Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Dream Big

By Debby Giusti

A few days ago, I reviewed some of my older blogs and found this post from 2008 that I thought might prove motivating as we work on our Speedbo goals. After all, Speedbo is about achieving our writing dreams whether we're penning our first manuscript or our twentieth. No matter where we are on our journey to publication or beyond, we need to dream big and work hard to achieve that which gives meaning to our lives.


So what’s your dream?

Finish a book? Win a contest? Become a published author?

Motivational speaker and author Matthew Kelly writes about the importance of dreams in his book, THE DREAM MANAGER (Hyperion, 2007, ISBN 978-1-40013-9370-9). According to Kelly, dreams are the keys to a successful, happy and motivated life. Without them, you languish. With them, you soar.

To illustrate his point, he uses a janitorial company with a high turnover rate. Needing to improve employee morale and retention, the executives came up with an innovative concept -- hire a Dream Manager to help the employees identify and achieve their own personal dreams. Before long, morale was up. Employees took pride in their work and felt a new sense of loyalty to the company. The jobs they once considered dead-end were seen as stepping-stones to success.




So how does that relate to writing? Let’s take a closer look at what Kelly has to say.

People stop dreaming when they become caught up in everyday activities. Sound familiar? The house, the job, the family take time and energy. Often there’s little left in the day to devote to your own needs and especially your writing.

Most people don’t fail because they want to fail; they fail because they don’t know how to succeed. The first step is to identify your dreams. Start with something small that can be easily achieved. Then move on to a bigger dream.

Those who fail to plan can plan to fail. Draw up a plan to achieve your dream. Break it down into steps that are manageable and measurable.

Keep a Dream Book. Get a notebook or journal and write down your dreams, then review them often to stay focused and on track. Be sure to note the date when you first had the dream and also the date when your dream came true.

Dream without limits. Don’t hold back. Want to be a New York Times best-selling author? Add that to your Dream Book as a long-term goal. Now come up with a list of short-term and mid-term dreams that bridge the gap from where you are now to where you want to be in the future.

Find a Dream Manager. His or her job is to support your dream. The Dream Manager doesn’t do the work himself or solve any of the problems involved, but rather serves as a coach and cheerleader. (Consider asking a critique partner or online writing friend to serve as your Dream Manager.)

Be a Dream Manager for someone else. Relationships are built and strengthened when you help others achieve their dreams, whether family members, friends or fellow employees.

The earlier you start dreaming and the more mentors and friends you have who urge you toward your dreams, the richer your life becomes. Sharing your dreams opens the door to opportunity. You’re no longer isolated or working alone; rather, you're joined with others in a common sense of purpose.

As a writer, you know the journey to publication is long. With a map or plan, you can see where you’ve been and where you’re going. Charting your progress helps you realize you’re moving forward.



Steps in your plan for publication could include:

●Take part in Speedbo 2017.

●Read a how-to book on writing. Work on daily writing tasks that reinforce the techniques presented in the book.

●Do a “what if” and come up with a deeply troubled but endearing hero. Then create a heroine who is his complete opposite. Now brainstorm a plot that would tell their story.

●Read a book by an author who writes for the house you’re targeting. Reread the book like an editor. Pick out the internal and external conflict, make an outline of the story and see how the author moves the plot from beginning to end, note the emotional and romantic development.

●Write something new. While revisions fine-tune your writing, overwriting can be as poisonous as underwriting. Realistic deadlines keep you on track. Every time you begin a new book, you become energized and regain some of the thrill you initially felt when you started on your writing journey.

●Look at the manuscripts you’ve written. Determine five ways you could improve each story. Apply what you’ve learned to your current work-in-progress.

Everyone needs a mountain to climb or new horizons to conquer. Set lofty goals and make a plan that leads to success so your dreams can come true.

Leave a comment about your writing dreams, your Speedbo goals, and anything else you’re doing on a regular basis to make your dreams come true. All those who comment will be entered in a drawing for the first Seekerville giveaway of my upcoming May release, AMISH REFUGE.

The coffee’s hot. Tea is available, along with a light breakfast of fresh fruit, yogurt, hard boiled eggs and blueberry muffins. Enjoy!




I’ll be at Romancing the Smokies 2017 this weekend and wanted to share a picture of the goodies I’m giving to each person at my table. Plus, I’m donating a cute computer tote packed with gifts, including a Kindle Fire. My wonderful publisher is giving a copy of AMISH REFUGE to each person who attends and there’s more SWAG in each goody bag! I’ll be speaking between noon and one PM EST, and would appreciate prayer coverage to make sure I don’t stumble getting to the podium. Wish all of you could be there with me…be assured that I’ll feel your prayers and support across the miles!

