Tag Archives: inspirational writing

Book Signings Aren’t Just for New Books

Picture and article from Chicken Soup for the Soul’s The Inner Circle Newsletter for August 2017.

Thank you “Chicken Soup” for the write-up, and thank you to everyone who purchased books at these bookstore signings.

May God bless you all!


How to Know if You are a Writer – Matthew 7:24-29

A great post by Kathy S. Davis. Not just for writers, but for anyone who is passionate about their craft.

Kathy Davis

I was perched near the top of a tall building, under the Tower of Babel sign, trying to address the crowd. The problem was, only a few of my listeners understood what I was saying. The rest were raising a ruckus trying to find someone who spoke their language, making it impossible for anyone to hear me. My nightmare turned out just as it did in the Bible, my audience parting a hundred different ways.

I’m glad it was only a dream.

obyvatel. stockxchngIs writing for you?

The need to communicate with others is a basic need, but how do you know if writing is the best outlet for you?

The first thing I would ask, if you wonder about calling yourself a writer, is how important is it to you?

I have been writing consistently for more than forty years. Writing helps me think, or understand, my world. It helps me communicate better when I speak, because I’ve…

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Holiday Greetings to All

Yea, I know, I’ve blogged this message before, but it’s still applicable. Happy holidays to everyone.

Charles Earl Harrel

Merry Christmas

All of us are writers in one way or another. As such, we understand the importance of rewriting and tightening our drafts. We always look for ways to eliminate unnecessary adverbs or adjectives, phrases, and other redundant words in sentences. With this thought in mind, here is my special and somewhat witty holiday greeting for you.

Rough draft:

Wishing you a merry and blessed Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year.

First rewrite:

Wishing you a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

Second rewrite:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Third rewrite:

Merry Christmas and more.

Fourth rewrite:

Happy Holidays.

Final draft:


—Charles and Laura

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Surviving the Valley

Encouraging advice for writers, authors, and everyone else who has traveled down the valley of shadows. When we see shadows, we know that light is in the valley too—His light.

WordServe Water Cooler

You hear a lot on the writing journey that it’s filled with highs and lows—probably more so in publishing because it’s rapidly changing and I personally wouldn’t consider any part of the industry stable or predictable.

valley-of-fire-1390258_1920The problem is the valley is hard. What exactly do you do? Do you give up writing? How do you readjust to keep your writing career moving forward when seemingly no one wants the words you’re putting on the page?

My writing valley (really—the deep dark hole of despair) started after my first trilogy was published. I worked really hard marketing those books, had great reviews, and two out of three of the books were each nominated for multiple awards. I was even told by my publisher that I was (at one point) their second-bestselling fiction author.

I thought there was no way my next proposal wouldn’t be picked up—by somebody. Well, it wasn’t…

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7 Ways Writers Can Find an Exclusive Voice

Good article about writing and the writer’s voice. Check it out.

WordServe Water Cooler

It’s one of the best compliments I receive from readers. “I loved your book. I could hear you encouraging me as I read. It felt like we were talking over lunch.”

Unique. Transparent. Courageous. Authentic. Fresh. Today’s most popular writing voices are often identified by these descriptors. But how do you tap into the exclusive inflections that showcase your authentic self on the page?Grandpa and Granddaughter

Recently, while watching my nine-month-old granddaughter amuse herself by practicing her newly discovered babble, I thought about a writer’s struggle to speak on paper. In the infancy of our career, we could learn a lot from babies about speaking in an identifiable way. And if we relax and learn to amuse ourselves in the process, we’ll likely find our voice faster.

Most of us need help understanding our voice. But if you follow the seven steps listed below, I can assure you, very soon, you’ll relax…

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Don’t ride . . . DRIVE the train! — WordServe Water Cooler

About fifteen years ago, while taking a graduate course in Spirituality and Leadership, I had a professor who presented me with one of the most motivational sayings I’ve ever encountered: “Don’t just ride the train, be the engineer!” Okay, maybe not the most theological statement I heard in the course of my graduate program, but […]

via Don’t ride . . . DRIVE the train! — WordServe Water Cooler

Who Will Light the Way?

Light of the WorldWho Will Light the Way?

The LORD says . . . “I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth” (Isaiah 49:5, 6).

Scripture: Isaiah 49:1-6
Song: “Light of Light, Enlighten Me”

Jeremy’s hand rose first when I asked the question. As youth leader for children’s church, I usually took requests for songs. Jeremy always requested, “This Little Light of Mine.” He never tired of that song. Reluctantly, I said yes—but, for me, the song had lost its meaning years ago. At times I even despised it, including the repetitive hand motions.

I suppose the Lord was listening in to my thoughts. Halfway into the chorus, He seemed to speak to my heart: So, how are you going to do that—be my light to a lost world?

The question challenged and convicted me. After the morning worship service, I stopped by the prayer room. I waited in silence for an hour, listening for the Lord, and then I prayed, “Do You have any openings for Christian writers?”

Isaiah prophesied about a Messiah who would one day be a light to all people, Jew and Gentile alike. He, Jesus Christ, is the divine source of light, and we are His lamps. Each of us is called to carry and spread His light to our friends and neighbors.

Oil LampLord, fill my lamp with oil, and trim its flame to burn brightly. And use me to bring Your light to those who live in darkness. In Jesus’ name, amen.

“Who Will Light the Way?” by Charles Earl Harrel. First published in Devotions® © 2009 Standard Publishing. Reprinted with permission from the publisher.

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