Friday, November 16, 2012

Meet Janie Reinart on the LOVE YOU MORE THAN YOU KNOW Blog Tour

During the past year, I have been a member of a very supportive, helpful, and motivating writer's group.  One the members of the group, Janie Reinart, was one of the first people outside my family to tell me that my writing for children was enjoyable to hear.  I will never forget how it felt to have someone tell me that they thought what I wrote was well done. Janie truly is someone with others on her mind and in her heart.  She is caring and always wants people to feel that they matter. 

I was so excited that Janie asked me to participate in her blog tour that highlights the release of her book, Love You More Than You Know Mothers’ Stories About Sending Their Sons and Daughters to War , as an eBook.  The post below contains a book synopsis, an author interview, links to purchase the book, and information about the author.

I hope you enjoy this post and the rest of the blog tour.  Please support Janie in her efforts to support our troops and their families.

Book Synopsis:

In these stories, 45 mothers of U.S. service men and women open their hearts and share what it feels like when your son or daughter leaves home to fight a war. 

Some were stunned when they learned that their “baby” had enlisted. Others had long been familiar with military life. But all of these mothers knew their world had just changed the day their child called home and said, “Mom, I’m being deployed . . .”

They discovered the strange mix of pride and fear. The anxiety of not knowing exactly where in Iraq or Afghanistan your son is, whether your daughter is facing mortar fire or enduring heat and boredom. Elation at the arrival of the briefest postcard or email message. The daily dread, when returning home from work or a trip to the grocery store, of seeing a government car in the driveway and two soldiers at the door . . .

Anyone who reads their stories will admire their faith and courage–and better understand the sacrifices made by our U.S. service men and women and their families.

Author Interview:

Janie, I have really enjoyed reading all the posts during your blog tour. You shared on Love's Gumbo that you wrote about your “deepest fears and greatest hopes” after your son went to war. You also said you "realized how therapeutic it was to get thoughts on paper, that the idea for a book was born.” 

Can you tell us more about the process requesting stories and thoughts from other mothers? What was it like compiling and organizing them into the book?

The initial collection included only a dozen stories. I needed to reach more contributors. I had tried word of mouth, personal contacts, referrals, speaking engagements, and articles in the local community newspaper. I also wanted, interwoven in the chapters, to include copies of e-mails, letters, photos, and recollections of phone calls between mother and soldier(s). (Can you believe that some moms had more then one child deployed at a time?) All this was to be done free of political commentary.

Looking for a larger network, I turned to Regina Brett, a columnist at the Cleveland Plain Dealer, to put out a call for submissions. She graciously featured the vision for our anthology in her column and on her radio show on WCPN FM, our local NPR affiliate. My goals were to:

- Share stories from mothers of soldiers
- Use writing as a therapeutic venue
- Give back to our injured veterans

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to charities benefiting wounded veterans:, a Bob Woodruff Foundation initiative for injured service members and their families.

The Semper Fi Fund will also receive donations.

The response was overwhelming. Military moms from Ohio stepped forward and their writing would become the mouthpiece for the world community.

To organize the flood of e-mails, I painstakingly added names to my computer address book. I placed each story into its own electronic folder and included pictures, signed releases and author biographies. The stage was set. The contributors were invited to join my author blog for encouragement and tips as the writing began. Within a few months of selecting, editing, and compiling a manuscript, there were more stories to send to the publisher. It took three years (editing 70,000 words plus) from idea to launching of Love You More Than You Know Mothers’ Stories About Sending Their Sons and Daughters to War. The book contains 45 powerful stories of love, faith, and courage.

Since the book has been published and now the eBook, can you tell us about reactions you have received from your readers?

When I hear from readers by email, a post, a hand written note, or in person it always takes me by surprise and makes me tear up. We have an instant bond. Here are some reactions from readers:

Just a short note to let you know how very touched I am by not only your book, but by the recent post you shared about your son getting married. I am sending along prayers for a lifetime of abundant blessings for the happy couple…and for you, who has been a great comfort to me during our boy’s deployment. Thank you and may God continue to bless you.

Carol stopped me after choir practice and told me that reading Love You More Than You Know helped her better understand what her sisters were going through when her two nephews served in Iraq. Carol said, “ I wished I would have had more compassion for my siblings as they went though their journeys with their sons.” She told me how she admires the strength of all these mothers and their sons and daughters at war. Carol now thinks of all of these women as her sisters. She said, “Not only are all of these mothers our sisters, but their children belong to all of us too. “

I have been attending the Buckeye Book Fair for years—ever since my sons were toddlers, rarely missing the Fair. This year I am unable to attend. When I heard about your book, I knew it was one I have to have. Both to share and for myself.

Thank you for writing this book. I am hoping to gain a little insight and also a little more courage and understanding for when it’s my turn—you see, I cannot attend the Fair this year because I will be at Twenty-nine Palms, CA visiting my youngest son, my Marine. Thank you in advance for your advice on coping. Sincerely Barb W

What advice would you offer writers who are struggling to become published?

My advice would be:
·      Join a writing group or get a writing partner for input about your work.
·      Don’t give up. Be persistent.
·      Do your homework to find a good match (publisher to query) for your project. I had good luck with a smaller press. My first query was sent to a large publishing house interested in war memoirs. My query was rejected. I sent a second query letter with three requested chapters and book outline to a regional press. I approached Gray & Company, Publishers, because they had published a book similar in format to what I envisioned for Love You More Than You Know. After two weeks, I received a call from the publisher.
·      Attend workshops, conventions, and read to perfect your craft.
·      Have fun and play with words!

Blog Tour Giveaway:

Click here to enter free giveaways of Love You More than You Know eBooks in honor of our Veterans and their families.

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to charities benefiting wounded veterans:, a Bob Woodruff Foundation initiative for injured service members and their families.

The Semper Fi Fund will also receive donations.

Click here to buy the eBook on

Click here to buy the print book on

I am committed to continue bringing you true stories of our heroes in uniform, sharing with you the bravery and sacrifices that our troops and their families make everyday for all of us.

You are invited to share your story about your soldier here at as a guest blogger. 

Send stories to

About Janie Reinart 

As an author, teacher consultant, National Writing Project Fellow, storyteller, and poet, words are my tools. Janie seeks ways to give people a voice to tell their own stories through prose and poetry. She and her husband, Ed, are grateful for their five children and 10 grandchildren. Most weekends, you will find Janie praying and singing with the choir at Holy Angels Catholic Church.

Janie's chapter, “Boots to Ground “ in Love You More Than You Know, won second place in the National Federation of Press Women's 2010 Communications Contest in the category of a chapter/essay in a nonfiction book. Her chapter won first place in the Ohio Professional Writer's Communications Contest.

Janie's blog Love You More Than You Know is a finalist for the 2012 Milbloggies (6th Annual) Best U.S. Military Parent Blog Award.

1 comment:

  1. Eric,
    Thank you for the warm welcome and for having me as a guest today! My grandchildren have had a lot of fun with Three Ghost Friends!