Welcome Julie to the Spotlight
About the Author
At thirteen, Julie dedicated her life to Christ. As a religion major at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, she received the American Bible Society’s Religion Major of the Year Award. She then studied for three semesters in seminary. She is a member of Advanced Writers & Speakers Association, American Christian Fiction Writers, North Texas Christian Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, DiAnn Mill’s Ripplers Group, The Christians Writers Group, and Christian Writers Fellowship International. A freelance writer and speaker, Julie has published hundreds of web content and articles with secular and Christian themes, led retreats, workshops, and Bible studies, and writes regularly for several Christian websites and publications. In the past three years alone, she has been published in Devozine and Alive Now Magazines published by the Upper Room, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Find Your Happiness to be released October 2011, Good News Daily, The Secret Place, Light from the Word, and has been commissioned to write a month long commentary on Philippians and Colossians for The Journey.
How did you become a Christian writer? When my husband was alive, we moved a lot for his job - so much that I soon became unemployable. We relocated to seven cities during the last ten years of his life. In one week, three people in three states suggested I try writing for a living. I figured that was a God thing because He always has to tell me more than once. I took a quick online freelance course, joined a writers' group, and began to submit articles. Within a few weeks I had contracts. So, I promised God I would tithe my writing day each morning to Him first. He has honored that. I write regularly for two Christian women's websites and have been published in the past three years in two Upper Room magazines, Chicken Soup for the Soul, The Secret Place, Good News Daily and The Journey, amongst others. I am also eking out a living as a freelance writer, author and public speaker even though I am now widowed.
What is your passion? Speaking to Christian women - leading workshops and retreats. All four of my non-fiction books came out of retreats I led. They are -
P.R.A.Y.I.N.G:Bringing Power and Purpose to Your Prayers in which I show how each letter is a form of prayer.
What Can She Tell Us?- A Bible study on the unnamed women in the New Testament.
Song Notes- a collection of devotionals on the Psalms.
Between the Window and the Door, a study which looks at why God places us in the in-between times through both life experiences and Biblical examples.
What is your fiction novel called? Focused. It was released earlier this year.
What is it about? Jen is in middle age maliase. Her parents have passed, her son has flown nest, and her husband, Jeff, is often absent, even when he is in his beloved recliner. Will her new trifocals help her focus on her faith and her fidelity once her newly divorced high school beau resurfaces in her life?
What do you hope this book accomplishes? I read a statistic that claimed if a marriage survives the first seven years, 80% of divorces will occur within a year after the death of a parent or the children leaving home. I wanted to address this, but in a fiction format so people could follow both Jeff and Christina's story. I hope readers will begin to see why a marriage gone stale is worth fighting for. Even if you have a good marriage or are not currently married, it will make you smile, and perhaps cry a bit. It is a heart warming, and at times an honest and humorous, look at real people in real life. So far, the women, and a few men, who have read it says it is a very good, realistic read without being preachy.
Any tips for upcoming authors? No pun intended, but stay focused on what God is calling you to write. Also, be patient in His timing and definition of what will be your success.
Continue to grow in your craft by graciously accepting positive critiques from authors who have been published as well as attending conferences, workshops, and becoming an active member in mentoring groups either online or over someone's dining room table.
If you feel this is your passion and God's calling, do not give up. In the course of writing over the past four years, I lost my husband and lost the use of my right hand. Praise God, through surgery, I can now type with three fingers on that hand again, though often my letters get jumbled up because I cannot feel the keys.
How can readers contact you? Go to my website www.juliebcosgrove.com. There is a contact tab to click on which takes you to a form you can fill in. Also, they can make comments on my blog - Where Did You Find God Today? and follow me on either Twiter@JulieBCosgrove or through Goodreads.
I will offer a giveaway, today. The winner will receive in the mail a softcover copy of Focused free of charge AND a coupon for 15% off plus free shipping and handling on their choice of one of my nonfiction books if ordered through me. To be eligible, you must leave a comment with your email address on this blog, or on mine over the next three days. The winner will be chosen at random.