I shared a quick get-to-know me sort of post over on my Facebook and Instagram accounts this morning. Thought it would be fun to share on here as well for those of you who aren’t on social media. I’d LOVE for you to share something about yourself in a comment too so we can get to know each other a bit more.
I’ll start with 10 things you need (or might not need – haha) to know about me:
I’ve been married for almost 19 years to my best friend, Eric, and am Mom to Emma who is 12.
I love Jesus and often picture simply sitting with Him talking about my day, my worries, etc. like I would with a dear friend.
I love, love, love coffee…hot, iced, whatever!
I first seriously considered writing after reading Anne of Green Gables around 11 years old because I wanted to transport people to new places and let them meet new people in the same way L.M. Montgomery did for me!
I was born in Hawaii, raised in Orlando, spent the first decade of married life in North Carolina, and now live in Texas. (We plan to retire in the mountains of NC!)
I work full-time from home (even when there’s not a pandemic) as a communications/public relations coordinator for a national non-profit based in Nashville.
My sister Cyndi and I are identical twins!
I am an introvert, an INFJ personality type, and a 4 on the Enneagram (Google it if you aren’t familiar)…all of these things should tell you more about me than just about anything. LOL
I cry at everything…happy, sad, nostalgic, beautiful, scary…commercials, songs, a pretty sunset, etc.
I decided early on in my writing journey to independently publish because it allows me to do things on my own timetable, stay flexible when life happens, and removes a lot of pressure that often brings me anxiety. So far, I’ve never regretted the decision and am so grateful for my little corner of the publishing world!
BONUS: I would be happy eating bread and good cheese for the rest of my life; I hate olives; and I consider Diet Coke to be one of life’s simple pleasures.
Well, that’s me in a nutshell. Be sure to comment with something about you that you’d like me to know. These little corners of the internet can make it hard to really know someone. And, while I know the list above is simply a snapshot of me, maybe it helps us feel a little more acquainted. Thanks for being here and reading along!
If your family is like mine, many holiday traditions include special recipes. Recipes passed down through generations. What smells and tastes fill your house this time of year? Today, I’d like to share one special family recipe that’s connected to a recent story I wrote.
In my Christmas novella, Somehow, This Christmas (appearing in the Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection) our couple Cate and Noah run into one not-so-merry mishap after another as their Christmas Eve wedding approaches. When one such misfortune ruins plans for their wedding cake, Cate comes up with the idea to make some of their families’ favorite holiday treats for the reception instead. Here’s an excerpt from that scene:
Noah stood back and watched the women flit around the kitchen. Cate was at her best when working through and idea she believed in. This one, for her mother to make some of their family’s favorite Christmas desserts for the reception, was brilliant. Every once and a while she sighed, but what bride wouldn’t after losing her cake? But this idea? This was inspired and so personal. So them. Bev had even agreed to make Noah’s grandmother’s fudge recipe.
Now the kitchen was stocked full of all the ingredients to open a North Pole-worthy bake shop! The menu included the fudge, classic frosted sugar cookies, gingerbread cookies, cherry pie, chocolate pecan pie, cranberry white chocolate cheesecake, and something Cate simply called “Christmas cake.”
That last recipe, despite it sounding the most important because of nostalgia, was the one he was tasked to make. No pressure. While Bev kneaded dough and rolled pie crusts on the small butcher-block island and Cate stirred cookie dough on the kitchen table, Noah was left with the stand mixer and a handwritten recipe on the front and back of a worn index card. He set eggs, butter, sugar, and almond extract to mixing in the stainless-steel bowl. Flipping the card, he scooped out flour and the other dry ingredients according to the scribbled numbers.
On the bottom right corner of the back of the recipe card were the words Love, Nana.
“Who’s Nana?” Noah asked over his shoulder.
Cate walked over, a dough-covered spoon in her hand, and glanced at the notation on the card – but it was Bev who spoke up.
“Nana is what Cate called my mom. That recipe was handed down by her mom, who got it from her mom, and so forth. Family legend has it that it originated with our ancestors in Germany more than five generations ago.”
