Tuesday, March 31, 2009

There is a God by Antony Flew

There Is a God: How The World's Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind
By: Antony Flew, Roy Abraham Varghese
HarperOne / 2008 / Paperback
ISBN: 0061335304
ISBN-13: 9780061335303

Once called the grandfather of modern atheism, Flew now argues for God's existence in this startling testimony! With refreshing openness to argument and an absence of anger and hostility, he reveals the scientific discoveries and philosophical viewpoints that turned him from non-believing into having faith in God as Designer. Eye-opening! 256 pages, softcover from HarperOne.

Here is a review and another and another

What I learned from the movies: How to be a man

The Next Evangelism: Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity

The Next Evangelism: Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity
by Soong-chan Rah

180 pages
IVP Books (May 2009)
ISBN-10: 0830833609
ISBN-13: 978-0830833603

I found these reviews


"Soong-Chan Rah explores the impact of ethnic and geographic shifts on the present and future state of evangelicalism. He gives us fair warning that parts of his heartfelt book are 'intended to provoke,' and they will. But that doesn't stop his book from being timely, thoughtful and very rewarding." --Philip Jenkins, Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Humanities, Pennsylvania State University, and author of The Next Christendom

"In this manifesto for change, Soong-Chan Rah calls for the church to break free from limiting and exclusive paradigms and fully embrace the dramatic cultural diversity that is rapidly defining the twenty-first century in the United States. His powerfully persuasive pen engages and challenges the reader in ways that radically transform how church life is to be understood, shaped and lived. Everyone who cares about the Christian church in the United States needs to read The Next Evangelicalism. This book ignites hope for reconciliation in the world through the church."

Key endorsement on the back cover from Harvey Cox, Hollis Professor of Divinity at Harvard University:
"One of the most important changes now going on in America -- and indeed world -- religion is the profound transformation of evangelicalism, a movement which encompasses hundreds of millions of people. This book is the best and most balanced treatment of the subject now available. It is well researched, written and comprehensive."

Monday, March 30, 2009

Monsanto's Many Attempts to Destroy All Seeds but Their Own

Monsanto's Many Attempts to Destroy All Seeds but Their Own
Dr. Joseph Mercola

Some say that if farmers don’t want problems from Monsanto, they simply shouldn’t buy Monsanto’s GMO seeds. But it isn’t quite that simple. Monsanto contaminates the fields, trespasses onto the land taking samples, and then sues, saying they own the crop.

Meanwhile, Monsanto is taking many other steps to keep farmers and everyone else from having any access at all to buying, collecting, and saving of normal seeds:

1. They’ve bought up the seed companies across the Midwest.

2. They’ve written Monsanto seed laws and gotten legislators to put them through, that make cleaning, collecting and storing of seeds so onerous in terms of fees and paperwork that having normal seed becomes almost impossible.

3. Monsanto is pushing laws that ensure farmers and citizens can’t block the planting of GMO crops even if they can contaminate other crops.

4. There are Monsanto regulations buried in the FDA rules that make a farmer’s seed cleaning equipment illegal because it’s now considered a “source of seed contamination.”

Monsanto has sued more than 1,500 farmers whose fields had simply been contaminated by GM crops.

Surviving the Middle Class Crash February 5, 2009

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

There is a reason why I believe Monsanto to be one of the most evil companies on the planet, and this is in large part due to its activities relating to controlling food production through controlling the seeds to produce it.

For nearly all of its history the United States Patent and Trademark Office refused to grant patents on seeds, viewing them as life-forms with too many variables to be patented. But in 1980 the U.S. Supreme Court allowed for seed patents in a five-to-four decision, laying the groundwork for a handful of corporations to begin taking control of the world’s food supply.

Since the 1980s, Monsanto has become the world leader in genetic modification of seeds and has won at least 674 biotechnology patents, more than any other company.

This is not surprising, considering they invest over $2 million a dayon research and development!

But Monsanto is not only patenting their own GMO seeds. They have also succeeded in slapping patents on a huge number of crop seeds, patenting life forms for the first time -- again without a vote of the people or Congress. By doing this, Monsanto becomes sole owner of the very seeds necessary to support the world’s food supply … an incredibly powerful position that no for-profit company should ever hold.

How do they defend this blatant attempt to control the food supply? They write on MonsantoToday.com:

“Patent protection allows companies to see a return on their investment which enables further investment in R-and-D and product development. This profit-investment cycle drives product innovation that is responsive to farmer needs.”

Farmers’ needs?

Farmers who buy Monsanto’s GM seeds are required to sign an agreement promising not to save the seeds or sell them to other farmers. The result? Farmers must buy new seeds every year, and they must buy them from Monsanto. See rest of article here:


Dark Parable: Once and once again

I dreamed Jesus came to those who were going to be saved -- either by the rapture or in judgment. Then he came back again and looked over the ones who had been saved. Then he trimmed the group down further. I was so nervous because he was winnowing people out.

I'm not really a once saved always saved kinda person but this was scary. Then the lord reminded me that many of the parables of judgment begin with folks already IN the kingdom. The man to whom the traveling lord gave one talent was already in the kingdom. The five foolish virgins were already in the bridal party.

I got to thinking how it will feel watching the great throne judgment. We'll watch as great televangelists we respect, folks who perhaps will have lived scandal-free lives. They'll go up to the throne. And Jesus will say, "I never knew you." What will such folks as you and I think? What chance will we have after seeing those folks? Just hoping I know my lord.


Sunday, March 29, 2009

am totally loving this blog

Okay, so there I was on youtube when I found videos from failblog They got me so hooked I bookmarked the site.

To start you off, here's one of their vids of Terry Moran, one of my favorite anchormen btw..so I'm not being meanspirited here.

Human Mirror

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Gracias by Marcos Witt

Eat This Not That

Eat This Not That
is written by David Zinczenko and the editors of Men's Health and it's about the stuff restaurants and fast food folks don't tell you about what's in the food they serve you.

Here's an article on the book over at msnbc

Here's an article on usatoday

Friday, March 27, 2009

Kriti Festival Call for Submissions

Kriti Festival Call for Submissions
June 11 - 14, 2009, Chicago
Guests of Honor: Amitava Kumar and Bapsi Sidhwa

DesiLit is pleased to welcome submissions to its upcoming festival of arts and literature, to be held in Chicago, June 11 - 14. Submissions are welcome in the following areas:

- literature (fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, drama)
- film
- music
- dance

We are not currently planning on a visual arts component (although if you live in Chicago and would be interested in curating such an exhibition, please do get in touch with us.)

