Friday, December 26, 2008

How observant are you?

It would be redundant to say a writer must also be a watcher. In many of my stories, the narrator is just that. In order for a reader to trust a narrator is for them to be believably observant. The level of observance is dependant on the character.

A four-year old narrator would be able to notice the name-brands of the furniture and products of his house.

A cat narrator won't be able to notice signs and writing.

However, an omniscient narrator is able to see and know everything. And, an author should be able to observe everything they encounter and know what should be mentioned and what shouldn't.

Here are some fun questions to answer.

When you put on your shoes, which foot do you pick up first?

Do you put your seat belt on before or after you turn on the car?

On which television channel is your TV when you turn it on?

What website do you go to first when you surf the web?

Do you fold paper hambuger style or hot dog style?

Remember, narrators should be limited, but author must observe everything.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Funny Foreign Words!

As someone who is very interested in linguistics, I'd like to share a few funny sounding foreign words:


I'll add more as I learn them, ^^

Thursday, November 20, 2008

You gotta read to write!

I am pooped! There's so much to do before Thanksgiving break that I've been to frazzled to post anything new.

Lately, I've been wandering around the library, picking up writing books to read so I can improve my craft. (In fact, I've been bothered lately because although I know my style, I don't know what to call it. So, I got a book called Fiction Dictionary. I plan on readnig it like a novel.)

I have a very small lull in my schedule, so I'm going to give you a list of the writing books I've found:

The Fiction Dictionary by Laurie Henry

On Writing by Stephen King

The Plot Thickens by Noah Lukeman

The Elements of Style by Strunk and White

Now Write! (Writing exercises from writers and teachers of writing.)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Story Prompt -

Hello, and welcome to the first weekly story prompt! Each week I'll give you a first line and you will provide the rest of the story. Happy writing!

The children would be home soon from school, but she hadn't even started the house chores...

I may post my response to this prompt... or I may not. We'll see.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Dear little one, I don't know if you'll live, but...

In one of my psychology classes, we were told to write a letter to our future child. This is my attempt. I've found in the past few years, strangely, even though I'm only twenty that I think of motherhood often. But only time can tell me whether those feelings are real or just wishful thinking.

I don't want to spoil the mood or anything. I've had many dreams in which I lose my ability to have children. In most of them, I get ovarian cancer.

I don't know the purpose of dreams like these.

What I do know is that whether or not my children will exist, I love them. Right here. Right now. Understanding why or how I could love someone who doesn't exist, I don't know. Either it's a miracle or I'm just dreaming.

Maybe it means that my child does exist, in the future.

Here is my letter. The words in bold are my teacher's instructions.

1. Describe your child.

My child could be a boy or a girl, but he/she is dark-headed with brown eyes. He/she is quiet and shy, but creative. For this letter, though, I’ll choose a girl. Her name is Jenny. Always, she plays with markers or a paint set. She likes to be read to and when she’s old enough, reads for fun and we take constant trips to the library. She’s tomboyish, but still has a calm personality. Enjoys thinking of all kinds of things. For the letter, she is ten years old.

2. Opening of letter to child describing your relationship and your aspirations for them.
3. Describing the things that you want them to do sexually and romantically
4. Describe in detail the things you want them to avoid sexually and romantically?
5. Describe the reasons they should avoid the things in the prior paragraph
6. A final paragraph affirming the relationship and closing the letter.

Dear Jennifer,

You’re ten now. The differences between you and ten and me at ten are undoubted very many. It’s that way because I prayed for it to be. So, you can thank God for that. It’s funny, because I’ve raised you the same way my mother and father raised me. I bought crayons and watercolor sets the day you were born; I read you storybooks before you could even speak; and I’ve talked to you nonstop since the minute you were formed inside me. But, you will not go through the same anxiety I did because there will never be a doubt in our home that your father doesn’t love you. I chose a good man, not only as my husband, but as your father. We have taken you to church every Sunday and Wednesday so that you may be close to your church family. I don’t know if you can understand this, but I loved you before I knew you would exist. This letter is proof of that because I wrote this before I knew you would exist. You may never be born. But, if you’re reading this, relax. You’re alive. And I still love you.

