Showing posts with label #DivineDining. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #DivineDining. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

SOUP DAY

Here in North Texas, the temperatures have run in the upper nineties through most of September. Saturday evening, God sent six inches of rain on Wichita Falls, ushering in a cold front. Yesterday, our high was 75 degrees. It felt wonderful.

For one who works at keeping my weight under control, the cooler temperature offered two special advantages.

1. It was cool enough to take a nice neighborhood walk in the afternoon.

 All summer, I only had two options for exercise: a)swimming in our backyard pool, or b) doing inside exercises such as DVDs, line dancing class, or riding my stationery bike. Those are good. Those are profitable. Those are beneficial. However, I love a nice walk in the neighborhood, or the walkway of Lucy Park (a big city park), or a hike around a small in-city lake (Sikes Lake between a museum and our university).

Thank you, Lord, for a cooler day. Though it warms back up today, I hear we're in for another cooler day this weekend. I love autumn.

2. Cool weather makes us hungry for a soup day.

Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? Luke 12:24


“….our sufficiency is of God.” 2 Corinthians 3:5

 When God placed man in the garden, He provided good food and great beauty. When we awake to our need to lose weight, God doesn't require we give up all good-tasting food. He supplies our sustenance and makes it desirable. When it's turning cooler, I love soup. Everywhere I go I find pumpkin-flavored ice cream, muffins, waffles, or other options. Fall is the time for pumpkin.
 
How about pumpkin in soup? Here's a pumpkin-flavored soup that is easy to make, low-calorie, and tasty. Pen-L Publishing will be releasing my Divine Dining Weight Controllers Workbook  the end of this year. This recipe is included in the upcoming workbook.
 
 
 
Chicken Tortilla Soup
Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to
Guide You to Healthier Weight and
Abundant Wellness
 
 
1 lb. chicken breast
Vegetable spray
3 cans fat free chicken broth
1 cup chopped celery
½ cup white or yellow onion
3 small cans of green enchilada sauce
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1 can whole kernel corn
 
Spray bottom of Dutch oven or 5 qt. pot with vegetable spray
Chop chicken in small bites.
Add chopped onion.
Brown in the pan until chicken is no longer pink and onion is browned.
 
Add broth and celery and bring to a boil.
Turn down burner and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
Add enchilada sauce and pumpkin and simmer for 10-15 more minutes.
 
Optional: Serve with 1 T. shredded 2% Mexican cheese and 15 baked tortilla chips.
 
Makes 4 servings of 1 ½ cups each.
 
Watch for the release of the workbook. Plan to start your own weight loss class or work your program at home by yourself. 
 
Let me know if you try this recipe for a SOUP DAY!
 
 

Saturday, July 16, 2016

A Devotion and a Birthday Giveaway

Monday, July 18, is my birthday, but I plan to give the gift, a $10 Amazon gift card. Scroll to the bottom to see how to win.

First, to celebrate my birthday week, here is today's devotion from my best-selling devotion book; Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness.


July 16

 

197. Watch the Stripes

 

“I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go; I will guide thee with mine eye.” Psalm 32:8

 

     In my haste to be all things to all people, my life often veers too far to one side or the other. Highway departments paint a center stripe on narrow roads and several stripes on freeways. Without these, one car would swerve into another. Center stripes stop head-on collisions. The darker the night, the more we need stripes with reflective paint or pegs. Have you ever thought about who decided to paint stripes on highways? When did that become necessary?

 

     In the early 1900s, our roads consisted mostly of dirt or sand. Traffic meant horses or carriages. Interestingly enough, bicyclers first brought attention to the need for better roads in 1897. With the invention of the Model T, the US government realized a need for standardization of the road system. A simple idea like stripes on the highways eliminates collisions and gives guidance on your travels.

 

     God’s word and instruction in prayer is a Christian’s stripe on their pathway of life. We tend to get too far in one direction, compensate, and then go too far in the other. Twelve-step programs use the mantra, “First Things First” to remind us to take care of our recovery first, then all things will fall in place. God tells us to “Seek first the kingdom of God.”

 

     Focus on God (the stripe). He will tell you when your compass is off base. Then, you can adjust and stay on the right road. Your spiritual recovery must always be your first focus.

 


Prayer: Help me keep first things first today.
 
I hope that devotion ministers to you today.


Now, for my chance to give one of you a birthday gift for MY birthday. God said it was more blessed to give than receive.


