Thursday, May 31, 2007

Baby, it's tough


There are times when the writing comes easily. I know where I'm headed, I know what to do, and I love doing it. Those are great times.
And then there's now.
At the beginning of another book. I'm three chapters in on the new project, I have a vague idea of where I want to go with it, and the last thing this girl wants to do is sit down and type it out.
I've come up with lots of excuses and way to procrastinate. Just before I finished today's work, I was actually contemplating getting out my counted cross-stitch (which I haven't worked on in MONTHS) just so I could have some busy work and not have to write. Sad, sad, sad.
I'm like this at the start of every book. There are so many choices to make, so many ways it could go. It isn't until I'm at least a fourth of the way into it that I feel I know the characters well enough and have narrowed the choices enough to write with any speed.
Then, with this one, there is the added challenge of a new genre for me. That's slowing me down a bit too.
The cure? Sit my butt in my chair and put black words on white paper. Sigh. I gotta keep moving on this one. The deadline looms.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Tag!


Lifted this tag from Sally Bradley's blog.



Five books in your To Be Read pile:
1. Reluctant Runaway by Jill E. Nelson
2. Fair Game by Carol Cox
3. Veil of Fire by Marlo Schalesky
4. Crime and Clutter by Cyndy Salzmann
5. Will to Murder: The True Story behind the Crimes and Trials Surrounding the Glensheen Killings by Gail Feichtinger

The last four books you read:
1. Great Cases of Scotland Yard (Reader's Digest Books)
2. Still Life With Crows by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
3. The Heir by Paul Robertson
4. A Bride Most Begrudging by Deanne Gist
The last three books you borrowed:
1. Pride of the Inland Seas: An illustrated history of the port of Duluth-Superior by Bill Beck and Patrick Labadie
2. Duluth: and illustrated history of the Zenith City by Glenn Sandvik
3. Ghost Ships of the Great Lakes by Dwight Boyer

The last two non-fiction books you read. Since the above books are all non-fiction, I'll add two other books here.
1. Over The Earth I Come: The Great Dakota Uprising of 1862 by Duane Schultz
2. The Dakota War of 1862: Minnesota's Other Civil War by Kenneth Carley
The one book you wish everyone would read:
The book of John.

I tag:
Kevin
CJ
Donna
Georgiana
and Kaye
Whatcha readin' folks. Stop by and lemme know!

This Week From CFBA


CFBA
is introducing
SPIRIT OF SWEETGRASS
Integrity/Thomas Nelson (March 6, 2007)
by
Nicole Seitz
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: NICOLE SEITZ is a South Carolina Lowcountry native and freelance writer/illustrator published in South Carolina Magazine, Charleston Magazine, House Calls, The Island Packet and The Bluffton Packet.A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Journalism, she also has a bachelor's degree in illustration from Savannah College of Art & Design. Nicole is an exhibiting artist in the Charleston, South Carolina area where she owns a web design firm and lives with her husband and two small children.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Essie Mae Laveau Jenkins is a 78-year-old sweetgrass basket weaver who sits on the side of Hwy. 17 in the company of her dead husband, Daddy Jim. Inspired by her Auntie Leona, Essie Mae finally discovers her calling in life and weaves powerful "love baskets," praying fervently over them to affect the lives of those who visit her roadside stand. Relations are strained with her daughter Henrietta, who thinks Essie belongs in a retirement center. If Essie can't pay $10,000 in back taxes to save her home, she may have no choice. More tensions: her grandson EJ wants to marry a white girl, Essie discovers that a handsome man she's trying to find a girl for is gay, and her daughter carries a hidden secret. When she's faced with losing her home and her stand and being put in a nursing home, Daddy Jim talks her into coming on up to Heaven to meet sweet Jesus-something she's always wanted to do. The SPIRIT OF SWEETGRASS shifts less successfully to the afterlife, where her Gullah-Creole ancestors surround her; but soon, her heavenly peace is disrupted, for she still has work to do. Now Essie Mae, who once felt powerless and invisible, must find the strength within her to keep her South Carolina family from falling apart. Together, with Daddy Jim, they team up to return to Earth and battle two spirits conjured up by Henrietta's voodoo that threatens to ruin an attempt to save the sweetgrass basket weaving culture.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Rechecking and Editing Goals


With nearly five months gone in 2007 (where did the time go?) I've decided to revisit my goals for the year and see how I'm doing. Bold black is the goal, pale blue is the update I gave in February as to where I was on each goal, and the red is the update for today.


