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Welcoming November

A quick look back at October and ahead to the holidays.


I've been knocked out by a sudden cold this week. Though I'm typically the "I don't have time to get sick!" mom, I'm fine with this forced slow down. October flew by in a frenzy. We had two road trips planned (one to visit family in west Texas, and one to go camping in Garner State Park), a third trip added by surprise due to a funeral in east Texas, and then my husband managed to squeeze in a fourth to go to an Astros game in Houston. Phew! Now, with sickness forcing me to curl up on the couch, I'm welcoming the little break before the craze of the holidays.

Hill rising over Frio Rio in Garner State Park
Garner State Park, Photo Credit: John Bray, Unsplash

Here are a few other wonderful things that happened during that hair-on-fire month of October...


Author Life


A fellow Black Rose Writing author featured me in her monthly author interview. I've been fortunate enough to meet Amanda Waters at a book signing before, and we chatted at the author conference in September as well. You can find more of Amanda's work here.


Gold medal reading "Pencraft Awards, Literary Excellence, Winner 1st Place, 2023"

Outside of Grace won First Place for Christian Fiction in the Pencraft Awards! I'll admit, I've been wanting to be able to slap a medal on my book cover and throw that coveted "award-winning author" title around for a while. This was one of my favorite things to happen this month.


As for the newest book, it has been in the hands of several beta readers and the plot has been tightened and strengthened thanks to them. I'm almost ready to pass the manuscript off to my editor. All we need now is a title (yes, still. Yikes!).


Local author fair, Saturday, November 4, New Braunfels Public Library, 1-3PM

Events


If you're in Central Texas this coming weekend, I would love to see you at the New Braunfels Library Author Fair on Saturday, Nov. 4th! I'll be out there with about a dozen other authors from 1-3pm.



Latest Reads:


Wouldn't it be nice if I were a highly routined, habit-driven person who always wrote their blog posts with the same format, and could include my 4-5 reads from this month? That would be great. Sadly, I'm not. I tend to go through reading bursts and slumps. I had two DNF (did not finish) reads this month, and a couple others I've only just started. We'll see if I can get through these.


Latest Listens:

I loved this interview with Angela Hunt, author of more than 150 books. Her process and timeline of writing and editing made so much sense and I will probably be tweaking how I do things to reflect what I learned from this.


Funny thing about these two songs (both covers of the same song by Tom Petty)—two of my beta readers sent me this song and said it reminded them of the protagonist in my newest book! And yes, I already had that song on my inspiration playlist. Apparently we are right on track with the vibes here.


Mini Devotional: Such a Time as This


Pink and purple clouds over mountains with Bible verse reading "God has given us everything we need for living a Godly life," 2 Peter 1:3

I'd like to end with a few thoughts that have been on my mind since a recent visit with family.


As a mom, I frequently hear people talk about what a terrible time this is to raise children, or how they're worried about XYZ, or how glad they are that they didn't have to deal with [fill in the blank].


Honestly, though, I'm not afraid of the world we live in, for myself or my children. Am I sometimes upset about the state of things? Rightfully so. Do I sometimes wish I had a horse-drawn carriage and a bonnet? We all do.


But like Mordecai told Esther: perhaps we were born for such a time as this. (Esther 4:14). In fact, Acts 17:26-27 promises it, telling us that God has marked out the nations, appointing their times and boundaries, so that men would seek him and find him.


Whenever the world tempts you to be afraid, take your eyes off of the world and set them on Christ instead (see the story of Peter and Jesus walking on water). God has you here, in this time and place, for a reason. He has not abandoned you here. He has equipped you and given you all power and knowledge through Christ to stand firm (2 Peter 1:3).


Let me hear from you!

Thank you for taking the time to read and celebrate the beginning of a new month with me. And now I would love to hear from you—how do you carve out time for rest in the midst of holiday season?



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