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Archive for September, 2018

BLOGWORDS – Sunday 30 September 2018 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – FRIENDS

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – FRIENDS

 

I believe Father God brings or allows people into our lives for different seasons and different purposes. Perhaps it’s a passing stranger who does a kindness. Even those who inflict pain and wrongdoing are ultimately used for His purpose. If you’re not sure, He tells us so:

 

But as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.  Genesis 50:20

 

Romans 8:28, We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

 

But the friends who come to stay are His hands and feet. They are His heart, expressing worth and value to hearts subjected to the world’s callousness.

 

Kind words are like honey—sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.  Proverbs 16:24

 

A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.  Proverbs 18:24

 

I am blessed and amazed to count the number of lifelong friends Father has placed in my life. Each with a special purpose and place in my life—Cyndi, Jennifer, Karyn, Merissa, Dana, Carrie, Donna—all but two I’ve known for 30+ years.

 

And to the impetus of today’s post—Dana came for a visit last week. Flew from Colorado to South Carolina, including 27 hours stranded in Texas. For a week-end stay. You don’t do that for casual acquaintances or half-hearted friendships. Well, maybe a visit. But half-hearted friendships don’t last years and decades. Half-hearted friends don’t lift you up like these friends do me. Half-hearted friends don’t stick with you through your mess and your junk.

 

True friends, God-friends are the smile when we’re not feelin’ it. They’re the Truth when we don’t want to hear it. They are the balm when our hearts are hurting. And I’m thankful for of mine.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNHBT7wjqVI

 

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Friends, Genesis 50:20, Romans8:28, Proverbs 16:24, Proverbs 18:24

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BLOGWORDS – Friday 28 September 2018 – FIRST LINE FRIDAY – HOUSE by TED DEKKER and FRANK PERETTI

FIRST LINE FRIDAY – HOUSE by TED DEKKER and FRANK PERETTI

 

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:    

A mind-bending supernatural thriller from the creators of This Present Darkness and Saint.

Frank Peretti and Ted Dekker two of the most acclaimed writers of supernatural thrillers have joined forces for the first time to craft a story unlike any you’ve ever read. Enter House where you’ll find yourself thrown into a killer’s deadly game in which the only way to win is to lose . . . and the only way out is in.

The stakes of the game become clear when a tin can is tossed into the house with rules scrawled on it. Rules that only a madman or worse could have written. Rules that make no sense yet must be followed.

One game. Seven players. Three rules. Game ends at dawn.

 

 

THE AUTHORS:    

 

TED DEKKER is a New York Times bestselling thriller author. Heralded as a “master of suspense” by Library Journal, Dekker has sold millions worldwide, establishing himself as one of the most widely recognized author brands.

He began his career writing fantasy novels that explored spirituality (Black, Red and White) and has since become a major force in the mainstream fiction arena with his recent thrillers, “Adam,” “Thr3e,” “Skin,” “Obsessed,” “BoneMan’s Daughters,” which landed in the #10 on the New York Times hardcover bestseller list in 2009, and “The Bride Collector”. Dekker has been honored with a Christy Award as well as a Gold Medallion Award for Best Fiction. “Thr3e” and his novel “House” became feature films.

Dekker was born to missionaries and grew up among cannibals of Indonesia, and his peculiar upbringing gives him a unique perspective outside the cultural bubble, allowing him the freedom to share provocative insights in his fiction. After leaving Indonesia, Dekker graduated from a multi-cultural high school and took up permanent residence in the United States, earning his B.A. in philosophy and religion, and then went into business.

In the early nineties, Dekker decided to pursue his desire to write fiction, selling his company, moving his family to the mountains of western Colorado, and writing full-time. Two years and three books later his first novel, a supernatural thriller called Heaven’s Wager, was published. Dekker proceeded to write 6 more supernatural thrillers, rising to the top of many bestsellers lists and earning himself critical acclaim and legions of fans. “Thr3e” heralded his launch into mainstream fiction and was followed by “Obsessed,” “Skin,” “Adam,” and “BoneMan’s Daughters,” all of which hit the New York Times bestseller list.

