ABOUT THE BOOK – A Promise to Keep
Research librarian Savannah Sanderson wants nothing more than to escape into her happily-ever-after novels with their larger-than-life fictional heroes. But a promise to her late husband has her attending her dreaded twenty-year high school reunion, drinking ghastly punch, and taking desperate measures just to keep her vow, even if she has to hide behind the décor to do it.
Once a reckless troublemaker, Michael McCann fled town after graduation. Now a professional technical rescuer, he’s back for the reunion, but on his trip down memory lane, he soon comes face to face with unresolved issues, namely Savannah.
Before the night is over, a pact between these two old friends will lead them on an adventure into uncharted emotional territory where Michael must confront his past regrets and find the courage to reveal the truth. But can Savannah fly from her sheltered nest and risk her heart on a real-life hero?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Melony Teague writes contemporary romance with a dash of humor, she loves to inspire and motivate others through her written words, and she believes everyone has a story to tell. Melony is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, and she is the co-author of As the Ink Flows, a devotional for authors. Her fiction debut, A Promise to Keep releases, Jan 21, 2020. Melony was born in South Africa and now lives in Toronto with her handsome husband, their two teenagers, and does the bidding of her two adorable cats.
Where did you grow up and attend school?
I was born in South Africa and grew up there, attended school in Klerksdorp, Pretoria before moving to Estcourt in KwaZulu-Natal where I attended High School. I now live in Toronto Canada and have been here over 20 years.
Are there any other authors in your family?
Good question! I don’t actually know of any other published authors in my family. Although my family are really good story tellers.
How did you get started writing? How old were you? What made you want to start?
I actually wrote a gossip column under a pen name in high school in the local newspaper. However I didn’t take writing as a career seriously. Now that I look back, it really was inevitable, it just took me way too long to figure it out. I was in my late thirties before I figured out I wanted to be a writer and journalist. I’ve been writing for the last decade as a journalist, biographer, non-fiction ghostwriter and freelancer. About three years ago I decided to shift my focus and work on my fiction work. I honestly can’t see myself doing anything else. It is such a part of who I am.
What did you enjoy reading as a child?
Interestingly enough, I did not start reading early like my own children did. It was only when I was around the age of ten or eleven when someone gave me a Nancy Drew book for Christmas did I really start to read. I then discovered the Secret Seven, Famous Five and Three investigators books and I was hooked. I had a lot of catching up to do. My love for Shakespeare, Chaucer and the classics came later in high school thanks to my wonderful and inspiring high school English Literature teacher, Mrs. Prinsloo. To this day I’m not a really fast reader, but I do love to read.
How and when did you and your husband meet? Was it love at first sight? What does he think about your being an author?
My husband and I met at church, and we attended the same young adults group. We were friends and I really respected him. The funny thing is, he thought I was this loud outgoing girl (and I sort of was) and I thought he was a snob. Turned out he was just shy and I was covering my insecurities with my extrovert nature. We had been friends for a few years when I suddenly noticed him in a different way at a BBQ. And I was like, “hey, why do I all of a sudden see him differently?” Anyway, we both felt the same way and within months we were engaged and within six months of getting engaged we were married. In reality we are opposites when it comes to personalities but we complement each other. He really is my best friend. We have been married 26 years in Jan 2020. As to your last question, he has always been supportive of whatever I do, but since you asked, I asked him what he thought exactly. He said he was proud of me and is thrilled my book is being published. He wishes me all the best of success.
How old are your children? Do they read your books? Have any of them got the writing bug, as well?
My children are teenagers and my eldest is months away from officially being an adult. I still can’t believe how fast time has flown. They are both avid readers. We’ve read to them since they were infants and when they got old enough to read, they read for themselves. My daughter is actually an excellent editor and proofreader and plans to go into editing in that capacity one day. My son is a voracious reader and he inspired me to write one of my manuscripts which is a work in progress. He kept on saying, “Mom, have you written another chapter yet?” It was hard for me to keep up.
How do you research the communities and people you write about? Do you find yourself having to do a lot of research?
Since the town of Point where A Promise to Keep begins is fictional, it was such fun to create a small town. The other settings in the book, such as Niagara Falls and Niagara-On-the-Lake were fun to write about because I’ve been there and enjoyed walking around and sightseeing. The other settings I had to rely on Google Earth and online research. Savannah Sanderson was born in South Africa, just like me, but she immigrated to the US as a youngster, however I used my own experience as an immigrant in her scenes. I don’t think I do as much research as I would find myself doing in a historical fiction novel, but I still have to do my research. I was blessed to have a physician and professional firefighter as consultants for some of the scenes as well as someone from the rock-climbing community for some other scenes. For the most part, real life is my inspiration. The photo is of us journeying behind the falls in 2018 while I was writing A Promise to Keep.
Which is your favorite book?
Oh my goodness, a favorite book, that is such a hard one. Before I became a published author I was a book reviewer and blogger, and still do that to some extent. There are so many I love but three that I read in one sitting and devoured are: Five Days in Skye by Carla Laureano, Space Between Words by Michele Phoenix and The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischoff. For pure entertainment and laugh-out-loud giggles, I chose any Jen Turano book. There are many, many more, I could go on for days. I also love Romantic Suspense and YA reads. So asking me for one favorite book is torture.
Do you have a character in your book you identify with the most?
I can’t say I identify with one character more than the other in A Promise to Keep. There are some things in Savannah that I can relate to, but then others in Michael McCann that I can relate to as well. I think as an author, I can relate to something in each of my characters. Well, except maybe Mrs. Delaney. However, we all know a lady like her. At least, I hope we all do. She is quite something.
Thank you Laura for having me on your blog. What interesting questions!
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Praise for A Promise to Keep
“A delightful romance sure to please anyone looking for a story about second chances, grace and hope. This one has all the right ingredients!”
“With beautiful tenderness, Melony Teague has given us a window into the joy, sorrow, humor, and soaring love of characters that come alive. Be ready to have your heart stolen in this must-read fiction debut.”
—Mikal Dawn, author of the EMERALD CITY ROMANCE series
“A Promise to Keep by Melony Teague is a welcome addition to the contemporary romance genre. Layers of laughter, chemistry, and unexpected intensity make Michael and Savannah’s story a wonderful surprise! A Promise to Keep shows the skill of a talented author who can sensitively tackle subjects like cancer and grief while still producing a laugh-out-loud story! I can’t wait to read whatever Melony Teague writes next!
—V. Joy Palmer, Author of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations and Weddings, Willows, and Revised Expectations
“With charm, wit, and romance, Teague's debut novel takes readers on a journey of second chances, grace... and a trusty fern. Hope and humor blend throughout the story, balancing deep emotions with lighter moments and a sweet romance besides. A bright new voice in Christian fiction!”
—Carrie Schmidt, ReadingIsMySuperPower.org