If your work is selected, you'll be invited to serve on panels and/or give a reading/screen a film/give a performance/etc. At this time, we do not know what our final budget will be, but panelists will receive free festival registration, and if there are funds remaining after expenses, a share of the proceeds towards reimbursing their travel expenses. We'll also do our best to help you find crash space in
Chicago with local volunteers if needed.

To have your work considered please send an electronic sample with the subject line: KRITI SUB [title of work /
your name], following these guidelines:
- a brief bio, PLUS one of the following
- literature sample (up to 20 pages)
- film sample (up to 20 minutes; if you want to send a longer film, be aware that we may only view the first 20 minutes)
- music sample (up to 20 minutes)
- dance sample (up to 20 minutes)

For large sound/graphic files, we STRONGLY prefer that you host the work on your own site and send us a pointer to the URL. If you wish to submit in multiple genres, please submit each sample separately.

For a sample of our 2005 panelists, please visit our website
If you have any questions, please send those as well

DEADLINE: May 1, 2009 (but sooner is better)

More Festival Info

If you live in Chicago, we can definitely use your help in planning and running the festival! We need both folks who can come to monthly planning meetings in the next few months, and people who are available to help out at the festival weekend itself. No experience needed!
Volunteers will receive complimentary registration -- our planning meetings are also a lot of fun. :-) We usually meet at my home in Bucktown (near North Ave. and Damen, convenient both to the Blue line and 90/94), and figure things out over a yummy meal. And even if you can't make every meeting, we welcome your input on our planning
mailing list!

If interested in helping us out, please join our planning list here

And if you're just interested in attending and want to get occasional festival updates as planning progresses, be sure you're on our general DesiLit mailing list -- stop by our website and enter your e-mail address in the box provided.

Kriti is co-sponsored by Roosevelt University and the University
of Illinois at Chicago, and will be held at their two campuses, in the
Loop and West Loop, Chicago.
Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago
Executive Director, DesiLit
Executive Director, SLF

Autistic Boy bitten by hospital tech

Newsboys - He Reigns

Around the internet

Nice little quiz on black geek

Came across Scrah's blog via Angry Asian Man and loved it! He's written a new book called The Next Evangelicalism Freeing The Church From Western Cultural Captivity. YAY!!!!!!! You know I love this stuff if you keep up with my posts on wiconi and Native American Pastor Richard Twiss's book, One Church, Many Tribes: Following Jesus the way God made you. The book is finally expected to be in the warehouse towards the end of this week. I pick up my copies on Friday. It's not too late to pre-order on Amazon. Give his book a first week boost. Order by the end of the month, beginning of April.

Black Women Blow the Trumpet did a post on dismantling entitlement. Okay, I don't mind black folks talking about this cause I know where they come from. So I agree with them when they talk about it. But when certain whites talk about it...uhm...

Maurice Broadus did a great post on Blogging in Black about Race Fail racism and horror and ignoring the elephant in the room. Claire Light also did a post on Race Fail and cultural appropriation in respect to the word "hapa."

Christians in Cinema blog did a post on what the vatican learned from the Da Vinci Code

Christianity Today did a post on christian films being short on substance. Totally true. Honestly, not everyone is brought to christ by being told how sinful they are.

Electronic Village is supporting Genocide Prevention Month

Am really loving a blog called Facing Autism and they did a post on truth which I utterly loved. Yeah, too many romanticized autism stuff in the media.

Living in a Toxic World did a post on Obama overload. They aren't against Obama; they're against the old same-old same-old thinking. Raw Dawg also said the same thing. So it's not a black or white thing. I totally agree with them. I mean, look who he made head of the dept of Agriculture: Monsanto's Man.

And APOOO did a post on African-American women for Women's History Month

Discovered Rob Rey at Artist of the Day blogspot

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Aurora Nominees Announced 2009

-------------- Aurora Nominees Announced -------------

This communique is available in both French and English.
Ce communiqué c'est disponsible en français et en anglais.


Anticipation: Press Release #19, March 2009
Aurora Nominees Announced

Anticipation, the 67th World Science Fiction Convention, is pleased to
announce the Prix Aurora nominees for 2009. The Auroras recognize
Canadian science fiction and fantasy artwork, writing, and fan
activities. Any Canadian citizen or resident may vote in the Aurora
selection process. Mail-in or online ballots must be submitted before
Wednesday, July 15th, 2009.

Please visit http://www.anticipationsf.ca/English/Canvention for more
information or to vote.

Best Long-Form Work in English
Meilleur livre en anglais
– After the Fires, Ursula Pflug (Tightrope Books)
– Identity Theft and Other Stories, Robert J. Sawyer (Red Deer Press)
– Impossibilia, Douglas Smith (PS Publishing)
– Defining Diana, Hayden Trenholm (Bundoran Press)
– Marseguro, Edward Willett (DAW Books)

Meilleur livre en français
Best Long-Form Work in French
– Une fêlure au flanc du monde, Éric Gauthier (Alire)
– Les vents de Tammerlan, Michèle Laframboise (Éditions Médiaspaul,
coll. Jeunesse-Plus)

Best Short-Form Work in English
Meilleure nouvelle en anglais
– "All In," Peter Atwood (May–June, Weird Tales magazine)
– "Back," Susan J. Forest (June, Analog magazine)
– "Ringing in the Changes in Okotoks, Alberta," Randy McCharles
(Tesseracts Twelve, Edge Science Fiction)
– "A Bouquet of Flowers in a Vase by Van Gogh," Douglas Smith
(Impossibilia, PS Publishing)
– "Doorways," Douglas Smith (Postscripts Magazine #17, PS Publishing)

Meilleure nouvelle en français
Best Short-Form Work in French
– « Ballade sur Pallide », Michèle Laframboise (Virages 44)
– « La révolte des gilets-malins », Michèle Laframboise (QUAD9 6A)
– « Le Dôme de Saint-Macaire », Jean-Louis Trudel (Solaris 167)
– « Jos Montferrand et le Grand Brigand des routes », Alain Ducharme
(Solaris 161)

Best Work in English (Other)
Meilleur ouvrage en anglais (Autre)
– The Gaslight Grimoire, Jeff Campbell & Charles Prepolec, Editors,
(Edge Science Fiction)
– Neo-opsis magazine, Karl Johanson, Ed.
– Tesseracts Twelve, Claude Lalumière, Ed. (Edge Science Fiction)
– Through the Window: a Journey to the Borderlands of Faerie, Marcie
Lynn Tentchoff (Double Edge Publishing)
– On Spec magazine, Diane Walton, Managing Ed.

