Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cookbook Giveaway and Interview with Angela Breidenbach

I virtually met Angela Breidenbach online about three years ago when we were part of the same ACFW critique group. I met her in person at the 2009 conference in Denver, and we've even connected by phone about a project we were both involved in (that since fell through). There is no denying that Angela is gorgeous on the outside (she IS a former Mrs. Montana, after all!) but what makes her truly beautiful is her sweet spirit and amazing heart. And of course, there's her writing talent, which you'll learn about today.

Angela is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of Hartline Literary Agency. Her new book, Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance, was recently released - just in time for the holidays - and Angela is offering a copy of this cookbook to one lucky winner! Just leave a comment on this post to be automatically entered in this giveaway. The winner will be randomly selected on Friday, November 19 and announced on the 20th, along with next week's 12 Books of Christmas winner.

Now, join me in learning more about Angela and her Creative Cooking series:

LYNDA: Angela, you are definitely a woman of many, many talents. You're a wife, mother and grandmother, a writer / author and speaker, a former Mrs. Montana, a life coach, and ACFW Publicity Officer volunteer. How in the world do you find time for it all? I'm thinking you must be extremely organized!

ANGELA: You know this is a fun question because it makes me look like I do it all every day :-) Seriously though, I work off a to-do list. That's my organizational secret, lol. I go between the list and my day timer and just do the things that have to be done that day. I do take time to plan ahead once a week. I also try really hard to enter in any appointment immediately because I've found if I wait, I forget.

Another thing that's interesting is the Strength Finder 2.0 book. I had a friend key me into that book and the testing. Once I took the test online with a code from the book, I understood better who I was and the strengths I have. The testing focuses on your top 5 strengths and teaches you to work in those areas. I've become much more productive and fulfilled by doing that testing. My strengths happen to include being a high achiever, lol. It's just in my DNA.

LYNDA: Where did the idea for your Creative Cooking series come from?

ANGELA: After I was diagnosed with severe Colitis, I really wanted to find out what I could eat safely. Friends and family needed to be able to eat with me too. I began noting the recipes I used that anyone could eat and those that people would go out of their way to show up for at a family dinner ;-)

I've always enjoyed cooking and baking, but to use it to help other people made me feel like I had something to offer others besides a tasty dish. I could offer hope, joy, and even teach the simple things in the kitchen that seemed to disappear in the last two generations. I hope I've brought confidence to new cooks and possibly given simple tips to veteran cooks.

LYNDA: How many books are available so far?

ANGELA: Right now there are two e-books and one in print for a total of three.
Creative Cooking for Colitis is the original title, available on ebook or CD.
Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance comes as an ebook, CD, or the hard copy form.
The hard copy form of Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance has both ebooks combined into one with the bonus section adding in the IBD, Colitis, Celiac, and weight loss tips.

LYNDA: As a former pageant winner and a Weight Watchers leader, how much emphasis is put on the "healthy" aspect of these recipes?

ANGELA: The important thing about eating healthy is paying attention to lots of fruits, vegetables, protein, fiber, and portion control. Every recipe is intentionally very healthy. But there are some recipes that the portions must be smaller to control fat and sugar. There's no "bad" food. "Everything is permissible for me, but not everything is beneficial, Everything is permissible for me, but I will not be mastered by anything." 1 Corinthians 6:12 helps us to understand that we have the choice to have it all, do it all, eat it all. But all is not beneficial. This verse guides me as I make choices each day.

For instance, there are several treats in Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance such as Grandma Bigelow's Orange Rolls or the Caramel Corn. Lovely treats. The key is moderation. One roll. One small bowl of caramel corn. It's easy to get carried away with treats because they taste good and we have free will. I suggest taking one serving out and putting the rest completely away. Then eat fresh fruit or veggies before you go back for more of the treats. Beneficial versus permissible.

The desserts and candies aren't bad for you, in fact those in the Creative Cooking series use some great healthy ingredients, but deprivation is a very harmful way of life. When we deprive ourselves, that's when it's easiest to fall into gluttony. By making treats a standard, in moderation, we can better control our eating habits and protect ourselves from binge eating. It's just as permissible to deprive yourself. Deprivation is not beneficial to the goal of being healthy either.

LYNDA: Tell us what we can expect with Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance. Are these recipes that would be especially appropriate during the holiday season?

ANGELA: Many of the recipes will be great for your holiday table like the Sage Turkey, Spiced Roast Beef, Frosted Fruit, Sweet Potatoes and Apple Streusel, Caramel Corn and more. But I also like those that work well with the left overs from Thanksgiving like the Mexican Lasagna and Simple Scratch Chicken Soup. I love using the turkey for these as well as for the Blooming Chicken Savories. But truthfully, no Christmas morning ever feels right without my grandma's orange rolls. All the recipes work all year round and you'll even find a few for Easter.

LYNDA: Any other cookbooks in the works?

ANGELA: I do have a few other plans, but the contracts for non-fiction have those releases coming out first. I've been asked a lot about cooking for singles and couples. This may be the next one I work on because my husband and I are now empty-nesters. Cooking is definitely different than when we had all six kids and their friends around for most meals. And my groceries cost a lot less ;-)

LYNDA: You have another series, Gems of Wisdom: For a Treasure-filled Life, coming out in May of 2011. Tell us a little about that.

