Sometimes, I wondered if this day would come. The search for the right literary agent has been quite the journey.
But the wait was worthwhile. I’m so honored to share that I signed with the Blythe Daniel Agency and Literary Agent Stephanie Alton, who will be representing me on a new Christian Romantic Suspense project I cannot wait for you to read one day!
About My New Project
The setting of this story is near to my life (and heart) as it takes my heroine from her ordinary world in Tampa to the snow-covered slopes of Beech Mountain. Both places are special to me, because I’m a Florida girl by birth, and my husband James proposed to me near Beech Mountain. You’ll get to experience so much of what I love about these settings in this novel.
Here’s a sneak preview of the premise:
Kaley just wants a carefree ski trip with her church singles’ group, but trouble follows her to Beech Mountain. When her last client of the day is murdered hours after she leaves for vacation, she becomes the target of an underworld celebrity who will stop at nothing to keep her secrets buried. The ally Kaley needs to survive is none other than her ex-boyfriend who won’t give up on her, even if she gave up on him.
You can be praying with me as my agent works to place this project with the right publisher.
Introducing My New Agent
Speaking of my agent, I’m excited for you to meet her! But first, some backstory:
It’s so neat how God works in unexpected ways. I met Blythe Daniel, the owner of the Blythe Daniel Agency, several years ago at the Florida Christian Writer’s Conference. I appreciated so much her professional expertise and also her gracious ability to connect with people on a personal level. Never in my dreams did I imagine that one day, I’d get to be part of her author community.
She connected me with her Blog About Blogger Network, organized by her colleague Stephanie Alton. For a few years, you’ve enjoyed the giveaways made possible through this network right here on the blog.
In March of this year, Faith Pitch on Twitter did a special #FaithOverFear contest where writers could pitch an in-progress project, and the participating editors and agents would each award one person a consultation. Although I figured it was a long shot, I pitched my current WIP (work in progress), and to my delight, won a consultation with Stephanie Alton, also an agent with the Blythe Daniel Agency.
Stephanie has been so helpful in answering my questions and a delight to communicate with. Long story short, I just signed an agreement for her to represent me on my new project.
Because we only see news (like this) and new book release announcements on social media, it often appears that just like that, the book is published.
But that’s not how the publishing industry works. In reality, it’s a slow process that often takes years.
All that to say, it could be over a year or even two before you have this novel in your hands. But in the meantime, I’ll be sharing the journey right here with you, along with other book news, the author chat features I hope you’ve been enjoying, giveaway opportunities, and as always, faith in the everyday adventures of life.
Thanks so much for being my friends and celebrating with me today!
Book News! I’m proud to partner with the Blythe Daniel Agency. @kjhogrefe
I’m excited to introduce you to today’s featured author, Jerusha Agen! This gal has been such a blessing to me as we’ve gotten to know each other through our writing journeys, and today, it’s your turn to be blessed by her. I hope you enjoy this author chat as much as I have!
Q: What prompted you to first write Christian romantic suspense?
The first novels I wrote, which became the Sisters Redeemed Series, were romantic women’s fiction. But a curious thing happened as I was crafting those stories—each book in the three-book series leaned increasingly toward suspense! I realized when I finished that series that I might as well stop fighting the urge to add suspense to everything and embrace it instead!
Since then, I’ve written suspense novels that allow me to revel in the excitement, danger, and fear-fighting courage of the genre. I especially love how suspense stories delve into intense, sometimes dark issues—the places where the love and hope of Christ shine the brightest.
Q: What do you hope readers will take away from your books?
I hope and pray readers will always find in my stories a greater understanding of Who God is and where He is in the midst of suffering. I want my readers to come away with an unshakable hope from the realization that even in the darkest, most difficult circumstances, the Redeemer is there, is in control, and is always good.
Q: How does your Fear Warrior Blog tackle the topic that plagues characters in suspense novels—and many people in real life too? How does your faith shape the way you approach fighting fear?
The Fear Warrior Blog is dedicated to helping people fight against fear in their everyday lives. And you’re right, Kristen, this is an issue that does plague the characters in suspense novels, as well as all of us in real life! Everyone experiences fear at some point in their lives, to varying degrees, and I love to write realistic fiction that depicts that authentic struggle in the lives of characters too.
