Secrets and a giveaway from author Jody Hedlund


Today I’m sharing in the excitement of author Jody Hedlund’s newest release, UNENDING DEVOTION. Publisher’s Weekly calls it “a meaty tale of life amid the debauchery of the lumber camps of 1880s Michigan . . . exciting and unpredictable to the very end.” This is stop #2 on Jody’s blog tour sharing fun secrets you probably didn’t know about her.

There’s also a signed copy of her book to be won. Check out the details below.


Secret #2: The secret source of my writing inspiration

By Jody Hedlund, @JodyHedlund

The secret of my writing inspiration is my bed. Yes, I really do get most of my story ideas when I’m lying in bed at night before I fall asleep.

Ideas stay in my heart and mind at all times during the course of writing the first draft. But it’s at night, in the quiet of the house, when my mind slows down and when my body is at rest, that I can hear my characters, that I fall in love with them, and they become real to me.

Interestingly, the moment I turn my book in to my editors, the characters leave my heart and head. It’s as if hitting ‘send’ severs the tie with them—which thankfully prepares me to be more objective with my work during the editing phase.

After the story is out of my hands, then usually the very next night, as I lie in bed, I begin the search for a new story and new characters. I begin to sort through ideas, always trying to find something fresh and exciting.

In fact, if I don’t have direction for a story, I start to feel lost. Then when I’m lying in bed, my mind is restless. And that undercurrent of restlessness remains until I latch onto another story and new characters.

Of course, I do find inspiration from many other places besides my bed. I glean ideas from biographies, history books, interesting people, old photographs, etc.

But it takes a quieting of the mind and the peacefulness of rest for those ideas to simmer and to come to fruition.

Are you building enough quiet and rest into your life to fuel your creative energy? Where do you find your greatest inspiration?


Thanks for sharing with us today, Jody! Next time I’m lacking a good story idea maybe I should just go to bed! 😉

 To celebrate the release of UNENDING DEVOTION, Jody is giving away a signed copy. Leave a comment  on today’s post (along with your email address) to enter the drawing. Valid only with US or Canadian addresses. Giveaway ends at 11:59 p.m. Thursday, September 6th. Winner’s name will be posted on Friday.

For more secrets about Jody and additional chances to win her newest release, visit her Events Page to see where she’ll be next in her “Fun Secrets About Author Jody Hedlund” blog tour. Also join in the Pinterest Photo Contest she’s hosting. Find more information about it on her Contest Page.


Jody would love to connect with you! Find her in one of these places:

Facebook: Author Jody Hedlund


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35 thoughts on “Secrets and a giveaway from author Jody Hedlund

  1. Ganise says:

    Good morning!
    I’m first… again!
    I like that Jody, finding creativity in quietness (which I LOVE.) You know what, thinking about it, I can mostly relate to everything you’ve said… wow!

    Thanks for the giveaway on this lovely blog 🙂

    Good day, everyone

  2. Wow, I’ve got a double-dose of Jody this morning (I just read her latest blog post and left a comment!). Yes, my bed. I get TONS of ideas while I’m lying there or on my living room sofa gazing out the window. Down time, I find, is essential for creativity. Would love the chance to win Jody’s latest book! Thanks for such a great blog, Carol, and for hosting other terrific writers!

  3. Amy O'Quinn says:

    Great inspirational ‘secret’ post by Jody. I, too, like to use the time right after I got to bed to think and imagine. Sometimes I do fall asleep during the process, but it’s usually a good time for me to come up with good ideas and scenarios for my writing.
    I’d love to be entered to win Jody’s book.
    Thanks for hosting, and I’ll definitely be back to visit your lovely blog.
    Amy O’Quinn

  4. Amy O'Quinn says:

    * go to bed. Sorry…

  5. Elyssa says:

    Awesome interview and giveaway! I really enjoyed The Preacher’s Bride, and I’m looking forward to reading Unending Devotion! Thanks for the chance to win it!


  6. Jenny says:

    I’ve never read any of Jody’s books before, but this looks like a really great read! Sign me up!


  7. The Jesus Freak says:

    What a great giveaway! Jody’s books look wonderful- can’t wait to get my hands on one of them!


  8. Emily says:

    I find my inspiration just about anywhere. Sometimes it’s hard to focus on anything else because my mind is always working on a story. I feel like I’m always in tune with my characters….like they literally are a part of who I am. I have to say that I was surprised that you can let go of them so quickly and easily….that is not how it works for me. They stay in my heart and I find it painful to see them go. I actually wish I could be more like you in that aspect. lol! Thanks for the giveaway!

  9. Debbie says:

    My daughter has told me all about Jody’s books! Can’t wait to read this one!!! Looks great! Thanks for the giveaway!

  10. John says:

    I’m entering for my daughter! Great post….I find my inspiration in my quiet time with the Lord….that’s when He speaks to my heart! Thanks for the chance to win!

  11. Carol says:

    It’s great to hear from all of you this morning! I’ve read both of Jody’s earlier novels. She has a talent for making the lives of her characters so fascinating that I can never put the books down until I reach the end!

  12. Jenilee says:

    I am dying to get a hold of this book! Love her work so much! Thanks!

