Category Archives: MoGo7000

Planning is Not a Dirty Word: 5 Tips to Being a More Productive Writer by Susan Sleeman, & Kudos, MoGo, & a Free Book!

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net/koratmember

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net/koratmember

Yep, It’s April 15: A Great Day to Have Author Susan Sleeman Talk About PLANNING (And we’re NOT talking about taxes!)

Feel like you’re drowning in tax advice? Don’t worry, we’re not going to talk about the IRS. No, no, no! We’re going to talk about IMPORTANT stuff, like planning our novels! And that’s something all us novelists need to hear.

I’m thrilled to have Susan Sleeman with us today as she shares her five tips to being more productive as a writer. Be sure to read her bio below, but let me tell you that Susan is an award-winning and award-nominated author, so if she speaks, I think we should all be listening!

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Interview & Book Give-Away with Michelle Cox; Who Won The Writing Sisters’ Book? and Kudos & MoGo7000 Call-Out

Michelle Cox headshotAs 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!

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First Up–Michelle Cox Shares Her Amazing Journey with Her Book, Blog, and Screenplay, Just 18 Summers®!

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!

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Top Ten Things About Being a Writer, A Contest, And Kudos & MoGo7000 Totals!

I love my job fdp pakorn

Image courtesy of pakorn/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A while back, my friend, Jolene Philo, posted her Top Ten Things to Love About Being a Writer and I immediately knew I wanted to share it with you!

And since this is Kudos and MoGo7000 reporting day, I think it’ll be a great time to have a fun little contest. After reading Jolene’s list below, please post a comment of your own top things (any number) about being a writer. Then I’ll have an independent judge choose the most interesting or unusual or just plain funny answer, and the winner will receive a set of Cyn Rogalski’s Writer’s Blocks!

Then read on to celebrate with our successful friends this month. :-)

Let’s get started!

Top Ten Things About Being a Writer, by Jolene Philo

 

10. Writing often feels like Show and Tell felt in elementary school…when you knew your show and tell item would be the talk of the playground at recess.

9.   Having our books on library shelves is as exciting as meeting Michael Jordan, Serena Williams, or Derek Jeter is for basketball, tennis, or baseball fans.Jolene Philo headshot

8.   Writing in the afternoon produces a sweet feeling akin to when elementary teachers read aloud to their students after lunch.

7.   Writing in the evening is akin to snuggling with our kids when reading them a bedtime story.

6.   Writers who work from home never stress about drive time weather.

5.   Writing is one Bilbo Baggins adventure after another: “Go back?” he (Bilbo) thought. “No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!”

4.  We writers absolutely must travel to unusual and interesting places to conduct research.

3.  We have to remind ourselves that we are working when “work” involves hours and days of reading.

2.  People buy our words. How cool is that?

Photo courtesy of Cyn Rogalski

Photo courtesy of Cyn Rogalski

1.  Writers meet the most fascinating people in unexpected places.

So, what do you think? What are your favorite things about being a writer? Post your answers below and you could be the winner of Cyn Rogalski’s Writer’s Blocks! Be sure to come back next week to see if you’re the winner. :-)

Bio: Jolene Philo is the author of the Different Dream Parenting series. Her new book, The Jolene Philo cover Different Dream ParentingCaregiver’s Notebook: An Organizational Tool and Support to Help You Care for Others will be released in November of 2014 by Discovery House Publishers. Over 100 of her articles have appeared in publications including Focus on the FamilyParentLife, and Home Cooking. She speaks at conferences and events throughout the United States. Her blog, www.DifferentDream.com, provides resources and encouragement for parents of kids with special needs. She also blogs about life on her dusty gravel road  at www.jolenephilo.com. You can connect with her on FacebookTwitter,  and Pinterest. She is slightly addicted Netflix. With their two children married and on their own, Jolene and her husband are kicking up their empty nester heels in Boone, Iowa.

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Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Kudos to YOU, Cathy Baker!

 

I think this is the first time this has ever happened, but we had only one report of Kudos this month. Yes, it has been a long, cold winter!

