A literary journalist and publicist since 2003, Dee Stewart's writings have appeared in Precious Times, Romantic Times, Spirit Led Woman Magazines and on The Master's Artist Blog. She is also the owner of DeeGospel PR (www.deegospelpr.com,) Christian entertainment PR boutique located in Atlanta, GA. Visit her Christian Fiction Blog, which turned 6 years old in July at http://christianfiction.blogspot.com. Her debut novel "A Good Excuse to Be Bad (Kensington/Dafina) releases Summer 2011. Talk to her in real-time on Twitter at @deegospel.
One Way Or Another
The February 2012 Library Journal features the Christian fiction genre with a spotlight article, “Christian Fiction: A Born-Again Genre.” One of the authors mentioned is Kensington Books author Rhonda Bowen. Rhonda’s spotlight is special because she does not write for a Christian publisher. As the genre grows, acquisitions of these works by secular publishers have grown, especially for multicultural authors. This month Christian Fiction Online Magazine chatted with Bowen about her upcoming release, One Way or Another.
About the Book
Atlanta reporter Toni Shields will do whatever it takes to get a good story. So when she’s arrested for sneaking around the mayor’s house, she’s prepared. What she’s not prepared for is getting demoted—or her run-in with stubborn Adam Bayne, director of the local young men’s rehab center . . .
The first time Adam saw Toni, she was wrangling with the cops. Now she’s looking for a scoop at Jacob House. Adam has no intention of letting her near his boys—yet, as usual, her pushiness wins. And when she genuinely helps a teen in trouble, Adam sees a side of her that cares about more than just a headline. Soon they become close—their attraction growing. But there’s more to both their lives than meets the eye. Toni has a haunting family secret, one that is taking a great toll on her. And when she uncovers that Adam has a devastating past of his own, not only their relationship but their futures and their faith lie in the balance.
Which authors inspire you?
I absolutely love the classics and am a huge fan Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, so their work inspires me to some extent. But I also like a lot of contemporary authors like Marilynn Griffith and Michele Andrea Bowen. And because I read it daily, the Bible is a major source of inspiration for me—particularly the Old Testament. I love how stories are told there.
Why did you choose to write One Way or Another?
I wanted to write a story that was a little bit heavier than my first novel. Around the same time I was thinking about this I went to a conference where I met a young man who had an incredible testimony about his past and how God had brought
him through it. I knew that many people would never get to hear his story, and I wanted to introduce a new audience to a version of it through One Way or Another.
What’s the spiritual takeaway from it?
We all accumulate baggage as we go through life, especially before we come to know Christ. Some baggage is from our own mistakes or from the mistakes of others that have affected us. But we don’t have to continue through life with this baggage. When we come to know who Christ is, we realize that He wants to carry our burdens for us. With Him we can go through life lighter and happier.
What did you learn about writing as a published author that helped you write the novel?
I have come to understand the process of writing a lot more. Everything my editor told me the first time around, I was able to incorporate into this novel, so we didn’t have to go over those again. I also learned to think a little like an editor, look at my story critically, and ask myself the questions I knew she would ask. This helped me deal with plot holes and structuring, saving me a lot of time later on.
What have you learned about yourself and your faith from writing One Way or Another?
I have learned that everything in life takes time. I have learned that writing a complete novel takes time because sometimes you have to wait on God to guide you on where to go next. I see it as a parallel to life where a lot of the things we want and ask of God we will receive, but not until He is ready to give them to us. I guess waiting on God was the biggest takeaway for me.
To read an excerpt of One Way or
Another, visit Rhonda’s Facebook page at