Monday, April 30, 2007

A rotten patient

I am such a rotten patient. I want to be left alone when I'm sick, but then I get lonely. I pretend I'm not ill, but get cranky if no one says they hope I feel better soon.
And medicine? Oh my! Cough medicine makes me want to hurl, and when I take an antihistimine? Well, let's just say that when I took the kid's dose of Dimetapp yesterday it made my brain feel as if all my hair were growing inside out. I could feel my spine tingling with every indrawn breath! If I take NyQuil, I have to take it sitting on the side of the bed, because I'll be drunk on the walk between the medicine cabinet and my pillow.
The family has been wonderful, bringing me anything and everything I need and being quiet so I can sleep. I don't know what I would do without them.
It does make me feel a little guilty that I wasn't more sympathetic last week when James (my son) had this cold. Who taught that kid to share, anyway?
Are you a 'good patient', a 'bad' patient, or a 'pull the covers over your head and hibernate till it's over' patient?

Saturday, April 28, 2007

The Friday Five (on Saturday)

The Friday Five (on Saturday this week.)

Five places I've worked.

1. McDonald's (That's right, I was a burger babe, and do ya want fries with that?)

2. Calvary Bible College Dining Hall (Roast beast on Sunday and shipwreck casserole that was as awful as the name implied.) Library (Shh! And no diet coke in the library!) and Admissions (recruiting students and following through with their applications, planning Preview weekends for prospective students)

3. College Park Family Care Center (medical receptionist)

4. Faith Christian School (Jr and Sr High history teacher)

5. Vetsch Hardwoods, Inc. (Bookkeeper extraordinaire)

How about you? Where have you worked?

Thursday, April 26, 2007

This Week From CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
(Bethany House March 1, 2007)
Paul Robertson


Paul Robertson is a computer programming consultant, part-time high-school math and science teacher, and former independent bookstore owner in Blacksburg, Virginia. This is his first novel.


Jason Boyer Just Got an Inheritance to Die For.

The fortune wasn't supposed to befall him. Jason Boyer had known all along his father's business empire would pass to different hands. Which suited him just fine. The money was crooked and the power corrupt. But when an accident claims the old man's life, everyone is stunned by the unveiling of the will. With the passing of the Boyer crown, power-hungry politicians and shady business partners all try to force Boyer's hand. Fighting the temptation of influence and riches, he simply wants to be a better man than his father--but attempting to stand for what’s right soon brings murderous consequences. As those closest to him are endangered--and news emerges that his father's accident may be something more sinister--Boyer finds himself fighting for his soul…and his life!

Is There Any Escape for The Heir?

All the money he could ever crave. In the splintering crash of a car plunging through a railing, Jason Boyer's life is changed. All the fame he could ever desire. But the last thing he wanted was the throne of his father's corrupt business empire. All the power he could ever wield.The estate should have gone elsewhere, but the will was changed. And now everything is Jason's. But gaining the whole world just might cost him his life.

THE HEIR is a Grisham-like tale of intrigue and murder with a lot of humor and well-drawn minor characters.

Endorsement: "In THE HEIR, Paul Robertson serves up politics, privilege, and murder with a side of acerbic wit. What a fabulous book--a great mix of angst, humor, and ultimately, hope." T.L.HINES--author of Waking Lazarus and The Dead Whisper On

My Review: I really enjoyed the book. The first person POV was reminiscent of a Dick Francis thriller. (High praise from this girl, a dedicated Dick Francis fan.) The action moved quickly, and there were a couple of twists I NEVER saw coming. I did figure out the villain about halfway through, but it didn't diminish the pleasure in the book as I then tried to plot out how the good guy would uncover the truth before it was too late.

One drawback for me was the lack of spiritual content. The main character was obviously searching and by the end, he'd made contact with someone who might have the answers for him, but this is never shown in the book. You're left wondering if he will ask this person his burning, yearning, tormenting questions, and if this person would tell him the meaning of life and how to fill the void inside.

That being said, the book is tightly written, entertaining, and an excellent first novel. I hope to see more from Paul Robertson soon.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Glass and Goats

Bet you're wondering what goats and glass have to do with each other...or anything for that matter.

Actually, the link is, both appear in my upcoming WIP, Pam on Rye.
Yesterday we got a tour of a stained glass art studio. Today, we went to see nine adorable baby goats. First hand research.
The baby goats were soooo sweet. All ears and eyes and knees. The oldest were about six weeks and the youngest only four days. They capered around the field, nibbling on everything from grass to clothing to even my daughter's hair! They butted and baa-ed and browsed. The two youngest, twin does, each fell asleep in my kids' laps as they sat on the grass. What a fun time. I learned a lot about goat behavior and have a good resource to answer further questions that might arise.
Tomorrow we venture to the stained glass art studio for a lesson in actually working with the glass. Came, foil, solder, flux, grinders, bandsaws, frames, blow torches, light tables, drawing much to learn.
I'm excited about how God put this story into my heart, then supplied just the right people to help me research it first hand.
I also started something new for this book. A storyboard. Tonight I gathered pictures into a folder on my pc, pictures of the setting, the main characters, and even those two little goats at the top of the post. Aren't they sweet? After our glass setting lesson, Heather and I will print pictures and glue them to a posterboard for handy reference.
Do you use a physical storyboard? An electronic one? A mental one?
Do you visit places and research in person, or do you use mainly books and the internet?

Sunday, April 22, 2007

This Week From CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Navpress Publishing Group (January 15, 2007)
Annette Smith
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: In 1997, Annette was working as a home health nurse. She traveled the back roads from house to house, caring for ill and injured, homebound people. Because of her unique position in the lives of relative strangers, she often found herself bearing solitary witness to intimate behind-the-scenes situations full of grace and meaning. The desire to honor both a particular patient and a poignant scene involving the woman and her husband prompted Annette to write a fictionalized story, The Anniversary. That first story appeared as a column in the Houston Chronicle newspaper and as an essay in Today’s Christian Woman magazine. Later it became a chapter in Annette’s first and best-selling book of short stories, The Whispers of Angels, that has sold more than 100,000 copies Since then, Annette has penned four more books of stories, two volumes on parenting, and the Coming Home to Ruby Prairie trilogy. Annette and her husband Randy, a High School teacher and coach, make their home on a wooded lot in Quitman, Texas. They are the parents of two young adult children, Russell and Rachel, both out on their own. Wally, a grateful, rescued mutt provides warmth and entertainment and keeps the Smith’s empty nest from feeling too lonely. In addition to writing, Annette continues to serve part-time as a registered nurse. She finds the people she works with and the patients she cares for provide great inspiration for her fiction.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Joel Carpenter did not plan for his life to turn out like this. He never meant to be a single dad, working at a hair salon in Eden Plain, Texas. But after making a careless choice four years ago, his marriage was permanently shattered. Now at twenty-seven, he finds himself juggling custody of his preschool son with Kari, the ex-wife he still loves, and sharing Sunday dinners with a group of other single dads. Joel regrets the choices that brought him to this place, but it's not until the worst happens that he learns how much he still has to give. In the midst of deep tragedy, he learns that forgiveness is way more important than freedom. Hopefully it's not too late!
A BIGGER LIFE is a story of love in the midst of heartache, and friendship in the midst of real, everyday life.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

