Blog Archives

Simplicity

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Last summer I had to move. My 9-5 was relocating, my lease was becoming not affordable and I just needed a change. Before I moved into that apartment, I use to live in a town house. I had to get rid of a lot of things coming from a town house to a 2-bedroom apartment. This time I decided to move into a 1-bedroom apartment. I made that decision purposely. Again, I had to get rid of a lot of stuff. Guess what? I still have a lot of stuff.

The reason for the downsize was that I wanted live a simple life. I still look at houses in real estate websites that are gorgeous. At the end I always asked myself, who’s going to clean all that?

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As time goes by, I’ve been trying to prioritize my life. What’s the point of having my closets filled with things that I never use? What’s the point of having all these things around to have more to clean? In return I can have more time for more important things. I can have more time to write, to read, to exercise, to pray and most important to rest.

Luke 16:13 “No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”

When our focus is in getting more stuff and not in our live purpose, we are practicing a way of idolatry.

I haven’t just worked on simplifying my surroundings. I’m working on simplifying every aspect of my life. My schedule, the things I eat, the company I keep. Life is complicated enough without us trying to do more than what we’re called to do.

Simplifying our life will help us have more time for more important thing, and probably more resources to accomplish our goals.

Thbd8f307411d23d6481031f5d786380c0e Lord has not asked us to hoard treasures on earth, but to store them in heaven. Now I’m sure that none of the treasures that he was talking about can be found at your preferred department store or at the mall. That scripture in Matthew also says that where our treasures are, so is our heart. It’s our heart in the things that the world craves or in the simple things the Lord has created for us.

Is out lifestyle living by: Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

 

Have a great week!

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2015 In Review

20152015 has been quite a different year. Different is usually associated with a negative connotation, but different is not always bad. God has taken me into a journey that I never imagined.

In 2009, when I started this blog and had just finished the first draft of my first novel (The Road Home) I thought I had finally found my purpose. I’m not implying that I will no longer write, I actually miss it a lot. But I’ve been placed on hold to pursue other things for the Kingdom of God.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord in Isaiah 55:8 I have to admit that I still can’t get that through my head. After a life of fighting for everything, I stop the fight and have left the Lord be the pilot of this life that belongs to him anyway. My small mind thinks that with every step that’s as far as I’m going to go, yet the Lord surprises me again.

When I started writing, I never thought I would get a book to see the light of day. Now I have 4 books published: The Road Home, Growth Lessons, Season’s Greetings from Amelia and A Brothers Vow. I also have 2 other novels waiting to be edit for release: Saving Paola and Breaking Free.

In 2010 I started attending a ministry program called Celebrate Recovery to deal with the domestic violence in my marriage and eventual divorce. Today I’m the Ministry Leader of the only Spanish Celebrate Recovery in GA and a State Representative for Celebrate Recovery in GA. These are not my accomplishments, but places where God has brought me to that I never imagined. The State Rep happened this summer.

CR blog

It’s been kind of a quiet year. I’ve been a little reclusive doing a lot of introspection. It has been a year to connect with God at a different level. It’s been a year of growth.

I also moved to a new apartment in the summer. A smaller but way better apartment. My dog is happy as the complex has 2 dog parks, and she gets to drag me there to play.

For the first time in my life I have a television over 24 inches, not an accomplishment but something that happened. It looks really good and weird to see the clarity of some shows like if you were sitting right next to the characters or walking with them through hallways and streets.

It’s been a peaceful year. I’m really enjoying being quiet for long periods of time. I’m enjoying silence, which is a different pace for me. I don’t want to get too comfortable ad stop chasing dreams, but for now being able to breath is a good place to be.

Happy New Year 2016!

NYE

Sister’s of the Heart

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Take advantage of 9-99-99

Nine Christian authors have joined together to offer you NINE ebooks, each for 99 cents for 99 hours. The sale runs from 12:01 a.m. EST Friday, October 4, 2013, through 11:59 p.m. PST Monday, October 7. Click the links below the graphic to “look inside” on Amazon and pick up your digital copies!

9, 99 cents, sale, Christian fiction

Contemporary Romance

Raspberries and Vinegar by Valerie Comer

Josephine Shaw: complex, yet singleminded. A tiny woman with big ideas and, some would say, a mouth to match. But what does she really know about sustainable living as it relates to the real world? After all, she and her two friends are new to farming.

