Monday, December 24, 2007
The gifts were many, each a treasure
Some of wealth, more of the heart.
The greetings robust, yet hushed
And filled with awe.
The star shimmered still, even
As morning neared.
Her body drained, Mary sighed, breathing in scents
Of pungent hay, and sheep, and donkey.
Her pulse quickened again at the wonder—
Her new son, her Jesus, who would be Lord.
She knew the Scriptures and held them dear.
Her stomach clenched, overwhelmed at being chosen.
Her, a common girl, not worthy, not ready.
The baby fussed, and Mary hugged Him to her chest. A breeze
Tickled the hairs on her arm, and she smiled.
She thought of the Angel’s words, the shepherd’s words.
The voices lifted in praise.
Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart.
She held them dear.
Friday, December 21, 2007
The Christmas Candle
A single flame flickers, alone in the silence
Wax drips like lace down all sides
No one watches, but like the greatest star
Which ever rose, it is a
Flicker of light, flicker of hope.
Those in darkness have seen great light,
The flame leaps with joy, and sways silently,
no sound in the night, and like the greatest star
which ever rose, it is a
Flicker of light, flicker of hope.
The children clutch white candles,
Casting pinpricks of light like stardust
In the land, sprinkled on all men from the greatest star
Which ever rose.
Flickers of light, flickers of hope.
Across the globe the candles shine
Their flames bow and praise the Great News.
They light the sky, they light the sanctuaries as they wait
And watch for the greatest start which ever rose.
Flickering with light, flickering with hope.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Avon Inspire January 2, 2008)
In the second book in the Westward Hearts trilogy, will the promise of a new life out west heal the scars of Toni's past?
This series tells the stories of three strong women as they struggle to survive on the rough wagon train and lose their hearts to unlikely heroes along the way/ Thin Little House on the Prairie meets Francine river's Redeeming Love and you begin to get a sense of the riveting historical series that Tracey Bateman has created.
In this second installment, we follow Toni Rodden, a former prostitute who sought to escape her past and build a new life, and a new reputation, when she joined the wagon train. Despite much resentment and distrust from the other women, Toni has finally earned a place on the wagon train and found a surrogate family in Fannie Caldwell and her two siblings. For the first time in her life, Toni actually feels free.
But while Toni once harbored dreams that her new life might include a husband and family, she soon realizes the stigma that comes with her past is difficult to see beyond and that she'll never be truly loved or seen as worthy. As the trip out west begins to teach her to survive on her own, she resolves to make her own living as a seamstress when the train finally reaches Oregon.
But despite Toni's conviction that no man will be able to see beyond her marred past, Sam Two-feathers, the wagon scout and acting preacher for the train seems to know of a love that forgives sins and values much more than outward appearances. Will Sam have the confidence to declare his love? Will Toni be able to trust in a God that can forgive even the darkest past? Faith, love, and courage will be put to the test in Distant Heart.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
As a child of God, we have all been commanded, not asked, to serve Him. It
is part of the responsibility of being in the family of God to serve. One of
the issues that I get hundreds of emails about each day is people who are
serving the Lord and because things didn't work out exactly as they planned,
feel like they have failed. There is a word I want to impart into your life
today that I don't want you to EVER forget. THERE IS NO FAILURE WITH GOD!
***THE ONLY WAY TO FAIL GOD IS TO NOT SERVE HIM!!!
Let me share something with you. When you are serving the Lord, NOTHING ever
always works out the way YOU planned, but it ALWAYS works out the way God
planned! Please, let me repeat that one more time to insure you get this.
When you are serving the Lord, NOTHING ever always works out the way YOU
planned, but it ALWAYS works out the way God planned. You see, when you are
truly serving God, it is God, not you, who is in control. You are the clay,
not the potter! Does the clay tell the potter what to do?
The key to serving the Lord is two things, our obedience and our
faithfulness. Those are the two things that we have 100% control over. We
can obey and we can be faithful. When God has an obedient and faithful
servant, He has a servant He can truly use and work through. Again, that is
what we are, God's servants. When it is us, when we are doing it, it is
simply a work of flesh and blood and the dynamic power of the Holy Spirit is
missing. When it is God and we are yielded to Him, the supernatural power of
His Spirit can move and incredible things happen.
The problem we have in serving the Lord is getting caught up in how the
world defines success. The world says a church of 5,000 is a huge success
and a church of 50 is a failure. The world says the pastor of the church of
5,000 is doing great things and the man who pastors the church of 50
obviously doesn't know what he is doing. However, God says that if the
church of 5,000 is simply a Christian country club where people are coming
to be entertained for an hour a week, having their ears tickled, never
hearing the power of the Gospel but simply being coddled, yet in the church
of 50 the people are being fed the Truth of the Word, equipped to serve,
challenged to holy living, using their lives to serve God, it is the church
of 5,000 that is not measuring up to God's standards and the church of 50 is
the one He is proud of.
The world says that if you have huge palatial buildings, brand new private
jets, live like the ruler of a small nation, and are famous the world over,
you are a great success. Likewise, the world says that if you have no
building, drive an older model car with 120,000 miles on it, live modestly,
and nobody knows your name, you are a failure. However, God says that if the
person experiencing great financial success is simply using the Gospel as a
business and is being served, and the person with very little materially is
using the Gospel to minister to the lost and is serving others, the one
being served is getting his rewards now and the one serving others will
enjoy the crowns and rewards in Glory for all eternity.
That is what this really boils down to my friend, service. We are called to
serve the Lord and when we answer that call there is no such thing as
failure despite what the world says. Part of being a servant is having the
faith in the One you serve to go where He says go and do what He says do,
and not worry about the outcome. Of course, when you walk by faith you have
to take the first step. That is why you spend time in prayer, get wise
counsel before you start. But once you start taking that walk of faith, God
will open and close doors along the way to guide you so that you are exactly
where He wants you to be and doing exactly what He wants you to be doing.
