Author, Author! — Kathleen D. Bailey And Redemption’s Hope

7 Sep

About The Book

Book: Redemption’s Hope

Author: Kathleen D. Bailey

Genre: Christian fiction

Release date: July 22, 2022

Two distinct sets of villains. Two orphaned children. A man without a country and a woman with too much past . . . . All in a rambunctious young country where anything goes, especially in the West. Seriously. What can go wrong?

In this latest installment of the best-selling series, “Western Dreams”, join Jenny and White Bear as they cross the historic West in an epic story peppered with grit, guns, and glory that award-winning author Kelly Goshorn calls “a sweeping tale of faith, dedication, and perseverance set in the American west.”

Click here to get your copy!

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About The Author

Kathleen D. Bailey was a child in the 50s, a teen in the 60s, a young adult in the 70s, and a young mom in the 80s. It’s been a turbulent, colorful time to grow up, and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it and written about most of it.

More from Kathleen

The “Western Dreams” series

The Oregon Trail was one of the premier events in American history, with people giving up everything to see what waited on the other side of the continent. Some had nothing to give up, and they joined a wagon train simply to survive. That was the case with Caroline Pierce O’Leary, a gently-bred widow whose young husband died before they could make a go of their farm. What would happen, I mused, if Caroline took the skimpy proceeds from selling her farm, signed on as a cook for a wagon master, and worked her way West? And what would happen if the scout on that particular wagon train was the man who had betrayed her years before, and they had to work together to cross the prairie? What if, what if, what if?

Everyone who hopped on a wagon for the Western Migration had a story, and I knew I’d found mine. As Caroline and Michael Moriarty struggled to rebuild their relationship, a host of other characters formed around them like a snowball. The loving Harkness family, who befriended Caroline on the way down from Ohio. Pious matrons who looked down on her and their harried husbands. Jenny Thatcher, the saloon girl who breaks from that life to save Michael’s. And Pace Williams, the wagon master, a man who had seen too much of life before he even took to the trail. The first book in the Western Dreams series, “Westward Hope,” debuted in September 2019.

I fell in love with Jenny and I fell in love with Pace. Jenny followed her new friends to the muddy Oregon hamlet where they settled, and Pace gave up the trail to make a life in the Oregon woods. But I wasn’t done with either of them – they had their own stories to tell. Pace battled his own demons and his love for Michael’s sister Oona, and it was enough to give them their own book, “Settlers Hope,” published in July 2020. I also spun off two novellas, “The Logger’s Christmas Bride” and “The Widow’s Christmas Miracle,” from the bigger books, and these were published with Pelican Book Group’s Christmas Extravaganza.

Jenny Thatcher demanded her own book, and she had a lot to offer. Saloon girl, wagon train scout, hotel cook and maid, horse breeder. Jenny could do anything, and she’d already proved it in the first two books. But Jenny had some unfinished business – the handsome Indian brave who’d saved her life, early in the westward journey. She’d never forgotten him, and White Bear had never forgotten her. What if she left the horse farm, and all she’d achieved in Oregon, to take to the trail again and find him? And what if he had the same idea? What if they crisscrossed the known world, picking up strays and meeting historical figures before coming together in New Orleans? (Honestly, what better place to reconnect with a lost love?) And what if the forces of evil split them up again, so they had to keep searching?

Though Jenny accepted Christ as her Savior sometime in the second book, her past continues to haunt her, and she wonders if she can ever be good enough for God. She’s physically given up the saloon life, but her inner doubts remain. White Bear struggles with a different facet of their union: can he sentence her to the criticism and censure of the white world if they marry?

The epic journey of two larger-than-life people formed the basis for the third Western Dreams book, “Redemption’s Hope,” out July 22, 2022.  Like Caroline and Michael, Pace and Oona, Jenny and White Bear find their answers in the Risen Christ.

Am I done with the West? Not likely. While I’m working on new novels set in other time periods, the West and my personal Western Dreams keep tugging at me. What happened to the Harkness family, Caroline’s friends, when they went to California? What happened to the ragged Smith children Caroline befriended? What happened to Jenny’s traveling companion, the would-be miner Noonday?
And how can I give this up when I haven’t written a cattle drive or a barroom brawl?

