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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    • Are You This Week's Winner?
      Once again, we offer you a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft. And before we announce our winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to these Christian authors who offered a sample of their writing to our faithful readers:Rick Barry who offered his Suspense:  The Methuselah Project. Candee Fick who offered her Contemporary Romance:  Ca […]
    • From Northern Ireland, Author Erin Burnett
      Welcome to the Book Loft, Erin!Is there a story behind your book, Liza’s Avenger?Liza’s Avenger started life as an RPG game I made way back in 2011, but I felt my limited technical ability was holding me back from conveying the story I really wanted to tell, which is why I decided to write it as a NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) project when I was 1 […]
    • Liza's Avenger by Erin Burnett
      Hikari once lived an idyllic life in the far-reaches of the Maysea Continent, but when her sister Liza is killed by the mysterious Kellua race everything changes. She is plunged into a perilous journey filled with epic battles, life or death situations and new friends that share her determination to stop the Kelluas. However, will destroying her enemies real […]
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    • FREE Kindle! To Celebrate Five Years of COTT!
      Happy Birthday, COTT! We're half a decade old!To celebrate FIVE YEARS of Clash of the Titles, we're GIVING AWAY some fun gifts. You can win books by Gail Pallotta and Lisa Lickel, or even a KINDLE FIRE!!Raffle opens right now!Closes Monday, November 30.There are several ways to enter the drawing outlined in the RaffleCopter below. Winners will be d […]
    • And Our Winner is...
      Congratulations toA Noble Masqueradeby Kristi Ann Hunter!Book Blurb:Lady Miranda Hawthorne may long to break free of her ladylike expectations as he approaches spinsterhood, but finding herself intrigued by her brother's new valet is more rebellion than she planned. When she accidentally begins exchanging letters with a long-lost duke, things become eve […]
    • September Releases Clash 2015!
      Welcome back to our arena! We have six authors stepping onto our sands, ready to wield their mighty pens. Please look at each of their covers and descriptions and choose which one looks most appealing to you. Which would go on the top of your to-be-read pile? Be sure to make your choice in the actual survey, as those in the comments section alone won't […]
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    • Audio Versions Are Here!!!
      That's right. I'vebeen having my novels recorded in audio. There are three finished now and more in the works. Healing Love, Cottonwood Series #1 is available read by Lori Smith. She's working on Lord's Love now. Leah's Peace and Chasing Norie have been released read by Suzie Venable. Both these women are wonderful readers bringing t […]
    • So I Failed Nano
      Hi again,It's been a long time again since I posted. Haven't done a ton of writing but I did start a new novel or novelette or series of novelettes at the beginning of the month. November is National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to start a novel and write 50,000 words during the month. November isn't over yet but I know I'm not going […]
    • I'm Baack, I Think
      If you haven't noticed, which I actually hope you have, I haven't blogged for a while. Well, I needed a break. I'd published seven books in three years and I was sort of written out. I simply needed a break. So now I think the break is over. I'm thinking about writing again and have several projects in different stages of writing. They we […]
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    • Anita Estes and her forty day devotional When God Speaks
      When God Speaks--Forty Days and Nights of His Promises by Anita EstesAnita shares:          The inspiration for  When God Speaks grew out of my desire to connect women to the powerful promises of God. Told through my own stories and life experiences, my hope is to show others how God's promises can transform the ordinary into the extraordinary.          […]
    • Carol Brown and her newest book for children
      Thank you, Lisa, for hosting me! I always enjoy talking about Sassy Pants and delighting children with another story in the series!Buy Sassypants in paperback format from Amazon, $11.99, or order from your favorite bookstore.ISBN-13: 978-0996495356Can you tell us about your new book? Sassy Pants Learns About Strange Creatures Sassy Pants Learns...about stran […]
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    • The Color of the Season by Julianne MacLean
      NOTE:  Due to a serious need to cut back on my workload, this will be my last official book review on this blog.It doesn’t seem possible that the evening can get any worse for police officer Josh Wallace after he is dumped by the girlfriend he planned to propose to, but it does.  Josh and his partner are shot while chasing a carjacking suspect. While on the […]
    • Book Review: Swept Away (Trouble in texas Book 1) by Mary Connealy
      Ruthy MacNeil is rescued by Luke Stone after she nearly drowns fording a flooded river with a wagon train. Her step family doesn’t survive and she is finally free of their mistreatment. Luke surived the horrific ordeal as a prisoner of war in notorious Anderson prison during the civil war, only to learn that his father has been killed and the family ranch st […]
    • Book Review of Everything She Ever Wanted by Ann Rule
      When Pat Taylor wed Tom Allanson he had no way of knowing it would destroy his life in just a matter of weeksIn fact, Pat destroyed a lot of people’s lives. The attractive Southern belle was spoiled by her mother and she expected to live a lavish lifestyle at any cost. Nobody crosses Pat who was fascinated with Scarlett O’Hara. Pat could pour on the charm, b […]

    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; April can be found at Clash of the Titles, http://www.clashofthetitles, 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, 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 ‘authors’

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 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 »

Tuesday Promotion in Motion: Shellie Neumeier!

