Sunday, December 13, 2015

25 Days of Christmas Stories: Interview with Mary L. Ball, author of Christmas at Angel Ranch

Welcome Mary L. Ball to the blog today! She's here to talk about Kayla and Reed, the two main characters of her holiday story, Christmas at Angel Ranch.

Enjoy the interview with Mary! 

Words by Alexis are in bold, words from Mary L. Ball are not in bold...

Alexis: Why is your story called Christmas at Angel Ranch?

Mary: I’ve always wanted a character’s last name to be Angel. When I created this Christmas novella, it just seemed fitting for the family who owned the lodge to have that surname.

Share the story-behind-the-story. What inspired you to write this book?

Around our house, deer hunting is common during Thanksgiving and Christmas. I was listening to my husband describe a particular hunt at his hunting lodge and the idea came to me. All the years I’ve heard his stories and could write a book. But Christmas at Angel Ranch isn’t soaked with hunting details, it’s a romance.

Kayla, your heroine, is a home designer. Tell us why you chose that career for her and what significance it has to the story.

I’m a fly by my seat kind of writer. I let the Lord guide me, and the character’s take over. Kayla’s career choice was just that, her fancy. The fact that many different possibilities arrive from being a designer gave Kayla options that challenged her as she found her life changing. 

Why did you choose to set your story in North Carolina?

Hunting in the mountains of NC is a well-loved sport. What better place to for an elite hunting ranch. And it doesn’t hurt that I’m familiar with the area.

What’s the family business for Kayla like? Why did she leave NC to start her own company instead of growing into the family business?

Like a Hallmark movie. The things Kayla grew up with seems dreary, so she leaves home for greener pastors. She returns to help out with the family business, just until the holidays are over.

Angel Ranch is a hunting lodge that caters to elite hunters. Sounds intriguing! Tell us more about it in a way that helps us envision it.

Angel Ranch is high-class lodge. The huge log cabin style ranch offers hunting at its finest, and a large dining room where meals are prepared daily. The area also has a comfortable den with a massive wood-burning fireplace for relaxing. Added to that is a store where sportsmen can find all the comforts needed.

Reed Jessup, who we find at Angel Ranch, seems like the ruggedly handsome type who lives for being outdoors. Am I right? Explain his persona, traits, strengths, and flaws.

He’s a smart man whose eyes shine with kindness. His smile captures his entire face. Reed is rugged, with a firm build from enjoying outdoor activities. He likes striped shirts because they remind him of his grandfather’s beloved flannel and the winters Reed spent hunting with him. Reed is a Godly man who has been hurt by a past love and is a bit suspicious of a woman’s anterior motive when it comes to love.

What is Reed’s career and why is he ready to leave his corner office for a few weeks of rest and relaxation?

Reed Jessup is a CPA for a prestigious accounting firm. Hunting takes him back to a simpler time and offers him an escape from the mental challenges of keeping his clients happy.

Is there a Christmas miracle in this story? If so, what can you tell us without giving way the ending?

Christmas is about opening up your heart, that’s all I’ll say.

What are you, as an author, looking forward to this Christmas?

I’m happy to be celebrating the Lord’s birth and spending time with friends and family.

Thanks for the interview, Mary! Merry Christmas and God bless you! 

Author bio: 
Mary L. Ball is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives in North Carolina and writes about real-life problems, blended with romance or mystery.

Her novels include: Escape to Big Fork Lake, Stone of Destiny, Postmarked Ever After, Christmas at Angel Ranch and Redemption in Big Fork Lake.

When Mary is not working on her latest story, she enjoys fishing, reading, and singing with her husband at church functions.

Watch for Mary's new release, Sparks of Love from Prism Book Group, tentatively scheduled for Summer 2016. 

Buy Mary's book, Christmas at Angel Ranch: -
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  1. Thanks Alexis for the interview. Your blog is lovely. I hope you and all the readers have a wonderful Christmas.


  2. I've read Mary's book, Christmas at Angel Ranch.
    She does a good job weaving her characters and exposing faith, past hurts and in this Joyous Season, faith and love.


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