Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"Leaving Yesterday"

I have just finished reading the book that I previously posted about, "Leaving Yesterday." This is an excellent book and very well written. It is about a mother who has lost one son to a violent death and has another son who is lost in the drug world. The death of the son affected the whole family. While it led his brother into the world of drugs it caused dissension between the mother and father which led to their separation. The mother is trying her best to keep Her world together for her young daughter who is 10 years old.

In the meantime she has been giving talks to other parents who are going through the grief of losing a child. She knows that she is helpful to others but yet she feels like a hypocrite while she is still struggling with her own grief. During this time her son calls her and tells her that he is in rehab which brings her great happiness and hope. Then a detective comes and wants to question her son about the murder of a drug dealer.

When the mother finds out that her son has played a part in the death of the drug dealer she is torn between destroying evidence that would implicate him in the murder. She struggles greatly with wanting to be a good Christian and yet at the same time wanting to protect her child. This is something I believe every mother has had to deal with in one way or another.

I don't want to give away the ending because I would love for you to read this book and find out the ending for yourself. I hope that you will read this book for yourself and see exactly what I'm talking about when I say this is a well written book and very realistic. Katie Cushman will be in Cartersville on October 19 at the Open Door Christian Bookstore from 12 to 1:30 PM. She will be in Marietta on the 19th from three to 5 PM at the Sweet Spirit Christian Bookstore. Her last stop of the day will be in Calhoun at Jacobs Well at 7 PM.

I'm really excited because I plan to attend the book signing in Cartersville. Of course, while I am there I will have to stop by Cracker Barrel for lunch. Once again I encourage you to read this book I really think it's something that you will enjoy. As always, Happy Reading!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Kathryn Cushman

The other day when I was checking my e-mail from the American Christian Fiction Writers group there was an author, Kathryn Cushman, who lives in Santa Barbara, California that needed someone in the North Georgia area to help her.

Well, I guess that would be me. I wrote to her and told her that I lived in the North Georgia area and live close to Cartersville and Calhoun which were two cities that she was interested in. She wrote back and told me she has a new book coming out entitled, "Leaving Yesterday"and she needed some help in promoting her book. I told her I would be glad to help.

Katie sent to me some postcards to hand out telling about her book signings. She will have one in Cartersville, Georgia at the Open Door Christian Book Store on October 19 from 12 to 1:30 PM.the next one will be in Marietta at the Sweet Spirit Christian bookstore on October 19 from 3 to 5 PM. Then she will go to Calhoun to Jacob's Well and she will be there at 7 PM.This sounds like a whirlwind book signing tour and should be a lot of fun. I'm not sure which one do I will go to it will probably be the Cartersville are Calhoun store.

Let me tell you a little about the book.


When Alisa Stewart's son checks himself into rehab,he seems to find a healing faith that's real. yet the hope she feels at this news is cracked when a policeman shows up asking hard questions about a murder of someone Kurt knew. Alisa is terrified. Her boy is different now. He's changed and deserves a second chance. But as his old life refuses to stay buried, Alisa finds herself facing an impossible choice: keep silent and keep her son or risk everything in a quest for the truth.

Please look under my favorite links to find the link to her website. Happy reading!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

ACFW -- The Voice of Christian Fiction

Please take note of this announcement from the American Christian Fiction Writers.

In a few minutes I will make an announcement about a brand new
ACFW project: As ACFW fulfills its mission of being
the voice of Christian fiction we have launched this new initiative. So go
check it out! Let us know what you think! And stay tuned for more info on
how you can help.

Fiction Finder is really an exciting database - of authors, books, genres -
anything a reader would look for. It will be a wonderful tool for readers
and writers alike. There has been a lot of hard work and effort put into
this. It's amazing and wonderful.

Again, take a look. I just love ACFW and all its doing to be the "Voice of
Christian Fiction!" More details will come about this so stay tuned.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Revisions! Revisions!

A few days ago I wrote about an article that I submitted to Georgia Backroads entitled "The Sheriff Shoots the Deputy." I was very excited about this article and was waiting to hear from the editor to see if he wanted to publish it. When I did hear from the editor, he had several suggestions for revisions in the article. To say the least I was quite disappointed. I have written for Georgia Backroads for many years and have had many articles published. I have never been asked to revise an article until now. After the disappointment my first thoughts were to just forget about this article. When the disappointment wore off I knew that I wanted to rewrite the article with hopes that it would then be published.

I sat about looking at the changes that my editor suggested and incorporated them into the revision. After I was finished I submitted the article again. I have heard back from my editor who told me that he has not had time to look over the article thoroughly but that he could tell I had spent a lot of effort in re writing the article. When he gets a chance he's going to look at it further. I check my e-mail daily to see if he has written anything yet. I have not heard from him at this time but I will be sure and let you know when I do.

