Bonus Post: Meet Another Writing Friend

Yes, this is another Bonus Post. As you know, I ordinarily only write one post a day five days a week, Monday through Friday. However, once in a while, when I deem it necessary, I add a bonus post and write a second post on one of the days.

Today I want you to meet another one of my writing friends. I like to help my friends boost their blogs and gain more recognition from the worldwide blogosphere. My friend Melinda is a talented writer who writes a lot of Sci-Fi, as well as some other things. She has been posting on a blog for a couple of years here. This summer, she’s doing a cool new blog where she posts a story a week about a vampire in Baltimore, Maryland, and she said she’d never write a vampire story. You can read these fascinating stories here. She also created a Facebook page for her main character in the vampire stories, Niles Gule, which I think is really cool because she even has a photo which is really bizarre because he looks a lot like a guy I know. ¬† ūüėõ

Now, I will warn you, none of her writing is Christian and you will encounter some language you may find offensive and, of course, in the Niles Gule stories, some blood and guts. But Melinda weaves some good tales, creates fascinating worlds and characters that grab your attention and make you like them and care about them pretty much from the moment you meet them.

Top Ten Tuesday

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday suggestion, as per The Broke and Bookish, is “Ten Reasons I Love X” and you can place whatever you like in the spot of “X”. ¬†Therefore, I am going to do “Ten Reasons I Love Janette Oke”.

  1.  When I first gave my heart to the Lord and became a Christian, the first Christian fiction books I read were books written by Janette Oke.
  2. I love every book that I have ever read by Janette Oke, although, unfortunately, I have not read them all. Her characters capture my heart.
  3. I love that many of Janette’s stories are Christian historical romantic fiction. ¬†Maybe that’s why I decided that clean historical romantic fiction is what I want to write.
  4. Although I have only read five of the twelve books in Janette’s “Women of the West” series, A Gown of Spanish Lace and Drums of Change are two of my favorite Janette Oke stories.¬†Drums of Change is a special favorite because it is about an Indian girl, and I have always had a fondness and fascination for the Indians. ¬†My great-great-grandmother was a full-blooded Cherokee Indian woman. ¬†Unfortunately, I never had the privilege of meeting her.
  5. One of my favorite series of all time is one written by Janette Oke, and that is the Love Comes Softly series.  In that series, Janette created two characters that all of her readers fell in love with, Marty and Clark Davis.
  6. Janette Oke cares about her readers and their opinions.  She originally wrote Love Comes Softly as a single book, but many of her readers wanted more, and so with the encouragement of an editor at Bethany House publishing, she wrote a second book, and the series eventually turned into an eight novel series. When readers still wanted more, Janette wrote four more novels, The Prairie Legacy series, where the series of Clark and Marty Davis and their family finally ended because at the end of twelve novels, Clark and Marty had reached their final years together and Janette nor her readers wanted to mourn their deaths.  So finally, the readers were satisfied, and Janette had cared enough about her readers to change one novel into a series of twelve novels, and that remains, maybe, the best loved series Janette has written.
  7. ¬†Some of Janette Oke’s stories have been made into movies. ¬†The¬†Love Comes Softly series was made into movies, and I LOVE them! ¬†(Well, the ones I have seen) I have the complete book and movie series of¬†Love Comes Softly, including the¬†Prairie Legacy series, although I have not read the¬†Prairie Legacy series. ¬†I plan to read all of these twelve novels very soon, and then sit down and watch the movies!
  8. I recently found a book at a bargain book store that is a book about Janette Oke written by her daughter, Laurel Oke Logan, and I can’t wait to read it and learn more about one of my favorite authors!
  9. Janette Oke also wrote another of my favorite book series and that is her Seasons of the Heart series.  It is a four book series.
  10. The biggest reason I love Janette Oke is because not only does she care about her readers, she also cares about future writers and those who write letters to her. ¬†I wrote a letter to her back in 1996, when I was hoping to soon become a published author. ¬†I sent her a letter expressing my love for her writing and I sent her a short story of my own and asked for feedback and advice on becoming a published author. ¬†Now, you and I both know that successful writers don’t usually answer their own fan mail. ¬†They don’t have time, and they don’t read stories fans send them asking for writing advice. ¬†Well, I want you to know that Janette Oke did just that. ¬†She read my letter and the story I sent and she sent me a two page letter responding with answers to some of my questions about publishing at the time! ¬†She offered me some tips on my writing and encouraged me to keep writing! ¬†This busy, successful writer took the time to personally respond to my letter! ¬†What a sweet, caring woman Janette Oke is! ¬†I am so glad that I was bold in writing to her. ¬†I still have the letter she sent me in the original envelope it was sent in, and it still means a lot to me today!I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Janette Oke in person or having any other contact or correspondence with her, but she will always remain special to me for taking the time to encourage me in my writing, even if it did take me considerably longer to really get serious about my writing.