Meilleur ouvrage en français (Autre)
Best Work in French (Other)
– Jean-Louis Trudel, Sophie Beaulé, (Éditions David)
– Solaris, Joël Champetier, édition et direction littéraire

Artistic Achievement
Accomplissement artistique
– Looking for Group, Lar deSouza (Online Comic)
– cover Neo-Opsis #14, Stephanie Ann Johanson
– Imagination, Michèle Laframboise (Imagination contre les pigeons
spammers, Vermillion)
– Fear Agent #22, Ronn Sutton (Dark Horse)
– cover JEMMA7729, David Willicome

Fan Achievement (Fanzine)
Accomplissement fanique (Fanzine)
– The Original Universe, Jeff Boman, (Ed.)
– Opuntia, Dale Spiers (Ed.)
– Clair/Obscur, François-Bernard Tremblay, (Réd.)
– Brins d'éternité, Guillaume Voisine, (Réd.)

Fan Achievement (Organizational)
Accomplissement fanique (Organisation)
– Robyn Herrington Memorial Short Story Contest, Renée Bennett (Administrator)
– World Fantasy 2008, Kim Greyson (Guest Liaison)
– FilKONtario 19, Judith Hayman, & Peggi Warner-Lalonde (Co-chairs)
– World Fantasy 2008, Randy McCharles, (Chair)
– Anime North 2008, David Simmons (Organizer)

Fan Achievement (Other)
Accomplissement fanique (autre)
– World Fantasy 2008 Podcasts, Kurt Armbruster, & Ryah Deines
– Impulse, news bulletin of MonSFFA, Keith Braithwaite (Ed.)
– Through the Keyhole – 25 years of Keycon Memories, Jennifer Ennis (Ed.)
– Fan Writing, Lloyd Penney
– Heather Dale Concert, Joan Sherman (Organizer)

Anticipation is honoured to host Canvention, the Canadian national science fiction convention and the Prix Aurora Awards

The 67th World Science Fiction Convention, known as Anticipation, will take place in Montréal, Québec, Canada from Thursday, August 6th through Monday, August 10th, 2009.

More information about Anticipation, including current membership rates, is available on their web site you can also write to us for more information.

Dark Parable: Financial advice

I dreamed I was in a restaurant. I wanted to make a reservation. But that involved incurring a debt. I reconsidered. Then I went outside and saw my husband buried up to his neck in a deep hole. I was so upset that he would do that. He said, "Look, it's easy." And there was someone beside him in the hole who lifted him out just like that. I said, "Well, okay, but whatever you do, don't use that $7600."

I think this dream is referring to some money h ubby and I are expecting next week. I feel I'm being told not to incur any debt--especially on pleasures like eating out. One can fritter money away without realizing it. I was afraid my husband would mess us up with debt again and get us and himself into a hole up to his neck but I was shown that an angel or helper will help him. I don't know how much money we're going to get next week but I feel God is saying no matter what we must not use $7600. One thing I learned from playing simcity and simtower is that I tend to use up all my money then end up waiting for the next pay check to help me out. I've learned now that when I get money, I must save. And I think that's what the dream is saying.

I am a total believer that when God gives you a bit of advice...no matter how small..that one MUST obey it. He knows what's what. So, whatever we get...$7600 of it will not be touched.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature 2009

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature
April 27–May 3, 2009
A week-long celebration of world literature featuring 160 writers from 40 countries for 60 events in New York City.

Check out the reading

Also check out the 2009 Pen Online Translation Slam

CFBA: Turning the Paige

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Turning The Paige

Zondervan (March 1, 2009)


Laura Jensen Walker


Laura Jensen Walker is an award-winning writer, popular speaker, and breast-cancer survivor who loves to touch readers and audiences with the healing power of laughter.

Born in Racine, Wisconsin (home of Western Printing and Johnson’s Wax—maker of your favorite floor care products) Laura moved to Phoenix, Arizona when she was in high school. But not being a fan of blazing heat and knowing that Uncle Sam was looking for a few good women, she enlisted in the United States Air Force shortly after graduation and spent the next five years flying a typewriter through Europe.

By the time she was 23, Laura had climbed the Eiffel Tower, trod the steps of the Parthenon, skied (okay, snowplowed) in the Alps, rode in a gondola in Venice, and wept at the ovens of Dachau. She’d also learned how to fold her underwear into equal thirds, make a proper cup of English tea, and repel the amorous advances of a blind date by donning combat gear and a gas mask.

Laura is a former newspaper reporter and columnist with a degree in journalism who has written hundreds of articles on many subjects ranging from emu ranching and pigeon racing to goat-roping and cemetery board meetings. However, realizing that livestock and local government weren’t her passion, she switched to writing humor, which she calls a “total God-thing.”

Her lifelong dream of writing fiction came true in Spring 2005 with the release of her first chick lit novel, Dreaming in Black & White which won the Contemporary Fiction Book of the Year from American Christian Fiction Writers. Her sophomore novel, Dreaming in Technicolor was published in Fall 2005.

Laura’s third novel, Reconstructing Natalie, chosen as the Women of Faith Novel of the Year for 2006, is the funny and poignant story of a young, single woman who gets breast cancer and how her life is reconstructed as a result. This book was born out of Laura’s cancer speaking engagements where she started meeting younger and younger women stricken with this disease—some whose husbands had left them, and others who wondered what breast cancer would do to their dating life. She wanted to write a novel that would give voice to those women. Something real. And honest. And funny.

Because although cancer isn’t funny, humor is healing.

A popular speaker and teacher at writing conferences, Laura has also been a guest on hundreds of radio and TV shows around the country including the ABC Weekend News, The 700 Club, and The Jay Thomas Morning Show.

Another book in this series is Daring Chloe

She lives in Northern California with her Renaissance-man husband Michael, and Gracie, their piano playing dog


At 35, Paige Kelley is feeling very "in between." She's still working her temp job after two years, still not dating three years after her divorce, and still melting at every chubby-cheeked toddler she sees while her biological clock ticks ever louder. Paige even moves back home to help her ailing, high-maintenance mother.It's not exactly the life she'd dreamed of!

When her Getaway Girls book club members urge Paige to break free and get on with her life, she's afraid. How will her mother react? How can Paige honor her widowed mother and still pursue her own life? The answers come from a surprising source.
A trip to Scotland and a potential new love interest help launch an exciting new chapter in her life, and lead Paige to discover that God's plan for her promises to be more than she ever imagined.

This latest release in the Getaway Girls collection delivers a smart, funny, and warm account of one woman's challenge to reconcile who she is - a dutiful Christian daughter - with the woman she longs to be.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Turning The Paige, go HERE

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

How to prevent another aspect of victimhood

Well, will be spending much of today working on the Tolika chapter. As it is, the chapter doesn't move the plot along, and has a sexual temptation scene that doesn't really work...but I can't figure out what this character is doing. I know she's in the book for a reason. But dang! What is the reason? I really really really feels she needs to be there. And she's too intricately woven into the plot now to remove her if I accidentally put her in for the wrong reason.

