Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Introducing Our New Blogging Buddy!!! Gabrielle Meyer!!!!!


Erica here: I'm posting here for Jaime, who has been laid low with pneumonia. If you think of Jaime today, please pray. She's got a big day at work, leading training seminars, and she needs strength. Thank you!


Almost a year ago, I was welcomed into the blogging partnership here at Coffee Cups & Camisoles, and now it is my great pleasure to welcome another blogger. Gabrielle Meyer!


Here is a little about Gabrielle:





Gabrielle Meyer lives in central Minnesota on the banks of the Mississippi River with her husband and four young children. As an employee of the Minnesota Historical Society, she fell in love with the rich history of her state and enjoys writing fictional stories inspired by real people and events. Gabrielle can be found on her personal blog or her group blog where she writes about her passion for history, Minnesota, and her faith.





Gabrielle and I are kindred spirits. Fellow Minnesotans, history addicts, romance writers. We each have thick, curly hair. And she is a member of TEAM TEA! YAY! We even have novellas releasing in TWO different collections together later this year. (You'll hear about both of those collections as they release...FYI, be prepared to party. These are Gabrielle's FIRST published works!)




We thought it might be fun to interview Gabrielle to help everyone get to know her, so we each came up with a couple of questions. I love the answers!

Anne’s:


1) Where were you the first moment you realized you'd fallen in love with history?
I grew up with history all around me—quite literally. My father was the grounds and maintenance caretaker for a wealthy heiress named Laura Jane Musser and we lived above the carriage house on the estate. Her father was a lumber baron and he had built a mansion next door to his business partner, Charles Weyerhaeuser. Laura Jane inherited both mansions and the nine acres of land along the Mississippi where they were built (it’s now a retreat center). I loved growing up there, but it wasn’t until I was seventeen that I can honestly say I fell in love with history—like over-the-moon, I’m gone forever kind of love. That was the summer I began working at the Charles A. Lindbergh Historic Site here in my hometown of Little Falls, Minnesota. I was immersed in history every single day, and I was paid to learn all I could and then tell people what I knew! I worked at the Lindbergh Site for ten years, and it shaped my love of history in ways nothing else ever could. I learned how to tell a good story, with historical facts, to entertain an audience.


2) What event, moment, memory, or person first made you believe you might try to write your own book?

There were so many. Some that stand out: my mom telling me I could do anything I set my mind to, a youth pastor asking me for my first autograph on a restaurant napkin, a college professor telling me I had “potential to be a great writer,” transcribing a written history of our community at our local county historical society (and discovering a goldmine of ideas), and my husband’s complete and utter belief in me. The one that pushed me over the edge of my little nest, and forced me to flap my writing wings, was reading The Colonel’s Lady by Laura Frantz. My kindle suggested the title, and I was eager to try a new-to-me author. I devoured that book! And at the end, I thought to myself: “Why am I not writing?” I had dreamed of being an author almost my whole life—but it was that book that made me believe I could do it. I also found Laura on Facebook and she was my first author friend. :) She’s been an amazing encouragement ever since.


3) What author or heroine (living or dead) is most like you?


*Sigh* I relate to so many. :)  But the one who is most like me is an author named Maud Hart Lovelace. Her series, Betsy-Tacy, is set at the turn of the 20th Century in Mankato, Minnesota (called Deep Valley in the books). It’s a fictional auto-biography, much like Little House on the Prairie. She begins the series when Betsy (a.k.a. Maud) is a little girl, and she takes her through childhood, into high school, and on to college, marriage, and the great world. I read the series in high school and I fell in love. Maud captures the heart and soul of her hometown, which is what I long to do with my writing. I’ve read the first half of the series to my girls, and we’ve gone to Maud’s house in Mankato. I highly recommend the series! (Maud and I also share a birthday, April 25th. :) )


4) When was the first time you met Anne, Jaime, and Erica?

I met Erica first at the 2012 ACFW Conference in Dallas. We had formerly “met” online, and we are both from Minnesota, so I was excited to meet her. I’ll never forget that moment, because the very first thing she did was compliment me. :) (Do you remember what you said, Erica?) I also “met” Jaime and Anne online, and then in person for the first time at the 2013 ACFW Conference in Indianapolis. It was like a big reunion! I’ve felt a kindred spirit with all three ladies, and I’m so excited to be a part of this blog.


Erica here...I don't remember! What did I say????


5) Coffee or Tea? And how do you take it?

I’m a tea girl! I love all flavors—hot and cold. If it’s hot, I love to put cream in it—if it’s cold, I want it to be sweet.


Erica here again...Yay for another tea-drinker! :)

Erica’s:


6) Which character from Little House on the Prairie are you most like?
What I love about LHOP is that I relate to a few characters. I’m the oldest of two sisters (I also have two older brothers), so growing up I often felt like Mary. I was the responsible sister, and if you asked my younger sister Andrea, she’d tell you I never got into trouble and was a “perfect” little girl like Mary. :) As I got older, and discovered my love for writing, I began to relate to Laura. I wanted to write about my childhood and my family and all the nuances of my community life. Now, as a mother of four, I totally get Ma! J I remember re-reading the series after having children, and seeing Ma’s point of view for the first time. I can’t even begin to understand how difficult it was to live on the prairie as a pioneer. Go Ma Ingalls!


