Latest Blog Posts for March 2012

Parting Words From The WORD…

Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net

As writers and speakers, we often feel compelled to rate ourselves and our ministries. We look at our schedules and count our sales in search of honor and respect.

We’re looking for validation.

But in Psalm 62, David reminds us that our rest, our Rock, our validation is in Him alone.

Lowborn men are but a breath,
the highborn are but a lie;
if weighed on a balance, they are nothing;
together they are only a breath. Psalm 62:9

Whether we’re highborn or lowborn, rich or poor, a respected writer and speaker or the new kid on the block, our worth, our honor comes through God alone.

My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge. Psalm 62:7

May we honor Him with our words and our works this week, regardless of how many may hear and see.

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

(Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net)

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The Kids’ Ark Magazine: Wittiness, Witness, and Writing Opportunity All Rolled into One!

(It’s the 5th Thursday, so today we get to bring you a special treat!)

Let’s face it, kids spend a lot of time watching TV, playing video games, and getting lost in Facebook. But what if you could offer your child games, puzzles, and the chance to win $100? Do you think that would generate some interest?

Jim and Violette Burger have done exactly that through their non-profit ministry, The Kids’ Ark magazine! Be sure to leave a comment and you’ll be in the running for a FREE subscription!

I spoke at Write2Ignite Christian Writers Conference a few weeks ago and had the joy of meeting Jim and Violette Burger, and what a blessing they were!

Jim and Vi have a heart for children and it shows through their ministry, The Kids’ Ark, a quarterly children’s Christian magazine they’ve publish in Victoria, Texas since 2004. Targeted to children 6-12 years of age, the purpose of the magazine is to teach the truth of God’s Word while also helping them make good choices in life.

The Burgers love kids and encourage them to learn about the Bible by giving away $100 to a young reader every single month! The kids simply read the magazine, fill in the blanks in the back, and mail it in. Once a month they draw a winning name, and that child receives $100 in cold, hard cash! Now that’s a great way to get kids to get excited about reading and learning God’s Word!

Each issue of The Kids’ Ark has a theme. The magazine includes puzzles, mazes, fiction stories, Bible stories and a true story featuring a child who is living his or her life for God. The 10 Commandments and a Salvation prayer are also included each month. Children who pray to ask Jesus into their hearts can complete a form and mail it in. Within weeks, their “Born Again” re-birth certificate with the date they received Christ arrives in the mail, addressed to them.

Jim and Vi said, “God flooded the earth once, with water to destroy all the evil people, but He gave an ark to save His children, the people who really loved Him. Now, the earth is again being flooded, but this time, by Satan. He’s flooding the earth with lies and distractions to keep us from loving God. And, just as before, God is giving us an ark to save His children. This time, the ark is not a boat but a magazine full of the truth–the truth about God’s love for each of us.”

And The Kids’ Ark is not a little four to six page black and white magazine. No! The sample copy I read online had almost 40 colorful pages of fun and faith!

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Stuart Miles

The Kids’ Ark has reached children across America, Canada, Taiwan, Australia, U.K. and India. Many of the magazines have been donated to foster agencies to touch children who might not go to church.

Jim and Vi are trying to reach children for the Lord and tell them that God is exciting and He has a plan and a purpose for their lives. So, what children in your life would benefit from this great resource? I’m ordering a subscription for my granddaughter’s birthday coming up in a few weeks! What better way to help her learn more about our Savior, while having fun at the same time?

The Burgers would love your prayers and support to help reach more children. The cost of a one-year hardcopy subscription is only $20; online subscriptions are $15. This not only helps them reach children, but it also helps pay The Kids’ Ark writers. (Yes! It’s a paying market!)

So what are you waiting for? For more information on how to order, as well as the writers guidelines, you can check out the web-site at www.thekidsark.com. You can also call 1-800-455-1770, or write The Kids’ Ark, P.O. Box 3160, Victoria, Texas 77903.

Bio: Jim and Violette Burger are graduates of Destiny Bible Institute and have been active members of Faith Family Church in Victoria for over 18 years. Jim is still employed and has worked as a Respiratory Therapist for the last 37 years. Violette was a former Flight Attendant with Braniff Airlines until they went bankrupt in 1982. The Lord moved her to Victoria where she met Jim and has worked in outside sales for the last 20 years selling building maintenance and janitorial supplies. Violette likes to let everyone know that this means she sells toilet paper! (Don’t you love it???)