And the winner is....

The kids and I threw all the names of the contest entrants into my son's Day-glo orange hunting cap, and my daughter pulled out the winner.
I'm thrilled to announce that the winner of the Glass Roads/On the Write Path book package is...
Congratulations to Nutter, she's won five great books. I'll get those in the mail to her as soon as possible.
Thank you to each of you who have stopped by, read the interviews and left comments. According to my handy dandy stat counter, traffic more than TRIPLED on the blog this week.
Thank you to Kathy Willis at Glass Road Public Relations for her help with this fun project. I look forward to working with Glass Road in the future.

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Friday Five

This Friday's Five is:

Best ways to spend a Saturday.

1. Watching cooking shows and home improvement shows on PBS. (I don't cook much, nor can I drive a nail straight, but it's vicarious living.)

2. At a museum of history.

3. Working on the WIP at the library in the company of my best girl, Heather. (Daughter, age 14)

4. Reading excellent fiction written by people I know.

5. Playing Big Kahuna Reef on my laptop, Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit with my son, or watching movies with the family.

How 'bout you? How do you burn your Saturdays?

Day Five ~ Glass Road Week

Crime & Clutter

by Cyndy Salzmann

A storage unit, a 1963 Volkswagen minibus, and tattered letters...reveal shattering secrets from the '60s.

It's been a year since Mary Alice lost her father -- the father she never really knew. Now she's stuck cleaning out his rubbish from a storage unit. Just when she'd rather it all go away from her well-ordered life, her long-held secret is discovered by the feisty Marina, one of the six members of the Friday Afternoon Club. When these friends make it their mission to help Mary Alice tackle her stash, they arrive at the storage unit, prepared to clean. But what they discover takes them on a riotous ride through the crime and clutter of the sixties, the angst and betrayal of those caught in The Revolution, and the forgiveness that can only come through acceptance of a different kind of Cause.

How many days do you wear your blue jeans before they go in the laundry?

Jeans are so much more comfortable on the second day. Plus, laundry is the bane of my existence. I am always behind. My only solace comes from Gen 2:25, "They were naked and not ashamed."

How many sizes of clothing do you have in your closet? In storage?

I sometimes think I should have those little size rings in my closet 8, 10, 12, "none of your business."

What is your comfort food?

My mom's fried chicken and cream gravy. Especially in the summer when she serves it with homegrown tomatoes, green beans fresh from the garden and creamy mashed potatoes. Maybe this is why I should have those size rings in my closet...

White chocolate? Milk chocolate? Dark chocolate?

Definitely dark chocolate now that researchers say it is a "super food" that's better for you than blueberries. Plus I just found out that Harry & David sells dark-chocolate-covered blueberries. I can just feel the vitamins coursing through my body when I pop one of those babies into my mouth.

What's your favorite mode of communication?
E-mail, Instant Message, Land Line Phone, Cell Phone, Old-Fashioned Snail Mail Letter?

I adore receiving a snail mail note or letter. There's something special about seeing someone's handwriting and knowing they took the time to write and post a letter. However, thoughtless person that I am, I always use email.

What's your idea of a day of relaxation?

Massage. Pedicure. Lunch. Movie. Bath. Bed. Ahhh...

When you are stressed, who's the first person you call?

I have this reminder on my fridge... "Go to the throne before you go to the phone." But I usually call my hubby at work to whine - unless it's Friday. Then I can make it to 4:30 and whine to my FAC friends.

What's your biggest pet peeve?

My husband and son's channel surfing. I want to scream, "Just make a decision and stick with it!"

Who would play you in the Cyndy Salzmann Movie of the Week?

My friend Marilyn recently told me that my new hairstyle makes me look like Renée Zellweger. (Marilyn is now my very favorite friend.) So, I guess I'd have to let Renee at least audition for the part...

If you could do one thing over in life, what would it be?

Work less. Play more. That is so shallow...

Triple Chocolate Pecan Brownies

1 package brownie mix
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Instructions:1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. Prepare brownie mix as directed on package. Add remaining ingredients to batter. 3. Put batter in greased 9 x 9 pan. Bake 40-45 minutes until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean.

Uses for salt...
Add a pinch of salt to your coffee basket before brewing. This will make the coffee less acidic tasting.
To clean silk flowers and plants, place them in a large bag with one cup of salt. Shake vigorously for a few minutes. Your plants will come out dust free.
Remove rust from household tools by making a paste with salt and one tablespoon of lemon juice. Apply to rusted area with a dry cloth and rub.


Too many books?If you find your shelves overflowing with books, consider donating them to your church library. If you want to read a book again, you can always check it out.Another handy tip is to slip a box in your closet to stash novels you've read. Then when a friend or family member who likes to read stops by, pass it along. For the books you do decide to keep, categorize them according to subject so you'll be able to find the book when you need it.
It was my pleasure to meet Cyndy at a book signing this past February here in Rochester. She's enthusiastic, fun and full of life. I enjoyed her fellowship and the chocolate dipped strawberries. :)
Today is the last day to leave a comment on the Glass Road interviews and enter to win the five book package. The winner will be announced here on the blog on Saturday, April 21st. The winner will have one week to contact me. If the winner fails to contact me in one week, another winner will be drawn from those eligible.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Day Four ~ Glass Road Week


Kim Vogel Sawyer has written two novellas for Heartsong Presents and the popular novel Waiting for Summers Return. She writes gentle stories of hope, offering her readers encouragement. Bygones is the first book of the Sommerfeld Trilogy.
Kim Vogel Sawyer
Barbour Books
On Shelves: April 2007

After being shunned by her parents for marrying someone outside the Mennonite community, widow Marie Koeppler left her childhood home and never looked back. It was too painful. Now, nearly twenty-five years later, she's stunned to see her former beau walk through the doors of the truck stop where she waitresses. He brings unexpected news.

