Sunday, October 29, 2006

Something Missing

October is almost over and I haven't finished the rewrites for my new book. I had this grand scheme of finishing this book in October, outlining Book 4 of my Jenna's Creek Novel Series in November, and polishing this one and submitting it in December. You know what they say about the best laid plans...

I've just come from church. It's Sunday night and I'm in front of the computer eating a Payday Avalanche and trying to get a head start on Monday's to-do list. One of my to-do's is posting on this blog, which I can't seem to do regularly no matter how good my intentions.

Our pastor preached tonight that we seldom know what God has planned for our lives. We can only see what's directly in front of us. God already knows which one of my books will be my break-out work. He already knows how each book will touch hearts--hearts of people I may never meet this side of glory.

I worry a lot about book promotion. The more I write, the less time I have to promote the books I've already done. The more I promote, the less time I have to focus on the next book. What to do! Promote these books or work on the next one since readers expect books at a pretty fast clip? Are my efforts even necessary? Is anyone out there reading? There are so many excellent books already on the bookstore shelves, do I need to contribute yet another book that will only take readers away from Bible study?

So I worry. I make deadlines and schedule book signings and work on my website. I seldom even ask God which way He wants me to go. There is only so much I can do with my limited talent and twenty-four hours in a day. But God's resources are limitless. Why don't I rely on Him more? With only two more workdays in October in which to get this book finished, I'm going to do what I can to use my time wisely. Even if I don't finish the rewrites like I want, I need to do my best. Limit distractions, keep the TV off, and start each day with prayer. God knows when and how this book needs finished. I'll trust him and stop worrying about what I see with my eyes. He sees the big picture. He's in charge, not me.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

For the record, my wayward dog Molly was found a few hours after I told you she was missing. About ten a.m. I got in the van to go to the bank. If I didn't see her on my way through town, I was going to drive down her favorite side roads when I got finished with my errand. I had just backed out of the driveway and was straightening up the van when she came running across the yard. She was very excited from the noise of the van and the prospect of going for a ride. She was wet and smelly so she went inside the house instead of inside my wet and smelly van. Even though she enjoyed her little adventure, she was relieved to be home. She did her little circle dance that she does when she is very excited (a funny thing to watch a fifty pound dog do) and ran in the house and rolled all over her doggie bed. She was happy to see her sister, but Angel was annoyed at the fuss and just wanted to be left alone.

Now that things are back to normal, I am at the unpleasant stage of rewrites on my latest novel. I am still undecided about how to get a convicted killer out of prison. It's been 12 years, but he needs to be released so readers will have another suspect, among other reasons.

I am bummed that I lost my ebay auction yesterday for a Marie Osmond doll, Katie Sue. Let me tell you, she's gorgeous. She sold for only 3 dollars over my maximum bid. When I found out I had been outbid, I intended to wait until a few minutes before the end of the auction and then bid a few dollars more. Then I got engrossed in the Robert Redford/Morgan Freeman movie, An Unfinished Life (really enjoyed it) and forgot to bid. When the movie ended, I found out I lost the auction. Oh well, there will be more chances to win her before Christmas.

Enough stalling. Back to work.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Have you seen this dog?

Lots going on here the past few weeks. My fall schedule is in full swing. I have yet another craft fair this weekend at Lewis Mtn. Herbs & Everlasting in Manchester, Ohio, and I'm hustling to get things wrapped up on my current manuscript. Yesterday I had a doctor's appt. so I took my notebook and some fresh pencils to work on those last little problems that frustrate writers as they near the end of a work in progress. All those loose ends to tie up. There are plenty in this book. But I am loving the process.

Thunderstorms and possible tornados ravaged central Ohio last night, but we missed the brunt of the storm. Afterwards I let Molly and Angel outside to tour the damage, and Molly hasn't come back yet. It's breakfast time and she should be here. When she isn't here warm and dry where I can keep an eye on her, I always imagine she's out there somewhere cold and hurt and alone and scared. I don't know why I do this to myself. After the night she came home with a turtle hook caught in her mouth, I wonder what other dangers she'll find out there. Part terrier, part border collie, and who knows what else, she's always on the lookout for mischief.

If you see her, send her home. She knows the way.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


Here in Ohio, the leaves are starting to change. I almost hate to see it happen. Not because it means the unpredicatability of winter is just around the corner. Like all the seasons I love winter. The peaceful quiet when a heavy snow blankets the trees and the earth. The sparkling beauty of sunshine on a winter's landscape. The vivid pinks, reds, oranges, and purples the freezing temperatures splash across the sky every morning to usher in the day. I almost hate to see the leaves change because there's a good chance if I blink I might miss it.

This summer has been dry, which usually means Autumn's magnificent color show won't be as vibrant or last as long. But the cool nights and hot days mean the apples ripening on the trees will taste better, so it's a fair trade.

Everywhere around us is the beauty and splendor of Creation. I spend most of my daytime hours inside in front of my computer, so I miss some of these last gorgeous days of mild weather. I don't stop to enjoy the color changes on the trees as much as I could. But I enjoy good health, a body that cooperates with nearly any task I ask of it, and people who love me. Like everyone, I come across jealousy, strife, resentment, misunderstandings, and loneliness in my daily walk. But I also have more than my share of blessings: love, peace, joy, romance, happiness, fulfillment.

We can focus on the negative in this world; there's plenty around if you stop and look. Or we can focus on the positive and share that with the world; there's plenty of that too. You might have to look a little. Or then again, it might be right under your nose.