7) What is your favorite housekeeping chore?
Ugh. Can I say it again? Ugh. I do not enjoy housekeeping—I enjoy a clean, organized house, but with four children, a dog, a cat, two small businesses we run out of the house, and homeschooling, our house gets a workout every day! Last week my eight year old daughter said to me: “I bet our house likes when we all leave so it can take a break.” :) If someone twisted my arm, and I had to say one favorite chore, it would probably be vacuuming. Usually this comes at the end of my cleaning routine and it gives me great satisfaction to see it done. :) Here’s one of my favorite pictures from parenting twins. As they get older, their messes only get bigger. :)


Jaime’s:
8) If you were stranded on an island, what FICTION novel could you not live without?

I have so many favorites! Some recent ones are The Wood’s Edge, by Lori Benton, The Colonel’s Lady, by Laura Frantz, Rebellious Heart, by Jody Hedlund…but the one I have read numerous times and I never tire of is Redeeming Love, by Francine Rivers. I know this may seem like a generic answer, since it’s a favorite of so many people—but there is a good reason for its popularity! Every time I read Redeeming Love, I come away with a new insight, a different perspective, and a deeper understanding. The story is rich in characters, plot, dialogue, setting, and spiritual depth. I’m a huge fan of plot twists and unexpected revelations, and that book is ripe with them! If you’ve read it, you know what I mean.


9) Do you have a writing mentor? If so, what is one of the biggest things they have taught you about your writing journey?


I have a few mentors, but the one who has taught me the most is Susan May Warren. Not only has she been a fantastic teacher, but she’s also become a good friend (we Minnesotans need to stick together). J I think the biggest thing she’s taught me is the importance of a support network. Writing can be a lonely, solitary pursuit—but it doesn’t have to be. There is power in numbers! As I walk this writing journey, I’m so thankful for kindred spirits who travel beside me. They encourage me, pray for me, brainstorm with me, laugh with me, cry with me—but best of all, they love me, and that is a priceless gift.

10) You know I'm going to ask you for a selfie!!!?


Here’s a different take on a selfie. J I took this picture on the beach in Monterey, California during the Books & Such Literary Management Retreat.




To celebrate Gabrielle coming to our blog, we're giving away a copy of one of her favorite books! Enter the giveaway, then come back and ask Gabrielle a 'get to know you' kind of question!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

27 comments:

  1. WELCOME!!! Yay, another homeschooler - what fun it is, isn't it? The picture of the twins is about what happens here, too. :) Team Tea - that made me giggle. Thanks for sharing with us today, have fun hanging around here with these characters.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Susan, thank you for the warm welcome!!! Yes, homeschooling is fun! I was also homeschooled, so we're a second generation homeschool family. And Tea Drinkers Unite! :) Team Tea made me giggle, too. Looking forward to getting to know you here.

      Delete
  2. Prayers with Jaime as she handles so many things and celebrates her new contract, too! And I'm SO delighted Gabrielle is here with you! And beyond honored to see TCL for the giveaway and know that this book was one of the reasons behind Gabe taking the writing/publishing plunge:) Two novellas later, I can't wait to see what happens next! Great questions and answers here that really make you think and show the heart behind the stories Gabe writes. I know I'll be a fan of her writing because I am such a fan of HER! Blessings on your blog ministry here. It's a real light and blessing for me whenever I come by.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by, Laura! You really are such a blessing and encouragement to me. Your writing is some of my very favorite, and TCL will always, always hold a special place in my heart. I'm thrilled a lucky winner will get their own copy! I enjoyed answering these questions (weren't they great questions?!?!). It's fun to share a bit of my personal history and my heart here.

      Delete
  3. SO glad to hear this! I always enjoy this blog and sweet crew. Welcome Gabrielle!! And love, love, love those covers of yours. I'm looking forward to your novellas!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Joanne! I'm thrilled you stopped by to celebrate with us today. I'm a little partial to those covers myself. :)

      Delete
  4. So fun to read your answers, Gabe! We are all so excited for our home-town gal to be published. I share your love of history, too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Joyce! Thank you for stopping by. I can't wait to share my love for Little Falls with the rest of the world. :) Thank you for your support and encouragement.