Top Ten Tuesday

Today’s Top Ten List as suggested by The Broke and the Bookish is the Ten Bookish People You Should Follow on Social Media.

As much as I love to read, I must admit that I don’t follow too many “bookish” people because I am a writer, I follow “writer” people. ¬†So I can list Four Bookish People that I think you should Follow on Twitter and one on Facebook:


  1.  Glenn Soucy @GlennSoucy1
  2. Faydra Deon @faydra_deon
  3. Readers Gazette @ReadersGazette
  4. Gary Lindberg @gary_lindberg


1.  Mindy Detweiler

Now, since writers write good books for the bookish people and because writers are bookish people too, here are five writers that I follow on Facebook that I think you should follow:

  1.  Grace Greene
  2. Jeanette Lavellie
  3. Shelley Adina
  4. Mike Dellosso
  5. Marsha Hubler

Upcoming Writers’ Conference in Lancaster County


Are you an aspiring writer seeking to hone skills, become market savvy, consult personally with editors/authors‚ÄĒall on a budget? Then join us at Lancaster Christian WritersSuper Saturday 2016!! April 16th, 2016, from 8:30am-4:30pm at Lancaster Bible College, 901 Eden Road, Lancaster, PA, 17601. This one-day writers conference offers a dual track of workshops in fiction and non-fiction. Early registration price of $50 is due by Wednesday, April 13, and includes soup/sandwich buffet lunch and LCW membership. Registrations after April 13 and walk-ins day of the conference are $60.

Non-fiction faculty include writers conference director and author Marsha Hubler, professional writer/editor Hana Haatainen Caye, transformational speaker and novelist Tracy Higley, and award-winning Toastmaster speaker and author Michele Chynoweth. A fiction track will be taught by award-winning novelists Gayle Roper, Mike Dellosso, and Dwight Kopp.

Workshops cover such topics as:

  • Can You Say Satisfying? Creating the Inspiring Moment.
  • Keep ‘Em Wide-Eyed! Sure-Fire Techniques for Writing Hi-Octane Suspense
  • From Book to Bestseller: You Are Your Own Best Publicist
  • The Delicate Art of Creating Villains
  • Non-fiction That Sells: Making Your Article or Book Irresistible to Editors
  • Style:¬†Uncovering Voice and the Power of Identity.
  • The Business of Writing: Making Money as a Freelance Writer.
  • Impactivity: Pursuing Your Writing Dream with Passion, Balance, and Joy

A conference bookstore will offer a wide variety of writer resources and faculty titles. Personal consultations with faculty are on a first-come, first-serve basis. Author/editor/conference director Marlene Bagnull and award-winning novelist/collaborative writer Jeanette Windle are among auxiliary faculty offering personal consultations.

More information, including the Super Saturday 2016 Flyer/Registration Form and Press Release can be found at Lancaster Christian Writers Today ( OR email LCW president Jeanette Windle at

Mail Super Saturday 2016 registration form (or relevant info) and check or money order payable to: Lancaster Christian Writers, c/o Jeanette Windle, 1776 Euclid Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601. For credit card/PayPal payment, request invoice at (preferred) or call 717-209-0011 after 4 PM.

