Coffee, life and encouragement on the island couch

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Raise your coffee mugs to Betty Thomason Owens

Betty Thomason Owens

I prefer tea, but coffee is the tipple of my guest Betty Thomason Owens. So please raise your cups, glasses and reusable containers to the one and only Betty T Owens.

Come on over Betty to the Desert Island couch. It’s a pleasure to have you with me today. Let’s all give Betty a huge round of applause. Ok smart alec over there, yes you clapping in a circular motion! 🙂

You are on tour with Celebrate Lit promoting Rebecca’s Legacy –  I hope that is going well. And because you are doing this tour I get to whisk you off to my desert island. I hope you like your time here.

Betty – Thank you for inviting me, Margaret.

Let’s get started then.

This is Author Interview 31
My first question is…

Who would you like to be marooned on the island with and why?

Betty I hope it’s my husband because I can’t imagine life without him. We’ve been married forty-four years, and still like each other’s company.

Wow, that is a long time Betty. You don’t look old enough. You must tell me your secret. No, not here when we are back on the mainland!

I love this next question, people ask for the strangest things…

What luxury would you like to have washed up on the beach?

Betty I’m dreaming that we’re off the coast of South America, and a shipment of gourmet coffee beans gets washed up, along with a French press. Do we have plenty of fresh water available? I hope so. I can easily imagine myself using stones to grind coffee beans. Then I can brew them over an open fire. I hope it’s not as much trouble building a fire as it was in Castaway, though. I may have to try “sun coffee” instead. 😊

That sounds like a great name for a brand of coffee. You will find that the island has some wonderful waterfalls and natural springs where you can use the water. I can see that you are going to have a wonderful cottage industry up and running before you are rescued.

Let’s get bookish…

What book would you crave to read (you already have the bible, so please pick another book)?

Betty Jane Eyre. I’m not sure how many times I’ve read it, but whenever I’m stuck, it’s my go-to. Charlotte Bronte’s story techniques inspire me. Jane’s quiet desperation and final dream-come-true romance is timeless.

A good English author Betty, I like your thinking 🙂 I can’t disagree with you there. Of course, Charlotte Bronte’s pen name was Currer Bell, and there was speculation about the identity and gender of the writer. There is an interesting article about Charlotte and her sister’s pen names here.

Can you share with us a pearl of wisdom?

You find a piece of paper with a pencil left behind from the previous Author who was shipwrecked here, what encouraging message would you leave for the next cast away?

BettyNever give up. God’s mercies are new every morning, be ready for the impossible to happen!

That is a great piece of advice Betty and one I hope my readers will take away with them. Thank you.

That all-important final question…

On the island you have time to think, can you tell me why you decided to become a writer?

BettySometimes I wonder why I became a writer. I certainly never set out to write. The desire, almost overwhelming, struck suddenly when I was in my thirties. My decision to pursue it seemed foolhardy. But I had all these stories inside my head and there’s nothing in the world like writing under inspiration, when you can’t seem to stop. You can write for hours until the story is all told and only then, maybe the characters’ voices will grow quiet long enough for a good night’s sleep. Then another story buds and blossoms and must be told.

It sounds like God gave you a wonderful gift of storytelling. I am so glad you haven’t hidden it under a bush. Please don’t go exploding all over the place on the island as you no doubt will be brimming with great ideas with all that quiet time on your hands. I think we better provide you with plenty of paper to write your ideas down.

Thank you, Betty, this has been such fun getting to know the author behind Rebecca’s Legacy. I hope we have given readers a desire to get to know you and your books better.

Betty – You’re welcome, thank you for having me.

Don’t forget Betty’s giveaway at the end of this post. You could win a $50 Amazon gift card.

And of course, if you liked this interview please make my day and send me a comment or two. Many thanks – Margaret

Rebecca's Legacy @batowens #book on tour with @Celebrate_Lit read #interview & enter #free #giveaway $50 Amazon gift card Click To Tweet
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Book

Margaret Kazmierczak interviews Betty Thomason Owens author of Rebecca's Legacy

Book Title:  Rebecca’s Legacy

Author: Betty Thomason Owens

Genre: Gentle Romance, 1950s Romance

Release date: August, 2018

What will it take to teach a spoiled heiress that the greatest legacy is love?