Marie's aunt has died, and to everyone's surprise, she's left her house, belongings, and café to Beth, Marie's daughter. But there's one catch. To receive her inheritance, Beth must come and live within the Mennonite community for a period of no less than three months. Beth determines to live there so she can pay her mother back for all the sacrifices Marie made for her growing up.

Marie returns with Beth to help her adapt to the Mennonite lifestyle and finds more than her lost beau waiting for her. It isn't long before she finds herself wanting to remain. Beth, however, finds herself living under a shadow of suspicion when homes are broken into and antiques are stolen. Loyal to her daughter, yet missing the simplistic lifestyle, Marie is once again faced with a heart-wrenching decision.

What sort of research was required to write a book like Bygones, to assure its authenticity?

You should see my "research book" shelves...full! lol I did a lot of reading, but I also did some "on the street" research. Just a few miles from my hometown is a small, Amish-Mennonite community, so I wandered the streets there. I visited with a handful of young women who were willing to share some thoughts with me. Then I prayed it would be all right! I didn't want to perpetrate stereotypes or myths about this gentle, dedicated group of people. One thing I learned is that each different sect has its own set of "guidelines" concerning what is and isn't acceptable, so I finally just had to say, "Okay, this is what I'm using" and call it quits for my fictional community.

Why do you think readers have an interest in the Amish/Mennonite way of life?

There's a peaceful simplicity to their lifestyle that I think we who are caught up in the hustle-and-bustle full-of-technology world find intriguing. I would imagine nearly everyone, regardless of contentment in life, occasionally finds himself longing for a simpler time. They live their faith so openly with their distinctive clothing and modes of transportation--it just captures our attention. I found it interesting in my research to discover not all people are born to the Mennonite/Amish faith, but choose it later in life. So there must be an appeal.

Which character in Bygones can you most relate to, and why?

It might seem a little strange, but I most closely relate to Henry Braun. I tend to be fiercely loyal and want to believe the best of those I love. I suppose I can also relate to Marie as a mother of three girls--I understand that mom/daughter bond and the desire to protect and provide for your child.

What's your favorite writer's block trick?

Prayer, followed by going back and rereading what I've already written. I ask God to open my heart to the characters again, and by going to the beginning, I can emerse myself in the story once more. I usually munch dark chocolate while I'm doing the rereading, too.

What do you crave (beverage or food) when you are under "writer's stress"?

Hm, I am a dark chocolate-aholic, so I crave it whether I'm under stress or not!

Can you share something with our readers about what God has been teaching you lately?

I've been so amazed at the Holy Spirit's empowerment in my life. I am a bashful person--I've never liked being front and center or a part of large crowds--but writing kind of throws you out there. Your book is being read by people you don't know, and people are calling you to come speak, and sometimes it can be overwhelming. But God whispers, "Peace, be still," and reminds me I can do everything through His strength. Then, when I face that audience or read reviews, and somebody picks up something from the written or spoken words that's beyond the message I planned, I know God is at work behind the scenes, using my humble offerings to impact lives for Him. He's reminding me again and again I don't have to be perfect, I just have to be willing, and He can use this tarnished vessel. He truly is an awesome God.

What book are you currently reading?

I am currently reading The Book of Boston: The Victorian Period as research.

What would most surprise our readers about you?

I have a little bit of an ornery streak inherited from my meek, innocent-looking mother. lol I love a good practical joke, and it usually catches people by surprise because they wouldn't expect it of shy, introverted Kim. Of course, now that I've stated that, I might have to curtail my joke-playing!

What book is coming out next? Can you give us a sneak peak into the story line?

The next story will be the second in the Sommerfeld Trilogy, called Beginnings. This story focuses on Marie's daughter, Beth, who has chosen to remain in the community of Sommerfeld to open her own business, but feels alienated from the community. Two men--one Mennonite and one "worldly"--will vie for her attention, and Beth must dig deep into her heart and new-found faith to discover where she truly belongs in the world. I hope readers will enjoy her journey of developing trust in both God and man.

Give readers one good reason why they should read Bygones.

I think those who read Bygones will leave with an appreciation for deep-rooted faith and a healthy respect for those who live differently among us as an expression of their faith.

What takeaway point do you hope readers pull from the book?

Holding onto anger leads to regret and pain, and it can have a trickle-down effect through the generations. Jesus told us to "forgive seventy times seven," and He said it because he knew the heartache of holding onto wrongs. While writing this story, I faced a situation that brought great pain--someone else's choice had impacted my family tremendously, and I admit to feeling bitter. But writing about Marie and her family helped me get a perspective on what could happen in my family if I didn't forgive and let go. It isn't easy, but it's necessary, and the positive results are well worth the effort it takes to say, "I forgive." I hope the story will help others move toward reconciliation if they harbor a bitter resentment toward someone.

Where did you birth the idea for this book? How did it come about?

Oddly enough, I was contacted by an editor at Barbour who had learned I have a Mennonite background. Barbour publishes Amish fiction, and they thought it would be interesting to juxtapose that lifstyle with the Mennonite. So I was asked if I'd like to submit a story using a contemporary Mennonite setting. I'd had no aspirations in that direction, but once asked, this character--Marie--just sprang to life in my head. The story went in about four different directions before playing out with the adult daughter, the beau-left-behind, and the faithful, prayer-warrior aunt. And, as I said, God used it to bring a sense of healing in my own heart during its writing, so I believe it was God-inspired.

If your book was turned into a movie, who would play the main characters?

I have always said if one of my books becomes a movie, I get to play somebody important! lol In this case, I would have to be Marie--I'm "kind of" the right age. *ahem* And if I were Marie, then I would choose Mel Gibson or Tom Selleck as Henry, since John Wayne isn't available. *wink*

Are your characters from real life experiences? A compilation of people you know?

Since writing is personal, it's hard to avoid bringing real-life situations into the fictional communities and characters. In the case of Bygones, Lisbeth is a combination of an aunt with whom I spent a great deal of time when growing up (my Aunt Lois) and my mom, who is my biggest prayer warrior. Consequently, the character of Lisbeth is quite special to me. The other characters in this story are pure conjecture.

