Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Messy Jobs

This isn't a picture of my living room, the one I'm currently stripping wallpaper from, but it might as well be. The job depicted in this google picture seems every bit as tedious as the one that's keeping me too busy to snap my own telling photo.

A piece of advice to all you writers procrastinating from editing, don't turn to wallpaper stripping. The tasks are far too similar. Tedious, messy, and apparently never-ending. Definitely not the break I was looking for.

"Think optomistically", you say as you jab me in the ribs .

Okay, if you want to be like that, then, yes, let's consider how this inconvenient project might turn out.

Once I strip away the outer "decorative" layer of the paper (reduce pet words and phrases, replace weak adverbs and adjectives with stronger verbs and adjectives, trim and strip redundancies, convert telling into showing where it is best suited), then I'm left with the really gooey layer to be soaked, then scraped ever so carefully to not damage the underlying drywall or plaster (smooth your wording into a rhythm that hums, drums, beats, or sings, modify scenes to make them shine, or remove the weaker ones if necessary and work the required nuggets into a stronger existing scene, be sure your transitions are seamless). Now the final TSP scrub is performed (one more read through to catch those sneaky unwanted left-behinds), and then we are ready for painting, because only a punishment-seeker would dare to re-wallpaper. Right?

I'll leave the painting phase for another day, as the stripping one is taxing enough for me. So, tell me, how do you go about taking a break from your manuscript so that you can dive in with a clear mind, eyes-wide-open approach to the editing phase?



86 days to reflect and celebrate our Saviour's birth.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Welcoming a New Pearl Girl

We affectionately call our critique group The Pearl Girls. Up until yesterday we had four shiny pearls on our strand, Patti Lacy, Becky Melby, Lee Franklin, and me. Now, we add a fifth sparkling pearl, Patty Hall. Welcome, Patty, and Congratulations on your Genesis win in the Historical Fiction category!! Way to go Patty with a 'y'! I look forward to critiquing with you for years to come.

Since I haven't bragged about all my crit partners yet on this blog, I thought I'd take a moment to do that.

Patti Lacy writes Contemporary Christian Women's Lit. Patti's first book, An Irishwoman's Tale, published by Kregel was released last month. She has since contracted her second story, What the Bayou Saw, and is currently working on a third stunning story that reveals one woman's challenge to come to terms with her secret past, and seek to right a future wrong. (At least that's what I'm getting from where we are at in the rotations so far.) Patti writes with such clarity that you can smell, see, and hear her story unfolding.

Becky Melby is a multi-published Contemporary Christian Romance author, who often co-authors with Cathy Wienke. Becky's stories brighten your days long after the cover has collected dust. There is a quaintness to her stories that makes you feel all cozy while reading and reminiscing about her scenes. And she is amazingly fast at pumping out her novels and novellas. I wish I had her snappy fingers, and awesome scene structure.

Lee Franklin is our poignant Suspense writer. The story she is running through the crit group now has made my insides curdle, my skin clam up, gives me an ache for justice to prevail, and brings my most annoying impatience out. Unlike the rest of us, Lee likes to dole out her story in very small increments, leaving us hanging by a very fine thread each rotation. I know once this story is done, it's going to be the type that you just can't put down to digest a bit here and a bit there. It's going to be a thrill ride of reading, one straight fast and furious run to the final page, just the way thriller/suspense novels ought to be.

And so you see, the Lord is very good to me. I am counseled by amazing writers/authors, and blessed with having a first look at each of their works. Patti, Becky, and Lee not only provide me with wonderful stories to enjoy and pull apart, but they are all great teachers of the craft by example.

Patty with a 'y', welcome to our diverse, supportive, and amazingly gifted critique group. And thank you for entrusting your precious works of labour with each of us. I pray God will continue to guide each of us in how best to support and encourage continual growth in our calling to write for Him.