In September of 2007 the Burgers were nominated as “Hometown Heroes” by KAVU, the Victoria local NBC television station, for their sacrificial work on the magazine.

Readers, don’t forget to leave a comment and you could win a free subscription!

Grace and peace,

Vonda

(Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Stuart Miles)

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Author Interview & Book Give-Away with Phoebe Leggett

Phoebe Leggett

Hello readers! It’s the 4th Tuesday of March, so that means it’s time to talk with an author and give away a book! Today’s guest is Phoebe Leggett, a friend I met at the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference who is now part of our local Word Weavers writer’s group!

Be sure to leave a comment for Phoebe and you could win a free book!

Welcome, Phoebe! Let’s just start at the beginning. When did you first begin writing?

As a child I wrote poetry and children’s songs. After my husband’s employment moved us to new locations, I began creating poems about my children when they were younger and other topics when an idea hit.

When my son was killed in 2004, writing about my struggle through grief produced the poems featured in my book. Journaling my thoughts and feelings helped put my grief into perspective.

Tell us about your first publication.

My first published article was in a magazine called Who’s DANN. This publication supported handicapped and disabled persons by encouraging them to tell their story. My bio, poem, and MS article were accepted for publication as I have multiple sclerosis. It was exciting to see my work in print. At that point I was given space in the magazine, and Phoebe’s Corner was born–featuring a poem each publication. A couple of years later the magazine lost its funding, and was cancelled. By that time, I was well on my way as a freelance writer.

You certainly were! What else has been published under your name?

Many children’s stories have been published in Our Little Friend, a Pacific Press Publishing Company for children’s literature. Articles, stories, and poetry have found their place in Christian literature and various monthly publications. The Upper Room featured one of my devotionals last year, and other devotionals have been published at www.christiandevotions.us. This past year an article on kayaking was published in Heartland Boating, along with articles published in The Evangel, Live, a weekly journal of Practical Living, MS Focus, MS Connection, with poetry in SheMom, and Harold and Banner Press.

Several poems have been read on air at WORD Radio in Greenville, South Carolina. And, I serve as Assistant Editor for www.DevoKids.com.

Wow, that’s quite a list! Do you currently have work featured in a publication?

Every month, Greenville Critter Magazine features one of my poems about animals. Since I love cats and have three of my own, it’s easy to write about them.

How do you decide what to write about?

When an opportunity presents itself, I write per the publisher’s request or guidelines; or look through my files and find something I’ve already written that can be submitted.

When did you decide to write your book, It’s My Time To Grieve?

When my twenty-two-year-old son was killed in a car crash, I felt a deep desire to help others who were also grieving. My dad had already passed when my son died. A couple of years later, my best friend was diagnosed with cancer, and later passed. Following her death, my mother died. These deaths prompted me to write my first book, It’s My Time To Grieve.

Tell our readers what the book is about.

When I received a tragic call in the middle of the night nearly eight years ago, my life was forever changed. My twenty-two-year-old son had just been killed in a car crash. Devastated and confused, I embarked on a long and difficult journey to recovery.

Using personal experiences as a guide, I share personal stories in my book It’s My Time to Grieve while providing a resource for others to successfully navigate through the grieving process. This includes:

  • Moving through the stages of grief
  • Managing the holidays
  • Handling the emotions of fear, anger, and regret
  • Dealing with the death of a child, spouse, parent, sibling, friend, or pet
  • Sharing the pain
  • Gaining comfort and healing from the Bible
  • Moving forward

It’s My Time to Grieve offers hope for the brokenhearted with the comfort God provides.

I know you have contributor stories in your book. Could you talk a little bit about that?

The best of contributor stories are included in my book, It’s My Time To Grieve.

  • Ann Tatlock, an award-winning novelist from North Carolina, reveals the crush of losing her mother, and the devastation that followed.
  • Belle Woods from Illinois writes about losing her husband of many years when he passed during the Christmas season.
  • Carolyn Knefely from South Carolina writes about the infant daughter she lost years ago.
  • Cathy Pendola from Texas shares personal pain after her teenage son lost his life in a fatal car accident.
  • Lori Marett from North Carolina writes how her close relationship with her dad helped her deal with his death in a positive way.
  • And of course, you write about the passing of your father in the Foreword, and the horrendous pain you felt following his death.

