Wednesday, March 30, 2011

First Chapter Wednesday--Overcoming Addiction

Overcoming Addiction: A Twelve-Step Companion Guide by Douglas Dobberfuhl


INTRODUCTION


For nearly twenty years, I have worked as a professional counselor. I have spent most of my career working with behavioral addiction recovery, severely abused trauma survivors, and disorganized and chaotic families. For the past three years, I have been blessed to act as a facilitator in LDS Family Services’ Addiction Recovery Program. Prior to that, I attended group meetings as an addict myself. This book is a result of my own thoughts and experiences from working in and studying that program.

A Guide to Addiction Recovery and Healing is the manual for the LDS Addiction Recovery Program. As is stated on the cover of that manual, it was “written with support from Church leaders and counseling professionals and by those who have suffered from addiction.” Overcoming Addiction: A Twelve-Step Companion Guide is designed to complement the Church’s inspired manual, not to replace it.

Overcoming Addiction was written for those who struggle to understand their addiction, believing they are beyond the blessings of the Atonement, and who question how they can ever come back to full fellowship with the Saints and once again feel Heavenly Father’s loving embrace.

Addiction does not discriminate. It attacks men and women, rich and poor, members and nonmembers of the Church. A common error is to try to attach a specific addiction to a gender or to a certain class of people. The inspiration of the LDS Church’s addiction recovery manual is that it is not gender specific. It is not race or ethnic focused. A woman can be a sex addict, just as a man can have an eating disorder. A young man from Brazil can have a gambling problem, and an elderly woman in Japan can struggle with alcoholism. The manual will work for everyone in every place. How? Because it contains the “Good News”—that the atonement of Jesus Christ can heal us of our addictions. And that message is for all of God’s children.

The goal of this companion guide is to follow that example. Even though I have written this book and used some of my own experiences as examples, it is not written specifically for men or only for those who have struggled with the same addiction as I have. This book can be used by anyone who has an addiction or a compulsive behavior, or who desires to overcome any other problem.

In LDS recovery meetings, we talk about the need to “work the steps.” It sounds good, and members of the group want to follow that admonition. Yet when the meeting is done and the recovering addict goes home, he or she may wonder, “How do I work the twelve steps? Do I simply read and answer the questions at the end of each chapter in the Church’s manual? Is that all there is to it?”

How do you “work the steps”? This book will offer you insight and direction to help you do just that, and to receive the promised blessings from our Father in Heaven.

Remember that each step is its own little journey where you will experience greater awareness and discover a deeper connection with your Father in Heaven. Each step will offer stretching moments. Positive feelings will return, and your heart will begin to soften. Your very nature will be changed by the power of the Atonement.

No more half-measured attempts. No more shortcuts! Some people in recovery pick and choose the steps they want to do. This is folly. The Lord’s Church, through inspiration, created the Addiction Recovery Program, and therefore each step is essential in gaining the promised blessings of recovery.

President James E. Faust stated, “Said the Savior, ‘If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine.’ A testimony of . . . prayer comes through humble and sincere prayer. A testimony of tithing comes by paying tithing. Jump in with both feet” (James E. Faust, “Lord, I Believe; Help Thou Mine Unbelief,” Ensign, Nov. 2003, 19).

The exercises and questions in this guide will help you more completely experience the power and promises of the twelve steps. Working each step will give you a testimony of the power and necessity of that step. Gaining a testimony that the Church’s twelve-step program works can only come by working it.

Be willing to go to any length to find the peace the Savior is anxiously waiting to bless you with. Remember, the message of the twelve-step program is that God is a God of miracles. He can do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. Through Him, we can find recovery, repentance, and healing.


HOW RECOVERY WORKS


What are the basic building blocks of recovery? How does it actually work? The most fundamental principles of any kind of change are desire, hope, faith, and grace. The following discussion will help you understand the process of recovery from a spiritual point of view (see Alma 32).

Desire—Opens Us Up to Experience Hope

“I’d like to be free of this addiction, but I don’t think it’ll ever happen.”

“Do you think it’s really true? Could I really be healed?”