One day you’ll leave me and your father. I want you to know that that’s okay, on the grounds that you find a man that would die for you. I can’t stop you from marrying someone who doesn’t deserve you. The truth is, if there is a boy out there that deserves you, I’ll believe it when I see him. Please know that I want to meet him and get to know him. Don’t keep it a secret even if you don’t think I’ll like him. I want to know he is a loving, brave man so that I can be at peace when he takes you away. Don’t feel you have to shape him into the perfect man, because honestly, you can’t. Instead, look for a boy who is honest, brave, loving, and faithful to God. Think about your father. But don’t use him as the ultimate model for your beloved. He’s not that big. Instead, chose a man that as like Jesus as you can. Be slow to marry. You’re not going to run out of time. Once you’re able to love a man with all your heart, then marry and express your love through your time and your body. Be happy together.

Never bind yourself to a weak man. Avoid a boy that says he can’t live without you. Stay away from a boy that says he’ll die if you’re not with him. If you feel him using you, get away from him. If he’s sucking your emotion out of you or using you to feel something inside himself, dump him! He’s sick. Find a healthy man. One who can stand on his own feet and be an adult. Find a man you wouldn’t mind following to the ends of the earth, because, honey, he will be the caretaker of the house. Don’t marry someone because you don’t think you can make it without them. The truth is that you don’t need someone else. That’s not love, it’s symbiosis. The love comes when you can live without someone, but you don’t want to. Never think that you’ll just try being married and if it doesn’t work out, you’ll just divorce him. That’s not love, either, it’s shopping. Find someone your own maturity level. Don’t rob the cradle or settle for a dead man. You don’t want to be changing diapers or wiping spit for the rest of your life. I’m speaking honestly here, Jenny. Don’t be distracted by my words. Fall in love. Devote yourself. With a man who gauges your affection, your intelligence, and who follows God.

You don’t really have to take my word for it. At the time I’m writing this, I am unmarried; I’m not engaged; I’m not even in love. And I haven’t dated in seven years. I’d like to say that this is because I know something everyone else doesn’t. But I don’t. At least, if I do, I don’t know what it is. I can only tell you what I believe is the truth. The truth comes from God, so don’t blow Him off when He talks to you about sex and love. I don’t want you to be stuck because of a bad choice. Don’t throw away your life for what you think is love. Add to it with real love. Also, listen to your father about boys. He won’t lie to you. After all, we women have to be realistic about this. Living in a dream isn’t living at all.

I’m going to close this letter now. I’ve written for a very long time and you probably have something else to do now. You’re only ten after all! Think of me, though. Don’t forget me. Wherever I am, whatever I’m doing, I’m probably doing it for you.


Friday, October 31, 2008

What I Almost Missed is Great News!

Yesterday I was going through my email, looking for the workshop guide attatchment my professor sent us a couple weeks ago. As I sifted through my "Read" pile I noticed a email titled "Literary Magazine."

I had sent in two short stories to my university literary magazine about two months ago and had been wondering when I would hear news of my rejection or acceptance.

I have no idea how that email got into the "Read" pile. I suspect my Mom read it and forgot to tell me about it. But it doesn't matter.

It doesn't matter because... one of my stories was accepted!

"In the Belly of the Whale" - a modern Jonah tale - about two subway passengers, stranded below the city when the train breaks down at 3 a.m. They can't help but bicker in the blindness. Each has something that can't work without the other, but are not willing to give it up. The chain-smoking young writer and the crusty old security guard eventually address where they are going when The Whale finally spits them up.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Writer's Block hath no fury like a... Oh forget it.

I had determined that my next post would be a creative response to one of my many writing exercises. But, alas! Wedneday last week I was hit with a stomach virus. Saturday was the worst - in fact, I haven't been so sick in a long time. But, alley-oop and all that.

I don't know about any of you, but I just cannot write while I'm sick. Something to do with being emotionally as well as physically deflated. I have a story I'm trying to mold together right now. But, more about that later.

