Sign up for Lisa's Newsletters & receive a copy of Blood Ransom

Join My Mailing List
Email:
For Email Marketing you can trust

Friday, September 25, 2015

Behind the scenes with Nikki Boyd part two (+ a giveaway)

One of the things I love about writing is the behind the scenes research that goes into a story. Vendetta, book one in the Nikki Boyd Files, is one of those series that has given me a glimpse a completely different world. Between the setting of the stunning Smoky Mountains and Nikki's work on a missing person task force, I found myself completely pulled into both the tough terrain of the area and a look at how police work so hard to find those who have gone missing. If you didn't catch my part one of behind the scenes with Nikki Boyd, you can check it out here. Recently I was able to take a bunch of photographs when our family visited the park last month. One of the things our family did while we were there was white water rafting, which was a blast. 

Along with the gorgeous setting, Vendetta also deals with some tough issues about what happens with someone goes missing and how friends and family often respond. In Vendetta, this case ends up clashing with Nikki's past as she works against time to find a missing teenage girl. Nikki has a lot of motivation to do what she does because of the loss of her own sister which has shown her both the side of the authorities and as the victim. And with that the emotional pull she feels to bring justice to a sitaution isn't always easy.


“Sometimes there is nothing you can do to change your circumstances. Sometimes all you can do is hold on for dear life and pray that God will help you find a way through the storm. Sometimes he shows you a way to escape, and sometimes he walks through the fires with you.” (Nikki from Vendetta)

Sometimes my own spiritual struggles come to light in my books as I wrestle with the tough things I see around me. I've come to realize that because we live in a fallen world, life is hard, but even in the times when we feel as if there is no way out, He will walk through the storm with us.

On to the giveaway. . .

In celebration of the release of Vendetta--the kindle version comes out on Tuesday!--I wanted to have a fun giveaway. While I was at the park, I found a beautiful CD of music and mug that I'll be giving away. Leave a comment below with a way for me to contact you and while you're there, I'd love to hear about any memorable experiences you've had at a national park. Hopefully, none of them were quite as action packed and dangerous as Nikki's! Giveaway ends October 1st at midnight, EST.


Happy reading!!

Lisa


Official Rules for Giveaway: No purchase necessary. Giveaway is opened to U.S. residents 18 years and older. Odds of winning depend on number of entries. Total prizes: One CD and one mug valued at $25. Winner will be chosen by a random number generator and will be notified via email with instructions on how to claim the book. If the winner does not leave an email or meet the above criteria (US resident 18+), another winner will be selected. If a winner does not follow the instructions within 24 hours to claim the prize, no prize will be awarded. Void where prohibited by law.

66 comments:

  1. We love Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and have had many memorable outings there. The most memorable is probably the raccoon that stalked us and hid out in a tree. Our camping neighbor had apparently spent the previous nights getting high and falling asleep with his open bag of peanuts at his side - a perfect feast for the coon. The neighbor left, and the raccoon tried to score a free meal at our campsite. My husband had to fend him off with a propane canister.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hadn't thought of this when I asked the question, but I have a feeling some of the stories are going to give me some great ideas. LOL That is so funny!

      Delete
  2. Enjoyed reading about your travels. I once went white-water rafting down the Colorado River thryu the Grand Canyon. It was awesome.seeing the canyon from that angle. The colors were full bodied and striking. Loved it.
    That should be on everyone's bucket list.
    jwisley8(at)me(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Can you believe that I've traveled all over the world, but never seen the Grand Canyon. One day I must go there! Sounds amazing!

      Delete
  3. We liked to go the the Rocky Mountains. Once we just got out of the valley where there was a flash flood. I'd like to get back to the mountains again !
    dkstevensne AToutlook )dot) com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the mountains too, Deanna, though a flash flood would have been a bit scary! Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  4. We loved visiting Yellowstone a few years ago. Great family fun! Thedanielsr (at) comcast (dot) net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The last time I visited Yellowstone, it rained and our tent leaked, but yes. . .fun memories. Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  5. vickie storey11:56 PM

    looks like a wonderful place to vacation with all the beauty thank you for the chance to win the giveaway

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was even more beautiful than I'd imagined, Vickie, but photos never really do a place justice, do they. :-)

      Delete
  6. Sounds like a powerful story. Authors really have to face their fears to write about the tough issues in life. Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sounds like a powerful story! Authors really have to face their fears to write about the tough issues in the world. Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so right, Sara. Thanks so much for stopping by!