  13. Candes says:

    Characters and stories, strangely follow me into the bathroom at night when it’s time to shower. I sit on the floor and while I wait for the bathroom to warm up I pull out a pad of paper and write or read. I step into the shower and scenes unfold, dialog spins its threads and sometimes so do my prayers. It’s my own little world.

  14. Valarie McCoy says:

    Sounds like a great book! Would love to read it!

  15. Amy C says:

    With two very small children, I have a hard time getting peach and quiet. I love to do locker hooking and quilting. I hope for both kids go to bed early and sleep late. So, you can imagine how that goes.

    campbellamyd at gmail dot com

  16. Heather says:

    I would LOVE to win a copy of Jody’s new book!

  17. Martha J. Sturm says:

    I don’t sleep well or really get enough rest due to health problems. The thing that frees my mind and helps me relax and be more creative? Nature! I love to lie on a quilt beneath a tree in our backyard.

  18. Jennifer Hines says:

    I have to laugh. Isn’t it sad that us exhausted moms can’t turn our minds off when we’re in our nice comfy cozy beds? That’s totally the case w/ me too. Love it. Also love Jody!


  19. Jody Hedlund says:

    Hi Everyone!! Great to see so many here on Carol’s blog today! I’m enjoying hearing where YOU all find your inspiration! Thank you for sharing! 🙂

  20. Night time seems like a good time for new ideas. More than once, I’ve been forced out of bed to write something down. So I understand Jody’s comments exactly!

    I’ll also point out that sometimes merely lying down in the middle of the day is all it takes to get past a roadblock in whatever I’m working on. There’s clearly something about putting your body in neutral that unlocks the imagination.

  21. Taffy says:

    Funny! I get inspiration right before I fall asleep too. Then I roll over, grab my phone and type as fast as I can all the ideas trying to crowd each other out.

  22. Keli Gwyn says:

    What a fun post. I enjoyed learning something new about Jody.

    I get much of my inspiration in the shower or while I’m on my walks. I try not to think of my stories before I sleep because that tends to keep me awake. That’s one reason I read right before bed. It helps me to break the connection with my characters by reading about those created by others. Of course, I do find myself thinking–or even dreaming– about those stories, too, on occasion. =)

    Please don’t enter me in the drawing. I have two copies of Unending Devotion, one to keep and one I’ll be giving away in a drawing of my own soon.

  23. Cheryl says:

    It’s nice to read these tidbits of information about you! Love your books, and would love to win! I don’t feel very creative at all lately. Working too many hrs.

  24. Carol says:

    I’m really enjoying all your comments!

    “Putting the body in neutral to unlock the imagination” is a great way to think of it, Carrie Lynn!

    I’m like Keli in that I love to read in bed. Unfortunately, it rarely happens except on vacation when my hubby will read, too.

    Martha, a quilt under a tree in the backyard sounds idyllic!

  25. Shelly says:

    I get most of my inspiration the same way, while I’m lying in bed before falling asleep. Unfortunately this keeps me up until all hours of the night at times, particularly when I have a good idea I’m processing in my mind or I have a deep insight into one of my characters. But I love the quiet that nighttime brings.

    I’d love to win a copy of Unending Devotion!

  26. Becky Doughty says:

    Hi Carol, Jody!
    Hopped over here from Jody’s page – lovely blog, Carol!
    Jody – when I get frustrated about a scene, bed is the place for sorting it all out. I lay in bed, talking with Jesus (in my head so as not to wake my snoring hubster) about my characters or the dilemma they’re in and if I don’t figure things out before I drift off, I almost always wake up with either an answer or a renewed vigor, prepared to tackle things again. This is often true in many real life situations, too!

    Would love a copy of your new book!


  27. Susan Mason says:

    Hey Jody,

    Thanks for sharing your creative process! I love how your characters ‘go away’ once you hit send!

    I’m like Keli – I can’t think of my story before bed or I’d never get to sleep! The shower is a good spot, or doing something mundane like laundry. Sometimes I find myself plotting as I drive (gulp), but then pull myself back to reality.

    I’d love a chance to win your new book – I LOVED your others! So many good books coming out now.

    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

  28. Carol says:

    Thanks to everyone who visited today. The draw remains open for comments here until Thursday night at 11:59 p.m. The winner will be announced on Friday.

  29. Jody Hedlund says:

    Thank you, everyone, for stopping by Carol’s blog and sharing your sources of inspiration! I enjoyed getting to know more about each of you! 🙂

    And a BIG thank you to Carol for hosting me for this stop in my blog tour! Thank you so much, Carol! 🙂

  30. joylene says:

    My hat’s off to you, Jody. I’m doing the opposite these days, trying not to think about anything but my heart beat at night when I’m preparing to sleep. I used to do exactly what you’re talking about, but then my characters wouldn’t leave and I’d be awake for almost 90 minutes with them moving about inside my head. I guess the trick is to find a happy medium.

    Your cover looks fabulous. I’m very thrilled for you and can’t wait to read the book.

  31. Lady DragonKeeper says:

    I often find inspiration through what I see –books, t.v. shows, movies, etc. often inspire more crafting projects!

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  32. Danelle says:

    Thank you for sharing that Jody. And your question at the end about building enough quiet and rest into life to fuel creative energy was challenging.

    danelli04 [at] hotmail [dot] com

  33. Laura Best says:

    Sorry, I was late getting here. I blame dial-up and my full-time job. I keep missing out on things!

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