Fridays with Friends–Guestblog by Deborah Vogts
I am always happy to introduce other readers to my guestbloggers and their writing, and especially glad when the person is a long-time friend like Deb Vogts. I met Deb at one of the first ACFW conferences, and I have watched her faithfully hone her craft. I also attended a well-run writers’ conference run by Deb’s local Kansas group a few years ago, and hope to get the chance to do that again. And we have plans to brainstorm with each other someday. I have reviewed two of Deb’s books on this blog which you can check out by typing Deb Vogts or Deborah Vogts in the little search box at the top left-hand corner of this blog. You are in for a treat with Deb’s pictures as added inspiration for her stories!
Now, without further ado, here is Deborah Vogts!
Finding God in Your Story Setting by Deborah Vogts
I thought I would share with you today about one of my “research trips” into the Flint Hills of Kansas, the setting for my book series. Some of my most cherished moments in life have occurred while driving off-the-beaten-path into the heart of these rolling pastures.
On this particular November day, the north winds were trying to blow in a storm, but we managed to stay dry–cold but dry. And the prairie colors couldn’t have been more beautiful.
“I heard the prairie call to me, its words a whisper on my heart, and I knew that I was home.” From Snow Melts in Spring.
Cattle Guards are used in the open range to keep cattle within their pasture boundaries without the use of gates. A very nifty invention. In case you haven’t guessed, my books deal with ranching, horses, and family conflict . . . with some romance thrown in for fun.
Pictured above, my husband pretending he’s a movie director. I first fell in love with the Flint Hills while attending college at Emporia State University. And while these hills were my first love, the man above claimed my heart a few years later and has never let go. We’ll celebrate our 21st wedding anniversary in February.
My road to publication has been long and winding, just like this back road through the Flint Hills. But it’s been a joyous adventure and well worth the wait. I’m currently working to finish my third book with Zondervan, Blades of Autumn (release date to be announced). What I find most rewarding, however, is how with each book, I learn a little something new about myself and my faith in God.
Just like in this closing picture—when the sun peaked out and smiled on us, reminding me that God is always with me. Each time I drive out into the Flint Hills, my heart soars, and I’m touched by God’s presence in the simplicity of that rolling prairie. Do you have a favorite place that warms your heart?
Thanks so much for allowing me to share with you today. Many blessings to you.
Deborah and her husband have three daughters and make their home in Southeast Kansas. As a student at Emporia State University studying English and journalism, Deborah developed a love for the Flint Hills that has never faded. In writing this series, she hopes to share her passion for one of the last tallgrass prairie regions in the world, showing that God’s great beauty rests on the prairie and in the hearts of those who live there. Visit Deborah at her web site http://deborahvogts.com or at her Country at Heart blog: http://deborahvogts.blogspot.com