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Monthly Archives: October 2015

Funny Friday

Spending the day with hubby. Let’s hope he fares better than Tim in this comical classic clip. Enjoy comedian Tim Hawkins on this fantastic and fun filled Friday! 

 

 

Kara writes supernatural suspense thrillers and is an ACFW Genesis 2013 Finalist in the Mystery/Suspense/Thriller category. BlogPhoto Resized

She’ll also keep you updated on upcoming writing contests and some of the best reads in Christian suspense.

To contact Kara, email her at fictionwithfaith@gmail.com or by clicking the below link:

@KaraHunt2015 on Twitter

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2015 in Humor, Kara Hunt

 

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Writer’s Chuckle

bad grammar vandlism

 
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Posted by on October 28, 2015 in Humor, Writing Contests

 

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What is Home?, Part Three

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Our little home away from home.

This past weekend, we stayed in our home away from home—cabin #11 at Standing Stone State Park, Hillham, Tennessee. It’s a small, rustic cabin without certain modern conveniences like television and internet. The leaves were turning beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and red. A perfect fall breeze stirred the hilly landscape. The slower pace of life in that short timeframe made me relax, bask in the much-needed time with my hubby and kids, and recharged my batteries—as wife, mother, author, employee, and child of God.

As I cooked and cleaned in our little cabin, and enjoyed activities so different from my normal routine, I pictured us living in a rustic home tucked away in the hills of Tennessee. The same as I did over the summer when we stayed in a suite on Sarasota Beach. Or when we visited a quaint harbor town in Maine a few years back. The gist of it is, I believe I could live anywhere as long as I had my family. Because to me, they make my house a home.

In parts one and two of What is a Home?, I talked about different styles of homes and how they match our personalities as well as reasons why people move. But no matter what city or town we live in or the age of the structure, what actually makes a house a home?

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My hubby FINALLY reading Silver White Winters.

People.

Humans were not created to be alone. That’s why God made Eve for Adam. “It is not good that man should be alone.” (Genesis 2:18) Whether we’re raising families, the kids are grown, we live with a relative or spouse, or we live alone, it’s people who make the transition of brick and mortar to a refuge. The folks of the community, our neighbors, our churches, our families are what fills the square footage with love and memories.

I encourage you this week to think about what makes your house a home. Show your loved ones appreciation this week by leaving a note of gratitude where they’re sure to find it or by cooking a special meal. If you know someone who lives alone, reach out to them. Show them you care.

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Autumn colors in Tennessee

We’d love to hear from you. What makes your house a home?

~Candice Sue Patterson is the author of Bright Copper Kettles and Silver White Winters. Her debut novel How to Charm a Beekeeper’s Heart will release next year through Pelican Book Group. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons on a hobby farm. Visit her website for more information.

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

3 Reasons Why You Should Say No

Do you find it hard to say No to people? file5321243900330

I can relate. I don’t like saying No because I enjoying helping people. But I’ve often said Yes to requests that have been pretty unreasonable, even downright selfish. We’re supposed to set an example by being a blessing to people, right? How can we do that if we don’t say Yes?

Here are three reasons to reconsider your response when people ask you for help.

6F6A3033Give people a chance to discover new solutions to their problems. That may sound cruel, but if someone continues to take advantage of your kindness to assist, it’s not healthy for her or you. Give the individual an opportunity to weigh all of her options.

A grudgingly-given Yes is really a dishonest No in disguise. Why say Yes if you don’t mean it? Scripture tells us to let our yes and no be authentic. We must be emotionally transparent, honest in our speech and actions.

girl in natureAn authentic No is a blessing. God gives wisdom to those who ask. Ask Him how you should use your time. When we’re not constantly fulfilling the wishes of others, we can rightly divide our time with our Creator, our families, our work, and our hobbies.

By all means, whenever it’s in your power to help someone, do. But if you sense a pattern of irresponsible behavior, a genuine No might be the kindest response you can give.

Those are my thoughts. I’d love to hear yours.

~ Jericha Kingston

 
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Posted by on October 23, 2015 in Jericha Kingston

 

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Spotlight on Carolyn Astfalk, author of Stay With Me

Stay With Me Front-1Thanks for joining us today, Carolyn. So glad to have you!

