Posted on: July 30, 2014
Thank you so much to all who voted for
To continue the celebration…
Visit me this week at
and leave a comment for a chance to win an E copy of Blind Trust (or other Orchard title of your choice)
for a second opportunity…
on Friday, August 1st hop over to
Posted on: July 26, 2014
Hi All…I know I’m supposed to be taking a blogging break over the summer and I keep popping in here with news.
Blind Trust is on Clash of the Titles this month (where you vote for the books based on cover and description that you want to read this summer.)
If you’ve read, plan to read or would like to read Blind Trust, I’d appreciate it if you popped over to the page and voted for it:
No email etc required. You just click the title then “next” then “done.” Easy peasy.
Posted on: July 17, 2014
Visit me this week at
and leave a comment for a chance to win a paperback copy of Blind Trust
Posted on: July 15, 2014
Ebook Lovers here’s your chance to get Blind Trust for a steal!
cheap great way to gift Aunt Martha who got that Ebook reader for Christmas a great book.
It’s $2.99 or less wherever Ebooks are sold.
Here are some of the most popular links:
Amazon UK (£1.44 Kindle)
CBD.com (Epub version) only $2.39!
If you enjoyed Blind Trust, I’d love it if you’d tell your friends about this great deal! There are share buttons below to make it super easy. Of course…I highly recommend reading Deadly Devotion first.
Posted on: June 30, 2014
Last week, I was able to enjoy a few days away with my hubby at Letchworth State Park to celebrate our wedding anniversary. It was so nice to spend hours of uninterrupted time together, hiking through God’s beautiful creation, being awed by sights such as the rainbow above or soothed by the sound of waterfalls.
I was reminded of Jesus invitation to his disciples at a time when they were very busy with people coming and going:
“Come with me
by yourselves to a quiet place
and get some rest.”
I don’t know about you, but I can be a bit of a workaholic, so I find it reassuring that Jesus stressed the importance of taking time to rest, to renew and refresh your spirit, soul, mind and body. With edits to do on one novel, another novel to finish, and my thoughts eagerly jumping ahead to a future series I’ve proposed, I know that this verse is talking to me. So…
My blogs may be sparse this summer as I’ve scratched “write this week’s blog” off my to-do list for the summer.
But…I loooove having conversations with my readers and with aspiring writers, so please don’t hesitate to comment or ask questions here or via email or on my Facebook page (where I will continue to check in each day).
Posted on: June 22, 2014
What a whirlwind this month has been! Can you believe we’re already in the last week?
I want to send out a huge thank you to so many of you who have already read Blind Trust and taken the time to blog about or post reviews. I really appreciate your support!
As I await edits on the third, and last, book in the Port Aster series, I’m enjoying brainstorming characters for a new series.
I’ve copied and pasted a slew of handsome male actors’ pics into my male characters’ file, and I think I’ve settled on Jennifer Connelly as the model for my heroine.
I love this part of writing, when ideas come fast and furious and it feels as if they’ll never stop.
I literally had to set a notepad and pen outside the shower, because all these punchy comebacks that I imagined she might say kept popping into my head. My notepad is now a tad soggy, but I’m not complaining!
Of course… the reality of publishing is that the Port Aster series needs to sell well for my publisher to want to start another with me. But I’m happily ignoring that minor detail at the moment.
If you’re an aspiring writer and would like to learn a little more about how I create characters, join me at the Faith, Hope, Love blog on Monday where I’ll be sharing Keys to Creating Compelling Characters.
And I can’t resist sharing a pic of the biggest ‘character’ in my life these days–my soon-to-be-one grandson:
“Oh, nana, I KNOW you just cleaned these all up, but I’m not tired enough to go to bed!”
Your Turn: What’s the most interesting character in your life these days? Real or imagined.
Posted on: June 16, 2014
This past week I had the privilege of both attending and teaching at Write!Canada.
I had tons of fun hanging out with my editor and my agent
My agent Steve Laube and I, goofing around for the camera before the awards gala. BTW, Deadly Devotion won the suspense category!
and old friends and new friends, and despite entering this new week severely sleep-deprived because of it, I have an I-can’t-wait-to-write-today anticipation that I haven’t felt in weeks, maybe months!
Fellowship with fellow writers and awesome classes can do that, but a huge part of the credit goes to Ted Dekker’s inspiring keynote address and class.
Okay, I honestly don’t know why I look a tad spaced. He’s not the least bit scary.
I have to admit that the last Dekker book I read was Three. The plots started getting too dark for my comfort level, so I wasn’t sure what to expect from his talks. But wow, I am so glad I didn’t miss them!
He was so open and honest, talking writer to writer.
We learned about his childhood on the mission field in Indonesia and at boarding school, and his rocky journey to publication, and the new fears and struggles that came with sudden success. Too often our identity is wrapped up in our job or our children or spouse or in what we accomplish instead of in the Father and what he’s done for us.
Then he shared a proverb about a person who climbs a rope to get away from the tiger chasing him, only to be faced with a second tiger at the other end of the rope and two mice nibbling through the rope.
He likened the tigers to our fears and how if you’re focused on them you won’t escape the fear and see the beauty around you…the strawberries.
He admitted that he often needs to consciously let the fear fall away before he begins writing each day and remind himself that the accuser is the one telling him he doesn’t love this.
When we let go of the fear & the lies, rivers of living water–creativity–can flow.
He likened our stories to sandcastles and authors are like kids playing in the sand.
