Writing Opportunities at Civitas Press

As you may know, last October I published a book of essays about depression with Civitas Press called Not Alone. I also had a piece in the first Civitas community project, The Practice of Love. I'm thankful, both as a reader and a writer, for the good work that is going on over at Civitas.I wanted to let you know about a few other projects that they have in the pipe right now.My friend Tamara Lunardo is still accepting submissions for her book, What a Woman is Worth. This book is a collection of stories about the value of women in the Church and in society. Tamara is specifically looking for submissions from women of color (edit: Tamara said that she's really looking for women outside of the white, straight, middle-class American Christian upbringing). Based on the blog carnival that she … [Read more...]

What If…

What if...     ...you auditioned for that play?     ...you made the first move in pursuing friendship?     ...you took a pottery class?What if...     ...you sang out loud the song that's in your heart?     ...you let the words in your head bleed all over the page?     ...you danced with your whole body?What if...     ...you spoke up when you saw injustice?     ...you celebrated small victories?     ...you questioned the status quo?What if...     ...you forgave more?     ...you laughed more?     ...you believed more?What would you learn about yourself? How would your life change?+++++++++++If you've overcome the … [Read more...]

Results Not Typical

Last night I was watching some Adult Swim on the Cartoon Network. I tend to do most of my television viewing online, so I rarely see many commercials. Which is why I missed the one for InventHelp until last night.The commercial talks about a guy who invented a water toy that he pitched to Wham-o with the aid of InventHelp. He's now a big successful inventor. But the part of the commercial that really grabbed me was at the 20 second mark.Did you catch that?"Bill's experience is not typical and most inventions are not successful."I admit, I went back and listened to it again because I was sure that I hadn't heard that correctly.Like everyone, I'm used to hearing disclaimers at the end of a commercial uttered at break-neck speed or watching them scroll across the bottom of the screen in … [Read more...]

Forget to Freak Out

Two summers ago, we went on vacation to North Carolina with my extended family and while we were there, we visited Chimney Rock. It's a beautiful location and everyone was looking forward to it.Except for my oldest son.He has a sometimes crippling fear of heights. Even with clear boundaries that he knows will protect him from a fall, he will often keep his distance. When he was younger, even minor elevations could cause him to start shaking. So the thought of climbing to the summit of Chimney Rock at 2480 feet was downright terrifying.But his sisters and his cousin and his dad and his grandfather and his aunt and his uncle were all making the climb and he wanted to be with them. And they all wanted him to be a part of the experience as well. So he made the choice to ignore his fears and … [Read more...]

The Distance Between

I was the girl who was everybody's friend. I was funny and nice and smart and loud and weird. I played the saxophone in band, the piano in chorus, and the hussy in school musicals, but in real life, I was completely chaste. I'd like to say it was because of my strong moral fiber, but mostly it was because there weren't any inquiries. It was easy to maintain my virginity when no one was interested in procuring it.Most of the time I could convince myself that it didn't matter. I embraced my weirdness. I did things that would insure that I would still have friends, but that any lack of interest in me wasn't because I wasn't pretty or desirable, but instead because I was just too much for a regular high school boy. I joked with the boy I liked at the cast party, but I went home and cried after … [Read more...]

Not Afraid Book Project

I'm the worst finisher ever.I cannot tell you how many projects I've started and not seen through to the end, but it's a lot. When I was contacted about turning the Not Alone series into a book, I hesitated. It just seemed so big. Even though I was just in as the editor, it still struck me as an opportunity to fail. Or worse, an opportunity to succeed and have that taken away or undermined. Despite believing deeply in the importance of the project, I was sure that I was ill-equipped to head it up and my initial response was to give it a pass.Fortunately, my husband pointed out just how often this has been my response. And with all of the love and honesty that I have come to expect over the years, he told me to stop being a baby and do the damn book. (No, he was way more awesome than that. … [Read more...]