IN HIGH COTTON by Ane Mulligan

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Ane Mulligan is my Writer of the Day.

She’s been a voracious reader ever since her mom instilled within her a love of reading at age three, escaping into worlds otherwise unknown. But when Ane saw PETER PAN on stage, she was struck with a fever from which she never recovered—stage fever. She submerged herself in drama through high school and college. One day, her two loves collided, and a bestselling, award-winning novelist emerged. She lives in Sugar Hill, GA, with her artist husband and a rascally Rottweiler. Find Ane on her website, Amazon Author page, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and The Write Conversation.


Trusting God

by Ane Mulligan  @AneMulligan

Her husband died. The stock market crashed. Her little boy was kidnapped by his grandfather. How can she find the strength of faith to go on?

That’s from my new novel, In High Cotton. But I drew from my life’s darkest moments for Maggie’s emotions. I interviewed friends for their hardest time of trusting God. A mother whose twenty-one-year-old son was leaving for a three-month missionary tour. He went fishing with his father that afternoon before he had to leave. He slipped on a rock and drowned in three inches of water.

As each story unfolded, one thread was common to all. God showed up in the form of good friends to help them through.

All my life, I wanted sisters. My brother and I were both adopted. While our childhood was idyllic, I missed having sisters. When I was sixty-two years old, I discovered my birth sisters. I won’t go into that whole story here. You can read it on my website. The point is God showed up. He was faithful with my dreams when I left them at His feet.

In my story of Maggie, she didn’t see God stop the bad things. When she wondered where He was, she only needed to look at those “angels” closest to her. He surrounded her with four strong women to help her.

In High Cotton

Southern women may look as delicate as flowers, but there’s iron in their veins.                            

While the rest of the world has been roaring through the 1920s, times are hardscrabble in rural South Georgia. Widow Maggie Parker is barely surviving while raising her young son alone. Then as banks begin to fail, her father-in-law threatens to take her son and sell off her livelihood—the grocery store her husband left her. Can five Southern women band together, using their wisdom and wiles to stop him and survive the Great Depression?


In High Cotton is available online in both print and eBook:




And in bookstores.





Ane Mulligan–Chapel Springs Revival


I’m so excited to have Ane Mulligan as my Friday Friend–even though it’s Monday!  I’ve been on Ane’s blog a time or two, but this is her time. to be in the spotlight She’s releasing her debut novel, Chapel Springs Revival. Today, she shares about her writing journey–and what a journey it was!




While a large, floppy straw hat is her favorite, Ane has worn many different ones: hairdresser, legislative affairs director (that’s a fancy name for a lobbyist), drama director, playwright, humor columnist, and novelist. Her lifetime experience provides a plethora of fodder for her Southern-fried fiction (try saying that three times fast). She firmly believes coffee and chocolate are two of the four major food groups. Ane resides in Suwanee, GA, with her artist husband, her chef son, and two dogs of Biblical proportion. You can find Ane on her Southern-fried Fiction website, Google+, Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, and Pinterest.

In 2003, I started my first novel. I found an online Christian critique group and a few mentors, who became close friends, ones who told me plainly I had a lot to learn. POV? Never heard the term. Omniscient? That’s what God was. Show don’t tell? How do I tell a story without telling? Yikes!

In 2006, an editor took my manuscript to committee. While I waited for the result, expecting a contract of course, I got an agent. However … sigh …the editorial committee said no. I was discouraged. I cried out to God, asking … okay, whining … why wasn’t I getting anywhere? I had been so sure God called me to write. I needed a sign. And God gave me the one in the form of a contest win. That carried me for months.

While I kept writing and going to conferences, my critique partners kept getting published. Finally, in 2010, my agent called. My manuscript had passed editorial committee and was going to pub board. This was it! Pub board loved it, but their slate was filled, so the editor would hold it for their next quarter. Only she retired and her computer hard drive was wiped clean. I was lost in cyber oblivion.

Do you see a pattern here? I did and it looked like a rollercoaster. Once again, I whined, “Lord, what is going on?”

And He said, “Wait. Trust me.” He didn’t offer me another choice, so I chose to trust. The next three years went about the same.

Then, in August of 2013, nearly eleven years after I began this journey, my agent called with an offer from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. And my heart quickened. All right, God! This was it. This time, He said, “Yes.

