Monday, July 25, 2011


No post for today. My sister and her kids came visit and blogging kind of went out the window this weekend :o)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Social Media Marketing for Writers: How to Blog, Tweet, and Peep your Way onto Amazon’s Best Seller’s List

Good things come in small packages and Edie Melson’s Social Media Marketing for Writers: How to Blog, Tweet, and Peep your Way onto Amazon’s Best Seller’s List is no exception. This book is a mere 19 pages long but is packed with nuggets of information.

The image of the solitary, recluse writer is no longer accurate. While we labor in solitude to bring the words to paper and computer screen these days it takes more than just a good work to get published. Writers need to be able to build relationships.

Blogs, Twitter, Facebook and other forms of social media are an important part of the relationship aspect of being a writer. In her book, Edie doesn’t just talk about the technical aspects of these tools. She encourages the reader to delve into their passions and what they want to succeed.

Social Media Marketing is quick to read and is full of step-by-step directions on how to get started. This little gem is definitely worth a little bit of cash and time.

About the Author (from the author's web site)

Edie Melson is a freelance writer and editor with a passion for life’s stories. She loves to share her 16+ years experience in the field of writing through mentoring and teaching others. Her first foray into professional writing was as a technical writer in the 80’s. From there she quickly moved into freelance writing and editing, a perfect fit for someone who loves new challenges. Hundreds of articles and devotions, including those for Focus on the Family,, and, have flowed from her pen to her audience.

A savvy business owner, Edie has numerous copywriting clients who rely on her expertise in SEO and keyword formatting. She also consults on web content and social networking.

Fighting Fear, Winning the War at Home, is Edie’s latest project. This devotional book for those with family members in the military has just been contracted with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas.

A frequent faculty member at writers conferences, Edie shares her insights with other writers around the country. She's also a contributing editor with The Book Doctor Blog.

She’s a member of several professional writing organizations, including The Christian Pen, The Christian Writer’s View I and ACFW, where she serves as the Editor for the Southeast Zone Newsletter and staff reviewer for Afictionado Magazine. She’s also an assistant proofer/editor for the Voices E-zine, a publication of My Book Therapy.

Married 29 years to husband, Kirk, they have raised three sons

Monday, July 18, 2011

Dear Diary

Dear Diary, today I…

Recently one of my writing mentors has been publishing excerpts from a diary she kept as a young girl. It’s fun to walk down memory lane with her even though I didn’t know her back then.

Posting old diary excerpts is not something I would do. Well, better put, I can’t do because keeping a journal is not something I have ever done.

Gasp, I know! When people hear this some are shocked since I’m a writer and by nature many writers are also journal keepers. But, I’m not, never have been.

Several years ago another writing mentor suggested I keep a journal. He even recommended a very good book about the subject. I read the book and tried to journal. It just didn’t take.

I don’t know why I can’t journal. I’ve started many times but it always falls by the wayside eventually. In my closet I do have several mistrials that I go back and look at occasionally. And that’s about the extent of it.

I love journals. Actually I love all office supplies. I’m just a geek that way. I even wrote about my love of office supplies. Every time I go into a store I gravitate toward the journals and notebooks. And often I’ll buy one or three or four. Sadly, they languish half used in my closet because it just doesn’t seem to be in my genes.

So, there you have it, my sordid confession of being a non-journal keeping writer type.

What about you, are you a journaler? If you are, what kinds topics do you journal about?

Friday, July 15, 2011

It Sounds Like Redemption

The rain is coming down. It splatters against the windows and rattles the vent on the fireplace. The quiet night is broken by the sound. It’s a beautiful sound. It’s the sound of redemption.

Our land is dry. The grass is brown and trees are not filling out much this year. There just hasn’t been significant moisture for this area. If you listen closely you can almost hear the earth calling out for release from the prison of barrenness.

I don’t know about you, but my soul is like that sometimes. Life takes and takes and takes and gives up nothing in return. My spirit withers under the harshness of it all. Like the earth I cry out for release from my barrenness.

When the time is right; God’s time, not mine, the healing water comes like the rain. It splatters down into my life. It drenches my soul and buoys my spirit. Redemption rings through my life.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

When God Calls, He Provides

The voice on the radio interview sounds young, but there is wisdom and strength in the woman behind that voice. NPR recently featured a story on Katie Davis. You may know Katie from previous posts I’ve written about her.