“It’s so neat you know so much about your family heritage,” he said as Cate returned to her bowl of dough. Other than a few stories his grandma had told him about his own parents, Noah knew close to nothing about his ancestors. He wouldn’t be bringing any traditions like these to their new family. Maybe one day their own children and grandchildren would carry on this Forsyth tradition, and many new ones.
He shut off the mixer, reading over the scribbled ink and faded card. “I think I may have an idea for a wedding favor. What if we print up some recipe cards of the desserts we’re making? Every time someone makes the recipe, they’ll think of the wedding and us.”
Bev pushed aside her unruly red locks with the back of her hand and winked. “My, my. Cute and sentimental.”
Cate wiped her hands on her checkered apron front and approached, eyes tender. “I absolutely love that.” She squeezed his waist as she rose on her toes to meet his lips. “You know, you’re pretty good at this. If that firefighter thing doesn’t work out, I could always use an assistant.”
from Somehow, This Christmas by Teresa Tysinger in the Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection
Cate’s “Christmas Cake” is based on a recipe my own family enjoys every Christmas morning. I make it every year just like my mom and and her mom before her. To us, it’s as nostalgic as tearing open presents and leaving cookies for Santa. And just like Noah’s suggestion to share the recipe with their wedding guests, I’d like to share it with you today!
What are some of your family’s favorite Christmas treats? Leave a comment telling me about your most nostalgic holiday cookies, cakes, breakfasts, dishes, etc. Have they been passed down by a loved one? Is Christmas just not the same without them?
I hope you and your family have a chance to try this delicious German Christmas Cake. If you do, please let me know! Post a photo on social media and tag me! I’d love to see how it turns out.
If you’ve not yet read about Cate and Noah’s journey to the holiday aisle in Somehow, This Christmas or the other amazing stories in the Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection, get your copy HERE now. It’s not too late to order a copy for yourself as well as copies for the readers in your life!
Here’s hoping your holidays are filled with joyful traditions, happy memories, and merry blessings!
I’m so excited that Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection is “on tour” this week with Celebrate Lit! My very first Christmas novella, Somehow This Christmas, is included in this sweet collection along with stories by Jaycee Weaver, Toni Shiloh, Mikal Dawn, and Andrea Boyd. What’s just as exciting? As you visit the stops along the tour, you get the chance to win a fun giveaway including an Amazon gift card, cute jeweled pens, and chocolates!
About Something Borrowed
Old friends, new loves, and a borrowed tiara.
Always Been Yours — Hanady’s planning her dream wedding, but her injured best friend Keenan isn’t the groom. If she can’t see she’s marrying the wrong guy soon, his leg won’t be the only thing broken.
All the Moore — Leilah Anderson has been living behind the screen to hide her disability, then she meets Reggie Moore face-to-face. Can their relationship survive the truth and distance between them?
A Holly, Bolly Christmas — A dream wedding venue at Christmas? Sign Chahna Kapoor up. Even if her fiancé doesn’t know it…
Somehow, This Christmas — When not-so-merry mishaps threaten wedding planner Cate Forsyth’s holiday wedding and reputation, will her own happily ever after with sweetheart Noah Bennett melt away?
A Promise So Sweet — Lydia Osborn hasn’t heard from her ex in ten years, so imagine her surprise when he shows up proposing marriage. Tis the season for love?
Before I share the schedule of tour stops, here’s something extra from all of us about this special collection of stories.
From the Something Borrowed Crew…
Thank you for stopping by the Celebrate Lit blog tour of Something Borrowed. Before we share our excitement for the collection, we’d like to give a brief history of how it came to be.
Last year, the five of us crafted the Once Upon a Christmas collection, but Teresa needed to step down and we were blessed to have Angela Ruth Strong join us in her stead. Early this year, we rejoiced as Teresa was able to resume her place, and then our hearts broke as we learned of Angela’s breast cancer battle. Through all life has thrown our way, we’ve formed a beautiful friendship and have plans to write more collections together!
In January, we decided on a Christmas weddings theme, but we wanted it to be different and unique. Ideas sprang to life and six college roommates emerged, each from a different walk of life but bound by friendship. And then, we found ourselves missing our sixth. With prayers and a blessing over Angela’s health and a writing endeavor that’s been a dream for years (read her story on Facebook!), we found a way to include her in the form of a sixth roommate who no longer needed a love story.