Speed-bo on!

Wishing you abundant blessings!
Debby Giusti


AMISH REFUGE
By Debby Giusti

HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT

Miriam Miller barely escapes the ruthless attacker that killed her mother and kidnapped her sister. Running deeper into the woods, she’s running out of hope…until she falls into the arms of an unlikely bodyguard—a peaceful Amish farmer. Something about Abram Zook inspires her trust, but even in bucolic Willkommen, Georgia, Miriam faces danger. Both from the men pursuing her and from her growing feelings for the caring—though guarded— widower who protects her. Because if she falls for Abram she’ll have to embrace his Amish faith as her own—or lose him. With each minute, her abductor creeps closer, pushing Miriam to an inevitable choice: stay and risk her heart…or leave and risk her life.

Preorder HERE!

105 comments :

  1. Oopsie, this was scheduled for tonight at 9 pm. Fixed.

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    1. Thank you, Tina! May I blame the mix-up on Daylight Savings Time? Seems I'm a bit off this week! :)

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    2. It's been an adjustment, that's for sure! Always is. {sigh}

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  2. I always love that quote. "If your dreams don't scare you, dream bigger!"

    Love those goodies for your program this weekend. Praying it's a blessed day!

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    1. Thanks for your prayers, Tina! I know the entire weekend will be wonderful!

      Love your quote! That's why we need to write new stories...so we'll be challenged to go deeper and stretch our creative minds.

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  3. Debbie, I have several big dreams floating around. I want to pick the one that brings me the most joy. Since writing is part of all these dreams, my goal for Speedbo is write each day. My initial pick-a-number out of a hat goal was 1k per day. I'm at 500. This is helpful and I'm trying not to be disappointed and instead be grateful for developing a writing routine.

    Thank you for the detailed suggestions.

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    1. Establishing a writing routine is a huge accomplishment, Laura. Don't allow that negative inner voice to dampen your enthusiasm. Congrats on your 500 words-a-day success!

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  4. Thank you for bringing this post back Debbie. I have several dreams that I had to put on hold while I was a caregiver for my Mom, but I didn't mind as I had precious time with her and was able to complete a goal/promise/dream with her and that was to do everything I could to NOT put her in a nursing home. That was achieved.Now that Mom has passed, I'm trying to reorganize my dreams and get back on track.

    I did sign up for Speedbo and it's been sporadic for me as I still have so very much to do to get Mom's house ready to be sold. I would appreciate prayer that when the house is ready to place on the market, that it will sell quickly.

    Have a blessed day!
    Cindy W.

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    1. What a beautiful gift your gave your mother, Cindy. That time together and the loving home you provided for her was priceless. I'm sure the Lord is pleased with your faithful servant's heart. Everything comes in his perfect time. Your dream will be waiting for you after the work of selling her home is done. Bless you and your family! You're an inspiration to all of us!

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  5. Thanks for revisiting this post, Debbie. I love to record my dreams into my journal...looking back is so much fun. I'm working on something new these days that really has me fired up. I can't WAIT to read Amish Refuge!

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    1. Jill, thanks for mentioning that you record your dreams in your journal. I make note of ministry-type goals in my prayer journal, but plan to add my writing goals as well. Like you, I enjoy looking back and seeing "where I was" at a certain point in life.

      I hope you like AMISH REFUGE. It was both a challenge and a joy to write.

      Hugs!

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  6. Thank you for this great post. It's one I'm going to print up and keep with my journal. I will keep you in my prayers. I'm sure you'll do great.

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    1. Bettie, I'm glad you found the post of value. Thank you so much for your prayers!

      You're in the drawing! :)

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  7. Good morning, Debby! I know you're going to have an amazing weekend! I'll keep you in my prayers. The people attending are going to be blessed!

    HGTV has a commercial for Property Brothers, and Jonathan says something about people don't dream big enough. I always think about my writing when I see this, and he encourages me.

    Thanks for sharing today.

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    1. I sometimes tune into Property Brothers when I'm on the treadmill at the gym. They're cute guys, aren't they! Seems I recall one of them mentioning dreaming big! Confirmation for this post, right?