90 days to reflect and celebrate our Saviour's birth.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Three-Month Count Down Begins

I recently created a fall display, complete with various varieties of mums, pumpkins, including a fairytale one, and scarecrows out front, but my thoughts are wandering to the most precious season of all. Christmas. Did you know that the day we dedicate to celebrating Jesus's birth is only ninety-one days away?

The months and days leading to Christmas Day have always been my favorite season. Though I imagine when I was little the spark came more from anticipation of what brightly wrapped surprises I'd discover tucked under our glittering Christmas tree on that special morning. Now, however, the spark that Christmas ignites in me is far less selfish. It's not about the gifts, or even so much about the giving, anymore. It's difficult to explain, but the Christmas season brings history to life for me. At least one particular time in history, that of Jesus's time on earth.

My mother leaves with a Church group for a tour of Jerusalem in a couple of weeks. I'm so excited for her, and so looking forward to the day that I can walk the Holy land where Mary and Joseph raised their son, where Jesus later ministered, and ultimately sacrificed His life for everyone. I've cloaked my Mom in prayer for this amazing adventure she's about to experience. Due to the unrest in the Holy land, I welcome all prayers of safety and clarity for my Mom and those she is traveling with.

I know that if I were on this trip with Mom at this time of year, I'd be thinking of Mary and Joseph as I toured. Particularly about Mary's mindset as the birth of Jesus approached. She was such a young girl, not yet even known her new husband. She'd be rounding, and feeling Jesus's kicks within by now. No doubt anxious about the birth experience, worried about safety for them all, concerned about how she and Joseph would raise God's child to His glory. I imagine Mary as a very quiet young woman. She must have been to allow herself to hear God's guidance with how she was to rear His Son, and conduct her own life. I suspect she talked often with God. Poured her fears and concerns out to Him, and found her strength through Him. I think I'll take that thought with me today, won't you join me? Allow yourself to be quiet, listening for God's peace and direction for the hours ahead.

Blessings to us all,


91 days to reflect and celebrate our Saviour's birth.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Valuable Reference Book for All Writers

Write Tight by William Brohaugh

Amazon.com Quick Link

A Clip from the back cover:

"What is the most effective way to take your writing from good to great? Say exactly what you want to say with precision and power. It sounds simple, but every writer struggles with this essential skill. Now, the tools you need to write concise, powerful prose are at your fingertips.

Write Tight is an utterly readable guide that tackles these issues head-on, with incredible tips and techniques to help you master your prose. William Brohaugh, former editor of Writer's Digest, goes beyond the discussion on redundancy and overwriting to take on evasiveness, affectations, roundabout writing, tangents and "invisible" words."

I will be absorbing all that William Brohaugh offers in this writer's manual, Write Tight, for some time. There's just so much to grasp, that a single read-through isn't enough for me. It's the type of resource book that a writer can grow with, gaining more insight into the art of writing for brevity and clarity with each pass taken.

Write Tight offers helpful tools and techniques that every writer should strive to master. If you don't have a copy of this manual, be sure to add it to your wish list. You won't be disappointed.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Harvest Time

I believe we planted our two apple trees five or six years ago, and this year is the first that we've gotten a true crop from either of them. Both trees were loaded with a variety of round, dimpled, mildly deformed, to yes, seriously ruined tart, cooking apples. But I was determined not to waste any of the unscathed morsels of fruit, even if it meant cutting around squiggly little worms fighting for what they deemed as their turf.

What I wasn't prepared for, however, were leaping, squirming earwigs that unexpectedly released themselves from their chosen juicy home and decided to investigate the surface of me. More than once those ugly black creatures with their u-shaped butt and too-active tentacles caused a most girlish high-pitched squeal to escape from the usually-calm me, along with a muscle-jarring jig that thankfully sent them flying back into the sink. Each time I managed to recover my wits quick enough to depress the garborator button immediately. But, still, with perseverance and added caution, I ventured forth to create my masterpieces of Apple Crisp to be enjoyed during the approaching winter months. There's a certain satisfaction in creating a well-loved dessert from the fruit that you first enjoyed as pale-pink blossoms on your trees. Climbing a ladder months later to retrieve the ripened fruit is an added bonus to the whole experience.