But, now that the demon named Virus is being beaten down and my mind is quenching its thirst, I had a story idea that just might be worth fleshing out.

Have you heard of taste aversion? Here's the Wikipedia link (I just love Wikipedia - it doesn't have to be true for a fiction writer, ;D) for it:

It's when your mind associates something with throwing up... and since I was on the verge of throwing my head in the toilet the past few days, I felt this relevant.

My idea is this: a young writer becomes very ill. Thinking she'll/he'll take advantage of being home from school/work and write, she returns time and time again to her computer to try to write.

Unfortunately, her head is in a daze, she gets dizzy at every attempt, and she has to make several trips to the restroom to... ahem, relieve her stomach.

When she recovers, she goes to write again, but finds that she gets sick when she tries to write.

I'll have to spend some more time with this. But, first I want to finish (including start) Bedhead, my next short story.

Hope I didn't make anyone sick! Ja ne!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ignorance can be taught, but stupid is forever...

Stupid headlines or stupid people? Who's responsible for this? I can only shake my head.
There are hundreds of stupid news clippings out there. If only people would learn from their mistakes - or at least from each other's. The donkey and the fox.
For more funny headlines, check out:

Friday, October 17, 2008

I'd Never Let those Kids Plan my Future

Wednesday night I had my AWANAs Trek group do a simple (writing, although they didn't know it) excercise. It was a blast! What you do is divide them into partners. The partners should know each other pretty well or it won't be as funny. Each person writes their partner's future.

You see where I'm going here?

For those who aren't familiar with AWANAs, Trek is made up of 6-8th graders - and if you know anything about 6-8th graders, you know that they are so social and love to have fun.

Mix a room of social, funlovers with thoughts of each other's futures and there are tons of possibilities.

We have one set of siblings. The brother sent his sister to prison. We have a boyfriend/girfriend pair. They got married. We had two BFFs. They gave made each other pop stars with 15 cars. Another boy made his partner work at Burger King, earning $2/hour.

"Ah, all the things you can think!"

- That's what I wanted to say to them.

Nobody planned my future. We had 10 kids, so everything was nice and even. Still, I wonder what they would have written. You never know with these kids. Considering the all the children they gave each other and the crummy jobs and going to prison for life, maybe it's better that they didn't. ; )

Monday, October 13, 2008

All through the Years...

This is one of my favorite exercises. What you do is, select a character - one you especially like or one that needs some more flesh - and pick a few ages for the character (i.e. 6, 14, 32, etc.) After that, create life events that happened for that character at the given ages.

Let's have some fun! I'll do an All through the Years for Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh to show you.

Age 3: His mother gives him a ribbon for his tail on his birthday

He pretends a rock is his pet and talks to it.

Age 10: His father teaches him how to build a house out of sticks - without much luck

He sees a myserious bouncing creature with a long tail in the woods at night, but doesn't know what it is

Age 25: Decides that his favorite activity is staring at the clouds; Pooh, Piglet and Tigger worry about him, but Eeyore tells them it makes him happy.

Follows Christopher Robin to school and becomes the first 100 Acre friend to multiply

Age 40: Tries to write a book on the things he thinks about, but ends up just thinking about them more and never writing them down

Rabbit leaves to visit family and Eeyore is asked to tend his garden. Eeyore accepts reluctantly but finds he likes planting and the smell of dirt. Eventually spends more time with Rabbit, taking care othe the garden

Age 70: Because he's too old to stand the elements, Christopher Robin prepares a place for Eeyore to live in his house.

The gang starts meeting every day at Christopher Robin's for honey and tea and to talk, at Eeyore's suggestion

Friday, October 10, 2008

Blogs are our friends!

I just read a very informative article on "blog marketing for writers" by Camy Tang (whose blog appears on my blog roll.) I encourage fellow writers to read it.

Here's the link:

In fact, I'm capitalizing on one of her pieces of advice right now: add whitespace and only have 3 or 4 sentences in a paragraph.

Blogging is becoming the friend of writers. Because of the expanse of the internet (you can find anything!), it's very easy find authors to network with. My professor told us that finding mentors is a very important step for writers - writers remember each other and can vouch for each other to editors.