Other writers provide exceptional contributions to the book.

What a great way to let others express and work through their own grief. Thank you for that opportunity. So, do you have another book in the works?

Currently, I’m writing my second book titled No Weapon Formed. This book features my own struggle as a battered wife with three small children, and how I escaped my abuser. Valuable information for battered women will be offered in the book. Contributor stories from women in similar circumstances will also be part of the manuscript, along with Bible verses that provide God’s point of view concerning abuse, and restoration.

Wow, Phoebe, that sounds like another much-needed book for those in similar situations. Your life and your books are proof that, if we give it to Him to use for His glory, God never wastes any hurts. Thanks for sharing with us.

And readers, don’t forget to leave a comment and you’ll be in the drawing for an autographed copy of Phoebe’s book, It’s My Time to Grieve.

You can get your own copies by visiting Phoebe’s website at www.phoebe-leggett.com.

Phoebe Leggett is a freelance writer who has published articles, stories, devotionals, and poetry. Although she spends many hours developing her writing craft, her family is most important. She resides in Simpsonville, South Carolina with husband and three felines. This is Leggett’s debut book. I hope you’ll visit her online at www.phoebe-leggett.com.

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Parting Words From The WORD…

Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net

As Christians, we know we have been set free. From the moment we truly give our hearts to Christ and seek to live for Him, we know our sins are as far as the east is from the west, hidden beneath the deepest ocean, and no longer remembered by God.

But we aren’t God. We remember. And we hold tight to those memories, giving an ear to Satan and his condemnation. Perhaps you’re like me and have a relative or acquaintance who never lets us forget how miserably we fail at being perfect, like Christ.

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Writer’s Headlines: A Brand New Call for Submissions, Conferences & Contests

It’s time for Thursday’s Writer’s Headlines…

And that means great opportunities for you! This week’s Writer’s Headlines include a brand new, time sensitive call for submissions, a list of writers conferences, and some writing contests that could bring you some money to help you GO to writers conferences!

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Edie Melson is Looking for True Stories of Abuse

Friends, Family, and Foes: Learning How to Recognize and Stop the Cycle of Domestic Violence—Call for Submissions By Edie Melson

In 2001 my best friend and her daughter were murdered…by her husband. I had spent hours in close proximity with this family and never knew they were victims of domestic violence. That tragedy, along with the things that followed, dramatically shaped my life. I’ve made it one of my life’s missions to warn others about the signs of domestic violence I missed and help them put an end to the cycle of domestic violence so common in our world today.

This book is under contract with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. We are now accepting submissions of your either your true-life experience with domestic violence or how you dealt with a friend’s experience of domestic violence.

Access the full call to submission for Edie Melson’s writers guidelines for Friends, Family, and Foes here, or find them at Edie Melson’s website. But you must hurry–the deadline is May 31, 2012.

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Writing Contests Can Help You Win

Jennifer Slattery recently joined us here at The Christian Writer’s Den to talk about writing contests. You can check out Jennifer Slattery’s post here.

Here are some contests you might want to check out:

1.  Utmost Christian Writers Poetry Contest

2.  Christian Writers Guild Operation First Novel will be announcing a new contest soon. Be on the lookout for it!

3.  Tom Howard/John H. Reid Short Story Contest

4. Writer’s Digest Writing Competition

5.  Word Weavers Writing Contest for members of Word Weavers only. Check with your local chapter for details.

6.  Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest is closed for this year, but you could be working on your book now for next year’s contest!

7.  Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards

8.  PBS KidsGO Writing Contest for kids

9.  The Frasier Contest for Voices members at My Book Therapy

10. The Biggest Loser Write It and Win SweepstakesOkay, this isn’t officially a writing contest, but you can write letters to your favorite Biggest Loser competitor and win a trip to the Biggest Loser Resort, Biggest Loser meals, or tickets to the Finale! :-)

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Speakers Conferences


1.  2012 CLASS Reunion: April 27-29, 2012, Palm Springs, CA

2.  Christian Communicators Conference: August 29-September 2 at The Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove, Asheville, NC. Come join Carolyn Knefely and me as we partner with you to bring Him glory through your writing and speaking ministry! Cec Murphey Scholarships are available! But you must hurry–scholarship deadline is April 1, 2012! Registration deadline is July 29, 2012. Space is limited, so please don’t delay. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

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2012 Writer’s Conferences are Moving into High Gear!

