Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Inspire me! by Tracey J Lyons



I am on a daily search for inspiration, in my work and in my life.  I love to read inspirational quotes. All those little memes on social media bring light to my day. My new favorite one is on a little wooden sign I found at a local shop. I have this posted on the shelf right below my bathroom mirror so every day it's the first thing I see.



I also find inspiration in things in my own backyard. Like my pond. One of the reasons we purchased this house was because of the pond. The only problem; I can't see the pond from anywhere in the house. I keep telling my husband we need to find a spot to put in a window so I can take in the view from inside the house. Here's a recent picture of the morning fog over our pond. 


With my writing I often draw inspiration from places I visit for my research. On my latest research trip for my soon to be released LI Amish romance, A Love For Lizzie, I came upon this lovely church. I actually have this as the wallpaper shot on my laptop screen, so it's the first thing I see every time I open my laptop. 


And of course I find inspiration in my family. Our sons with their wives and that passel of grandkids bring me not only inspiration, but keep me smiling. 


I'd love to hear what or who inspires you! I welcome you to share your thoughts in the comments section. 

Monday, October 15, 2018

Crossing one off the list

Do you have a bucket list, a list of things you want to do in your life? 

I recently crossed one thing off my bucket list: I took a trip from Oregon to Denver.  I rode Amtrak’s Coast Starlight down to Sacramento, and then went eastward on the California Zephyr over the Sierras and through the Rockies to Denver. It was like taking a trip through history.

The Sierra foothills, home of the original 49ers
 I went through Donner Pass, where the Chinese immigrants had to blast tunnels through solid granite to get the trains over the pass.  Past Donner lake, which looks far too innocent for its tragic past. 

Donner lake, just below Donner summit
 Past Reno, I started to get the feel of being back in the old West. There were mustangs running wild on the hills. Then the land flattened out into a level landscape of sagebrush and dust, I marveled at the old pioneers, traveling by wagon or trudging through on foot.


East of Reno... a whole lotta sagebrush
 I couldn’t face a 36-hour trip in coach, so I splurged on a bedroom. Falling to sleep on a train was surprisingly easy. I let the rhythm of the rails lull me to sleep as we traveled through Nevada.


Woke to a Utahn sunrise, and the feeling of traveling back in time to the Old West continued. 

Utahn sunrise
 Travel by train is ideal for a writer. I brought my laptop along, and when not gazing out the window, I worked on a scene where the hero and heroine went to a beautiful desert canyon. All I had to do was look out the window for inspiration.
I wrote a romantic scene looking at this romantic scenery

All this needs is a handsome cowboy
The train followed the Colorado river up into the Rockies.


And I do mean up. The route through the Rockies climbed to over eight thousand feet before winding down in slow, wide curves down to Denver.


I loved seeing wild places, far from any road. I had no idea of all the little hidden pockets of beauty the Lord has placed in the loneliest of places. 



White cranes lurking in the emerald-green reeds in a pond in Nevada

Pelicans hanging out on a riverbank high in the Rockies

It was humbling to realize the depth and intricacy of the beauty of the Lord’s works. 

He counts the number of the stars. 
He calls them all by their names.
Psalm 147:4

 Every hour gave me new vistas that I hadn’t imagined before. So many different scenes and settings, people living their lives amid this beautiful scenery. We’d be in the middle of nowhere and I would catch a glimpse of a homestead out in the middle of a clearing. 

It struck me how many different lives were going on all around, hidden from my sight, but not His. If the Lord knows each star by name, I have faith that He loves each person who lives in His creation. And He knows them all by name.