She also told my writing class to keep in touch with each other. Get your writing classmates' Facebook or Myspace - or blogs!

"Your blog is your unedited version of yourself."

Julia Knispel (), a professional freelance writer who spoke to my class told us the best way to get people to view your blog is to leave comments on theirs. "It's an unwritten rule that if you comment on their blog, they have to comment on yours." That's the common curtesy of the blog c0mmunity.

Of course, you want to be careful about which blogs you want to put on your blog roll. If your goal is to put your work out there for editors and the like to see, then you don't want to see your dirty underwear, so to speak. Mrs. Knispel says to create another blog for your personal diary and keep it separate from your work.

And, another piece of Camy Tang's advice is to add pictures - and I'll add to that: use quotes!

"A blog is merely a tool that lets you do anything from change the world to share your shopping list."


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Sidewalk Chalk Alien Legend

The Sidewalk Chalk Alien Legend
By Emily Lawrence

The blue and pink powder from the sidewalk chalk Bik had given the kindergarten class was getting all over Chul’s hands so that they were painted just as heavily as the concrete in the school compound. He always rubbed the chalk too hard, hiding every gray spot of concrete, and through the day, the chalk was worn down to little stubs in his palms. Green and yellow stars, red and purple planets, big as Chin-Hwa’s bicycle wheels, and a kingly rocket ship, blue and red with a huge orange tail of fire. Literally a universe of chalk.
Mi-Ok sat on her pink strap-on shoes. She had a beautiful new four-leaf clover barrette in her coal black hair. The other girls, who couldn’t afford one of their own, had admired it all day and told her how pretty she looked and Mi-Ok blushed shyly. She watched Chul drawing his rocket, quietly, with her finger in her mouth. Jae Eun’s voice could be heard as she made up a story to go along with the illustrations of a picture book from the classroom. She was sitting by the cage where the class rabbits were stored.
“Chul,” Mi-Ok called, even though she was only inches from his ears.
“What?” His fat fingers scraped the chalk over the rough concrete, undistracted.
“What’s that black thing with the sharp teeth?”
“An alien.”
“I thought aliens were green?” She bit her thumb bashfully.
A group of running feet swept their backs. “Mi-Ok likes Chubby Chul! Mi-Ok likes Chubby Chul!”
Chul took a break long enough to shake his fist at them. “Don’t walk on my drawing!” He was met with laughter. “Shut up, baldy!”
Mi-Ok scooted closer to his side. “I don’t mind what they say.”
Chul bent back over his snarling black alien, letting her snuggle where she was.
“Be quiet, I’m trying to read!” Jae Eun shouted.
“You can’t read!” The school yard laughed.
Jae Eun ignored them and went back to “reading” to her little brother, Dak-Ho, who was more of a plush toy than a brother. She saw that he had slipped down, so she propped him back up.
“I wonder what Bik’s bringing for snack today.” Mi-Ok wondered out loud to Chul. He only continued yellowing the monster’s teeth, but she didn’t mind. “Chul, do you believe aliens exist?”
The wind picked up in a sudden gust that blew off Jae Eun’s glasses. Colorful dust flew into Chul and Mi-Ok’s face. The children chattered lowly for a moment. Then, a racing sound was heard and, as if she were blown in by the wind, an older girl sped into the school compound on shiny black rollerblades. Violently turning, she tore her blades against the concrete to a halt on top of Chul’s chalk universe.
She wore a high school Gyobok; the skirt brown plaid, deep brown tights and a burgundy jacket, but also she wore knee and elbow pads comically over her uniform and a sleek helmet with a sticker of a rose and blue guitar. Her raven hair streamed out in two long pigtails from inside her helmet. In her hand was a long street hockey stick.
Huffing and puffing a little, she addressed the two children at her feet: Chul and Mi-Ok. “Oi, you two, I’m looking for someone; you’re going to tell me where this person is, alright?”
“Nobody’s allowed in the school compound, eonni,” Jae Eun said. The other children came to see what the big girl could want at their little private school.
Seeing them crowd around her seemed to make the big girl happier. “I’m called ‘June Bug,’” she declared. The children marveled at the English words. June Bug. Bik hadn’t taught them those words yet in their English hour.
Mi-Ok whispered to Chul, “What’s ‘June Bug?’” But Chul didn’t answer; he couldn’t because he didn’t know either.
“I need you kids to help me. I’m hunting someone.” June Bug paused for effect and surveyed her audience’s faces.
“Who are you hunting, eonni?” Chin-Hwa ventured.
June Bug chuckled and smiled so widely, her mouth was lost in her cheeks. “An alien.”
Chul stared up at her with his mouth open. Mi-Ok clung to his arm, frightened a little, but still paying close attention. Jae Eun had picked up Dak-Ho and carried him over, his cheeks hanging over her arms. “Is the alien here in the school?”
