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Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Remember the quake yesterday? Was it caused by fracking? Read this. It's been going on in the area of the quake's epicenter.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Winner Announced

Congratulations to Sheri Salatin, winner of JoAnn Carter's Gift Card Giveaway!

Thanks again to JoAnn for talking with us last week!

Friday, August 19, 2011

T.D. Jakes

"64 Lessons For A Life Without Limits"

I didn't request this book for review, but found it in my mail a few weeks ago. I picked it up and starting thumbing through it, and was pleasantly surprised to find interesting life anecdotes and tidbits with spiritual meaning.

From Amazon:

New York Times bestselling books Reposition Yourself and Making Great Decisions are the basis for the 64 best bits of advice from T.D. Jakes, one of America’s most beloved and influential spiritual leaders.
So you’ve made adjustments and the important choices toward a better life, and now it’s time to stand firm. This treasure of a book is divided into 8 sections; each one includes 8 bits of advice, which add up to 64 Lessons for a Life Without Limits, the perfect inspiration tool for keeping you grounded with confidence and maximizing your potential.

About the Author
T.D. Jakes is the CEO of TDJ Enterprises, LLP; founder and senior pastor of The Potter's House of Dallas, Inc.; and the New York Times bestselling author of Making Great Decisions (previously titled Before You Do) and Reposition Yourself: Living Life Without Limits. He has won and been nominated for numerous awards, including Essence magazine’s President’s Award in 2007 for Reposition Yourself, A Grammy in 2004, and NAACP Image awards. He has been the host of national radio and television broadcasts, and is regularly featured on the highly rated Dr. Phil show. He lives in Dallas with his wife and five children.

Order here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

What's in a Title?

Do you like coming up with titles for your work? Or do you struggle with every one? Are titles even important?

Check out a great article on titles today over at "From the Heart," the blog of my agent's company.

"Spine-Out Titles" by Andy Scheer

Three little words. Maybe five. Never more than seven.

No matter how much time you spent crafting your manuscript, the success of your project hinges on whether it has an effective title.

If you haven't done so already, get used to this idea. It will hold true until you work yourself up the ladder to A-list status. At which point your name becomes the drawing card for readers, and the publisher displays it on the cover even more prominently than your book's title. (And then, with your name in such huge type, there's no room for a rambling title.)

You have my permission to endulge for a moment in that A-list fantasy. Okay, just another minute. Now stop fantasizing. Remember, it's the struggle that readers most enjoy. So if you struggle to craft an effective title, keep struggling. In the end, you'll have more readers to enjoy what you struggled to create.

This past weekend I indulged one of my favorite pastimes: browsing through used book stores. Actually, thrift stores with excellent used book departments. (The book section of the Goodwill stores in Colorado Springs actually offers quality fresh coffee.)

Yet even with a pleasant, well-lighted environment, it's still retailing at the most basic. No end caps, no displays of the latest releases—not even separation by genre. (On good days, all the fiction's in one section, the nonfiction in another—mostly—paperbacks on one side, hardcovers on the other.)

And all the books are spine out. So everything rests on those three little words. Maybe five. Never more than seven.

Read the rest here.

Saturday, August 13, 2011


August 13, 2011

By God's will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed.
-- Romans 15:32

Our lives, our futures, and our plans are in God's hands. This inescapable reality is the basis of our existence. It is also the foundation of our joy and refreshment when we are with each other.
Think about it a second: our meetings with each other, and our ministry to each other, are not chance happenings. They are acts of God's grace that gives us a chance to share in God's blessing and joy.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Welcome JoAnn Carter

The Floating Palace~ (Book One)

ELLIE DUNKLING’S life long dream has been to work on one of Lake Champlain’s steamboat, the Ticonderoga. There’s only one problem. Men, not women, are hired to work on ships. Ellie, however is determined to change that. After all, it is 1923 and far from the dark-ages.

Captain PHILIP LAWHORN is a man’s man. When Champlain Transportation Inc. informs him a woman has been hired to work on his ship as stewardess, he’s anything but pleased. First, he doesn’t appreciate the fact someone’s hired on his twenty-eight-member crew without his knowledge. Secondly, how is he supposed to handle this company mandated—sure to be—disaster?

---JoAnn Carter


"Excuse me, captain?"