For those who serve the Lord, that is why it is so critical that you stay in
that close, intimate relationship with the Lord each and every day. That is
why it is critical that you be yielded at all times to the Holy Sprit so
that it is His will and not your will you are seeking. Trust me, God will
guide you each step of the way. When you get a bit off course, He will guide
you back. When it is time to be doing other things, God will close doors and
open new ones. Life is made up of seasons. Some seasons are longer than
others. We are always serving God until the moment we take our last breath,
but we usually will serve Him in many different ways along our journey
Let me give you some counsel today on being a true servant of the most high
God. First, remember it is ALWAYS Him and never you. Second, always be
obedient and faithful. Third, give your very best to the Lord every second
of every day. Fourth, follow the motto of the great revival preacher from
the 1800s Charles Finney who said, "I do all I can like it all depends on
me, then I pray like it all depends on God!" Fifth, you are to be a servant
to others, not served by others. Sixth, never forget that there is never any
failure with God. Seventh and last, let your only goal in serving the Lord
be to hear those words when you stand before God, "Well done thou good and
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
What Lies Within
Multnomah Fiction (November 20, 2007)
Nothing’s going to stop Kyla…
until the ground crumbles beneath her feet.
Kyla Justice has arrived. Her company, Justice Construction, is one of the most critically acclaimed, commercially successful companies in the Pacific Northwest. And yet, something is missing. Not until she’s called on to build a center for inner-city kids does she realize what it is: her sense of purpose. Now nothing can stop her, not the low budget, not supply problems, not gang opposition, not her boyfriend’s suggestion that she sell her business and marry him–and most especially not that disagreeable Rafael Murphy.
Rafe Murphy understands battle. Wounded in action, this Force Recon Marine carries the scars–and the nightmares–to prove it. Though he can’t fight overseas any longer, he’s found his place as a warrior in the civilian world. So he soldiers on, trusting that one of these days, God will reveal to him why Rafe survived the ambush in Iraq. That day has arrived.
Kyla and Rafe both discover that determination alone won’t carry them through danger and challenges. When gang violence threatens their very foundations, there’s only one way to survive: rely on each other, be real–and surrender to God. In other words, risk everything…
Friday, December 07, 2007
A message from Kristy's husband Milton, on her blog--
A Miracle on Monday
Would you join with us at 3:30 E.S.T., this Monday, Dec. 10, 2007, in prayer at the time of her first radiation treatment? Thousands are praying around the world for Kristy.
It just seemed to dawn on me that while the concentrated radiation was being shot into her brain that focused prayer of thousands of believers around the world praying at this same time would also have powerful impact. Do you agree? Will you set this time aside to pray for her? Surely God would hear our combined, united prayer for her healing.
If you have a blog site I humbly ask you to put this Miracle on Monday request on your blog site to request prayer, this would mean so much to us.
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Over the years I've become a less is more person, especially in regard to my profession. I've trimmed down what I am willing to do as an author to: writing my novels, maintaining PBW, and doing the occasional favor for a reader, colleague, editor or book buyer. Aside from what I do around here, which is infrequent and clumsy at best, I'd say that I'm pretty much through with self-promotion.
And look -- lightning didn't strike me as I typed that. Incredible.
In 2008, I'd like to be the writer who just writes books. If my novels go on to be bestsellers, great. If they don't, that's the way it goes. Maybe the self-promotion advocates are right, and you have to get out there and pimp yourself or you won't get anywhere in this business. But if I ever get "there" I'd like it to be on the strength of the work, not how often or loudly I clamored for everyone to buy it.
For me personally, I plan to *not* worry about the market and write a story that I want to write.
What won't you do in '08???
Sunday, December 02, 2007
Friday, November 30, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(WaterBrook Press September 4, 2007)
As a baby, she was found in a footprint.
As a girl, she was raised by thieves in a wilderness where savages lurk.
As a young woman, she will risk her life to save the world with the only secret she knows.
When thieves find an abandoned child lying in a monster’s footprint, they have no idea that their wilderness discovery will change the course of history.
Cloaked in mystery, Auralia grows up among criminals outside the walls of House Abascar, where vicious beastmen lurk in shadow. There, she discovers an unsettling–and forbidden–talent for crafting colors that enchant all who behold them, including Abascar’s hard-hearted king, an exiled wizard, and a prince who keeps dangerous secrets.
Auralia’s gift opens doors from the palace to the dungeons, setting the stage for violent and miraculous change in the great houses of the Expanse.
Auralia’s Colors weaves literary fantasy together with poetic prose, a suspenseful plot, adrenaline-rush action, and unpredictable characters sure to enthrall ambitious imaginations.
Visit the Website especially created for the book, Auralia's Colors. On the site, you can read the first chapter and listen to jeffrey's introduction of the book, plus a lit more!
Monday, November 26, 2007
For Parents Only
by Shaunti Feldhahn and Lisa A. Ricea
For every bewildered parent, there’s a kid longing to be understood.
What parent hasn’t occasionally looked at their beloved but bewildering offspring and wondered, What in the world is he thinking? or Why is my sweet little girl acting like that?
In this remarkable book, Shaunti Feldhahn and Lisa Rice take you inside the mind of teens and preteens through the same innovative approach that seized national attention in the best-selling books For Women Only, For Men Only, and For Young Women Only. They explore the results of a nationwide survey and personal interviews with more than 1,000 real-life teens and tweens to tackle those things parents often don’t “get” about their kids. You’ll hear first-hand about the longings that drive your kids’ seemingly illogical decisions, the truth behind those exasperating “attitude problems,” and what your children would tell you if they could trust you to truly listen.
Want to win a copy??? To win this book, please add your comment to the blog and let me know if you're a parent by FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 30th. Offer only good in continental US (sorry, it's due to the prepaid mailers!)
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
These verses are from the book of Romans, and make me feel especially thankful this holiday week.