June Bug smiled again and held up her cell phone. “That’s what my boss said when he called me.”
“Are you a space policeman?” Chul asked, letting out more enthusiasm than he wanted. “Just like Super Sentai?”
“Something like that – I’m an alien bounty hunter.” June Bug said. “This alien was kicked out of her home-world because of heresy.”
“Are you going to use that hockey stick to beat up the alien?” Chin-Hwa asked
She looked at her hockey as a weapon for the first time. “Maybe. My boss does that kind of stuff, though. I just tell him when I’ve found them.”
The questions started pouring out.
“Do you have a space ship?”
“How many aliens have you caught?”
“How do you become an alien hunter?”
The children were having a great time. June Bug got annoyed and tried to bring them back to focus. “Quiet, quiet! Look, I want to hurry and catch it, so –”
Jae Eun interrupted from her seat on the ground, “What does the alien look like?”
June Bug slumped down and looked her audience in the eyes. “Just like us.”
“Ahhahhh!” The kids squealed in interest.
“Like a human?”
“Yes. It looks like a high school girl. Like me. Only, she’s Chinese.” June Bug told them. “Have you seen a Chinese girl? Her name’s Chin-Lan, but she may be using another name.”
Mi-Ok murmured to Chul. “Bik’s Chinese.”
“Shhh.” Chul, who had become a little put off by June Bug’s rudeness and wanted to hunt the alien himself, told her to be quiet. Mi-Ok nodded and buried her head in her shoulders like she was attempting to become a human safe.
It was no good, though, because the other children thinking the same and revealed it to June Bug. “Bik is.”
“Who?” June Bug demanded, now with a darkening look.
“She’s a girl who helps out in our class.”
“What does she do?”
“Um… She teaches us English…”
“She bakes us sweets.”
“And teaches us songs.”
June Bug perked up. “Does she carry around a big book? Or tell you stories?”
Jae Eun suddenly stood, and, taking her brother, walked away from the group and into the school building. June Bug watched her go with hard eyes then turned back to the other children.
“Does she?”
The children looked at each other. They didn’t understand. Suddenly they lost interest and drifted away. June Bug got angry at this; with her hockey stick pointed at him, she pinpointed Chul, who had gotten up, followed by Mi-Ok. “Oi, you. Does that girl tell you stories about an ark or a man being thrown into a pit of lions?”
“You mean Bible stories?” Mi-Ok asked, momentarily forgetting herself.
“Bik’s not an alien” Chul said nonchalantly.
June Bug scowled at him, then shot a look at Mi-Ok, who hid behind Chul. “You kids are so stupid.”
“Excuse me!” From the school building, a kind voice trying to be authoritative caught June Bug’s attention. Chul and Mi-Ok looked back and then ran to Bik, a tall Chinese girl with very short hair and a bad patch on the lower side of her left cheek. Jae Eun was with her, but Dak-Ho had been left inside. Bik confronted June Bug. “Outsiders are not permitted into the school compound unless they are family to one of the students, please.” Bik suddenly recognized her. “Hong Hanuel? You’re a player on the high school street hockey team, right?”
“I didn’t realize it was you.” June Bug sighed. “What a surprise.”
“What are you talking about –”
“Liu Chin-Lan.”
Bik was silenced immediately. Chul and Mi-Ok looked up at her quizzically. Then, Bik met June Bug with an even gaze.
“God, why did it have to you?” June Bug, or, Hanuel flipped open her phone and began hitting keys.
Jae Eun tugged Bik’s skirt. “What’s going on, eonni?”
The children finally caught the urgent atmosphere. “Who is this person?” Chul asked.
Mi-Ok was tearing up, “Who is she, Bik?”
Bik bent down, “It’s okay, darlings. There are some people who want me not to be in Korea. But, I’m not going anywhere.”
“We’ll see about that.” June Bug said.
“Jae Eun, go get Mrs. Park.” Bik said and Jae Eun dashed away.
“Why do they want you?” Chul’s eyebrows trembled.
“Don’t go!” Mi-Ok was crying now and hugged her legs. “Don’t leave!”
Bik wobbled. “Don’t worry, kids. God’s protecting me.” She looked at June Bug. “My citizenship should be finalized now.”
June Bug had her phone to her ear; she stared back at Bik stiffly.
“So, I’m afraid you won’t be getting any money.”
Chul couldn’t stand it any longer. “You’re not an alien, are you?”
A startled look swept over Bik’s face then she laughed. “We all are in this world, Chul.”
“Did you do something wrong?” Mi-Ok asked.
“Some people think so.” Bik replied, putting a hand on Mi-Ok’s head. “But I don’t need them to think what I’ve done is right or wrong. And even if they somehow take me away, it’ll be okay. Because they didn’t like my Father, either, but He still beat them in the end.”
For writers: I wrote this story in response to a writing exercise. The instructions are to write a story in which one character is lying to or misleading other characters who believe what the liar is saying. Happy writing!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Words, Words, (shrug) Words

