Friday, December 15, 2006
Friday, November 17, 2006
Friday, November 03, 2006
Saturday, October 21, 2006
"You don't just create compelling stories, you see them as clearly as a movie in your mind.
You have a knack for details and dialogue. You can really make a character come to life.
Chances are, you enjoy creating all types of stories. The joy is in the storytelling.
And nothing would please you more than millions of people seeing your story on the big screen!"
Check it out -- http://www.blogthings.com/whattypeofwritershouldyoubequiz/
Friday, September 15, 2006
Sunday, September 10, 2006
Monday, August 21, 2006
Okay, not a mountain—but it’s a challenge none-the-less. I’m pushing hard to finish my novel, wanting to get over that 80,000 word hump. Over the weekend I went backward on my word count. Yowsa. A writing buddy told me not to panic because I was making the story better.
That’s the idea I’m pinning my hopes on. I’m looking forward to reaching my goal and looking back at this journey I’ve taken. And soon, very soon I’ll finish with this story and go on to the next one that’s just itching to pop out of my head. I can hear my next characters’ voices and feel their desperation at being stuck in impossible situations.
Oh, I can hardly wait!
Happy writing, friends.
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Last weekend I had the pleasure of climbing up the side of a beautiful Colorado mountain. I was as prepared as possible—the right shoes, comfortable clothes, a bottle of water and signs to point me in the right direction.
You know, that uphill climb is quite similar to writing. Most writers prepare themselves by going to conferences, practicing their craft, joining writers groups and critique groups.
Like most hiking trails, the one I was on started out smoothly and was clearly marked. I was fully confident that it would be a piece of cake. Then the path began to get steeper, and there were rocks, boulders and tree roots in the way. I was getting hot and sweaty. Even the water bottle began to feel like a 20 pound weight. I kept climbing upward and put my weary muscles out of my mind, and if my toe kicked a rock on the way, I remember to lift my foot higher the next time there was an obstacle in the path. I also tried not to get distracted by hikers who gave up and turned back before reaching their goal.
I bet many of those hikers could have had the thrill of reaching their goal if only they persisted. I have the same theory when it comes to being a published author. If only we persist, continue to strive for improvement and keep our eye on the goal, we just might reach that pinnacle we’ve dreamed of.
Speaking of writing buddies, I hope see all my old friends and make some new friends next month at the ACFW conference in Dallas. American Christian Fiction Writers is an awesome organization. I firmly believe without the benefit of being a member, I would have quit on writing. But the loving and giving ACFW writers are committed to helping fellow authors along their journey.
If you’re serious about writing fiction, check out ACFW. You’ll be glad you did.
Sunday, July 09, 2006
I’ve had the pleasure of having Camy critique my wip. She’s fabulous, and she makes you think of better ways to express yourself and points you into the right direction to give your work that extra umph.
From now until July 15th, Camy Tang will be holding a fabulous contest for her Story Sensei critique service.
She will draw the names of TWO lucky winners! They will each receive a free synopsis critique – up to 10 pages single-spaced, a $40 value! AND a coupon for 25% OFF any manuscript critique – whether full or partial manuscript, any number of words. For a 100,000 word manuscript, that's a savings of $250!
In addition, EVERYONE WHO ENTERS will receive a 10% OFF coupon for any service, whether synopsis, query letter, or manuscript critique (full or partial). For a 100,000 word manuscript, that's a savings of $100, just for entering. Go to her Story Sensei blog and post a comment to enter the contest!
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Please welcome author Mary DeMuth. It seems 2006 is turning out to be a banner year for Mary, Building the Christian Family You Never Had (WaterBrook Press) was released in January, Watching the Tree Limbs (NavPress) was released this month, and Wishing on Dandelions (NavPress) will be released this September. Mary’s other non-fiction book Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God (Harvest House) was released last March. Mary and her family are currently in the mission field and live in southern France.
Megan: Congratulations, Mary! Have you had time to catch your breath with all this excitement?
Mary: No, not really. I still haven’t found time to celebrate!
Megan: Talk to us a little bit about your books that came out this month.
Mary: Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God is a devotional for thinking, Jesus-following mothers. I was tired of devotionals aimed at women that were foofy. This is not a foofy book!
Mary: Building the Christian Family You Never Had is for pioneer parents who don’t want to duplicate the homes they were raised in.