Katie’s heart is tuned to God. She gave up an easy life in the States to travel to Uganda after she fell in love with the people of the country. The children have stolen her heart and she is changing their lives.

This story on NPR didn’t turn out quite like Katie and Amazima Ministries had hoped. Instead of focusing on what the ministry is doing, it called into question the legality of her family. You see, Katie, at the mere age of 22 is the foster mom of 13 Ugandan children. Despite what her detractors think she has complied with Uganda law in seeking guardianship and adoption. From the start she has been forthright with the courts and they have thus far approved her guardianship requests.

Some say that she shouldn’t have so many children, but the future of these girls was dismal without Katie. They are orphans and children whose parents couldn’t take care of them. They faced a life in institutions full of other needy children. Or they faced life on the streets. Now they have a mother and siblings. They have a roof over their head and three meals a day. They are loved and cared for.

Yes, Katie faces many challenges. Yes, she is young. Yes, there are probably times when she wonders how much she can do. But, Katie loves God and she knows that her strength comes from Him. She knows that for some reason He has called her to this life. She has found joy in this calling. Even in the midst of the hard times she knows joy.

You can read or listen to the NPR story here.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Teddy the Runaway

I love this video of Teddy the Runaway. I smiled a lot when I first saw this and then I realized that Teddy knows a couple of things about life.

1. Life is too short to not experience the joy of living. Sometimes a dog has to have fun and not take himself too seriously.

2. After taking time out for fun you have to get back to business. A dog has to learn to balance out the joy and the business so life doesn’t get too lopsided.

Enjoy the video and consider Teddy’s lessons.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


That's how many teams have been formed to help fight Alzheimer's in this year's annual Walk to Remember. Are you part of one of those teams? I am!

Here's the thing about Alzheimer's, Lewy Body Dementia, Vascular Dementia, and other forms of dementia - more and more people have loved ones, friends, or coworkers that currently deal with these conditions. If you don't now, chances are good that within the next year you will come in contact with someone that does.

I believe that as the baby boomers move into their golden years this country is going to see increased numbers of people with dementia simply because the sheer numbers of this generation. I believe that we will hear more about these conditions because their generation has been known for speaking out. And, I believe that those of us coming behind them will be faced with tough situations and decisions as parents and aunts and uncles find they need help.

Many of you know that my mother had Lewy Body Dementia for about 10 years before she died. My family has faced the questions and circumstances that go along with dementia. It's my goal to keep fighting so that the coming generations will have more answers and resources.

I walk because any advances made in the fight against Alzheimer's will ultimately help other forms also. I also walk because several of my mother's aunts and uncles have or had Alzheimer's.

Walking is an easy way to help. All it requires is signing up, joining a team or creating a team, and raising some money. There are no minimum fund raising levels or entry fees. Every little bit helps.  It takes a few hours on a weekend morning. The course is usually 5k or 3.1 miles. At our local walk there is even a portion that is fairly level and paved so that people in wheelchairs can participate.

To find a walk in your area and to sign up just visit the Alzheimer's Association web site.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Fourth of July!

I am out grilling brats and enjoying the day. I wish you all a very Happy Independence Day! Don't forget to take some time to remember all those who have fought for the freedom we enjoy.

Friday, July 1, 2011

It Already has Onions on it Moron

“It already has onions on it moron.” I overheard the cafeteria worker say this to the man at the counter.

“Excuse me?” The man apparently wanted to make sure he heard her right.

“The sandwich comes with onions. Would you like me to put more on it?”

Whew, she always seemed like such a nice lady and I was glad to hear she didn’t really call him a moron. I did have to laugh, though.

I love listening to conversation. I try not to be snoopy and obnoxious but people say the funniest things.

As a writer dialogue is an important part of a novel. It has to be authentic. That’s where my studying the things people say comes in handy. When people read my stories I want my characters to ring true and be something my reader can relate to.

Sometimes when I write dialogue I write too formal. It sounds stilted and people on the whole don’t talk like that. Sometimes you have to break the rules to make it work. So I keep listening to the way people talk to give me insight into good dialogue.