Nancy and Robert Emerson’s daughter Amy Juliana is doing her best to follow in Mom’s rebellious footsteps.

Her desperate attempt to escape Dad’s control comes at the worst possible time. A threat against their family and Sanderson Industries has Robert Emerson taking extra steps to guarantee his family’s safety. He sends Amy, an heiress and a debutante, to the country to work on a produce farm run by Aunt Rebecca. Humiliated and angry, Amy contemplates a path that will lead her even farther from home, away from Dad’s protection.

Will Aunt Rebecca’s quiet strength and unconditional love be enough to still the prodigal daughter’s rebellious ways, and open her heart to the plight of others around her?

Matt Wordsworth is the man Robert calls upon to help keep his daughter in line. She thinks the guy is an old fuddy-duddy. By the time her ideas about him begin to change, it may be too late. When an old friend tests her loyalty, she is forced to face her past to overcome a guilty conscience. But, is she playing into the hands of the enemy?

About the Author

Betty Thomason OwensBetty Thomason Owens has been writing for almost thirty years. She’s a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), and serves on the planning committee of the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference. Her writing credits include Amelia’s Legacy and Carlotta’s Legacy, in the Legacy Series, Annabelle’s Ruth and Sutter’s Landing, in the southern historical Kinsman Redeemer Series. When she’s not writing, Owens is a part-time bookkeeper, who loves to travel and spend time with her family.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, August 11

Remembrancy, August 12

Inklings and notions, August 13

Baker Kella, August 14

proud to be an autism mom, August 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 16

Reading is my Super Power, August 16 (Interview)

Janices book reviews, August 17

Bibliophile Reviews, August 18

Jeanette’s Thoughts, August 19

Carpe Diem, August 20

A Baker’s Perspective, August 21

Power of Words, August 22 (Spotlight)

margaret kazmierczak, August 23 (Interview)

Bigreadersite, August 24

Giveaway

Finished

Seeds of wisdom – 5 reasons why God cares

I love planting seeds and watching them grow. There is a high expectation from the moment you pop the little seed into the soil and water it to its first showing. That picture on the packet of colourful blossoms…. You get the idea. Time and again mine fail to look like that! Why? Usually, because the cat has decided to dig the new area for her purposes. Or some form of pest takes a liking to the flowers and thinks I am growing a tasty meal for them. Now there’s a thought; our souls are a bit like that.

Five reasons why God cares

We are Gods seeds

God plants us into our mother’s womb; we are seeds from God’s imagination. He has tended us from the very beginning when he created the universe. We have been in His thoughts right from the first creation. The ultimate cherry on the top of the cake.

And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. Genesis 1:31

God knows us intimately

He knows every single seed by sight; we are not from a packet of identical seeds, but individually crafted.

Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them. How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! Psalm 139:16-17

Margaret Kazmierczak talks about Seeds of wisdom - 5 reasons why God cares
We need God’s spirit

From the moment we are born that seed needs God’s spirit, the food and drink necessary for its growth. Therefore he has a vested interest in our growth.

What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

We are under His loving gaze

God watches over us as we break through the soil and begin to raise our heads to Him the source of our being.

The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.       Psalm 121:5-8

We are Gods seed the fruit of HIs creation. He cares for each and every one of us. No matter how eaten we are by slugs He will never leave us. #God #encouragement #amwriting Click To Tweet
God’s care and protection comes through his Word

The upward and continual struggle of that initial seed is thwarted by weeds trying to prevent it from growing and blossoming. The root of growth is God’s Word and poison to those weeds that try to stop us.

Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word. Psalm 119:114

Seeds for the purpose of love

Every seed that is planted has the opportunity to become an image of God’s love, of His care and mercy. Without feeding it the slugs will devour it, petal by petal, leaf by leaf. But what is beautiful is that no matter how much of the flower is destroyed God will never pull it out and throw it away. Whatever condition it is in when it calls on its Creator for help, the flower can be restored and shine brilliantly in God’s garden. Its spirit will be made new and fulfil its purpose – that of reflecting God’s love to others.

