Grace Awards

Expanding the Tent Pegs of Christian Fiction

Two Write Southern Fic, One Biblical, All Share Their Love of Christmas

Nativity

Twenty-two talented authors are participating in the Grace Filled Christmas Blog Tour, sponsored by the Grace Awards. These writers have a great love for Christmas and would like to share with the public their thoughts about what inspires them and their Christmas memories.Xmas, Bow Border

BJ ROBINSON (WHISPERING CYPRESS, SOUTHERN SUPERSTITIONS, ONE RAINY SUMMER, romantic suspense chock full of southern charm)

Grace Awards:  Have you ever had to handle a significant loss during the holidays? How did you cope?

BJ:  Before I was even old enough to read, Momma had me hooked on fairytales. She bought a new one for me each month out of the small social-security check she received after my father’s death. She would rock me to sleep reading my favorite fairytales each night. I loved The Glass Mountain, Cinderella, and Snow White. I was only four years old when my father died one cold Christmas Day in a charity hospital. Four years earlier, I had been born in a charity hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana. We never had much, but I had not yet realized that. To me, before Daddy died, we had everything. The last memory of my father before the Christmas he died runs through my mind often. One sunny day daddy and I strolled down Pine Street on our way to the grocery. As we passed Richardson’s Hardware, my eyes caught a little pink wringer-type washing machine in the showcase window. I tugged at dad’s jacket and pointed, “Look, Daddy! It’s a little pink washing machine just like Momma’s big machine. Oh, Daddy, can I get it to wash my doll’s clothes? It’s so cute. It looks just like Momma’s big white washer.” He told me, “Not today, but who knows, Christmas is right around the corner and perhaps Santa heard you.” I remember wishing Christmas would hurry up and come, not realizing that with it, my father would be lost to me forever. I grew up watching all the other children I knew with their fathers and yearning for mine. It was many years later before I realized I still had a heavenly Father, and He would never leave me alone. The first time I had to handle a significant loss during the holidays was the loss of my father as a child. As an adult, I didn’t lose my mother and youngest sister at Christmas, but I lost them both a mere six years apart and Christmas has never been the same without them.

Grace Awards:  Tell us about your fondest Christmas memory?

BJ:  One of my fondest memories centers around a Christmas my husband and I traveled to Louisiana and stayed in our camper in my daughter’s front yard. I had all my children together for Christmas that year, and it was such fun. My husband shot fireworks, my son fried a turkey, and my daughter made dressing and all the trimmings. It will be a memory forever etched in my heart when I remember a favorite family Christmas. It wasn’t the presents, but the people that made it so special. I thank God for those sweet, precious memories.  I just want to add that I’m thrilled to be a part of this fabulous showcase of twenty-five talented authors, ones I love to read myself. I want to wish a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all my readers, Facebook friends, and family. As we remember the reason for the season, may God bless you and yours with a heart-warming, safe holiday season.Xmas, tree decorations

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BJis a multi-published, prize-winning author who writes from Florida where she lives with her husband, two dogs, and a cat. She has authored four novels as well as numerous poems, short stories, essays, and devotionals. She is blessed with children and grandchildren, and Jesus is her best friend. http://barbarajrobinson.blogspot.com.

Link to BJ’s showcase in the Grace Filled Christmas Blog Tour. Check out southern suspense with more twists and turns than you can shake a stick at.  http://tiny.cc/r805ow

Xmas, Poinsietta Ball

CAROLE TOWRISS (SHADOW OF SINAI, hope amidst despair, trust in the face of terror, and a love that binds)

Grace Awards:  Tell us about your fondest Christmas memory?

Carole:  My oldest daughter was born on Christmas Eve. The year before we had lost a baby on Christmas Eve after just a couple weeks. We’d been trying for eight years. That was quite a wallop, and a difficult holiday. For a few days I wasn’t even sure I could hold onto my faith. But Emma Noelle came three weeks early to be born exactly one year later. At the candlelight service they announced she’d been born at noon and everyone cheered because they’d all been praying for so many years. We took her home on Christmas Day. They even gave us a baby-sized stocking. She is a living, breathing reminder of God’s faithfulness, and the best Christmas present I ever had! She’ll be nineteen this year and is studying for a BFA in photography.

Grace Awards:  What is your favorite Christmas carol and why? Do you have a favorite performing artist who sings that song?

Carole:  “O Holy Night.” It’s my absolute favorite by far it because it embodies the real meaning, the purpose of Christmas. “It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth. Fall on your knees!” Without Christmas, there is nothing else—no life, no salvation, no redemption, no forgiveness, nothing. No Easter! I listen to it over and over all during the season until my kids get really annoyed! I love it by any singer—I have ten different versions on my iPhone. That being said, my favorite is Gary Chapman’s.Xmas, Stocking

Carole Towriss

Bio: Carole Towriss grew up in beautiful San Diego, California. Now she and her husband live just north of Washington, DC. In between making tacos and telling her four children to pick up their shoes for the third time, she reads, writes, watches chick flicks and waits for summertime to return to the beach. www.caroletowriss.com

Link to Carole’s showcase on the Grace Filled Blog Tour. You might think you know the story of the Exodus, but you might be surprised. http://caroletowriss.com/welcome-to-the-grace-filled-christmas-blog-tour/Xmas, Angel 2

JEAN THOMPSON KINSET (SECRETS OF WILLOW SHADE, THE LIGHT KEEPER’S DAUGHTER, whether it’s a contemporary or historical novel, it’s the warmth of family in rural Kentucky)

Grace Awards:  Tell us about your fondest Christmas memory?

