Showing posts from March, 2014

Grappling With Success: finaling in the RITA®, part 1

So ... I’ve been a little slow to share, but I got a call this week. The kind that every published romance author dreams of getting. No, it wasn’t “The Call” from an agent or editor—the, “I want to sign you as a client” or “I want to publish your book”—but “your work is a finalist in our contest!” This wasn’t just any old contest, but the RITA , sponsored by Romance Writers of America ® . It’s considered the premier contest for published romance fiction, nationwide. Yep, my little bitty story. :-) I scored at least a 90%, and this in the novella category with entries ranging from sweet romance (romantic tension but no sexual detail) to erotic (no-holds-barred explicit). Most of you know I write from an unashamedly Christian worldview, and Defending Truth was no exception. I am floored. I was, as I described it to one, shocked silly. Maybe shocked stupid would be a better descriptor, since after getting the call, I couldn’t seem to focus on anything, to save my life.

CSFF Blog Tour: Patrick Carr's A Draw of Kings, Day Three

Before I give my best approximation at a review (I feel like I really stink at these anymore, for various reasons), I’d like to point out Rebecca LuElla Miller’s excellent posts (link below)—she says everything I was thinking about this series, and a bit more. Overall, things I loved—the borrowing from Earth cultures, as if this were an alternate Earth. The parallel story of apostasy in the Church, with a few who know the truth or suspect there’s more—and then the beautiful discovery that there is, and how various characters’ lives changed as a result. I loved the complexity of the characters. And the richness of Errol’s journey. And the fact that the author doesn’t make things too easy on them. (I’m still shuddering, as another blogger mentioned, what Adora had to endure in book three!) And—look at these gorgeous covers! I bought all three of these on Kindle, but I have to buy them in paperback as well so I can ogle them in person. :-) Speaking of purchasing, I did

CSFF Blog Tour: Patrick Carr's A Draw of Kings, Day 2

So, in my usual rambly way, today I’m going to start by discussing ... Patrick Carr’s website . Yes. :-) I love poking around on author websites and seeing what other sorts of interesting things they do. In Carr’s case, he’s a mathematics teacher, which piqued my interest as a homeschooling mother of a teen currently doing geometry. I’m planning to show her his page for geometry contructs ... He also has a nifty glossary for the series, which was handy since I had a fairly long time lapse between reading books two and three, and I’d unhandily forgotten who a few of the cast were. I read A Cast of Stones and The Hero’s Lot one after another. I was left in such suspense after the first book (which as I mentioned already, I’d picked up free for Kindle on Amazon) that I just had to go purchase the next one. But then I had several months’ wait for the last book. Doggone it, anyway! Why is something that takes months and sometimes years to create and polish devoured in such

CSFF Tour: Patrick Carr's A Draw of Kings

Yes! The CSFF blog tour is back. Or should that be, I’m back on the tour? :-) For those unfamiliar with the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy blog tour, each month we feature an upcoming or new release, handpicked from among various Christian speculative offerings. I’ve been hoping to come back for a while, but the mountainloads of real life kinda got in the way. I even missed the tour for my dear friend Donita K. Paul’s newest release, but I read some wonderful reviews. Thank you to those of you who helped support her! I’m extra pleased to be able to review A Draw of Kings , the final book of Patrick Carr ’s fantasy trilogy, The Staff and the Sword. I’ve found his storyworld mesmerizing, his characters engaging, the conflict gripping ... you know, all the usual things reviewers are supposed to say when talking up a story. But seriously. I’d downloaded A Cast of Stones on ebook sometime last year, then stalled in giving it a start. Once I did, though (at the urging of a

From Carolina to Dakota: Shopping Trip

So, we've been in North Dakota for two months now. There's a ton of things to write about, to share ... guess I'll start with yesterday. Yesterday I decided to haul not only my four youngest children along on the big weekly grocery shopping trip, but to break out the stash of green reusable grocery bags I used to take along on trips to the commissary. Seriously, they’re GREEN, as in green in color, not just because they’re reusable. And it isn’t that I have any serious conviction about recycling, although my upbringing conditioned me to save and reuse and generally be thrifty, anyway—and with our family size, we can accumulate an alarming amount of plastic bags in a very short amount of time. But they’re durable, handy for carrying, and can hold so much more than plastic. After two months of living in a new town, one without a commissary, I knew taking them along would proclaim as little else that “we’re not from around here.” I also suspected it might throw some uns