Watching the Tree Limbs is a novel about God’s redemptive hand in a nearly impossible situation—childhood sexual abuse.
Megan: When did you realize that you were going to be a writer, and when did you first pursue it as a career?
Mary: I realized it during college after I handed in a short story in lieu of a term paper. The English professor loved it. I knew then that I wanted to spend my time writing. I first started writing “professionally” in the early nineties. I published a newsletter called The Giving Home Journal for three years. This led to editing and writing for three church newsletters. In 2000, I started getting serious about publication. I met a mentor then who helped me navigate my first query letter and encouraged me as I wrote my first novel.
Megan: Three books released in one year—what was the timeline for this accomplishment?
Mary: I wrote Watching the Tree Limbs first, in the summer of 2003. I wrote Building the Christian Family and Ordinary Mom fall 2004 until summer of 2005. I wrote Wishing on Dandelions June and November of 2005.
Megan: Your bio lists work as an editor, novelist, freelance writer and columnist. What is your training in writing?
Mary: I graduated from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA with a degree in English. Everything else, I learned from reading, going to conferences, and attending (and now leading) critique groups.
Megan: What does a typical writing day look like for you?
Mary: Wake up around 7. Run or do the Stairmaster. Eat breakfast with the kids and walk them to school by 8:30. Write from 8:30—4:30 except on the days my children are home (Wednesdays) and our church planting team meetings (Tuesdays). Lately, I’m pretty swamped so I am doing a lot of work in the evening as well, particularly radio interviews.
Megan: Do you write your books simultaneously or one-at-a-time?
Mary: It depends. Right now I’m writing a parenting book about parenting in a postmodern context, but I’m also working on a fiction proposal and retooling another fiction proposal, all the while doing the final edits for Wishing on Dandelions. It’s pretty crazy.
Megan: What’s Wishing on Dandelions about?
Mary: Wishing on Dandelions is the sequel of Watching the Tree Limbs, taking themain character, Maranatha, to her teens. It's Southern Drama and deals withprejudice, fear, and dealing with past sexual abuse.
Megan: We know that being a writer can be a solitary career. Are you able to fellowship with other Christian authors?
Mary: Not in France. I miss it terribly. I do have a writer’s group here, though it’s been hard to meet other Christian writers. I try to fly back to the states a few times a year to network with other publishers and authors.
Megan: What advice can you give to new writers?
Mary: BOC time (bottom on chair). You won’t improve your writing if you’re not writing. Read good writing books. Join a critique group even if you’re scared. Attend a writer’s conference. Read good books, even outside your genre.
Megan: I’ve had the pleasure of keeping up with you and your family as you minister in France. How is God working through you in that mission field? What’s the best way to pray for your ministry?
Mary: It’s been really fun seeing how God has used my writing in English IN FRANCE! Today I heard from a new friend of mine here that she read my novel and really loved it. I’m tickled!
Our first church service is April 8th. Please be praying for that. We have a lot to do to prepare for it.
Megan: Mary, thanks for joining us and sharing your news. God bless you.