I have attended LCW’s Super Saturday conferences for the past three years and am already registered to attend this one! ¬†I always learn something helpful or make a valuable new contact or make a new friend, and I have heard all but one of these speakers before and they do an excellent job! ¬†So, if you write or want to write and live in or near Lancaster County, plan to join us for this Super Saturday Writers’ Conference!

Mermaid Moon by Colleen Coble

I received a free copy of this eBook to write a review (my personal opinion) for BookLook Blogger.

This is the first romantic suspense novel I have read by Colleen Coble. ¬†I read her “Journey of the Heart” series last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. ¬†You can read my reviews of each of those by searching for “Book Reviews” under Categories on the right sidebar of this blog. ¬†They were western romance stories. ¬†They had a bit of suspense, but not like¬†Mermaid Moon.

Mermaid Moon is a Sunset Cove novel by Colleen Coble. ¬†I have not read¬†Inn at Ocean’s Edge which is the first book of this series. ¬†But that is one thing I really like about Ms. Coble’s writing. ¬†Even when she writes a series, you can read them out of order, or read one from the series and not the rest, and because of the information she includes in each book of the series, you do not feel lost or confused about the characters or the plot line.

Mallory Davis left her home on Mermaid Point in Maine years ago and never looked back. But when she receives a mysterious call from her father and later is informed of his death, she heads back to Mermaid Point immediately.

She suspects that her father was murdered, and a Downeast Maine game warden, Kevin O’Connor, confirms her suspicions. ¬†Mallory doesn’t want to spend too much time with Kevin, but he wants to help her find out what happened to her father. ¬†Mallory broke Kevin’s heart when she left Maine 15 years ago, and the history between them is something she believes cannot be repaired.

Mallory’s friend and neighbor, Carol brings her daughter, Haylie to Mermaid Point much sooner than planned and informs Mallory that someone showed up at her house in Bangor, Maine looking for her; someone who seemed quite threatening.

As the story continues, more questions arise and more suspicious characters emerge.  Whenever I thought I knew who was guilty, something else would show me I was wrong.  The story kept me guessing almost to the end.

Colleen Coble did a great job creating deep characters that made me care for them and cheer for them right for the start.  The plot line was suspenseful and kept me guessing.   The plot line kept me turning pages.  I look forward to reading more romantic suspense by Colleen Coble.

I recommend this book to all Colleen Coble fans, to anyone who enjoys a real page turner, to anyone who enjoys romantic suspense, and to anyone who likes a story with rich characters and a fast-moving plot line.



The Golden Braid by Melanie Dickerson

I received a free eBook copy of this book to write a review for BookLook Blogger.

This is the first story I have ever read by Melanie Dickerson. ¬†I have never been familiar with the story of Rapunzel, so I do not know if Ms. Dickerson’s story is too much like the original or not. ¬†What I do know is that Ms. Dickerson captured my attention and held it throughout the book. ¬†She created rich, deep characters. ¬†Good characters that I fell in love with and cheered for, and bad characters that I wanted to see get their comeuppance.

Ms. Dickerson’s descriptions were brief but clear. ¬†I could easily picture both characters and places in my head. ¬†The story takes place in Medieval times complete with knights and castles. ¬†I’ve always enjoyed romance stories from Medieval times, and I thoroughly enjoyed this story by Melanie Dickerson.

The fact that the story is a spin off of a fairy tale was intriguing to me. ¬†I have only read one other such story by a different author. ¬†I really liked that though Ms. Dickerson’s story ended happily, it was not presented as “happily ever after”. ¬†That’s the one thing about fairy tales and Disney that I find quite frustrating, because when you grow up with those stories, you expect to find and experience that kind of romance and love, which is not true to life. ¬†True to life love/marriage requires a lot of work and give and take, communication and understanding on the part of both people involved. ¬†Therefore, I loved that Ms. Dickerson hinted that not every day would be “happily ever after” because of the personality differences of the characters and their past hurts. ¬†Thank you, Ms. Dickerson for that.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who would like to read a fairy tale type story that’s a ¬†bit more realistic, and to anyone who loves historical fiction novels, Medieval times, knights and castles, and romance stories, or anyone who just wants to read a good book.