Friday, October 30, 2015

"Vendetta" by Lisa Harris




Special Agent Nikki Boyd is on the Tennessee Missing Persons Task Force. She takes her job very seriously, especially as she is driven to solve the ten-year-old case of her missing sister Sarah. While following a lead on a new case, an abducted teen girl named Bridget, Nikki cannot help but notice the similarities between this case and Sarah’s. A Polaroid photograph found at the scene pulls Nikki in deeper, and she finds herself a target. Has Sarah’s abductor reappeared after all this time? Solving Sarah’s case has been the main focus for Nikki for years, and she is not about to give up. Will she be able to connect the cases in time to save Bridget? Or is she seeing a connection that doesn’t even exist?


This is the first in a new series, and it sets the pace for a thrilling, action-packed ride. There is a large amount of suspense mixed with numerous red herrings and just a hint of romance. It captivates the reader from the start. An excerpt from the second book will leave you anticipating the sequel.


Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the Revell Reads blogger program in exchange for an honest review.


Purchase Link…


About Lisa…


I'm a wife, mom, teacher, author, dreamer, photographer, world explorer, but most importantly a follower of Christ Jesus.

I currently live with my husband near the Indian Ocean in Mozambique where we work as church-planting missionaries. We've started the empty nest stage with two children spread around the globe and a third — thankfully — still at home.

As a homeschooling mom, life is busy, but I see my writing as an extension of my ministry, which also includes running a non-profit organization. The ECHO Project works in southern Africa promoting Education, Compassion, Health, and Opportunity, and it is a way for us to "speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves… the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice." (Proverbs 31:8)

When I'm not working, I love hanging out with my family at the beach, playing games, cooking different ethnic dishes, and heading into the African bush on Safari.

Twitter:     @heartofafrica

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Tuesday Tip: Dealing with Rejection


No one likes to be rejected, but it is something everyone encounters at some point in life. It is no different for a writer.

Every writer dreams of receiving that glorious letter stating that a publisher would love to publish their book. However, that is not always the case. Sometimes, the publisher sends a rejection letter, and other times, there is no response at all.

What exactly does the silence or rejection mean? Here are some common possibilities:

  • Your work is not ready to be published at this time.
  • Your work is not a good fit for us at this time.
  • For some reason, something in your book is not a match for us at this time.
Silence and rejection should not be taken personally, even though that may be difficult to accept. Use this experience as a learning tool. Many famous writers were rejected numerous times. For example:

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling received 14 rejections.
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle received 29 rejections.
Carrie by Stephen King received over 30 rejections.
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell received 38 rejections.
Ray Bradbury received over 800 rejections before publishing his first story.


What can a writer do after receiving a rejection or no response at all?

  • Go back over the manuscript to be sure that it is the best it can possibly be. This may include hiring an editor (or another editor) to look things over before re-submission.
  • Look at the submission guidelines for the publishing house. Be realistic. Just because you want to publish with this house, it does not mean it is the best fit for your work. If that is the case, explore other options.
  • Consider submitting a different story altogether. 
  • Consider self-publication. While it is not the solution for everyone, it is always a possibility.

The most important thing to remember is to continue writing!




Friday, October 23, 2015

"Fervent" by Priscilla Shirer...and a GIVEAWAY!


B & H Publishing Group provided me with an extra copy of this book, and I'm happy to offer it to one lucky person. To enter, go to the Rafflecopter box at the end of the post. You must enter by October 31, 2015. If you're the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you for your mailing information (US ONLY).  Good luck!


I will admit I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I went to see War Room. I did not plan to leave the theater feeling blown away, but that is exactly what happened. This movie has such a powerful message. While it is geared (in many ways) for married couples, I believe anyone could benefit from watching this movie. So when I had the opportunity to read and review this book, inspired by the movie and written by one of the main actresses in it, I jumped at the chance. I’m so happy I did. I’m thrilled that the publisher allowed me to have a copy to give away to one lucky person. My copy is flagged and highlighted after just one time through it. This book is a wonderful resource for an individual or small group. While it is designed for women, I feel there are things in this book which can be utilized by anyone. I hope you find this book as encouraging and helpful as I do.