Tell me about Stay With Me: 

With the encouragement of her brash sister, Abby, Rebecca has moved out of their overbearing father’s home. When a chance encounter with a good-looking guy named Chris ends with an invitation, Rebecca is emboldened to say yes. The authentic way Chris lives his Catholic faith and his life attracts Rebecca, and a family wedding, a camping trip, and a ride on his Harley-Davidson later, she’s in love, though she can’t bring herself to tell him.

Chris loves Rebecca and her innocence, but he’s confounded by the emotional scars she bears from her mother’s abandonment, her father’s cruelty, and an attempted assault. Coupled with her past, their differing faiths and her father’s disdain for both Chris’s religion and his career threaten their future.

With the counsel of their mutual friend Father John, can Rebecca and Chris overcome all the obstacles in their path and bridge the deepening gulf between them and her dad? Or will a crucial lapse in judgment and its repercussions end their relationship?

Who is the book primarily for?  

Stay With Me is aimed primarily at Christian women who enjoy an edgy but clean romance.

CarolynAstfalkWhat inspired you to start writing? 

I’ve always enjoyed reading and writing, but I was inspired to tackle fiction-writing by a newspaper clipping that generated an intriguing plot and the challenge of National Novel Writing Month in 2010. You could say that’s when I was bitten by the novel-writing bug.

Where do you write? What does your writing space look like? 

Most of my writing is done on my laptop at the dining room table. I’d love to have a sturdy desk with an inspiring view, but due to lack of space and the need to be near my children and write in dribs and drabs, my dining room setup works best.

Where do you find inspiration? 

The ideas come from living, observing, and reading. The inspiration for developing them is getting outdoors or doing something physical that requires minimal concentration such as washing dishes, sorting dirty laundry, or driving. It allows my mind to wander and my daydreams to unfold.

What are you reading now?  

The Thief by Stephanie Landsem. She’s an excellent writer, and I had the pleasure of meeting her at a writer’s conference this summer.  The Thief is biblical fiction that is contemporaneous to Jesus’ crucifixion.

What is one of your favorite lines or character quotes from your current book?

“But when they climbed back onto his bike and she wrapped her arms around his waist, she realized the fissure was already being soothed and filled, that love was spilling into all the brittle cracks and crevices that the pain had etched.”

Wow, that’s a great line. What got you interested in your genre?

Oddly enough, I didn’t begin reading in my genre in earnest until I started writing in it. My first manuscript took on a life of its own. At that point, I knew I had to both familiarize myself with the genre and study the craft of writing.

What legacy would you like to leave to the next generation? To your readers? 

I’d like my children to understand that if you seek to follow God’s will, all things are possible through Him, even those that are difficult or that you’ve failed at again and again. Also that your value lies not in what you do but in who you are. For readers, I’d like them to appreciate that it’s possible to be entertained and uplifted. That truth isn’t necessarily best transmitted in nonfiction but in engaging fiction as well.

What deep spiritual truth do you want your reader to know?

That our relationship with God should permeate every aspect of our lives, including romance and sexuality, not in a burdensome, oppressive way that diminishes it, but in a holistic way that uplifts, enhances, and glorifies.

Awesome truth, Carolyn. Thanks for joining us today!

Order Stay With Me from Amazon today!

You can connect with Carolyn at her  Website, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Google+, on YouTube, on LinkedIn, on Goodreads, and on Instagram

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2015 in Author Chat

 

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A Convocation of Eagles

eagles in flight

Hubby and I were on a hike last week through the woods near Ocqueoc Falls in northeastern lower Michigan. It’s a beautiful spot at any time of the year. In the fall it’s even more so. With God’s handiwork painted on the trees, it’s truly a sight to behold.

While admiring the colors and the ever-changing cloud formations, we also spotted a convocation of eagles. They soared above us on strong air currents. I could see three distinctly white heads among them, and at least two that appeared to be immature eagles. It took me a moment to get my camera turned on, but I managed to snap a few photos.

