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The Inside Scoop with Linda Rodante

Amber Alert

Today Linda Rodante is  graciously answering questions about her writing life. Linda’s new book, Amber Alert, is available now. I have all the links and book info below!
Let’s get to it!

THE INSIDE SCOOP WITH LINDA RODANTE

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I started reading Nancy Drew Mysteries when I was twelve—loved them and decided I might have to write! I began writing soon after and continued through high school, college, and marriage. After I accepted the Lord at twenty-seven, I realized nothing in my writing reflected God, so I threw everything away. I decided if God ever wanted me to write again, He would let me know. Thirty years later, the desire to praise Him with a Christmas short-story was all I needed. After I wrote that, I continued; but this time, I wanted to write stories that would reflect His love and goodness.

2. What is unique about your process?

Often, I write while youtube praise and worship videos play in the background. I switch back and forth—praising God with the videos and then writing again.

3. What inspired your book?

Christmas is such a wonderful time of year, and I wanted to show God’s love for us by writing a love story within that framework. Of course, it had to have a mystery, too. Amber Alert is that book, and it’s Book One of the Dangerous Series.

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t give up. I know people have heard that before, but keep on writing, keep on reading writing books, keep going to critique groups and conferences (if you can). Just keep on.

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Linda, I loved reading Nancy Drew (when I could get my hands on them) novels too! I also loved the Bobbsey Twins, and pretty much every book that I opened. Your series sounds so intriguing–Dangerous Series! Mm-mm! I’m with you on the advice. Read. Write. Learn. Repeat. 🙂 Thanks so much for being my guest!

 

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Amber Alert

 

Sharee Jones just wants a partner with whom she can serve the Lord. She didn’t plan on getting involved with a man who resents God, didn’t plan on the mutilated dolls or the threatening notes interfering with her Christmas program—and with the child who’s to play baby Jesus. She thought God’s hand was in it, but how can it be, when everything she hoped and prayed for is crashing down?

John Jergenson thought taking the maintenance job at his cousin’s church meant leaving his guilt-ridden past behind. But he hadn’t counted on Sharee and her program, hadn’t counted on her laugh or the warmth in her hazel eyes. And he certainly hadn’t counted on her wanting to know the truth about his past life. He wants to leave, but Sharee could be in danger; and if he runs again, will he ever forgive himself?
Purchase AMBER ALERT (linked)!

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Linda Rodante

About Linda ~

Born and raised in Florida, Linda loves the salt water, the sun and the swamp lands. She and her husband live in Tarpon Springs, FL. She has two sons. Her mother was a missionary to Israel and Indonesia, and her younger son has followed in those footsteps. He and his family are missionaries in Botswana, Africa. Her other son is a PA at the National Institutes of Health in Washington, DC.

After becoming a Christian, Linda lead prayer and women’s groups at her church, worked with Concerned Women for America, and was a Center Director for the Pregnancy Center of Pinellas County. Since, 2008, she has been a speaker with the Tampa Bay area’s Community Campaign Against Human Trafficking Task Force (now called FREE). Her blog Writing for God, Fighting Human Trafficking can be found at http://lindarodante.wordpress.com/.
Her author’s blog is at http://lindarodante.com/ Her books have won finalist and semifinalist awards with the American Christian Fiction Writers Genesis and First Impressions Contests.

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What books influenced you as a child?

 

Have a terrific day!

The Inside Scoop with Davalynn Spencer!

The Cowboy's Bride

Today Davalynn Spencer is  graciously answering questions about her writing life. Davalynn’s novella, “The Wrangler’s Woman” is included in Barbour’s The Cowboy’s Bride collection available in stores and online. Don’t worry, I have all the links and book info below!

Let’s get to it!

THE INSIDE SCOOP WITH DAVALYNN SPENCER

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I knew I not just wanted, but had to be a writer in the sixth grade when I was compelled to put everything into words: how I felt, how something looked, sounded, tasted—you get the idea.

 

2. What is unique about your process?

I doubt that my process is unique, but I tend to work off of flash videos that shoot through my brain in the form of a story. Sometimes, it’s an opening scene to a book; sometimes it’s the final scene. Ideas come during the most unexpected moments, such as when I’m sitting in the parking lot of the local diner/gas station watching a woman in her car talking on her cell phone. Wham—a story idea. That’s when I have to rush home and get it all down on paper before I forget it.

