Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Brain Dump: How getting it all out is freeing

Have you noticed lately that you have lots of thoughts and feelings but haven't really had an outlet for them? I usually have a good vent session when things are stressful and talk things out. But we've been encouraged for what seems like the whole year to stay away from everyone and I feel like, for me at least, things tend to build up and until "I'm about to McFreakin' lose it!" 

So last night it hit me. Just write it all down. So I'm not a physician and I'm not a specialist in anything except driving myself crazy. But I do have a buttload of sharpies and paper. So I grabbed a piece of cardstock because I knew it was going to be brutal. And I started writing. Now you might be more fly by the seat of your pants but I like to give myself permission for things so I wrote right in the middle of the page "Brain Dump" and then I went at it. 

And I'll be honest, I found myself censoring myself. So then I yelled wrote really hard with my sharpie "stop censoring me!" So I stopped censoring ME. I wrote lots of things. Things I'd been thinking but didn't tell anybody because you know what? they probably wouldn't come across as nice. But they were in my brain so they were on the paper. Some stuff was probably mean, stupid, ridiculous, hurtful, full of anger and bitterness, sad stuff that I don't say because I'm suppose to be happy all the time. This paper was really covered in sharpie. I didn't care about writing over the other writing because I was letting it all out and that's how it looked in my head anyways; thoughts covered with other thoughts. Things that have been really weighing on me and I wanted to pray about or tell someone about but the words weren't there, they all came pouring out in a massive mess of sharpie. Did it bleed through the page? Yes. But it had been ripping at my heart for months, years even. I honestly couldn't think of anything else I was worried or upset. Then after I had completely messed up that sheet of paper...

I showed my husband the mess of words, told him what it was and then I ripped it to shreds and threw it into the trash. 

Because I realized that in writing all of it down I had confessed what was weighing on me and I didn't want it anymore. It was a huge mess of colors and words and scribbled feelings. And it wasn't really pretty. Seeing it all there, written out was actually revealing. There was more there than I had realized. But I felt that God saw me as I wrote, He heard the words that wouldn't come out as sounds, He knew what was in my heart and mind and that was what mattered. Even if I didn't feel heard by Facebook friends or even real life friends, even if I never yelled it out loud or ranted about it. He knew. So I took the heavy weight off and handed it to Him. And for the first night in months, I went to bed without stress. I slept easier. I woke up the next morning and when stress tried to come in I said "No". 

So my prayer for you, friends, is that whatever is weighing on you that you would hand it over. "Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you." -1 Peter 5:7

Because, let's be fair, there is a lot of crap hitting the fan. There's a virus and an election and shutdowns and craziness. People have lost jobs and loved ones. People are losing relationships. There's a lot of stress to be found. Lots of bad to be seen. But on the other side of everything is hope and peace. 

So I don't know if you are a visual learner like I am but here's a printable. I highly recommend either printing it on cardstock or putting it on a surface you don't care about. But just don't censor what is in your head. It's okay if it's mean, if it's what you are thinking then write it down. I wouldn't recommend doing it in front of people who might be on the list of stresses as that might cause more stress. It's not for show, it's from you and to God. It's a prayer. But sometimes prayers aren't spoken. 

I'm not saying to focus on the bad. I'm saying to get it out. Everything you are feeling. Because I also think you should do this exercise but by listing all the good things and post it somewhere to remind you of the good. But some of us don't wear our hearts out in the open for all to see. Some hide inside an outer shell and it's suffocating. Break out of it. Because holding it all in might also mean you are keeping good things from coming in. 

Like I said, I'm not an expert. Just a person who wants to live more freely and I hope you will too. 

Here's the printable:

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Avalanche by M. Liz Boyle Celebrate Lit Tour

Blog Stops

Remembrancy, May 10
Lukewarm Tea, May 14 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, May 14
Blossoms and Blessings, May 19  (Author Interview)
Rebecca Tews, May 19

About the Book

Book:  Avalanche
Author: M. Liz Boyle
Genre:  Christian YA
Release Date: September 27, 2019
When fifteen-year-old Marlee Stanley joins her two sisters and the sons of their family friends on a secretive hike in the middle of the night, she is thrilled and nervous. Battling her conscience, she prays that the hike will go flawlessly and that they will return to the safety of their campsite before their parents wake. The start of the hike is beautiful and wonderfully memorable.
In a white flash so fast that Marlee can barely comprehend what has happened, an avalanche crashes into their path. Buried in packed snow, Marlee is forced to remember survival tips learned from her dad and her own research.
This group of friends, ages eleven through seventeen, is about to endure bigger challenges than many adults have experienced. Digging out of the packed snow is only the first of many challenges. Injuries, cold, hunger, fatigue, aggressive wildlife and tensions in the group make this a much bigger adventure than they ever imagined. As the kids strive to exhibit Christian values throughout the trials, they learn numerous life lessons. But they are nearly out of food, and their energy is waning quickly. How will they ever reach help?

