Welcome to The Story Keeper!

Lisa-Wingate-porchpicthumb65-1Happy Monday everyone! I hope this weekend found you doing something relaxing, fun, and springy. Around the Wingate house, it’s an exciting time. On Friday, the UPS man appeared at our front gate… with… very special boxes. Look what was inside!

The very first advance copies of my upcoming in September book, The Story Keeper!

As an author, no matter what you were doing the moment before a box like this shows up, you’re instantly breathless the moment you open the lid. There’s just something about seeing the story you’ve spent the past year with, and agonized over, and stayed up late with, and hoped, hoped, hoped would turn out, and feared, feared, feared wouldn’t, in print for the first time. It’s an experience not unlike that magical moment in the hospital when the nurse places a baby in your hands after many long months of pregnancy.  Suddenly, it’s real and you can hold it in your hands!

This book is special for me. Never before have I “dreamed” a book — seen it like a mind-movie as I slept, and then awakened with it still clear in my thoughts. I’ve also never written the story set amid the fast-paced world of publishing. The Story Keeper was a tale that took me over for days and nights as it found its voice, page by page.

So, my friend’s on the porch, I am incredibly excited to introduce to you to my 23rd Book baby. Here’s the official description:

Successful New York editor, Jen Gibbs, is at the top of her game with her new position at Vida House Publishing — until a mysterious manuscript from an old slush pile appears on her desk. Turning the pages, Jen finds herself drawn into the life of Sarra, a mixed-race Melungeon girl trapped by dangerous men in the turn of the century Appalachia. A risky hunch may lead to The Story Keeper’s hidden origins and its unknown author, but when the trail turns toward the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, a place Jen thought she’d left behind forever, the price of a blockbuster next book deal may be higher than she’s willing to pay.

FoxTale Book Shop, an awesome indie store near Atlanta sent in this quote, for which I am incredibly grateful:

“A kaleidoscope of past and present, “The Story Keeper” finds the soft spot of our souls where who we were, stands face to face with who we are. Can we go home again? Faith, courage and the power of story are the backbone of generations of the Appalachian women you’ll meet in these stories.  I was captivated by this story and can’t wait to share it with my customers.  Lisa Wingate, you rock!” — Karen Schwettman, co owner, FoxTale Book Shoppe, Woodstock, Ga.

Dear porch friends, as you’re visiting BelleView this morning,, I hope you’ll take a few minutes to check out this sneak peek of The Story Keeper. To read the free preview, click here.

In celebration of the first copies of the book, my publisher and I are doing a couple special things today:

1. Last summer’s Sisterhood Of the Traveling Book was so much fun, we’re doing it again this summer!

Selected sister circles of readers will have the chance to read The Story Keeper early over the summer. Here’s a little bit about how it works:


Here’s a little of last year’s fun:


You can enter the contest to join this summer’s Sisterhood Of the Traveling Books and read an early copy of The Story Keeper by clicking here.



Huckleberry wasn’t invited join the The Sisterhood of the Traveling Book… because… well, technically he’s a dog.  He’s not happy about being left out, can you tell?  ;)

2. Huckleberry is getting his revenge by giving away the first advance copy out of the box — here on Southern BelleView!

To enter the advance copy drawing, leave a comment at the end of this blog answering the question of the day. We’ll leave the contest open through the week and announce a winner on Saturday. Be sure to leave an email address so Huckleberry can contact you if you win!


Question of the day: The Story Keeper is about the discovery of a fascinating untold story. Is there an item or a place that has an interesting story in your home, your family, or your community? Tell us about it!

The Prayer Box — Selected as One of Booklist’s Top Ten of 2013!