Yesterday I realized that although my short story for my class is due next Tuesday, I have to email it a week in advance. Oh, no! ... So, I called Caleb, the co-teacher for my AWANAs Trek class and asked him if he would teach. "I'm so sorry - it'll never happen again." Of course, he didn't mind; he's going to school to be an art teacher. I'm going to school to become a writer. So, it worked out.

However, with the loud television shows and writer's block, things were not looking up for me. I was staring at the Word document, and let me tell you, I had nothing! Finally, I X'ed out of that story and went looking thorough My Documents for some shred of remaining hope: a story I could finish in one day.

I knew my chances were slim. You see, about two years ago we bought a Vista. More than 2,000 dollars. Of my student loan. Do you see the mistake, here? My old computer won't start anymore, though, so I couldn't get the stories I had saved on it. I could only lean on my Vista.
But, lo and behold, I found it! A lively little stories told completely in a chat room - a little too random, but I straightened it up in time to watch a couple episodes of Maison Ikkoku before I went to bed.

Something is bothering me about the story, however. The way it ends leaves the reader to decide the right course of action for each character. But, I'm afraid the reader will interpret it as both points of view are correct in their own right. That's not what I mean at all!

What I want to show is that both characters are wrong and they'll need to take responsibility for their actions. You see, one is a teenage girl who is constantly bullied because she has cleft palette. Her parents are strict and don't believe in surgery; they believe God made her the way she is and she doesn't deserve the right to "fix" her condition because is would an affront to God.

By the way, here are a few websites for Cleft Palette organizations:

The other character is another teenage girl who lives almost inside a theme park. Unlike the first girl, she's very high-maintenance, ADD, OCD, and rough and tumble. She was born to teenage parents who tried to raise her, but due to emotional problems caused by both she and her parents, they were forced to leave her int he care of her grandparents.
I still feel a little guilty about how she talks. Because of her tough attitude and poor background, she uses foul language. Not as much as real people with her personality, because I cut it down, but there are vulgar words in my manuscript.

How does a Christian writer deal with that? It can't be denied that that's the way it in this world. The world is sinful and people use profanity. And to try to act like they don't, by not presenting the world the way it really is, causes Christian work to appear idealized. Non-believers would accuse us of being selfish if we acted like everybody says "what the hey" instead "Hell." But, the scriptures say "Do not cause anyone to stumble..." 1 Corinthians 10:32

Leading by example or leading by denouncing sin? Showing the world what is wrong and then showing them a better way. Perhaps this is how Christians should approach this issue. But, you should decide for yourself.

