Saturday, February 23, 2019

Weekend Edition


If you are not familiar with our giveaway rules, take a minute to read them here. It keeps us all happy! All winners should send their name, address, and phone number to claim prizes.  Note our new email address and please send your emails to

Monday: Jan Drexler continued her series Reading As A Writer: The Great Adventure (part two). A copy of Convenient Amish Proposal goes to kaybee 

Tuesday: Lisa Jordan visited Seekerville to share her thoughts on Leaving a Spiritual Legacy. The winner of her brand new release, Season of Hope, is Vince!

Wednesday: Debby Giusti was our hostess with her blog, "Writing Internal Conflict in a Broken World."  A copy of AMISH SAFE HOUSE goes to one lucky winner! Congrats, Jackie Smith, for being Debby's winner!

Friday: Pat Jeanne Davis encouraged us to Keep Your Dream. The winner of a print copy of When Valleys Bloom Again is Laurie Wood 

Monday:  Erica Vetsch shares wisdom and grace with us today.

Wednesday:  Melanie Dickerson never fails to inspire us along the journey.
Friday: Amanda Cabot shares the secrets of her series-writing success.

Writers interested in teaching at a great conference, Georgia Romance Writers is taking proposals for workshops at the Moonlight and Magnolias Conference. The deadline to submit is March 1st.

Cover reveal!! Missy Tippens will have 13 devotionals included in this upcoming release from Guideposts! More info will be coming once it's released. Animal lovers, get ready!


made the 

By Debby Giusti
Hiding in Plain Sight
The second thrilling Amish Witness Protection novel

After Julia Bradford’s son witnesses a gang shooting, hiding in witness protection on Abraham King’s Amish farm is the only hope the Englischer and her children have. Even as danger closes in, Julia is drawn to the community’s peaceful ways—and the ex-cop turned Amish protector. But when their location is discovered, can Abraham protect her family…and possibly have a future by her side?
 Order HERE!

Check out The Suspense Zone
Featuring an interview with 
Publishers Weekly Bestselling Author 
Debby Giusti

Enter the Suspense Zone Contest to win a copy of

Be sure to read the February issue of
for a great interview with Debby Giusti!

A beautiful new historical romance set on the western prairie by Ruth Logan Herne!

Sebastian Ward is a frontier "Mr. Darcy", strong, singular and aloof... but when a five-year-old illegitimate brother shows up on his doorstep, what's a man to do? Call out his father and embarrass his mother? Or man up and take the boy under his wing as if he was his own?

Rachel Eichas was raised plain by an austere father. Donning pretty clothes to take over the frontier schoolhouse is a dream come true, but she rues her reclusive upbringing as sparks fly with her nearest neighbor Seb Ward. She has no experience with men, and to have a little boy show up out of the blue-- a boy that looks just like Sebastian-- sets a lot of tongues in motion and school teachers are supposed to be above reproach. Does she dare risk her job to give her heart?  

Kindle edition releases this week... paperback to follow in early March! Link is here!

2019 Literary Calendar with 98 Holidays, Weeks and Months for Book Lovers by Sandra Beckwith at  BuildBookBuzz.

Controlled Digital Lending (CDL): An Appeal to Librarians and Readers from the Author's Guild website

Writers Beware of the Legal Pitfalls: Negligent Publication by Karen Van Den Heuvel at Thyme For Writers


  1. .
    "My best short stories are the last chapter of the novels I didn't write."

    Quote attributed to Roger Zelazny by Neil Gamin in conversation about the importance of backstory.

    How would you word this if applied to writing the best Novellas?

    1. While writing one of my novellas, I realized the story started close to the climax. In a longer book, I would have added more details leading up to that climax. So, Roger is right. That climactic ending can, in essence, be turned into a stand alone short story.

  2. I won a book and it's one of Jan's, yay.
    Enjoyed the posts this week. Pat Jeanne Davis proves it can be done to all us Villagers. Again.
    I hope to post near my pub date, I've already got my random gift planned, a New England goodies gift box! If I don't eat them all first.
    Kathy Bailey

  3. I am so thrilled to win Debby's book! Love her books!
    Happy weekend to all!

    1. Thanks, Jackie! So glad you won too! Remember to send in your mailing address.

  4. Happy weekend, everyone!

    We have sunshine and temperatures above freezing today for the first time in...well, it seems like forever. It's only for today, so I plan to enjoy it.