Posted by Lisa Lickel on April 3, 2012

Welcome Shellie Neumeier, friend, fellow co-author, and all around fun person, even when she’s not here. Shellie says she’s an over-achiever, and I’d have to agree. She’s the only person I know who decided she wanted to be a writer and less than a year later held her first book in her hands, published by a traditional, but new, publisher. ~Lisa

Hi. My name is Shellie and I haven’t figured out what I want to be when I grow up. When I was little, I wanted to be a famous psychologist. Maybe even win the Nobel Peace Prize. So I studied psychology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. But I met a young man with whom I fell in love and the thought of five more years of college…well, it didn’t sound so great anymore.

Then I wanted to teach high school. I could teach psychology. Maybe even sociology, social studies and history, too. Mom always said I was an over-achiever. But I moved out of state and my teaching license didn’t work.

Then I wanted to be a mom. We had four children, two by birth and two by adoption. When they grew older, I got bored. I served at my church and worked as a Children’s Ministry Assistant. In addition, I decided I wanted to be a tax accountant. I loved numbers and since the tax season piqued during the school year, it seemed like a perfect fit. But when tax season ended and the kids were still at school, I picked up my husband’s power tools. After drilling through my thumb with a screw driver and “leaving bits of me on every project,” my husband hid his tools.

He suggested I find a safe hobby. Something that forced me to stay still. That’s when I decided I wanted to be a writer.

Yeah, sounds like you have a winner in your house! Keep him, even though he took you away from Wisocnsin. Shellie, what do you love about this book?

Like any artwork a mom receives from her children, whether it’s macaroni art, finger painting, tissue flowers, or gallery premiers, you love the art you kids made because YOUR kid made them. I love this book because my children had a hand in making it. I love the thumb print my children made on this book.

Can you share with us the main thing you learned during the process of writing and publishing this book?

Children have an amazing imagination and they allow you to push fiction beyond reality in a way that may make some adults squirm. Come to think of it, children love it when you push those boundaries. Consider the greybar, the mythical pet in The Wishing Ring. This adult never would have crafted a beast that has the head of a greyhound, body of a polar bear, and wings of an eagle. It would be disproportionate, unable to fly, unimaginable. As a matter of fact, the flight issue has risen among adult readers time and again, but not so with my younger readers. They want to ride the critter themselves. Not only can they picture it, they can reconstruct it in their mind’s eye and interact with it. Love that.

The thought of doing something with the kids, letting them see that they are valued and matter is so important. I love that. What should your readers discover and want to share with their family and friends after reading this book?

My hope is that readers rediscover the truth in where beauty and strength lie. It’s not in their looks. Their possessions. Their friends (or family). Their beauty and strength come from a place deep within. A place God created and designed to nurture their unique version of beauty and strength. No one else’s. Theirs. There’s always good inside. We tend to forget that.


The Wishing Ring (book one in the Adventures of Cory and Ally),

published by MuseItYoung, ASIN: B0073UHRM4

Buy it on Amazon


The King’s Seal (book two), published by MuseItYoung

To be released 12/2012

Other books by Shellie:

Driven,a YA supernatural book from Risen Books

available from Amazon

and A Summer in Oakville, a romance, from BlackLyon Publishing

available from Amazon

Posted in Authors, Encouragment, Friendship, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Promotion in Motion Tuesday with Lynda Schab: Mind Over Madi

Posted by Lisa Lickel on December 20, 2011

Welcome to debut author Lynda Schab.

LYNDA LEE SCHAB got her writing start in greeting cards (Blue Mountain Arts, Dayspring) and from there went on to write articles and short stories (Mature Living, Christian Home & School) and in many places online (including and, but her passion has always been fiction. Mind Over Madi, her debut novel, is near and dear to her heart. Lynda admits she has a lot in common with the character of Madi. Not only are they both addicted to ice cream, chocolate, and computer games, they struggle with the same types of insecurities and continually require a hefty dose of God’s grace. Lynda works behind the scenes at and is a member of ACFW. She is a regular book reviewer for and is the Grand Rapids Christian Fiction Examiner and the National Writing Examiner for Mind Over Madi received Runner-up in the 2007 FaithWriters Page Turner contest, was a finalist in the 2007 RWA Get your Stiletto in the Door contest, and won second place in the 2008 ACFW Genesis contest, Chick Lit category. Lynda lives with her husband, Rob, and two teenagers in Michigan. Visit Lynda online and connect with her on her blog.