God’s seed is precisely that – God’s seed – and He will care for it no matter what. That is His promise to us because He has already claimed the victory for our souls.

I hope when you go and plant your seeds now you will think of how tenderly God plants us, how he nurtures our growth and life. How much He cares.

Spotlight Five on Joey by Jennifer Marshall Bleakley

Spotlight Five on Joey by Jennifer Marshall Bleakley by Margaret Kazmierczak

 

Spotlight Five

Spotlight Five. Today I am doing a spotlight on “Joey” by  Jennifer Marshall Bleakley which is on tour with Celebrate Lit from May 31-June 13. Jennifer also has a GIVEAWAY  for you so don’t forget to enter for a chance to win.

To spotlight  Joey I would like to talk about some of the reviews this book has received. I hope you this helpful in deciding to read Jody’s book. Thanks for popping by 🙂

A touching book

It is always helpful to read other reviews and one of them that touched my heart was the comment  “As expected, I fell in love with Joey but what I didn’t expect was how much I would care for so many others in Joey’s story. It would be hard to pick a favourite character.”  What an accolade!

I have read further comments such

“It was such a well-written, engaging read!”

“One of the most heartwarming true stories I have read in a long time.”

“I pray this amazing story gives true Hope to all who have the privilege of reading it! You do NOT want to miss this precious and true story!!!”

Does it deserve five-stars?

So what is the bottom line after 115 reviews, I think this statement sums it up:

“Oh, this story will capture your heart very early on. This is a powerful story where yes, the main character is technically a horse, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it is some whimsical child’s book”

With only one four-star and 114 five-stars, (according to Amazon) it seems apparent that this book is well loved for its storyline and hero. The reviews speak for themselves and yes, having a blind horse as its main character is certainly different, but then it is a true story and there is nothing stranger than true life.

Should you read Joey?

Well, I don’t know about you but I am putting it on my ‘to read’ list 🙂

Click here to purchase your copy.
Joey @JenniferMarshalBleakley on tour with @Celebrate_Lit read #spotlight & enter #free #giveaway Click To Tweet

About the Book

Spotlight Five on Joey by Jennifer Marshall Bleakley by Margaret KazmierczakTitle: Joey

Author: Jennifer Marshall Bleakley

Genre: Inspirational, Memoir

Release Date: May 8, 2018

The heartwarming true story of a blind horse named Joey.

At the height of his show career, this beautiful Appaloosa’s majestic stature, strength, and willingness to work made him the perfect partner. But when an injury cost Joey his show career, he moved from one owner to the next, ultimately experiencing severe abuse and neglect. A rescue group found Joey nearly dead from starvation—and blind.

Then he came to Hope Reins—a ranch dedicated to helping hurting kids who had been abused, emotionally wounded, or unwanted. By teaching these children to care for rescued animals, the Hope Reins staff were convinced they could reach kids with love and hope and show them that we are never forgotten by God.

But could the financially struggling ranch afford to take care of a blind horse that no one else wanted? Could Joey somehow learn to trust people even though the world had hurt him so badly? And what would happen—to Joey, the kids, and Hope Reins—if they failed?

A true story of friendship destined to become a classic, Joey will touch your heart and reveal the power of finding light in the darkness.

More Information About This Book

  • When a blind horse named Joey meets a struggling ranch owner dedicated to helping troubled kids, the result is a story of friendship, faith, and overcoming–and ultimately, a tale of how God always cares for the cast aside and uses them for His glory.
  • Joey is an inspirational memoir-like read that delights readers with a story about finding healing and restoration in the unlikeliest of places.
  • What a blind horse can teach you about overcoming your past and living fully in the life God has called you to have.
  • An unlikely story of God using a blind horse to bring healing and restoration to hurting children.
  • A percentage of the author’s proceeds from her book, Joey, will go to supporting Hope Reins which pairs hurting kids with rescued horses.
  • God said “you’re worthy” when the world said “you’re worthless.” Joey, an inspiriting story of finding healing and restoration in the unlikeliest of places.
  • The Hope Reins ranch set out to save these horses, but in the end, the horses saved them.
  • How the story of Joey saved the ranch… and taught the most valuable lesson.
  • Joey… your family’s next read.
  • Let God wake you up to life lessons learned in unexpected places!

