Thursday, August 27, 2009

Sign of the ICHTHUS

The Greek letters for ichthus (meaning "fish", pronounced "ICK-THOOS") became an acronym: I=Jesus; X=Christ; O=God's; Y=Son; E=Savior

On the pavement of the Bonneville Dam Fish Hatchery in Oregon, there are images of sturgeon spraypainted on the pavement leading to the hatchery buildings and ponds--an effective guidepost to direct visitors on the right path.

Is there such a fish pointing the way to God in your writing and in your life?

Some fiction writers lack subtlety in their approach, deciding on a formulaic character arc and salvation scene--boy meets girl, boy and girl don't get along cause one isn't saved, a crisis happens and the one that's not saved gets saved and the two of them fall in love and get married. Now that's a BIG fish--a sturgeon.

Others swing the opposite direction and are so subtle in their references to Jesus, to faith and salvation that it would be difficult to distinguish their book from a secular one. That's a goldfish.

Is either writer wrong?

Not if that type of novel is what God is calling you to write. If your writing is bearing fruit to God, you're doing something right!

But if you want to grow as a writer, you will avoid imitating others or following trends and instead, work tirelessly to develop a unique style and voice that falls somewhere in between the two fish. A God-honoring and praiseworthy work that will bring glory to the Lord, change hearts and change lives.

No matter the size of your fish, keep writing! Keep your hatchery of ideas full, and let your writing be a lasting symbol to the world--pointing the way to Christ.

As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen."Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men." At once they left their nets and followed him. Mark 1:16-18

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Lawn Chair Cathedral--by Linda Kozar

Stained glass wings, tapered, lovely things
Fleeting, flutter of life
Billowing rice paper launches
Carried on a sea of wind
A waft of incense,
A sigh.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Morning Edict--by Janice Thompson

Dawn awakens and I attempt to do the same.  With diet soda in hand and eyes still crusted over from sleep, I drag up the stairs and cross over into hallowed territory.  In this sacred place I have witnessed miracles, waged wars and struggled to maintain my sanity. I love this spot nearly as much as I despise it.  A turn to the left, my heart aiming to the right, and I sit to translate His daily symphony.  My ritual has become almost commonplace, and I fear I might one day forget the awesome responsibility of this call – this blissful, gut-wrenching call.

The sublime dances alongside the mundane and I witness it all as my fingers prepare to transcribe the notes on the page.  These two worlds confuse and delight me.  Oh, the wonder of such a majestic composition!  Oh, the fragility of a heart aching to be used.  How great, the ensuing battle between the two.  I find myself forever torn between wanting to do His will and wondering if I am capable of constructing even one intelligent sentence.  Can I lay down my insecurities and selfish desires long enough to pencil the message the Lord places on my heart this morning?  Will there be a message worth conveying?

The instruments begin to warm up – a harsh contrast to my ears as each one pits itself against the other.  For a brief moment I’m baffled by the cacophony of sounds, the sheer confusion of it all. Then, miraculously, all of the dissonance fades into one clear, singular note and I am free to begin.  My fingertips dance across near-silent keys, a stark contrast to the plinking and plunking of yesterday’s typewriter.  Today’s message tip-toes out onto a stark white screen, and I come alive as the oil begins to flow – blessed, holy oil that washes over me with its invigorating power.  The music is pouring now, and I am tuned in as never before.  I race.  I sit idle.  I sing in three keys at once.  I hold back, suspended in time.  I press anxious keys.  I wait in silence. 

Sometimes, truth be told, I forget to wait.  Some days I forge ahead, anxious to meet the deadline, state my case and impress potential readers with carefully crafted words.  On those days, pride becomes my friend.  We feed one another tasteless foods and toast our victories with empty glasses. Then, just as quickly, arrogance gives way to defeat. There are days when I search aimlessly for words, unable to locate even one.  On those days, hopelessness seeps in and the enemy of my soul whispers the phrase I’ve grown to dread, “How can you offer up what you don’t even possess?”  Just as quickly, the voice of the Lord echoes loudly in my ears, reminding me that I possess heaven and earth.  Heaven, I can share with those on earth.  Heaven, I must share with those on earth. 

