March 30, 2009

Comp Day=Writing Time...Huzzah!


What a glorious day! A comp day spent writing was just the best day ever. Seriously, a more perfect day, there could not be. I slept 2 hours later than normal, and got out of bed at 7 am. I sipped my coffee, read my Bible, wrote in my prayer journal, then booted my computer and began to write.



I stayed in my pajamas (gasp, I know!) and wrote and wrote. Of course, I did take a few breaks. Sometimes to check email and sometimes to check my Google Reader for all the fabulous blogs I read. Oh, I my husband came home for lunch, so I took a break and ate with him, which was nice



I have to say that I was victorious today and was able to push through the block that I have been having. I think I needed a long stretch of uninterrupted time to concentrate and get the juices flowing once again.



For me, one who has a full time job and is addicted to certain shows at night, writing can be a challenge. I know, I know, dump the TV, you say. Well...you are right, but I am a sucker for AI and DWTS and Smallville, and a new fav, Castle. (ooo-la-la, the chemistry and quirky humor is superb...and I call watching it research!)



So today I wrote 6 pages and could have written more if I had not stopped to write this blog before I head out to a track meet. (anyone feel sorry for me?) Now, to keep the momentum going, I am promising myself I will write one page a day. One page, that's all. It will be enought to keep the flow going and maybe spur me on to write a little more than just that one page.



What do you do when you hit a block?

March 25, 2009

My Senior Son

This is my son, the senior. He is my second child and such a unique young man. He has been the easiest child to raise, not having a temper, not an argumentative person, and an all around obedient guy. Just easy.

He is very quiet and has been his whole life. He is a thinker and an artist with a very unique style. One of his art pieces was chosen to go on to state this year. Way cool.

He is a 6'7" basketball dropout, who was tired of the game being a job and not the enjoyable sport that he loved. So he dropped out and taught himself to play a drumset and devoted himself to his art.

While not the most industrius at home and the keeping of his space, he is a hard worker . He keeps a job delivering pizzas and works for a neighbor as a handy/yard man.

My son is hoping to leave home this summer, move in with a friend 6 hours away, and attend a small college to get his basics out of the way before persuing his art in a big way. While I am okay with this, I will miss this gentle giant of a son.

He got a tatoo this year. (He is 18, and I am sorry if some of those reading don't like them.) But what I appreciated about him was that he designed the tat and it has meaning for him. He designed a tree stump with hands coming down out of the roots. He wants his life's work to be about the work of his hands in his art, in the gift that God gave him, and not just be about making money. I love that.

I pray that God will bless my son with more of Himself and lead him to the work that He has planned out for him. (And lead him to a lovely godly young woman!)



March 24, 2009

Writer Associations

I need to jump in and join ACFW. I haven't done so for various reasons, but I think I am ready. I had originally thought to join RWA, since I thought I would write a sweet romance, just not with a Christian worldview. I quickly found out that my faith keeps popping in, so now I am weaving faith into my story. I guess that is a good thing that my view of life is woven with my faith, huh?

Now, I have a question for all you writers out there. What organizations/associations do you belong to? Do you belong to more than one?

If you belong to ACFW, what are the benefits? (besides getting to enter the Genisis) What is beyond that sacred Members Only Area?

I'm going to join soon no matter what, but thought I would get some feedback before I do.

March 22, 2009

Calling All Readers

For all you readers out there, I found a reading challenge that looks pretty fun at Callapidder Days

Essentially, Spring Reading Thing 2009 is a fun, low-pressure reading challenge open to anyone and everyone. It will take place March 20th-June 20th (which is, coincidentally, the spring of 2009).

To participate, here’s what you need to do:

Create a list of some books you’d like to read or finish this spring.

Feel free to set some additional reading goals (such as reading to your kids two hours per week, getting through your pile of magazines, etc.). This is completely optional.

Write a blog post including the list of books you want to read and any additional goals you’ve set, and get ready to post it on your blog on March 20th.

Visit this blog on March 20th to sign up. There will be a Mr. Linky set up that morning, so you can submit a link to your personal Spring Reading Thing post, and it will be added to the master list.

Read! Work on your goals throughout Spring 2009.

Report your results. Write another blog post in June to let everyone know how you did.

Have fun! Visit other participants to see what they’re reading. Write reviews if you’re so inclined. But most of all, enjoy your spring reading.