13 I am saying all this especially for you Gentiles. God has appointed me as the apostle to the Gentiles. I stress this, 14 for I want somehow to make the people of Israel jealous of what you Gentiles have, so I might save some of them. 15 For since their rejection meant that God offered salvation to the rest of the world, their acceptance will be even more wonderful. It will be life for those who were dead! 16 And since Abraham and the other patriarchs were holy, their descendants will also be holy—just as the entire batch of dough is holy because the portion given as an offering is holy. For if the roots of the tree are holy, the branches will be, too.
17 But some of these branches from Abraham’s tree—some of the people of Israel—have been broken off. And you Gentiles, who were branches from a wild olive tree, have been grafted in. So now you also receive the blessing God has promised Abraham and his children, sharing in the rich nourishment from the root of God’s special olive tree. 18 But you must not brag about being grafted in to replace the branches that were broken off. You are just a branch, not the root.
19 “Well,” you may say, “those branches were broken off to make room for me.” 20 Yes, but remember—those branches were broken off because they didn’t believe in Christ, and you are there because you do believe. So don’t think highly of yourself, but fear what could happen. 21 For if God did not spare the original branches, he won’t[s] spare you either.
22 Notice how God is both kind and severe. He is severe toward those who disobeyed, but kind to you if you continue to trust in his kindness. But if you stop trusting, you also will be cut off. 23 And if the people of Israel turn from their unbelief, they will be grafted in again, for God has the power to graft them back into the tree. 24 You, by nature, were a branch cut from a wild olive tree. So if God was willing to do something contrary to nature by grafting you into his cultivated tree, he will be far more eager to graft the original branches back into the tree where they belong.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Apart from our universal purpose to serve and glorify the Lord with our
lives, God calls each of us to do that in unique ways. He gives each of us
special gifts and talents in order to be able to serve Him in the specific
area He calls us to serve. Most people understand their universal purpose in
life is to serve God, but are not very clear what God is specifically
calling them to do with their life. This is another area where your daily,
intimate, personal walk with the Lord becomes so important.
In serving God, don't be misled that this means doing something on a grand
scale or what the world would notice because it was something so visible and
affecting so many people. I would guess that 99.9% of the people who have
served the Lord over the ages were people whose name the world never knew.
Most people know who Paul is, and Billy Graham, and many of the world-renown
men and women of God who have made an impact on millions with their lives.
But in the eyes of God, the faithful service of someone carrying groceries
to a poor family, someone using their gift of music in their local church,
someone visiting those in the prisons and nursing homes, someone who holds a
Bible study at their job, someone who passes out tracts, is just as
important as someone whose name is known by the masses.
You don't need to stand in a pulpit and preach to thousands, or write books
read by millions, or reach nations on TV or radio, or operate an
Internet./TV ministry reaching millions of people worldwide daily to serve
the Lord. We are ALL called to serve the Lord, each in our own special and
unique way, and nobody's service is more important than someone else's. What
IS important is that we are faithful and obedient to serve the Lord to the
best of our ability. Never forget, it is our heart that God sees and is
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Center Street October 24, 2007)
James Scott Bell
On a wet Tuesday morning in December, Ernesto Bonilla, twenty-eight, shot his twenty-three-year-old wife, Alejandra, in the backyard of their West 45th Street home in South Los Angeles. As Alejandra lay bleeding to death, Ernesto drove their Ford Explorer to the westbound Century Freeway connector where it crossed over the Harbor Freeway and pulled to a stop on the shoulder.
Bonilla stepped around the back of the SUV, ignoring the rain and the afternoon drivers on their way to LAX and the west side, placed the barrel of his .38 caliber pistol into his mouth, and fired.
His body fell over the shoulder and plunged one hundred feet, hitting the roof of a Toyota Camry heading northbound on the harbor Freeway. The impact crushed the roof of the Camry. The driver, Jacqueline Dwyer, twenty-seven, an elementary schoolteacher from Reseda, died at the scene.
This would have been simply another dark and strange coincidence, the sort of thing that shows up for a two-minute report on the local news--with live remote from the scene--and maybe gets a follow-up the next day. Eventually the story would go away, fading from the city's collective memory.
But this story did not go away. Not for me. Because Jacqueline Dwyer was the woman I was going to marry.
In Try Dying, this fast-paced thriller, lawyer Ty Buchanan must enter a world of evil to uncover the cause of his fiancee's death--even if hie has to kill for the truth.
"Bell is one of the best writers out there...he creates characters readers care about...a story worth telling."
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
10 Ways to Get Started in Writing
Here are some specific ways you can hone your writing skills this year. This list is by no means exhaustive, but if you incorporate some of these ten tasks into your writing life, improvement awaits you (how's that for passive voice?!):
1. Find a writing mentor and establish a prayer team. I fledged my way through eight years of writing before I met my mentor (who is also one of my closest friends). Although I definitely see those eight years as greatly important in terms of learning to labor in obscurity, I see the last four years as more fruitful because of my friend Sandi. She helped me craft my first sellable query letter. She rejoiced with me when I actually sold an article. She attended Mount Hermon Christian Writer's Conference with me.
Even more important: consider pulling together a team of praying folks who will lift you up as you write. I don’t think I’d be where I am today without my Writing Prayer Circle. You’ll see them thanked in every acknowledgment section of my books. Stop right now and pray about who God might want to bring into your circle of prayer. Send out an invitational email, then faithfully email your team on a regular basis. Prepare to be blessed.
Monday, November 12, 2007
Also praying tonight for Christian author Kristy Dykes. Thinking of you and praying!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Thomas Nelson November 6, 2007)
Deep in the isolated Northwest Territories, four friends are on the trip of a lifetime. Dropped by helicopter into the Canadian wilderness, Hutch, Terry, Phil, and David are looking to escape the events of a tumultuous year for two weeks of hunting, fishing, and camping.
Armes with only a bow and arrow and the basics for survival, they've chosen a place far from civilization, a retreat from their turbulent lives. But they quickly discover that another group has targeted the remote region and the secluded hamlet of Fiddler Falls for a more menacing purpose: to field test the ultimate weapon.
With more than a week before the helicopter rendezvous and no satellite phone, Hutch, a skilled bow-hunter and outdoor-survivalist must help his friend elude their seemingly inescapable foes, as well as decide whether to run for their lives...or risk everything to help the townspeople who are being held hostage and terrorized.
