Hope For Tomorrow Blog Tour: Author Interview + Giveaway

 

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour (and Giveaway!) for Hope for Tomorrow by Michelle De Bruin, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!



 
Title: Hope for Tomorrow 
Author: Michelle De Bruin  
Publisher: Mantle Rock Publishing 
Release Date: October 23, 2018  
Genre: Inspirational Historical Fiction

When Logan De Witt learns of his father’s sudden death, he returns home to the family’s dairy farm. During his stay, he discovers his mother’s struggle with finances and his younger sister’s struggle with grief. Concern for his family presses Logan to make the difficult decision to leave his career as a pastor and stay on the farm. As a way to make some extra money, he agrees to board the teacher for their local school.

Karen Millerson arrives from Chicago ready to teach high school but her position is eliminated so she accepts the role of country school teacher. Eager to put her family’s ugly past behind her, Karen begins a new career to replace the trust she lost in her own father who had been in ministry when she was a child.

Logan and Karen both sense a call from the Lord to serve him, but neither of them expected that one day they would do it together.

Can Karen learn to trust again? Will Logan lay aside his grief in exchange for God’s purpose for his life?



 

Michelle De Bruin is a worship leader and spiritual services provider. She lives in Iowa with her husband and two teenage sons. A romantic at heart, Michelle is always looking for glimpses of God’s love through the window of a good story.  

CONNECT WITH MICHELLE: Website | Facebook | Twitter


Hi Michelle! First of all, I want to thank you for taking the time to allow myself and my readers the chance to get to know you and your book better.  Let’s start with something fun: Tell us 5 random facts about yourself that we will NOT find in your bio! 

1.     My favorite food is pie. I eat it for breakfast whenever there is some on hand. Cherry pie, lemon pie, pumpkin pie, and strawberry pie are my favorites. My tastes change along with the seasons. 
2.    I am left-handed.
3.    I do not like the color orange.
4.    My favorite vacation spot is anywhere on the Great Lakes.
5.    I started taking piano lessons when I was six.

Congrats on your debut novel, Hope For Tomorrow. I cannot wait to read it myself! Can you share what that experience was like: from learning it was to be published to seeing it in print for the first time, etc.? 

The experience was all about faith. Writing books wasn’t ever something I expected to do. In 2009, I returned to college to finish my bachelor’s degree as a non-traditional student. Prior to my first semester, I took a writing course because I hoped to pursue a religion major. A religion major is all about writing so I knew I needed to figure this out before I had even a slim chance of success. One of the topics covered in the writing course was fiction. While I worked toward the religion major, I wrote story in the evenings for fun. After I graduated, I joined ACFW where I participated in critique groups and in the on-line courses. I realized that the stories I wrote for fun might actually amount to something, so I worked with a friend I met through ACFW, Liz Tolsma. She edited my story and helped me out in so many ways. When we completed this process, I contacted an agent and also sent a sample to Mantle Rock Publishing. They were interested in seeing an entire manuscript, so I sent it to them. That was in November of 2017. By February of 2018, they had taken a look at the manuscript and decided to offer me a contract.

The moment I learned that my book would get published ranked right up there with my husband’s marriage proposal and having a baby. Exhilarating!  The process of working toward publication through the summer of 2018 was very dear because my family, church, and local community has been so supportive of me and happy for me. We’ve shared in the success of it together.

You mention on your website that your experiences growing up on a farm provided the inspiration for the setting of this series. What was your favorite part about growing up on a farm? Were there any favorite childhood memories that made it into this book that you can share with us? 

My favorite part of growing up on the farm is the wide expanse of sky and the spaciousness of fields and pastureland that surrounded us. I love looking to a faraway horizon where the sun sets or rises, where clouds build and bring rain. I also enjoy the interaction with the changing seasons country life offers like planting and harvesting.

A favorite memory that made its way into the book is the mealtimes the family shares during the story. We packed around the kitchen table for dinner, as the noon meal was called, supper, as the evening meal was called, and the dining room table for Sunday dinners with family. That part of the book is nostalgic for me.

Growing up in the country myself, I know having an imagination was an absolute must (and quite the blessing too!). Did you make up a lot of stories as a child as well, or is writing something that came to you later? 

