ADVICE FOR BEGINNING WRITERS
Ummm....Don't do what I just did. Send a requested manuscript to a publisher without putting "Requested Material" on the outside of the envelope. My poor baby may be headed for the slush piles. Then again, maybe not. Dana Corbit, a wonderful author and encourager who I met on the Steeple Hill Message Boards, told me the editors usually log the packets in when they arrive, so hopefully, they'll read my cover letter and see that it is a requested ms.
WRITERLY DEFINITIONS AND TERMS
ms-Initials for "Manuscript."
mss- Initials for "Manuscripts."
Slush Pile-Stack of unsolicited ms in a publishing house. Unsolicited means the person sent the ms without asking for permission to do so. While some houses do accept unsolicited ms, definitely know the guidelines of the house you're targeting. You wouldn't want to make a bad impression right off the bat with an editor by sending in a full or parital ms when their guidelines clearly say, "No unsolicited ms." Most of them prefer a one page query letter and partial Synopsis. To follow guidelines shows professionalism.
BLUSH AND CRINGE
My husband is a talker. That's fine as long as I'm not in a hurry. We were getting ready to leave a restaurant a couple days ago. The room lights were low and I forgot to wear my glasses and I don't see well without them. As we were leaving, I sensed my husband stop behind me (we can't go anywhere that he doesn't see someone he knows) so, without turning around, I swing my arm in an arch behind me to "tap" his shoulder with the back of my hand and say, "C'mon, we need to get goin'." Okay, so it was more than a little tap. As I "tapped" him, I also clutched his shirt with my fingers...you know, to tug him along toward the door. He follows me, so it's all good, right?
About ten steps later, I see my husband ALREADY AT THE DOOR waiting for me and he has a very strange look on his face. So it took all of 1.5 seconds for me to let go of whoever it was I had ahold of. I cut a glance up and sure enough....I had the wrong husband. Once in the car, my husband teased me relentlessly about how I have the tendency to bring home strays and how he'd overlook the animals, but he'd have to draw the line there.
Went to a wedding last evening. CONGRATS REBECCA and Joshua! It was lovely. Greg, the minister, was talking about the marriage relationship being likened to the relationship between sheep and their shepperd. How the shepperd(husband) needs to protect the marriage and watch over it with diligence. The analogy really impacted me. He also read a letter from the mother of the groom, which was written to the couple and she talked about how there is an enemy who would like to tear their marriage apart. Though that may seem like she used strong words, it's the truth and we have to be on guard to preseve and protect our marriages. Greg went on to say to the couple, "The reason the enemy doesn't want you to be together is because God wants you to be." That's such a simple truth, but it affected me profoundly.
If you are reading this, you know someone who has been affected by the devastation of divorce. It may even be you. If you've suffered through that, I'm sorry. Did you know the Bible says that God is very near to the broken hearted? (Psalms 34:18) I pray you take comfort in that.
I watched the couples, many of them from our church, dancing with one another at the wedding and it made me grateful to have a church family. I know a good one is hard to find for some of you. But I encourage you not to give up, though. We all need each other. There is a wonderful couple, Larry and Carol, pillars of our church really, who are like spiritual parents to many of the college students who are away from their parents. They are such a blessing. I know it's hard on them when their "kids" and "grandkids" end up moving away, but I know God will bless them a thousand fold for all the love they've lavished on us.
That's all for today.
PS: Even if you don't have a relationship with God, or if you read secular fiction, I want you to know you are welcome here. Just come exactly as you are. I'm really glad you stopped by. Comments are welcome.