My Review...

This book is different from just about any other one I have ever encountered. It is designed to be used and lived, not just read. There is so much to digest, so be sure to allow ample time when working through the chapters. It is not a theological discussion, but a hands-on resource. It is well-organized, easy to follow, and thought-provoking. It is so relatable, particularly as Shirer includes a number of personal stories. The enemy is set on destroying us, but we don’t have to allow it.

As Shirer notes, a main purpose of her book is to get God’s fence of protection around us, and learning the correct way to pray, specifically with precision, is key. Prayer is the fuel that drives everything, and the enemy is out to hit us hardest in the following areas: our passion, our focus, our identity, our family, our confidence, our calling, our purity, our rest and contentment, our heart, and our relationships. Shirer points out that these are the areas we need to focus on. She encourages the reader to write out prayers, and there are perforated prayer strategy pages at the end of the book for this purpose. “You write out your prayers so you ‘won’t forget’… won’t forget who the real enemy is, won’t forget the One in whom your hope lies, won’t forget your real need and dependencies, and, later, won’t forget the record of how God responds.” The latter can be noted in a prayer journal.

When we pray, it should include praise, repentance, and asking.  I love the one acronym she uses in the book:
Prayer Releases All Your Eternal Resources

Each chapter ends with biblical passages and promises that can be used to create specific prayers for each of the ten areas listed above. Fervent prayer needs to be focused!

While there are a number of wonderful reminders in this book, one of my favorites is:  “These areas of greatest fear and anxiety in your life are clues to some important spiritual information. They reveal… that a personalized strategy has been insidiously put in place to destroy your vibrancy and render you defeated.” We are truly in a battle, but it is not one we have to lose. By following the strategies outlined by Shirer, the reader will be better prepared for battle, complete with the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, and the shoes of peace (the full armor of God, as mentioned in Eph. 6:10-17).  So, grab your notebook and pen and dig in!

Disclaimer: I received a free copy from the publisher (B & H Publishing Group) in exchange for an honest review.




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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Writing Prompt Wednesday



If you're feeling stuck in your WIP (work in progress) or just want to shake things up a bit, here's a prompt to try today:


"You stumble upon the end of a rainbow. What do you find?"

Happy writing!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Monday Motivation: Time to Make a Fresh Start!



"Isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?"
                                                                                                        — L. M. Montgomery

"The beginning is always today."
                                            — Mary Shelley

"I want every day to be a fresh start on expanding what is possible."
                                                                                              — Oprah Winfrey

"You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing that we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down."
                                                — Mary Pickford





Thursday, October 15, 2015

"Secrets She Kept" by Cathy Gohlke...and a GIVEAWAY!


To celebrate the release of Cathy's latest book, she has agreed to give away a hard copy of the book to one lucky person (US only). To enter, see the Rafflecopter box at the bottom of this post. (Contest ends October 31, 2015). If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and and pass your information along. Good luck!

A Word from Cathy...

Secrets She Kept was conceived while researching WWII and touring Germany, and especially while touring Berlin and Ravensbruk Concentration Camp.  As I spoke with survivors of the war, both those who’d fought in the Wehrmacht and Jewish Holocaust victims, I learned that the war bred many deep secrets in families—secrets of good deeds unrewarded and secrets of evil deeds never discovered. 

But I wondered, how did Holocaust survivors reclaim their lives and live beyond the tragedies of the war when anti-Semitism still existed? How did perpetrators and their families live with the horrors they’d inflicted?  Were they sorry for what they’d done?  Did they attempt to hide their wartime activities?  Did they confess or try in any way to redeem the wrongs they’d committed?  Is there atonement?  How do Germans today reconcile what they or their nation did during WWII?

Those questions made me ask, too, how do we confront the far-reaching consequences of our actions or those of our family members?