Zachary Nemesek is back only until his dad recovers enough to work his own land again. When Zach discovers three helpless females have taken up residence at the old farm next door, he expects trouble. But a mouse invasion proves Jo has everything under control. Is there anything she can’t handle? And surely there’s something sweet beneath all that tart.

BUY Raspberries and Vinegar HERE

To Protect and Serve by Staci Stallings

Jeff Taylor is a fireman’s fireman. No situation is too dangerous to keep him on the sideline if lives are at stake.

Lisa Matheson runs a semi-successful ad agency that’s on the brink of falling apart. When she falls for a handsome but shy firefighter, it’s possible that life might just be going her way for a change. The only problem is she can’t control Jeff and the death wish he seems to have…

BUY To Protect and Serve HERE

Patient Love by R. M. Strong

Jasmine Williams is trying to put her life back together after her fiancé dumps her hours before their wedding. Returning home to her parents’ beachfront B&B she begins to realize how much Philip had insisted on controlling–everything from her hairstyle to her opinions of her home church; even how she viewed God’s love. Just as she regains her identity, a summons from Philip demands she take him back. Will this time be different?

BUY Patient Love HERE

Something about Sam by Susette Williams

Having lost the family ranch due her parents untimely death and their past debts, Samantha Marlow is forced to look for a job for the first time in her life. Accustomed to using her nickname, Sam, she is hired as a cook, based off of her resume, site-unseen.

Jake Dampier needs someone to manage his household while he manages his ranch. He never anticipated his foreman would hire someone without interviewing them in person, especially someone as young and beautiful as Sam. The last thing he wants is a distraction—but it may turn out to be just what he needs.

BUY Something About Sam HERE

Historical Romance

A Time to Say Goodbye by J. M. Downey

Cotton plantation daughter, May Lynn Whitley sees nothing wrong with owning others. After all how would they fend for themselves if it wasn’t for gracious people like her family? But a handsome young preacher’s probing words and mesmerizing blue eyes unlock a new sense of justice and lead her on a journey that will change her life and soul. But she is betrothed and May Lynn’s controlling fiance’ will do anything to make sure they wed. Anything including destroying all that she holds dear. Set in Antebellum America, May Lynn’s adventure spans the Eastern Seaboard as she joins a movement she once scorned.

BUY A Time to Say Goodbye HERE

Mystery/Suspense

Fudge Laced Felonies by Cynthia Hickey

While transplanting the rosebush her church’s handsome greeter, Ethan Banning, inadvertently killed, Summer and Ethan discover a hidden stash of diamonds, a rusty can full of cash, and a bloody-gardening glove. This discovery sets Summer and her candy-making aunt on a search for a killer.

As Summer gets closer to the truth-not only of the theft but of her true feelings for Ethan-the diamond thief hatches a plan to hush the feisty sleuth.

BUY Fudge Laced Felonies HERE

Out of a Dream by Rosemary Hines

Newlywed Michelle Baron should be enjoying life in the quaint coastal community of Sandy Cove, Oregon. Her husband has joined his uncle’s law firm, and they have a cozy new home ~ what more could she want? But a series of nightmares leads her on a spiritual journey that challenges her Christian heritage as well as her marriage. Where will she find answers to her disturbing dreams? And how will those answers impact her life?

BUY Out of a Dream HERE

Women’s Fiction

Rain Dance by Joy Dekok

What happens when a Christian woman facing a childless future and a woman seeking an abortion are waiting to see the same doctor? What if after that “chance” encounter they are unable to forget each other? What if they find themselves drawn together in spite of their drastic differences by their surprising similarities? What if they somehow find the courage to become friends? Rain Dance takes the reader into the hearts of these two women as they journey closer to the heart of the One who offers hope and healing.

BUY Rain Dance HERE

The Road Home by Naty Matos

He was finally coming. He told Desiree that once her task was complete, he would be there to pick her up. And they could finally be together forever. Desiree was finally going to be with the one she loved. But what did she need to do? And how was she going to figure out what it was?

BUY The Road Home HERE

Enjoy!

New Release: A Brother’s Vow

I’m very happy to announce the release of my new novel  “A Brother’s Vow” Writing this book taught me a lot about Grace, family dynamics and spiritual warfare. It is amazing how God uses everything to teach us and push us to grow to the next level. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Blessings… Naty

A Brother's Vow (Final)

You can obtain your copy today at

Amazon.com, Barnes & Nobles and Smashwords.

