If you enjoy the the wind on your face and open sky before you, you have come to a good place to find the romance and flavor of the West.

Valerie Massey Goree ~Deceive Me Once~ Book Giveaway

Help me welcome American Christian Fiction Writer Genesis 2010 winner Valerie Massey Goree who lives in the Texas Hill Country northwest of San Antonio with her husband of thirty-seven years. She was born in South Africa and grew up in Rhodesia – now Zimbabwe. She and her husband served as missionaries in Zimbabwe where their two children were born. After twenty-five years in the Texas public school system working with students with special needs, Valerie retired and spends her time writing, reading, gardening, and indulging in her favorite hobby – spoiling her granddaughter.

First of all, A J thank you so much for interviewing me. Your blog is inspirational and informative. What a service to writers!

Thanks, Valerie. I enjoy learning more about my favorite authors. What are you currently reading?
I have several books in line at the moment. I’m into the Lonestar series by Colleen Coble, and have started Predator, by Terri Blackstock. I enjoy suspense, crime dramas, police procedurals.

What is your favorite season and why?
I love the fall. Growing up on the High Veld of Central Africa I didn’t experience the four seasons. We had hot and not so hot. Here in south Texas I relish the cooler days of autumn with little or no humidity, and the clear blue skies remind me of Africa.

When did you first discover you were a writer?
I had to think long and hard about this question. In middle school I had an English teacher who encouraged us to write, but then we’d have to read our essays out loud in front of the whole class. She would critique our efforts publicly. I remember being mortified more than once. That experience crushed my creative spirit and it wasn’t until I was in my 30s that I tinkered with a word processor – remember those days? – and began to create a make-believe world.

What other book have you written?
That first novel I wrote back in the 90s was a romance set in Australia. Then I penned a romance set in Zimbabwe. Both received a few nibbles from interested publishers, but I didn’t know enough about the industry to pursue the leads. And with family and career obligations didn’t take the time to investigate. Since joining ACFW and attending a variety of writers’ conferences, I wrote Deceive Me Once, released September 2010, it’s sequel, Colors of Deceit – as yet unpublished, and Weep in the Night, the first in the Eye Witness Series, which won the 2010 Genesis award in the Romantic Suspense category.

What is the best piece of writing advice you have received?
Keep on writing! If you want to learn how to play tennis you can read a dozen ‘how to’ books, but until you pick up a racket and practice, you will probably never learn how to play. The same can be said of writing.

What book are you working on now?
I’ve started the next in the Eye Witness Series. It is set in Southern California and Mexico.

What was your inspiration for Deceive Me Once?
There were two things that started the ball rolling. We live way out in the country on seven acres of uncleared land. I often see buzzards circling overhead and wonder what poor animal has died. One day while traipsing through the brush following my dog, I thought how terrible it would be if I came upon a human instead of an animal. (Maybe post a viewer discretion blurb for this answer.) Then one day I was chatting with a friend from Puerto Rico. Her husband is Anglo and they live in New York City. Their daughter was close to celebrating her quinceaƱera but the mother-in-law objected. So I began to weave a story around the conflict. Somehow the two incidents collided and the story blossomed.

Back cover of Deceive Me Once:
Maricella McDonough, known simply as Chella to her family and friends, has been living a life of deception in Hanson Ridge, Texas, ever since the day of her quinceaƱera in Eagle Pass. Riddled with guilt over the part she played in the death of her parents, her best friend Eva, and Eva's parents, she stuffed it all down into the deepest recesses of her mind and moved on with her life.
Now, many miles away and more than 25 years later, it has all finally caught up with her. The body of a young woman is found on the edge of Chella’s property.
As she investigates the mysterious death, she discovers the woman is connected with her hidden past. Will Chella’s dark secret finally be her undoing and ruin the life she has built with her husband and sons? Will they ever forgive her for lying to them all these years?

What is the theme?
The major theme is forgiveness. There are so many aspects to forgiveness. First, Maricella has to forgive herself. She knows she has to ask her family to forgive her, but that can’t happen until she asks God to enter her life.

How do you choose the characters’ names?
For this book I had definite inspiration. Since it is written in first person, I wanted a strong name for the female lead. Years ago when we first moved to Texas, I taught at the school my second grade daughter attended. At recess on that first day, my daughter looked so miserable. I approach a few girls I knew were in her class and asked them to befriend her. They did, but one in particular became her best friend. That was Maricella, a young girl with a sweet spirit. I have never met another person with that name, but I will never forget her. For other characters, I make sure I don’t have too many starting with the same letter, and names that suit the character. But hold on – for my villains I usually choose a name that has a negative connotation from my past–first names only!

How can you be contacted?
Deceive Me Once is available from the publisher at; http://www.parsonplacepress.com/, or from Amazon, or B & N online.

Valerie, thank you so much for stopping by and sharing with us. To have the possibility to receive a copy of Deceive Me Once leave a comment with your email (name at domain name dot com). Giveaway closes Sunday, November 28, 2010 at midnight (CST). Only US postal codes.If you're reading this on Feedburner, Facebook, or Amazon please come to AJHawke.blogspot.com to leave your comments.


Jan Marie said...

This story sounds very interesting and I found the premise for the plot quite intriguing. Please add my name for the drawing.

Thanks for this very interesting interview!


Wendy said...

Sounds like a good read!

Linda said...

What a gut-wrenching book! I cannot imagine hiding those secrets for so many years. Please add me to the giveaway.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Jo said...

This sounds like quite a good read. Please enter me.


Anonymous said...

sounds like a wonderful story...thanks for the opportunity to read it :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Trinity Rose said...

This really sounds like a wonderful book to read. Thanks for the giveaway.
Many blessings,
Trinity Rose
wandaelaine at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Great interview. Congrats to Val on winning the Genisis contest! I know that one is a great read!!

Rosslyn Elliott said...

I think the premise is intriguing too!

Deb said...

Interesting plot and I know the author... yes, I would love to get the book.

Ramona said...

Congrats Valerie !! Looking forward to reading your books. Please keep writing. Blessings. Add me to your draw.

Gill (Lacey) Robinson said...

It was wonderful to read your interview. The books sound exciting and I would definately like to read them. So very happy that you have found such an amazing hobby and done so well at it. You should be proud,
Gill (Lacey) Robinson

Katie M said...

This is a new author for me. Glad I found her! Please include me in the giveaway. :-)

- Katie


Trinity Rose said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Linda Kish said...

This sounds like a very good story.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

LaTawnia said...

What a great book! Enter me please

latawniakintz at gmail dot come

Teresa Thomas Bohannon said...

Deceive Me Once by Valerie Massey Goree. I love a good mystery and the premise of this one cannot help but leaving me wondering about what happened, why, and how it will all be resolved.
Teresa [at] LadySilk (dot) Net

Aik said...

I'd love to enter!

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Maureen said...

She carried around a lot of guilt for 25 years. Sounds like a good read. Please include me!


Charlotte Kay said...

Forgiveness is so tough!
This sounds like a good read!
Thank you for this giveaway!
chakasa58 at gmail dot com


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I love the wind in my face, the open sky before me, the romance and flavor of the West, but, most of all, our loving and living God, who created it all. I love how He works out His plans in the realm of human events, which is His Story. I have been blessed with a gift: a compulsion to write Historical and present-day novels set in the American West that demonstrate His power to transform ordinary people into true heroes and heroines. I am just a scribe really. I find the joy of participating in the creation of inspirational fiction indescribable. May our Lord Jesus Christ receive all of the credit and be glorified.

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