An intense novel of character forged in the midst of struggle, survival, and sacrifice. Deadfall is highly-aclaimed author Robert Liparulo's latest rivetingly smart thriller.
Get Downloads and EXCERPTS at www.LIPARULO.com
Sunday, November 04, 2007
There is one simple message that I want you to hear loud and clear today.
GOD LOVES YOU and all He expects is that you do your best each day. None of
us are perfect. The Bible says that we all have sinned and come short of
God's glory. In the course of our day-to-day lives, we all fail God, we all
make choices that we wish we could change. But God knows our heart, and all
He has ever asked you to do, is your best.
Each day I deal with the real life issues that we all face, in the context
of God's Word. I deal with all of the sins that are out there to hurt our
lives. I deal with the tricks that satan uses to try and destroy us. It is
out of my love for you that I share the Absolute Truth of God's Word and how
He has called us to live. I do my best to break down for you why God's way
The fact is, there is right and wrong in our world. Those who oppose God
have always done their best to get people to believe that right and wrong
doesn't exist. Their goal is to get each person to decide for themselves
what is right and wrong. That way, you can never tell a person that they are
wrong no matter what they choose to believe. That sounds wonderful in
theory, but in reality it leads to utter chaos. More important, it is a lie,
since God has clearly told us in His Word what is right and what is wrong.
In the course of applying the truth of God's Word to our personal lives each
day, it can get frustrating when we sin, when we don't follow God's plan.
Again, the word that I want to share with you today is to DO YOUR BEST.
Saturday, November 03, 2007
Thursday, November 01, 2007
It’s Christmastime in Skary, and the town is planning an original production of A Christmas Carol with a horror spin. As showtime approaches, things go very awry for director Lois Stepaphanopolis. She panics when she discovers that her marketing director loathes Christmas and that the audience has been promised not Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, but the real Christmas story. Can the actors pull off the improv of all improvs and convince their community to embrace the true meaning of the Christmas season?
Boo, Humbug! offers readers a delightful glimpse into small town, community life with heartwarming humor and winsome characters. And in the end, the true meaning of Christmas shines out bright and clear, in a decidedly un-Skary way.
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Thomas Nelson November 6, 2007)
When Sam's estranged step-father dies, she inherits his ocean-front cottage in Nantucket--not because he kindly bequeathed it to her, but because he neglected to ever create a will. Sam returns to the island she left 11 years ago with her daughter Caden to fix up the house and sell it, but she isn't counting on is the fact that Landon Reed still lives two doors down from her childhood home.
As their long-dormant romance begins to bud again, Sam must face the fact that Landon still doesn't know why she really left the island. Will the secrets she's hidden all these years tear them apart? Or is Landon's love really as unconditional as he claims?
"I've always thought Denise Hunter was an amazing writer but this wonderful story sets her firmly at the forefront of compelling love stories. How Landon breaks down Samantha's determination that she is unworthy of love kept me glued to the pages. An amazing story!"
--Colleen Coble, author of Fire Dancer (Smoke Jumper Series)
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Saturday, October 27, 2007
When Stacy meets Veteran’s Day re-enactor William, she knows immediately there’s something different about this man. Will her heart win out over logic?
William heard music. Bolder music than he’d ever heard
before, with more instruments playing at once. Turning
into the bright sunlight, he saw its source. A large
group of musicians played just outside the cemetery,
only a short distance from where he stood every
eleventh of November. Last year, there had been no
music, no red, white and blue flags, no cameras for
television news people. This year, he saw total
devastation of one block of homes, separate from the
rest of the town. What had happened here?
He shivered, taking a deep breath, but smelled nothing
save for a tinge of automobile smoke. It was truly
November, and though the marked areas for the dead
always chilled him, today the sheer number of grave
markers overwhelmed him. So many more than last time,
so many more fancy stones appeared every year that
William could only shake his head at the waste. Oh, he
knew that war piled dead atop dead, rapidly. But there
had been no war, as he defined the term, on this soil
for the last century.
Every year, for ten years now, William had found
himself standing in this cemetery on this holiday,
left to walk the town for several days. Each year the
townsfolk smiled at him, waved, asked for him to pose
with them for photographs, and called him a
‘re-enactor.’ Each year he learned more about the
time, and its people, but a ‘re-enactor’ he was not.
He wore Union blue because he’d served with Northern
troops. To William, it was only yesterday that he’d
helped a wounded lad find his way home, relieved as
everyone that the war was over. Knowing he’d end up
here for this mysterious annual ritual, he’d donned
the threadbare uniform this morning so he’d blend in
with the war “re-enactors” of the future.
To the men and women he saw now standing in the
cemetery, dressed in solemn clothing, that surrender
would have occurred over one hundred thirty years ago.
No, he was not a play actor, but he let them think
that. It was better than being thought insane.
Looking down, William did a quick inspection of his
dull blue trousers and faded coat, noting the familiar
burnt cuff from an argument he’d had with a lantern on
the floor of a friend’s barn.
William began to walk, tracing the line of spiked
metal fence which enclosed the stone church and its
land. Rusted in places, the fence changed only
slightly each year. Its gate still swung open with a
squeak and groan, and he pushed on it, setting it in
motion with the cold breeze.
“It needs oiling.”
William turned to find a lovely young lady watching
him. She was dressed like the other mourners he’d
observed, in dark clothing, but wore a skirt so short
that William could see most of her long, slim legs and
“Are you here for the Veteran’s Day parade?” She
smiled, showing straight white teeth. With one hand,
she reached down and tugged at the hem of her skirt.
William said nothing, just nodded as he always did
when confronted by these people from the future. After
the first few visits, he’d learned to be
non-committal, agreeable with their assumptions,
because that was how he’d survived these altered time
“My name’s Stacy Martin,” the woman said, moving
toward him and extending a slender hand with nicely
Surprised, William took it, closing it gently between
his own, larger hands. “William Madiston, ma’am.” The
small ring she wore pressed into his palms, and her
skin felt warm next to his. William’s heart beat
faster, and he felt a tug in his chest.
