Enjoy the Journey with Jodi Thomas

A big welcome to Jodi Thomas today! We’re so pleased to have her join us again!

The Wild Lavender Bookshop is my second book in the Someday Valley series, a spin off of my Honey Creek series. The Wild Lavender Bookshop will be out in April of 2024. I enjoyed writing this book for two reasons. One, I love bookstores. When I was writing about the bookshop it was fun to describe the people I see in bookstores and libraries every day. Two, I enjoyed writing a character who had no idea where he was going in life.  

It seemed when I was young I could never decide what I wanted to be when I grew up. I was working in high school and I was in the bottom fourth of my class, but I decided I should go to college because Tom (my then future husband) was going to college, and I was crazy about him my senior year. Of course, he never even talked to me. But he was going so I decided to go too. The only thing was I had no idea what to major in. I wanted to be a writer, but I can’t spell. And my mother told me to major in home economics because it was a course that would always be there. I went to Amarillo College and then Texas Tech and got a degree in family studies and became a marriage counselor. I hated it. People came in and yelled all the time, so I went back and got a degree in counseling, majoring in grief. I still didn’t know what I wanted to be, but I was happy.  

When I started this book, I had a character in mind who was drifting too, just like I had. Sometimes, you’re not looking for a thing; you’re looking for a person. My character, Noah, wanted to be a writer, so I began to think about how most writers stumble into their careers. I think most people through life look for their place in the world, and some of them spend their whole lives looking. While a rare few actually find what they’re searching for.  

As always, when I write small towns, I met many interesting characters. And I brought back a few characters from Strawberry Lane that I loved. I hope you’ll join me in Honey Creek again in The Wild Lavender Bookshop and enjoy the journey as much as I did.  


For a chance to win a free autographed copy of Strawberry Lane,
just share about a dream you had of going somewhere for years.
Was it as exciting as you expected when you got there?
I had always dreamed of going to Paris, and when I got there it was beautiful, but I was ready to come home.
I find when I’m driving alone between Amarillo and Lubbock, that is a most beautiful prairie drive.

With millions of books in print, Jodi Thomas is both a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 60 novels and countless short story collections. Her stories travel through the past and present days of Texas and draw readers from around the world.

 In July 2006, Jodi was the 11th writer to be inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. With five RITA’s to her credit, along with National Readers’ Choice Awards and Booksellers’ Best Awards, Thomas has proven her skill as a master storyteller.

 Honored in 2002 as a Distinguished Alumni by Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Thomas also served as Writer in Residence at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas. Jodi was inducted into the Texas Literary Hall of Fame in 2022.

 When not working on a novel or inspiring students to pursue a writing career, Thomas enjoys traveling, renovating a historic home, and “checking on” two grown sons and four grandchildren.


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64 thoughts on “Enjoy the Journey with Jodi Thomas”

  1. For many years I tried convincing my hubby to go on a cruise and he would say no. finally, I convinced him to go on one for our tenth anniversary. We both had an amazing time and have been on many others since then.

  2. Good morning Jodi- I just finished Strawberry Lane, and as usual, you swept me away.
    I love the plot of your new book, can’t wait to read it.
    I have always wanted to go to Wyoming, The Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. In 2017 Rob and I went. It was so amazing, it was way better than I ever could have imagined. In 2020 we went again, even though we were in the pandemic. I think that trip even surpassed our previous trip. Truly a masterpiece of God’s beautiful work.
    Hope you’re doing well? Miss you, maybe Rob, Linda, you, & I can meet up sometime soon. Have a very wonderful weekend.

    • I always love hearing from you, Tonya, and we all miss you too! When my husband finally realized he enjoyed Europe, we also went back several times and every time was great.

  3. I’d love to go to Alaska. Haven’t been able to yet. And North Dakota, Amish Country – all those places I’ve read about. Even Lake Michigan. Love my srories.
    I was blessed to live in several European countries and I loved it. Italy was my favorite. I’d love to go back.
    With dreams of careers. Most of my growing up I wanted to be a honemaker. After a short teaching career, I’ve been a homemaker for 24 years. Now I have 6 kids and my first grandchild -3 weeks old.
    I love bookstores too!

  4. Northern arizona in 1993 before even some of the national parks became national parks. Was beautiful too see area’s that very few had visited. Tours were not planned but that’s when you get to see the real beauty. Glad to have stopped as far north as Jerome and flagstaff.