We’re having fun making stuff up. If we don’t like it, we can wipe it away and start over. Change the story.
So go have fun and build a sandcastle!
Tiger image courtesy of anankkml / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Posted on: June 8, 2014
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
An interesting revelation unfolded for me this past week. A writing acquaintance offered to read a summary of my current work-in-progress, or more accurately, my work-not-progressing, and share her perspective on what themes or root problems the characters might shed light on.
I figured that I was struggling because I’m a lot like my heroine, in that I tend to keep my emotions under wraps.
(ruckus in the other room)
“Okay, yes, dear, except when I’m mad.” Sheesh, I was sure my hubby never read my blog!
Anyway…this writer saw my characters as perfectionists and expounded on various truths they’d need to learn.
I was totally floored. I never saw them that way at all.
My hubby would never accuse me of being a perfectionist. He’s the perfectionist. Takes forever to do things or starts things, because everything has to be right, whereas I just want to get them done. Except…
Then I pulled out a trait book and read examples of root causes and the various ways the trait might manifest, and I was stunned to realize that my friend was right.
My characters are both perfectionists. They each respond very differently, but the trait is the same.
Gasp! And a lot of the descriptions were eerily apt descriptions of me, too.
“Yes, hubby, dear. Unbelievable, I know. But I do submit a very clean manuscript no matter how thick the dust bunnies in the corner of the bedroom.”
Sorry, I promise he won’t interrupt anymore.
Anyway, if that revelation wasn’t surprising enough. As I was browsing my daughter’s blog, JLOrchard.com, I discovered a post she wrote about being a perfectionist. And was stunned again.
I never thought of her as a perfectionist. Am I really that inept at understanding what drives people?
I thought I did pretty good with the characters in my books!
I found that quote of Einstein’s at my daughter’s blog, along with this revelation:
Nothing frustrated my music teacher more than my resistance to answer a question. He’d say, “You make a choice, it’s either right or its wrong, but at least you’ve made a choice.” There’s always been this strand of perfectionism in me. Growing up I’d punish myself cruelly for little mistakes to the point where I’d rather give no answer than the wrong answer.
Well, I remember her music teacher saying that, but I can’t say that I ever noticed the other. And I homeschooled her!
Hmm, I can see that I have a lot more to learn about my characters, and apparently myself, before my current writing-not-in-progress starts progressing!
Your Turn: Can you offer me any insights into the mind of a perfectionist?
emotiguy Image courtesy of farconville / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
vacuuming guy image courtesy of artur84 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Posted on: June 2, 2014
Blind Trust is now shipping and I was tickled to already hear from a few readers over the weekend! I’m very excited to be visiting several blogs this week to celebrate the release. Oh, and check out the new cover I found online!
The image on the right is for the large print, hard cover edition that will release in August from Center Point Publishing. Cool, eh?
I’d love for you to pop by one of my blog stops for a visit!
My hero & I will be chatting about all sorts of things.
Today I’m at Trish Perry’s blog, answering questions about Blind Trust and life and if you leave a comment sometime this week, you’ll have a chance to win a copy.
This week, Detective Tom Parker will be answering questions at Margaret Daley’s blog.
Tuesday, I’ll be posting at the Craftie Ladies’ Blog on interesting factoids I learned while researching Blind Trust.
And…here’s the special I learned about from my publisher over the weekend:
This week only, Deadly Devotion will be on sale in Ebook format at most retailers for only $2.99. I highly recommend reading it before Blind Trust, which has a spoiler for the mystery in it.
And… the Ebook format for Blind Trust will be on sale until July 14th for the special price of $6.99!
Posted on: May 24, 2014
I don’t live in the US, but any excuse for
taking a day off a giveaway will do.
Well, that and because I’m up to my eyeballs preparing powerpoint slides for the classes I’m teaching at Write!Canada in a couple of weeks.
Actually…having waaaay too much fun picking fun pictures to liven up the lessons. Like this one on how to write romantic suspense:
He looks like a go-to kind of guy when you need to get out of a dangerous situation. The kind of guy who’d take a bullet for you, or…at least for the president.
And if you happen to live near Southern Ontario and love to write, you can still register for Write!Canada.
June 12-14, 2014
Giveaway Opportunities for Blind Trust
Ending Sunday evening – http://jennifershirk.blogspot.ca/2014/05/fun-interview-and-giveaway.html
Ending May 30th in AM – http://elainestock.blogspot.ca/2014/05/sandra-orchard-master-at-intrigue.html
Ending June 17th – for Goodreads members – https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/92614-blind-trust
How to Make Money
Wow, did that get your attention?
Yes, that’s what Canadian money looks like, now, courtesy of the Bank of Canada website. This past week I had fun blogging at International Christian Fiction Writers about what I learned about counterfeiting while researching for Blind Trust.
Did you know that new photocopiers and printers are designed to lock up if you attempt to copy money?
A number of years ago a kid in Canada did it successfully and passed the bills off at school (before our money went plastic), but one of the blog readers confirmed that yes, photocopiers freeze up. She’d tried copying a bill for a play prop…or so she claimed.
You can read the whole post here: http://internationalchristianfictionwriters.blogspot.ca/2014/05/on-making-money-more.html
Have a great week!
Could you help me with my class prep for a Fictions Basics? If you’re a writer, what was the one element of craft you learned that leapfrogged your writing forward? For everyone…what makes you put a book down and not pick it up again? Thanks so much!