Fiction Faith & Foodies

Fiction Faith & Foodies: November 2012

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

WEDNESDAY'S CHILD by Clare Revell ~ My Review

About the book: Liam Page, school teacher and ex-missionary, is a man with a secret agenda. Revenge. But when he says it with flowers, and accidentally drenches a woman who just happens to be the school's landscape architect, he may have found a light in his darkness.

After an abusive relationship, Jacqui Dorne prefers work to men. It's safer. But Liam Page with his boyish charm and wounded soul, manages to change her preferences. Has God led her to Liam to help him heal?

When their growing relationship is marred by the reappearance of Jacqui's ex-boyfriend, they find themselves suddenly embroiled in a series of dangerous events which leads them to Africa and has them fighting for both love and life.

My review:
Liam wrestles with God over his wife's murder, and the theme "Why do bad things happen to good people?" permeates the book. He's bitter and wants revenge, and the heroine reminds him of the Truth he walked away from after his wife's death.

After reading both Monday's Child & Tuesday's Child by Clare Revell, I couldn't wait to dig into Wednesday's Child and wasn't disappointedWednesday's Child started with an emotionally intense scene like the other two books based on the popular nursery rhyme, but unlike the others, I feel this story veered mostly towards romance until midway through the book before the suspense really kicked in. That's OK with me because I enjoy both inspirational romance and romantic suspense. 

I enjoy this author's no nonsense writing style combined with a wry sense of humor and strong heroes/heroines. You don't have to read this book in order, although once you read Wednesday's Child, you'll want to go back and pick up the first two.

Purchase Link

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my fair and unbiased review.

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Build it right!

Housewarming: Celebrate success, Hold a Housewarming Party, Consider and pray about your next project.

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.” (Ps 100:4-5 NIV)

Celebrate success.
It’s done! After months of waiting, watching, crying, whining, wringing your hands and praying, you can finally move in to your new house. Yay! You offer a thanksgiving prayer, shake the builder’s hand, and then get to work moving in furniture, unpacking boxes, and settling things in place. When it’s presentable, you invite friends and family for a housewarming party.

What do you do when you type "The End" on your story?  

Offer a thanksgiving prayer. Celebrate. Go out for a special dinner. Visit the spa. Meet a friend for coffee. Whatever you do to celebrate victories and accomplishments. 

Hold a housewarming party. 
Typing “the end” doesn’t mean the project is finished. In the writing industry, the end is really the beginning. Your next step is to submit your completed and polished work, whether it’s directly to the publisher or to an agent. Show it off! But be warned…just as friends and family will praise and criticize certain elements of your house, expect the same from agents, publishers and readers.

Consider and pray about your next project. 
Who better than the Creator of the Universe to approach for ideas and inspiration? Chat with God. Praise Him. Worship at His feet. 

God has such an imagination and a sense of humor. Ask Him for a spark, just a speck of sand, from His creative well and open your mind to His possibilities. 

Where can you find ideas? 
Scour newspapers, magazines, and books 
Soak up your favorite television shows 
Browse through news articles and local news sites 
Wade through files and notes, research online 
Dreams. (OK, I hear you laughing here, but don’t discount the idea. My opening scene for Journey’s Embrace actually came to me in a dream.)
Consider life experiences: weddings, funerals, jobs, family issues, hobbies, etc. 

“In My Father's house there are many dwelling places (homes). If it were not so, I would have told you; for I am going away to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2 AMP)

I’m so thankful for the Master Builder and His creative well. 

What about you? Do you incorporate God’s blueprint in your writing?

Thank you for joining me on this Build it right! journey. 

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving Day, my friends!

We're counting our writing blessings over at Seriously Write today. 
Stop on by and share yours, won't you?

Wishing you a joyous, Son-filled Thanksgiving!

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Build it right!

Layer the finishing details: Sensory Details.

“How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” 
(Psalm 119:103 NIV)

The mason lathers mortar on the last brick and slaps it in place. 

Your eyes widen. Your heart beats a frantic rhythm. A smile lights up your face. “Wow! Hello house!” 
You’re excited because you know the end is near. But the house isn’t done yet. Other things need to happen on the inside before you can move in. Final tasks like painting, installing cabinets and appliances.
The same goes for our writing. We’ve cemented our foundation and joined cohesive elements, but for our story to light up our readers, we must add some finishing touches.

Layer sensory details.
Think back to the last time you received new prescription lenses. How much clearer, more sharp or vivid, was your vision after putting on the new lenses? Sprinkling sensory details makes our writing crisp, brings it into focus, and makes the story literally dance off the page. 
Let’s have some fun. 

How many sensory details can you find in this excerpt from Journey’s Edge?

Her face plowed into an expansive, muscular chest. Strong hands grabbed McKinley’s upper arms. A vague, familiar smell permeated the man’s torso, a citrus and woodsy scent mingled with masculine deodorant. She heard the door close behind her and felt legs wimp out on her. Good thing this guy held her up or she would have sank straight to the floor like a pile of spaghetti. She angled a hand to eject chest hair from her tongue, trying not to make a face.
“Honey, if you’re looking for that kind of action, you’ve got the wrong room.”

Now you try it. In one or two paragraphs, write the following scene with as many sensory details as you can fit in.

After crying herself to sleep, the next morning Delaney follows the scent of coffee and stumbles into her tiny kitchen, frightened to find a man making chocolate chip pancakes. She didn’t know that Sage, a friend she’s secretly been in love with forever, spent the night on the couch. 

Give it a shot. You know you want to try…

Have you added finishing details to make your story shine? 