The characters may face a more palpable or overt danger than many of us do in our lives, but their deepest fears are the same as ours. And the only way to gain victory over fear is the same for us too.
You pinpointed that answer when you asked how faith shapes the way I approach fighting fear. Faith in God is the only way anyone can truly obtain victory over fear and break free from the prison of anxiety, worry, and all forms of fear. The good news is that this faith isn’t a pie-in-the-sky make believe or ignorance of reality. And the other good news is I don’t have to muster some heroic degree of faith myself.
“Faith in God is the only way anyone can truly obtain victory over fear and break free from the prison of anxiety, worry, and all forms of fear.” ~ @SDGwords on @kjhogrefe
This faith that gives us victory over fear is simply acknowledgement of and belief in the truth. And this faith, thank the Lord, isn’t something I have to conjure or force, but rather is a gift from God Himself.
So my faith, the faith God enables me to have, is also the means by which He gives me victory over fear. This fear-fighting weapon is available to everyone who belongs to Christ!
Q: How have you overcome fear in your own life, and how has this experience helped you encourage others?
Since God started me on this journey of fighting fear years ago, He has granted me so many victories, but many of them are in the small steps forward on my path to eventual conquering of that fear.
The most remarkable fear God has enabled me to overcome is my stage fright. I shared the complete story of this victory and how others can beat their own stage fright at the FW Blog, but the short version is that God gave me the faith, wisdom, and radical shift in perspective that enabled me to break free of stage fright. Ironically, this breakthrough happened when I gave a live presentation on fighting fear!
I knew we as Christians could have victory over our fears because the Bible tells me so. However, this experience has equipped and encouraged me to speak this truth to others with even more conviction because I’ve seen the evidence of victory over fear in my own life.
Q: As writers, we often don’t get to see how our writing influences others. However, sometimes readers do reach out and share with us. What has been the most encouraging feedback you’ve received?
I wouldn’t have thought to receive feedback on my writing during a pandemic, but I got a hand-written note from an elderly reader the other day who shared that one of my books gave her comfort and helped her pass the time in an enjoyable way while she was quarantined alone.
I never expected a story I wrote would bring encouragement to a sweet woman alone during such a time. But God knew how it would be used, just as He knows how He will use each of the posts I write for the Fear Warrior Blog, where I have often been astounded and encouraged by feedback from readers who were strengthened for their battles against fear.
I am awed by the privilege to have my words used by God to help others!
Q: Can you hint about what next project you have in the works?
I’m delighted you asked this, Kristen, because I’m currently working on getting my debut romantic suspense novel ready to launch with Love Inspired! I’d like to share with your readers the official title, for the first time in public: Rising Danger.
Rising Danger, which will be among the first books published with Love Inspired’s new trade line, is slated to release in July 2021. The novel tells the exciting story of a woman and her explosives detection K9 who stand between a city and a bomber.
That’s all I can say for now, but I’ll be sharing more exclusive updates and insider peeks with members of the Fear Warrior Suspense community (my awesome newsletter subscribers) in the coming months. I hope you’ll all join me by visiting FearWarriorSuspense.com.
Meet Romantic Suspense Author Jerusha Agen whose Fear Warrior blog equips readers to fight fear in their everyday lives and whose suspense novels remind them of the One who provides the victory. @kjhogrefe
Jerusha Agen imagines danger around every corner, but knows God is there too. So naturally, she writes romantic suspense infused with the hope of salvation in Jesus Christ. Her debut romantic suspense novel, Rising Danger, releases in July 2021.
With a B.A. in English and a background in screenwriting, Jerusha is a speaker, writing instructor, and author of the Fear Warrior Blog, where she writes about fighting against fear in our everyday lives.
You’ll often find Jerusha sharing irresistibly adorable photos of her Furry Fear Warriors (three big dogs and two little cats) on social media.
Jerusha is giving away Introverted, a free romantic suspense story, to anyone who signs up to join the Fear Warrior Suspense community! Follow this link to get your free story at FearWarriorSuspense.com!
She never invites visitors. But visitors sometimes invite themselves.
When a winter storm brings more than snow, May Denver is forced to flee from her home and fight for her life. Can she trust an unwanted neighbor and risk her greatest fear in order to survive?