Leave me a happy birthday message along with your e-mail address. On the morning of July 25, I will draw from the names of all that left a comment before midnight July 24. If you left me an e-mail, I will send you a $10 Amazon gift certificate. Of course, I would love for you to use it for one of my books. (Just a hint) preorders on my new women's fiction due to release Sept 1 will be available the middle of August) Nevertheless, the gift certificate will be yours to use as you wish, with my thanks for the birthday wishes.

Click on post a comment. Log in with your Google account or even anonymous. When you write your comment, don't forget to leave your e-mail unless you know that I already have it.


God bless you today and thanks ahead of time.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Amazon

I took Terri Main's advice and set up my first global link to Amazon. So far, I've only set up one for my devotion book, Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness. When you click on this link, it takes you to the Amazon page that sells that book, but it's the store that's near to you, in your language.

The link is mybook.to/DivineDining


If you live in another country, and find this book in your most-used Amazon store, please, comment, Facebook message, or e-mail me. I would love to know if it works.

Thank you, my friends. God bless.
 
 
 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Is Willpower Enough?

Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.

                                   John 8:32
 

If there is one truth I’ve learned since the Lord healed me of compulsive overeating, it’s that I must be honest and real.

 
Me at 250 pounds
That truth provides the basis for my book Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness.http://www.pen-l.com/DivineDining.html
 

     Despite the trusted belief to the contrary, will power isn’t the answer for weight loss. My strong will power fueled my disease. I reached two hundred, fifty pounds. By then, I was an emotional wreck with thoughts of suicide. Food dominated everything I did.

     I was a Christian, so I prayed for God to help me, to stop the cravings, to take away the desire to overeat. Nothing lasted. I rose from my knees to try another diet, to do it for myself. I could tell you the caloric content of foods, what to eat and what to avoid. Knowledge did not translate into success. My will power would last for days or for months, but then it turned on me and pushed me to eat what I wanted, so that I regained the weight, plus some. Nothing worked until I truly gave up trying and told God if He didn't heal me, I was doomed. Desperation drives divine dining.

     Every week during a Christian weight loss class, I soaked up the lessons presented. When the teacher moved, I continued to teach the class. I lost weight in direct proportion to my reliance on Christ. God healed me emotionally. While teaching this class, I also attended a twelve-step Overeater’s Anonymous group. I tore down the idol of food and put God on the throne of my heart.
Showing off my 3 books including Divine Dining in the center.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     In Divine Dining I teach principles from my weight loss journey. Even now, after eighteen years, I read books and literature over and over to keep me inspired, and keep off the weight.


     I have several daily devotion books, some specifically for compulsive overeaters, but Divine Dining is the first one I’ve found that combines a twelve-step approach with drawing closer to Christ and allowing Him to take His rightful place in our lives.



     A few years ago, the Lord woke me in the middle of the night. My mind popped with devotions. I wrote fourteen before I went back to bed. For four years, ideas came to me. Sometimes I wrote one a day. Other times I wrote one a week.
Now, at 150 pounds, 100 lbs. less
By the time I had finished 300 devotions, I knew this wasn’t meant just for me. God wanted me to share it. I started submitting. Pen-L Publishing released it in December, 2012.


 
It remains my best seller.
 
Soon, I’ll be releasing a workbook as a compliment to the devotion book. Keep tuned for further information.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

What Can You Do This Weekend to Help Your Weight?

A journey begins with the first step. So, does weight loss. It's not about "going cold turkey" with many drastic changes.

Looking to Christ to guide you, add one block to another until your entire lifestyle appears to be different. On the potter's wheel, God rubs off the pointed edges, making us a work unto Him.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 
                                    2 Corinthians 5:17

We overeaters established destructive, defeating habits over time, often through our teens, into our twenties, and some during thirties, or more. We defeat each bad habit with one good habit. The journey isn't a day trip. It's a prolonged excursion.

Think of this weekend as your first step. What three things might you do to begin your jaunt?


Drink more water?

3 days of walking?

Leave 3 bites on a plate of something you like?

Eat fish twice in three days?

Talk to the Lord about it three days in a row?

Read the Bible?

Have 2 vegetables each of the 3 days?

Read labels at the grocery store and choose the lower fat version?

3 days of leaving off after dinner snacks?



What can you do this weekend to help your weight?