Ted Dekker’s fans are comprised of readers of all ages, backgrounds, and belief systems who love his compulsively readable stories, authentic characters, and universal and relatable themes that he explores from a unique point of view.

He resides in Austin, Texas with his wife and children. You can find him at Teddekker.com and Facebook.com/teddekker.

 

 

FRANK E. PERETTI is one of American Christianity’s best-known authors. His novels have sold over 10 million copies, and he is widely credited with reinventing Christian fiction. He and his wife, Barbara, live in the Pacific Northwest. http://www.frankperetti.com.

 

 

 

 

 

THE FIRST LINE:   

He stood motionless in the entryway, staring at his own shadow splayed before him like a stain upon the floor.

 

MY THOUGHTS:    

This book bends the mind just as it bends reality. Or what we know to be real. So many twists, so many turns. Gripping to the end.

 

 

#Blogwords, First Line Friday, #FLF, House, Ted Dekker, Frank Peretti

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BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 25 September 2018 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – AN UNPRESENTABLE GLORY by ELEANOR K. GUSTAFSON

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – AN UNPRESENTABLE GLORY by ELEANOR K. GUSTAFSON

                                                                             

 

THE BLURB:

“I trusted you, and some day, you may know just how much you hold in your hands.”

Linda Jensen leads a relatively quiet life in Westchester County, New York, as the owner of a highly-acclaimed garden. Inherited from her parents, the garden is her pride and joy. What is not so joyful is finding a strange man sprawled near her delphiniums! The mysterious man is sick, unable to do anything more than drink water—and beg for secrecy. Ignoring all alarm bells, Linda sees to his needs, but her caring act takes on unexpected significance, an unpresentable glory.

Seeds of trust, and perhaps love, are planted in Linda’s garden haven. But as secrets are revealed and scandal hits the headlines, the act of caring for this man threatens to tarnish both of their reputations. Like weeds in Linda’s garden, circumstances threaten to choke out their fledgling relationship, and small moments prove to be the biggest influencers—on a national scale.

 

THE AUTHOR:

Ellie Gustafson began thinking up stories at a young age but did not begin writing and publishing until 1978. A graduate of Wheaton College in Illinois, she has been actively involved in church life as a minister’s wife, teacher, musician, writer, and encourager. Additional experiences include gardening, house construction, tree farming, mouse control, and parenting–all of which have helped bring color and humor to her fiction. One of her major writing goals has been to make scriptural principles understandable and relevant for today’s readers through the undeniable power of story.

Personal themes crop up in her novels:
* An Unpresentable Glory–her love of gardening and American Indians. She even made a 15′ tepee!
* Dynamo builds off her lifelong love of horses.
* The Stones, on King David, grew out of the inherent power of his story in the Bible.

 

 

MY REVIEW:

Oh my goodness! This story starts off running and doesn’t slow down! What a powerhouse of a story! So many issues adroitly handled, tough issues, current issues, skillfully written.

Characters so real any one of us might fit right in. Fighting against ourselves and against the grace of God—how well this reviewer can identify with that! And how I cheered Lawrie on, encouraging, nay, chastising him for not accepting such a precious gift.

Linda, so gracious in her discovery. And so real in her angst and agony at what cannot be—and yet hoping against hope.

 

Ms. Gustafson has played so many elements and emotions into this story, guilt and grace, compassion and conflict. Characters who, though real, are as angels in their purpose. The ugly of this life and the beauty that God never abandons us. Life and death, dreams and obligation.

 

And through it all, unpresentable glory.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS:

ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

 

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

 

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, An Unpresentable Glory, Eleanor K. Gustafson

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BLOGWORDS – Monday 24 September 2018 – NEW WEEK NEW FACE – GUEST POST – ANGELA ACKERMAN – AUTHOR CONFESSIONS: WHEN SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT MY COMFORT ZONE

NEW WEEK NEW FACE – GUEST POST – ANGELA ACKERMAN – AUTHOR CONFESSIONS: WHEN SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT MY COMFORT ZONE

 

 

Author Confessions: When Social Media Is NOT My Comfort Zone

 

Everywhere you look there are blog posts, webinars, online courses and websites all shouting the same message: Join social media! Engage, connect, network! Build your audience! Everyone says that authors must navigate the social media waters to be successful. Is this true?