This had never happened here before.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Nora Roberts Beats Out Al Gore for Literary Prize
If you didn’t heart Nora Roberts before for her writing, you have to love her for the speech she gave last night at the 3d Annual Quill Awards. Publisher’s Weekly and NBC teamed up to create the Quill Awards a few years ago with the intention of bringing “glamour and red carpet extravagance to the world of publishing.”
Roberts’ book, Angels Fall, was the voted as the best romance of the year, but last night it also took the book of the year. The freaking book of the year, folks. She beat out 18 other winners including Nobel Peace Prize winner, former Vice President Al Gore.
In her acceptance speech, Roberts said “Romance rocks.” So do you, Ms. Roberts.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Zondervan October 30, 2007)
Carla stared at the gun and David Thornby—or whatever his name was. Her mind split in two, one side pleading this was some sick joke, the other screaming it was all too real.
“Please. You must have the wrong person. There’s no reason for someone to want me dead. I don’t have any enemies.”
“Then you’d best rethink your friends.”
Realtor Carla Radling shows an “English gentleman” a lakeside estate—and finds herself facing a gun. Who has hired this assassin to kill her, and why?
Forced on the run, Carla must uncover the scathing secrets of her past. Secrets that could destroy some very powerful people...
Brandilyn Collins fans and reviewers are saying Crimson Eve is her best book yet:
“Collins tops herself by creating a suspenseful nonstop thrill ride … Truly the best Christian Fiction suspense title so far this year.”
– Library Journal, starred review
“Crimson Eve is Collins at her very best. It left me feeling as if I’d climbed Mount Everest without oxygen … I didn’t think Brandilyn could outdo herself after reading Coral Moon. She did.”
“I’ve never edited a more tightly crafted, deftly woven, compellingly written book.” –a Crimson Eve editor, with 20 years experience
“This is your best book! I could not stop reading!” – one of many readers with similar responses
Read about Violet Dawn and Coral Moon, books one and two in the Kanner Lake series.
Monday, October 15, 2007
“This is trust: doing what you believe you are called to do and trusting that God will provide--" Amy
Grammy Award–winning artist Amy Grant has lived in the spotlight since bursting onto the Christian music scene as a teenager thirty years ago. In that time her work, marriage, and spiritual life have been subject to varying degrees of adulation and criticism.
Now, in her first autobiographical book, Grant bares her heart and soul, giving readers an intimate glimpse into her everyday life and the lessons she’s learning along the way. From lighthearted reminiscences of her Tennessee childhood to painfully honest reflections on the journey of faith, her vivid writing draws readers into her world while simultaneously creating space for them to rethink their own perspectives on life.
With honesty and depth, Grant offers poignant and often startling insights on motherhood, marriage, friendship, faith, loss, forgiveness, and redemption. Never-before-shared stories about her husband, country music star Vince Gill, provide a look into her life as a celebrity, while intimate portraits of her mother and musings on the past reveal the various pieces of a life blessed with jagged edges as well as vivid colors. Readers will find their preconceived notions of this music icon stripped away as they settle in for a warmly satisfying conversation with a gracious and wise friend.
Amy Grant is the best-selling Christian music artist of all time and the first to garner the number one spot on Billboard’s chart. Since beginning her career at age 17, she has earned six Grammy Awards and twenty-five Dove Awards, and last year she received her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Grant’s numerous television appearances include Oprah; Good Morning, America; and Late Night with David Letterman. In 2007 she’ll tour nationwide, performing with local symphonies in Atlanta, Minneapolis, Kansas City, and elsewhere.
To purchase a copy of Mosaic, click here
To enter my drawing to win one of several copies, leave me a comment with your email address by October 25th.I will contact winners by email to get their mailing address! Have fun!
Oh, almost forgot--I can only ship books to the continental US--due to the prepaid envelopes provided. Thanks!
Sunday, October 14, 2007
“Did you see what Suzie asked us to pray for? I had no idea Dave was seeing someone else.”
“Yeah, imagine how bad she must feel. Poor Suzie, you know just the other day I heard she was going for a make-over at the mall. Do you think she knew about it all along?”
Sound like high-school to you? We all remember passing notes, writing in “slam” books and talking by phone long into the night with friends. The conversation above could have come from teenagers, from an adult conversation, or from another, newer source of gossip: the online prayer request list. Whether or not prayers were offered up for Suzie, or for our own classmates back then, the mature thing to do would be to ignore gossip.
I belong to a wide variety of online groups, writing organizations, women’s health groups and active Christian fellowships. What they have in common is that they all host prayer request lists; everything is prayed over, from the most simple need to find lost car keys to the most pressing health concerns.
On occasion someone will post a request for their failing marriage, sometimes revealing far too much personal information. Why do we find ourselves intrigued by these human dramas? Because their stories are compelling. Because of our human nature, urging us to listen to “dirt” on others. How can we avoid being entertained by the misery of others? Perhaps we have to turn to our spiritual nature. Get right to the prayers than make a concerted effort to forget, and not repeat, the details. As I once heard on the show “Dharma and Greg,” you simply pray about it, then “put it in a bubble and blow it away.”
The moment you share the information, even with a friend who may have advice, it becomes gossip. Think back to the last time you asked for prayer. Mine had to do with a particular doctor’s visit, and was not something I’d want shared all over the Internet. To be honest, I really didn’t want to share it with the members of the group, but I coveted their prayers for the outcome. I must work under the assumption others feel the same way, so I offer up a prayer for their situation and let the names and specifics go. I also keep in mind all the blessings I have, and the fact that my life could change at any moment. Every woman on that prayer list is important, and I want to treat her how I’d want to be treated. I guess it falls back to the Golden Rule, summed up so nicely in James 2:8: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Multnomah Fiction September 11, 2007)
Creston Mapes Not everything that happens in Vegas has to stay in Vegas!
They said, “He’s a nobody.”
