The Story Behind the Story…

Please join me in welcoming Lisa Jordan.

I featured the first novel in her Lakeside collection here last fall–a novel that is a finalist for ACFW’s prestigious Carol Award in the romance category. Congratulations, Lisa!!!
By day, Lisa is an early childhood educator. In her free time (ha!), Lisa enjoys good books, chick flicks, crafting with friends and feeding her NCIS addiction. 
Welcome back, Lisa. Please tell us how the characters of Lakeside Family came to life.

I didn’t expect to write Lakeside Family. When I planned the books in my Lakeside Collection, I wanted to write at least three books, and Lakeside Family wasn’t one of them.

When I wrote Lakeside Reunion, I wanted a fun name for a coffee shop. So I played around with names, coffee puns and Cuppa Josie’s was created. I introduced Josie as the owner of Cuppa Josie’s and Max’s daughter who was a single mother.

A friend mentioned she liked Josie’s character and I should write her story. I pondered it and had to figure out how Josie had become a single mother? Why wasn’t Hannah’s dad in the picture? I decided not to have Josie divorced or widowed because let’s face it—single mothers are a reality.

Josie needed a strong enough reason to find Nick after nearly a decade, so it needed to be something life threatening. The mothers I know would do anything it took to keep their kids safe and healthy. I remember walking through my kitchen and coming to a sudden stop as I realized—that’s it…Hannah had leukemia and needed a bone marrow transplant. Josie needed to see if Nick would get tested to see if he was a match.

God provided connections in ways only He could—one of my writing support friends just landed a job with the National Marrow Donor Program in Minnesota. Through Vacation Bible School at our church, I met a local pastor’s wife who had just returned home after donating bone marrow for an unknown patient dying from leukemia. Total God moments.

I interviewed Amy and Kym, did more of my own research and the premise of Lakeside Family was created—He was the one man she never wanted to see again but the only one who could save her daughter’s life.

Nick had his own challenges to face. He vowed never to abandon his family the way his father did. When tragedy struck his family, Nick shouldered a lot of guilt and felt like nobody’s hero. Then he learned he had a daughter. He stepped up and promised to always be there for his daughter.

Josie struggled to include Nick into their lives—she wanted what was best for her daughter, but her own fears of abandonment built a wall around her heart. She needed to forgive and trust in order for them to be a family.

After choosing this illness for Hannah, Josie’s daughter, my heart ached for those dying of leukemia or other blood-borne diseases. I registered with Be The Match to become a bone marrow donor. I wanted to do my part in being someone’s hope for a new lease on life. I don’t know if I’ll ever be called, but I wanted to be ready in case I was.

Your Turn: What about you? Have you considered being a bone marrow donor? Registration is free. Imagine the joy and hope you could give another person simply by saying yes. For more information, visit Be The Match.

Giveaway: Lisa is celebrating the release of Lakeside Family with a month-long party of giveaways, including Coffee Lovers and Tea Lovers baskets. For more details and to enter the gift basket giveaways, leave a comment here.

Read Excerpt

Lakeside Reunion – Character Interview

A couple of Mondays ago we talked about how the hero of Lakeside Reunion had to sacrifice a future with the woman he loved to do the honorable thing. Today, I’m excited to be able to bring him here to answer a few questions his choice raised for me.

