It seemed like the impossible dream
When twelve Christian Romance authors came together in February of 2016, they had a vision for what could be accomplished if they worked not as “indies” but as a team.
On July 7, 2016, that vision became reality when WHISPERS OF LOVE, a compilation of 12 brand new contemporary Christian romance novels, crested the hill and broke onto the USA Today Best Sellers list at #79.
“Writing is an uphill climb most days,” Lesley Ann McDaniel, author of Oceans Apart, said. “The days when you get to stop and enjoy the view are few and far between, and I’m really happy to be enjoying this particular view with this amazing group of authors.”
The 12 newly-minted USA Today best sellers and titles include:
Lesley Ann McDaniel Oceans Apart
Valerie Comer Secrets of Sunbeams
JoAnn Durgin Gentle Like The Rain
Kimberly Rae Jordan A Change of Heart
Jan Thompson Smile for Me
Marion Ueckermann (who writes for our blog) The Other You
Autumn Macarthur Teapots & Tiaras
Leah Atwood Not This Time
Staci Stallings Flight 259
Sally Bradley Homestands
Carol Moncado The Lifeguard, the Abandoned Heiress, and Frozen Custard
Christina Coryell Overture and a Prince
“To land at #79 (on the list) had me dancing in the living room, and overdosing on gingersnap cookies,” Valerie Comer said. “Everyone in the set worked so hard to get the word out to our fans and beyond. It’s been an amazing journey.”
The idea behind the set, conceived and shepherded to completion by Jan Thompson, was:
- to take twelve current Amazon bestselling authors
- get each of them to contribute a brand-new, never-before-released novel
- and then market the books as a unit rather than as individual books.
However, while the destination was always in mind, just how to get there wasn’t always so clear.
“The cover was one of the hardest things about the set,” Staci Stallings said. “We knew it had to be perfect, and somehow it needed to perfectly convey all twelve stories and authors. That is a much bigger challenge than it might at first appear.”
With story settings ranging from the USA to Canada and South Africa to the Bahamas, not to mention such varied characters as an architect, a doctor, a principal, an artist, a lifeguard, an athlete, and a medical missionary, even finding common ground was no easy task.
After discussing and submitting many, many possibilities, Durgin finally dropped the right piece into the overwhelming puzzle. The picture featured on the front cover was from an actual wedding shoot, and perfect it turned out to be.
“I think it says Christian romance,” Staci Stallings said. “Gentle, fun, quirky but really, really romantic just like the stories. It’s an absolutely perfect match for such a diverse collection.”
12 books, over 2,000 pages and a wide range of stories
The stories contained in the WHISPERS OF LOVE collection range from one about a swim team to one that features a cantankerous goat. From tears to laughter, this collection has it all and will surely prove to be one of the most enjoyable reads of the summer.
Kimberly Rae Jordan summed up the experience well:
My goal has always been to write stories that I would like to read myself. I have been so very blessed to find other readers along the way who actually enjoy the stories I like to write. Without them, I would not be where I am today.
Where can you get them?
The USA Today Bestselling collection, WHISPERS OF LOVE, can be found at the following online bookstores:
PS from Beauty for Ashes
Marion Ueckermann, one of the 12 authors of Whispers of Love, writes for our blog. We are SO proud of her!! Her debut novella, Helsinki Sunrise (reviewed on this blog), has been picked up by Herman Forlag publishers in Norway and will be translated into Norwegian. She has now had a number of books published and has been pursuing her writing career full-time since March 2016. We know God’s blessing is on your writing, Marion! Much love from all at Beauty for Ashes!