There are different kinds of victimizations and reactions to those victimizations. I made Tolika too bitter and too spiteful. Maybe I can make her a pure victim. Haven't really had one of those. Not even Ktwala. In the scene, she comes to Psal to speak to him. I made her come as a bitter scheming fury. Then I'm falling into temptress knee-jerk mode. Which isn't needed.

I'm against the rape, I'm against the principles of the Wheel clan. In fact the hero is against his clan. But what should I have my rape victim do? I'm thinking maybe she will come and ask him to not marry her cousin, Maharai. He's been friendly with Maharai and she sees that.

Psal's a good person but maybe she fears he will harm her cousin. But must figure out what her objections to the marriage will do to the plot. Will it make him fear being with Maharai? Maybe it'll make him avoid Maharai because he feels Maharai will feel the same way, then during that time Netophah gets into the picture.

I just hate anything kneejerk. kneejerk disdain, kneejerk bitterness, kneejerk sentimentality he scene reads quite emptily. feels kneejerk to me. So it's like i can't see what has to happen. To make the scene really resonate with the rest of the themes in the book, yet bring passion and push the plot along or at least add a texture. Maybe I'll get it or it'll come to me. Cause I see her quite clearly coming to him...but lord knows.

Water, water, everywhere and not a drop to drink

Medha Patkar is on a US tour to show the world the dangers of privatization of water, the stealing of water, the usurping of water. She speaks against the World Water Forum, a group created by the world bank to basically steal water from native peoples.

You can read more about her at Medha Patkar

National Alliance of People's Movement

Monday, March 23, 2009

CFBA: A Cousin's Promise

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

A Cousin's Promise

Barbour Books (March 1, 2009)


Wanda Brunstetter

Wanda enjoys writing about the Amish because they live a peaceful, simple life─something she says we all need in this day and age.

Using the knowledge her Amish friends have shared with her, Wanda has also produced several children’s titles in the Rachel Yoder─Always Trouble Somewhere series, an Amish cookbook, and a devotional collection entitled The Simpler Life, which was released in July 2008 and celebrates the virtues of the Amish lifestyle. Wanda and her husband are members of the fellowship of Christian Magicians.

Wanda is also a member of the North American Association of ventriloquists, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Northwest Christian Writers Association. She lives in Washington State, where her husband pastors, but takes every opportunity to visit Amish settlements across the country.

Other books by Wanda are A Sister's Test, A Sister's Hope, and A Sister's Secret


Wayne Lambright who, crippled after a tragic accident, feels himself unworthy of her love; and Jake Beechy who, after having abandoned her to explore the English world, returns to renew their courtship.

Willkumm to the lush and lavish Amish country where Wanda Brunstetter's new romantic series, Indiana Cousins, begins with A Cousin's Promise. Loraine Miller finds herself torn between the love of two good men.

When a horrific accident cripples Wayne Lambright, he finds it difficult enough to take care of himself, much less Loraine Miller, his future bride. Will he sacrifice his happiness to give her a better life?

Having already been jilted once, Loraine is terrified of yet another rejection. But does she love Wayne enough to marry him, for better or worse? When her old boyfriend Jake Beechy returns from exploring the English world, he hopes Loraine will give him another chance.

How will God work to give Loraine the desires of her heart? To which man will she pledge her love and loyalty - for better or worse, until death they do part?

If you would like to read the first chapter of A Cousin's Promise, go HERE

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Graphic Novel: Why I Killed Peter

Alfred & Olivier Ka
NBM publishing
full color clothbound jacketed,
ISBN 978-1-56163-543-6

Here's the NBM Publishing blog

Here's the blurb:
“Peter was a populist priest. He was cool. He was funny. He was no priest, just a regular guy. It’s like I had another uncle. A great one, who laughed, who sang, who tickled. Until he took us for summer camp. Until we were so close, temptation came in the picture.”
Based on a true story that the writer experienced himself, this graphic novel presents very simply the grey areas in such a situation, how he had tucked the whole episode deep within him but then how his rage and self-pity let it all out and finally revisiting the man when close to death and his coming to grips. A very moving , topical and important work, sensitively presented.

A review in Read about comics




Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Dammit, I love a gorgeous man with a sword

Ain't no other man like a final fantasy AC Man

CFBA: Michal

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing


Revell (March 1, 2009)


Jill Eileen Smith


Jill Eileen Smith is the author of several articles, poems, and stories, and her unpublished novels have placed in five writing contests in the past five years. A children’s story, which she wrote for her church led her youngest son to faith in Christ several years ago; much like a gospel tract led her to the Lord at a similar age.

That story, “Seeking Treasureland,” is now available. Jill is a member of several online writing groups and helps promote fellow authors’ works through monthly interviews on the "Spotlight" page of her website. She, along with her husband and children, are active members in their local church. A stay-at-home mom, she homeschooled the couple’s three sons for twelve years through high school, seeing them go on to higher education.

In her spare time, Jill teaches piano, reads, does picture scrap-booking, and enjoys trying out new recipes, especially those that include dark chocolate. Jill and her family make their home in Southeastern Lower Michigan.


Can their epic search for true love survive a father's fury?
The daughter of King Saul, Michal lives a life of privilege--but one that is haunted by her father's unpredictable moods and competition from her beautiful older sister.

As a girl, Michal quickly falls for the handsome young harpist David. But soon after their romance begins, David must flee for his life, leaving Michal at her father's mercy in the prison that is King Saul's palace.

Will Michal ever be reunited with David? Or is she doomed to remain separated from him forever?

Against the backdrop of opulent palace life, raging war, and daring desert escapes, Jill Eileen Smith takes you on an emotional journey as Michal deals with love, loss, and personal transformation as the first wife of King David. Jill Eileen Smith has more than twenty years of writing experience, and her writing has gathered acclaim in several contests. Her research into the lives of David's wives has taken her from the Bible to Israel, and she particularly enjoys learning how women lived in Old Testament times.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Michal, go HERE

Monday, March 16, 2009

CFBA: Breach of Trust

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

The Passion of Mary Margaret

Thomas Nelson (March 10, 2009)


Lisa Samson


Lisa Samson is a Christy Award-winning author of 19 books, including the Women of the Faith Novel of the Year, Quaker Summer. Lisa has been hailed by Publishers Weekly as "a talented novelist who isn't afraid to take risks."

Her novel Embrace Me has been named as one of Library Journal's books of the year.

She lives in Lexinton, Kentucky, with her husband and three kids.

She stays busy by writing, volunteering at Kentucky Refugee Ministries, raising children and trying to be supportive of a husband in seminary. (Trying...some days she's downright awful. It's a good thing he's such a fabulous cook!) She can tell you one thing, it's never dull around there.