Monday, September 29, 2008

A Love Letter from God - Rewriting Ephesians 1:3-14

I'm currently following a study on Ephesians in my church's discipleship training hour. I took the class because I'm working on a story and one of the characters is named Ephesus - I want to give him the characteristics of the Ephesian church.

The story is slow in developing because it's on the back burner right now. It's a story about a certain church that Jesus Himself visits and stays with for a while. The story is told through a compilation of first-hand accounts of the members of the church. Ephesus is the young preacher/secret drug addict that pastors the church.

That's not what I want to write about in this post, though, ^^

The teacher of the class, Marje, had each of us read Ephesians 1:1-14 and rewrite it as a letter from God to them. (I was working with the New King James Version, by the way.) Here is God's love letter to me:

Dear Emily,

I'm sending you My grace and peace and every spiritual blessing there is in Heaven.

I want you to know that before I began making the world I chose you to be perfect, that no one could look on you as trash or a mistake. Before the earth, you were My daughter and you are My daughter now because I wanted you to be with me.

Through My son, the Beloved, you are given an invitation to be clean, through His blood. My grace will wash over you in abundance as will my wisdom over your mind.

There is a life I have planned for you according to My delight that will bring all things in earth and Heaven together in Christ. This is your inheritence.

Know that I work my hands in all things and there is no one who stands against mee and prevails, especially not in attempt to hurt you. So, trust in Me, and in Jesus as you have ever since you heard the truth He spoke to you.

Praise Me and be with Me. Know that you are sealed to Me through the Holy Spirit. Consider His presence proof of the promise I have made between us. If you forget, He will remind you of the inheritence waiting for you.

Stay close to Me,
Dear Love
P.S. I am only as far as you push Me
I encourage you to try rewriting scripture as a letter from God, so that you will feel close to Him. For it is to stay close to God that we live. (Deutoronomy 30:20) You may choose any scripture because the Word is God-breathed, it all comes from Him.
Peace be you.

Question for God

(This is something I wrote for my writing seminar class. If you could spend a few minutes with God to interview Him, what would you ask Him? (For writing students, write a 800-word response; then, cut it down to 400 words. This will help you in seeing what is most important in your writing.)

“Have you ever thought of jumping of a building?” The author asks this in Stranger than Fiction. “Everyone thinks about jumping off of buildings.” I agree. Jumping off buildings or in front of cars; people wonder about these things. But, also, “What would it be like if that child playing in the sand box were mine and not hers?” And, “If I had told him I was in love with him then, would he not dislike me now?” There’s even another layer. “What if I got a million dollars?” And, “What if I never got hurt again?”

So, God, why do we wonder? We could have lived without wondering. You could have handed us a life and we would accept it and nothing else. Our events would run smoothly before us like a movie, each frame on time, and that would be all we’d ever encounter. We don’t have to ask “what if.” If we do, will anything change? But why would You create a world that had to be changed?

So much is added to our lives by wondering. For instance, why do we read? We read because we wonder. Why do we write? Because we wonder. Reading and writing consumes my time, my energy, my life. Sometimes it’s hard, but I fight to write and I need to read. Does that mean that I wonder all the time? Is that all I ever do? Could it be that that I wonder more than other people, if so, does that mean I wonder too much?

Is what I wonder about right in front of me? Is wondering a way of finding what’s already in front of you? If I wonder, will I find something I could not have otherwise? But what could be in jumping off a building or having a child? A story?

It’s not a game, is it? A game of tag we play with You in our daydreams? Are they distractions in from what is a little harder? No one could deny it’s fun; no writer ever would, that’s for sure.
Maybe wondering is writing. It is a talent, a gift. With it would come the gift of imagination. All writers are wonderers. Reading is seeing the wonderings of others; our way of knowing their thoughts; the realistic way to be a mind-reader. If we collected everybody’s wonderings, would we have a world? No. But, we would have a library.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A-Editing We will Go, A-Editing We willl Go... !