Evelyn M. Hill is a multi-published author who lives at the end of the Oregon Trail. Her debut book, His Forgotten FiancĂ©e, was published by Love Inspired Historical. Her latest book, The English Lieutenant's Lady, deals with British spies in the Oregon Territory (based on actual events). 
When not being distracted by her cat, she writes inspirational romances set in Oregon. She loves to hear from readers. Please visit her website or sign up for her newsletter.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Sunday Scripture

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler, Heinrich Hofmann, 1889, Riverside Church,
New York [PS-US]
As Jesus was setting out on a journey, a man ran up,
knelt down before him, and asked him,
"Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" 
Jesus answered him, "Why do you call me good? 
No one is good but God alone.
You know the commandments: You shall not kill;
you shall not commit adultery;
you shall not steal;
you shall not bear false witness;
you shall not defraud;
honor your father and your mother."

He replied and said to him,
"Teacher, all of these I have observed from my youth."
Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said to him,
"You are lacking in one thing. 
Go, sell what you have, and give to the poor
and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me."
At that statement his face fell,
and he went away sad, for he had many possessions.

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples,
"How hard it is for those who have wealth
to enter the kingdom of God!"
The disciples were amazed at his words. 
So Jesus again said to them in reply,
"Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 
It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle
than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." 
They were exceedingly astonished and said among themselves,
"Then who can be saved?"
Jesus looked at them and said,
"For human beings it is impossible, but not for God. 
All things are possible for God."
Mark 10:17-27

If you have prayer needs, please mention them in the comments section so we can join you in prayer. You do not need to include specific names or situations of a private nature, just say that you have a prayer request. The Lord knows your heart and the needs you have. It is a privilege and honor to pray with you and for you.

The Love Inspired Authors on this blog are praying for all those who suffered injury and property damage from Hurricane Michael. God bless the first responders and those who are helping in the search and rescue. May the Lord bring comfort and hope as so many people struggle to put their lives back together again.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Another Side to the Ladies of Love Inspired Romance

Many of the Ladies of Love Inspired Romance write more than their Love Inspired Books. Here are some of this month's other new releases. Just click on the covers or buy links to purchase them. And to learn more about the authors, click on their names.

https://www.amazon.com/Autumn-Chill-Mary-Alford-ebook/dp/B07HRZS7FP/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1538512552&sr=8-1&keywords=an+autumn+chill+by+mary+alford#customerReviews
An Autumn Chill
by Mary Alford

Can she remember the past and what happened the night her friend died, or will she take those memories to her grave?

In an instant, Isabelle Dunn’s past disappeared when the car she was driving went over the side of a mountain, killing her best friend. Isabelle knows she is lucky to be alive, yet there is something about the man claiming to be her fiancĂ© that terrifies her. To stay alive, Isabelle flees Buffalo Ridge, Wyoming, looking back over her shoulder every mile of the way. When she stops to catch some sleep just inside the city limits sign for Cedar Creek, Texas, she has no idea how much the quaint little town, and Texas Ranger Seth Walker, will change her life for the better.

Ranger Seth Walker has written love out of his life after he watched his twin sister die at the hands of someone she loved. Seth wasn’t able to save Sarah. Can he protect Isabelle now?

Forced into hiding until they can untangle the web of deceit Detective Paul Hardwick has spun, unexpectedly, Seth and Isabelle can’t stop the attraction they feel for each other from turning to love.

With Seth’s help and God’s protection, will Isabelle remember what really happened the night her friend died before Paul Hardwick can silence those memories forever?

Inspirational Romantic Suspense

https://www.anniesfiction.com/home.php?program_id=HAC
Her Blessed Gift
by Jo Ann Brown

Addie Weaver has lived in the Amish tourist town of Pinecraft for the last year since leaving her difficult life in Lancaster County behind. She's making a new place for herself in the Florida sunshine, complete with a tiny home and a job at the local diner. When a handsome Amish man sits down at her booth, she can see he's troubled. Her heart tells her she must try to help.

David Brennenman is at the end of his rope, looking for his younger siblings. He's tracked them to Pinecraft, but now lost their trail. David walks Addie home where they discover a basket containing a pink and precious baby girl. Who is the child? Can someone else's child help two broken people heal and become stronger...together?

Amish Inspirational Romance 

Friday, October 12, 2018

All Aboard the Love Boat!

