Kansas Courtship — Coming March 16th! Giveaway No. 2

momlogolihThe pub date for my next Love Inspired Historical, Kansas Courtship,  is Tuesday, March 16th. That’s just around the corner.  This is a milestone book for me.  When I sold to Harlequin in February 2002, I never dreamed I’d someday have 10 books to my name.  Well, Kansas Courtship is No. 10! It’s also the book I most enjoyed writing.

Here’s why . . .Kansas Courtship cropped

Kansas Courtship is book No. 3 in a three-book continuity series called “After the Storm: The Founding Years.”  That means I received the characters and  basic plot from the editors at Steeple Hill.  Two other LIH authors, Valerie Hansen and Renee Ryan, wrote the first two books, High Plains Bride and Heartland Wedding. (You’ve  met Renee here at Wildflower Junction.)  All three books are set in 1860 in a Kansas town that’s been devastated by a tornado.  As authors, we had to coordinate certain elements, which meant being in constant contact via email. 

I can’t say enough about these two women.  I loved working with both of them. Early on, I ran into a plot problem with the timeline for my heroine’s arrival in High Plains. Renee came up with the perfect solution. Not only did she solve the problem, she made the whole book more believable. Val had done a continuity before, and she knew how to keep us all on track.  I loved checking email and finding notes from these two wonderful writers.

Colvin Run Historic MillThe other thing I loved about doing this book was the research. My hero, Zeb Garrison, is one of the town founders and he owns a mill.  I knew zilch about mills when I started this story, buy my husband came to my rescue.  We were living in northern Virginia when I wrote this story, and he knew about Colvin Mill.  Colvin Mill is a fully restored 19th century mill that turned out to be a 30 minute drive from our house.  We had a great day watching the mill in full operation.

So far I’ve gotten several comments on the realism of the mill scenes.  I owe that accuracy to my husband and the docents at Colvin Mill.  We were there for a good two hours, watching and especially listening.  You can look at pictures online and in books, but you can’t usually hear what something sounds like.  I’ll never forget the music of the mill, and I used it in the book.  

Readers also seem  to be noticing the medical research.  My heroine, Dr. Nora Mitchell,women's dress 1860 is one of the first female physicians in America.  I wrote about a lady doctor for Harlequin Historicals, but that book was set in 1899, not 1860. Fashion changed in those 40 years, and so did medicine. I had to start from square one when it came to Dr. Nora’s training. 

I also had to educate myself on a particular kind of injury.  I was fortunate to be working for a modern day lady doctor at the time, and she set me straight on a few things. No spoilers (though I’m itching to say what happens!) but she saved from embarrassing inaccuracies. It’s not smart to kill off a main character by accident!  

Since I’m celebrating, I want to give away three more copies of Kansas Courtship.  We’ll do it like we did it last month.  Anyone who comments will be eligible for the drawing.  Good luck!

To order now or right after the drawing, here’s the link to Amazon:  Kansas Courtship.

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Victoria Bylin is under contract with Bethany House Publishers for two inspirational contemporary romances.Prior to jumping to the present day, she wrote westerns for Harlequin Historical and Love Inspired Historical. Her books have finaled in the ACFW Carol Awards, the Rita Awards and RT Magazine’s Reviewers’ Choice Awards. She and her husband live in Lexington, Kentucky and have two grown sons. You can learn more about Vicki at www.victoriabylin.com

71 thoughts on “Kansas Courtship — Coming March 16th! Giveaway No. 2”

  1. Victoria, I read Heartland Wedding in this connected series and am looking forward to your story. Congratulations on the release!

  2. Hi Deb! I enjoyed Renee’s book, too! When I first saw “the bible” (that’s the info that went to all three authors for the continuity elements, I liked her story the best. But then I fell totally in love with Zeb and Nora. They had chemistry from the get-go! (You’re in the drawing!)

  3. Victoria, what a nice post,I love your books,an this time period is just what I love,cant wait to read the ones you have listed,thanks

  4. Hello Vickie, It *is* a fun time period. I also enjoyed writing about Kansas instead of Colorado. The most fun, though, came from Nora and Zeb. She had fun putting him in his place 🙂 You’re in the drawing!

  5. Hi Jeannene! Good luck with the drawing! I thoroughly enjoyed doing this book. I tend to write dark and dramatic. This story has those moments, but it there’s fun stuff too. Loved writing about a lady doctor!