Click for peek at The Prayer Box

 Click for sneak peek at The Sea Glass Sisters







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Selected among BOOKLIST'S Top 10 of 2012 and Top 10 of 2013, Lisa Wingate weaves Southern settings with elements of women's fiction, history, and mystery to create stories that Publisher's Weekly calls "Masterful" and Library Journal refers to as "Lyrical and beautiful." She is a seven-time Carol Award nominee, and a two-time Carol Award winner. She once dreamed of making the Olympics and winning the National Finals Rodeo, but was thwarted by an inability to do a back flip on the balance beam and parents who wouldn't finance a rodeo career, so she took her first-grade teacher's advice and became a writer instead ;)

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  1. says

    Yay, Lisa! Congrats on another beautiful book baby! Can’t wait to meet her and hold her in my arms! Up the road from where we live is a ramshackle Civil War-era plantation house that was the setting for a hold-out between Yankee troops and Confederate soldiers (this was after the war had ended). Some call the Confederate soldiers heroes, others call them marauders. However, this past Saturday, people came up here and fired their guns at the graveyard above where we live, in honor of these fallen troops. I felt like I was in Sweet Home Alabama!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Thank you, Jolina!

      i love the story of the ramshackle plantation house. That sounds like the kind of place where a fine new take might be born in the mind of a certain talented neighbor-girl :-)

  2. Trella Hughes says

    yes.i have a tiny foot long braid of hair passed down to a daughter that is over one hundred years old from my great great. great grandmother who died on the trail of tears. im writing a story about her for my children.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh wow, Trella! What a story. When I was writing about the Choctaw Trail of Tears experience (for A thousand Voices) I learned much about how they revered ancestral things. When forced to leave behind their homeland, they brought soil from the graves so as to spread it in their new lands and have their history still with them. That braid of hair must have been a very precious link to someone treasured.

      What a wonderful untold story!

  3. Jean E Stafford says

    Oh how grand to see that another adventure has been penned by YOU!! Your question brings to mind my Grandmother’s home place called “Million PInes”. So named because my Grandfather planted 7 million pine trees in his lifetime. Intriguing to me is that Margaret Mitchell once visited there and went fishing in the 30 acre lake on the property. The story goes “she caught a mess of bluegill” and a fish fry was so enjoyed!! I would have loved to have been part of that day. G’mother, Justine spoke of this often!!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      That is wonderful! So, your grandfather lives on in many, many millions of pines now — those he planted and those grown from the seeds. What a grand legacy! And having Margaret Mitchell stay over and fish in the lake too! What a lovely portrait of her as more than an amazing writer.

  4. Patti Reichlin says

    I was having a yard sale and had over 1,200 Christian books for sale. As I was packing all my stuff that I had for sale, A couple of men stopped. They asked about the books and I told them they were both fiction and non-fiction Christian books. They said they would take them all and how much would I sell them for as the entire lot. I needed to know the story behind why they would want all of them. It turned out that they wanted to start a library in Africa and needed books for the library. It was also to help the people learn English. So I asked him where in Africa it was and to my surprise, it is where we help sponsor a missionary. I ran in the house and got the missionary’s card and brought it out. They knew the missionary and his wife because the library was going right next door to the missionary office. Definitely God’s planning! I gave them all the books to help start the library.

    • Shirley Davidson says

      Patti, isn’t it “goosebumpy” when God moves people toward one another! I love this story! Thank you for sharing!

  5. says

    This is about my grandmother who died at age 96 in 2004. It’s also about my oldest son Chip who was killed in a car accident in 2008. Grandma and Chip were very close. From the day that we brought him home from the hospital, he was her “Chippie.”
    I have in my possession a music box that my Grandma passed on to me before her death. Grandaddy gave it to her before I was born. I have it in my bedroom on a shelf. I never wind it up for fear that it will break. Shortly after we lost Chip there was a day that I was inconsolable. It was a dreary day outside and my husband and I were the only ones in the house. From where we were sitting we heard a soft melody coming from the bedroom. My husband looked at me as if to say, what is that? I knew that sound. It was Grandma’s music box and it was playing for us.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Doesn’t God have the most wonderful and gentle ways of reminding us that those we love are never gone from us. Love is the bridge between earth and heaven. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story.

  6. Marci says

    I have a bunny figurine that my grandmother painted during her last days in the nursing home before she died. It’s one of the only things I have that belonged to her as my father’s family stopped acknowledging my existence shortly after she died (well…they did before she died too….)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      That is a sweet memento of your grandmother.There’s nothing so special as a grandmother’s love for her grandchild. Even if you don’t have other things, I will bet she’d be thrilled that you ended up with this one.