So this month, let’s all join together to celebrate with Cathy Baker as she shares TWO exciting reports this month:

Cathy Baker (SC): My blog has been revamped. It’s now “Fragrant Ink.” (same blog address) It has a NEW name, format, and focus. Also, I’ve been asked to lead a workshop on Writing to Heal for mothers who’ve lost children of any age. For more information on the retreat, please contact Cathy at tea4thee@charter.net.

Congratulations, Cathy! Congratulations on two jobs well Done!

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Who MoGo’d in February?mogo7000 logo

 

These CWD writers have earned a February entry into the end-of-the-year drawing for $100 in cash!

#5: Eddie Snipes – 7,300 words#6: Jeanne Doyon – 7,378 words

Congrats, Eddie and Jeanne! Keep up the good work and you’ll earn even more entries into the drawing.

Writers, want to know how you can qualify for the $100 challenge? Check out the MoGo7000 Challenge here. It’s free and open to everyone all year long!

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Okay, I think that does it for another week at The Christian Writer’s Den. Thank you, friends, for visiting with me week after week. As we celebrate our 6th year of meeting together, I’m reminded again I am blessed to have you joining me in this journey called the writing life.

Writing is hard enough without doing it alone. It’s my goal to encourage and challenge and lift you up for the journey. Please let me know any time you have a new book coming out and I’ll be happy to highlight your success!

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

Vonda

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Who Won Sharon Lavy’s Book? Call-Outs for Kudos, MoGo7000 Totals, & CCC Scholarship Applications

Sharon Lavy Deadly Secrets coverWho Won Sharon Lavy’s Book?

And the winner of Deadly Secret: A Tale from The Ohio Valley is…Julie Garmon! Congratulations, Julie! Just contact me with your snail mail address and your preference of a paperback or digital format and your book will be on its way! But I need to let you know Sharon may still be in Israel, so it may take a few extra days to hear from her.

Israel. Can you imagine? I sure hope to be there one of these days. I would love to walk where Jesus walked! :-)

And friends, you don’t have to miss out. Here’s the Amazon link to Deadly Secret: A Tale from the Ohio ValleyAvailable in both digital and paperback. Enjoy!

Thanks for joining us and sharing your book with us, Sharon.

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Call-Out for Kudos…I Want to Brag on You!

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’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!

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order ONLY:

**Your name
**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 can’t wait for us to celebrate with you!

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mogo7000 logoCall for MoGo7000 Totals

If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in February, you can receive an entry in the drawing for the 2014 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! It’s open to everyone who qualifies.

To report your February results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written in February. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Monday). 

If you missed out on last year’s money-winning writing challenge, don’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 you’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 “hat” for the drawing. Reach the goal one month and you’ll have one entry. Meet it 12 months and you’ll have 12 entries!

So what are you waiting for? Get started now and you could have $100 this time next year. And it doesn’t cost you a cent. :-)

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Still Accepting Scholarship Applications for the 2014 Christian Communicatorsccclogosmall Conference!

Thank you for your quick responses to the Christian Communicators Conference open registration announcement. The response was overwhelming and open registration is now closed; however, we’re still accepting applications for FIVE scholarships.

If you have a financial need, please feel free to visit the CCC Scholarship Information page and submit the completed application. But you must hurry, deadline for receipt of scholarship applications is April 1, 2014.

And if you don’t have a financial need, but would like to attend CCC, please contact our Conference Coordinator, Cynthia Owens at ccc [@] gowithvision.com to be placed on the waiting list (at no charge).

Okay, that does it for this Tuesday call-out! Can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to this month! Thank you for letting us celebrate your successes with you!

Blessings,

Vonda

(Celebration image courtesy of m_bartosch/FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

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Interview & Book Give-Away with Jo Ann Fore; Kudos & MoGo7000 Totals

Jo Ann Fore Headshot

You are in for a treat today, sweet friends! Today I have the joy of introducing my friend Jo Ann Fore to you. We’ve known each other for many years and she just gets more and more beautiful!

Jo Ann is a speaker, life coach, and author of a life-changing new book, When A Woman Finds Her Voice: Overcoming Life’s Hurts & Using Your Story to Make a DifferenceAs you’ll see in this interview, her ministry is all about hope.

I know you’re going to fall in love with Jo Ann, just as I have. Be sure to leave a comment for Jo Ann and you’ll be in the drawing for a free book!