Enter Ruth Ann. Married right out of college, she’s been busy cranking out babies like nobody’s business. And when the next bride, Jaycee’s character Hanady, brings them together for a girls’ reunion weekend, it’s Ruth Ann who produces the perfect something borrowed for this circle of friends.
Hanady’s planning a wedding to the wrong groom—just ask Keenan, the injured best friend who’s loved her for years. Wheelchair-bound Leilah doubts she’ll wear the tiara, but her online gaming friend might be too wonderful to resist. Chahna “Ana” Kapoor just knows she’s going to wear the tiara, so she books her dream venue—she just needs her boyfriend to propose and her parents to tone down the drama. After being engaged to Noah for years, Cate is more than ready for the tiara to be hers, but not-so-merry mishaps the week of the wedding threaten a happily ever after. And finally, having watched all of her friends marry and start their families, when Lydia’s ex shows up on her doorstep with an outrageous proposal, she finds it hard to believe her turn might finally have come.
We are so happy to present to you this collection of five interconnected stories where friendship and faith take center stage. For some, it’s new love. For others, it’s finally sealing an old one. Each tale is unique and yet together they weave one overarching message of love, joy, hope, and peace through the Christmas season.
As you read these stories, we pray they touch your heart. We pray they entertain you and maybe even make you laugh a time or two. And lastly, we pray the Christmas truths bless you this holiday season.
Blessings, Jaycee, Toni, Mikal, Teresa, and Andrea
I’m thrilled to be participating in something really fun today. Celebrate Lit is hosting a read-along series with Christian authors narrating scenes from our books. I just love how technology can connect us when distance or something crazy like a pandemic separates us.
For my read-along, I’m sharing a snippet from one of my favorite scenes in my latest novel, Suddenly Forever. In the part of this scene, Cora (the heroine) chats with her opinionated and wise elderly neighbor about being open to love after loss. It includes what is possibly my favorite line from the whole book:
“That’s the thing about loss, dear. Those of us left on this side of heaven must redefine ourselves. It’s the only hope we have of continuing to live in the here and now…”
spoken by Ina McLean in Suddenly Forever by Teresa Tysinger
Watch the whole video below, then check out the other read-alongs at Celebrate Lit.
Just in time for holiday shopping, both books in the Laurel Cove Romance Series are currently on sale!
Did you know Amazon makes it super easy to purchase eBooks as gifts for others? On the product page, simply choose the “Buy For Others” option and enter the name and email address of a friend or family member who you think would enjoy the book.
Of course, you can treat yourself, too!
Don’t wait as these special discounted prices won’t last forever! Click on the titles below to buy today.
*Both books are still also available in paperback at regular cost.
Don’t forget to also pick up your copy of Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection today! My novella, Somehow, This Christmas, is included in this sweet and festive collection with four other amazing stories.
Last night was a whirlwind of laughs, hackers (yes, hackers), and all things fall at the Suddenly Forever Book Launch Bonfire over on Facebook.
We did, indeed, get off to a whacky start when a viewer told us in the comment section that some “guy” apparently had hacked the event page and was posting bogus links, effectively burying the link to the live video!!! So, if you had trouble getting to the video, I’m sorry. It seems to have affected notifications and reminders. At the end of the day, though, this fun little virtual event is so insignificant in the scope of problems in our world. So, no sweat!
Good news is, you can watch the entire thing NOW! Listen as me and Bethany Turner and Mikal Dawn talk about fall movies (discover which CLASSIC Mikal admitted she’s never seen!), our favorite fall things, and answer questions from readers about books and writing. It was so fun and I hope you’ll enjoy, too. Be sure to comment while watching the video by Sunday evening (October 11) and you could win one of a few fall treats!
Be sure to also scroll through the event page for my pre-recorded chat with Courtney Walsh (SO FUN!). I hope you enjoy this fun celebration. Thanks to all of you who made this release week of my second book the absolute best!!