  7. Shirley Davidson says

    Lisa, I’m dying to read “The Story Keeper”. I want to share a small story with you. My mother has been gone for about eight years now. After she passed, my sister gave me a couple of coats and other articles of clothing of Mom’s. I let them hang in my closet for the longest time. Then I had a friend who needed a coat. I knew my Mother would have been okay with me giving my friend the coat. Before I gave it to her I went through the pockets. Change for a dollar in one pocket, a pair of gloves in the other. I put the gloves to my face and inhaled. They smelled just like her. I tucked those into a plastic bag, put the change in a tiny drawer above my desk. Every now and then I open that plastic bag and take just a little whiff, especially when I’m missing her so.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Shirley, isn’t it something the way our memories of a loved one are tied to so many things? Sometimes a song or a scent can make it feel as if they are right back in the room with us.

      It’s beautiful, too, that you gave her coat to someone who can use it. What a lovely testament to her.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh, sweet! I adore love at first sight stories, in fact, I was just writing about one in this latest manuscript :-)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Jefferson is one of my favorite places! Stories and history around every corner! You can literally feel it oozing from the cracks in the sidewalk.

  8. Patsye says

    I grew up in the house that my grandfather built for my grandmother when they married in 1905. Everything was “period”! Six generations of our family spent time in that house, and four generations LIVED there, so the stories abound. I have written a few “memory slices” from my mother’s recollections to keep them from being forever lost, and I hope to write more. I think a story with bits from all four generations would be wonderful, and I hope that I, or perhaps my daughter, will write it one day. We are planning to start a blog together, so who knows where that will go!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      I so hope that you write that story. Oh, the times and experiences that house has seen! If only houses could talk… But then again when the same family has been there for generations and the stories have been shared, I guess houses can :-)

  9. Rachel Hauck says

    Lisa, congrats on this wonderful, wonderful book!! Have a fun tour this summer and may the Lord bless you abundantly!!


  10. Monica says

    We have a box of old letters from World War 2 that were left in the rafters of a house. Fun to read them as they are mostly between a man and his wife, although a few are between brothers. They used to own a small grocery store in the town we once lived in. It is long gone but we have tried to find old pictures of the store in the historical center. Lots of fun to speculate more on their story than what we know.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Wow, I love this! I have several bundles of World War II letters I bought at estate sales. I haven’t read through them yet, but one of these days I will. I always look at them and think about what stories they may contain.

  11. Lisa says

    Congratulations!! I can hardly wait to read “The Story Keeper.”
    On Main Street of my beloved hometown there is a house known as The Cave House. As it stands now, it is a souvenir and gift shop. However, the history of the house is what is so fascinating. Underneath the house is a cave that once was part of the Underground Railroad. The caves are closed now for safety reasons. But, standing in the alley behind the house, you can see the entrance to the cave. The Cave House is very near my home and I often go through that alley. I try to imagine the brave souls who helped slaves find their way to freedom right in the middle of this Confederate town.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      That is fascinating! I’ve been researching some North Carolina Underground Railroad history for this new manuscript. It is amazing to think of the risk these people were taking, of their bravery. What an experience to walk by one of their hiding places as you come and go daily. Thank you for sharing the story of the cave house!!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Huckleberry says to tell you… “Rood ruck, Risa!” He hopes you win and he thinks you have a really cool name :-)

  12. Virginia Rush says

    ohhhhh I love the traveling circle….and of course I want to read The Story Keeper …read and review them both.
    and yes we do have an untold story….well several but there is a men’s wedding ring that I have always assumed belonged to my dad. he never wore it, it just sat in a box. almost all the way around the inside are letters that stand for something…there has been no way to figure them out…and no one left to tell us. I find it sad that we’ll never know that story…

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh, wow! What a mystery. I think that would drive me crazy on nights when I can’t sleep. What does it mean? What does it mean????