I'm glad that I decided to go ahead and rewrite the article. I know that this will help me in writing my book. I'm sure there'll be many requests for revisions or rewrites. I have heard many times that a writer needs a tough skin to be able to take rejections or be willing to change things in hopes of a better book. The bottom line is to never give up and to keep writing. As I have said, this is a butterfly journey and I am still in the cocoon stage. I hope you will travel with me during this journey. Happy reading!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A Review Of: A String Of Murders

I want to tell you about a book that I have just read. It is entitled A String Of Murders. It is written by Darlene Franklin. I am just going to read what is written on the back of the book and then I'll tell you my thoughts on the book.

CiCi Wilde's fiancé, Audie Howe, calls her with disturbing news. Her stores broken into and worse, someone murdered the intruder. The victim clutches a string of pearls in one hand and a threatening e-mail in the other.

With the discovery of the body, a recent spate of ugly e-mails throughout the Grace Gulch communitybecomes intensely personal. And it all seems related to Magda Grace Mallory's strand of pearls.

Evidence points to members of the close theator community.It is Gene Mallory, Magda's ne'er-do-well son? Lauren Parker, Magda's lawyer? Peppi Lambert, Grace Gulch newcomer and good friends with Cici's sister? Or Suzanne Jay, theater diva with a shady past? When a second murder is committed with the same string of pearls, CiCi battles through baffling clues to find the killer before they strike again.

This book comes under the genre of a cozy mystery. This is the type of book that I want to write. It was a pleasure to read the book and I hated for it to end. It was very well written and kept my interest to the very end. Please take a minute to visit Darlene Franklin's website and check out all of her books. I'm going to list your website along with the others over on the right hand side of my blog. This is one book that I thoroughly enjoyed and I'm glad that I chose to be an influencer for this book. Happy Reading!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Featuring Linore Rose Burkard

England, 1813: As Ariana Forsythe plans her wedding, she must adjust to the realization that she will soon become the wife of an extremely wealthy man. She wonders if it's wrong to rejoice that her future husband is rich. But, she promises herself to use her new position to do what she can to aid the numerous street waifs she sees all too often in London. During a tour of her future home-the house in Grosvenor Square-Ariana impulsively makes plans to redecorate (just a little) according to her tastes . But when Philip arrives home later, he is informed that an expensive silver candlestick and a miniature portrait of George III have gone missing. Moreover, each time Ariana visits the house, another item disappears.

When Ariana suffers an abduction attempt by two villains, and other mysterious goings-on are unexplained, Mr. Mornay must unravel the mystery of who is after her, and why. He knows he has to prevent any harm from befalling his future bride, even if it means he must keep her under lock and key in his own house!

Romance, suspense, and a deft touch of humor are part of the wonderful story of Philip Mornay and Ariana Forsythe's march to the altar. Fans of Linore's first book, Before the Season Ends, will love this delightful addition to the

Linore Rose Burkard creates Inspirational Romance for the Jane Austen Soul. Her characters take you back in time to experience life and love during the Regency England era (circa 1800 - 1830). Ms. Burkard's novels include Before the Seasons Ends and The House in Grosvenor Square (coming April, 2009). Her stories blend Christian faith and romance with well-researched details from the Regency period. Experience a romantic age, where timeless lessons still apply to modern life. And, enjoy a romance that reminds you happy endings are possible for everyone.

Q&A with Linore

Linore, what drew you to writing Regency Romance novels?
Georgette Heyer and Jane Austen books gave me a love for the period, and there weren't any Christian regencies to be found. I wanted to change that.

Where did you find your inspiration for Ariana and Phillip?
I think they're both amalgamations of people I've read about and/or known. All of my characters are very real for me, so I suppose I've had to pull them from the world in some way or other.

What do you think we could learn today from how society operated in the Regency period?
England in the 1800s is a world away from the 21st century. Times have changed, but people haven't. Men and women of the time were concerned with their appearances, their finances, their futures, finding the right spouse, and so on, just as we are, today. How they went about pursuing these ends is where all the difference lies, however, and this is precisely where the interest and adventure opens up for writers; We get to bring to life the means and methods of everyday life and timeless concerns from the regency. It is fun and enlightening as a glimpse into the past, but readers can also identify with the basic human need to be genuinely loved for oneself, no matter the setting or time period, and to be certain of one's convictions concerning life, eternity, and faith. Having said that, it is good to remind modern readers that valuing one's purity can be mainstream, as it was then; or that the struggle to find a true love and a sense that one's life has value, has always been a human issue.