They were dead wrong.
When reporter Hudson Ambrose hears an early morning call on his police scanner about an injured person at a bus stop on Las Vegas Boulevard, he rushes to the scene to get the scoop.
His world is blown off its axis when he discovers a murdered homeless man with a bankbook in his pocket showing a balance of almost one million dollars. Should he wait for the police, knowing the case will get lost in reams of red tape, or swipe the bankbook and take the investigation–and perhaps a chunk of the money–into his own hands?
With sirens bearing down on the scene, Hudson makes an impulse decision that whisks him on a frantic search for answers, not only about the mysterious dead man, but about the lost soul lurking within himself.
Uncovering bizarre links between a plane crash, a Las Vegas pit boss, a dirty cop, and a widowed Atlanta business mogul, Hudson is forced to find out: who was Chester Holte, what was he doing on the streets, and why are his homeless friends convinced he was an angel in disguise?
Thursday, October 04, 2007
Ever felt depressed? Seems a lot of writers do, both Christian and non. Read more here--my new column for Spirit Led Writer is up.
Writers seem to live in states of anticipation and dejection, interspersed with small moments of happiness. It's the whole submit, rejection or acceptance cycle the publishing world casts on us—and we accept—as we don the title "writer." A related factor is that writing is a solitary pursuit.
It's normal to be down for a day or two after a rejection or a hard-drive crash, but what about the writers who don't seem to bounce back? Who lose their creative edge? Who just want to sleep?
There are many aspects of mental health, but I want to focus on depression because it is so common and seems to affect so many of us.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
THE TROPHY WIVES CLUB
Avon Inspire (September 4, 2007)
(one of my favorite authors!)Kristin Billerbeck
Haley Cutler is the consummate trophy wife. Perhaps "was" is the more accurate term. Haley married Prince Charming when she was only twenty years old – back in the day when highlights came from an afternoon at the beach, not three hours in the salon.
When Jay first turned his eye to Haley, she was putty in his slender, graceful hands. No one ever treated her like she was important, and on the arm of Jay Cutler, she became someone people listened to and admired. Unfortunately, after seven years of marriage, her Prince Charming seems to belong to the Henry the XIII line of royalty. When Haley loses Jay, she not only loses her husband, she loses her identity.
With her first independent decision, Haley leaves LA and moves home to Northern California. Feeling freedom just within her grasp, Haley learns that her settlement payments must go through one of Jay's financial advisors, Hamilton Lowe. Haley believes he's nothing more than a spy. And the feelings of distrust are mutual. Yet somehow, Hamilton finds himself handing over the monthly checks in person, and Haley can't deny that there's a kind of tenderness and protectiveness in Hamilton that she's never experienced in a man before.
But before Haley can even consider another relationship, she must learn to accept her inherent worth, and what it is to be loved for who she is, not what's on the outside.
Monday, October 01, 2007
Please email your name and mailing address to:
RLXBayne@XNbayne.com (remove the X's!)
Thanks to all who entered. Check back mid-October when I will be giving away 3 copies of Amy Grant's new book, "Mosaic."
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Have any of you experienced that? Someone reading or wanting to read your earlier work? (I imagine if you have a lot of older titles still circulating it's unavoidable.) And not only work that might have explicit material, but books you feel were your earlier works and not up to the level at which you write now?
How do you handle it?
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Warning: Don't read while hungry!!! I picked up this book, I must admit, because I loved the cover. I thought the story might be similar to my own novella, "The Good Samaritan," which also featured yummy pastries. This book, however, is about a much younger heroine and her search for meaning, and a life. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and am craving French dessert!
I also have a copy of this book to give away! Just post a comment here before Sunday and tell me your favorite dessert, and you will be entered in the drawing. (sorry, only available to ship in continental US)
Book: LET THEM EAT CAKE
Author: SANDRA BYRD
Summary: Lexi Stuart is at a critical crossroads. She’s done with college but still living at home, ready to launch a career but unable to find a job, and solidly stalled between boyfriends.
When a lighthearted conversation in French with the manager of her favorite bakery turns into a job offer, Lexi accepts. But the actual glamour is minimal: the pay is less than generous, her co-workers are skeptical, her bank account remains vertically-challenged, and her parents are perpetually disappointed. Her only comfort comes from the flirtatious baker she has her eye—but even may not be who he seems to be!
So when a handsome young executive dashes into the bakery to pick up his high profile company’s special order for an important meeting—an order Lexi has flubbed— she loses her compulsion to please. “What am I going to do?” he shouts. “Let them eat cake!” she fires back with equal passion and a nod to Marie Antoinette. And then, something inside Lexi clicks. Laissez la révolution commencer! Let the revolution begin! Instead of trying to fulfill everyone else’s expectations for her life, Lexi embarks on an adventure in trusting God with her future—très bon!
Lexi – and Let Them Eat Cake – will entertain readers with wit and great fun, but also explore the universal coming-of-age themes of separating from one’s family of origin, establishing self-esteem, and making healthy choices.
Monday, September 24, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
Avon Inspire (October 1, 2007)
Now available for the first time in one edition--All three novels from Lyn Cote's beloved Blessed Assurance series
In Whispers of Love, Civil War widow Jessie Wagstaff must fend for herself and her son. When a stranger, Lee Smith, befriends Jessie's son, even though she recognizes nine-year-old Linc's need for a father figure, she's reluctant to let a new man into their life. When the Great Chicago Fire blazes, every heart is pushed to its limits.
In Lost In His Love, Jessie's son Linc, a social activist and reporter, charms his way through the upper class of San Francisco to build much-needed support for his fight against child labor. His main target is Cecilia Jackson, a beautiful heiress who doesn't recognize the crucial part she plays in this dangerous exploitation. As the secrets of her family's dark past are exposed, Cecilia must revive her own wounded spirit and find the strength to lean on the never-failing love of Christ. But when the 1906 earthquake hits, everyone's faith will be put to the test.
