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BLOGWORDS – Friday 19 January 2018 – SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

“Simone’s willow green eyes were searching, not weeping. She’d heard that name before. But where? When? Memory fragments rattled, whispered. She strained to listen, to piece the jumble together. But the puzzle that was her memory was still missing so many pieces.
And Mercedes Renaldi was one of those pieces.”

Rough couple of days… and juggling final tasks with #TheSilentSongofWinter. And being Book #4 in series, I’m culling through Books 1, 2, & 3 for relevant bits!

 

I love how these stories are overlapping and intertwining, each new one going back to the previous ones, and tying them all together! Can’t wait to get to Simone’s story—The Whispering Winds of Spring!  #May2018

 

 

“I’ve always had voices—er, stories in my head. I once said I should write them all down so someone could write them someday. I had no idea at the time that someone was me!”

 

 

http://robinemason.com

https://robinsnest212.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Robin-E-Mason-Author-Artist/224223274404877
http://www.amazon.com/Robin-E.-Mason/e/B00MR5IQ9S
https://twitter.com/amythyst212
http://www.pinterest.com/amythyst212/

https://plus.google.com/u/0/108929134414473292325

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7808042.Robin_E_Mason

 

 

“the battle for identity, one story at a time”

 

 

#Blogwords, Special Edition, #RemJanWriMo, Seasons, The Long Shadows of Summer, The Tilting Leaves of Autumn, The Silent Song of Winter, The Whispering Winds of Spring

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BLOGWORDS – Friday 19 January 2018 – FIRST LINE FRIDAY – AMETHYST DREAMS by PHYLLIS A. WHITNEY

FIRST LINE FRIDAY – AMETHYST DREAMS by PHYLLIS A. WHITNEY

 

Welcome to First Line Fridays, hosted by Hoarding Books!!!

Tell us your first line in the comments & then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating!

 

 

 

THE BLURB:    

Seeking shelter from her own broken dreams, Hallie Knight answers a cryptic plea for help from Nicholas Trench, the grandfather of her dearest friend. Susan mysteriously disappeared from home one night off North Carolina’s historical Topsail Island–and Hallie is Nick’s last hope of finding her.

But surrounding Nick is a family as headstrong as they are suspicious–for at the heart of the matter is a vast inheritance. And as Hallie is lured deeper into a mystery nestled in a quagmire of bitterness, dark betrayal, and subtle menace, she becomes certain of one thing: this sunny, seaside paradise harbors dangerous and profoundly shattering secrets.

 

THE FIRST LINE:   

“She must be stopped from coming here…”

 

GENRE:

Gothic, Psychological thriller

 

 

#Blogwords, First Line Friday, #FLF, Amethyst Dreams, Phyllis A. Whitney

BLOGWORDS – Wednesday 17 January 2018 – SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

 

Simone’s willow green eyes were searching, not weeping. She’d heard that name before. But where? When? Memory fragments rattled, whispered. She strained to listen, to piece the jumble together. But the puzzle that was her memory was still missing so many pieces.
And Mercedes Renaldi was one of those pieces.”

 

 

Slow.going. both physically and writerly—but it’s going—#AMWRITING

 

I love how these stories are overlapping and intertwining, each new one going back to the previous ones, and tying them all together! Can’t wait to get to Simone’s story—The Whispering Winds of Spring!  #May2018

 

 

 

“I’ve always had voices—er, stories in my head. I once said I should write them all down so someone could write them someday. I had no idea at the time that someone was me!”