 

3. What inspired your book?

When the call-out came from Barbour Publishing for novellas to be included in their Cowboy’s Bride collection, I knew I had to be part of that deal. After all, I married a cowboy. I could do this! Research takes an historical author to some pretty fun places, and I had recently learned about a nearby crossroads area called Texas Creek, named after the creek that flows into the Arkansas River at that point. However, in 1881, it was known as Ford Junction. Bingo. The setting for my cowboy novella.

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

The best writing I ever received is to not quit. Don’t give up. Get discouraged? Okay, maybe for a day or two. But after that, cowboy-up and start the next story, or rewrite the one you’re working on. Just. Don’t. Stop. Writing.

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Davalynn, sixth grade!! That is amazing! I love that you knew so early. And I also enjoyed hearing about your “flash video” process. It’s so fun learning how authors work with ideas. By the way, I’m a big fan of cowboys. 🙂 Thanks so much for being my guest today!

 

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The Cowboy's Bride

 

One of nine novellas in The Cowboy’s Bride, “The Wrangler’s Woman” tells the story of widowed rancher Josiah Hanacker who hires spinster Corra Jameson as a lady-trainer for his young daughter, Jess. He fears losing Jess to his wife’s sister if the girl doesn’t meet her aunt’s ladylike expectations. Turns out, Corra has everything Josiah needs for his daughter. He just never figured she’d have what he needed for himself.

Interested in purchasing The Cowboy’s Bride Collection? Click here for Amazon!

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Davalynn Spencer

About Davalynn ~

Multi-published author Davalynn Spencer writes inspirational Western romance complete with rugged cowboys, their challenges, and their loves. She is the 2015 recipient of the Will Rogers Gold Medallion for Western Inspirational Fiction, second place winner in the 2014 Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award, and a 2014 finalist for the Holt Medallion and Selah Awards. As a former rodeo-market and newspaper reporter, she has won several journalistic awards and has over 100 articles, interviews, and devotionals published in national periodicals. She teaches Creative Writing at Pueblo Community College and pens a popular slice-of-life column for a mid-size daily newspaper. Davalynn makes her home on Colorado’s Front Range with a Queensland heeler named Blue and two mouse detectors, Annie and Oakley. Connect with her online at her website, www.davalynnspencer.com, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

 

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What fun place have you visited? (I’m a sucker for Mackinaw Island up in Michigan!)

Have a great day!

The Inside Scoop with Sandra D. Bricker

From Bags To Riches

Today Sandra D. Bricker is graciously answering questions about her writing life. Sandra writes inspirational contemporary romance, and her new book, From Bags to Riches, is available in stores and online. All the links and book info are listed below!

Let’s get to it.

THE INSIDE SCOOP WITH SANDRA D. BRICKER

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

The love of story has been inside me for as long as I can remember! I’ve been writing fiction since about 6th grade, and I never really wanted to do anything else.

 

2. What is unique about your process?

Let me preface by saying I think the process is very different for every writer. For me, I almost always come up with a character first. A fleeting thought or a quick notice of someone in line at the bank … and I’ll soon find myself creating story around the character that’s already started to take shape in my head.

 

3. What inspired your book?

I spent a good bit of time living in Los Angeles and trying to make my way. Not in fashion like Jessie, but in the world of entertainment where Size 0 and botox was the norm. I was very much a fish out of water in that world, and I wanted to write something about one of their kind falling from grace. Jessie emerged out of that.

 

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

“Don’t spend your time dreaming about a writing career, but spend your time dreaming up characters and plots … and then put your fanny in the chair and stay there until they come alive.”

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Sandra, I’m fascinated by what sparked Jessie’s story. The fact Jessie is so sweet (can I be her best friend?) just shows how generous you are. Another author might have taken satisfaction in her fall from grace, but you made us sympathize with her and love her.

Your writing advice is spot on! I need to get my fanny in the chair! Thanks so much for being my guest!

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From Bags to Riches

 

Years of hard work may land her … right back where she started.

Jessie Hart put her Louisiana roots in the rearview mirror and has finally put her Adornments boutique on the map. When renegade “husband” Jack turns up again, he’s impressed with the new and improved Jessie and makes every effort to win her back … before Danny gets his girl.

Jessie’s hard work is finally paying off, but amid award shows and photo shoots, her beloved grandfather falls ill and she’s nudged back to the Louisiana roots she worked so hard to escape. Could it be that after years of searching for success, true love, and faith, God will lead her back to the beginning?

 

Click here to purchase From Bags to Riches!

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I had the pleasure of reading From Bags to Riches! Here’s my review:

FIVE STARS!!!

