A Fuzzy Peach — Ada Brownell
Today I’m happy to welcome author Ada Brownell for an author spotlight and giveaway. Read through to the end to find out how to enter.
A ripe peach is a delicacy created by God’s heavenly love with us in mind.
I grew up in peach country and every summer, we visited the orchards. One summer I worked on my aunt’s peach and horse ranch, taking care of her children, making lunch, and later picking peaches and working in her peach packing shed as an inspector.
I had to watch for bad spots, the little hole in one end that signified a split seed, and see that the fruit was an acceptable size. The peaches were poured onto a belt that had rollers to help move the peaches gently down the line into wooden boxes. The peaches rolled around so I could see all their sides if I kept my eyes on the conveyor belt.
Today the taste of a fresh tree-ripened peach is not experienced by many. The trouble is that most peaches are picked green so they won’t be bruised during packing and shipping. A peach ripened in the box is about 10 percent as tasty as a juicy tree-ripened one.
Some orchards near Palisade, Colo., allow buyers to come in and pick their own fruit. Now as sweet as a peach is, you wouldn’t think there is a problem with pulling the fruit off the tree, but every peach is covered with an irritant. The problem is fuzz—peach fuzz!
Pros who work the orchard can’t wait to go home at the end of the day and take a shower. Peach fuzz sticks to sweat on hot sticky days, and it feels about like you’ve been crawling around in an attic insulated with rockwool, or spun fiberglass.
Where I worked inspecting peaches on the conveyor belt, the machine defuzzed the peaches as they went through the line so customers and grocery store workers weren’t bothered by fuzz.
Today scientists are working with peach genetics to get rid of the fuzz. Nectarines are closely related to the peach and don’t have the itchy stuff.
Yet God knew what he was doing when he designed the peach. Experts tell us fuzz protects peaches from loss of moisture due to evaporation, and it also protects the fruit from bugs.
In the last chapter of Peach Blossom Rancher John Lincoln Parks sees his work in the orchards pay off. Here’s an excerpt:
August 25, 1910, arrived with John supervising a crew of peach pickers and packers. “This is the best crop peach growers have had in recent years,” he shared with Paul Jorgenson. “Too many bad years in a row caused a good market. Evidently people everywhere are hungry for peaches.
Paul stood nearby, crutches under his arms. Both hands free, he took two fingers and pulled the peel from a big yellow peach blushed red on the cheeks. He took a bite, and juice dribbled down the edges of his mouth.
“Ah. Wonderful.” He yanked a big blue and white handkerchief from his pocket to wipe his face. “Nothing better than a tree-ripened peach.
Bellea walked up behind him, took one crutch, and put an arm around her husband’s waist. “You hungry already? You had a big breakfast.”
Paul grunted as he chewed. “Aw, wifey. I can eat a ripe peach any time. John, how many Arabian horses do you have now?”
“With that new colt, I only have the three. I hope to have at least twenty for breeding.”
“Sounds wonderful. How do Polly and Abe like their new house?”
“They’re happy as two crickets on a summer night. You probably heard their son is back and working for us. We’re building a house for his family, too.”
PEACH BLOSSOM RANCHER IS ON SALE FOR .99 CENTS TODAY ONLY. Get it here: http://ow.ly/4ETL302QdhW
— What is your current work in progress?
I have about 15,000 words written on the third book in the Peaches and Dreams series. The Lady Fugitive is first, Peach Blossom Rancher second, and Ritah is the working title for the third.
Here’s the summary: Ritah heads off to college, one of the few women who attends college in 1916. She hopes to fulfill her dream of becoming an outstanding teacher. She especially wants to see women succeed in the marketplace in case they need to support their family. But war, trouble back home because of a man trying to make a young friend work in his brothel, sickness, and two men who propose marriage stand between Ritah and the life she hopes to live. Will she marry one of these men? Will she achieve her goals?
— What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
My most difficult writing obstacle is time, and I think I’ve found the answer. I need to get by with less sleep, and budget my time just as I do money. At this moment I’m thinking of writing down what I need to do each day, and writing out a schedule for it all. I need to prioritize like emergency rooms do their patients with triage. I used to do that in my youth quite successfully. I at least need to try it now.
— When did you first discover that you were a writer?