Mary-Margaret accepts a calling that surpasses her wildest dreams . . . and challenges her deep faith.

When Mary-Margaret Danaher met Jude Keller, the lightkeeper's son, she was studying at convent school on a small island in the Chesapeake Bay. Destined for a life as a religious sister, she nevertheless felt a pull toward Jude-rough and tumble, promiscuous Jude.

After sojourning as a medical missions sister in Swaziland, Mary-Margaret returns to the island to prepare for her final vows. Jude, too, returns to the island, dissolute and hardened. Mary-Margaret can hardly believe it when the Spirit tells her she must marry the troubled boy who befriended her all those years ago, forsaking the only life she ever wanted for a man she knows she'll never love.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Passion of Mary Margaret , go HERE

Sunday, March 15, 2009

I want! I want!

My favorite etching by William Blake

The Blues Don't Care Who's Got 'Em

Back in the day I heard a great song called The Blues Don't care who's got 'Em. It was written by Gary Stewart. Here's a little bit of it. Nice little tune.
Reba did a version which you can find if you go to rhapsody and search tracks. But she doesn't do its anger much justice.

Gary was white. He also did a really neat song called "I got a bad attitude." One of the best outlaw rockers. Here are some of his songs. Check out the rocking country, "I ain't living long like this." and the bluesy country. "You're not the woman you used to be." But hey, the blues don't care who's got them.

I got some great CD's mailed to me by Northern Blues for me to review. They do great modern blues: Indian fusion blues, African-American and African fusion blues, Native American blues, all kinds of blues, blue-eyed blues, cowboy blues, jazz blues. Everything! I didn't have time to review them and since I didn't have the brain strength to review them (long story) I gave them to a friend who loved them. But honestly, the blues don't care who's got them.

Everyone gets the blues. And the only difference is how one's culture shows the blues. When a Russian gets the blues he sings quite differently from an Irishman who gets the blues or a Greek who gets the blues or a Native American who gets the blues or a black person from Memphis.

But I want to introduce you to what is universally thought of as the "first" English blues. Not as if the English weren't singing the blues and dealing with ballads for hundreds of years before. But this song was written in the modern folkie blues era written by a sailor who came home from sea and found his girlfriend had run off with another fellow. The version I like best is on a tape so I can't share it with you. But here's Cyril Tawley's version of "Sally Free and Easy" and hey Cyril wrote it.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

It's time to free Seaborn

It's time to free Seaborn.

I have posted the complete book in PDF and HTML for downloading and reading. Share the link!


Right now, I'm twenty chapters into a new book, new series, new characters, new places, most of it far far from the sea. But I want more people to read Seaborn. Feel free to read and share the PDF or HTML versions (for other uses and rights questions, email me) but please send along the link above, because I'd like as many people as possible to know that they can give to one (or both) of my favorite organizations: Monterey Bay Aquarium or Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.

Happy Reading!


Chris Howard
web: http://www.SaltwaterWitch.com

Dang, couldn't get my main character to commit murder

What a stressful day the past three days have been! There I was -- totally sure and aware that a certain beloved character had been poisoned-- but dang if I could figure out how he ended up in that unfortunate position. I tried to have my main character do it. But to no avail. He balked. Then, mercifully, after brainstorming with Jessica, a writer buddy, I figured that mystery out.

One good thing that popped up, though, was that I discovered a hateful spiteful anger in a character whom I thought was rather sweet. Turned out I hadn't really understood his anger. I'd been trying to make him be rather noble but it never worked. I kept saying I couldn't find his personality. Alas, I couldn't see it cause I was trying not to. But now, wow! I see him. So, it was fun and a bit scary to feel his hurt and how it led to malicious anger. So that was good.

But then I had to figure out the sex scenes. Yes, Carole --Queen of the awkward sex scenes-- had to awkwardly write not one but two awkward sex scenes. And I've been trying to get to them for days. Am gonna force myself to get down to my characters getting down. However awkward and stressing it might be for them and for me! The story needs the scenes! I tried slipping by with some general summary but nah! didn't work.

I ended up spending a great deal of time researching and watching videos about directing and writing sex scenes, passion, and kissing. This is one of the best because it combines both a discussion of art, technique, and passion.

So, today will be spending most of the time in bed with my characters. I hope I enjoy it. -C

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A great film: When I Came Home

When I Came Home
Directed by Dan Lohaus
Winner 2006 Tribeca Film Festival

When I came Home is such a painful film I simply could not finish watching it. Yeah, I know. I'm always watching painful films I can't finish.

Here's the trailer:

I swear! It's not as if I'm a revolutionary or something but it does annoy the heck outta me to see Christians getting all worked up over certain issues yet totally ignoring others. Where, oh where, is the Christian extreme Biblical left?

This film is about homeless veterans...and the horror they return to when they get home. No medical care, intense bills on medical care, disabled, homelessness, losing their kids, their homes, etc. And honestly, when I think of all the Christian friends I knew who were all for the war, I am tempted to ask, "Okay, now that these destroyed soldiers are coming home, why don't you care about them?"

Here's the blurb:

Director’s note: When I Came Home is a documentary which follows the lives and struggles of several homeless veterans, including those who have recently returned home from the war in Iraq. The film examines the factors which led over 150,000 Vietnam veterans from the battlefield to the street and asks the question: Will what happened to Vietnam veterans happen to a new generation of soldiers? The film also focuses on the veteran-led movement which is fighting to end this national disgrace.

When I Came Home is a work-in-progress. Follow the making of the film on director Dan Lohaus’ GNN blog

Links you might be interested in:

Black Veterans for social justice

Iraq Veterans Against the War

National Coalition for Homeless Veterans

Operation Dignity

I swear I just want to cry.