Here's my 3 things:

I'm going to a banquet tonight and plan to only eat half my dessert.
I will add 15 minutes on my mini trampoline each of the 3 days.
I will have no after dinner snack all 3 days.

What's your 3 things?

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

How to prepare for Divine Dining Weight Control

Are you ready to begin losing weight the Divine Dining way?



 
Of course, my first suggestion is to purchase the book Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness. The weight controlling program follows the same principles, and reading a devotion of this type each day strengthens, encourages, and improves your mindset.


Here's the link for purchase if you don't own a copy.
http://pen-l.com/DivineDining.html




Here's the 4S motto for Divine Dining Weight Controllers.

Strive toward a decision to follow Christ in all things.

Stretch toward God’s excellence, not man’s approval.

Surrender to God’s will, not ours.

Succeed in keeping communication lines open with God for healthier living.
 
 
 
Prepare to fight weight on three levels: physically, mentally, and spiritually.
 
 
 
Here are three guides to preparing for the practical, physical side of weight loss:
 
 
1.     Plan your meals with God’s guidance day by day.
 
Visualize possible changes in your day and how you’ll handle them. Be constantly in prayer.
 
 
2.     Purchase foods that work for your lifestyle.
 
What must you keep around to stay on target?
    With me, I must have fruits & low-fat yogurt.
 
3.     Decide on some activity, and do it five times a week.
 
Remember, activity doesn't have to be calisthenics. It might be, but it might be sweeping and mopping the house or even moving the yard.
 
What works for you?
 
 
 
If you've committed to beginning a Divine Dining Weight Controlling regimen, leave me a comment or e-mail me at Janet.hope@att.net
 
I would love to hear of your progress. God bless you. Thanks for reading my blog posts.
 
 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Failure or Success?

I prepare the feast

With heavy heart.

Faults bog me down

Fear sets me apart.

 

I stir the foods, but

Something’s not right.

My hands shake

As I take a bite.

 

I taste bitterness for sure.

What’s that ingredient?

Submission to God makes

Repentence expedient.

 

I bow before the heavenly throne

Knowing I’m unworthy.

On my own, I fall short

Cling to food that’s earthly.

 

I’ve worked for You,

I plead with God.

Did I misread your command

Wanting Your applause?



No, my child He explains.

You don’t know my thoughts

They’re higher than yours

So don’t be distraught.

 

Dessert will come later.

I view the whole meal.

Stay in the kitchen

Pray for the yield.

 

How say you, you’ve failed

When the dinner’s not ready.

The yeast is still rising

Now hold fast and steady.

 

At banquet time

I’ll sound the alert.

We’ll gather round the table

In me, you’ll have worth.
                      Divine Dining
                  by Janet K. Brown



This is God's view.

How do you measure failure or success?

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Are you in a safe place?

On June 15, I began this post right after reading the devotion in Divine Dining for that day.


Forgive me for sending it on. Those who own the book may have just read it, but today, it's on my heart.
 

Safe From Winds.

 

 

“If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered and men gather them and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.” John 15:6

  

     Memorial Day, 2011, my husband and I camped in our travel trailer. The winds were horrendous, the heat oppressive, in North Texas. Fires ravaged acres of land taking homes, barns, cattle, even some people in their path.

 

     Through the air sailed tumbleweeds and small limbs. On the west side of our trailer, I watched a small oak. The owners of the RV Park planted it for extra shade. When a gust of wind blasted from the south, a big cottonwood tree bowed over our patio and dropped cotton balls on our picnic table.

 

     The oak, not more than four feet tall, braved the monster wind with strength and determination. The spindly branches folded but remained tight against the strength of a two-inch diameter trunk.

 

     Though wind (or trials) buffeted that small tree, the branches remained in the trunk (or vine) and stayed firm, unmovable. God didn’t promise I’d have no trials, no temptations, but He advised me to stay in Him to be able to withstand.

 

     Foregoing daily quiet time with the Lord isn’t an option for a compulsive person to prepare for the wind.

 

 

Prayer: I abide in You, today. It’s the only way I stay safe when the winds blow.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Forget About It


“For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” Hebrews 8:12 NIV

 
 

     When I pull into my garage after going to the grocery store, I love to spot my husband’s car at home because I know, he can lift my burden of groceries and bring them into the house relieving me of that weight. Once I told him to pile everything on the sofa so it wouldn’t be on the kitchen counter where I needed to start dinner. Unfortunately, he didn’t follow my instructions. Imagine that? By habit, he placed every sack on the kitchen counter.

