Glad you're here. You'll find reviews of various products....books, dvd's, music, and who knows what else you might find with a review! There will be an occasional interview and maybe even a few giveaways! Enjoy your time here and find yourself a treasure or two!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Review for "Chesapeake Weddings" by Cecelia Dowdy


"Chesapeake Weddings" is a collection of three different stories. I really liked how Cecelia developed the friendships of the characters and had them woven into the following stories. I think Cecelia did a wonderful job of presenting Christian values without being "preachy". The book was very enjoyable for me!


In "John's Quest" Monica becomes an instant mom when her sister "dumps" her blind son, Scotty, at her home. The sister wants to see the world with her new boyfriend. Monica is thrust into one of the hardest jobs of all! John is recommended as a tutor for Scotty when the school principle advises Monica that his grades are below grade level. There is an attraction between John and Monica but it is hampered by the fact that John is agnostic and Monica is a born again believer.

In "Milk Money" Emily is trying to save the family dairy farm. Her father has recently died and her step-mother has gone to one of her daughters homes to begin to heal. Before leaving she hires Frank, a CPA, to audit the farms finances. He is, of course, a very handsome gentleman and he takes a "liking" to Emily. Emily has feelings for Frank but his drinking presents a problem. Can he come to terms with what has brought him to drink?

In "Bittersweet Memories" Karen is devasted to learn that her fiance' is an embezzler. She leaves her job, her friends, and her church to go live with her mother. Keith is her mother's next door neighbor who has his own plumbing business. In the beginning he seems to really get on Karen's nerves but she soon softens up. Keith is busy in his church, which also happens to be the church that Karen's mother belongs to. After what Karen has just been through, she has drifted from God and isn't sure if she wants to get back into church or not.

I would recommend this book to someone who likes shorter stories. It was a little predictable but that didn't bother me at all.  I'm really looking forward to more from Cecelia Dowdy!   Way to go, Cecelia!  Thank you for the book and for the opportunity to read and review it.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Interview with Author and Writing Instructor, Janice Hanna Thompson

Janice, could you tell us a little about your new venture?


Of course! Thanks for asking. On April 20th, 2010, I debuted my new writing course “Becoming a Successful Freelance Writer” at www.freelancewritingcourses.com. The sole purpose of this venture is to teach struggling freelance writers how to earn money with their writing. Here’s how it will work: students can purchase one lesson (for $24.95) or all ten (for $199). They don’t have to feel compelled to buy the whole package, though they will get a package price, if they do. Each lesson will include an audio file and a video power point presentation of me teaching the lesson (available with just a click of the mouse), a corresponding audio script, a downloadable worksheet, a bonus feature, and full access to the site’s forum, where I will meet with authors for some group mentoring (at designated times). Right now there are ten lessons, but eventually those ten lessons will become ten separate categories with multiple lessons in each. For example, the current lesson on magazine article writing will eventually have multiple other lessons underneath it—all meant to teach writers how to make money writing articles. People who take these courses will have the benefit of meeting other freelancers in the forum and can also chat with me about their projects. Best of all, the site will continually grow. New, fresh material will always be available. (I’ll be recording new lessons routinely.) I’m so excited, because I know that struggling freelancers can and will learn how to make money with their writing.

What prompted you to set off on this new adventure?


For years I’ve been writing novels and non-fiction books. I’ve been so blessed to have over fifty books published, as well as dozens of magazine articles and even a movie script. It’s been quite a ride. . .and it’s not ending anytime soon! I’m currently contracted through 2011. The longer I’m in this business, however, the more I’m aware of the basic need of the average freelance author to make “better” money. Sure, many of them eventually sell books. They get advances and royalties, (though, not often in the range they had hoped). As a full-time freelancer, I’ve faced this myself. Several years ago, I found myself hollering, “Where’s the money?” I made up my mind to find as many creative ways as I could to bring in money as a freelancer. I’ve learned so much since then, and want to share what I’ve learned with others, so that they can benefit, too.

Why are you so passionate about teaching others how to make money with their writing?


I meet so many struggling writers. So many are just hoping and praying to sell a book. They pour all of their energies into that venture. Most don’t realize that they could be making money much sooner if they would explore other avenues (besides just books). The possibilities are endless. If I can share what I’ve learned about the money-making aspects of writing, then I’ve helped another struggling writer on his or her journey.

Tell us a little about your own writing.


As I mentioned above, I’ve written just about everything! Most of my writing is for the Christian market, so my stories have a clear faith element. Lately I’ve been writing romantic comedies, (most recently the “Weddings by Bella” series), but I also enjoy writing mysteries, kid’s stories, historicals and more. I continue to write magazine articles, because they provide a great financial supplement. I’m also very excited about my many write-for-hire projects, because a huge chunk of my income comes from those. To learn more about my books visit my author site at http://www.janiceathompson.com/. Books can be ordered directly from the site.

I would think that the writing industry would be very competitive. Why do you want to see others succeed? Aren’t you shooting yourself in the foot when you hand off potential freelance jobs to other authors?


The writing industry is competitive, but that doesn’t mean I am! Sure, I want to make a name for myself, (most writers do), but I’m equally as interested in training up other writers to be the best they can be. Why? I believe that Christian writers have been called by the Lord to spread His love through their writing. How will they get the word out if someone doesn’t show them the ropes? I love to see others succeed because we’re all one big happy family and we care about each other.

If you could list one of the biggest frustrations that freelance writers face, what would that be?


