Welcome 2017 Goldie Award-Winning Author Catherine Friend! **AND FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY**

Today I’m so excited to welcome multiple Goldie Award-winning author Catherine Friend to Women and Words! We are just coming off an AMAZING 2017 Golden Crown Literary Convention, where Catherine won another Goldie for her book The Copper Egg! CONGRATS Catherine! SO exciting!! I’m sure many W&W bloggers will cough up all the fun and exciting con details, so I’ll only say it was the best con ever and I’m so looking forward to GCLS 2018 in LAS VEGAS, baby!

Catherine’s new book is called Spark, and it sounds amazing!!! Of course, anything Catherine does is fantastic, but I’m really looking forward to this one. Drop a comment below and you’ll be entered into a drawing for either an ebook or print book. I’ll do the drawing Monday July 24th, so that will be plenty of time to get those comments in!! SO GET TO IT!

Now, without further ado, here is Catherine!

I’m thrilled to be part of Women and Words this week, and a little intimidated because of all the wisdom the other authors bring to this blog. I don’t have any wisdom to share, just a confession.

Here it is: I spend a great deal of time escaping from my life through daydreams. I always have. The critical thing to know here is that I have a fine life. Good parents, boring adolescence, stable relationship, etc. And even though I’m trying to stay engaged in these insane political times, I still need to escape now and then to a happy place where Trump can’t follow.

As a teenager, most of my waking hours were spent thinking about rescuing people from burning buildings because I could fly. Or being struck by lightning and suddenly being able to sing well enough to become a rock star. Or turning into a mermaid. Or being beamed up to the Enterprise by Captain Kirk (I hadn’t yet figured out that Lt. Uhura would have been much more to my liking.)

I think this is why I write romantic adventure fiction—it allows me to continue escaping. (If I can’t daydream about the situation, I’m not interested in writing about it.) What would it be like to be flung back in time to 11th century Spain? I loved daydreaming about this for The Spanish Pearl and The Crown of Valencia. What would it be like to be a female pirate in the 1700s? More daydreaming for A Pirate’s Heart. Or an archeologist searching for a tomb? (The Copper Egg) Or a modern woman meeting Queen Elizabeth I? (Spark)

Early studies about daydreaming claimed it made you lonely and unhappy, but luckily more recent studies say that daydreaming can: 1) increase empathy; 2) enhance your memory; 3) improve creativity; 4) lift your mood; and 5) lead to self-discovery. (Self-discovery has shown me that, sadly, I’m never going to turn into a mermaid.)

I don’t read a lot of what’s known as “literature” (those ‘must-read’ books about important or difficult issues) because many leave me unhappy or depressed. I want to be entertained by a book. I want to escape.

It’s not that I don’t like challenges, but I have plenty of those in my life, thank you very much. I want the books that I read, and that I write, to let me escape into the lives I’m never going to lead (and would never want to lead.)

For some of us, reading is a form of daydreaming, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Jamie’s life is turned upside when her consciousness apparently travels back to 1560 and lands in the body of one of Queen Elizabeth I’s ladies-in-waiting…or has she instead totally lost her grip on reality? Betrayal, murder, thunderstorms, and two doctors complicate everything, but just as Jamie is running out of both hope and time, help—and love—come from a most unexpected place.

Catherine Friend is the author of five romantic adventure novels, and has also written memoir, nonfiction, and children’s books. She’s won a Minnesota Book Award, a McKnight/Loft Fellowship, the Alice B. Readers Appreciation Award, an Independent Book Publishers Association award, four Goldies, and has been a Lambda Literary Award finalist. She’s narrated two of her books for Dog Ear Audio: Hit by a Farm and A Pirate’s Heart. She lives in Minnesota with her wife and their dogs and cats. Her current day job is writing nonfiction for an educational publisher, which is more fun than it sounds.

