Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Deep Bible Study

For some time I have wanted to get more depth out of my Bible study. We read the words, but do we study? I felt I was lacking in really studying.

I do study more when I am writing an article for our ForChristianGirls website. I go to the Word and make comparisons of scriptures to use. It is hard to do sometimes, and I feel so unprepared.

A friend of mine put something on Face Book that really hit me in a good way. A way to study, deep study the Bible for the next year. Cindy Colley wrote How to Dig Deep for the Meat of the Word. I was very impressed, and I'm starting a few days early on the September assignment. I think I can do it. If you would like to follow along with me, please feel free to do it. I think we will all benefit.


Read through the book of Genesis and write down every promise. 
Read it until you can tell its story in sequence.
Memorize Genesis 3:15 and Genesis 12:2
Understand that the Bible’s theme from Genesis 3:15  forth is “Redemption”. 
Go to cindycolley.blogspot.com, subscribe and read twice weekly this month.

Friday, August 26, 2011

To Have and To Hold

To Have and To Hold is a historical romance by Tracie Peterson and Judith Miller. They are two really good writers. Tracie is the Key Note Speaker in September at American Christian Fiction Writers Conference. I'm looking forward to hearing her. I have read several of her books and also several of Judith's.

The setting of this book is an island off the coast of Georgia. It tells of building a resort for the rich, or rather a club for the rich. It's much like Jekyll Island and the history of Jekyll is included in the book. Bridal Veil Island is close to Jekyll, in the book.

Audrey Cunningham lives on Bridal Veil with her father and feisty Aunt Thora. I loved Aunt Thora and her antics. One of the investors is trying to find a contractor to take over the work of building this fabulous clubhouse. In comes Marshall Graham.

Audrey has one problem. She jumps to conclusions before she has the facts. When Marshall came to the island, she remembered his father was killed in a barroom brawl and her father was present. She assumed Marshall was also a drinking man. That's when the fun begins.

I loved the setting. We had vacationed on Jekyll this summer and the story brought back so many memories. The writing was so clean and good. I couldn't tell what part Judy wrote and what part Tracie wrote. If I know an author well, I can usually tell who writes what. This was so different. It was smooth.

There will be other books coming out about the islands. I'm anxious to read more. Personally, I love the islands and the lighthouses and have visited most of them. This was a lovely book.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


This topic has been on my mind for some time now, so I'll have to address it to get some peace. We all know we have to beware of a lot of things, but there are a few we have to watch in writing.

We all know about ing, ed, ly,  as, such, and my favorite just. I always have too many of them in my sentences, and there is the all time favorite was. I think when I started writing I wrote, "It was just wonderful," or "It was just so pretty," a lot. I don't do that anymore, I think. We all slip back into our old ways if we don't constantly write.

My biggest beware was to listen to people who did not know what they were talking about. I knew practically nothing when I started writing, and I listened to people who thought they knew it all. It slowed me down so much in my writing. I've been guilty of doing the same thing to new writers and I've tried to stop it.

What have I learned? Listen to multi-published authors. Read books on writing. Go to conferences and listen to the speakers. Talk to authors. We have a small writers group and there are two authors in the group. They have been so helpful to me and to the other members of the group. They have helped and encouraged me so much. The rest of us are babes in the group, but they treat us like we are best-sellers.

One thing I have learned with Christian fiction writers, they are as common as an old shoe. There is no pretense with any of them. The successful ones are the most helpful. There is not any stabbing in the back. If we are to show we are Christians, we should act like one. I'm happy to be associated with these men and women.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Ransome's Quest

The other day I said "good-bye" to an old friend. At least that is what it felt like when I finished Ransome's Quest. It was a little daunting to know that I wouldn't read anymore about William, Julia, Charlotte, and Ned. They had become such good friends. As all things must come to an end, so they go by the wayside to pick up again and read later. 

As with all of Kaye Dacus' books, I loved this one. This book had more excitement in it, but it had been a while since I had read the other two. There were more surprises and two, no three, kidnappings. A very exciting book!