One of the amazing things about writing for Love Inspired Suspense is that sometimes we get to do fun events with readers and other authors. While I enjoy them all, I have to admit the most exciting one I have ever done was at Toronto’s recent Word on the Street. Along with Harlequin authors Stefanie London and Mary Sullivanwe set sail on a reader’s cruise on Lake Ontario. I read a few pages from my Military K-9 book Standing Fast. Stefanie and Mary read from their books. The sky was bright blue and the weather was absolutely beautiful.
But the best part was talking with readers and answering their questions about writing. I always learn a lot from spending time with readers and writers, whether we’re on water or on land.
Readers wanted to know if we plot out books out in advance. (We do! But changes happen along the way as we’re writing). They asked what our best solution was for writer’s block. (We said having a regular writing routine is important, but so is knowing when to take breaks.) And what we loved most about writing romance. (Creating strong female characters and helping them find good men who are worthy of their love).
A huge thank you to everyone who came out and a big thanks to Mary for these wonderful pictures.
When was the last time you were on a boat? Was it a big or small adventure?

Monday, October 8, 2018

Why Embracing October Makes the Holidays Sweeter

by @jillkemerer

It's about this time of year I start anticipating the holidays. Turkey and stuffing. Warm sweaters and hot cocoa. Christmas carols and Hallmark movies. Candy canes and snowmen. You know how it is.

But Thanksgiving and Christmas are still weeks away, and October is in all its vibrant glory here in northern Ohio. Rather than breaking out my Christmas music or planning the side dishes I'm making for Thanksgiving, I take the time to embrace October.




The summer grass and flowers are dying. Leaves tumble to the ground--slowly on a mild day, quickly on a rainy one. Every car ride reveals orange, maize, and rust-colored trees intermingled with the evergreens. The colors typically last about two weeks--give or take--around here, and it's oh-too-easy to miss them.

I usually listen to classic jazz in the fall. Nina Simone, Miles Davis and Bill Evans get me into a mellow frame of mind. I need the downtime, the lull before the end of the year hustle bustle.

As much as I want to watch all my favorite Christmas movies, I refrain. Click through television channels and you'll see football, new episodes of favorite shows, more football, scary movies, and, yep, more football. I watch it all! Except for the scary movies. I get scared easily!

October always passes quickly. Before I know it, I'm moaning about all the Halloween candy I ate and turning a new page on my calendar. November arrives. And I'm ready to break out those Christmas CDs, search for side dish recipes to serve on Thanksgiving, and to watch movie after movie on the Hallmark channel.

By pacing myself and embracing October, experiencing all the joys of the holidays is that much sweeter.

What do you love about October?

Are you on Facebook? Join the Love Inspired Authors and Readers group. I'm "taking over" the group Monday through Wednesday this week and would love to have you join us. I'll be giving away books, too! Mary Alford will be the hostess from Wednesday at noon until Friday!

I have a new book out! Wyoming Christmas Quadruplets is in stores now! Here's a little about the book.


A nanny at Christmastime…
Will she find love in this Wyoming Cowboys novel?


Six weeks on a ranch caring for quadruplets—aspiring nurse Ainsley Draper’s prepared for a busy Christmas. When the children’s handsome uncle opens the door, her task gets extra complicated. Marshall Graham is upholding his promise to look after his twin sister, the babies’ mom. But as family loyalty clashes with new love, will the perfect present include a future with Ainsley?


*

Jill Kemerer is a multi-published author of Christian romance novels. Her essentials include coffee, fluffy animals, a stack of books and taking long nature walks. Jill resides in Ohio with her husband and two almost-grown children. She loves connecting with readers, so please visit her website, jillkemerer.com, and sign up for her newsletter.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Sunday Scripture

Adam, Eve, and the serpent at the entrance to Notre Dame Cathedral
in Paris [Creative Commons PD-US]

The LORD God said: "It is not good for the man to be alone.
I will make a suitable partner for him."
So the LORD God formed out of the ground
various wild animals and various birds of the air,
and he brought them to the man to see what he would call them;
whatever the man called each of them would be its name. 
The man gave names to all the cattle,
all the birds of the air, and all wild animals;
but none proved to be the suitable partner for the man.