You are right. An imagination is definitely an advantage for country life. I made up all kinds of stories. The best ones were created with the help of my two brothers. Our entire yard was an imaginary maze of roads that led to pretend farms and towns. We’d drive our toy trucks or ride our tricycles along these roads to visit people only we knew who they were.

We’d also fly kites in the spring. I remember one year when dragon kites were popular, we took our kites out to the field, tied the strings to corn stalks left from the previous year’s crops, and let the kites fly in the wind until it got dark.

As a historical romance writer, how do you find your inspiration to write about a time so removed from the modern, technology driven world we live in now?

My own heritage offers me a great supply of inspiration. I chose the year 1910 as the era for this book because that is the year when my great-grandparents got married, traveled by train to their new farm, and got established. Many papers, photos, church directories, and other documents have been kept in the farmhouse on our Van Zante farm until just a few years ago when my grandparents passed away. Most of those materials were passed on to me, so I use those to inform my writing.

What type of research goes into creating these stories and keeping them accurate for the time period?

The type of research I’ve needed to rely on for this first book was to investigate farming practices at the turn of the 20th century. How did people harvest the hay crop? What sorts of implements were used? What were the attitudes and worldviews of that generation? What sorts of clothing, and layers of undergarments, did women wear? What was socially acceptable for courtships and interactions between men and women? What was the level of education required to teach country school and high school?

These questions were the largest ones I needed to answer to write a historical novel with accuracy.


If there is anything I love more than a good book, it’s worship music! Being a worship leader yourself, what are some of your favorite worship songs? Do you ever find inspiration for your stories through music as well? 

Oh, yes! Great question. The heroine, Karen, goes along with the hero to help him conduct worship services. She can sing well so she leads the singing of the hymns. I find inspiration through music because the music helps me pray. Writing and prayer are very closely linked for me. If I’m thriving in worship and listening to the Lord in prayer, then I can rest assured that my writing will be in good shape.

I have so many favorite worship songs that I will only list a few here or my list will take up the rest of this interview.  I love 10,000 Reasons, also known as Bless the Lord, by Matt Redman, How Great is Our God, by Chris Tomlin, Forever by Chris Tomlin, Breathe by Marie Barnett, the entire Glory in the Highest Christmas album by Chris Tomlin, and anything Shane and Shane composes. In addition to these more contemporary songs, I have a whole list of hymns I love as well. Great stuff! 

I know so many in my audience are going to want to add Hope for Tomorrow to their reading list already, but let’s give them that extra nudge! Tell us the top 3 reasons to fall in love with this book and series! 

The top three reasons are these:  The hero is adorable. He has a great sense of humor and is quite the catch, but he hasn’t caught on to that yet.

The setting of the book is small town. People care about each other and look out for one another.

The De Witt family, the ones who own the farm and are related to the hero, triumph over a sudden and painful loss. Each one responds in a different way, but all reach a deeper level of faith by the end of the story.

Thank you again for taking the time to answer my questions and giving us a look behind the pages. Before you go, what are you currently working on and what can we expect from the remainder of the Hope for Tomorrow series? 

Thanks for asking! This is a busy time for the Hope for Tomorrow series. Book two titled Promise for Tomorrow, is releasing November of this year. It continues the story of Logan De Witt and Karen Millerson. I am currently working on the manuscript for book three. It is titled Dreaming of Tomorrow. In this book, Logan will return to the town where he ministers. Karen will join him there. I won’t say anymore to avoid spoilers, but you can probably use your imagination to guess what happens in book three! I’m getting ready to write the best part in the next few days!




(1) winner will receive a prize pack that includes a print copy of Hope for Tomorrow and a $25 gift card plus a set of handmade quilted hot pads and Dutch chocolate.


Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight August 5, 2019 and last through 11:59 PM EST on August 12, 2019. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

 

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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9 comments

  1. Great interview. This is such an interesting book. Thank you for hosting a stop on this blog tour. Good luck everyone.

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  2. What a great book and giveaway this is.
    Marion

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  3. Love the interview what an amazing story!

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  4. This sounds like a terrific and interesting read.

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  5. Wonderful interview! Thank you for being part of the tour.

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  6. Fantastic interview! I loved it! I enjoy getting to know the authors - it seems to make their books even more enjoyable. Thanks!

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  7. Thanks so much for the interview! Book looks good! Looking forward to reading it!
    faithdcreech at gmail dot com

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