"If you write FOR a particular market or FOR a particular editor you will often miss the mark. But if you write because your fingers have danced across the keyboard, because a character has tapped you on the shoulder, because a story has settled in your heart, then even if you never sell it you have done the work you were meant to do. And sometime, dear readers, real magic happens." Jane Yolen

4/29/11

Finds for Fridays April 29 (and "the S-word")

Hehe - probably NOT the word you're thinking of. Truly. I'm over at The Barn Door today, chatting about that season that sometimes, but not always, comes after winter here in Michigan. (Yeah - THAT S-word) Just afraid that if I say it out loud, white stuff might appear. But reading it should NOT have that same effect (at least I hope not LOL). Stop by, if you would!

And now that I've sent you to ONE site to read my stuff - here are a few more from some other blogs ;)


 

Finds for Fridays is my way of sharing some of the wonderful blogs posts I read each week. I am currently following close to 100 blogs and at least scan them as much as I can.  Each week, I'll note and "set aside" some posts that especially speak to me for whatever reason. And each Friday that I am able, I'll share them with you. I hope you'll stop by and read the posts, and maybe even follow the blogs if you aren't already. A win-win, right?

And now...here they are!

From the Margin of my Bible by Christina Banks at With Pen In Hand (about characteristics of a Christ-centered home)

Spaghetti Agents by Nathan Bransford at his blog (about a not-so-good type of agent)

One Paragraph or Less by Jessica Faust at BookEnds LLC (about succinct descriptions of your book)

A Question of Prayer by Billy Coffey at What I Learned Today (about who to ask serious questions of)

Evangelizing Through Fiction by Michelle Massaro at Adventures in Writing (about spreading the Gospel through your novels)

Be sure to stop by these blogs and read - and subscribe. I'm always blessed.


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/28/11

Monday Manna for May 2


The purpose of Monday Manna to get together and get to know Christ more through His Word. Each Thursday, a Bible verse to ponder will be posted, either here or at my dear friend Vonnie's blog, My Back Door. The following Monday, those participating will post their thoughts on the verse at their own blogs and link up at the bottom of the post in the Mr. Linky  gadget. The main purpose is to chew on the same Scripture and learn from one another.

I'm hosting this week.

Was having trouble picking a verse this week - but this one jumped out at me as I did my daily Bible reading this morning.  Can't wait to ponder it -- and hear what you guys have to say!
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Thanks for stopping by. Looking forward to your thoughts - and mine - on Monday

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/26/11

Guest Post: My Brain-Buddy, Peejers

I'm guessing that most of the folks who follow this blog know Patty Wysong. She is amazing in SO many ways, and an amazing friend (we share a brain :D). She is such an awesome friend and encourager to me. So, when she asked to guest post here, I didn't even have to think twice. Besides, what she's talking about is AWESOME--especially for us folks trying to build our platform (and she'll be fixin' up my blog before the summer's over!). So read what she has to say.
A rare time when we both used the brain at the same time
Sharing a brain with Joanne has been more than a lifesaver, it's been a whole lot of fun!

A few years ago, when I joined Faithwriters, Jo was one of the first ones to reach out to me—which isn't surprising. Since then we've worked together on oodles of projects and our lives have become rather... well, rather intertwined, which is natural since we share our brain. She's kept me sane, kept my feet on the ground all the while cheering me on and teaching me things I need to know. She's one of the huge blessings in my life.

One of the areas she's cheered me on in is in my blogging adventure (Jo note - though, truth be told, it was Peejers who dragged ME into blogging first!). Blogging was an act of obedience, not something that I wanted to do. My reasoning was “In the big wide world of cyber space no one will ever find my puny little blog.”

Um, wrong.

Joanne followed me, cheering the whole way, and with her, others found my blog, too. The next step was working on my site. It's been a roller coaster as I learned how to manipulate a blog.

After that I discovered my blog knowledge was a ministry to others. And that's when it got really fun! Joanne is a tremendous encourager. I just did blog stuff for others because it was what God gave me to do.

But seasons of life change, and God prepared me for this most recent change. This month my bloggy knowledge, experience and love have become part of the answer to a problem and it's so cool to see God's hand in it, preparing and leading me, especially in these last six months. What a great God of detail we have!

