Reflections In Hindsight

Grace in the Rearview Mirror…it's closer than it appears

  • Ephesians 4:29

    Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)

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      A-ZE is for Evil Parents and Rotten KidsI present you Jimmy Kimmel's annual "I Told My Kids I Ate All Their Halloween Candy" video montage. It's an artful mixture of cruelty, humor, and ghastly awe. My favorite is Drawer Boy. Now there's an ax murderer in the making.Which is your favorite?
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      Is there a story behind your book The Devil and Pastor Gus?Absolutely! About thirty years ago—maybe forty—I wrote a little play called “B.L.Z.” When I say “little,” I mean little. Just a few pages. In this play, the Devil is disgusted with the fact that his son, Junior, always messes up his evil assignments by doing good instead and sends him to earth on one […]
    • The Devil and Pastor Gus
      Back Cover Blurb:Fifty. Half a century old. Closer to the grave than cradle. And what does Pastor Gus Gospello have to show for his fifty years on earth? Not much. Shepherd of a small church. Married without kids. Faithful keeper of God's commands. Well, most of them, anyway. Gus longs to make a difference for God to have an eternal legacy. Now, as he c […]
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      Back CoverThe Hair Mavens are back! Women are flocking to the newly remodeled Hair Mavens Salon. But the salon isn’t the only thing that has changed—two more mavens arrive and create chaos for the ladies; and if that weren’t enough Katya is about to bring on something new that will change all their lives. KATYA: The former mousey Kathy has transformed into t […]
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    • The December Clash Victory Goes To...
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    • December Clash
      It's the most wonderful time of the year!This is our last clash of 2014, but the year isn't over yet! The Christmas season is in full swing and that means books, books, and more books! Whether you're looking for something to curl up with in front of the fire, or something to gift to your best friend, we've got you covered. Come "peek […]
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      Former Clash Contestant Patricia Bradley is in the spotlight today! A popular romantic suspense author from Mississippi, her latest book "A Promise to Protect" released this fall and garnered high praise from readers. It's the second book in her Logan Point series, with the third releasing next summer.A Promise to Protect:In a steamy small tow […]
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      As I stated last week, November is NANOWRIMO. I'm working on the next Stones Creek novel. It's the story of Chloe, Noah Preston's sister. She comes to Stones Creek with her two children. If you would like to read her pre-story simply subscribe to Sophie's Special Emails. No more than twice a month will you receive an email with special co […]
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      It is November and thus NANOWRIMO, National Novel Writing Month. The challenge is to begin a novel and write 50,000 words during the month. Since this occupies most of my focus for these four weeks I will be reposting previous articles each week this month. Fudgsicles, how long has it been since I’ve had a fudgsicle? I’m not sure, but they came to mind when […]
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      During Nazi Germay Christian Stearn, a freedom-fighter is rescued by a band of gypsies involved in the resistance after being captured by  the Nazis. Christian immediately falls in love with Nadya the beautify gypsy girl who helps orchestrate his rescue. Christian then joins forces and works with the gypsies.The author uses the story to help educate readers […]
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    • BOOK REVIEW: LAKE SURRENDER BY CAROL GRACE STRATTON
      Ally Cervantes’ life is in the toilet. Her husband has bailed on their marriage partially due to the fact that he can’t handle being dad to an autistic son and partly because the passion has died. Ally has to sell her home in California at a loss and simultaneously loses her job as an editor for a book publisher. Not sure how else to make it, she takes her A […]
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    Thank you for your encouragement and support for the past three years. We've had fun connecting with you and hope you've found useful material here on Reflections. And here's the but... Reflections In Hindsight is closing on December 21, 2012. Elaine and Sophie and I can be found over at http://authorculture.blogspot.com; April can be found at Clash of the Titles, http://www.clashofthetitles, http://www.aprilgardner.com and watch for news for more novels from her!; Janet is ever-present on the Internet with her very special words of wisdom and grace at http://www.janetperezeckles.com, and Luther--who knows where he'll show up next, but I'd watch my back if I were you... Book Reviews are always important, so I, Lisa, will continue to offer them through my blog, as well as those promotions for your new books or book launches, or your news.
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Posts Tagged ‘editing’

AutoCrit Editing Wizard, a useful tool for writers

Posted by April W Gardner on November 14, 2012

Last month, someone on the John 3:16 Marketing Network recommended the website AutoCrit.com. Today, I looked into it, and so far, it has all the appearance of being useful tool for writers.