What do you hope readers will take away from your books?
I hope my readers will feel as though they've been transported to the Regency for a good, satisfying visit; While they're visiting, they'll be reminded that God is involved in their life, and that happy endings are possible for everyone.

Any Regency romance is going to be compared to Jane Austen's novels ~ how are your books similar / different?
I don't think most regencies are written with this comparison in mind at all. However, other people say my book is "Austen-like." That is a huge compliment, and one I would love to live up to.

Do you have more Regency novels planned?
Right now I'm working on my third book in the series,
The Country House Courtship. I have a few more regencies in mind also, which I hope to have published after TCHC.

Can you give us a sneak peek into The Country House Courtship?
Country House is the third book in the Regency Series, and gives one of the minor characters from the first books her own "day in the spotlight," her own romance. It begins about five years later (about 1818) and sees Mr. O'Brien (a curate, now) to a happy marriage of his own.

Do you ever bang your head against the wall from the dreaded writer's block? If so, how do you overcome it?
I do something else. If I can't write a scene for a book, I can always update my website or blog, or do an article for someone, or answer interview questions. I can't really force a scene when it isn't coming; A real block means I need to think about the story more; that something isn't fleshed out enough in my mind to write it out in a compelling way. So getting busy doing something else is the best thing I can do for the book and for me (rather than beat myself up). It allows me to think about what is missing in the scene or in the character until I can get back to writing it more confidently.

Novelists sometimes dig themselves into a hole over implausible plots, flat characters, or a host of other problems. What's the most difficult part of writing for you (or was when you first started on your novel journey)?
I think for me the biggest challenge was to believe that I could write a novel in small increments. As a mom of five, four of whom are still home year-round (one is in college), having frequent interruptions is a fact of life. Writing takes a concentration so deep so that when I first started doing scenes, I would find myself getting woozy after standing up. I was shocked at the level of exertion it took to use my brain that hard, I guess! It happens less now--I guess I've grown accustomed to it. And I've learned to appreciate those small blocks of time. Ten minutes in a waiting room can yield a part of a scene I couldn't get done at home. Every little bit counts. I don't despise small beginnings. There are times when I'm in a deep level of involvement with a story or a character, and then getting interrupted can break the mood; but I'm getting better all the time at picking up where I left off, no matter how deeply I've got to dive to get back into the character or situation. For people like me with busy households, this is a must-have ability. I believe it can be the difference between making that deadline or not.

How did (or do) you climb out (overcome it)?
If I do get stuck at some point in the plot, I let it simmer in my mind. I also exercise--for some reason, when I am physically active, my brain gets going in a way that doesn't always happen when I'm sitting with my laptop before me. Swimming and doing the treadmill (walking) almost always result in wonderful new ideas I just can 't wait to get on paper. Sometimes, I've even had to stop walking and run to the pc just to get the idea down so I don't forget. By the way, I always pray for the right idea, too. There is no better writer than God.
The second "nifty" way to solve a plot (or other) problem in a book is to let it sit awhile without reading it. When you come back to it after a long enough interval (as long as you can give it) solutions just present themselves. I find the same thing happens to me with crossword puzzles--if I'm stuck, I put it down and when I come back to it--even an hour later--the word is there. So the key is, give yourself permission to take a break.

Some authors report writing 5-10 thousand words a day. Do scenes flow freely from your veins, or do you have to tweeze each word out?
In general, I write more than I need and later have to cut back. I don't use a word count, but I may set a goal of one chapter a day or two chapters for a busy week. Other times, I don't think in terms of chapters at all, just events. I may break an event down into four scenes, say, and so my goal for that day will be to get the whole event on paper. In other words, finish the four scenes. Life changes so rapidly with the children, that for me, a hard and fast writing goal just wouldn't work. And, I focus on results, not time spent. Instead of, "Now I'll write for three hours," I say, "Now I'll have this or that happen to a character, or, 'I'll show a different side to this person." When I have accomplished that goal, no matter how long it took, I feel satisfied, and only then.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Dragon Naturally Speaking

Another week has come and gone. I haven't been able to write much in my blog because I have not been able to type. I have a condition called fibromyalgia which causes chronic muscle pain and there are times when it flares and is unusually painful. A couple of weeks ago I typed two nights in a row and when I woke up the next morning I was in severe pain. I was not able to type after that. Since my writing depends on being able to type this was very discouraging to me. I thought I would never be able to write again and especially not able to finish the book that I so want to write. Several people suggested that I look into a voice recognition program. I belong to a writing group online down as the American Christian fiction writers group. I wrote to them and ask if there was anyone using a voice recognition program to write with. I was surprised to get several responses telling me that they used this kind of program. The one I got the best response for was a dragon Naturally speaking. I went to Staples and chose the Dragon program.I purchased the Dragon 10 and was recommended that I buy a good headset that was comfortable and would pick up what I was saying without a static. I was so excited when I received the program. It was very easy to install and there was a small learning curve to use the program. Within a couple of hours I was writing with it. You can even send e-mails and go to the Internet by using this program. It is quite amazing. I have dictated this blog entry by using the program. If anyone asked please recommend this to them. Once again I am back and running. Happy reading as always!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

