Monday, October 28, 2013

"A Step in the Write Direction," October 28, 2013--Supplies List

A Step in the Write Direction
October 28, 2013
Update: I have an article titled “Lessons Learned from Rejection Letters” in the latest issue of The Working Writer, a great newsletter. Get a free subscription at: My  computer was down a couple days this week because of a vicious new virus. It happened when I opened an email with the subject line “wedding invitation.” My computer guy fixed it, then the next morning I had a notice of a Microsoft update, and it hit again. It tried 7 times yesterday and this morning to re-attack, but my TrendMicro anti-virus caught it….This next Friday and Saturday is the annual Arizona Christian Writers Conference—the last one Reg Forder and ACW will be holding in Arizona. After this it will just be one-on-one mentoring workshops. All the books will be 50% off. You don’t have to attend the conference to take advantage of this special…. Since I didn’t buy flowers when Eleanor died, I’m giving a donation towards a scholarship, so if you know someone who would like to attend, have them contact Reg at: for a discounted price.
Thought for the Day: “First surrender, then wait, then walk. First surrender your own will and plans; then wait until you are convinced you’ve heard God’s direction, then walk in the work He has planned beforehand for you to walk in” (Pamela Rosewall Moore. Safer Than a Known Way [Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming R. Revell Company, 1988], p. 38).
Laugh for the Day: My parents had not been out together in quite some time. One Saturday, as Mom was finishing the dinner dishes, my father stepped up behind her. "Would you like to go out, girl?" he asked. My mother quickly replied, "Oh, yes, I'd love to!" They had a wonderful evening, and it wasn't until later Dad confessed that his question had actually been directed to the family dog, lying near Mom's feet on the kitchen floor. (From Gospel News newsletter.)
Song for the Day:
Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You're the One that guides my heart
Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me
Teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I'll fall on You
Jesus, You're my hope and stay
Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You
(“Lord, I Need You,” by Chris Tomlin)
Fun Quiz: See how many words you can make from the letters in Happy Halloween. You can use each letter as many times as it appears in the two words, i.e., you can only use “a” once, but you can use “h,” “l,” “p,” and “e” twice. Have fun. (I have 167 so far!)
Writer’s Tips (Supplies—this is also a good check-off list when doing your taxes):
·        ink for your printer
·        paper—white, 8½” x 11”. Save money by printing rough drafts on paper that has been used on only one side. If you hear of a business moving, ask for their old stationery. Copy stores often throw away a lot of paper too. Ask around.
·        pens, pencils, erasers
·        paper clips
·        stapler and staples
·        envelopes and stamps (for publishers who don’t accept e-mail submissions)—size 10 business envelope, 9” x 12”, Priority Mail
·        address labels
·        maps, travel brochures (for nonfiction or novels)
·        index cards (for taking notes and outlining)
·        postage stamps
·        legal/steno/scratch pads
·        file folders and labels. Many business offices toss out folders at the end of the year. Again, ask around.
·        business card holder. Collect business cards from people you meet, then if you need a quotation or an up-to-date fact on a subject, go through your cards and select someone in that field. Give them credit for the quotation in your manuscript. They’ll love it!
·        telephone/address/Internet address book
·        tape recorder and tapes, if you’re not using digital recorder
·        camera, batteries, film or memory cards
·        a “Do not disturb/Writer at work” sign (unless they bring chocolate or pizza!)
You may not need all the items on this list at first; just collect them as you need them or put them on your Christmas list. (Note: I usually buy two sets of some of these—one for the household and one just for my business for tax deductions.)

