Jane Perrine and the Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek

Posted by on May 23, 2012

Today, I’d like to introduce Jane Perrine, one of the co-authors of the non-fiction book, The Overcomers: Christian Authors Who Conquered Learning Disabilities, which I reviewed a few weeks ago. She has a new fiction release, The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek, (which you can win a copy of by commenting below) and has not only agreed to be interviewed about it here, but she is also on my blog, Living the Body of Christ, talking about her struggle with dyslexia.

Here’s a little blurb about her latest fiction release, The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek:cover 1   2

Immediately after graduation from seminary, Adam Jordan heads west to the beautiful hill country of central Texas, and moves into the enormous, echoing parsonage. One man with six bedrooms. He’s met by a welcome committee led by Miss Birdie and her friend Mercedes, also known as “the Widows.” They recognize immediately that it is their chore to education Reverend Jordan and to find him a wife.

Sadly, the latter fails so they set their sights on amputee and Afghan vet Sam Peterson who only wants to be left alone. When two red-headed boys show up in his back yard, Sam can hardly remain a hermit. Then he meets the boys’ mother.

“[G]entle, funny, romantic, and honest new series…. The veteran author and ordained minister has a sure eye for small-town church drama, as well as the dynamics of life in a town where everyone knows your business. Perrine does a fine job blending small and large story lines, portraying details and dilemmas of regular folks, and offering spiritual messages from real life. This is a delightful first volume in what promises to be a wonderful series.” Publishers Weekly

Hmmm, a young, inexperienced minister and a bunch of Widows … I can see the fun now. And to think, someone can win a free book if they comment below.

Thank you, Jane, for joining us today. Please tell us about yourself.

I’ve had three careers. I taught high school and college Spanish; served as a pastor; and now write. My father was a minister and medical doctor. My husband is a minister. We all seem to blend together in the idea of service to others.

Wonderful. Give us three more facts about yourself that would surprise your readers.

1) I once taught marksmanship at a summer camp; 2) I’m fluent in Spanish; 3) I’m a rabid fan of Kansas State and University of Louisville athletics. In my study, I have a Power Cat clock, Tiffany lamp, and wastebasket in addition to other KSU paraphernalia.

Remind me never to speak ill of Kansas State while you have a rifle in your hand.

As a child or teenager, did you ever dream of being an author?

I always dreamed of being an author. I wrote and illustrated an art book when I was six. Sadly, I couldn’t draw noses so everyone in the illustrations had flat faces—but the directions were written spectacularly well for a child that young. All the way through grade school, I wrote plays for classes—most of them produced. In college, I co-wrote an award winning one-act play.

Wow! What is your favorite genre to read?

This sounds really strange but I love warm books about small towns like James Herriot’s and I love murder mysteries—cozies, of course.

How many books do you have published and where can they be found?

I wrote three books for Avalon; 4 for Love Inspired; am on a 3-book contract with FaithWords. Several Love Inspired authors and I collaborated on a non-fiction book about being dyslexic. The titles is: The Overcomers. We self-published that book both because we were so proud of it and it didn’t fit any niche.

Tell us about your latest book series.

I’m currently writing a series about a young, inexperienced minister who is called to a small church in Butternut Creek, TX. Although each of the books has a romance or two, the main focus is the interplay of the personalities. The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek was issued in April, 2012. The second, The Matchmakers of Butternut Creek, will be available November 20 of this year. The third, The Wedding Planners of Butternut Creek,will be out in 2013.

Where do you get ideas for your books?

Wish I could explain this. They come to me.

How do you choose names for your characters?

Because I’m dyslexic, I easily forget the names of my characters. For that reason, I very often borrow friends’ names. I taught with Mary Firestone and, in this series of books, I have Janey Firestone, a combination of Mary’s name and mine. My husband is George. So is Adam’s next door neighbor. The name of the young minister is Adam Daniel Jordan, putting together three Biblical names/places. I named Gussie Milton in honor of my dear mother-in-law, Ollie. I have several books of first and last names and search on-line a lot. I need to have that character name fit—and I have to be able to remember it.

What are your favorite themes to write about?

Risk and redemption. In order to get what they want, characters have to risk the most important thing in their world. Only then can they find what they need: love, renewed faith, and, often, redemption.

What is your writing schedule and where do you write?

The cat wakes me up before seven every day, earlier than I want. I eat breakfast, then go in my study. I write until noon, go swimming when it’s warm enough, or walk, if not. After that, I catch up on blogs and email. When I finish, I read. I write in my study/guest room where I have a desk, huge bookcase, and day bed for guests and my naps.

Does your faith affect your writing? How?

OvercomersMy faith affects everything I do. I have been so blessed to have found faith as a child, so blessed to have married my husband, and incredibly blessed with the talents a generous God showered on me. For those reasons, I’ve always been active in church and in volunteer work. With The Overcomers, I felt it was very important to witness to others who are dyslexic. I wish I’d know what this meant when I was a child. With fiction, I write about people of faith and use humor so my novels aren’t preachy. Even before I wrote inspirationals, the characters in my books went to church on Sundays, had high moral standards, and cared about other people.

Do you put yourself into your main character, or do you find yourself borrowing from family or friends as your characters develop?

With the TALES FROM BUTTERNUT CREEKseries, I’m shameless about this. Everyone I’ve talked to says they can see people they know in these books. There are many scenes in my books that come from real events—although both slightly and greatly changed—like the time the donkey ran away on Palm Sunday. The list is too long to mention.