The biggest frustration of all is this: Some markets don’t want to pay. This is especially true when it comes to the Internet. It’s so challenging to make a living when you can’t figure out who pays and who doesn’t! But that’s why I created this course! There are so many markets that do pay, and many of them are relatively untapped. Freelancers can earn money. . .they just have to discover where the money is! (And I plan to help them in that journey!)

You’ve said there’s money to be made. . .but where? What avenues are available to freelancers?


At www.freelancewritingcourses.com, students will explore multiple areas where they can earn money with their writing. Lessons include:

· Setting Career Goals

· Magazine Article Writing

· Write for Hire Work

· Marketing and Public Relations

· Becoming a Public Speaker

· Becoming a Creative Writing Teacher

· Making Money as an Editor

· Writing and Selling the Non-Fiction Book

· Writing and Selling the Novel

· Secrets From the World of the Pros

Each lesson will cover a host of possibilities and will give real, practical suggestions.

If you could tell beginning freelancers one thing, what would it be?


Don’t give up. Keep going and keep looking for creative ways to make money. Examine new markets. Learn all you can about the industry. Become friends with editors. The potential for money-making is there, but much of it is relational.

Why do you feel so strongly about stirring up the gifts?


There’s a scripture I love where the apostle Paul speaks to his young protégé, Timothy: “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” (II Timothy 1:6 NIV) The King James version uses the words “stir up the gift” instead of “fan into flame the gift.” The idea is the same. Gifts need stirring and fanning. As a published author, I make it my goal to “stir the gifts” of those hoping to be published (or hoping to be published in more markets). I know that these lessons will stir people up. I could sense it as I recorded them. Changing lives. . .and encouraging writers. . .what could be better?

Janice, where else can people find you on the web?


My freelance writing courses site: http://www.freelancewritingcourses.com/

My book-related website: http://www.janiceathompson/

My blog: http://janicehannathompson.blogspot.com//

My facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/jhannathompson?ref=profile

My facebook reader’s page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Janice-Hanna-Thompsons-Readers-Page/303537684650?ref=ts

Thanks Janice for this interview!  I hope some budding author out there will find encouragement through your writing classes!!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I Won A Book!

I got an email today telling me I'd won "Rooms" by James L. Rubart.  Can't wait to get it in hand and start on it!  I had downloaded it to my pc a while back but I've found I don't really like reading on my pc.  I much prefer a book in my hands!  So not sure if I will even invest in an e-reader.  I'm afraid it would be a waste of money for me.  Guess I still need to do some thinking on that subject.
The book I'm reading right now, "Chesapeake Weddings" by Cecelia Dowdy is a really good one!!  I'll be doing a review on it as soon as I'm finished with it.  That should be in the next couple of days.  I've got 4 author interviews/giveaways coming up in the next couple of months!  So stay tuned for those!!
I am just really thankful for the ones of you who have helped me get my blog started!  This is really a fun thing I'm doing!!  My husband asked me tonight if there was a way I could do this and get paid!  I said, "I don't think so honey."  He just sighed!  Men...

Sunday, April 18, 2010

My First Blog Award!

I was just given my first blog award by Cathy Bryant, Word Vessel.  Thank you so much Cathy!
The Sunshine Award is passed on to blogger's that inspire others and show positivity and creativity.

The rules for accepting the award are:

1) Put the logo within my blog or on my post

2) Pass the award onto 12 fellow bloggers

3) Link the nominees within my post

4) Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog

5) Share the love and link to the person whom you received this award from.

These are blogs that I visit regularly and that have given me inspiration in my book review adventure! May the Lord continue to bless each one of you!


http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 16, 2010

A Great Book Giveaway!

Visit Cami's Blog for a chance to win a copy of an awesome book!  The book is "Texas Roads" by Cathy Bryant.  I haven't read it yet but it is on my list!  All of the reviews have been wonderful.  So, head on over there and enter!!  (scroll about half way down the page to see "Texas Roads")
  http://camicheckettsbooks.blogspot.com/


Sunday, April 11, 2010

What An Awesome Sunday Morning!

We had an incredible worship service this morning!  Our speaker was Kevin Kirkland who is a former youth pastor.  He is now a speaker at youth retreats, youth discipleship weekends, and churches.  He is such an energetic guy!!  And totally annointed by God!  Really enjoyed his sermon and the way he delivers just what needs to be heard.  I got a copy of his book, "Broken Walls and Those Called To Repair Them" and will be reading and reviewing it in the very near future!  At that time I will have a giveaway of the book, which Kevin signed, to some lucky person.  Stay tuned!


Thursday, April 8, 2010

I'm getting there!

It's been kinda slow getting my blog going!  I need to get some book reviews done.  I'm gonna review a few I've already read, then will be reviewing one from BookSneeze.  After that one is done, I will go back and review some previously read books.  I do want to get some crochet things put on my crochet page, too.  That is one of my favorite pastimes!  I can do that while sitting in the den, watching tv with hubby!  He's happy I'm there and I'm doing something I really love!!  Gotta keep the hubby happy!!  Please be patient with me as I get my blog fully funtioning and full of all my favorite things!  Have a blessed day!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Getting Started

I've been wanting to start a blog for a long time but just didn't really know much about them. I visited a few and I think I've gotten the gist of what a blog is....kind of like a journal for everyone to read. I will be doing book reviews for some of the books I read. I LOVE to read! I've got several favorite authors whom I'll talk about in a later post. My other favorite pastime is crocheting. My mamaw taught me to crochet when I was 8 years old. I hope to put patterns, ideas, and maybe even some instructions in the near future. Stay tuned!!

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