I'd like you to celebrate with me as I officially open my design and teaching doors. To help celebrate, I'm giving away the winner's choice of a premade design. Leave a comment here, on this post, to be entered into the drawing and the winner will be posted on my site sometime on May 5th. =]

Want some extra entries in the drawing? Go to my site and leave a comment on this post. Also, each time you share this link on Twitter, Facebook or on your blog, I'll throw your name in the drawing again. (Yes, I'm on Twitter, but Jo usually has that part of the brain. LoL) Email me when you do. patty at pattywysong.com.

Click here to see some sites I've designed, recommendations and pricing. Not only are there blogs there, but there are a couple of websites, too. These are hosted on Blogger, but I am working on Wordpress now too.

Do you want to learn to work on your own blog? I teach a 4 week class, Clearing the Blog Fog, that's email based (yahoo group). It teaches how to set up and customize your site. If you don't need or want the whole class there's tutoring and all now I'm offering workshops in webinar format so you can see what I'm doing on my screen as I talk through it. So far I have workshops on how to make blog buttons and headers, which have learning how to work on Paint.net, a free option to Photoshop, as a great perk. ;-)

Another thing I've added is a selection of premade layouts, offered reasonably. I'll even install it for you. It's one of these I'm giving away. ;-)

Designing and teaching like this will enable me to work from home—something that has become necessary at this point. God is so good to give me something to do, something I LOVE doing and that I can work on it at home--in the middle of cornfields. And God blessed me tremendously when He brought Joanne into my life those years age. A blessing I'm especially grateful for!

Don't forget to leave a comment here (and at my site) to be entered in the premade design giveaway. The winner will be posted on my site on May 5th. And for another extra entry in the drawing, tell me something you love or appreciate about Joanne, or a fun memory of her. :-)

Thanks so much for having me, JoDear. Love you!!




(huh, maybe I need to make another siggy that says Peejers instead of Patty. LoL)

Love you TOO, Peejers! Can't wait to see my redesign. PLEASE check out her stuff, folks. It's wonderful.

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/25/11

Dead and Raised: Monday Manna


This week, Vonnie is hosting Monday Manna, so be sure to pop over to My Back Door and read the other entries, and link up if you want to participate.

Here's today's verse.
Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. Colossians 2:12
Looking forward to your thoughts. Mine are below.

**
I died. No--really. Kicked the bucket. Checked out of the hotel. No longer breathed. Bye-bye, Joanne.

Everything about me--everything--was gone. My desires. My skills. My interests. My relationships. My emotions. All of it stopped existing. Because I was dead.

When I believed that Jesus Christ died for my sins, I died right along with Him. Everything that was mine was buried in the ground, never to be mine again.

Yet, when I believed in God's workings--that His Son's death on the cross was sufficient propitiation for my sins--I am raised. I live again.

But, do you know what? It's not really me. I am a brand new person. My relationships? Interests? Emotions? Desires? Skills? Transformed. Everything that is mine is now His--because I am new on the inside. He dwells in me. THAT is why I live. He is my heartbeat. Because He lives, so do I.

**

Thanks for reading! Be sure to stop by Vonnie's blog for more Monday Manna.

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/23/11

It Runs In The Family - My Daughter The Writer

Not sure if I've mentioned it here or not, but my beautiful seven-year-old daughter Annika is not just beautiful: she's smart and creative too. And she may have gotten a bit of my "writing gene."

She has written two stories in the past several months (very cute ones, of course). And today, one of them is featured at my dear friend Vonnie Blake's kids' writing blog, Polliwog Pages: Kids Write.

Would love to have you stop by and leave her a comment. We ALL love that feedback, don't we?

Thanks! And have a wonderful Easter weekend!



Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/22/11

Finds for (Good) Friday April 22

I pray that, today especially, you remember the sacrifice Christ made for us on the cross.

Several years ago, I wrote a poem for the FaithWriters' Writing Challenge that folks have often told me is especially fitting for today. Thanks to my awesome husband's leading, it is going to be read (by him, by the way!) at our church's Good Friday service.

It's one of those pieces that I know was inspired by God. If you'd like to see, click here (then come back for Finds for Fridays LOL).