  13. says

    I have two items in my home that cause me to wonder and speculate and dream. One is a an antique desk my husband bought for me some years ago. I wonder who sat there before me and wrote, dreamed, or just tended to business. I also have my mother’s old hope chest. I’ve often wondered about the young woman who used it. We were never close, to my lasting regret, and she often seemed a woman with little hope. I’ve written and journalled about what it might have been like to be her when young and holding on to some hope. I treasure the chest, as I treasured her, and I grieve that she missed so much of what life offers us every day. She gave up on life before she ever truly lived it.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh, Susan. What a bittersweet story of that hope chest. I have always been close to my mom, as the only daughter, but I remember finding her high school scrapbook years ago and discovering a young woman so much different from the mom I’d always known. I marveled at the fact that she had a life before she ever knew me.

      You for sharing your moms hope chest!

  14. says

    How exciting Lisa! And how faithfully you have stewarded your gifts…So excited for you and this new endeavor. Can’t wait to read it! And tell Huckleberry he would love my Sophie:)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Denise, Huckleberry wants to know if Sophie can come over for a play date. He thinks they would have a great time together.

      Thank you for the sweet words and sweet wishes, too :-)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Amy, bless you and thanks! I’m so glad that Pulpwood Queens and that dinner out brought us together. I’d read Having Our Say years ago and never dreamed we’d meet one day. The paths God brings us along in life are so truly incredible!

  15. Carol J Dewing says

    Loved the Prayer Box! Hope I’m one of the winners for the Story Keeper!!
    (Question of the day: The Story Keeper is about the discovery of a fascinating untold story. Is there an item or a place that has an interesting story in your home, your family, or your community? Tell us about it!)

    A turquoise ring with two turquoise stones. It was made by a friend’s Aunt. She gave it to me explaining that the blue stone is male–the green, female. IT means a whole lot because of the memories of this friend and the Navajo people, and how they helped me through a difficult time after my Mom’s death.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Carol, what a beautiful story and a lovely reminder of Navaho culture. How wonderful that your friend’s mother gave you this gift of love and explained the meaning behind it.

      Thank you for sharing!

  16. Jackie Tessnair says

    Congratulations on your new release.It sounds great.I would love to win and read this book.The only thing I can think of is an metal angel figurine that showed up out of nowhere in our car.Not to long after finding this angel someone hit us and our car was totaled.The angel was still in the car with us.Even though the car didn’t survive,we did,and that’s all that matters.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      How sweet! My mind is now turning with ideas of where the angel could have come from. Glad you were all okay after the car wreck!

  17. Lorraine Fuller says

    I will give you two. One is where we live there was once a thriving town. The old well for the school is capped and on our property and across the street is one of the historical markers. All that is really left is a church down the road with a graveyard and a building that was once the crossroads store down the road the other way. It’s a great neighborhood. My next door neighbor has the foundation for the school and also a bench that is built around a tree that is left from the school. Another neighbor gifted her with photos of the school building and the children there and a map of the area. (there was a corn field where my house is, but I would have been right between the school and the post office) I love imagining what life was like when the town was here. The other is a story from when we went to adopt my daughter in Russia. The normal person who drove people was ill and so a friend of our host stepped in. When I came out of the orphanage the first time he was in tears and kept telling me that he had been lied to. He had been told the kids had bad blood, but he had sat on the hood of his car and watched the 3 and 4 year olds play while I was inside and realized they were just kids. He was even more astounded to realize that the superstitions he had been taught about children who were a little different were wrong as my daughter in spite of missing a few pieces is a normal kid. Later he mentioned he had been praying for a Bible for two years. I had picked up a few Russian Bibles before I left. I had no idea how valuable they were. He came over the next day with questions, he had read all of Genesis. I pointed him to the New Testament and we talked through the interpreter. He talked about how when he was a child his grand mother had him baptized in an underground church. His father had been sent to Siberia for being part of the underground church and he never saw him again. On our last night this man presented my husband with his father’s hunting knife. What an amazing gift that we will pass on to my daughter and her children someday along with the story of this man.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Lorraine, your story has left me in tears. God winds our paths with the paths of other people in the most magnificent ways. To think that he put this driver in your path on your trip to adopt your daughter and that you were able to give gifts to each other. What an incredible blessing!

      And I love forgotten places that once were, too — hints of lives and activities that have come and gone.

