Thursday, March 31, 2011

Book Review Thursday

Today I'm reviewing Nancy Werlin's Extraordinary. This book was recommended to me at a writer's conference. I loved the premise. I loved the lessons learned and the growth that Phoebe has. It is a journey we all take in different ways. I couldn't put it down. Werlin does a wonderful job weaving everything together to make a wonderful story. I would recommend this to most everyone. Here's the back cover blurb and a link to purchase it.. Let me know what you think.

What does it mean to be extraordinary? Phoebe finds herself drawn to Mallory, the strange and secretive new kid in school. Soon the two girls are as close as sisters . . . until Mallory’s magnetic older brother, Ryland, appears. Ryland has an immediate, exciting hold on Phoebe—but a dangerous hold, for she begins to question her feelings about her best friend and, worse, about herself.

Soon she’ll discover the shocking, fantastical truth about Ryland and Mallory, and about an age-old debt they expect Phoebe to pay. Will she be strong enough to resist? Will she be special enough to save herself?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Work In Progress Wednesday

So I'm still querying and researching and everything else with Encoded Secrets. I'm also making good progress on the first draft on my new book. I think I might title it Black Orchid. What do you think?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Choices

by Bonnie Harris

Good, Better, Best. That seems to be the topic that has been discussed for several weeks in church. It has gotten me thinking about the choices I have before me. Am I really make the Best decisions with the time I've been given. It's been pretty eye opening.

What's been the biggest eye opener is what I've focused on. It's been more of the minute details rather than the bigger picture. I get so hung up on the small things that I forget the reason why I'm doing the little things.

I've seen this in my writing process as well as others. We get so caught up on the wording of a certain sentence that we forget that the whole purpose of the sentence is to help propel the story forward. I've seen this literally stop the process of someone's wonderful story. They are so worried about it being perfect that they can't move past that one sentence, or chapter. It's really sad.

So how does this apply to choices? It's all in what we/I choose to focus on. Do I choose to focus on the little things around the house like having things spotless or do I look at the bigger picture of spending time with my son and husband. Do I worry about the wording of a particular scene or do I make sure the story is flowing. Now I realize that the little things all add to and enhance the big things, but in the long run or the eternal perspective of things, is the wording really going to make that big of a difference? I really don't think so.

These past few weeks have shown me that I shouldn't sweat the little stuff. It will all get done eventually but I need to enjoy the process. My mom has often said that when I was young she got so frustrated that she couldn't sew. I took up all her time. It wasn't until she realized that everything she wanted to sew was for me that she was able to put it aside and enjoy the journey. I'm trying to take her advice and not worry about what is not getting done, making the better choice--as I see it. I sure hope this is making sense. My baby doesn't want to go to sleep and has been crying for awhile now. It's one of those times that I'm trying to remind myself that I'm making the better choice. So here's to enjoying the ride!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Book Review

Today's book review is Cross My Heart by Julie Wright. I have to say that this is one of my favorite romances. Julie has a way with weaving a story, making you fall in love with the characters and become so involved in the story that time just passes by. I was drawn into it and found myself part of the story. I loved everything about the story and would recommend it to anyone. I can't wait to read everything else she's written. (Ps. I've taken classes from, heard her on panels and talked to her at conferences. She's a riot!) Here's a link for Julie's blog and the back cover blurb. Let me know what you think!

The first man is Geoffrey—in Boston, which is Jillian’s hometown. Hazel-eyed Geoffrey, the brilliant ad exec who Jillian would’ve married if he hadn’t stolen some of her best work (and gotten her promotion as a result).

The second man is Jack in Los Angeles. Insecure Jack, who signs Jillian up for a love study at a local university “just for fun” but secretly intends to find out if she still loves Geoffrey. Flaky Jack, who splits as soon as her brain neurons fire an emphaticyes.

The third man is Allen on the airplane from L.A. to Boston, where Jillian’s boss has ordered her to investigate the underhanded dealings of a competing agency (and where Jillian’s crazy parents still live). Allen, the electric-blue-eyed dentist who hates the advertising industry because his ex-girlfriend, Nicole, recently dumped him for some hotshot ad exec.

Head spinning yet? Just wait until Allen’s nemesis, Nicole’s fiancĂ©, and Jillian’s target turn out to be the same guy: Geoffrey. Yes, that Geoffrey. Forget about love triangles— this is a full-blown love quadrangle that quickly becomes a high-stakes game with savvy players, snappy dialogue, and a plot that won’t stop twisting . . . until another love study delivers surprising results.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Work In Progress Wednesday

So, I've gotten one more rejection and sent out two more queries. I'm really excited about one of them. I've also made it through another revision of Encoded Secrets. I feel really good about it and am excited to get back to my new idea.

I've also realized that some of my query goals were unrealistic. Rather than one query a day I'm going to shoot for one a week. I think that will be more manageable. Well, baby's fussing so this will have to do for now! Happy Writing and Reading!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Book Giveaway


Hey all! Janette Rallison is giving away a book a day until her new book My Unfair Godmother comes out April 12th. Take a look!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Book Review

So I just realized today is Thursday, not Wednesday and my baby is already screaming . . . To be continued :)

I just don't know where time goes. Anyway, this is a twofer post. My WIP update: I have 25 pages left on my revision for Encoded Secrets. That has me really excited. If the baby decides to sleep tomorrow, I should have it done and hopefully sent off to a few agents this weekend.