      Hope your dreams are coming true in your new home. Always hard to settle a house, make new friends and get to know an area, but so glad you and hubby are reunited.

      Thanks for your prayers, Jackie!

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  8. Great article. I shared on Twitter. Thanks, Terri Kelly

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  9. DEBBY, this is a terrific post! We all need to think about this writing journey and make sure that we're dreaming big. I like to keep a prayer journal. Kind of a talk to God on paper. I'm going to add a section for dreams.

    Janet

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    1. I'm going to do the same, Janet. Love the idea of keeping a record of our dreams!

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    2. And of the answers. :-)

      Janet

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  10. Thanks for this post, Debby.

    People stop dreaming when they become caught up in everyday activities.

    This is me right now. I'm working on being a good mommy and wife I guess. I know I haven't stopped dreaming, but I haven't written anything down either. Ooops... Thanks for the reminder to do so.

    Prayers for you this weekend. Wish I could be there too. I know you will be a huge blessing to all there!!!!!

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    1. That line from Debby's post hit home with me, too, Deb. Normal life just gets so busy, and then you add in all the distractions of the Internet and social media. I seemed to have a lot more time before we could hold the world in the palm of our hand.

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    2. Deb and Myra, I agree with both of you about the demands on our lives. The days seem so full...and that doesn't even include writing!

      Deb, I put my writing on hold as I raised my family. Not enough hours in the day, and the family came first. Once the children were older--high school and college--I became a more focused and determined writer.

      Enjoy the time you have now with Guppy. Children grow up too fast.

      Hugs!

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  11. I loved the line "be a dream manager for someone else..."

    I think that's clutch to success in my book. I love what I do but I love helping others, too... and not making it all about me. Deb, this is such a wonderful, inspirational and directed post. It makes so many good points on multiple levels. About ourselves, our goals, our work ethics and our lives.

    Thank you for this.

    I am inspired to dream and reach for those dreams!

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    1. You dream big, Ruthy, and you achieve your dreams. I love your enthusiasm. You're the eternal optimist...and that's good!

      Thanks for inspiring me to reach for the stars!

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  12. Thank you for the memories and the chance to win a copy of your newest book. By the way, I love your books!!!!!

    wfnren at aol dot com

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    1. Wendy, thank you for your kind words about my stories. You've touched my heart!

      You're in the drawing!

      Hugs and love!

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  13. Great post. Lately I've been doing a lot of craft book reading and re-reading with my MS in mind. I had just finished putting my MS through Scribes before Speedbo, so this month's goals are helping me get the ball rolling on some major rewrites. (It was hard for me to come to the conclusion that my MS needed such extensive revisions, but I'm glad I did. The story is going to be so much better for it.) So far, I'm ahead of my Speedbo goal.

    Also, I still critique sometimes through Scribes, and I'm convinced that I never would've learned so much about writing without that experience. Critiquing forced me to ask these important questions: “Is this writing/scene/sentence working for me?” and “Why or why not?” And, if not, “Do I do that in my own writing?” I think most of us struggle to be objective with our own writing, but when we analyze the writing of others alongside us in the writing journey, it can start to open our eyes about how we might need to improve our own writing.

    Debby, so true about needing others for encouragement. Also to shake things up and get us past even those invisible blocks when we see our not-so-shining MS through rose-colored glasses :-). My goals are to finish the revision, no matter how hard, while trying to apply all the new things I've learned. Then maybe get some people to read the story again for some much-needed feedback. After that, maybe another contest.

    Thanks for the post. Your upcoming release sounds interesting. Please put my name in the draw :-)

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    1. Hi Lara, you realize that most, if not all of us develop our stories in the revision phase. My first draft is far from where the story ends up. Actually, revising is my favorite part of the process...other than the final read when everything looks fairly good. :)

      So, Lara, it sounds as if you're doing everything right! The creative process takes time and effort and lots of editing. So true that all the editing you did on other manuscripts will help you see the changes you need to make in your own story. Although sometimes it's hard to kill our darlings, as the saying goes.

      Cheering you on through SPEEDBO!

      You're in the drawing!

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  14. Great post Debby, I love how you inspired us to dream and dream big. I agree with Ruthy, it helps to help others. Seems I do better at that than helping myself anyway. LOL. Best wishes on your presentation at the writer's event this weekend. What super great gifts. Wish I could be there. Hugs and praying.

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    1. Wish you could be there too, Sandra, but then you'd have to leave your warm Southwest! :)

      Georgia and Tennessee are so cold today! Brrrr...