So the LORD God cast a deep sleep on the man,
and while he was asleep,
he took out one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh.
The LORD God then built up into a woman the rib
that he had taken from the man.
When he brought her to the man, the man said:
"This one, at last, is bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
this one shall be called 'woman, '
for out of 'her man' this one has been taken."
That is why a man leaves his father and mother
and clings to his wife,
and the two of them become one flesh.
Genesis 2:18-24

If you have prayer needs, please mention them in the comments section so we can join you in prayer. You do not need to include specific names or situations of a private nature, just say that you have a prayer request. The Lord knows your heart and the needs you have. It is a privilege and honor to pray with you and for you.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Feeling Skunked



Feeling Skunked


Ever notice annoying things happen when you do not have time to deal with them? Murphy’s Law or something like that. And it stinks. In my case, or rather, my dog’s case, it stunk literally.

On the day that I was to board a plane for the ACFW conference, I kept to my normal routine and took my dog, Niko, for our morning walk.



We are fortunate to have a place where I can walk off my pumpkin spice creamer calories while he runs off leash.

Let’s face it, I can’t give up the pumpkin. Nor do I want to, but I’m willing to do the work to keep the deliciousness that pumpkin creamer provides. Sorry…lost focus and I digress. Pumpkin spice does that to me.

Anyway, on that particular morning, the sun hadn’t fully risen, but it wasn't pitch-black dark. So, when Niko bolted into a field, I couldn’t see what he was chasing.

Until it was too late.
With a black tail lifted high, the animal went scurrying into a tree line, and Niko returned to me. I smelled him long before he reached me.


Niko had met his first skunk, and all I could say was, “Are you kidding me?” 
Although he sneezed a lot afterward, Niko really didn’t seem bothered by the smell. I, however, went into a panic. I needed to fix it, and fast. After all, I had a plane to catch, and I had no clue where to start. I didn’t have time to de-skunk (is that even a word?) my dog!

Thankfully, several friends and our amazing groomer, offered a sure-fire fix for ridding Niko of the stench. And, thanks to the help of my adult son, who selflessly offered to wash Niko so that I could make my flight, Niko’s skunk days are behind him.
That whole experience got me to thinking…

Sometimes, we bear the stench of broken dreams, rejection, disappointment, and hopelessness. And those times can sure make us feel like we’ve been skunked.
For writers, rejection is a part of the journey, but that doesn’t make the trip any easier. Rejection is hard, and nobody I know wants to encounter it. Nobody willingly signs up just to be shot down. Nobody wants that nasty book review or the rejected book proposal.

And yet, rejection makes us rethink our story, forcing us back to the keyboard to make it the best it can possibly be.
Is rejection skunking you? Is it defeating you? Are you wondering if there’s ever going to be a time when you get a thumbs-up instead of a thumbs-down?


Maybe it’s that promotion you’ve been working so hard toward. The sale you thought for sure you’d made. The agent that seemed so interested in representing you. The positive pregnancy test you’ve longed to see. When those things don’t happen, it's easier to ask, "Why bother to keep trying? Why not give up and save ourselves the heartache?"

Because we can’t.

Hope springs eternal for that dream, even if it’s only an inkling of an urge…oh you know, about the size of a mustard seed? Yep. That small. We’re holding on to that hope. Because there’s this part of us that wonders…what if we give up today and then discover our dream would’ve been realized tomorrow? What if we've given up too soon?
Like Niko, we might struggle with getting rid of the stench of rejection. It might weigh us down or make us feel less than. It might be the voice that seems louder than all the others, telling us we’re not enough, that we’ll never make it. Rejection can sure feel like a skunk attack.

For Niko, the de-skunking required two lengthy baths, some intense soaking in the soap, and a final grooming appointment. It wasn’t easy. He had to be committed. At least, his owners did.