I clamor for forgiveness and the Lord whispers words of solace. Hope kicks in and I’m on my way once more.  Faithful fingers begin to dance with joy and something miraculous occurs.  In that moment, as heaven and earth meet, self gives way to the Spirit of God.  I cease typing and He begins. Tiny black words tumble out onto a barren white screen, then somehow plunge forward into paragraphs.  Paragraphs gently press their way into full pages.  Pages majestically align themselves to compose chapters, and chapters gloriously sing until they erupt into books.  I don’t mind playing the role of spectator as His stories take shape.  In fact, I have grown rather accustomed to it.

 Tomorrow morning I will rise from my bed and wipe the sleep from my eyes.  I will once again face the challenge of the call of God on my life – to write, or not to write? As I step foot onto that hallowed ground I call my workspace, I will empty myself of all I desire and give myself over.


Friday, April 24, 2009

I Missed It!--By Frank A. Pietersz

(Frank is one of my international students at Lonestar Community College. I'm proud to show off his talent for writing--Linda K)

It was two o’clock. The day that everybody was waiting for started quietly. I was reading in the Extended Learning Center at college. I was very concentrated on my lesson when I heard a distant voice. 
“Hey you. You heard me? We have to go.” 

I was in another world. I was aloof even there were a lot of people around me. I was only thinking about my reading. Again, I heard the voice.

". . .the College will close as soon as possible. Ike is here."

This time somebody approached and said to me, "Let’s go we have to get out.”

I raised my head. All the students were taking their books, laptops, etc.

“Hurry Frank. We have to go to the supermarket to buy food before Ike hits this area!”

When I left the building, everybody was in a hurry. There were people locking the doors behind us. Workers were sealing the windows to protect them with sheets of plywood. The cars were roaring by. Some of them were going faster than the speed limit. It looked like real emergency .

By the time I arrived at the supermarket, the shelves were nearly empty. People were walking once, twice, even three times down the same aisle. None of us found what we were looking for. There was no bread, or cans of soup, no cheese, no biscuits, only a few chocolates, and definitely no batteries. People were in long lines to pay for only a small item that they found but held like a treasure. I started to be nervous. Will this be enough with the food that we already have at home? Could we lose power and water for more than a week? Will we lose the food that is in our freezer? 

With the experience of Katrina, Rita and other hurricanes the government must have a very good experience to act quickly. I didn’t believe it would be very bad. 

I walked out of the store, looked up at the sky and thought these people must be crazy. Look at what a nice day it is! The sun is shining, there are no clouds and the temperature is very pleasant. It looks like a day to go to the beach in Galveston.
We came home and I started to watch the trees, the birds. But I noticed that we were alone. Our neighbors were all inside their houses. There were no cars on the street. The dogs that usually bark when my car is arriving were very silent. 

Again I started to think. “It cannot be so bad. Look! What a nice day. We could go to a picnic. We can enjoy this beautiful weather. We can feel the wind, the sun, the perfect time.” However, I decided to take some precautions. Just in case. I removed all small things like pots, pictures, small chairs, tables, and any adornments that the wind could blow away. I putted them in the garage.

The phone rang. A friend advised us to protect the windows. I told her that I did not have plywood to do it and there was no time to buy some. My house has many windows and I could not protect them all. She told me to use some masking tape on the windows. If any of them broke, the jagged glass would not spread around and it would be safer. She advised me to be careful with the trees because I have a lot of them behind the house. I decided to go to Home Depot or Lowe’s looking for the tape. 

Again, we found people running around hysterically. Some of them were carrying sheets of plywood, some buying generators and other goods. I found a bundle of 12 masking tape. I was lucky because the store was announcing that they would close in five minutes. We went back home and I did my job. After I finished, the windows looked like they were decorated by the strips of tape.

Finally we were ready to receive our "guest." We decided to be a little quiet watching the news on the TV while we were tracing the route of the undesirable guest. The telephone rang. My daughter answered. She told me it was my niece --She was going to bring her car to park it in our garage. I went to the garage to make room before she arrived. The skies became dark and I opened the garage doors, so that when she arrived did not have to knock on the door and wait for me. The time passed and I forgot the garage doors were open. (I found out later that my niece had decided not to come but did not call to tell us.) 