Good Read: The Student Loan Scam

The Student Loan Scam: The Most Oppressive Debt in U.S. History - and How We Can Fight Back
by Alan Michael Collinge, Founder of StudentLoanJustice.Org,
167 pages
Beacon Press (February 1, 2009)
Here's the blurb:
An in-depth exploration and exposé of the predatory nature of the student loan industry Alan Collinge never imagined he would become a student loan justice activist. He planned to land a solid job after college, repay his student loan debt, and then simply forget the loans ever existed. Like millions of Americans, however, in spite of working hard, Collinge fell behind on payments and entered a labyrinthine student loan nightmare. High school graduates can no longer put themselves through college for a few thousand dollars in loan debt. Today, the average undergraduate borrower leaves school with more than $20,000 in student loans, and for graduate students the average is a whopping $42,000. For the past twenty years, college tuition has increased at more than double the rate of inflation, with the cost largely shifting to student debt. The Student Loan Scam is an exposé of the predatory nature of the $85-billion student loan industry. In this in-depth exploration, Collinge argues that student loans have become the most profitable, uncompetitive, and oppressive type of debt in American history. This has occurred in large part due to federal legislation passed since the mid-1990s that removed standard consumer protections from student loans-and allowed for massive penalties and draconian wealth-extraction mechanisms to collect this inflated debt. Collinge covers the history of student loans, the rise of Sallie Mae, and how universities have profited at the expense of students. The book includes candid and compelling stories from people across the country about how both nonprofit and for-profit student loan companies, aided by poor legislation, have shattered their lives-and livelihoods. With nearly 5 million defaulted loans, this crisis is growing to epic proportions. The Student Loan Scam takes an unflinching look at this unprecedented and pressing problem, while exposing the powerful organizations and individuals who caused it to happen. Ultimately, Collinge argues for the return of standard consumer protections for student loans, among other pragmatic solutions, in this clarion call for social action.

Here it is on amazon

Here's the book's facebook page

Here's a great article on student loan debt from us news

and another from NY times

and another from L A Times

and another in the Wall Street Journal

Also check out

No Sucker Left Behind: Avoiding the Great College Rip-off
by Marc Scheer

352 pages
Common Courage Press (May 15, 2008)
ISBN-10: 1567513786
ISBN-13: 978-1567513783
7.6 x 5 x 1 inches

Bono talks about his faith

Credit where credit is due:
Saw this on Otium Sanctium

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

CFBA: Journey to the Well

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Journey To The Well

Revell (March 1, 2009)


Diana Wallis Taylor


Diana Wallis Taylor, San Diego resident, is an award-winning Christian author and speaker who shares her personal testimony to women’s groups. The Lord gave Diana a desire to write a book about the woman of Samaria who encountered Jesus at Jacob’s Well. It was at the edge of the well where the woman of Samaria found the living water of Jesus.

A native Californian, Diana Wallis Taylor graduated from San Diego State University. She has had many occupations; elementary and junior high school teacher, bookshop owner, and conference director for a Christian college. A poet since the age of 12, she published a book of poems, Wings Of The Wind, in 1994, now republished with watercolor illustrations in 2006. She has received awards in songwriting and poetry and her writing contributions appear in various books and magazines. The author speaks on the woman at the well in conjunction with her own testimony. She also speaks on A Walk in the Darkness, on her family involvement in the occult and how it affected her life.

Diana lives with her husband Frank in San Diego, California and between them they have six grown children and ten grandchildren. In addition to her speaking and writing, she serves on the board of the San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild and is active in Christian Women’s Fellowship.


She went to the well for water. What she found there would change her life forever.

Marah is a young girl in love with her childhood friend, Jesse. When she is forced to marry an older man, she must abandon her dreams of happiness. At the mercy of men who are often only interested in using her, Marah must fight for survival. Will she ever meet a man who can save her?

The story of the Samaritan woman at Jacob's well is one of hope, redemption, and a life changed in an instant through a remarkable encounter. Jesus told her "everything she'd ever done," but we are left to wonder at the circumstances that led her life on such a tragic path to begin with. Now from the creative mind of Diana Wallis Taylor comes the full story of the woman at the well.

This well-researched portrayal of a woman's life in the time of Jesus opens a window into a fascinating world. Taylor's rich descriptions of the landscapes, lifestyles, and rituals mesh easily with the emotional and very personal story of one woman who desperately seeks to rise above the difficult circumstances of her life.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Journey To The Well, click HERE

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Dark Parable: Bits and Blinders

I dreamed of sitting at a table and someone said to me: "This is what she saw." I looked and saw a woman wearing a gold hat that seemed a bit like a crown and a bit like a church hat. Attached to it was a gold orb that pretty much made it hard for her to see because the orb was so big. And on her lips were bits that horses might wear but they were made of silver and had jewels in them.

I think this has to do with

A) Be not as a horse whose mouth must be kept with a bit and bridle
2) Zechariah, the Father of John the Baptist, had a bit put in his mouth because he doubted so much the angel Gabriel had to close his mouth lest he say something negative and cancel the miraculous seed God had planted.
3) The wise woman -- in the book of Kings-- whose son died in her arms did not say anything about the situation when asked how her son was. She simply rode off to Elijah...and even then said nothing.

I feel God has been really showing me the power of affirming His word and His word only.

As the Psalms say:

To him who ordereth his conversation aright I will show the salvation of the Lord.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord My strength, and my redeemer.

God has promised good to me, and told me to expect great things. I have to speak faith.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Native American Public Telecommunications blog

Native American Public Telecommunications has a new blog. They're affiliated with airos.org which airs Native American music. So tune in and check out their music.

CFBA: The Passion of Mary Margaret

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

The Passion of Mary Margaret

Thomas Nelson (March 10, 2009)


Lisa Samson


Lisa Samson is a Christy Award-winning author of 19 books, including the Women of the Faith Novel of the Year, Quaker Summer. Lisa has been hailed by Publishers Weekly as "a talented novelist who isn't afraid to take risks."

Her novel Embrace Me has been named as one of Library Journal's books of the year.

She lives in Lexinton, Kentucky, with her husband and three kids.

She stays busy by writing, volunteering at Kentucky Refugee Ministries, raising children and trying to be supportive of a husband in seminary. (Trying...some days she's downright awful. It's a good thing he's such a fabulous cook!) She can tell you one thing, it's never dull around there.


Mary-Margaret accepts a calling that surpasses her wildest dreams . . . and challenges her deep faith.

When Mary-Margaret Danaher met Jude Keller, the lightkeeper's son, she was studying at convent school on a small island in the Chesapeake Bay. Destined for a life as a religious sister, she nevertheless felt a pull toward Jude-rough and tumble, promiscuous Jude.

After sojourning as a medical missions sister in Swaziland, Mary-Margaret returns to the island to prepare for her final vows. Jude, too, returns to the island, dissolute and hardened. Mary-Margaret can hardly believe it when the Spirit tells her she must marry the troubled boy who befriended her all those years ago, forsaking the only life she ever wanted for a man she knows she'll never love.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Passion of Mary Margaret , go HERE

Dark Parables: studying the supernatural

All I dreamed was this statement being made to me: "Study and examine how the supernatural is being marketed."

After talking with my dream group, we came up with two possible meanings for this. First, it's not just the bad demonic supernatural stuff that God is talking about..it's also about Christian marketing of godly supernatural stuff.

I had a dream about four years ago in which God said certain books should be written for free. I get pretty annoyed at the salesmanship I see on Christian programs: "This book will change your life, yadda yadda." And the greed in so many of these ministries...but wow!!!! Have you ever tried to wade through some Christian websites?