Although I’d written for Christian publications for years, I didn’t call myself a writer until I went back to work as a newspaper reporter and made significant money for my work. I’d read somewhere you aren’t a professional writer unless you’re making a living at it.
For years I only made $3 and then maybe up to $10 or $12 for an article. Yet one time I sold an article to David C. Cook’s Leader Magazine for $35. I had to look at it twice before I believed I received that amount. I was so excited I sold my accordion, put the $35 with it, enrolled in a Christian Writing correspondence course and bought an electric typewriter. It was at least 20 years before I made $35 or more again from one article.
Now that I have seven books and helped put our children through college on my newspaper reporter’s salary, I do accept the title that I’m a writer.
Readers, Ada has a question for you… Have you ever tasted a tree-ripened peach or encountered peach fuzz? She’s giving away one e-copy of Peach Blossom Rancher and one copy of The Lady Fugitive.
ABOUT THE BOOK: Peach Blossom Rancher:
To write this historical romance, the author drew from her experiences as a journalist covering the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo, a former asylum; and from working during her teens on a peach and horse ranch in Palisade, Colorado.
Although the fictional asylum is in Boston, the author says you wouldn’t believe the types of diagnoses that could get you committed in the early 1900s. She took the information from historical lists compiled by the Colorado Board of Lunacy Commissioners on the supposed cause of insanity of those held in 1899 to 1910, when asylums were young. Many of those conditions are revealed in the novel.
The leading man, rancher John Lincoln Parks, yearns for a wife to help rebuild the ranch he inherited. He eyes Valerie MacDougal, a young widow who homesteaded, but she also is an attorney who hopes to help those wrongly held in the asylum. One of those she hopes to help is a doctor who had one seizure.
Will the doctor ever be set free from the asylum? Will John marry Valerie or Edwina Jorgenson, the feisty rancher-neighbor he constantly fusses with? This neighbor has a Peeping Tom whose boot prints are like the person’s who dumped a body in John’s barn. Will John even marry, or be hanged for the murder?
Get e-book or paperback of Peach Blossom Rancher–on sale now for .99 at http://ow.ly/4ETL302QdhW
FIRST PAGE OF PEACH BLOSSOM RANCHER:
Peach Blossom Ranch March 1904
“Come on boy, your hard life is over.”
The sleek stallion pulled, snorted, grunted, yanked his head upward and tried to whirl away. John Lincoln Parks held the reins tight. “Come on. The judge isn’t here. The whip’s in your past.”
Bringing the animal all the way from Colorado’s Eastern Slope after the judge’s death hadn’t been easy. The judge, John’s uncle, was murdered near Yucca Blossom and would never return to the horse ranch and acres of peach orchards he expected to inherit from John’s father.
“He look like he a good un to breed,” Abe said, sweat glistening on his crinkled chocolate brow, “But an animal abused like ‘im usually is disobedient or loses his spirit.”
John rubbed the stallion’s neck and extended a hand with sugar cubes in it. “I don’t want to give up on him yet. Come on, boy. We’re going to be friends. You should be tired and hungry after that train trip.”
A long red tongue licked the sugar cube into the toothy mouth. Abe followed John to the horse barn.
“I’ll get ’im some oats and fill the water trough. He a right pretty animal except fa the welts the judge left on ’im.”
Thanks, Donna, for inviting me to be your guest.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ada Brownell
Author of Peach Blossom Rancher on sale for .99 Oct. 19-21 http://ow.ly/4ETL302QdhW
Ada Brownell is the author of seven books. She has written for Christian publications since age 15 and spent much of her life as a reporter for The Pueblo Chieftain in Colo.
A freckled redhead, she’s used to standing out in a crowd like her seven older sibling achievers she grew up with, most of them redheads. She also is a veteran youth Christian education teacher, and most of her life sang in Christian gospel groups including the Damascus Singers and Praise Trio. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Ozarks Chapter of American Christian Writers.
Read sample chapters of her books on Amazon or listen to her audio Imagine the Future You. Amazon author page is https://www.amazon.com/author/adabrownell
Connect with Ada at
Book Fun Network: http://www.bookfun.org
Amazon Ada Brownell author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KJ2C06
Blog: http://inkfromanearthenvessel.blogspot.com Stick-to-Your-Soul Encouragement