Philip whirled on his heel. A petite woman with a creamy complexion stared at him with wide, hazel eyes. "Yes?" The lady hesitated then put one foot into his room. She held out a gloved hand, which he took automatically. No matter how glad he might be for a distraction, passengers weren't supposed to be in his quarters. He made a mental note to have a word with his crew later. For now, he had to find an inoffensive way to get rid of this interloper.

"What can I do for you, miss?"

She withdrew her hand and lifted her chin. Determination sparked in her eyes, and Philip hoped what he'd heard about redheads wasn't true. The last thing he needed right now was a hot-tempered, stubborn woman -- however beautiful she may be -- to upset things even more. He took a step closer and held out his elbow. "Let me escort you back to the purser's desk to find someone to help you locate your stateroom."

The woman frowned as if he spoke a different language. Finally, she smiled. Her whole face radiated warmth that enveloped him. "I don't think you understand. I'm Ellie Dunkling, your new stewardess."

"My... my what?" So much for distracting him, she was the distraction.

"Your new--"

He cut her off with a wave of his hand. "I heard you, but I don't agree." He wheezed, "You are not a steward."

Her arched brows drew together. "There must be some misunderstanding. Mr. Trembley said you were expecting me."

Expecting her? Not hardly.

"Lady." He shook his head. "You have no idea." The situation was so ludicrous he was tempted to pinch himself. However, the only thing he was sure to wind up with was a bruise for his efforts. Before him stood an elegant woman in a long, drop-waist garment, insisting she had a place of employment... here.

If there had to be a stewardess, shouldn't it be a frumpy, gray-haired spinster with thick round glasses and a substantial waistline? At least then he wouldn't feel as uncomfortable about the dirty, difficult responsibilities she would need to carry. Nor would he have half the worry over the reputation of his crew and boat, or even the state of his heart for that matter.

Special Surprise from the Author:

If a reader posts a link to Facebook, Twitter, or their own web-page back to this post about THE FLOATING PALACE, they will be entered to win a $10.00 Visa gift card. Winner will be drawn 8/20/11.

A bit about the journey of writing this story~

If I've learned anything through the journey of writing it's that like in life, you never know what (or who) God will use. A few years ago, my husband's family came up for a visit and we went to the Shelburne museum for the first time. As soon as I stepped aboard the S. S. Ticonderoga, I fell in love with it. One fact totally captured my imagination. In 1923, the first female stewardess was hired. It didn't take long for seeds to be planted for The Floating Palace. (Book One of a three part series.)

Fast forward a few months...

Our family was invited to dinner at the a home of a couple in our church. I don't even think they realize what a blessing this was for me. We went downstairs to see some of their "toys" when a box caught my eye. Bob, the fellow said someone in the family had given it to him, it was a treasure chest of information about... can you guess? Yup, the Ticonderoga and 1923. He let me take this box home and I was able to look through headlines of newspapers and such. That box was like an energy drink for my story. It helped me get a clearer picture of the life and times.

Guess what else I discovered about 1923? Betti Dunkling, also a member of our church, was born this year. When I first started asking her questions about what she might know of this time period, I didn't realize this was the year of her birth. Isn't it just like God to give us sweet surprises like that? In honor of Betti, I used a derivative of her name, Ellie Dunkling. Betti is such a remarkable woman and tremendous role model for me. Although her life experiences varied greatly from the main charter in The Floating Palace, they both share the same spunk. With Betti's help, the rest of the cast was set in motion as I asked her what names were popular in Vermont when she was a girl. After our visit, I sat down with the list and chose the names according to the role they played in the story. It's a special memory for me and I enjoyed working with her on this project.

God's hand has guiding this story since the very beginning. I'm praying that He would continue to do so to accomplish His great purposes... in my life and in the lives of others.

Order here!

Also available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble websites.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Salsa Releases Today

Update on yesterday's post:

When life is complicated and tough, Simply Salsa: Dancing Without Fear at God’s Fiesta shows you the simplicity of a life rich with joy. Find out the secret when you order Simply Salsa through When you order on Tuesday, August 9, win valuable bonus gifts and a chance to win prizes such as a round-trip airline ticket. Get details here:

Ordering today gets you an array of free online gifts.

Monday, August 08, 2011

John 3:16 Marketing Group Book Launch Today!

Simply Salsa

Fear holds us back, worry steals our joy, and discouragement ushers bloom. But God points to the answer. Often through His Word, sometimes through a message or a simple book. My author friend Janet P. Eckles’ new release, Simply Salsa: Dancing Without Fear at God’s Fiesta promises to bring delicious inspiration with valuable insights to find the secret to live, really live a life free from fear.

