Born in California, Caryl McAdoo got to Texas in time to celebrate her first birthday. As a Dallas seventh grader, she remembers a homework essay on ‘What will you be doing in 2000?’ Looking into the future, Caryl saw herself as an inter-galactically famous author, streaking from planet to planet signing books. She laughs, “But I didn’t start writing again until the late ’80s, then was so blessed to find the DFW Writers’ Workshop in ’93.”
Her first book debuted ’99, then for the next nine years, she averaged a title a year from four presses: two non-fiction, four novels, and three mid-grade chapter books. In March 2014, her first historical Christian romance VOW UNBROKEN (see my review) debuted from Howard Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster.
In April, she re-released LADY LUCK’S A LOSER (formerly The Apple Orchard Bed and Breakfast) with a new chapter. In September HEARTS STOLEN, book two in the historical romance series, and in November A LITTLE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS, her first Biblical fiction series The Generations. So four titles in 2014
Book three of the historicals HOPE REBORN debuted in January to start off a whale of a new year with eleven new titles planned–God willing. THE PREACHER’S FAITH comes in February, Caryl’s first contemporary in Red River Romance series. THEN THE DELUGE COMES, volume two of The Generations, follows in March.
Also known as Grami, she loves fourteen grandsugars, and she and O’Pa—her high school sweetheart and husband of forty-five years—have been rearing four of the grandsons for the past twelve years sending two off to college in 2014. She’s dedicated to advancing God’s Kingdom through her novels, praise and worship—He frequently gives her new songs—prayers, and her testimony.
She believes all good things are from Him and that her books will minister His love, mercy, and grace to her readers. Irving, Texas remained her life long home until 2008 when she and Ron followed God’s leading to Red River County in the far northeast corner of the Lone Star State.
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Friends, Please join me in giving a warm joyful welcome to my friend Caryl McAdoo!
Trisha, I want to thank you so much for inviting me to visit today. If there’s anything I love, it’s visiting, especially with a new friend.
Caryl, I’ve been looking forward to our fun interview! Let’s get started with a few fun questions and then talk about your wonderful books.
Q: What is your favorite season, and why?
Caryl: Spring, spring, and some more spring. I love it for all the new life. Since a child, I’ve loved green. I used to say because it was the color of my eyes, my birthstone—emerald for May, and money, but as an adult, I had to replace that last reason. Didn’t want to sound like a moneygrubber, so I changed it to it’s the color of Spring which represents new life.
Winter is cold and gray, and Spring comes along and makes the world beautiful again. Plus, new babies start popping up everywhere, and what woman doesn’t adore new baby anythings?
I live in a farm and ranching community—Red River County, in far Northeast Texas—and I love how white the new Charolais calves are, and all the new foals, (horses are my favorite animals), and oh, the kids! I raised a herd of about eighty Nigerian dwarf goats, and kidding season was the best! I milked about thirteen at a time and thought my thumbs would surely fall off!
It’s the season of my birth and I suppose the temperature warming up makes Spring just perfect for me. While I’m glad for all the seasons—just about the time you get tired of whichever one it is—the next one comes along . . . and they all have their positives, but IMHO, Spring is the only one with no negatives!
Trisha: Spring is my favorite also. The beautiful flowers, and sunshine, birds singing, everything seems fresh and new.
Q: What is the best part of your day?
Caryl: My favorite part of the day is when I lay down to rest. Waking up is okay, but I go go go all day, and at night, I just love getting prone in my soft bed and cuddling to my sweet husband. He checks every morning to see if my books have any new reviews and reads them to me, too. That’s a close second, finding out how much a reader loved one of my stories.
Trisha: Ahhh, yes! Sleep is a wonderful thing. Is it nap time yet? 😉
Q: What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?
Caryl: I don’t have to think twice on this! It’s is such an easy question because I love Bodie Thoene’s series—all of them! The Zion Covenant and the Zion Chronicles were my favorites since they took me to Jerusalem, the only place in the world I long to go.
I remember being on the bus in New York City taking a break from a tradeshow at the Javits Center. I had all the people around me giggling as I could not stop myself from laughing at the scene I was reading. Bodie’s books all make me laugh aloud and cry so much that I couldn’t read the blurry words. I had to quit reading until I could stop crying. To my way of thinking, a story can’t get any better than that.