  6. oh Victoria–sounds very interesting! how cool that three different authors carried on a story line! i have not read a series like that yet–i bet it was really fun to write!
    i’m always amazed at the amount of research you gals have to do for these books…and it’s comforting to know that my pleasure reading is also educational 🙂
    it would be hard for me to learn the rules of medicine for two different time periods and keep them straight in my mind!
    sounds like a great book!
    congratulations on number 10!

  7. Howdy, Tabitha! Working with Val and Renee was great. The storylines that get continued meant we had to work to keep the characters consistent. There’s an extra romance in all three books, the twin story and a girl who can’t speak. I enjoyed all the action in the books.

    I’ve got you in the drawing!

  8. Hello victoria, I can’t wait for your book, I have the feeling it will be an amazing book. I haven’t had the chace to read it just yet. I do enjoy the drawing.

  9. Hey, there! No need to put me in the drawing because you know I have read this wonderful book and the others in the continuity. Just a wonderful series! Ladies, Kansas Courtship is a great read for all the reasons Vicky mentioned. Her research really does show…and about that mystery medical condition…yep, it is a crucial part of the book that makes it such a great read.

    Vicky, congrats on reaching #10. Looking forward to helping you reach 20!

  10. Hi Julie! Thank you for the kind words 🙂 If someone had told me 20 years ago that I’d have written 10 books (12 actually, counting the ones in production), I’d have been shocked to my toes. It’s been an awesome ride, and readers like you are a BIG part of that. Blessings!

  11. I must say, I like the idea of being handed a basic plot line. That is the hardest part of writing for me. And to have teammates to inspire you and help figure things out must have been a real blessing.

    What kind of mill did Zeb run? I’ve read about lumber mills and textile mills, but not too much about grist mills. Being in Texas, we don’t have much lumber. But we can grow corn and wheat. I’d love to read your descriptions of the milling process.

    Congatulations on your successful run of books. May it continue for years to come!

  12. Hi Karen! I feel the exact same way about plotting. The hardest thing for me as a writer is to construct external situations that illustrate internal problems. Having the outline from the get-go (even though it was flawed and I changed the endng) made things a lot easier.

    Zeb owns a sawmill, and here’s where research paid off . . . Today, in that area of Kansas, there aren’t many trees. How in the world could I justify a sawmill? Turns out the trees were cut down to build towns like High Plains. In 1860, there were plenty of trees. It was quite common for a mill to start as a sawmill and morph into a grist (flour) mill as the needs of the community changed. This stuff fascinated me, because it added to Zeb’s character.

    BTW, I’ve got you in the drawing!

  13. I love the era specified in you write and also the last time I read your old article I liked. I like the America of that time and I’m really curious to read your books.
    When I will have a good mastered the English language I will buy a your book:)

    Congratulations for this new publication.

  14. Vicki,

    Good Morning! I must have this book. You are right when you say if you can see what you are writing about first it is so real in your book.

    The mill is one of my favorite things. I guess it is due to the fact of how I love the “Little House” Series.

    I sure hope to win this book of yours. I would be so honored. You are a great writer and I love your work

    Walk in harmony,
    Melinda

  15. Hi Linda, You’re entered! Good luck!

    Hello Veronica! Your English is good. It’s hard to learn a second lanugage. My oldest son studied Germasn and Arabic. I’m putting you in the drawing. If you win, you can save the book for later 🙂 Good luck!

  16. This book sounds great! Thanks for entering me in the drawing!!

    P.S. the cover is so cool! 🙂

    Thanks!
    Kim
    lonebanana(at)msn(dot)com

  17. Victoria, I’ve read the current day stories, now I’m going to get the historical ones.

    I love this continuity series, and the very idea of it, how fun it is to work with other authors. Well, there are a few I’d have a problem with but Mary Connealy isn’t with Steeple Hill as yet…

    Do you know she snores???? Really. I have that on GOOD AUTHORITY!!!!

    Kiddo, I can’t wait to read this! And the rest of the series as well. Wonderful stuff.

    Ruthy

  18. Victoria, ignore Ruthy and that whole snoring rumor. I do NOT snore and no one can say different…because…of course…I’m too smart to let anyone near me when I’m asleep.