From Bags to Riches is the final installment of the Jessie Stanton series, and it is wonderful! It surprised me over and over–and I’m not easily surprised. Ms. Bricker did an amazing job of showing Jessie’s inner growth in this book, especially in regards to letting go of the past and embracing a future Jessie might not have been open to before she met Danny. I won’t spoil anything for you, but this book ties up all the loose ends and leaves you happy for Jessie but sad that the series is over. I highly recommend! Buy the first two books first–you’ll be glad you did!

*I received an advance reader copy with no obligation to review this book. All opinions are my own.*

 

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Sandra D. Bricker

 

SANDRA D. BRICKER was an entertainment publicist in Los Angeles for 15+ years where she attended school to learn screenwriting and eventually taught the craft for several semesters. When she put Hollywood in the rearview mirror and headed across the country to take care of her mom until she passed away, she traded her scripts for books, and a best-selling, award-winning author of Live-Out-Loud fiction for the inspirational market was born. Sandie is best known for her Another Emma Rae Creation and Jessie Stanton series for Abingdon Press, and she was also recently named ACFW’s Editor of the Year for her work as managing editor of Bling!, an edgy romance imprint for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. “I believe in the power of the parable,” she says. “And I just love words in almost any form. From the assembling on the page to the polishing and perfecting, there’s almost nothing more powerful.”As an ovarian cancer survivor, Sandie also gears time and effort toward raising awareness and funds for research, diagnostics and a cure.

 

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Do you ever feel sad when a series is over? (I miss Jessie and the gang already!)

 

Have a terrific day!

The Inside Scoop with Belle Calhoune and a Giveaway!

Today Belle Calhoune is  graciously answering questions about her writing life and giving away a paperback copy of her new book, Alaskan Reunion! Belle writes for Harlequin Love Inspired, and Alaskan Reunion is available in stores and online. Don’t worry, I have all the links and book info below!

Let’s get to it.

The Inside Scoop with Belle Calhoune

 

Belle Calhoune

 

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I grew up in Massachusetts across the street from a Public Library, so from the time I was very little, books were deeply embedded in my heart. For as long as I can remember, I dreamed of being a writer. I knew deep down in my soul that it was my destiny. It’s funny but it seems as if I always knew. I honestly can’t remember a time that I didn’t dream about it. When you constantly have stories running through your head, there aren’t many paths you can follow other than writing. As a kid I was really inspired by books such as Where the Wild Things Are, Ramona the Pest, Phyllis Whitney books, and of course, once I was a teen, Harlequin romances.

 

2. What is unique about your process?

Hmm. I’m not sure if it’s unique but I’m a big brainstormer. I love to take colored pens and markers and create a huge storyboard. Since I’m working
on a series for Love Inspired called “Alaskan Grooms” it’s really fun for me to chart the characters and their back story and relationships. I’m also an author who loves creating names for my characters. So I have a baby book that I delve into from time to time that lists wonderful, creative names. I also go to my author Facebook page and get help from time to time from my readers. They’re the best! They’ve helped me out a time or two. I also love to read aloud my words. It really helps me by hearing how they sound out loud. At times I can really get into it. If something doesn’t sound right, I go back in and fix it.

 

3. What inspired your book?

To be honest, I don’t really like secret baby stories. It always seems so wrong to have a parent miss out on those precious weeks and months of their child’s life. Because of this, I decided to write a secret baby story to challenge myself. As a writer I think it’s fun to challenge ourselves to do the very thing that scares us or takes us to a point of almost being uncomfortable. That’s where true growth as a writer comes from. Once I decided to write that trope, I wanted to create a story about hurt people who made decisions based on that hurt. And I love the theme of forgiveness. It always seems to pop up in my books. I think there is such power and grace in granting forgiveness. I always try and remind myself of that in my personal life.

 

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

Finish the book! So many people want to write a book and they end up working really hard but not making the goal of finishing it. An unfinished book cannot be sold to a publisher, especially when you’re just starting out and an editor-publisher needs a completed work in order to make a contract offer. Trust me, they want to see that authors can finish. As hard as the task may be, writers need to finish their novel. It helps create credibility in the industry, and as authors it gives us a sense of accomplishment to know that we completed the project.

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Alaskan Reunion

A Baby Between Them

After her father’s betrayal turned her hometown against her, Paige Reynolds fled Love, Alaska. Now she’s returned to mend the damage her dad’s actions caused. But repairing her broken heart is a different story. She must face Cameron Prescott, the man she left behind—and reveal he’s the father of her infant daughter. As Cameron falls in love with his baby girl, he can’t bury the growing feelings for her mother. In a time of turmoil, they turned on one another. But older and wiser, can Cameron and Paige learn that forgiveness may lead to their happily-ever-after?