Corrie ten Boom, a Dutch Christian, who, with her sister, father, and many family members, helped Jews escape Nazi persecution during the war, inspired the answer in her book, The Hiding Place.

Little did I know, while writing Secrets She Kept, that no sooner would I complete editorial work on the book than I’d receive a diagnosis for breast cancer.  In what seemed a whirlwind, my team of doctors outlined surgery, months of chemotherapy and radiation, and a five-year plan for hormone therapy.

Cancer treatments derailed my writing plans, including a newly contracted book I longed to write.  “Chemo brain” (brain fog, weakness, forgetfulness, and muddled-headedness) is real.   So often through treatments I’ve wondered if I’ll ever be able to think clearly, to capture a plot and hold onto it, to write another novel. 

At one of the lowest points in my chemotherapy treatments—while weak and bedridden from a dangerously low white blood count—I read an account of John Sherrill’s two-time battle with cancer. 

Sherrill and his wife, Elizabeth, were writers for Guideposts magazine at the time.  According to the story I read, although John believed in God and regularly wrote stories of people whose faith helped them overcome great obstacles, he’d not yet accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior.  He’d not made a personal, internal commitment. On his way to a second surgery, with a prognosis of only three months to live, John surrendered his life to Christ.  When the doctors went in to cut out the mass of suspected cancer, it had shrunk to the size of a “raisin” and was not cancerous.  John considered his healing miraculous. 

But there was another miracle for me.  I hadn’t known the Sherrills as writers for Guideposts.  I knew them as the “as told to” co-writers of Corrie ten Boom’s The Hiding Place.

I realized that if John had given up, if he’d allowed cancer to overwhelm him and steal his life—which is very tempting as one battles cancer—if he’d never surrendered his life to Christ and been healed to go from strength to strength, he and Elizabeth would not have gone on to write The Hiding Place, the book that has brought hope to and strengthened the faith of millions.  He would not have written the book that so convicted me as a young woman or that inspired Billy Graham to produce the movie by the same name—or that provided the answer to Hannah’s desperate need to forgive in Secrets She Kept.  I checked Sherrill’s website.  He is now in his 90s and still writing.

Reading the story of Sherrill’s surrender to the Lord, and of overcoming fear and cancer at the low time I did, gave me great hope that if I wait upon the Lord He will again use me to write stories of hope and faith and conviction, too—stories that glorify Him and portray His love for us all.

This unique connection to Corrie ten Boom and the characters of Secrets She Kept washed over me as a love gift, a reminder that all my days and all my abilities and opportunities are in God’s hands and that He is not limited by diagnoses.  That morning I claimed a well-loved Scripture as my inspiration: “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

Cancer is a precious and enlightening part of my journey, but it does not define me.  It’s neither the climax nor the end of my life’s story. And by God’s grace, there will be many more stories to write.  Those are the secrets I keep, warm and alive in my heart. 


You can find my review on the RT Bookreviews website at the following link:

(I rated it 4.5- TOP PICK/4.5 stars)

Q & A with Cathy...


      Q:    How did the idea for this story come to be?
A:    Secrets She Kept was conceived while researching WWII and touring Germany.  I learned that the war bred many deep secrets in families—secrets of good deeds unrewarded and secrets of evil deeds never discovered. 
        But I wondered, how did Holocaust survivors reclaim their lives and live beyond the tragedies of the war when anti-Semitism still existed? How did perpetrators and their families live with the horrors they’d inflicted?  Were they sorry for what they’d done?  Did they attempt to hide their wartime activities?  Did they confess or try in any way to redeem the wrongs they’d committed?  Is there atonement?  How do Germans today reconcile what they or their nation did during WWII?
        Other questions may be asked, too. How do we confront the far-reaching consequences of our actions or those of our family members?
        Corie ten Boom, a Dutch Christian, who, with her sister, father, and many family members, helped Jews escape Nazi persecution during the war, inspired the answer in her book, The Hiding Place.