 Have a good week spreading the
gospel through the printed page.
Donna Clark Goodrich

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A Step in the Write Direction--October 21, 2013--Writer's Tips

A Step in the Write Direction
October 21, 2013
Update: A pretty quiet week. This was the week I was supposed to be on staff at the CLASS conference in Albuquerque, but had to bow out because of my husband’s health. My writer friend who attended, though, had some very productive appointments….For those who sent me submissions for my friendship gift book, I did get a rejection this week from the publisher for that book and the mother’s gift book. She said they’re “going in a different direction,”  but that she’ll contact me if things change. So, back to sending them out again….I sent out 135 brochures last week to Mesa area churches for speaking. If you’d like a brochure to give to your program/ senior adult/ladies’ ministries director, email me….I’m also setting up dates for one-day “A Step in the Write Direction” workshops next spring. All I need is a church and a registrar. If interested, I’ll send you the topics covered.
Thought for Today: "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent" (Calvin Coolidge).
Laugh for Today:
"Moses had indigestion like you do," Bobby told his mother at the dinner table one Sunday. 
"What makes you think that?" his mother asked.
"Well," Bobby said, "our Sunday school teacher said that when he went up on the mountain, God gave him two tablets."

Song for the Week: (This was written by my nephew, Dave Clark, during his 19-year illness for which 29 doctors at Mayo Clinic could find no cure—until God stepped in! His story is told in my book Healing in God’s Time.)
I said, “Lord, I know you’ve already taken me
To places that some will never see.
And I know that I’ve been blessed, but Lord, I must confess,
The journey’s almost got the best of me.”
He said, “Child, I know the miles have got you feeling low,
And you wonder how much farther you can go.
The pain you feel is real; I know exactly how you feel,
And there is only one way I can know:
(Chorus): “I’ve been there….I’ve faced those lonely trials,
Child, I’ve been there,
I’m familiar with the miles,
So if you’re walking through the valley
Of the heartache once again,
You’re only going where I’ve already been.”
I said, “Lord, it’s hard to keep from feeling like I do,
And I question why the test you’ve put me through.
Yet in my darkest  hour, I felt a healing power
That only comes from walking close to you.”
He said, “Child, it’s hard to watch the hurt you’re going thru,
And the questions that you ask are nothing new.
Sometimes the Father’s plan is so hard to understand,
There’ve been days that I’ve felt the same as you.
 (back to chorus):
(Ending): So if you’re walking through the valley
Of the heartache once again,
You’re only going where He’s already been.
“I’ve Been There,” Dave Clark. © 1986 by Emmanuel Music (ASCAP). Used by Permission.
Writer’s Tips (Bits and Pieces this week):
Editing Hints: (Hope your writing isn’t like this!) I thought this email from my anthology publisher was humorous. “It is so funny how writers reply to an email when I asked for their phone number. One simply gives it to me. The next person says, ‘Well, I have two numbers but I am never at home but I will give you my daughter’s number and my aunt Mary’s number but she is in the hospital with a lung problem. Did I tell you that I want 5 copies or did I say I want 6. I just can’t decide because I don’t know if Johnny would like to read it or not, but here is my cell number also just in case you call when I am at the drugstore where I seem to live these days because of my heart problem that started….’”
Puzzle: The seven letter word therein contains 17 words without rearranging any of its letters Can you get them? (Answer at bottom.)
Spelling hints:
forego (before); forgo (go without)
e.g. for example
i.e., that is, in effect
eight-foot boards (adjective)
except – “x” excludes; accept – think of 2 c’s snuggling together, they accept each other
setup – noun; set up – verb
Church – upper case when referring to the Roman Catholic Church, or whole body of Christians
gibe – to tease; jibe – to agree
apart – separate; a part of – union
silicon – an element; silicone – contains silicon
desert – dry; can’t afford 2 s’s; dessert – you want 2
altogether – completely; all together – in a group
beside – next to; besides – in addition to
resister – person; resistor – electric current
all ready – prepared; already – happened earlier
Answer to puzzle: The word therein contains the following 20 words in order:
the, there, he, in, rein, her, here, ere, I, therein, herein, tin, then, thee, hen, hi, ten, thin, tern, teen.
How many did you get?
Have a good week spreading the
gospel through the printed page.
Donna Clark Goodrich