And he had to know that all of the time – even the waiting time – was worth it. The process was necessary to rid him of the stench that had drenched his fur.
Friend, I don’t know where you are or what it is that you’re enduring, but can I encourage you today and tell you that waiting for your dream is necessary? And if rejection or disappointment have left you feeling skunked, know that hope—even a teeny tiny portion of it—is all you need to keep the dream alive. Get that odor of rejection off you and keep dreaming. Who knows what tomorrow might bring?


Thursday, October 4, 2018

Oh Look – There I Am! By Mary Alford


I’ll let you in on a little secret…most authors put pieces of themselves into their books. Whether it be in the hero or heroine’s personality traits or the setting for the book, if you look close enough, you can see the author throughout the story. It can be kind of fun searching for the hidden clues hidden.


For instance, In Forgotten Past, the heroine Faith McKenzie, loves coffee. She drinks it all the time. You guessed it, she got that from me. Although I have tried to cut back through the years, I love coffee and can drink it all day long. 




The idea for Jase Bradford’s mountain home in Rocky Mountain Pursuit came from a mixture of Silverton and Creede, Colorado. Both are small and rugged mountain towns with breathtaking views of the mountains surrounding them. 


On one particular visit to Silverton in October, my husband and I were caught unexpectedly in a snowstorm. The road we were traveling on was covered with snow and very narrow. We were forced to back up, then turn around, and it was very harrowing, much like the scene in Rocky Mountain Pursuit, where Reyna Peterson tries to find Jase. She’s alone at night on a narrow mountain road in a snowstorm. Reyna ends up running off the road. Luckily, Jase saves here. After what we went through, I could definitely feel Reyna’s terror.       


A scene in Deadly Memories when we see the small country church where Ella Weiss’s father once pastored was taken from a church my brother pastored when I was just a teenager. It was a small congregation, but the people there were so encouraging. I played the piano and my sister led the singing. Good times.


Framed for Murder hero and heroine, Aaron Foster and Liz Ramirez share a breakfast of bacon and eggs, one of my favorite meals to have at any time of the day. 



Grave Peril is my latest release from Love Inspired Suspense. It features heroine Jamie Hendricks’s somewhat eccentric Uncle Paxton. Uncle Paxton is a combination of my spunky Aunt Mabel and my prickly Uncle Bud. Growing up, Aunt Mabel was a force to be reckoned with most times, never settling into the mold of what people thought she should be. I admired her so much and miss her terribly. Uncle Bud, well, he said what was on his mind and had no filter. I took the interesting traits from each of them and made Uncle Paxton.

So, next time you pick up a novel from one of your favorite authors, know that you are getting more than just a great story. You are getting a glimpse into that author’s life. Happy hunting!

About Grave Peril

Mountain Ambush!
Reunions can be deadly…
Jamie Hendricks always believed her late father was innocent of murder…and now her uncle claims to have proof. But when she arrives in her hometown, her uncle has vanished—and someone wants her dead. Jamie’s ex-boyfriend, CIA agent Gavin Dalton, is the only person she trusts…even if he believes her dad killed his father. But can he help her uncover a deadly conspiracy that goes deeper than anyone expected?

All the best...

Mary Alford 


Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Me and the Monster of Carey Creek

A true story by Patricia Davids.
Warning, long post

This happened one year ago.

 It was my birthday. Not any birthday, a momentous one. I turned 65. Old-ish, Medicare ready, Social Security on the way, I was happy to hit another milestone but what I wanted for my birthday was a little bit of nostalgia. I wanted to go fishing in the creek that runs through my dad’s farm. 

Carey Creek is hardly big enough to deserve a name but it was one of my favorite spots as a kid. I waded in it, swam in it, seined minnows, caught crawdads in the muddy water and I fished there. First with a long cane pole when I was little and later with a rod and reel when I got older. I caught sun perch and pumpkin seed perch and if I was lucky a few bullheads big enough for my mother to fry up for supper. 