Thanks so much for the opportunity to visit with you! I enjoyed it!

Remember to leave a comment on one of the interviews this week to enter to win all five books. Drawing will be held Saturday, April 21st.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Day Three ~ Glass Road Week

Marlo Schalesky Paints Compelling Word Picture in
(NASHVILLE, TENN.) Hinckley, Minnesota is going up in flames and a mysterious “being” sets up camp at the
edge of town in Marlo Schalesky’s May 2007 release, VEIL OF FIRE. Coping with the loss of loved ones and
belongings is hard enough, but Hinckley citizens are also encountering a monster. Or is it a ghost? Something
didn’t burn up in the fire and Hinckley folks aren’t quite sure if that’s a good thing or bad.
Marlo Schalesky uses the facts from the worst firestorm in Minnesota history—the fire of 1894— as the backdrop
for VEIL OF FIRE. Her lyrical prose is woven deftly into the harsh reality of a fire that consumed 400 square
miles and killed 418 people in just four hours. Hinckley of today still isn’t sure
what or who the monster was that the fire left behind. Perhaps, though,
Schalesky’s story can solve that mystery once and for all.
Schalesky is the author of four books and a regular columnist for Power for
Living. She has been published in Focus on the Family, Decision, Moody
Magazine, Today’s Christian Woman, Discipleship Journal, and others. In
addition, she was named 2001 Writer of the Year at the Mount Hermon
Christian Writers' Conference.
Cook Communications will be launching the “Sizzling Summer of Fiction”
reading campaign with VEIL OF FIRE and other summer releases. Fiction
book clubs and reader groups may contact Schalesky and schedule a time
and date to interact via Internet or conference call. Downloadable reader’s
guides are available at A separate “Bring an Author
to Your Book Club” Internet page, will go
live April 15, 2007.

Where did you birth the idea for this book? When? How did it come about?

People often ask where I get my ideas for my books. My answer? You never know! For Veil of Fire, the idea was birthed at my favorite Mexican restaurant in the mission town of San Juan Bautista. There I was, sitting with my family, nibbling chips and salsa, when a wedding party came by. The bridesmaids were dressed in beautiful turn-of-the-century style gowns. As they passed, my mother-in-law began to tell me of the dresses that her great grandmother, who lived in Hinckley, used to sew for the rich ladies in Minneapolis and St. Paul. From there, came the story of the great Hinckley fire and the rebuilding that this woman, my husband’s great-great-grandmother, was a part of. And finally, I heard the tale of the mystery figure in the hills, a person burned beyond recognition. A person never identified, living as a hermit until one day he just disappeared.
At that moment, the first inklings of the story that would become Veil of Fire were born in my heart. Who was the hermit in the hills? What happened to him? And how would I solve the mystery if I could? As I pondered those questions, I knew that I had to write the hermit’s story. Had to explore what it would be like to lose everything, even your identity. Had to hear the hermit’s voice in my mind, and hear the story for myself.
So, the writing of the book became for me a process of discovery, as I hope it will be for my readers. I hope that as the mystery of the hermit drew me, so too it will draw others to this story of how fire can change you, take from you, and in the end, may just set you free.

Can you explain the research process, since this is such a historical novel?

The research for Veil of Fire was particularly fascinating not only because of its link to my personal family history, but also because of the incredible first-person accounts of the fire that were written by people who were actually there. These stories are compiled into a book written entirely by survivors who recount their personal experience of living through the firestorm that swept through their town. I read about a man whose hat lifted from his head and exploded above him as he ran through wind and fire. I read about another whose horse raced beside the Eastern Minnesota train as fire billowed around him. The horse swerved into the smoke, and the man was never seen again. I read about a boy racing down the tracks, falling, and surviving as the fire roared over him. I read about fire on the surface of the Grindstone River, darkness broken only by bursts of flame, the St. Paul and Duluth engine backing up to Skunk Lake through blinding heat and smoke. I read about a train trestle disintegrating into flame moments after a train passed, about Jane Tew praying on that train, and the brakemen who saved them all.
Those eyewitness accounts, as well as information gathered about the fire from other sources, created the realistic feel of the fire and its aftermath in Veil of Fire. Plus, you can be sure that if something seems almost beyond belief in Veil of Fire, it will be drawn from an actual account that came directly from the research, so amazing were the real stories of the fire on that day!
Today, a number of books about the fire, as well as artifacts, photos, and other articles can be seen at the Hinckley Fire Museum in Hinckley.

What takeaway points do you hope your readers pull from this book?

Once, when we were children, we believed in miracles. The impossible was only a prayer away. Fairy tales were real, and dreams were free. Where did we lose the ability to trust? When did we stop daring to believe? What happened to us?
Life happened. Failure, discouragement, pain, loss. Somewhere, somehow, life burns us all. And we realize that this life we live is not the one we once dreamed. The realities of life scar us. Doubts rise. Fear whispers that hope is gone. And what was once a simple faith can fail in the face of that fear.
In the midst of life’s disillusionment, choices appear. Do we retreat? Hide our hurts far from probing eyes? Do we embrace bitterness and cynicism? Do we use deceit to try to obtain our goals? Do we give up, give in, forget that we ever dared to dream?
Or is it possible to reach the high places of faith in the low valleys of life’s reality? Can we still live a life of bold faith, of fierce hope, when fairy tales don’t come true? How do we live this life that God has given us when it’s not the life we dreamed?
These are the questions I wanted to explore in Veil of Fire. These are the questions which underlie each character’s journey in the aftermath of the great fire of 1894.
So, for those burned by life, for those who carry scars that cannot be seen, for those who have retreated for fear of more pain, this story is for you, this journey from the hidden places of pain to a new hope in the unhidden truth of Christ’s love.

Can you share with your readers something God has been teaching you lately?

