Santa Cruz, California, October 28th, 2014

Santa Cruz, California, October 28th, 2014

Friday, March 1, 2013

A visit with Joanne Bischof? Okay, SURE!!!

One thing Christians loathe discussing is when God says 'no'.

 Why? Because doesn't it work on a point system? Like Weight Watchers?

"Lord, I shoveled that grumpy neighbour's sidewalk, doesn't that give me 5 points toward me getting a truck?

Yeah, I know, it's 8 points for dealing with grumpy neighbours.

I personally HATE being told 'no', because I'm self-absorbed and want what I want.
But even though I've walked through the valley  of the shadow, and lingered there longer than I wanted to,  I like to think I learned something. 
Heartbreak is never for naught when God has asked it of us.


Say hello to one of THE BEST WRITERS AROUND!!

This is Joanne.

Joanne REALLY knows how to take her readers on an arduous journey. I mean, Frodo Baggins *MIGHT* have had it easier than Lonnie.

Doesn't she look nice? Yeah, that mind is ticking, people!!!

Here's the cover of the next chapter in Lonnie and Gideon's story. 
Waaaaaaaait just a minute. SHE looks sad. HE is on a horse. Huh?
In the sequel to her excellent debut novel, 'Be Still My Soul', Joanne Bischof tackles the soul crushing turmoil of being torn from the one you love.
'Though My Heart Is Torn' throws poor dear Lonnie and Gideon into a whirlwind of someone else's making. 
And as one who was truly privileged to be given an advanced copy of the sequel, let me just say, OH MY WORD!!!

Here's a brief excerpt. 

Gideon O'Riley has two wives-but he doesn't know it.
(umm, okay, just a second...WHAT??)

“Git on up!”
 The horse scaled the steep slope. The clop, clop of his shod hooves and the creaking of leather were the only sounds to be heard. They scaled the hill and the land leveled out into a broad, flat valley. Gideon glanced around. Nothing but open land for miles. He pulled his hat off and used it to shove his hair back before settling it into place. He moved the mount along a stand of trees, the road beneath him unfamiliar. Untested.
 And the urge to run hit him like a blow to the chest.
 His eyelids nearly fluttered closed. A handful of days and he could be at the Bennett’s door. Lonnie’s familiar form in his arms. Her scent. Her tears. His hand gripped the reins tighter when a burn threatened to clamp his throat shut. His son.
 Gideon gently tapped his worn-out boots into Abel’s side, and the horse broke into a trot. A tumble of clouds shifted in front of the sun. The air cooled. He tugged his coat tighter, the oilcloth smooth in his fingers. Moments passed as light danced with shadow before the sun broke free. It hit Gideon’s face in a burst of warmth, and he tilted his chin up, wishing he could ride toward it.
 Ride toward it and never stop.
 Not until he reached his bride. And in her hands he could place the tattered remains of his heart. For she was the only one who could mend it.

Now wait just one minute!!!
What is going on?
Joanne, you got some explaining to do!!

Girl, we need to TALK!!

1) Why , oh why, must they suffer so MUCH?!?!?!

I’ve heard from so many early readers that the book should come with a box of Kleenex. It’s an emotional journey isn’t? But one that’s not in vain. Though it may tug at your heart and although a tear may fall for this couple who only wanted each other, the happily-ever-after can still be all the more richer—purer, when looking out from the darkness and wondering how sweet the light might taste and if one day they might see it again. Though all hope may seem lost and though weeping may endure for a night, joy comes in the morning.

2)Are you insane?   The letter from Cassie barely is noticed in BSMS, did you plan that? What other hidden goodies should we look for?

Good question. Yes, that letter in Be Still My Soul—the one Gideon never opens to prove his love for Lonnie—is actually from Cassie. There are a few other moments of Cassie tucked in the first book as in the first chapter when she tries to get Gideon alone…yet during that time, Gideon knew how to orchestrate things to his benefit and avoided her. It’s a mystery that weaves lightly through the first story, no more than a memory of Gideon’s past, a life he’s certain is no more. Yet little does he know, it’s much more than a memory when Cassie appears in Though My Heart is Torn.

3) On a more serious note, what do we say to people when there is no beauty on their horizon, and trust takes everything they've got, and more?

I think back to 1 Peter 5: 10 “But may the God of all grace who called us to His eternal Glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered awhile, perfect, establish, strengthen and settle you.”
God is always at work and even though we may be walking in a time of darkness, He is by our side at all times and WILL see us through just as He promises. 

4) How do you choose your themes? Or do they choose you? Perseverance and unflinching faith are not light fluffy issues. 