“I hear other people in the group talk about their changes and their sobriety. I’d sure like to have those kinds of experiences.”


Desire is wishing for, wanting, and dreaming of something better. Desire is an elementary building block of change. But even with desire present, there can still be pride, doubt, fear, and relapses. For desire to produce the beginnings of change, we must possess humility. Being humble causes us to take tiny steps forward, helping us to act on our desire. Every tiny step we take, acting on wanting a different life, wanting to be free of the addiction, our desire grows. Our desire can grow bigger than our pride. It can grow bigger than our fear. It can grow bigger than our doubt. Going to recovery meetings, even though you are still struggling—that’s acting on your desire. Going to church even though you can’t take the sacrament—that’s acting on your desire. Going to see the bishop even though you have nothing but bad news after another rough week of acting out—that’s acting on your desire.

Hope—Leads to Faith

“The Holy Ghost has told me that I can recover.”

“I can feel God’s love for me. Maybe I’m not garbage after all.”

“When I go to the Church’s recovery meetings, I feel lighter, I feel better, I feel stronger.”


As Sister Gunn, a group missionary in the Church’s Addiction Recovery Program, stated, “Hope is not an intellectual experience. It is a spiritual experience. You don’t think it—you feel it. Open yourself up to it.”

Hope is a spiritual gift that comes from acting on our desire to change. Hope energizes us. It burns away darkness and despair. Hope fills us up, offering us the promise that things will get better. With hope, we feel more confident, more alive, and above all, more loved. There is nothing that infuses a soul with hope more than Father in Heaven touching the wounded heart and encompassing His son or daughter with His love. Hope is a motivator. Hope is the fuel of recovery. It is no mistake that hope is often one of the first feelings members experience as they come to recovery meetings. Hope eventually anchors the soul (see Ether 12:4), allowing the recovering son or daughter of God to feel more stable, more grounded, more solid. On this spiritual and emotional ground, a firm foundation of faith can be built.

Faith—Unlocks Grace

“I will work the twelve steps because I believe they are inspired of God.”

“I will go to recovery meetings because the bishop said I should.”

“The group missionaries said I should share during group, so I will.”


Faith is trusting in God. Faith is believing what He says and then acting accordingly. Faith is not seeing the end of the journey, but taking that first step anyway. Faith is letting down our defenses so the Savior can heal us. Faith is trusting God will make all things right, that He can and will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. Faith is believing God when He tells us He loves us. Faith is remaining abstinent even through the agony of withdrawals because Heavenly Father said He’d be there to help us through the pain. Faith is not knowing for sure if step 2 or 4 or 9 is necessary, but working through it anyway because the Lord asks us to.

One brother, who had struggled with compulsive overeating for nearly twenty years, came to an addiction recovery meeting. He attended every week for several months. Nothing changed much during that time. However, he desired to be different, and he acted on that desire by reading and coming to group. Eventually, as the brother became more humble, the Spirit testified to him that he could be healed of his overeating and lose weight.

Filled with hope, this brother started doing more than just showing up for the meetings. He enlisted the help of his doctor and a nutritionist. He started keeping a food journal. He started working the steps, including the Lord in his daily struggle with food. This brother was acting on his faith—his belief that Heavenly Father had spoken to him and that he could and would be free of this problem if he did what God told him to do.

Faith is acting on our trust in God. Every act of faith unlocks a portion of the gift of grace. With time, we can receive a fullness of grace, being endowed with Christ’s power to change.

Grace—Gives Us Power

On page 9 of the LDS addiction recovery manual, we read:


In the Bible Dictionary, grace is defined as “divine means of help or strength” given through the “bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ” (“Grace,” 697). This gift of divine strength enables you to do more than you would be able to do if left on your own. The Savior will do for you what you cannot do for yourself. His grace is the means by which you can repent and be changed.


If hope is the fuel of recovery, then grace is the vehicle of change. Without grace, there could be no recovery. Without grace, there could be no repentance, no change of heart, no rebirth. Grace permeates every aspect of our lives, from obedience to continued strength for a single mother or father, to understanding complex math equations. The atonement of Jesus Christ offers all the sons and daughters of God access to the heavenly power of grace. It is one of the most precious gifts we receive as we come unto Christ.