  18. Janice Burzlaff says

    My mom was born and raised in Washington, D.C. but her mom and dad were both from West Virginia, where Mom enjoyed many summers staying with her maternal grandparents on their farm near the small town of Buffalo. The farm, known as Lawnvale had been in the Atkeson family since Thomas Atkeson, Mom’s great-grandfather, bought the 400 acres of wooded land on the Kanawha River in 1835. Prior to that time he had worked at various occupations, as a farmer, a builder of flatboats and barns, he had quarried stone and worked as a woodcarver. In Pioneering in Agriculture written by Thomas’ son, Thomas Clark Atkeson with granddaughter, Mary Meek Atkeson, it says “he became so expert with the carpenter’s tools that in 1832 he went to Cincinnati and worked on the fine paneling in houses, and also helped on the inside woodwork of two new Ohio River steamboats. This work required great skill because in those days all the details of the panels were cut by hand, with special shaped planes…”
    Preferring life on a farm, Thomas saved till he had the money to purchase his farm, moving there in 1836. Years brought a log house, a wife, a growing family. They lived in the log house near the river until 1854 when they moved into the large brick house that he helped build farther back from the river. “Much of the woodwork he made with his own hands with considerable skill and taste, from the experience he had gained when working on the interior of fine houses in Cincinnati. One of his friends in Cincinnati was Nicholas Longworth, and I have often heard him tell that he assisted in building the old Longworth home on the hill near Cincinnati.” A chair I inherited from my mother, the “dog chair”, was carved from wood from Lawnvale; I was always told it was carved in the 1830s. I found it interesting to read, “It was my father’s custom to have the wood from a favorite tree made up into furniture, when a wind-storm or something else brought its career to an end…and he always had an affection for these pieces of furniture.” And I wonder if this chair was one of those pieces of furniture from a favorite tree. Whether it was or not it is a beautifully carved piece that I’ve always loved – a treasured family heirloom.
    I ‘m thankful to have the “dog chair” and also Pioneering in Agriculture which tells so much of the people I descended from. I loved capturing glimpses of the personalities of these people who otherwise would be just names in a family tree. About Thomas’ wife Virginia I read, “Daguerreotypes of my mother, taken at that time, show a young, sweet, intelligent face, with dark hair drawn back severely. She was only eighteen years old, but with a strength of spirit equal to anything. To my father she was always a symbol of the finest and best in life. In his later years, he often spoke of the pure beauty of the white blossoms of the wild sweet-potato which was much too common in our fields. He said they always reminded him of Virginia, his wife. And in his old prayer-book and hymnal, are many passages referring to the beauty and comfort of the spiritual life, which he had marked ‘Virginia.’”

    • Lisa Wingate says

      What a beautiful family history, and to know so much about the people you come from is an incredible gift. When we know our family stories, I think we know ourselves in a different way. Growing up, one of my favorite times of the year was when we’d visit my grandma and she’d tell us about the family farm and how my ancestors built the barn from logs hewn out of the forest. I loved to stand in that barn and imagine!

  19. says

    I have in my possession my grandmothers leather baby shoes. Since my mom died at age 93 and my grandma at 82, I would love to know the travels these little hard heeled shoes have been on. No one left to ask! But they would be about 135 years old,

  20. says

    The Story Keeper sounds like a keeper! :)

    My paternal grandmother (Mimi), who went Home in 2009, passed on a hobby that is a huge part of our family to this day. Mimi loved to read, both God’s word and fiction, and some of my earliest memories are of her reading to my sister and me. She passed on that love to my dad, who passed it on to me (my mom also enjoys reading). Likewise, I’ve passed it on to our two boys. Books are like family members to us, 100 + years after her birth, and for that I’m grateful.

    Another sweet item my aunt gave me after Mimi’s death was her high school yearbook (from the early thirties). The messages the kids wrote to each other are fascinating: how they wrote them (such neat cursive! All of them!), their word use (using the word ‘gay’ instead of happy; writing what a “dear” someone was), and the thoughtful sentiment and playful teasing. I have the yearbook in a special spot in our family room. It’s a reminder of my family’s history as well as the history of our language.

