Monday, July 25, 2011

Southern-Style Meet & Greet with Annalisa Daughety

Time for another week with another Meet & Greet! This week, I've got another sweet, Southern author, and one that I've ACTUALLY gotten to meet in person, too!! How exciting is that?! But first, gotta let you know who won last week's giveaway of The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck by Kathleen Y'Barbo. Thanks to our dear friends at, the lucky winner is:

Jo (ladijo40@...)

Congrats, Jo! I'll be in touch with you shortly to get all the necessary mailing info. :o)

And now, it's time for our next author....Annalisa Daughety! Like I said before, I had the great privilege of meeting Annalisa at a local book signing some time ago, and truthfully...I had a little bit of a starstruck moment. I remember that I could hardly think of anything witty to say, so I just said "thanks for signing my book, and can we get a picture, please?" If I could do it over again...well, that's why we're having this here meet and greet. :o)  Since she's Southern, and a local Southerner to boot, we're gonna have all kinds of fun talking about our favorite Southern things.  Stay tuned to the very end for a nice surprise!

Welcome, Annalisa!

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve been writing stories since I learned to hold a pencil so I guess I’ve been a writer almost my whole life. Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve loved to read—and I think that love of words and books contributed to my desire to be a writer.

If you were not a writer, what would your dream job be and why? (This is, of course, assuming that writing IS your dream job!) :o) 

Writing is definitely one of my dream jobs. :) I’ve been blessed to have worked in my other “dream” fields as well. I worked as a Park Ranger for the National Park Service, which was definitely a dream job. I loved working at a Civil War battlefield (Shiloh) because I’ve been a Civil War buff since I was a little girl. My other dream job is working as an event planner, which I’ve done for many years. I love seeing a special event come together and be a success. Most recently I worked in that capacity for the National Foundation for Transplants and loved working for an organization I believe in.

I've been to Shiloh once, thanks to my Civil-War-buff hubby.  I'm sure we'll go again at some point in time...he can't get enough of all that history.  :o)

What genre do you most like to write? 

I’m still finding my way—at this point, I think the genre I most like to write would be labeled women’s fiction but most of the books I’ve written that have been published are romance. Being a history buff, I would eventually like to branch out and do a book that blends contemporary and historical, yet still ties in a little romance. Guess I’m sort of all over the place.

Do your own personal experiences, or those of family and friends, ever find their way into one your stories? 

Of course! Usually amplified in some way though. And I always change names. :)

What do you hope readers “take away” with them after they read one of your books?

My main purpose is to entertain and tell a story. My books aren’t preachy, but the characters definitely rely on their faith to get them through tough times.

What is your latest book release?

My July release is from Summerside Press—Love Finds You in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Here’s the back cover blurb:

Two women with nothing in common—except the need for a friend and a fresh start. When Amish-born Lydia Ann Raber and Southern belle Caroline DeMarco discover a shared history of loss, the unlikely duo decides to open a gift shop in beautiful Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Lydia Ann is surprised to find herself drawn to handsome woodworker Simon Zook. When God offers her a second chance at love and family, will she take it? Or will the secret Simon harbors cause her even more heartbreak? For Caroline, love comes in the form of journalist Michael Landis. Their low-key romance is a dream come true for Caroline, a fugitive from an infamous past. Is Michael to blame when reporters start hovering once again, or can Caroline find a way to trust him with her heart?

My guess is that this is a semi-sequel to Love Finds You in Charm, Ohio.  Oh, I do hope I'm right!  

Are you currently working on another novel, and if so, can you give us a snippet about it?

I just turned in All Shook Up which will release through Heartsong Presents Book Club in January. It’s set in Memphis, which made it really fun to write!

Graceland wedding planner Suzanne Simpson finds love with writer Nick Taggart after a chance meeting during Elvis Week. Will Suzanne’s fierce independence and Nick’s fear of commitment doom their blossoming relationship? Or have they finally found a love that’s worth the risk?

For the record, I probably should admit that I've never been to Graceland in my life, and I've lived close enough to visit it for 23 years.  Oh, the horror...  But you can bet your bottom dollar that I'll be reading this one when it comes out!

Where can readers find you on the web?

My website:
My blog:
Also I’m very active on Twitter and Facebook and would love to connect with readers there!

What is your most favorite thing about the South?

I love everything about the South. I love the hot, lazy summer days and the way lightning bugs dance around the yard at dusk. I love meeting new people in a small Southern town and spending the first fifteen minutes of our conversation establishing who we know in common and how we may or may not be related. People in the South are great storytellers and I think that’s one reason there are so many wonderful Southern authors. Southern hospitality and manners are still alive and well and when I hear a Southern child say “yes ma’am” it does my heart good. And I can’t gush about the South without talking about the food! Barbecue, fried okra, and sweet tea are some of my very favorites.