Kaye did wonderful descriptions of Tierra Dulce and their way of life on the island. Everything was very real, especially Capt. Ned Cochranes lack of self-confidence. I thoroughly enjoyed Charlotte's impetuousness nature and her loyalty. I completely loved Charlotte. 

This was another "can't put down book." Kaye has a way of weaving stories that make you feel good when you finish. Thanks Kaye, for this book, and for being my friend.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My First Interview

I'm not published yet, but Heidi Glick interviewed me anyway. Click onto http://queencityquill.blogspot.com/2011/08/interview-with-kathy-cretsinger.html and read about my writing, my favorite authors, and research.

I will have to say I was surprised when Heidi wrote me. I hadn't expected an interview until published, then in my wildest dreams, thousand of authors would want to interview me. I would be swamped and not have time for anything else, but to answer interview questions. That's a dream and I don't think it will happen that way.

It was an honor and I so appreciate Heidi for braving the waters. Her blog is new and I'm anxious to see more of it in the future. We as writers need to encourage others along the way. I have appreciated all the writers and authors who have done that for me. That is what makes us go on with writing.

Thank you, Heidi for making me feel special. Thanks for the wonderful questions. 

Monday, August 15, 2011


Gina Holmes is the bestselling author of Crossing Oceans and the newly released novel, DRY AS RAIN. She's the founder of Novel Rocket, (formerly Novel Journey), a registered nurse,  wife and mother who makes her home in Southern Virginia. You can learn more about her atwww.ginaholmes.com 

Your debut novel hit ECPA, Amazon, PW and CBA bestsellers list (some throughout the span of a year!) For several weeks Crossing Oceans was the #1 free kindle download and then stay in the top hundred for a long time.

Beside the commercial success, your book was a finalist in every major Christian book award, including: Christy, ECPA, Retailer’s Choice, Carol Awards, and won RWA’s Inspirational Reader’s Choice and an INSPY. Does having that kind of success put the pressure on for your second book?

I try not to think too much about it. I didn’t expect that kind of success but am very grateful for it. I had a lot of pressure on me on this releasing novel, not because of the success of the first book, but because, unlike the first, I didn’t have all the time in the world to write it. Some books flow smoothly, this one I had to yank out like a bad tooth. I faced multiple rewrites, some of them pretty major, all while trying to promote my all important first novel. I was still working full time, mothering, running Novel Journey (now Novel Rocket) and all of that, so this was a tough tough book for me to produce.

Tell our readers about your latest release, Dry as Rain:

I'm a really bad pitchman so I'll just repeat the back of the book copy:

Behind every broken vow lies a broken heart.
When Eric and Kyra Yoshida first met, they thought their love would last forever. But like many marriages, theirs has gradually crumbled, one thoughtless comment and misunderstanding at a time, until the ultimate betrayal pushes them beyond reconciliation. Though Eric longs to reunite with Kyra, the only woman he has truly loved, he has no idea how to repair the damage that’s been done.

Then a car accident erases part of Kyra’s memory—including her separation from Eric—and a glimmer of hope rises from the wreckage. Is this a precious opportunity for the fresh start Eric has longed for? Does he even deserve the chance to find forgiveness and win back Kyra’s heart . . . or will the truth blow up in his face, shattering their last hope for happiness? A richly engaging story of betrayal and redemption, Dry as Rain illuminates with striking emotional intensity the surprising truth of what it means to forgive.

You can read the first chapter HERE. 

"Holmes grabs the reader with a unique storyline about infidelity and what it truly means to forgive after betrayal.  By looking at the situation from a different angle, the author provides a great deal of food for thought and contemplation." RT Book Reviews – September, 2011

Library Journal says, "Fans of emotionally packed domestic fiction will love it."

This novel feels so much different than Crossing Oceans. Why did you choose to take such a different path?

