Monday, April 13, 2015

Sacred Idleness






"Work is not always required. 

There is such a thing as sacred idleness, 

the cultivation of which is now fearfully neglected."

George MacDonald  



Must idleness always be thought of as unproductive or lazy? Or can it be sacred, as Mr. MacDonald suggests? 
 
Years ago, one of my writing instructors at the Institute for Children's Literature stressed the importance of being idle. It gives the brain and body time to rest, for one thing, and can also produce fresh ideas and a new perspective.

In this age of 24/7 activity, I think there is a great need for cultivating idleness. In the long run, the fruit of inactive times can be great.

Do you agree with Mr. MacDonald? Is there idleness in your schedule?

My Dad is coming to visit later this week, so I'm taking a break to spend time with him. I'll be back on April 27. See you then!

Happy writing,

Karen 


Photo credit: Free Images

Monday, April 6, 2015

Meet the Blogger with Susan J. Reinhardt






Welcome to another installment of my new series, Meet the Blogger. Susan J. Reinhardt is here to share a little about her blogging adventure.  

Susan is the author of The Moses Conspiracy and The Scent of Fear. While each book can stand alone, they comprise a series set in the future in the scenic Amish countryside in Pennsylvania and Ohio. The last book in the series, Out of the Mist, should be out later this year. The collection also includes a heartwarming novella, The Christmas Wish.
 

Welcome Susan! Why did you start blogging? How long have you had your present blog?   

Hi, Karen! Thanks for having me on your blog today. I began Christian Writer/Reader Connection to start building my social media platform. May will mark the blog's 7th anniversary. 

Congratulations on 7 years! What is your blog about? 

It's all about connecting writers and readers. There's something special about drawing those who love to write and those who love to read together. I've met so many lovely people during my blogging years.

I agree on both counts. :) What benefits have you gained through blogging? 

The biggest plus has been the relationships within the writing/reading community. As a result of visiting other blogs, I've discovered authors and books I would never have otherwise known about. Posts on the craft, encouragement for the journey, and helpful links have educated me and helped me progress in my own writing.  

What projects are you working on right now?  

My fourth novel, Out of the Mist, will be out soon. I'm so excited to have The Moses Trilogy completed. (The 4th book, A Christmas Wish is a novella that gives a peek at what happens between the first two books.) I've also begun my 5th novel, which is a Contemporary, a new experience for me!  

What might people be surprised to learn about you?  

I didn't start off writing novels. Non-fiction was my first love. I might still write a non-fiction book or two down the road.  

What advice would you share with a newbie blogger?  

Start small and build your following. If you try to post five days a week in the beginning, you'll burn out. I began posting Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, which worked nicely for me. The important thing is consistency. People will get accustomed to finding a new post on a certain day. Don't disappoint them. Also, visit other blogs and ask the bloggers to exchange links. This will give your blog greater exposure. 

Thanks for visiting, Susan! 

Thanks for inviting me, Karen!  


More About Susan: 

Susan's publishing credits include numerous devotionals, articles, and some anthologies. In 2003, she began writing fiction. The Moses Conspiracy, The Scent of Fear, and The Christmas Wish were published in 2013. Her latest book, Out of the Mist, released in 2015. A Christian, widow, stepmom, daughter, and friend, she makes her home in Pennsylvania. In her spare time, she enjoys couponing, reading, gardening, and finding small treasures in antique shops.

Susan's Blog - Christian Writer/Reader Connection
Susan's Facebook Page  
Twitter - @susanjreinhardt


Do you have any questions for Susan? What advice would you share with new bloggers?  

Happy writing,

Karen

  
Purple rose photo credit: Free Images

Monday, March 30, 2015

Visiting a Friend



 

Visiting a friend today -

I invite you to stop by 




Have a great week,

Karen 



 Photo credit: Free Images


Monday, March 23, 2015

Question Time





Do questions help you move through the writing process? Whether brainstorming, writing, revising, or editing, I think questions are an important part of the sequence. That said, here are a few questions and answers that might aid your journey.

Are you "Avoiding the Vague Swamp"? C. S. Lakin illustrates ways to use a smart balance of specific and descriptive words to better engage readers in this post at Live Write Thrive.

