Monday Spotlight on Nicole O’Dell

I’m happy to find out more about the fantastic author Nicole O’Dell who writes the whole gamut from fiction to non-fiction for many ages. She graciously answered several questions for us below. Enjoy! And then check out her books.
1. Tell us about your favorite book as a child and your favorite book as an adult. Can you see a connection between those books?

I have a lot of favorite books from childhood. But the one that stands out right now because I read it so many times was The Hiding Place. I loved that story. Themes from the true story of the Ten Booms about God’s protection, provision, and power still resonate with me today.

As an adult, again, soooo many. I love Deadline by Randy Alcorn and Redeeming Love and Lineage of Grace by Francine Rivers—again, themes of God’s mercy and sovereignty.

2. What is your favorite Scripture? Do you also have a favorite Scripture that encourages you in your writing?

The one scripture that stands out to me all the time in reference to my own walk with the Lord, my parenting, and my work, is Philippians 1:6: “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

It’s all about choices! We have the power to choose righteousness or sin when it comes to the way we live our lives. I believe in helping teens prepare to make good choices in advance of the pressure, and I work to help parents with that goal.

But, we’re told that the work isn’t complete. We aren’t perfected until we stand before Jesus. So, we will make mistakes. We’ll choose badly from time to time, our teens will mess up. When mistakes are made, the redemptive and restorative power of the blood of Jesus is sufficient to cover all sin even though there are natural consequences to choices.

The work will be finished. It’s a promise.

Those threads are pretty much an outline of each of the books in the Diamond Estates series.

3. If you could go to any place in the world to research/write a book, what setting would you choose?

Today? Today I just want to be alone in a house full of windows off some rocky shore with blue waves beating against the rocks. Maybe Greece…?

Tomorrow, I might say a beach.

As a mom of three three-year olds plus two teenagers in the house, I just want to get away. Wherever away is. J

4. I often wonder if I would write if I had to do it the old-fashioned way without computers and spell-checks and email. Is there anything about technology that you don’t like? Or anything about it that you feel enhances your writing?

I know! I was just thinking about this today. What if I set out to write a novel on a typewriter. Would it be difficult? Would I finish it? Would it be any good? I know one thing for sure. It would have two spaces after each sentence. Without the find/replace feature, I’d never be able to take them all out when I finished writing.

Also, those trouble words we all have (mine are that, just, and looked). How would we search and destroy them?

I also started dabbling with dictation software when I wrote my last book. I was…um…interesting. I think I’ll like it, but I need to definitely put more time into training that dragon. Literally.

5. As a writer how have you had to grow and stretch out of your comfort zone?

Hmm. Good question. I really can’t think of an answer to this. I’ve never been in a comfort zone as a writer, I don’t think. Publishing has been such a whirlwind to me and each project has been so different than the last, I’m thinking a comfort zone might be a nice change. Between YA and adult fiction, YA and adult Non-fiction, running my radio shows and Choose NOW Ministries, it’s been all about adapting and being flexible.

Book Info:

The Embittered Ruby

Sixteen-year-old Carmen Castillo wonders what it would be like to have a pair of ruby slippers.

“There’s no place like home. . .”

“There’s no place like home. . .”

“There’s no place like home.”

But then reality sets in, and Carmen concludes that ruby slippers are mere fiction. Constant prayers that her parents will patch things up remain unanswered. . .and her hurtful world becomes too much for her to bear. Trapped by resentment and anger, Carmen lashes out the only way she knows how and soon finds herself at a crossroads.

Will Carmen find the path to ultimate peace and contentment that her heart longs for?

Or will her troubled soul remain forever embittered?

Series Description:

DIAMOND ESTATES. Three girls are on a journey to find hope and healing. Each coming to Diamond Estates seeking solace… Each with her own unique set of struggles… And each capturing hearts and challenging the faith of teen girls.




Nicole O’Dell, founder of Choose NOW Ministries and host of Choose NOW Radio: Parent Talk and Teen Talk, is a youth culture expert who writes and speaks to preteens, teenagers, and parents about how to prepare for life’s tough choices. She’s author of YA fiction, including the popular Scenarios for Girls interactive fiction series and the Diamond Estates Series, and non-fiction for teens including Girl Talk, 2/1/12, which she wrote with her two daughters based on their popular advice column. Hot Buttons, O’Dell’s non-fiction series for parents helps pre-empt peer pressure by tackling tough issues. Visit for more info.

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One Response to

  1. Thanks, Rose!! I’m thrilled to be able to be on your blog again. Appreciate you!!!

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