Author Paula K. Parker Celebrates Father’s Day With eBook Giveaway

Author Paula K. Parker Celebrates Father’s Day With eBook Giveaway
Poignant memoir "An Unlike Evangelist" free for a limited time in eBook formats

Poignant memoir “An Unlike Evangelist” free for a limited time in eBook formats

Internationally acclaimed author makes her memoir, An Unlikely Evangelist, available for free download during the Father’s Day season

Middle Tennessee-based author and playwright, Paula K. Parker, is celebrating the Father’s Day season by making the eBook version of her emotion-laden memoir, An Unlikely Evangelist, available for free during the week before and the week following Father’s Day. “Since the book’s initial released, it has been my tradition to give the eBook version away during the Father’s Day season,” Paula explained. “There are no hoops to jump through and no coupons to fuss with. It’s available in all major eBook formats, exclusively through the Smashwords eBook Store.”

At 5:10 p.m. on Friday, March 1, 2013, Paula learned that her father had passed away. He died as he had lived, all alone, in the bar he managed in rural Oklahoma. Paula admits to having had a strained relationship with her father for years, one that had only recently begun to heal.

Paula’s father was not a religious man. The last time he set foot inside a church was the day she got married, more than 38 years before. She doubted there would be more than a handful of people at his funeral. She made the trek from Tennessee to Oklahoma to attend the funeral, not out of any need for closure, but because she didn’t want his passing to go unobserved.

She was stunned to discover the little chapel at the funeral home filled to capacity. She was even more surprised to discover she was something of a celebrity in that tiny community. Her father, who wouldn’t darken the doors of a church, had passed her books of Bible stories around to everyone who came into his bar, with the admonition to read them, pass them around, then bring them back.

Paula wrote the experience down in a short memoir called, An Unlikely Evangelist, and shared it with a few friends, including Monica Schmelter, host of the syndicated television show Bridges’ on the Christian Television Network. Monica encouraged Paula to share her story with as many people as possible.

“Father’s Day is usually thought of as a happy occasion for family gatherings,” Monica explained. “But not everyone has a great relationship with their dad. It can be a tough day for some people. Paula’s story is so encouraging and I believe it can bring healing to a lot of hurting people.”

Internationally acclaimed author/playwright Paula K. Parker

Internationally acclaimed author/playwright Paula K. Parker

Although Paula states she wrote her story down merely as a means of preserving her memory of the event, it was soon evident that its impact went far beyond her original intent. With more and more people asking for their own copy, Paula decided to publish An Unlikely Evangelist to encourage others to reach out and heal the breach that may have occurred between family members while there is still time.

“My friend Jason Gray wrote an amazing song, Nothing is Wasted, which was a major encouragement to me during the writing of An Unlikely Evangelist, Paula says. If you are walking through a difficult place in your life, I encourage you to check out the music video version of Jason’s song. It is incredible! For more information about Jason, visit him online at JasonGrayMusic.com.

To download your free copy of “An Unlikely Evangelist” in your preferred eBook format, visit the Smashwords eBook Store.

For more information about Paula K. Parker or An Unlikely Evangelist contact:
Bethany Ring
Publicist
WordCrafts Press
ring@wordcrafts.net

Read More

Sisters of Lazarus Tops Amazon Hot New Releases List

Sisters of Lazarus Tops Amazon Hot New Releases List
Author Paula K. Parker releases her  book, Sister of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled this week (Paula K. Parker photo)

Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled, the latest book by Paula K. Parker, has reached Amazon’s Top 10 Bestsellers in Biblical Fiction. (Paula K. Parker photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (September 24, 2013) – Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled, the latest biblical novel by Paula K. Parker, which U.K. publisher Authentic Media released September 10, recently reached the No. 8 spot on Amazon’s Bestsellers in Biblical Fiction category.

The title also tops the list of Hot New Releases in Biblical Fiction. Rankings are based on sales. The book, which examines the story of two of the Bible’s most famous sisters–Mary and Martha–is distributed in the U.S. by Capitol Christian Distribution.

