|Pelican Book Group, 2015|
Where Hearts Meet
Shattered by the loss of her parents, Deena pours her love into her patients at an assisted living facility. When the son of one her charges starts showing up to spend time with his mother, Deena's wary heart is warmed by his attention to his mother...and to her. Simon is plagued by his ex-wife's disappearance years before. When he meets Deena, who closely resembles the woman, he fears his attraction is based only on Deena's looks. But she exhibits a warmth his ex-wife never had. Dare he risk his once broken heart? As two lonely souls pursue a tentative, budding love, secrets and lies come forward to tear them apart. Can Simon and Deena overcome loss and allow their hearts to mend?
Has anyone said to you, “Life is easy?”
Each of us has a story, and each one is unique. God chooses the timing of events in our lives. We either choose to fight as we hit roadblocks doing things our own way, or give the leadership to Him and go along for the ride. At some point we come to realize His plan rules, so instead of fighting, why not seek His guidance?
The writing bug bit me in the mid-eighties, as a cathartic journey to help me through grief and unanswered questions. Does anyone else moan at the thought of our first efforts, be it writing or another pursuit?
I had nothing to draw on besides my own life. Life lessons resulting in growth or aha moments take time to come to fruition. God reaches us when we are still in the valleys, amidst whatever storm caught us in its grip. He works out a different plan for our individual growth. We’d better learn to listen during those hard times. We can be desperate, focused on the pain, or we opt to quiet our hearts, persevere, and discover the grace in store for each of us.
Would writing efforts be worth it if writing came easy?
Even this post challenged me. I didn’t know where to start because I had a hard time focusing on finding something I hadn’t written before.
Many Bible verses have spoken to me over the years. One of my favorites is 1 John 5:4. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.
Our family was struck by tragedy in late April, 1975, at the trauma of my father’s murder. For some reason, much like the word closure, survivor rubs me wrong. I’d much rather think of myself as an overcomer.
The word victory also holds significance. Since the origin of my name comes from laurel leaves used in the winning crowns of athletes going back to ancient Olympics, I think of myself as victorious.
That victory comes about only when I set myself aside and seek my Lord’s guidance.
At the time I picked up pen and paper (I borrowed the computer during breaks on the job), I had two children at home, and was clueless as to “how” to write. I started out with short romances and submitted, what amounted to unpolished drafts, to magazines.
I gained writing experience when I contributed to a newsletter for a large church and evolved into editing a women’s newsletter. A friend and I started a Christian critique group.
On the job, I learned how to proofread and copy edit. I bought how-to books and tried my hand at nonfiction. My Nebraska essays were published in academic journals and anthologies.
Did you catch my earlier reference to closure? My father’s homicide remains unsolved. The Lord used that incident as part of my testimony. I received my first writing check when it was published.
To help my early attempts, I took a novel writing course through Writer’s Digest. My first novel took ten years to finish. It will remain in its container. That story was about a young woman who went back to her home town and proved her father’s reported accidental death had been a hit.
Setting down the story of my dad’s murder with resolution and a happy ending has been my driving force.
Would any part of life be worth living if we didn’t have to work hard?
I joined RWA, and learned more in six months than I had in ten years. I attended conferences. I read all the time I wasn’t writing. I didn’t write for eighteen months while I searched for an agent.
The Lord changed my attitude toward a sinful situation in my life, and my break came with White Rose Publishing, an imprint of Pelican Book Group.
Had the sin remained unresolved, I may still not be published.
“Fragmented to Fulfilled” will appear in an upcoming anthology, But God: Interventions of Grace, projected to release late August. It’s spearheaded by Patricia Bradley.
Back to my father’s homicide, the struggle remains. One day I can say I’ve accepted God’s answer as “No.” The next day I work on the story, a fictional memoir combined with a contemporary romance in the current rewrite, and all the old emotions rise to the surface.
I take it to Jesus. Again.
same as for her characters, is to discover where they fit in this life journey to best work out the Lord’s life plan. She is who she is by the grace of God: Christian, country girl, wife, mother, grandmother, sister, friend, and author. She’s been a reader since before kindergarten. One day she slapped a story in her lap. “I could write better than this.” (Lofty assumption, eh?) Her dear hubby challenged, “Why don’t you?” Thus her writing journey began many moons ago. Connect with LoRee through these links: