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Forms of Expression

Faith Filled Friday – I liked his comment that none of us have a blueprint for life. We need God in our lives and I’m happy in He’s in mine.

Life Unscripted

you-are-hereIt seems to me that most quotations about photography apply metaphorically to life just as well as they do to images.  I think that this little nugget from Ansel Adams really hits an important nail on the head.

I have found that every experience
is a form of exploration.

–Ansel Adams

None of us has a blueprint for life.  We like to think we do.  We make plans, we talk a good tale, but the fact is that we are all making calculated guesses about what’s the right way to live; who are the right people to befriend; what are the values that really matter, etc..

Every experience, indeed life itself, is a form of exploration.  We put our faith into our world view — whether it’s educated or ignorant, whether it’s considered or slipshod — and that’s how we go through life.  We tinker our way through life.  Some…

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How to find stats for your blog

WordDreams...

I don’t pay much attention to these except in passing. I’ll notice that I’m getting about the same number of viewers or that a post has climbed to the top of my most-commented-on list. Let’s say, if I spend ten minutes a week on this, I’d be exaggerating.

But, it’s nice to know where I can look for quantitative feedback. One of my wonderful readers, Jill Weatherholt, asked where I found them. I don’t use anything beyond what WordPress offers. There are fancier options (like through Google) but this gives me everything I want. To that end, here’s where I found the stats I posted as a summary of my 2017:

First: Access the backend of your WordPress blog:

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Which Side the Fuel Door?

Many years ago I remember having to drag the fuel hose across the car to pump my gas! Do they make them long enough to do that today? Great article, Peter. Thank you. Maybe I should have one of my characters forget which side his tank is on which leads him to meet the love of his life.

Life Unscripted

Fuel Door

Quick: On which side is your vehicle’s fuel door?

Could you answer instinctively?

Did you know that your car tells you what side the fuel door is on?  I didn’t know until just a little while ago that my car does.  And probably yours does too.

Look at your fuel guage.  See that little diamond shaped arrow next to the emoji for fuel pump.  what-side-your-car-is-gas-tankThere it is.  The indicator for which side of your car the filler door is located.

Have you ever pulled to the fuel island to discover you’re on the wrong side? Our CR-V had the filler on the opposite side of the car from our new Outback.  I am regularly driving up to the wrong side of the car to fill up.  (Of course with a larger tank and better mileage we get almost twice the range with the Outback so we aren’t filling up…

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My Trials of Writing

I decided to share with you a bit about the book I’m working on – A Sign for Love. I finished this novel ages ago and never did anything with it. Then my old computer died and took my novel with it. Fortunately, I had a typed copy so I retyped it into my new computer. I gave my sister a copy to read. She loved it, but I still did nothing with it. I didn’t think it had enough action and could not think of anything different for it. It waited a few more years.
I wrote and published Dana’s Dilemma. I designed it as a quick but enjoyable read. Being a first book by a new author were two strikes against me. The publisher printing it in 9-font was the third strike. I finished another novel, but it’s still not ready for publication. One day my sister Joan asked why I never did anything with the book she liked. She was my incentive to try again.
Somewhere along the line I had added several sex scenes. Sex sells according to most people. Cindy who does my editing encouraged me to write in the Christian series since there were not enough good books in that category. I’ve learned to take Cindy’s advice. One time I disagreed with one of her changes. She explained why she thought it would be best. It wasn’t what I wanted or thought my character wanted, and I planned to leave it in. As I worked on the editing changes I ended up making the change she had suggested. It fell into place beautifully. Much to my chagrin.
Months ago I eliminated most of the beginning. It was too slow and boring. Then I had trouble with what to do next. I looked at my character page. I had little filled in about them and everything I’ve read about characters say they need a lifetime of information. So I worked on developing the characters better. A Sign for Love was taking shape nicely.
While rewriting the first chapter I learned Jennifer (Primary Character) had a fear of darkness. I was surprised. That was not something I had thought of, let alone planned!
Jennifer has 2 adversaries and I couldn’t remember who was pulling which stunt. So I included that in with the characters. Having 2 adversaries is supposed to be a secret so forget that point when you’re reading the book.
The main premise of the book is that Jennifer is hearing but had to pretend to be deaf to help out at the camp. Jennifer knows ASL very well because she is good friends with Rita (Secondary Character) and a substitute teacher at the school. The school required deaf teachers at the camp. The headmaster okayed Jennifer helping out since this was an unexpected event.
Jennifer planned to stay the week after the students left so she could take photos. Her reputation got her a free stay if she gave them photos not used for her article. She meets Jack in chapter one and learns he’s on the school board so she has to continue to her ruse. Being a new Christian Jennifer feels like she is lying even though the headmistress told her to play deaf.
Rita and Vincent (Jack’s younger brother) meet and instantly connect. Vince is agile with ASL whereas Jack is not. They often double date to make Jack’s life easier. I’ve thought about doing a spin-off book with Rita and Vince, but haven’t made up my mind yet.
My biggest problem has been working in their faith naturally. Maybe it will come as I write more. The second problem was cell phones. They weren’t in use when I started this book. Texting would simplify life, but I didn’t want such an easy solution. Time to go write. Thanks for listening.  ~ Connie