In the company’s own words, “The AutoCrit Editing Wizard is an instant book editor. With the click of a button it shows you the problems in your manuscript.”

Copy, paste, click “analyze.” That simple.

The free version analyzes 1,500 words each day. It will check for overused words, sentence length variation, and clichés and redundancies.

The paid version increases word count to 3,000 per day and adds on repeated words and phrases, phrases summary, pacing, dialog tags, initial pronouns, readability, and homonyms. The repeated words and phrases alone is worth the $47/year!

I put the first scene of my latest novel through the wizard. Mind you, it had already undergone four critiques, but I was still shocked at what the wizard caught. It’s mostly nit-picky stuff, but since I’m a nit-picky author, AutoCrit has potential to become by bestest buddy.

With a 30-day money back guarantee, it was a no-brainer to fork over $47, but I plan to test-drive it hard over the next month!

Swing by there now and pop 500 of your latest words into the wizard. Just for fun. Then come back and let me know what you think!

April W Gardner is an award-winning author and the founder of Clash of the Titles.

Posted in Authors, Working from home, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Market Mondays – Nuke the Slush Pile! with Jim Pence

Posted by Lisa Lickel on June 13, 2011

This month I’m delighted to welcome James H. Pence (he’ll answer to Jim), fellow author, visionary chalk artist, and gifted with a honey voice that will melt your socks, who has agreed to share his talk from the QuadCities Christian Writers Conference 2010. Take it away, Jim!

Nuke the
Slush Pile, Part 1

By James H. Pence

If you’ve been writing for any length of time, you know what the “slush pile” is. It’s that gargantuan pile of query letters and unsolicited  submissions that clutter editors’ desks. In other words, if you’re a new writer who is trying to break in, the slush pile is your competition. Of course, in today’s world of e-mail and electronic submissions, the slush pile tends to be more “virtual” than physical, but nevertheless, it’s there and it’s real.

I remember back when I was an unpublished writer, I read a short newspaper item that described the odds against getting a book published. I didn’t save the article, so I don’t remember the exact numbers, but I do remember that they were very discouraging. Something like only one in 10,000 manuscripts submitted to conventional publishers ever makes it to print.

I posted this statistic to an online forum for writers, and someone responded, “If those are the odds, why should I even try?”

Why, indeed?

Picture yourself standing before an editor’s desk, clutching your query, proposal, or manuscript in your trembling hands. On this editor’s desk is a pile of ten thousand manuscripts. I don’t know how big a pile that would make, but I imagine that 10,000 manuscripts would probably bury the desk, if not the editor.

You humbly place your envelope on to the pile, hoping that it doesn’t trigger a fatal avalanche. Nearby you hear the muffled voice of the editor calling out to you. (You can’t see her because she is indeed buried under the pile of manuscripts.)

“Thank you for your submission,” she says. “I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.”

As you leave the office, the editor’s administrative assistant takes a sip of his latte and says, “You know, only three of those manuscripts will be chosen.”

Your heart sinks as you wander out of the publisher’s office and into a rain-soaked street. The dark clouds mirror your depression.

“Why did I even bother?” you wonder aloud. As your day ends, you seek out a local Starbucks and quietly wonder if you should change
careers and become a barista.

Okay, okay. I know I’m exaggerating. But almost all of us have felt that way at one time or another. What if I were to tell you that you don’t need to worry about the odds? What if I were to tell you that there is a not only a way to improve the odds, but to “nuke” the slush pile and get it out of the way entirely?

Am I guaranteeing you will be published? No.

I am saying that it is possible for you to significantly increase your chances, bypass your competition, and get noticed by editors.

That’s what we’ll be focusing on over the next three weeks. Hopefully, by the time you’re finished reading through these blog posts, you’ll have a plan of action that will move that slush pile out of the way forever.

We’ll get into the specifics of how to nuke the slush pile next week, but here’s a little tidbit to whet your appetite:

You remember that pile of 10,000 manuscripts that has buried our poor editor?

At least 90% of them are unpublishable.

Now your odds are only 1 in 1000.

See you next week.

Bio: James H. Pence is a full-time freelance writer and the author of six books. His latest book (a collaboration with Stephen Arterburn), is titled The Encounter and is set for publication by Thomas Nelson, Publishers in November. You can learn more about James at his

web sites: http://www.jamespence.com/ and www.fulltimefreelancing.com

Posted in Authors, Encouragment, Writing | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

 
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