Monday, April 23, 2012


 meadows along the drive into N. Bloomfield
 McKillican and Mobley General Store
 a look down main st.
 N. Bloomfield circa 1870
Humbug Creek

There's nothing like actually visiting the place you intend to write about, esp. if you are writing from a historical perspective. If your location is a ghost town, more luck to you. Nothing much will have changed since the day the people packed up and left. The same streets will go to the same place, the general store will still be in the same place and the houses will be on one side of town or scattered all over. Pictures don't always say enough. There's always something to the left or the right that wasn't captured. 

If you never visit, you will never know that the air smells like sugar pines or if you can hardly hear a thing above whatever machinery they use, or that there are birds that squawk or tweet. Maybe bug torment the people, or maybe its a paradise. You'll never know until you go. 

In my head, I can still picture where I would go to find the blacksmith and that if I tilt my head up and inhale, I will smell the sweet scent of pines and deciduous mingled together. I can hear humbug creek down relief hill road and if I lived a hundred years before, the hydraulic monitors would have roared as the pressurized water smacked the walls of the mine. Gravel crunches under my feet when I walk, and in the thick of the forest, ground cover that looks like strawberry plants are abundant. Pine needles are everywhere. Grass and meadows linger here and there, and the air in thin. 

Think about it. I couldn't show you all that from a picture. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Mt. Hermon Christian Writer's Conference

No matter who you are, if you write, you are not a "normal" person. It is not at all unusual to make your eyes water form staring at a computer screen for too long - though everyone thinks you're crying. And more often than not, you talk to yourself, though its not yourself, its your characters - those people who seem to live in your head?

You're not alone, I promise, and Mount Hermon is one of the best places for a Christian writer to realize this.

For five days, writers have the opportunity to get to know one another, sympathize and perfect their craft of writing under the mentorship of others. As for me, during the past two years, I have gotten to know names like Sarah Sundin, Lauraine Snelling and Mona Hodgson. Suddenly, these names don't feel so lofty. These people aren't celebrities any more. They have become my mentors and friends.

This year at the conference, I took away many things that will help me with my writing, but more than that, Mount Hermon has honored me with "The Most Promising Teen Writer Award." I pray that this won't go to my head. God's been doing some work on my pride and this award has made me feel completely overwhelmed and blessed.

Thank goodness Allison's story has changed so much from what you may have read in my previous blog posts. My writing has changed and hopefully improved plenty since those posts. (thanks to mt. hermon) Someday you can see just how much and judge for yourself. But for now, this is my attempt at encouraging you, if you enjoy writing fiction... or even non-fiction, whether you are a teen or adult, beginning, mediocre or accomplished, to consider attending Mt. Hermon Christian Writer's Conference next year.

In His love,