 

     I huffed, puffed, and transferred every item from the counter to the sofa, struggling against the weight of five pound flour and two milk cartons. When I’d finished, my back ached from the heavy-lifting, and my anger fomented against my husband.

 

     “Why didn’t you remind me?” he asked. “I meant to lift them for you.”

 

     Are we like that with God? Do we ask for our sins to be removed, but then pick them up again to carry?

 

     Satan uses past sins to disable our effectiveness. When I repented and asked Jesus into my heart, He took my burden of sin and cast it as the Bible says, “as far as the east is from the west.” Therefore, I can be sure that any condemnation I have over sins from my past comes from the devil.

 

     Leave them with Jesus. Talk to him about any anguish you feel. He means to relieve us of those burdens. Not unlike unwanted pounds on our bodies, resentment and anger are too heavy for us to bear.

 
 

Prayer: Lord, I leave my sins at Your feet. Help me to forget about them as You have done.



Today, I read this devotion in my own book, Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness.
I decided to copy it here. I needed to hear it.


Perhaps, you do, too.



Wednesday, May 6, 2015

PEACE

“If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7 New Recovery Bible

 
Blue after the storm while we were in Kerrville, TX.

 
     Peace, ah, how we long for it in this busy age with the devil free to roam the earth and send forth unrest and turmoil. A lack of peace affects our entire life, but never more than when we're out of the will of God. If we don't submit one area of our lives to Him, the whole person suffers.
 
     God prepared a place in man's heart meant for worship of our Creator. When we fill that hole with anything else, there is bondage, there is captivity, there is NO PEACE.
 
     Over a four year period, God gave me 365 devotions in Divine Dining. I read them daily for my own encouragement and am amazed at His Words that once flew through my fingers on the keyboard. On May 3, I read this devotion.
   

     Recovery is a process. Many times we live for years in denial. We want freedom to do what we prefer. Because we’re adults and work hard, we think we should control our own destiny—with God’s help, of course.

 

     That’s the way I felt. I had freedom. I ate what I wanted; donuts in the morning at work and Reese’s candy stashed to eat whenever I was home, and no one was watching. Yeah, I controlled my destiny, all right.

 

     But, I had no peace.

 

     God’s peace is worth whatever we have to pay.

 

     For me, I had to give up forever some treats I loved. I had to give up the concept that I was free to do as I pleased. Anything I decided to eat, I had to eat it while others watched. I had to stop being secretive. The sinner lives in shadows.

 

     God’s peace keeps your heart at rest. We don’t know how to accept it and utilize it, but through the recovery time, God teaches us. Give up the selfishness. Reach for the peace.

Prayer: Teach me what I need to learn about your peace today.

 
 
 
If you have no peace, search your heart. Is God in control? Is every area of your life submitted to His will, or do you keep back in the shadows a small part? For you, it could be spending more money than you make, a bad relationship, or a critical attitude, but ask God to illuminate your weakness.

Peace is worth whatever you have to pay.

 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

IMPOSSIBLE

Then, Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.
Again, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.

You can imagine the wide eyes of his disciples when Jesus said this. That's like Him saying that a person who has reached 300 pounds can never lose the weight.

IMPOSSIBLE

That's a word we don't want to discuss.

Many reach the point that something is impossible. To me, it was my compulsive overeating. To someone else, it could be debt, or drugs, or a runaway child.

IMPOSSIBLE.


Read on in that same chapter with me through verses 25 and 26.

When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, and asked, "Who then can be saved?"
Jesus looked at them, and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.


I am powerless. I hate that idea. Yet, that is the position I had to reach to receive God's emotional healing.



"Every great accomplishment was once thought impossible."   ~Thomas Edison.
 

I write God's message of hope.

For weight loss.

For emotional healing.

For the impossible.


 

     When we want to reset a computer, we turn it off and back on again. Everything reverts to its original settings. Our mind works the same way. We find it impossible to keep on our food plan when our spiritual condition deteriorates. Closeness to God reveals our dependencies and self-defeating habits. Without His light shining on those things, we revert to our years of programming wrong information. "You’re worthless. I can’t get my mind off food. I deserve a pick-me-up." 


     We can’t afford to bypass our quiet time with our Savior. When we enter His gates of praise and His tabernacle of thanksgiving, He shines His truth on incorrect thinking. We eat what we should. Our day is productive, our mind, content. His truth “sets us free.”