In Echoes of Mercy, Meg Wagstaff challenges the racial barriers of 1920s New Orleans in order to prove that her childhood friend did not commit murder. The stubborn lawyer prosecuting the case, Gabriel St. Clair, is an authentic Southern gentleman who makes the mistake of underestimating Meg, both her tenacity and her charm. Despite their many differences, sparks begin to fly. But when Meg discovers the truth, will Gabe be able to protect her from those who can't afford to have justice prevail?
This is a compelling series and I was swept up in each scene!
"A beautiful tale of love, forgiveness, and acceptance."
About the Author:
Lyn Cote's journey to becoming a published author was a long one - she started her first book when her daughter was 13 months old and her first novel was published when her daughter was about to enter high school. But Lyn was writing for a market that hadn't taken shape yet - the inspirational fiction market.
In 1996, Lyn Cote's first inspirational historical manuscript was a finalist in the Romance Writers of America's Golden Heart Contest. This became her first historical novel, Whispers Of Love, in her BLESSED ASSURANCE series.
Most recently, Chloe, the first novel in Lyn's "Women of Ivy Manor" historical series was a 2006 RWA Rita Award finalist for Best Inspirational, as well as a finalist for the Holt Medallion and the National REaders Choice Contest.
Lyn also writes contemporary romance and romantic suspense. She lives in the lovely northwoods of Wisconsin with her husband and three cats. Aside from writing, she also likes to knit, crochet, read, and do lunch with friends.
Sunday, September 23, 2007
Both encourage each other to stick with it, the results will be worth it. (Publication for writers, a healthy body for the dieters)
Both mention patience in working toward the goal. Both display support and comfort from fellow members, with newbies being treated with kindness and respect. Both demonstrate one of my favorite slogans for organizations: One hand reaching forward, the other reaching back.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
There are four ways a woman can handle heartbreak. She can fall apart, seek revenge, turn cold, or move on. The Ex Files is the story of these four women:
When Kendall Stewart finds her husband and her sister in bed together, she vows to never let anyone get that close again. But when she is faced with saving the life of the woman who destroyed hers, will she be able to forgive?
When an NBA superstar tells his mistress, Asia Ingrum, that he's decided to honor his marriage vows, her shock quickly gives way to revenge...but her decision may come back to haunt their five-year-old daughter.
Every night Vanessa Martin wonders why her husband committed suicide. Even worse, she contemplates joining him in eternity. Will Vanessa be able to gather the strength to live again?
Sheridan Hart is finally finding her way after a lie destroyed her seventeen-year marriage. Her new love is ready to get married, but will she commit to this younger man or is her ex-husband taking up too much space in her heart?
When their pastor asks Kendall, Asia, Vanessa, and Sheridan to meet weekly for prayer, they can't imagine they will have anything in common. But then a devastating tragedy strikes and these strangers are forced to reexamine their choices. Will they find true friendship, or will prayer -- and their union -- fail them?
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Friday, September 14, 2007
And, Liveprayer.com had this to say (excerpt)
Even if you have never heard of Kathy Griffin, the fact is she is a very
high-profile member of the entertainment community. She is not some
obscure, unknown person, but has an Emmy award winning television program.
To simply dismiss her as another God-hating member of the Hollywood
community is too easy. Let me start with a big picture observation, one
that I have been sharing with you for over 8 years now. We live in a world
where the majority of the people reject the God of the Bible, thoroughly
reject Biblical Truth, and live their lives without Christ in their hearts.
The Bible calls us a "peculiar people," and to most of the world we are
extremely peculiar and in many cases hated. They hate us because we remind
them of their sin. They have made the conscious choice to live their lives
apart from Christ and in rebellion to the Truth of His Word, and those who
embrace the Lord and His Truth are seen as the enemy.
Those who choose to live in rebellion to God and His Word are always on the
offensive, marketing their rebellion to the masses, finding great comfort
and strength in others who have also chosen to live their lives in rebellion
to God. They are loud, bold, aggressive, and use all of the modern tools of
communication to reach the masses 24/7 with their lies. Because we have the
better percentage of two full generations out there who have never been to
church, have no foundation of Biblical faith in their life, the lost masses
have become easy prey for these tools of satan who propagate a lifestyle of
rebellion to God, rejecting Christ's love and the Absolute Truth of the
People of Faith don't have the stomach to stand up to these bullies and
usually back down, leaving them to propagate their lies to the masses
unopposed. I have told you so often, the only way God doesn't win is when
you don't put Him in the game. All of the abusive language, the
name-calling, the mocking, can't put one dent in the Truth, doesn't mean for
a second God doesn't exist, and never changes the fact that each person will
die one day and at that moment the only thing that will matter is do you
know Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior!
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
(Harvest House Publishers March 1, 2007)
Libby Hawthorne makes exotic trip itineraries but never leaves Seattle. She’d like to attend church but winds up at a bookstore. She longs for love—but who has the time? Delayed happiness has been worth it, because she’s about to get her dream promotion...
So now what?
When a corporate merger leaves her demoted and disillusioned, Libby realizes she needs to start living authentically...and soon. But just as she tries to uncover her purposed life, her cruel and unusual boss, Cecilia, demands that Libby hide Seattle’s most famous homegrown rock star in order to keep her new, bad job. For the first time in years, Libby doesn’t have a step by step plan to guide her. She must trust her faith and her heart. But what is she supposed to do with her growing admiration for Blaine Slater, a new VP from Chicago, or the surprising kindness of the rock star living incognito in her Seattle apartment? Through the humorous twist and turns, Libby uncovers a big life truth—the detours we are afraid of might just be the perfect path to happiness.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
I was swept up in the action of"The Begotten."
When the Church compiled wrote the Christian canon, it is possible that they left some of Paul's letters out. Now, in Book 1 of The Gifted series, in 1339, a letter that is half a millennium old has resurfaced, telling of a group of people with special spiritual gifts called the Gifted. Now the Gifted must find each other and band together against the people who wish to destroy them out of fear, as well as the deadly Sorcerer, Satan's minion. While they struggle to stay alive, they work to uncover a secret that will determine the ultimate fate of the world.