2007 Writing Goals:


1) Finish the first draft of Drums of the North Star (this will mean 1500 words a day, 5 days a week, for six more weeks.) I've been diligent in working on the manuscript. It now stands at just over 80,000 words, the original projected word count. However, this first draft is going to run closer to 90,000 words before it's all finished. So I've allowed myself a few more days to accomplish this goal. The former deadline was Feb. 14th. The new deadline is Feb. 17th. I'm 'stealing' that Saturday to wrap up the first draft. First draft done! Woohoo!


2) Write out plot cards for new book--Pam on Rye--by 3/20/07. Lots of composting going on with this one. I'm hoping to have all the plot cards done well before this date to give myself a little more time on the deadline for the first draft. I've got a few cards but have decided I can't finish the cards until I have about 20K words of it done. It's just the way I work. I have tried something new with this one though. I found photos of the characters and locations and did a storyboard. It is stuck on the side of my filing cabinet within easy reach. It's already proven to be a big help.


3) Write first draft of Pam on Rye by 6/29/07. This will be pushing it, but since we will be done with school, and hopefully this addition too, I will be able to focus a lot of concentrated effort on getting this first draft done in the allotted three months. I've got two chapters written on the first draft. I'm going to have to push this deadline out to the middle to end of July.


4) Write synopsis/proposal packet for Drums of the North Star, including series ideas. This one might come up sooner than I'd anticipated, if I do enter the Barclay Sterling contest, as they require a synopsis and query letter with the submission. This will be an August project in preparation for conference. I did not enter the Barclay Sterling.


5) Write synopsis/proposal packet for Pam on Rye, including series ideas. Haven't even started this one. Another August project for me.


6) Edit and revise Drums of the North Star, particularly the first three chapters and synopsis. Thanks to some terrific critique partners, this one has already begun. The crit buddies and I are deep into the edits for this book. Another couple of crit rounds and it will be done! Woohoo!


7) Edit and revise Pam on Rye, particularly the first three chapters and synopsis. No action here as all attention has been on Drums of the North Star. No news here yet.


8) Attend ACFW Conference in September. This is still the plan. I'm getting excited already. I've purchased airfare and reserved my hotel room. I have a roommate, and I've chosen my workshops and some editors to meet with. I can't wait for registration to open this Friday!


9) Follow up on manuscript request of my first novel, Beauty for Ashes. The follow-up came. A polite 'no, thank-you.' At least I can cross it off my list of things to do. Silly ms is sitting just where I left it on the bookcase.


10) Pray, pray, pray! (this one should be #1...or #1-10) Still praying. And God is working. God is still working, though my prayer life has slipped. I need to get back into the swing. Does this happen to anyone else?


11) I'm adding in here join a critique group. (Hee hee hee. I love lists, and I have been known to add things to my list for the day that I've already done, just so I can cross them off. I like to look back on the day/year and see I've gotten at least a FEW things accomplished.) All I can say is, "Girls, you smell GOOOOOOOOOD!"


12) Also adding: Enter the Genesis contest for 2007. I'm still waiting on one set of crits before I do a final polish and submit. Rest assured, I'll post when I turn it in. I entered, first round is over and the winners will be announced in September at the conference. Now I need to get a decent picture of me (is there such a thing?) and send it to the conference coordinator by July 15th.



How about you? Are you being deliberate, dedicated and determined about your writing goals this year? Have you made some progress? Anything unexpected happen as a result? I'd love to hear from you.