After experiencing unimaginable pain and suffering for acts He would never commit, the Savior turns around and offers His spiritual brothers and sisters a portion of His power. Such love. Such mercy. And as we receive such a wondrous gift, how can we not fall to our knees in worship and proclaim our allegiance and obedience to our Savior Jesus Christ?

Heavenly Father understood that we would find ourselves in countless situations on earth where we would become powerless over a situation or a given behavior. Through the atonement of His Only Begotten Son, Father in Heaven offers us a portion of His power so we can overcome and be victorious in this otherwise fruitless and unwinnable struggle. Through Christ, we move from being powerless and imprisoned to being powerful and free. Recovery rests squarely on the miracles offered us—hope, faith, and grace—by the Savior Jesus Christ.


*****

A twelve-step guide to healing from addiction

Overcoming Addiction: A Twelve-Step Companion Guide answers the often asked question: How do I work the Church s twelve steps? With exercises, meditations, scriptural examples, and real-life stories of recovery, Overcoming Addiction is designed to be used hand in hand with the Church s inspired manual. This companion guide helps the addict to more completely experience the power and promises of the twelve steps, and to apply the Savior s atonement to achieve lasting sobriety.

Overcoming Addiction is an essential tool for anyone struggling with addiction, as well as for family members of addicts and for professional counselors and addiction-recovery group leaders.

In this insightful, empowering manual, Doug Dobberfuhl guides the reader through the complicated and challenging journey of working the Twelve Steps of recovery from addiction. . . . The power behind this guide is that Brother Dobberfuhl has lived what he has written, the most powerful credential of all. The manual is practical, straightforward, and honest. It guides the reader through each step, explaining exactly with insight and clarity what is required to work the step from a gospel perspective. . . . I highly recommend this to anyone struggling with addiction or living with an addict. This guide can become a personal journey that changes a life. --Tamera Smith Allred, therapist, Pulitzer Prize nominee

Don t leave home without it. . . . Where the LDS Addiction Recovery Manual is akin to a GPS,Overcoming Addiction is a guidebook. Use this guidebook and you will more deeply understand the steps of recovery along the way. Questions will be answered and fears assuaged. This journey of recovery is to recover your spiritual and physical life. Shouldn t you have all the information pertaining to the trip? Shouldn t you have, at your fingertips, the spiritual insight and understanding that make each step mean so much more? This workbook will do that for you. It did for me. --Rod G.

We hit 200 posts so it's time to celebrate

I didn't realize that when we posted our Get-to-Know Doug Dobberfuhl on Monday that it was our 200th post! And since we love celebrating milestones with free books, that's exctaly what we'll do. Leave us a comment and you'll have the chance to win 2 Walnut Springs Press books of your choice from the following titles. How great is that!

Leave us a comment letting us know what you do to celebrate milestones. Don't forget to include your email address. Contest ends April 1st at midnight, MST. Open to international entries.

Novels
Trapped by Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen
Missing by Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen
Finding Rose by Stephanie Humphreys
Winning Mr. Wrong by Marie Higgins
Hearts Through Time by Marie Higgins
Heart of a Hero by Marrie Higgins
Chocolate Rose by Joan Sowards
Haunts Haven by Joan Sowards
The Star Prophecy by Joan Sowards
Awakening Avery by Laurie Lewis
Oh, Say Can You See by Laurie (LC) Lewis
Queen in Exile by Donna Hatch
Sun Tunnels and Secrets by Carole Thayne Warburton
Just Shy of Paradise by Carole Thayne Warburton
Redemption by Susan Dayley
Wild Irish Rose by Deborah Weikel
Illuminations of the Heart by Joyce DiPastena
Dearly Departed by Tristi Pinkston
Under A Lakota Moon by Deborah Weikel
The Route by Gale Sears

Cookbooks
Gluten-Free Cooking Made Easy by Susan Bell
I Can't Believe It's Food Storage by Crystal Goodfrey
Fabulous Freezer Meal by Jenny Stanger