 

Finds for Fridays is my way of sharing some of the wonderful blogs posts I read each week. I am currently following over 100 blogs and at least scan them as much as I can.  Each week, I'll note and "set aside" some posts that especially speak to me for whatever reason. And each Friday that I am able, I'll share them with you. I hope you'll stop by and read the posts, and maybe even follow the blogs if you aren't already. A win-win, right?

And now...here they are!

Salad Bar Bible by Carol Hatcher at Internet Cafe Devotions (about picking and choosing what to follow)

The Anointed Author By Angie Dicken at The Writers Alley (about our anointed accomplishments - and this is one of my new FAVORITE blogs!)

We Can Make No Promises by Scott Eagan at Babbles from Scott Eagan (about getting an agent as a sure way to publication - or not)


Six Screws and One Piece Left Over by Lynda Schultz at Grains of Sand (about the instruction manual and creator)

Hope you'll stop by these blogs and check out the post - and maybe even follow the blogs. You won't be disappointed.


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/19/11

A Jewel for You - Hope

I'm posting over at JoE today, talking about Joy In The Depths. Stop by--today and EVERY day - for some encouragement.


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/18/11

Nothing Else Needed: Monday Manna


I'm hosting Monday Manna this week :)

The purpose of Monday Manna to get together and get to know Christ more through His Word. Each Thursday, a Bible verse to ponder will be posted, either here or at my dear friend Vonnie's blog, My Back Door. The following Monday, those participating will post their thoughts on the verse at their own blogs and link up at the bottom of the post in the Linky gadget. The main purpose is to chew on the same Scripture and learn from one another.

Here's this week' verse:
Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures. Luke 24:27
Looking forward to your thoughts. Mine are below.

**

As most of you know, I was raised in the Jewish faith and came to Christ in my 30s. The first 20+ years of my life, the only knowledge I had of God was from the Old Testament. I thought there was nothing else I needed to read to know the Lord. It was all there - Genesis to Malachi. Nothing else needed.
And you know what? In a way, I was right.
It never ceases to amaze me how many people came to Christ back in the time before there was a New Testament. The only Bible they had to read was the Jewish scriptures. Matthew's chapters on the Beatitudes? Nope. Paul's conversion on the Damascus Road? No record of it. Hebrews' hall of faith? Nowhere to be found. John 3:16? Never heard of it.
Everything you need to know to become a Christian is in the first 39 books of the Bible.
I "got saved" in Isaiah 53 (the passage about the suffering servant). Old Testament prophecies about Christ's coming appear as early as Genesis 3:15, and all the way through to Malachi 3. Christ is in every book of the Bible--you just have to look for it.
The Road to Emmaus Pictures, Images and Photos


**

Thanks for reading! Don't forget to link up below with your own thoughts, and read those others have left. I know they will be a blessing.




Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/15/11

Finds for Fridays: April 15



 

Finds for Fridays is my way of sharing some of the wonderful blogs posts I read each week. I am currently following over 100 blogs and at least scan them as much as I can.  Each week, I'll note and "set aside" some posts that especially speak to me for whatever reason. And each Friday that I am able, I'll share them with you. I hope you'll stop by and read the posts, and maybe even follow the blogs if you aren't already. A win-win, right?

And now...here they are!

Guest Linda Yezak's Recipe for a Golden Manuscript By Linda Yezak at Reflections in Hindsight (about the need for critique partners)

Speak to Your Mountain By Debbie Dillon at Jewels of Encouragement (about God in our trials)

My Husband Loves Me By Mary DeMuth at her blog (about the beauty others see, but we don't)

If Fishes Were Wishes and Ponies Were Cheap By the MikChiks at Connecting Now (about parents, children, and pet recipient logic)

Why Do We Write? By Scott Eagan at Babbles from Scott Eagan (about where our writing passion should be from)

Be sure to check these out - great reading. And while you're there, follow the blogs. Thanks!


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/14/11

Monday Manna for April 18


The purpose of Monday Manna to get together and get to know Christ more through His Word. Each Thursday, a Bible verse to ponder will be posted, either here or at my dear friend Vonnie's blog, My Back Door. The following Monday, those participating will post their thoughts on the verse at their own blogs and link up at the bottom of the post in the Mr. Linky  gadget. The main purpose is to chew on the same Scripture and learn from one another.

