Johnnie Alexander — Author Spotlight ( + Giveaway )
Today I’m happy to welcome author Johnnie Alexander for an author spotlight. Read through to the end to find out how to enter her giveaway.
— What genre(s) do you write in and why?
Several years ago, God gave me a phrase found in Psalm 31:8 during my quiet time at a writers conference: I have set your feet in a spacious place.
At that time, I dreamed of getting “the call” from an agent and of someday seeing one of my novels in a bookstore. I prayed for my spacious place, and as the years passed, those dreams came true.
After my debut historical novel was published, I encountered rocky paths in my spacious place. My next three novels were contemporary romances. A historical short story and novella appeared between those releases and then I switched to cozy mysteries. I’ve recently written my first Amish novel.
The conventional advice is to stick to one genre, but that wasn’t God’s plan for me. I said yes to the opportunities He gave me and now my spacious place includes multiple genres.
— What do you think about when you’re alone in your car?
I’m embarrassed to admit this, but I once ran a red light because I was deep in thought about . . . Lay’s Classic potato chips! (What can I say? I was on the way to Publix for a jerk turkey sub with chipotle gouda cheese and Pepperhouse Gourmaise.)
But my thoughts aren’t usually that frivolous. I like to listen to PBS/NPR radio stations because of the variety of topics discussed on their various programs. Driving is also a great time for plotting and problem-solving, praying and pondering. My mind can wander as long as my tires don’t.
And I remember to stop when the light is red.
— What is your favorite part of writing?
I’m still amazed by the creative process—and I hope I always am! It’s humbling and exciting and frustrating and gut-wrenching fulfilling for an idea to become a story blurb and for the blurb to become a rough draft. And eventually that rough draft becomes a polished manuscript which becomes a novel in a reader’s hands.
I’m thrilled when characters surprise me and when ideas and themes I didn’t plan become an integral part of the story. Wow, that’s fun!
Readers, Johnnie has a question for you…. “What’s your favorite kind of sub?”
Leave a comment below to enter the giveaway for a copy of her debut novel, Where Treasure Hides. A US winner will receive a print copy; an international winner will receive an ebook.
Artist Alison Schuyler spends her time working in her family’s renowned art gallery, determined to avoid the curse that has followed the Schuyler clan from the Netherlands to America and back again. She’s certain that true love will only lead to tragedy—that is, until a chance meeting at Waterloo station brings Ian Devlin into her life.
Drawn to the bold and compassionate British Army captain, Alison begins to question her fear of love as World War II breaks out, separating the two and drawing each into their own battles. While Ian fights for freedom on the battlefield, Alison works with the Dutch Underground to find a safe haven for Jewish children and priceless pieces of art alike. But safety is a luxury war does not allow.
As time, war, and human will struggle to keep them apart, will Alison and Ian have the faith to fight for their love, or is it their fate to be separated forever?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Johnnie Alexander
Johnnie Alexander creates characters you want to meet and imagines stories you won’t forget in a variety of genres. An award-winning, best-selling novelist, she serves on the executive boards of Serious Writer, Inc. and the Mid-South Christian Writers Conference, co-hosts Writers Chat, and interviews other inspirational authors for Novelists Unwind. Johnnie lives in Oklahoma with Griff, her happy-go-lucky collie, and Rugby, her raccoon-treeing papillon. Connect with her at www.johnnie-alexander.com and other social media sites via https://linktr.ee/johnniealexndr.
Sign up for Johnnie’s newsletter on her website for updates and special giveaways.
Where Treasure Hides
The stringed notes of “Rule, Britannia!” grew louder as the crowd quieted, eyes and ears straining in their search for the violin soloist. The patriotic anthem echoed through Waterloo Station’s concourse, and as the second chorus began, sporadic voices sang the lyrics. Travel- weary Brits stood a little straighter, chins lifted, as the violinist completed the impromptu performance, the last note sounding long after the strings were silenced.
Alison Schuyler gripped her leather bag and threaded her way through the crowd toward the source of the music. As the final note faded inside the hushed terminal, she squeezed between a sailor and his girl, murmuring an apology at forcing them to part, and stepped onto a bench to see over the crowd. A dark-haired boy, no more than seven or eight, held the violin close to his anemic frame. His jacket, made of a finely woven cloth, hung loosely on his thin shoulders. The matching trousers would have slipped down his hips if not for his hand-tooled leather belt.
Either the boy had lost weight or his parents had purposely provided him clothes to grow into. Alison hoped for the latter, though from the rumors she’d heard, her first assumption was all too likely. She stared at the cardboard square, secured by a thick length of twine, that the boy wore as a cheap necklace. The penciled writing on the square numbered the boy as 127.
Other children crowded near the young musician, each one dressed in their fine traveling clothes, each one labeled with cardboard and twine. Germany’s castaways, transported to England for their own safety while their desperate parents paced the floors at home and vainly wished for an end to these troublesome days.
“Now will you allow him to keep his violin?” A man’s voice, pleasant but firm, broke the spell cast over the station. The children fidgeted and a low murmur rumbled through the crowd. The speaker, dressed in the khaki uniform of a British Army officer, ignored them, his gaze intent on the railroad official overseeing the children.
“He better,” said a woman standing near Alison. “Never heard anything so lovely. And the lad not even one of the king’s subjects. I’d take him home myself—yes, I would—if I’d a bed to spare.”
Alison mentally sketched the tableau before her, pinning the details into her memory. The officer’s hand resting on the boy’s shoulder; the official, a whistle around his neck, restlessly tapping his clipboard with his pencil; the dread and hope in the boy’s eyes as he clutched his prized instrument. The jagged square that tagged his identity.