    Thank you for this chance to win!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Your Mimi gave your family the gift of many lives and endless adventures. What a blessing to pass from generation to generation! (and one I especially treasure 😉

  21. Amy Lorenzen says

    Congratulations on your new book! Can’t wait to read it, I enjoy your books so! They always speak to my heart! I have many interesting stories that my mom has told me about her growing up years in western Kansas during the 1930s–dustbowl depression days. One of the ones that has always got my interest was how the kids who lived out of town and rode the school bus had homes to go to when a dust storm hit. My mother and her family only lived about a block from school, so they had a couple of country kids who came to their house. She tells how that school would be turned out and town kids and country kids were sent to their designated homes. She tells how the wind and dust was so bad that they always held hands, with the oldest (her sister) leading the way. She and the other children had dampened towels or bandanas that they tied around their noses and mouths to keep the dirt out. A very important precaution because the dust was so fine and so thick that it would cause choking and sneezing. She is an admirable woman, who at 82, still teaches music at our local Catholic School. I attribute her good health and happiness to her strong faith and positive attitude. Someday soon I am going to gather all her stories together for my children. Her stories are rich in human interest and her love for this sometimes brutal place we call home.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh, my goodness, can you imagine? We just sent our son out to West TX for college this year, and people said, “Wait until he experiences his first dust storm!” I doubt those are anything like the ones experienced during the dust bowl. I think we forget that our ancestors had to endure so many tests just to survive.

  22. says

    Very excited you have a new book baby. Can’t wait to read it. I can’t think of any untold stories. I guess I lead a boring life. Loved Tending Roses and The Prayer Box.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Thank you Bonnie! I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed The Prayer Box and Tending Roses — two of my most tenderly-hatched book babies 😉

  23. Susan Roberts says

    I have a small wooden handkerchief box that belonged to my great grandmother. She didn’t die until I was 16 so I was lucky enough to know her as I was growing up and I remember this box sitting on her dresser. Inside are handkerchiefs that she had embroidered as a young girl. Our home got robbed last year and even though they didn’t take much, I was so upset that they took this box off my dresser. I didn’t care about the TV that they took, losing this box from my great grandmother was so sad! Two days later, there was a knock on my back door and a farmer from a near by community was at my door with my grandmother’s handkerchief box with the handkerchiefs still neatly folded inside. Evidently the thieves had decided that it was worthless and tossed it out into his field! He found it and returned it to me! It may have been worthless to them but it was worth everything to me!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh how wonderful! I think your great grandmother may have whispered in God’s ear about bringing that box back home where it belonged 😉

  24. D Stevens says

    Your cover is a place I’d love to enjoy! Our family was one of the first settlers in our hometown & we enjoy telling the stories about Great-Great grandfather Orin!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      I’d love to be in a town founding family… sadly we’re not, but I’ve founded a few towns in fiction 😉

  25. Teresa S Mathews says

    Congrats Lisa on your new baby, I sure it gets to come to my house for a visit!! :-)

    I have a story I want to share with you; before my first son was born as most new parents-to-be we were getting his room ready, we didn’t have a lot of money so we were looking around for a used chest for his clothes. My hubby happened to see a garage sale near his work so he stopped and found a nice sturdy chest that had been well used by some other child but was basically in good shape. He brought it home and when he pulled out the drawers to get started on refinishing it there in the back was an old belt buckle with the name DANIEL on it. That was the name we were already calling our soon-to-be born son. After getting over the shock and chill bumps we knew had named our son exactly what God wanted. Cool bonus is my now 20 year old enjoys wearing his belt buckle! :-)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh wow! Now my mind is spinning and I’m coming up with scenarios as to who the original “Daniel” was. What a grand story for your Daniel to carry with him in his great, big grown-up life. A tie to his beginnings… and those of an unknown namesake. Great story!