Initially, I tried two low-fat recipes, hence the two pans pictured here. The family unanimously decided that the lighter version was never to be made again. Just to prove their point, over a third of it was sent to the waste bin. "Too dry, too nothing," was their take on it.

Since the initial two taste-tester pans you see here, I've stocked my freezer with seven tin pans filled with the following Low Fat Apple Crisp recipe from our apple harvest so far this year. (I need a taller ladder to get to the remaining fruit.)

Low Fat Apple Crisp (From COOKS.COM)

7 c. sliced peeled apples
1/3 c. granulated sugar
2 tbsp. flour
2 tsp. cinnamon


1 c. quick rolled oats
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. soft butter (I use cholesterol-free, low-fat margarine)

In 2 quart baking dish put apples on bottom. In small bowl combine sugar, flour and cinnamon. Add to fruit and toss.

Topping: Combine oats, sugar and cinnamon. With 2 knives cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over fruit. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes or microwave at high for 15 minutes. Serves 8. Enjoy hot with 1/2 cup low-fat vanilla ice cream for a special treat!

It's taken five or more years for our apple trees to produce enough fruit for baking. Sure, we've had the odd apple make it to maturation in the past couple of years, but never enough to supply the entire fruit requirement for even a single apple crisp, and this year we have enough for eleven, at least. I suspect that's how it is with writing. Each year of studying the craft and diligently writing gets you a little closer to the final prize--a baked-good composed of your mature writing, complete with your editor's recommended tweaking. A book that you can hold in your hands, and truly feel the satisfaction of knowing that you nurtured and persevered through droughts and storms to achieve this writing harvest.

Writers, may God bless us with the nutrients and perseverance we need to one day discover our very own harvest time.

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9



Thursday, September 11, 2008

Patti Lacy Interview with Giveaway of An Irishwoman's Tale

This is a special interview for me, as Patti is my critique partner extraordinaire. Patti Lacy is an all-round wonderful writing-technique teacher, not to mention a grammar guru. I attribute many of my writing improvements to her wielding red pen (actually, it comes in the form of endless comment bubbles running down the right side of my manuscript. Unraveling the dotted lines to reach the origin of the faulty prose is rarely easy. There are just so darn many comments…err, problems!) Would you believe that wordiness is commonly stated on my critiques? LOL

But I digress. This feature isn’t supposed to be about my ill writing and how Patti is a Godsend to me. Instead, let’s take a peek into the life of this fabulous new author, Patti Lacy, from Normal, Illinois. Patti writes Women’s Contemporary Fiction, and her debut novel, An Irishwoman’s Tale, published by Kregel, is available now.

Tell us, Patti, what are your hobbies?

Patti: Some of the “ings”: Jogging, reading, traveling.

With how you help so many of us, I was expecting mentoring writers to be included. Those sound much more fun, however. While you write, Patti, what is your preference, coffee or tea?

Patti: Ooh, I love black coffee AND unusual teas, like the curls of green jasmine that blossom like flowers when you pour water into your cup.

Okay, now see, it’s only the second question and I already hear your voice so clear in your written word. An Irishwoman’s Tale is written with such a vivid voice that draws you in, so do share, was there anything in particular you did to refine your writer’s voice?

Patti: It’s hard to get my elusive gray matter around the concept of voice. I just try to live in the character’s head. A lot of times, I “act out” what’s going on as I’m sitting there writing. I jerk my head, kick my leg, drop a book, to see how it makes me feel.

Have you received any bruised shins from doing that? LOL. Seriously, that’s great advice. I believe it was Deb Raney who suggested writers keep a mirror on their desk to visualize expressions. Feeling the consequence of actions goes right with that. The things we writers will do for the art.