There are actually four birds in the photo above, but I didn’t see them all until I zoomed in the photo. One of the birds is almost hidden behind the dead trunk closest to the middle of the photo, and another is just above the tree tops to the left of him.

eagle in flight

Of course, by the time I got my camera on and up and ready and zoomed in … they were flying away.

While I’ve seen my share of eagles over the years, it’s rare to see more than a pair at once. To come upon a convocation (yes – that really is the term for a gathering of eagles) may be a once in a lifetime opportunity. I know I’ll never forget it. And I wouldn’t have seen it if I hadn’t been in the right place at the right time.

We almost missed this. We almost didn’t turn onto the road that leads to the falls. We almost drove on by. It was an after thought, a destination tacked on at the end of our color tour. I enjoyed the whole day, but years from now, this will be what sticks in my memory.

How often in life do we miss out on things because we drive on by, because we don’t follow our impulses to stop along the way? Follow an impulse at least once this week and let me know where it leads you.

~ Pegg Thomas

Trooper and Pegg cropped

 

 

 

 

 

PeggThomas.com

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

The Methuselah Project – Behind The Story

As promised, here’s the story behind the story of one of the hottest new releases in Christian Fiction Suspense -The Methuselah Project by ACFW author Rick Barry.

Author Rick BarryEven without knowing me, reviewers of The Methuselah Project have rightly concluded several things about me:

One, that history fascinates me, especially World War II history. (I don’t care so much about big-picture troop movements as I do the individual experiences of ordinary men and women thrown into incredible circumstances. I always wonder, “What would I have done?”)

Second, that I like airplanes. My Dad, Tom Barry, learned to fly in the 1940s, so all the time I was growing up, our family owned one kind of single-engine airplane or another at the Pontiac Airport in Michigan. Even as a tot, I went flying with Dad as he piloted over our house and our neighborhood. Later in life I took skydiving lessons. What a thrill!

Third, reviewers picked up on the fact that sci-fi has influenced me since this novel contains a slight flavor of science fiction without actually being a sci-fi story. I have two older brothers, and even when I was too little to turn on the TV, they were tuning in to programs such as The unnamedTwilight Zone, The Outer Limits, and the original Star Trek series. (I was the first person in Mrs. Yuchartz’s third-grade class at Dublin Elementary who could do a proper Vulcan salute. My young claim to fame!)

Lastly, I’m a bit of a romantic. Sure, I could’ve written a macho story about Roger Greene and the experiment without any women in it. But the real world does have women, and we are not Vulcans. Real people have feelings. We long to connect, to fall in love. So I definitely wanted at minimum a thread of romance to bring the story alive and give it more appeal for a wider audience of readers.

I have a strong faith in the Lord. The book is not preachy, but my God-centered worldview is there. I prayed over every chapter as I wrote it.

unnamed4There have been past movies and even a couple short-run TV series (one of them British) that brought an aviator from the past into the present. For instance, Mel Gibson starred in a 1992 movie called Forever Young. He was not a WW2 pilot, but he got frozen in a device that somehow kept him on ice for decades without even being plugged in. The title was ridiculous since Mel rapidly aged at the end. The story was so-so, but in my opinion fell far short of its potential.

As I developed the concept for The Methuselah Project, I did not want space ships or aliens or any hardcore science fiction. But I needed someTMP believable method of getting my main character from 1943 to 2015 without aging him much. When I hit upon the idea of a Nazi experiment—Bingo! All the pieces began to fall into place. That’s when I got seriously excited and couldn’t wait for each opportunity to get back to the keyboard!

Judging from readers’ enthusiastic responses, this mix of history, suspense, romance, and a light dusting of sci-fi is a success. I credit the Lord for that. I also thank all the readers who are contacting friends and urging them to try The Methuselah Project!

If anyone would like to connect with me, I invite them to visit my author site, http://www.rickcbarry.com.

 

Kara writes supernatural suspense thrillers and is an ACFW Genesis 2013 Finalist in the Mystery/Suspense/Thriller category. BlogPhoto Resized

She’ll also keep you updated on upcoming writing contests and some of the best reads in Christian suspense.

To contact Kara, email her at fictionwithfaith@gmail.com or by clicking the below link:

@KaraHunt2015 on Twitter

 

 
 

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