The Quality of Light

“Of all the facts I daily live with there’s none more comforting than this; If I have two rooms, one dark, the other light, and I open the door between them, the dark room becomes lighter without the light one becoming darker. I know this is no headline, but it is a marvelous foot note; and comforts me in that.” ― Gerhard Frost

Probably there’s some scientific explanation for why light affects darkness, but not vice-versa. These kinds of questions intrigue me, so I guess it’s no wonder they furrow my characters’ brows, as well.

Why doesn’t darkness “move into” light when we open a door or when a light shines outside our windows? Instead, brightness penetrates into the formerly dark area.

In my last novel, Kate, Domingo, and the wily priest who accompanies them on some of their clandestine missions ponder such concepts. Why didn’t one of the assassination attempts on Hitler’s life succeed? How could such evil run rampant over Europe?

If you enjoyed With Each New Dawn and A Purpose True, you’d most likely appreciate the story I’m working on right now, too. Stan, an all-American guy-type, considers philosophical questions in the mountains of Bataan, where he and a captain escape to carry on guerrilla warfare instead of succumbing to captivity in a Japanese POW camp.

Add to this the captain’s literary mind bursting with quotes, and his penchant for employing them in everyday conversation…plus his bouts of malaria and dengue fever. Needless to say, Stan has his hands full.

As usual, I keep thinking this novel must be nearly finished…and that day will come. Meanwhile, Easter’s not a bad time to consider the effect of light on darkness, and the failure of darkness to squelch light.

Have a meaningful holiday.

 

Maybe We Aren’t in Charge…

Another wonderful photo from my husband’s collection – see this mama cardinal’s bright red beak through the peephole? This image speaks to recent events in our lives.  (See the previous blog’s great pictures.)

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She seems as patient and determined as can be, awaiting her hatchlings’ births.

 

The next shot shows  her from above, in our cold Northern Iowa rain. At first, he thought the white dots were actual specks on her back. IMG_3780But they’re raindrops a-sparkle.

Rain or shine, cold or bitter, nasty winter wind, she’s faithful, with no idea when these chicks will burst forth from their shells.

After a wild night last night, I can relate! My first women’s fiction historical novel in a series of three was scheduled to release on June 6, D-Day. I thought the date fitting, since the theme is one woman’s personal growth and victory over fear in the violent backdrop of World War II.

Well, what do I know? The book seems to have a life of its own, because last night it went live, regardless of our posted schedule. I’ve almost gotten over the shock, but still wonder why, since I had readers/reviewers lined up to post on release day–I was doing everything RIGHT to make this book release a success. (Just like my heroine, Addie does everything possible to please her controlling husband.)

Which takes us back to our title–maybe I’m not in charge. Maybe God pried my tight little fingers away from this story and has things in mind for it I’d never have dreamed of. Whatever the case, Addie is now out there in the world–sometimes cold and cruel.

Dear readers, I hope you love her! Here’s the book blurb:

Pearl Harbor attacked! The United States is at war.

But Addie fights her own battles on the Iowa home front. Her controlling husband Harold vents his rage on her when his father’s stoke prevents him from joining the military. He degrades Addie, ridicules her productive victory garden, and even labels her childlessness as God’s punishment.

When he manipulates his way into a military unit bound for Normandy, Addie learns that her best friend Kate’s pilot husband has died on a mission, leaving her stranded in London in desperate straits.

Will Addie be able to help Kate, and find courage to trust God with her future?

Here’s the Amazon.com purchase link: http://amzn.to/1VFEoYh

Ill-fitting, or fit for our work?

Every summer, I take some of my plants outdoors. In early March, I noticed something else growing out of one of those pots, a totally “other” plant. But something told me to let it grow, and it’s since flourished in the sunshine of our south dining room windows. Kind of hard to pull up a specimen that wants to grow so badly.

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Yes, it’s an oak tree in a jade world.

But it doesn’t belong, right? Well, years ago, I felt like I didn’t, either. Since I’m kind of a gregarious personality type, it really didn’t bother me too much, but every once in a while, I’d sense that outsider feeling. Since we’ve moved quite a few times, I usually attributed the situation to being new.

Then I read The Cloister Walk  by Kathleen Norris. It’s one of those books I’ve read more than once, but the first time through, this author encouraged me SO much by helping me understand myself better. I don’t have the exact quote, but it went something like, “As writers, our job is to record/report what we see. That means we often stand outside an event, a circumstance, or a place and look in. Then we report on what we see.”

Wow – a puzzle piece slipped into place. Today I met a bunch of Iowa writers at the Ankeny Book Fair. Spending time with them heartened me, as our far-north locale doesn’t produce tons of writer-types. And we are a type!

So I’d like to say thank you to Joy King, who planned the fair and also to the many writers there who encouraged me today. Hope to see you again somewhere in Iowa!