You have a fabulous website where you pose a monthly contest, or sometimes I think “challenge” might be a better descriptor for it. Will you tell us about that, and why you offer it?

Patti: Every month, I pose a question to my readers based on a theme in my book or on Patti’s whim, such as, “What is your first memory?” Mary, the feisty protagonist in An Irishwoman’s Tale, demanded that I ask that one. Sure; why not? It’s a fun way to connect with folks!

What are your thoughts on Writer’s Conferences?

Patti: Intimate, hands-on conferences (like Green Lake Writers Conference) where writers work together, eat together, laugh and cry together, personify a bit of heaven on earth. However, many writers instead gravitate to larger conferences so they can rub shoulders and hopefully business cards with agents and publishers. In a perfect world, wouldn’t it be great to sample each type per year? Sigh… I do think the Write to Publish conference in Wheaton strikes a nice balance between the two styles.

Patti, I am blessed to have you as a critique partner, mentor, really, but there can only be so many Pearl Girls (the name of our critique group), is there anything in the works for you in the way of teaching writing for others to gain from your experience and knowledge?

Patti: At a recent civic event, God linked me with another Normal writer (no, we’re not generic, but we do live in Normal, Illinois!) After a lively coffee shop date, we decided to start a local club. We’ll share snippets of our writing, grammatical tips, and our current nightstand favorites. Fun, fun, fun! E-mail me next week, and I’ll let you know how the first meeting went!

Watching a writer grow is so fun. (It’s the old teacher in me!) Starting next week, I’m sharing Mary’s story with some libraries, have a couple of book signings arranged, including one very special get-together in Mary’s old home town. More information can be found at
http://pattilacy.com/, event schedule.

When books capture my heart, I review them on my website. Sigh. So many books, so little time…

So tell us, what, or who, inspired you to take up fiction writing?

Patti: An acquaintance’s mesmerizing yet melancholy first memory captured my heart and wouldn’t let go until I got it onto a computer file. I should add it took ten years for me to work up the nerve to write it.

Is there something unique or special about how you write that you would like to tell us about?

Patti: I scan the newspapers, eavesdrop in bathrooms, capture daydreams to find images that grab hold of my soul and won’t let go. Those images are dumped into a computer file, and I started collecting all the pieces until they begin to fit together, like a puzzle.

How many novels did you have completed before your first sale?

Patti: Kregel, my wonderful publisher, bought my first novel, An Irishwoman’s Tale. I heard Dennis Hillman’s crazy about the Irish!

What inspired you to write An Irishwoman's Tale?

Patti: I love the idea of collecting women’s stories, and after visiting mystical Ireland, I fell in love with the rollicking, brilliant people. The folks at Kregel worked through things and decided to make it happen.

Kregel is a very wise publishing house!

What do you consider to be the most important aspect of honing the craft of fiction writing, and why?

Patti: Learning to show emotion in your work. If the reader can’t connect with your character and throws the book across the room, you’re in trouble.

Do you have any further direction or thoughts that you care to share with weary authors-in-training?

Patti: Just read, read, read. And write for that Audience of One. If I would take the latter piece of advice, there wouldn’t be a bad writing day!

Thank you so much, Patti, for sharing all this with us. You are a very special author indeed! For more information about Patti and her books, please visit her website, www.pattilacy.com.

Patti: Thank you, Pearl Girl! Hope to come back soon.

An Irishwoman’s Tale,
Women’s Contemporary Christian Fiction,
ISBN 978-0-8254-2987-3,
released August 31, 2008.
Amazon Purchasing Quick Link.

Back Cover Blurb: Mary Freeman's earliest memory has haunted her since childhood: An old oaken table, bitter faces drinking bitter tea, a heated discussion of what's to be done with the "little eejit"--her. Now she is far removed from this family that didn't want her, and separated from her native Ireland. Living in the United States heartland, Mary searches out fulfilling roles--entrepreneur, wife, Christian, mother, community servant--but her loneliness and torment remain as acute as ever.

