Wednesday, September 28, 2011



Okay, free day in Seekerville!

This is what happens when you think you're invincible (HAHAHAHAHAHA!)

...and your guest blogger runs into problems....

And you think she's on TOMORROW.

Really, Ruthy???? REALLY??????

The last time we did this I did a frittatta recipe. Talk about lame.

But hey, frittattas are good, right? ;)

So today, instead of cooking, let me share a quick rundown of how wonderful this ACFW conference was:The Perfect Pre Conference Photo-click to enlarge

So there they were minding their own business with a photo-op and these
men jumped into the photo, claiming to be district fan club presidents.
Is this true??

I met so many of you that I don't dare list names because I'll forget someone, but I had so much fun hugging, kissing, chatting brainstorming, eating Carol's cookies, staying up late, getting up early (3:40 AM for flight out) and just getting to know you.

(a random movie song with Deborah Kerr just popped into my brain and visions of bald headed kings and BIG dresses are swamping my consciousness!!!)

Great session on choosing the "hero's path" in writing hosted by Allen Arnold, Julie Gwynn and Jeff Rupart... Learning to choose and meter time wisely. Always a good reminder for authors.

Julie"s "A Kiss is Never Just a Kiss" session with Ruth Axtell Morren....

Food at Caleco's Restaurant just up the road.

Climbing into a POD with Audra to go to the top of the arch.

Walking the City Garden with Helen Gray, Ivan Connealy and Audra... at night... under the lights... a colored splash fountain.... a step-layered waterfall. Just gorgeous!


Oh my stars, ridiculous really!


YES!!!! :)

Sneaking Seeker time.... Prayer time.... Having Deb Giusti pray over me and for me.... Brainstorming/plotstorming time... with Pepper!!!! Sharing ideas, thoughts, wishes, prayers.... Time with Melissa Endlich.... Time with Wendy Lawton.... Time with LI authors..... And so many others.

This had to be the best ACFW I've ever been to. Really. They've worked so hard as a fast-growing organization (remember, ACFW is only about 11-12 years old from the writing of the bylaws)... And that hard work showed this year. Amazing, really.

Kudos to the team that put it together. Margaret Daley, always the epitome of grace and poise... Tracie Peterson as Keynote speaker.... Brandilyn Collins as emcee... Great job, all.

But mostly I loved seeing you guys. Talking with you. Planning with you. Sharing with you. That made it worth every single cent I spent to put voices with faces. To share our laughter and tears. To share our time.

I have $35 in my stash toward next year. I put aside the money I came back with, so there you go. It begins with a $35 fund... And now I'll have to just keep it growing monthly to get to either RWA or ACFW next year.

Who knows?

Maybe both!

Okay, even though Shirlee was unable to come by today, I've got two copies of her current book Lone Defender in the hopper. They're hard copy so I can't offer e-reader on them, but chime in and chastise me for messing this up, and you get into the drawing. If you MOCK ME A LOT, you get more chances.

Because I SO DESERVE IT!!!


  1. Snicker...aww Ruthy. I TOTALLY understand this. I was up at The Alley on Monday morning and had to get a post together at 7am before the 'early birds' could check it out.
    Like-minds...or lack-minds.

    You already know that a highlight was meeting you. What a blessing and joy. And of course you would mention Carol first because she bribed EVERYBODY with cookies.

    Just sayin....

  2. I think you should give away a five page critique too.

  3. The "oops" is still a lot of fun to read! You've made me want to get to Dallas next year more than ever...

    I think I have almost $10 in my stash. It's going to be a long year of weighing financial priorities!

    Working on the final polishing of my manuscript today!!! And I haven't run out of chocolate yet.

    And of course, please put me in the drawing for Shirlee's book!

  4. Awwwww Ruthy, And here I thought you were invincible.

    But I heard a baby crying when I called so am truly impressed girlfriend. You are awesome.

    And Carol's cookies were to die for. They were real, not cyber cookies and loaded with chocolate chips.

    I was only there Thursday evening so missed a lot of you, but it was such a joy to visit with Seekers and meet Seeker friends. I loved it.

  5. I further think that you should give away sponge's almost sponge candy time.

  6. I deal with "oops" quite a bit. Realize I should have done something when I didn't. What I really do a lot is go into a room for something and then say "oops" what am I here for! I saw an advertisement on TV for a pill to help your memory but I can't remember what the name of the pill was! haha. So goes our lives..

  7. Hmmm Tina, Great idea and don't you think she should give all of us Seekers some also since we can't win it?

    We can be bribed into forgiveness Ruthy.

  8. No mocking needed. May won't allow it...

    It sounds like such a grand time. So glad you were able to recap for us - SEE? All in God's plan...


    Now... go take on the day!