      
      Q:  What sparked your interest in the World War II era?
A:  It has fascinated, even frightened, me that a nation was swept into a passion that led to the persecution of an entire group of human beings.  Why didn’t more Germans analyze their prejudice and stand up to Hitler and his degrading Nuremberg laws?  How did intelligent people step onto such slippery moral slopes, losing their moral and spiritual compass, ultimately losing their ability to stop the monster they’d enabled?  Can such superior racist attitudes be prevented in the future, and what are the warning signs?  Do we see them in our society or in ourselves?  If the answer is yes, what can we, as individuals, do about that?

      Q: How much research was involved?
A:  Writing historical fiction that is faithful to the time period and that does not manipulate history requires extensive and detailed research.  Learning about different cultures, time periods—especially war and its aftermath—is a complex undertaking.  I visited museums in Germany, read primary archival and secondary historical material, watched documentaries, interviewed survivors—all fascinating and rich fodder for a thousand stories.  The treasure hunt was in combing through the past and finding that single thread and those shining gems that helped bring the story to life.  The joy and victory was in penning the one character and purpose-driven story that rose above the others, the one desperate to be told.

Q:  What advice do you have for new authors?
A:   Know your heart in the quality of work you intend to produce. Know your passion and how it relates to the world. Read and experience everything you can on the subject and ask tough questions of yourself — questions you're willing to ask your characters. Then find your story.

Q:  What are your thoughts on current trends in the Christian publishing industry, such as hybrid/indie publishing?
A:   I believe hybrid/indie publishing in the Christian publishing industry is a reflection of the current state of the industry at large. With the online market glutted with less expensive books (for many reason), with so many brick-and-mortar bookstores closing (providing publishing houses with fewer distribution venues), with numerous publishing houses downsizing and/or merging, traditional publishing house money is tight. This results in fewer viable contract offers for authors — longtime or new. Authors need to make a living and hybrid/indie publishing is a way to continue writing and make that happen. But, the industry is in a state of flux. Rapidly changing technology guarantees that more changes and means to navigate those changes will come — for readers, for writers, and for publishing houses.

Q:   Would you ever consider hybrid/indie publishing?
A:   My mother taught me to say, "Never say never." But as long as I'm able to secure sustainable novel contracts, I have no desire to pursue another route. I love working with Tyndale House Publishing. They've caught my vision as a writer, allow me to pen the stories burning in my heart, and provide me with an incredible publishing team to polish my novels and bring them to the world. Could I replicate the excellent editorial work, the unique design, the dedicated marketing, publicity, and distribution they provide? No, I don't believe I could, or could afford to, nor would I want to spend my time doing what others are more gifted to do. Their work allows me to write — to pursue my loving gift.

Q:   If you weren't a writer, what would you be doing?
A:   I'd spend more time with family and friends and in hands-on mission work. If energy allowed, I'd love to take up clogging and international folk dance with my husband, take classes in international cooking with my daughter or son, and learn more historic crafts to share with my granddaughter. I'd say "Yes" to more of my husband's invitations to attend bluegrass festivals and entice him to travel to more historic sites with me. I'd enjoy organic gardening, canoeing, and sitting around the campfire singing.

Q:  What was your path to publication, and how long did it take for you to get your first book published?
A:   My first publications came to feature a new story submitted to local newspapers, poems submitted for local anthologies, and essays and devotionals for Chicken Soup for the Single's Soul and My Turn to Care. I wrote and directed plays to promote literacy for presentations in schools and libraries, all of which helped me learn rich characterization. My first novel began as part of my lifelong passion and a correspondence course run by the Institute of Children's Literature. Upon completion of the book a few years later, I submitted it to publishers on my own and then through The Writers Edge — a company that connects books by new authors (who make the proposal cut) with traditional Christian publishing houses to a monthly online publication. Three publishers contacted me, wanting to see the manuscript. Moody publishers offered a contract and published my first and second novels, William Henry is a Fine Name and I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires, both of which won Christy Awards. Since then, Tyndale House Publishers has published four more and contracted another.

