Monday, April 29, 2013

A Monday Post

It is probably obvious to those who follow my blog regularly that it is a work in progress. The break I've taken for the past few weeks has let me reevaluate and make a few changes. I've realized how much time can get eaten away by social media, and I've taken steps to make sure I don't overdue it with other blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  I don't want to be so busy that I miss moments like these tiny spring flowers poking through the ground.

That being said I'm going to start posting only on Mondays. Some weeks will be a Marvelous Middle Grade Monday post or a post on another book, some may be an update on writing, some may just be a quote. This means that I won't be participating in Perfect Picture Book Friday anymore. I've come to the point in my writing that my main focus has become middle grade fiction and picture books are moving to the back burner.  I'm excited for the change and hope you will all stick with me!

Progress continues on my middle grade novel. I'm nearing the end of my major revision to change it from third person to first person. I'm excited for this story and hope to get it completed soon. With baseball season underway for my family, writing time can be hard to come by, but I've set some goals for myself which I hope to complete.  I don't know about you, but I've come to an age where if I don't set goals and keep to-do lists, I don't get things done.  

I'm also excited about a writing conference I'm attending this weekend - the Wild, Wild, Midwest SCBWI Multi-State Conference in Fort Wayne. Some of the speakers include Kathi Appelt, Peter Brown, Jill Corcoran, Matt Faulkner, Kendra Levin, Lin Oliver, Linda Pratt, Chris Rylander and Jane Yolen to name a few. I will definitely share my experience next Monday!

Another exciting thing for me is I'm now the co-coordinator for SCBWI-MI's SE-Mitten Meet Up.  My friend, Patti, and I will be hosting monthly get-togethers for SCBWI members in the Metro Detroit area starting in June. We are excited to support our Michigan chapter in this way.

Have a great week!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A Winner and a Link

I'm happy to announce the winner of The Passionate Mom by Susan Merrill.  Congratulations to 

Molly E Hulse!!!

I will be sending you an email shortly for your address.

I would also like to share a link to a great blog post by fellow SCBWI - MI member Vicky Lorencen. Her post this past Monday really encouraged me in my writing journey, and I set a new goal for myself for this week that I hope will stick for even longer.  The thoughts could be applied to many other aspects of life too. It's a short and sweet post with a punch. Check it out!

Have a great rest of the week and for those who didn't win a copy of The Passionate Mom, stop by Susan's blog this week for excerpts and giveaways!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Passionate Mom by Susan Merrill AND a Giveaway!

Today is a special post. I know many of you that follow my blog are moms (and even you dads would enjoy this or could share with your wife). I would like to share a wonderful book with you that I recently read. I'm actually part of the "Delivery Team" for the book. It has been an enjoyable experience and I can't wait until I have my own book to market, as I've learned many new, creative ideas. Anyway, this book is one I plan to refer back to over the rest of my parenting years.  Be sure to read all the way to the end, as I am hosting a giveaway too!

THE PASSIONATE MOM: Dare to Parent In Today's World
by: Susan Merrill
April 2013

The Passionate Mom is a book all moms should read. It provides a clear, organized plan for any mom who cares and loves their kids as much as God Himself cares and loves us. The reader is taken through the book of Nehemiah from the Old Testament of the Bible. Due to a variety of circumstances, Nehemiah took charge of rebuilding the wall surrounding the city of Jerusalem. Using the rebuilding of the wall as a guide, Susan describes how to build a wall around your family for both protection and provision. Each chapter of the book describes a brick that should be part of every passionate mom's wall and the various traits needed that act as the mortar to keep the wall from crumbling. The 10 bricks needed are: perception, pondering, passion, prayer, patience, preparation, purpose, planning, problem solving and perseverance. Interspersed between the brick chapters are an interlude on building your wall and one on opening gates in your wall, since as your kids grow, they will need to leave and begin to make their own choices and decisions.

I loved reading this book. The image of building a wall for my family was very easy to picture and allowed me to keep that image in mind as I read. Susan used plenty of examples to describe the different bricks from Nehemiah's live, as well as her own life. By asking questions and having spots where thinking of my own answers was necessary, I was able to think about how to put the bricks of my wall into place. I look forward to placing the bricks into mortar around my family and doing the best I can, to be the best mom I can be. 

For even more information and the book trailer, please visit

Thanks for stopping by today. I'm happy to say that Thomas Nelson is providing a copy of THE PASSIONATE MOM for me to offer as a giveaway.  See the details below and good luck! I will announce the winner next Wednesday.

a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher for my honest opinion. All thoughts are my own.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday - Deadweather and Sunrise (part 2)

When I posted last week about DEADWEATHER AND SUNRISE by Geoff Rodkey, I hadn't finished the book yet.  Since I have read the entire book now, I thought I would share my comments from Goodreads.

DEADWEATHER AND SUNRISE: The Chronicles of Egg, Book One 
by Geoff Rodkey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have to admit, I was a little unsure about this book when I started reading it. Pirates really aren't my thing. But, I was totally hooked by the first couple of chapters. Egbert, or Egg as he becomes known, is a true hero. He tries to do the right thing, even if it means dying or losing the girl he loves. And as it often happens with a hero, their choices end up being in their favor, just maybe not at first glance. The book was filled with continual action and took twists and turns I had no idea were coming. I'm very curious to see how Burn Healy's character is involved in all the action, and I do have a few guesses I'm keeping to myself. The description of the islands and characters were wonderful, and I could picture everything in my head as I read. I can't wait to start Book 2 - New Lands!

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher/publicity company for my honest opinion. All thoughts are my own.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Thanks for stopping by on this first day of April! For other great MMGM links, please see the list to the right on my website.  This will likely be my last post for a few weeks. I have some personal writing goals I want to reach and need to take a step back from social media to free up more writing time. So if you don't see me around, that's what I'm doing. :)  Have a great week!