I went to my room sat down in front my PC. It was a little late, I was chatting with some of my family. The time passed very fast and I forgot all about the garage door being open. Around one o’clock the power went off. I decided to go to sleep. I was so tired that I slept like a log. My wife told me later that during the night, Ike started to make noise. The wind was fast. The trees started to fall down. The house was creaking. But I was sleeping very deep and I didn’t hear much of anything. 

Around 6:00 a.m. my wife woke me up. She had been scared the whole night while I was sleeping, dreaming with the angels flying in paradise. She heard a lot of noises and when she opened the kitchen door, she saw that the garage door was open. I asked her why she didn’t call me before. She told me that she was afraid I would be crazy enough to go outside the house with the camera watching the hurricane, so she preferred to tell me nothing. Anyway, I jumped out the bed and closed the garage doors. 

After that, just as my wife feared I would,  I started to use my camcorder to record how Ike was blowing. I saw how a tree fell down just across of the house across the street. When I opened the window behind my room, I was astonished. One tree had fallen near and broke my fence. It came to rest only two inches from the window. I gave thanks to God for protecting us and we waited until the storm ended.

I could not believe I slept through my first hurricane! And I put my house in danger by falling sleep and forgetting to close the garage door. But after I saw all the damage that Ike made, I hope I never experience another hurricane.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Sardines in a Train--by Kumi Hori

This is a fascinating article written by one of my talented international students (Kumi Hori) for our college newsletter, "The Global Pen" Check out the YouTube link. It is unbelievable. There is NO WAY I would get on such a crowded train, much less commute on it twice a day! How about you?

Just imagine you are packed in an overstuffed suitcase.
Can you stand being jammed into a small rolling space? How about being too close to strangers in that situation?
If you visit Japan and use the railway, you will see an incredible sight at major train stations. Surely, one of the biggest challenges foreigners face when they visit Japan is riding the overcrowded trains. One of the most comfortable things about living here in Texas is that I don’t have to take the dreadfully overcrowded trains anymore. My husband used to take those awful commuters for two hours to get to his office every day and is now very happy with the 5 minute drive to his office. For those who live in such a big state with a less dense population, it must be hard to imagine such a nightmare.

An extreme level of urban overcrowding in Japan is so serious that its train system is known as the most crowded in the world. In fact, Shinjuku (shin-ju-ku), a major station in Tokyo, is used by more than 4 million people every weekday. While the trains arrive and leave within a few minutes in Shinjuku station, masses of people are still in long lines. Once a train arrives and the door opens, people stream out as if a floodgate had just opened. Due to the trains being filled beyond capacity, passengers can’t avoid squeezing in with other people. Sometimes the train door barely shuts and the train staff is required to push people inside. You definitely feel how a sardine feels in a can. To make matters worse, clothing is sometimes caught in the door and only when the train arrives at the next stop, can they be pulled out. The door on your side might not open next, however.

The environment inside of the car is awful, especially when it rains! If you get on the train on a rainy day, your shoes and the hemline of your pants can get wet due to numbers of sopping umbrellas. Also, the car is overwhelmed with the scent of sweat and bad breath. When someone sneezes right in front of you, it is as we say in Japanese, “BANJI-KYUUSU” (ban-ji-kyu-su) which stands for “the game is over.”

Even after you succeed in squeezing yourself into a car, there is still no relief. Now, you have to prepare for getting off the train. Believe it or not, it’s extremely difficult to exit the train when so many people are packed on. Since not all the people get off at your stop, you need to make your way through the crowd to the door shouting, “Excuse me! I’m getting off!” Still, sometimes you miss your stop.
I am so thankful that I no longer have to be a sardine in a train!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Power of the Empty Tomb--by Linda Kozar

In the final three hours Jesus hung on the cross, darkness hung over the land, symbolic of the spiritual darkness in the hearts of men and the absolute darkness of sin upon all of mankind. When Jesus yielded up his spirit on the cross at Golgotha, three most notable things happened.