My whole family loves to fish and we have our favorite place near Delevan, Ks where a spring fed creek hidden in the Flint Hills harbors some awesome bigmouth bass and catfish. Dad likes to fish for wipers and bass on Milford or Herington Lake from his boat. I admit I like that, too, but my favorite fishing is done from the bank of a creek in the shade of a tree with the birds and the wind for company. 

So, for my 65th birthday that was the plan. I would walk down to the creek, sit a spell and maybe hook a bass or two on a spinner or a bullhead or channel cat on some beef liver and look back on my life3.
The sun was setting by the time I tired of casting a spinner. I caught and put back two nice bass. My dog Sugar was busy running up and down the bank trying to bite the fish I caught. She’s a rat terrier. I guess to her they look like water rats.

Finally, I put some beef liver on my catfish pole with its long rod and twenty-pound test line. It was a bit of overkill on the creek but I didn’t think it would matter. I set my bobber at about two and a half or three feet which is the depth of that stretch of water that parallels the dirt road on the south lane. 
The wind died down and I took a deep breath of pure air as I watched the sun set through the trees. Trees that weren’t there was I was little. It had been a horse pasture then. Just grass. It was a jungle now of the hackberry, cottonwoods, Osage orange and elm trees that had grown up over fifty years to make the pasture unrecognizable. White-tail deer, wild turkey and the occasional bobcat prowl the shadowy depths where my brothers and I used to play football and I trained my horse to jump over wooden barriers for fun. 
My tall orange and white bobber ducked under the water once. My pulse raced as I picked up my pole. My brother Mark is a fly fishing guide in Montana, a professional fisherman. He says “the tug is the drug,” and he is so right. The bobber dove under the water and I set the hook and Zower, there was a big fish on the other end.

Eeeerrr, my reel squealed as he lunged against the drag in his dash upstream. I pulled him back, cranked in a little line, pulled again, cranked in a little more then, Eeeerr, he made a dash downstream and I knew I had a monster on my hands. 

I have never seriously fought a fish. I have caught some three and five-pound wipers or bass or even trout that took some time to reel in but this was different. This was a fight. My little dog Sugar was going crazy at the sight of my orange and white bobber flashing across the water. 

I was wondering how long it would go on. Five minutes? Had it been five minutes? The Monster didn’t act tired. I wasn’t going to admit my carpel tunnel affected wrists were hurting. I cranked, he spooled out more line, I cranked some more. The dog barked. The sun set in a brilliant ball of orange. Suddenly, the ultimate outcome of this epic battle came into sharp focus for me. I could reel him in but I couldn’t land him. 
The banks of the creek are five-foot high in my fishing spot. Straight down into the water. Even if I got him to the bottom of the bank there was no way I could lift him five feet straight up out of the water. I did not have a dipnet with me. Why would I? No one has ever caught a fish like this in our little creek.

So, we had a Mexican standoff. I couldn’t land him, he couldn’t shake my hook but by golly he tried. He rolled and lunged and splashed his tail. And then I heard the put-put of my Dad’s four-wheeler coming down the road. Maybe, just maybe, I was going to win. “Dad, get a dip net! I need a dip net!”

Dad waved. “I’m coming. Figured you’d be done fishing by now.”

“Go get a dip net! I need a dip net, Dad. Get a net!”

For those of you who don’t know my dad, he is stone cold deaf unless you are a foot away from his hearing aide. Seriously and that’s if he has it turned on which he didn’t. He walks with a cane and his unsteady gate makes it dangerous for him to get close enough to the bank to help. 

He waved again from his four-wheeler on the road. “No rush.” 

“No rush.” I looked at the fish at the bottom of the bank just visible in the fading light. He was a flathead, black and sleek with a huge head and beady eyes. Ten pounds, maybe more. He was on his side. His gills were flapping. I knew he was done, but so was I. I couldn’t get down to get hold of him. My only choice was to try and lift him straight up. Sugar was pacing at my feet sure she was going to get a nip in. I had him two-thirds out of the water when my line snapped. 