I’m so glad I didn’t push but listened to my agent’s advice. If there’s one thing I’ve learned during this journey, it’s this: God must be part of the equation. Though I’d learned the craft earlier, He wasn’t ready for me to publish. I won’t know why this side of Heaven, but I’m okay with that.

I believe people let down their guard when they think they’re being entertained. Through fiction, I can entertain readers. Through fiction, I can present seeds of God’s truth. Then when they least expect it, the story can reach out, touch their hearts, and change them. And isn’t that why we write?


Chapel Springs Revival:

With a friend like Claire, you need a gurney, a mop, and a guardian angel.

Everybody in the small town of Chapel Springs, Georgia, knows best friends Claire and Patsy. It’s impossible not to, what with Claire’s zany antics and Patsy’s self-appointed mission to keep her friend out of trouble. And trouble abounds. Chapel Springs has grown dilapidated and the tourist trade has slackened. With their livelihoods threatened, they join forces to revitalize the town. No one could have guessed the real issue needing restoration is personal.

With their marriages in as much disarray as the town, Claire and Patsy embark on a mission of mishaps and miscommunication, determined to restore warmth to Chapel Springs —and their lives. That is if they can convince their husbands and the town council, led by two curmudgeons who would prefer to see Chapel Springs left in the fifties and closed to traffic.


CONGRATULATIONS, ANE! By the way, Ane told me that her husband, the artist, created the cover.

Fridays are for Friends!


For the time being, I’ve decided to dedicate Fridays to Friends! Mostly writer friends but anyone’s eligible–all you have to do is ask! Anyway, this is about getting to know writers as people not about book promotion. Though, I’m hoping you’ll at least give their books a look over to see if you might enjoy them.

Anyway, my very first friend is Ane Mulligan. She is the president of the award-winning Novel Rocket and is a multi-published playwright, humor columnist, and a three-time Genesis finalist. Her debut novel, Chapel Springs Revival, releases Sept 8th, 2014. You can find her on her website.

Wow, Ane! You sound busier than me!


What’s With Greeting Cards These Days?


Yesterday, I read a cartoon in the newspaper that reminded me of a mentor/buddy, and needing a break from writing, I went to the store to pick out a funny card to send with the cartoon.

I browsed the card section, enjoying a good chuckle—until I turned one over. Have you priced cards lately? $3.50! For a piece of paper with a joke on it? Not that my friend isn’t worth $3.50, but come on. For $3.50, it should come in chocolate.

I could do better for half the price; I’m a writer. Right? I marched out of the store and drove straight to Office Depot. In the computer section, I chose greeting card software for $29.99 and a 15-pack of Avery premium cards and envelopes for $11.99. I’d create a customized card for my friend, and have the supplies to create all my card needs for years. I was on a roll.

At home, I loaded the software, chose a funny greeting, tweaked it for my buddy, and loaded the card stock in the printer. Then I hit print. The software said to print a test page. Our printer isn’t in my office; I share it with my husband, and it’s in his office. Across the house. I walked to the printer, added a sheet of plain paper for the test, went back to my office, and clicked “okay”. Then I walked back across the house to the printer to check the test page.

I noted the direction of the arrow indicating how to put it back in for the second side, went back across the house to my office and clicked “okay print.” I then went back to the printer to see my card. But instead, it’s printed page two of the test. On my good card stock.

Sigh. I reloaded 2 sheets of regular paper on top of the card stock to repeat the exercise, walked back to my office, hit print again. Back at the printer (I’m beginning to wear a path in the carpet), instead of another test page, it’s printed my card—on regular paper.

Gritting my teeth and thinking that a three dollar and fifty cent card was looking better by the minute, I reloaded the card stock, stomped back to my office and clicked print. The card printed. On the right paper. YES! I put the sheet back into the printer in the direction according to the test arrow, ran back to my office and clicked “print card inside.”

Back at the printer, I removed my wonderful, customized card. I folded it and read it. The front was perfect. I opened it.

The inside was printed upside down.

I mailed it anyway. Stupid card cost me $35.94. She had better like it.


Funny story, Ane! I know exactly how you feel.  I go through bouts when I make greeting cards with my stamps and stuff. I know they don’t look as good as the store ones–but I hope they’re more meaningful. At least, that’s why I tell myself.

Thanks for sharing your story.