Friday, June 25, 2010

Writing for Christ/ Operation Encourage an Author

Why don't we start out with you telling us about yourself...

Oh boy, are you sure?? Okay…I am a homeschool graduate, a sinner save by the grace of God, an avid reader, beginning writer of two novels (not completed beyond minimal editing mind you),knitter, cook, member of ACFW, voracious blogger, daughter, sister, child of the King.

How would you describe your blog?

Hmmm. Which one? LOL, I have four altogether, so I will start with the first: Writing for Christ. I started this blog because I wanted to have a place to express myself. I review books, share writing thoughts, challenge others, hold contests, share my spiritual journey on occasion and generally spend time getting to know fellow bloggers who are a lot like me. : )

Operation Encourage an Author was born of my desire from God to encourage and support the authors we all know and love, so it is place of encouragement, support and love from readers to writers. The Bible verse on the page sums it up well, I think: 1 Thess.5:11 Therefore ENCOURAGE and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

The Writer’s Alley is my group blog with four other wonderful ladies, Mary, Sherrinda, Krista and Pepper, who keep me on my toes and loving the writing craft. We blog daily on the writing craft and what we are learning, I blog every Thursday there.

My fourth is my blog for my jewelry business, Bug’s Beads.

How long have you been blogging? How/why did you get started?

I have been blogging for 6 months this month and LOVE every minute of it. It has gotten to where I can’t imagine not blogging. I got started because I wanted to. Plain and simple. I saw others blogging and thought, “That would be fun!” and God has blessed me abundantly through it. I have met so many wonderful people, it is just incredible. It has been a true blessing and isn’t work at all.

Which genres do you prefer to read?

All kinds! Suspense (like Terri Blackstock), romance, historical fiction, contemporary (My favorite genre right now), some chick lit, but not a lot, and women’s fiction.

What are your favorites?

ie) books, characters, food, beverage, movies, tv shows, seasons, vacations, animal, whatever, etc...

Books! I could read all day. Besides that I love to knit, experiment in the kitchen, write, connect with authors, blog, writing, and my family. I love the outdoors and enjoy the summer. Making jewelry and reading, did I mention that? LOL!

Do you have a favorite scripture or a life verse? If so what is it (and why, if you want to get into it!?)

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plan to prosper and not to harm, plans to give you hope and a future (slightly paraphrased). I love this verse because it encapsulates everything in my life. To trust God so completely with my tomorrows, my writing career, my everything, is so vitally important, I couldn’t live life if I didn’t know that God has it in His control. He will guide my steps, I just have to let Him.

What advice do you have to other book bloggers?

There is no substitute for blogging often and continuously. Blog, blog, blog. I blog every single weekday and on the weekends at least on Saturday and sometimes a worship video on Sunday. Followers want a return for their time and finding out what they like is important to the success of a blog. Experiment with the thoughts of your heart, book reviews are always a hit, start a contest, host an author interview, but mainly just blog. One of the first things I look for when I visit a blog is when was the last time they updated their site? Does a month go by without an update? I generally don’t follow those blogs. Not because I don’t like them, but if it’s too hit and miss I won’t get a lot out of it.

When a comment is left, reply to it. It makes the followers feel valued and they will enjoy coming back to see what you said. Also, be on time too. If you say a contest ends on a certain date, be sure and draw a winner, it will add creditability to your site.

But just have fun! There are no hard and fast rules, no laws that you need to follow. Go where God leads and enjoy it while you do it.

Anything else you'd like to add?

You have to decide when you blog: are you blogging for comments and followers or are you blogging because you want to? It can be discouraging to not see comments popping up or followers slowly trickling in, but just remember there are people reading your blog. They just don’t often comment. Blog because you want to, God will supply the rest, just trust in Him to provide. He will blow your mind!

Thank you to the wonderful ladies here on Winning Readings, your site is awesome and I so appreciate the time and energy you put into it! Thanks for having me. : )

Thank you so much, Casey! I love all your blogs! And thanks for taking the time to tell us more about yourself!