      Thanks for your prayers and support!

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  15. DEBBY -- this is SO very inspirational, my friend, but then your posts always are to the nth degree!!

    You said: "Leave a comment about your writing dreams."

    My writing dreams have changed considerably over the last two years, from lofty goals to one even higher: focusing more on God and His direction for me and my writing. For me, that simply means less focus on the promotion aspect and more on the writing, trusting God to take it and me where He wants us to go. A whole new tact, but one that has given me more peace and joy in my writing than I have ever had before. :)

    Praying for anointing on your conference and speech, my friend -- I have no doubt you will bless their socks off!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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    1. Julie, I love where God has taken you on this writing journey. Also love your willingness to share your walk of faith. Your honesty has touched me. I'm sure it's touched others as well.

      Sending hugs and love and gratitude for your prayer coverage!

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  16. You mentioned Mathew Kelly. Have you been watching his Best Lent Ever series? Its wonderful and inspiring.

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    1. I need to tune in! MK is wonderful. He's been to our church twice and I've heard him speak two additional times within the greater ATL area. In fact, I believe he's in town today speaking to groups from various churches.

      God bless him!

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  17. Even though I'm not an author, I plan to save this. These are wonderful words of advice for all of us!
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Hi Connie, dreams are so important! Glad you can use the post for your own needs. Also glad that you're a part of Seekerville. Always good to see your comments!

      Hugs!

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  18. Good morning Debby, and thank you for bringing back this excellent post because I wasn't around Seekerville in 2008! I'm behind on my Speedbo goal but even so, have pushed through writing with a migraine and still getting some pages done. This week should be much better. At least I've been writing every day and that's something. My dream is to be an LIS author and I'm doing everything I can to get there. :) I wish I could be at your conference this weekend but I'm sure you'll all have a wonderful and productive time together. Don't put me in the drawing because I already have your book! Loving it!

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    1. Laurie, you must be in the book club to get Amish Refuge so early. That's a great way to know what the editors are looking for in the LIS stories! My editor is Emily Rodmell. She's wonderful and often shares what she's looking to acquire on Twitter so you might want to follow her there!

      Sorry about your migraine. It takes dedication to write when you're in pain or not feeling up to par! So pat yourself--gently--on your back. :)

      Hugs!

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  19. So inspiring, Debby! The "Dream Manager" idea intrigues me. Seems like Seekerville helps fill that role for many of us!

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    1. You're right, Myra, about Seekerville filling that role. Some folks have accountability partners, which sounds similar.

      I loved your blog yesterday! So fun to read all the comments. Thanks for making the post so special!

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  20. Good morning, Debby! What a fantastic post. I love the idea of Dream Manager and the story about the janitorial company was a great example of how dreaming motivates.

    I lived so much of life surviving that dreaming seemed almost...inappropriate. As if there was no time for that. Writing has changed that thinking because as you said, what's your dream:
    Finish a book? Win a contest? Become a published author?
    Yes to all of the above. Some days that looks like an impossible mountain. Thank you for the encouragement this morning. It brightened my day! And yes, please, please throw me in for the drawing. Would love to read Amish Refuge.

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    1. Hi Sharee! You're in the drawing.

      Life can weigh us down so much that we forget about our dreams and feel stuck. Glad you've moved to a better place so your dreams can soar! I bet you'll achieve all the goals/dreams you mentioned: Write a book! Win a contest! Become a published author!

      Yes, you can!!!

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  21. My dreams keep changing, I guess, but I keep dreaming them. Seekerville is my Dream Manager. Thanks Debby!

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    1. Cindy, are your dreams becoming bigger? Or are they changing direction?

      I stopped dreaming for a short time not too long ago. I was bogged down with projects that had to get done and didn't allow myself to think of where I wanted to go beyond the immediate deadlines. Now, I'm back to dreaming...

      Love your comment about Seekerville being your Dream Manager. Tina keeps all of us on task and moving forward! Trying to catch up to Ruthy and Mary forces us onward. No time for slacking off when Ruthy's around. :)

      Hugs!

