Saturday, January 31, 2015

The Power of Common Words

Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

I also invite you to use this image any way you like online. Post it to your blog, share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, anywhere you'd like. All I ask is that you keep it intact, with my website watermark visible.

Don't forget to join the conversation!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Platform Tips for Writers—How Much Information is Safe to Share Online?

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

As writers we know the importance of developing an online presence, but is there such a thing as too much information out there?


The result of too much information online can range from the irritating to the dangerous. But it is possible to be smart and still have an online presence that will garner you the right kind of reader notice.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Working Writer—Don't Wait for the Mood to Strike to Write!

By Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I began writing like most of you did—as a creative outlet—a way to process the world around me. 

I kept diaries, started stories and books, played around with articles. But all of these efforts had one thing in common. They were written out of my own emotional overflow. When that overflow dried up, so did the words.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

What is Your Writing Battlefront?

by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Do you know your opposing army in the world of writing and publishing? Because if you don’t know who is against you, you will fail miserably. Perhaps you have no idea who’d ever want you not to write a bestseller or have your blog or tweet not go viral. We all have fellow writers who are determined to deepen their craft, master social media, create a phenomenal website, and spread good will to readers and other writers. 

We’re all forced to get involved with the battlefront. Those who are prominent in the industry are writers we want to emulate. We treasure their discipline and genuinely want them to continue pleasing readers. In short, we want to be just like them. Since we are dealing with friends and peers, how does a writer approach the publishing battlefront?

An army is trained physically and strategically to win. So let me give you a few tips on how to train for success. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Turning Writing Wounds into Wisdom

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

We writers wear our hearts on their sleeves, metaphorically speaking. We pour our inner selves out on the page, drawing on the highs and lows of life to interpret the world through words. This is an exhilarating journey. The highs are incredible, and the lows…well…they’re tough. If we don’t take time to process the difficult experiences, those writing wounds can leave disfiguring scars. But when we do evaluate what’s happened, there is wisdom to be found in those writing wounds.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Social Media Monday—Ditch Professional Facebook Pages by Adding a Follow Button to Your Personal Profile

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

We all know there are big changes with Facebook. Gaining traction on the professional pages is difficult, and becoming harder. If you're not up to date on what's new, here's a post I wrote on Facebook Changes in 2015.

Because of these changes, there’s a movement away from the necessity of having a professional Facebook page. For those of you who have growing and active professional pages, this post does NOT affect you. Keep doing what works. But for those of us who haven’t had much success migrating our professional connections over from our personal profile it’s a gift from Heaven!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Peace of God

And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

I love rainy days—when I have an umbrella.
I love rainy days. The rest of my family are sun worshippers, but I look forward to those cozy days, hemmed with rain and raveled in jagged strips of lightning. 

I especially love walking in the rain. There’s just something comforting in huddling beneath a large umbrella, safe and dry, while the world around me is wet.

It occurred to me that this is a perfect picture of what God does with us. As we move about our days, we’re sheltered by Him. Once we put our faith in God, He becomes our shield—our umbrella in a dreary world. That’s not to say bad things don’t happen, they definitely do. But we’re sheltered by His peace and the knowledge of His perfect love for every single one of us.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Showing the World through Words

As writers we interpret the world around us with words. The ability to take life and translate it is god-given talent, something hard-wired into who we are. But it's also a skill and one we need to consciously practice and improve.

How do you improve your descriptive muscles?

"Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light..." -Anton Chekhov
Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

I also invite you to use this image any way you like online. Post it to your blog, share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, anywhere you'd like. All I ask is that you keep it intact, with my website watermark visible.

Don't forget to join the conversation!

Friday, January 23, 2015

How to Have a Successful Book Launch Party – Part I

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

I am a survivor.

Of a book launch party, that is. My first.

Every author dreams of his or her book release, but for many, the thought of a planning and executing a launch party seems more like a nightmare. Writers are solitary souls who generally prefer to hug the walls of social events. A party where we are the center of attention? Just shoot me now.

But because of God’s mercy and the help of kind friends, I am proof positive that an introverted, inexperienced, and somewhat ignorant author can successfully pull off a book launch party and live to tell (or write) the tale. In the next few segments of The Editor’s Desk, a No-nonsense Approach to Non-Fiction, I’ll share the lessons I learned so you, too, can have a successful event. 

Today we’ll concentrate on how to prepare for your launch party.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

So Wrong Yet So Right

Edie here. Today I'm really excited to share a post with you from the Director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, Alton Ganksy. Many of you know him for his novels and his writing classes. Today I want to introduce you to the non-fiction hat he wears with such style and authority.

His newest book, 30 Events that Shaped the Church, is destined to become a Christian classic.


So Wrong Yet So Right
by Alton Gansky @AltonGansky

Arthur C. Clarke died on March 19, 2008. News of his death prompted me to pull out my old, well-worn mass paperback edition of his 1973 Rendezvous with Rama. I hadn’t read the sci-fi novel in decades, maybe longer, still the story and images he painted remain with me. In a recent interview I fielded the question, “What is your favorite book?” It surprised me a little when Clarke’s Rama sprang to mind. I reread the book and loved it as much as I did the first time around.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Writing Conferences – big or small? Pros and Cons?

by Lynette Eason @LynetteEason

Which conference is right for you?
I don't know about y'all, but I get excited about conferences. I loved attending them as a pre-published author, seeking to acquire every scrap of information possible about my passion: writing!