So let’s jump right in, Jo Ann. I think I know the answer to this question, but I want our friends to hear your heart. So tell us, why did you write When A Woman Finds Her Voice?

I believe God created each one of us with this distinctive life message to share, but far too often the hurts of life block us from sharing. Our stories deserve to be told, need to be told, but sometimes there’s this part of us that can’t help but wonder if what we say really matters, wonders if we ourselves matter.

We tend to develop this concept of who we think we should be, so we spend our days presenting that to the world, masking our true voices. And in this masking, we lose our true selves. Sometimes we try to be so many things to so many people that we stuff our voice so deep that even we forget who we are.

That’s not God’s plan.

I’m passionate about helping with women in this area because I’ve walked this journey. I know the silence, fear, and doubt that comes from unfathomable hurts. And I want to help women identify these toxic beliefs that twist our thinking in the fallout of these hurts.

What do you hope readers will gain from your book?Jo Ann Fore book cover

I want women to know, to really know, that just because we walk through some hard stuff in life, it doesn’t mean God’s purpose for us changes.

Sometimes what we need most is a simple word of encouragement that God’s still with us, that if we stick it out we will somehow see His hand and His hand will somehow lead us through.

There’s a scripture tucked in Acts 18:10 where Paul had been trying to share the message that God entrusted him with but no one would listen to him, so in a dream God told him this, “Don’t let anyone silence you. No matter what happens, I’m with you and no one is going to be able to hurt you.”

That’s what Paul needed to stick it out, to make it through the storms that threatened to blow him off course. It’s the same thing we need: to know God is with us. And we need to trust that, to hold to that when nothing else makes sense.

How do you define “finding your voice?”

As a writer we hear a lot about voice, about finding our voices. It’s drilled into us from the beginning, about how it’s our unique voice that sets us apart in the millions of words that are being spread daily.

And much like that individualism that we read in a particular author’s words, each one of us, whether we write or not, holds our own unique voice deep inside.

Our voice is what makes us us, it’s this unique combination of our personality, belief systems, feelings, and passions, it’s basically everything that encompasses all of who God made us to be.

It’s this unique that pours red from the vein of our authentic selves. A crucial individualism that’s about being known, not just to others, but first to ourselves.

Sort of like our favorite author, when we pick up her work and recognize her voice, this is what we need to walk out in our own lives. When we make decisions, when we live our daily lives, we need to check to make sure it’s our own voice we’re walking out and not a substitute because those just waste our time.

How did you decide on this topic?

I have a wise agent. {Really, I do.} About 18 months ago, I had a meeting with my agent {and his lovely wife}, tossing about ideas for what book I would write. He asked me a simple question, “What book would you write that excites you each morning—a book that you will make you want to get out of bed each day so you can work on it?”

It was this book.

Jo Ann Fore logo imageYou are passionate about the power of story—do you have any tips to help us tell our stories?

There is an extraordinary power in the sharing of story. This finding our voices, its about sharing our stories—stories that have the power to change both our lives and the lives of others.

In the book we have a list of tips for finding your voice, but you can also grab them for FREE in a downloadable printable over here.

Jo Ann, you don’t realize it, but you’ve hit on a very important point we stress at Christian Communicators Conference for women: There truly is an extraordinary power in the sharing of our stories. God doesn’t waste any scars. Thank you for sharing your message and your book with us.

And readers, be sure to leave a comment for Jo Ann and you’ll automatically be in the drawing for a free book! Don’t forget to check back next week to see if you’re the winner.

But you don’t have to wait to get this great book! Here’s a direct Amazon link for When A Woman Finds Her Voice: Overcoming Life’s Hurts & Using Your Story to Make a Difference. You could get yours today!

Bio: Jo Ann Fore is known as the “Hope Coach.” She is a popular blogger, certified Life Purpose Coach-Facilitator, and the author of the recently released When A Woman Finds Her Voice: Overcoming Life’s Hurts & Using Your Story to Make a Difference. Jo Ann serves a powerful promise of hope to a woman’s heart. Her encouraging words have been featured in Guideposts, Christianity Today’s Just Between Us & Today’s Christian Woman, Lifeway’s HomeLife, as well as many others, while her coaching experiences have helped many women transform broken lives into beautiful ones.

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Kudos to YOU!