  9. I think Ruthy should give snarky advice...
    oh wait, she already does :-)

    How about time-management advice, Ruth? I'm sure that when you not Post Writing Conference Brain, you're great at time-management.

    Or give Captain Jack a call. No one complains when he comes for a visit. That'd be a good distraction from your 'oops' too :-)

  10. Oooo, I like Sandra's 'hint'.

    Bribed into forgiveness.


  11. No, ten page critique.

    Just because.

    And if you DON'T mock me, you will not get in the drawing.

    Hey, anybody got coffee???

    Desperate in Upstate...

  12. Y'all wouldn't let those of us still at home wallow in pity parties, so I guess we should mind our manners and not mock Ruthy too much today either. It must be the week for such -- I was in the same fix Monday morning with Favorite PASTimes. I knew it was my time to post, but the days slid by awfully quick!

    Conference sounds like it's great, as usual. We got home from a family thing Saturday night in time for me to catch the last 30 minutes or so of the live blog/broadcast.

    And, speaking of Favorite PASTimes, hop over there for another Seeker fix ( Pam Hillman is our guest author this week, with a 2-day interview posted yesterday and today. :-)

    Happy Wednesday!

  13. I'm just tickled pink to know Ruthy's not perfect!!! Neener neener neener!!!


    Missy--pretending she's superior and never messed up in her life.


  14. BTW, I hope Shirlee can come soon. She's so much fun!

  15. Ruthy - I'm going to have seriously rethink your cookie access next year if this is what happens when you get back.

    At least until you squeal with as much delight as I did upon meeting you. Then I will relent. Momentarily at least. Though if you play your cards right for the next 51 weeks, I could bring you your own baggie. But I wouldn't count on it ;).

    And yes, I bribed the front desk guy for free internet. [sort of. more to the story than that. but he did get cookies.]

    Sandra - so wish we could have chatted more! LOVED seeing you friend!

    Trying to come up with more snarkiness, but how can I when Ruthy mentioned ME first?! [Ha Pepper! ;)]

    carolmoncado at gmail dot com

  16. Nice Save, Ruthy! :D

    The cookies were sublime. Carol should seriously think about a start-up business supplying authors around the country with that gooey chocolaty goodness. We'd all be pounding out best sellers at a shocking rate. :D

    Getting to meet you in person was a highlight of my was your hilarious behavior in the crowded elevator.

  17. Erica!! Congrats on the Times list dudette.

    And you must tell us about Ruthy and Elevator incident. Please.

    The more to taunt her with my dear.

  18. So nice to meet everyone! Pepper, you and I sat at the same table at lunch one day :)

  19. Good thing you're so nice, Sherri,because to make matters worse you are apparently photogenic and just as gorgeous in person as you are in your blog photo.


  20. OH LOOK!@!! We've increased our demands and added a copy of Mended Hearts to our list.

    I love holding Ruthy hostage. Don't you?

  21. RUTHY!!! Oh, what a FUN screw-up, my friend!! Only YOU could make a screw-up fun, seriously. I would be hyperventilating by now and require CPR ... from Keith! ;)

    Like Erica said, "nice save," girlfriend, and quite frankly I would read (and laugh) at ANYTHING you write, be it grocery list or check (you can make it out to 1/2 of the "Kissing Queen," if you will ...)

    ACFW was SOOOOOO FUN!!! Seekers and agents and cookies, OH MY!!


  22. It happens to the best of us reprimands here. Love the description of the conference...sounds like it was so much fun. Can't wait to go next year!

    Jodie Wolfe

  23. Oh my stars... One of the little urchins has stolen my wireless mouse...

    And I left one someplace between St. Louis and HERE....

    So addled is obviously a chronic state.


    Mended Hearts

    2 Five Page Critiques (because why not SHARE THE LOVE????)

    Sponge Candy... Whoever wins THIS will love me forever. I really mean that.

    2 Shirlee McCoy books (who is my WITNESS that I e-mailed her this morning saying it's okay, I'll come up with a quick blog by TONIGHT.... because I've been on the wrong day all week.

    What else????

    Come on, really. You guys can do better than that, right? Just DON'T dip into my $35 conference fund for 2012.


  24. Teenster, love the photos. I had one baby yelling, one baby whining and Dave trying to amuse both while we were waiting for Lisa to drop off her cutie baby before her chemo session...

    (that was a gratuitous plug, mentioning Lisa to gain me brownie points to show how NICE I am...)

    Hey, fresh cookies.... chocolate toffee brickle like the ones I sent Vince a few months back.

    He said he and wifey thought they were the BEST ever, Carol.

    Yup. Gauntlet's been THROWN.


  25. Okay, Ruthy, step a-w-a-a-ay from the Keurig. Really, I think you've had enough caffeine for now.

    It takes a very secure person to air their mistakes so publicly. Makes the rest of us feel better about our own ;) I don't need a book, just dropped in to say I'm glad you're back cuz I missed you!

