Sunday, September 3, 2017

Summer Love: Why Gail Wrote the story, "Poppy Fields With You"


Beauty, Brains and Poppy Fields
A personal essay by Gail Gaymer Martin

Poppies are the state flower of California, and the book was to be part of a series on state flowers. Even more than that, I love the Monterey area where the story is set and have written other novels set in Pacific Grove which it happens is known for its poppy fields. It is beautiful there and is a place I’ve visited numerous times since I have family living in the area.

Along with the theme, I needed a story and the idea for Poppy Fields With You came to mind. I wanted to do an unexpected romance, sort of a second chance story, but also one that covered an issue in many people’s lives and that is having a misguided concept of who they are and what they’re worth. I happen to be a counselor by trade and worked in the field for 23 years. People who feel they have nothing to offer or lack self-worth is not uncommon. I worked with many people who grew up with misconceptions of their value due to a variety of things, often based on comments they heard or learned as a child.

In the novel, Jill is told that she’s very much like her mother. This devastates her because her mother had a flaw that had hurt Jill deeply, and she assumed that this was the way she was like her mother. She overlooked the good qualities her mother had and geared her life around avoiding anyway she might fall into her mother’s trap. But this is something that can happen to anyone.

My sister and I are good examples of this phenomena. We had wonderful parents who always wanted to provide positive messages. My sister always envied that I was the oldest and had many opportunities that she didn’t have, and I looked at my cute sister and envied her looks. One day our mother, trying to soothe us said, “Jan, Gail is smart, but you’re very cute.” Immediately my sister and I took those comments and twisted them to our understanding. To me, my mother was saying that I was smart but ugly. My sister heard, she was cute but stupid. This is far from the truth, but for many years that silent stigma lingered in our heads.

I am grateful that with growth, education and common sense those misguided statements are gone. My sister still doesn’t think she’s as talented as I am since I’ve been a successful writer, but she has many talents that I don’t have and I admire them. I finally looked into a mirror and knew that I wasn’t ugly and yes, I wasn’t cute, but I had good physical attributes that I’ve heard from others through the years and I have some not so great, but that’s okay. I know who I am now, and I accept my looks as they are.

Sadly, many people have heard derogatory comments about them, especially from those who have been bullied by others as well as members, and have never recovered or learned to step back and seek reality. I find this sad and hope that as we all mature, we can look at the truth and really see it. I’m glad that Jill learned the truth and was able to change her life for the better.

Author bio: 
Multi-award-winning novelist Gail Gaymer Martin is the author of Christian contemporary romance, romantic suspense, women's fiction and sweet romances. She has 77 published novels or novellas and over 4 million books sold. 

Her novels have received several national awards, including the ACFW Carol Award and RT Reviewers Choice Award. CBS local news listed Gail as one of the four best writers in the Detroit area. She is the author of Writer Digest’s Writing the Christian Romance and a co-founder of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). She is a member of Advanced Speakers and Writers (AWSA). 

Gail is a keynote speaker at churches, civic and business organizations. In her earlier career, Gail was a teacher of English, literature and public speaking at high school and university levels and still enjoys teaching workshop at conferences across the U.S. Though living most of her life in Michigan, Gail now lives in Arizona with her husband.

Blurb for Poppy Fields with You
Jill Noodan’s life changes when her best friend, Jack Dodd, appears in her life after many years. 

They had been inseparable until Jack’s high school graduation when he moved on to education and a career in Los Angeles while Jill remained in Pacific Grove, not wanting to leave her father, abandoned by his wife. 

Being told how much she was like her mother, Jill has avoided relationships other than her deep friendship with Jack. His return now brings back memories of fun-filled days with someone she trusted and stirs feelings she’s never felt before. Jack realizes that Jill has been the model for the woman he could never find to love. 

But the past is strong, and will the fear of losing their perfect friendship stands in their way of falling in love?  

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  1. Thanks for sharing this. I needed to hear this message today.

    1. So happy to hear that! Praise the Lord! :) You're welcome and God bless you, Jess.

    2. Congrats on winning the free book, Jessica. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did writing it.

  2. Thanks for an inspiring post and interview with Gail. I think we've all experienced doubts because of a remark made in our past. The title brings back memories of our local VFW auxiliary ladies selling Poppies to raise money and to honor veterans on Memorial Day. Thank you for this giveaway.

    1. I remember those too, Connie. Funny what brings back memories and poppies are one of them. Wishing you all good things.

  3. Excited to see your latest, Gail. Hope to re-meet you some day, you're an inspiration.

    1. I'm sure we will one day, Gail. I'll be at ACFW this year as always.

  4. Your story about your relationship with your mother and sister rang true with my sisters as well. We were all different and aware of our shortcomings when we were young. That led to bitter problems later in life for some of my sisters.

  5. Thanks so much and I'm pleased you enjoyed the article. The book was fun to write and I like to share a message as well as create a good romance story. Hope I succeeded. Please let me know in a review of you have time. Blessings.


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