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  22. Thanks, Debby. I love dreams! Figure I might as well dream big and long term so after attending ACFW last year I decided some of the things I would work towards over the next twenty to fifty years would be something like the "lifetime achievement award" ;) Not that ACFW will still be around in 50 years, but that embodies the idea of my dream. My first book was published when I was 35. I realize that I am not in my prime for writing. Still have small kids at home, another baby on the way, and a lot of life experience let to gain. Mostly, I want to write high quality books that point people to God, and I want my books to look good and be read by many (B/c if they aren't reading it, how can I point them to God?)...and I never want to stop writing. Simple enough, right? Oh, and Speedbo is going well. :)

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    1. I love your dreams, Angela! Congrats on your success to date with your writing...and with raising your beautiful family. And a new baby to welcome into the world. How special! Enjoy each precious moment. I'm confident all your dreams will come true!

      Congrats on your SPEEDBO achievements too!

      Hugs!

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  23. Awesome post about dreaming! One thing that smacked me upside the head: I want to be published. Before I was entering contests for the feedback until it was pointed out I needed to enter contests for the final judges. Plan going in to make it that far. Now, I don't want to just write stories, or win contests, I want to be published. Thank you for that lightbulb moment. I'm able to see a little further over the mountain of getting there lol.

    This: Find a Dream Manager. His or her job is to support your dream. The Dream Manager doesn’t do the work himself or solve any of the problems involved, but rather serves as a coach and cheerleader. (Consider asking a critique partner or online writing friend to serve as your Dream Manager.)I have one of these. My critique partner, first reader, brainstorming buddy Sandy. She is my cheerleader, my come on and write already encourager, my I'm going to see your name on a book enforcer. Without her, I'd probably have given up before now. She's seen a few finished stories and the start of several, including pieces of what I'm working on now. My son reads through drafts for me as well, and encourages me all along the way, but there's just something special about Sandy. She's there for me when I'm doubting myself, listens to my issues, prays for me, and asks when she can read more of the story. She keeps me going.

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    1. Wonderful to have such strong supporters and encouragers, Sally! Invaluable!

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    2. Good for you, Sally. My one big writing dream was to see my name on the cover of a book. Yay for such a great supporter. Keep writing!

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    3. Sally, give Sandy a hug for me. She sounds like a delightful friend and, yes, a Dream Manager. We each need a person like that in our lives.

      I have a friend who buoys me up when I'm feeling low. She always replies to my concerns with optimism and encouragement. I thank God for her everyday. :)

      Sally, I loved reading your comment about wanting to be published! I'm confident your dream will come true. You're almost there. Don't get discouraged. Keep pushing forward.

      Covering you and your dream with prayer!

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  24. Right now my dream is to get warm. It is only 56 degrees in my house and currently 22 degrees outside. I am wearing layers and just spent a minute standing in front of the space heater but that doesn't get things done.

    I need to begin formatting for my entry in the Genesis. I had a grand dream of entering two in this contest, but will do good to only get one. Health has gotten in the way again.

    My other dream this month is to finish strong in Speedbo and to sign up for camp nanowrimo and repeat a good goal So far I am at 17,568.

    My ultimate goal is to become a strong writer and get published.

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    1. Wilani, you're accomplishing so much, even with your health issues. Sorry about your cold house! Is your heating system acting up? It's cold in Georgia too...and my office isn't as warm as I would like so I'm draped with a lap throw and sipping hot tea.

      Congrats on your SPEEDBO progress, Wilani! You're doing everything right!

      Praying for an end to your vertigo!

      Hugs!

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    2. The only heat source is propane fireplace and I can't use because of my asthma.good thing it's been a mild winter.

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  25. Sorry I was away for a bit with a rush need from my editor. Now, I'm back, and I've brought burgers and fries for lunch! YUM!

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  26. Romancing the Smokies sounds delightful. I jotted down to pray for you, Debby.
    I dream of seeing the Grand Canyon. As far as writing dreams, I list my goals and rely on the Lord for the results as I work to achieve them. He granted my one big writing dream, to see my name on the cover of a book.
    I keep plugging along...for Him. If anything I've written touches a reader, whether I ever know or not, it's for God's glory.

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    1. LoRee, writing for God's glory makes all the work worthwhile, doesn't it? Congrats on your success and on your publication. I'm sure God is using your story to touch others. He wouldn't have given you the desire to write if he didn't want your stories to find a home in the hearts of your readers!

      I hope you get to the Grand Canyon someday. It is magnificent!

      Hugs!