 

Click Here to Purchase Alaskan Reunion!

 

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About Belle ~

Belle Calhoune grew up in a small town in Massachusetts as one of five children. Growing up across the street from a public library was a huge influence on her life and fueled her love of romance novels. Belle is the author of six Harlequin Love Inspired novels with a 7th, Christmas-themed book coming out in 2016. She has Indie published the popular Inspirational romance series, Seven Brides, Seven Brothers. Her new Indie Series, the Secrets of Savannah is a spin-off of her debut series. A best-selling Amazon author and winner of the Angeline Bishop award for Multicultural Romance, Belle loves writing romance and crafting happily ever afters. When she’s not wrangling her two high maintenance dogs or spending time with her family, Belle enjoys travel and exploring new places.
Facebook: Author Belle Calhoune

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Belle is giving away one paperback copy of Alaskan Reunion! Easy entry options are below.

Contest giveaway open to US Residents 18 years and older. Winner will be chosen via GiveawayTools.com on February 28, 2016 at 9pm. Winner will be notified via email. See entry form for complete rules.

 

 

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Did you borrow books from the library as a child? I did all the time!

Have a terrific Day!

The Inside Scoop with Julie Jarnigin: Writer Wednesday

The Wedding Barn

Today  Julie Jarnigin is  graciously answering questions about her writing life. Julie’s new sweet contemporary romance, The Wedding Barn, is available now. Don’t worry, I have all the links and book info below!

Let’s get to it.

THE INSIDE SCOOP WITH JULIE JARNIGIN

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I did speech and drama in high school and really enjoyed writing original speeches. That led me to believe I wanted to write non-fiction. When my writing professor my sophomore year of college assigned us to write a short story, I wasn’t looking forward to it. My story was a mess. I accidentally changed the name of the main characters mid-story! The poor woman. She probably read a lot of terrible writing that day. But when I got my assignment back, she’d written, “Hang onto this story” at the top of the page. That was the first time I’d ever even considered fiction. After that, I fell in love with writing novels, and I haven’t looked back.

 

2. What is unique about your process?

Almost ten books into this writing journey, I think every process has been a little different. I’m always trying something new. I’ve done intensive plotting. I’ve done complete seat-of-the-pants writing. I’ve written a rough draft in two weeks. I’ve written a rough draft in two years. And honestly, I still don’t feel like I’ve found the “best” way…because writing is hard! It’s a challenge. Maybe that’s what keeps me interested.

 

3. What inspired your book?

Weddings on Pinterest inspired this book. My heroine, Paige, was a wedding planner in Dallas who ends up living and working on a ranch. My wedding was nice, but it was 15 years ago—pre-Pinterest! This book gave me a fun opportunity to dream up all kinds of fun weddings.

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

Writers write! It’s so easy to get wrapped up in blogging, social media, conferences, writing groups, etc. and not leave any time for actual writing. And I would say that making time for reading is equally important. There’s something about consistently reading great novels that gives writers an eye for good story and writing that captures readers.

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Julie, I’m nodding to everything you said! I feel sorry for the people who read my first attempts at fiction, too! And I’m always trying new things. Some books come easily while others do not. Pinterest relaxes me. The engagement photos get me every time. Thanks so much for being my guest!

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The Wedding Barn

 

Paige Morgan’s career is in shambles. What kind of wedding planner gets left at the altar? So when a job planning parties on a ranch in rural Texas comes her way, she jumps at it. So what if the cowboy who runs the place isn’t happy she’s there?

Rancher Nick Reid risked his heart once… and lost. Who needs love? He’s got a great life on the family ranch—so long as Paige Morgan and her city ideas don’t ruin it all. If only his family didn’t need her help to save their livelihood. And if only he wasn’t so darned drawn to the woman. But no sooner does Nick start to believe in love again, than a socialite shows up looking for Paige. Asking her to plan an elaborate wedding. Back in the city.

Both Paige and Nick need a second chance at love. But what will it cost them to take it?

 

Interested in purchasing The Wedding Barn? Retailers are linked below!

Amazon      |      Barnes & Noble      |      iBooks      |      Kobo

 

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Julie Jarnigin

About Julie ~

Julie Jarnagin is a USA Today bestselling author of sweet and inspirational romance. She grew up in a small Oklahoma town where her family farmed and ranched. These days she lives in a not-so-big city with her amazing husband and two young sons who tolerate all her nerdy quirks. Julie earned a B.A. in Journalism / Professional Writing from the University of Oklahoma and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.
Sign up for her newsletter (linked) to be the first to learn about new releases and free books. www.JulieJarnagin.com.

