by Michelle Massaro
Good morning, lovers of the written word! We have some big news to share today: The Olympia has a winner!
Please give a virtual hand to Kelly Goshorn!!
Kelly Goshorn is an aspiring novelist currently masquerading as a virtual assistant and a Target cashier who believes everybody needs a little more love and romance in their life. Ever since Laura Ingalls peered into Almanzo Wilder’s eyes and called him “Manly,” she has been a pushover for historical romances. Kelly weaves her affinity for history and her passion for God into uplifting stories of love, faith and family set in nineteenth century America. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and American Christian Fiction Writers. Kelly earned her B.A. in Social Studies Education from Messiah College and her M.Ed. in History Education from The Pennsylvania State University. She has been enjoying her own happily-ever- after with her husband and best friend, Mike, for nearly 25 years. When she is not writing, Kelly enjoys spending time with her young adult children, scrapbooking with friends, board gaming with her husband, and spoiling her Welsh corgi, Levi. Kelly writes from her home near the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Purcellville, Virginia.
Kelly's entry, A Love Restored, was chosen as winner based on the scoring by a panel of non-industry readers and then our panel of industry professionals*. Here's a bit about her story:
A Love Restored
She was nothing like the woman he’d envisioned for his bride, but he was everything she’d ever dreamed of—until a promise from his past threatened their future.
Twenty-year old Ruth Ann Sutton doesn’t measure up to society’s vision of a perfect lady. She would rather read Jules Verne or teach Negro children to read and write than join the Women’s Benevolent Aid Society or practice her voice lessons. Her pert opinions and less than perfect figure kept many suitors away, and when Ruth Ann accepts a position teaching at the new Freedman’s School, it threatens the only marriage offer she is likely to receive. Should she risk life as a lonely spinster or reinvent herself to accept a proposal from a man who doesn’t love her?
Determined to rise above his meager beginnings, Benjamin Saunders reputation as a fast learner and hard worker earn him the opportunity to apprentice with a surveyor—a position that will garner the respect of other men. All he needs now is a woman to share his promising future. When Benjamin has a chance encounter with Ruth Ann Sutton, he is smitten with her pretty face, quick wit, and feisty personality, but can he overcome a promise from his past to marry a woman other men would envy?
Sorry, readers, this book is not yet published! So we'll all have to wait and see where Kelly's publishing journey takes her and this manuscript. We at COTT hope to see this book in print one day soon.
In addition to a tour through COTT's Blog Alliance, Kelly will be receiving a beautiful plaque to commemorate her win and an internet radio interview with Cynthia Simmons!
A HUGE Thank-you to our reader panel and especially to
our *Final Round judges:
Karen Ball--Agent, Steve Laube Literary Agency
Becky Philpott-- Acquisitions Editor, Harper Collins
Becky Wade-- Award-winning Author