Children and Teen
Learning About My Baptism by Arie Van de Graff
Bro Jo's Guide to Relationships for LDS Young Single Adults by Dave Johnson
Bro Jo's Guide to Casual Group Dating for LDS Youth by Dave Johnson
Learning about the Bible by Jenna Mitchell
Learning about the Book of Mormon by Jenna Mitchell
A Leader's Guide to Activities for Girls Ages 8 to 11 by Amy Peterson
Learning about Jesus by Shauna Mooney Kawasaki
The Puzzle Book for LDS Kids by Arie Van De Graaff
The Youth Speakers Guide by Colleen Terry, Amy Orton, Linda Prince
The A-MAZE-ing Book of Mormon by Arie Van De Graaff

Inspiration
Divine Intervention by Randy and Helen Hall
Early Missionary Journeys of Faith: Wilford Woodruff by Wilford Woodruff
Everyday Wisdom for Latter-day Saints
Unlocking the Power of the Spirit by Campbell Gray
Overcoming Addiction by Douglas Dobberfuhl
Life Lessons from the Old Testament
A Girl in a Whirl by Victoria Gunther
Love Your Body by Brooke Parker
Simple Steps for More Meaningful Prayer
Gospel Insights for Everyday Living by Sheri Mills Johnson
Delivered by Christ by Mary Jane Woodger
Insights on the Holy Ghost

Monday, March 28, 2011

Get to Know You Monday--Douglas Dobberfuhl

We're excited to introduce you to the newest author to join the Walnut Springs Press family, Douglas Dobberfuhl,


author of Overcoming Addiction: A Twelve-Step Companion Guide.
Be sure to visit his blog for additional great information.


  1. What is your favorite food? Not favorite food, but topping – peanut sauce – like you find in Thai food.
  2. Do you prefer chocolate or vanilla ice cream? Vanilla – it is the blank canvas upon which I can create a culinary masterpiece of hot fudge etc.
  3. What is one food you despise? beets
  4. Where did you grow up? Northwestern Wisconsin, small farming community called Barron
  5. Is there a book that changed your life? The Dark is Rising series – Teen fiction – made me want to be a writer.
  6. What is your favorite sport? Is Frisbee a sport?
  7. What is your favorite song? No one compares to you was “our” song while we were dating – my wife and I
  8. What one place would you like to visit that you haven’t? Madrid
  9. What is your favorite thing about yourself? I’ve never stopped asking Why?
  10. Do you like to dance? I used to go to all the stake dances and could keep a pretty good beat. When I came home from my mission, I couldn’t dance anymore
  11. Do you play a musical instrument? I used to play Tuba in the High School band. I was skinny enough that the instrument hid me pretty well
  12. What is the strangest thing you ever did? When I was ten I climbed onto the roof of one of our sheds, ran across it and leaped into the air into a pine tree that was seven feet away. I’m still not sure why I did that.
  13. What is the strangest food you ever ate? Tripe – gagged on it
  14. What was a favorite adulthood event? I loved going to Grad school. My mind really expanded during that time.
  15. What was a favorite childhood memory? After kindergarten, I’d go home with my grandma and eat lunch at her house and then we'd take a nap.
  16. Are you a beach, country, or city person? Beach – I love the beach.
  17. What cartoon character best describes you? A cross between Bugs Bunny, Sylvester the Cat and Droopy the dog – based upon the kind of day I’m having.
  18. If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be? Someplace remote where it’s me and the wild – maybe on the Himalayan plains.
  19. Are you a collector of anything? I’m somewhat of a book fiend. I love books, buying books. I could spend a whole day in a book store.
  20. Were you named after anyone? I like to think I was named after Gen. Douglas MacArthur, but I don’t know that for sure.
  21. Do you like your handwriting? It has gotten worse over the years. Thank goodness for the laptop.
  22. What book are you reading now? I just finished reading On Grief and Grieving helping people to deal with loss.
  23. What is the best gift anyone has ever given you? When I was seven or eight, I got a Star Trek Command Center with all the action figures.
  24. What was the best decision you’ve ever made? Easy – marrying my wife Stephanie
  25. If won a million dollars, what would you do with it? Give everyone I know ten grand and then pay off debt.