Oh, just wait...we are definitely gonna talk about some food!

Iced Tea—sweet or un-sweet?

Sweet--the sweeter the better!

BBQ Pork or BBQ Beef? 

Barbecue is my FAVORITE food! In fact, I just finished up writing a book set in Memphis and I’m ashamed to tell you how many times barbecue is mentioned! Definitely pork.

Definitely pork for me, too...nothing will do but Corky's.  Yum, yum, yum!!!

Potluck dinner or restaurant dinner? 

Restaurant. Unless it’s just my family and then I like potluck.

Summer or Winter?

I’m a summer girl through and through. I like one snow per year—the kind that shuts the city down and allows me to stay inside and drink hot chocolate—and then I’m ready for summer again.

One snow per year for me, too, although lately, it's been coming around more than once.  That's okay, too...I'm good with 2 or more days off work!

Country gal or city gal? 

I’m kind of a mix. I grew up in the country surrounded by rice fields—but I’ve lived in the big city for the past fourteen years. I love the city, but after a little while start to feel very stifled and long for wide open space again.

You, you all, or y’all? 

Y’all. No question. :)

Y'all is right!  

Annalisa, I think somehow we must be "kindred spirits" (courtesy of dear Anne).  I won't be so bashful next time around if I see you at another book signing...or at a BBQ restaurant!  :o)  Thank you so much for coming and chatting today, and telling all of us about your newest (and also forthcoming) books!


Remember that surprise I promised you?  Well, you probably guessed what it was anyway, but it's always nice to be surprised.  :o)  Annalisa is giving away a copy of her brand new book, Love Finds You in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (which I, for one, cannot WAIT to read) to one special person that comments on this post.  If you'd like to be entered for a chance to win, please leave a comment with your email address before Sunday, July 31.  If there's no email addy, sorry, but your comment will not count toward the drawing.  The winner will be announced next Monday, August 1st.  US addresses only, please.

Thanks for stopping by, as always, my dear friends!  I love meetin' with you here each and every week!


  1. I love me these interviews, Christy :) Thank you for sharing Annalisa with us--great answers to great questions.

  2. I subscribe to Christian Woman magazine, and Love is a Battlefield was recommended. There's really not a lot of Christian Fiction recommended in there. It also said Annalisa went to Freed-Hardman University. Well, I immediately went to PBS and got that book! I haven't read it YET, but very soon. I also have Charm, Ohio waiting on me, too.

    bluerosesheart at yahoo dot com

  3. Great interview, Christy. I love these. I love this kind of book too, so please enter me.

    countrysunset40 (at) aol dot com

  4. My comment didn't work. Wonderful post. I put it on My Life. One Story at a Time. facebook page for you. Also grabbed your button. Donna

  5. Love your interviews! Thanks for a fun read, ladies. Please enter me in the giveaway :)

    reneeasmith61 [at] yahoo [dot] com

  6. Ohh, a LFY in Lancaster! Sounds like a fun read. Please count me in.

    Thanks for the interview and giveaway, Christy and Annalisa! :-)

    ~ Katy

  7. Annalisa I read your answer concerning writing a book that blends contemporary and historical and time travel popped in my head! You should write a time travel romance! I for one love those and I know a few others who do too. Maybe you could do a story where a present day lady or gentleman travels to the 1860s since you're a Civil War buff too. ;-)

    XOXO~ Renee C.

  8. I just love these interviews, Christy! And might I add that I know exactly what you mean about being starstruck? I met Robin Jones Gunn at a Women to Women conference hosted at my college several months ago, and I, too, just asked her to sign my book (and my sister's) and take a picture with me. Of course, I also had to add that I wanted to become an author, as well, in a rather desperate and ignorant-sounding way... ;)

    Anyway, these responses were a lot of fun, and I'd love a chance to win Annalisa's latest book! (I really enjoyed Love is Monumental!)



  9. Hey Y'all ~ Terrific interview! Even if you didn't say you are from the south your tastes would! I think loving bbq, fried okra and sweet tea is born in us southerners :) Yummy!!!

    I like Renee's idea about a time travel book and thought the same thing when I read that part.

    I've only read one LFY book so I would love to read another one. Thanks for the giveaway.

    trying to stay cool ~ Anne


  10. Great interview and both books look great! Blessings! ihhcheryl(at)comcast(dot)net

  11. I loved the interview with Annalisa! I would love to win a copy of her book, Love Finds You in Lancaster County Pennsylvania. This sounds like a great read! I did read Love Finds You in Charm Ohio and loved it!