Looking for ways to add variety to your blog posts? Carol Tice's My 23 Best Types of Blog Posts That Grab Attention offers great ideas that can help refresh and infuse variety.

Need advice on obtaining better freelance work? Check out this post at Pen and Prosper. Jennifer Brown Banks highlights pitfalls and solutions in 5 Things You Must Know to Get Better Clients and Get Paid!

Did you know that you don't need to register your writing with the U.S. Copyright office? According to a recent article on the Guide to Literary Agents blog, "Your work is copyrighted the moment it hits a tangible medium..." Learn more about copyright guidelines in Chuck Sambuchino's article, 6 Questions Writers Ask About Copyright and the Law.

Congratulations to Cecelia Lester, the winner of last week's book giveaway! Thanks to everyone who stopped by. :)

Are you inquisitive? What questions do you ask during the process?

Happy writing,

Karen


Photo credit: Stock Exchange

Monday, March 16, 2015

Jeanette Levellie Shares Her Heart of Humor


Today's guest post comes to us courtesy of Jeanette Levellie. I met Jeanette through blogging; she is a sweet and talented author who has a knack for making readers laugh. Her latest book, The Heart of Humor offers a "...vacation from stress, worry, and global whining." I've read it and I must say, it does just that!. :) 

Jeanette has offered a paperback copy of The Heart of Humor to one of my followers, so check out the details below.



If Socks Could Talk 

By Jeanette Levellie

What is it with socks? Do you think they conspire to separate when we wash them? Perhaps as they come off the assembly line and their price tags are attached, they yell to each other, “See you the first week in November at the International Sock Reunion. This year we meet in St. Louis!”

For the first few months you own them, they behave, staying in tidy pairs from the hamper to the dryer. But soon the time approaches for their annual get-together with the friends they haven’t seen since birth. They start to strategize in the drawer at night. 

“Hey, Bernie, you drop on the floor when the guy throws you in the hamper from across the bedroom. You know how he likes to pretend he’s Michael Jordan. Scrunch behind the dresser where no one will find you. I’ll fall out of the lady’s hand when she tosses clothes into the washer. We’ll meet outside at ten tomorrow night and hitchhike to St. Louis. I can’t wait to see if one of those little French anklets with the purple lace around their cuffs shows up.” 




In the meantime the orphaned socks slump in the back of the bottom drawer, reading the novel Left Behind and wondering what they did wrong. A men’s trouser sock grumbles to an athletic, “They better find my mate soon; I haven’t been outta this drawer since last October. I just hope the sock police didn’t catch him. Their toe-jam torture nearly ruined my sister’s boy. I heard the black dress shoe telling its mate how he could hardly breathe after a day with my nephew.”

“I don’t believe you,” cries the athletic sock, huffing in disgust. “What kind of idiot do you think I am? Everyone knows shoes can’t talk!”  


© From My Heart to Yours: I love the story in the Bible about the talking donkey God used to rebuke a prophet gone astray. Makes me want to obey the Lord’s direction for my life, or He might decide to make one of my socks talk to me when I’ve wandered off His path.  Jen
 

Jeanette is a popular speaker, editor, and pastor's wife. Her hobbies include reading, gardening, traveling, and finding ways to avoid housework. She and her husband are parents to a son and a daughter, grandparents to three, and servants to four cats. 
  

Find her books on Amazon:  The Heart of Humor and Two Scoops of Grace with Chuckles on Top 

Visit her blog: Hope Splashes - Finding Gold in Life's Puddles



Giveaway Details 

Jeanette is giving away one paperback copy of The Heart of Humor. To enter, please note the following:  

1) Open to U.S. residents only  
2) Please leave your email address 
3) You must be a Google Friend Connect Follower of Write Now (on sidebar) 
4) Giveaway ends Friday, March 20 at noon Eastern Daylight Time 
5) Winner will be announced Monday, March 23

Congratulations to Jessica Haight, winner of last week's Amazon gift card giveaway!

Do your socks talk and tend to disappear? What's your "missing sock theory"?

Have a great week,

Karen