From-the-blog

Writing When the Unexpected Happens

Wouldn't it be nice if everything went according to plan? I think we'd all breathe easier. *sigh* Well, as you know, life is rarely predictable. BUT here's the good thing---writers understand that without conflict there is no story. In fiction, conflict makes us turn the page. In real life, conflict is similar, yet different. It puts us in the driver's seat and forces decisions. Suddenly, we're the main character muddling through our own real life story. Whether we like it or not, in real life conflict challenges us, changes us, and grows us. And---for glass-half-full thinkers (and writers) that's a definite plus. Where better to glean story fodder than from our own circumstance or situation? That's what I tell myself as my daddy recuperates from a recent fall that fractured four ribs, punctured a lung, and left him bruised from stem to stern. We're now in a two-week stretch of this recent chapter, and it's been a journey, my friend. If you have aging parents, you well
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Writing When the Unexpected Happens

Hold the Hate, Pass the Love

Okay, I don't know about you, but there are some weeks (like this one) that just leave me breathless. I shake my head. Heart-grieved. Stricken. Torn. Enough, already. Sometimes, I want to shout it. (But I don't. Loud doesn't necessarily mean brave. Think about it.) Sometimes, a different (notice I didn't say softer or quieter---just different) approach---is called for. I'm speaking of the approach that calls for reason, compassion, love. ...the approach that generates a civil discourse between God-created humanity in the midst of belabored fallacies and innuendo. ...the approach that upgirds rather than inflames. ...the approach that draws, not castigates. ...the approach that, regardless of differences, embodies what a man went to the cross for. Hope. Hope for today. Hope for eternity. Today I won't ride the elephant in the room. Thousands have already done that so there's no need to break out my sequined body suit and leotards. Instead, may we just chat for a moment? You know---like the grown-ups we are---and share a heart-to-heart? Ready? Then, let's. In this big, beautiful
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Hold the Hate, Pass the Love

Sharing Great News

A few months ago, I shared that I was a 2016 ACFW Genesis (Double) Semi-Finalist. Today I'd like to share more great news. I received word that I finaled in both categories I entered! I now move into the finalist stage of ACFW's Genesis Contest. I'm humbled and ohh so blessed to have advanced in this prestigious contest. To have my work assessed and chosen by industry professionals to move forward is a tremendous honor. Judging contests is rarely easy. There's a lot of time and effort involved, and authors, agents, and editors often place their own projects on hold as they pore over submissions. For that I'm very grateful and I'd like to extend a huge, heartfelt Thank You. So...what happens next? You can learn more about how the process works here. All finalists are listed here. To simplify---there are three finalists in each of the ten categories. At this stage, the finalists' entries are sent on to the next level judges---in this case,
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Sharing Great News

WELCOME to Free-For-All Friday

Ahh. Another week down. We made it! Here in the Ozarks we've gone from a lengthy stretch of clouds and rain to warmth and bright sunshine. As always, things change quickly in our neck of the woods. It keeps us hopping. On Monday, darling daughter and I made a quick trip to her future home. College. Oh, my coffee! I can't even wrap my mind around the fact. We dropped off some paperwork, rented a PO box, and perused the campus bookstore. We checked out dorms and classrooms, hiked down a small nature trail, and snagged a delicious lunch at a nearby restaurant. It was one of many trips we've already made and we know the trek well. Still, each time, the experience seems a little surreal knowing that in about eight weeks, our visit to campus will be more than a visit. It'll be drop-off (and stay) day. For her---not her mama and daddy. (Well, unless we can hide in one of her clothing tubs. Hmm.) *wink* We've been through
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WELCOME to Free-For-All Friday

How Writers Can Use Pinterest

A few weeks ago, you may remember I joined Pinterest. My opinion? I love it. As with anything new there's a bit of a learning curve, but for the most part, Pinterest is fairly easy to navigate and get the hang of. Although I'm late to the Pinterest party, I'm glad I waited to join. As I said in my recent newsletter, while platform is important, we (writers) should grow our craft first before jumping on too many social media bandwagons. I only choose those things that appeal to me as a writer, and I don't adopt every new social media network that comes along. All too often, that leads to undue stress and time-suckitis. And for those who do it all? Here's my question--- When do they have time to actually write? Moving on. The thing I like about Pinterest is it feels less like networking and more like fun. But that's the kicker. Because it's ohh so attractive with lots of pretty, shiny pictures, recipes, quotes, ideas,
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How Writers Can Use Pinterest

Meet Cindy

A hopeless romantic, wife, mother, lover of the Ozarks, and passionate follower of Jesus. And that’s just for starters…
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