    Except my husband and he’s too traumatized to discuss it.

    The book sounds great. It should be showing up in bookstores soon. YAY!

  19. Hi Kim, I was thrilled with the cover because it’s 100% accurate. the clothing is right and the mill is perfect. You’re in the drawing!

    Hello Ruthy! I had no idea Mary snored! Don’t tell anyone, but I do too. I hope you enjoy the book! You’re in the drawing 🙂

  20. Great post. I love historical and have been waiting to get this one. Please enter me.
    tarenn98{at]yahoo[dot]com

  21. Hi CrystalGB, I’ve added you to the drawing! I like the cover, too. It does a nice of job of capturing the story.

    Hello Joye! Happy St. Patrick’s day to you, too! It’s coming up, isn’t it? I’ve got you in the drawing 🙂

  22. I’m glad your husband was able to help you with that accuracy factor. Some people don’t believe me when I say husbands are good for something, LOL! Seriously, though, I am glad you were able to enjoy these times together. Here’s to many more!

  23. Hi Victoria, congrats on your new release! It sounds fabulous and I can’t wait to read it. I love books set in this time period and your books are alway great! Thanks for sharing with us today!

  24. Hi Victoria,
    I have loved all your books and am looking forward to this one. I particularly loved Abbie’s Outlaw, Of Men and Angels, A Son is Given. I love the covers on the Loved Inspired Historicals!!! Even if one didn’t read them I would think you would want to buy them for the covers alone. I have the other two books and look forward to reading them together. Please keep writing!

  25. Congratulations on your tenth book, Vicki! Woo-Hoo! It looks like one I’m going to have to have. And I really want to get the whole set of the continuity. I’ve never seen a story built around a tornado before, much less three. Seeing as how I’m a tornado survivor I really want to read these. I know how tramatizing both the storm and the aftermath can be. I would certainly relate.

  26. Howdy, Laney! My husband gets a big gold star for finding Colvin Mill. We really had a good time. You’re in the drawing 🙂

    Hi Quilt Lady! Thank you so much! It’s a joy to write books for readers like yourself. In fact, that’s the best part! You’re name is in the hat.

    Hello Linda! The tornado happens in Book #1, but Renee and I show it in prologues. We worked hard to make that accurate. It definitely traumatized our characters and the entire town.

  27. Hi Sharon B! You know, to this day “Abbie’s Outlaw” is still my personal overall favorite. There are things I love in every book, but that one was special to me. I agree with you about the covers. I’ve gotten just one cover I didn’t like (Maverick Preacher), but other people like that one a lot. My hat’s off to the Steeple Hill Art Dept. They’re amazing.

    You’re in the drawing 🙂

  28. A big congrats on book #10!!! I already have a copy of the book in hand so please do not enter me in the draw… 😀

  29. Congratulations, Vicki. Ten terrific books, way way cool. And Renee is terrific. You guys really get me inspirated about inspirationals. Best of luck and here’s hugs and prayers for many more great books. This story sounds amazing and is on the TBR list! oxoxoxoxoxox

  30. Your book has me hooked I have to read it and find out the mystery medical issue. I would love to read my inspirational books. Please put me in the drawing and congrats on number 10 well really 12 books.

    I love the cover!!!!!!!!

  31. That’s why I love this genre so much – all the research. I really appreciate the “work” authors put into it but better yet when the research is really fun/interesting and I think it shows through. Thanks.

  32. Hi Tanya, Crossing over to inspirationals was one of the best decisions I’ve made re: writing. It’s been a blast!

    Hello Brenda, You’re in the drawing 🙂 I’d love to spill the beans on that medical mystery issue, but my lips are sealed.

    Hi Jeanne! The only time research is work is when I can’t find some little detail that makes a big difference. I’ve spent hours hunting for the smallest things. Your name is in the hat!

  33. Love the idea of a trilogy with three different
    writers involved. I can appreciate the detail work
    each of you had to do to keep yourselves “in line!”
    I’m looking forward to your novel. With my education
    and background in nursing I am always drawn to all
    books with a medical storyline.

    Pat Cochran

  34. Vicki, I’m really looking forward to this book. And congratulations on #10!

    Visiting a working historical site helps me make the sounds and smells a part of my story. And I have wonderful memories of those trips.