About the Author

Liz is an author, the wife of a professional tree climber and the mom of three energetic and laundry-producing children. She received her Associate’s of Arts at the University of Sioux Falls, where she received the LAR Writing Award for her essay entitled, “My Real Life Mufasa.” Liz once spent a summer in Colorado teaching rock climbing, which she believes was a fantastic way to make money and memories. She resides with her family in Wisconsin, where they enjoy hiking and rock climbing. Liz and her husband have also backpacked in Colorado and the Grand Canyon, which have provided inspiration for her writing. She likes making adventurous stories to encourage others to find adventures and expand their comfort zones (though admittedly, she still needs lots of practice expanding her own comfort zone). She has thoroughly enjoyed working on her first novel, Avalanche, and the sequel Chased, which will release in the summer of 2020.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Bitter Honey by Caryl McAdoo Celebrate Lit tour

Author Interview

1. Who has been your favorite character to write?
I’ve loved so many, but I’m going to say Jasmine in THE BEDWARMER’S STORY. She’s such a strong character, sweet and intelligent, but na├»ve. And she steps into a fairytale where Prince Charming falls in love and carrys her away to live her dream.
2. Has a real person inspired a character?
Most of my heroines are a good part me, and most my heroes, a good part Ron. When writing a child, I use my grandsugars, how they act, things they’ve said. Sometimes I think of Mama or my best friend Elaine when writing a new character. So yes, most of my characters are inspired by real people.

3. Is there a scene you wish you could rewrite?
I can’t think of one, but if I could, then I would. Just rewrite it. If there was a scene I wanted to rewrite, I would rewrite it and upload the new rendition to Amazon! Isn’t that amazing? I absolutely love being an Independent publisher! My first ten titles were published traditionally, the tenth by Simon and Schuster—those scenes I cannot change, but as an Indie, I have that ability. I think that’s awesome!

4. Is there a setting/time period you'd love to write about?
But of course! It’s the mid-nineteenth century in Texas! And further points west. And I do write about it! Because it’s a wonderful time when neighbors knew each other and helped one another. When men provided and women helped as they could and kept his home and his children. That doesn’t make a woman weak; that takes a strong woman.

Think of your grandmother or the stories you heard about her mother, your great-grandmother. We aren’t that far from a society who for the most part loved God and followed His teachings. They were moral and modest and love always prevailed.

5. Who is your favorite fictional villian?
I’ll say Darth Vadar since he redeemed himself in the end. Praise God that He provides a redeemer for us!

Thanks so much again for having me, Elizabeth. I appreciate you taking part in my BITTER HONEY Celebrate Lit Blog Tour! Blessings to you and your readers!

About the Book

Book:  Bitter Honey
Author: Caryl McAdoo
Genre: Historical Christian Romance
Release Date: March 23, 2020
With God, all things are possible.
But can lost love be found again or two wounded hearts knitted together?
Young love, sweeter than honey, is separated by a natural disaster and turns bitter. After five years, a miracle reunites Samantha Adams and Silas Mercier, but it seems it’s too late. Will love prevail?

Click here for your copy!

About the Author

Praying her story gives God glory, award-winning author Caryl McAdoo continues prolificity with her new Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga series. Readers around the world enjoy her best-selling novels and shower them with 5-Star ratings galore. With forty-eight titles—and counting—her love for writing is obvious; the lady loves singing the new songs the Lord gives her as well! (Check out YouTube). Caryl gave Ron four children and the couple shares eighteen grandsugars. The McAdoos live in the woods south of Clarksville, the seat of Red River County, in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.

