Welcome to Author Spotlight! Each week will feature a different author. We’ll get the scoop behind their writing life and dish a little. The authors will also be giving away a copy of their latest book. FUN.

The winner from last week’s Author Spotlight with Catherine West is Robbie Pink! Please email my assistant Christen with your mailing address. (ckrumm@litfusegroup.com)

This week please welcome Deeanne Gist in the spotlight! To win a copy her book It Happened at the Fair (Howard Books, 2013) , leave a comment on this post.

Deeanne is giving away an iPad Mini! Click the banner below to see what others are saying about her new book, sign up to win, and RSVP for her Facebook party on 5/22!

What is the smartest writing advice you ever got?

Finish the book.

What was your biggest break?

Discovering RWA (Romance Writers of America)

I’m inspired by… 

…a deadline that isn’t looming. I hate writing under pressure or when I’m behind. But I truly enjoy the process when I’m on schedule and not under the gun.

My great adventure has been…

…backpacking through Europe during college. My roommate and I had no idea where we were going to stay or what we were going to find. We simply boarded the train and off we went.

If I could go anywhere, it would be…

…Yosemite National Park. I caught one corner of it when I was researching The Measure of a Lady and have always wanted to go back and see it at my leisure.

If you have only…an hour…

…I pray really hard for God to increase my time and then I become very focused.

Describe yourself in one word


If your house were on fire, what one thing would you save?

My dog.

What has been your most surreal, “pinch-me-I’m-dreaming” moment so far?

Going to my publishers for the first time in 2004 and sitting at a long conference table with all the players. Carol Johnson, the VP of Editorial, turned to me and said, “Dee, You’re not just an author to us. You’re a member of our family. We’re going to pray for you and you’re going to pray for us.” I was floored. Never in a million years did I expect to hear my publisher say something like that to me. All my anxiety immediately fell from my shoulders. I’ll never forget that moment as long as I live.

What drives you to succeed?

Deadlines. Not wanting to disappoint. Wanting to use my gifts and talents to make the world a better place.

Best Surprise

My husband read—and liked—my books.

Best Saturday Afternoon

Read Years, by LaVyrle Spencer

Best Forgotten Custom

Men censoring their language in front of women.

Best Way to Break a Sweat

There is no best way to do that, sister.

Best Style Icon

Grace Kelly or Audrey Hepurn

Best Time-Waster

Pinterest. Love that site.

Best Indulgence

Anything chocolate.

Best Advice

Finish the book.

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