Thursday, February 02, 2006
2. How many states are there in the USA? (Don't laugh, some people don'tknow)
3. In which hand is the Statue of Liberty's torch?
4. What six colors are on the classic Campbell's soup label?
5. What two numbers on the telephone dial don't have letters by them?
6. When you walk does your left arm swing with your right or left leg? (Don't you dare get up to see!)
7. How many matches are in a standard pack?
8. On the United States flag is the top stripe red or white?
9. Which way does water go down the drain, counter or clockwise?
10. Which way does a "no smoking" sign's slash run?
11. How many channels on a VHF TV dial?
12 On which side of a women's blouse are the buttons?
13. Which way do fans rotate?
14 How many sides does a stop sign have?
15. Do books have even-numbered pages on the right or left side?
16 How many lug nuts are on a standard car wheel?
17. How many sides are there on a standard pencil?
18. Sleepy, Happy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Dopey, Doc. Who's missing?
19. How many hot dog buns are in a standard package?
20 On which playing card is the card maker's trademark?
21. On which side of a Venetian blind is the cord that adjusts the openingbetween the slats?
22. How many curves are there in the standard paper clip?
23. Does a merry-go-round turn counter or clockwise?
1. On a standard traffic light, is the green on the top or bottom? BOTTOM
2. How many states are there in the USA? (Don't laugh, some people don'tknow) 50
3. In which hand is the Statue of Liberty's torch? RIGHT
4. What six colors are on the classic Campbell's soup label? BLUE, RED,WHITE, YELLOW, BLACK & GOLD
5. What two numbers on the telephone dial don't have letters by them? 1,0
6. When you walk does your left arm swing with your right or left leg?RIGHT
7. How many matches are in a standard pack? 20
8. On the United States flag is the top stripe red or white? RED
9. Which way does water go down the drain, counter or clockwise?CLOCKWISE (NORTH OF THE EQUATOR)
10. Which way does a "no smoking" sign's slash run?TOWARDS BOTTOM RIGHT
11. How many channels on a VHF TV dial? 12 (no #1)
12 On which side of a women's blouse are the buttons? LEFT
13. Which way do fans rotate? CLOCKWISE AS YOU LOOK AT IT
14 How many sides does a stop sign have? 8
15. Do books have even-numbered pages on the right or left side? LEFT
16 How many lug nuts are on a standard car wheel? 5
17. How many sides are there on a standard pencil? 6
18. Sleepy, Happy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Dopey, Doc. Who's missing? BASHFUL
19. How many hot dog buns are in a standard package? 8
20 On which playing card is the card maker's trademark? ACE OF SPADES
21 On which side of a Venetian blind is the cord that adjusts the opening between the slats? LEFT
22. How many curves are there in the standard paper clip? 3
23. Does a merry-go-round turn counter or clockwise? COUNTER
Friday, January 20, 2006
Tonight I’m going to my sweet friend Leah’s birthday party. I won’t say how old she is, only that it rhymes with “nifty.” She is truly a gift from God. Don’t you love friends who speak Jesus into your life? She does. A few months ago we went to the Paul McCartney concert together. During one song the verse said, “but tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.” Leah leaned over to me and sang the song, and when she finished that line she squeezed my arm and sang, “… so we’ll follow the S-O-N.” What a blessing.
I urge you to take the time to nurture your relationships. Stuff fades and erodes and eventually turns into garbage. But our loved ones are for eternity. When you go to the throne in prayer tonight, thank God for your relationships and ask Him how you can brighten a day or share a burden. And if you’re lucky, your loved ones will speak Jesus into your life, too.
Monday, January 16, 2006
In my last blog entry I listed some interesting facts about me. In the original entry there was a line about my favorite movie—I changed that to my favorite book. Hey, I am a writer, after all. I guess now that I’ve changed the blog entry, I’ve cheated. Anyway I couldn’t pick a favorite movie, but aside from the Bible, my all-time favorite book is Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ by Jeanne Guyon. This little book, written around 1865 is so wonderful it’s distracting. Let me explain. Many times as I read this book I have the desire to put it down and run to read my Bible and pray. I wish the same distraction for you. God bless.
Saturday, January 07, 2006
My childhood ambition … to work for a magazine in Manhattan
My fondest memory … the smile on my husband’s face when we were pronounced husband and wife.
My soundtrack … music from the 70s
My retreat … my backyard patio
My wildest dream … to be a published author
My biggest challenge … overcoming procrastination
My alarm clock … my Jack Russell Terrier Belle
My perfect day … any day spent with my family
My first job … stuffing envelopes for the Commissioner of Jurors in Rensselaer County, NY
My indulgence … sitting under a palapa on a tropical beach reading a great book
My last purchase … ummm, I’m sure it was a book :)
My favorite book … Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ by Jeanne Guyon because it made me want to drop everything and pray and read my Bible.
My inspiration … people who just keep plugging along—with a smile on their face
My life … filled with love and optimism
My card … sorry, not AMEX
Thursday, January 05, 2006
I took an idea from my friend Marilynn Griffith and asked the Lord, not for a good resolution, but for a word to carry me through 2006. He told me, faithful. Hmmm. Sounds good. I believe I wasn’t called to be a superwoman, a best selling author, a community dynamo or any other fabulous ambition. I am simply called to be faithful to God. I’m eager to see where my faithfulness will lead me. It takes a lot of pressure off me to know I only have to please my Savior. I anticipate a wonderful year with Him.
I wish you a blessed 2006 as well.