Through some recent tragedies and through writing Veil of Fire, God is showing me that I cannot measure his love by my successes and failures, or even by my happiness. Who I am on the inside, how I am being shaped into the likeness of Christ, the character of my life – the color and beauty of it – are what are important to God. And to create that color and beauty, sorrow is necessary. Hurtful things happen.
So, I’m starting to understand that my life, too, is a story that God is writing. And since the best stories have conflict, disappointments, and plenty of action, I shouldn’t be surprised when my life takes a turn and my faith is challenged once again.
And yet, my sorrow matters to God, my tears are counted by him as precious. He does not leave me alone in my hurt. He touches me, he heals me, he creates beauty from the ashes of my pain.
So I’m learning to walk through the fires in my own life. And to dig deeper – not to answer the question of why but the question of who – who is God really, who am I, and who is he making me to be? Those are the questions that matter. Those are the things that help me to face my own fires, accept my own scars.

What book are you currently reading?

Why, the New Testament, of course . . . in Greek! Now, before you start thinking that loving Greek makes me too scholarly to write a decent novel, you should know that even though I just completed my Masters at Fuller (that’s a Masters in Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary – so cool!), it wasn’t my desire for an “A” that made me fall in love with New Testament Greek. After all, most students get through Greek class as fast as they can and then forget it. I might have too.
But one day, as I was sitting there in class, learning forms and tenses, my professor happened to mention something interesting. “Did you realize,” he said, “that the Greek word for truth and the word for unhidden share the same root.”
Ah, in that moment an idea came to me, a little whisper from the heart of God. Truth. Unhidden. Truth. And I began to see the connection between truth and what it means for those who hide in their pain.
That idea became the basis for the theme in Veil of Fire. So you see, I can’t help loving the Greek. I can’t help wanting to read the New Testament that way. After all, who knows what I might discover next.

Which character in Veil of Fire do you most relate to, and why?

Even though I base no character on myself, they all reflect a little of me – my questions, my struggles, the issues that have shaped and molded me. In Veil of Fire, this is particularly true for the hermit in the hills. Just as the hermit questions God’s love, believes “I am Esau, unchosen, unloved,” so I too have struggled with those same feelings, doubts, and questions. I, too, have cried out to God, “Why don’t you love me?” For the hermit, it was a question born out of fire, abuse, and disfigurement. For me, it was a question that came out of failure, infertility, and miscarriage. So, in many ways, the hermit’s questions were my own, the answers mine, the external scars reflections of my internal ones, and in turn, I think, symbols of the scars of us all.

When writing Veil of Fire, did you plan the plot before sitting down to write the story, or did the plot develop as the story progressed?

I am a “headlights” writer, which means I can see the chapter I’m writing and a few chapters ahead. I may also glimpse a few “signposts” in the distance. The funny thing about Veil of Fire is that I wrote three quarters of the book thinking the hermit in the hills was one character only to find out as I neared the end that I was wrong! And the impact of that discovery was both a shock and a delight. Suddenly, I understood what God was getting at through the theme and nuances of character in the book.
And truly, while I may complain that it would be easier to write a book if it were all mapped out (it certainly would be quicker!), this sense of surprise and delight is one of things that I love about the writing process. I love when the story and characters take on a life of their own. I love to discover what God has been planning for a story all along. And I love to be surprised by a sudden turn of events. And I know if I’m surprised and delighted, my readers will be too.

What book project can we expect from you after Veil of Fire? Can you give us a sneak peak of the storyline?

After Veil of Fire, I’m writing 3 contemporary novels for Waterbrook-Multnomah. All of them are “Love Stories with a Twist!,” a new type of story that I think will knock readers’ socks off.
The first, Beyond the Night, releases in May 2008. With groovy 70’s trivia and a whopper of an ending twist, this one was as fun to write as it will be to read. Here’s a blurb about it:
They say love is blind. This time, they’re right.
A poignant love story . . .
A shocking twist . . .
Come, experience a love that will not die.
Nicolas Sparks (The Notebook) meets M. Night Shymalan (The Sixth Sense) in this moving story of two people trying to find love in the dark. A woman going blind, a man who loves her but can’t tell her so, a car crash, a hospital room, and an ending that has to be experienced to be believed. Watch for it next May!
I wish I could take credit for these terrific interview questions, but credit goes to the Glass Roads Public Relations firm for providing the press releases and the interviews with the authors.
Remember to leave a comment on one of the interviews to enter to win a copy of each of the books showcased this week.
I can't wait to read Veil of Fire. I'm working on a series of historical ficiton set in Minnesota and the Great Hinkley Fire was one of my possible settings for an upcoming book.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Day Two ~ Glass Road Week


DiAnn Mills has sold over a million copies of her combined seventeen novels, fourteen novellas, and non-fiction book. Six of her anthologies have appeared on the CBA Best Seller List. Three of her books have won the distinction of Best Historical of the Year by Heartsong Presents, and two of her books have won short historical of the year by American Christian Romance Writers 2003 and 2004. She is the recipient of the Inspirational Reader's Choice award for 2005 in the long contemporary and novella category. DiAnn is a founding board member for American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Inspirational Writers Alive, Chi Libris, and Advanced Writers and Speakers Association.

(NASHVILLE, TN) DiAnn Mills concludes her Texas Legacy series with Lightning and Lace, a gritty novel that is part thriller and part romance. The year is 1898 when Travis Whitworth steps onto the train platform in Kahlerville, Texas. As he has a good look at the small, dusty town, he is determined to face life again and return to preaching. Having lost his last church because of a scandal involving a brothel, he is equally determined to avoid women altogether. But within an hour of his arrival, he finds himself caught in the affairs of Bonnie Kahler, an attractive, young widow whose unruly son is headed for a future of crime unless someone can reach him.

Like Travis, Bonnie also intends to face life again by rising from her grief and returning to her responsibilities. Staring over is proving hard though. Her oldest son has already been arrested once and is now living with the new preacher, and the married banker who supplied her with wine during her mourning 'to help her sleep at night,' is now threatening to reveal that she's been drinking if she crosses him. When she refuses the banker's advances, she ignites a storm of wrath that engulfs her and her family in rumors that threaten to destroy them. Her strongest ally becomes the new preacher who is hiding secrets of his own.

"DiAnn Mills has done it again--only better!" -Diane Noble, author of The Butterfly Farm, a Harriet MacIver Mystery

Are the characters from Lightning and Lace taken from real-life people?

No. They are simply characters that jumped into my mind.

Are they compilations of people you know, and if so, will those people recognize themselves? If your characters are purely make-believe, how do you develop them?

Developing characters takes more time than any other aspect of writing--for me. I live with them. I give them personality tests. I interview them. I question their motivations. I put them in uncomfortable situations to see how they respond.

