As you can see, today is a busy day. And it’s all my fault. Last week, I completely forgot to ask for your Kudos and MoGo7000 totals! So today, in addition to an awesome interview with the multi-talented Michelle Cox, our triple duty day will also cover call-outs, and a book winner!
First Up–Michelle Cox Shares Her Amazing Journey with Her Book, Blog, and Screenplay, Just 18 SummersÂ®!
Yes, you read right. My brilliant friend, Michelle Cox, got a great idea, the Lord multiplied her vision, and now she has all kinds of stuff going on! Read on to hear how a simple comment from her pastor kicked off an avalanche of opportunities!
And if you’d like a free copy of Just 18 SummersÂ®, just leave a comment for Michelle and you’ll be in the drawing. Don’t forget to come back next week to see if you’re the winner!
Welcome, Michelle. I can’t wait to share your story, so let’s get started. Please tell our readers how you got the idea for Just 18 SummersÂ®.
My pastor dedicated a baby during a Sunday service and as the parents turned to leave the platform, he said, â€śDonâ€™t forgetâ€”you have just 18 summers. Take time to make some memories.â€ť Whew, those words slammed into me!
I came up with the idea to do a gift book about the concept, but God had much bigger plans, and now Iâ€™m working with my business partner, Dave Moody, to develop a complete brand of products and resources for families.
I know a lot is planned for Just 18 SummersÂ®? Can you give us a quick rundown?Â
Iâ€™m excited because my Just 18 Summers novel (co-authored with Rene Gutteridge) has just released from Tyndale. The story follows the lives of four families who begin to realize how preciousâ€”and fleetingâ€”their time is with their children. Butch Browning is facing single parenthood after the death of his wife. The Oâ€™Reillys are expecting their first child. The Andersons are approaching an empty nest, and the Buckleys are so focused on providing their children with everything that theyâ€™ve forgotten what they truly need.
Each family has just eighteen summers before their children are grown and each must decide how to spend them. Will they look back with memories . . . or regrets?
Weâ€™ve also launched a parenting blog. We have a new post each Monday-Friday and our staff of 18 writers brings a wealth of great content including home dĂ©cor, recipes, craft projects, organizational tips, devotionals, object lessons, practical advice, and so much more.
Weâ€™ve written the screenplay and are working to raise the funding for a film. Other plans include music, a line of books, and other products to inspire, equip, and encourage parents.
Yes, the Just 18 Summers blog is a powerhouse of parenting, marriage, and family information. I believe it in so much I’ve had the joy of contributing a couple of posts there myself! đź™‚ Now, with all this activity, what have you learned that will help other writers?
I wish I had time to tell you the whole story because itâ€™s hysterical how God brought all of this together. He can do amazing things with our effortsâ€”even when we bring him nothing but a willing heart. Iâ€™m proof of that because everything thatâ€™s happened with Just 18 SummersÂ® has come about in exactly the opposite way it should have occurred. I love it because that way God gets all the credit.
My advice for other writers would be to ask God for ideas and then to train your ears to listen for them. Once He sends you an idea, see how you can make your work universally personal. In other words, make it appeal to as many people as possible while still making each person think that it was written specifically for them.
Be open and available when God asks you to step out of your comfort zone. Youâ€™ll discover what I haveâ€”He goes with us into those unfamiliar territories and Heâ€™ll equip us with everything we need to accomplish the projects Heâ€™s put on our hearts.
So put your running shoes on and be ready to run through doors as God opens them. Who knows what exciting adventures He has planned for you!
What do you hope folks will take away from Just 18 SummersÂ®?
Just 18 SummersÂ® isn’t a guilt-trip. It’s a gentle reminder to slow down and savor the moments, to make memories together, and toÂ instill character and other important traits in our children. Itâ€™s a wake-up call that our children wonâ€™t always be there, to enjoy each precious season with themâ€”because we can’t go back and rewind yesterday, no matter how much we’d like to do that.
Eighteen years sounds like a long time, but we really have just 18 summers before our children leave home. My question for parents is: How many summers do you have left . . . and what are you going to do with them?
Thank you for sharing this valuable information with us. Whatâ€™s the best way to get in touch with you or to learn more about Just 18 SummersÂ®?
You can also find me on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/just18summers and www.Facebook.com/MichelleCoxInspirations, and on Twitter @michelleinspire and @just18summers. Iâ€™m also at Just 18 Summers on Pinterest.
Thanks again for joining us, Michelle. I pray God continues to bless your socks off as you use His truth to support and encourage families.
And readers, don’t forget to leave a comment for Michelle and you could win a free book! Don’t forget to check back next week to see who wins!
And if you’d like to go ahead and get your copy now, you can use this direct Amazon link to Just 18 Summers.
Bio: Besides developing the Just 18 SummersÂ® brand, Michelle Cox is a speaker and the author of seven books, including her new novel, Just 18 Summers. She has written for FoxNews.com, is a contributing writer for WHOA Magazine for Women and Leading Hearts Magazine, does interviews and writes movie reviews for ChristianCinema.com, has written for Focus on the Family, Product Concept, and many other groups, and writes a weekly food column for the blog hosted by Fox News Personality Todd Starnes.
Michelle has been on faculty for many conferences, has designed book trailers for Tentmakerâ€™s Entertainment, and has been a guest on numerous radio and television programs, including Hannity, The Harvest Show, and Focus on the Family. Sheâ€™s been married to her favoriteâ€”and onlyâ€”husband, Paul, for almost 40 years. They have three grown sons and five perfect grandchildren. And just so youâ€™ll know, she can be bribed with cupcakes.
Who Won The Writing Sisters’ New Book, The Shepherd’s Song?
The winner is Cheryl Pelton Lutz! Congratulations, Cheryl! Getting your book is simple. Just contact me with your snail mail address and Betsy and Laurie will get your book right out to you!
And friends, I know you’re gonna want to get your own copy, so here’s a direct Amazon link to The Shepherd’s Song.
We Need To Hear About Your Successes!
Yes, I know I’m a week late, but I want to know what you’ve been up to. Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe youâ€™ve had an article published, signed a book contract, released a new book, got an agent, or started a new blog. If so, we want to hear from you!
Itâ€™s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order ONLY:
**Your state in two-letter abbreviation
**Link to your website or blog
**Your good news
**Link to your good news, if online (online bookstore, online article, etc)
I canâ€™t wait for us to celebrate with you!
And Who Worked on Their MoGo7000 in March?
If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in March, you can receive an entry in the drawing for the 2014 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! Itâ€™s open to everyone who qualifies.
To report your March results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written in March. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Monday).Â
If you missed out on last yearâ€™s money-winning writing challenge, donâ€™t worry, the 2014 challenge is underway! Here are the MoGo7000 Challenge rules. All you have to do is write at least 7000 NEW words on a book project in any month and youâ€™ll receive an entry into the end-of-the-year drawing for $100.
Each month that you qualify with 7000 new words, your name goes in the â€śhatâ€ť for the drawing. Reach the goal one month and youâ€™ll have one entry. Meet it 12 months and youâ€™ll have 12 entries!
So what are you waiting for? Get started now and you could have $100 this time next year. And it doesnâ€™t cost you a cent.
Again, I apologize for getting off-schedule, but I promise I’ll cover all our usual bases this month. They just won’t be on the right days!
Hope to see you back on Friday as we hear a message from the Lord about procrastination. Not that any of us need to hear it…certainly not me…