Thursday, January 7, 2010

things kept, things left behind

I've finished with the galleys for Courting Morrow Little and returned them to my editor. Hope she doesn't gasp at all that red markup! Since I was away from the manuscript for 4 months, I could see a number of changes to make once it was in my lap again. Because I love narrative and readers don't always appreciate it, I added dialogue in crucial places and was always searching for the better word or phrase. Some breeze through the galleys. But I seem to be a galley's slave:)

Now that we've turned the corner on the new year, I've been prayerfully evaluating what worked and didn't in 2009. I have to confess I'm a Twitter, Shoutlife, and Goodreads dropout. But I do manage to keep up with this blog, Facebook, and have just joined a great bunch of reading friends over at Christian Fiction Challenge (

Margaret, the site's founder, has provided a great list of fiction titles coming out this year. One of my favorite reviewers and reading friends, Becky, read over 600 books last year! She reads across the spectrum in both secular and inspirational markets. TFD made her top five list for the latter and her review of it won the award for best blog tour review in Christian Fiction Online Magazine. Thanks, Becky!

I can't help but mention my reading/writing friends who've started 2010 off with a bang:

Lori Benton won the prestigious Novel Matter's Audience With an Agent contest and her manuscript, Kindred, a Genesis winner, is in the hands of Books&Such agent Wendy Lawton!

Carla Gade was asked by two established authors to submit a group proposal for a book contract!

Linda Thomas is finishing galleys and anxiously awaiting the release of her book, Grandmother's Letter's from Africa: Quaint I Ain't!

Lorna Seilstad, fellow Revell author, just received her first ever book cover for Making Waves, due to release October, 2010!

Keli Gwyn received her best Christmas gift ever as she's now represented by top-notch agent Rachelle Gardner for her manuscript, Violets and Violins. This book-to-be has won too many contests to count!

My dear friend and fellow Kentuckian, Ann Gabhart, has finished galleys for The Seeker, due to release July 1!

Do you have any news to celebrate? Make a new year's resolution that is somewhat of an epiphany to you? I'd love to share it here. Let's pledge to pray for one another in the new year. Looks like it's going to be a blessed one.


  1. My epiphany is that God has told me he wants me to lay off being a "slave" to writing and instead focus on being a joyful servant to Him and my family. Writing is still in the picture, it is just not front and center where it can cause me unnecessary stress. I want to get joy out of life and I want to be where God wants me to be!

    I'm still all about books and am going to try to READ more this year...and keep a list of what I read, which I've never done before. I can't believe your friend who read 600 books last year!! Wish I could do that but my goal is more like 15 or 20.

    So good to hear from you, Laura. Just so you know---Dialogue is good, but I love your detailed narratives! So exciting that CML is moving closer and closer to publication.

  2. I love reading about the success of other writers...and I'm glad those galleys are finished! Can't wait to meet Morrow Little!

  3. What a great list of new authors I know I'm going to want to read. I love how supportive the Christian writing community is of one another. That kind of spirit is definitely reflected in the pages of the books I get to read.

  4. Becky read over 600 books! I am still in shock over that number. I can't wait to read "Courting Morrow Little," Laura. I know it will be wonderful.

    Thanks for mentioning Making Waves. October doesn't seem as far away as it once did.

  5. Congrats on finishing your galleys!! I can't wait to read it!

  6. "Shock" is the right word, Lorna:) Becky is an amazing reader. Her reviews are top-notch too as she doesn't sugar-coat anything. In fact, her review of my book begins with, "I've been in a bit of a reading slump lately when it comes to Christian fiction. I've not really enjoyed much of anything in several months-most of the summer really..."

    Part of me lives in trepidation of a reveiwer like this and I pray she likes Morrow as much as Lael:) Hope you do, too!

    It's such a privilege to help share your book. It's high on my list of must-reads:) When October draws near I'd love to interview you here to celebrate your launch. Not too far off, indeed:)

  7. I've included Becky's great blog, Becky's Book Reviews, in my blog roll in the side bar if anyone wants to see what she's currently reading. She has quite an online presence and this is just one of several of her blogs, etc.

  8. Kav, You've made such an important point. It's a privilege to support each other - I think we have a duty to reach out. I know my life is much richer with my reading and writing friends now than it was even a few months ago! Nice to think it is felt in the pages of those books:)

  9. Kristen, Thanks so much for stopping by. Can't wait for Morrow to meet you, too!

  10. Mary, My reading goal is much smaller also. I really appreciated your recent blog post on the devotional book you're reading/reviewing. And you're so wise to follow the Lord's leading. He knows what's best for us at all times and what causes us undue stress. He prompted me to stop writing completely for 5 years when my boys were small and you know what happened? It was a RELIEF!

    Thank you for sharing such heartfelt things. They always add so much here.

  11. Hi Britt/Smoky Mountain sister:) I can sense your support for these writing successes - thank you for taking time to say that here. I have no doubt we'll be celebrating in a few of your own!
    Thank you again for reading TFD and looking forward to my next. Hoping you are feeling better and have a good book in hand!