Well, unless you happen to be a celebrity or are gifted with a giant promotional push from a publisher…then probably yes, if you hope to reach a wider audience.

And herein lies the problem: many writers are introverts. They like having the computer screen between them and the world, thank you very much. They don’t want to get involved in every newfangled social media platform, or blog with no idea what to say, or try to find an ‘in’ on a site when it seems like everyone knows each other already.

When it’s been decades since you’ve had to walk the playground and make friends, the idea of entering a giant online cocktail party can be hive-inducing. So what is a writer to do when they feel they are not suited for social networking or are simply terrified by the very idea of it?

 

Stay Within Your Comfort Zone

If the idea of social networking is overwhelming, pick something contained and more likely to be in your comfort zone. Forums may feel less intimidating than the biggies of socialization like Twitter or Facebook. In a forum, rather than being bombarded by hundreds of people, interaction is more intimate. Joining conversations in a forum (either with other writers to network, or on focused topics that tie into your book’s audience) will put you together with only a few people at once, and the topic is focused. You can learn, share and make friends at a slower pace.

If you want to find your potential readers, run a google search for a subject of interest that ties into your book. Chances are, if you like it enough to write about it, there’s a forum for it somewhere. If you’re struggling to know who your audience is, read this post. You can also search Goodreads, and look for discussions about books that are similar to your own that you’ve read. This is a good way to start a relationship with people through discussion on something you all enjoy.

 

Become A Lurker

Rather than be pressured into jumping into the fray, do some lurking. Think about the blogs you visit for book research, the ones that will help you improve your writing and marketing, and other blogs that tie into your interests. Read the comments so you can understand how people engage.

Check out how other writers interact on Twitter by searching up some hashtags like #writersroad #ontheporch or #writechat. See what they share and click on some profiles to find people who interest you. Run searches for your interests. If you like cycling, you’re not alone. Try #Cycling in twitter search. If your book is for dragon lovers, search for #Dragons and you’re sure to find fans.

If you have Facebook, check out a few groups! Again, search by interest to find groups that have interests or passions that tie into your book in some way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dip Your Toe In…On A Trial Basis

If you did some lurking and found a social networking medium that seemed like it could be within your comfort zone, then step in, slowly. Reach out and share a bit–it can be things that inspire you, what you find funny, or something about writing (if you want to connect with other writers for support and community).

Friend or follow a few people and comment on what they share. If you’re looking to connect with your direct book audience, then share content that you know they will enjoy (as it ties right in with topics you touch on in your books). Soon, conversations will start and you’ll be off to the races. If you find you enjoy it, great! And if not, then you can walk away, wiser for trying. Just be authentic and open – be yourself!

Social Networking can seem intimidating at first. Some worry it will chew up all their writing time and that they need to be everywhere to be successful–Twitter, Blogs, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr and more. Honestly it is much better for you to choose one or two and do them well than scatter yourself across all networks. And remember, YOU are in control. Engage as much or as little as time allows. Writing should come first.

 

What tips would you share with people looking to start using social media but who are a bit nervous about it? Let us know in the comments!

 

 

ANGELA ACKERMAN is a writing coach, international speaker, and co-author of six bestselling resources including The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression. A proud indie author, her books are available in six languages, are sourced by universities, and used by novelists, screenwriters, editors, and psychologists around the world. Angela is also the co-founder of the popular site, Writers Helping Writers ®, as well as One Stop For Writers ®, an innovative online library filled with unique tools to help writers elevate their storytelling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, New Week New Fact, #NWNF, Guest Post, Angela Ackerman

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BLOGWORDS – Friday 21 September 2018 – FIRST LINE FRIDAY – PIERCING THE DARKNESS by FRANK PERETTI

FIRST LINE FRIDAY – PIERCING THE DARKNESS by FRANK PERETTI

 

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:    

Leaders in the realm of darkness have mounted a new attack that will create chaos and cause defeat in the human beings who claim unity with their enemy, Christ.