Doug and his family

*****

A twelve-step guide to healing from addiction

Overcoming Addiction: A Twelve-Step Companion Guide answers the often asked question: How do I work the Church s twelve steps? With exercises, meditations, scriptural examples, and real-life stories of recovery, Overcoming Addiction is designed to be used hand in hand with the Church s inspired manual. This companion guide helps the addict to more completely experience the power and promises of the twelve steps, and to apply the Savior s atonement to achieve lasting sobriety.

Overcoming Addiction is an essential tool for anyone struggling with addiction, as well as for family members of addicts and for professional counselors and addiction-recovery group leaders.

In this insightful, empowering manual, Doug Dobberfuhl guides the reader through the complicated and challenging journey of working the Twelve Steps of recovery from addiction. . . . The power behind this guide is that Brother Dobberfuhl has lived what he has written, the most powerful credential of all. The manual is practical, straightforward, and honest. It guides the reader through each step, explaining exactly with insight and clarity what is required to work the step from a gospel perspective. . . . I highly recommend this to anyone struggling with addiction or living with an addict. This guide can become a personal journey that changes a life. --Tamera Smith Allred, therapist, Pulitzer Prize nominee

Don t leave home without it. . . . Where the LDS Addiction Recovery Manual is akin to a GPS, Overcoming Addiction is a guidebook. Use this guidebook and you will more deeply understand the steps of recovery along the way. Questions will be answered and fears assuaged. This journey of recovery is to recover your spiritual and physical life. Shouldn t you have all the information pertaining to the trip? Shouldn t you have, at your fingertips, the spiritual insight and understanding that make each step mean so much more? This workbook will do that for you. It did for me. --Rod G.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Free Book Friday Giveaway--Just Shy of Paradise

You've got just 6 days to enter to win a copy of Just Shy of Paradise.



Entering is easy, but you must be done by MIDNIGHT MST THURSDAY, March 31st.

To enter, leave us a comment with the answer to the weekly question. Make sure to include your email address if it isn't found on your blog profile.

The weekly question is
"Where's your favorite place (aka Paradise)?"

*****
When Lily's valuable fishing pole is stolen, her Native American friend Sky is charged with the crime. But things are not always as they seem in this intriguing tale of romance, secrets, and betrayal.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

First Chapter Wednesday--Just Shy of Paradise

You're in for a treat with Carole's second novel, Just Shy of Paradise.




PROLOGUE
It was Lily’s fourth birthday. Her mother had tried to get her to eat something before cake, but the picnic lunch was Grandma’s chicken casserole, and it looked exactly like cat vomit. So while Lily waited for her mother to cut the cake, she decided to follow a big, blue butterfly. Everyone was so busy talking that no one noticed her wandering away.

Lily danced after the butterfly and watched it sail over the bank of Little Bear River and disappear into the brush. Her mother had warned her to stay away from the water, high from spring runoff, but as she watched it swirling past, Lily was mesmerized. She saw the shiny rocks at the edge of the river, and one rock looked pink. Pink was her favorite color. It wouldn’t hurt to just see if she could reach the rock. Lily leaned as far as she could, her fingers skimming the bottom, but she couldn’t touch the pink rock. It wasn’t very far out, though. If she stood where the water was shallow, she could reach it for sure.

Lily pulled off her shiny, black Sunday shoes, then peeled her socks off and carefully set them on the bank. She stepped into the frigid water and shuddered. She glanced back at her mother, who was still unaware she had left. Lily leaned down to pick up the stone and felt her feet slip. With a small plop, she landed in the fast-moving river.

Frantically, she flailed her arms, trying to stay afloat, but the current quickly swept her away. Then she went underwater. The water quickly filled her lungs, and she couldn’t breathe. She would die, and all she could think about was that she hadn’t even gotten to eat a piece of her cake, with her named spelled out in pink frosting. She had even sprinkled the cake with colorful candies.

Then something happened. Lily felt hands grab her lacy dress and then her waist. Someone dragged her out of the water and set her on the bank. She briefly saw his face, which seemed to glow in the afternoon sun. He was dressed in white. She knew he was an angel when she heard him ask God to make her live. When she opened her eyes again her family was there, screaming and asking what had happened.