Suddenly Forever is now available in paperback and eBook! If you’re local to my area of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas stop by Leaves Books and Tea Shop to grab your copy of the book and support a sweet small business! You can also order fromAmazon, of course.
I’ve talked quite a bit about how this story means so much to me. Early on in the drafting process, I became emotional invested in Cora and Luke and Ina’s lives. Their journey through grief to hope and new beginnings and love really hit me deeply. It’s my prayer that you, too, will find the story uplifting and encouraging.
Who’s Talking About Suddenly Forever
I’m excited to have a bunch of friends and early readers chatting about Suddenly Forever throughout this week! I’d love if you gave these folks a visit and show them some love. There aren’t enough words to express my gratitude for this kind of support. (I’ll come back and edit links to direct you to the specific posts as they go live.)
This Friday, October 9, join me and a few special guests over on Facebook for a super fun Book Launch Bonfire! As a “pre-party” warm up, at 6:30pm Central I’ll be sharing a super fun chat I pre-recorded with author Courtney Walsh, which you do NOT want to miss (watch and comment for a last-minute entry into the giveaway; see below). Then at 7:00pm Central we will kick things off with a LIVE chat with my friends and fellow contemporary romance authors Bethany Turner and Mikal Dawn. Get your questions ready as we talk about all things fall and movies and books (of course!).
You’ll have the chance to ask us questions, chat along with other readers, and more. I might even have a small giveaway or two just for the bonfire attendees!
Before the end of the evening, I’ll announce the BIG WINNER for the book release giveaway. More on that below. You don’t have to be present at the bonfire to win; the winner will also be contacted by email.
Suddenly Forever Release Giveaway
There’s still time to enter the book release giveaway, celebrating Suddenly Forever. One winner will receive the goodies listed below…some of my fall favorites! The winner will be notified by email the evening of October 9 AND announced at the Bonfire Facebook event (see above).
As a writer, I prefer to type my words. The only sound accompanying them is the click-clack of my keyboard. If I do use my voice, it’s within the private sanctuary of my office to test a line for clarity before revising. And so, a few months ago when I booked my very first podcast guest appearance, some nerves started to bubble up!
Would I speak as well as my written words read? Would my nerves ooze through the airwaves? (Are they still airwaves in our digital age?) Would I stutter over my thoughts without the ability to edit them first?
Turns out, when this author got in front of a microphone, it wasn’t so bad!
Even though nerves percolated just below the surface, I was thrilled when Chautona Havig agreed to have me on as a guest on The Because Fiction Podcast. LISTEN TO THE EPISODE HERE. Chautona put me at such ease and before I knew it, the conversation drew to a close and we were done!
This inaugural podcast experience got me thinking about two sort of surprising things: obedience and trust. Just ask my husband, I am not naturally inclined to put myself out there. Even though my career in marketing and communications tasks me with putting my organization’s events or products out in front of the community at large, I’m not so keen on it when it’s about me. My gut tells me it’s narcissistic or something.
But, God… (my favorite phrase) God has called me to write. The stories God has put on my heart are for a world in need of messages of truth and hope and grace. If I’m obedient enough to write the stories down, I need to be obedient enough to tell the world about those stories. That means putting myself out there. And so, with my second book I have felt pushed to stretch the limits of my comfort zone. Talking out loud about Suddenly Forever on a podcast is certainly new territory. When making my marketing plan for this book, God whispered podcasts on my heart. And so, I keep praying for ways to be obedient to that. I’m SO grateful Chautona and her podcast can be my first tip-toe into such a fun venue to talk books and writing and HOPE.
I also mentioned trust. Since speaking engagements scare me, I’ve had to lean on trusting in a few things I believe to be true. First, I am trusting in God’s promise to never leave us (Hebrews 13:5). When I go into a scary situation, God is right there by my side. WIN! I also choose to trust that I’ve got inside me whatever I need for the task at hand. This is a big one for me…insecurities abound! And so, I choose to trust that I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippins 4:13). WIN! Finally, I choose to trust that God goes before me and also follows me (Psalm 139:5). To me, that takes the Hebrews verse even farther. God not only is always with us, but I take comfort in trusting that He prepares a path for us and knows what’s coming ahead. That helps me feel protected and prepared for whatever may come.