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Do you swoon over wedding pictures? Sometimes I’m tempted to buy a bridal magazine because the layouts are so pretty!

 

Have a wonderful day!

 

 

The Inside Scoop with Mary Alford: Writer Wednesday

Today Mary Alford is  graciously answering questions about her writing life. Mary writes for Love Inspired Suspense, and her new book, Rocky Mountain Pursuit, is available in stores and online. Don’t worry, I have all the links and book info below!

Let’s get to it.

THE INSIDE SCOOP WITH MARY ALFORD

1. How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

 

For me, becoming a writer kind of evolved from being an avid reader. I can’t remember exactly when I first started reading, but when I did, I realized I couldn’t put a book down. The stories drew me in and transported me to wonderful places. I was a true bookworm.

Early on, I discovered Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys Mysteries and loved them. Then a few years later, I was introduced to Phyllis Whitney and Victoria Holt and I was hooked on the romantic suspense genre. I loved the mystery and the drama along with the love stories these two iconic women blended into their books. I couldn’t wait to get to the last page to see how the book turned out.

That’s when I first knew I wanted to be a writer. I wrote my first book when I was a tween, (it’s tucked away in a drawer somewhere never to see the light of day).

But for me, the dream of becoming a published author came much later. Although I continued to create stories in my head, it wasn’t until 2012 when I entered the So You Think You Can Write contest hosted by Love Inspired Suspense and sold Forgotten Past. It still seems surreal. It was a dream come true for me.

 

2. What is unique about your process?

 

I’ve always been a seat of my pants writer, although I’m trying to be more organized.

My writing process goes something like this. I’ll see or read about something that sparks my imagination and gives me an idea for a book. From there, I let the story play out in my head for a bit and then I sit down with my laptop to put words on the page. I don’t care how well planned out you have the book, staring at a blank page for the first time can be intimidating. And it never fails, the story I had in my mind doesn’t quite come to life exactly as planned, but that’s okay. I figure my characters have their own idea of how they want their story to end.

 

3. What inspired your book?

 

I love spy stories. I think if I had chosen another career path in life it would have been a spy. I love the danger and intrigue, the life and death decisions spies are forced to make. Then there’s the romance… Living life on the edge has a way of clearing away the clutter in life. It shows you what’s really important.

Rocky Mountain Pursuit is about a former spy who is forced to live under an alias because some very bad people are trying to kill him. When Reyna Peterson, the widow of his former comrade comes to him for help, Jase Bradford doesn’t hesitate to assist, even though it means risking his life and blowing his cover. Jase is a true man of valor.

 

4. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

 

The hardest to do at times. Keep writing and don’t give up. If you are really a writer, then you can’t help but write. Every author I know was rejected before they became published. Some many times. If you give up, you’ll never know what might have been.

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Mary, I’m nodding at how fabulous authors hooked you on a genre. For me it was Jodi Thomas and Stephanie Laurens, both historical romance authors. I still love reading historical romance, but I don’t write it! I think it’s really cool you’d be a spy if you weren’t a writer. Something tells me you practice on your downtime. Am I right? *wink, wink* Thank you so much for being my guest!

 

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The Inside Scoop with Mary Alford

 

IDENTITY: CONFIDENTIAL

Everyone believes agent Jase Bradford is dead—everyone but Reyna Peterson. Only he can protect her now that someone wants the information her CIA husband died to secure. As the one member of their spy team not killed, Jase must remain in the shadows. Yet when Reyna leads the enemy right to his mountain refuge and blows his cover, Jase risks his life for hers. As his best friend’s beautiful widow scales the walls around his heart, whether out of loyalty or love, he makes it his duty to secure her safety. But when their pursuers trap them in the snowy Colorado mountains, will it become his final mission?

Interested in purchasing Rocky Mountain Pursuit?

Buy from Harlequin!

Buy from Amazon!

 

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Mary Alford

About MARY  ~

Mary Alford was inspired to become a writer after reading romantic suspense greats Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney. Soon creating characters and throwing them into dangerous situations that test their faith came naturally for Mary. In 2012 Mary entered the Speed Dating contest hosted by Love Inspired Suspense and later received “the call”. Writing for Love Inspired Suspense has been a dream come true for Mary. Visit Mary’s website!

 

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So…would you make a great spy? Why or why not?

(I’d be a terrible spy. I’m no good at lying, and my eyes give EVERYTHING away!!)

Thanks so much for stopping by!

 

 

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