What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?

If I weren’t writing, I’d have to clean house. That’s why I write.

Hah! Me, too. Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Keep writing.

Where can fans find you or your books on the internet?

My books are available at on-line bookstores. The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek is available at Mardels and Family Christian Bookstores.

Jane can also be found at the following:

Facebook JaneMyersPerrine

Twitter @perrinejane

Website janemyersperrine.com

Blog janemyersperrine.com/blog

Don’t forget to comment below to win your copy of The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek.

Jane is offering a copy of her novel, The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek, to one of our commenters today who lives in the US or Canada. To be eligible for the drawing, leave a comment below with your email and I will announce the winner Tuesday, May 29th. The winner will receive his or her choice of a book or Kindle download.

Publicity photoJane Myers Perrine has worked as a Spanish teacher, minister, cook, rifle instructor, program director in a state hospital, and been an active volunteer, but she’s always wanted to write. Finally, she found time and has published books with Avalon Books and Steeple Hill Love Inspired. Her short pieces have appeared in the Houston Chronicle and Woman’s Worldmagazine.

She’s now writing a three-book series she loves about a young minister in a small town of Butternut Creek in the beautiful Hill Country of Texas. She likes small towns, warm, friendly people and humor. The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek, the first book in the series, was published in April, 2012. The Matchmakers of Butternut Creekwill be available in November, 2012.

With her minister husband, George, she landed in the South after living many years in cold areas of the country. They decided to give up changing seasons for no snow and have never regretted that choice. They now live north of Austin where their lives are controlled by two incredibly spoiled tuxedo cats.

14 Responses to Jane Perrine and the Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek

  1. Jane Myers Perrine

    Carolyn, both of my parents are KU grads so they are good people! Actually, UK people are, too, but it’s a rule: we have to give each other grief.

    It’s been delightful to be here! Thanks for the invitation, Connie. Tomorrow I’ll send a book!

  2. Carolyn Boyles

    I never argue with people about sports. It’s like discussing religion. I’d love to win this book. My dad taught at KU for a short period of time a long, long time ago.

    Yours from a Kansas native.
    Carolyn
    authorboyles at swbell.net

  3. Jane Myers Perrine

    Thanks, June. Glad you dropped in.

  4. Jane Myers Perrine

    But I AM the one who sends the book out! Yes, the state of KY had a great year in basketball. Next year–Cards win it all! Only fair, Jackie! Hope you’ll enjoy BUtternut Creek whether you win it or buy it!

  5. June Foster

    Jane, your book sounds delightful. June

  6. Connie Almony

    Jackie,
    Be assured your comments about Univ. basketball will have no bearing on who wins the book. I will be selecting RANDOMLY and Jane tells me she seldom “carries” anymore so I will not be swayed by her marksmanship ;o)!

  7. Jackie Layton

    Loved the interview, loved the cover of your book and your story sounds great.

    U of L had a great run in basketball this year. Thankfully the cats had a better run. Yeah, I know I did myself in for a chance to win your book. LOL. Even Murray had an amazing year.
    All in all Kentucky did great.
    Oh, and those people coming in burning couches and causing problems, most of them drove here from other places. Lexington’s chief of police said most of the people arrested were not locals.

    I’ll be looking out for you book. I hope you reach a lot of people with your story. It sounds delightful.
    So glad I stopped by.

    Joyfully,
    Jackie
    joyfuljel((at))gmaildotcom

  8. Jane Myers Perrine

    All–please forgive my icon. I know I’m no Shakespeare but cannot figure out how to change it!

  9. Jane Myers Perrine

    JoAnn–Thanks for your comments. When I google “Butternut Creek”, I always end up with links to butternut squash recipes. Aren’t the connections between us fun and amazing? When football starts again, I will cheer very loudly for the marching bad!

    Gail–I no longer iron! We buy only perma-press. Thanks for visiting.

  10. Gail Pallotta

    Thanks for the interesting interview, and for telling us about your book. It sounds like a heart-warming book, and the match-making sounds fun. Also, I can’t think of a better reason to write than having it keep one from cleaning the house…unless it’s keeping one from ironing.

  11. JoAnn Durgin

    Thank you, ladies, for a fun interview! It’s great to “meet” Jane and hear all about Butternut Creek. Now I’m craving butternut squash soup…whenever I hear “butternut” it reminds me of it. I laughed at the cleaning house part. Dust bunnies are the best, aren’t they? This sounds like a wonderful book, and nothing’s better than a “cast” of quirky, lively characters. It sounds like a terrific read, and I’d love to win it! My eyes opened wider when I saw Jane’s reference to Kansas State (part of my heritage on my mom’s side) and the University of Louisville (I live in southern IN but grew up going to U of L basketball games and my daughter is now in their marching band). Many blessings!

  12. Jane Myers Perrine

    Mildred–thanks for dropping in. Oh, yes–I adore small towns and the wonderful characters!

    Connie, Your comment really made me laugh! “Remind me never to speak ill of Kansas State while you have a rifle in your hand.” Relax–I seldom carry.

  13. Mildred Colvin

    I greatly enjoyed your interview, Jane! Welcome to Infinite Characters. Your book series sounds like a winner. Aren’t nosy, small-town characters fun?