Excerpt from Divine Dining




God always masters the impossible.

With Him, there is always hope.

 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

My Secret Tool to Losing 95 Pounds

One of my biggest secrets to maintaining my weight loss this time has been my daily prayer and meditation that includes reading inspirational books or pamphlets that address my compulsive overeating.

I read the same 20-25 books over and over. Four years ago, God woke me in the night and dictated fourteen devotions to me. I wrote as fast as my fingers could move on the keyboard.

I’m thinking God felt it was time to add a new book to my library because He continued to give me devotions over a 4 year period. Some months, I only wrote 1 or 2. Some months, I wrote 20. I thought God was giving them to help me with my healing.

When I had written 300, I decided I was aiming for 365, so that other people could benefit. I proposed the idea of a 365 devotion book for overeaters to Duke Pennell of Pen-L Publishing. He asked me to finish it and send the full manuscript. I did, and he offered me a contract.

The book released December, 2013. I find it beneficial to have my own copy in my prayer corner. I, like others, read one devotion each day. They’re short and easy and, hopefully, inspirational.


Though I gave my heart to God at age seven and attended church regularly, compulsive overeating almost ruined my life. I teetered on the brink of suicide and divorce for several years. Praise God, He gave me an emotional and spiritual healing in time. I lost 95 pounds and have now kept it off 18 years.
 
Food is merely a symptom of a problem. When I have trouble wanting to eat, I:
1)Get more into the Word and draw closer to my Lord.
2)Pray for God to examine my heart and let me know why I'm so tempted.
 
Saturday, we'll delve into some of the reasons that push us to overeat. See you then.
 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

After God's Healing, What Next?

Have you ever prayed and felt God's forgiveness wash over you and cleanse you? What a wonderful feeling! The weight of sin drops from your life. You sparkle with excitement. Your energy level expands. You're free, free indeed.

You go your merry way, living your life as before, but forgiven and clean. In a few days, or weeks, or months, new burdens build up around your soul. What happened to your freedom? Why didn't it last? God forgave you. Why did you sin again?

Discouraged over not being able to sustain our salvation, we delve further into the anger and envy that plagued us before, so that the load we carry now is heavier than it was previously. Our minds fight greater demons. Our hearts break with failure. We are farther from God, not closer.

I've sensed this problem in the realm of weight loss. My mother started me on my first diet when I was fourteen. For over thirty years, I tried every diet imaginable. Some were healthy, some were not. Often, during that time, I called out to God, "Lord, keep me from craving sweets. Help me lose weight. Make this be the diet that works."

I began each new eating plan with great assurance. In the beginning, my hope and belief that I would lose my weight, keep it off, and never struggle with this problem again rose as high as the mountains that I wished to scale when we traveled to Red River, New Mexico. In later years, my hope grew weaker because of my failures. I would begin fresh, renewed with the promises of the new diet, only to find that in a few days, weeks, or months, food consumed my mind and my life.

Once again, I ate and ate. "That diet didn't work," I declared. I gained back the pounds I had lost, plus a few extra, so that by the time I tried a new program, I was even fatter than before. My situation was worse.


    But when the unclean spirit has gone out of a man, it roams through dry (arid) places in search of rest, but it does not find any.
    Then it says I will go back to my house from which I came out. And when it arrives, it finds the place unoccupied, swept, put in order, and decorated.
    Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and make their home there. And the last condition of that man becomes worse than the first. So also shall it be with this wicked generation.
                    Matthew 12:43-45
                  The Amplified Bible

These are Jesus' own words during a sermon to His followers.

Recently, God convicted our church leaders of the need to focus more on making disciples out of those who come to the altar for salvation. New converts were leaving the altar and going back to their usual lives without the strength and understanding that the Lord longs to give them for protection and strength from the devil's snares.

When sin is removed, God must fill the gap. After salvation must come lots of studying God's Word and lots of prayer. Friends and mentors are needed for instruction and guidance in the beginning until the new convert learns to rely on his own understanding of what God is saying to him, step by step.

In my Divine Dining Weight Controllers weekly class, this is also true in the realm of following Christ in weight loss. Just as before, if we begin a new plan and take away the food that brings us comfort and love and joy, we must fill our minds with something else or the food moves back in to take its usual place.

Food is not your friend.

Food is not your enemy.

Food is just a pleasant way of getting nutrition. Period.

Put God on the throne, instead of food.

