Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A Virtual Tour - Author Jana Richards and Home Fires

It's summer time, that time of easy days, the long wait for warm weather ended(for us northerners) and hopefully a bit of vacation.  So with easy days in mind, today there's something a little different, a new release made for summer, Jana Richards latest release, a novella, Home Fires.  Stop by, chat with the author and be entered for a prize.  As part of her tour, Jana will be offering a $25 Amazon gift certificate to one lucky commenter.  So up your odds of success and follow the remainder of Jana's tour, adding a comment as you go.

Prizes, it doesn't stop there - Jana is also offering up to July 18, a bonus gift for anyone who purchases a copy of Home Fires.  Check out the details on her website:

Jana has tried her hand at many writing projects over the years, from magazine articles and short stories to full-length paranormal suspense and romantic comedy.  She loves to create characters with a sense of humor, but also a serious side.  She believes there's nothing more interesting then peeling back the layers of a character to see what makes them tick.

When not writing up a storm, working at her day job as an Office Administrator, or dealing with ever present mountains of laundry, Jana can be found on the local golf course pursuing her newest hobby.

Jana lives in Western Canada with her husband Warren, and a highly spoiled Pug/Terrier cross named Lou. 

Welcome Jana!!

And here is Jana's response to:

Life hasn't been the same since...

There have been several trips that changed my life.  The short trip down the aisle to marry my husband was the first major change.  For the first time in my life, I had to focus on 'us' instead of 'just me'.  I'm not an only child, but my brother is seven years older.  He had moved away from home by the time I was twelve, so it was almost like being an only child.  When I married my husband at twenty-one, I had to learn to share, learn to compromise, and learn to live as a couple.  We must have done something right, because we just celebrated our 34th wedding anniversary!

The next trips that changed my life were the two trips I made to the hospital to give birth to my daughters.  I was thrilled the first time I became pregnant, and so ready to be a mother.  Unfortunately, twelve weeks into my pregnancy, I miscarried.  I was devastated, but undeterred.  As soon as I got the green light from the doctor, we tried again and I became pregnant right away.  This time everything went according to plan.  I had a smooth, uneventful pregnancy and nine months later we made the short ten minute trip to the hospital.  The delivery didn't go quite as smoothly as the pregnancy.  After hours in labor, I had a c-section.  But it was okay.  I had a beautiful, healthy baby girl and that was all that mattered.

In the five years between the births of my two daughters, I had more miscarriages.  At times I thought we'd never have more children and we even thought of adopting.  But finally, after so many more tries, I was able to carry my pregnancy to term.  The trip to the hospital for our second daughter's birth took a lot longer than the first time.  Because of the difficulties I'd had, I was seeing a specialist in a city 200 kilometers away, a two hour drive.  Any pregnant woman will tell you that a two hour drive when you're about to give birth is not fun.  In the end, all the uncomfortable car rides, all the heartaches faded away when I held my beautiful, healthy baby girl in my arms.

Anyone who has children knows that life is never the same after you give birth.  There are sleepless nights, and endless responsibilities.  There are times when you wonder if you're doing the right thing, if you're teaching them what they need to know to become happy successful adults.  But there is also much joy.  I can't imagine not being a mother.

I know that being a parent has made me stronger.  It's given me tenacity and determination I didn't know I possessed.  And I know now that being a mother never ends, no matter how old my children get.

Blurb from Home Fires:
Anne Wakefield travels halfway around the world for love.  But when she arrives in Canada from England at the end of World War Two, she discovers the handsome Canadian pilot she'd fallen in love with has married someone else.  Heartbroken, she prepares to return to London, though she has nothing left there to return to.    Her former fiance's mother makes a suggestion:  marriage to her other son.

Badly wounded and scarred during the war, Erik Gustafson thinks he's a poor substitute for his brother.  Although he loves Anne almost from the first time he sees her, he cannot believe she would ever be able to love him as he is--especially as he might be after another operation on his bad leg.    Anne sees the beauty of his heart.  The cold prairie winter may test her courage, but can she prove to Erik that her love for him is real?

An excerpt from Home Fires:

She offered him her hand.  Erik looked at it for a moment, then at her face.  Not a trace of pity marred her beautiful features.  He took her small, soft hand in his, and was surprised at the strength with which she pulled him to his feet.

"You're a lot stronger than you look."

She laughed, the first genuine sound of amusement he'd heard from her.  "Probably comes from spending the war lifting men twice my size."

"Anders said you were a nurse.  Are you planning to continue nursing now that the war is over?"  Her smile disappeared.  "I hope not.  I've seen enough misery to last me the rest of my life."

He nodded.  After witnessing the blood bath at Dieppe, he knew exactly what she meant.

"How far is it to the house?" she asked.

Erik leaned on his cane.  "Not far.  Wait.  You've got dried leaves stuck in your hair."

He pulled the offending leaves from her hair, letting his hand linger on the silky tresses.  She looked up at him, her dark brown eyes huge and round.  But she didn't move or stop him from touching her.  With her porcelain skin and fine bone structure, she looked like a delicate English rose, yet he detected a strength in her that would put any man to shame.

"We should go," she whispered.

Erik dropped his hand.  What was he doing?  This beautiful English rose was still in love with his brother.  His handsome, fit, unscarred brother.  She didn't want him.

He'd do well to remember that.  He'd already been rejected by one beautiful English girl because of his scars.  Another rejection would be more than he could bear.

You can reach Jana at her website


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting Jana today.

Ryshia Kennie said...

You're welcome. I'm looking forward to the day. I know we've had lots of drop ins - comments anyone?