There's this lust for "supernatural" power and greed in certain Christian circles. How can God give His people dominion when the first thing we aim for is wealth?

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Dang! How do I turn a sweet character into a murderer?

Slowly, and with good reasoning, I suspect.

Realized I needed to amp up a particular 3rd character in order to do this. So, moving ahead. -C

Dark Parables: Tests and Veggies

I dreamed I was told that whenever I had a test I should listen to the general conversation around me because God would provide the answers by sprinkling it inside the conversations around me. I also dreamed I made dinner for some guests and was very stressed out that I had totally forgotten to make a veggie salad.

I think these dreams are pretty straight forward. I've lived long enough to see how God works and he is absolutely amazing at slipping stuff into seemingly regular conversations to help us. And I definitely need more raw veggies. I eat cooked ones but...

These seem pretty straightforward so am not sure if they're dark parables. Unless it's one of those verses that are meant to remind me of the verse, "When you are called upon, don't think beforehand about what you're going to say because your father will give you in that hour what you need to say."

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Mi Amigo Jesus -- Stanilao Marino

i so love animals

Update on novel: emotional breakthrough

I'm finally cutting loose in my novel. I really had to allow myself to be brave and transparent and emotional in Wind Follower. Sometimes I'd write a scene and get very ashamed because it was such an intimate scene. But that seems to be my talent in writing: writing a story that is very intimate. (I just have to watch my pacing.)

It's hard to do this because deep-felt emotional pain isn't what some folks want in their fantasy. I keep telling myself, "You're going to get slammed for this." So I don't enter fully into the story. Or at least I haven't been.

But now I feel it. I'm breaking through, breaking away from stiff-upper-lipped ness and baring all the emotions. In this case I want to really show the unraveling of my main character, and to show him veering off. Not into madness but into a kind of self-willedness. He's right, of course. And that's what I like: a character who is totally right by standards of divine law and yet who simply doesn't know how to handle the battle he's fighting against the bad guys. I like these characters because -- honestly, I'm being very vain and honest here-- I've been in situations where I KNOW I am right...but where my anger at the stupid folks who can't see the light just produces absolutely nutty behavior on my party. I am way nasty when I'm right, and waaay nastier when the person I'm dealing with is cruel or smug. And this is the kind of situation where my main character in Constant Tower finds himself. He loses his way. And yet, I don't think readers will dislike him. He is so plainly right in his cause against genocide...and so utterly immature in how he deals with the situation.

Weirdly, I was watching a channel last night that I usually don't watch -- hubby was at a life modeling class and I was waiting for him to return, plus I was way too pooped to get up and turn the channel. And of COURSE, two interviews on two shows totally spoke to my situation. In one the British screenwriter of Slumdog Millionaire (which I hope to see now that I have some money coming) says (paraphrased) "When I got the book Q&A on which the movie would be based, it was a collection of stories. I couldn't figure out how to make it a novel because a novel is like a train on a track roaring along. So I went to India to understand India...and realized that India is over the top. The colors are over the top, the movies are over the top. And here was I a stiff-upper-lip repressed Britisher trying to write this novel. I realized the story had to be over the top. So I just let loose."

Ah! How I grinned with joy, then! Because, as you all know, that's been my trouble with my writing. I want to be over the top. But sometimes I'm pretty repressed.

So then after this they interview the producer of Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li. He's east Indian. A very nice guy. And in the course of the interview, he's asked, "Why do Bollywood movies do so badly in Hollywood and vice versa?" He said, "Indian movies have dancing, etc." Basically, he said they were over-the-top. And American movies have a different ethic, feel, emotional standard, norm, more, craft. You know what I mean (what he means) all those creative cultural words. Then he said (again, am paraphrasing.) "A movie like Slumdog Millionaire would never make it in India, but that he was trying to do movies that fit into hollywood, fit into india, and also fit into a new multiculti world cinema kind of thing."

That made me smile. The new multiculti ethic of film-making is something we artists are aiming for. The western repressed standard must give way. Soon, at least in some quarters...emotion will reign.

Dark Parable: Chick, Cents, Stove

I dreamed of standing outside my gate in front of my house. An efriend I met on youtube (who sent me some DVD's on the Elijah Challenge by William Lao, a Singaporean minister) was bringing something to me. He was pushing a dirty stove toward me. On top of the stove were a lot of pennies a whole lot of them. And I could see some quarters and other silver coins stacked in their two. It looked like there was a lot of money there except of course one would have to spend it by small coins here and there. I couldn't imagine counting them all up and going to the bank. I tried to talk to him but he had trouble hearing me. So I wrote a note and put it on my gate: something about I'm not going out into the rain with new shoes on.

Meanwhile I told him about my younger son's cousin. I said, "well, she also has. . .issues." Then I saw her approach. She was half-human and half-chicken and I was trying to talk to her. I felt glad that he saw her and knew what I was talking about.

The odd thing about this dream is that we just removed our old stove -- which needs cleaning-- and it's on our front porch waiting for me to clean it. We have a "new" old stove which we got from someone else who was renovating her house. But that stove is a bit wonky.

Not sure what all the coins mean: common sense, a penny for your thoughts. I feel there's a whole lotta puns here. The "chick" "being chicken." And the dream seems to refer to so many things in my life. The Christian youtube friend is hard to get a hold of sometimes. So in the dream of course I had trouble talking to him and him hearing me. The stove is definitely something on my mind cause I definitely want a real new new stove. My sons have a female cousin but we rarely see her. William Lao teaches about how to speak to illnesses and command demons: the kingly anointing. Not sure what all was in my mind...or if this was from God.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Chinese Whispers by Jan Wong

Chinese Whispers Searching for Forgiveness in Beijing
by Jan Wong
ISBN 13: 9781843549741 | ISBN 10: 184354974

Here's the blurb:
In 1972, Jan Wong became one of only two Westerners admitted to Beijing University at the height of the Cultural Revolution.
One day a student, Yin Luoyi, sought Jan's assistance in going to the United States. Wong, then a starry-eyed Maoist from Montreal, was that most dangerous combination in the young - ignorant, innocent and idealistic - and she reported Yin to the authorities. Wong knew nothing of what ensued. Indeed, she completely forgot about her brief encounter with the young stranger until many years later.

Now, thirty-three years on, Wong returns to Beijing to search for the woman who has haunted her conscience. She hopes to apologise, perhaps somehow to make ammends. At the very least, she wants to find out whether Yin has survived.
Preoccupied by the past, fascinated by China's present and future, Jan Wong searches out old friends, foes and comrades in this half-familiar city, finally uncovering the truth about the woman she wronged.

Chinese Whispers tells a unique and unforgettable story of communism and capitalism, of guilt and attonement, of remembering and forgetting.