We only had two Christian Writer’s Den friends to send in their successes this month, but my goodness, what great successes they are!

1.  Eddie Snipes (GA): I had two books released in January. Abounding Grace and Out of the Ashes (a book written for the Pregnancy Resource Center). Here are Amazon links to Abounding Grace and Out of the Ashes.

2.  Lori Hatcher (SC): Lori is pleased to announce a contract with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas for her devotional book, Hungry for God . . . Starving for Time. Also, this spring, she’ll be the featured speaker at the Women to Women Spring Conference at Myrtle Beach, SC March 28-30. She’ll serve with worship leader Janet Rollings and devotion leader Cherie Nettles to present “Too Stressed to Be Blessed? Come Away.”

Congratulations, Eddie and Lori! We’re so proud of you!

And readers, be sure to check back next week for a list of writing opportunities collected just for you. Follow through with submissions and maybe we’ll be celebrating with you soon!

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Congrats to These MoGo7000 Qualifiers in January!

My goodness, y’all have been busy! These CWD writers have earned an entry into the end-of-the-year drawing for $100 in cash!

#1: Joan Hall – 7,035 words
#2: Susan Baganz – 14,190 words
#3: Jeanne Doyon – 8,520 words

#4: Eddie Snipes – 65,000 words

Want to know how you can qualify for the $100 challenge? Check out the MoGo7000 Challenge here. It’s free and open to everyone!

Well, we’re expecting snow and ice today and the next few days here in SC. Be safe, everyone!

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

Vonda

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Your Muse is DEAD by Dave Weiss; Call-Outs for Kudos & MoGo7000 Totals

Dave Weiss stage shotToday it’s a joy to welcome back Dave Weiss, artist, writer, speaker, and founder of AMOKArts, where Dave helps Christian Creatives use their gifts for God’s glory. I read Dave’s post recently and knew immediately that I wanted to share it with you!

Your Muse is DEAD, by Dave Weiss of AMOKARTS

You’re going to see a side of me you may not like today. I am hoping you will stick with me. There is one thing that always drives me a little crazy. It happens whenever I hear a creative type who seems to be waiting on his or her muse. Waiting for inspiration to strike. Worse still are people who blame this lack of inspiration on God. So today let’s get it straight. The concept of muses comes from mythology, it’s pagan. It has no place in your Christian life. Your muse is dead.

As far as blaming God, that happens when you say God is not inspiring you today. Now I’ll be the first one to admit there are days when it’s hard to find the idea and there are days where you need to unplug, cease striving and be still. I do not think it is fair to blame anything on a perfect God though…

Inspiration is not something to wait for, it’s something to seek. It’s not some whispy goddess who capriciously decides to withhold your creativity. The muse is dead, actually she was never alive. Most of inspiration is work.

What we’re really missing most of the time is not inspiration, it’s motivation. We all know those days where we have the idea and everything is flowing and creating is fun. And then there are those other days where it all just feels like work. Guess what… on those days the best thing you can do is get to work. Let’s just say for a moment that on any given day there is no new idea. My first question is have you finished and shipped yesterday’s idea or last week’s or last year’s? Most of the times when I feel stuck, the reality is, I’m not stuck. I have a project that is at a point where it’s not fun, it’s work and I’m just not motivated to do something that isn’t fun. In those times the answer is to suck it up and push through. Sometimes the new idea doesn’t come because we have to finish the old idea. It’s called faithfulness.

Look at God. He created the Universe in six days, saw that is was good (ready to “ship”) and then rested. That’s a good word for us all. Give your project your best, get it done and done well, ship it and take a break. Maybe instead of looking for a non-existent muse, we should look at what we already have going and finish that, before we start seeking the next idea.

God is not witholding from you, when He has something for you to do, He will make it clear. In the mean time look to what He’s previously given you that you left unfinished and start working on that.

Inspiration must be accompanied with motivation and determination. Don’t use it as an excuse for procrastination.

What do you need to finish?

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Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Call-Out for Kudos…I Want to Brag on You!

Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’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!

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order:

**Your name
**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 can’t wait for us to celebrate with you!

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mogo7000 logoCall for MoGo7000 Totals

If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in January, you can get your first entry in the drawing for the 2014 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! It’s open to everyone who qualifies.