A crisis in her youngest daughter's life--and the encouragement of Sally, a plucky Southern transplant--propels Mary back to the rocky cliffs of her home in County Clare, Ireland. Her harrowing journey unveils her tragic past, and forces her face-to-face with God.

BOOK GIVEAWAY: For a chance to win a copy of Patti Lacy's An Irishwoman's Tale, please leave a pertinent comment in this post with your augmented e-mail address by Wednesday, September 17, 2008, 9:00 p.m. Eastern time.

Congratulations to Mimi B. Your name was drawn for a copy of Patti Lacy's An Irishwoman's Tale.
Good luck to All!



Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Good Dialogue and Prelude to tomorrow

Hey, All:

I'm over on Writer's Rest blogging about writing Good Dialogue. I hope you'll skip on over and leave your own suggestions. You can click here to get there.

Tomorrow, I have the pleasure of featuring an amazing friend, critique partner, and fellow ACFW member. Patti Lacy, author of An Irishwoman's Tale, and so many more to come, will be here, so be sure to stop by and hear her story.



Tuesday, September 9, 2008

At His Command by Brenda Coulter

At His Command by Brenda Coulter
Love Inspired, Sep 08
ISBN: 978-0-373-87496-5
Purchasing link for Amazon.com

Back Cover Blurb: A Smile As Big As Texas
In one short month, cheerful army nurse Madeline Bright has become the darling of Prairie Springs, Texas. And if ex-pilot Jake Hopkins isn’t careful, she might just conquer his heart. She’s young, pretty and blithe-spirited…he’s older and jaded. But being around Maddie brings back too many painful memories. Jake still feels guilty about failing to save Maddie’s brother in an army helicopter crash years ago. So no matter how much Maddie wants to be in his life, for her own good, Jake can’t allow that. He’ll never have a normal, stable life. And sweet Madeline deserves nothing less.

Review: Forgiving yourself is one of life's greatest challenges. Brenda Coulter reveals this through her story, At His Command. Living with regret can criple your future. As it did with Jake Hopkins. It took the forgiveness and love of another, Madeline Bright, to bring Jake out of his past, ready to embrace the future. At His Command is a touching story with a sprinkling of humor, and a great lesson in forgiveness for us all.

Available now at Wal-Mart, and stores selling Steeple Hill's Love Inspired line, as well as on-line.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Summer...You're not technically over yet!

It's been a while since I wrote a Friday's Musings post. This could take some work, so please pardon me if I mess up!

Something that came to mind as I toured our gardens while encouraging our puppy to do his business is that summer ISN'T really over yet. In the past week I've heard many a parent utter the infamous "Come on now, summer is over..." But according to my calendar, it's not over until midnight Monday, September 21st. And I'm none too anxious for it to come to an end this year. Oddly enough.

You see, I'm one of those people who love all the four seasons that my part of the world offers. Usually as we near the end of one season I'm joyfully anticipating the next to roll on in. There's something different about this forty-third summer of my life, though. Hmmm...I wonder what it could be?

Perhaps my tipsy-turvey summer has me analysing life a little more aggressively these days. Or, could it be that the weather wasn't optimal enough for pool enjoyment these past months, and just this week I've gotten really into doing my laps for exercise. The girls going off for their annual week at horse camp was later this year, too, perhaps that messed with my internal calendar. I could come up with a scroll of possibilities, but I won't bore you with all of them. In any case, I intend to enjoy the last seventeen days of summer. Swim as much as possible, tour our gardens and continue dead heading and weeding until the colors fade and become like the earth, then I'll welcome fall and all of it's glory just in time to see my most favorite season approach in all it's splendor--Christmas.

I hope you enjoy these pictures. Phil toiled over the flagstone patio and path all summer long. Doesn't it look awesome?