Here's a review

The Atheism Test

Smoke Signals - Mar 5, 2009

Smoke Signals - Cool Reports, Grant for Equipment and Upcoming Stuff
Richard Twiss
Mar 5, 2009

Hau kola,

It’s been a very busy few weeks of travel and speaking. I was so encouraged a few weeks ago to listen to my new friend Duane tell me how he experienced the Spirit of God in a traditional Hopi Kiva ceremony as a follower of Jesus. While teaching at a Youth With a Mission school with Will and Millie Toms, in Kykotsmovi, AZ, I heard many encouraging stories of Hopi men and women who, as followers of Jesus, were working out their local theologies (without calling it that). For a few it got them unwelcomed from area churches by missionary pastors. One woman was told if she did not stop participating in the traditional ceremonies she could lose her salvation and go to hell.

About ten years ago I wrote a booklet called Dancing Our Prayers that addresses issues of Native believers doing the hard work of thinking through how the bible relates, critiques, informs and mutually affirms their faith in Jesus. Here is a quote;

We want to see the indigenous church arise among First Nations people; One that is self-governing/supporting/propagating, and most importantly, self-theologizing.

“But little was said about the fourth self: self theologizing. For the most part, national [Indigenous] leaders were not encouraged to study the Scriptures for themselves and to develop their own theologies. Deviation from the missionary’s theology was often branded as heresy. To young, nationalistically [Indigenously] minded leaders this was theological colonialism. …Whether we like it or not, young [Indigenous] theologians around the world are reading scripture and interpreting it for their own cultures.”
Paul G. Hiebert, Anthropological Reflections on Missiological Issues, (Grand Rapids, MI: Regal Books, 1994) p. 46-47

These prophetic words by Dr. Hiebert describe exactly what is being played out among the Hopi people today! It is, however, not only among Hopi people, but all across North America and globally. My work, in partnership with many others, over the past twenty years has helped “remove barriers and build bridges” for this prophetic word to become our growing reality. For this, all my heretical friends and I are deeply grateful to our Creator and to you our friends and supporters!


Listening to President Barak Obama and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair share two inspiring, yet simple stories of faith in Jesus was a remarkable experience. While sharing a meal or a sitting in a crowd, listening to followers of Jesus from around the world tell of their faith journey in the midst of difficult to horrific political, economic, militaristic and religious situations was very inspiring. The Spirit of the Lord is at work among the nations in ways we will never know. Certainly far beyond what we see and hear on television or read in the newspaper. We are making plans to take a Dancing Our Prayers Team to Jordan and Lebanon next year in partnership with some Muslim followers of Jesus we have come to befriend.

We are finalizing our plans for our second annual National Congress of American Indian Prayer Breakfast for Tuesday October 13 in Palm Springs. We are inviting Sec. of the Interior Ken Salazar to be our keynote speaker. Please join us in prayer for his acceptance and all the details to get worked out. (Visit NCAI.org to grasp the importance of this).


Our office equipment is an outdated mismatched assortment of computers that can’t talk to each other, old printer, funky copier, donated stuff and a mysterious collection of telephones patched together. We have been in dire need of new systems for several years now. I am grateful to say that our deliverance draweth nigh. We received a matching grant from the Murdock Charitable Trust in the amount of $16,000 to finally renovate our equipment. That amount, however, is only half the amount needed to get re-outfitted. In order to use any of that money we must first raise the other $16K. This opportunity goes away if can’t raise the other half by June 15th, 09. Will you pray with us about locating the other $16K? Thanks so much!


Kath and I spoke at New Covenant Church in Manassas and Immanuel’s Church in Silverspring, two of our partner churches. I addressed the polarizing tensions that surfaced within the church before the presidential election, inviting listeners to wrestle with love and dignity through difficult socio-political issues as followers of Jesus. It was great seeing old friends we have come to love and appreciate in recent years. You can watch and listen to one of the messages on line at http://www.immanuels.org/media/video/previousvideo3.htm


Kath and I will be joining Robert and Iris for their annual powwow and anniversary celebration of their Native church, March 13-16. We’re looking forward to hanging with them and other cool friends in the area. Jacob and Jodi are joining us from our office team as well.


Several highly respected national First Nations leaders, along with other scholars, tribal leaders and theologians will be speaking at this important conference on April 17, at George Fox Seminary in Newberg, Oregon. For more info and to register visit http://www.georgefox.edu/seminary/contemporary_culture/index.html or visit our website under the Home page and click on “schedule”.

Pilamaya for journeying with us,

Richard Twiss
Wiconi International

Some writerly promotion stuff I had to attend to

I have a new post over at Blogging in Black


And an interview at Written Voices Blog

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Dear Zachary: A letter to a son about his father

Dear Zachary A letter to a son about his father

Genre: Documentary
Running Time: 93 min.
MPAA Rating: No Rating
Director: Kurt Kuenne
Writer: Kurt Kuenne
Cast: Kurt Kuenne, Zachary Andrew, David Bagby, Dr. Andrew Bagby, Kathleen Bagby
This aired on MSNBC. Try seeing it if they repeat it.

On Nov. 5, 2001, Dr. Andrew Bagby was murdered in a parking lot in western Pennsylvania; the prime suspect, his ex-girlfriend Dr. Shirley Turner, promptly fled the United States for St. John's, Canada, where she announced that she was pregnant with Andrew's child. She named the little boy Zachary. Filmmaker Kurt Kuenne, Andrew's oldest friend, began making a film for little Zachary as a way for him to get to know the father he'd never meet. But, when Shirley Turner was released on bail in Canada and was given custody of Zachary while awaiting extradition to the United States, the film's focus shifted to Zachary's grandparents, David and Kathleen Bagby, and their desperate efforts to win custody of the boy from the woman they knew had murdered their son. What happened next, no one could have foreseen.

Reviews are at:


and at filmthreat

and other online review sites.

And a review on youtube

Dark Parables: Two loads, bedding

I dreamed I was with Paula, the editor at Juno. We were in a school building and I was discussing Psal, my main character in my new novel-in-progress, The Constant Tower. I had carried some bedding, pillows, etc to be washed. I was so busy talking to her that I forgot where I had the pile of clothing, actually totally forgot I had them. But then I entered a room and I found another pile of bedding, pillows, etc to be washed. I rolled them all up as best as I could and carried them downstairs outside the school. Then I remembered I had the other bedding, pillows, etc to be washed. I was unsure how I was going to get this big load of clothes from the school to my house without a car but even so I went inside the building again to get the second load of begging. Now I had two loads of bulky stuff to carry.

I think of "Take up your bed and walk." and "Cast your care upon Him for He careth for you."

Don't know what the dream means.

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