      Delete
  9. We haven't made it to any national parks, but they are on my bucket list!! Love hearing about them from others who have been, though. waynes1wife (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You definitely should, Diane! I'd never visited the Smokies before, but would love to go back and spend more time there one day.

      Delete
  10. The only national park I've ever been in is Glacier Park and I've lived within 200 miles of the park for all of my whopping 27 years. Honestly, I've only been through the park twice on the Going To The Sun Road but Highway 2 skirts the park as does the rail lines for Amtrak. I've never had any truly memorable experiences IN the park but I have had many in the woods that have surrounded the different houses and towns I've lived in. But back to Glacier Park, I think the most memorable experience was about 10 years ago on a return trip via train from seeing my older brother out of state. It was summer and Glacier Park was on fire that year and I remember the people all moving from their seats to the other side of the car to watch the flames lifting up into the darkening sky. Our train car actually rocked a minute fraction with the weight shift. At the time that was the closest I had been to anything larger than a tiny grassfire only a few feet across....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, that would have been quite a sight, I'm sure. And frightening really. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing.

      Delete
    2. I forgot to leave a way to reach me. montanamade(at)gmail(dot)com

      Delete
  11. I love your books and would really like to win this giveaway. My email is momndad243 at yahoo dot com. Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah! So glad you have enjoyed my books, Polly. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

      Delete
  12. bn1003:31 AM

    Nice to visit Yosemite

    Bn100candg at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I went there as a child, but don't have any memories of being there. Maybe one day. . .

      Delete
  13. I absolutely LOVE visiting the Smoky Mountains!!! The beauty of the terrain paired with the pleasant people and great food make for a peaceful retreat!! During the peak fall foliage you can see the beauty of God's artistry and it will take your breath away!! My email is divaqueen52@gmail.com.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think if I'm ever able to go back, I definitely want to go in the fall. The trees were starting to change when we were there, but just barely. Though it was still incredibly beautiful!

      Delete
  14. I absolutely LOVE visiting the Smoky Mountains!!! The beauty of the terrain paired with the pleasant people and great food make for a peaceful retreat!! During the peak fall foliage you can see the beauty of God's artistry and it will take your breath away!! My email is divaqueen52@gmail.com.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I absolutely LOVE visiting the Smoky Mountains!!! The beauty of the terrain paired with the pleasant people and great food make for a peaceful retreat!! During the peak fall foliage you can see the beauty of God's artistry and it will take your breath away!! My email is divaqueen52@gmail.com.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Most of my trips to National Parks have been around my home states of Mississippi and Tennessee. Shiloh, Natches Trace, Brice's Crossroads...
    pat at ptbradley dot com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad to see you here, Pat! Thanks for stopping by. I've decided that Tennessee is one of the most stunning states. Love all the trees and forests.

      Delete
  17. Lisa, really looking forward to Vendetta arriving down under. I think I'm going to enjoy meeting Nikki and reading all her adventures. It's had for us to acknowledge that the Lord is in the fire with us. We hope He'd just extinguish it, don't we, but we can take great comfort that if we in faith keep holding onto Him He'll cover us from the real heat of the flames. Sure we may inhale smoke, get covered in ash and perhaps take a few small burns but just like those 3 young men in Daniel, He'll bring us out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so right, Ian. I think we all pray that he'd extinguish the fire, but realizing He IS there is so important. And for me, often, the only way to get through it. Hope you love Nikki's stories! Thanks so much for stopping by.

      Delete
  18. Our three kids and their children (my grandchildren, of course) love going to Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. This summer we took a family vacation there for my husband's and my 40th anniversary. We rented a four story house (so each family had their own floor!!) in Estes Park and had a wonderful time spending several days in the Park. Can't wait to read your new book. Sounds great!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My husband is from Colorado, and I've always loved visiting there. Sounds like a perfect setting. And a huge congrats on your 40th anniversary. What a wonderful testimony to your family!

      Delete
  19. love the Smokeys, Gettysburg really touched my heart standing on the battlefield. You could almost feel the cries of the soldiers, the agony of the wounded and dying. Trip to the Grand Canyon, Yosemite Natl Park, seeing the San Philippe Fiesta in Alburque NM, so many wonderful places we have enjoyed. Also loved Hershey, PA and the smell of chocolate all over the town. The beaches on the Atlantic - could go on & on. Also lived near the Daniel Boone Natl Forrest.