Oh, no! “Sugar, get him!” I yelled like my fifteen-pound dog could land a ten-pound fish by herself. Sugar gave it a look. She was ready to jump when I came to my senses yelled, “No!” 

Then I saw it. Caught in the bush a few feet down from the top was my cork. Please let the line still be attached. 

If I could just get my hand on the line. The fish was gasping in the shallows.
I threw myself down on my belly and grabbed the cork as the end of the line slipped through my fingers. With a flick of his tail the Monster was gone. All I had to show for our epic fight was grass stains on my shirt and the bobber in my hand. He had my hook. 

I’m ashamed to say I pounded the ground in frustration. My dad came gingerly through the grass and stopped a few feet away. “Are you done fishing yet?”

I bowed my head. “Yes, I’m done.”

My birthday adventure was over. What could possibly top hooking a Monster like that? 
I’ve been told swallowing a hook won’t always harm a fish. My fisherman brother assured me an old catfish would likely live a long time and might even pass the hook one day. I hope so.

I rose to my feet, dusted off my hands and stared at the now still surface of the water. The balance of power in that little world had shifted for the both of us. Why? Because he knows that I know he is in there. There will be another meeting. There will be a dip net within reach. 

Thank you Monster of Carey Creek for a most memorable birthday.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

MEMORIES

WHAT'S IN YOUR HEAD? :)

By Valerie Hansen

Writers are a strange lot. If you follow any of us on social media or in print you already know this but I thought it might be fun to discuss how my mind works. To begin with, it's almost never quiet - unless I'm sick. 

I awoke this morning with an old hymn running through my head. Don't know the name but "There to my sins was the blood applied, Glory to His name." Over and over again. Now, if I were totally OCD I'd have to pursue this song until I figured out what it was called but my squirrels rescued me. I can be a lot like the joke, "Of course I'm listening - Oh look! A squirrel!" Or a chicken. Take your pick.

Just the process of writing this blog post has set my imagination whirling. For all my teachers and those to come, I wasn't trying to be troublesome, I just had to chase a few of the wild squirrels racing through my brain and sometimes that meant missing part of your fascinating lectures. Seriously. Any room that had a window was deadly for me. One glance outside and I was a goner. 

 Let me see if I can illustrate. Sun. Um, warm. Beach. Sand. The feel of ocean waves lapping at my toes and the way the receding water slips under my feet and pulls away sand. Is there a rule for that? Grains of sand are pretty. Just like jewels. (picturing this) and the seaweed is icky. Except when it's growing. Seahorses in it. Swimming. Having live babies. Wonder if I could raise little seahorses like I do my mice for physiology class? Mice? Did I remember to feed and water? I must have. I always do. But maybe that's a false memory. No, it isn't. Well, it might be. What's it like to have amnesia? 

And so on and so on.  

As I have matured I've learned to control my rambling thoughts enough to put them to use creating fiction. Turning on the special feature isn't hard. Turning it off can be, however, particularly when I'm going through tough times. Here's where my Christian faith comes into play. 

(I stopped here to look up the exact scripture) Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are noble, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy - meditate on these things." Sounds good to me!





 

Monday, October 1, 2018

Turning the Page by Pamela Tracy

 This past weekend, my family went to a place every author should visit.  Yup, Page, Arizona.



This is the entrance to Antelope Canyon.
It's on the Navajo rez.

Once inside, we were captivated.


Every turn brought something beautiful created by the Lord God.

What an amazing world he gave us.

We could have stood there, admiring its beauty, for hours.

All this was made over time by flash floods.

Sand falling

Unfortunately, there was an exit.



We're back home.  The wonders of upper Antelope Canyon are now memories in the scrapbook of time.  
We're going back.  There's other places to explore in lower Antelope Canyon (apparently the next adventure will 
involve ladder climbing).

Where did you have your last adventure?  And, did it have a "book" connection like Page, Arizona?