  12. Thanks for sharing my good news, Laura. It's so exciting to see all that is going on and get to share in each others joy!

    Like you, I'm really appreciating my online writer and reader friends. Having this close community is such a blessing to me.

  13. I'm so happy to help spread your news, Carla. Can't wait to look back come 2011 and see what adventures the Lord has led us through:) But no sense wishing time away as we've just begun 2010!

  14. You're great at collecting friends, Laura. Glad to be one of them. A new year starts every day, a blank page to be filled with the events of our lives the same as we fill those blank pages with our characters' adventures.

  15. What a sweet surprise to come here this morning and see you made mention of my WIP. Thank you! Soon as I post this I plan to check out Becky's book reviews.

    I have to agree about Twitter. I'm on it, but hardly ever. I don't understand the appeal at all, but have remained active on Facebook for over a year now. It feels more like a community there. I'll also check out Christian Fiction Challenge. Thanks for the good links!

  16. How special it is to see my BIG news shared here on your blog, Laura. Thanks for the encouragement and support you've been to me. I will long remember the fact that you took time out of your busy schedule to talk to me on the phone and give me a taste of what life looks like for a published author. You're a class act, and I look forward to the day we can meet in person.

  17. Oh Kathleen, I apologize but I only rec'd one in which you thanked me but didn't get your book choice or your snail mail address! But it's never too late:) There are 2 books left - The Choice and Stand-In Groom. When you have a minute please let me know at Sometimes my email server fails to deliver all my email and that may be what happened. Looking forward to hearing from you!

  18. Keli, It's a JOY to share your news. I am guessing you're still dancing:) Thank you for your gracious words here - they sure touch my heart. You probably noticed a "Keli touch" to this post:) Thanks so much for being such a special friend.

  19. Lori, We must have logged onto Facebook about the same time last year. It is a nicer format for me, too. Hope you enjoy Becky's site - good stuff:) And the Christian Fiction Challenge sounds fun and will keep me on top of my reading. The group is just starting which is fun. Hope to see you there!

  20. ok I'll admit..... I'm a facebook dropout!. I haven't been on their in months. I'm so glad you keep up with your blog. I always look forward to reading about what is happening in the world of book-writing.

    600 books in one year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Is that even possible!!!???? yikes!
    And she blogs!? Does the woman ever eat or sleep? I'll have to check out her blog... now I'm curious.

    have you ever thought about writing for children? It's something that has been on my mind lately. The kids and I were reading some Jan Brett books yesterday (love her!!!) and I was thinking what a great gift she has to put stories into words and pictures.

    Looking forward anxiously to Morrow Little!

    Have a blessed day, Laura!

  21. Lisa, I'm not on FB very often, that's for sure. And I can see how you wouldn't have time for that with 4 kiddos in your house:) You can always Facebook after they leave home! Oh, and then there's the matter of 600 books! The goal at the Christian fiction challenge is to read 24 which is doable for me as I read a lot for research, etc.
    I've heard of Jan Brett. So glad you and the kids have found a great author to enjoy together!
    Can't wait for you to meet Morrow - not too much longer now.

  22. Hi Laura, I got your message/comment about the would be best just to take my name off of the list and let someone else win the book. I am busy anyway, and I know there are a lot of people who read your blog, who would love to win and probably read a lot of books. But thank you for the give away, it is very sweet of you! blessings,Kathleen

  23. So many with good news. It is exciting. Congrats on what looks to be another great book! :O)

  24. Diane, Great to hear from you again:) And thanks so much for your kind comments about my upcoming book. I hope you're still with me when I do a giveaway this June prior to release. I'd love to send you a copy. Will be sending out 4-5 depending on how many weeks we have that month.
    BTW, you have a wonderful blog!

  25. Well Laura...My goals for 2010 is to try harder to market my hand mades...I love making them and my walls are bulging in my den with finished items and walls in my sewing room are bulging with more to make. I am having a special sale right now in my blog for Pin Cushions and Tote Bags and will have a drawing for a give away in a week.
    My other goal is to help as many people keep from getting sick as I can so I will be making a lot more soap. They keep telling us on TV that the best way to keep from getting sick wash our hands:)
    And then I think to help not spread any more germs I will make up a lot more of the covers for the shopping cart handles..I think that helps for any size hands that push a cart.
    And last but not least I am praying that we can move back up North..I just want to go HOME, so I will be working hard to achieve that goal.
    Hope you get lots of writing done and that you and your family have a blessed 2010
    I have you in my blog roll now that I figured out how to do it :)

  26. Nancy, It's so good to hear from you again! Sounds like you're well on your way to meeting some of your 2010 goals. Your crafts are so wonderful and creative - I loved giving them as gifts this Christmas! I know what it's like to be homesick. Praying you move like you want and that the Lord blesses you abundantly this coming year.