Which character is most like you, and why?

None of them and all of them. I strive to make sure that every character does not resemble me, but that is impossible. I believe all of my characters have a little of "me" simmering inside.

Can you share something with our readers about what God has been teaching you lately?

This began while I was in Sudan, and it's all about forgiveness. We all have people who have hurt our feelings, wronged us in some way. But I met people in Africa who had watched their families and friends murdered, and still many of them have been able to forgive. God not only instilled in my heart to forgive but to push for reconciliation with anyone who has wronged me or I have wronged them. I don't want to stand before God and have Him ask me why I didn't help someone through the forgiveness process. Besides, He'll have lots of other things to ask me about. ☺

How do you deal with your other obligations (family, church, etc.) when it's crunch time near deadlines?

I list everything that has to be done with a due date and the approximate amount of time that the obligation will take to complete. For my writing project, I divide the number of words by the days left to complete it and make sure I don't go to bed until the word count is completed.

What's your favorite worship song, and why?

These are the Days of Elijah. I guess because it speaks of hope, the hope since the Old Testament times when those who loved God looked for the Messiah and on to current times when we look for Christ's second coming.

What book are you currently reading?

The Count of Monte Cristo. I also went back to school for a Biblical Studies degree, so I'm knee-deep in several books. ☺

What book project are you working on now? Can you give us a sneak-peak of the storyline?

I'm working on a novella set during the Depression in Missouri. The hero and heroine were married just before he left for the Great War. But he lost his leg and could not forgive himself for the horrors of what he'd done as a soldier. He couldn't bring himself to return home. Now it's the Depression, and he has to see her one more time. She doesn't recognize him, but there is something familiar. . .

If Lightning and Lace was turned into a movie, who would you like to play the main characters?

LOL I have to think about that a moment. I suppose Reese Witherspoon for Bonnie and Matt Damon for Travis.

Do you plan the plot of your story in advance, or does it develop as the story plays out?

I do both. I have some major scenes in my mind and then I fill in the blanks, according to character, as I go along.

What did you do to ensure the authentic feel of Lightning and Lace? What sort of research was necessary?

Texas research. Historical culture: dress, food, speech, politics, church life, school, and visit the places where I want the story to unfold.

How long did it take you to write Lightning and Lace?

Three months, start to finish.

What would most surprise us about you?

This is a tough question! Perhaps that I would one day like to teach creative writing on a college level.

Give readers one good reason why they should read Lightning and Lace.

It's real life today with issues of alcohol, single parenting, and deceit in a historical setting. It's also an unlikely romance and a story of God's redeeming love.

Remember, to win a copy of Lightning and Lace, as well as four other new fiction books, leave a comment on one of the interviews posted this week. The winner will be announced Saturday, April 21st.

Glass Road, Day One

Encounter the thrills and spills of

Fair Game

A showcase of mystery, history, romance, and adventure

at the World's Fair

Book Two of the series entitled A Fair to Remember

Dinah Mayhew takes on more than just a job at the Chicago World's Fair when she sets her cap for Seth Howell. As Dinah and Seth team up to help Chicago's unfortunates, romance fairly blossoms. But matters take a turn for the worse when cousin Gladys appears on the scene and starts looking for love in all the wrong places. Upon Gladdie's sudden and mysterious disappearance, Dinah and Seth begin searching for answers, only to find themselves trapped in a maze of secrecy and deception. Will they live to expose the truth or find themselves facing the point of no return?

A Maze of Mystery and Mayhem at the World's Fair
By Award-winning, Best-selling author Carol Cox
Second Book in the Compelling Series: A Fair to Remember

What book are you working on now? Can you give us a sneak peek of the storyline?

Sure! Asking an author to talk about her books is never a problem. It's getting her to know when to stop talking that can be tricky! I just turned in the manuscript for a title in a brand-new fiction series from Guideposts called Mystery and the Minister's Wife. There are five authors working on the series, and the one I've just completed will be book four.Currently, I'm working on another story set at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair for Barbour Publishing. Like the first two, Ticket to Tomorrow and Fair Game, this one will have the splendor of the fair's White City as a backdrop . . . along with some of the less savory elements in Chicago's underworld.The storyline revolves around Emily Ralston, a worker at the fair's Children's Building, and Stephen Bridger, one of the exposition's Columbian Guards. When a little boy is abandoned at the Children's Building, Emily and Stephen join forces to reunite the child with his family. Tracking little Adam's family down proves to be more challenging than they expected when their efforts make all three of them targets of a cold-hearted criminal, and their lives--as well as their blossoming romance--are at risk.And there's good news for those who have followed the first two books--quirky Mrs. Purvis will be back, along with brief appearances by Annie and Nick from Ticket to Tomorrow and Dinah and Seth from Fair Game.

What takeaway points do you hope the reader pulls from this book?

Like many of us, Dinah wants to serve God but isn't sure about what He wants her to do. She has to learn to focus on Him, rather than circumstances, to guide her. She also discovers that He can use her willingness to serve despite her shortcomings.

How do you deal with your other obligations (family, church, etc.) when it's crunch time near deadlines?

After living through the crunch time for over twenty titles, my family is pretty well trained. They know there will be days when I'm bleary-eyed and uncommunicative and they'll have to take care of their own meals, laundry, etc. for a time. I appreciate their support so much! In return, I try very hard to be available for family time at some point during the day, even when the deadline is pressing hard. I don't want to fall into the trap of focusing on what we'll do together once the current deadline is out of the way and lose out on the precious time we have right now. I recently gave a talk to our local ACFW group on time management. The preparation for reminded me that I knew what to do to make life run more smoothly, but didn't always follow through on that. I'm working hard a planning my time better so those deadlines don't crunch quite so hard.

Where did you birth the idea for this book? When? How did it come about?

My mother taught me to read at an early age, and books have been a major part of my life ever since. One I remember in particular was published in the 1940s and contained the history of the United States in mock newspaper format. As a little girl, I would spread the book open on the living room floor and spend hours poring over stories of long-ago events. When she passed the book along to my son several years go, I thumbed through it again and discovered a story that grabbed my interest and wouldn't let go. It contained only a brief mention of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, but that was enough to set me off on a trail of research and discovery. The World's Columbian Exposition (the fair's official title) may not be familiar to many of us, but we're all quite familiar with the things that originated there. Juicy Fruit gum, for instance, along with Cracker Jacks and Shredded Wheat. All of those were introduced at that fair. So was the concept of the midway. The star of the midway, the Ferris wheel, was created specifically for the exposition. It was a huge structure, rising nearly 250 feet in the air and capable of carrying over 2,000 passengers at a time. A setting like that is more than enough to spark an author's imagination! Right away, I knew there were stories to tell, and characters starting appearing on the scene and taking on a life of their own. It has been an adventure to follow along and record their stories. It truly was a fair to remember!