Friday, May 25, 2007

The Friday Five



This week's Friday Five is:
Five books/authors I loved as a child. (The hard thing is going to be limiting it to five.)
1) The Black Stallion books by Walter Farley.
2) The Arabian Cow Horse books by John Richard Young (Very hard to find, but I've completed the set.)
3) The Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder (I wore out a copy of Farmer Boy in third grade)
4) The Misty books by Marguerite Henry (My copy of Stormy, Misty's Foal, is held together with tape)
5) Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery (Loved, loved, loved the language of these books and all the trouble Anne got herself into.)
Some books that I also loved but that didn't make the top five:
Cherry Ames nursing books by Helen Wells and Julie Tatham
Pretty much anything by Betty Cavanna, but Spring Comes Riding in particular. (The dance at the Naval Academy...sigh...so romantic.)
Rosamund du Jardin and Janet Lambert's work.
Zane Grey, oh man, my friends and I were addicted to his books and passed them around and spoke in an horrible 'cowboy twang' whenever we were together. Must've driven our parents nuts.
And so many more. I was such a bookworm. My best friends were found in books, and my mind was always firmly planted in 'their' world rather than my own. Guess not much has changed, huh?
How about you. Favorite books as a child?
"There is no frigate like a book to take us worlds away." Emily Dickenson

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

This Week From CFBA



ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rene Gutteridge is the author of several novels, including Ghost Writer (Bethany House Publishers) The Boo Series (WaterBrook Press) and the Storm Series, (Tyndale House Publishers. She will release three novels in 2006: Storm Surge (Tyndale) My Life as a Doormat (WestBow Press, Women of Faith)Occupational Hazards Book #1: Scoop (WaterBrook Press).
She has also been published over thirty times as a playwright, best known for her Christian comedy sketches. She studied screenwriting under a Mass Communications degree, graduating Magna Cum Laude from Oklahoma City University, and earned the "Excellence in Mass Communication" award. She served as the full-time Director of Drama for First United Methodist Church for five years before leaving to stay home and write. She enjoys instructing at writer's conferences and in college classrooms. She lives with her husband, Sean, a musician, and their children in Oklahoma City.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Old School meets New School meets Homeschool
Just shy of retirement and a well-earned pension, Las Vegas Police Department Sergeant Ron Yeager's definition of "active duty" involves shifting his bad leg into a more comfortable position. But when he's requested from his mind-numbing desk job to head an undercover auto theft task force, the former narcotics officer determines to prove he's still got the right stuff.That is...until he meets his unlikely team of officers.As Yeager soon finds out, not all the crazies are on the street. An undercover rookie, the audaciously honest Mackenzie "Mack" Hazard sends Yeager's blood pressure skyrocketing by wearing her faith like an ever-present badge. Then there's Jesse Lunden, a maverick undercover officer who refuses to learn anything from an old guy with a cane. Can this tangle of egos and eccentrics be trained into a lean, mean, crime-fighting machine...even while they are being drawn into something much bigger and more dangerous than anyone imagined?In her trademark style, Rene Gutteridge blends zany, original characters, sincere faith, and surprising plot twists into one hilariously addictive read.

"Snitch is an engaging crime novel, balanced between sheer whimsy and genuine human drama."
....CHRIS WELL, author of Tribulation House

"A wonderful, fully developed ensemble cast makes Snitch an entertaining, engaging read. Rene's flair for a comedic, well-turned phrase shines here. Snitch is worth snatching."
...SUSAN MEISSNER, author of Widows and Orphans


Due to the publicist moving this book up the list, I haven't had a chance to finish it yet. But I will say I've read the first five chapters, and I'm enjoying it very much. Rene has a way of using just the right word to convey the feeling of a scene. She's got an unusual family, unusual occupations, and unusual settings in this series. It's def. worth a look.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

HOORAY!!!

Can I just put out a big old Congratulations to the Genesis Contest finalists of 2007?

