Sundin #D70 ©2008 Linda Johnson Photography web (2)Greetings from Sarah Sundin in California! I pray you had a bountiful Thanksgiving with family and friends. Today I have the honor of interviewing Rebecca Ondov, who turned her extensive experience as a horseback guide and Ranger into the book Horse Tales from Heaven.CAN Ondov

Rebecca, how did you get into writing?

For years I’d been working from the saddle in the Bob Marshall Wilderness of Montana, taking people on horse pack trips. During the winter of 1992 when I was “out of the hills” and working an off-season job, I reached in my mailbox and pulled out a Guideposts magazine. As I thumbed through the issue, an advertisement caught my eye. It said something like, “Win an all-expense paid trip to New Yo rk.” Guideposts was having a writing competition and would fly fifteen winners to New York, where they would be personally tutored by some of the top Christian authors in the world.

God resounded in my spirit, “Write a manuscript and send it in.”

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Sherry Kyle here, writing to you from my laptop in central California.

Sherry Kyle headshotCan you believe it’s almost December? Now that Thanksgiving is over for 2011, it’s time to decorate our homes for Christmas. I don’t know what it’s like at your house, but my kids can’t wait for the tree to go up and the decorating to begin. 

Like embellishing our homes for the holidays, our manuscripts need that something special in order to capture a reader’s attention.

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Aloha from Karen

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It’s already Thanksgiving Day. I am thankful today for family (especially my husband who continues to battle breast cancer) and many friends. My family keeps growing-five children and now eight grandchildren.

But I also want to express thanks babout books, including thanks for past rejections and current contracts and for books in general. I’m an avid reader and books opened my mind to many possibilities.

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HI! Grace Fox here, newest member of the Monday blogging team. 

As a writer, I believe God has given me the assignment of communicating truth through the written word. Some days I feel confident of my call. Ideas flow, and fingers fly across the keyboard. An editor accepts an article. A royalty check arrives. And a reader emails, “Your book changed my life. Please keep writing.”

Other days…well, other days the computer screen stares at me in silence. My fingers hover over the keyboard awaiting a divine download. I pour a cup of coffee. A rejection hits my inbox. More coffee. I check my Amazon stats, and I entertain thoughts about getting a real job.

Sometimes I feel as though accomplishing this assignment borders on the brink of impossibility, and I think of Moses. How did he feel when he stood on the shore of the Red Sea with more than three million people depending on him for their well-being? His was a God-given assignment, too, but as waves wet his feet perhaps he questioned his ability to fulfill it.

I stand on the shore of my own Red Sea wondering how to best tackle a task fraught with challenges including…

How can I present my idea in a unique way?

How can I turn my idea into a compelling sentence or two?

How can I develop that sentence into an irresistible query or proposal?

What’s the right market for that query or proposal?

How can I ensure my work passes the slush pile and lands on the editor’s desk?

How can I overcome the pain of rejection or disappointment?

How do I find an agent?

What’s the best publishing option for my book?

How do I negotiate a contract without an agent?

What marketing and publicity strategies are most effective for my book?

How do I best utilize social media marketing?

How can I build my platform?

Writing for publication, especially considering the industry’s constant, rapid changes, is not an easy task. It’s vital that we, as writers, focus not on the Red Sea before us but on the One who’s able to part the waters and show us the way through them. Several weeks ago I discovered these verses, and I’ve found them encouraging in this context:

“When the Red Sea saw you, O God, its waters looked and trembled! The sea quaked to its very depths. The clouds poured down rain; the thunder rumbled in the sky. Your arrows of lightning flashed. Your thunder roared from the whirlwind; the lightning lit up the world! The earth trembled and shook. Your road led through the sea, your pathways through the mighty waters—a pathway no one knew was there! You led your people along that road like a flock of sheep, with Moses and Aaron as their shepherds” (Psalm 77:16-20). 

God gave Moses a seemingly impossible task and then made the way to accomplish it. He’ll do the same for us as we seek to communicate messages of hope and healing to a hurting world. Let’s be faithful to do what He’s called us to do with excellence and enthusiasm, and let’s trust Him to make a way through the publishing Red Sea for our messages to reach those who need them most.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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    Hello. I'm DonnTaylor, writing again about the basic elements of poetry writing. In previous blog sessions we've mentioned the late Lawrence Perrine's statement that poetry speaks "in higher voltage" with greater compression of meaning than most prose. We've also spoken of placing strong words in the emphatic positions of the poetic line, and we've discussed the necessity of using strong images. Now we move to one of the most important elements that achieve compression of meaning, often with striking effect: figurative language. In this session we'll look at personification, simile, and metaphor. We'll cover other figures later.

 

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