Saturday, March 28, 2009

Edge of Recall by Kristen Heitzmann

If you like a good tense read, this is it.
Edge of Recall by Kristen Heitzmann will keep you up all night. It's the story of a young woman with "issues." Her colleague and one-time boyfriend calls her a "high maintenance woman" and her psychiatrist keeps trying to get her to tell him the real underlying problem that won't let her go. She keeps telling him she isn't holding anything back, but the nightmares are always there. The obsession with labyrinths keeps her searching.

When Tess gets a phone call from Smith Chandler, the architect who broke her heart and betrayed her long ago, all the issues rise to the surface. Her psychiatrist tells her it's too dangerous for her to work on a labyrinth and be close to Smith, but she can't say no to the job he offers her.

Then strange things start happening at the remote site where they are working. Things are moved or disappear all together. Tess and the others sense they are being watched. And Tess begins to see things and hear things that drive her to the speed dial on her phone so the psychiatrist can keep it all under control.

But then Smith is attacked and Tess becomes the primary suspect.

Don't pick up this book unless you have several free hours to finish it.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The ADD Writer

I start my day with a cup of coffee and think about what I should have for breakfast. I decide on cereal but there isn’t any milk, so I find a scrap of paper and begin a shopping list.

The phone rings and I take a message for my husband, on another scrap of paper, then remember that I have to call a friend but the phone goes dead so I return it to the cradle and go hunting for the other one.

I enter my office and notice there’s a ‘note to self’ to send an email to my publisher. I sit down to do that and open my email program.
But there’s a note from my daughter so I open it and then decide to send my other daughter a note but she’s on Facebook so I click on the internet icon and open up the world of fb friends.

One of them is excited because she is having her first book published so I send her a note to congratulate her.

Then I decide to click into her site to see what the book cover looks like and notice a link about marketing that looks interesting, so I click on it and decide that it’s a great article so go to my blog to link to it.

There’s a message from a reader there so I take just a wee moment to answer it, and while I’m doing that I remember I intended to post an article to my writing blog.

So I open the folder on my computer where that article should be but it’s not there so I open another one and find a short story that I intended to send to a magazine.

So I go back to my email program and open it up and see that the four lists I’m on have all sent their daily digests so I take just a few moments to look at them and then my stomach growls and I realize it’s lunch time.

My husband comes home and we decide to go out for a bite and then decide we really need to look at that bed that we’ve been thinking about buying and then we see the Tim’s on the corner so decide we need a coffee.

Then I remember that there wasn’t any milk for breakfast so we go to our favourite, huge, all-in-one store and take just a little while to look at the laptops and cameras.

Then suddenly it’s supper time. We drive home and throw something together to eat before heading out to our regular Bible study.

Someone asks how my writing is going.

Writing? Who has time for writing?

Monday, March 23, 2009

Fantasy Football by Marcia Lee Laycock

My daughter sent us a YouTube video recently, featuring the prowess of a few NFL football players. They were ‘strutting their stuff’ to prove they were worthy of being picked for the Fantasy Football Team. My husband loved the video and even though I don’t follow the sport much, I was impressed. The young athletes were able to do amazing things. One even leaped through two open windows of a car, landing unscathed on the other side, with a football in his hands of course.

As I watched it I thought of the pressure these young men are under to perform. They have already achieved amazing things as athletes. They have trained every day, honed their skills until there is very little left to learn and then been able to put it all on display on a football field in front of thousands of fans. No small accomplishment. Yet they are still trying to prove they can do it. The refrain in the video was, “Look what I can do. Pick me.”

It reminded me of times when I have been in a classroom full of fourth graders. They are anxious to prove themselves too, waving their hands energetically at every question. (Even when they don’t know the answer!). Often they would come to me with the work they had finished, looking up with hopeful eyes for the teacher’s praise. Even those who were able to do excellent work never ceased to try and claim the approval they were never totally confident they would receive.

I have talked to many writers who are a lot like these football players and fourth graders. Even when they have accomplished amazing things – many articles published in magazines, or books circulating all over the country – they still have doubts about their work and feel they have to continue to prove they can really do it.

Some time ago I discovered I had fallen into this group. Though I have managed to accomplish what many do not – publication in several areas – I am plagued with self-doubt. I hold my breath with every submission. I also discovered I was using my writing like those football players and fourth graders – as a means to gain approval. I realized I was waving my hand to try and attract God’s attention, then holding out my accomplishments and saying, “Look what I can do. Pick me.”

Sometimes I forget that God isn’t looking at how many by-lines I have in how many magazines. He isn’t keeping track of the number of books published and sold. He’s not looking at what I’ve accomplished at all.

He’s looking at what Jesus did. For some unfathomable reason He showered His grace upon me and opened my eyes to what happened when Jesus died on a cross more than 2,000 years ago. He picked me. And now the Father sees a heart changed and His Holy Spirit living in me.
And now He’s smiling.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast”( Ephesians 2:8 &9).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Great post by Lyn Cote at Novel Journey today. Very practical info.

Also check out my interview at the Hot Apple Cider blog