“An angel saved me, Mommy. A little angel.”

CHAPTER ONE
Sometimes the responsibility of being saved by an angel was almost more than Lily Anderson could bear. On the twenty-fourth anniversary of the miracle—also her birthday—Lily hopped into her beat-up Geo Metro and turned the key. The engine sputtered once, then quit.

“Dang!” she said aloud, flipping back her long blond hair in frustration. She tried to start the car again and then noticed that the gas gauge showed empty. She was confused, since she’d just filled up on her way home from her job at the hospital the day before. When Lily got out of the car, she spotted a rubber tube on the ground and realized someone had siphoned and stolen her gas. Annoyed, she bent down to pick up the hose. With the high cost of gasoline, there had been a rash of gas thefts. Just one more reason Paradise didn’t live up to its name, she thought. An angel might have saved her when she was four, but things were certainly less than heavenly now in the small Cache Valley town.

Lily opened the garage door and slid the cover off her grandmother’s white Chrysler LeBaron. It had been a while since anyone had driven the car. Grandma Bergman had been too ill to drive it herself, but occasionally when she felt up to it, Lily would drive her around town. They’d head up to the cemetery and pause at the family plot, where Grandma would unsnap her large black handbag, fish out a lacy handkerchief, and blow her nose—an eruption that sounded like a goose honking.

Last fall, Lily had driven Grandma Bergman up to Porcupine Dam while the leaves were golden, crimson, and orange. Lily had prayed her grandmother would live to see the leaves change, and she did. She died the day before Halloween.

Lily scooped the key out of the ashtray and after a few false starts, the LeBaron’s engine roared. As she backed the large car out of the driveway, she noticed the faint odor of camphor oil, which her grandmother had always rubbed on her arthritic joints. Tears sprang to Lily’s eyes when she slid her hand along the tan leather upholstery. Driving the car now felt like a betrayal, even though her grandmother had wanted her to have it.

First, Lily drove to the post office. No sooner had she arrived than she realized she’d forgotten her post-office-box key, so she’d have to go inside and ask for her mail.

When she stepped out of her car, Lily heard a sharp intake of breath.

“Heavens to Betsy, it’s just you.” Doris Davenport’s hair was cut short and dyed blond, defying her age of nearly eighty.

“Just me,” Lily said as she realized Doris, who was coming out of the post office with her mail in hand, must have been startled to see Esther Bergman’s car again. “My car wouldn’t start—the gas was siphoned out.”

“Well, well, doesn’t that beat all?” Doris exclaimed. “First the bishop and now you.”

Lily glanced at her watch without even noticing what time it was. “His gas was stolen too?”

“Not that I know of, but someone dropped a load of manure on his lawn the other night. They propped up a cardboard sign that said, ‘Since you’re so full of crap we thought you’d enjoy this.’”

Doris whispered the word “crap.” Now she leaned in and held her mail in front of her mouth, apparently trying to shield her words from prying lip readers, who Lily could only assume were looking out of their upstairs windows a good block away. “And the Williams had a pipe bomb in their mailbox. Blew that beautiful box to kingdom come. You know Brother Williams hand-painted an especially lovely little scene on the side of it. Now they’ve resorted to just a plain old metal box. I hate to say it, but Paradise just isn’t paradise anymore. Newcomers—they change everything. If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a thousand times to your grandmother Esther. I’d say, ‘Esther, we’re strangers in Paradise.’” Doris eyed Lily and then smiled. “Of course, even though you haven’t lived here long, you’re not a stranger, being Paradise’s own miracle.”

Lily inwardly groaned at the mention of the miracle. Small towns never forget.

Doris got into her car and stuck her head out the window. “So are you seeing anyone?”

“Not really. See you later, Doris.” Lily turned on her heel and strode into the post office. Lily smiled, keeping her secret to herself. She had Rob, but she hadn’t even told her mother about their relationship, because she still mulled over the reality—the dream that had finally come true. Even though they hadn’t even held hands yet, she believed he was the one. She could almost feel it deep within her, much the way Grandma had always felt something good happening. “Something good is brewing,” she would say, and then she’d tap her heart and add, “I can feel it.”