More from Caryl

Are you ready to revisit the Adams and Corbin families (from UNIQUELY COMMON and REMI)? Five years have passed, so it’s 1853, and life has gone on.
Samantha, only fourteen back then, wrote faithfully to Silas back in New Orleans as she traveled west on the Oregon/California Trail. She expected a tall stack of letters waiting on her at the General Store in Napa, but alas there were none.
BITTER HONEY is a story of puppy love time tries to dissipate, but Samantha never forgot Silas—or forgave him either! Though she had no way of knowing what tragic events had kept him from mailing the return missives, he never quit thinking of the beautiful girl who’d written of her love for him.
However, each day that passed only made it harder for him to write. Until he decided only a face-to-face talk would suffice, he worked with the man who’d always loved his mother, Claude, to rebuild his family’s vineyard, catching gators on the side.
This story has a second love story, that of Claude and the prostitute he rescues Odette, so there’s plenty of action to keep readers flipping pages. A story of first love and late, second-chance love with a taste of the Cajun life in Louisiana, BITTER HONEY is about restoration and following God’s will.
I hope you enjoy BITTER HONEY and all the other Lockets and Lace stories!

Blog Stops

Simple Harvest Reads, April 27 (Author Interview)
Betti Mace, April 30
For the Love of Literature, May 2 (Author Interview)
Artistic Nobody, May 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
Lukewarm Tea, May 6 (Author Interview)


To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

The Ministry of Healing Celebrate Lit Tour and Giveaway!

The Ministry of Heaing FB Banner

About the Book

Book:  The Ministry of Healing
Author: AJ Gordon
Genre:  Christian non-fiction, spiritual growth
Release Date: January 17, 2020
Ministry of Healing CoverClassic Christian author A. J. Gordon expresses curiosity about whether the healing miracles from the Middle Ages up to his day can be verified as a continuation of Christ’s Spirit in the church. Through deep study and inquiry of the established history, Gordon concludes that the power to heal followers remains with the church—there was no special era of miracle working. God and His powers remain the same in the modern era as they have right through human history. For Gordon, God’s intervention in the suffering and sickness of His followers is frequent; the will of the Lord however is variable—but He will not prolong the pain of someone whose illness is too great. Throughout this text, A. J. Gordon makes his argument from a biblical perspective, citing passages in both the Old and New Testament that support the continuation of spiritual gifts. Quoting testimonies of believers across the ages, he offers a convincing argument that the church ministry is, to this day, one of healing.

Click here to get your copy!


The Ministry of Healing by AJ Gordon is a look into the proof and belief of healing. Based on the study of scripture, reason and many other testimonies, the author tries to find evidence to answer the question: “Have there been any miracles since the days of the apostles?”

He makes a compelling argument for both sides. I found it to be a little difficult to read but also found it to be well written. I tend toward the fiction section but this was also an interesting read.

About the Author
Adoniram_Judson_GordonAdoniram Judson (A. J.) Gordon (1836–1895) came to prominence in the United States as the evangelical pastor of Clarendon Street Baptist Church in Boston for more than twenty-five years. During his tenure there, he saw the church completely transformed into one of the most spiritual and aggressive churches in America, with an unsurpassed effort in missions. A missionary training school and publishing house were associated with the church, and Gordon preached at many of D. L. Moody’s Northfield Conferences, along with other notable preachers such as A. B. Simpson, A. T. Pierson, and R. A. Torrey. His training school eventually became Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. He also founded Gordon College, in Wenham, Massachusetts. He wrote his most famous book, The Ministry of Healing, in 1882, but he also wrote at least fifteen hymns, including “My Jesus, I Love Thee,” as well as other books of Christian instruction.

More from Whitaker House

This classic Christian work has previously only been self published. Gordon is renowned as founder of Gordon-Conwell Seminary and Gordon College. His writings became foundational work for what later became the spirit-filled movement.

Blog Stops

Blossoms and Blessings, March 19 (Spotlight)
Artistic Nobody, March 21 (Spotlight)
Lukewarm Tea, March 23 (Spotlight)
Andrea Christenson, March 25 (Spotlight)
For the Love of Literature, March 27 (Spotlight)
Simple Harvest Reads, March 29 (Spotlight)
CarpeDiem, March 30


To celebrate their tour, Whitaker House is giving away the grand prize of a $20 Starbucks Gift Card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Will The Real Person Please Stand Up? Celebration Tour