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  27. Hi Debby,
    My dream is to 'get the socks.' Harlequin authors who attend RWA understand what that means. lol. I didn't know that was so important to me until last night as I was falling asleep! This is a God inspired dream, because it came out of left field last night as I stirred in anxious moments worrying about how to best serve my parents as we sell their home, making the nursing home their permanent residence. It's a sad and unhappy time for them that has troubled me for nearly a year. But today, I'm plugging on, typing the revisions on the synopsis and coming close to the end of the rewrite on the requested MS. In my mind, I see the socks and I hope they are pink! Thanks for your post and Congrats on your new book! You are so special to me. Blessings!

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    1. Lyndee, don't know why my response to your comment didn't appear directly below your post. I'm blaming it on Blogger and not user error...

      :)

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    2. I hear you, Lyndee! That was my dream for many years, too! Yes, I am now in possession of a pair of pink socks!

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  28. Debby, I'm so glad you re-posted this! I love the idea of a dream journal. Honestly, it does feel scary to dream big. I'm working through some of that fear now.

    This past year has been hard in the ways of holding onto my dream. Real life, lots of challenges, and living with a pre-teen and a teenager have diverted my attention. This is the year I'm working to get back on track.

    I love your suggestion to read a book and look for specific things that the author did that I can strengthen in my own writing.

    Your post is so encouraging!

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    1. Jeanne, there's no good time to write when the kids are young. Teenagers seem to take more time then little ones because Mom has to present--and available--24/7.

      Enjoy the moment. The writing will come to fruition in God's perfect time! Jesus, I trust in you! (My favorite little prayer...saying it for you and your writing dream!)

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    2. Thank you, thank you, Debby!

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  29. Lyndee, I'm smiling. Yes, I know those socks. What a great visual. I always wanted to attend the party! :)

    Bless you for caring so beautifully for your parents. Remember you're the faithful daughter who is helping them through this time of transition. It's not what you would choose for their lives, but it's the reality of their age and perhaps health. So instead of regretting what you have to do, be grateful that you have the wherewithal, time, energy to help them. I'll add them to my prayers. Seeing a door close is never easy, but we know that God always opens a window...

    Hugs and love and congrats on getting that request!

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  30. Thanks for the motivating post, Debby! I see a new journal (dream book) in my future. LOL. Like I need an excuse to buy a new journal.

    I have to say I have excellent CPs to keep me on track with my dreams. If I'm ever slacking, they are the first to give me a much need kick in the seat of my pants.

    One way I motivate myself is that I create a mock book cover (complete with the appropriate publishing house logo) for my completed manuscripts. I then set the covers as my computer desktop background. This is a daily reminder to work toward my goal of publication.

    Sending you a big warm hug from chilly Alabama!

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    1. Hi Rhonda! Hugging you back.

      Brrr....
      It's cold in GA too!

      Love, love, love your tip about creating a book cover and keeping it close as your write. Such a great motivator!

      Sounds like your CPs are also your Dream Managers. I'm sure you encourage them as well.

      You mentioned journals...I've never seen a journal I didn't want to buy. Really! I must have a journal fetish. :)

      Where's spring? All our blooming flowers have been zapped by the cold.

      Stay warm!

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    2. PS, Rhonda...
      Did you notice the pretty journals I'm giving the ladies who sit at my table this weekend? Love them! I need to buy one for myself. :)

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  31. My Speedbo goals are to get at least a thousand words done a day. MAYBE I'll finish my book, but I don't know. It's rather large. All the same I'll write as much as I can. Already I've written way more than I thought possible for me to do in fifteen days reaching over thirty thousand words.

    I hope someday to be as popular of a YA author as Stephanie Meyer and Suzanne Collins with whole franchises made off of my books, and movies. Definitely movies.

    To help realize that dream I am writing. When I finish this series I hope to move onto another one, and then another, and then another. The more books I have the more likely I am to get noticed. Perhaps I'll consider the route of traditional publishing when I start my next series...

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    1. Nicki, you're dreaming BIG and that's good!!!

      Congrats on your SPEEDBO success...30,000 words! That's wonderful!

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  32. DEBBY, thank you for encouraging us to DREAM! Have you ever thought about what the Lord's dreams are? I'd like to dream with Him.

    May dreams of becoming published be realized SOON!

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    1. Interesting question about what the Lord dreams. Perhaps he dreams about all of us joining him in Heaven, gathered around his throne and giving him praise and honor. Sounds like a dream come true to me!

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  33. DEBBY, You have a knack for putting together terrific baskets/goodies for the women at your table whenever you speak or attend a function. I'll be praying for your speech to go well, but I've heard you speak and know they'll be blessed as I was.