(Print copies will be available within the next few weeks)

Randall Benson didn’t think life could be any better. His job with the family business allowed him to travel and meet new people. His relationship with his girlfriend the model, gave his access to all the red carpet events and parties, yet there was no requirement for him to be faithful. Although his family doesn’t approve of his careless lifestyle, they love him and do whatever they can to keep him from self-destructing. Yet Randall’s only concern is Randall.

Randall’s world begins to come undone after a series of unexpected events. As Randall tries to settle down and become more dependable, his twin brother Brian seems to be headed down a path that Randall is way too familiar. Brian makes an unusual request that nonchalantly he agrees to keep. He never thought that he would have to keep his word, but he does. As Randall struggles to fulfill his promise to his brother, he is confronted with challenges from his past. Will he succumb to his past and risk losing everything he’s worked so hard to accomplish?

CrossReads Book Blast: Found Adrift by Pauline Creeden

Found Adrift By Pauline Creeden

About the Book

Welcome fellow drifter. I don’t know about you, but I’m easily distracted. If God set me in a rowboat on the water and told me to pay attention and not let myself drift too far from the shoreline, I’m sure I’d be in the middle of the lake before I realized I’d drifted from the shore. Then sitting in the middle of that lake, I’d realize I didn’t have a paddle. And sometimes I feel so far away that no one on the shore could possibly hear me. Have you ever been there? If you have ever been distracted by your daily life and suddenly looked up and found yourself far behind where you should be in your walk with God, then you are a drifter like me. This devotional is your paddle.

Found Adrift: 40 Days of Recovering Grace On Kindle Found Adrift: 40 Days of Recovering Grace in Paperback

About Pauline Creeden

Pauline Creeden picIn simple language, Pauline Creeden breaks down Biblical stories and applies them to real life in new ways. Her methods of teaching have brought new light to old scriptures. In her fiction, she creates worlds that are both familiar and strange, often pulling the veil between dimensions. She becomes the main character in each of her stories, and because she has ADD, she will get bored if she pretends to be one person for too long.

Pauline is a horse trainer from Virginia, but writing is her therapy.

Follow Pauline Creeden

Website | Facebook | Twitter

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This book blast is hosted by Crossreads. We would like to send out a special THANK YOU to all of the CrossReads book blast bloggers!

What did I do this summer?

Taking this summer off was a great decision. Some times you just need some time to take a step back and regroup. It is hard to hear the voice of God in the middle of noise. I needed  a change of scenery in order to organize,  a real vacation and some projects.

I was able to de-clutter some old things that I’ve been hanging on for too long. I was allowed to finally have a vacation, the last one I had was in 2006. I read a full book. Yes, writers love to read too, we just don’t have enough time.

I took a vacation from my healthy lifestyle and recovered some of the pounds I had lost, but I’m now back  on  track and decided to lose them with the plan to not find them again.

Finally I was able to get some writing work done. My new novel “A Brother’s Vow” is in the final stages of editing and the cover is being worked on. I started a new project, currently called “Second Chances”, which I was able to write the first five chapters and many more things to come.

It’s good to be back.

So tell me, what has your summer been like?

Still for 0.99 cents Season’s Greetings from Amelia

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“This book is in a class by itself, you will not be able to put it down! The characters pull you in and you begin to feel their emotions. Excellently written. The title fooled me, the saying goes” never judge a book by the cover “and this is one of those books.” By Duezette

Summer Break

To all my readers,

I will be taking off from blogging during this summer. This year has been a little bit more challenging than anticipated and I have not been able to be true to my promise to provide you with new good reads. I will be focusing on the following stories: “My Promise To Keep”, “Breaking Free” and the first draft of a new novella “Hope”

This has been one of the challenges. My computer has broken down several times and as I type this is barely allowing me to work. It is my hope to get that problem resolved in the next few weeks.

I have been very involved in too many projects and for the first time in three years I will be going on vacation. Although I’ll be writing during my time away, it will be great to focus on it in a new environment. It is awesome when you are writing fiction and your story is just as good as your reality.

So enjoy  your summer, be safe, be blessed and see you all back on August 5th

Body Image Lies Women Believe: Free Kindle eBook & $100 Giveaway

By Shelley Hitz and contributing authors

Download on Kindle

FREE three days only: 5/8/13, 5/9/13 and 5/10/13

PLUS enter to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card!

About the Book, Body Image Lies Women Believe:

  • Are you insecure about your looks?
  • Have you ever compared yourself to someone else and found yourself wanting?
  • Do complements or put downs determine the image you have of your beauty?