Book Review:
Perfect Shot by Sonia O'brien was published by Covenant Communications in 2006. It is a fabulous mystery novel. I quite enjoyed it, not being able to put it down. I loved the characters and the twists she worked into the story. I would recommend this for most everyone. Here's the back cover blurb. Take a look and let me know what you think.

Jonathan clicked off several shots, then tilted his camera to take the building from another angle. These pictures were going to make the perfect addition to his up-and-coming photo exhibit.

He was so engrossed that he didn’t hear the voices that floated across the narrow alleyway until he was almost on top of them. Jonathan’s breath caught, his eyes riveted on the scene before him . . .

Reegan Richards has been moved from home to home, town to town, for as long as she can remember. But now she has proof that her mother
has been hiding the truth about her father, Jonathan—a man Reegan thought was long dead.

In a dangerous turn of events, Reegan soon learns far more truth than she is ready for, and now she may be forced to pay the consequences for what an innocent eyewitness saw more than fourteen fateful years ago.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Chocolate and Missionary Work

by Bonnie Harris

I've usually had ideas for this posts a few days after the last one, but this time I didn't think of anything until two days ago. My mom shared this experience with me and I immediately thought of a similar situation she told me about earlier. I kept coming back to this and took that as meaning I needed to write about it.

My dad had the privilege of serving on a jury recently. The jurors were told it should take a week or so to get through the trial. (Side note: How wonderful is it that we have a system set up like this? I know I complain about jury duty and how inconvenient it is and all the other excuses, but when I really sit down and think about it, what a blessing it is to be tried by peers. If I was even in a situation when I needed that, I would sure be glad to have it. Prayerfully that will never happen. Kudos to those who enjoy the law enough to represent the "common man.") Halfway through the trial someone suggested everyone needed chocolate. Dad mentioned this to Mom and she said, "Well, go get some."

One of my favorite kind of chocolates--besides Swiss--is the Utah truffles that are sold at Desert Book and Seagull. If you've never had a bar, it's well worth the money to savor it. (It is also a great snack when writing.) Desert Book happened to be on the way to court, so being the wonderful guy he is, Dad stopped and got a box to share with the other jurors. No big deal, right.

Well, the trial adjourned for the weekend and the Monday following several of the jurors were still raving about the chocolate. At least two of them had gone online to find out where to get it. Funny thing about that is, Desert Book and Seagull are the only places in Arizona to get some. :)

Mom also got some of the same chocolate for co-workers as a Christmas present. Several of them have gone into Desert Book to get more. In may not seem like much, but who knows how many of those people would have ever stepped foot in a Desert Book Store. Who knows if something else will catch their attention. Who knows if they'll purchase something that will change their lives . . . other than chocolate that is. Who knows . . .

Chocolate and Missionary Work. You just never know what will come from it. :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Book Review

I have so many book reviews to do, I just haven't found/made the time to get them all back-posted so when I have a week like this one it'll already be done. Right now I have a sick husband and a baby who's been fussy most of the day. You'll have to forgive me and stay tuned for next week. (Fingers-crossed)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Work In Progress Wednesday

This is going to be short and sweet. Since the ANWA conference, I've been working on another edit for Encoded Secrets. So far so good. I'm having a good time with it and realizing how much I really don't know about anything. It's all in the process. At least that's what I keep telling myself.

I am itching to get working on a new idea and excited to send out the newest version of Encoded Secrets. I'll keep you posted and thanks for taking the time to check in!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Book Review Thursday

The Kiss of a Stranger by Sarah M. Eden is a delightful, witty romance. I laughed and fell in love with the characters. I throughly enjoyed the plot and found I couldn't put it down. This book is a great read for anyone who loves a good story full of humor, twists and of course love. I highly recommend it for anyone. Take a look and let me know what you think!

From the back cover: When Crispin, Lord Cavratt, thoroughly and scandalously kisses a serving woman in the garden of a country inn, he assumes the encounter will be of no consequence. But he could be more mistaken--the maid is not only a lady of birth, she's the niece of a very large, exceptionally angry gentleman, who claims Crispin has compromised his niece beyond redemption. The dismayed young lord has no choice but to marry Miss Catherine Thorndale, who lacks both money and refinement and assumes all men are as vicious as her guardian uncle.
Trapped between an unwanted marriage and a hasty annulment, which would leave his reputation tainted and Catherine's utterly ruined, Crispin begins guiding his wife's transformation from a socially petrified country girl to a lady of society. Their unfolding relationship reveals encouraging surprises for both of them, and privately each of them wonders if theirs may become a true marriage of the heart. But their hopes are dashed when forces conspire to split asunder what fate has granted. As a battle of wits escalates into a life-threatening confrontation, will it be possible for Crispin and Catherine to live happily ever after?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Work In Progress Wednesday

The ANWA Conference was wonderful. I learn, networked and had a great time. My pitch session for Encoded Secrets went well and I'm currently doing one more run through before sending the requested pages. I'm pretty excited. I can also add two more rejections to the running tally. Gotta love it!