    I can't wait to read, All Shook Up when that one is published. It sounds like a fun read!



  12. I would luv 2 win 1 of your books...just found your I am new...but look forward to reading your new book Love Finds You In Lancater County Pennyslvannia......luv Amish books

  13. I always am interested in why these Amish themed books are so popular, and for some reason they really are hitting a nerve with a lot of people. I live in the Lancaster area myself which i love, and i think the interest in the Amish themselves just keeps growing without any slow down in sight !. Richard from Amish Stories.

  14. I really enjoyed your interview with Annalisa. I have not yet read any of Annalisa's books, so I would love to have an opportunity to do so. I especially love Amish Christian Fiction romance books. I will have to put Love Finds you in Charm Ohio and Love Finds you in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania on my book wish list. Thanks Annalisa for writing these books!!! Blessings, Kristin

  15. Thanks for all the wonderful comments, folks! I appreciate them so much, and I know Annalisa is thrilled with the interest in her books. :o)

    Just a quick reminder--

    ***IF YOU HAVE NOT INCLUDED YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN YOUR COMMENT, I CANNOT INCLUDE YOUR NAME IN THE DRAWING!*** The whole point of leaving your email addy is so I can easily contact you if you are chosen as the winner.

    Thanks for understanding, and for those of you that did not include your email addy on any of the above comments, I hope you'll stop back by to leave another comment so you can have a chance to win. :o)

  16. I enjoyed the interview. The books sounds like one I'd like to read so please enter me in the drawing.

  17. Loved the varied answers -- I too prefer the restaurant to the potluck -- some folks eat strange things! I would love to win a copy for my mother-in-law who has joined me inreading Amish fiction.

    barbarabeers AT verizon DOT com

  18. Annalisa is a wonderful writer. She brings you into the story and you are just there! Her books are so refreshing. It is so hard to find good, wholesome books to read. Wonderful interview!!

  19. I have read ALL Annalisa's books and she is WONDERFUL! She gets better with each book! I am so glad I found your blog (Annalisa had a link on her facebook page)! I am now following and can't wait to see more!

  20. So thrilled that I found this site...luv reading about the amish and memnonites.. and I hope to win one of your wonderful e-mail is

  21. I love reading books.... Amish books are my favorite..

  22. thanks for the interview. I love sweet tea also and sweeter the better. My kind of gal you are. I'd also love to win this book. I love LFY series.

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

  23. I love Annalisa's writing style! Thanks for the info on her latest.

    donnyandshelly at yahoo dot com

  24. I loved all your other books, so I'm sure I would like this one as well!

    aregeetee5162 (at) yahoo (dot) com

  25. Thanks for introducing me to Annalisa. I really enjoy reading Amish fiction and would love to win this giveaway.
    njones127 at tampabay dot rr dot com

  26. I'm a Southern gal too- South Mississippi! I love all of the Love Finds You Series. Would love to read this book. I know it will be great!


  27. I am from Mississippi and love Amish stories as well as anything Southern, ya'll! You put the two together and it's bound to be amazing. This would be awesome to win. Thanks for the opportunity! Good luck everyone! Email:

  28. I love the interview - great! And I would love to win this book -- I love to read the Love Finds You books. lolly-pops(at)juno(dot)com

  29. I also enjoy the Love Finds You series and since I live in Lancaster County PA I especially can't wait to read this particular one. I would be thrilled to win it. Thank you for the chance. Email:

  30. So fun! Now I have another author to add to my to-read list!! I haven't heard of her before, but the book looks great! I'll have to look into her other books too! My to-read list is already LONG, but oh well, I love adding to it! books(at)bookwormfamily(dot)com

  31. I have never had the chance to read her books but they sound so wonderful. I know now that this is one I will have to find. Thank you so much for sharing.

  32. Ooh, it was so nice to read a bit about Annalisa! So far, I have enjoyed every Amish and Love Finds You book I have picked up, so I am very much looking forward to this one!

    Victoria Goldy-Rhodes

  33. Thanks to each of you for the nice comments! And a big thanks to Christy for having me here. :) Corky's is my favorite, too--maybe we'll run into each other sometime! And Renee, you and I are on the same page as far as a book I'd like to do in the future!

  34. Please enter me! This looks great. :)


  35. I really enjoyed reading the interview. Proud to say that Annalisa graduated from high school with my youngest sister and her mother was my youngest son's kindergarten teacher.


I love your comments!! They make me happier than cold sweet tea on a hot summer day! :o)