Q:  What can you tell me about your next project?
A:   In May 2014 I traveled to England's Lake District — for me, the prettiest spot on earth — to research a story set among British and Jewish (from France and Germany) evacuees relocated there during WWII and the locals who took them in.
       As the German army plows its way west, Claire flees France for England with five Jewish children — children meant to be rescued by a Resistance contact who never shows. Desperate to return to France and the man she loves, Claire begs her estranged aunt in England's Lake District to take the children. But the war, her aunt's mysterious past, a disarming but difficult Scot-born American, and the conflicting desires of Claire's own heart change everything. Claire must find a way of escape or face her own demons to forge a new life among the growing number of child evacuees from England's cities, as well as Jewish children from France and Germany's Kindertransport — all children with the needs more like her own than she is willing to admit.

         
About Cathy...


Cathy Gohlke is the two-time Christy Award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novels Saving Amelie, Band of Sisters,  Promise me This (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2012), William Henry is a Fine Name, and I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2008), which also won the American Christian Fiction Writers' Book of the Year Award.

Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of  children's and education ministries. When not traipsing the hills and dales of historic sites, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, divide their time between Northern Virginia and their home on the banks of the Laurel Run in Elkton, Maryland. Visit her website at http://authorcathygohlke.com/



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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Tuesday Tip: Hook the Reader!



It is very important to engage your readers from the first sentence, so be sure it is a strong one.  If it’s not, the reader may never reach the final sentence. You never get a second chance to make that first impression.

What are some of the best ways to hook your reader? Keep reading…

1.       Drop the reader in on the action. By starting with an interesting, action-packed scene, the reader will want to continue reading until their questions are answered.
2.      Begin with an interesting character. From the start, make the reader see why your character is intriguing and different.
3.      Make your first sentence short and attention grabbing. Make the reader wonder what you have planned next.
4.      Address questions that will be answered during the story. This minor mystery will keep the reader engaged.
5.      Keep dialogue out of the first sentence, in most cases. Somewhere on the first page is fine for this, but it can be confusing to start this way. The reader will not understand who is speaking, and at this point, they have no reason to care.
6.      Don’t be overly detailed with unnecessary information. It’s a surefire way to lose the reader.
7.      Don’t overload the reader with all of your characters at once.
8.      Begin with a simple fact that is important to the plot.
9.      Make the first sentence vivid.
10.  Be sure it fits with the remainder of your novel.

The first sentence paves the way for the rest of the book. Keep it simple and engaging. Take the time to craft the first sentence, as it will hook the reader through the remainder of the story.

Here are a few examples from author Jeff Gerke:
·         “Once he decided to kill himself, the rest was easy.” (from Virtually Eliminated)
·         “Today I’m going to kill a man in cold blood.” (from Operation: Firebrand)

Both of these sentences grab you immediately. Why is someone planning to commit suicide? Why does someone plan to kill a man? What’s happening? It will make your reader continue reading.


Now it’s your turn. Feel free to share the first sentence from your work in progress in the comments below. Happy writing!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Friday Reads: "Intertwined" by Jennifer Slattery (and a GIVEAWAY!)



Jennifer has agreed to give away a hard copy of "Intertwined." You can enter by going to the Rafflecopter box at the end of this post. Contest ends October 15, 2015. If you are the randomly chosen winners, I will contact you to get your information to pass along to the author. Good luck!



A Word About the Book...

Intertwined, part of New Hope Publisher’s contemporary fiction line, is a great reminder of how God can turn our greatest tragedies and failures into beautiful acts of love and grace. Readers will fall in love with the realistic characters and enjoy the combination of depth, heartfelt emotion, and humor that makes Jennifer’s novels so appealing. Readers will be inspired to find God in every moment and encounter in their own lives!