Lily asked Mrs. Reed, the Paradise postmaster, for her mail while doing her relaxation breathing, focusing on the tiles on the floor instead of Mrs. Reed. Lily was in therapy for social anxiety, and even asking for mail was a challenge.

“Happy birthday,” Mrs. Reed said. “Looks like a card from your brother. How’s he doing with his new job?”

“Fine, thanks.”

Lily was surprised her brother Daniel had sent her a card, since he’d almost forgotten the birthday celebration the year before.

Mrs. Reed handed Lily a stack of envelopes. “How many children do they have by now?”

“Five,” Lily answered while thumbing through her mail.

“Are you dating anyone, dear?”

Lily felt a sudden tightness in her chest. She would love to tell someone about Rob, but not the postmaster. Someday soon, when it was official, she would be able to spread the news. “Gotta go. Thanks.”

She hurried to the car, jumped in, and drove faster than usual through town, her mind swimming with angels, miracles, and the new love of her life. She was thinking about Rob when she heard the whine of the siren. She’d forgotten that one of the favorite hiding places for the highway patrol was in the Car Service parking lot, where they blended in with the broken-down vehicles. Lily pulled off the side of the road, feeling her heart race and her brow begin to perspire. The uniformed officer sauntered up to the window.

“License and registration, please.”

Lily peered up at his mirrored sunglasses, her bright blue eyes reflecting back at her. With a sigh, she thumbed through her wallet and pulled out her driver’s license. Her hands trembled, her heart pounded, and her face reddened as she located the car registration papers in the glove compartment. She handed them to the officer. Breathe, two, three, four. Breathe.

“Sorry about your grandma. Fine lady. And hey, it looks like today’s your birthday. Happy birthday.”

Lily felt calmer. The officer didn’t look familiar but was so nice; surely he wouldn’t give her a ticket. He strolled back to his patrol car. Passersby strained their necks as they drove by, trying to glimpse the unfortunate person who had been pulled over. Humiliated, Lily slouched in the seat.

When the officer came back he handed her a ticket for going six miles over the speed limit. “Slow down.”

“Some birthday present,” she whispered, feeling insulted and cheated. After the officer drove away, she glanced in her mirror and could see red splotches forming on her neck. Lily deliberately replaced her negative thoughts with affirming ones, taking care to breathe slowly. “It’s my twenty-eighth birthday. I will have a great day. The ticket doesn’t matter.” She continued to recite this as she slowly drove down the steep grade to the Bergman riverside property. “I will have a great day.”


*****
When Lily's valuable fishing pole is stolen, her Native American friend Sky is charged with the crime. But things are not always as they seem in this intriguing tale of romance, secrets, and betrayal.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Get to know you Monday--Carole Thayne Warburton


We got to know a little bit about Carole Thayne Warburton, author of Just Shy of Paradise and Sun Tunnels and Secrets last September . If you want to know her favorite food and color is check out the interview here. This time we're lucky enough to get to know her a better on a literary level.


Your top five authors: My top five authors sometimes changes, but I always love Anne Tyler, Barbara Kingsbury, Amy Tan. Anne Quindlen, John Steinbeck.


Favorite book when you were a child: My favorite books when I was really young were Little Bear Books by Sendak, Dr Suess books, and Blueberries For Sal by Robert McCloskey Later I really loved Boxcar Children books by Gertrude Chandler Warnen, The Wizard of Oz books by L. Frank Baum, The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, and Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.


Book I’ve faked reading: Hmmm, I honestly don’t think I’ve ever faked reading a book, but there were lots of books that I tried to read and couldn’t get into like War and Peace by Leo Tolsoy, Les Miserables (my daughter read the unabridged version in 8th grade) so I tried to read it.


Book that changed your life: A book that changed my life in high school was To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Recently a book that had a profound effect on me was Left to Tell: Discovering God among the Rwandan Holocaust by Imaculee Ilibagiza. Another recent favorite is Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Patillo Beals.