Contemporary Romance (includes romantic comedy)
Jennifer Lynn Cary
Audra Harders
Catherine Hershberger
Roxanne Sherwood
Jennifer Hudson Taylor

Historical Romance
Linda Fulkerson
Audra Harders
Pam Hillman (double finalist in Historical Romance)
Jennifer Hudson Taylor

Romantic Suspense
Sally Bradley (visitor and commenter on this blog from time to time)
Marci J. Burke
Dineen Miller
Dani Pettrey
Suzan Robertson

Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Allegory
Sally A. Apokedak
Valerie Comer
Rebecca Grabill
Shannon McNear
Chris Mikesell

Historical Fiction (not romance)
Yvonne Anderson
Marcia Gruver
Tina Helmuth
Carla Stewart
Erica Vetsch (Big Grin!)

Young Adult
Sally Apokedak
Leigh DeLozier
Linda Fulkerson
Charlene Glatkowski
Rachael Phillips

Contemporary Fiction
Michael Ehret
Jennifer Griffith
Kathy Harriss
Myra Johnson
Angie Poole

Women's Fiction
Lynne Gentry
Ane Mulligan
Kristine Pratt
Kathleen Sprout
Ginger Vaughan

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Martha Pope Gorris
Gina Holmes (double finalist in Mystery/Suspense/Thriller)
Janet Robertson
Janet Rubin

Chick/Mom/Hen/Lady Lit
Georgiana Daniels (My critique partner!)
Annalisa Daughety
Sabrina Fox-Butcher
Carrie Padgett
Jenness Walker

Congratulations to all the 2007 Genesis finalists!

I need to apologize to Tiffany Coulter, my categories' co-ordinator, for sounding like a complete DORK when she called. I was all blublburblaahblickblob?

Monday, May 21, 2007

Romance from CFBA

Defiant Heart
(Avon Inspire May 8, 2007)
by
Tracey Bateman
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Tracey Bateman lives in Missouri with her husband and four children. Their rural home provides a wonderful atmosphere for a writer'simagination to grow and produce characters, plots, and settings.In 1994, with three children to raise, she and her husband agreed that she should go to college and earn a degree. In a freshman English class, her love for writing was rekindled, and she wrote a short story that she later turned into a book.Her college career was cut short with the news of their fourth baby's impending arrival, but the seeds of hope for a writing career had already taken root. Over the next several years she wrote, exchanged ideas with critique partners, studied the craft of writing, and eventually all the hard work paid off.She currently has over twenty-five books published in a variety of genres. Tracey Bateman believes completely that God has big plans for his Kids and that all things are possible to anyone who will put their hope and trust in God!
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Will Fannie be able to keep her family...and her heart, safe and find a new life on the frontier?Book One of the Westward Hearts series, orphans Fannie Caldwell and her two young siblings have spent the last three years as indentured servants under a cruel master. Desperately wanting a better life for her brother and sister, Fannie devises a plan to secretly join a wagon train heading west.Her plan immediately runs into trouble when the handsome yet bullheaded wagon master Blake Tanner refuses to allow an unmarried woman on the train.But Fannie's determined...she'll escape and go west with or without help!As life on the trail tests everyone's endurance and faith, Fannie soon realizes the perils of being a single woman on the frontier. Witnessing Fannie fending off one scare after another, Blake slowly recognizes how much he cares for this alluring young woman.Will Blake sacrifice his own dreams and guide Fannie to safety?
Or will Fannie's stubborn independence keep her from finding true love?

Friday, May 18, 2007

The Friday Five

The Friday Five:

Five things I did today:

1) Got up earlier than I wanted.

2) Went on a delivery with my DH.

3) Went out to lunch with the DH.

4) Got absolutely NOWHERE with the IRS on a notice I received about some money I paid correctly but they say I didn't.

5) Read a book about shipping on Lake Superior and pinned down the decade for a new historical series set in Duluth, MN.

