Posts Tagged ‘ Coffee ’

Scary Story Contest

First of all, we would like to thank all of you who submitted a story for our contest. There was not a clear winner in the end, so we are going to send all participants a gift card for a cup of coffee. Thank you for taking the time and courage to write. I will contact those who submitted via email to get your address and send your card along.

Keep an eye out for future contests. We really enjoy reading what you write and would love to continue getting to know our audience even better. Have a safe weekend!

Thank you again!
~Brittany

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5 Terrific Things for Tuesday: Must Dos for Fall

Good afternoon Fiction Friends!

Our post is all about fall today! What are some things that are nonnegotiable for you when this cool season rolls in after summer? We asked around the office and came up with the top 5. Drumroll please………

1) Apple picking for fresh homemade apple sauce made the Italian way with plenty of butter and saffron.

2) Switching out your summer and spring clothes in your closet for your fall and winter pieces. Make sure and organize them by shirts, jackets, sweaters, pants, and skirts, then you can just grab things and put an outfit together, no shuffling through the closet.

3) Stepping on every crunchy leaf you can find and sipping a pumpkin spice latte while you do it.

4) Going to a pumpkin patch that has everything, and I mean everything. I want a wagon to carry my pumpkin that I choose, I want pumpkin spiced donuts, I want a corn maze with scarecrows, and I want a petting zoo where I can feed the animals. You aren’t supposed to feed the animals in the city. Take me out to the country where I can feed the animals.

5) Boots, boots, and more boots. I love seeing all of the different styles of boots that come out when fall starts. There are brown ones, black ones, grey ones, purple ones, Cowboy boots, tall boots, short boots. I love boots and the different ways you can wear them.  Boots scream fall to me.

What do you absolutely have to do when fall starts?

~Brittany

P.S. Don’t forget the scary short story contest that is going on right now. There is still time to submit a story.

5 Terrific Things for Tuesday: What is your Fall Beverage of Choice?

Hello Fiction Fans!

I got our team together to discuss a very important topic: What do you have to be sipping on while you are settled in and reading your book?

1) Holly said her favorite beverage in the fall is mulled cider and it must have whipped cream on top, that is not negotiable.

2) Tracey enjoys a hot pumpkin spice chai when she is curled up with her book (she has given up coffee for the month).

3) Michele likes a good ‘ole Diet Coke and prefers it in a pumpkin mug, you know, for the season!

4) Deb digs an Earl Grey tea with a soy topper and two natural sugars, whew, that is a mouthful, and I bet it is delicious!

5) Myself, I prefer a skim latte, plain and simple. I love it when they can make it rich and creamy enough that it tastes like they used whole milk!

What is your preferred fall beverage to curl up with when you are reading? We would love to know!

Happy beautiful leaf changing day, folks!

~Brittany

5 Terrific Things for Tuesday (yes, we know it is Wednesday…) ACFW Conference

Final thoughts on ACFW Conference (That stands for the American Christian Fiction Writers) 

By Deb Keiser

 

Okay, it is not Tuesday. . . again. Unfortunately I’ve spent a few days clutching a box of tissues with my head propped up in bed. So, my schedule is shot at this point, but I wanted to make sure that I shared the highlights of my trip to St. Louis for the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference. 

1. The best part of the whole conference is the opportunity to have one-on-one meetings with fantastic authors at every stage of their writing life from aspiring to seasoned. 

2. Agents were excited to hear about our vision for River North fiction by Moody Publishers and shared with me information about authors who would be a good fit for our line. Publishing is a dance often orchestrated at the onset by a knowledgeable agent.  

3. Everyone doesn’t get it—the love of created characters making merry in one’s mind. But it is a wonder to me when I can be in a crowd of hundreds of people who do. It is God’s mercy that I get to share life with likeminded folks. 

4. Now my whiteboard is full of ideas that were planted at the conference. I have more proposals than I can keep up with and a fresh way of looking at some things. Best of all, there are a few ideas that really have some traction and the potential to end in a really good finished piece of fiction publishing.  

5. My anxiety was relieved when I got to the hotel and spied the Starbucks in the lobby. The reports that there were no coffee makers in the hotel rooms turned out to be true. But the hotel staff graciously supplied my needs when I called. My wonderful husband asked me a very silly question, “Why don’t you just throw on your sweats and go down to the Starbucks? Coffee in the room is usually not very good anyway.” Can you believe that? Go to the lobby with foggy eyes and bed-head. No way. Very glad I didn’t have to.

5 Terrific Things for Tuesday: Fun Facts about Author Jocelyn Green

Hello Fiction Friends,

I had the pleasure of meeting one of our great authors this weekend. When I first started working here at Moody Publishers, I was corresponding with Jocelyn Green and noticed on her email signature that she lives on the same street that I did when I attended the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls. It was a fun little coincidence to me. Well, my husband and I took a little trip back to that area this past weekend for a get together with some of his college buddies and their wives and I was able to pop in on Jocelyn and finally meet her face to face. This was my first sit down with an author and it was really neat to hear about her process and see firsthand the different ways in which she organizes herself and her thoughts. Here are 5 fun little facts that I learned about Jocelyn and her writing process:

1) The 4 Civil War fiction novels that Jocelyn is writing for us are her first fiction novels. She has done so much research. In order to keep her ideas organized, she tapes colored index cards to the wall with one line running east to west with actual historical events and then cards running north and south that are fiction lines she is adding in.