Sitting in front of a microphone may not ever be comfortable for me. I’ll likely always prefer sitting in front on my computer typing out my thoughts. Holding on to the ability to punch the backspace button and reframe a thought before putting it out into the world. But, I’m grateful for this new adventure. We can do BIG things with a little obedience and trust!
After you give a listen to the Because Fiction episode, be on the lookout for my upcoming appearance on the Footnotes Podcast with Jaime Jo Wright on October 5! I’m also excited to be chatting later this fall with the sweet ladies behind the A Rough Draft Life Podcast. I’ll post that date as soon as I know when it’ll air.
Before we wrap up…
We are officially counting down the last several days before the release of Suddenly Forever! If you prefer ebooks, be sure to PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY today. The paperback and ebook will both be available October 6.
Celebrate Suddenly Forever with me and a few of my author friends and a bunch of readers at the BOOK LAUNCH BONFIRE on Friday, October 9 at 7:00 PM Central. Get all the details and RSVP here.
A finally, don’t forget to enter my big BOOK RELEASE GIVEAWAY here. The winner will be announced at the bonfire on October 9…BUT, you don’t have to be present there to win. I’ll contact the winner directly, too.
I am 99% done with putting the finishing touches on my next novel, Suddenly Forever. On October 6, this second book in the Laurel Cove Romance series will be available in both paperback and ebook. Final edits are done. Tweaks have been made to the cover design. My street team is currently reading their early copies. Besides hitting the final “publish” button to send files off to Amazon, what’s next?
Next, we party!
Join me and a few of my author friends on Friday, October 9 at 7:00 PM Central over on Facebook. We’re going to celebrate the launch of Suddenly Forever the same way Cora and Luke, its main characters, would: sitting in front of a crackling fire talking, enjoying a hot beverage, and making s’mores. (Well, we’re going to improvise.) This Book Launch Bonfire won’t be the same without YOU!
Speaking of giveaways, it’s time to tell you about the second way I’m celebrating the release of Suddenly Forever! The book is set during the fall season in the gorgeous mountains of North Carolina. So, one lucky reader will receive a bundle of my favorite fall things. I’ll announce the winner at the end of the Book Launch Bonfire (you don’t have to be present to win).
I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t nerve-wracking when people begin reading your book for the first time. Recently, I sent the advanced reader copies to my street team members. [Cue nail biting.] For a while, I’ve felt like this book is something special. But the early reviews coming in from my early readers are confirming that God is indeed doing something special with this story! ALL the glory goes to Him for the power on these pages that I pray reflect true hope and redemption after loss and pain.
Here’s a few bits and pieces of early reviews that have blessed my socks off!
True to life and not glossing over the pain of first loves lost, Tysinger’s latest contemporary southern romance left an imprint on me. Love is messy, it *is* a rollercoaster of many emotions, infinite layers, steps forward, and back, alike. But when it is God to both heal hearts and bring hearts together, as beautifully written in Cora and Luke’s story? Well, it makes for a memorable, impactful read.
This is an incredible contemporary novel of loss, grief, regrets, and learning to live again. It’s the second book in the Laurel Cove series but can absolutely be read as a stand-alone (those who read Someplace Familiar will enjoy the cameo appearance of Jake and Livy but their story is not necessary to fully enjoy this book). […] This book has it all – beautiful and lyrical writing, clever dialogue, wonderfully layered plot, and intriguing characters. It will make you cry ugly tears and happy satisfied tears and help you to hold onto hope and healing.
It’s a tender story full of times where grief had an overwhelming hold, and yet, there were beautiful examples of how love in action can bring healing. […] The author has a wonderful way with words as she describes the setting of this story. I loved feeling I was right there in Laurel Cove on the lake gliding across as the seasons changed.
The countdown it ticking away to release day on October 6! If you prefer eBooks, you can pre-order Suddenly Forever now and have it delivered to your inbox on release day. Paperback and eBook will both be available for purchase October 6.