 

 

http://robinemason.com

https://robinsnest212.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Robin-E-Mason-Author-Artist/224223274404877
http://www.amazon.com/Robin-E.-Mason/e/B00MR5IQ9S
https://twitter.com/amythyst212
http://www.pinterest.com/amythyst212/

https://plus.google.com/u/0/108929134414473292325

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7808042.Robin_E_Mason

 

 

“the battle for identity, one story at a time”

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, Special Edition, #RemJanWriMo, Seasons, The Long Shadows of Summer, The Tilting Leaves of Autumn, The Silent Song of Winter, The Whispering Winds of Spring

BLOGWORDS – Wednesday 17 January 2018 – WREADING WEDNESDAY – FEATURED BOOK EXCERPT – THE SILENT SONG OF WINTER

WREADING WEDNESDAY – FEATURED BOOK EXCERPT – THE SILENT SONG OF WINTER

 

#WreadingWednedsay is now dedicated to ‘wreading’ bits and excepts from my books—there’s five now! And because book 3 in my Seasons series, The Silent Song of Winter, releases next month, here is the first chapter.

* not the final cover

COVER REVEAL Saturday 3 February

The sounds of the swamp in winter would scare another person but not me. I grew up here. The sounds, these sounds—the swirl of black water, the tremble of the trees, and growl and hiss of alligators—they are comfort to me.

After Lissette left—and Simone died—Mercedes and Scarlett and I all swore we’d not come back here ever.

But I did.

It was the one place of solace for me. Home was, well home was a cold place even in the balmy heat of summer. Mamá never spoke to me. She never spoke to anyone. She never came out of her apartments. And Papá, well, whenever he was home, he was busy; he always had… company.

Lissette had been my companion and then she was gone.

The others didn’t understand. They didn’t know what she had meant to me; she had been more of a mother to me than ma mére.

I knew I shouldn’t fault Simone. She wasn’t to blame that Lisette left me to pursue Monsieur Dubois. But Simone had usurped the affection that had been mine always. And at not yet ten years of age, I knew only to lash out, to act in anger because the heartache was too much to bear.

 

I sat now at Versailles. It had been our secret castle; we had such grand adventures here.

It was nothing like Château de Versailles in Paris, of course. I had been there as a young girl and it was my idea to name this place Versailles. In truth it was nothing more than the ruins of Saint Allyons, two hundred year old church that had served not our town, but natives who lived hidden in these woods.

As I listened to the sounds of night, the sounds of winter, I knew my child would come into this world as I had, and learn to love this place, too. If only I could return. If only this mightn’t be my last time here.

 

July 1912

 

I had seen her of course. How could I not? Mercedes prided herself as our little detective, our Sherlock Holmes. And truly, she was. She examined and investigated and scrutinized all our childhood mysteries, the ones we made up and the real curiosities about Saisons.

They didn’t give me enough credit. They all thought I was frivolous and silly. I was dainty, and I was a lady, but frivolous I was not.

I was proper. Ma mère had seen to that. Etiquette school and elocution classes, a private tutor and piano instructor. It was how I came to play at all; I certainly was not accomplished at the keyboard, nor did I play particularly well, but I could read music and make out the chords of a hymn.

Reading, however, I mastered with great ease, and enjoyed with great pleasure. Papá saw to it that my private collection of books was the largest of anyone we knew. First editions of everything from Cicero to Canterbury Tales to Peter Pan, and Plato to Shakespeare to Beatrix Potter. And not English only, but Latin and German, and of course, en français.

I spent many hours reading, above any other activity or preoccupation. As a girl, I had been permitted very little time away from Ashley Santee, our family estate. Even to stroll les jardins, I was accompanied by my nursemaid, Twila—even when I was no longer a toddler in the nursery, or in her daily care.

Now, as an adult, I no longer lived at Ashley Santee. I was no longer under ma mère’s scrutinous eyes and exacting ways, no longer captive to her impossible standards. Non, Papá had built me my own townhome. And not just mine; he built seven rows of townhomes, just south of Saisons Plantation. It put me ever so much closer to my friends and to the marsh and to Edisto River where our Versailles sat.

 

I had seen her the same day Mercedes did. Mercedes didn’t know, of course, that I was watching her or that I had seen Simone. Lorraine Hershey and Caroline Dixon had invited me to tea at the new café, and we were sitting on the patio. And I watched and observed just as studiously as Mercedes ever did.