  26. Pat Moore says

    Would love to win one of your advanced copies. I’ve never read your books but I’ve heard that you are a gifted author and your books are really good. Not good grammar I know but what I over heard in a book store. Also, will be glad to leave reviews at Goodreads, Book Club Network, B&N, Amazon, Deeper Shopping. Christian Books, and any other that you would like for me to leave them.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      That’s wonderful news, thank you Pat! Please tell the bookstore thank you for me… and thanks for spending time with us on the porch, too. Good luck in the drawing. I’d love to introduce you to my stories 😉

  27. Katie Addington says

    We have a sign in front of my house with the name Young’s Escape. We knew it was the name of the plantation that was located on our property many years ago, but we didn’t know any other details. My sister began doing research and found out that the land had been in our family since the 1840s. Once she looked into it, she began finding more about our ancestors and the land they owned, as well as some of the history of the town we live in. We even have a copy of the original deed to the land framed in our house.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      What a treasure and a fascinating story! Think of all the generations of ancestors who have walked that land!

  28. Dawn Crawford says

    I have a baby quilt that my grandmother made for me when I was a baby. 29 years later my daughter received a blanket from my grandmother, her great grandmother. What made it special was she had passed away 2 years before my daughter was born. It was said for her.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Awww… I have a wedding quilt made my my husband’s great-grandmother years before she died. I treasure that quilt and enjoyed having it on the guest bed in our first home 😉

  29. Cheryl H. says

    What gorgeous cover art! I can’t wait to read this book. :)

    My children were in an awful car accident back in 2005. They were t-boned, on the drivers side. I arrived at the scene as they were using the jaws of life to get my daughter out of the vehicle. It was the worst thing I’d ever seen in my life and I nearly fell apart.
    My son was taken by ambulance to a local hospital and was treated for non-life-threatening injuries, but my daughter was life-flighted to Atlanta where she was on a ventilator for several days with broken bones, cuts, and a head injury. (She recovered fully–praise the Lord!)
    The firemen and police officers who cut her out of the vehicle gave me photos they had taken at the scene. I noticed in several of the photos the ceramic guardian angel I’d pinned to her visor when she got her driver’s license was GLOWING! The angel pin has a matte finish and does not reflect a flash. A sense of peace came over me and I knew that everything was going to be okay.
    Though her vehicle was totaled, I was able to retrieve the angel, and I later pinned it on the visor in her new vehicle.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Cheryl, this is such a beautiful story of God’s provision and guardianship. I’ll bet your daughter has looked at that angel many times and realized that her mom loves her very much, too.

      The Tidewater Sisters novella has in it the after effects of a brother/sister car accident, so your story gave me chills this morning. I’m so glad your kids came through the treatment and recovered.

  30. Lona Kirk says

    The magic of a quiet evening, with a new Lisa Wingate book in my lap, is how I imagine myself often. On my long commute home from work, I relive moments in these stories. The story characters keep my company, and inspire me to enjoy the simple goodness of life, and the good and kind people in my life.

  31. Bonnie Roof says

    Hi, Lisa!!

    Congrats on “The Story Keeper”!! I would love to join the Sisterhood of the Traveling Book – but with the current health issues facing me, am hesitant to commit because of the time constraint involved. I’m hoping, instead, that cute little Huckleberry will draw my name out as the winner of a copy (I love the way he “poses” for the pictures you post!!) – I have four of your books and am joyfully working towards acquiring the other nineteen!!

    There are a number of relics in our family, belonging to my deceased grandparents: a draft card, drivers license, nurses license, pipe (my grandfather smoked a pipe from the time he was four years old and started his grandmothers pipe with a live coal from the fireplace – until he died at the age of 100), nylon gloves, watch, wallet, glasses, etc. – several of which I included in shadow boxes I made for my mother, aunt, and myself. A local jewelry designer took pieces of my grandmother’s costume jewelry and made pins from them. I inherited some of my grandparents furniture, and will also inherit a huge, beautiful grandfather clock enclosed within a handmade case/stand. I would lie on their couch as a child and listen to the clock chiming. My grandmother loved to read Christian fiction and I have her tiny bookcase and some of her books. My grandfather was 100 years old when he passed away and my grandmother was 96 – they have been gone for quite a few years. My mother and aunt each have a large doll (identical) that they have kept from their childhood, and I have some from mine also (mine are 60+ years old). I also have a desk and cedar chest that my father made – both probably as old, or older, than my dolls.

