Windows of Blessing (and more publishing news)

“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!” Malachi 3:10

When it rains it pours!

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Not sure who to credit for this pic. Not mine. I found it here….

 

God has been moving in my life lately. I mean, he ALWAYS is moving in my life, but in the last two weeks I’ve really seen his hand and felt his favour.

My first book is now published. Available here. 😃 So exciting!

Lots of love, fuzzy feelings, cyber hugs, digital high-fives, and assorted comments, shares, and most importantly–reading! happening over on my facebook author page. One lovely lady even made a meme with a quote from my book!! See? Blessings.

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Credit to Susan Snodgrass

 

Just when I think God is about to shut that window of blessing … cos I have doubts sometimes. In my humanness I put limits on His grace. Silly me.

We had a win in a personal matter. I won’t share the details, but it had me crying happy tears, feeling relieved, and smiling non-stop.

Ta-da! Another window of blessing opened by God.

And then…

I have to ask this question. It’s very serious, so bear with me. Practice your serious face.

🤓   🤔

Ready?

Question:

What’s better than ONE mail order bride story?

Answer:

NINE mail order bride stories!!

I’m now included in a fantabulous NINE book collection of mail order bride stories. *gasp* 

Mail Order Brides: Sometimes Love is only an Advertisement Away

Mail Order Brides- Sometimes Love is only an Advertisement Away (9 stories of mail order love)

Click here to buy. $3.99 for all nine! 😮

The other lovely authors in this collection are:

Janice Thompson      Jennifer AlLee      Cynthia Hickey      Debbie Mayne

Darlene Franklin      Teresa Ives Lilly      Martha Rogers      Julie Pollitt

Now that’s a huge window of blessing.

Wow. I’m amazed by God. Only he could orchestrate the events that happened in the last few weeks, few months, or indeed, anything life-changing in my life.

How about you? Have you noticed the windows of heaven opening in your life? Or is God silent?

I’ve had seasons of both in my life. All I can offer is this: Pray. Trust. Wait.

God bless. And keep reading. 😉

 

 

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My Writing Space

My ‘office’.

Messy. Creative. Materials on hand. Index cards. Reference books–currently it’s “Deep and Wide” by Susan May Warren. Highlighter, pencil and biro on hand.

Lucy writing

Earphones in to drown out other noises under the bass and lyrics of Third Day or Nightwish.

I do have a desk and most of the time it looks tidy. I use it to ‘look’ professional and to hold up my growing collection of To-Be-Read craft books. The right is what I wish my office looked like…I can dream, right?

2013-02-27 19.19.55      what I wished my writing spot looked like

I’m working on some re-writes at the moment so it’s all index cards go! 🙂 Note (ha ha) my reference book covered in sticky notes and yellow highlighter. Makes finding important parts much easier!

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Do you have a special place that you write? The kitchen table? Comfy armchair? Only in a hammock in the Caribbean while surrounded by palm trees and cool drinks?

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I offer you an “Invitation to Change” your habits, try somewhere new to write.

To create a new “Black Moment” for your characters…

And to write the coolest “Happy Ever After”

Happy writing and thank you for spending time in my writing space. 🙂

 

Bushrangers, horse duffers and heroines to love.

We’ve been on the road again, partly to visit friends, partly to research.

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The rubbish bins holders at Winton are in the shape of dinosaur feet. 🙂

We called in at Augathella, and again at Mitchell, Qld and checked out the information centre there. Found out some fascinating history. One thing that caught my attention was the story of a horse duffer family. *a duffer, of course, is a thief. An old photo listed two brothers and a father as well as “the sister”. Ooh, I thought. What if….

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The two brothers.

What if my heroine was the daughter of a horse duffer family. What if she stole as well. What if her worth is in belongings, possessions, and not in how God sees her. What if, what if….

And I was off and racing with ideas. 🙂

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Me in the bush at Winton, taking photos for location research.

45c/113F temps outside. Stinking hot! Can’t imagine walking for miles in that sort of heat to get from shearing shed to shearing shed like swaggies used to do. (click on the word ‘swaggies’ for a link to explain what one is…).

How hard would it be to love someone who had a light fingered approach to life? What would that relationship look like? What lessons would have to be learnt/obstacles overcome to have a Happy Ever After?

What about you? Have you ever lived, or loved someone who treated your stuff, or your heart with carelessness? Do you have any tips or advice for dealing with that? I’d love to hear from you. 🙂

Children’s Capers and Writing

“Mummy, mummy!”

The soft cloud I’m sleeping on bounces up and down, jolting me out of the Land of Nod. I crack open one eye and peer at the cherub perched on the edge of my bed. “Wha?” I mumble then close my eye and hope she takes the hint to go away.

The bouncing continues. “Is it my turn to get the mail? Rebekah says it’s her turn to get the mail. Why don’t I get a turn?”

Rebekah thinks every day is her turn. I crack open my eye again peer out the window behind my bed. There is daylight, the kind that has just fought a valiant battle with night and is leading its way across the sky. Our postie is punctual and enthusiastic, but I doubt even he is up this early. My mind shrugs off sleep and I blink, trying to remember what day it is. Wednesday I think. Maybe Thursday. No, it is Thursday I need to do my bible study. “Yes, today is your turn. But I don’t think the mail has been yet, Rachel.”