  26. Who ARE those men in that group photo??? One of them looks vaguely familiar. I think I've run into him around the house here from time to time on my way to the kitchen for a snack.

  27. Seriously Ruthy? What's the matter with you?
    I don't know what I'm more appalled by. That you messed up OR... that you aren't stomping your feet somewhere shouting "Silence! I meant to do that!!!"
    Just, don't let it happen again.

    *Keeping my internal antagonist reined in is a way of life, so when she's invited out, especially to try to get a critique, this is what happens. ;-)

  28. If I promise not to mock you, Ruthy, will you promise not to ever mock me in the future? Not that I ever plan to make any mistakes, but it is possible.

    You're forgiven!

  29. Quick. Who wants the critiques. Speak up!!!

    Anything else you want???

  30. Erica don't leave us hanging we want to hear about the hilarious behavior in the crowded elevator.

    Leave it to Ruthy to give us a great post even when it starts with a great big OOPS.

    I'd love to be entered for a Five Page Critique.

  31. I was post was just invisible. I sent it yesterday morning, and now I'm so sad, because I have this wonderful box of goodies I planned to give away- books and tea and chocolate.

  32. I'll take a critique!

    And some of that chocolate-y stuff Ruthy claims is better than my cookies. I gotta see for myself.

    Or a book.

    Or well, I love prizes of any kind ;).

  33. Ruthy, I"m serious about the sponge candy for all of us. Or no forgiveness. (yikes, Lord forget I said that)

    We'll forgive you, but it would be easier with sponge candy in hand.

    I'm with you Tina, We have Ruthy. Let's think of something else we want.

    And as Missy says, Neener neener.

    And Carol, your cookies ARE yummy

  34. Here's a question for Seekerville's talented writers. When one of your evolving characters throws you a curve, how do you handle it? Do you toss your original concept and follow along? Or do you wrestle them back on track?

  35. It sounds like a lot of fun!
    Please enter me in the draw.


  36. Ruthy, only you could redeem yourself with so much laughter.

    I want sponge candy, too! Ah, what is sponge candy?

  37. Mia in my current wip my heroine surprised me. She's tougher than I expected. I let her run with it. Just have to make sure she stays likable as well.

  38. For the record...

    The cute guy standing behind me in the photo did not come with me. He belongs to Julie, and he's as nice as she is. Don't know how I got between them. :)

    My sweetie was at home doing the laundry and cleaning and grocery shopping!



    All of which I've had to do since I came home.

    But I love him anyway. :)

  39. Waving to Shirley!!!!

    Honey, you have to come back to Seekerville when someone else can be your hostess.

    Ruthy...well, you know Ruthy gets things mixed up...and, well.....we love her....but....

    I'm just sayin' next time ask for someone else! :)

  40. Tina or Mary... if you're around... when's the book signing in Tulsa? I wrote it down but can't find it...

  41. Ruthie mess up? With all that energy, who would have guessed that possible?

    I'll take a critique, btw. :)

    And is anyone else avoiding the deluge of after-conference email?

  42. Shirlee, bless your heart. I'll host you next time!! :)

    Ruthy has conference brain and a baby on the way (not her own! A grandchild.) So I guess I should be kinder. But it is, after all, hold Ruthy prisoner day.

  43. Hi Ruth:

    I don’t believe all this for a minute. Today was carefully staged to demonstrate your genius for creative spontaneity. You can’t fool a philosopher!

    BTW: we loved your cookies and when I made your maple fudge we loved that, too. I was going to mail you a 2” square piece but my wife said fudge wouldn’t make the trip and still taste good. So I ate your piece, too. : )


    P.S. Who is that handsome movie actor with the mustache standing next to Debby? I think I saw him in “Lonesome Dove”.

  44. Here's coffee for anyone who needs it this late in the day!!

    I checked and checked last night. Then this morning I had no internet. Nasty air waves or something I guess. Anyhow, just now got online, so I'm happy again.

    Loved walking the streets with Ruthie, Audra, and Ivan. Fun.

    Had Carol's cookies, too. Hopefully I'll see more of her between now and Dallas. I went to the first meeting of the MozArk group and want to get back for more. Too far to go every month. But I can do combine the trip with a visit to my daughter's now and then. (Daughter and Carol teach at the same school.)


  45. Every time I pop back in, there are more prizes on the list.

    I think Sandra has a wonderful idea - sponge candy for all of us. I'll send you my address. And a pre-paid box.

    Mia had a great question. I tend to argue with my characters, but we work things out and the story turns out much better than my original plan!

    And Vince, are you sure Ruthy would plan this in advance? Hmmm. You may have something there...