Here’s an updated list of writers conferences. Hope you’re planning to make it to at least one!

1.  Carolina Christian Writers Conference: April 20-21, 2012, Spartanburg, SC (I’ll see you there!)

2.  Colorado Christian Writers Conference: May 16-19, 2012, Estes Park, CO

3.  Orange County Christian Writers Conference: May 18-20, 2012, Newport Beach, CA

4.  Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference: May 20-24, 2012, Ridgecrest, NC (I’ll see you there!)

5.  St. Davids Christian Writers’ Conference: June 19-23, 2012, Grove City, PA

6.  North Texas Christian Writers Conference: June 22-23, 2012, Keller, TX (I’ll see you there!)

7.  AnAuthor World/The Writers’ Plot Conference: July 21, 2012, Furman University, Greenville, SC (I’ll see you there!)

8.  Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference: August 1-4, 2012, Langhorne, PA

9.  Gideon Media Arts Conference and Film Festival: August 11-16, 2012, Ridgecrest, NC (I’ll see you there!)

10. Christian Authors Guild “Catch the Wave” Writers Conference: August 23-25, 2012, Norcross, GA

11. CLASS Christian Writers Conference: October 31-November 4, 2012, Ghost Ranch, NM

Can’t wait to see what comes from these links!

Write on!

Vonda

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Another Lesson in How NOT to Impress an Editor

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and zole4

Some of you may remember this story when it happened several years ago. But since we have so many new readers and since it’s conference season, I thought it’d be a good time to encourage you by letting you see the funny and the good, even in the midst of the horror.

And I hope you’ll get a good laugh along the way. :-)

Coke, Sweet Tea, and Grace

I took one last look in the mirror, then touched up my lipstick, primped my hair, and brushed my teeth…again. Everything had to be perfect! After all, I was having dinner with an editor from a major CBA house and a well-known author, also with a major publisher. I whispered a prayer for direction and discernment regarding my novel idea. I should have prayed for bigger hands.

At the restaurant, we were quickly seated at our tiny table, Major CBA House Editor on my right and Successful Well-Known Author with Another Major House on my left. Within seconds, the cute, perky waitress took our drink orders. I really wanted a good ol’ Southern sweet tea, but since we were in PA, I knew better than to ask. (Just for the record, unsweetened tea and packets of sugar do not sweet tea make!) So I ordered Coke. Better to be safe than sorry.

The waitress returned with our salads and drinks and placed the giant glass of Coke on my right, between Major CBA House Editor and me. The drink needed to be on my left. So I reached across my salad to grab it with my left hand. Have you ever heard people talk about how horrendous catastrophes play out in slow motion as they’re happening before their very eyes? Well, I can tell you for a fact, it’s true.

I watched in horror as my dreams of publishing with Major CBA House pirouetted to a funeral dirge across the table and fell, along with the oversized glass of Coke, right smack onto the blouse, into the lap, and then into the tapestry purse of Major CBA House Editor. Now we’re not talking about a glass turning over and dripping its contents onto someone’s pants. Nope. We’re talking about a supersized glass the size of a watermelon, filled with syrupy sweet, near-black Coke falling headlong onto said editor’s entire body. I wanted to crawl under the table. I actually tried, but the floor was full of feet…and waiters with mops…and waitresses with napkins…and a soaking wet purse carrying the expensive electronic devices of Major CBA House Editor.

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Ambro

For this I brushed my teeth…twice.

I looked up from the floor, my small hands sticky with the evidence of my fall from grace, and forced an embarrassed laugh. “Well, there goes any chance of ever submitting a manuscript to you.” I hated the whine in my voice.

Gentle Editor rose from her cola bath, gazed down at me on the floor in all my soda splendor, and smiled. “Oh, you can submit it…as long as this scene is in it.” She stepped over me and my mess and sloshed to the restroom.