Can you share something with our readers about what God has been teaching you lately?

Currently, it's all about focus and priorities. I keep going back to Jeremiah 29:11, where God reminds me His plans are to give me a future and a hope--not to burden my life and overwhelm me. My husband pastors two churches and runs a saddle shop in what we laughingly call his spare time. In addition to writing, I homeschool our fifth-grade daughter and help out at the shop a couple of days a week. With all we have going on, it's easy to get sidetracked and put off doing things until later. But "later" never comes. When I procrastinate, I wind up in a time crunch that puts me--and my family--under a lot of stress. Remembering to keep God as my number one priority at all times is a must! In addition, I've posted some little signs in my office and at the top of the to-do list I keep on my laptop. These say "Focus!" and "Do It Now." Small reminders, but they're helping me keep on track.

Which one of your characters is most like you, and why do you say that?

In Fair Game, I can definitely see similarities to myself in Dinah. Dinah wants so much to be used by the Lord, but focuses on her weaknesses instead of her strengths. She has to learn that God is looking for obedience and a willing heart. It's easy for me to focus on all my shortcomings rather than on what He can do if I'll just step out of the way and allow Him to use me as He sees fit.

Do you pre-plan character development and then let them run with the story, or do you plot the story in advance?

I'm definitely a plotter. It's far easier for me to have a road map at the beginning of a journey rather than to try to find my way as I go along. But that just gives me a guide. It doesn't mean I'm locked into a rigid outline. There are still plenty of surprises that come up along the way to keep things fresh and interesting.

Do you have an organized office and set times to write, or do you find yourself writing at unusual times or places?

At the moment, we're reorganizing our storage space. As a result, there are crates of books stacked all around my office. Having to maneuver past them would normally drive me crazy, but I'm trying to live with it for the time being. I do have a regular writing schedule, but having a husband in ministry means I have to be flexible. When a call comes asking us to visit a critically ill church member, I can't turn that down because it conflicts with my writing time. When "life happens" and my schedule doesn't work out the way I planned, I've learned to redeem the time by being ready to write whenever the opportunity arises, even if it's just for a few minutes at a stretch. That can mean working in places most people don't consider the typical writing environment. Living in a remote area, we spend a fair amount of time on the road just to run errands and do shopping. Most of my books have large sections that were written while we were on the road. . .with my husband driving, of course! We heat our home with a woodstove. There's nothing like that old-timey feeling of warmth, but in the early mornings it can be downright cold in the house until the fire gets built up again. I've been known to curl up with my laptop on the wood box next to the stove and write until the place thaws out a bit. The important thing is to be ready to seize those moments whenever--and wherever--they arise. Even small increments of time can add up to a considerable amount of writing accomplished.

CAROL COX is a native of Arizona whose time is devoted to being a pastor's wife, mom to her grown son, and a home-school teacher to her daughter, church pianist, and youth worker. She loves anything that she can do with her family: reading, traveling, historical studies, and outdoor excursions. She is also open to new pursuits on her own including genealogy research, crafts, and the local historical society. She plans to write more historical inspirational romance in which her goals are to encourage Christian readers with entertaining and uplifting stories and to pique the interests of non-Christians who might read her novels.

Remember to leave a comment this week to enter to win FIVE BOOKS from Glass Road Public Relations and On The Write Path.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Big Blog News!!!!

Do books make you dance? Does a contest make your heart

beat faster? Well, have I got news for you.

This week, April 16-20, here at On The Write Path,

we're celebrationg "Glass Road" week.

Every day for five days, I'll be blogging an interview with an

author who is represented by Glass Road, a dynamite publicity

firm that specializes in promoting Christian authors.

At the end of the week, I'll be drawing a name from

those who leave comments. The cool thing is, Glass Road is

pairing with On The Write Path to give away

a Five Book Package-the newest release by each author featured this week.
The line-up for this fun week is:
Monday, April 16th, Fair Game by Carol Cox
Tuesday, April 17th, Lightening and Lace by DiAnn Mills
Wednesday, April 18th, Veil of Fire by Marlo Schalesky
Thursday, April 19th, Bygones by Kim Vogel Sawyer
Friday, April 20th, Crime & Clutter by Cyndy Salzmann
It doesn't get better than that. Come, read, leave a comment.
Enter to win!

So get the word out. Tell your friends.
The winner will be announced on Saturday, April 21st.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

The Friday Five

Five Things About...
Favorite TV Shows
Going to try something new on the blog for awhile. Each Friday I'll tell you five things about myself. Today's topic is 'Favorite TV Shows'.
In no particular order:
1. The Big Valley ~ No longer on the air, but still a great show.
2. Survivor
3. Numb3rs
4. Any sport but wrestling or boxing.
5. Lately, Scrubs reruns on WGN late night.
What TV shows do you watch?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

This Week From CFBA ~ Coral Moon by Brandilyn Collins

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Brandilyn Collins is the bestselling author of Violet Dawn, Web Of Lies, Dead of Night, Stain of Guilt, Brink of Death, and Eyes of Elisha just to name a few.Brandilyn and her family divide their time between the California Bay Area and Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.She also maintains an informative blog called Forensics and Faith where she daily dispenses wisdom on writing, life, and the Christian book industry.

The figure remained still as stone. Leslie couldn't even detect a breath. Spider fingers teased the back of her neck. Leslie's feet rooted to the pavement. She dropped her gaze to the driveway, seeking...what? Spatters of blood? Footprints? She saw nothing. Honed through her recent coverage of crime scene evidence, the testimony as last month's trial, the reporter in Leslie spewed warnings: Notice everything, touch nothing...
Leslie Brymes hurries out to her car on a typical workday morning...and discovers a dead body inside.Why was the corpse left for her to find? And what is the meaning of the message pinned to its chest?In Coral Moon, the senseless murder of a beloved Kanner Lake citizen spirals the small Idaho town into a terrifying glimpse of spiritual forces beyond our world. What appears true seems impossible.OR IS IT? And as Brandilyn would say...