  46. Ruthy,
    I think you should feel absolutely horrible right now. Not because you had forgot a blog but for 2 reasons: 1 you made this blog funny and possibly better than something else you may have written and 2 you made me feel like I missed the event of the year. Let me wipe away a tear as I get back to my mundane and unexciting life.

  47. So....stand up comic moment.

    13 women walk into a bar....

    I'm just testing. I haven't been able to comment all morning!!! And on National Make Fun of Ruthy Day, too.

    Uh....Am I the only one calling it that???

  48. I've never heard of sponge candy.
    But I'm assuming it's good.

    Enter me into every drawing. I could use the pick-me-up.

  49. Ruthy,

    way to go. I love seeing other people screw up besides me.

    Shows our humanity. Honestly, I rarely screw up. But I'm here for you Ruth.

    Next time give me a call and I try to come up with a filler.

    although I must admit, you did a wonderful job yourself.

    On the bribery front...
    I believe we are thinking to small.
    My goodness, this was a massive oopsy.

    I think we should have a chapter critique...

    and a paid trip to the conference next year. :-)

    I need some funds for dental work.

    We are talking about bribery here, and it is never cheap.

    And what is sponge candy?
    I'm envisioning chocolate covered dish sponges. LOL

    Okay, not much more to say.

    Two Thumbs up for your mess up, Ruth.

    Now if anyone would like to... we can talk about the bites on my arms and see if we can conclude what bit me.

    Wouldn't that be fun?


    Ehhh Bribery is much more fun.

  50. Okay, I gained 4 lbs last week. 3.9 of those lbs were from Carol's cookies.

    Carol, your chocolate chip cookies are banned next year!

    Just sayin'

  51. chocolate toffee brickle

    Oh my stars!

    That sounds like the BEST ever cookies.

    Sorry Carol...

  52. Hi Jan:

    You asked if Ruthy would plan something like this in advance?

    All I have to say:

    “È il papa italiano?”


  53. So with all this talk about food. Who will running the little bistro/cafe/coffee shop??? in Seekerville?

    What will it be called?

    Sweet Seekers?

    Island of Chocolate.

    just thinking...

  54. Vince,

    You need to ask Julie about the handsome guy! :)

    He's also brilliant, like his wife. :)

  55. Helen,

    Amazing about daughter and Carol teaching at the same school! How nice. So do tell....does Carol bring cookies to school?

  56. Okay, Tonja, fess up. Who's the handsome hunk in your blogger photo?

  57. Hi Debby:

    I think I understand that ‘edgy’ business better now. : )


  58. Sweet Seekers? Love it, Carol!!!!

    The Sweet Seekers shop...or shoppe...could sell Sweet Seekers Bars...guaranteed to reverse writer's block and bring instant creativity to any who so indulge.

  59. Ah, Vince, refresh my memory?

    Maybe I need a Sweet Seekers Bar! :)

    Will you be at ACFW next year, Vince? Are you planning to submit your workshop?

    YES! YES! YES!

    If so, I'll be there, front row, smiling, and taking notes!

  60. Oh my stars...

    Shirlee, we'll figure this out, honey! I didn't get it but I kept bouncing from your e-mail, too...


    It's not the FIRST time people have blocked me, Shirlee!

    So we'll give away your box of goodies when I REALLY, TRULY have you on. But I'm so glad you came over so we could talk.... Dagnabbit, woman, you've got so much to say and I'm all about lettin' you say it!

  61. I had a FABULOUS time at the conference, and I'm hoping that maybe I'll actually WIN some awards some day. Maybe then the Seekers will hang out with me. Ah-hem. Just sayin'.


    I did get to at least say hi to MOST of the Seekers, almost all, I think. I am so bummed I missed Julie and Ruth's workshop, and now I'm not even sure I can order it without ordering the entire set. :-( Bummer.

    Just finished my galley edits for The Merchant's Daughter! OH MY GOSH, I am so nervous to see how it does. SO NERVOUS. And I got so overwhelmed with marketing last time, I haven't committed to much of anything as far as marketing with this new book. I don't even have a single book signing lined up. Oh my stars above. God, please be my publicist! I need you!

    And my 13-yr-old, who loved my first book, doesn't like the beginning of this book. She had several complaints about it. Talk about killing my confidence. :-( :-( :-(

  62. This comment has been removed by the author.

  63. Leigh, thanks for the shout out for Pammers! We love to see our Pam out there, making new friends... When they let her out of the home, that is.

    Those alarm systems can be a real KILLER... ;)

    Love the ginkoRuthoba.... and still can't find my 'mouse'.... We have checked the garbage, the cupboards, the bins, the toy box(es)....

    Couch cushions... So do we need to sweeten the larder more???

    I see Sandra over there BEGGING for sponge candy for all...

    Really????? :)

    I love sponge candy. And Teena (being a upstater originally) knows about sponge candy.

    It's just lovely.