      Delete
  5. Thank you for the warm welcome, Erica, Jaime, & Anne!!! I'm thrilled to be here and I can't wait to post on Thursdays!!! You ladies truly are kindred spirits. :)

    Erica, the first thing you said upon meeting me was: "You're pretty!" :) Of course I wouldn't forget a meeting like that! :) Love that we're part of Team Tea!! We'll convert Anne and Jaime yet...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Coffee Cups and Camisoles is one of my favorite blogs. Welcome, Gabrielle. As a former Minnesotan, I am always interested in writers who make Minnesota their home. Oh my goodness, I'd forgotten all about Betsy-Tacy! I will have to re-acquaint myself with the series. Thank you all for the great interview. I am praying for Jaime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for the welcome, Kay! I love Coffee Cups and Camisoles, and the ladies here. :) I was born and raised in Minnesota, and spent a year and a half in Iowa when my husband was finishing school at Iowa State, but we chose to come back here and raise a family. I love this state. So happy to hear you were once a resident. And, yes! Please rediscover Betsy-Tacy. It's a wonderful series.

      Delete
  7. The novellas have beautiful covers, I can not wait to hear more about them!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, LeAnne! I love the covers and I'm excited to see them in real life (and not just on the computer screen)! Only a couple more months!!

      Delete
  8. Welcome Gabrielle! Kudos on being a home school mom and a tea drinker! I am continuing prayers for Jaime and her family. Also His Blessings on you AMAZING ladies here at Coffee Cups & Camisoles. Thank you for ALL you do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Caryl! Always great to see you here. :)

      Delete
    2. Thank you for the welcome, Caryl. Joining this blog feels like coming home. :) I look forward to getting to know you here. :)

      Delete
  9. Welcome, Gabrielle!!

    I really enjoyed the interview and learning more about you and your writing journey - my thanks to you, Erica, Jaime, and Anne!! I love your history of growing up on the grounds of an estate, and have the same feeling as you re: housework. It's one of my very least fave things to do, as with you, vacuuming would be my fave task, also - if forced to choose.

    I've checked out your blog and been a FB follower for some time - your children are beautiful!! Hard to understand how you ever find time to write - with 4 small children!! You mentioned operating 2 businesses - was wondering what kinds, thought I had read somewhere that your hubby is a minister??

    So looking forward to reading your novellas!! I can understand how Laura's writing would inspire you to write, she is one of my very fave, and most inspiring and encouraging, authors and friends!! Her writing is beautiful and exceptional!!

    Shared post!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. P.S. I'm also a tea drinker!!

      Delete
    2. So happy you're here, and yay for another Team Tea member! :) My husband owns a landscaping and lawn care company, so I do the bulk of my writing during the long Minnesota winter months when he's home. If he worked outside the home year-round I don't know that I'd get in as much writing time. :) He's my biggest fan, so he is good at helping me find time to write (just tonight he made supper so I could get caught up on my social media work). :) Thank you for sharing this post! I appreciate wonderful readers like you.

      Delete
  10. Laura Frantz is one of my most favorite authors too! I have several on my Kindle, won one recently (Love's Awakening), and have read many....this book is one I have really been wanting to add to my collection! Thanks for the chance :-)
    My husband hails from Minnesota, Saint Louis Park to be precise. Though he's been in the Pacific Northwest (WA & OR) since he was about 8. I grew up in Illinois myself but certainly don't miss the weather!
    Can I be a part of Team Tea too?? I drink a LOT of plain brewed ice tea but I do like a variety of hot tea....especially with a little cream & sugar! I just tried my first cup of Lady Grey the other night, and boy did I ever love it! So different from Earl Grey, but both are so good.
    Enough about me :-) Gabrielle, welcome to the blog! I very much enjoyed reading about you, your life, your family & odds and ends! You sound like you have a lot of great author friends/mentors in your life...isn't it great to be surrounded by like-minded people? Your "shadow" selfie looks like a Victorian lady regally standing....probably sounds a bit odd, but that's what it looks like to me :-) Maybe I have historical stories on my mind too much, haha!!
    Thanks for sharing a bit of yourself with us today & praying many blessings on you as you go about your days!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Trixi, it's so nice to meet you here! I can tell we're kindred spirits just by the things you shared. I've never tried Lady Grey tea--I didn't even know it existed! I'll have to find it and try some myself. :) I'd love to go to the Pacific Northwest. My grandmother grew up in Eugene, Oregon and came to Minnesota in the 1950's. She still has some family there, and it's a dream to go and visit. Thank you for the welcome to Coffee Cups & Camisoles. I have been blessed with wonderful writing friends, and it's so much fun to be with like-minded people. :) It recharges my energy tank! And, I couldn't agree more about the selfie! When I took it, I was wearing a mid-calf length skirt and a jean jacket, but the picture looks like I'm wearing a Victorian era gown! I love it! I also have one with my hubby, and that's a special picture, too. Thank you for joining the celebration today--I look forward to seeing you here again.

      Delete
  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  12. You all will be blessed by Gabe! Her genuine concern and kindness for others shines through in all she says and does.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Alena. :) So happy to see another kindred spirit here today. :)

      Delete
  13. This was a lot of fun to read! Congrats, Gabe! You'll make a wonderful addition to an already stellar blog team. :) Yay!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jessica!!! So happy you stopped by to celebrate. :)

      Delete

Hey friend! Please leave a comment, no lurking allowed ;)