Thursday in my Writing Seminar class Julia Knispel, an accomplished writer, came to speak to us writing students. She talked about marketing ourselves as writers, getting our name out by way of blogs, and networking (finding mentors and keeping in touch with our writing peers.) This blog is my pursuit to take advantage of her advice. I'd like to take a moment to say I appreciate the advice she shared.

There's another way I'm preparing for my planned profession. My professor, Deborah Miller Fox, added while Mrs. Knispel was there that many people who knew she was a published writer would come, asking her to read their papers and stories. I supposed that's the bane of being a professional. She tells them, "Come see me in April or May," when she's not teaching, and how much she'll charge. "That either stops the conversation right there, or, if they're serious, they'll come back at a better time."

"There are three infallible ways of pleasing an author, and the threeform a rising scale of compliment: 1--to tell him you have read oneof his books; 2--to tell him you have read all of his books;3--to ask him to let you read the manuscript of his forthcoming book.No. 1 admits you to his respect; No. 2 admits you to his admiration;No. 3 carries you clear into his heart.
-Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar
Charging by page is the best policy to have, she told us, because that way if they're wanting you to review a 27-page paper, you'll get each page's worth. And so, I decided to do it! I'm opening an editing service. The problem is, I don't know how much to charge a page.
I thought 10 cents per page wasn't too bad. I won't be making much; even it they give me a 27-page paper, that would only be 2.70 dollars.

I mentioned my intent to my Sunday School class this morning. Many of them are out of college, or didn't go at all. Still, it doesn't hurt to mention, just in case they need to write a report for work or a letter asking for something they need. One, a young woman who just joined our church with her husband, mentioned she was trying to write a book. She didn't say what sort of book it was, and I'm little disappointed about that. I'll have to ask her tonight. She a teacher. I'm really hoping she lets me edit for her - I get exited thinking I could have a hand in helping someone else write.

I love writing. Lately, I've noticed that my stories have been about writing or storytelling. They explore why we write, how to write... I'm writing about writing - it's kind of funny. ^-^

Is it professional to use emoticons in a blog? S:/

I plan to go to the middle school and high school classes tonight and offer my services. I'm going to tell them straight out that I'm not going to write their papers for them. My sisters have pulled that on me too much. They must be crazy if they think I'm doing their work for them. No, mine is only an editing service.

The problem with going to that age group, even though they have many papers and reports due for school, they don't have the money to pay me. So, I'm struggling with whether I should do charity work for my younger peers when I have gobs of homework myself. (Including a market analysis for my Writing Seminar class due Tuesday.)

I'm the Trek leader for my church's AWANA's program. One of my students whom I like very much hasn't been coming to class. It breaks my heart. I see him at the libaray occaisionally. He once asked me to help him with his homework. "I'd be happy to." But then he didn't come back. My editing service reminded me of that. Sorry. Tangent.

To conclude, (you're very kind to have read so far) I can feel the whirwind of excitement swirling up in me. Feeling this way, it makes me confident that editing and writing is what I want to do for the rest of my life. And so, a-editing I will go!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Something to Say and the Lie that tells the Truth

There is a song by Suzanne Jennings that says:

"You've never lived til the words become true
Til forgiveness and mercy mean something to you
And you've never cried til the tears come from faith
You've never lived til you have something to say."
Through everything we go through on this earth, in all the garbage we wade through, in flying through the clear blue sky, God is teaching us to have a testimony. He put us on the earth to live and "tell each other the truth," (Ephesians 4:25).
As for me, God made me a writer. As a writer, I tell the truth through my stories. I'm fiction writer, though. My stories haven't happened in real life - and probably never could. (I write magical realism; sometimes I call it spiritual realism.) A child may ask, "Doesn't that make it a lie?"
Perhaps. But, just because the charcters I create aren't real, that doesn't mean God can't use them to tell the truth. So, I give Him my paper and He give me my purpose. I give Him my characters and He gives me their life. I give Him my stories and He gives me my truth. Theses stories are lies that tell the world the truth.