I didn’t intend to write something completely different and I think it feels that way because of the characters telling the story. In Crossing Oceans, Jenny was our narrator and she was a melancholy, all woman sort.

In Dry as Rain, we have Eric, who is a man’s man and doesn’t think in flowery language and descriptions so it would have been wrong to write him that way. While both books have a heavy subject matter, Crossing Oceans was much more so. You can’t get heavier than dying, so it was bound to be more emotional, no matter how I wrote the next book.

But, my genre seems to be relational drama which both are and I like to pepper in a quirky cast and that’s true of both books.

You took a lot of chances in this book. First writing first person from a male’s perspective, secondly to have the protagonist someone who does a lot of things that aren’t very Christianly, like cheating on his wife, drinking, lying, etc. Are you afraid this might hurt your sales in the Christian market?

Afraid? No. Concerned, sure. While I don’t personally have a problem with Eric drinking a beer, the rest I have a problem with too. The thing is Eric’s a nominal Christian at the beginning of the book, lukewarm about his faith like many who call themselves followers of Christ. This is his journey though and he doesn’t end up where he begins. I wanted to tell the story as truthfully as I could and at the end of the day let the chips fall where they may.

What happened to your long time website, Novel Journey?

www.noveljourney.blogspot.com is now www.novelrocket.com You can get to it by either address but we decided on an overhaul because we wanted to drop the blogspot address and just have a dot com. The guy who owned Novel Journey didn’t return our emails to sell so we had to do something a little different. This turned out to be a good thing maybe because we’d been chewing on broadening the site for some time. We’ve got some exciting changes now, the most notable is the addition of “Rocket Pages” a sort of Craig’s List for writers to find the services they need to launch and sustain their career.

What’s going on with you personally?

Well, I’m blissfully married, mom to two, stepmom to three, and owner of 2 dogs and a fish. I bought a guitar and hope to start fiddling with that soon and just writing a lot. Nothing too exciting over here but that’s the way I like it. I’m the happiest I’ve been in my life. I’ve accomplished many of the dreams and goals I’d hoped to and I always tell my husband, if I died today, I’d feel I lived and full and rewarding life. Not that I’m looking to die just yet.

What are you working on now?

I can’t give the title yet as that’s a work in progress but it’s a story very close to my heart. I’m more excited about this one than anything I’ve ever written. Hopefully my publisher agrees and you see it on the stands in the next year or so. That’s really all I can say for now.

Tell us something we don’t know about you.

I’ll tell you a few. I thought I was afraid of heights until I bungee-jumped and loved it. I’d love to skydive for the first time in the next year, white water raft and get at least a little skill on the guitar. My husband is a talented songwriter. My kids are the sweetest in the world, (yes, the world!), and I love to get my hands dirty. That should do it. Thanks for having me!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Screen Savers

My friend told me the other day she had changed her screen saver to orange. The normal blue, which looks like the sky, tires your eyes. I decided to try it and see how it works. It's very simple and anyone can do it.

Go to Control Panel. Hit Personalization, and then Window Color and Appearance. There are several colors to choose from I chose "orange" because it doesn't have an earthy appearance.

I used it for about thirty minutes last night and it rested my eyes. I had a bad headache, so it didn't hurt me any. This morning, the orange is relaxing. Maybe it will help eye strain. If your computer is it the bedroom, it is supposed to help you sleep. I usually turn mine off, so there is no color there.

When  you sit at the computer, you see the little blue strip on the top of your programs. When you change the color, you see whatever color you select. Yellow is a more restful color, and I may change mine to see what happens. It does nothing to the pictures on the screen saver. It makes the screen more user friendly.

I thought I would pass this along. We all need to have less stress at the computer.