Real Stories of Overcoming Body Image Lies Women Believe with God’s Truth

Throughout this book, Christian women share their stories of how they have struggled with body image lies and a distorted view of themselves. However, each of their stories also contains hope – the hope of replacing these lies with God’s truth. Our prayer for you is that you find encouragement within these pages and allow Christ to transform you with His truth.

We Are Each Created Unique

God has created each one of us with unique abilities, unique talents and a unique personality. As women we are influencers and God has given us that role and our beauty to share with others. Yet so often we settle for a counterfeit. The enemy has counterfeited our idea of beauty, convincing us to share our beauty with the world in a distorted way. Today that often means that we see our beauty as what we look like on the outside.

What Lies Have You Been Believing?

Join us for the journey of replacing body image lies with truth from God’s Word.

Download on Kindle

FREE on 5/8/13, 5/9/13 and 5/10/13

Paperback | Large Print | Audiobook

Shelley Hitz

Shelley HItzShelley Hitz is an award-winning and international best-selling author. Her openness and vulnerability as she shares her own story of hope and healing through her books will inspire and encourage you.

Shelley has been ministering alongside her husband, CJ, since 1998. They currently travel and speak to teens and adults around the country. Shelley’s main passion is to share God’s truth and the freedom in Christ she has found with others. She does this through her books, websites and speaking engagements.

Follow Shelley Hitz
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Enter Below to Win a $100 Amazon Gift Card!

Thank you to our sponsors!  The giveaway is sponsored by Staci Stallings, Spirit Filled Kindle, Grace & Faith 4 U and Body and Soul Publishing.

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Letter to the Unknown Author

By Karen Baney

Dear Unknown Author,

I know the blood, sweat, and tears you’ve poured into your book. The late nights. The early mornings. The crazy moments when the idea for your next chapter hits you and you can hardly wait to get time to sit down and pour it all out.

It’s your masterpiece, your joy. You wrote it with purpose and determination.

The happiest day of your life, next to your wedding day and the birth of your kids, was the birth of your book. Oh how you shouted for joy when you first saw your name on the cover of your book! Then when it became available in bookstores online or brick and mortar, you could hardly contain your excitement. Your baby, your masterpiece was finally out there in the world.

Then the excitement faded. Week after week you wondered if anyone would buy your book. Weeks turned to months. Months to years. The next book you wrote was with a little less enthusiasm—containing an underlying fear that maybe you aren’t really cut out for this whole writing thing.

I know what you’re saying. Reader, how can you know me so well? Where have you been? Did you read my book?

I would love to read it. I’m sure it is really good. I would love to go on the journey you so cleverly crafted with painstaking details.

Just one problem, dear unknown author: You are unknown to me.

You see, I only have a few minutes of time between picking up the kids from soccer and getting dinner on the stove—maybe we’ll just stop for fast food tonight—that it’s hard for me to take the time to find you. I have a blog that I read once every few weeks, and you’re not there. When I browse through my favorite genre, you’re not there. When I talk to friends, they haven’t heard of you either. You don’t show up in my Twitter stream.

I do like trying new authors, I really do. But with 18,000 other religious fiction authors vying for my attention, what have you done to get mine?

Maybe someday I’ll hear about you from a friend. Maybe my book club will bring you to my attention. Until then, you will remain an unknown author to me.

Blessings,

Busy Reader

What are you doing to stand out among the 18,000? Is your publish-it-and-they-will come strategy getting you nowhere? If so, unknown author, it’s time to stand out. It’s time to learn about marketing. Get out there. Be bold. Be seen. Be a name and not a number.

Karen_closeup_left_medBest-selling self-published author, Karen Baney, enjoys sharing information to help authors learn about the Business of Writing.  She holds a Masters of Business Administration from Arizona State University and has worked in various business related career fields for the past 20 years.  She writes Christian Historical Fiction and Contemporary Romance novels.  To learn more about her novels visit her website: karenbaney.com. Authors can find tips and information on self-publishing and marketing at: www.myauthorservices.com.

Karen and her husband, Jim, also run several online businesses.  They make their home in Gilbert, AZ, with their two dogs.

Connect with Karen on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.10 Keys Cover Med

Not sure how to start marketing your book? Check out Karen’s new book just for authors: 10 Keys to Ebook Marketing Success. Now available on Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Keys-Ebook-Marketing-Success-ebook/dp/B00B2YUQ16

For great marketing and self-publishing advice, visit MyAuthorServices.com.