Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Miami, Misadventures, and an Aussie Book Club

Spent the last two weeks on the road, arriving back to Lancaster, PA's biggest snowfall in history, more than 30 inches on the ground. At this rate, we'll need to get used to that white stuff on the ground, and Al Gore needs to make a new movie. Not much of an apology for how long it's been since I've attended this blog; if I did this for a living, I'd be deservedly fired by now.

But the two back-to-back trips that made up my absence were SO worth time away from home and that new manuscript I'm scribbling madly to finish. February 1-7 I taught an advanced fiction track at the Asociacion Latinoamericano de Escritores Cristianos (ALEC) 10th Anniversary conference in Miami, FL, as well as meeting with numerous writers I've mentored from various countries on their personal manuscripts.

A focus of the conference was brainstorming on how to promote the publication and marketing of Spanish-language Christian fiction. I've been a finalist judge on the 2008 and 2009 Spanish-language Christian novel contest, sponsored by Thomas Nelson with more than 170 total manuscript submissions from over 20 Spanish-speaking countries. One of the highlights of this conference for me was seeing a dozen Spanish-language Christian novels from three publishing houses, of which I'd had a hand in the original manuscript and mentoring writers for every single book. Some of the fruit of ten years mentoring Christian writers across the Spanish-speaking world.

The ALEC conference ended just in time for me to join my husband Marty, who is president of BCM International, for the CrossGlobal Link (formerly International Foreign Missions Assocation) CEO cruise from Orlando to the Bahamas Feb. 7-11, along with 22 other couples in mission leadership. At least that was the plan. The first of snowstorms that have set records in Pennsylvania cancelled my hubby's flight, so I sailed alone (or as alone as 22 other couples can be!).

After various misadventures, rescheduled flights, and a roundabout route, Marty was able to join me at the first stop, Freeport, just as the ship docked so only missed the first night. It was SO relaxing and fun, a break Marty and I didn't realize how much we needed until we were enjoying it. Our return flight was on time, but our vehicle was parked in long-term parking, where many of the cars were simply white mounds. My Montana-bred hubby had thought to leave shovel, boots, gloves in the vehicle just in case, so we dug ourselves out in far less time than I'd have expected.

All to say that I'm home until I fly to Scotland for a conference next week, so should have time for proper blogging. But instead I'm finishing that new manuscript, so let me share with you instead a Book Club interview that Relz Reviewz (Australia) has just posted on Jeanette Windle (that's me!), Veiled Freedom, Afghanistan, and writing.

Thanks, Rel, for rounding out my blog so beautifully for this week (and possibly this month!).