    Tomorrow winter will be back.

    Have a great day!

  5. A quick update. I had to have a Second surgery last Saturday. Back at rehab. They are going to bring in a mobile x-ray for my chest tonight I feel like I have bronchitis.

    The other morning around 2 I woke up to a male resident standing at the foot of my bed. Just a little scary. This may find a way into a book.

    1. Bless you, Wilani. I'm so sorry you needed a second surgery. Praying for you!

  6. "Is Backstory like Movement at a Distance?"

    I've read that Physicists are seriously dealing with the theory that an event at the subatomic level can be mirrored or cause a similar event to happen somewhere else in the universe. Even galaxies away! It may not make sense at first but it seems to fit their theories. Don't laugh. Remember scientists once worried about how gravity could cause movement at a distance.

    Distant Backstory that is Never Used

    I've heard writers talking about how working out backstory in adequate detail can be appreciated by readers even when the backstory is not used in the story.

    I once thought this was a bit too mystical to be literally true. I mean, shouldn't the story stand on its own and be judged only by what is on the page? This is actually a school of literary and art criticism.

    Then in one of my writing MasterClasses the instructor had this to say:

    "It's not what you want a character to do next and it is not what the story/plot wants a character to do next, it's what the character would do next! To do otherwise is to invite contrivance."

    But how do you know what the character would do next? By knowing the character's history. How? Learn the character's backstory. If you have the backstory, then you have a history on the character and can honestly give him or her a set of consistent action choices. To the reader this consistent set of actions gives the character and story a logical and realistic course of events.

    I believe the above is why a detailed backstory, even if not used in the story, can actually be felt and appreciated by the reader.

    So, even when writing a short story or novella, develop the backstory. It can move a reader --even at a distance.

    BTW: a great way to generate detailed backstory is to write a series and have characters from the early books appear in the sequels.


  7. Learning to Write by Reading & Rereading

    I always read fiction with a view to learning what the author is doing and if it is something I should try doing in my own writing.

    I learned something just recently about reading to learn how to write. A year or so ago I read a novella by Missy, "Her Valentine Reunion" which was in a collection of novellas. I found it an ideal example of a novella, which to me means it was a little novel and not just a long 'short' story. That means it had chapters, hooks, cliff-hangers, story arc's, black moments; in short, it displayed the structure of a novel.

    I think the two best novellas I read so far are "Yule Die" by Debby and "Her Valentine Reunion"" by Missy. By ideal I mean I would recommend these two works as paradigms for structuring a novella.

    I just finished reading, "Her Valentine Reunion," as a stand alone story and not in the context of reading other novellas.

    What I learned this time was how much I missed in the first reading! I missed a lot of little things which I first took as story-movers but which I now saw were doing two or three other jobs, like five-sensing, helping establish character uniqueness, creating a foundation for a future action by a character, plus other writing objectives. Sometimes these writing objectives were accomplished in short sentences and did not require added verbiage!

    I believe the above 'extras' are what make a book seem well written and professional. Sometimes it is called 'rich' reading.

    What I learned: rereading this novella a year or so later, is that when you read to learn how to write, such reading can be more beneficial towards learning how to write than the first reading. It can also act as a mirror to show how much you've learned/aged in the meantime.

    I would strongly suggest rereading books that you thought were the most helpful in the past. It's possible that that second reading will show you how much you've learned in that time and give you inspiration to keep learning!


    1. Thanks, Vince, for mentioning YULE DIE. The novella practically wrote itself. I'm glad you enjoyed the story. :)

  8. Wow!

    I just noticed that I won a book! "The Season of Hope" by Lisa Jordan! I'm very happy to get this book because I think it has one of the best inspirational themes I've encountered in some time. I'm all in for the vets!

    I found Lisa's visit inspirational in itself.

    Thanks Lisa and all the Seekers.

    BTW: It really rewards to leave comments because sometimes there are few comments and the odds of winning are very high! 

    1. We're always glad when you leave a comment, Vince!

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