 

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38 thoughts on “Welcome 2017 Goldie Award-Winning Author Catherine Friend! **AND FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY**

  1. Greetings from Canada! I totally get it about wanting to escape. I have had a difficult few years (illness, deaths of 2 members of my immediate family, etc.). Having my lesfic on my Kindle helps me get through those long hours in hospital waiting rooms awaiting doctors’ appointments, tests or medical procedures for myself or someone close to me. So, keep those books coming and help me escape to better and interesting places! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Catherine, Great Job on the Goldie. Hey, my grandmother’s name was Catherine! I was surprised to here you are
    from Minnesota. Keep up the great work and throw my name in the hat please. Thanks,Pat

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m the same way with my choice of books. I read to escape my every day life. To go on virtual adventures and experience the emotions of the characters. And I’m not ashamed to say I love “feel good” books. I study part time so I get more than my share of serious non fiction reading. When I read for fun, that’s exactly what I want. Fun. Adventures. Suspense. Romance. Intrigue. Action.

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  4. Congrats on your win and thanks for putting bits of your imagination on paper for the rest of us to escape into. The Golden Egg was a fun read. Spark sounds like another intriguing escape. Looking forward to reading it.

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  5. I’ve never read one of your books, but I look forward to doing so. I, too, see reading as an escape, not because there’s anything wrong with my life, but because it makes me happy. Books have been my favourite entertainment since childhood, and I look forward to many more years of reading enjoyment. Thanks for writing!

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  6. Congrats for the Goldie. So happy for you. I will always love a good escape in a story well-written. Drop my name in your lucky draw.

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  7. Congratulations Catherine on the Goldie! I so wish I could have been at the conference to meet you but this year has been almost on par with 5 years ago for me, when I almost died in a massive car accident, and the year seemed to keep throwing something else at me the minute I thought I had a second to breathe. After being at last years Con for the first time, I really missed being able to attend this year but it just wasn’t possible. I really missed being able to see everyone and feel that amazing feeling of being with so many fabulous and talented women!
    I completely understand wanting to read for the escape value. Books have always been my escape since I was very young. Anytime I was upset or overly emotional, I could escape into a book and not have to think about what happened or brought about those feelings! These days, when I have trouble even getting on Facebook because the political discussions and warnings (that are valid and definitely serve a good purpose), tend to make my depression even worse. So, I have been avoiding it…when I was able to get on there. (which hasn’t been that often) So, I have been reading and rereading alot of lesfic because it gives me a world and people whose lives I can think about, rather than mine! I will say Spanish Pearl and The Crown of Valencia are a couple of those because they are amazing and I have loved them since they came out. I’m going to have to put Copper Egg and now Spark on my wishlist. They both sound phenomenal! I especially can’t wait to read Spark. I’ve always loved reading about Queen Elizabeth and that era and I’m sure that any book you’ve done on the subject will be great!
    Sorry to make this so long winded but I would definitely love to receive a copy of Spark! Thanks for the wonderful gift of your writing you share with us and good luck with all your future endeavors…whatever they may be!
    Big hugs, Kara

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    1. Thanks, Kara. I hope you can make it to the conference next year (although Las Vegas won’t be my favorite site.) And I’m going to follow your lead and start avoiding politics on the days I want to write…it’s making it hard to be creative….

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  8. Books like yours help me to escape not only while reading them, but I sometimes succeed in returning there in my dreams, to become an active participant.

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  9. Daydreaming is what I’ve been doing with my time for as long as I can remember. When I figured out I could channel it into writing, I knew for a fact that it was the one thing I wanted to do with the rest of my life. Congrats on your win!

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  10. Congrats Catherine! I too am a day-dreamer … and early ‘dreams’ were of the kind of things YOU write about … adventure, romance, action. I have enough “real life” so …. 🙂

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  11. I agree that Con was awesome. Also looking forward to this book because Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth I was the central figure at the Ren Faire I worked at for many seasons. 😁

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  12. I loved the Spanish Pearl and i’m sure i am going to love this one too!! Congratulations on your Goldie! Well deserved! 😀

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