Friday, April 20, 2012

Welcome, Nicole O'Dell

It's good to have you today, Nicole.

Let’s start with some fun questions:

Tell us a bit about your childhood: a favorite memory or moment that’s stood out to your through the years.

My family loved to go downhill skiing. My parents met in a ski club, so they were very eager to get my brother and I started so they could ski, too. I think I was four when we started with the small man-made slopes here in Illinois. After a few years, we graduated to skiing the higher elevations in Michigan, then Colorado. I even lived in Utah for a year, right at the bottom of the pass to Snowbird and Alta.

One of my dad’s rules was that we couldn’t have our own skis until we could carry them ourselves. I remember struggling to carry my skis as I clomped along in my boots, the snow crunching underfoot, already shivering, but knowing that somehow I’d warm up when things got going.

And there’s nothing like the ride on the chair lift up the mountain…

Yeah, it’s been a while. Might be time to dust off those skis. :

My youngest son loves to ski, too! I've never been brave enough for that! What career did you have before writing?

Mostly I was raising kids with a bit of retail-management madness thrown in for the chaos and the discount. I can’t say it was for the money because I left most of that there!

I started writing for publication right about the time I got pregnant with my triplets, and I’ve never looked back.

Now, some serious ones:
Do you have a favorite spiritual theme you like to write about?

Oh yeah—It’s all about choices! We have the power to choose righteousness or sin when it comes to the way we live our lives. I believe in helping teens prepare to make good choices in advance of the pressure, and I work to help parents with that goal.

When mistakes are made, the redemptive and restorative power of the blood of Jesus is sufficient to cover all sin even though there are natural consequences to choices.

Those themes are pretty much an outline of each of the books in the Diamond Estates series.

If one of your characters showed up at your house, which one would be the most feared/least wanted? Why?

The fearless gang-leader, Marco! He was a real piece of work. He had sinister intentions from the very start and he made my skin crawl. Marco is the kind of guy you don’t want to corner you in a dark alley. Or a bus stop. As Carmen found out the hard way.

Ooooh, he does sound scary. Tell us where readers can learn more about you and where they can get your book.

Sixteen-year-old Carmen Castillo wonders what it would be like to have a pair of ruby slippers.
“There’s no place like home. . .”
“There’s no place like home. . .”
“There’s no place like home.”

But then reality sets in, and Carmen concludes that ruby slippers are mere fiction. Constant prayers that her parents will patch things up remain unanswered. . .and her hurtful world becomes too much for her to bear. Trapped by resentment and anger, Carmen lashes out the only way she knows how and soon finds herself at a crossroads.

Will Carmen find the path to ultimate peace and contentment that her heart longs for? Or will her troubled soul remain forever embittered?

Series Description:
DIAMOND ESTATES. Three girls are on a journey to find hope and healing. Each coming to Diamond Estates seeking solace… Each with her own unique set of struggles… And each capturing hearts and challenging the faith of teen girls.




Nicole O'Dell, founder of Choose NOW Ministries and host of Choose NOW Radio: Parent Talk and Teen Talk, is a youth culture expert who writes and speaks to preteens, teenagers, and parents about how to prepare for life's tough choices. She’s author of YA fiction, including the popular Scenarios for Girls interactive fiction series and the Diamond Estates Series, and non-fiction for teens including Girl Talk, 2/1/12, which she wrote with her two daughters based on their popular advice column. Hot Buttons, O’Dell’s non-fiction series for parents helps pre-empt peer pressure by tackling tough issues. Visit for more info.

Nicole is giving away a copy of The Embittered Ruby. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.

Happy Reading!


Jennifer said...

Wow! Congrats on having triplets! I have four boys of my own. I'm grateful somebody is willing to help teens and they're families because life can be so over whelming. Your book sounds great. My oldest is 13yrs old so we are just entering the teen years and would appreciate a lot of prayer. I'm also going on my first out of the country mission trip this summer. If you pray for the mission team I'm going with that would be great. We are working with Herko Family Missions. Thanks! Jenny

Joanne Sher said...

Fun interview - please enter me :)

Charity U said...

I'd love to read this! I read "Girl Talk" and enjoyed it a lot...would be delighted to read this too. :)


Abbi Hart (gatorade635) said...

Yeah I don't think I'll ever be brave enough for skis! Thanks for the giveaway!

apple blossom said...

thanks for the chance to win my teen daughter will love it if I won

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Laura J said...

Looks like a great book!

laurelprincess12 at gmail dot com

Jo said...

I would love to read this book. Congratulations on your triplets. Sounds like you have your hands full.


Emma said...

Please enter me in this contest.The Embittered Ruby sounds like a great book. Thank you for the opportunity to win.

Nicole O'Dell said...

Thanks so much everyone! I love doing these interviews because I get to "meet" so many new people! Love reading your comments!!

Thanks again for having me here!

Teela said...

great interview! And thanks for the chance to win. My grandaughter would love this after I read it first! LOL!

Nancee said...

Your new book sounds so poignant and from a Christian perspective. You have my admiration. Thank you for offering this giveaway!
Nancee in Western Michigan

Lady DragonKeeper said...

Thanks for the chance ton win! Mrs. O'Dell's books are great!

Anonymous said...

I would love the chance to win Nicole's book. Maxie ( )

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