About the Author

Jennifer BleakleyJennifer Bleakley graduated from Florida Southern College with a degree in biology and was planning to apply for medical school when her best friend’s father died of pancreatic cancer. Walking through that experience with a family she had loved for so long left a permanent mark on her heart, and she soon realized that God was calling her to stand alongside other families facing similar heartbreak and loss. Jennifer earned a master’s degree in counseling from Nova Southeastern University and began working at the local hospice in St. Petersburg, Florida, as a child and family grief counselor. It was a job she loved deeply and one she continued doing until she and her husband started a family.

God’s path

When her husband’s job required the family to relocate to Raleigh, North Carolina, God began awakening in Jennifer a long-forgotten passion for writing. She began journaling—recording evidences of God’s hand at work in her new season of motherhood. Her journal morphed into a blog, and she still writes regularly about glimpsing God’s grace in her daily life at jenniferbleakley.com.

Jennifer now writes curriculum and devotionals for her local church, is a contributing author for Treasuring Christ curriculum and She Believes online Bible studies, and leads a community women’s Bible study. She loves introducing children at her church and in the community to Jesus, helping them discover his goodness. Even though she once asserted she was much too introverted to be a public speaker, Jennifer has found that God’s grace is big enough even for lifelong introverts, and she now delights in speaking to audiences about his extraordinary grace at work in our ordinary lives.

Guest Post from Jennifer Bleakley

Captivated

One October evening I stared into the eyes of the most unusual looking horse I had ever seen—his black and white spotted coat resembled that of a Dalmatian; his soft pink lips were chewing at some invisible morsel; and his charcoal eyes seemed to peer into my very soul.

And although I’m not what anyone would describe as a horse person, I was completely captivated by this horse.

Can horse’s smile?

I inched closer to him, compelled forward by some unseen force, until only a thin rail separated us. He stared at me. I smiled. Can a horse register a human smile? I had no idea, but I smiled anyway. The founder of the horse ranch was telling our small group about the ministry she had started—a ministry that pairs rescued horses with hurting children to help them find true hope and real healing. I listened to her words, but my eyes never moved from the horse. He looked at me as if he could read my every thought. As if he knew exactly why I was at the ranch that night. That I had been feeling a bit lost, struggling to find myself—my calling—in the midst of a new season of life. That I was on this tour in the hopes that I might find answers here—maybe even a purpose.

He bent his head toward the railing just inches from my resting hand. His eyes now level with my own, the setting sun reflecting brilliant hues in the depths of his eyes.

How beautiful, I whispered as my fingers reached toward him.

Seeing beyond the blindness

“And our Joey here is completely blind…” I heard the woman say. “He was a former champion…injured…sold…abused…abandoned….

The fragmented sentence floated around the picturesque scene, but the words just didn’t make sense. Surely the woman wasn’t talking about this horse? Not the one who could see into my soul. Not the black and white beauty who knew all my secrets with just one look?

The woman handed Joey a carrot. His greedy lips taking the treat from her hand, leaving it free to scratch him behind the ear.

“But Joey was rescued and now he lives here,” she continued, “Where every day his determination and blind faith, point hurting kids to hope. Kids who have also known abuse and abandonment. Kids who see Joey choosing to live, choosing to learn, choosing to trust, and realize that maybe, just maybe they can too.”

Tears flowed down my face as I watched the horse nuzzle the woman’s hand. A blind horse leading people to see hope. The phrase swirled around my mind, before settling in my heart.

Helping me find my purpose

I had gone to the ranch that day looking for a purpose. Thinking that I could volunteer—use my long forgotten counseling degree in some way. Thinking that time spent here would ease the transition from full-time mommy to mother of school-age children. However, days after meeting the horse his eyes still haunted me. His story still captivated me. And so in spite of knowing very little about horses, and having never attempted anything like writing a book before, I sat down to write about a horse named Joey. A blind horse who was helping me find my way home….