Jean:  One of my fondest memories dates back to 1946, when I was six-years-old. Traditionally, we received a gift from Momma and Daddy separately from Santa. Living in the country, as we did, it was a real treat to go to the movies and buy that wonderful, delicious, buttered popcorn. So when Momma asked what I wanted from her for Christmas, I said, “All the movie popcorn I can eat.” Daddy insisted day-old popcorn was not what I really wanted for Christmas. Maybe a pretty doll would be better. Christmas morning, after Santa’s gifts were opened, Daddy said excitedly, “Here’s my gift.” The tobacco crop had been good that year, and he could afford a nice present. Then Momma calmly said, “Here’s mine.” You should have seen my daddy’s long face when I sped past a big beautiful, curly-haired, baby doll to dig into Momma’s humongous bag of cold, buttered, movie popcorn. That was the best popcorn I ever tasted, especially at the break of dawn on Christmas morning. Sometimes I think back to those days and wonder why I ask for so much today, when it took so little to satisfy me then.

Grace Awards: What does keeping the true spirit of Christmas alive mean to you?

Jean:  When I hear bells jingling, my spirits soar at this joyous season. When accepting a nicely wrapped package, I am aware of the Ultimate Gift I’ve already received. The pretty, twinkling lights remind me of the star that led the wise men to Jesus. Christmas carols make me think of the angels heralding the news of the King. “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”( Luke 2:14 kjv) I cannot do away with the commercialism, the greed and the coveting that surround us during this holy season, but I keep the true spirit of Christmas in my heart when I allocate His love to others. When I help someone in need, I share God’s generous spirit. Sometimes a smile might be all that’s required. Other times I may have to dig deeper and give generously. By sharing Christ Jesus, I keep His spirit alive throughout this hallowed time of year. I sincerely wish everyone a “Merry Christmas.”Xmas, Gifts

Jean Thompson Kinsey

Jean Thompson Kinsey lived in rural Kentucky until she married in 1960. She has lived near Louisville, KY since then. Jean loves to travel. She and her husband, Glen, explored the back roads of many states of the U.S. and Canada in their motorhome until she was widowed in 2005, at which time she expanded her hobby of writing. Jean teaches adult Sunday school at her church. She is the mother of three, the grandmother of seven and great-grandmother of two. http://kystorywriter.blogspot.com/

Link to Jean’s showcase in the Grace Awards Christmas Blog Tour. Find real life in rural Kentucky on display in a sweet-tender way. http://kystorywriter.blogspot.com/2012/08/grace-filled-christmas-tour.html

Xmas, Inside Cathedral

Xmas, Bow Border

 

There will be more author interviews to follow. The authors on the Grace Filled Christmas Blog Tour want to share their Christmas hopes, dreams, memories, decorating trips, perhaps even a recipe or two. Stay turned as these terrific and very interesting authors share about what Christmas means to them.

Link to access the Calendar of the Grace Filled Christmas Blog Tour: https://graceawardsdotorg.wordpress.com/grace-filled-christmas-blog-tour-2012/

Xmas, Merry Christmas 2

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8 thoughts on “Two Write Southern Fic, One Biblical, All Share Their Love of Christmas

  1. I am seriously loving these interviews.
    BJ – I just lost my father this year. It must have been hard to lose him when you were just a child… your story also made me remember the cute little ‘Barbie doll’ sized washing machine I got for Christmas one year. It really worked. I still have it.

    Carole – What a wonderful gift your daughter was that year! I have a great neice who was born on Dec. 25 and sometimes I feel bad that she has to ‘share’ her birthday. (But she doesn’t seem to mind… they do a special cake etc. later in the day for her)

    Jean – I also like the sound of jingle bells – in moderation!

    • Tracy, thanks for stopping by. Yes, losing my father was one of the hardest things I went through as a child. I felt like I had an empty hole in my heart until I realized I still had a heavenly Father watching over me who’d never leave me. I love bells, too 🙂 Blessings, BJ

  2. Jean, Carole, and BJ, all of your stories really tugged at my heart. I think we all feel our losses so much more at Christmas, but at the same time we’re more in touch with the “wonders of His love” too.

  3. I lost both my parents. That was awhile ago, but it’s still hard.

    I also love “Oh Holy Night.” Just heard Celine Dion do it on Youtube and it wiped me out.

    Jean, I love your stories and your writing. And I know how you struggle with health and how it takes all your strength just to type the words. Keep on keeping on, girl.

  4. What great interviews!
    BJ – it must have been terrible losing your father at such a young age and losing him on Christmas must have made it that much harder for a little child.

    Carole – the loss of a child is always heart-wrenching. I lost my little 3 yr old in November of ’84 and I still miss her as if it were yesterday. I’m so delighted that you had another child on the same date, it must have given Christmas a fresh meaning for you.

    Jean – I love your stories and am so happy to have been part of a group of writers where I met you. I treasure the help I received from you and all the other members there.
    Love your story about the popcorn and love your Spirit of Christmas. You are a special lady 🙂

  5. Jean is an excellent writer! Blessings for health and success, Jean. BJ

  6. Jean, I love your popcorn story! Why can’t we remain so pure-hearted forever?
    BJ, I’m so glad you found our Heavenly Father’s love.

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