ANGELA: Historical pirates embody the negative attitudes, behaviors, and beliefs we all carry with us. As we go to daily battle against these pirates, we fill our treasure chests with the gems of wisdom. The significance shimmers as we overflow that wisdom onto others. I have to tell you that researching both pirates and gemstones was fun! It made the personal and spiritual growth aspect of this book much more entertaining. Okay, and I was talking in pirate lingo in my head all the time, lol. The Gems of Wisdom Companion Guide comes along side the book and lets you get personal with the concepts too.

Gems of Wisdom: For A Treasure-Filled Life allows you to discover each gem of wisdom as you become victorious over the pirates who try to steal them. God uses gemstones throughout the Bible as memory anchors to help us to remember, pray, respect, worship, and celebrate. This unique book will empower women to influence and preserve important relationships and discover the wisdom to lead a powerful life. Gems of Wisdom invites the reader on a treasure hunt for important concepts represented by the beautiful stones God created. Excellent for Bible study and book clubs as well as individual study.

LYNDA: For us writers, can you share a little of your journey to publication?

ANGELA: Back in about 2000, I started sending in a few articles to the newspaper and magazines like Group based on the youth group programs I wrote. Every now and then, one would get accepted. I really never understood why one and not another. But I loved writing and editing, what little I knew of it. I began reading books on the craft of writing for magazines, thinking I wanted to write articles or do journalism. Then stories started popping into my head for novel length. But I had no idea how to write those either. I met a mentor at the Idaho Writers League who led me to RWA and from there another led me to ACFW.

I took online classes all over the place, but had found my home in ACFW. I started attending all the conferences and entering the contests like the Genesis and Touched By Love. In 2006, I started winning or placing very high in contests and getting positive responses to my queries. Then I knew it was time to get serious. So finishing a book became a driving goal. I had a message to share in non-fiction through cookbooks and personal growth studies. I'll tell you, cookbooks were not an inkling when I started writing!

I'm still writing articles for ezines, magazines, and blogs but now it's more honed to the expertise from my non-fiction. Interesting thing I learned along the way is that the more I volunteered, the more I learned about writing and the publishing industry. I began volunteering for RWA/FHL leading prayers at the mini-conference. Then hostessing classes for ACFW a couple of years in a row gave me the opportunity to meet several agents and editors. Serving as publicity officer for two years helped me continue learning the industry even as I could share my abilities to help the organization too. I'd highly suggest volunteering at conferences and for writing organizations.

I don't think any one thing led to publication. I think compounding all the experiences, each leading to the next, blends into the story of my journey. If I could give any advice to a new writer it would be open up to volunteer opportunities. It's in those volunteer moments that I met my best friends, my agent, and most admired mentors.

LYNDA: Thanks so much for your time and for this fabulous giveaway! End by sharing a few links to sites where we can connect with you.

Thank you so much, Lynda, for having me here. I'm truly honored.

htttp:// (Angie) (Wed. posts)


For your chance to win a copy of Creative Cooking for Simple Elegance, leave a comment on this blog post by Friday, November 19. The winner will be randomly selected and announced on November 20.

**Contest disclaimer: Void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents. Odds of winning depend on number of entrants.**


gahome2mom said...

I would love to win a copy of Angela's cookbook. Thanks. gahome2mom/at/gmail/dt/com

Jan Cline said...

Angela you are one busy girl! Who couldn't use a great cookbook like this one! Enter me for a chance.
jancline at ymail dot com

Stephanie Craig said...

Great interview. I like the tip about eating veggies before going back eating more treats. Sounds like a good cookbook with common sense.

Stephanie Craig


Joanne Sher said...

Great advice, and a super interview :) Enter me please!

Cheryl Linn Martin said...

I love to learn new ways to make my meals more healthy and more creative.

On the healthy side, I've been adding lots of spinach and kale to things like soup, spaghetti, chili, tuna casserole, mac and cheese, etc.

My family loves it! I think it adds to the flavor.

Love to have this cookbook!

Angela Breidenbach said...

Hi everybody!
Wow, you've all been just as busy this morning commenting :-) My morning was spent reviewing a book, prepping a proposal, discussing marketing for jewelry with Pamba Toto, and an impromptu chat with my 21 year old daughter.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read the interview! I'm appreciative and having lots of fun reading your comments.

I really hope you all enjoy the cookbook and thank you for the tips you're leaving here too! I collect and use the wisdom of others as well. How better to grow? Cheryl, I add spinach, onions, and tomatoes to my 3 egg omelette most mornings. But I cut out 2 of the yolks :-)

Excited to visit with you all,

Susan said...

Okay, Linda, sign me up. I have an extensive cookbook collection. Sincerely, Susan

Inspired Kathy said...

Oh what a great cookbook.
Thanks for the chance.

Angela Breidenbach said...

Tonight for dinner my husband picked the cashew stir fry. I get to raid his cashew stash :-)

Angie Breidenbach

Diane said...

I need cooking ideas that are simple and lovely. Sounds like a great journey for her so far. :O)

estrella8888 at roadrunner dot com

Anonymous said...

I really would like to win this cookbook. Thanks for having this giveaway.
susanbillietaylor [at] gmail [dot] com

Joan said...

Sounds like a great cookbook. I know I'd enjoy cooking from it.
joosbornenc at yahoo dot com

holdenj said...

I would love to win Angela's cookbook, we can always use some new, healthy ideas around here!
Thanks so much.