Balance – Part 2

click here for Balance – Part 1

My creative focus remains on the River Wild Series. At the moment, I have a fascination with moving bodies of water. That’s why my second post on balance has an ocean theme.

When life gets a little turbulent, my initial response is to retreat to the safety of the shore. Experience has taught me that I need strength and self-confidence if I am to maintain my balance when the waves are breaking. This realisation teaches me that, while I enjoy watching moving water, being moved by the waves has become a fearful thing. A reminder of all my limitations, which takes my eyes off the potential adventure and parks me on the shore of “I must not dare”.

God and I have been talking about how I can regain my self-confidence. There are parallels between my creative hesitancy and my physical wellbeing. I have a long-term infirmity that has kept me out of the waves for the past two summers. Here’s a photo of me – note the sensible walking shoes to avoid any possibility that I might trip or fall.

January 2019, Tiger Head Beach, Dodges Ferry, Tasmania

Anxiety was the catalyst for my initial injury and anxiety continues to sustain the problem. I find myself pausing before I step forward to help someone, wondering if I will have the strength to make it safely home when I am finished.

Anxiety also nibbles away at my writing success. Not even three self-published books on my bookcase are enough to keep me upright when anxiety rolls in, like a thundering wave, and sweeps me off my feet.

The balance that I am seeking is halfway between “I am too afraid to try” and “my reckless decisions come at too great a cost”. I want to get back into the water, and to be confident that I won’t drown.

For me, the answer includes making a stand with God at my side. I’m looking for that place of safety, where He holds my hand. If the waves threaten to pull me off my feet, His strength sustains me. He created the waves and can see the danger that is coming, and He asks me to trust in Him. In everything I write, that search for balance is there.

DO you have a favourite Scripture to help bring balance into your situation? Please share.

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Spare Time?

Rocks at Okines Beach, Dodges Ferry, Tasmania, Australia

It is winter here in Tassie. Much too cold to go to the beach today, but I can dream of warmer days as I sit here at the computer 🙂
For the past few months, my Saturdays have been devoted to recording, editing, and publishing videos to YouTube so that my small church community could have a shared online Worship experience.

Tomorrow we will be meeting face to face for the first time since CoVid19 restrictions came in. Which means Saturday has become my own again.

So what will I do with
all this spare time?

All I really want to do is write, write, write.
Book 5 is nearing the critical point,
and I am impatient to get there.
And I have three more story ideas for a spin-off series
featuring Marco Fontana, the pizza-devouring teenager who has become a favourite.
Plus there’s the final book in my fantasy trilogy…

Alas, there are other tasks that must have their turn first. One of them was right in my face when I opened up my computer to start this post. A big red ! warning me that something technical was “out-of-date” and “unstable”. I had a quick look at the accompanying information and then hunted out the password to contact the Help Desk. Problem solved, and it didn’t cost me more than half an hour.

Plus there was a bonus opportunity to have a little laugh. The Online Helper said these kinds of red warnings were “normal”, and if my web page was working okay, I could leave it…

Would you? I didn’t think so. Neither did I.

It has been a busy week. The first shipment of paperbacks for Book 3: When Freedom Is Promised came early. I’ve made some hand deliveries and put a few copies in the regular mail. Here is Ezra, my helpful assistant, checking that I put the right addresses on a few books. With the borders still closed, he was tempted to mail himself to Queensland.it…

Help, please

I am keeping this short today. The final topic is a request for your help. Before I can start planning the Marco Fontana series of books, I need to invent a pizza menu for Papa Benito and Mama Rosa’s restaurant. If the choices were left to me, it wouldn’t be a very long list. I’m not very adventurous – give me meat and cheese and I’m happy.

So I am putting out an invitation to my readers. Please send me your menu suggestions in the comments section below. If you have a fancy name to go with your topping description, even better. If I include your idea in Marco’s menu, then I will credit you in his books.

Talk to you again soon,

Chrissy )i(

Chasing Inspiration

Today’s inspiration comes from another long-term project. A few years ago, I set myself a task to create images to go with my Butterfly Prayer House daily blog, with the ambitious goal of one day having designed an image for a verse from every chapter in the Bible. As there are many great inspirational texts, it will take me the rest of my life to fulfil this goal.

Today, I went through my collection and selected some images taken at Dodges Ferry, Tasmania, Australia. I love going to the beach, but not on my own.

I have added a caption below each image to explain the relevance that these Scriptures brought me today as I prepared for my day of writing )i(

Writing a book takes a long time.
I like to swap out the word ‘temple’ in the final line of this text
and replace it with my current project.
This is a good Scripture to describe what happens when writing the manuscript is done,
and the revision and editing stage begins.
I have discovered that it is easier to write the story than

to reach the end of the process of editing.
But the end result is worth the extra effort.
There comes a time in the writing process
where taking time to rest and recover
is the best way to keep moving forward.
There also comes a time when I sit and call out to God for help.
There are moments when I know where my characters need to get to
but I have trouble writing their journey.
Always God answers my prayer for guidance.
Not always when I expect Him to, and not often within my time frame,
but when I wait patiently, He brings me through the desert
to the place where the words flow from me like water from a spring.
My stories are about justice, with lots of internal conflict and
more than a little bit of trouble for my characters.
I am working on my third manuscript in the River Wild Series,
and so far the stream of inspiration hasn’t failed me.
I remember sending off my first manuscript White Rose of Promise (WRoP) 
for Copy Editing, and my editor told me to get to work on my second manuscript.
The first one (WRoP) is still fully engaged in that process,
and my second manuscript When Promises Are Broken (WPaB)
is away with my alpha readers.
Meanwhile, I am up to chapter 5 of book three… 
I have chosen water themes to join together the books in my River Wild Series.
When I trusted God to give me a clear direction for my writing,
I was expecting to come to a satisfactory conclusion to my first story,
and then wait on Him for inspiration.
I never expected Him to take my characters and build a new story around them,
so that I started writing the next episode with all the hard work already done.

When I take the time, I can find inspiration from wherever God has placed, me, but sometimes it takes me some intentional sitting and waiting before I find the key to what God wants to say.

Do you have a favourite beach or water photo? Or do you get your inspiration from another natural feature?