A favorite quote: Atticus Finch is the same in his house as he is on the public streets.~ Miss Maudie from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

I like this one because for me Atticus Finch is the kind of person I would like to be like.


Book you want to read again for the first time: Book I’d want to read again for the first time would probably be Anne Tyler’s Accidental Tourist. With Tyler’s books you either love them or you don’t. When I read this book, my first of hers I wanted to immediately search for everything she’d written. After I read all on the market, I had to wait a year or two between her books. I hope she never dies—or at least doesn’t die before I do.


Book you bought for the cover: A Book that attracted me because of the cover and also didn’t disappoint was A Curious Incident of the Dog at Night-Time by Mark Haddon.


What was your first story about: One of my first actual stories I wrote in the 8th grade about a boy named Roger. Roger had abusive parents who are eventually killed in a car accident as an answer to his prayers. I look back at the story and see that it’s pretty well written for an 8th grader, but it’s funny that the story got passed out for years by my 8th grade teacher and I heard it read in seminary classes and even in sacrament meetings for talks for years. Because the teacher left my name off of the copy and told the students to write it in, it was seldom attributed to me. Years later in high school my seminary teacher was Don J. Black and he discovered I wrote the story and asked for permission to publish it in a book—he wrote books and spoke at youth conferences. I don’t know if it was ever published and I wonder if it’s still floating around somewhere. The story also won third place in a state contest for youth. However, it seems strange to me that no one seemed bothered that the abused boy’s parents are killed in an answer to his prayer.

How do you come up with your plots: I come up with plots by just thinking of a character and a scene. In all the books I’ve written, only my most recent one did I have an idea about the ending. Usually all I have is that one idea and scene. The plots grow from there. It’s a fun way to write because I feel like I’m discovering a story that is already out there.


When did you know you wanted to be an author: I knew I wanted to be an author in 3rd grade. My teacher Mrs. Tanner would give us writing assignments. Then she typed them up for us and ran them off on a ditto machine and gave them to us for Christmas. I still have that first publication with my name in it.



Most influential writing influence: My most influential writing influence would have to be my own mother. My mother wrote for the Orem Geneva Times. Journalistic writing came easily to her, but she also had a passion for creative writing and was always a member of the Leauge of Utah Writers. And she took a mail course called Famous Writers or something like that. She was always writing assignments for her course and would sometimes read her stories aloud. I thought they were wonderful. Later when she could tell I had some writing interest and talent, she would encourage me to write, attend some of the conference meetings with her, and enter contests. I remember hearing Louis Lamour speak at one of those conferences.

I had many teachers through out my entire school career who were also very influential. Maybe you were thinking authors who were influential and I’m sure I’m influenced by everything I read. I pay close attention to the writing in every book I read, but my teachers were more influential. From Mrs. Tanner in 3rd grade, Mr. Atkinson who read a story I wrote about my dad to the class in 5th grade, to Mr. Healy who had writing contests in 8th grade, to my creative writing teacher in 10th grade (can’t remember her name) Also Melodee Lambert from Orem High with her unrestrained enthusiasm for my writing to some outstanding college teachers like Ken Brewer and Helen Cannon.

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop Winners

We had such fun participating that Lucky Leprechaun giveaway hop. The turnout was fantastic and while we wish we could give a prize to everybody that enters, we just can't. :( The three lucky winners were Jennifer@Book Noise, Lorelle, and Anaiz. Congratulations!

Jennifer@Book Noise won

Lastly, remember we host frequent giveaways so don't forget to enter in the future!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop



It's the Lucky Leprechaun Blog Giveaway Hop. With 270 blogs offering a book related giveaway hopefully the luck o' the Irish hopefully.

All the blogs are linked up together so you can easily hop from one giveaway to another. Check out the complete list of blogs participating in the Lucky Leprechaun here. The hop runs from Thursday, March 17th through Sunday, March 20th at midnight.

Three lucky winners will win one of the following books

Giveaway Details:
To enter the giveaway please follow this blog then fill out the form below.
Last Day to enter 4/20/11 by midnight. Open to international entries.

Optional Extra Entries:
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Wednesday, March 9, 2011