    Janet

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    1. Thank you, sweet Janet! Your prayers mean so much to me!

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  34. Debby, what a wonderful post! I think my dream to get traditionally published was such a huge part of my life that once I did, I didn't really dream much beyond that. Thank you for this reminder that we need to keep dreaming!

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    1. Missy, I mentioned earlier that I stopped dreaming for a bit. Like you, publication was my dream...then to write the next book and the next. Passing the ten book mark was another accomplishment, but then I stopped forming new dreams, which wasn't good.

      Thankfully, I'm dreaming again!

      You're so busy with your family responsibilities, that you probably can't find time to dream. Trusting your heavy load will lighten in the not-too-distant future. Shall I be your Dream Manager?

      Hugs!

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    2. Debby, I would love for you to be my dream manager!

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  35. Thank you for this post, Debby!
    I haven't reviewed my dreams in a while, but I recently read an article on creativity that suggested making lists of new dreams every weekend. I love the idea of a dream journal and keeping up with dates dreams are achieved.

    I love what you said about starting with a small dream and working our way to a bigger one. I think when we have too few dreams, and only huge ones, we can get wrapped up in them, which, when they don't see success over several months or years, can make us feel utterly hopeless. Small dreams are such a blessing when we can see them come to pass!

    Like the verse says, "Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life." :)

    I'll be praying for your speaking engagement this weekend! I know you'll do great! Wish I was there to hear it!
    Love the Smokies!

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    1. Natalie, so good to "see" you again! Lovely comment and shared verse. Thank you! So true about having small dreams that we can accomplished rather quickly. As you mentioned, a BIG dream that never comes to fruition can turn into a negative stumbling block to success.

      Wish you could join me this weekend. Thanks for your prayers.

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  36. My one dream just ended. The photo I planned to use does not meet the requirements. So I will have to wait another year. Our church is taking photos for a new church directory then but it will be too late for the Genesis Contest. Unfortunately since this is not a romance but a Women's fiction, a lot of the contests do not have that genre. I just spent 2 hours even though I am sick to shrink a 2 page synopsis to a 1 page synopsis. Oh Well this is life. I guess I could look at the fact I just saved the entrance fee, but it is a setback. on my dreams.

    If anyone knows of a contest that will take a genre that is not romance please let me know. I really feel confident it is ready to submit.

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    1. Wilani, I've had the same problem as you. Some years ago, I couldn't get my cover to fit the Carol photo requirement and, thus, couldn't enter. I don't think they realize how difficult it can be in some cases. Seems the story is more important than the photo. I know you're disappointed!

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    2. Wilani, I would go ahead an email the Genesis coordinator at genesis@acfw.com asap. You might be able to get this straightened out before the 4pm ct deadline. Also, email me at ct@acfw.com and I'll see what I can do about your photo. Again, the deadline is at 4pm ct, but if you're online right now, there is time to get this done. Don't give up too soon. :)

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    3. Wilani, I just emailed you. Check your inbox! :)

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    4. Thanks, Pam. Didn't realize you had left a message. I sent an email with the info, as well.

      Thank you, Pam!

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  37. "Only in America would there be dream managers."

    Seek not to manage your dreams
    For dreams are a magic carpet

    They take you to freedom
    They let you breathe where there is no air
    They show you the unimaginable

    For dreams begin where they end
    Like the shadows of your soul
    Seek not...your dreams will seek you.


    ************

    A Poem by John Boyle O Reilly

    I am tired of planning and toiling
    In the crowded hives of men;
    Heart-weary of building and spoiling,
    And spoiling and building again.
    And I long for the dear old river,
    Where I dreamed my youth away;
    For a dreamer lives forever,
    And a toiler dies in a day.

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    1. Vince, you always provide a fresh perspective!

      That's why we love you!!!

      Hugs!

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  38. I remember after I sold my first book someone asking, "what do you want next?"
    And I said, "I want a career."

    I heard those words come out of my mouth, after one little sale to Barbour Heartsong and just felt ARROGANT. I felt boastful. I felt like I was confessing to ravenous ambition. I can still feel the embarrassment that waved through me when I said those words aloud.

    "I want a career."

    It seemed like JUST TOO BIG A DREAM! TOO MUCH TO HOPE FOR! TOO MUCH TO ASK! HOW DARE I WANT SUCH A THING???

    And I got a career, and I'm still amazed and humbled and I have plenty of days where I wonder, what kind of bureaucratic mix-up let to me publishing all these books???

