Marji Laine

I Love a Good Mystery!

With Like Minds

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25

I am blessed to be united with a wonderful church. I love the teaching. I love the integrity of the leadership. I love the spirit that exudes from the ministers. And I know I’m blessed. Not from anything I’ve done. Sweet hubby and I were gently led to our new home and are profoundly grateful. But I promise, this isn’t an advertisement for our congregation.

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Why Do You Do What You Do?

A few weeks ago, Lena Nelson Dooley interviewed me on the Blog Talk Radio program, The Gate Beautiful. A recording of the program is at the link, and you can find an article about it here. During our chat, she asked me why I write the way I do.

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News. Previews. Reviews. And God is GOOD!

What an awesome week! I feel like a new woman. Seriously! After coughing my head off for a solid week, I get by with only about one to two coughs per hour and I’m finally able to sleep all night without interruption. Yippee! (Little things tickle the tar out of me!)

But there is more to cheer about.
God is so good! His faithfulness never quits! I’m in awe. Several connections, family members and family of friends have had intensive situations, surgeries or illnesses. In every case, God not only gave His blessings but showered exceeding abundant on the families. I love it when I can see His intentions and watch Him work in the lives of people I love.

What a great week!

This weekender has:

I love being able to put together this newspaper. I collect and search through hundreds of posts to find the ones I like the best for my headlines. Check them out!

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Inspired by other blogs and my F post I started my week with a post explaining what Faith-Driven Fiction means to me. I followed it up on Tuesday with a post about my family – they’re what I’m mostly about. On Wednesday, I continued my Monday post with an article on Purpose along with my ROW80 mid-week review. Thursday I skewed from my normal writing tip and posted about Holiness. The song by Sonic Flood has been churning through my head for days! Then I rounded out the week with an interview with a debut novelist from Saint Lucia who writes Christian Thrillers.
I’m so excited! I got a brand new idea last night and have been tapping away at the keyboard all day. Do writers really have to sleep? This new story pumps me up and drives me to my keyboard at every opportunity. Needless to say, I’m blasting my ROW80 writing goals off the charts.
Surprisingly, I’m also keeping my balance well. In fact, I’m able to spend more and more time with my sweet hubby and kids. (Can’t wait to go watch my boy in a Rugby match this weekend. Pictures to come!) The only thing I’m still working on is visiting other blogs. I’m visiting weekly, but not often seeking out new blogs to read. Oh, and now that my cough is subsiding, I need to get back to my exercise.
I’m adding a new goal. I have several books that I wanted to read before their debut. I WILL find a way to get those read. (Four in all) I want to have at least one of those read before March 1st.
Monday’s post will hold the latest winners for Almost Kiss at Clash of the Titles. What a fiery excerpt! On Tuesday, is my post for Patty Wysong’s A2Z blog hop. This week the letter is G, and my post is … well … unique to say the least. My ROW80 update will detail where I am on my writing goals on Wednesday. Synopsis writing earns the highlight on Thursday. I’m told that is the hardest writing I’ll do. On Friday, I’ll be hosting author and founder of Submission Ministries, Zeke Lam. This guy is amazing! By all means come back next week!

So what did you do this week and what are you looking forward to?



sitting pretty in an almost complete, empty roomI visited a blog today that totally inspired me. My own little corner of this great virtual existence is tenincy. (Yes, that’s a word I’ve used all my life! Long I in the middle – tea-nIne-cee.) I’ve been tickled that ANYONE came by and have LOVED “meeting” folks online. Some of them, I’m getting to meet up close and personal from time to time. That’s fun!

But after almost nine months of daily blogging, I’m not quite reaching the goals I

aspired to. Or all the folks I hoped to. So I looked up a posting about the 25 Ways to Increase Blog Traffic. Most of them I’ve heard before and I do. Not because I want a whirlwind of traffic, but because it’s the right way to do things – like posting regularly. That’s being dependable in my work place. Visiting other blogs. That’s supporting and encouraging co-workers. Linking, tweeting, and all that goes with it are things I can improve upon, but I still practice with regularity.


I didn’t see anything that really glared at me except for the ever-on-my-mind “Create a Niche” until #21 rolled around. Craft an Editorial Calendar, and yes that was linked to another post. Calendars, mmmmmm. I LOVE calendars and spreadsheets and anything to organize. Don’t ever take me to the Container Store – just saying.


So I hit the link and found the author’s weekly plan for his blog.


Oh. I do that.


But wait. He had his goal for his blog. Now that’s big-picture thinking. I haven’t done that. And that provoked some thought whether to increase traffic, or just make sure I’m not spinning my wheels.


What do I hope Faith-Driven Fiction will do for readers this year?


Because I’m a fiction author, I want to entertain. I hope to make readers laugh or think for a moment. Maybe even cry? (If anyone else shed a tear, you can bet I bawled big-time!) But I’m not only about fiction. My stories point to the Author and Perfecter of my faith. The same must be with my blog. I hope to be used as His pen to inspire His people.


So I’m using part of this week to develop the goals for my blog and set my plan into action. Don’t expect a face lift, as I’m looking more to the long-term content rather than the short-term make up, but you never know. And maybe as I’m developing my goals for this blog, the elusive niche will spring up.


In the meantime, I developed a working synopsis for my romantic suspense, Cat’s Eyes. I pray for mentoring judges who will encourage rather than blast. I’ve heard some horror stories about this contest!


So I’m pleased with my gains. It’s hard to see them, such small steps on a massive path, but their there and moving forward. I have to call it a win!


Your Turn: What wins have you enjoyed this week?



Focusing on the Purpose

I was asked last week about my writing. What type of writing am I doing and why am I doing it? Thankfully, I've given some in-depth thought to this very question.

I've read some amazing bios from current Christian authors, how the Lord brought them through terrible situations. Not only did they survive, but they thrived and now share, in the midst of their pain, their stories. Women with similar situations of abuse or misuse can identify with the characters in their books. As they read the fictional success stories, they can grow closer in their relationships with the Lord, right along with the lady in the book they are reading.

I don't have a story like that. Oh, I'm not complaining, but it's a fact. I've been blessed through my life. Even though my parents were divorced when I was really young and I technically qualified as a latchkey kid, the Spirit protected my brother and me.

My lack of a dramatic history led me to wonder about my own audience. Who could I be writing for?

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