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Interesting Discussions. . .

Hi All!

Have you visited the Five Scribes blog Take a peek on the current conversation on tattoos. Quite the interesting topic : )

And check out The Seekers blog Susan Sleeman shares her *Call* moment. Had me drooling : )

If you want the current scoop on contests and Asian gourmet [grin], visit Camy’s Loft Camy has her third book in the Sushi series out, Single Sashimi, and it’s a winner! A review will be posted here soon!

That’s all for now. Visit again soon : )

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Discerning Minds Want to Know

In support of my commitment to return to writing, I glanced through my writing books to spend a couple hours reigniting excitment. Like most writers, I have quite a library of titles.

Writing the Breakout Novel, by Donald Maass?
Techniques of the Selling Writer, by Dwight Swain?
GMC by Debra Dixon?

These three books, among many more, are truly inspirational works guaranteed to get the creative juices flowing. No writing reference section is complete without them. Instead, since afterall this is a Sunday afternoon, I turned to a more inspirational source.

Write His Answer, by Marlene Bagnull

Write His Answer gives thought to why we write. In short, concise, informative chapters, Ms Bagnull opens her own writing journey to the world, filled with all the pitfalls and detours we all experience in life. She made herself vulnerable to me, and in return, I completed the exercise sections at the end of each chapter with humiliating honesty. Though I haven’t read the book in its entirety, I do see a lot of wisdom in her words effecting my life.

First and foremost, I’m forced to admit, I’m fragmented. I grant the same importance to so many voices, prioritizing is impossible. So often I give up in frustration before I even sit down before the computer screen. How do I know I’ve been called to write? I know I’ve been called to write because deep down the desire burns unceasingly.

Well, fine. But how do you know what to write? The answer is in James Chapter 1:

5 If you need wisdom–if you want to know what God wants you to do–ask Him and He will gladly tell you. He will not resent your asking.

Silly me, I’ve always known that! That verse leaves you with warm, fuzzy feelings knowing God will answer prayer. . .it’s the next verse that made me sit up and pay attention as I planned on asking God for his guidance.

6 But when you ask Him, be sure that you really expect Him to answer, for a doutful mind is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.

Since my childhood, I’ve known God answers prayer. Maybe not as I’d like, but He answers. I must unceasingly pray that I hear His answer when He gives it. But wait, that’s not all. . .

7 People like that should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 They can’t make up their minds. They waver back and forth in everything they do.

Ouch!! That’s me, the flag waving in the wind. Is this what God wants?…no, no, this is what God wants…is this the story You want me to tell?…hmm, how about this one?…wait, this one is so timely…

All around the bush I chase, never stopping to taste the berries God has blessed me with.

There is a silver lining in my story of indecision. Before I stopped my study time, I opened my Bible to a Psalm where I often find comfort. Psalm 32 remains a strong influence in my life, but one verse left a deep groove in my brain:

“The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8

This afternoon, I found peace. I know the road ahead of me is rocky and full of pitfalls, but the Lord is guiding me if I but ask and listen.

Stay tuned, I’ll let you know how it goes. . .better yet, how about if you come along? In God’s kingdom, there’s always room for more.

Blessings in Jesus’ name,

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MIA for a season

Hmm, I have this perfectly great blog space and rarely use it. Now, that’s just not right : )

Recently, I’ve been going through some soul searching. Am I on the right track with my writing? Am I being selfish in demanding time to devote to my passion at the expense of my family? Is my being an author on God’s radar?

Tough questions, even tougher to actually face.

So, I set out on a journey of self-discovery, of sorts. A temporary job opportunity plopped itself on my lap offering to let me be a fill-in secretary for our 4-H organization. Now, if you know me at all, I love 4-H and can spend an entire blog itself on just that topic. But that’s not my mission today, so you’ll have to tune in again : )

The challenges of being in the workplace again were very stimulating. I had tasks to perform under deadline, the public to greet with constant humor, and generally easing back into the working world. I loved my days, but I came home exhausted.

Too exhausted to write.

This concerned me. How was I to do God’s bidding, if indeed He intended to make me a published author, if I didn’t write? I prayed, but didn’t hear an answer.

Four months later, our regular secretary decided to retire, so I was offered the position permanently. Talk about a bizarre mix of excitement and apprehension! Lord, what will You have me do??

Again, silence on the line.

Well, I accepted the position and focused on being the best Administrative Assistant I could be. I learned a lot. I worked a lot. I laughed a lot.

I didn’t really try to wedge writing into my already full life — oh did I mention my husband owns a Painting company for which I continue to also secretary for, and we have two teenagers, one graduated this last May and is in college? My prayer life filled to capacity. I neglected my writing duties. I felt badly, but you know what? I also found out who my friends were.

Take a moment and visit Seekerville and meet 14 of the most giving ladies to ever create a blog (I’m the 15th, hee). Fine advice and humor abound with the ladies of Seekerville and I find myself most fortunate they love me even when I go MIA.

Then, mosey on over to the Five Scribes home and meet the ladies who also love me as they sprinkle words of wisdom across blog pages about the Ups and Downs of the writing world. Leslie Ann, Donnell, Theresa, Kerri-Leigh and MIA-me, do our best to shed light on fiction and screenwriting across genres.