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 31

ansel book blog, June 1

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, June 1

Bibliophile Reviews, June 2

Janices book reviews, June 3

Carpe Diem, June 4

A Baker’s Perspective, June 5

Girls in White Dresses, June 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 6

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, June 7

Texas Book-aholic, June 8

Lots of Helpers, June 9

Mary Hake, June 9

proud to be an autism mom, June 10

margaret kazmierczak, June 10 (Interview)

Red Headed Book Lady, June 11

Jeanette’s Thoughts, June 11

Pursuing Stacie, June 12

Bigreadersite, June 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 13

A Greater Yes, June 13

Giveaway

 

e06f18c6-15ae-4809-92ff-e47aec28e7a6To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away a grand prize of a beautiful hope necklace!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/cca4

21 days of Joy – moms, life, love, and relationships

Why are moms so important? Perhaps when we boil everything down to the bones, we realise how important they are. Our experiences can be positive, negative, or ambivalent depending on our relationship with the person who carried and bore us into this world. That first bond welcoming or not form our view of love and life from within the womb.

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews 21 Days of Joy Compiled by Kathy Ide

My Penny’s Worth

21 days of Joy is an open door to stories of “moms” in all their forms, from different writers. Some stories will resonate with the readers as they did with me, but all show the love moms have for their children.

Great writing

There are paragraphs such as “Maybe if she’d looked closer at the fine print, she would’ve known constant noise was included in the all-American dream. Or that by the end of the day she’d look like the flowers Paul had given her last week did now – wilted and tired.” I think we all feel like that at times! (Quote taken from Pieces and Quiet by Barbara Curtis) I think this is my favourite short story as it reminded me of the days when my children were young.

This is so me!

However, Martha Bolton’s “You Can Take this Job and Love it!” is also a lovely piece of writing and could be used to help youngsters understand the nature of motherhood. I particularly enjoyed this part, “If a mother does all that work, the pay must be terrific!” The clerk laughed so hard she held her side. “Did you say…pay?” “She does get paid, doesn’t she?” “Of course! She gets to keep all the change she finds in the washing machine.” – Brilliant I do love a good laugh.

Would I recommend this book?

There are so many great words in this collection to ponder on, and at the end of each story, Kathy Ide gives you some thoughts to chew on backed by Bible references. 21 days of Joy is certainly a good book to give any mother figure and one that they will find something to laugh, empathise and maybe cry about. It is also worth reading if you are a daughter too.

I would like to award this book 4 stars.

Thank you, Kathy, for your book.

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

21 days of joyTitle: 21 Days of Joy

Author: Kathy Ide

Genre: Non-fiction, Devotional

Release Date: April 1, 2016

Tour Dates: April 28 – May 11

Oh, the joys—and struggles—of motherhood!

21 Days of Joy honors mothers of all varieties. Biological moms. Adoptive moms. Stepmothers. Grandmothers. Godmothers. “Second moms.” Even men who “mother” children when circumstances put them in that position.

Whether you are a mother, have one, or know one, these heartwarming fictional stories will touch your soul and help you see that you are not alone. The work you’re doing will have an impact for eternity. And those rewards will make the trials all worthwhile.

God knows every sacrifice you make for the children He has brought into your life. So take a few moments out of your busy schedule to read this book, and get a glimpse of your daily routine from a divine perspective.

Compiler and editor KATHY IDE has written fiction and nonfiction books and is the author of Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors. She is a professional freelance editor and the founder and director of two organizations for editorial freelancers. She has ghostwritten ten nonfiction books and a series of five novels. Kathy makes her home in Orange County, California.

About the Author

Kathy Ide-square_300x300Compiler and editor KATHY IDE has been a published author since 1989. She has written fiction and nonfiction books and is the author of Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors. Ms Ide has ghostwritten ten nonfiction books and a series of five novels. Furthermore, she also writes columns of writing and editing tips for blogs and newsletters. Kathy makes her home in Orange County, California.

Q & A with Kathy Ide

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’ve been writing for publication since 1989 and I’ve been a full-time freelance editor since 1998. I teach at writers’ conferences across the country, and I’m the director of the Orange County Christian Writers Conference here in Southern California. I’m also the founder and director of two organizations for freelance editors: the Christian Editor Connection and The Christian PEN: Proofreaders and Editors Network.