Trisha: I have read a few of Bodie Thoene’s books. It’s been quite a while!
Q: If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?
Caryl: Most likely that would be Kari Jobe. She sings in my key and her music takes me straight to the Throne Room of the Most High King. My heart is to praise and worship God, to extol His majesty, and heap the glory due Him through the way I live my life. There’s no one like Him, not one to even compare. I’ve never met Kari—she also went to school at Christ For The Nations with my precious niece—but I’m certain we are of like heart.
Trisha: Kari Jobe is a wonderful singer. I hope you get to attend a concert and meet her soon!
Q: Did the plotline or the characters come first?
Caryl: Good question . . . don’t guess I’ve thought about this, but as I do . . . It has to be the characters. I usually use a crisis that leads to a bad decision or a bad decision that leads to a crisis to open a story, throwing my point-of-view character into the thick of it.
At that point in a new work, I have no idea about the plot or where the story is going. But I’ve created that character and from then on, she—or he—is a close friend I come to love. The more I write, the closer we become.
I tell you, Trisha. I can’t imagine leaving the Buckmeyers, Baylors, and Nightingales behind when Book Ten in my family saga, CHIEF OF SINNERS, launches in September I’ve announced it as the last Texas Romance, but then there’s that precious little boy named David . . .
Trisha: I’m looking forward to reading Chief of Sinners. I’d love to read David’s story also!
Q: Which character took you by surprise?
Caryl: One of my favorite characters definitely took me by surprise, and that would be Millicent May Meriwether, the heroine of Hope Reborn. She’s a very successful New York dime novelist, bored with the same-o same-o heroes and heroines. Reading the newspaper one morning, she sees an article about a Texas Ranger who’s brought an Indian Chief in to stand trial for his atrocities and decides on the spot, she’s got to interview him to fashion her next novel’s male lead.
I loved writing about a writer! And even MORE fun, she writes the same stories I write! She titles her novel where Henry Buckmeyer and Sue Baylor fall in love THE GRANGER. Simon and Schuster’s Christian division, Howard Books published that same story I titled VOW UNBROKEN (book one in my Texas Romance series. My book two HEARTS STOLEN became her THE RANGER). Doesn’t that sound like so much fun?
My husband thinks of all my heroines, I’m most like May.
Trisha: That does sound like a super fun character, and she’s wearing your favorite color!
Q: What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?
Caryl: Four o’clock in the morning? I’ve always been quite the night owl. The house is quiet and I’m never interrupted. Until this past January, O’Pa and I had been rearing four grandsons. We got them back in 2002 when the baby was born; he came home to us from the hospital. His brothers were three, four, and six.
This is the first time since we were nineteen years old that we haven’t had children in our home. I spread my own four out, and then we took in the little boys the same year our youngest left for college. I’m sixty-seven, that’s a lot of years with noisy, needy, beloved children! See why I’ve got that night-working habit?
Trisha: 4 am?! Wow! My eyes start going blurry around midnight and I know it’s time to give them a rest. 4 boys will keep you busy!
Q: What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?
Caryl: Sad, sad, sad. In VOW UNBROKEN, book one, a major character is Blue Dog. Ron and I had written a series for children The River Bottom Ranch Stories wherein we ‘talk’ for the animals—write from their points of view. So, ‘speaking’ for Blue Dog seemed only natural. Not that the dog talked, but I got into his head and wrote from his point of view.
My agent, Mary Sue Seymore remarked that she’d never been in a dog’s head before and really enjoyed it, but when she sold the manuscript to Simon and Schuster, my new editor didn’t so much agree and asked that the scene be written only from Sue or Henry’s POV. And so it was cut, and that made me sad. Blue Dog was an amazing animal. His progenies are mentioned throughout the series.
Trisha: This sounds like a great adventure story for kids! I can imagine that your Grandsugars love hearing you read it it to them.
Trisha, this was so much fun and your questions, so out of the ordinary, were great! I thank you again for having me over. I thoroughly enjoyed myself!
Thank you Caryl! It has sure been fun spending time chatting with you and getting to know you better. Please do come visit again!
Friends, Caryl is giving away 1 autographed, printed copy of her book ‘Vow Unbroken’. The giveaway is only open to those in the continental USA. Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page.
To Enter the Giveaway:
1.) Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“What is your favorite children’s book?”
2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.
*****GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED *****