My First Book Release Day with When Plans Go Awry

It’s my very first book release day and there are so many exciting things happening. I’m finding myself wanting to use all the terms for today. Happy Book Launch, Happy Release Day, and Happy Book Birthday. So When Plans Go Awry, I wish you all of these!

Happy Release Day for When Plans Go Awry blog banner

And I ask all of you to come celebrate with me as my debut novel, When Plans Go Awry, releases out into the world. When Plans Go Awry is now available at Amazon in paperback, eBook, and on Kindle Unlimited. The paperback is also available on Barnes and Noble’s website.

I have had such great response to the cover and the story, from early readers. Much to be thankful for! I hope you will enjoy the story as well.

Historical Romance Book Cover pre-order link with words When Plans Go Awry by Denise M. Colby which is a historical christian romance novel

Other Book Release Excitement

I’ve been busy creating author and book accounts at AmazonFictionfinderGoodReads, and BookBub, so if you are on any of these, please follow me! And if you haven’t yet signed up for my newsletter, please do so to stay informed of future book events and books.

Also, I wanted to share I have a new logo!

Red one room schoolhouse with text underneath Denise M. Colby Historical Romance Author

And a variation with my tagline

Denise M. Colby Historical Romance sweetened with faith, hope, & love logo

Links to other activities this week

What fun I’ve had leading up to this day. From my first author blog interview, to my first author podcast interview, to the book blog tour my book is taking this week.

Click on the graphic below to check out the book blog tour. Every day there are several book bloggers posting on their book blog. The complete list is listed here on the Silver Dagger Book Tour page.

When Plans Go Awry Book Launch Blog Tour graphic to celebrate New Book Release

I’m just so grateful Luke and Olivia’s story can be read and enjoyed by everyone. Thank you so much for your support. And if you feel led to leave a review after reading it, that would be so appreciated. Leaving reviews is one of the most helpful things you can do for authors.

Stay tuned for more book launch news as the fun continues.




Incorporating a Character Journal Into My Story

Blog Post Header with the words My Heroin's Character Journal Captures Her Journey by Denise M. Colby

Some writers write a character journal for their characters to help them see things from their character’s perspective. But for me, I wanted my heroine to actually have a journal in my story. Not quite sure why, but capturing her journey through a journal stuck as I brainstormed my scenes.

Do you write in a journal? 

If you do, do you ever worry about someone reading what you wrote?

My heroine gets handed a journal upon her start as a teacher.

Character Journal cover created for my story by Denise M. Colby

In it, she’s instructed to write down the events of her days to capture what happens as a female teacher who moves West to teach in small pioneer towns.

Olivia finds her journal to be a close confidant. She enjoys documenting her observances about the places she’s been and the people she meets. Given that it’s 1869 and traveling by train across the country is a new and unprecedented event, the importance in capturing the momentous occasion is not lost on her.  

She’s also very protective of her book. It never leaves her side and she would never leave it out so that someone could read it. But even if they did, she is very careful what she writes, never putting to paper her own thoughts and opinions, just in case someone else might read it and pass judgement on her. 

See judgement stings and her fear of being judged stems from…well…I don’t want to give too much away.

I write prayers in a journal almost every morning.

Some entries are one full page. Others are short paragraphs. I sometimes wonder what someone would think of my shortest entry. 

“Dear God. Help me today.” 

Yes, I admit. I have written it just like that. 

I’ve been writing down these prayers for so long, I don’t think about it anymore. It’s really between me and God, and the benefit of writing the words weighs more important than the fear of someone reading it and judging me.

And see, that’s what happens to Olivia in her character journal. Over time and with a few encouraging words from one of her pupils, Olivia’s heart slowly changes and her journal changes right along with her. It’s been exciting to flush out her journal entries so that the reader can see this change.

Olivia's Character Journal with entries from 1869 as I imagined them for my story, by Denise M. Colby

I even created a small diary in Olivia’s hand, so that I could think like her and feel what it might’ve been like all those years ago to have a small diary to write down words that could be read one hundred fifty years later. What she was doing was historic in 1869. 

Which was why I wanted to create a character journal for her.

Something that captured all these historical events – Traveling across the country, coming west to teach in a one-room schoolhouse in order to make a difference in the life of a child, and for herself as well.

I wonder, in real life, how many of them kept a journal? And if they had any idea that we would be reading what they wrote so many years later?

This is why the act of writing in a journal is so precious to me. Over at A Slice of Orange (an outside blog I write for), I wrote a blog post on how a handwritten note can be a gift, one that lasts forever. Journals can be that type of gift.

I’m excited to finish editing Olivia’s story and her journal entries. If you’re interested in learning more about my stories check out my Going West Series page.

First Line Fridays

First Line Fridays – 5.11.18

It’s First Line Friday time.  Pulling again from treasures read a while ago, today’s first line comes from another Love Finds You… book.  I thought I would do them all in a row!

Love Finds You in Hope, Kansas by Pamela Griffin

Book Cover Love Finds You in Hope, Kansas by Pamela Griffin - First Line Fridays Denise M. Colby Blog Post

I have read several from this line and being the history/geography lover that I am, have found these real town names and fiction stories fun.

So here’s the first line.  Drumroll please…….

Hope, Kansas

Midsummer 1889

“Don’t just stand there with your mouth hangin’ open like a fish. Do you want a new ma or don’t you?” Andy directed the tense question to their little sister, Maggie, who hovered outside the stable door in clear indecision about whether to join them.

In return, I hope you will share the first line from any book you choose in the comments below.  And then head on over to:

First Line Friday hosted by Hoarding Books Button

Happy Reading,


First Line Fridays

First Line Fridays – 3.2.18

It’s First Line Friday time.  Here’s the book I selected for todays First Line.  It’s in my TBR pile:

Bandolero by Nancy J. Farrier historical romanceBandolero by Nancy J. Farrier

Land of Promise, Book 1

Nancy is a friend of mine that I met through two different writing groups**.  This is her first Indie book, although she has several others out either in collections or as stand alone.

Here’s the book blurb:

She’s been rejected and betrayed. 
He sacrificed all to seek revenge. 
Can they find they trust God as time runs out?

Alta California 1830’s
Yoana Armenta knows she is doomed to a miserable existence after her betrothal is broken. But when her reckless behavior results in her and her Tía being captured by bandoleros, Yoana fears her impulsive nature may cause irreparable disaster. 

Amado Castro gave a death bed promise that he intends to keep – at all costs. When that means endangering Yoana’s life, he struggles with the decision to honor his word, or to protect Yoana, whom he has come to care for more than he could have imagined. 

Now as the women face a fate worse than death, Amado and Yoana both have choices to make. Will they each be willing to surrender self, and trust God, even if that means the worst could happen?

So here’s the first line.  Drumroll please…….

Alta California–1830’s

Billowing sheets of gray congregated overhead. A few rays of sun stabbed through the mass to brush pale fingers across Yoana’s face. Fingers too weak to warm her chilled heart.

In return, I hope you will share the first line from any book you choose in the comments below.  And then head on over to:

First Line Friday hosted by Hoarding Books Button

Happy Reading,


**One of the writing groups is the Faith, Hope and Love Chapter of Romance Writers of America.  You can follow our FHL chapter on Facebook or on Twitter and learn about other authors who write Inspirational and Sweet Romance Fiction, or check out the chapters website www.faithhopelove-rwa.org.