Presently this Kanner Lake Series of books has its own character blog called Scenes and Beans. Stop by and visit the folks from Kanner Lake!


There are many things Brandilyn Collins is good at. Creating great characters, scaring the hoo-ha out of her readers, teaching writing techniques to up and coming scribes. But there are a few things Brandilyn Collins is GREAT at. I found these in CORAL MOON.

Tone. She sets the tone of her scary books right away. The use of the most subtle words makes you feel the icy fingers of fear tickling the back of your neck.

Verbs. Such active, vivid, throat-clutching verbs. Emotions kick and knock through people. They don't get up, the push themselves up. She uses words often employed as adjectives as verbs.

Tension. The pace never slackens. The fear, the danger are real for every POV character all the time, and therefore to the reader as well. Brandilyn often employs a sort of "stream of consciousness" style, lots of fragments, creative use of punctuation, italics, and parenthesis to keep things moving, tight and scary.

POV. While this entire book is scary, one particular chapter made me need to close the book, catch my breath, and still my fast-beating heart. All I can say is, watch out for Chapter 13, the first time you get a peek into the motives of the bad guy. I thought I might faint.

All in all, a very, VERY exciting read. Hie thee to or your local Christian bookstore and get this book.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Rushing the Ending

Hi, my name is Erica, and I am an ending rusher.

Today I was adding 'date stamps' to my chapter headings on Drums so the reader (and I) can keep track of where and when a scene takes place. I worked my way through 35 chapters and the epilogue, dug out my research books just to make sure I hadn't gotten off track, recreated my hand-drawn calendar to double check my checking, and did a quick read through of my ending.

As I skimmed my scorchingly paced finale, I thought, "Georgiana and Kaye are never going to let me get away with this." LOL And it is so true. They both exhort me to flesh out the emotions, draw out the internal conflict, and stop skimming the hard stuff to get to the next scene.

God bless them.

This past week I rushed a scene that was...okay-ish...but had the potential to be so much more. They both recognized it as a pivotal scene in one character's journey (For which I was grateful, as that was my intent all along) but they both also recognized that I'd skipped a lot of the internal conflict, the visceral reaction that would be so natural given the circumstances I'd tossed the character into. My first instinct was to add more description of the setting and circumstances, but a further inquiry as to what the scene needed yeilded the answer I both anticipated and dreaded. More emotion, more character reaction to what I'd already thrown at him...not more 'stuff'.

The cool thing is, these girls teach, encourage, give 'atta-girls', speak truth, tell it plain, and all the time, I'm soaking it up. Each week it takes me more time to get my submission ready for critique, because I'm working to apply what I've learned in the previous week. So much to much already learned!

Another cool don't have to belong to this critique group to learn from these gals. Visit Kaye's blog: Write Place, Write Time for some of the best online writing courses I've come across (and free too!) and Georgiana's blogs, Georgiana D, and Honey Do for book reviews, homemaking tips and an all around fun time.

Tell 'em Erica sent you!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Easter Blessings

I hope your Easter was as blessed as mine. After experiencing my first Maundy Thursday service, the Easter service was especially joyful.

We spent the afternoon with family, playing games, watching the Master's Golf Tournament (wasn't that Iowa boy's win amazing?) and talking.

Family seems especially sweet this weekend, for last week we learned that one of our family members' cancer has returned. Radiation treatment has started and will continue for the next week or so, then they will evaluate the situation again and decide on another strategy.

The songs, the sermon, the fellowship, the reminder that as Christ was resurrected, so shall all who believe in him be, was so sweet to me in the face of this family sorrow. It was a wonderful reminder that God is good.

All the time.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

This Week From CFBA ~ In High Places by Tom Morrisey

Tom Morrisey is the author of four previous novels and numerous short stories, a world-renowned adventure-travel writer whose work has appeared in Outside, Sport Diver (where he serves as Executive Editor) and other leading magazines.

He holds an MA in English Language and Literature from the University of Toledo and an MFA in Creative Writing from Bowling Green State University. He lives in Orlando, Florida.

ABOUT THE BOOK:For Patrick Nolan, every climb tells a story. And now maybe it's his own …. He's right at the rim, staring over the cliff's knife edge and wondering how things went wrong so quickly.It all started after arriving home from a weekend climbing trip with his father, Kevin. That's when word reached them. In a silent moment, they'd lost the person most important to them—her death raising unanswerable questions and dangerous doubts.Launching a new life in a new town to escape their pain, son and father find themselves in danger of being torn apart forever. As his father seeks a route to solace on the dangerous high face of the rock, Patrick finds a path to hope with the unlikeliest of allies—a pastor's daughter. Together they must discover the one answer that can bring Patrick and Kevin back from the brink of the precipice.

Endorsements: "It is rare to find a 'man's man' who knows the human heart, much less one who can write with such a well-balanced combination of sensitivity and adrenaline-charged adventure."—Athol Dickson, Christy-Award-winning author of River Rising

"Beautifully exciting, haunting, and satisfying. Morrisey leaves you hanging by your fingertips."—Lisa Samson, award-winning author of The Church Ladies and Straight Up

"Tom Morrisey is a master wordsmith and an expert at weaving gripping stories. If I pick up a book with his name on it, I know I'm going for gold."—Angela Hunt, author of Uncharted

You can buy the book Here.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Pop Culture

I am a member of the Minnesota State Historical Society, and I receive their quarterly publication "Minnesota History."

In this quarter's issue, they have an article about the Beatles' concert at the old Met Stadium in the Twin Cities in 1965. The article documents the plane's arrival, the screaming fans, the concert, and the press conference.

After the press conference, one St. Paul Pioneer Press newsman summed up the experience with this phrase that caught my eye.

"Never have so few done so little to take so much from so many." (Auggust 22, 1965, sec. 1 page 2)

Pithy, isn't it? Four young men changed a generation. When asked how they proposed to use their vast influence on young people, Paul McCartney replied succinctly, "We don't." And yet they did.

We have a winner!

Once more we brought out my son's day-glo orange hunting hat and dropped in the names of all who entered to win a copy of Susan May Warren's RECLAIMING NICK.

And the winner is.....


Congratulations, CJ, and your book will be in the mail today.

Thanks to everyone who entered. We'll have another drawing to win a book soon.