What I didn't get done was any writing on POR due to playing the wag and gallivanting across south-central Minnesota with my husband today. I re-learned something that I became familiar with when I was a high school teacher. We made a lumber delivery to a school in Owatonna, MN and several of the students came out to help unload the truck. The thing I re-learned was, the smallest high school boy in a class is often the loudest and does the most directing of traffic in a situation like this.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

This Week From CFBA



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Ann H. Gabhart has published a number of adult and young adult novels with several different publishers. The author of The Scent of Lilacs, Ann and her husband live a mile from where she was born in the Bluegrass region of Kentucky. She is active in her country church, and her husband sings bass in a southern gospel quartet.

ABOUT THE BOOK:
Nothing will be the same after the summer of 1964.Drought has gripped the quiet Kentucky town of Hollyhill, and the town seems as if it is holding its breath--waiting. Jocie Brooke is nervous about starting high school. Her sister Tabitha is experiencing the weariness of waiting for a new baby. Her father David is feeling the timidity of those first steps toward true love. All of these pivotal steps in life are awaiting the Brooke family. Into this cloud of tense anticipation, a black family from Chicago, the Hearndons move here to plant an orchard outside of town. Fresh off the Freedom Train, Myra Hearndon is sensitive to what the color of her skin may mean in a Southern town. Her family will have to contend with more than the dry ground and blazing sun as they try to create their ORCHARD OF HOPE. Jocie finds herself befrending a boy that some townspeople shun. Due to unspoken racial lines in this southern town, the presence of these newcomers sparks a smoldering fire of unrest that will change Hollyhill..and Jocie...forever. In this close-knit community, everything is about to change. Let this riveting novel take you along to experience unexpected love, new life, and renewed faith amid life's trials.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

This killed me

I found this on a friend's facebook. He's still single. ... Shocker.

Friday, May 11, 2007

The Friday Five


The Friday Five: Kinds of flowers I planted in my garden today.
1) RED Geraniums (In the garden and in the flowerboxes I have hanging from the railing on my front porch.)
2) Red and white striped petunias. (In the flowerboxes with the red geraniums)
3) Kansas RED peony. (I couldn't pass it up when I saw the name.)
4) Stella d' Oro Lilies (I've always wanted some of those. Beautiful yellow flowers.)
5) Double petal red and white columbine. (I'd never seen it before and thought it was so beautiful.)
On a side note, I ordered FTD flowers to be delivered to my mom for Mother's Day. While online, I jumped through all the hoops of delivery address, filling out the card, billing address, credit card info, etc. Only to have the shopping cart wiped out when I clicked the "order" button. Frustrated, I decided to order by phone instead. Jumped through more hoops, but via phone this time with a really nice gal named Jennifer.
Guess how many floral arrangements were delivered to my mother today?
That's right.
2.
Happy HAPPY Mother's Day, Mom.
Sigh.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

This Week From CFBA


This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
RANSOMED DREAMS
(Multnomah April 16, 2007)
by
Amy Wallace




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Amy Wallace is a member of the CFBA and an avid Blogger. A self-confessed chocoholic, this freelance writer is a graduate of the Gwinnett County Citizens Police Academy and serves as the liaison for the training division of the county police department. Amy is a contributing author of God Answers Moms' Prayers, God Allows U-Turns for Teens, Chicken Soup for the Soul Healthy Living Series: Diabetes, and A Cup of Comfort for Expectant Mothers. She lives in Georgia with her husband and three daughters.




ABOUT THE BOOK:
Drama. Tragedy. Thriller. Romance. Can these four actually go together? Amy Wallace's meaty first book of the Defenders of Hope Series, RANSOMED DREAMS, has successfully united these genres.

It is one of those books that after you read a little and put it down, the desire to see what will happen next is so strong that it will occupy your thoughts, compelling you to make the time to finish. But watch out! It is best consumed where no one will hear you cry because, if you have children, it will hit you like a stab in the gut and wrench you with a twist of the knife.
Although the subject at first depresses, the characters are so real and likable that you need to see what will become of them.
This book will NOT bore you.



