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Author | Professor | Podcaster
What reviewers are saying...
"There is a spirit in every home that meets us at the door." Laura Ingalls Wilder
Sometimes it's waiting on the porch.    

New Podcast

"Gladness & Hunger"

The vocational magic of stories and soft skills. 


Frederick Buechner said that the key to a career satisfying to both your soul and your finances was to find “where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”


My own deep gladness is in sharing messages of hope and inspiration, whether writing, teaching, or in simple conversation. 

In my new podcast, I have the opportunity to sit down with friends (old and new) to discuss personal stories and explore the question, "What brings you deep gladness?"


Geared toward writers, students, and story lovers, this podcast will inspire anyone on their own vocational journey. 


As an author of inspirational fiction, I write about love, loss, struggle, hope, home and new beginnings. As a professor, my goal is to teach students how to get jobs and build sustainable careers that actually feed their soul.


This podcast serves as yet another branch on the tree of those offerings.

Alone in a Cabin


Maggie was alone in the cabin when the snowstorm began,

until a half-frozen man appeared on the doorstep.


On the eve of Maggie Raines’ fiftieth birthday, her husband announces he has gotten his young receptionist pregnant.


Months later, newly-divorced Maggie sees an ad for an 1800s cabin billed as the “perfect writer’s retreat.” For years she has wondered if she has what it takes to be a fiction writer.


Maggie rents the cabin for the week between Christmas and New Year’s hoping the old log walls will inspire a story.


And they do—just not the story she imagines.


A ghost. A body. A lonely small town sheriff.

If Maggie can survive her own story,

she might find her heart’s rhythm again.

Leaving Independence

“a stunning debut”

“will watch for more from this gifted author”

“plot is solid and characters well developed”

“had everything I look for in a book”

“best novel that I have read in 2016”

“I laughed and cried. I cheered and held my breath.”

“a blend of history, romance, suspense and humor that drew me in from the first page”

“a vibrant cast of characters…just when you think you have it all figured out, the book takes an unexpected turn!”

“one of the best books I’ve ever read”

“talented new author…her ability to transport the reader into the story is amazing”

“I was gripped by the story from the first page…the characters were complicated and real”

“Smith drives a great plot, fun dialogue, and big questions for the reader”

“I didn’t want it to end!”

“Smith’s immaculately researched tale of life and love on an 1866 wagon train entertains from the first page until the dramatic finish”

“exquisite descriptions of the main characters and scenery”

“lovable and diverse side characters introduce you to a truly special world”

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A Contradiction to His Pride

"this author is a storyteller"

"couldn't put it down"

"this sequel is even better"

"no disappointment"

"a real wild west story"

"stands on its own so well it wouldn't have to be considered a sequel"

"I hope Leanne Smith writes many more books"

"a great summer read"


The joy of the journey...

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