I'm hosting this week.

This is a verse that fascinates me like few others. Always has me wondering (perhaps more than others since I was raised Jewish).
Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures. Luke 24:27
Looking forward to your thoughts on this one. See you back here on Monday!

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/11/11

Why? Monday Manna


This week, Vonnie is hosting Monday Manna, so be sure to pop over to My Back Door and read the other entries, and link up if you want to participate.

Here's today's verse.
"Only fear the LORD, and serve Him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things He hath done for you." 1 Samuel 12:24
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Mine are below.

**

Sometimes staying in God's will can be...well...hard. Temptations to follow our own plan - the easier way to our goals (which, of course, may or may not be His goals)- are everywhere. And we want the easy way. Many of us may not want to admit it, but it's true.

Why study hard when you can cheat and get the same - or a better - result? Why study missions when you can make a lot more money in some other field? Why share your faith with your annoying coworker when it could cause even more conflict?

Before you answer those questions, let's put the shoe on the other foot.

Why come to earth as a baby when it would be so much easier to stay in heaven? Why be tempted by Satan when You have the power to make him leave You alone? Why have a disciple follow You for three years only to betray You when You could have simply not chosen him in the first place? Why submit to scourging, whipping, and death on the cross when You could have called a legion of angels to save You with just a thought?

Why NOT take the easy way? Why should I fear the Lord and serve Him with all my heart?

Because of the great things He has done for me.

**

Thanks for reading! Be sure to stop by Vonnie's blog for more Monday Manna.

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/9/11

Sunshine??

The Barn Door

The kids are finishing up spring break this weekend. The weather, however, hasn't exactly cooperated. Finally, today is supposed to be a "springish" day. And tomorrow? We could hit eighty! It looks like the kids will, after waiting, be able to pull out the springish toys.

At least they haven't been sitting on them too long. Stop by The Barn Door to see what I have to say about No Bicycles for Christmas. I sure didn't grow up that way :)



Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/8/11

Finds for Fridays: April 8



 

Finds for Fridays is my way of sharing some of the wonderful blogs posts I read each week. I am currently following over 100 blogs and at least scan them as much as I can.  Each week, I'll note and "set aside" some posts that especially speak to me for whatever reason. And each Friday that I am able, I'll share them with you. I hope you'll stop by and read the posts, and maybe even follow the blogs if you aren't already. A win-win, right?

And now...here they are!

How Do You Know If God is Calling You To Ministry? by Carol Hatcher at Sheep To The Right (about listening - and not listening - to God)

Mensa Alternate Meanings by Joy Bach at Life Moments (hysterical - just read them!)

Keep going... by Holley Gerth at Heart to Heart with Holley (about staying on the path)

Be Careful What You Wish For by Rachelle Gardner at Rants and Ramblings (about added responsibilities once you're published)

Don't miss these posts - stop by and read/follow the authors. Great stuff!


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/5/11

I'm Not Here - but follow the link below anyway! ;)

Scroll down a bit for a link to a guest post I'm doing, please :)


Today is my monthly tech fast - no computer, no internet, no texting. Should be interesting - especially with my kids home for Spring break. Hoping to get some writing done (longhand!) and a bit of cleaning.

OH, and since you don't have anything HERE to read from me, be sure to stop by the Internet Cafe, where I'm "serving up" the devotional (NOT in person, of course!). Come here a bit of a confession about how I feel about my kids sometimes, AND the reassurance that the Lord never feels the same way. Abandoned? Nope!

See ya'all Wednesday!!

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/4/11

Without Faith: Monday Manna


I'm hosting Monday Manna this week :)

The purpose of Monday Manna to get together and get to know Christ more through His Word. Each Thursday, a Bible verse to ponder will be posted, either here or at my dear friend Vonnie's blog, My Back Door. The following Monday, those participating will post their thoughts on the verse at their own blogs and link up at the bottom of the post in the Linky gadget. The main purpose is to chew on the same Scripture and learn from one another.

Here's this week' verse:
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:6 NIV
Looking forward to your thoughts. Mine are below.

**

He was a philanthropist; giving all his money to the poor, disabled, and down on their luck. He served in soup kitchens, participated in community clean-up, and helped children from broken homes get a new lease on life.