Matthew 27: 51 "And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked and the rocks were split." First, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The veil was not a gossamer-thin cloth one might imagine when the word "veil" is mentioned, but inches thick, strong and sturdy, sort of like a phone book. The veil was meant to keep people out and God in! Except for one priest chosen by lot to enter once a year. But now God and man would no longer separated by sin!

Second, the earth quaked and the rocks were split. An earthquake strong enough to split rocks into pieces would surely have done more damage as well. When Jesus breathed His last breath on earth and paid for all our sins, a monumental change in the universe occurred. Death, Hell and the grave were conquered. Complete victory over the bondage of sin!

Third, in Matthew 27:52-43, "The graves were opened and many of the bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after the resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many." Can you imagine that? Hollywood always skips over that part in Biblical movies. It's too incredible, even for them!

But here's something even more incredible. Take a look in Exodus. "And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had placed the children of Israel under solumne oath saying, 'God will surely visit you, and you shall carry up my bones from here with you.'"--Exodus 13:19. Though Joseph's body was prepared in the manner of the Egyptians, he left explicit instructions before he died, that someday when his people left Egypt, they would carry his bones with them. Why? Was it simply a desire for his bones to rest in the presence of his people? Most likely--yes. But perhaps God had given Joseph something more--a glimpse of things to come, or a revelation in his heart. Regardless, the bones of Joseph left Egypt and traveled with the children of Israel until they settled in the Promised Land. And there, just as he expressed in his last desire before breathing his last, Joseph was buried...

What if Joseph was among those who's graves were opened during the earthquake? Can you imagine seeing Joseph walking around town, perhaps arrayed in his famous coat of many colors?

But if seeing Joseph come to life turned heads, imagine three days later seeing Jesus rise from the grave!

Jesus defeated death, Hell and the grave for us. That open grave is also symbolic of our own--your grave and mine. Eternal death no longer rules over us. All those who receive the gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus will not be bound by a grave. In fact, no grave can ever hold you! Your eternal life began the moment you asked Jesus into your heart!

Thank you Jesus for sacrificing Your life for us. Forgiving us and for giving us eternal life!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Closet of Creativity

Kathleen Y'Barbo's Luxurious Cloister of Creativity

Where's your favorite place to write? Is it on your bed, laptop propped on your knees while your fingers fly across the keyboard? (Hmmm...sounds like someone we know.) Or, do you wait until the kids leave for school and frantically write for a few hours? Or, do you wait until everyone is asleep, trying to write as much as you can before giving in to sheer exhaustion? I used to write in our laundry room. Our desktop was in there, coated with lint from the dryer. Every time I'd get a good idea for my book and would sit down to write, someone would interrupt me. I'd take care of that issue, only to have another come up within the next three minutes. It was so frustrating. After the my first ACFW's conference, a friend gave me a laptop and I found freedom. My husband put some extra plugs in our bedroom closet and I bought a little desk. The cherry on the top, so to speak, was the lock my husband installed on the door. I have the key in my possession at all times. And so can I sit, typing away in my little writing nook and blissfully ignore the chaos around me. I've been hiding out in the closet for two years now and my family has survived.Where's your favorite place to write? I'd love to hear your stories!

Monday, February 2, 2009

*****BOOK REVIEW: The Red Siren (MaryLu Tyndall)

After months of being away from writing reviews, I'm thrilled to be back in the saddle again. Most of you probably remember that I only read in the bathtub. I'm so busy writing my own books that my bathtub time is truly the only free time I have for reading. (You should see the edge of my tub - loaded with books!) When I stumble across a really great book, I'll sit in the tub for hours, forgetting about the time and any other obligations. For that reason, I've decided to develop a new way to score these books as I read them. I'm calling it my pruning system. A one prune book is one that I'm not crazy about. Two prunes means it's so-so. Three prunes means I enjoyed it. Four prunes. . .really good. Five prunes? Well, a five prune book is one that kept me in the tub so long that I came out of the frigid water completely wrinkled with a water-soaked book in my hand. A five-pruner is the sort to make me want to give up writing altogether. (No joke. . .every time I read a book that completely floors me, I always feel like giving up. Either that, or it motivates me to want to improve.)

