cindi

Donna said...

Katie, I so agree with having Karen be the guide. Maybe we should plan a girls trip. Of course we have to wait for money to not be an problem

Becky C. said...

I would love to read this book.

The three places I would love to visit are, Scotland, Ireland, and England.

Please enter me in the contest.

Thank you,

Becky C.


Anonymous said...

Hhmmm, the three places I would like to travel to are:
Bangor, Maine
and Rochester, NY

Thanks for the great giveaway:D


Homemaker said...

I would love to travel to Norway, Japan and Russia.

Homemaker said...

I'm a follower :o)

Alyce said...

I would like to travel to Spain, France and Italy.
akreese (at) hotmail (dot) com

Alyce said...

I am now following this blog.
akreese (at) hotmail (dot) com

CherryBlossomMJ said...

Please enter me. To answer the question: Scotland (to see my sister), Back to Canada to PEI for the first time too, and New Zeland (Wanted to go since I was a child watching Zena and Hercules).

cherryblossommj(at) gmail[dot]com


ireland- poland,) and italy

MJ said...

The Grand Canyon, New York City and Paris!

Sherry Kyle said...

Australia, Paris, and Bora!

Hoping to win!

kisah jackson said...

i would love to see:
egypt - the pyramids!
disney world - so much has changed since i last went there!
england - i'm secretly an angliophile!

please enter me!

Deborah said...

I'd like to travel to Japan (where my son is stationed now), Turkey (where he's going next year) and Italy (just to cook and eat with great Italian cooks). Thanks for the chance to win what sounds like a fantastic book. asthenight at gmail dot com

Valorie said...

I'd like to go to Rome, Venice and Kyoto.


gahome2mom said...

1. Ireland - Europe
2. Greece
3. Japan

Renee G said...

I'd love to see:
and Florence.

bookwurm70 said...

I'd love to travel to Japan and South Korea in Asia. Also the Pacific Northwest.

Please enter me, the book sounds great.

bookwurm70 at gmail dot com

liane66 said...

I would like to go to Japan, Amsterdam and Austraila,

Sandee61 said...

I so enjoyed the interview, and would love to be entered in your giveaway. Three places I'd love to visit are:


Thank you,and many blessings!


demmi said...

Ireland ,Antartica,India con5459@gmail(dot)com

EllyBean said...

I'd like to visit Ireland, Japan, and Germany.

Thanks for such a great giveaway!
ellybean (at)

Anita Yancey said...

I'd like to travel to.


Anita Yancey said...

I am a subscriber. Thanks for having this giveaway.


Jinxy and Me said...

I would like to travel to Australia, Costa Rica and Japan.

Jinxy and Me said...

I'm a follower!

Anonymous said...

I'd like to read this book. I'd travel to Walt Disney World (seems I'm one of the few people that's never been there). I'd also go to Paris, France and Australia.

-Terra H.

sweetsue said...

I would love to go to China, Australia, and Fiji!
smchester at gmail dot com

sweetsue said...

I'm following you!
smchester at gmail dot com

Debs Desk said...

Please include me in your giveaway. I would love to go to Japan, Ireland or Scotland.

Molly C. said...

I would love to go to Ireland, France & Australia

Qwill said...

I want to go to Wales, Alaska, and Yellowstone National Park. Thanks for the giveaway.

Candie said...

If money was not an issue. I would love to go to: Greece, Australia, and England. Thank you


Candie said...

I subscribed. Thank you.


Martha A. said...

I would love to go to Italy, Russia and Greece....I would love to see the history in Italy and Greece and Russia because I would understand the language some and see where my husband was born.
I am a follower of your blog as well!

LT said...

I would love to visit Venice, Hawaii, and Disney World

masonsgranny59 said...

ty 4 the awesome book giveaway and 4 the entry:)

kathy55439 said...

I really want to do take pictures in Vegas

bohemiangypsy said...

I think that it would be great to visit Alaska, New Zealand, and the western part of the continental U.S- I have only visited states or places on the eastern part of the U.S. It would also be great to see the Amazon rainforests. Thank you for the contest.

darbyscloset said...

I would love to go to Ireland, the Carabiean and Africa.
Thanks so much,
darbyscloset at yahoo dot com

darbyscloset said...

I am a subscriber, too!
Thanks so much,
darbyscloset at yahoo dot com

Heather said...

I would love to go to Disney World, New York, and England.

Heather said...

following your blog

esther said...

I would love to travel to England, Finland, and Italy.

esther said...

I follow.

Katie said...

I would love to see Ireland and Scotland and maybe Africa. I love any book set in those places! And I am also intrigued as to Ireland and Scotland’s history and would love to visit and gain more knowledge of it!



Janna said...

This book looks amazing - I love historical fiction!


Janna said...

Oops - I forgot to list the places I want to go -
1)My husband and I would love to go to Ireland (he's Irish)

2)We got to go on a dream trip to Maui and really want to go back!

3)A European trip would be a lot of fun too!

Lorraine said...

My husband and I are both French but I've always wanted to see Ireland. I also would love to read this book.
Thank you.

Lorraine said...

I would love to go to Paris also.

Pick me, pick me, pick me.


Amy said...

I would love to go to Las Vegas, Paris, and London.

Amy said...

I'm a follower.

danie88 said...

The three places I'd like to travel to are: Egypt, Germany, and France.

danie88 said...

I'm already a follower :)

mrs.cupcake said...

im simple... disneyland, disneyworld, or wrapped in my husbands arms somewhere tropical

I would love to win this book, thank you,

QallieQ (at) gmail (dot) com

Lorraine said...

I don't know how to blog or twitter so I hope this is a really good entry. ERIN GO BRAGH