"A Step in the Write Direction--the Complete How-to Guide for Christian Writers"
"The Freedom of Letting Go"
"Healing in God's Time"
"Christmas Anthology"
"Mother/Grandmother Anthology"
"Preparing Your Heart for Christmas"--Advent devotional
Ohio Cookbook
Michigan Cookbook
"How to Start and Run a Christian Writers' Group...Critique Group...Conference"

Monday, October 14, 2013

"A Step in the Write Direction"--October 14, 2013--Periodical Analysis Sheet

A Step in the Write Direction


October 14, 2013


Update: What a good week (except for the Tigers’ 2nd game Sunday night)! While I have one publisher for whom I proofread about 50 books a year, I’ve been praying for one more. After my interview appeared in the local paper, a writer called me to edit a book for her, being published by a Phoenix publisher. I sent that publisher my resume and, so far, have had four proofreading jobs!...I also completed 2 of 3 big jobs on my to-do list: sent out 135 letters/brochures to area churches for speaking, and sorted out 16 trays of slides. Threw away a bunch and now have only 10 trays. I also updated my slide index…Yet to do: I sent 2 (lengthy) Easter poems to a program publisher who requested 4 more, so need to finish those and take to my critique group Tuesday.


Confession: For some reason I’ve been dreading Sundays. I love church (once I get there), but seems like the thought of getting dressed and going somewhere wears me out. This morning when I woke up, I prayed for those who would be there, for the song leader, for the preacher—and for me. (P.S. It worked!) Once there, I looked around at those nearest me and prayed for them too: A friend who lost her husband with lung cancer after being married just 21 years; a woman whose husband left her after 40-some years of marriage; a lady who had to move into assisted living, a friend whose mother-in-law has cancer. And I’m sure they all agreed with the words of my favorite chorus sung today, which will be the—


Song for the Day:

For all that You’ve done I will thank You, For all that You're going to do
For all that You've promised And all that You are
Is all that has carried me through, Jesus, I thank You
And I thank You, Thank You Lord
And I thank You, Thank You Lord

Thank You for loving and setting me free
Thank You for giving Your life just for me
How I thank You; Jesus, I thank You
Gratefully thank You. Thank You (Dennis Jernigan, performed by Mercy Me)


Thought for the Day:

If you want to put across a thought (an idea, a moral) in your story, don’t begin with that.

Before you can reach your reader and make him come over to your side in his beliefs, you

must reach him though his emotions. You must make him feel. In order to make him feel, let

him experience a sensation or emotion with one of the characters (Phyllis A. Whitney).


Laugh for the Day:

A minister was making a pastoral call.  Just before he left, he said he wished to read the Bible and have prayer.  The father turned to one of his children and sanctimoniously said, "Go bring that book your father's always reading."  Soon, to the deacon's delight and the father's embarrassment, the son returned bringing a copy of the swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated.


Writer’s Tips:


The following is a little long, but it is a great way to study a magazine and its needs. Would be helpful to fill out one of these for each sample magazine you’re considering as a market. (I’ll be going into more detail on this at the Arizona conference November 1.) If you’d like this sent as a separate sheet, email me at:




Name of Publication _______________________________________________________


Email: _____________________________ Web site _____________________________

Submissions Editor ________________________________________________________

Frequency of Publication _______________________Denomination _________________

Audience _________________________________________________________________

Taboos ___________________________________________________________________

Rights Purchased _______________ Reprints?____________ Simultaneous ____________

Payment: How much? ________________ When __________________________________

Table of Contents: % Staff written?_____________ % Freelance?_____________________

Check photos, illustrations, ads.

Read Letters to the Editor? Reactions? Like to see article on?


Yes/No                                                                        Length







Book Reviews

Other (Personal Experience, etc.)


 Have a good week spreading the

gospel through the printed page.