"The Transformation" book review

The Transformation by Terri Kraus is more than meets the eye. Yes, there is the transformation of a beautiful old church. A beautiful young woman who buys real estate and flips them for a profit has her eye on transforming this church into a restaurant/bar. However, the man she chooses to do this is a man of strong faith and conviction. During the work on the building they begin to learn more about each other. He finds out that she has a colored past and she discovers he has a strong sense of right and wrong. What they both discover through their transformations - not just the buildings - is that they both have more in common than they would have ever thought. What is that common thread from their past that haunts both of them? Will it bring them together for will their differences keep them apart? There is an array of characters and each will go through transformations of their own. If you like surprise endings, then you don't want to miss this one. You can follow Terri Kraus' link that is listed under My Links to find her website and more about her book. Happy Reading!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Happy Reading!

September ACFW New Releases

1. A Blue and Gray Christmas, by Carrie Turansky, Vickie McDonough, Lauralee BlissTamela Hancock Murray from Barbour Publishing. A Blue and Gray Christmas highlights the faith and courage of four couples who remained true to their convictions and found lasting love despite the hardships of the Civil War.

2. A Man of His Word, Book 1 in the Hearts of Middlefield Series, by Kathleen Fuller from Thomas Nelson. Moriah’s heart will only be safe with a man of his word.

3. A Silent Fury, by Lynette Eason from Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense. Detective Catelyn Clark and her ex-boyfriend, FBI agent Joseph Santino, must overcome their rocky past while working to solve the murder of a deaf student and find the friend who’s still missing.

4. Always Ready, Book 1, by Susan Page Davis from Heartsong. Two Coast Guard officers find danger and romance in the hostile seas of Alaska.

5. An Amish Christmas, by Kathleen Fuller, , Beth Wiseman, from Thomas Nelson. Follow the lives of three Amish families through the Christmas season.

6. Beautiful Ugly, by Shelia Lipsey from Kensington Publishing Corp. Three friends need plenty of faith in God and support from each other to see their real beauty lies within.

7. Cowboy Christmas, by Mary Connealy from Barbour. A secretive singer with trouble following her, and a cowboy who hates liars, especially female liars, need a Christmas miracle to take a chance on love.

8. Fields of Grace, by Kim Vogel Sawyer from Bethany House. A Russian Mennonite family fights to survive and maintain their faith in a new land.

9. It’s Not about Him, Second Glance Series, Book #2, by Michelle Sutton from Sheaf House. Two young Christians with an unplanned pregnancy where she wants to place her child in a good home but he wants to marry her so she’ll keep her child even though it’s not his.

10. Love Finds You in Charm, Ohio, by Annalisa Daughety from Summerside Press. A summer in Charm, Ohio, gives Emma Miller the chance to decide once and for all what she wants from life—but soon finds herself pulled between two worlds.

11. Painted Desert, by Nancy Farrier from Barbour. As modern life takes unexpected turns, love comes knocking on the doors of three Arizona women’s lives.

12. Protector’s Honor, by Kit Wilkinson from Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense. Rory Farrell searches for the link between Tabitha Beaumont and his ongoing murder investigation, but to protect her, he’ll have to her trust as well.

13. Raising Rain, by Debbie Fuller Thomas from Moody Publishers. A single woman desperate for a child and the 3 college roommates who raised her meet her terminally ill mother on a stormy weekend and confront the past.

14. The Transformation, Project Restoration Series Book 3, by Terri Kraus from David C. Cook. Can a good, hard-working Christian man disregard his cultural and religious admonitions—as well as his mother’s plans for his life—for the love of a woman and an historic church building?

15. The Unfinished Gift, by Dan Walsh from Revell, Division of Baker Publishing Group. Set at Christmastime in 1943, The Unfinished Gift is an engaging story of reconciliation between a father and son, and how God uses an unexpected gift from the past to mend this broken family.

16. Tidings of Great Boys, All About Us #5, by Shelley Adina from Hatchette FaithWords. Lady Lindsay (Mac) MacPhail invites her classmates home to her castle in Scotland for an unforgettable Christmas.

17. Wild West Christmas, by Lena Nelson Dooley, Kathleen Y’Barbo, Vickie McDonough,Darlene Franklin from Barbour. Christmas courtships corral four sisters in Texas.