Saturday, May 9, 2020

Celebrating the Beauty of Story

Edie here. Today I want us to celebrate the release of Beth's final installment in an amazing series. I had the honor of getting an advance reader copy and have read the entire series. It now has a special place on my "Favorite Books" shelf. In addition, during this time of social distancing, it's so important that we band together and help authors who are caught by circumstances. So be sure and give her a shout out!

Celebrating the Beauty of Story
by Beth Vogt @BethVogt

I celebrated two birthdays this past week.

That’s correct – two birthdays

Tuesday, May 5, was my once-a-year- birthday. 

Tuesday was also the “book birthday” for The Best We’ve Been, book three in my Thatcher Sisters Series.

Book birthdays are fun for authors. Yes, we’re in a marketing state of mind, but this is a wonderful day of celebration—the culmination of months, if not years, of work. Books become “real” when they reach our readers. 

It’s said that story connects us. We understand one another as we learn each other’s story. Why we say certain things. Why we do—or don’t do—certain things.

It’s also true that our life stories are connected, and this is especially true when it comes to family.

Sister relationships are at the heart of The Best We’ve Been. I thought about Johanna Thatcher, the older sister and central character in this novel, back when I was plotting books one and two. More specifically, I thought about her interaction with her younger sisters, Jillian, Payton, and Pepper. The four Thatcher sisters’ connection one another? Complicated, at best. 

Yes, by definition I’m making up a story whenever I write a novel. But writing is also an act of exploration. As novelists, we pen stories filled with imaginary characters’ choices and changes. But we also use story as a microscope to examine real life themes. 





And then we welcome readers into our stories. Yes, we hope they fall in love with our characters, but we also hope they discover truth along the way. About themselves. About life. Perhaps our words, page after page, chapter after chapter, will create a connection to both the imaginary and reality.

That possibility is why the beauty of story can be celebrated every day.


The Best We've Been
by Beth Vogt
Having abandoned her childhood dream years ago, Johanna Thatcher knows what she wants from life. Discovering that her fiancĂ© was cheating on her only convinces Johanna it’s best to maintain control and protect her heart.

Despite years of distance and friction, Johanna and her sisters, Jillian and Payton, have moved from a truce toward a fragile friendship. But then Johanna reveals she has the one thing Jillian wants most and may never have—and Johanna doesn’t want it. As Johanna wrestles with a choice that will change her life and her relationships with her sisters forever, the cracks in Jillian’s marriage and faith deepen. Through it all, the Thatcher sisters must decide once and for all what it means to be family.

Beth K. Vogt believes God’s best often waits behind the doors marked “Never.” Having authored nine contemporary romance novels and novellas, The Best We’ve Been, the final book in Beth’s Thatcher Sisters Series with Tyndale House Publishers, releasers May 2020. Other books in the women’s fiction series include Things I Never Told You, which won the 2019 AWSA Award for Contemporary Novel of the Year, and Moments We Forget. Beth is a 2016 Christy Award winner, a 2016 ACFW Carol Award winner, and a 2015RITA®finalist. An established magazine writer and former editor of the leadership magazine for MOPS International, Beth blogs for Learn How to Write a Novel and The Write Conversation and also enjoys speaking to writers group and mentoring other writers. Visit Beth at


  1. Happy Birthdays, Beth! I'm celebrating with you and look forward to reading the series.

  2. Thank you, Cathy, for your encouragement.

  3. At a conference I attended last summer, a panel of agents and publishers was asked the number one thing they looked for in a book proposal. Their universal answer: story. I went home and re-thought my non-fiction book proposal and wove my own story through its pages. It brought the material to life. Our lives are a story we are meant to share. As God brings peace and comfort to us, we are meant to share that with others to encourage them in their own story. And isn't that what we write for--to bring the glory of God into view for those who may have lost sight of it? Great post, Beth!!

    1. Julie: Thank you for sharing, friend. And I think of how our lives connected so many years ago, before we both were published authors, and now years later, here we are, reconnecting with a love for The Word and for words ...

  4. Diane T. HolmesMay 9, 2020 at 9:51 AM

    Thank you Beth - I'm celebrating with you too. My novel was released in print form on May 6 of this week - I'm a first time published author! I thank God daily for all His help in getting me this far. What a great Mother's Day gift. I loved your writing this morning and can identify with so much of it - so encouraging. It helps to start my day right. I will read more of your writings. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Happy Book Birthday to you, Diane! And congratulations on your debut novel -- Two Sisters' Secret, yes? The plot is intriguing and such an important topic.

  5. Happy birthday to you and your book, Beth. Congratulations! Keep moving forward.

  6. Late happy birthday to you and to your book, Beth! And thank you for the recommendation, Edie. I just ordered The Best We've Been. Happy Mother's Day to me! :)

    1. Karen, thank you for the birthday wishes. I will mention again that The Best We've Been is book 3 in the series. It can be read as a standalone, but I wanted to just remind you. And Happy Mother's Day to you!