    Love your books. Became a fan through Book Club Network.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for sharing, Pat! Love reading about places that touched you. And I'm wondering what it would be like to live in a town that smelled like chocolate. Too cool, actually. :-) Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  20. I love the Grand Canyon and they have lookouts with glass floors overlooking the Canyon. This is an awesome vista.
    I was also privileged to spend a day working for the Indian Health Service in Supai down in the Grand Canyon.
    linderellarAT yahooDotcom

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm definitely adding the Grand Canyon to my bucket list, and how neat that you were able to work there as well. Thanks so much for stopping by!

      Delete
  21. The only national park that I remember ever going to was an overnight camping trip to Joshua Tree National Park in California. There wasn't really anything that stands out to me except for the fact that even in the summertime it got really cold at night.

    debbiewilder (at) comcast (dot) net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is amazing how cold those places can get, even in the summertime! Thanks so much for stopping by, Debbie!

      Delete
  22. My framily did a lot of cross-country camping when I was a kid, and we visited a lot of parks. One of my favorite memories was going to Yellowstone National Park when I graduated from High School. My dad and my step mom took me on a trip for a graduation gift. I hadn't been there since I was about 13 years old and I remember being absolutely blown away by the sheer size of the park. My favorite thing was the Jade pools. They stank unbelievably but they were absolutely stunning. I also recall the stars seeming so bright and they truly looked like they could fall at any moment. I do hope I can make that trip again some day.

    KellysShining(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds incredible, Kelly. Stargazing is one of my favorite things to do in a place like that. It's stunning, isn't it! I've loved the opportunity to see the southern sky as well which is so neat. Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  23. A memorable experience at a national park was in Idaho where the bears come right up to your car. Our grandson, then 8 thought the was the "coolest" thing he had ever seen. sonja dot nishimoto at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really wanted to see a bear while we were in the Smokies, and we ended up seeing a mama and her cubs--2-4 cubs depending on who you ask in our car. LOL I was so excited, but my photos didn't turn out at all. Was still pretty cool to me, though, even though they were across the river.

      Delete
  24. It is great to see former students from schools where I taught living for God in this world. I can see that you are allowing yourself and your gifts to be well used for His purposes.
    One of my favorite places in the world is Olympic National Park. It has it all -- tidepools, rainforest, desert, snowy peaks. David and I spent a week there camping before kids, and we still have notebooks of the hundreds of slides we took of plants, fungi, scenery, etc. as we hiked and explored. I was able to spend a special time there a few years ago with my mother, but I still want to go back and camp out again!

    May blessings abound as you continue your work and life.

    Brenda Richardson (Mrs. Richardson from Columbia Christian School)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love the connection from the past! Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and sharing!

      Delete
  25. I went to the Grand Canyon when I was little bitty, but I only remember walking on the rock wall that surrounded a flower bed! I've spent a lot of time camping and on different trips, but couldn't say for sure where they were. I've gone white water rafting in TN and GA. I've summitted a 14,000 ft mtn in the Rockies. I've been on numerous hiking and camping trips. I've loved it all! One of the most memorable experiences, though, wasn't me. When my dad was in college, he was spending several days backpacking in the mountains with friends. My dad is diabetic and had all his supplies in his backpack. A bear got a hold of his pack and started looking for food. So, my dad threw rocks at the bear while chasing it down the mountain! Eventually, the bear dropped the pack and wandered off. The pack was messed up, but my dad had his meds and supplies back!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh my! Love your stories. Glad your dad was okay. :-) Thanks so much for sharing!

      Delete
  26. My daughter recently graduated from high school. We gave our FAMILY a gift and took at trip to the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas. The Grand Canyon is FANTASTIC! One of the highlights of the trip was a park we visited on a whim. We drove to Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area just outside of Vegas on a Friday evening. The park was not crowded, there were maybe 12-15 cars in the whole park. It felt like we had the whole canyon to ourselves. We took fabulous family photos and hiked as the sun was setting. Being a part of this wonderful creation was awesome and displayed the majesty of our Creator. Every vacation for us has been to visit family or the beach. This was a very different vacation for us as we all prepared for our oldest to leave the house and head to college. The real treat of the trip was making sweet family memories and beautiful photos together.
    kwdunlap(at)bellsouth(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a wonderful family gift! And it sounds like it was a stunning trip. I also so understand what it's like to send your oldest off to college. Thanks so much for sharing!