But first allow me to introduce you to his creator, debut author, Lisa Jordan. I first met Lisa online through My Book Therapy and then later in person at ACFW conferences.  What a thrill it has been for us to see our debut novels come out with Love Inspired within months of each other. 
Heart, home and faith have always been important to Lisa Jordan, so writing stories that feature both comes naturally to her. Happily married for twenty-two years, Lisa and her husband have two young adult sons. When she isn’t writing or caring for children in her in-home childcare business, Lisa enjoys family time, romantic comedies, good books, crafting with friends and feeding her NCIS addiction. Visit her at to learn more about her writing. 
Before we dive into the character questions, here’s the back cover blurb for Lakeside Reunion:
Bed-and-breakfast owner Lindsey Porter prays she won’t run into Stephen Chase when she returns to Shelby Lake.Five years ago, the cop jilted her to marry another woman, and Lindsey fled town. But no sooner does she hit city limits than Stephen pulls her over for a broken taillight. Despite the past, he’s still able to stir up Lindsey’s old feelings for him. Now a widower and single dad, Stephen recognizes a second chance when he sees one. And he’ll do anything to make Lindsey trust in God and take a risk for love—again.Read an excerpt of Lakeside Reunion
Now, Stephen, you chose honor over love. Why?
I screwed up. Big time. I had to man up and face the consequences of my actions. What happened affected many people I loved, but I had to do the right thing, even if it meant giving up Lindsey.
What would you have missed out on if you had chosen Lindsey?         
I missed the first two years of Ty’s life. If I had married Lindsey, I would have become a weekend dad, and I didn’t want that. Tyler didn’t deserve that either. He was already losing his mother. The poor guy needed some security in his life.
And Bethany … she was a great person who didn’t deserve what happened to her. She was one of the kindest, gentlest people I’ve had the privilege to know. She loved Ty with all her heart. He’s a great kid, mainly because of her.
How did you feel when you saw Lindsey for the first time?
Like someone had just stepped on my chest. Man, she looked amazing. She was so close, yet so far away, you know?
What regrets do you have over hurting Lindsey?
I loved Lindsey. That never changed. But I had to do what was right for Bethany and Tyler. I was all they had. Breaking my engagement was one of the toughest things I had to do, especially since she was grieving her father’s death.
How did you grow to care for Bethany?
Bethany’s gentle personality made it easy. We were strangers when we got married, but as we talked, our relationship grew into a deep friendship. She was my wife, and I loved her. I will always cherish her memory and honor it for Ty.
Why is your job so important?
I’m a cop. I catch bad guys. But it’s more than that. I screwed up in the past. Being a cop showed I could do something right and honorable. Lindsey’s father was my mentor and believed in me. I couldn’t let him down.
What’s the hardest thing about being a single parent?
What’s not hard about it? You have to do everything yourself. Thank God I had my family to lend a hand or else Ty and I may have lived on chicken nuggets or mac and cheese. He deserved so much more. I do my best, but sometimes it doesn’t feel like enough. I miss having a partner to share his accomplishments or cute stories with. I hate having to juggle work, his school events, and making sure someone is always there for him.
What life lesson would you share with someone else?
God’s grace is a free gift—it’s up to you to accept it or deny it. Plus, life’s hard, but you don’t have to go it alone. Lean on family and friends, but most of all, lean on God. His shoulders can take it and wants to walk alongside us every day. 
Stephen and Lisa, thanks so much for joining us today and being so open with your answers. Lisa do you have anything you’d like to tell my readers? 
Yes, for the past month-plus, I’ve been holding a scavenger hunt to promote my Lakeside Reunion release. Also, blog commenters on my blog hop (like today) will be put in a drawing for fun prizes—breakfast basket, Love Inspired Authors basket, autographed copies of Lakeside Reunion. (U.S. addresses only, I’m afraid.) 
There are still a couple of days left to get in on the scavenger hunt. Visit my Lakeside Reunion Contest page for more information. For those participating…the token for this blog is a home-cooked meal.
Your Turn: Do you have any questions for Lisa or Stephen? 

Special Notice: Tomorrow at noon Mountain Standard Time, the For Canadians Only gift basket will go up on the fundraiser for Sandi Rog blog. The basket open to International for the 2500 word critique from the Christian Writer’s Guild will be on Friday. Be sure to stop in every day. These baskets are worth hundreds of dollars and feature everything from chocolates, crafts, hand-knitted items, jewellery, scrapbooking supplies to books. 


Blog Hoppers looking for…

Lisa Jordan’s Character Interview for Lakeside Reunion will be posted Monday, November 28th.

My apologies for the schedule change, I didn’t realize that I was part of the official hop. You’ll be able to find the token you’re looking for here on Monday.

In the meantime, I invite you to read today’s post from Suzanne Hartmann on choosing character names. You might also be interested on this earlier post based on Lisa’s book: What-would-you-give-up-for-love?

A Change of Heart

Monday we talked about what we’d give up for love.

Because of fear, both Ginny in Deep Cover, and Lindsey in Lakeside Reunion, ask the police officers they love to give up their jobs before they’ll marry them.

Of course, every diehard romance reader longs for the hero to choose love over anything else. But what of the heroine?

She needs a change of heart, too. Right?

Your turn: Can you share an example of how you embraced God instead of clinging to fear? Are you struggling with this very thing, now? How might we pray for you?

GIVEAWAY OF DEEP COVER this week on Noelle Marchand’s new blog Today features an interview of the heroine. 

What would you give up for love?

This past week I read the Love Inspired contemporary Lakeside Reunion by Lisa Jordan about a cop who jilted his bride-to-be mere weeks before their wedding after learning that a night of indiscretion three years earlier had led to the birth of his son.

He chose honor over love and married his son’s mother, a woman he scarcely knew and who was battling cancer. The story begins five years later. Stephen has been widowed for a year, and Lindsey, the woman he’d jilted, and never stopped loving, is back in town.

And Stephen will do anything to make her trust in God and take a risk for love–again.

This story has a similar element to one in Deep Cover in that Lindsey’s father died in the line of duty, and she doesn’t think she can risk enduring that kind of loss ever again. But for Stephen being a cop and eventually becoming captain is his ticket to redeeming himself from his past mistakes and proving himself honorable to his family and community.

Stephen’s friend asks Stephen what he’s willing to give up to keep Lindsey.

I won’t give away the ending by telling you what he decides. But I will share an interesting tidbit about the author. Twenty-three years ago, Lisa begged her then Marine husband to give up his dream of becoming a police officer like his dad. She admits that she was terrified of losing him and didn’t trust God enough to protect him.

Lisa’s husband honored her plea.

Your Turn: Have you had to make a sacrifice for someone you loved (spouse, child, parent)? How did you handle it? Has someone made such a sacrifice for you? Thank them, today.