  5. Good morning Jodi what a great blog to start the day. We all have dreams that we put on back burner, life has away of just getting in the way. Then I got cancer, I thought all my dreams were gone. I had a nurse tell me during treatment to set a goal that I’m going to do when I’m through all this. Well I love music but had never been to a concert. I always wanted to travel but never did. Well I’m cancer free now, I’m 66 years old but not to old to enjoy life. I’ve been to over 30 country music concerts and just got home from Austin Tx . I’ve traveled to several different states South Dakota being my favorite!! I always have my books with me, reading is my downtime. I still have ALL your Harmony series, and I’m definitely going to be reading Strawberry Lane again and I can’t wait for your Wild Lavender Bookshop !

    • What an awesome attitude you have, Rose Ann! So glad you’re enjoying my books and I know you’ll love The Wild Lavender Bookshop. It’s got some wonderful characters.

  6. I always dreamed of seeing the Grand Canyon and looking at pictures doesn’t even come close to being there! It’s breathtaking!

  7. With can’t really travel because of migraines but if I could I would want to go to Alaska and to an ice hotel. I was finally able to move back to Maine and it definitely didn’t disappoint(getting there was the difficult part).

  8. Every drive home is a beautiful drive this time of the year the leaves are changing colors on a daily basis since we are still in drought!

  9. Most of my trips have a driving timeline but I’d love to some day be able to stop and see all the interesting things that are advertised along the way (museums, the birthplace of a famous person, etc.) and arrive whenever I get there. Thanks for the chance to win a prize.

  10. i planned on taking a train trip with my identical twin sister once we retired. That never happened she went home to be with the Lord not too long after we retired. It wasn;t in God’s plan for us but that is okay we had many good memories together. Now I take long walks and look forward to spending eternity with Jesus.

  11. When I was I think in grade 3 we had to do research of three countries and write about them, I chose Australia, Belgium and Ireland…for obvious reason, my last name being O’Donnell and it was my heritage. But I long to go to Australia. It’s still on the bucket list. I have been to Ireland many times although not in many years.

  12. As another multiple generations native, it is hard to beat the backroads of the state! My husband and I enjoy simple things, such as state and national parks. We have been fortunate to visit many of the western and southeastern parks over many years of marriage. However, we always wanted to visit Yosemite and include Kings Canyon and Sequoia. We finally were able to cross that item off our bucket list, to our great enjoyment (and beautiful pictures)! I have always loved your books and recommended them to friends and family.

    • Love hearing about your travels, Catherine. Glad to hear you’re enjoying my books too. I think you’ll love meeting Noah and the other characters in The Wild Lavender Bookshop.

  13. I took Spanish for 8 years and dreamed of going to Spain. I went to Mallorca, Spain, and while beautiful, because we were there in the off-season, it wasn’t easy to be tourists.

    We had a few things go wrong.

  14. when I lived on the farm, I used to dream that my horse, Goldie, a palomino and I took a long trip across the desert. never happened, but in my dream we had a great time. not really sure why, other than I loved to ride and loved to ride in the desert. quilting dash lady at comcast dot net

  15. What a wonderful look into your journey, Jodi. When we’re young, we really don’t have a clue about what we’re doing. Mostly we stumble. 🙂 I certainly stumbled into writing and now I can’t stop. Thank you for sharing and Noah sounds like a wonderful character. Best wishes!

  16. Jodi,

    Looking forward to your next book, I love the stories you tell!

    I worked for myself and decided I’d quit as soon as my youngest graduated from college. I sold my business and now I travel through the U.S. seeing whatever interests me. I like to fly to my destination, rent a car to sightsee and then take amtrak back home, very relaxing to me. I always get a little room on the train and it’s a fun way to see our beautiful country.

    I feel like it’s even better than I thought it would be but I think that’s more from what I don’t have to do anymore (meaning work). 🙂

  17. I always daydreamed of going to Hawaii and boy, I was not disappointed. it was several years ago before the cities got too “touristy”. I enjoyed everything-the scenery, the people, the food, and the weather.

  18. Growing up I dreamed of going to another country. My husband, his good friend and I took our backpacks and visited the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Norway. Lots of trains. The cobblestone streets sure hurt my feet after a while. We have wonderful memories and pictures to look back on. My health prevents me from traveling like this again.