If you think of it, please add this book to your prayer list. Join me in asking God to bless those who need its message of hope and love and new beginnings. I pray, too, that YOU enjoy it and are encouraged. I can’t wait to share this sweet, tender story with you, friends!
In three weeks, my second novel Suddenly Forever releases into the world! To say there’s been a lot going on in my world and heart is an understatement. I’ve talked on here before about how publishing a book is like birthing a baby. While I won’t belabor (pun not intended – ha!) that comparison again today, I am full of the weight we indie publishers sometimes carry. Though I do have several folks who help me with certain steps of the process, I am my own marketing, design, sales, and accounting departments!
I’ve heard from a lot of readers that they love learning behind-the-scenes stuff about authors’ process. What it takes to get a book on the shelves. So, I thought I’d share a run-down of what I’ve been busy doing the last few weeks as release day approaches!
EDITS!!! As soon as my editor sent back her copy edit notes a few weeks ago, it was go-time! Because I set some quicker deadlines than usual, I really put in some late hours to do some scene rewrites and address my love-hate relationship with dangling modifiers. (PS Thank God for editors!!!)
Once edits were done, it was time to format the Advanced Reader Copy for my street team members and a few bloggers/reviewers. This step is both exciting and a bit nerve-wracking because it’s the first time readers other than my critique partners began reading the story! Here’s a little insider info: I received my master’s degree in English with a concentration in book design through an editing and publishing program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. So, I actually LOVE working on formatting.
Next up, I designed the cover for the paperback book. I don’t have formal training in graphic design, but it’s been part of my job for more than 15 years. I absolutely LOVE it. I designed the cover for my first bookSomeplace Familiarand loved doing the same for the cover for Suddenly Forever, too. Incidentally, just this week I also finished up the paperback cover for the Something Borrowed: Christmas Weddings Collection that my novel Somehow, This Christmas appears in (releasing October 20!). Now, I am waiting anxiously for the final proof copy of the novel to arrive from Amazon. Once I thumb through one last time, I can give the final thumbs up for production!!
Speaking of design, I’ve also been busy designing marketing materials for the book. Social media memes, posts, advertisements, bookmarks, quote cards, etc. Here’s a few I’m really loving so far:
Marketing for a new book can be overwhelming. There are so many options out there and even as someone who works on marketing in my day job, it’s daunting to know what to pick to promote your book. I’m currently working through a schedule of features on several book blogs, review sites, multi-author promotions, and more. Hopefully, you’ll start to see Suddenly Forever out and about more and more in the coming days and weeks.
Swag, baby! Even though I don’t craft as much as I used to, I’ve been having fun putting together some fun swag for folks who have partnered with me to help champion the book. I just mailed off “kits” to a few VIP guests who will join me at my BOOK LAUNCH BONFIRE celebration on Facebook, coming up Friday, October 9. Stay tuned for a formal invitation soon! I’m also getting some thank you swag ready for my sweet street team folks.
Tired yet???? Me, too. HAHA. I feel like I could go on and on and on. It’s another full-time job, this author gig. But I love every minute of it. In addition to the above, there’s been lots of music jams, endless coffee, and prayer!
Prayer, you say? YES! About this time, with just a few weeks left before the book is “live,” I begin praying daily that God gets the book into the hands of the people who need the story most. I pray for God’s truths to settle into the hearts of those who need to hear them. I pray the book reaches far and wide and glorifies God in new and unexpected ways. This story’s characters have all been touched by grief and search for hope. So many of us can relate to this longing, so I’ll continue to pray that ALL readers will find just that — hope — in these pages.
If you’ve read this far, you get an extra gold star.
Thanks for peeking behind the curtain with me on what life has looked like recently. I forgot to mention that all of the above happens IN ADDITION to my full-time day job. Whew! Be sure to tune into the Because Fiction Podcast episode I mentioned above. Chautona Havig and I chat about what “writing on the fringes” looks like for me.
And lastly…for those of you who prefer ebooks, don’t forget there’s still time to PRE-ORDER Suddenly Forever! When you pre-order you ensure you’ll be among the first to get the book delivered to you on release day, October 6! Like paperbacks? Don’t worry…those will be available October 6, too!