Author Interview

  1. Who most influenced your writing?The other members of my Word Weavers International writing group. Our personal interaction, critique groups, and honest advice for my own submissions have helped me make huge progress on the craft of writing.
  2. What was the best advice you received about writing?You don’t need to implement everything you learn at a writers’ conference or workshop. Consider what two next things you would like to focus on and let the other things go.
  3. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?Choose to take risks more frequently. I’ve made a lot of progress in saying yes, even without assurance of succeeding, but I want to keep traveling on that new track.
  4. Where do you do most of your writing?At my dining room table, which overlooks my inviting screened-in porch and my backyard with refreshing green grass, majestic trees, and colored flowers. It’s easy to raise my head and find refreshment for my mind whenever I need it.
  5. What's currently in your To Be Read pile?
    Sam’s Letters to Jennifer – James PattersonThe God I Thought I knew – Robert Morris
    Uninvited – Lysa Terkeurst 

Blog Stops

Artistic Nobody, March 4 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, March 4
SPLASHES of Joy, March 6
Rebecca Tews, March 7
For the Love of Literature, March 9 (Author Interview)
Betti Mace, March 10
Lukewarm Tea, March 12 (Author Interview)
Wishful Endings, March 15 (Author Interview)

About the Book

Book:  Will the Real Person Please Stand Up?
Author: Gail Porter
Genre:  Non-Fiction/Personal Growth
Release Date: Oct 1, 2018
Does fear of rejection hold you back from letting people see the real you? Are you tired of hiding?
Gail Porter lived with this kind of fear during her childhood and most of her adult life. When God revealed her bondage to the power of fear, she was set free to come out of hiding and become who He’d created her to be. What she learned grew into a passion to help others experience the same freedom.
Will the Real Person Please Stand Up? offers much-needed hope to those who long to be set free from the fear of rejection and become their authentic selves. In this life-changing book you will read Gail’s own experiences, stories of real people, and input from those in the medical field. Gail walks you through the process of identifying and acknowledging what holds you captive so you can live in freedom rather than in fear.
With God’s help, you can walk out of your self-made prison, break strongholds, and taste the freedom that will allow you to become who God made you to be. Get ready to stand up and say, “This is the real me.”
“Gail teaches her readers how to embrace the present without encumbrances of the past. With practical, action-based steps, we learn to climb mountains with new determination and anticipate our futures with joy.” Jeanne LeMay, author of Dear God I’m Desperate: Women Have Issues, God Has Answers.

About the Author

Gail Porter graduated from Oregon State University and spent fifty years serving with Cru/Campus Crusade for Christ. She is the author of Life through Loss: Facing Your Pain, Finding Your Purpose and two co-written books. Gail lives in Orlando, Florida, where she enjoys ballroom dancing and her favorite role of aunt to her nieces and nephews.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Childhood Celebration Tour

Author Interview

  1. Who has been your favorite character to write?
    Jake, from my first novel, because he emulated me. In the circumstances that I placed him in, he did what I would do. I lived vicariously through Jake in the first novel. 

  2. Who has been your most difficult character to write?
    Aleksey in my second novel, because he is essentially the devil in human flesh.

  3. Has a real person inspired a character?
    Many of my characters are inspired by one or more real people.

  4. Where is the weirdest place you've found inspiration?
    The bathroom.

  5. Is there a scene you wish you could rewrite?
    Yes. In my last novel a couple of the scenes, in retrospect, are “preachier” than I intended.

About the Book

Book:  Childhood
Author: Greg Schaffer
Genre:  Contemporary
Release Date: February 10, 2020
Katie lived a lonely childhood, her after school time filled with responsibilities to her father and special needs brother. Her chores prevented her from experiencing the carefree life her peers, including Joey, her neighbor and secret crush, lived. She began running to impress Joey, then discovered track as a possible way out of the small town of Nortonville, Tennessee. But as the promise of a college scholarship drew her closer to the escape she had dreamed about since childhood, she wondered why she didn’t feel better. What was missing?
Childhood is the novelette prequel to Fatherhood, a full-length novel about abortion from the father’s point of view.

About the Author

Greg Schaffer has written several novels, beginning with Forgiveness (2014). Each conveys the message that hope is always available, even in the darkest of times. His other works of fiction include horse-humor and poetry anthologies. A northerner by birth and a southerner by choice, Greg resides with his wife and rescue dogs in Franklin, Tennessee

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, February 11
Older & Smarter?, February 13
Artistic Nobody, February 14 (Author Interview)
Inklings and notions, February 15
For Him and My Family, February 16
Through the Fire Blogs, February 17 (Author Interview)
deb’s Book Review, February 18
By The Book, February 20 (Author Interview)
Just the Write Escape, February 21
Mamma Loves Books, February 22
Lukewarm Tea, February 23 (Author Interview)
Spoken from the Heart, February 24


To celebrate his tour, Greg is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon Gift Card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.