  19. Hi Jodi! – while working for a physician-owned medical clinic, several women took a cruise together on the Celebrity ship named the Millennium. It was so much fun to cruise the Caribbean. I loved it and returned for five more cruises with some of these women. It was such a blessing and so much fun. Now my husband and I would like to go to Alaska. We shall see!

  20. My biggest dream, which I never thought I would see come to fruition, was going to Hawaii. Yes, I did make it to Hawaii in 1988 to celebrate my 44th birthday which happens to be December 7th. So, guess what? We visited Pearl Harbor that day, 12-7-88. My husband enjoyed that beautiful look into the history of “A day that would go down in infamy” much more than I did. He is a history buff, so wondering through the museum and they the visit to the memorial overtop the USS Arizona was out of the world to him. I was very impressed with the Arizona memorial. Later we took a couple of tours, one to the cemetery, better known as the punch bowl. Then off to Diamond Head, and a tour completely around the island of Oahu with a stop At Turtle Creek on the North Shore, then we saw where the Pipeline is for surfing and so many other beautiful sites. I NEVER WANTED TO GO HOME!

  21. I dreamt of going to Lacier National Park and we finally got to go after the Covid restrictions were lifted! It was jus as beautiful as I thought it would be, but it very expensive! I’m glad I went, but was also glad to get home and unpack and clean up!

  22. Travel was rare when I was young and we only went on car trips closeby. Now everyone travels the world. I would enjoy leaving home for a month or more every summer and staying at a lakeside cabin. I only began to travel when I was much older and would love to continue with this fascinating quest.

  23. I’m a little late, Jodi, but hope you’re enjoying your visit. There are so many places I’ve wanted to go but what I’d really love is to see the Northern Lights. Iceland seems the best place. Someday maybe I’ll get there. I just have to win the lottery first. Hard to do when I never play. Can’t wait for Wild Lavender Bookshop to come out!

    • I am having a blast, Linda, and hope you get to see those Northern Lights! I guess we should check into playing the lottery so you can go. I’m ready for The Wild Lavender Bookshop release too. Hope to see you soon!

  24. I always wanted to go to Scotland and Ireland and Wyoming. It probably won’t ever happen but I can dream.

  25. I have always dream of going to Ireland and Scotland. My best friend mother was from Ireland and I spent many days at her house and I loved to listen to her mother speak. My girlfriends grandfather came here one time and I got to spend time with them while he was here and I loved every minute of it.

  26. I had wanted to spend time with my 90+ aunt who lived in Plantation, Florida. She moved their in her later years to be closer to her youngest son. My Mom planned and took us for my 40th birthday gift. We had a wonderful time with her. I have memories that no one can take away. Thank you for being here and sharing. God bless you.

  27. I have been to Spain and Germany since my mom is from Spain and my dad is from Germany. In fact, we were in both countries this summer since we still have relatives over there, and also my brother and his family live in Spain now.

  28. Hi Jodi, I have been to California, New York, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennesse, Georgia & Florida. First two trips were when I was younger, the other trips were with my hubby going to NASCAR & NHRA races.
    I feel blessed to have been able to travel to these places & meet so many nice people & see our beautiful country. Still enjoying all of your Awesome books. Your reader always

  29. I heard President Kennedy’s speech establishing the Peace Corps when I was in high school. I decided at that moment I wanted to join. It took finishing high school and four years of college, but 4 weeks after graduation, I left for 3 wonderful years in the Philippines with the Peace Corps. I am not sure what I expected, but it was a learning experience like no other. Since grade school I had been reading about other cultures and countries. I spent my time seeing as much of the country as I could and finding out what I could about the different cultures on the islands. For someone who never left home except for 2 months of student teaching, it was quite an experience. The job, the place, the people, and the experience were so much more than I ever expected. There have been many enjoyable and memorable trips since and most have lived up to or exceeded expectations. The ones we are planning now I am sure will be the same.

    • You truly did live out your dream and sounds like it was very worthwhile. I believe travel is a wonderful teacher and I’m glad your plans still include more trips. Enjoy!

  30. I always wanted to go to London and I was able to go when I was in college. It was great and I got to see so much. I was able to see shows and musicals each night at a reasonable price. Annie front row center for £12.

  31. I always dreamed of going to Paris and yes it was as exciting as in my dreams. It was a long time ago and we got to go all the way to the top of the Eiffel tower and look at the city all the way around. I hear they don’t let you go to the top anymore. That’s a shame. It was so pretty.

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