Kind Successful Well-Known Author with Another Major House, still safely stationed to my left, leaned over the edge of the table and peered into my soppy space. “Uh…that went well.”

It did. It really did! After all, Major CBA House Editor not only said she would look at my manuscript, she wanted to be IN IT! The moment of my publishing death had evolved into new life for my novel idea!

Just for the record, I would never recommend this technique for approaching editors. Others may not be as nice as this kind, gracious lady. Oh, and let’s be clear here, she didn’t say she’d BUY it, she just said she’d LOOK at it. Believe me, there’s a huge difference.

But what she didn’t know was that at that moment she answered an important question in my story arc. Even though the novel will be loosely based on my experience of caring for my terminally-ill sister, I had been struggling with whether or not to make the protagonist a writer and speaker. After all, I didn’t want it to be too close to the truth and possibly stifle the creative process. But this scene is just too good to waste! Now I know the main character will have to be a writer and speaker. Cool!

So, what scenes from your life–or the lives of those around you–can you include in your books? If you’ve ever heard me teach on writing fiction you know that I use a lot of real life in my books. That doesn’t mean the story is about me.

The storyline itself may not have anything to do with our life experiences, but that doesn’t mean we can’t pull hilarious, heart-wrenching, thought-provoking, frightening scenes from real life and plop them into the fabric of our books. We simply let those scenes happen to our characters. And the good thing is, not only do we have instant access to the conflict, but we also have the emotional reaction that went with it. After all, we experienced first hand the joy, the heartache, the fear, the humor, the embarrassment. We know how it felt.

This happened several years ago, and as you’ve most likely figured out, I still haven’t written that book, but I will. And I can promise you, at some point in the story, the protagonist will have dinner with a major editor, and…well…you know what’ll happen next.

(Photos courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and zole4 and FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Ambro)

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Parting Words From The WORD…

Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net

This year I’m thrilled to be participating in the Through the Bible in a Year Living Power Online Bible Study with Shannon Mullins. It has already been an amazing study and I’ve learned so much from Shannon as she pulls out details of the passages I’d never noticed before.

As I write this I remember that just this morning, Shannon pointed out that when Jesus was in the wilderness and Satan tempted Him, all three of Jesus’ responses were scripture (which I already knew) AND that all three were taken from the book of Deuteronomy (which I didn’t know).

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Writer’s Headlines: Writing Opportunities Just for YOU & Who’s MoGoing for $100?

It’s the 3rd Thursday’s Writer’s Headlines!

And that means it’s time for writing opportunities. Here are 16 opportunities I’ve collected just for you! Read ‘em and WIN!

1.  Better Homes and Gardens writers guidelines

2.  ADDitude Magazine writers guidelines

3.  Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine writers guidelines

4.  Alive Now writers guidelines and theme list

5.  Decision Magazine writers guidelines

6.  American Girl writers guidelines

7.  Chicken Soup for the Soul possible book titles

8.  Arizona Highways writers guidelines

9.  Asimov’s Science Fiction writers guidelines

10. CampSite writers guidelines

11. The Christian Century writers guidelines

12. Enrichment Journal writers guidelines

13. family fun writer-guidelines

14. The Lutheran writers guidelines

15. LIVE needs 3-14-12

16. Saturday Writers Writing Contests—LOTS of opportunities to win!

There you go, readers. Now, who’s going to do what it takes? Find something that you can submit to, and maybe we’ll be celebrating your successes soon!

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Don’t miss out on the opportunity to win $100!

Are you working on a book project? If so, you could be $100 richer at the end of the year!

Yep, that’s right. I PAY you to write that book you’re supposed to write–and it doesn’t cost you anything! Think it’s too good to be true?

Check out the MoGo7000 Writing Challenge guidelines here and then get started. You can join any time, but the sooner you join, the more entries you could have to win!

Just ask Cindy Patterson, last year’s winner. :-)

Write on!

Vonda

 

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Write Smart: Don’t Dumb Down Your Reader

Photo courtesy of Farconville/FreeDigitalPhotos

Readers are smart. They’re smart because they read. And if there’s one thing smart readers hate, it’s when writers treat them like they’re dumb.

One way writers dumb down their readers is by info-dumping. Check out these examples:

“When are things going to get back to the way they were before? Can you believe it’s been ten years since daddy left us?” Marsha turned from her sister and wiped a tear. “We had to move into public housing and go on food stamps. Then our brother died and Daddy never even knew. And then you had to ago into rehab. It’s all his fault.”