Truly, how would I have not seen her? How would I not recognize her? I was neither frivolous nor simple minded. I was quite the astute student and observer, and I had witnessed much in my life.

Mon père’s guests, for instance. I was not naïve to who they were nor their reason for visiting him. I was not naïve to their visits to his bedchamber. As a child, they had thought they were protecting my innocence, keeping me unaware. As a child I had known far too much, already.

I had observed ma mère’s indifference to Papá, and found it most curious. She had married him, after all. She must have, at one time, felt some affection for him.

Mon papá was a most handsome man. Tall by most accounts, and well built. Neither stout nor too thin. He had black curly hair and deep blue eyes. His square jaw was clean shaven and he kept a neat moustache. Papá was a kind and gentle man, friendly with everyone, including the servants—one thing that ma mère disapproved—and he was more than friendly with some of them. Papá’s smile lit his face and his laugh filled the room. No one felt ill at ease when mon papá was around.

He was well studied and well versed in topics from politics to religion to world history, and he was outspoken. No one, at least not in his presence, knew more than Eugéne Christophe Marchand. Or if they did, he waxed philosophical on the subject at hand, talking broadly and expansively, confusing his guest until the subject was changed. And he did this with such skill and in such a manner that none noticed, nor were they offended. Non, mon père made friends wherever he went.

And when he was at home, I was the apple of his eye and the center of his universe. Papá brought me treats and trinkets from all of his travels, from Africa and India, from South America and Australia and Europe, from New York and Chicago and San Francisco, the Paris of the West. He brought me dolls and tea sets, roller skates and bicycles. And books, he brought me books from all over the world.

But my favorite things mon papá brought me were the dresses. Saris from India, dirndls from Austria, kaftans from Egypt. I still kept them hanging in my wardrobe at Ashley Santee, in a back corner, in a hidden compartment.

 

I had watched Simone as she came into town. She was coming from the direction of the train depot, walking along School Street and passing right by the Tea Cup Café. Mercedes did her marketing at the mercantile at the far end of School Street, and when Simone turned onto Savannah Street toward the square, Mercedes turned in the same direction on Charleston Road. Situated as I was three blocks from the square, I couldn’t see more until I made my excuses to my friends, claiming to be overcome with heat and leaving our tea early.

I followed Simone at some distance, and observed as she sat on the bench in the square, just staring off at Saisons Plantation. Her face was a study of recognition and confusion, and I wondered that she didn’t go immediately and announce her arrival.

I wondered, too, the reason for her return. And I wondered the very fact that she was alive.

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, Wreading Wednesday, Featured Book Except, The Long Shadows of Summer, Seasons, Chapter One, Seasons, The Tilting Leaves of Autumn, The Silent Song of Winter, The Whispering Winds of Spring

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 16 January 2018 – SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

SPECIAL EDITION – REMJANWRIMO

“Simone’s willow green eyes were searching, not weeping. She’d heard that name before. But where? When? Memory fragments rattled, whispered. She strained to listen, to piece the jumble together. But the puzzle that was her memory was still missing so many pieces.
And Mercedes Renaldi was one of those pieces.”

 

FINALLY!!!

Typed the two magic words—THE END—for The Silent Song of Winter and started on The Whispering Winds of Spring!!! yyyaaayyy!!!!

 

Took me a bonafide LAY-ZEE day on Sunday and had a rough day yesterday but I’m working both stories now, [GO BACKS] and READ-THROUGH and EDITS for #TheSilentSongofWinter and #FETCHnFORWARD for #TheWhisperingWindsofSpring—pulling the secrets and details from the first three books!!

 

 

I do love how these stories are overlapping and intertwining, each new one going back to the previous ones, and tying them all together! Can’t wait to get to Simone’s story—The Whispering Winds of Spring#May2018

 

“I’ve always had voices—er, stories in my head. I once said I should write them all down so someone could write them someday. I had no idea at the time that someone was me!”