Sisters of Lazarus has received endorsements from numerous high-profile celebrities, including actress Roma Downey, best known for her role in Touched By An Angel and as the co-producer of the Emmy nominated mini-series The Bible, the top-selling TV mini-series on DVD of all time, which recently aired on the History Channel.

Sisters of Lazarus is a fun and meaningful read, offering the best of what biblical fiction provides–a tale built around beloved scriptural figures. But Paula Parker goes deeper than just creating an entertaining story featuring Mary and Martha. She explores the eternal question of what it means to be truly beautiful,” says Downey.

Hollywood actress Roma Downey endorses Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled

Hollywood actress Roma Downey endorses Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled

In Parker’s novel, Martha and Mary, the two sisters of Lazarus, couldn’t be more different. Martha, the elder, is plain and self-conscious; Mary, the younger, is beautiful and vain. One sees her value only in serving, while the other believes her outward appearance is her only asset. Their worlds are turned upside down when Lazarus offers hospitality to an intriguing new teacher named Jesus.

Parker invites her readers in, allowing them to feel like a fellow guest sharing the sisters’ wonder at meeting Jesus for the first time and experiencing His transforming power, demonstrated by one of the most astonishing miracles ever recorded–raising their brother, Lazarus, from the dead.

More than simply a re-telling of a familiar Bible story, Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled explores what it means to be a woman of God, and how the true value of a woman does not lie in her outward appearance or her skills, accomplishments, possessions or intellect.

91Safq68L2L._SL1500_

Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled is the latest biblical novel by author Paula K. Parker

“In Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled, Paula K. Parker pens a riveting story of love, longing and faith,” says Bonnie Keen, author and recording artist with the Dove Award-winning vocal trio, First Call. “Parker’s novel bears the profoundly satisfying mark of her gift as a playwright. She combines masterful story-telling with well-crafted dialogue. The result is a cast of Biblical characters fresh and human and real.”

“Through the eyes of Lazarus, Mary and Martha, the reader eagerly connects with three siblings from a normal, dysfunctional family. Gone are the dusty, unapproachable characters of Sunday school,” Keen says. “Set in Bethany, 2000 years ago, Parker breaks the time barrier with her brilliant use of cultural detail. The veil lifts, and we are brought face to face with flesh-and-blood people who jump off the pages and into our 21st century world. We resonate with their struggles, dreams, delights, disappointments, and in the unpredictable ways God continually touches the human heart. Thank you Paula, for giving a powerful new voice to another ageless story.”

About Paula K. Parker:

Paula K. Parker is an internationally-acclaimed author and playwright. She is a contributor to the New York Times bestseller, Becoming (Thomas Nelson), and co-authored the two-volume Ancient Mysteries Retold series (Authentic Media U.K.) with New York Times bestselling author G.P. Taylor. Her stage adaptations of Jane Austen’s beloved novels, Pride & Prejudice and Sense & Sensibility, have been performed on stages across the United States. For more information about about Sisters of Lazarus: Beauty Unveiled or Parker, visit PaulaKParker.com.

For more information:
*     To schedule an interview, contact: pr@wordcrafts.net
*     For Review copies, contact NetGalley.com

Read More

“SISTERS OF LAZARUS; Beauty Unveiled” Interview Questions

The following is a list of interview questions I have been asked about SISTERS OF LAZARUS; Beauty Unveiled. If you have a marvelous question that I neglected to include here, please send me a note through my Contact page.

Q: What is SISTERS OF LAZARUS; Beauty Unveiled about?

A: SISTERS OF LAZARUS: Beauty Unveiled is the novelization of the biblical story of Mary, Martha and Lazarus.  It is set in first century Israel and, as much as possible, I tried to remain respectful to the historical settings and culture as well as to Scripture.

In the book, Martha and Mary are at two ends of the spectrum. Martha, the elder, is plain and self-conscious, and sees her value only in her housekeeping, cooking and being known as a great hostess.  Mary, the younger, is beautiful and vain and believes her outward appearance is her only asset.

Their worlds are turned upside down when their brother Lazarus offers hospitality to the popular and intriguing new teacher named Jesus.

Q: Where did you come up with the idea for this story?