You’ve created a Fiction Lover’s Devotional series. What inspired you to gather a collection of short fiction stories to be used as devotions?

I’ve always loved Christian fiction, and I’ve seen the power of fiction to touch hearts and change lives, both firsthand and hearing about the experiences of others. But you know, in my quiet times with the Lord, reading a chapter from a novel just doesn’t seem quite appropriate. So a devotional with short fiction stories seemed like a great solution.

Tell us about the books in this series.

Each one contains 21 short fiction stories, followed by brief life applications, each written by a different author. Some contributors are best sellers, some are mid-range authors, and some are new writers. The first book was 21 Days of Grace: Stories that Celebrate God’s Unconditional Love. That came out June 1st of last year. The second book, 21 Days of Christmas, released on September 1st21 Days of Love came out January 1st.

Tell us about this third book, 21 Days of Joy.

21 Days of Joy: Stories that Celebrate Mom contains stories about mothers of all varieties. Biological moms. Adoptive moms. Stepmothers. Grandmothers. Godmothers. “Second moms.” Even men who “mother” children when circumstances put them in that position. It makes a wonderful Mother’s Day gift. And it’s a great way to boost your spirit when dealing with your kids—or your mom—becomes challenging.

Tell us about some of the stories in 21 Days of Joy.

Some of the stories are about the struggles moms have dealing with their kids at various ages and stages. Others are about women dealing with their aging mothers. One story is about a young woman who thinks her dreams of having lots of kids are shattered when her fiance dumps her right before the wedding. There are a couple of stories about adopted kids meeting their biological moms. One story is about a barren woman who realizes she actually has lots of children. And one story, written by one of Bob Hope’s comedy writers, is a humorous tale of a woman who applies for the job of mother.

How do you hope readers will use 21 Days of Joy?

This book makes a great gift, with its beautiful debossed hardback cover, full-color interior, even a ribbon page marker. With stories about all kinds of mothers, it’s great for anyone who is a mom, has a mom, or knows a mom.

Like the other books in this series, 21 Days of Joy makes a wonderful daily devotional. And if you want to go deeper, you can get a Study Guide with additional questions about each of the stories. It will be available soon as a free PDF download at FictionDevo.com or as a 99-cent e-book from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

What do you hope readers will get out of reading 21 Days of Joy?

I’m praying the Holy Spirit will speak to the hearts of everyone who reads this devotional about how much God has shown His love for them through the mothers in their lives, and what a tremendous impact women have in the lives of the children God has given them to love.

What is unique about this series?

Most devotionals contain true stories. And those are great! But so many believers today are big fans of Christian fiction … because fiction can be a powerful way to soak in spiritual truths and apply them to our daily lives. In this devotional, the authors share the themes and messages they see in the pieces they’ve written, and encourage readers to look for those types of things in these devotional stories as well as in other fictional things they might read.

What life circumstances worked together to put you in a position to be able to create this series?

Since I’ve been a professional freelance editor for several years, I’m able to edit the submissions I choose to use, polishing them without losing the author’s unique voice. And since I’ve been teaching and speaking at writers’ conferences across the country, I’ve connected with several authors at all levels, including well-known best sellers. So there are a lot of people I can personally ask about submitting to the books in this series. And I’ve developed a strong social media presence, so I can get the word out to other writers as well.

What other books have you written?

I wrote Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors, to help writers and editors learn how to proofread manuscripts for typos, inconsistencies, and errors in punctuation, usage, grammar, and spelling, according to the industry-standard guidelines.

What do you do besides write?

Read, of course. And go to movies. I also love to travel with my husband. We visit our out-of-state relatives (when they’re not visiting us—which happens often since we live in Southern California). We also enjoy going jet skiing, and camping in our RV.

Can you share some of the names of the authors who have contributed stories to the devotional?