Jana Richards said...

Hi Ryshia. Thanks for having me on your blog. Your question kind of threw me. I've done a little travelling, but nothing that I can say has changed my life. So I went with the short trips that really did change my life. I hope my experience resonates with others.


Ryshia Kennie said...

Welcome Jana. I didn't mean to throw you - actually your answer was perfect. Life is a trip and you summed that up very nicely in your answer.

I'm looking forward to reading Home Fires. I imagine the research was fascinating. Even reading that excerpt caught my interest. Was your story inspired in any way by a real life event or person?

traveler said...

Welcome Jana. I enjoyed learning about your life and this wonderful novel, Home Fires. Home Fires beckons me with its story, characters and the era which is my favorite. It is so meaningful and compelling. I enjoyed the excerpt. When I read a novel of this type it is memorable. Wishing you the best of success.

petite said...

I am captivated with this book and the wonderful interview. The excerpt peaked my interest greatly and reading this story would be an experience. I wonder how you decided upon this particular subject, and period of time. I am always intrigued with this type of story since I have read a great deal of war stories and they resonate with me. Being a Canadian also makes this even more of an attraction for me. Especially Western Canada which I view as wonderful.

Annette said...

Good morning Jana,
I can tell you are a writer, you took the question and moved it to a wonderful place. Great job.
The trips you described are very important and life changing.
I know that you will be empathetic toward your characters.

Karyn Good said...

Hi Jana! Often it's those short trips you mentioned that are the most life changing. But what a journey your heroine undertook, giving up her country and her home to come to a new one! Can't wait to read Home Fires!!!!

Diane said...

It took awhile to figure out how to link and post a comment, but I figured it out. Can you tell I am kind of new at this? You have a way of creating a picture in my mind with your words. I could see you taking those 'life trips'.

Jana Richards said...

Hi Ryshia,
"Home Fires" isn't based on a specific person. In fact, I didn't know anyone growing up who was a war bride, though I certainly heard about them. Rather, Anne Wakefield is a picture of many British war brides I read about.

Glad my 'travel' story worked for you!


Jana Richards said...

Thanks Traveller! I hope you enjoy Anne and Erik's story.


Anonymous said...

My brother is ten years older, and my mom always refers to us as her "two only children." It's an interesting dynamic, as it must be for you and your sibling...


Jana Richards said...

Hi Petite,
I've been fascinated with stories of WW2 for a long time. My Dad participated in the D-Day invasion with the Regina Rifles. I wish he was still around to tell his stories. Last year around Remembrance Day we had what I can only describe as a message from my Dad. You can read about it on my blog.

Because I'm Canadian and because Saskatchewan is the place I know best, it made sense to set the story here. Saskatchewan must have seemed another world to these women. It was opposite to everything they were used to!


Jana Richards said...

Thanks for the compliment Annette! That means a lot to me.

Thanks for stopping by,

Jana Richards said...

Hi Karyn,
I don't think I'd manage a life changing trip like the one Anne undertook. The short 'trips' I've made are life changing enough for me.

Thanks for commenting.

Jana Richards said...

Hi Diane,
Glad you figured it out! Soon you'll be an old hand at this blogging stuff.

I'm glad you enjoyed my journey. All the best.


Jennifer said...

Just stopped by to say HI and I just so happen to be looking for my next book to read and think I will give HOME FIRES a try. It looks just like what I need. keep up the good work.

Jana Richards said...

I read somewhere that when siblings are six or more years apart in age, they act more like only children than oldest and youngest. That was certainly true for me and my brother. My daughters are five years apart, and at one time, especially when my oldest was a teenager, all they seemed to do was fight. Now that they're both in their twenties, their best friends.

Thanks for following.

Jana Richards said...

Hi Jennifer,
I'm glad we found each other at the right time! I hope you enjoy "Home Fires".


Rita Wray said...

"Home Fires" is on my to read list.

Joni said...

I am looking forward to reading Home Fires. I am old enough that I had several relatives who served in WWII and I have always been fascinated by stories of that era.

MomJane said...

I really love stories based on that time era.
This one sounds extremly touching.

Jana Richards said...

Hi Ingeborg!
Thank you so much. I hope you enjoy "Home Fires".


Jana Richards said...

Hi Joni,
My husband and I are of the age also. My Dad was in the war, as well as one of his brothers. My husband's father and his two brothers also enlisted. The oldest brother was shot down somewhere over the English Channel. The loss hit a lot of families close to home.

Thanks for commenting. I hope you enjoy "Home Fires".


Jana Richards said...

Hi MomJane,
I hope readers find "Home Fires" an emotional, touching read.

Thanks for following,

Jana Richards said...

Can I ask people to please leave an email address so I can contact you if you win the $25 Amazon gift certificate?


Mary Preston said...

It's those life journey's that we make that shape us & our future.

Thank you for sharing.


Ryshia Kennie said...

Thanks for stopping by Jana and being so generous with your time. It made for an enjoyable day and a good look at your latest Home Fires. I know there will be many of us - including so many that stopped by without leaving a comment, that will be getting our own copy of Home Fires.

GladysMP said...

Homw Fires seems like a
true love story. Willing
to marry someone who has
physical handicaps is love
at its finest.

GladysMP said...

Oops! Should have proofread my post. That's Home FIRES, of course.

traveler said...

Lovely and special. My e-mail address from my earlier coment.saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

petite said...

Congratulations and best wishes as this book is unbelievably beautiful and your post wonderful. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

Tammy said...

You're welcome. I'm looking forward to the day. I know we've had lots of drop ins - comments anyone?