HERE'S MY LIST:

Petticoat Ranch by Mary Connealy

Calico Canyon by Mary Connealy

Gingham Mountain by Mary Connealy

The Maverick Preacher by Victoria Bylin

Marshal Takes A Bride by Renee Ryan

I Do Again by Cheryl & Jeff Scruggs

Hand-Me-Down Family by Winnie Grig

Age Before Beauty by Virginia Smith

Her Captain's Heart by Lyn Cote

Legacy of Secrets by Sara Mitchell

Hearts In The Highlands by Ruth Axtell Morren

Second Chance Bride by Jane Myers Perrine

The Parson's Christmas Gift" by Kerri Mountain

The Widow's Secret by Sara Mitchell

These are the books I have, but there are a few at the library that I am waiting on. I won't list them (in case I never get to them!)

March 21, 2009

And The Winners Are....

Drum roll please......

The winners of Joyce's books are:

Lisa - Chili and Chocolate Cake
Elizabeth - Life Is More Than $100 Bills
Eileen - Life is Not About Perfect
Pam - Grass Stains And Giggles

Congratulations to each of you! I will be in touch with you to get your snail mail and get these books right to you.

Thank you Joyce for letting me interview you and for you sharing your heart with us. Thank you for your generosity in giving away your books! May God bless you in your service to Him!

March 12, 2009

Interview with Joyce Schneider & 4 Book Giveaways!


Today I have the priveledge and joy to share an interview with Joyce Schneider. I met Joyce on a social networking blog and we hit it right off. Joyce is passionate about Jesus and has a message and testimony that is very powerful and very real. I think you will enjoy her books that encourage and inspire living in the midst of God's goodness.


Tell me a little bit about yourself.

I am a wife to Bobby. We've been married 14 years in October. A mother to Carson, 12 and Chase, 10. I Live in Naples, Florida, moving here 28 years ago, from Southeastern Ohio. I love dogs and coffee and Jesus. I'm not into religion, but relationship, learning how to walk out my faith in real life. I grew up on a farm and have a degree in Livestock Production, which I do not use now, but have a dream of raising pygmy goats sometime in the near future ... maybe. I love serving people, thus my job as chief coffee chick at church. (I brew the coffee ... it's really not so glamorous!)

How did you start your writing career? Did you always know you wanted to write?

I was going through a difficult period of my life and I started emailing my thoughts to a friend. Those emails turned into chapters and the chapters eventually became my first book, Chili and Chocolate Cake. I had thoughts of writing as a child, but I had put those dreams up on the shelf years ago. But God didn't forget. He brought them back down, dusted them off and started me dreaming again.

Can you tell us about each of your books?

Chili and Chocolate Cake
My Recipe for Staying Anchored in the Storms of Life
Chili and Chocolate Cake is not your average inspirational book; and is as unique as the title. The author shares her message of forgiveness, restoration, and hope for hurting women-- especially those who have experienced the loss of a child through abortion, miscarriage, or stillborn birth. This book is a shining testimony to the power of God to heal the broken heart. Author Joyce Schneider's dramatic life and the miraculous change from a tortured young women to a great woman of God will encourage every reader. God even used the stablilty gained from preparing chili and chocolate cake to weave the thread of His grace throughout her troubled life. Get ready for an outpouring--from the barren days of the past, to springs of living waters; rivers that will refresh long after you close the pages of this book.

LIFE IS ... More Than $100 Bills
Letting Go of the Past and Living the Abundant Life
Popular author Joyce Schneider's newest book, Life Is More Than $100 Bills, will hit you where you live. This inspirational book full of life lessons will touch your heart, make you smile, and challenge you to grow in Christ. It is an inspirational book of life-lessons geared towards those who want to strengthen their walk of faith. Joyce Schneider offers this personal collection of lessons and true-life stories. In her warm, vulnerable style, this gifted story teller takes the reader along as she faces everyday challenges that test her patience and commitment. Life is more than wasted days, more than empty pursuits, more than misplaced priorities -- Life Is More Than $100 Bills!

LIFE IS... Not About Perfect
A Daily Dose of Encouragement
In her third work, Life Is Not About Perfect; Joyce Schneider gives us a glimpse into how to enjoy living amidst the trials and tribulations of everyday life. This unique devotional proclaims a message of hope and encouragement through family antics, inspiring us to see life situations for what they truly are—opportunities to live out our faith.