"Few women have experienced a seemingly endless string of tragedies like those that shattered the life of Janet Perez Eckles. But in a lively tone that reflects her vivacious personality, Janet teaches us how to reclaim our joy through biblical principles and real life examples. In reading Simply Salsa and applying the scriptural lessons, everyone whose heart has been broken or whose body has been afflicted by devastating illness will find herself dancing to the music of our Heavenly Father."
---- Louise M. Gouge, author of At the Captain’s Command

Have you felt as if you’re dying inside?

Have you cried till you have no more tears?

Do you wonder whether your storm will ever calm? Whether you’ll find peace and happiness?

I asked those same questions. But rather than despair, I chose to dance even when life was ugly, painful and unfair. Let me tell you why…

Check out Janet's video here.

*This book has not been read/reviewed by this blogger.*

Friday, August 05, 2011

New Release from Dana Pratola

"The Covering" by Dana Pratola

What do a Christian woman and a faithless biker have in common? The devil of course.


“Your pastor says I’m marked for death.”

The abruptness of the announcement left her momentarily speechless and quite unsure she’d heard correctly. “What?”

“He thinks the devil’s trying to kill me.”

She looked closely for any sign of humor, but Gunnar didn’t have a sense of humor she was aware of.

“Why does he think that?” she asked.

“I told you I have nightmares, right?” Tessa nodded. Gunnar ran his finger along the edge of his napkin. “Well it goes a little beyond that.”

Tessa listened, enthralled, as Gunnar described in terrifying detail what he suffered in the night. A few things made more sense – his hostility for one – and she now had a better grasp of what pushed him toward suicide. God, how had he coped so long with the torment?

“I’d say Pastor’s right,” Tessa said when he finished.

The waiter arrived with their plates then disappeared. “You said when you had the gun to your head,” she shivered inwardly, “it didn’t feel like you.
It felt like you were being driven.” Gunnar met her eyes across the table. “I believe you were.”

“Demons, right?” he asked. Tessa inclined her head. “Can they do that?”

“They can’t pick up your gun and shoot you with it,” she said. “But they can be persuasive.”

“Yeah,” he grumbled.

Tessa glanced around the small room. To an eavesdropper the conversation would seem like mumbo jumbo and ordinarily she wouldn’t care if strangers thought her “out there” or weird, but she kept her voice low in consideration for Gunnar’s privacy.

“When was the last time you had one of those dreams?” she asked.

“It’s been a while. Thank God.” He made a sound exactly between a chuckle and a snicker. “I mean that.”

This time when Tessa reached for his hand he left it under hers, turning it upward to lightly grip her fingers. “But you don’t think it’s the end,” Tessa said.

He topped her thumb with his and rubbed gently. “It’s like they’re constantly hovering. Waiting for the right time.”

Tessa refused to acknowledge the chill that swept through her.

“I know when they come for me, I won’t be able to stop it,” Gunnar said. “And one of these times they’ll pull me back there and I won’t come out.”

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Ever Been There?

There is a wonderful post by LoRee Peery over on White Roses in Bloom. Here's the beginning--

Curt, Convicted, Contrite

We’ve had one day in over two weeks when the heat index wasn’t above 100 degrees. Patience and tempers run short. People are testy. My DH had debilitating cluster headaches for three days. Wednesday it was 109, thanks to 98 on the thermometer, and the high dew point. Hubby went to bed at 8:30.

Not five minutes later, the phone rang. A woman asked for someone who doesn’t live in our home. We don’t have cells or caller ID (don’t ask), and we get a lot of unsolicited calls.

I admit I’ve never been a quick thinker (years ago a kid asked if my refrigerator was running and I went to look), so I didn’t even consider asking who she was or the last name of the individual she wanted. I was curt, and basically hung up.

The phone rang again and the same woman asked for the same person.

I said, “No one by that name has ever lived here.”

She verified our phone number, then offered, “You must get a lot of calls to be so irritated.”

“We do. And my husband just lay down with a horrid migraine.” I didn’t apologize.

She said, “The Lord be with you.”

I was convicted by her click. It sounded so final. It was too late to apologize or search for any more excuses.

Humble, regretful, guilty. That old sin nature can still raise its ugly head. My mind raced to the Lord.

Been there? Read more here.