Thursday, July 2, 2009

Tab's Fiction Pick: Snow Melts in Spring by Deborah Vogts

Adult Fiction: Debut author Deborah Vogts

The Book

I want to feature new authors on this blog for two reasons; Firstly, I hope to be a new author one day and thus I am all about supporting fellow writers and secondly, I like to expand my horizons both as a reader and a writer and see who's out there, what they're writing and what's getting published. 

Christian fiction is not usually I genre I read much of, but there is something quiet, still and powerful about author Deborah Vogts' writing. Her debut novel the 'Snow Melts in Spring' is the first of four books that will make up the 'Seasons of the Tallgrass' series. Zondervan Publishing has at the moment only bought the first three books, but Deborah is hopeful that the forth will also be accepted. 

The Setting

Although I don't think I could ever live in the country (not close enough to Myers) I love escaping into other people's worlds. This book is set in the Flint Hills of Kansas, USA. For us Aussies, that region of the world is largely awash with sweeping grasses of unspoilt beauty and unhindered country breezes (ah, can't you just feel it?). On her website   Deborah writes about her novel.

“When an aged horse is severely injured on a gravel road in the Flint Hills of Kansas, country veterinarian Mattie Evans accepts the challenge to save him. But she finds herself in the middle of a longstanding feud between the horse’s owner, pro quarterback Gil McCray, and his ailing father—who is also her dear friend.”

From what I have read (and I haven't finished it) the books seems like great winter reading snuggled up on the couch, preferably with the soft flicker from the embers of your fireplace and a glass of wine; it is a story about forgiveness and the courage to face the past and the choices we make to love.

Deborah says on her website;

"I wanted to write books I could share with my girls or my grandmother--books with true and pure romance in them--the kind that reaches deep into the heart and soul of a person and makes her smile the rest of the day. My prayer for all my books is that they minister to a reader's heart in whatever fashion God allows."

For Readers

The book has only just been released in the USA (June 09), so it probably won't hit Aussie book shelves for awhile. You can order it at , 

or from

For Writers

I thought you might find Deborah's list of top ten books on writing useful. They are on her website, but I thought I'd post her selection here too.

1.Stein on Writing, by Sol Stein

2.Plot & Structure, by James Scott Bell

3.Word Painting, by Rebecca McClanahan

4.Revision & Self-Editing, by James Scott Bell

5.Writing the Breakout Novel, by Donald Maass

6.Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, by R. Brown & D. King

7.GMC - Goal, Motivation & Conflict, by Debra Dixon

8.Getting into Character, by Brandilyn Collins

9.The Elements of Style, by William Strunk Jr. & E.B. White

10.The Complete Guide to Writing & Selling the Christian Novel, by Penelope J. Stokes


I thought it was also worth mentioning that Deborah was with an agent for a year but her book was not sold. She was finally released from that agent before she met her current agent (Rachelle Gardner) who subsequently sold the book to Zondervan. I can't imagine how hard that waiting must have been, or how it would feel to be released by an agent, but she hung in there believing that God had her future in His hands. Some time we writers wonder, will I ever be published? I don't have the answers to that one, but I am convinced that God has a good plan and that I just need to be still and let Him be who He is.



  1. Hi Tabitha, thank you for posting about my book this week. I hope you enjoy the ending. Best wishes!

  2. Thanks heaps for visiting Deborah! Congrats on your new book and enjoy the writing conference (it's in Denver right?) I used to live there! Can't believe I have only just heard about it! Oh, well...maybe one day I'll get back. Blessings for the book and your future writing.

  3. Hey Tabitha - wow, that's crazy about having to wait a year, then getting Rachelle for an agent. I LOVE hearing stories like that. They are encouraging... probably not encouraging to Deborah at the time, but encouraging for me to hear after the fact. I wish her all the very best in her writing career and hope to read the book soon!

  4. Thanks for your comments Katie. I know what you mean about being encouraged by stories like Deborah's. Sometimes I wish I could see the future and know what was going to happen. But then again, where would the adventure of living be in that? I will just have to contend myself knowing the God who knows. Blessing for your writing too, Katie. I hear you are getting ready for a conference soon. Which one? All the best. I'll be checking your blog for details of any good news! :)