Grass Stains and Giggles
Experiencing God in the Midst of Motherhood
Grass Stains and Giggles by Joyce Schneider invites you to look again in the daily grind of life. Through heartwarming and colloquial tales about her life adventures of parenting, Joyce offers a glimpse of how to live out your faith in real time, every single day. Allow God to nourish your spirit and bring hope through the journey not in spite of, but in the midst of the frenzy of day-to-day affairs. Grass Stains and Giggles reminds us that God is ever present in caring for His children if we are willing to listen, even when we don’t expect Him to speak.

Who would you say is your target audience?

I think my target audience is actually anyone. My first two books are focused more on a woman's point of view, but sometimes men need to know how women think and I've had many men read my books, who've appreciated this viewpoint. My last two books are stories on how to live out our faith in day to day life ... stories that anyone can relate to.

What inspires your writing? Where do you get your ideas?

That's easy ...my family, my life. God gives me the inspiration and the ideas and I use day to day life situations and turn them into real life lessons on how to walk out my faith.

You are a busy lady. How do you balance life with writing?

I try to write a little every day. I write either first thing in the morning or last thing at night. When I'm involved in editing of a book, or the actual publishing process, I have to spend more time on them. I've found that when I tithe my time to God, he makes sure I have plenty for the other areas of my life.

If you could spend a day with any one person, past or present, who would it be?

YIKES ... that's a hard question, there are so many. Honestly, I don't want to sound corny or religous, but I love Joseph, from the Old Testament. I would love to spend a day with him, hearing his stories. It's so easy to be faithful when life is treating us well, but Joseph went through so many trials, yet he stayed faithful to the end and God blessed that faithfulness.

One last silly question. If you were granted 3 wishes to come true, what would they be?

For Carson and Chase to grow up to be Godly men.
To grow old with Bobby.
And for present day, I'd love to have a center for women to come for healing and hope. A place that offered counseling, bible studies, discussion groups, a coffee shop, and child care. A safe place where they would find the love of Jesus; healing from their past and hope for their future.



What a beautiful and giving heart you have Joyce. Thanks so much for taking the time to let me interview you!




Joyce has graciously offered up a copy of each of her books to any commenters on the blog. That means four different winners! I will draw from a hat (or rather a bowl) next week, Saturday, March 21st. Please leave a comment with you email (like this: sherrinda[at]gmail[dot]com) so that I can get a hold of you if you win. Good luck!

All the books are on Amazon ... Here are the links.


Chili and Chocolate Cake









Life Is More Than $100 Bills







Life Is Not About Perfect







Grass Stains and Giggles

March 08, 2009

Affirmation

Our church gathering was special today. Next Sunday is our last time to worship together, as our small church is closing its doors, but today we took the time to speak blessing over each and affirm each other.

What a sweet time it was, with lots of love and lots of tears. I think what was so meaningful for me was when one special sister said that our 3 year journey together was not a failure, but a blessed time of healing. So often we get caught up in the numbers of our church and not on what God is doing in us and among us. While I have wondered why God has not blessed our church to grow, I feel that the time together has been a safe place to rest and recharge.

While I will miss seeing my brothers and sisters in Christ, but I know that they will go out and be fruitful in other ministries and be a blessing wherever they go.

May the Lord bless you and keep you, may the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you, and may the Lord give you peace.

March 04, 2009

Changes

Life can be surprising. I don't suppose that should come as a surprise. We know things change. If things aren't changing, they are dying, right?

So life as I know it is about to change. Possibly in a big way -- most likely in a big way. My husband (and I) started a church 3 years ago and last week, we all decided that it was time to close its doors. I don't know why God's blessing wasn't on it to grow, but I do know that the time spent there with people I love was a blessing. A time of healing and growing.

So now we are looking for where God wants us to be. We would like to be close, though I feel like that is asking alot of God. I know, He listens to heart's desires, but deep down I know I want what He wants. I know His path, His plan, His way is always best. (My daughter has 2 years left of high school and it would break my heart if she had to uproot at this point in her schooling.) Of course, we will go wherever God calls us and trust He will work out the details.

So has anyone ever been uprooted unwillingly? Has anyone ever followed God on a wild and crazy ride? I'd love to hear your journeys of faith building.
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