Food doesn't belong there. God does.

When you start on the path of weight loss after years of compulsive overeating, concentrate less on what you eat or don't eat (or cleaning out your bodies) but concentrate more on drawing closer to the Lord, of filling your life with His presence.

Fill those empty places in your heart with God's love.

Fill your mind with God's wisdom.

Fill your life with truth, and the truth will set you truly free.



January is a good time to begin reading a devotion book like my Divine Dining: 365 Devotions to Guide You to Healthier Weight and Abundant Wellness. I find that daily reading God's Word and literature that guides us in the area of keeping our eating in God's control has helped me not only lose the 95 pounds but keep it off for nineteen years now. I recommend this to all compulsive overeaters like me.

Praise God, I'm now a recovering compulsive overeater.


Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Word from Pen-L Publishing, Publisher of Divine Dining


Me with Duke & Kimberly at OWFI in May, 2013
 
 
For the first time on "Writing with God's Hope" blog, I have the opportunity to welcome my own publisher, Pen-L Publishing Company. Duke and Kimberly Pennell know the inside scoop on Janet K. Brown, Author and on publishing in general.
 
 
Now, straight from the horse's mouth, so to speak.
 
 
 
 
 
Tying the Knot: “I Do” or “Oh No You Don’t”?

 

From Pen-L Publishing, Duke and Kimberly Pennell

 
When we first met Janet, back in July of 2012, we were only five months into our publishing experience. She took a chance with us and we were thrilled. Since then, her book, Divine Dining has inspired many to create a new and happy relationship with food and their bodies. It’s worked out well for both of us. Janet is a great example of a professional writer. She writes most of the time (she and her husband do have the travel bug to feed) and promotes constantly. She loves to talk and teach and learn and she’s kind, committed, and flexible. No wonder we’re soon publishing a second book with her! Worth Her Weight is a love story about overcoming through friendship and faith, due out late this year.

 
One thing we’ve learned since early 2012 is that no two writers are alike. That means some are a joy to work with, some are fine, and some are, well, “challenging.” That’s not to say that they’re not good people, just that they’re an uncomfortable fit for us. We’ve learned from experience to get to know our authors a bit before offering them a contract, and to be specific about what we expect from them and what they can expect from us. We’ve found that this makes it much more likely that it will be a happy experience for everyone involved.

 
One day, it occurred to us that working with our authors is a bit like being married. After nearly thirty years of the give and take of a relationship, we’re found both have many opportunities to stand firm, give in, or find compromise, depending on the moment. Surely the best way to ensure a happy pairing of any kind is to:

·         spell out what you expect from the other party

·         know what you are willing to do to achieve your goal

·         communicate your wants and willingness

·         ask for the other party’s expectations

·         look for any mismatches and discuss

·         don’t assume everything will work itself out!

 

The thrill of knowing that someone has chosen you to partner with – whether your sweetheart or a publisher – has been known to suspend people’s rational thought. But this is the time you need it most. Don’t say “I do” until you know the match is a good fit. If it isn’t, hold out for someone who is.

 
Remember, there are no stupid questions – don’t assume things will be the way you envision them – ask. And ask yourself important questions too – where do you want to be in your writing career/marriage in five years? Ten? Twenty? Make sure your intended has a similar picture of the future.

 
So if the day comes when you are considering entering into a contract – marriage or publishing – give some time to examining the expectations of both partners. It will help you avoid much stress, disappointment and frustration, and help create a more peaceful union.


Make sure your “I do!” doesn’t become a “Why didn’t I?”

 
Wonderful advice for prospective brides and groom, and new writers searching a fit for their book. Thank you for a wonderful, insightful article, Duke & Kim.

I remember that first visit with Duke when I pitched my devotion book, Divine Dining. Like most authors pitching to a publisher at a conference, my knees were knocking, and my heart was galloping, but Duke was kind, professional, and receptive to the idea. I was ecstatic. After a few weeks, I received a contract, and my relationship with Pen-L began.

If you're looking for a chance with a small, traditional press, I recommend Pen-L The company has grown since the early days of 2012. They've hired editors and cover designers. They've moved  more into promotion. But, they maintain the friendly, small-group atmosphere.

Here's a few books Pen-L wishes to highlight today.



 
 
Thank you again, Duke and Kimberly.
 
Do any of you have questions for Kim and Duke? Click on "post a comment" and ask away. You have their ear now, and that doesn't often happen.