*The Begotten is a finalist for the prestigious Christy Awards, one of three contenders for best suspense novel of the year! Publishers Weekly calls it "a classic battle of good and evil."
An award-winning author with one million books in print. Second in the breathtaking trilogy
The first book in Lisa T. Bergren's Gifted trilogy, The Begotten, was hailed by Library Journal as "a full-bodied, absorbing tale that combines authentic historical detail with a universally appealing and gripping story that will have readers cheering." Now the breathtaking quest of the spiritually empowered Gifted ones-prophesized in a long-lost illuminated letter from the apostle Paul-continues as the healer, the priest, and the knight gather together to fight a battle in a profound new war. For the enemies of the Gifted are gathering, led by an evil lord who will do anything to destroy their unwavering faith.
Monday, September 03, 2007
Many times we get to a point in our life where we feel
like no one really cares about us or really loves us. I want to assure you
this morning, that Jesus loves you more than you can ever know. Because He
came to this earth and walked where we walk each day, He understands the
problems and difficulties of our daily lives.
That is one reason why our prayers have so much meaning. Jesus understands
what it is like to have a sick friend. He understands what it is like to
have people we love in trouble. He understands when your lives are in a
mess. Jesus knows, He understands, He cares, and most of all, He loves you
As you go thru this day and deal with the problems of life we all face,
keep in the front of your mind the love Jesus has for you. Let that
knowledge give you hope in the hard times, and peace in those times where
things are going OK. As you make those daily decisions, remember Jesus
loves you. You can reciprocate that love by doing those things which will
be pleasing to Him. Remembering His love for us, wanting to please Him,
helps us to make the right decisions throughout the day.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
THE DEAD WHISPER ON
(Bethany House July 1, 2007)
T. L. Hines
Would You Run Into A Burning Building?
Candace "Canada Mac" MacHugh lives a ghost of her former life.
Once a proud Butte, Montana, miner who daily risked her life setting explosives, she's now a garbage collector in her dying hometown.
Her beloves father is dead and she doesn't speak to her mom. More than anything, Candace Mac misses her father. He promised to contact her from the "other side" if he could...but it's been eleven long years. And now even her beloved city of Butte, Montana, seems to be dying off.
Candace Mac is alone. Longing for the past. Dreaming of making a difference.
Until one night when her father's voice speaks to her from the shadows. Bud MacHugh's trademark growl. The dead, it seems, have messages they hunger to share with the world...warnings of impending disasters and grave danger. Of cities doomed to burn.
But they need Canada's help.
T.L. Hines' first novel, Waking Lazarus was named one of the Library Journal's Top 25 Genre novels of 2006. Now he's back with a gripping suspense that brings to light our fears and asks us if we still have the courage to fight for those around us. if we have the guts to be one of those who run into burning buildings.
"Chilling!" Publishers Weekly
Monday, August 27, 2007
A few highlights--
(Bible reading, Memorizing and Meditation)
--Prayer: Be vulnerable when you pray. Anticipate and listen for His understanding response. Receive what He shares.
--Worship: Recognize who God is and reflect that back to Him.
Afraid to Get Close?
--Fear of being disrespectful: We may be afraid to approach His majesty.
--Fear of disappointment: We may be afraid of His answer
--Fear of disclosure: We may be afraid of criticism
--Fear of silence: We may be afraid He won't be listening
Hear me as I pray, O Lord.
Be merciful and answer me!
My heart has heard you say, “Come and talk with me.”
And my heart responds, “Lord, I am coming.” --
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Multnomah Fiction August 21, 2007)
The Truth Chasers Book Three
Someone’s trying to play God…and he’s turning Palm Bay into hell.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement Agent Robbie Sanchez devotes her life to crime prevention, and it shows: She has no personal life and doesn’t know the meaning of a day off. After all, someone has to be around to clean up the mess crime leaves behind.
So when Officer Brad Worthington is brutally murdered, Agent Sanchez is called to the scene along with Brad’s best friend, Detective Eric Casey. The two turn to Lifetex, the genetics lab near the scene, hoping their elaborate security system might have captured the crime outside.
But what’s going on inside the lab is far worse: a renegade scientist is cloning humans! As Robbie and Eric pursue clues–and a growing attraction–they are caught in a deadly battle as the clones begin to act on their own volition…but this battle threatens to claim more than human life; the clones are vying for human souls.
The Void is nothing short of a page-turner. Mynheir is truly hitting his stride as one of our industry's most notable Christian novelists. This latest book has it all: suspense, humor, intrigue, realistic police action, and one thought-provoking story line.
Author of Nobody
Monday, August 20, 2007
I'd like to share with you an author and series I am really enjoying! Melody Carlson has a new heroine, 19 year old Maddie, whom I could relate to despite her being a "young adult." Maddie's trip to Ireland with her aunt was a fun read and a mini-history lesson. I always knew Ireland had a rich history and without being dull, Maddie and the characters bring it to life. This series is published by Waterbrook Press.
The Notes from a Spinning Planet series follows the adventures of 19-year-old Maddie Chase as she travels around the world with her Aunt Sid, a reporter. Excitement and adventure abound as Maddie learns about the world, different cultures, and herself. In her latest trip to Mexico, Maddie is taken aback to encounter the poverty of the land—and of her own heart. The third book in the Notes from a Spinning Planet series invites young women to explore a love deeper than simple affection—and the beauty of true sacrifice.
I have also started reading the next book in the series, in which Maddie travels with her aunt to Papua New Guinea. The next journey I will embark on with Maddie will be to Mexico
Melody Carlson is the winner of the RITA Award and the Gold Medallion and has published over ninety books for adults, children, and teens, including Finding Alice, Crystal Lies, and the Diary of a Teenage Girl series. Carlson is the mother of two grown sons and lives in a "cabin in the words" near the Cascade Mountains in central Oregon with her husband and a chocolate lab retriever. A full-time writer and part-time gardener, biker, skier, and hiker, Carlson can be found on the Internet at www.melodycarlson.com.