Q & A with Kathleen D. Bailey

Many authors say that they have always been a writer — making up stories as a child. When did you first become a writer?

I was probably six and reading Maud Hart Lovelace’s “Betsy-Tacy” books. Always loved to tell stories. “Betsy” wanted to be a writer and I figured I could, too.

Was there a special someone, such as a teacher, parent, or other relative, who encouraged you to pursue writing?

My fifth-grade teacher encouraged me and let me read my stories in front of the class.

Why did you choose the Western fiction genre?

I kind of “fell into” the Western genre. I had an idea for an Oregon Trail book, and when that was done, I had characters who demanded a sequel. And another sequel. And two related novellas. The West is so vast, and there’s so much I haven’t touched yet – the Land Rush, the Gold Rush, cattle drives and barroom brawls. 

Were there any obstacles you faced in your journey to publication?

The biggest obstacle was me. I had to learn to take criticism. Could have shaved years off my journey if I’d listened to more people.

What types of research do you pursue? Books, on-site visits, etc. 

Internet research, now. Not so much in person, though I’m always open to it. 

What does a typical writing day look like? Are you structured or informal in your writing schedule?

Blocks of time Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in the morning, then catch as catch can on the weekend if I have something left over. I live near a lake, and in the summer I’ll often go out and take a dip, then edit hard copy with my trusty red pen under a beach umbrella. 

How long does it usually take to craft your books? (from outlines/first drafts to final edits) 

It depends. Some “gel” for up to 10 years. “Redemption’s Hope” took about a year. The characters were set because Jenny was in the first two books, but I had a huge task with the plotting. She’s looking for him, he’s looking for her, so those are two separate epic journeys, and I had to make sure everyone was where they were supposed to be. Color-coding is my fallback for this kind of thing.

Can you tell us a little about what inspired your latest novel.

Jenny Thatcher, the heroine of “Redemption’s Hope,” appeared in my first two Western Dreams novels, the saloon girl turned wagon train scout turned hotel cook. Jenny has accepted Jesus as her Savior, but finds it challenging to let go of her murky past. She wants to see White Bear again, the Native man she met on the Overland Trail, but she doesn’t think she’s good enough for him. And as a Native man with a foot in the White world, White Bear doesn’t know where he belongs, so he’s not sure he can take her there. She has to let go of her past, and he has to recognize that she’s strong enough to live the life he can offer her. I knew I wasn’t done with Jenny yet, so I gave her her own book. Of course that meant it had to be White Bear’s book too. I also wanted to do something in the “epic” format, with two characters criss-crossing the then-world to find each other. 

What do you want your readers to take away with them after finishing one of your novels?

That God is more than conqueror to anything they are facing, Then and Now.

Readers always want to know what is next for an author. Do you have any works in progress you can share about?

I was going to step away from the Oregon Trail, and Westerns in general, to see if I could be good at anything else. But those pesky characters keep nagging at me. Right now it’s Michael Moriarty’s older brother Tom, stuck in Ireland during the Famine. What will it take for me to bring Tom to the Oregon Country, first in the steerage and then on the wagon train? I’m about to find out…

Blog Stops

Inklings and notions, September 2

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, September 3 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, September 4

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 5 (Author Interview)

Lily’s Book Reviews, September 5

For Him and My Family, September 6

By The Book, September 7 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 7

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 8

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 9

deb’s Book Review, September 10

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, September 11 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 12

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 13

Through the Fire Blogs, September 14 (Author Interview)

Connie’s History Classroom, September 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize package of $50 Amazon card and copy of book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

5 Responses to “Author, Author! — Kathleen D. Bailey And Redemption’s Hope”

  1. Eva Millien September 7, 2022 at 6:14 pm #

    I enjoyed the Q&A, Redemption’s Hope sounds like an amazing read for me!

    Thanks for sharing it with me and have a wonderful day!

  2. slehan September 7, 2022 at 7:31 pm #

    Good interview.
    Thanks for the contest.

  3. Marisela Zuniga September 7, 2022 at 8:02 pm #

    Sounds like a wonderful book

  4. Debbie P September 16, 2022 at 10:27 pm #

    This sounds like a fantastic book.

  5. Debbie P September 17, 2022 at 11:58 pm #

    This sounds like an excellent read.

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