Another good hint for getting a good nigh'ts sleep is to sleep in a dark room. I have Roman shades in my bedroom and they are off white. My connecting bath has the same color shades, and there is an outside light outside the bathroom. That gives the room lots of light. To see the clock, I have to sit up in the bed, but beside my bed is a C pap machine with lights, and a weather radio with lights. It doesn't seem to bother me that much. I'm resting better than I have in a long time. If you do have trouble, try these suggestions.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Plans for Today

I was wondering what to write about today, and I'm stuck. I thought I might tell you what I do in a day.

Already, there is a load of clothes in the washer. My husband and grandson #1 have gone fishing, so I am in peace and quiet. No mumbling from the family room, from my husband, and I'm not watching Disney channel with Chet. What are my plans?

Today is Wednesday and first on my list is to prepare for church tonight. We are studying Revelations and I am enjoying it so much. I'll have to stop long enough to study a little before tonight.

Now, daily chores. There are two more loads waiting to be washed and clothes folding to do. When I get tired, I'll do that off and on through the morning.

Writing. I'm critiquing a book for a friend, and she just sent me a chapter. I like to get the chapters back as soon as possible. I need to do that first. My friend is also critiquing my book, and I need to go over the next chapter and send it to her.

My office is in a spare bedroom with a twin bed. The grandchildren have each claimed it as their room. When they spend the night, I can't write, so I am getting ready to move my office to the family room. It is colder in the winter in this room and the family room is warmer. My husband has his office on one end and I hope to put mine at the other.

With this development, I have to clean off my desk. Everyone who has seen my office know what a mess it is. My Bible and date book are usually on the bed and there are papers all round it. My desk at this moment is piled up and it causes me to want to be here less and less. My plan. Clean off the desk as much as I can today. A little each day helps.

When my mother passed away I found a lot of handkerchiefs that we had all had years ago. I pulled out eight that were fairly good, and pretty, to put in a skirt. The skirt has eight gores and a little flare that's sown onto the bottom of each gore. I've put a handkerchief on each flare. I found a pale pink floral at Hancock's in Paducah. If you are ever in Paducah, go by Hancock's at Exit 4. It is so nice to browse the fabric.It's one of my favorite places.

That's about my day, except for cooking. What's happening in your day?

Monday, August 1, 2011

My Special Niece

Friday was my wonderful niece's birthday. I have one sister, and out of her four children, she had one daughter. This little girl, not little now, was born on July 29. It has been my pleasure to be a part of her life. Let me tell you a little about Judy Galloway Meek.

Judy has not had an easy life. She was diagnosed with a kidney disease in her teens. Her kidneys would eventually deteriorate and she would be faced with a transplant. My sister and her husband moved from West Virginia to Columbia, Tennessee and found a wonderful doctor at Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee. Judy kept the same doctor as she grew up.

Judy married a great man, Charlie Meek, and they began their life together. Judy was told not to conceive by her doctor. She would be endangering her life and her babies. It was a disappointment to her because she wanted to have her own children. Instead they adopted a baby boy, Joseph. He is like our own and graduated from high school this past spring.

Through the years, her kidneys did stop functioning and she was on dialysis and waited for a transplant. She had a match with her brother in Scotland, the only thing wrong was his high blood pressure. He walked many hills, lost weight, and ate the right food, but his blood pressure would not go down enough. We were all devastated. She needed a kidney.

A lady from church told her she had been tested as a donor for a bone marrow transplant, and thought she would be approved as a kidney donor, if they matched. She was a perfect match! The transplant was under way. This woman is a true Christian.

Today Judy is a healthy woman. Her dedication to God during all this has been something we could all learn from. She never turned her back on Him, even in her worse moments. It's hard to face disappointments, but Judy and Charlie helped each other, with God's help. They leaned on the Lord.

At times we forget about God when things are good. We only go to Him when we have bad times. This was a rough time for our family, but we all leaned on the Lord. What else could we do? Right now Judy is an inspiration for so many. She doesn't realize what she does, but she encourages me, in particular, to be more dedicated to God. This is my way of honoring my friend, my niece, and my encouragement. Love you, Judy.

Look at her blog, A Meek Prospective. It's on the top of my right sidebar.