  64. Oops, I'm having some trouble commenting...

    Great goodness, Ruthy! Only you could turn an "Oops" into this much fun!

    What is sponge candy?

    A Ruthy critique? Seriously? Count me in.

    Hmm. Mocking... I'm not sure how to go about it.

    Oh, btw, when my family walks by asking what the raucous laughter is about and why I'm scrounging in the cabinets for chocolate chip cookie ingredients singing, "Getting to Know You" opera-style, I'm just going to tell them... some crazy woman named Ruthy did it!

    Is that mocking enough? :)

  65. 13 women walk into a bar...

    The bartender says, “If you’re looking for the apostles, they’re upstairs eating.”

    The leader of the women says, “Don’t tell us; show us.”

    The bartender shakes his head slowly, “But haven’t you heard that blessed are those who haven't seen but still believe?"

    “Haven’t you heard we’re writers?”


  66. Sherri Shackleford is stinking adorable.

    Erica is so vibrant and smart and I could talk to her all day... But Mary's already done that....

    Pepper... Oh my stars, I've already adopted Pepper only...


    Her mother looks YOUNGER than me and she's beautiful. She looks like a blonde Pepper with sky blue eyes.

    Rude, rude, rude. I don't handle being upstaged, but we know that right???

    And Carol.... So much fun, so busy, and bribing me with food. I'm all over that, girlfriend!

    Naomi Rawlings... Adorable. And we've got a new younger-than-young friend, Amanda Barnett.... a go-getter teen writer with FOUR completed novels.

    My kind of girl, LOL!

    Beth is making me coffee. I'm starting to feel normal.

    As if. ;)

  67. Just want to say that Ruthy is (surprisingly, maybe?) sweet and low-key in person.

    You know I love you, Ruthy!

  68. So, Pepper managed snarky advice...


    And time-management system advice...


    How ironic is it that I'M the person who didn't go to the second half of the 'time stealer' course because I'm SO CAREFUL WITH MY TIME.

    Oy. What a dweeb!

  69. Oh, Mia threw out a great question...

    For me it depends on whether or not it will deepen the story.

    So when an old friend walked onstage in A Family to Cherish, I just welcomed her with open arms.

    And when Matt Cavanaugh turned out to be Neal Brennan's illegitimate child with a waitress... that made life a little tough for half siblings Meredith and Jeff Brennan...

    And who knew that Brooks Harriman was going to be befriended by a big, red Golden Retriever????

    I love going with the flow and making it work, Mia-kins.

  70. Ruthy, meeting YOU was truly one of the highlights for me---and you were as precious as I knew you'd be! (besides, back in the winter I won a chocolate basket from you, so how could I not love you?!). No, really....I'd adore you even without that chocolate, because you're so sincere, and I LOVE that! Thanks for all you do in Seekerville, and for making ME feel so special at ACFW. Hugs from Georgia, Patti Jo :)

  71. Tonja...

    Step away from the tissues, honey. Here. Have a piece of chocolate.

    Did you see Tina's post last week (Pity Party on Friday) that talked about saving for conference and the complete breakdown????

    Let's aim for next year, sweetums, if possible. And if not, I'll update you again...



    But yes, it was fun, informative, well worth the time and money, and...

    I never blow sunshine at people, so you gotta know it was good.

    Next year. And for those of you wondering, I'm sure there will be scholarships, prizes, etc. to help with conference fees. We'll keep you posted as we hear, 'kay?

    Teeena, get on that, won't you?

  72. What? You mean even published authors forget things? Ah, my image of you, Ruthy, has been ruined. What's a newbie to do? (No, I really don't have you on a pedestal. Really. :))

    I guess I'll extend grace and say thanks for being real. :) I can only mock so much.

    I'd love to be considered for a critique, if they're being offered.

    Sooo appreciate your humor and spontaneity, Ruthy! I've been laughing out loud reading your words and the comments. :) Today's post will be memorable, that's for certain.

  73. Free conference trip, Tina P.???

    Oh, honey, that seems fair.

    Let me talk to Mary... ;)

    Vince, I'm so glad you loved the cookies and fudge! And thank you for thinking I'm smart enough to do this.

    I assure you I am not.

    (tee hee)


    But if I was, it worked pretty well, huh? AND.... what about this big move next week????? To AND...

    We're talkin' fun plans for the future....


    We're so stinkin' excited....


    We are blessed. Truly. To be buds with all o' youse.

  74. Vince, dying laughing!!! You know me too well.

    Leave the gun. Take the cannoli, Dude.

  75. Naomi...

    So stinkin' cute. And young.

    Two strikes, chica!!! ;)

  76. A bistro/sweet/coffee shop in Seekerville?????

    WHAT A NOVEL IDEA!!!! ;)

    I have these delicious little Italian cheese-stuffed pastries I've perfected lately....