I made a commitment at the beginning of 2009 to read books that are different from the norm. For me, the norm is inspirational romance or romantic comedy/chick-lit. So, when I received a copy of MaryLu Tyndall's new book, The Red Siren, I was a little hesitant. First, I don't read pre-19th century books. Second, I don't read pirate stories. Imagine my surprise to find out The Red Siren was both!

I publish with Barbour, just like MaryLu, so I must start by saying how ashamed I am that I've never picked up one of her books before. I'd heard of her, of course. Knew she was nominated for a Christy. But I wasn't sure I'd do well with her books because they're just so different from what I read and write. Boy, was I wrong! After reading only two pages of The Red Siren, I knew I would love this story. First, the writing is brilliant. Very intelligent, but not in a snobbish sort of way, as if often the case in pre-19th century historicals. Second, the story line is clever, different from any I've ever seen before. Finally, the characters are unique and well thought out, especially the heroine. (How many stories do you see where the heroine is queen of the manor by day, pirate by night?) I found myself caught up in the story very quickly and couldn't get enough. I'm a Pride and Prejudice fanatic, and this book definitely has that feel about it. It's got just enough of all the elements to keep the reader turning page after page. Conflict is key, and MaryLu does a great job of creating it. As you might imagine, I sat in the tub for an extended length of time, turning into a wrinkled mess. So, with those things in mind, I have to dub The Red Siren my first five-pruner of 2009. It's truly amazing!

Here's a synopsis of the story:

Worlds collide when a lady pirate meets a godly naval captain. Faith Wescott abandoned her shallow faith when a series of tragedies struck her family. To save herself and her sisters from forced marriages, this fiery, born-to-the-manor redhead is a lady by day and a pirate by night. How long can she maintain this dual identity before she's caught red-handed?

God-fearing Dajon Waite, who scours the Carolina coast, expunging it of pirates, is more-than-capable captain in the British Royal Navy. But when he is asked to take on the guardianship of Faith and her sisters, he's headed for deep water. Having vowed to avoid women, what will he do when he finds himself falling for Faith?

Sir Wilhelm Carteret has always gotten everything he desired, but Faith seems to be unaffected by his charms. When he devises a plot to rid himself of his competition, more than Captain Waite's reputation is at stake as alarming secrets are revealed.

Will Faith regain her trust in God only to find herself headed for the gallows? Will Dajoy scuttle his good name--and neck--to save her?

Run to your nearest Christian bookstore and pick up a copy of this beautifully written book today!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Coming Up

Our April 8th speaker is Karen Mayer Cunningham who will share her miraculous story of hope. Invite a friend to attend this luncheon.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

February Luncheon Workshop Announcement

Writers On The Storm
the Woodlands, Texas chapter of ACFW

invites you to attend a luncheon and writing workshop,

"Co-Authoring. . .A Novel Idea"

on Wednesday, February 4th, 2009
featuring authors

Janelle Mowrey and Elizabeth Ludwig

at TaiPei China Bistro, 25807 I-45, The Woodlands (281)363-9188)
from 11:00am--1:00 pm

$5 at door
Random Doorprizes!
Bring a guest--if they Join ACFW National and our chapter you win an ACFW t-shirt!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Check out Linda Lou's Book Trailer Park
A place for trailer reviews and news!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Booksigning with Gayle Wigglesworth

I will be signing and discussing my Claire Gulliver Mysteries at Read It Again and Again, a small, independent book store, which is celebrating it’s relocation to 38 Braeswood Square, Houston, TX 77096, 713 283-9188, .

As you know, in order to have these small stores available to us, it is important we support them. Maria Galloway, the owner, would be very happy if you stopped by sometime to see her selection of new and used books and I would be delighted if you could make that visit on the evening I will be there at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, January 23, 2009.

I look forward to seeing you and please share this information with your reader friends.

Gayle Wigglesworth author of the Claire Gulliver Mysteries

Monday, January 12, 2009

Submissions Wanted!

Almost every family has a dysfunctional member or two. What about your family? Did your father-in-law make a totally embarrassing toast at your wedding reception? Does your cousin Vinny have an enormous collection of gnome statues in his yard? Did your Aunt Martha leave all of her fortune to her parakeet? Or does your grandmother dye her hair pink and ride a Harley?

