Friday, January 27, 2017

Research trips, with guest Jennifer Slattery

Jennifer and stained glass
If reading transports one to another world, what does that say about the book’s author? One might thing the act of writing is a sedentary act, and at times, that’s true. But before the ink hits the page, the writer often must embrace one adventure after another. From rock climbing to stained glass art classes and visits to state penitentiaries (though they never let me in and, well, I didn’t think it wise to force the warden’s hand), readers might be surprised the lengths a writer will go to research a story.

Luckily, most times, our research trips are fun. And filled with great food.

If you’ve read any of my novels, you may have picked up on my severe coffee and ice cream addiction. It seems I can’t write a story without including at least one coffeehouse and ice cream shop. And I love finding unique scene settings that capture the flavor of an area.

Restoring Love was especially fun to write as it’s set in my stomping ground—Omaha. My main character’s journey had been pinging through my brain for a while, begging to come out. She started in Kansas City, where her daughter’s story, Beyond I Do, is set. And I suppose I could’ve kept her there, but then, well … Omaha.

Old Market

If you’ve never been to this city, I encourage you to make a trip. We’re famous for our zoo, credited by TripAdvisor to be the best in the world. (Mitch, my hero, attempted to take Angela there on a date, but, well, his invitation turned incredibly awkward. And resulted in him painting a fence.) We’ve also got an incredible downtown area called the Old Market. This is my absolutely favorite Omaha location, and it’s a place my family and I visit often. In fact, this historical area is so romantic, it’s one of my favorite date night locations.

Since this does make it into my story, on the rare occasion Mitch doesn’t flub the invite, I’ll share more about it.

The Old Market has brick paved streets, a passageway that will make you feel as if you’ve stepped into an elegant Italian villa, musicians playing on various street corners, and it houses some of the best and most unique restaurants in Omaha, and perhaps all of Nebraska. My favorites are the Twisted Fork and Plank.

The latter made it in to my story. I’d tell you more, but I worry that’d be a spoiler. ;)

If you could visit any setting locations from one of you favorite books, where would you go and why? If you’re an author, share one of your favorite research trips with us. 

Novelist and speaker JenniferSlattery has a passion for helping women discover, embrace, and live out who they are in Christ. As the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, she and her team put on events at partnering churches designed to help women rest in their true worth and live with maximum impact. She writes devotions for Internet CafĂ© Devotions, Christian living articles for, and edits for Firefly, a Southern fiction imprint with LighthousePublishing of the Carolinas. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.
Visit with Jennifer online at and connect with her on Facebook TwitterPinterest

Restoring Love
Mitch, a contractor and house-flipper, is restoring a beautiful old house in an idyllic Midwestern neighborhood. Angela, a woman filled with regrets and recently transplanted to his area, is anything but idyllic. She's almost his worst nightmare, and she s also working on restoring something herself. As he struggles to keep his business afloat and she works to overcome mistakes of her past, these two unlikely friends soon discover they have something unexpected in common, a young mom who is fighting to give her children a better life after her husband's incarceration. While both Mitch and Angela are drawn to help this young mother survive, they also find themselves drawn to each other. Will a lifetime of regrets hold them back or unite them and bring redemption along with true love?

Buy it: CBD   |    B&N    |    Amazon

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