Absolutely! 21 Days of Joy has chapters written by well-known, best-selling novelists, including Deborah Raney, Lynette Sowell, Mary DeMuth, Sherry Kyle, and New York Times best-selling author Cindy Woodsmall. There are also stories by writers you may not have heard of. At the end of each chapter is an author bio that gives some background information, and usually the author’s website. So if you really like a story in the devotional, you can find out what else that author has written. You may just find some new names to add to your favorites list.

And if you haven’t read much Christian fiction, this devotional will give you a small taste of several different authors and genres, without having to commit to reading an entire novel. You might just discover that you actually love Christian fiction!

Where can people purchase the books?

They’re available online at Amazon, ChristianBook.com, Barnes & Noble, and other websites. If you go to FictionDevo.com, you’ll find several links that will take you directly to the ordering pages for all of the books in the series. You can also find them at many Christian bookstores and Barnes & Noble stores.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, April 28

Blossoms and Blessings, April 29

A Greater Yes, April 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 30

Janices book reviews, May 1

Captive Dreams Window, May 2

Mary Hake, May 2

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 3

Moments Dipped in Ink, May 4

Simple Harvest Reads, May 4 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Bibliophile Reviews, May 5

Carpe Diem, May 6

A Baker’s Perspective, May 7

Bigreadersite, May 7

Pursuing Stacie, May 8

Margaret Kazmierczak, May 9

proud to be an autism mom, May 10

Beck to Basics, May 10

Aryn the Libraryan, May 11

Giveaway

 

28f95839-d2ba-4523-adc0-3fdf63df4a5cTo celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away a hardback copy of 21 Days of Grace and an eBook copy of 21 days of Joy to two winners!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/cc8e

How to derail my crazy life

How to derail my crazy life

Last July I wanted to know how to derail my crazy life. I didn’t want another tomorrow struggling. I yelled out imploring someone to give me the key to this knowledge. Alright, smart-aleck don’t tell me the answer is 42 as I won’t believe you. Computers lie!

My slimming world journey by Margaret Kazmierczak

So looking in the mirror back then, I sensed that “over the hill feeling” as I am onto my last year in my fifties. Or at least that is what my body kept telling me. I am not listening. Bodies lie trust me!

Then my mind told me I am too tired to try. Don’t buy into that either – minds can lie too.

Continue reading “How to derail my crazy life”

How to bless God in all circumstances

Bless God

It had to happen, the car an old faithful companion, died on the motorway, bless God there was a hard shoulder. A few miles further this safety net ended. Hubby limped the car to a stop; I followed behind in my vehicle with the hazard lights blazing. So ended the lovely weekend we had had with our son.

Stuck but not immobile

Contacting the breakdown company for help gave us a time span of three hours to fill. We stood on the hard shoulder as lorries and motorists whizzed by. The cold ate away at my bones as the summer clothes gave no protection during the late evening.

At first, we just watched, then started to stamp our feet. The wait seemed endless.

Bless God in all circumstances

Sing you choirs of angels

As the noise continued, a beat began to surface, then a note. Music formed to the beat and flowed from my lips. Chug chug, voom, chug chug, voom. Bless you, God, bless you, God. Stand close to us, stand close to us. Troubles may come, troubles may come. But you are here, yes you are here. Oh, praise the Lord, praise the Lord.

My song grew louder and my body danced.

Bless God in all circumstances

 

“Psalm 104:33 I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.”

Oddity on the motorway

People stared from their cars, some pointed. However, my song and arm waving continued. Nothing mattered but to Bless God.

The cold ate away at my bones as the summer clothes gave no protection during the late evening…. But God warmed my soul that night.

This breakdown became another “How to bless God in all circumstances.”

How awesome God is.

Bless God in all circumstances

How God rewards those that trust

Jeremiah 17:7-8

“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord
and have made the Lord their hope and confidence.
 They are like trees planted along a riverbank,
with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat
or worried by long months of drought.
Their leaves stay green,
and they never stop producing fruit.”

Bless God in all circumstances

God of the circumstance

The car finally strapped to the breakdown truck and us in my vehicle we arrived home five hours later from the time we left our son’s house. The next day the garage confirmed that the car was terminal and we thanked God that He had kept us safe during our time on the motorway.

How great is our God?

What experience have you had that lead you to bless and praise God in a difficult situation?