I’m coauthoring the upcoming book, Chicken Soup for the Soul: All in the Family, and we are looking for your true stories and poems about your off-the-wall, goofy or just downright strange family members. Stories can be serious or hilarious, or both, and should make readers realize that their quirky families are not so different from those of other people!

To submit your stories, go to and click on “Submit a Story.” Be sure to select “All in the Family” as the book title when you fill out the form. Submit under your real name, but rest assured that we will allow you, if requested, to use pen names for publication and change the names of family members to protect the innocent (or guilty!). We prefer stories and poems written in the first person of no more than 1,200 words.

[Note: We are not looking for stories about divorce or the normal trials and tribulations of raising children and teenagers.]

If your story is chosen, you will be a published author and your bio will be printed in the book if you so choose. You will also receive a check for $200 and 10 free copies of the book, worth more than $100. You will retain the copyright for your story and the right to resell it.

DEADLINE IS JUNE 30, 2009. Book is scheduled for publication in October 2009, in time for the next holiday season!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Don’t Be A Jane Eyre Head!

The January meeting of Writers On The Storm started off with a bang at Taipei China Bistro in The Woodlands, TX. Board members met briefly before members started to arrive. Seven ACFW/WOTS regulars and two visitors (including our guest author) were in attendance. Visitor, Jackie Weidemeyer, was awarded the January door prize.

Multi-published author, Anita Higman spoke on the topic of “Gothic Christian Fiction.” Our own ‘word wizard’ Linda Kozar entitled Anita’s talk “Don’t Be A Jane Eyre Head.” We learned that gothic fiction is a genre that combines elements of both horror and romance. Gothic “Christian” fiction is of course written from a Christian worldview. Anita pointed out that Christian publishing houses are accepting subject matter in novels that would never have been acceptable in the past. Her current release, in fact, has a character who is believed to be a vampire! Several well known Christian authors have pulled off writing about formerly untouchable topics quite successfully. Some examples are:
A demon possessed house – House by: Ted Dekker & Frank Peretti
Pregnancy as a result of rape – Atonement Child by: Francine Rivers
A Christian man falls in love with a prostitute – Redeeming Love by: Francine Rivers
An interview with a demon – Demon by: Tosca Lee
The search for Bigfoot – Monster by: Frank Peretti

A few tips Anita recommended for writing gothic fiction: Read a lot of the genre. Write a lot in the genre. Find your natural voice. Use your own personal experiences to enhance your writing.

Anita ended her talk by answering questions from audience members and signed books one and two of the Volstead Manor series, “Another Stab at Life” and “Another Hour To Kill.” She also had copies of her newest book, “Love Finds You In Humble Texas.”

Our members had a couple of announcements. Linda Kozar and Dannelle Woody learned the release date for Babes With A Beatitude, Devotions For Smart, Savvy Women of Faith is Oct 1st by Howard/Simon & Schuster. The book will be released in hard cover. Way to go girls! Annette O’Hare and Kathy Burnett were pleased to announce they would both be attending the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference in April.

Join us next month when our guest speakers will be Janelle Mowrey and Elizabeth Ludwig who will be speaking on the subject of Co-Authoring A Novel Idea!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Castle of Otranto

For those of you who attended Anita Higman's workshop "Don't Be A Jane Eyre-Head--Writing Christian Gothic 101," the following link is to the book she mentioned. The entire book is downloaded to a blog format.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Wanted: Submissions

Peggy Blann Phifer: NEW Writer's Blog:
Writer to Reader

"If there is anyone who would like to submit something, have 'em send it on. I'd love some material. The email address is:"

Monday, January 5, 2009


Jerry Jenkins will be interviewed on a History Channel 2-hour special, “Seven Signs of the Apocalypse,” to air Monday, January 5. The program is part of the History Channel’s “Armageddon Week.” Air times are 9PM both Eastern and Pacific, 8 PM Central, and 7PM Mountain time.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Our January 7th Speaker--Anita Higman

Award-winning author Anita Higman has twenty-two books published for adults and children, and she has five more coming out. She's contributed to nine nonfiction compilations and was selected as a Barnes & Noble
"Author of the Month" for Houston.

