Monday, January 16, 2012

Piecing Together a New Fiction Line

by Jennifer AlLee

As you may have noticed, the world of books is in the midst of a shake up. Some publishers are folding, some are being bought and folded into bigger houses. And the new frontier of e-books has everyone scratching their heads. In the current climate, it's rare for a publisher to decide to expand. But that's exactly what Abingdon Press (my publisher - GRIN) is doing.

This is from the official press release...
Beginning October 2012, Christian publisher Abingdon Press will launch a new series, Quilts of Love, as part of their growing fiction line. Based on the idea that behind every heirloom quilt is a story of how it came to be, the Quilts of Love series will focus on the romance and adventures of the women who quilted a part of their family history.  
Senior Acquisitions Editor Ramona Richards believes there is a strong connection between storytelling and quilts. “More than a creative art, quilts have been passed from one generation to another as precious heirlooms. They tell our family history, and they have bought communities together.” As a reflection of Abingdon’s diverse fiction line, the Quilts of Love series will feature contemporary and historical romances as well as women’s fiction and the occasional light mystery.

Abingdon Press will release one book per month through March 2014 beginning with Carolyn Zane’s Storm’s Signal (October 2012). Richards says, “Each book in the series tells the story of one quilt, one family, and one unforgettable love.”
You've probably guessed that I have the honor of being one of the authors involved in this line. My book will be the second release (November 2012) and is also the Christmas title: A Wild Goose Chase Christmas. Whether or not you're a quilter, I believe you'll enjoy this fun, romantic story. Here's a little taste...
Izzy Fontaine’s life takes an unexpected turn when a senior citizen arrives at her front door with an heirloom quilt from her deceased grandmother. Grandma Isabella wanted Izzy to have the Wild Goose Chase quilt because she believed it would lead her grandaughter to a great treasure. The news sends Izzy’s family into a tizzy as they question its monetary value and whether anyone but Izzy is entitled to it. Complicating matters, local museum director Max Logan claims Isabella promised him the quilt. Max seems sincere, and his smile is nearly enough to charm the quilt (and anything else he wants) out of her, but Izzy has to be certain. What is it about this quilt that makes everyone want it? Is she on a wild goose chase of her own, or a journey that will her to the treasure Gran intended?
The Quilts of Love line has something for everybody... contemporary stories, historicals, deep emotional plot lines, and light-hearted romps. I hope you'll enjoy it. And thanks for giving me a few minutes of your day to share the news.

JENNIFER ALLEE believes the most important thing a woman can do is find her identity in God – a theme that carries throughout her novels. A professional writer for over twenty years, she's done extensive freelance work for Concordia Publishing House, including skits, Bible activity pages, and over 100 contributions to their popular My Devotions series. Her first novel, The Love of His Brother, was released by Five Star Publishers in November 2007. Her latest novel, The Pastor’s Wife, was released by Abingdon Press in February 2010. Her next two novels are The Mother Road (April 2012) and A Wild Goose Chase Christmas (November 2012), both from Abingdon Press. She's a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, Christian Authors Network, and the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance.
Visit Jennifer's website at


  1. love your teaser blurb, Jen! To be honest, I want to sell a book so I can submit to Quilts of Love as a published author (of course, that's not the only reason I'd like to sell...).

    For one thing I'm imagining the beautiful covers you will all have. What a great idea, Abingdon!

    I've seen this news pop up in different places around the internet. I know Bonnie Calhoun is writing one. Part of the fun will be to see how each author, with their own style (Bonnie's current book has a sassy female detective) takes the challenge and runs with it.

    I wish you all the best - big sales and new readers of inspirational fiction!

  2. I think this is a very smart move for Abingdon. They are definitely coming up with creative ways to meet the demand in the CBA. I'm erally excited though, that you are one of teh authors to help launch this line. I know it will be fantastic!!

  3. Hey gals, I should have noted that the line was officially presented to the public at a gift show in Atlanta over the weekend... which is why I brought it up now as a "current event." Thanks for humoring me and letting me share it here :)

    Deb, I've seen the almost-finished covers for three of the books (not mine yet) and they are lovely. Abingdon's doing a good job at creating a unifying design, yet giving each book its own individual flair.

    And y'all should know that Lisa (and Susie) were the voices of encouragement and reason on my shoulder while I wrote AWGCC. They greatly improved the book. Sing with me... "You gotta have friends..."

  4. So exciting to be included in this project. Congrats and hugs! :O)

  5. Jen, I can't wait to hold this book in my hands. It's a wonderful story.

    What a fabulous idea this series is! Kudos to Abingdon.

    I, too, can't wait to see the covers of these titles.

  6. Oh, lovely! I'm a quilter, and this sounds like a wonderful new line. Woot!

  7. November 2012~
    do you think they will be available in Ebook at same time, earlier or later? And what about THE MOTHER ROAD? Still on pre-order only?


  8. DeAnna, I'd be very interested in what you think, since you know all about quilts. It should be fun.

    Deb, I think the ebook version will come out close to the same time, but I'm not sure. I need to find out. As for The Mother Road... yep, it's available for pre-order now. It hits the shelves (both real and virtual) on April 1st :+}

  9. Can't say I'm into quilting. Recently my great aunt showed me an album of all her quilts, though. I liked the "Crazy Quilt," which looked like the Patridge family bus. We joked that it looked like an acid trip.

  10. Jen! Congratulations. This is so exciting, and I'm really happy for you. What a unique idea. I think it will have wide appeal. Thank you for telling us about it.


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