Join us next week as we celebrate success, hold a Housewarming Party, and consider our next project.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS from Pelican Book Group

Permission to forward granted

Passport to Romance™

Let’s take a trip and fall in love! Passport to Romance™ titles are contemporary romances that are set in specific locales and feature a special set of objects. (
Check out the Location/Object table for specifics). 

Passport to Romance™ feature chic heroines who are sparkling, confident, open for adventure—and who are a perfect match for a contemporary alpha male who has a zest for life, a thirst for God, and who likes an intelligent woman who can hold her own.

Set in exotic locations around the world, these stories offer the contemporary Christian reader adventure, vivacity, romance and faith.

Passport to Romance™ key elements:

· Heroines must be between the ages of 22 and 35.

· Heroes must be between the ages of 22 and 39.

· Settings and objects must be chosen from within the Passport to Romance™ guidelines.

· Hero or Heroine (or both) must’ve traveled to the location of the story (He/She must’ve needed a passport to arrive at the story setting)

· Regular guidelines for White Rose Publishing also apply

· Word length: 30,000-35,000 words

· Please submit only completed stories

An Important Tip:

We created the Passport to Romance™ series to for a two-fold reason: to give readers a taste of overseas and to stir the creative juices of authors. We encourage authors to research the chosen location so that the cultural flavor of the location can be infused into the story. Also, we want to encourage authors to think outside the box when considering ways to incorporate the object prompts. If the location is the Arctic Circle and one of the objects is Hibiscus in Winter, don’t be discouraged! Rather, consider alternatives to the conventional bush blooming in the garden. Hibiscus in Winter might be the name of the heroine’s favourite musical band or book—or poem. A hibiscus could arrive in winter when a plane carrying hibiscus bushes crashes or dumps its cargo for some reason, or because the hero knows a the hibiscus is the heroine’s favourite flower and so carries one with him as he arrives from Hawaii.

When ready to submit, please use the
regular submission form found on the website.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Build it right!

Adding cohesive elements: Believable Plots, Appropriate Conflict, Setting, Theme.

“So that there should be no division or discord or lack of adaptation [of the parts of the body to each other], but the members all alike should have a mutual interest in and care for one another.” (1 Corinthians 12:25, Amp)

Last week we talked about building our story on a firm foundation. This week we’re adding cohesive elements by installing walls, windows & doors.

When we built our house, we used a general contractor. Although he visited the site frequently, he rarely participated in actual labor. Instead, he subcontracted the work to various trades. He didn’t expect the plumber to install the air conditioner, or the carpenter who mounted the doors to paint. Sub-contractors added their individual component, their skilled trade, creating another valuable element to the house as a whole. 

Just as different subcontractors work together to contribute essentials to make our house a home, a writer must join various elements for a cohesive story, or risk discord with the reader. Let’s talk about some basic elements, using romance as an example.

Believable plots. 
In romance, we want our readers to journey along with the characters as they fall in love. Unless the characters were in a prior relationship and the fire hasn’t quite burned out, a declaration of love on the fourth page doesn’t work. The same goes for a suspense plot. Readers don’t necessarily care about the heavy technical details, but the plot must be believable.

Appropriate conflict. 
Who wants to read a romance where the main characters constantly argue with each other? Aren’t they supposed to be falling in love? Conflict doesn’t mean regular clashes with one another. Conflict should arise internally, from their dreams and ambitions, their insecurities, and their belief and value system. Externally, what stands in their way of reaching their goals? 

Your setting is as fundamental to your story as the siding on your house. Stucco is common in Florida, but stucco would strike a discordant note in North Carolina where the majority of houses have brick or vinyl siding.  

Whether fact or fiction, you can cement the reader into your setting. If your book is set on a tropical island, readers expect salty breezes and palm trees, the lingering scent of suntan lotion, and seafood dinners on a sandy beach. Offering sensory details harmonious with your setting will make the locale more realistic.

Whether you write for the inspirational or secular market, a theme should weave through your story, as integral and seamless as the electrical wires running through your house. Simple messages of forgiveness, that it’s never too late, of second chances and rebuilding trust, and that with God all things are possible will resonate with the reader and keep them turning the page.

Do your individual elements work in harmony for a cohesive story? 

Join us next week as we discuss adding the finishing details.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

We're Back!

We just returned from a European cruise with my parents. My father warned us that weather in Europe might be a little iffy this time of the year. But since my parents spend their summers in Alaska, this was our first and only opportunity. After our cruise, the Carnival Breeze was making its transatlantic journey to its new home port in Miami. 

The weather deteriorated quickly and we sailed past our first port, Monaco. A medical emergency with one of the passengers forced us to backtrack while a Coast Guard helicopter and boat accompanied us until they were able to safely transfer the patient. When hubby returned from investigating, I teased him that he just couldn't leave work behind.

What was originally scheduled to be three sea days turned into six, and seven ports into five. We could have grumbled about the change in itinerary, but why blemish a wonderful experience with some amazing memories? Check these out: 

The peaceful, serenity of Croatia's coastline.

Lunch at a quaint little pasta restaurant tucked into an alley in Dubrovnik's Old Town.

A breathtaking drive through Tuscany. And yes, it's as beautiful as the movie.

That first creamy bite of cannoli and sipping espresso in a Sicily cafe. Mom and Dad chose granitas.

The magnificence and history of the Colosseum, St Peter’s Basilica, and the Trevi Fountain.

Precious time with my mom and dad. We celebrated Mom's birthday on the cruise. Here's our dining crew singing to her.

What about you? Do you treat life's twists and turns as an adventure?

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