“Okay!” She half falls off my bed and I hear her footsteps pound the wood floor. The screen door slams then I hear the click of the front gate followed by the slam of the mailbox. My children have an over-enthusiasm for collecting the mail. So much so I’ve had to put them on a roster to collect it. Eldest on Monday, 2nd child on Tuesday and so forth. Having 4 children means Friday ends up a day for someone who has missed a turn or I have a turn and spend 10 minutes chatting with the postie and swapping yarns. Ah. This sort of thing will have to make it into a book someday. I’m sure. 🙂

Fast forward a few hours…

Schoolwork around the kitchen table.

I listen to one child read, prod another to

‘Do your math! Please, build the next question!’

Explain why Australia went to war (is there any comfortable or rational explanation for that?).

And.. wait… back! I glance over at child no. 2 as he reads. A word catches my eye. It sounded fine as he read it, but…

“That’s the wrong spelling!” I exclaim. “Give me that book!” He grins, happy to get out of reading and hands the book over. All the other children gather around and I re-read the sentence, poking the offending word with a finger. Then follows a discussion as I scribble the different ways that word can be spelled on paper and what they mean. Of course they then chime in with examples in movies they’ve seen or how so-and-so did this (which is now hopelessly off track topic-wise, but nonetheless interesting). I shoo them back to their work and we carry on with work.

A picture tells a thousand words…

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My two youngest on the left, a cousin on the right and my eldest forehead in the bottom right in our 8 seater Ford stationwagon. That day was fun. Sort of. Now when I look back on it… We spent the whole day cleaning a house and packing up my sister to move. So all the last minute things got shoved in my car (no room in hers. We were running out of room to put plates near the end of the day and both of us pack really well!) Then we realised.. oh, 8 seats and we had 7 children between us and 2 adults. Those of us who can add will realise that someone has to run behind. Only thing is… my house is over 50kms away. No problem. Two children can share a seatbelt. Then we realised that mum had deposited some money in my account. And seeing as we were in a town that has a Woolies….That means food shopping! So $200 in food later we head out to the car. Pack the children in first, seatbelts on, then start packing shopping around them. That was interesting! When we drove off we had: 2 adults in the front seats (I had room at my feet and that’s only cos I needed to use the pedals), 4 in the backseat–that’s including the baby seat, no feet space, at least 2-3 mops and brooms next to them and a mower and catcher. (yes, you read that right.), the boot seat had 3 children and the rest of the $200 bucks worth of shopping. Oh, and tucked somewhere in all of that was a maltese terrier dog. 🙂 Good thing there wasn’t many bumps on the way home, I’m sure I would have felt the car bottom out on every bump otherwise. 🙂

Very happy to not repeat that experience. However some poor unsuspecting character might. Not sure how in a historical setting… but I’m sure I’ll find a way!

After dinner I’m knee deep in editing and critiques. Add in more detail of storefronts of buildings. I squint at the comment again and sigh. I mean, can’t the characters just walk on into the shop without noticing the surroundings… No? Well, that means some research then of 1881 mercantile storefronts. I’ll start by googling… My fingers hesitate above my laptop keys. Or, will I? I smile and lean over to my oldest daughter is sitting cross legged on my bed next to me.

I nudge her with my elbow. “Hey, what do store front’s on old streets look like?”

She pulls a headphone out of her ear and looks at me. “What?”

I refrain from rolling my eyes. This is an expert at old movies. If it’s an old movie and suitable for under 13’s then she’s probably seen it. A picture tells a thousand words… “I said, what do the store front’s on shops in old movies look like?”

“Ah!” Her eyes light up and she launches into descriptions of buildings, people and most importantly–mercantile stores.

My fingers speed across the keyboard, trying to keep up. Eventually she runs out of breath and quiets. I finish typing my sentence and look at her. “Thanks!”

She nods. “No problem. I like movies.”

This time I do roll my eyes. “I know.”

She sticks her headphones back in and goes back to her ipod. I review what I’ve typed up and smile. Perfect. And better yet, I can imagine what they look like thanks to the memory jog of the different movies these are set in. I begin rewording and adjusting what I’ve written, a sappy smile I’m sure plastered on my face.

I love research.

I love writing… and

I love my children. They help me write–and yes, sometimes they don’t help me write. They help with research and they listen when I ramble on about my ‘cool’ idea for a character. They provide oodles of examples of how people react to each other, and the funny stuff they do provide lots of examples for my writing.

How about you? Do you have children? Nieces, nephews? Some random child who walks past at 3pm every day with his blue cap on backwards and a butterfly on a string. Do they provide inspiration for you stories? Quirks for characters? A giggle for levity?

I know mine do. 🙂

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Sumo wrestling next to our lake. They were so hilarious as they attempted to swat each other. Then they’d totter on their matchlike legs. Teeter…then… timberrrrr! Splat. They’d hit the mat. Usually face first. Far too much padding to get hurt. But my goodness they were so funny I could barely keep the camera straight. I had to take pictures, that way I can giggle later at inopportune times in memory. Don’t worry, they loved it. 🙂