Welcome to my little bit of cyber-space. It is my prayer that all who enter here may be richly blessed by the God of all grace. All praise to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Guest Blogger, Margie Lawson

By Margie Lawson

A big THANK YOU to Rose McCauley for inviting me to guest blog!

Before we get started, you need to know you may be a WINNER today. If you post a comment, you have a chance to WIN one of my LECTURE PACKETS (a $20 value):

1. Empowering Characters' Emotions
2. Deep Editing: The EDITS System, Rhetorical Devices, and More
3. Defeat Self-Defeating Behaviors

Each Lecture Packet is power-packed with over 200 pages of lectures. Please visit my web site, www.MargieLawson.com, and click on Lecture Packets to read the course descriptions. Thank you.


This is one of those small things writers can do that has a HUGE IMPACT.

Taking several stretch breaks throughout your day is a simple way to keep yourself feeling good. YET – so few people do it.

When asked, most people say they know they’d feel better if they stretched. Then they confess that they rarely stretch. Or – they wait until they hurt, then stretch.

Why don’t they JUST DO IT?

They forget. Or they don’t want to take the time.

Do you STRETCH several times EVERY day?

Do you have stretching exercises that you do each time? Or is it more of a random bend-this-way, bend-that-way, kind of stretch?

Do you spend 3 to 5 minutes during each stretch break? Sometimes longer?

Do you make sure you’re stretching various areas of your body?

If you do ALL of the above, congratulate yourself. You’re smart! You’re stretching your body and your mind.

I bet you could each design at least 15 minutes of stretching to do during breaks. If you need a nudge – here’s a link that shows you how to do NECK, HAND, WRIST, FOREARM, SHOULDER, UPPER BACK AND ARM, and LOWER BACK STRETCHES.

HERE’S THE LINK: http://ehs.virginia.edu/ergo/stretch.html

If you need more instruction, you can research the web for free stretch demos (like the link above) or purchase software. You can buy DVD’s, connect with an exercise-buff friend, take an exercise class, or hire a personal trainer.

You can make up your own mini-stretch routine. We’re talking about 3 to 5 minutes of stretching. You have multiple options – and no excuses.

For those who have injuries (i.e., back, neck, shoulder), you can stretch your good parts. Still – no excuses. :-)))

STRETCHING is low-impact. Not intended to do more than give you a gentle stretch. Stretching will increase your circulation, increase your energy, and help reduce the incidence of a repetitive motion injury. Stretching also relieves tension and reduces stress.

Stretching is also a warm-up and cool-down for your exercise session. Create your stretching routine and use it for breaks and before and after you exercise.

If you chose to put more energy into stretching, you could sit on a yoga ball at your computer. You could pop in a DVD and do 5 to 10 minutes of yoga or pilates work during short breaks from writing. You could do Tai Chi or any number of movement-based, stretching, and stress-reducing activities. It’s all good.

Stretching stimulates your body. Stimulates your mind. Stimulates your creativity.

If you want to feel better physically and emotionally – and be more creative – you’ll stretch!

Are you ready to make the commitment? Take stretch breaks every day?

Chime in. Let us all know:

1. What you plan to do
2. How often
3. How you’ll remind yourself . . . use a timer?
4. How you’ll reward yourself when you stick with your plan!

Thank you for dropping by! Again, I appreciate Rose for inviting me to guest blog.

REMEMBER: CONTEST DRAWING will be tonight, 10PM Mountain Time. Post a comment, and you may win one of Margie’s Lecture Packets!
Margie merges her two worlds, psychology and writing, by analyzing writing craft as well as the psyche of the writer. She presents 1) Empowering Characters’ Emotions, 2) Deep Editing: The EDITS System, Rhetorical Devices, and More, and 3) Defeat Self-Defeating Behaviors in one and two day master classes internationally. She also teaches these topics in month-long on-line courses and offers Lecture Packets through PayPal from her web site. www.MargieLawson.com

Friday, November 23, 2007

Upcoming Guest Blogger--Margie Lawson

I'm happy to announce that Margie Lawson, counseling psychologist and writing teacher extraordinaire, will be my guest blogger this next Tuesday, November 27th.

I first met Margie at the ACFW conference in Dallas this past September and learned so much from her Empowering Characters' Emotions workshop that I signed up for her online class last month on Deep Editing and am already planning on taking her January online class on writing productivity and creativity entitled "Defeat Self-defeating Behaviors."

Margie has graciously agreed to do a mini-lesson for us writers on the importance and how-to of taking stretch breaks, so be sure to come back on Tuesday to glean some wisdom from this dynamic teacher and also be eligible to win a great prize!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

ACFW conference and pictures

In September, I (along with 500 others) attended the 6th annual national conference for American Christian Fiction Writers in Dallas, TX. I'm posting pics of some of the highlights of the conference for me.

My first highlight(this pic is third from the bottom) was traveling from KY to TX in the company of Ruth Seamands who is called Mama Ruth by most of our group. Ninety years young, she has been writing since before some of us were born! I took her book Cast A Long Shadow with me to read on the trip, and enjoyed her telling me how the book came to be written. She also shared many other stories and bits of wisdom with me.

Another highlight was rooming with Sharon Ball. (2nd from the bottom) We had met only once before at the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers conference, so we enjoyed getting to know each other better and sharing some of our writing journey and family stories. Even though I am only a few years younger than her mother, she ended up taking care of me when I got sick one night. She prayed for me, went and got me a soda, and picked up the handouts from the class I missed the next morning and even kept an appointment for me with an editor and pitched my story! A true friend! Here we are with Janet Kobobel Grant, founder of Books & Such Agency, after we shared a meal at her table one day.
Although I am not presently writing a historical novel, I learned much from attending Tricia Goyer's class on historical writing. She is such a great writer, and had lots of info to share with us. I first connected with Tricia years ago thru email when we both were working with Teen MOPS, and it was such a joy to meet with her in person. (bottom picture)

(note: these pics appear at the top of the blog.)A big part of the conference is meeting with friends from previous conferences whom we haven't seen in awhile. I was happy to get to spend a little time with Connie Stevens and Kim Sawyer who both are precious friends and prayer partners. Also I enjoyed sitting with Nancy Jo Jenkins, another friend from past conferences, and her supportive husband at the awards banquet. Amid all the classes and late night chats and appointments, sometimes meals are the only time you have to connect with "old" friends.

My final highlight was taking a cab to the airport with Mama Ruth and her real-life daughter, Brandilyn Collins, who always does such a fine job of emceeing the ACFW conference. In this picture taken at the airport, be sure to notice Ruth's unusual necklace. The chain is from her husband, and the pin was a gift from a raja in India when they were missionaries there. Another unique story from this very unique lady!

If you are a fiction writer, you need to join ACFW and you need to pray about attending next year's conference which will be in Minneapolis, MN, September, 2008. The booksigning will be held at the Mall of America. Go to http://www.acfw.com/ to learn more about the conference and this wonderful organization that will help you learn to hone the gift of writing to God's glory.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Monthly Book Drawing

Congratulations to Jan Parrish, our winner of the Nov 1st drawing. If you like historicals and love Christmas stories like I do, then you will want to be sure to leave a post during this month for the December 1st drawing. I read Christmas books during the month of December, so decided the book for that month will be Prairie Christmas, a novella collection with stories by Elizabeth White, Catherine Palmer and Peggy Stoks. This book also contains recipes to go with each story, so enter often and be sure to leave your contact info. Everyone is eligible except Jan. Let's get in the Christmas spirit early this year!