We also stained our garden shed. It took three coats this time. Why? you might ask. Well, see the shutters? We purchased that high-quality stain from the pre-mixed sale bin. Did the first coat of the whole garden shed in that...and hated it. We teased about waiting for our neighbors to drop subtle hints about how hideous it looked. They must have been away on vacation or hiding from us that day. Neither Phil or I could stand looking it any longer, so out we went and paid optimal price for a color we could live with. It took two coats of the darker shade to cover the pooh shade. The shutters are a reminder for us to never settle for a pre-mixed sale unless it is very close the original color we had intended to purchase. A lesson my arthritic fingers will not let me forget...ever! (I'll leave the back garage door story for another day--three coats seems to be the theme of summer 2008.)


Word of the Week:


Meaning, by The Merriam-Webster Dictionary: The quality or state of appearing to be true or real.

Sample Sentence: Authors may utilize redundancy to bring verisimilitude to a piece of dialogue.

(Note: I learned that tidbit from William Brohaugh's Write Tight instructional book that I'm currently studying. Cool, eh?)


May we all enjoy the remaining days of summer, and if you had a tipsy-turvey summer like me, my prayer is that God would infuse a little more peace into your coming seasons.



Thursday, September 4, 2008

An Interview with Michelle Sutton & Book Giveaway

I welcome edgy fiction writer Michelle Sutton today. Michelle is one very busy woman who’s getting her name out there big time. She is the creator of edgychristianfictionlovers.ning.com, a social network, and of the Christian Fiction Online Magazine, as well as the author of her debut young adults novel, It’s Not About Me.

Q: We know that It’s Not About Me is a young adult novel, but do you write in other genres, too?

Michelle Sutton responds: I write in two main genres. Young Adult and Women’s fiction.

Q: How many books have you written and over what period of time?

Michelle Sutton responds: I’ve written nine books and several additional proposals, but this story is the first one I’ve sold. The rest of the series is pretty much contracted, too. We started the cover of the next book and added the first chapter to the end of It’s Not About Me, so this isn’t just a one book deal.

Q: Did you enter any writer’s contests prior to publication?

Michelle Sutton responds: I finaled in the very first contest I entered. It was the Great Beginnings contest through RWA. I finaled in 2005. I haven’t sold the book yet, but had a few close calls. I’ve never entered the Noble Theme or Genesis contests.

Q: Besides novels, have you had any other work published?

Michelle Sutton responds: If you want to count the hundreds of book reviews I have published all over the internet and my magazine columns.

Q: Tell us something about yourself. What are your hobbies?

Michelle Sutton responds: Right now? Just reading. I used to enjoy cross-stitching and watching chick flicks but I don’t have time to do that anymore. I still enjoy a nice walk or playing board games with my family. I still enjoy singing.

Q: Is there something unique or special about you or how you write that you would like to share?

Michelle Sutton responds: I like reading edgy fiction and I love writing it. Edgy fiction to me is fiction that dares to tell the truth about the human condition. That’s what I write about. My characters all hunger for something. Some find out it’s Jesus they’ve been looking for. Some never figure this out. Some already know Him in my stories. My characters don’t always make the wisest choices but they always suffer full consequences for their actions. My characters have emotional lives, spiritual lives and sexual desires. I consider them fully human. That’s what I like to write. If you read any of the reviews posted on my book you’ll see that my writing is described as daring, honest, etc.

Q: How long did you concentrate on learning the craft of fiction writing before you received your initial offer?

Michelle Sutton responds: About 3 ½ years.

Q: Were rejections a part of your writing journey?

Michelle Sutton responds: I stop counting after the first twenty. I never allowed myself to focus on the fact that my stories weren’t a good fit. In fact, most of my rejections were very nice. They liked my writing and even my story but didn’t think they could sell it and did I have something less edgy to offer? I’ve never had a rejection that was mean or said I had no business trying to sell my work. That was very helpful in keeping my spirits up. A lot of people said that publishers weren’t ready for what I had to offer yet, but they would be soon, and I’d be ready. I tried focusing on that perspective rather than the rejection of my manuscripts. In truth, I’m glad I didn’t sell sooner because it took me four years to get my name out there and attract a following of likeminded readers. They will be what keeps me going in the publishing business. Them and God, of course.

