Donna Everhart

First Sentence Friday and Free Book Friday!

Hello Readers!

Welcome again to this week’s installment of First Sentence Friday and Free Book Friday! The free book is a signed Advance Reader Copy (ARC) of When the Jessamine Grows.

Please note: If you answer the question/comment (the way to win a book) out on the blog site, please be sure to add your name at the bottom because some of the comments are showing up as Anonymous.

I’m going to talk about one of the secondary characters who, after his unexpected entrance, became critical to the story. Charlie Hastings wasn’t even a blip on my radar when I first put together the proposal for this story and sent it off to my agent and editor. He was born from that process writers call organic – or pantster writing. (for those who don’t know, that’s “flying by the seat of one pants. ????)

I’m going to stay vague regarding him so there are no spoilers, but quite honestly, he’s one of my favorite characters in the story. He’s an old soul in a young body, filled with goodwill and intentions. There’s a big gap in Joetta’s heart, and Charlie helps to fill it, although he doesn’t know this.

I loved how he came through so clearly as I wrote his scenes. There was never any second guessing about him, how he would react and respond, or how he would fit into the story. I love it when this happens! He showed up like an unexpected guest and I invited him in to see what might happen. Luckily, it wasn’t a waste of time. He became important to the story, a way to create more conflict and tension with other characters, although he himself wasn’t confrontational. He was just. . . Charlie. He could have been any one of these young boy soldiers, although if I were able to cast one of these boys in the story, I’d choose the first young man with his hat on his head.



Chapter 24

She had to do what she could for her family, and Charlie; therefore, she took it upon herself to go and see Bess.



For this week’s chance to win a signed ARC of When the Jessamine Grows, have you read a story where one of the secondary characters comes through and is as meaningful to you as a primary? For me, this was the dog (!) “Six-Thirty” in Lessons in Chemistry. I LOVED Six-thirty!




Now you can read an excerpt of When the Jessamine Grows in this special Sneak Peek Kindle version! Hopefully, it will encourage your fingers (or legs!) to pre-order a copy. ????????



Pre-orders gauge the interest and signal to the publisher readers are eager for an author’s work! Please consider pre-ordering because it really does help! If you’re holding out because you might win an ARC or a finished copy, remember you can always give away the extra as a gift to one of your reader friends. ????

Pre-order links for your convenience:

Kensington Publishing Corporation

Barnes & Noble




Last, but not least, don’t forget to:


2 thoughts on “First Sentence Friday and Free Book Friday!”

    1. I agree – he was fun to write, and definitely added more to the story than I anticipated. I’m glad he popped into my head when he did! 🙂

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