  35. Hi Pat! The medical stuff was really interesting. We’ve come a long way in terms of science, but the human body is still vulnerable. The derm I used to work for was very helpful. You’re in the drawing 🙂

    Hello, Tracy! I wish I could go to 1876 Denver for what I’m working on now. I’ve got a pretty good feel for the setting, but there have to be sensory experiences no one in modern times can possibly know. Have a good day!

  36. Hi Goldie! That’s music to a writer’s ears : ) I hope you enjoy the story.

    Hello Estella, This was a fun story to tell, especially the scene when the hero realizes he’s hired a female doctor 🙂 You’re in the drawing!

  37. Hi Victoria,
    I am reading “Heartland Wedding” right now, and I love it so far. I was excited to see that your book is in the same series. I love historical fiction, and the medical side of the story sounds interesting. Please enter me in the drawing. Thanks so much!!

  38. Howdy, Barb! I’ve got you in the drawing. Medical stuff interests me, too. I was glad to get the lady doc, but I was a little jealous of Renee’s “Marriage of Convenience” story. I thoroughly enjoyed Pete and Rebecca.

  39. Victoria, this book is on my must have list. I have loved the other books in the series and can hardly wait to read your book. I love old mills. We stayed near one on our honeymoon many, many, years ago and our daughter stayed in the same place. she took pictures because she said when she saw the mill she felt like she has seen it before but knew that she had never been there. I took the framed picture off the hallway wall that I had taken 40 years before! we also live near a historic mill and have toured it a couple of times. It is very interesting. anyway I am looking forward to reading your book!

  40. Hello Connie! An old mill would be a wonderfully romantic place for a honeymoon, and how cool that your daughter visited the same place! It took real skill to run such an establishment, far more than I realized. I’ve got you in the drawing. Good luck!

  41. Being an old Kansas girl, I look forward to reading your book. How funny that you would have a mill in your book. I am a postcard collector and one of the cards I like to collect is old mills. I live in Missouri now and we have a few of them here.

  42. Hello, Linda. I bet you’ve got a great collection of postcards. Old mills are so picturesque. My internet research led me to a few that have been restored. You’re in the drawing 🙂

  43. I am so excited to read about the mill and about a lady doctor! I love Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, and the main character reminds me a bit of her the way she is described. How wonderful that you could get information from your employer about what women doctors were like back then. The Mill you went to looks beautiful, so quaint. I love places like that, wish there were more of them here! I’d love to be entered in the drawing. I’ve read the first two books in the series and am dying to read yours now! This is such a great series! 🙂

  44. Congrats on your latest book release–sounds like another great story! A lady doctor back in that time period certainly should make for some interesting reading.

  45. Have been looking at this series since it came out. I know my daughter would enjoy it also. Reading Heidi’s comment reminded me how much my daughter loved the Dr. Quinn series.
    We have visited old mills all over the country. There is a nice one on Cape Cod. I think we went to Colvin Mill when we lived in Northern Virginia. There is an old one in middle TN, but when we went, it wasn’t open. You are right, there is a special rhythm, feel, and smell to a mill and it varies depending on whether they are doing corn or wheat.
    Best of luck with the release of KANSAS COURTSHIP. I’ll be looking for it and the series.

  46. Hello Amy T, I loved both the heroine and the hero for this book. They had interesting occupations and could really spar with each other. I’ve got you in the drawing : )

    Hi Patricia, I like Dr. Quinn too. Classic romance! I’d love to visit more mills. Maybe there’s one close to Lexington. Your name’s in the hat!

  47. It sounds quite challenging to have to coordinate a book with other authors. I’ve read the first book in the series, but haven’t gotten to read the second one yet. I really enjoy your books!

  48. I have enjoyed this series. How many more are coming out, or is it just three books? This is a great book, thank you so much for writing it. Please enter me in the drawing.
    Thank you!

  49. This looks like such a great read! So interesting to hear about how the continuity works. I look forward to reading this. 🙂

  50. Hi Lisa, The LIH portion of the “After the Storm” series is just 3 books. The contemporary LI imprint started it off in June 2009 with six books. I’ve got you for the drawing 🙂

  51. Howdy, Shelly! Your name is in the hat 🙂 Glad you enjoyed the post.

    Hello, Emma! I’ve got you in for the drawing. In fact, you’re the very last one.

    I’ll post winners Friday evening 🙂

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