Monday, September 10, 2007

Montana Mistletoe!

Welcome to Kim Sawyer, Lisa Harris, Lena Nelson Dooley, and Debby Mayne. They're chatting about their latest release, Montana Mistletoe, available now from Barbour Publishing.

What is the premise of the collection?

KIM: Four childhood friends from Mistletoe, Montana--the town that celebrated Christmas year-round--make a pact to find true love by their 28th birthdays. But career commitments get in the way of fulfilling the pact. When love arrives in unexpected packages, will each girl recognize the gift?

In my story, All I want for Christmas. . .is You, Kathy Morgan has gotten caught up in the corporate world of writing advertising jingles at a San Francisco advertising company--a far cry from the simple world of Mistletoe. As Christmas approaches, an unexpected bonus gives her the opportunity to return to Mistletoe for a trip down "Memory Lane" where she can consider the marriage proposal of long-time co-worker Chad. But postman Erik Hoffman becomes a distraction that makes her wonder if she needs to evaluate more than Chad's proposal...perhaps more than romantic love, she needs the love of Jesus in her life.

What’s it like working with three other authors on one story?

LISA: One of the best parts of working with other authors is the time spent brainstorming and being creative together. It’s fun to work with new people, make friends, and enjoy the creative process. On the other hand, it is tough to put together a story, set in the same town, with the same characters. You have to pay attention to details to insure the integrity of the story.

Is there a character who you relate to and who made an input on your life?

KIM: I really enjoyed taking Kathy on her journey to discovery of faith. It's pretty easy to get caught up in our work and forget the needs of our heart to love and truly know God. Writing her story was a good reminder to me to keep my priorities in the right order: God first, family second, and work third.

What is the number one thing you’ve learned from your writing journey?

DEBBY: We don’t have as much control as we’d like.

Any future plans for your writing you’d like to share? Any specific dreams you’d like to accomplish in the area of writing?

LENA: I love what I do. I believe I’m fulfilling God’s purpose for this season in my life. As long as that’s His plan for me, I will continue to write books. As for dreams, my agent is marketing a women’s fiction proposal for me. It would be a breakout novel into the next level of writing. I’m looking forward to the time when an editor buys it. Others will follow.

There are many aspiring writers out there, can you share any tidbits of wisdom on getting published?

LISA: Be professional. Be diligent. And don’t give up. Join a crit group and a writer’s group. That will help with the frustrating times of rejection, and add to the joy of a sale.

If you want to learn more about the authors of Montana Mistletoe, check out Cecelia Dowdy’s blog on September 12th at

Winners! Winners! Winners!

Want a chance to win a FREE copy of the book and a $30 gift certificate to For more information, visit our official Montana, Mistletoe blog at by October 1st!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Tesser Well!

One of my favorite authors has passed away. I can't remember who lent me a copy of Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time many, many years ago. But I own several copies now, and one of them is autographed. Now I treasure it even more. Once I discovered Madeleine L'Engles's writing, I went on to read the rest of the Murry family series, and I also met the Austins, and read The Young Unicorns, and learned to enjoy the O'Keefes in Dragons in the Waters. Through these families and their stories, I saw the battle of good and evil, the glory of God and His power, and how He weaves events together seamlessly for good. But her books were not preachy, although they tackled some difficult subjects. Evil sometimes came in pretty packages, and the Holy was often seen in the base and rejected...a lesson to us all.

A snippet from A Wrinkle in Time:

With the last vestige of consciousness she [Meg] jerked her mind and body. Hate was nothing that IT didn't have. IT knew all about hate.

"You are lying about that, and you were lying about Mrs. Whatsit!" she screamed.

"Mrs. Whatsit hates you," Charles Wallace said.

And that was where IT made ITs fatal mistake for as Meg said, automatically, "Mrs. Whatsit loves me; that's what she told me, that she loves me," suddenly she knew.

She knew!


That was what she had that IT did not have.

She had Mrs. Whatsit's love, and her father's, and her mother's, and the real Charles Wallace's love, and the twins', and Aunt Beast's.

And she had her love for them.

But how could she use it? What was she meant to do?

If she could give love to IT, perhaps it would shrivel up and die, for she was sure that IT could not withstand love. But she, in all her weakness and foolishness, and baseness and nothingness, was incapable of loving IT. Perhaps it was too much to ask of her, but she could not do it.

But she could love Charles Wallace...

...Charles. Charles, I love you. My baby brother who always takes care of me. Come back to me Charles Wallace, come away from IT, come back, come home. I love you, Charles. Oh, Charles Wallace, I love you.

Tears were streaming down her cheeks, but she was unaware of them.

Now she was even able to look at him, at this animated thing that was not her own Charles Wallace at all. She was able to look and love.

And... if you want to find out more, then you'll have to read the book. :)

Tesser well, Madeleine. I trust you had a safe journey Home.

Monday, September 03, 2007


I slithered out of bed at 5 AM, knocked on the kids' doors, and one of them got up with me to see the lunar eclipse. Wow. No, I didn't take the photo on the left. A guy by the name of Ted Phillips did, and this is about how the moon appeared where I live. The night before, the family and I had made a trek to Wal-Mart. The full moon lit up the sky like a silver dollar. Cliche, but it did.
Then when we got up at 5 AM, this is how the moon appeared. Dark, brooding, shadowed, mysterious, as if someone had dropped a veil in front of it to block the glow of the sun--oh wait! That was us, on Earth.
Can you imagine what seeing a lunar eclipse meant to those centuries before us? Yes, I know that scientists finally figured out there are orbits, that the Earth moves around the sun and the moon circles around the Earth. But to the common people, to the superstitious. I wonder if they thought the world was ending, or that the shadowed moon foretold great judgment would befall them. However, they simply didn't understand what was going on in front of their eyes. Then, hours later, the shadow would pass and the silver glow would return.
How many times do we not understand what's going on in front of us? Lord, this is disastrous. Lord, what's going on? I can't see Your goodness. How can this work for Your glory? I just don't understand.
These are the questions and statements that don't surprise our Father at all. It's true. We don't understand. But if we trust Him like we say we do, we'll keep trusting and waiting. Either we believe He's all-powerful and all-knowing, or we don't. How much do we try to figure out, or handle on our own and mess up even worse? I admit there are tough questions, those vicious unanswered why's that echo back. Right now, I try to stop asking, and instead say, "I trust You. The moon is shadowed and it can't mean anything good. But I trust You."