A: Whenever I have read the story of Mary sitting listening to Jesus while Martha is being a perfect hostess, it was obvious that the two sisters didn’t get along. We often think of people in the Bible as being above something as petty as sibling rivalry. But they weren’t. That intrigued me.

Q: Why are you drawn to writing biblical novels?

A: Writing biblical novels combines two of my favorite things; Scripture and history.

Whenever I read stories in the Bible, I try to picture the scenes and wonder about how or why the people said or did the things they did. How did Noah gather the animals into the ark? Why would Rebekah and Isaac favor one son over the other? Why didn’t Balak run screaming in terror when the donkey spoke to him? What did Peter think when he was walking on the water? Who could afford perfume that cost a year’s worth of wages?

As I learn more about their time period and their culture, the Bible stories come alive and I glimpse possible answers to some of these questions.

Q: You state that this story is “biblically and historically respectful.” What does that mean?

A: This book is a work of fiction. It is not a history book, neither is it a translation of Scripture. While I am neither a theologian nor a historian, I am a good researcher. In order to engage my readers, I have researched the Scripture, the historical time period, the customs and the political situation in first century Judea. From a biblical perspective, while I paraphrased Scripture to match the conversational style of the book, I tried to remain respectful of the meaning of the passage. As far as respecting history, I try to avoid using modern concepts, thinking or slang in stories set in another time period.

Q: What type of research did you do for this story?

A: I read the story from different versions of the Bible. I drew on dozens of biblical reference materials as well as reference materials for that historical time period. I gathered information and pictures of people, places, architecture, furniture, clothes, etc. that would have been part of daily life in first century Judea. I complied all of this research and kept it close at hand while I was writing, to create what I hope is a story of what might actually have occurred.

Q: You portray the biblical characters as ordinary people, instead of the iconic saints we think of. Why?

A: They were ordinary people; they had flaws and strengths, likes and dislikes, favorite foods, hopes and fears, pride and insecurities. They were ordinary people, all going about their ordinary lives; until the day they met Jesus.

By taking these people out of the stained glass windows and wrapping them in flesh and bone, I hope it makes the Bible come alive for my readers, allowing them to feel a connection to someone in Scripture who struggled with the same issues they might have.

Q: Beyond telling the story of Mary, Martha and Lazarus, the book has an underlying message of godly value. Would you explain that?

A: About the time I began writing this story, I read a news report that stated the acceptable size for “plus” models had grown smaller, and that supermodels from the 1980s and 1990s would be considered plus-size models today.

That is not only sad, it is tragic considering how many people believe society’s claim that if you’re not as beautiful or skinny as an actress, a rock star or a fashion model, then you have no value. It is not just appearance; there are also those who place a person’s value on their skills, their accomplishments, their possessions, or their intellect.

All of these are lies; these things are temporal and, according to Scripture, our value is not found there. Jesus said that we were worth so much more than birds of the air or flowers in the field. Our value is not based upon what we have, what we do or how we appear. It is based upon our position as sons and daughters of God.

Q: You received an endorsement for SISTERS OF LAZARUS from Roma Downey. How did that come about?

A: In my role as an entertainment journalist, I have had the privilege to interview Ms. Downey on several occasions, but we are not best friends. I finished writing the novel about the same time that Ms Downey’s mini-series, THE BIBLE, became a television sensation. A mutual industry contact arranged for Ms Downey to read my novel and the rest – as they say – is history.

I was thrilled and humbled to receive her endorsement, as well as the kind endorsements I received from other influential people.

Q: What is next on your writing agenda?

A: I am always writing something and have many ideas for books and plays simmering in the back of my mind. Right now I putting the finishing touches on the stage adaptation of Jane Austen’s beloved novel, “Emma.” I have several biblical stories I am pondering as well as a contemporary novel involving spiritual warfare.

Read More

Review Copies Request

Click here to request review copies of any of Paula K. Parker’s books, with the exception of SISTERS OF LAZARUS. Please include the title of the book you wish to review in the subject line, and your mailing address and media outlet/blog site in the body of the email.

Review copies of SISTERS OF LAZARUS are available on NetGalley. To request your copy, click here:https://www.netgalley.com/catalog/show/id/34610

Read More