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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  • RSS April’s Blog: A Writer’s Journey

    • Cinema Saturday-- The 41 Most Unexpected Cat Jumps of All Time
      Why do jumping cats freak us out so much? And why do we laugh so hard at people who are freaking out?I'm one of those awkward laughers--someone who laughs at inappropriate times, such as when my husband does the splits on an icy sidewalk or when my child runs smack-dab into a doorpost. Unfortunately, compassion is not my go-to emotion. I do eventually f […]
      noreply@blogger.com (April Gardner)
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    • Oregon Author Bonnie Leon
      Welcome back to the Book Loft, Bonnie. Is there a story behind your new release, Where Eagles Soar?This is a true story. I changed the names of people and places out of respect for family members.Where Eagles Soar is dedicated to the brokenhearted, those who have or are presently living in the midst of heartache and fear. God has not forgotten you. He sees y […]
    • Where Eagles Soar by Bonnie Leon
      In 1947 Lily Sanders moved with her family to a homestead at the edge of an Athabaskan village in the Alaskan Territory. It was an ideal location for her father, a mountain man and hunting guide. It also provided a place where the world could not see his brutality.Seeking her father’s love and approval, Lily traipses the mountain trails at his side, learning […]
    • Winners at the Barn Door Book Loft
      Once again, we offer you a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft.And before we announce our three winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to:JM Downey who offered her Historical Romance  A Time To Overcome. Holly Michael who offered her Inspirational Fiction  Crooked Lines. And Susan Anne Mason who offered her Contemporary Romance  Bet […]
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    • O'Barr's Latest: Tender Shadows
      Author Ann Gaylia O'Barr visits today!She brings with her, in the form of her latest novel, all her experience as a Foreign Service officer in the turbulent Middle East. Tender Shadows is one of seven such novels and will appeal to lovers of foreign lands, culture, adventure, and romance.PURCHASEAmazonAbout Tender Shadows:When Beth Wilhite’s U.S. State […]
    • "A Place in His Heart," a New World Romance!
      Today's featured novel,A PLACE IN HIS HEART is a historical romance authored by Rebecca DeMarino. It's her debut novel and book one of The Southold Chronicles."I hope my readers find pure entertainment! I hope they enjoy the love story, with all of the ups and downs of Mary and Barnabas. I hope they get lost in a time period that was so far di […]
    • June's Hot New Releases Clash of the Titles Champion
      Thank you, voters and encouragers, for a great Clash of the Titles, June 2014 Release Battle.We'll begin our champion announcement with the kindness of the voters....Comments of Encouragement for this Month’s CLASH Authors:They are all stunning... I love though how Tamara writes in the medieval time... Hard to find clean fiction in that time period :)He […]
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    • Taking A Break
      If you are a regular reader you'll know I didn't post last week. We had just gotten home from vacation. Yellowstone National Park is fantastic. You know how things go when you get back. Well, that was the way it was for me. Add in an unplanned dental event and an 8 hour round trip to Chicago for a TV interview about Seeing The Life and you can prob […]
    • Sin Still Makes You Stupid and Your Stupidity  Ripples, Floods, or Tsunamis  
      A couple of years ago I wrote posts entitled Sin Makes You Stupid and The Ripple Effect. It's one of those truths that seem to be forgotten or glossed over. It's a truth we should be aware of and watch for within ourselves and others. The stupidity of sinning overflows into the lives of others. The consequences to ourselves is often increased expon […]
    • What's Next?
      Seeing The Life is off to a great start. It is garnering 5 star reviews and good publicity. Rhubarb Fest this year was good, even though I don't eat rhubarb. I left at noon on Saturday when the radar showed rain coming. I didn't want the books I had to get wet.So, what's next? I keep getting asked that question. When's your next book comi […]
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    • Get on Board and Stay on Board by Pear Nsiah-Kumi
      My friend Pearl Nsiah-Kumi, who is a multi-published Christian Author, has put together an inspiring book for us, Get On Board and Stay On Board. It is a collection of poems, short articles and short Bible studies based on scripture, to encourage non-Christians to place their faith in Jesus, and also to support Christians to have a closer relationship with G […]
    • Christian Writers Conference
      Country  Memories Farm Christian Writing ConferenceAugust 8-9 in Manitowoc, WisconsinWe have wonderful speakers again this year: Becky Melby Ben Wolf  Kathryn SpringerFriday evening critiques by Susan Baganz  On-the-farm networking social "getting writers together" Please check us out at www.countrymemoriesfarm.com.Joy,http://LisaLickel.com […]
    • CrossReads Book Blast with Elizabeth Maddrey
      Hope DeferredBy Elizabeth MaddreyAbout the Book:Christian fiction for women. It's been a tough year. Twin sisters June and July and their husbands spent the last year trying to start a family. Now, as the sisters work with fertility specialists to see how medicine can help them conceive, each must determine what treatment is right for them in the midst […]
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    • Book Review: Healing Grace by Lisa Lickel
      When Grace Runyan experiences the loss of her husband, she moves to escape her pain and her past. She rents a home in a small Michigan town next door to a seriously  ill man with a young son. Grace’s personal tragedy and hurts run deep. The  more we get to know her, the more secrets we learn about her. As she begins to care for the little boy, and finds hers […]
    • Book Giveaway: Mothers & Daughters: Mending a Strained Relationship
      Here's your chance to win a print or electronic copy of my book, Mothers and Daughters: Mending a Strained RelationshipHere's a bit more about the book.Mothers and daughters. In perhaps no other relationship are our hopes so high, and the dysfunction so disappointing. You feel locked into a hurtful relationship that you must deal with, and it' […]
    • Book Review: The Heart of Thornton Creek by Bonnie Leon
      I expected yet another romance lacking originality but Leon took this Christian historical  in another direction. When independent-minded Rebecca Williams is left without any prospects or means to support herself after her father dies, she has few prospects. Despite the fact that she doesn’t love him, she agrees to marry a young Australian, Daniel Thornton.T […]
  • BLOG NEWS

    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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