    Oh my stars, to die for. I wonder if they'll serve them in this quaint little Seeker shop????

    (laughing in upstate!)

  77. Hi Debby:


    Downtown Dallas is only 271 miles from my front door. An easy drive. I plan to be at the next ACFW conference and I will try to get the “Rewarding the Reader” workshop approved. I think I’ll have a talk with the President of the ACFW Saturday at our local chapter WIN meeting about what I have to do and when I have to do it. I was too late asking to give a workshop this year.

    I also plan to enter the Genesis contest this time. I’m excited about a book I outlined (77 pages) while I was in Orange Beach. It was a very creative environment for me.

    Thanks for your interest. I’ll save you a seat and give you a copy of the book (or manual).


  78. Natalie, good girl! Only better if you find a really BIG DRESS to wear with it as you cupboard-probe...

    Keep 'em guessing, honey!

    Melanie, step away from the errant kid. Kids know nothing. Even smart ones. Some times they know LESS...

    It's all mathematical. ;)

    And hey, we had a losers night in the lounge, kiddo... All were welcome, but I'll tell you honestly I was so stinkin' honored to be a finalist with Linda Goodnight and Irene Hannon... Winning is never important to me. Ever. But knowing I'm doing a good job??? (sales and contest finals are good judges of that, right???)

    Oh, that's sweet!

    There are no losers. Not when Christian fiction has opened its doors to so many of us, right? We are so blessed. Totally.

  79. Haha! I love real and flawed people. They make me feel at home.
    Plus, I don't want to chastise anybody because I got an e-mail that says I'm 2nd in the Inspy category of the Golden Pen! Yay! So exciting! Of course, now I have to look at the judges comments and revise, etc. But hey, I'm SO looking forward to it!

  80. Oh! Critique, please!I see the call is out... I have so many weird little WIPs.
    And I swear, Seekerville comments are almost as good as the posts! You guys crack me up.

  81. Vince, the Pope isn't Italian!! He's German. How about "E il Papa Catolico?"

  82. If this is messing up, I love it! Thanks, Ruthy, for the reminder of all the fun, worship and wisdom--at least I found some--at ACFW! Great seeing everyone!

    Shirlee, sorry about the post.

    Congratulations, Virginia, on second place in the Golden Pen!!


  83. Wow you learn something new on Seekerville everyday.

    I just learned something... the pope is German. I thought he was Roman.


    Mary, did Ruthy talk to you about my free conference trip to ACFW 2012?

    Just checking.

  84. Congrats, VIRGINIA, on the Golden Pen final! Woohoo for you!

    I agree, Ruthy! We are so blessed to be finaling in contests with "the big names." God has blessed me, oh my!!! Yes! I see every contest final as God's blessing. Contests are so subjective, so God has to make it all come together. He has been good to me. My publisher is pleased with me, my editor is pleased, so what more could I ask for?

    And I'm thankful my book is coming out in two months. My daughter stayed up really late reading it last night, so maybe she liked it more than she let on. Or maybe it got better. Or maybe it's more of an adult book--did I say that? Sh! Slapping my own wrist.

  85. Next time you mix up your days Ruthy (that's as snarky as I'm getting with you) just post that sponge candy recipe.
    It was really good to put real faces with so many Seekerville names at ACFW, especially as it involved cookies (thanks Carol). I enjoyed shouting at you over the music in the bar Ruthy.
    Since it is apparently confession time I will admit that I took TWO Seekerville pens from the basket by the bookstore - but one is for Bailey so that hardly counts, right?

  86. Vince, you could do stand-up comedy at ACFW next year. Do I hear a groundswell for you to take over the emcee position?

    Seekervillagers Rule!

  87. VIRGINIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    GOLDEN PEN FINALIST!!!!!!!!!!!!



  88. Stephanie...


    Never admit to taking two Seekerville pens. Mary might get mad! :)

  89. CAROL
    The Tina and Mary National Booktour has it's one and only event at:
    1 - 3
    Steve's Sundry, Books & Magazines
    2612 S. Harvard
    Tulsa, OK

  90. YAY, VINCE!!!!!

    Submitting an ACFW workshop for next year. Go, you!!!!

    Keep checking the website. They'll have info on how and when and where to submit. Won't be long until they'll be asking for program submissions.

    I'll tell Pam to keep us posted.

    And, yes, I'll take that front row seat and will buy multiple copies of your book! :)

  91. Hi Virginia:

    During all the years I was growing up people used to say, “Is the Pope Italian?” because for 455 years the Popes had all been Italian up to John Paul II.

    I used this comment (in Italian) because the answer is No. I was after irony and irony is very hard to make work. : )

    The pope was Polish.
    The pope is German.
    Whence cometh another Italian?