My Review...
Tammy Kuhn is an organ procurement coordinator struggling to keep her job and raise her two children after her husband leaves her for another. She puts her heart and soul into both tasks. Nick Zimmerman is doing his best to remain a part of his sons’ lives. His ex-wife is making that difficult. He didn’t have a relationship with his father, and he does not want the same for his boys. He would like to fight for joint custody, but the fact that he also runs a restaurant could make that a bit challenging.

While working at the hospital one evening, Tammy is surprised to encounter Nick, her high school sweetheart. He is there because his son was in a serious accident. He blames himself and feels that he is being punished by God. Neither is in the position for a romantic relationship, but there are still strong feelings between them. Will they come to realize that it was not a coincidence but a God-incidence that brought them back together?

This is a well-researched novel, educating the reader on organ donation and highlighting several issues that single parents encounter. Slattery deftly tackles the internal battles that parents face, in many situations, in this powerful story which showcases how someone’s legacy can continue through the gift of organ donation. There are a number of identifiable family dynamics contained in this appropriately paced and engaging novel. An important reminder to the reader is: “Bitterness is the worst kind of cancer. It buries its roots deep into one’s heart, growing like a parasitic vine, insulin strangles everything else.”


Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.


Q & A with Jennifer...


Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t an author? 
A:  Oh, my, that’s a tough one. Go completely insane? Haha. I’m also an editor, so at least I’d have that… right? If I couldn’t work, in some way, in the publishing industry, I’d probably be a librarian or bookstore clerk. (Yes, I have a fierce and incurable book addiction!)
         
  **Jennifer, I have to agree with you on this!  I can't see myself doing anything that doesn't involve books!

Q: What are your thoughts on current trends in the publishing/indie publishing/hybrid publishing? 
A:  I have mixed emotions on this. I’ve seen some authors do a great job with self-publishing, but I’ve seen others use it as a short cut to publication. For those who’ve chosen indie publishing because of the margins, and who’ve sifted their books through numerous critique partners and editors and have enlisted the help from talented cover artists who understand marketing, I say go for it! But for those who jumped to indie because they couldn’t receive a traditional contract, I’d say they might be harming their career by releasing their work before it’s ready. 

Q: What project are you currently working on? 
A:  I’m completing big picture edits on my fourth novel, Breaking Free, releasing by New Hope Publishers in the spring. This has been especially fun as I made final changes while my husband and I were vacationing in Seattle, where the novel is set. Sightseeing took on a whole new meaning as storyworld merged with real life, and we got to see so many places—like the historic Gas Works Park—we probably wouldn’t have otherwise. 

Q: What’s your favorite writing related book? 
A:  The Emotion Thesaurus—such a great resource! It tells you body language and physiological responses for different emotions. I rely heavily on this book from first draft to final edit. 

Q: What advice would do you have for new authors? 
A:  First, I’d say don’t give up. This is a long journey, one that will require perseverance and determination. Next, I’d say connect with a group of writers and find solid and committed critique partners. It’s amazing how quickly writers grow when they begin to work with other writers! 

Q:  PC or Mac
A:  Hm… I like the keys of PCs—most specifically, the Toshiba I purchased back in 2008. 
Unfortunately that computer died this past year, so I bought a Mac—and a wireless keyboard. And a plug-in keyboard, both with softer keys. 

Q: Introvert or extrovert?
A:  Both, depending on the situation. I have a natural desire to include people and am often drawn to those sitting on the outskirts. I want to bring them in to the group, and to do so, this requires me to be an active part of whatever group I’m drawing people in to. But this does drain me, and I need large amounts of time with me, myself, and my keyboard. I often joke that I could go weeks without leaving the house, although that’s not entirely true. The truth is, I could go weeks without leaving the house other than to go for a long, leisurely walk or on an occasional latte run. :)

Q: Winter or summer? 
A:  Honestly, I love both, which is why I enjoy living in Nebraska, with its four distinct and beautiful seasons. I love sitting in my living room, curled up in a blanket with a hot mug of tea in one hand and a book in the other while snow falls outside. I also love lazy summer nights spent on our back porch with my honey. 