Donna Clark Goodrich



Monday, October 7, 2013

A Step in the Write Direction--October 7, 2013--Query Letters

                                                          A Step in the Write Direction
October 7, 2013

Update: Another week! Where do the days go? I remember when I was young my mother told me how fast the time goes when you get older. I didn’t believe her because, when you’re young, time seems to drag until school is out, your next birthday, Christmas, when you get your driver’s license, when you graduate….Our daughter and family are now back in Oklahoma; thankful for their safe travel….And my hubby is getting over his fall, but still has a black and blue face and a swollen eye. (Looks ready for Halloween!)…Went to a “Going Home to Jesus” celebration yesterday for our friend’s husband. She said she thought he has less than two weeks as he’s sleeping all the time and not eating.….Edited a book for a writer who had it accepted by a Phoenix publisher. I wrote him last Wednesday, offering my services as an editor/proofreader, and am now finishing my third job for him. This is an answer to prayer! I have one publisher for whom I proofread about 50 books a year, but was looking for one more. This may be it!

Thought for the Day:
Slowly I have realized that I do not have to be qualified to do what I am asked to do. That I just have to go ahead and do it, even though I can't do it as well as I think it ought to be done. This is one of the most liberating lessons of my life (Madeleine L'Engel).

Laugh for the Day:
The boys had been up in the attic together helping with some cleaning. They uncovered an old manual typewriter and asked their mom, “What's this?" "Oh, that's an old typewriter," she answered. "Well, what does it do?" they queried. "I'll show you," she said and returned with a blank piece of paper. She rolled the paper into the typewriter and began striking the keys, leaving black letters of print on the page. "WOW!" they exclaimed, "That's really cool, but where do you plug it in?" "There is no plug," she answered. "It doesn't need a plug." "Then where do you put the batteries?" they persisted. "It doesn't need batteries either," she continued. "Wow! This is so cool!" they exclaimed. "Someone should have invented this a long time ago!" (from The Gospel Greats newsletter, 10/1/13).
Song for the Day: (this is a new weekly addition)
Brokenhearted people, I see them ev’ry day,
And I wish that I could be the one to take their hurt away;
But all my good intentions can’t take away the need,
But I’ve found a Friend in Someone—Who is all I cannot be.
People all around me, They see the way I live,
At times it seems they’re reaching out for love that I can’t give;
And all that I can hope for is that somehow they will see
A love that comes from Someone—Who is all I cannot be.
(Chorus) Jesus is all the things that I can never be,
He is ever watching over me, and He knows just what I need;
When I’ve fallen short of ev’rything the world expects of me,
I’ve found a Friend in Someone—Who is all I cannot be.
(Dave Clark, “He’s All I Cannot Be,” © Emmanuel Music (ASCAP). All rights reserved and controlled by Ben Speer Music. International copyright secured.)
Writer’s Tips:
Question: What should be included in a query letter?
Answer: A query letter shouldn’t be more than one page, three or four paragraphs, written to a specific editor (if you don’t know the name, call the publisher), asking if he/she would like to see your complete manuscript. Give the following information:
·         Why you feel this book or article is needed and your market;
·         A brief synopsis of the book or article, including the length and if it isn’t finished, when it will be;
·         Who are you? What qualifies you to write the manuscript (writing background, experience in a specific field, or just an interest in subject).
Don’t tell them you’re a beginning writer, or that “God told you to write this.”
If editor gives you a go-ahead to your query, send manuscript to same editor. If sending it via snail mail, write on envelope: “Requested material. Your letter of ________.” Enclose a short cover letter stating, Enclosed is manuscript titled “________________” you asked to see in your letter of _________. If sending snail mail, enclose an SASE.
Closing paragraph: Don’t say, “I hope you like this,” or “I hope you will publish this,” or “I look forward to hearing from you.” They know that! Simply say, “Thank you for your consideration.”
 Have a good week spreading the
gospel through the printed page.
Donna Clark Goodrich