 

 

http://robinemason.com

https://robinsnest212.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Robin-E-Mason-Author-Artist/224223274404877
http://www.amazon.com/Robin-E.-Mason/e/B00MR5IQ9S
https://twitter.com/amythyst212
http://www.pinterest.com/amythyst212/

https://plus.google.com/u/0/108929134414473292325

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7808042.Robin_E_Mason

 

 

“the battle for identity, one story at a time”

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, Special Edition, #RemJanWriMo, Seasons, The Long Shadows of Summer, The Tilting Leaves of Autumn, The Silent Song of Winter, The Whispering Winds of Spring

BLOGWORDS – 15 January 2018 – NEW WEEK NEW FACE – GUEST POST – CARRIE SCHMIDT

NEW WEEK NEW FACE – GUEST POST – CARRIE SCHMIDT

 

 

Soul Restoration
by Carrie Schmidt

 

What do you think of when you hear the word ‘restoration’?  Thanks to Chip & Joanna Gaines, I bet a lot of us think of a home restoration. And shiplap.

Maybe you think of an old photo that was damaged but has now been repaired. An old clunker car now gleaming like new. Or maybe a reputation being restored after it’s been dragged through the mud. A family reunited, old wounds slowly healing, forgiveness and grace extended. A season of life best forgotten, now redeemed in the Hands of your Savior.

In preparation for this post, I refreshed my memory on Robin’s beginning of the year post about restoration. And you know what? That little stinker took ALL the Bible verses on restoration! 😉

I nearly despaired, y’all.

BUT WAIT! I found one… one that sneaked by her, one that nearly sneaked by me.

It’s a little phrase tucked away in the most familiar Psalm in the Bible – “He restores my soul.” (Psalm 23:3, NIV)

I think so often we rush over that part. At least I do. But let’s camp here for a minute.

In the context of the Psalm, this phrase is reflective of Jesus as our Shepherd. As the One who leads us beside still waters. And then the One who leads us in paths of righteousness. And right there in the middle – between the peaceful water-sitting and the righteous walking – is the restoration of my soul.

Do you notice anything about the first part of ‘restoration’?

 

How about the word REST?

 

While ‘restoration’ is Robin’s word for 2018, ‘rest’ is mine.

I’m a busy gal. I read a lot. I blog a lot. I do freelance writing for a couple of magazines. I have a part-time job that becomes full-time depending on the time of year. I have family responsibilities, too. When do I rest? Not often, I gotta admit. I sleep, sure. When I’m not caught up in a book. But resting? When I ignore the responsibilities that are demanding my attention and just sit at the feet of Jesus? Or even just sit in a relaxing bath? It doesn’t happen very much.

But I know it needs to. After all, He leads me beside those still waters so that I’m in a position to allow Him to restore my soul. Because, you see, walking down paths of righteousness, doing stuff in Jesus’ name, won’t be effective long term unless I have embraced the rest He offers before the path, during the path, and after the path.

Why? Because I’ll burn out. I’ll become cranky instead of grace-filled. I’ll become anxious instead of embracing the peace that passes understanding. I’ll be doing all the right things for all the wrong reasons. And while Jesus leads me to the still waters, I’ll be trying to figure out how to build a bridge and move on to the paths of righteousness. Soul restoration? Who has time for that?!?

Can you see Him bemusedly shaking His head at me? Or maybe at you too?  (rem: oh, yesss…. )

For such a little phrase, it sure packs a punch. “He restores my soul.” When was the last time you let Jesus restore your soul? When you let Him renew your strength? When you made time to just rest in His grace?

And while we’re asking questions and shaking our heads at each other, what do those still waters look like?

I think ‘still waters’ can take many forms. What brings me peace may send you into a panic. And vice versa. But there are a couple of consistent trademarks.

  1. Time in God’s Word.
  2. Time worshipping God

Notice the key word there? Yep. The worst four-letter word I know. TIME. There’s never enough of it, is there? And that’s why ‘sacrifice’ is also a key step in soul restoration. Because Jesus can lead us beside the still waters but if we don’t take the time to notice them and let them nudge their way into our soul? There won’t be much restoring going on.

