Shannon here: It’s my pleasure to introduce Shirley Gould and her latest Romantic Suspense, Escape from Timbuktu. Comment on any post dated July 25th – 28th to enter the drawing for a print copy. Deadline: Aug 5th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s my side of her story:
This makes me so happy! I shared this story on Facebook several months ago, but now the book is releasing.
This is long, but it’s a great story. Several years ago, I signed up to do paid critiques at the American Christian Writer’s Conference. For the low fee of $35, I critiqued 3 chapters for unpublished writers, which is a steal getting advice from a published author. Years before I’d had my manuscripts critiqued by Margaret Daly and Deborah Raney at the same conference. Their advice was priceless and I wanted to return the favor.
I’m not a morning person. The conference set me up to start at 9 am. That meant I had to get up at 7:30 in order to be presentable and lucid. Presentable I was, not so much on the lucid part. Luckily, there was a coffee bar in the hotel. I got ready with 15 minutes to spare, planning to go get my nectar of life in a steaming mug, only to find a LOOOONNNNGGGGG line. Afraid I’d be late, I gave up getting coffee and went to my appointment.
My first crituiqee was Shirley Gould. The first thing I noticed was her awesome hair. I’m an ex-hairdresser. The next thing I noticed was her sweet smile and spirit. And I already knew she could write since she’d e-mailed her chapters in advance. I was impressed and went over the things I’d marked to help her. I misspoke a few times and apologized because I didn’t get my coffee. She asked me what my favorite coffee was. I told her and she told me hers.
We finished her critique and I told her how much I enjoyed the chapters, that with a few fixes, I felt like they were publish-ready. She thanked me and went on her way. I went on to my next critiquee.
About the time we were wrapping up, Shirley came back. With my COFFEE!!! And a mug she bought for me. I thanked her profusely and credit her with my lucidity for the rest of my critiques that year.
The next year, she sought me out to give me another mug. I honestly can’t remember if St. Louis or Dallas came first, but I cherish those mugs and regularly fill them up first thing in the morning.
I’ve run into Shirley a couple of times since then in different cities at ACFW. Imagine my surprise and delight when last year, I served as an Acquisitions Editor for Scrivenings Press at a smaller online conference, only to see Shirley had signed up for a zoom chat with me.
We caught up, she pitched her book, and I told her to send it. I was excited to read it and relieved it was really good. Then I passed it on to my friend Linda Fulkerson, owner of Scrivenings. And now Escape from Timbuktu is releasing this month. Yay Shirley!!!!!
Question for Readers: Do you have a favorite coffee mug or a gift from someone special? Tell us why it’s special and who got it for you.
About Shirley: Shirley Gould is an inspirational speaker, an African missionary, and the author of The Sahar of Zanzibar. Her second novel, Escape From Timbuktu, releases on July 25, 2023. She’s the founder of Kenya’s Kids Home for Street Children, an orphanage in Kenya. Shirley has written nonfiction for thirty years and is presently writing Christian fiction novels, especially contemporary romantic suspense. She lives in the Nashville, Tennessee area. Learn more & connect:
About the book – Escape from Timbuktu:
Elliana Bendale can’t believe her first assignment as a photojournalist is in … well, Timbuktu.
Yes, it sounds remote, but it’s an enchanting ancient city in West Africa, and if she does this right, this project could open the door to a world of exotic assignments. And even better—her translator is a ruggedly handsome Frenchman. What could be more exciting?
Beau de La Croix is not who he says he is. But posing as an interpreter enables him to gather intel about the terrorists threatening Timbuktu. No one needs to know he’s a double agent—especially not Ellie.
Unfortunately, the number one enemy in the world has figured it out, and suddenly Ellie’s photojournalist adventure includes dodging bullets, traveling down a crocodile-infested river, and literally running for her life.
What has Beau gotten her into? And if they survive, can she say goodbye to her hunky hero? Or is his life as a double agent too much excitement for a feisty Texas girl?
When Beau’s worst fears come true, what will he do to save the feisty reporter he can’t seem to shake?
Come back July 28th for Shirley Gould!