Lynda, tell us what do you love about your book. One positive thing I’ve heard most from readers so far is that Mind over Madi is real. And that is exactly what I was going for. We are all flawed and do stupid things. We all struggle with insecurities. We all need God’s grace. Perhaps not everyone will like my style of writing style or the blunt way I put things sometimes, but hopefully every reader will be able to relate to Madi in one way or another. Even if it’s only her tendency to stuff her face with Edy’s Dibs when the going gets tough.

Share something you learned during the writing or publishing process. I’ve learned I possess a level of patience I didn’t know I had! It’s a long process, that’s for sure. But the payoff is so worth it.

Can you tell us something behind-the-scenes about this book that the readers would love to hear—something not easily found on your web site? Quite a few of the characters in my book are based on real people. I wish I could tell you who I’m talking about. But if I told you, I’d have to kill you. And since I have no desire to go to prison (and because I’m a Christian), I’d better keep my mouth shut. :-)

Now you did it, Lynda Lee! Someone had better ask her about the above answer!

Thanks for coming by.

Buy Mind Over Madi at Amazon, Barnes and Noble or at your local book store.


Posted in Author Spotlight | Tagged: , , , , , | 4 Comments »

ACFW Recap and Splickety Magazine

Posted by Ben Erlichman on September 29, 2011

I have returned from the 2011 ACFW Conference a new man.

You’re probably wondering what I’m talking about. In a previous post I mentioned three goals that I was hoping to accomplish at this year’s conference:

Goal #1: With three novels written and one in-process, I want to convince a particular publisher (I’ll tell you who in a later post) to take the next step(s) in publishing me, thus making my path to publication a question of” when,” not “if.”

Goal #2: I want to network heavily with other authors to obtain submissions for the short fiction magazine I’m editing (previously described here) for Written World Communications. I’ll give an update on that in two weeks.

Goal #3: I want to soak in as much marketing strategy information as possible as it pertains to my writing so I can better promote and plan for my future success as an author.

The results of those goals are as follows:

Goal #1: Success. My 1st choice publisher has decided to take my first novel, The Dreamer, down the traditional publishing path to see if she can convince her team to take it on as a new project. We also have a fallback plan if that fails.

Goal #2: Success. I networked my bum off. Of the 500 cards I brought with me tot he conference, I’m pretty sure I passed out over 200 cards, perhaps even 250. I’ve also revamped the guidelines for the magazine and its name, both of which I will touch on later in this post.

Goal #3: Success–mostly. While I could have been more diligent about attending some of the sessions I’d signed up for, I have to say that the time I spent talking with my (hopefully) soon-to-be publisher about some marketing ideas and the time I spent talking with Jim Rubart about charting out my career path during our mentoring appointment really helped me ascertain how I want to start out my publishing career, which is by publishing The Dreamer first. We also discussed branding, and he said that my “new look” was much improved from last year’s.

For example, last year:

ACFW 2010

As opposed to this year:

ACFW 2011

Yes, that’s me in costume for the awards banquet. It was sort of a tribute to Rambo, the Terminator, Mad Max, and a combination of other miscellaneous action icons. Oh, and I’m standing next to former ACFW President Cynthia Ruchti, who graciously agreed not only to have her pic taken with me but also to hold my outlandish gun.

Granted, I didn’t dress like that the whole conference, but you get the idea. As an action/adventure author, I necessarily had to present myself in a way that reflected that. Overall, the conference was a success. :)

Anyway, I had mentioned that I was going to post a bit about my new project, Splickety Magazine. Instead of doing that, I’m posting a link to my personal blog where you can access submission guidelines and read about the actual magazine and what it will contain.

You can find it here.

Since ACFW the submissions have been trickling in, but I feel the waters straining against the floodgates with more submissions on their way. It’s not too late for you, though. You can still submit, and I will need submissions for all of my subsequent issues as well. The magazine will launch on November 1st (or possibly Oct. 31st) and will come out every 3 months (February, May, August, November, repeat). Keep sending me stuff, just follow the guidelines.

Thanks for reading.


P.S. Our very own April Gardener wins the free ebook from Lynn Rush since she was the only commenter aside from Lynn herself. Yay April! I hope you enjoy it.

Posted in Authors, Encouragment, Friendship, Happiness, Life Experiences, Living Our Faith Out Loud, Working from home, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »


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