Anita donated her manuscript I Can Be Anything to Literacy Advance of Houston. The book helped raise many thousands of dollars for literacy. She served on the Board of Directors of Literacy Advance and received both the Bell Ringer and Volunteer of the Year awards for her contributions to literacy.

Anita's book Who Will I Be for the Rest of My Life? (co-authored by Dr. Ruth Vaughn) appeared on the Houston Barnes & Noble best-seller list. The Celestial Helix, a collection of one-act plays through Lillenas Publishing Company was recommended in the national theater magazine,
Stage Directions, in a review.

One of Ms. Higman's books (A Tribute to Early Texas) has a foreword by Elmer Kelton and has won a San Antonio Conservation Society Citation as well as a Westerners International Book Award.

Ms. Higman has also written for radio, television, newspaper, ezine, advertising, and animation. She enjoys giving speeches and presentations at conferences, meetings, and schools.

She has a Bachelor of Arts (functional) degree in speech communication, art, and psychology. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Christian Humor Writers' Group.

Anita was born and raised on a farm in Western Oklahoma but has lived in Texas for the past twenty-three years. Besides writing, her other interests include reading, going to the movies, and cooking brunch for her friends. She lives with her family near Houston, Texas.

Writing Contests--You'll Never Win if You Never Enter!  AMAZON 2009 NOVEL BREAKTHROUGH AWARD! Enter this one!

No fee. $100 to winner. Publication of winning entry.  

ACFW NEWS from Camy Tang. . .
The Genesis contest will be MOSTLY the same as last year.

So, if you have questions about the 2009 contest, most of your
questions will be answered on the ACFW website: and on the Genesis FAQ page:

Faith, Hope and Love's 2009 IRCC

Happy New Year to you all. We're a tad later than usual, but Faith, Hope, and Love's 2009 IRCC is open for entries. You can enter online or print out the form and send it via snail mail. If you have any problems or questions you can contact me. This is the link to the entry forms and rules.

Our categories are Short Contemporary, Long Contemporary, Short Historical, Long Historical, Women's Fiction, Romantic Suspense, and Novella. We're looking forward to a great contest. Thank you for your entry.

God Bless,
Nancy J. Farrier
IRC Contest Coordinator

Inspiration for Writers Contest

First prize: Gift package worth over $500, including a professional edit and critique of up to 15,000 words, books on the craft of writing, and more.
Entry fee: $40. ALL ENTRIES receive a complimentary edit of the first 500 words, a detailed critique of the submission package, and an electronic copy of the Inspiration for Writers Tips and Techniques Workbook.
Entry Deadline: January 15, 2009. Inspiration for Writers will announce the winners on or before March 31, 2009.
Submit a one-page synopsis and first three chapters. Additional information at or call Sandy Tritt at 304-428-1218.

Category 5 Winners Announced at:

Category 5 Winners Announced at:
the Meet The Christian Authors Event!

Contest Deadline Extended!

Our Category Five Contest deadline has been extended to August 31st, 2011. If you missed the previous (July 31st) deadline, here's your chance to send your entry(s)!

Contest Details--UPDATE

Hi friends,

Janice Thompson here. I'm sending an updated version of an earlier email about our Writers on the Storm Category Five Fiction Writing Contest. We've added more information. We would like to ask three things of our WOTS members and/or Houston area writing friends:

1). If you are unpublished (on not traditionally published) please consider entering the contest.
2). Please help us spread the word to other writers by placing this information on your facebook page, blog, etc.
3). Please pray for our organization as we move forward with this, our first-ever writing contest.

Thanks so much for your support. Now, here's the updated information about the contest (per Linda Kozar):

Dear Writers,

Details for entry to the Writers On The Storm "CATEGORY FIVE" Writing Contest are below. The contest is open to unpublished and non-traditionally published FICTION authors, both members and non-members of the Writers on the Storm group. NOTE: If you have previously been "traditionally" published, you are not eligible. However, if you paid to publish your book(s), you are eligible and encouraged to participate.