  92. Oh, don't be to hard on yourself Ruthy :) It's OK.

  93. Uh... Mary... darlin'... what day is that book tour?! ;) And I must say, that our initial meeting totally helped make my conference.

    Ruthy - in light of it being immediately post-conference, you should offer a proposal crit. Not the chapters mind you, but the other few pages of, oh, I dunno, cover letter, synopsis, etc. For someone who might need one.

    I'll volunteer if no one else will.


    And I'll retract my retraction of cookies for next year. I'll even bribe with them.

    I'd insert a snarky comment about time management but /eyes piles of still-untouched laundry and unfinished proposal/ I'm using them all on me.

  94. Vince!

    See, I got lost there with the question of whether Ruthy would plan something like that (no?) or if she would think it was funny (yes?). So, I decided to be Chico to your Groucho and went literal. :D You're very funny! You deserve a better sraight man (gal) than me.
    Thanks Debbie! The comments are daunting, now that I'd had a moment to look at them. So many things to fix. :(

  95. Update:

    Free on Kindle

    “Highland Blessings” by Jennifer Hudson Taylor. This may only be for a short time. Also now available in print only is Jennifer’s second book in the series “Highland Sanctuary”.

    2011 HOLT Medallion Award for Best First Book Category
    2011 HOLT Medallion Merit Finalist for Inspirational Category.

    “Highland Blessings” is a very good book and it features my favorite romance heroine! I think it is a very good book for an aspiring writer to read. And now it’s free!


  96. Update:

    Two copies of “The Price of Victory” (Avalon Romance) by Sandra Leesmith are now available at the Tulsa County Library.

    It pays to request Seeker books from your library. I might not have had anything to do with it but every book I have requested has been purchased. Request and then check them out. It works…at least in Tulsa. : )


  97. Hi Virginia:

    I wouldn’t trade you for anyone! If I was easy to understand, what fun would that be?



    P.S. This might be #100.

  98. Oh, Faye, LOVE YOU!!!

    You have assuaged my guilt.

    Vince, I love the irony. And what's with all those Italian popes, anyway????

    I would have to guess that we just might have Italy outnumbered, but...

    We are upstart Americans.

    And didn't you just love John Paul II????

    Amazing man.

    Okay, still no mouse. Really.

    And pouring rain. Which means how about some hot apple cider and apple pie?

    Sounds good to me. I'll make the sponge candy when the humidity and temp drop a little.

    Hope you love it!



    I just met Stephanie in May when her beautiful daughter did some advance promo work for my books and booksigning in Allegany County...

    Stephanie has come out of her "writer's closet" beautifully! So proud of you!

  100. Haha! Out fo the writing closet, cute!
    Thanks Ruthy! And yes, JPII was awesome. When I went to live in Poland and people would ask why, I always said, 'Because the Pope's Polish, silly.' I got a lot of weird looks.

  101. Oh it wasn't me! there were a couple of blogs that didn't post before I went to bed so thought it was blogger for awhile.
    Love the photos.
    and over 100 comments a busy day from what I see. I am up early cos they are making a footpath outside my place. which means I cant get out of my front gate now! will be glad when its over.

  102. Hi Ruth:

    We were touring Italy and were in Vatican City when I read in the Italian newspaper that Thurman Munson was killed.

    That was about ten months after Pope John Paul II was made pope. I remember there were huge crowds bussed in from Eastern Europe to see the Pope make an appearance and bless the crowd. Everyone loved the Polish Pope. I had been to the Vatican several times before that over the years but I never saw such large crowds to see the Pope.

    I think there were so many Italian popes because they always made sure to have enough Italian cardinals to keep anyone else from winning. It’s not likely that will ever happen again. There could even be an American pope.


  103. Wow, Vince and Debby, you are really our hero and heroine holding up the fort for Ruthy. And funny too.

    I think that's a great idea for Vince to do stand up comic at ACFW and emcee. Yeah. Seekers do know how to have fun.

    And Lord knows we all make enough mistakes to laugh about.

    And I'm going to have to taste those cookies Vince because the ones Carol made were to die for. Natalie, how did your cookies turn out? I"m hungry for chocolate.

    I like the demands. Yes, sponge candy for everyone. We need to find the previous post with the recipe.

  104. I wondered what was going on when I checked Seekerville this morning and nothing new.
    THen I got to work and had one of those days! And it's not even a full moon.
    You've motivated me to start a concrete stash of money for conference next year. Thanks for that, and have a great day!
    I'd also love to be in the drawing. Thanks!

  105. First I see this -

    chime in and chastise me for messing this up, and you get into the drawing. If you MOCK ME A LOT, you get more chances.

    Then I see 107 comments

    I guess they really took you at your word!

    Since I can never even remember what I want when I open the freezer, I'm not saying a word about forgetfulness.

    The pictures were a really great save. Loved seeing everyone even though it only made me sadder to have missed out.