He was well-liked by kids and adults alike for his giving nature and selflessness. He enjoyed helping others. He often worked alongside his Christian friends, serving God's people in various capacities. He gave his tithe, and then some, to the local church.
But there was one problem. He had no faith in God. And it made all the difference.
He did the very same things that God's children did. He sat next to them in the pews. He served the needy beside them. He prayed aloud with them. He donated to their favorite causes.
But God was not pleased with him.
Seem unfair? From an earthly point of view, perhaps. How, you ask, can one person do good and be pleasing to the Lord, while the other does the same and is condemned? They each did the same thing.

But salvation, and delighting God, has nothing to do with works--with what we do. And it has everything to do with our hearts--Who is in them. No matter what we do, if we are not His, it is displeasing to the Lord.
You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.  My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise. Psalm 51:16-17
With a broken spirit and a contrite heart -- with faith, any act can be pleasing to Him. Without it? No chance.

**

Thanks for reading! Be sure to link up below, and read others' thoughts on this verse by clicking on the links!




Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/2/11

Springing Into April: A Goals/Progress Update

One-fourth of the way through the year already. I can hardly believe it! Overall, I think I'm doing all right - busy for sure. Lots of projects on my desk, and most of them are LOTS of fun.

So..how am I doing? Let's see.

First, I'll start with my annual goals:  I'm still in the process with my agent submission - and I noticed that another agent I'd consider if this doesn't work out is now open for submissions. So I wait. :) Plugging away at Handmaiden To A Princess - more info in my March update below. Doing well with platform I think (getting my name out in more places in more ways). Also doing better as far as keeping the house looking better. Please pray about that. AND my April tech-free day is this coming Tuesday - while my kids are on break. Please pray ;)

And now, back to this month and next. Here are March's goals:
  1. Whatever needs to be done for Ailing Body, Nourished Soul
  2. Finish "my part" of the tween devo proposal, plus whatever else needs to be done on that project
  3. Three blog posts a week minimum
  4. SOME progress on Handmaiden to a Princess
Did pretty well. There was nothing to do for Ailing Body, Nourished Soul, but that's okay. Did find the other agent being open, so that's something. The devo proposal is submitted, and we're waiting to hear back. My friend Jennifer and I are working on writing and editing the devos, with the aim of having all 52 ready by the end of October. As far as blog posts, again, I did quite well - 21 last month, which averages to five a week (WOW!).

And now to Handmaiden to a Princess. I spent the month reading through what I've written already - about 50k worth - and making fixes here and there - and finding where I need to do some MAJOR rearranging. As of April 1 at 3:30 (when I'm composing this post) I have about 15 pages yet to go through, but am hoping to get that done before I go to bed.

So, that was March. Now for April!
  1. Add 10,000 words to Handmaiden To A Princess
  2. Write at least four biblical fiction devos for the book
  3. At least four blog posts average a week
  4. Start putting together info for submitting Ailing Body, Nourished Soul to another agent if necessary
So, there they are! I know my word count goal is high - but it's what I'm aiming for! Will see how it goes. Thanks so much for all of your encouragement.


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

4/1/11

Finds for Fridays: April 1 (and Jewels of Encouragement)

I'm over at Jewels of Encouragement today, with a post about what God wants from us. Stop by!

And now to the REAL issue :)





 

Finds for Fridays is my way of sharing some of the wonderful blogs posts I read each week. I am currently following over 100 blogs and at least scan them as much as I can.  Each week, I'll note and "set aside" some posts that especially speak to me for whatever reason. And each Friday that I am able, I'll share them with you. I hope you'll stop by and read the posts, and maybe even follow the blogs if you aren't already. A win-win, right?

And now...here they are!

Lending a Hand by Lynda Schultz at Grains of Sand (about helping the needy)


Don't Let the One Get You Down By C. Hope Clark at her blog (about negative comments and not letting them bother you.)

Rethinking Love By Christy McGraw at Critty Joy (about what love really is)

Why "No" Comes Quickly... By Rachelle Gardner at Rants and Ramblings (about the inside of an acquisition editor/agent's head - sorta)

I've Perfected the Pout by Tricia Goyer at It's Real Life (about agreement in marriage)

Thanks for reading these. Be sure to check these posts out. They're awesome :)


Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence

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