If you've never been to a conference, I want to encourage you to go! Yes, I know that they're expensive. At least some of them are, but starting small, with a quality local conference could possibly the right decision for you.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Why Your Writer’s Bio is Valuable Real Estate

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Neglecting your writer's bio is like planting weeds
on valuable real estate. -Edie Melson
I'm always shocked by the bios I see at the end of articles. 

It's like writers don't realize the importance of those words. 

That space is valuable real estate and so many of you are just growing weeds on it. Today I want to share why your writer's bio is valuable real estate.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Social Media Monday—The 2015 Excellence in Blogging Awards

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

As promised, today is when I announce the winners of the first annual

Excellence in Blogging Awards!

I really appreciate everyone who took time, either through commenting or through email, to nominate their favorite blogs. When we share information like this it helps us and it helps other bloggers. 

If your blog is mentioned, please email me (ediegmelson (at) gmail (dot) com) and I'll send you your winner's button.

Category 1 - Established Blogs
Regency Reflections -
Alton Gansky’s My Christian Writers Conference –
Lori Stanley Roeleveld, Deeper With Jesus in Rhode Island -
Jennifer Dukes Lee’s blog, Dispatches from a Good News Girl,
K.M Weiland’s Helping Writers Become Better Authors -

Joe bunting’s, The Write Practice -

Category 2 - Up and Coming Blogs
The Artistic Christian by John Mark Miller -
John Holton’s blog, The Sound of One Hand Typing -
Michelle Griep’s Writer off the Leash -
Jenny Bravo’s Blots and Plots -

Category 3 - Blogs for Readers
Nan Jones’s, Morning Glory -
Third Scribe -
erin Elizabeth Austin's Broken but Priceless Ministries -
Cathy Baker’s, Fragrant Inc -
Heather Kopp, Sober Boots -
Gail Purath’s 1-Minute Bible Love Notes -
Karla Hanns, Quiet Quilter’s Blog -
Susan Gourley and susan Kelley's Susan Says -
Lincoln Michel’s Electric Literature -

Today I'd also like to include my personal list of go-to sites for writers. I didn't include them in the lists above because I really wanted to see which ones you all would pick. There are some of my go-to sites that were nominated in categories 1, 2 or 3 and I deleted them from the list below to prevent confusion. 

No matter which category and/or list you're on, you qualify for a winner's button!

Edie's List of Go-To Publishing Industry Sites

I'd still love to know if there are any sites you'd add to the list, and which of these are some of your favorites! Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don't forget to join the conversation!


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Weekend Worship—Be Still and Know I Am God

Edie here. Today I'm excited to introduce you to a writing friend of mine, Laura Hodges Poole. Laura has a powerful new devotional out , While I'm Waiting: Going from despair to hope while praising God and choosing contentment during trials. I invited her to share something from it here. I know you'll become a fan, just like me.

* * *

Be Still and Know I Am God

by Laura Poole @Laura_Poole 

Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10a

Have you ever been still? I mean really still. No cell phone, TV, or computer? No children running in and out? Complete and utter silence?

Imagine calmness filled only with your thoughts and God’s presence. If only we had the time, right?

Many things demand our time. And we give that time away and waste it freely, as though we have an endless supply. As Christians, we do—in eternity.

Meanwhile, here on the earth, if we’re to be effective disciples, we must spend time alone with God.

Crowds of people came to hear him and to be healed of their sicknesses. But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. Luke 5:15b-16/

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Mark 1:35.

Many are unwilling to give God premium time—the time they’d rather be (or are committed to) doing something else.

So how much free time is enough?

“O Lamb of God, deliver me …”
From subtle love of softening things,
From easy choices, weakenings,
(Not thus are spirits fortified,
Not this way went the Crucified)
From all that dims Thy Calvary
O Lamb of God, deliver me.
~ Amy Carmichael, missionary

I often take inventory when life’s demands and deadlines seem overwhelming. I don’t know about you, but Amy Carmichael’s words challenge me. What do I allow to dim His Calvary? Whatever I find that to be, it’s not more important than spending time alone with God.

Rearranging our schedules to have quiet time—be still and know time—with God, is necessary as Christians. It’s during this time that we replenish our spirits.

Reflection: When God has my undivided attention, inspiration and rejuvenation take place. What is God trying to whisper to your heart today in the midst of chaos?

Laura Hodges Poole is a freelance writer with dozens of articles, devotions, and short stories in publication. She is a 2014 ACFW Genesis semi-finalist and a 2012 RWA Emily finalist in Christian fiction. Laura is also a non-fiction ghostwriter/collaborator. Her passion is encouraging others in their Christian walk through her blog, "A Word of Encouragement." She may be contacted at Follow her on Twitter @ Laura_Poole and like her Facebook page at!/LauraHodgesPoole.

Her Christmas novella, “A Christmas Chance,” is available on Amazon.