No, they are not light issues, but even so, I think they are issues that hit home for so many people. The themes in my books definitely choose me. I don’t think I ever planned on writing about the subject matter that I do. I’m passionate about redemption and the promise that though weeping may endure for a night, joy comes in the morning. I love to take a group of characters on a journey that will try their faith, only to have them stronger on the other end.

5) Do you feel drawn to those who are hurting?

We often hear that God never gives us more than we can handle, but sometimes I wonder if perhaps He does. Because it’s in those moments that we cling to Him, and it’s only by His strength we are held up. I’ve had a time in my life like that, and I think many people have too. To be able to encourage people that they’re not alone, though they may feel alone, is one of my greatest hopes.

6) Will there be a long wait until Book Three? 

Not too long, I’m happy to say! Each book has been released six months apart, so My Hope is Found will come out on October 15th, 2013. It’s about to go into the production stage and edits will soon cover my desk and I’m so excited about digging into this story. I still haven’t seen the cover yet and I am so eager to see what the designers have put together for the last book of Lonnie and Gideon’s story!

7) Can I have the file?

Hehe, you ought to win an award for perseverance. I would love for people to get to dive right into the story, but it just so happens that I need my editors so bad! I’m a bit of a messy writer to begin with and they help me iron out ideas and clean up all my typos. Trust me, it’s a good thing no one can see that file ;)

Thank you Joanne, for visiting us today!


  1. Aw, great visit, Joanne and Jennifer! And I did notice those foreshadowings with Cassie in Be Still My Soul...still reading along on Though My Heart is Torn in my free time, and enjoying it so much, Joanne. I love not knowing all the twists a book is going to take, and this one keeps surprising me! Can't wait for book #3!

    1. Hey!!!
      I did worry about him tossing the note in Book One, but I didn't think it would be this bad!!
      Yes, Book Three will be a LONG way away!

      And one month til Married...With Fiction!!!!

    2. Heather, thanks so much! I am so glad you are enjoying Though My Heart is Torn. I'm glad the twists are surprising you! :)

      Jennifer, your comment had me cracking up. It seemed so simple a thing to do and then...BAM ;) Poor Gid!

    3. The poor guy, smacked upside the head with his own actions.
      I promise not to tell anyone what happens when you send me the word doc of the 3rd book.
      In an email.
      Addressed to me.

      What? You think I stop my pathetic begging? Not a chance!

  2. Jennifer and Joanne, what a fun interview! I actually have Joanne's first book on my TBR pile. I think it just moved up to the top because now I wanna read the second one! :) Thanks for sharing Joanne with us today, Jennifer.

    1. Hi Jeanne!! Welcome home. Yes, you really are missing out if you don't read this book. She is EXCELLENT!

    2. I'm so glad the first book is in your TBR! I so hope you enjoy it and the second book. Thanks so much for your sweet comment!

  3. YAY! i am starting this book this weekend! cannot wait for more of Lonnie and Gideon's story! Love the romance-after-marriage and the slow, sure way that they are discovering how much they need one another. Not to mention the beautiful Appalachian setting! Always lovely to read an interview with Joanne! thanks for hosting this, Jennifer!

    1. Rachel, I hear you have kleenex AND dark chocolate at the ready?! I can't wait for you to read the book, my friend and I hope that it blesses you in some way.

  4. Hi Rachel, you're in for a kicker of a weekend. Yes, romance after marriage, a bit crazy, eh? I'd love to see Appalachia, the way Joanne describes it in the book is so lovely. Thanks for dropping by!

  5. Hmmm.....reading some more about the book here, and the themes behind it, alleviates some of the qualms I had about the series from reading about it on Heathers' blog. (What bothered me was that it seemed that it might have strayed into the, "Even though someone is destructive and the relationship is self-defeatist, don't worry because people can "change" territory).

    Good interview, Jennifer!

    1. Larry, I think I will always write into the territory of people can "change" because they can :) Because God is that good and that powerful and because there is no problem too big or no sinner too far gone to be redeemed. Praise the Lord.

  6. Jennifer,

    Great interview, Jennifer and Joanne!

    I appreciate that you pulled that tidbit out about Cassie's letter in BSMS - lovely bit of foreshadowing there, Joanne!

    Can't wait for Book 3!!!!!!

    1. Thanks so much, Becky. And I am glad you're looking forward to the 3rd one. I'm in the process of editing it right now. (Pray for me!) haha :)

  7. Joanne, thank you SO MUCH for stopping by!! Especially since I know you're knee deep in work with Book 3. Which , if you mail it now, will get here in time for my birthday.