Let’s be honest here, would we ever have a conversation like that with our siblings? I doubt it. After all, it’s simply a retelling of facts we would both already know. It’s dumping info on to the page for the perceived benefit of the reader. But our readers won’t appreciate the so-called benefit. They can see through our ruse. They know that we’re taking the easy way out.

A good writer will bring those backstory details into the plot layer by layer, revealing facts and motivations through dialogue and POV in a more subtle, natural delivery. One detail may come out on page 5 when Marsha stands in line behind someone with food stamps. Another might be revealed on page 23 when Marsha picks up her sister at rehab and they realize it’s been exactly 10 years since their father left.Using this technique, your reader will be challenged and satisfied by putting together the pieces of the puzzle.

Another way to distance our readers is through unnecessary explanation. Ever read passages similar to these?

“I don’t care what you think!” Melanie yelled again. She wanted to be sure Jason had heard her.

Carly placed the rock on the gravestone and cried because she missed her mother so much.

In these two instances, the writer assumes the reader isn’t smart enough to figure out the characters’ motivations, so he or she writes out an additional explanation. But smart readers don’t appreciate the extra work the writer has done. Instead of being a help, it’s an insult to their reading intelligence. Well-written passages with well-developed characters don’t need explanation.

Which brings me to the reason you’re getting this lesson today. This past Sunday was my 61st birthday, complete with birthday wishes and jokes about getting older. After church a funny thing happened as Gary and I prepared for lunch…and I just had to share it with my Facebook friends.

Here’s the story, copied and pasted from my Facebook page:

Okay, I’ll give all of you a laugh at my expense. This afternoon Gary asked me what the two slices of bacon were doing in the microwave. I told him it wasn’t me, that I hadn’t eaten any bacon since I made that BLT on Friday. To which he asked, “Did you put bacon on it?”

I started to say, “Of course I did. What do you think I am–Stupid?” But before I could say it, I suddenly remembered that I thought the BLT didn’t have any flavor. Now I know why.

There was no B in the BLT. :-(

As my friend, Karen O’Connor says in her book, “Getting old ain’t for wimps…”

Although there are several things I would have written differently if I were writing it for real publication, here are some things I did take the time to address.

When I initially wrote it, I explained that I had forgotten to put the bacon on my sandwich two days before. And I really wanted to create more set-up by telling that Gary and I had discussed flavorless winter tomatoes days before, setting me up to think it was the tomatoes that caused the flavorless sandwich.

But then it hit me: Readers don’t really care that we had discussed tomatoes earlier, or that as a multitasking professional, I had moved on to other things and forgotten about the bacon in the microwave.

As a matter of fact, if I had it to do over again, I’d probably leave off the reference to Karen O’Connor’s book, simply because adding anything after the punchline takes away from the delivery.

But one thing I think did go well was: There was no B in the BLT.

Short, to the point, and without explanation. I trusted my readers to get it.

And they did. :-)

Treat your readers with respect and they’ll love you for it.

(Photo courtesy of Farconville/FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

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Parting Words From The WORD…

Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net

This week I was introduced to a video that was on a friend’s blog. I’m sorry, Friend, but I can’t remember whose it was, but t was the first time I had really listened to the lyrics of the Casting Crowns song, “Jesus, Friend of Sinners.” As I watched the words flash across the screen, my heart was broken for my more-often-than-I-want-to-admit failure to be like Christ.

One line in the song written by Mark Hall and Matthew West, gripped me at my core, stabbing me with the reality of my own sin:

“The world is on their way to You but they’re tripping over me…”

Immediately I began to see the faces of those I’ve tripped on their way to Jesus through the years. Where possible, I’ve asked for forgiveness. Some have granted it; others, I’m sure, haven’t.

Here’s the message in song from Casting Crowns. Am I the only one who’s heart is broken? Whose face do you see as the words appear across the screen?

But even in the midst of our failures, we have a God Who loves and forgives.

…who has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time… 2 Timothy 1:9

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May we be faithful to do what He’s called us to do.

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,
Vonda

(Photo courtesy of www.ChristianPhotos.net)

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