Q: Do you hope to sell all the novels you have written so far?

Michelle Sutton responds: I have a few novels that are great but so poorly written (head-hopping and passive language) that I’d have to completely rewrite them to make them good enough to sell. I may do that someday but for now I’ll consider them practice novels.

Q: Initially how long did it take for you to write a novel? And what about now?

Michelle Sutton responds: About six months. Now I can whip out a nicely polished 100+ word manuscript in four months, tops.

Q: What is your writing method?

Michelle Sutton responds: I write SOTP (Seat of the pants) but not until I’ve mulled over the plot in my head for months on end. By the time I sit down I already know what I’m going to write (in my head) and where the story is going. I just need my fingers to catch up with my thoughts.

Q: What was the timeframe involved between signing your initial contract to seeing your book on the shelves? And tell us about the revision process, please.

Michelle Sutton responds: From the time I signed the contract until the time it would be on the shelves was about 10 months. I only had to do minor revisions to eliminate pet phrases and such. I did this twice. No gutting of the story or anything jarring to deal with. The story is essentially the same, just tighter now that I’ve edited it again.

Q: What does your publishing house expect of you with regard to self-promoting your novel(s)?

Michelle Sutton responds: No more than any other publisher does. You have to get reviews and endorsements and have people get a buzz started about your book. Whether it’s a big house or a small press, the promotional piece is largely left up to the author. And honestly, I don’t want wimpy sales numbers. They are a career killer.

Q: Do you have any direction for or thoughts that you care to share with weary authors-in-training?

Michelle Sutton responds: Just keep honing your skills and writing until you find your voice. Attend writer’s conferences and read books on writing. You’ll know when you are getting closer to publication when people get excited about your stories and it’s not just because you are friends.

Thanks so much for sharing with us, Michelle. I wish you all the best with your writing and life. To learn more about Michelle Sutton please visit http://www.michellesutton.net/ or http://edgyinspirationalauthor.blogspot.com/.

It’s Not About Me (A Second Glances Novel, #1)
YA fiction, in stores Sept 1, 2008.
ISBN-13: 9780979748516
Sheaf House Publishers, LLC
Available now for pre-order online at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.

Annie has it all. She's attractive, graduated with honors, was accepted at the college of her choice, has supportive parents, good friends, and a steady boyfriend who loves her. One night when an unexpected visitor appears, Annie's safe world is destroyed. As she tries to recover the pieces of her broken life, a war ensues between two brothers who both claim to have her best interests at heart. But who will Annie choose? Or will she decide to turn her life in a different direction?

Book Giveaway: For a chance to win a copy of Michelle Sutton's It's Not About Me, leave a pertinent comment in this post by 9:00 pm Eastern time on Wednesday, September 10, 2008. Good luck to everyone.

Congratulations goes to Little Missus Sunshine. She won Michelle Sutton's book.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Long time no post...

I'm very sorry for the very long lapse in my posting! I will attempt to get back on track in the coming weeks, and get those missed interviews posted as well. I have some wonderful authors ready to share their road-to-publication stories for us all to learn from.

It would appear that I'm more suited to a teacher's schedule, as the summer finally caught up with me and pulled me from all internet interaction for several weeks. Though I won't be posting as regularly as I have in the past, I do plan to post two or three times a week in the future, and I do plan to finish the series on Applying Business Principles to your Writing Life, but it too will be spread out over a longer period of time.

Please stay tuned for an Authors-Helping-Writers post featuring Michelle Sutton, debut author of It's Not About Me. Michelle is one very busy and very edgy author. I look forward to sharing her interview with you all later this week.