BACK COVER COPY:
Chained To Yesterday
When tragedy struck and Gracie Lang lost everything, her faith crumbled, and nothing but the drive for justice propelled her forward. But after two years of dead-end searching, the truth Gracie seeks is the very thing her stalker will stop at nothing to hide.
Forgiveness Unlocks the Future
An FBI agent in the Crimes Against Children Unit, Steven Kessler spends his days rescuing other people’s children and nights caring for his son. He’s through with God, embittered by his ex-wife who abandoned them both, and definitely doesn’t expect what’s coming next.
The Past Is the Key
A plot to kidnap a British ambassador’s daughter dangerously intersects Steven and Gracie’s worlds–a collision that demands a decision. But are they willing to pay the high ransom required to redeem dreams and reignite hope?



ENDORSEMENTS:
Steeped in police intrigue and rich characters, Ransomed Dreams entertains, educates, and captivates. Amy Wallace is a fresh, vibrant voice in the Christian market
~Mark Mynheir, Homicide Detective and Author of The Void


Ransomed Dreams had me hooked from the start and didn't let go until the deeply satisfying ending.
~Kristin Billerbeck, Author of What a Girl Wants


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Tagged! 8 Random Things


Yesterday Georgiana tagged me. I've posted the rules here, and will tag some folks. :)

1. Each player starts with 8 random facts/habits about themselves

2. People who are tagged write a blog post about their own 8 random things and post these rules

3. At the end of your blog you need to tag 8 people and post their names

4. Don't forget to leave them a comment and tell them they're tagged, and to r ead your blog.
Okay, here's my random list.
a) I can tie a knot in a cherry stem inside my mouth, with no hands.
b) I will not step on a manhole cover, grating, or rainwater cover on the sidewalk.
c) Caffeine of any kind makes me levitate.
d) My cat is named Mittens, but we call her Pookie.
e) My favorite computer game is Big Kahuna Reef.
f) I ate an elk burger on Monday of this week.
g) I sing alto (very alto)
h) I have all the books written by Dick Francis with the exception of the biography of Lester Piggot.
I'm tagging:
CJ
Donna
Vicki
Kevin
Bonnie
Stephanie
Linda
and
Cath
Some of these folks don't have blogs, so I'm going to ask them to reply and leave their eight random things here. :)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Back in the Saddle


Last week was devoted to being sick and trips to the Mayo Clinic. The weekend was devoted to...well, being a weekend. And yesterday was a play day. But today, I'm back in the writing saddle. I worked on six chapters of Drums to send to the crit buddies. It feels good to be working on it again. I can tell, even in just a few days off, that I'm more objective about the work.





Yesterday was, as I said, a play day. The kids and I kidnapped their grampa from the shop and took him on a field trip day to Winona, Minnesota. Winona is located along the beautiful Mississippi River in the heart of River Bluff Country.









Here we saw the beautiful Winona County Courthouse, the Winona County Historical Society museum, the Watkins Museum, and the Wilkie, a replica steamboat.



This picture doesn't do justice to how beautiful this building is. It is made of golden yellow limestone and a purple pipestone found here in Minnesota.









This glass is found in the Winona National Bank, circa 1915, and was designed and manufactured by Tiffany Glass Company.








The Winona National Bank is an Egyptian Revival/Prairie School building built in 1915. It features marble floors and walls, as well as stained glass windows, plaster ceilings designed and molded by Tiffany, and prairie school furnishings and fixtures. On the third floor is a collection of African animals in glass cases, and a wall of firearms dating from the 1600's.

This is a replica steamboat on display on the waterfront.


This is the Watkins mill. Watkins dealers can be found across the country. They have a museum of their products through the years, and a store.

St. Stanislaus Church. This is one amazingly beautiful building. We didn't go in, but we gaped like tourists as we drove around it.


We also toured around Houston County with my FIL, his old stomping grounds. We drove for miles on one lane gravel roads up coulees to see where a building USED to be. LOL All in all, a great day.