To report your January results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written in January. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Monday). 

If you missed out on last year’s money-winning writing challenge, don’t worry, a brand new 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 you’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 “hat” for the drawing. Reach the goal one month and you’ll have one entry. Meet it 12 months and you’ll have 12 entries!

So what are you waiting for? Get started now and you could have $100 this time next year. And it doesn’t cost you a cent. :-)

Now, quit putting it off and get to work!

Blessings,

Vonda

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Writer’s Headlines: Changes, Champions, & Celebrations! And Who Won Johnnie Donley’s Book?

Photo courtesy of SSCreations/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of SSCreations/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Today is definitely a day of celebration–and we’re celebrating YOU, the Christian Writer’s Den family!

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Changes at Christian Writer’s Den

First of all, thank you to all who responded to my call-out for help with my blog posts. As I mentioned last week, this year I’m committed to working on the novel of my heart that I’ve been saying I was going to write for the past four years. On top of that, I forgot to mention that a friend and I are also reworking a non-fiction book proposal for an agent who has shown interest.

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Writer’s Headlines: Kudos & MoGo7000 Call Outs and Christian Writer’s Den Announcement

newspapersHappy New Year, friends! It’s the first week of 2014 and that means there are a lot of things to talk about today! Change is in the air!

Call-Out for Kudos…I Want to Brag on You!

Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’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!

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order:

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Writer’s Headlines: Writing Opportunities Selected for YOU & You Could Win $100!

newspapersIt’s the 3rd Thursday, and that means it’s time to share some writing opportunities with you!

I love gathering writing opportunities for you! Find the ones that are good fits for you and then be sure to follow the guidelines carefully. Don’t forget to let us know if something here leads to a publishing opportunity for you. We’ll want to join the celebration!

1.  Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference’ Co-Directors are looking for guest bloggers! If you’ve attended Blue Ridge, are registered for the 2014 conference, or have served as a faculty member, contact Al or Edie (addresses at the post). BRMCWC blog guest writing guidelines here.

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Writer’s Headlines: Kudos & MoGo7000 Totals

newspapersYep, it’s ALREADY the 2nd Thursday of December, so it’s time to celebrate YOU!

Here are the December kudos:

1.  Andrea Merrell (SC): Just signed two contracts with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. Murder of a Manuscript is filled with writing and editing tips to keep your manuscript out of the editorial graveyard. And Praying for the Prodigal is designed to give hope, encouragement, and practical advice to those waiting for their prodigal to come home. I share the story of my own prodigals, how God delivered and restored them, and the importance of praying the Word of God over our children daily.

2.  Johnna Stein (GA): My article, “Seriously Ridiculous” in which I was asked to write about JumpFrom Paper bags (my first assignment) is in the Dec/Jan issue of Kiki magazine.

3.  Marilyn Turk (FL): I have a ghosted story in the March 2014 issue of Guidesposts magazine. It’s a story based on an experience my husband and I shared when we were voluntary lighthouse keepers in Maine this past summer. I looked for a story, and God provided in a most unusual way! The story is told from my husband’s POV.

4.  Tracy Crump (MS): ChristianDevotions.US published my Christmas devotional, No Room in the Garage.

5.  Cheryl Barker (KS): Cheryl Barker signed with Credo Communications in November. Karen
Neumair is now her agent. Cheryl also has an article “From Generation to Generation” in a December issue of Live.

Congratulations, all! I’m so happy for you!

Didn’t see your name on this list? Then be sure to come back next week and you’ll find a list of writing opportunities collected just for you!

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You blew the top off MoGo7000 in November!

Take a look at these Christian Writer’s Den friends who pounded out the words last month and earned another entry in the drawing for $100:

#25: Marilyn Turk – 19,269 words
#26: Cynthia Owens – 17,219 words

#27: Edie Melson – 12,245 words
#28: Susan M. Baganz – 75,183 words

Yes, that’s almost 124,000 new words written in November by these four writers! Wow! I’m so proud of you!

And now, here it is, December and friends, you have 20 more days to pound out at least 7000 new words on a book project in order to get an entry into the drawing for $100. It’s open to everyone, you can start at any time, and it’s FREE! Check out the MoGo7000 Challenge details here.

Write on!

Vonda

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