Summer News

Summer News

I’m taking a short break from my ‘I Dare You’ series to bring everyone my summer news. Many things have happened this year so far, and I’m bursting at the seams to share it all.

April 4th I received an email back from Splickety Publishing Group about a manuscript I had submitted to them last year. It’s my contemporary young adult novel about a girl dealing with alcoholic parents, and the fallout of the lies she tells to try to cover it up. Splickety’s acquiring editor fell in love with it (her words, not mine), and she offered to help me publish it in partnership with SPG. You can only imagine the elation I felt that 1.) someone loved my story, and 2.) they wanted to help me get it published. Since this novel was one I had planned on self-publishing anyway, this is a real coup to get a publishing company to help me navigate these indie waters. We are currently working on the edits for this story, and when something more newsworthy such as a publishing date, or front cover comes, Inkspirationalmessages will be among the first to know.

ACFW logoOn May 4th I received a call telling me I was a semi-finalist in the ACFW Genesis contest for my fantasy submission. This isn’t the first time I’ve submitted, but the first time after a professional editor went through it first. I’d sent this in without any real intention of being a finalist, but God has a sense of humor. Maybe because I had given it fully over to Him this time, He blessed me. Later I received notice that my submission moved on to the finals rounds. The winner is going to be announced on August 27th at the ACFW gala in Nashville, TN. I quickly gathered the money needed and booked the conference, and later a flight, and hotel room. I’m beyond elated with this news, and a little queasy at the thought of having to have a speech ready, just in case. Talk about jitters!!

This past month I went to one of the most fulfilling conferences for Christian Sci Fi and Fantasy writers Davis Bunn RMever: Realm Makers. There I got to meet up with my Splickety editor, Sarah Grimm, and meet all of the SPG staff who came to the conference face to face. They are all amazing in so many ways. As are Becky and Scott Minor, who along with Ben Wolf, spearhead the conference. This year it was an honor to sit through a class with Davis Bunn, aka Thomas Locke. I almost envisioned gold coming out of his mouth as he spoke. Next year will be bigger and better. It’ll be held in Reno, NV and it boasts Ted Dekker as our feature speaker. This group is one of the most accepting and helpful I’ve ever met. It’s almost as if you assimilate when you sign up. (Dr. Who reference for those other nerds out there.)

And two days ago I received notice that one of my short stories has been accepted to a magazine. Because I don’t have anything signed yet, and I’m using a pen name, I can’t give you any details on that, save to say that my smile is breaking the sides of my face at this point. It feels like all of my hard work is finally coming together in fast succession. I don’t know what to do except praise God for giving me the stories of my heart that I can turn around and share with others.

It’s been an eventful year, and it promises to keep getting better. Normally I would knock on wood, or toss some salt behind my shoulder, but I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt this has all transpired due to God’s great and powerful favor. When people told me it would take ten years to get published, I used to scoff. It’s close to ten years for me now, and I’m not scoffing any longer.

So, how has your summer been?

Headline news

Extra, extra, read all about it!

Yeah, my life isn’t that exciting that I need a newsboy crying out my current front page headlines. The daily minutiae of my life is barely even worthy of a headline. But, it’s my blog, so I can make even small news seem big.

So, here’s the scoop from the Ludwig Tribune:

Symphony season nearly over!

 

The Omaha Symphony's recent performance of John Adams' Harmonielehre,
The Omaha Symphony’s recent performance of John Adams’ Harmonielehre,

One of the things I love about my job is that it is extremely cyclical. Like a school year, the symphony season runs from September through June, with a three and half month period that we call the off-season. Since it’s now the end of April, we only have a little more than a month of concerts left until we are DONE with the 2015/2016 symphony season! And it’s going to be a busy six weeks, with eight more concerts to go, and some big ones at that: The Oak Ridge Boys, our annual Gala featuring Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, a concert featuring music from superhero movies, two outdoor concerts, and the season closer, Scheherazade. That’s a lot of public relations work I still need to do!

But the best part is that when our season officially winds down, the symphony has eight designated Fridays that we close up the office and take a break. Yes, that’s right, I get summer Fridays off! They are still two months away, but I’m already planning everything I want to do on those blissful summer Fridays.

Word count increases, murder mystery might finally be solved (or at least finished)

Sitting in my office window seat, writing away.
Sitting in my office window seat, writing away.

This past spring, I’ve really been trying to make myself accountable to my writing by setting aside time to work, dig deeper into my story, and set goals for myself. I try to work over my lunch break about three to four days a week, sitting in my office’s deep window seat for a change of scenery. Sometimes I’m editing, other times I’m doing actual writing, but the point is that I’m working!

I also began meeting regularly with three other writing friends in the area about once a month for “brainstorming” sessions. We meet at a coffee shop and discuss story ideas, plot holes that need fixing, character arcs that need help, career advice, etc. It’s been extremely beneficial to help keep me accountable (after all, it’s not fun to come if nothing has changed in my story since we last met!), and I love being part of a give and take with fellow writers. They’ve really helped me in a short time, so special thanks to Jennifer, Mikal, and Sara!

I’ve set a goal that I’d like a polished first draft of my murder mystery finished by August 1. (Oh great, now it’s in print for the world to see!) Hopefully I can spend some of those hot summer Fridays inside in the cool AC with my laptop and imaginary friends!

Notes and Happenings:

  • I joined Twitter! Follow me at @ssqueenludwig
  • I’ll be at the Wordsower’s Writing Conference this weekend, so please say hello if you are there!
  • I joined my church’s choir and praise team this spring! I had forgotten how much I enjoyed reading music and helping to lead worship, rather than just participating.
  • I’m working on a flower garden in the back yard! One of my summer Friday projects is to transform an area of dead grass into a flower bed (hopefully no rocks lurk below the soil!).
  • I witnessed my best friend’s husband become a U.S. citizen last week! Julio now has dual citizenship with the U.S. and the Dominican Republic, where he lives with my college roommate Ruth, and their daughter Liliana.

 

 

Inksper Updates – February 2016

Welcome to our monthly Inksper update post! It’s a day we’ll use to celebrate good news and spread word about new Inksper books or any other updates that come about during the month.

Lassoed by MarriageCongratulations to Rose Ross Zediker! Her new release, The Lassoed by Marriage Novella Collection, in which she collaborated with eight other authors, made the Top 20 ECPA List for Christian fiction! Look at #18 on the list >here<.

Coloring Book for WritersColoring books for adults are the big craze right now, and our own Linda Fulkerson has created two coloring book especially for authors! Check out the books >here<.

Coming Home Series 4-in-1 Box SetAnd Brenda Anderson has put her Coming Home Series into one nice box set for ebook readers. All four ebooks for only $9.99! You can purchase the set >here<.