Right On Time

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by Michelle Medlock Adams I was in the window seat, thumbing through a magazine, just waiting for the plane to take off when a mother and her young daughter sat down next to me.             “Don’t worry, babe,” the mom comforted. “You’re going to be all right.”             But the little girl didn’t seem so sure. She fidgeted, hid her face in her stuffed unicorn, and eventually, her tears flowed.             She was afraid. Very afraid.             The mom in me wanted to help. I was so thankful I had listened to that still small Voice when I packed my…

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A Missing Persons Primer

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by Sarah Hamaker As a writer of romantic suspense, I’ve always been fascinated by missing persons, especially adults who simply disappear into thin air, leaving behind more questions than answers. According to Statista Research Department, more males than females go missing in the 21 and older category, while the opposite is true in the younger than 21 category. According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person and Unidentified Person Statistics as of December 31, 2021, the NCIC registered 93,718 active missing person records. Juveniles under 18 years of age account for 30,400 (32 percent) of the records…

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On the Way to Perfection

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by Joan C. Benson When an author completes a book, s/he wants it perfected before submitting it to an agent or publisher. The author has read and reread the manuscript multiple times and revised and revised it with the best of their expertise. Nothing but the best work should be considered for submission. In my case, my first novel took years to finish. No, it didn’t take years of writing, but years of retrieving it from the bottom of my to-do list. After all, I was paid for contract writing, my proverbial squeaky wheel. Once I finished polishing the manuscript,…

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Sweet Sprinkles

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by Donna Schlachter The Sweet Sprinkles Limited Anthology is a multi-author project originated by author Jennifer Miller. She wanted to put out sweet stories of romance and humor that included cake or cupcakes of some kind, in honor of her mother, who made the best cakes ever (according to Jennifer). So she gathered a group of 20 authors, set the ground rules for the collection, and got a cover designed. The goal was to release just before Mother’s Day 2022, and to target the stories for mothers. A few interesting facts about Mother’s Day that I thought you’d enjoy: The…

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Judging by Appearances

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by Yvonne Ortega Oh, no, I need a nickel for my four pennies. I can’t leave the kiosk with one gallon of water in the two-gallon jug. The kiosk won’t take pennies.   I looked for well-groomed men and women, who walked in or out of the grocery store by the kiosk. I tried to get their attention. Why did they turn away from me? That morning, I took a shower, shampooed my hair, and wore clean clothes that matched. With the words, ma’am, or sir, I addressed each adult with respect to no avail. Maybe someone put a sign…

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Getting Skunked

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            Getting skunked means to be overwhelmingly defeated in a competition, such as “We got skunked, 72-10 in the basketball game.”              And then there’s the literal meaning.             I had been prayerwalking for many years in my small town in the Sierra Valley that cold morning I headed out my front door and down Main Street—bundled up in gloves, coat, and hat that pre-dawn morning. I had forgotten my flashlight but wasn’t concerned when two doors down I heard rustling in the bushes to my right.             Just birds.             But soon I learned the rustling was not birds, but a skunk defending itself from an…

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Asthma Treatments in History

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In the process of writing Testing Tessa, I learned that asthma is not a recent affliction but has been around for thousands of years. First mentioned in Chinese records around 2600 B.C.,  the disease wasn’t given its current name until around 600 B.C. when Hippocrates linked the symptoms to environmental triggers. He recommended a concoction of owl’s blood and wine to alleviate symptoms, not recognizing that asthma was, in fact, a disease. Through the years, other cultures attempted other treatments, including heating of herbs on a brick and then inhaling the fumes in 1500 B.C. Pliny the Elder, in 50 B.C., realized pollen…

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My Notorious Mind Game

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Today’s Fascinating Friday post comes from Joan C. Benson. Thank you, Joan! The quirks of this writer are about to be laid bare before the world. Oh, no! What will they think? After years of self-analysis, I reached an “Ah ha!” moment not long ago. My trick may amuse you, or even better, might help you in your creative endeavors. I hope my revelation will at least be fascinating since this is a “Fascinating Friday” post. Have you known people who set their clocks ahead so they won’t be late? I used to laugh at this ploy. I was sure my brain…

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Finding God at the Spelling Bee

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Most of my newspaper bylines result from faith-based stories that I locate on my own. I enjoy sharing God-stories in the newspaper. As a newspaper stringer, however, I often have the opportunity to cover news-related stories, and I can honestly say I enjoy most of those stories, too. Some are a bit of a yawner, though, and three-and-a-half hours of spelling words fell in that category when I covered a school district contest a couple of years ago. Towards the end, two young brilliant boys went back and forth for thirty-five rounds before Elikem Gato stumbled on the word “mukhtar,”…

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Mining For Gold

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We think of gold primarily as either bullion or jewelry, but the precious metal has many other uses. In the old days, it was used for tooth fillings and even the odd false tooth. Nowadays, uses range from industrial to medical, to agricultural. For instance, gold is used to treat pain in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. It is liquefied, injected into muscle tissue, and reportedly helpful in 70 percent of cases.  Writing historical fiction doesn’t only mean researching the time period of the book’s setting. For my newest release, Miss Wetherham’s Wedding, my heroine owns the controlling number of shares in…

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