    Thinking of the land and historic buildings in our area – my condo/house community and two schools stand on what used to be part of my grandfather’s large farm, where I played as a child, and there is a house in my small town that used to be a part of the underground railroad.

    Writing these comments has brought back many pleasant memories of the years of my childhood!! Thank you for inspiring us with your books, Lisa – I especially love the ones that combine the present and past. Prayers and blessings on your writing, and love and hugs to you, dear Lisa!!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Hugs right back to you, Bonnie!

      “I would lie on their couch as a child and listen to the clock chiming.” That made me remember that I have the family clock from my mother’s side of the family. My mom usually kept it wound, so that it ticked and chimed all night long — always a challenge when we had lots of company and one of us was sleeping on the sofa. To this day, that sound reminds me of family gatherings 😉

  32. says

    So very excited for you Lisa !

    You know that I started writing my story of my teen pregnancy 31 years ago this year. I am also wanting to write the history of my family. Grandfathers Farm and Grandma’s Quilt ! In due time….
    My great grandfather fisher helped to make the erie canal here in ny and another one was in civil war. Lots of history.

    Linda Finn

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Oh, Linda, I hope you continue with that. That story could pour into the life of some young girl in amazing ways.

  33. Donna Hunt says

    Hi, Lisa! It was such a thrill to get a preview peak of The Story Keeper! I’m glad Huckleberry is willing to share a copy. 😉 I have a recipe box that belonged to my great aunt, who died a young bride when she was in her early twenties. Some of the recipes are newspaper clippings, but most are handwritten on yellowed bits of paper and recipe cards. I look at her handwriting and wonder about her dreams and love of life that ended so tragically. Recipes that are handed down from generation to generation tell such a wonderful story of history and heritage. I can’t wait to read the rest of The Story Keeper! Congratulations!!!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Hi Donna! Don’t you love old recipe boxes and the time capsule of life experiences they become? I have an old salt box (tin) I use as a recipe box. It’s filled with recipes from the time I started to college (simple ones written down by my mom) to wedding gift recipes to clippings to things I asked friends for in different places we’ve lived. Each one holds a memory. One day I’ll write a story about them 😉

  34. says

    Bravo and huge congrats on another release from my talented buddy~ Can’t wait to read about it– and of course– discuss it on air. Much love~

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Yes and thank you! I’d love to talk about The Story Keeper with you on All Things Southern Live!

      Love you, Shellie, and love that show!

  35. says

    While I was enjoying reading interesting comments from other readers, I realized that like many others, my place with a story was inspired by my Grandmother too. She, however, came here from Italy which inspired me. I lived in Rome for about 7 months and had many scary then and funny now stories I’d like to write.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      What a wonderful inspiration from your grandmother! I hope you write all of the stories of your experiences discovering her home country. That’s fabulous!

  36. SANDY says

    There is no doubt you are my favorite writer. I am so excited for the Story Keeper to hit the news stands so to speak. i have ordered my advance copies from Amazon and can hardly wait for them to come.

    i have always loved to have family pieces from generation past. I have an old trunk that was told came from Ireland when John and Kathleen O’Mannion brought with them and their 4 sons in 1865 on the ship coming to America.It still has travel stickers on one end.
    I have a gold locket that belonged to my grandmother before she married my grandfather because it has her maiden initials on the back. i also have a complete set of Depression dishes for 8 my grandmother collected over time.
    There is nothing quite like SPECIAL FAMILY PIECES to bring back memories. I read all the comments written here and my heart was touched by the memories shared with you Lisa. What a treasure box of memories just like Iola’s prayer boxes
    in “THE PRAYER BOX” Memories come to life again because someone shared their stories with the rest of us.. Love you girl and hope to meet Huck one of these days.


    • Lisa Wingate says

      Thank you! Huckleberry looks forward to that meeting day 😉

      I love the stories of your family items. Don’t you look at them sometimes and wish they could talk? Oh, if that set of Depression-era dishes could echo the stories of all the meals they have graced over the years. Wouldn’t that be something?

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  38. says

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