What inspired you to write this story?
That’s a funny tale in itself. I was at a local grocery store, and they had leftover calendars on the shelf. In between pop culture icons, black and white scenery, and cute puppies was the latest cowboy pinup calendar. It became a joke between me and a couple friends, so I wrote it into the story.
However, the story morphed quite a bit from the initial version. I gave who Neil Sanborn and Estelle Moore were and where I wanted them to end up a lot of thought. I only create characters that fit into the behaviors of real life people. They have flaws, make bad choices, and must live with the consequences. No one life is perfect, and love only comes when people work through all the kinks in the path. Neil and Estelle are no exception.
What moral did you want to portray?
Forgiveness. You see this in the life of Tyler, who needed forgiveness from Nadine, and in the life of the main character, Neil. He needed to forgive himself, then believe he’s capable of standing for the new values he’s chosen.
I took my main Scripture from 1 John 1:9 in the VOICE. “But if we own up to our sins, God shows that He is faithful and just by forgiving us of our sins and purifying us from the pollution of all the bad things we have done.”
I like the phrase “own up” and the word “pollution” because that’s how it feels most of the time, as if what we’ve done has dirtied the air around us. But the good news is God’s forgiveness is faithful and absolute, and Jesus’ sacrifice complete.
Can you give us an excerpt?
This scene comes at the end of a long day riding in the Florida sun:
They’d rounded the passenger side of her car, the stoop in sight, when Neil halted. Head bowed, he stared through the window glass, and she followed his gaze to the backside of the calendar.
He looked up. Placing his hand on the roof of her car, he slanted his weight on one hip.
“I can autograph that for you,” he said, a smile on his lips.
Autograph the calendar. How was he to take her seriously now?
A fresh wave of dizziness washed over her, and she wrapped her fingers around the door handle for support.
“Estelle? You sure you’re okay?” he asked, his expression growing concerned.
No, she wasn’t okay. She opened her mouth to say so, but what emerged was a whuff of air. Then her legs folding beneath her, she tumbled toward the ground.
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She gazed at him, unblinking, and made to turn, but his hand cupping her chin, stopped her. Never had she felt more small and insignificant than she did right then, as if the entire earth wasn’t big enough for Neil Sanborn. Never had she felt more feminine, like the finest lace sewed to a leather vest.
Estelle Moore was sent to Mossy Bottoms to evaluate struggling Sanborn Farms for her boss’s next investment. But from day one, the sight of the owners’ son, Neil, on a cowboy pin-up calendar seemed to set the tone for the visit.
He was amazing, and she had no idea who she was dealing with.
Yet what he is on the outside hides his battle within, and, five days later, it looks like what little time they’ve had together is over for good.
Best-selling author, SUZANNE D. WILLIAMS, brings readers a story of love and courage that heals the heart.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Best-selling author, Suzanne D. Williams, is a native Floridian, wife, mother, and photographer. She is the author of both nonfiction and fiction books. She writes a monthly column for Steves-Digicams.com on the subject of digital photography, as well as devotionals and instructional articles for various blogs. She also does graphic design for self-publishing authors.
To learn more about what she’s doing and check out her extensive catalogue of stories, visit http://suzanne-williams-photography.blogspot.com/ or link with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/suzannedwilliamsauthor.