Thursday, May 30, 2013

Zombies and Christians

zombie noteZombies are everywhere—books, TV, movies; even the Centers for Disease Control put out an article on preparing for the zombie apocalypse. The Walking Dead on AMC accounts for much of this interest. The third season’s finale broke a record for the most watched drama series on cable TV. And, yes, even children know all about zombies.

My grandsons had a conversation a few days ago. The four-year-old said, “My daddy loves zombies and I do too.” The seven-year-old responded, “You can’t love zombies. They’ll eat your brains.”

Yes, we’re all familiar with zombie shows. I’ve noticed the zombie apocalypse in the shows I’ve seen is a microcosm of our world. It’s our world intensified. What would that do to our faith? How would we, as Christians, react when we see the chaos and evil around us?

Zombies, as most know, are single-minded in their quest for brains. Nothing stops them. They move slowly, yet steadily, towards their goal. They can lose an arm and will use the limbs that remain to claw through solid boards. If they lose legs, they crawl through mud and filth. Their thirst for brains cannot be quenched.

And that’s the same kind of world we live in. The world is relentless in it’s pursuit of our souls, never stopping in its quest. How do we combat it? The same way survivors combat the zombies.

When fighting the undead, the combatants don’t worry about how fancy their homes are, if they’re wearing the latest fashions, if they’re driving the latest sports model—they have no concerns about the material world around them. They are focused on defeating the enemy.

They actively search for the best weapons, the sharpest swords to chop off zombie heads, the strongest homes to ward off attacks, the most trustworthy friends to help with the fight.

And that, my friends, is the same way we fight the world.

We learn God’s word for it is our sword: For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit…~Hebrews 4:12

We seek good companions to help us stay strong: A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. ~Proverbs 18:24

We remain righteous to fortify our homes: The LORD's curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the home of the righteous. ~Proverbs 3:33

Good to know for the zombie apocalypse and good to know in the here and now.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Spit Shine Your Writing

Excerpt from Shine that will be published at the end of the year.

Someone told me yesterday that nothing polishes boots better than a little spit. Having a scientific bent of mind, I wondered about “spit.”

I know that real “spit,” saliva if you prefer, moistens our food and helps it slide down our esophagus easier. Even the most delicious food becomes challenging if saliva is not present. We choke on it.

In the same way, if our writing does not contain “spit,” readers are going to choke on it. They may manage to swallow, but it will be difficult.

Besides moistening food, saliva also contains enzymes that begin the breakdown of food. I’m guessing here that the enzymes might be the reason spit works better than plain water. The enzymes help eat away the gunk clinging to the boots.

In our first drafts, we also have gunk. Our “spit” will remove the gunk and let our words shine.

Spit is rather disgusting, and, yet, it gets the job done. Anyone who has ever spit polished a pair of boots will tell you it takes a lot of elbow grease and a lot of time.

Many people want to be writers. What many do not realize is the messy, disgusting part of getting the manuscript polished to a perfect shine.

How many are willing to take the time and effort needed to bring their writing to a stage of palatability for their readers?

Notice the title of this series? Rise, Write, Shine? Today, let’s make it:

Rise, Write, Spit-Shine!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Review of Armored Hearts

Armored Hearts by Melissa Turner Lee and Pauline Creeden is about a young man, Gareth Smyth, who is a cripple, confined to a wheelchair. Gareth is not happy with his lot in life. The only one he allows to get close is his young aunt, Tabitha.

And then one day he discovers his special power when a girl, Jessamine, falls from a tree. More secrets reveal themselves as he grows to adulthood and discovers those around him are not whom they seem. Will Jessamine help him stand on moral precepts? Will Gareth allow even a chink in the armor he is encased in?

This is a fun read with likable characters. It delves into equal rights for women, steam punk, and the land of fairies.

However, there were a couple of problems—one was that the “bad guys” seem to come out of nowhere. I would have liked to have seen  more scenes leading up to the ending. And, speaking of the ending, it seems over before beginning. Also, although I skim when confronted with long descriptions, at times it was difficult to visualize the surroundings due to the sparseness of detail.

Despite the minor problems, overall, I enjoyed the book and can’t wait for the next in the series.
**I received an ARC for a fair, honest review.**