Friday, May 04, 2007

This Week From CFBA


TRIBULATION HOUSE
(Harvest House 2007)
by
Chris Well

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:Chris Well is a fellow member of the CFBA and founder of its sister organization, FIRST. He is an acclaimed novelist and award–winning magazine editor and has previously written the “laugh–out–loud Christian thrillers” Deliver Us from Evelyn and Forgiving Solomon Long(one of Booklist’s Top 10 Christian Novels of 2005). He has also contributed to 7ball, Infuze, and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. Chris and his wife live in Tennessee, where he is hard at work on his next novel.

ABOUT THE BOOK:IT’S NOT THE END OF THE WORLD—WHICH COULD BE A PROBLEM...Mark Hogan has it all. The job. The family. A position on the board at church. All he’s missing is a boat. Not just any boat—a 2008 Bayliner 192.When Reverend Daniel Glory announces that the Rapture is taking place on October 17 at 5:51am, Hogan realizes his boat–buying days are numbered. So he does what any man in his situation would do—he borrows a load of money from the mob.Not that there’s any risk involved: After all, when the Rapture comes, Hogan will be long gone. The mob will never find him.But when Jesus fails to come back on schedule, Mark Hogan finds the mob is in no mood to discuss the finer points of end–times theology...
Chris Well’s laugh–out–loud Christian thrillers appeal to the millions of readers who gobble up the rollicking crime fiction of Janet Evanovich and Elmore Leonard. TRIBULATION HOUSE does not disappoint!

The Friday Five


This week's Friday Five is:


Five places I want to visit:

1. New Zealand (Long before the LOTR craze, I wanted to visit this varied and beautiful land.)

2. The British Museum (I could LIVE there for a month and not see everything I want to there)

3) Split Rock Lighthouse on the north shore of Lake Superior. (Anyone know the tune to "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald"?)

4) The Oriental Institute of Chicago (Amazing ancient artifacts from the Middle East)

5) Sturbridge Village (I'm a colonial illiterate and I have a promised of a tour from a guide who lives not far from there.)

How about you? Where do you wanna go?

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Shoe Shocker

This past Saturday it was my pleasure to be the speaker at the Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church Ladies' Spring Tea. I spoke about our spiritual walk, and how sometimes our spiritual feet ache. The causes for such foot problems stemmed from improper footgear to walking in places we shouldn't. I brought a variety of shoes, from a steel-toed workboot (armored with bitterness) to a high-heeled mule (vain and looking for the approval of men) to a baby shoe (indiciative of spiritual immaturity). The talk was well received and I enjoyed giving it immensely.


In the course of the talk, I mentioned something funny that had happened to me a few years back when I was substitute teaching an elementary class at a local Christian school.




I came into class wearing a brand spanking new pair of Cobbie Cuddler tennis shoes. White, with green trim. I was pleased with them, hadn't paid too much for them (KMart, less than $20) and thought I looked a bit of alright in them. Nothing like a new pair of shoes to lift a girl's spirits, right?



I took my chair in the front of the classroom, crossed my legs and asked for any prayer requests before beginning the day with a word of prayer.



One of the sixth-grade boys stared at my shoes, then looked up and announced to me and the class, "Mrs. Vetsch, you look just like Pamela Anderson." For the record, I had to search a bit before I found a picture of Ms. Anderson suitable and well-clothed enough to put on the blog. You'll notice I had to go with a head-shot.





As you can imagine I was shocked and dumbfounded. I look NOTHING like Ms. Anderson.



When I regained a tiny part of my senses, I asked, "Jordan, what makes you say that?"

He pointed to my new shoes and announced, "Oh, she wears a pair of shoes just like that on her new show VIP."

To which his faithful sidekick, Nick, replied, "You should be flattered. He loves her!"
I nearly choked to death, and my thoughts during prayer time were quite scattered, I assure you.
If I'd only known all it took to transform me into an extremely buxom blond beauty was a pair of $17.99 Cobbie Cuddlers from KMart, you can bet I'd have made the purchase sooner. Ten years later, I still have those shoes.