Readers will find themselves rooting for a most unlikely hero as her quest for inner peace exposes the most frightening war of all, the battle for the human soul. Be captivated anew as you enter the world of battling angels and demons that author Frank Peretti so masterfully uncovered in This Present Darkness.

 

THE AUTHOR:    

 

Frank E. Peretti is one of American Christianity’s best-known authors. His novels have sold over 10 million copies, and he is widely credited with reinventing Christian fiction. He and his wife, Barbara, live in the Pacific Northwest. http://www.frankperetti.com.

 

 

 

 

 

THE FIRST LINE:   

It could have begun in any town. Bacon’s Corner was nothing special, just one of those little farming towns far from the interstate, nothing more than a small hollow dot on the AAA map, with exit signs that offered no gas, no lodging, maybe a little food if the place was open, and little more.

MY THOUGHTS:    

This continuation of the first book was just a powerful and gripping. If nothing else, it makes clear that this battle is not a “once and done” deal, but an everyday endeavor.

 

 

#Blogwords, First Line Friday, #FLF, Piercing the Darkness, Frank Peretti

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BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 18 September 2018 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE ORNAMENT KEEPER by EVA MARIE EVERSON

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE ORNAMENT KEEPER by EVA MARIE EVERSON

 

Welcome to the blog tour & giveaway for The Ornament Keeper by Eva Marie Everson, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

                                                                             

Title: The Ornament Keeper
Author: Eva Marie Everson
Publisher: New Hope Publishers
Release Date: September 24, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Holiday

THE BLURB:

Award-winning author Eva Marie Everson wraps up a Christmas story of hope, love, and forgiveness just in time for the holidays. The Ornament Keeper, a contemporary Christmas novella, features Felicia and Jackson Morgan who are spending their first Christmas apart after twenty years of marriage. But a lifetime of gifted ornaments helps Felicia piece together the story of their marriage and the one mistake of unforgiveness she made before they said, “I do.” Can these memory-filled ornaments reunite this family before Christmas? Only time will tell.

 

PURCHASE: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | CBD | Book Depository

 

THE AUTHOR:

 

Eva Marie Everson is a multiple-award winning author and speaker who hails from the picturesque Southern town of Sylvania, Georgia. She is president of Word Weavers International, director of Florida Christian Writers Conference, Managing Editor at Firefly Southern Fiction, and enjoys coaching new authors through her company, Pen in Hand. She is an avid photographer who enjoys turning her photos into inspiring memes for you to share (with proper attribution). Eva Marie and her husband make their home in Central Florida. They are the parents of three fabulous children who have blessed them with the world’s greatest grandchildren.

CONTACT: website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

 

 

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive:

  • a print copy of The Ornament Keeper, and
  • an ornament handpicked by the author

Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight September 17, 2018 and last through 11:59pm September 24, 2018. US only. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

MY REVIEW:

Another new-to-me author! #ishouldhavedoneablitz

Honestly, I wanted to shake some sense into Felicia! But then, I suppose someone would have to shake some sense into me, as well. Don’t we all hold onto past grudges and hurts? Letting them color—discolor—our days from the inside out?

Beautifully written, and tenderly poignant, each of Felicia’s reminders—her collection of Christmas ornaments—weigh against the gnawing bitterness that plagues her. Mementos that serve as glimpses of a life made with her husband, Jackson. Treasured moments, tender moments. Moments of happy times together.

Moments that have been tarnished with sin she won’t let go.

Ms. Everson blends the different elements of her story together flawlessly, creating a masterful and colorful painting. The human emotion and reaction. The illogic of the heart, and the true and deep longing. Guilt that taunts—and the wounds that won’t heal. And the master stroke—well, I don’t want to give the story away! I will say, Ms. Everson frames her story in God’s love and His healing.

 

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS:

ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

 

 

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

Follow along at JustReadTours for a full schedule of stops!

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, The Ornament Keeper, Eva Marie Everson

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