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Showing posts from June, 2006

Sabbatical

Many of you have already figured this out, but I'm taking a break from blogging this week and next, and hope to be back late next week. When I come back, I'll have some really great news about a Christian SF/F series I was told was being dropped, as well as one author's thoughts on why the genre is slow to catch on with some Christians ... highlights of the discussion about romance within the genre, as requested ... all mixed in, no doubt, with my usual ramblings on Life, the Universe, and Everything. And then it'll be time to do our third Christian SF/F blog tour, which I have the honor of leading ... In the meantime, have a safe and blessed Independence Day (for those of you in the States)! P.S. This weekend marks the seventh anniversary of Duncan's birth and my nineteenth wedding anniversary. Bittersweet, to be sure--I've been doing a lot of reflecting on God's sustaining mercy and grace. And were it not for a very patchy dial-up connection, I might

Donita K. Paul: Day 2

I was going to post a review today for DragonQuest, the second book in Donita’s fantasy series, but I suddenly find that … I never wrote a review, whether for Amazon or otherwise! I’m feeling quite embarrassed by this discovery, especially given the glowing comment Donita left on my previous post a while ago. (Was she really talking about me? LOL) And now, it’s late, and I must get myself and my older children up at 7 AM tomorrow to face the dreaded green beans—which my dear children spent 3 hours picking yesterday, and I thought would be able to go till Thursday or Friday before needing picked again (nobody say a word about my Midwestern dropped “to be,” okay??). Now, in addition to packing and servicing the van for our trip, I have to deal with yet MORE canning … Breathe in, breathe out. I can do this. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. The thought occurs to me that instead of a traditional review (it’s the continuing adventures of Kale and friends, both old a

Take Two: Christian Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog Tour--Donita K. Paul

From my review at Amazon.com: Welcome to the world of DragonSpell , where seven high races and seven low ones share the lovely kingdom of Amara, and the young village slave Kale is about to discover that adventure is not all it’s cracked up to be. Her talent for finding dragon eggs and her eventual destiny as the Dragonkeeper catapult her into a quest for the egg of the fabled meech dragon, now held captive by the evil wizard Risto. Kale journeys through hope and doubt, joy and seeming failure, until she comes to recognize and accept that despite her humble beginnings and internal uncertainty, she can indeed share a part in greatness. This book is billed as for all ages, from 9 to 90, and it certainly had enough sparkle to keep this cynical, weary reader engaged. I found it sweet, thought-provoking, and entertaining—in short, a very winsome read. The story and characters stayed with me long after I turned the last page. (Dar, in particular, is not to be missed!) DragonSpell works n

A maze of grace

Yesterday was the 14th birthday of my second-born—my intense, sensitive, funny, wildly dramatic, musical son Ian. In celebration of the day, I finally wrote his birth story, and updated the links on my birth page accordingly. Poor kid—I’m not sure why, but I’d never taken the time to write his out! It was my first induced labor, a transfer of care, from home birth to hospital, a month away from my due date, because of gestational diabetes. I think I was inspired in part by the events of Friday morning. After my declaration of Thursday evening (or rather the wee hours of Friday morning), my phone rang just before 6 AM—my midwife friend, asking me if I wanted to attend a birth with her. Still groggy from only 3 hours of sleep, I said no, thinking that I needed to be at Bible study at 10 (my turn to bring snacks) and of all the canning that awaited me (47 more quarts of green beans over the last day or two). But after I hung up, I lay there wide awake, realizing how flimsy those reas

Decisions

Where to start … Monday begins another blog tour, this time highlighting Donita K. Paul, author of DragonSpell and its sequels DragonQuest and the most recent DragonKnight, released this month. Begin, as before, at Rebecca Miller’s blog (see link on sidebar). I’ll offer a review of the first and second books; Rebecca offers a 2-part interview with Donita and (I believe) a review of her third book. I may also finally revisit some of the themes I started during the last blog tour. All week I’ve intended to do so, but have been snowed under by the canning, etc.—an additional 17 pints of sweet pickle relish, 4 quarts of squash, 5 of green beans, 6 of zucchini, 10 quart freezer bags of shredded zucchini, and 2 more gallon bags of blackberries … plus another large cobbler devoured over two days. Yesterday offered a lull, which I was grateful for since we picked green beans again tonight and I have another raft to can tomorrow after Bible study … I’ve also been trying to maintain my equ

Late-night musings

It's 1 AM, and here I sit, doing my nightly decompression ... Hmmm, now there's an interesting connection. Last night, my husband and children picked, oh, probably 3 bushels of green beans from our garden, and most of us stayed up still about midnight canning the first of them and getting them all snapped. Over the past 24 hours or so, I've canned 55 quarts of green beans. That's 8 canner loads of 7 quart jars each, except for the last load, which was 6. I learned something very important ... when the directions tell you to let the canner cool on its own and NOT to "help" it depressurize, there are good reasons for it. The jars are still boiling furiously inside, and a too-sudden release of pressure sends the liquid almost spewing out from under the still-sealing lid and ring. I had one jar refuse to seal because I was in too much of a hurry ... was amazed to see a later one seal anyway, despite hissing sulkily at me as I pulled it from the canner. (I

He is the Vine

Yesterday while doing the usual rock-and-snuggle-Meeg-to-sleep while sitting at my laptop, I took a hard left turn in my blog wanderings. Blame Dave Long for it. But to prove that God's hand is in all things, and that He can speak to us through all sorts of venues, I discovered this post: Feminary and found myself touched very deeply. You have to read all the way down, till you get to the parts about the fruit being crushed, and what comes of it. (If we aren't going through a crushing time right now, between writing issues and church merger issues, I don't know what is.) And I love the way she uses that Eric Liddell quote--I've often thought of that in regards to my own writing, if it isn't too presumptuous to say that we sense God's pleasure in the exercising of our talents and abilities. (I don't believe it is.) And speaking of, since I had to be up yesterday at 7 AM (I'm a night owl and late riser, no lectures please, LOL), I was at the ke

This & that, again

Forgive the sudden lull in posting ... I've been recuperating from a stomach virus, getting in a few year-end school outings, and entertaining company over the past week or so. First of all, Rebecca Grabill, one of my fellow Genesis finalists in the SF/F category, just started a blog: Of Making Many Books . Just to make it official ... the agent who requested my full manuscript turned me down after all. Basically, as I figured he would, it seems he felt the genre was still too big of a risk, and the caliber of story not quite high enough. Based on his comments, and some of the Genesis feedback, I'll be diving into my writing books then doing another read-through to see what I can improve. Thanks to everyone for their encouragement and support over the last several weeks. I appreciate you all more than I can say!