Both blogs are exceptional and vividly illuminate the trials and triumphs of the writer’s life.

Anyway, along this journey, God did speak to my heart and He did assure me I had something to write about. Who am I to argue when He graciously provides the story??

So, now I’ve respoken my marriage vows to God and my writing. I promise Just In Time will no long remain stagnant. I’ve too many thoughts and book reviews to share. Come back again, and often, and share moral support whenever the good Lord moves you : )

Blessing to you all!!!

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Only Uni

Book 2 in the Sushi Series
by Camy Tang

Trish Sakai has upset Grandma. Not a bad thing for the average person, but in the Sakai family, no one upsets Grandma. Trish had all the right reasons for putting her life on the so-called line–she’s just not ready to marry yet. Or is she?

Having kissed dating good-bye and asking the Lord’s guidance in leading her to the chosen man, Trish finds herself in humorous peril more often than not. Stalked by a gorgeous ex-boyfriend, supported by loving cousins who complain they’re always there to pick up the pieces of Trish’s life only to have her mess it all up again, and ramrod-ed by a Grandma who has sleuthy ways to persuade her granddaughter to see things in proper fashion, this book is a laugh from page one. To top it all off, her partner on a project at work is a man too good-looking for his own good, yet she must resist this temptation, she promised the Lord. . .right?

Ahh, what’s a flirtatious, senior biologist, California girl to do? Pray hard and meet the world head-on!!

As the second book in the Sushi Series, Only Uni is a wonderful, fast paced book that will make you laugh time and again. Life in the single lane as a Christian lady ain’t easy to begin with; Trish Sakai demonstrates how to overcome expectations with style! I can’t wait for the third book to come out!!

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Sushi For One?

Sushi For One?
Camy Tang

Bold. Gutsy. Unique.

This debut book by Ms. Tang is certain to open your eyes to a new culture alive and well and flourishing in gorgeous California. Bringing to life Asian customs, the characters never let you forget you’re in the United States, yet the mouth watering descriptions of Oriental foods and the fine examples of dedication to time honored traditions encourage the reader to consider looking up the closest sushi bar in town.

Lex Sakai is perfectly happy with her life. Grandma is not. Lex has high aspirations for her life, many of which seem to be falling just within reach. Grandma wants Lex married and pulls all stops to get what she wants. Who will win?

With a delightful cast of characters, Ms. Tang introduces us to the worlds of volleyball and physical therapy. Goals, ethics and dreams. Lex is thrown together with strangers, friends and relatives alike in a bizarre competition where the prize appears to satisfy only Grandma. Drawing on her Christian faith, Lex juggles the obstacles thrown in her way and just when we think she is down for the count, Lex discovers miracles really do happen when you let go and let God.

Excellent read. I look forward to next book in the series.

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Review: Waiting For Summer’s Return

Looking for an emotional read? Try this.

Kim Vogel Sawyer has created a stunning debut book. Strong emotions, coupled with gentle and humble souls, make Waiting For Summer’s Return a story loaded with turmoil and poignancy.

After losing her husband and children to Typhoid, Summer Steadman feels no desire to continue living. She has lost everything dear to her, including her faith in God. To widower Peter Ollenburger, who is raising his son with the help of his mother-in-law, faith in God is everything.

The Mennonite townspeople of Gaeddert, Kansas are suspicious of the woman stranded in their midst. Peter seeks a teacher for his injured son and turns to Summer for help, despite the displeasure of the tight-knit community. Through his patience and unshakeable devotion to God, Peter risks his reputation to befriend this despondant woman from Boston. He teaches Summer and the community the joy found in following the examples of Christ.

As Summer becomes comfortable with her new situation, she not only teaches academics to young Thomas, she also softens Peter’s heart to love, brings joy back to Grossmuter’s life, and eases the town’s fears of strangers.

Both Peter and Summer have loved and lost which makes this touching journey of discovery all the more sweeter.

Kim Sawyer has taken the frightened, desolute prairie of Kansas and turned it into a place to call home. She portrays Summer’s struggles in the Mennonite community with heart and depth of insight. She crafts a story of people filled with suspicion and fear who learn that trust in God relieves unnecessary burdens.

This is a must read book.

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Where To Begin?

Staring at a blank page is a bit daunting. . .especially when you’ve chosen this arena of expression all on your own. Why blog? Many use their blogs to express day to day thoughts (mine aren’t all that exciting) or welcome interactive participation (I’d never get anything done if I chatted all day) or announce any type of industry news (I count on others to provide for me) and the list goes on. Let’s experiment and see just where my niche may be. . ..

I’m a fiction novelist, how difficult can writing a few words be? I can begin with snippets of historical facts that I’ve come across during the research of my historical series, Lost Causes. Gypsies have always fascinated me. From the time my mother threatened to sell me to the gypsies if I was bad, to the vivid memories of colorful characters on the big screen, their mysterious, carefree life has become the stereotype for gypsies throughout time.

Want something more current? How about cowboys? My contemporary series, The Circle D Ranch, tackles problems home on the ranch, out on the riding circuit, and even in the world of high finance for those cowboys who make it big and maybe begin to forget their roots.

I’ll also be offering reviews of new books and plenty more.

Interested? I hope so!

Visit often!

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