Judges are all published authors and/or industry pros, though not members of our chapter. Entering a writing contest is a great way to get feedback or accolades, and we hope you will enter this one with great enthusiasm! The WOTS Chapter Board invite you to BLOW THE JUDGES AWAY with your fiction writing brilliance!

Our Cat Five Writing Contest OPENED on JUNE 1st and CLOSES on Friday, JULY 29th. Judges will receive entries for review on August 1st, 2011. Winners will be announced at our MEET THE CHRISTIAN AUTHOR event on September 17th, 2011 and winners will be notified by phone.
Our Five Categories (novels and/or short stories)
1. Romance (Historical and Contemporary)
2. Women's Fiction
3. General Fiction
4. Mystery/Suspense
5. Young Adult/Children's
Contest Fees:
Members-$20 per entry (Two or more entries $15/per entry)
NonMembers-$25 per entry (Two or more entries $20/per entry).

Make checks out to: Writers on the Storm

The overall grand prize (for the highest scoring entry) is the FICTION WRITING MASTER COURSE from, a $249 value. The grand prize winner will also receive a plaque, a press release he/she can share with others and a news splash on our website. The category winners will each receive a free edit of the first chapter of their book from a multi-published author, along with a certificate. Their names will be listed on our website, as well. We will also post the list to facebook, twitter, the ACFW loop, etc.

Send the first 15 pages of your novel or short story. If you have a prologue, you may send the prologue and part of chapter one or just 15 pages of chapter one if chapter one exceeds 15 pages. The total pages of your entries may not exceed 15).

Entries must be double-spaced, Times New Roman 12 point on white paper.
Entries should reflect a Christian world-view.
Entries with inappropriate content (i.e. profanity, pornography, extreme violence) will not be considered.
Entries will not be returned to contestants via the U.S. Post Office unless a SASE (self-addressed, stamped envelope) is enclosed with each entry submitted.
Judges are all published authors and/or industry pros, though not members of the Writers On The Storm chapter.
Send your entries via SNAIL MAIL to:
Linda Kozar
7 South Chandler Creek
The Woodlands, Texas 77381
Questions? Contact Linda Kozar at

Category Five Contest Entry Form

Registration Form Name:_____________________________________________________________ Address:_________________________________City_______State____ZIP_____ Email address:_______________________________________________________ Member of WOTS: Yes….. No….. Category Entered: 1. Historical/Contemporary Romance ______ 2. Women’s Fiction ______ 3. General Fiction ______ 4. Suspense/Mystery ______ 5. Young Adult/Children ______ Amount Enclosed: __________ Check:___ Money Order:______ Make Checks out to: Writers On The Storm Checklist: Correct Manuscript Form ___ SASE Envelope ____ Registration Form ____ Check or money order ____ Mail entries to: Linda Kozar 7 South Chandler Creek The Woodlands, Texas 77381 Contact: If you have questions. Linda Kozar: Martha Rogers: Janice Thompson:

SATURDAY, May 7th from 9:30-11:00 followed by a booksigning 11-12:30

The Multiple-Author Booksigning will feature Patrick Scott, Martha Rogers and Linda Kozar!

Patrick Scott currently serves as the Founder / Design Architect for Creative Solutions, Patrick Scott is the creator and author of the Archangels: The Saga™ comic book series. First published in 1995 - 2010; the series has sold over 1.2 Million copies.

Patrick Scott pioneered the Christian comic book market in 1995 and is a 12 time published author, a trading card game creator (Timestream: The Remnant™) and has developed and published 15 inspirational posters. Under his leadership, Cahaba Productions, Inc. received the International Christian Retail Show’s highest honor by receiving an “IMPACT AWARD” in 2003.

Patrick Scott has over 17 years of graphic design, venture capital fundraising and business experience within mainstream and the International Christian Retail Marketplace. Over those years Patrick Scott has developed a professional working relationship with Lovell-Fairchild, Dynamic Marketing, Focus on the Family, Propeller Consulting, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Dickson’s Inc., Cactus Game Design, Universal Designs, Lifeway Christian Stores and many more.

Writers On The Storm presents...

Writers On The Storm presents...
Category Five Writing Contest

Patrick Scott--May 7th Speaker

Patrick Scott--May 7th Speaker
Christian Comic Book Author

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