Enter below for a chance to win a copy of Christen Krumm’s new book, It Happened at Christmas.

Winner will be announced in the next Author Spotlight feature. Congratulations to Susan Atkinson for winning a copy of Melody Carlson’s Christmas in Winter Hill.

Please email my assistant Christen to claim your prize. Note: This post contains affiliate links meaning I will get a small commission if you click and buy from that link.

In this enchanting YA spin on While You Were Sleeping, Christen Krumm delivers laughter and Christmas sparkle through a swoon-worthy story of first love and belonging.

Life at Iverson Preparatory Boarding School isn’t easy when you’re basically the maid. Murphy Cain spends her days cleaning up after her upper-class peers in exchange for tuition while dodging their cutting remarks. All of that changes when she rescues her crush, the popular and hunky Tripp Harrington, after a near-fatal accident and is mistaken as his girlfriend.

Murphy finds herself struggling with the choice to reveal the truth or play along. As Tripp’s girl, his wealthy family will offer Murphy something she’s been craving her whole life—a chance to be one of the “in” crowd. A chance to belong. Without it, she’ll be right back where she started.

It only gets worse as Tripp’s brother Hank enters the picture. He’s handsome, down to earth, and seems to understand Murphy better than anyone else. The only problem? She’s supposed to be dating his brother.

As Christmas break draws to a close, Murphy must decide if telling the truth is worth losing it all or if the risk will bring a greater reward in the end.

Q&A with Christen Krumm

What is a Bible verse that inspires you to keep on writing?

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

Describe the moment that you knew you were born to write.

I honestly don’t think I can remember a time when I didn’t want to write. I do remember after a particularly harsh critique of my work in progress, I wanted to through in the towel, but the thought made me sick and I knew I was in this thing for the long haul.

What’s your strategy for coping with bad reviews?

I don’t read reviews. So I guess that’s one strategy of coping? If there is a bad review, it’s obvious the book wasn’t for that reader — and me reading that bad review will do nothing to help me. I do have a couple of well trusted friends that do keep an eye out on the reviews and if there is some constructive criticism, they will pass it on.

If for some reason you couldn’t write anymore, what would you do with your gift of communication?

What’s that saying? Those who cannot do teach? While I don’t necessarily believe in that saying, I would probably be teaching some kind of writing/literature class if I wasn’t able to write (shudder).

Do you have a day job as well? If so, what is it?

I’m currently a podcast producer and virtual assistant specializing in serving authors. I’m also a manager to three little wildings (aka mom).

When did you start writing your first book?

I started It Happened at Christmas last November for National Novel Writing Month. I didn’t finish the entire thing that month and learned that I take way to long to draft out the first draft.

How did you choose the genre you write in? Or did the genre choose you?

My very first completed novel (which is still sitting on my computer) is actually a Young Adult Dystopian (a far cry from the genre I’m published in). I still love that book and that genre will always have a special place in my heart. I had a friend who kept asking me if I thought I should write contemporary romance and it was always a hard no. When trying to work on something new while trying to get an agent for the dystopian, I couldn’t get the pacing or characters of that book out of my head, so I started working on It Happened at Christmas as a pallet cleanser of sorts. I ended up loving writing contemporary romance (just goes to show that sometimes we do need to listen to our friends).

Do you believe in writer’s block?

I believe in writer’s paralysis and writer’s procrastination all grouped under … writer’s block.

Do you create an outline before you begin? Do you have the end in mind, or do you just wait and see where the story takes you?

Yes? I have a general idea of the scenes I need to write, but as far as a detailed outline … it’s more of just building scenes and making sure they all go together to give the reader the full story.

What’s the best advice you ever received?

Write the next scene that’s on your heart. Keep writing and then put them in order.

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Christen Krumm is the author of It Happened at Christmas. She lives with her real-life superhero husband and three barefoot wildings in small-town Arkansas. Coffee is the lifeblood, books are her drugs, and creating stories is her favorite. Find her online at christenkrumm.com

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