 

 

 

 

2) She also keeps bulletin boards that are packed with pictures of real people from the specific time and place she is writing about, samples of clothes, and pictures of the actual places.

 

 

 

3) She has her own writing room where she keeps all of her materials and said her necessary items include a cup of coffee, her coffee cup warmer, a candle, and writing pants.

 

 

 

 

4) Jocelyn is a wife and mother of 2 children on top of being a busy author. She keeps her house rolling smoothly by preparing dinners in bulk and freezing them so that her family can still sit down together for dinner at night even though she is working hard at writing.

 

 

 

 

 

5) My favorite thing that Jocelyn told me is that at one point in time it was relaxing to have her cat pounce around while she was writing but now she has to keep an eye on the cat because not too long ago he caught his tail on fire while playing too close to Jocelyn’s candle. That would be a little stressful I would say! He looks so sweet and innocent here!

 

 

 

 

It was so great meeting Jocelyn and getting a chance to learn firsthand what a writer does in preparation for a novel. Thanks again for your time and hospitality! Go Panthers!

~Brittany

 

Coffee Withdrawal at ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers)

Coffee withdrawal at ACFW

By Deb Keiser

I stood on the platform waiting for my train into Chicago yesterday morning and glanced down at my iPhone. Like most of the commuters our faces were turned toward something to read—a newspaper, book, or an electronic device. Hardly anyone talks first thing in the morning. Not enough coffee yet.

I read this hysterically funny email string of comments about coffee makers at the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference which runs September 22-25 officially, but many participants are arriving on Wednesday.

Anyway, it appears that there will not be coffee makers in the rooms at the convention hotel, the Hyatt. It was so hard for me to believe that a reputable national hotel chain would not know that coffee is one of the nation’s staples. It is like soap—everyone needs it.  I had to call to discover for myself if it was true—and it is! “No coffee makers in the rooms, for green reasons.” The desk clerk told me when I called the hotel. Sounds fishy to me . . . next thing you know caffeine addicts will be escorted outside to drink coffee and forced to join the smokers on the street. I can just see us huddled together in the dead of winter on the sidewalks of Chicago.

No less than 16 people commented on the hardship of going without coffee first thing in the morning. I think that was the longest email string sent from the ACFW conference. Christian fiction writers definitely have their priorities. Coffee first then everything else.

I totally get it. In an attempt to give up coffee, I’ve been drinking tea first thing in the morning since December 2010, nine . . .  long . . . months. Drinking tea at work, too. But I’ve been “treating” myself to Starbucks lattes with an ever increasing frequency. I’m now a Starbucks Gold Card member. Good for Starbucks but bad for my pocketbook.  

I finally broke down and bought an espresso maker. After tallying up all I have spent on lattes in a given month, I decided that it was time to stop the bleeding. I checked on-line for the best price, make and model, but in the end I drove to the nearest Kohl’s and bought one for 50% off. I was so proud of myself—it cost less than a month-of-lattes.

In the end I failed to give up coffee. But I’m back in sync with my people—Caffeinated Christians for Fiction. Think that American Christian Fiction Writers would change the name?

Tonight I rest assured that on Thursday there will be coffee served on the plane to St. Louis bound for the ACFW (or the new CCFF?) conference. See you in St. Louie!

Know, Love, Serve

We went to Starbucks for our River North Fiction team meeting. This Starbucks location is an oasis in the city—tucked under the elevated commuter train and all too conveniently located close to our offices. Only two blocks away I can easily find an excuse to stop in: it’s rainy or snowy, too hot, I’m tired, it’s Monday . . . or Friday, the team finished our business plan, or we just need to catch up. With the constant flow of caffeine addicts (me included) and soft playing music, the team reconnects around our common mission: to produce fiction that will help our readers to know, love, and serve Jesus which goes hand-in-hand with our mission which is to know, love, and serve our readers.

What does this mean for Moody Publishers’s River North Fiction?

For one, we will only produce fiction that has a redemptive message. After all, isn’t that what Christ was doing when he told stories? He pointed to His Father and His Father’s kingdom. Often God was not in the story at all. Jesus used common everyday occurrences as illustrations that were understood by the audience—or should have been! Stories they could identity with and stories they could place themselves in. With characters who were often searching—longing for something lost like a son, or a coin, used as a parallel for His kingdom.

Next, we hope to provide a community around the love of Christian fiction. I stood on the train platform this morning and surveyed the community of commuters collected there. Weekday mornings I join the population of people gathered around the common experience of riding the train to work. You can tell who the daily commuters are. They crowd together at evenly spaced intervals in anticipation of the train doors opening in the same spot like it does every weekday morning when the commuter rail line pulls into the station. And everyone looks to the west in anticipation. Most regular commuters have a favorite car and line up waiting together. We might make eye contact and smile, some even say “hello” and may chat a while. We come together around a common goal. That is what we are attempting to do with our novels and here at our blog. But unlike the fleeting community that gathers for a few minutes every morning and disbands, we hope to establish a relationship with those of us gathered around a fondness for Christian fiction.
So, we want to hear from you. What do you like about reading novels? What kinds of stories do you long to engage with? Who are your favorite authors? Why read fiction, anyway? Is fiction true?
Please join us. We would love to have you as part of the River North Fiction community.

Enjoy,

Deb Keiser
Acquisitions Editor