A sacrifice of time – with Jesus, by the still waters – will put you well on your way to that renewal of your soul. Even if you just sit there with Him, letting His Presence wash over you. Even if you just put on a playlist of songs that point you to Him … and maybe sing along. Even if you just read one verse and reflect on it all day. Because you’ve given Him your most precious commodity – time – He will give you restoration of your soul.

Are you weary? Are you overwhelmed with life? Would you just love a nap? I’m with you. I get it. And so does Jesus.

Do a quick google search for ‘Jesus went away by himself’ and you’ll find a bevy of Scripture references that show us that He made soul restoration a priority. Don’t miss that. JESUS made soul restoration a priority. The Son of God. The One who was there when the world was spoken into existence. THE Word. He knew how important it was to REST. A rest from labor, yes, but it always involved prayer. His time of rest was intentional – to restore His soul.

(I confess, I don’t know exactly how that worked with Jesus. I’m a blogger. Not a theologian. Lol.)

If you get nothing else from all my ramblings today, please get this: When you sacrifice time to sit beside the still waters (figurative or literal) with Jesus, HE RESTORES YOUR SOUL. Guaranteed. Every time.

Rest and restoration so often go hand in hand. So go ahead. Get some rest. Your soul will thank you.

 

What about you? Where do you most need rest in your life?

GIVEAWAY: One commenter will win this cute ‘He Restores My Soul’ mug from Seeds of Faith Designs on Etsy. (US only. If for some reason mug is no longer available when winner is selected, a comparable substitution may be made with winner’s approval.)

 


Carrie Schmidt is an avid reader, book reviewer, story addict, KissingBooks fan, book boyfriend collector, and cool aunt. She loves Jesus and THE Story a whole lot. Carrie lives in Kentucky with her husband Eric and their quirky dog Zuzu and is a co-founder of the Christian Fiction Readers’ Retreat. She blogs at

 

http://readingismysuperpower.org

https://www.facebook.com/meezcarriereads

https://twitter.com/meezcarrie

https://www.pinterest.com/meezcarrie/

https://www.instagram.com/meezcarrie/

 

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, New Week New Fact, #NWNF, Guest Post, Carrie Schmidt, Rest, Restoration

BLOGWORDS – Sunday 31 December 2017 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – ANTICIPATION

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – ANTICIPATION

Anticipation. Expectation. Hope. Eagerness. Keenness. Excitement. Faith.

 

As we approach the New Year, I am filled with a great sense of anticipation and excitement. An almost tangible sense of what’s to come, of promises fulfilled. And the journey that got me here is faith.

 

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

 

Faith is a journey that begins at salvation. It’s a step into the unknown, into the spirit realm. It’s taking the hand of God the Father, and taking Him at his Word. It’s walking in righteousness and peace and Truth.

 

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints. Ephesians 6:14-18

 

Faith is learning who He is so we can know who we are.

 

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

 

Faith is walking in confidence that what He says is true. Faith is trusting God for who He is.

 

There is the gift of faith.

 

For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. Romans 12:3

 

And the act of faith.

 

14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? 26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. James 2:14 & 26

 

Faith isn’t a one-time event. It’s a living thing that grows—or withers and dies.

 

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17

 

Faith is an anchor. It doesn’t keep us from the storms, the disasters, catastrophes of this world, even our own foolishness. Faith takes us through them.

 

1Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:1-5

 

And with faith, we bring hope to hopeless situations, hopeless people. We bring light to darkness and healing to crushed hearts and spirits.

 

Hope burns with anticipation and excitement. And in the final days of 2017, anticipation and excitement are bubbling over in my heart.

 

Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Anticipation, Excitement, Expectation, Hope, Eagerness, Keenness, Faith, Hebrews 11:1, Ephesians 6:14-18, Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 12:3, James 2:14 & 26, Romans 10:17, Romans 5:1-5, Psalm 37:4

 

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