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    1. You had a BIG dream and it came true, Mary!!!

      So proud of you and your success! You and your books bring joy to so many.

      Loved your calf birthing pics today on FB! Close up and personal. :)

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  39. Just got home from a funeral, and needed to read something inspiring, so I headed to SEEKERVILLE!! :) LOVED this encouraging post, Debby, and all the tips are excellent - - thank you!! I'm a big believer in having dreams and working towards them. But I hadn't thought about keeping a dream notebook - - great suggestion!
    I'll keep praying that your trip to TN goes safely and smoothly, and look forward to seeing pics (if you have time to post any, LOL). The gifts you put together are SO lovely - - some ladies there are in for a treat!
    Hugs, Patti Jo

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    1. Patti Jo, you're such a wonderful prayer warrior. Thanks for all the prayers you've offered for me over the years! You bless me!

      I thought of you and Sandra when I was writing this post. Would you consider her a Dream Manager?

      Love you!

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  40. Debby, oh YES!! I meant to mention Sandra Orchard since we are accountability partners! She would be my Dream Manager for sure. :)

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    1. I thought of you two immediately!

      Hugs!

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  41. Debby, Thank you so much for the encouragement to dream big. My dream is to get published. My Speedbo goal is to finish the first edit on my WIP, and to print out the pages of the one that is on hold for four weeks so I can have more perspective for those edits. Okay, those are big dreams and big goals.

    Have a great time at the luncheon. I will be taking a step toward my goal this weekend as I go off to GRW.

    Thanks for the encouragement.

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    1. You work so hard for GRW! Thanks for all you do, Tanya! Good for you! Two manuscripts! Fantastic!

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  42. Thank you, DEBBY! This was so encouraging and inspiring. I'm definitely a big dreamer. Hoping and praying to be published in fiction one of these days, but I know it will happen in His time, not mine. Until then, I'll keep dreaming, praying...and writing :-) Congratulations on your newest book - it looks and sounds wonderful!

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    1. Laura,
      Dreaming, writing and praying is a good combination for success! I believe in you and your dream!!!

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  43. Thanks so much for all your encouraging words, Debby.

    It was 93* today here in sunny Nevada. Come on down and I'll share the warmth.

    Even though I'm in my 60's I still dream of publishing my three-book series. Speedbo is helping. I've not met my goals for the first half, but hoping to catch up in the latter half.

    Have fun this weekend. Be safe. God's blessings.

    Marcia

    p.s. Can I still enter for your book? If so, I'm in!

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    1. Marcia, you're in the drawing!

      Oh my! Nevada is the place to be. Enjoy that sunshine.

      Don't think about your age. It doesn't matter with writing. As long as you can sit at a computer and move your fingers, you can write. I'm hoping to keep working until I'm a very old lady. :)

      Hugs!

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  44. Such an upbeat, inspiring post, Debby. Thank you! Those goodies look super but the people at your table will probably feel like the real treat is meeting you :-) Have fun in Knoxville!

    Nancy C

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    1. Nancy, thanks for your sweet words. You made me smile!

      Hugs!

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  46. Debby, thanks for the motivating post today. The older I get the more I think about my dreams. I'm with Mary, I want a career.
    My husband's dream is to own a BBQ place and we started serving BBQ on Saturdays this last year. I help him w/BBQ and he makes sure I get my writing time alone.
    One thing Dave Ramsey always asks is if _______ will be a blessing. Could I write 2 books a year? 3? 4? When would it no longer be a blessing?

    That being said, right now, writing/publishing 2 books a year would my big dream. I'm a slow writer. If I got faster, I might have to reevaluate.

    Ok. I lied. There is one particular story of mine I'd love to see made into a movie.

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    1. I'd like to have one of my books made into a movie, Connie! That's a fun dream.

      How lovely that you and hubby help each other with your dreams. Sounds as if you serve as Dream Managers for one another.

      Good luck with the BBQ place for hubby! I don't think you need luck, Connie. You're determined and working hard to achieve your dream...a writing career. YES!

      Thanks for sharing Dave Ramsey's comment about "if it's a blessing." Something to always consider! He used to be on a local radio station and I always enjoyed his show.

      Two books a year is a wonderful dream! I'm claiming it for you!!!

      Hugs!

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    2. Dreams are awesome...like a bookshelf of books bearing MY name! Woohoo. Seekerville helps our dreams come true. Another 500+ word day yesterday, after work and meetings. Blessings to you all!

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