  106. I'd love a couple of Carol's cookies right now and maybe a cup of Helen's coffee. Actually, no coffee until tomorrow.

    Love your writer's joke, Vince.

  107. Mary C, ACFW PAID me to make you feel bad.

    Their upping the ante for 2012 and making you WISH YOU WERE THERE....

    Hey, that's where it's at, chica!


    So we tuck money away. (Half the time I end up using it or a portion for some emergency car or plumbing repair.)

    But it really does help to plan ahead. Find a roomie. Apply for scholarships or watch for contests with conference fees as grand prizes...

    Like the one Teeeeena dared me to enter 4 years ago.



    But I always take a dare, so I entered and finaled.

    I was "that" close to that conference fee, LOL!

    Hang in the game. Work hard. Then work harder.

    And I can't wait to make the sponge candy!

  108. ACFW should give you a bonus then Ruthy cuz I feel REALLY bad!

    I did save - even tutored - then had to have multiple root canals and crowns -- bye bye conference stash. :(

    Next year in Dallas - even if I'm toothless!

    And Virginia - CONGRATULATIONS!!!! That's awesome news.

    Mary Curry

  109. looks like I need to google sponge candy not sure what that is.

  110. Ok I see Sponge candy is like our violet crumbles or crunchie bar with honeycomb in the middle I do like that.

  111. I had to laugh this morning when I stopped by and saw yesterday's post still at the top. Oh well. It happens. Sorry, no mocking. It's happened to me far too many times. LoL. Loved these pix!! =]

  112. VINCE!!! That "handsome movie actor" is my hubby, or as he is known in my family -- St. Keith!! ;)

    GREAT JOB TODAY, Ruthy, especially for an "oops."


  113. It does sound like it was fun. I have five buck in my wallet. Will probably need a little more. :-)

  114. Ruthy,

    Mocking you is hard but I'm willing to do it to win Shirlee's book. lol

    Who do you think you are? All your posts about planning ahead and keeping all the balls in the air. Now this. If you hadn't put yourself on such a pedestal, it wouldn't be so bad. :)

    Is this the woman who devoted a whole post to the fact that we couldn't take the summer off? And you go to a measly conference and just fall apart.

    Well, I suspect this is all a trick. It's your way to teach us a lesson in characterization. You've shown how we can have our characters do something "out of character" for them and keep things interesting.

    Tell me that's what happened here, Ruthy. Tell me it isn't as bad as it seems. You were someone I counted on for stability. My world is shaken to the core.

    A Shirlee book won't make up for this trauma I've experienced, but it would be a start in the right direction....


  115. I'm ahead of you, Ruthie. I have $50 left to use as seed money for next year.

    Would say I can't wait, except I don't relish the idea of another year of my life being gone. I'm having too much fun to rush it.

  116. Ruthy, kudos on a fun wrap-up of a great time. Loved seeing everyone in St. Louis!

    And now, out comes my inner fact checker... the writer-dude leading the Hero's Path workshop with Allen and Julie was Jim Rubart (not Jeff Rupert). But I'm sure you knew that. Just testing us, right? ;+}

  117. Enjoyed your post as always Ruthy. Mock you? No, I won't do it, don't twist may arm. Can't do it, please don't make me. Okay, neener, neener, neener. See I'm not good at mocking.

    Hope you have a blessed week.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.


  118. Love the demands made becaue of your OOPS. How funny. I have friends like that, too.

    Please enter me in the drawings, including the critique. Thanks.


  119. Jennifer AILEE.....



    And I even googled (in my hurry) Brandilyn's name because I want to add an 'n'...

    But I was so sure about Jeff/Jim Rupert/Rubart!

    Shows I haven't read his book yet, but the guy (whoever he is) did a really good job.

    And yes, that was a test. Jennifer's the only one who called me out on it.

    Good job, girlfriend! ;)

    Oh my stars, this was too much fun. Cathy Shouse, you nailed me. There I am on my self-imposed pedestal and I openly mess up...

    Obviously a set-up.

    Because pshaw.

    Would Ruthy REALLY DO THAT???? MESS UP????

    I think not.

    Reverse strategy to build interest. Similar to creating scarcity to coerce sales.

    Effective ploy, obviously, LOL!!!

  120. Ruthy,

    Do you know how late I stayed up witing for this post. I looked for it again and again,but it just wasn't there.

    Then I didn't get back here to look at it until today.


    If it's not too late I'd like to be entered for the critique, the candy, and Mended Hearts, please.
    andeemarie95 at gmail dot com

  121. Ruthy!!!

    Great post!!! I absolutely loved the ACFW conference and getting the chance to meet some of you wonderful Seekers! Especially liked the spur of the moment plotting sessions!!

    Great pictures too! Sounds like it was fun at Julie's house!!!