Q:  City or country?
A:  Though I grew up on the outskirts of the country in a relatively small dairy town, I’m very much a city girl. I love shopping and being close to modern conveniences. I also love diverse cultures and people watching! 

Q:  Dog or cat?
A:  Um… neither? I’m a bit of a germaphobe and am not a huge fan of cat litter boxes and some of the things that go along with pet ownership. (Did I just lose a few readers with this one? Oops. :/ )

**Jennifer, totally understandable! I have a turtle (and, in the past, fish). I do like dogs, but my allergies do not. I'm also not a fan of the litter boxes.

Q:  Mountains or ocean?
A:  Both! Boy, I’m high-maintenance, huh? One of my favorite locations is the Puget Sound in Western Washington where you can hike through the mountains, surrounded by tall fir trees and gaze at the water below. 

**I'd love to be somewhere that I can see the ocean on one side of my house and the mountains on the other side. I'm not sure where that would be, however.

Q:  Casual or dressy?
A:  On a typical day, I’m way casual—like jogging pants and T-shirt, no make-up, hair pulled back in a pony casual. But I love to dress up and go out on the town with my man. I especially love wearing matchy-matchy jewelry, if possible, crafted by an artist we discovered on one of our romantic get-aways. 

Q:  Twitter or Facebook?
A:  Facebook for sure. I really don’t get Twitter. 

Q:  Mexican or Italian food? 
A:  Mexican, especially if their tortilla chips are gluten free!

Thanks for taking the time to chat with me, Jennifer. I'm sure my readers will enjoy getting to know you a bit better :)

About Jennifer...

Jennifer Slattery writes soul-stirring fiction for New Hope Publishers, a publishing house passionate about bringing God’s healing grace and truth to the hopeless. She also writes for Crosswalk.com, Internet CafĂ© Devotions, and the group blog, Faith-filled Friends. When not writing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.

Visit with Jennifer online at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com and connect with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/JenSlatte




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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Writing Prompt Wednesday



If you're feeling stuck in your WIP (work in progress) or just want to shake things up a bit, here's a prompt to try today:

"Describe each day of the week as if it was a person."

Happy writing!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Monday Motivation: Persevere!




"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish."
                              — John Quincy Adams


"Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th."
                             — Julie Andrews


"Never, never, never give in!"
                            — Winston S. Churchill


"It always seems impossible until it's done."
                           — Nelson Mandela


"Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were success when they gave up."
                          — Thomas A. Edison








Thursday, October 1, 2015

"The Photograph" by Beverly Lewis...and a GIVEAWAY!


To celebrate the release of Beverly's latest book, she has agreed to give away a hard copy of the book to one lucky person (US only). To enter, see the Rafflecopter box at the bottom of this post. (Contest ends October 14, 2015). If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and and pass your information along. Good luck!


About the Story...
Beverly states, "This particular story is sweet to my writer-heart for many reasons. I admit to being drawn to the Amish farmland around which I grew up, and a return to the setting of Eden Valley from The River— and the glimpses of Tilly Lantz Barrows and her growing family — are a result of my desire to step back into this rural area not far from my own childhood home. It was there that my sister and I read Little Women and acted out plays, just as the four celebrated March sisters did. I share Eva's love for that classic novel, as well as her yearning for a love that makes her heart sing."


A Snippet:

He studied the picture more closely, finding it curious that the young woman looked so boldly into the camera while wearing a white prayer Kapp shaped like a heart — the characteristic head covering for the Lancaster County Old Order Amish.

Why would a devout girl have her picture taken?


You can find my review on the RT Bookreviews website at the following link:


About Beverly...


Beverly Lewis, born in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch country, has more than 17 million books in print. Her stories have been published in 11 languages and have regularly appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times and USA Today. Beverly and her husband, David, live in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, making music, and spending time with their family You can learn more at http://www.beverlylewis.com/



a Rafflecopter giveaway