Is Your Book Cover Too Cluttered?

Marketing Christian Books

Writers love words. They often try to convey as much information as possible in words. This is great for a story or book, but not for marketing material.

Marketing material is all about catching someone’s attention. Good marketing or advertising copy draws the viewer in creating interest and intrigue so that the viewer wants to learn more. It doesn’t answer all the questions. It simply whets the appetite.

A book cover is marketing material. Like all advertising or marketing copy, its purpose is to draw a reader in.

One BookCrash reviewer recently said the following about a book she reviewed:

“The cover is attractive as well and I’m one of those who pays attention to such things. This one is nice and clean; not all cluttered up.”

The most attractive designs whether architectural or graphic are generally uncomplicated and streamlined. Your book cover should also be clean and uncluttered.

Take…

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Question: “Could God create a rock so heavy He could not lift it?”

GotQuestion.org

Answer: This question is frequently asked by skeptics of God, the Bible, Christianity, etc. If God can create a rock that He cannot lift, then God is not omnipotent. If God cannot create a rock so heavy that He cannot lift it, then God is not omnipotent. According to this argument, omnipotence is self-contradictory. Therefore, God cannot be omnipotent. So, the question, could God create a rock so heavy He could not lift it? The quick answer is “No.” But the explanation is far more important to understand than the answer…
This question is based on a popular misunderstanding about the definitions of words like “almighty” or “omnipotent.” These terms do not mean that God can do anything. Rather, they describe the amount of God’s power. Power is the ability to effect change – to make something happen. God (being unlimited) has unlimited power, and the Bible affirms this (Job 11:7-11, 37:23; 2 Corinthians 6:18; Revelation 4:8; etc.). Therefore, God can do whatever is possible to be done. God cannot, however, do that which is actually impossible. This is because true impossibility is not based on the amount of power one has, it is based on what is really possible. The truly impossible is not made possible by adding more power. Therefore, unless context indicates otherwise (e.g. Matthew 19:26 where man’s ability is being shown in contrast to God’s), impossibility means the same thing whether or not God is involved.
So, the first part of the question is based on a false idea – that God being almighty means that He can do anything. In fact, the Bible itself lists things God cannot do – like lie or deny Himself (Hebrews 6:18; 2 Timothy 2:13; Titus 1:2). The reason He cannot do these things is because of His nature and the nature of reality itself. God cannot do what is not actually possible to be done, like creating a two-sided triangle, or a married bachelor. Just because words can be strung together this way does not make the impossible possible – these things are contradictions, they are truly impossible in reality. Now, what about this rock? A rock would have to be infinitely large to defeat an infinite amount of lifting power. But an infinite rock is a contradiction since material objects cannot be infinite. Only God is infinite. There cannot be two infinites. So the question is actually asking if God can make a contradiction – which He cannot.

Recommended Resource: Knowing God by J.I. Packer

How babies express love

This is not what I was planning to post today, but I just couldn’t resist. All my kids are grown, but some memories never fade.

The Hejhej blog

Sometimes my child looks at me like she wants to chew my face. I take it as she is hungry or a new tooth is coming. Or she is a sociopath. She has so much from her dad.

She has a new hobby that we call The Hook and it’s goes a little something like this:

You need one big nose (an adult will do). One baby fist with long finger nails that nobody dares to cut. The baby sits just above your head as you lay down and her fingers goes in to your nose and gets STUCK. It’s called lock and pull. Baby now pulls her fingers upwards against herself making you look like a pig in pain. This is extremely fun to watch if you are like me and get very entertained by other people getting hurt.

And then we just have the normal nose grab. When…

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