      Delete
  27. I just love your mysteries and I'm in the middle of reading Dangerous Passage now. Thank you for writing great novels! I have lived in Alaska all my life and I think I have really only been to the Wrangell-St Elias National Park where we went camping many years ago. My husband went to Denali National Park back when he was in school. The only thing that surprised me when we were at Wrangell-St Elias is we didn't realize we were on Park land and we were going to ride our Four Wheeler on all the great terrain, but believe it or not, even in Alaska, we have some restrictions and we were only allowed to ride on official trails. Usually we just do want we want anywhere anytime here in Alaska. You never think of whether it is allowed or not! Anyway, I totally LOVE giveaways, especially swag give aways! I hope I get picked to receive the cool stuff. Please contact me at my email address - ptarmigantax@mtaonline.net.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alaska is another place I'd love visit. Really seems like such a stunning place. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing!!

      Delete
  28. Anonymous11:44 PM

    I am anxious to read the newest book that you've written. I coordinate our church library and have shared your books with others in this way. Thank you so much. The first book that I read that was authored by you was Blood Ransom. What a powerful book. I continue to look for books authored by you. As far as a national park experience, one of my memories also is from Rocky Mountain National Park. We love hiking the trails there. I remember one morning hearing the elk mating calls and looking up to the mountains around me, reciting Psalm 121, my favorite psalm. It is a memory etched in my mind and heart and is renewed when I look at the photo that I took that morning. I would love to win the contest. You may contact me at ddt8372@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for sharing! So glad you've enjoyed my books and appreciate your sharing them. Love your story about the Rocky Mountains. I always feel closest to God when I'm out in the beauty of His creation!

      Delete
  29. The last park I visited was Land Between the Lakes, but it's not a national park. The sense of peace is what I love the most. They have beautiful trails and lots of wildlife to enjoy. My favorite place is a little point situated on Kentucky Lake. I can always feel God there and could sit there forever. Thank you for sharing.
    eppersonkatrina@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. . .I so agree with you. I love that quiet and peace that is often hard to find in our rush, rush world!

      Delete
  30. I have never been to a national Park so I guess I don't stand a chance at winning your CD and mug lol, but I will tell you I am looking forward to reading Vendetta because I do really love your books. I don't recall ever reading a story set in a national park so I'm looking forward to that. l.bergh@sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You don't have to have been to a park to win, Laurie! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment. Hope you love Vendetta!

      Delete
  31. Rhonda Brewer10:21 PM

    About 40 years ago, my family went to the Smoky Mountains. During one of our stops at a visitor's center. my dad held my younger brother (who was 3 at the time) outside while the rest of us wandered around inside. My dad had seen a really rough looking, big and burly man go into the restrooms. So, he told my little brother that he had seen a bear go in. My brother watched closely for the "bear" to come out. When the man finally came out, my dad said, "See? Isn't that a bear?" My brother said, "No, that ain't no bear, but he looks like he fighted one." ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love this, Rhonda! What a funny story. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing!

      Delete
  32. I'm finally back home after spending the weekend with my son. Love seeing all the comments! Thanks so much to each of you for taking the time to stop by!!

    ReplyDelete
  33. I LIVE HERE, SO IM PRETTY MUCH TAKING IT FOR GRANTED, I LIVE ON SIDE OF MOUNTAIN. UNLESS I GO TO FLA, THEN I REALLY MISS MY MOUNTAINS

    Much of the terrain of eastern Polk County is mountainous, including Big Frog Mountain, constituting part of the southern Appalachian Mountains. Large tracts of Polk County are part of the Cherokee National Forest. The Ocoee River, site of whitewater slalom events in the Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympic Games, runs through Polk County and is vital to one of the county's major industries, whitewater rafting. The calmer Hiwassee River, a tributary of the Tennessee River which flows through northern Polk County, is also used for rafting and tubing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It sounds incredible, Tami! I grew up in the NW near mountains and the Pacific, so I love both, but after being away from the mountains for so long, I really miss them. Thanks for sharing!

      Delete
  34. I don't know if I missed the giveaway, but I am so excited to read your new book!! Can't wait.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Hi Amy, yes the giveaway is over, but Vendetta is available now! Enjoy!!!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Just finished your book which I got for review. I loved it check out my review at: http://misty103.hubpages.com/hub/Vendetta-by-Lisa-Harris

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Misty! So thrilled you loved Vendetta. And thanks so much for posting a review!! Appreciate it so much.

      Delete