Saturday, June 30, 2007

Summer Read-In

This month, the Christian Fiction Blog is holding "The Spirit of Summer Read-In" featuring The Spirit of Sweetgrass from Thursday, June 21 - July 28 2007. Owner Dee Stewart asked me some of the most interesting questions I've had so far... Check it out here.

Friday, June 22, 2007

A Day of Mourning, A Glimmer of Hope

My husband and I watched the movie Blood Diamond last night. Very disturbing. If there could be something more upsetting than watching innocent African people slain in their homes and villages, it was the kidnapping and recruiting of young boys to be brought into the rebel militia. Now this was horrifying to me--that people would claim young spirits for themselves, teaching them to kill, brainwashing them into doing evil acts. One of many important concepts discussed in the movie was this: Are people inherently good or inherently bad? One character suggested that people are just people; that it's the choices we make, the things that we do, that make us good or bad.

In my town, we've had scandals in the news lately about some businessmen who've been accused of going astray, breaking the law. Seems it's been day after day of watching the news, reading it, and only seeing bad things happen, watching people self-destruct, bringing shame to those around them. But this week, something else hit the front pages, something truly hard to wrap your brain around. There was a fire at a local furniture store warehouse, and nine of our Charleston firefighters lost their lives on Monday.

Today has been declared a day of mourning in our city. A slow procession of fire engines and motorcycles made its way through town to the Coliseum where thousands of people from all over the country have come to pay their respects at a memorial service. I am saddened when I think of the families these men left behind and their fellow firefighters, the ones who became their second families at the fire stations. But in this day of mourning, after being reminded of all the corruption and evil that takes place all over the world--in far away countries or in our own back yards--celebrating the lives of these nine brave men gives me hope: hope that perhaps there is goodness in the world--in people--afterall. There exists true bravery. There exists Valor. These men died doing what they loved to do--fight fires and save people and property. Our city and our world is missing nine heroes today, but these men give us all the hope that there are more like them. Real people. Regular people. Doing extraordinary things.

My prayers go out to the families of the nine firefighters who lost their lives in Charleston this week. My continued prayers and blessings go to all of our firefighters who clean their trucks and wait on shifts...waiting for the day when they can save a life. Selflessly choosing to do what is noble and good. They are what is right in this world. God bless them.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Good Times, Good People

My past few events have been extremely rewarding! Last weekend was the highly-anticipated 3rd Annual Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival. Emily Morrison of the Mount Pleasant Barnes and Noble gets kudos for sitting in the near hundred degree weather with me. Mind you, we were in the best shady spot under a gorgeous oak tree, but here's to you, Emily (see photo)! Now we can appreciate what sweetgrass basket makers endure on a daily basis...

Before that was a wonderful weekend further up the coast. I spoke at the Conway Library and one book group, Myrtle Trace South, brought 18 members! Nice to see you all! The next day was Litchfield Books' Moveable Feast at Blowfish Restaurant in Pawley's Island. What an incredible time. Thank you Tom and Linda! My mother and sister-in-law, Pawley's residents, came to that one too, so it was a special treat for me. That evening I met with the lovely ladies of the Prince Creek book club in Murrells Inlet. They outdid themselves with good food and great conversation. Thank you, Donna, for inviting me.
Truly, I get more out of each event than the folks who come to see me or buy The Spirit of Sweetgrass. Each reader fuels me. Thank you, thank you, everyone.

Saturday, June 02, 2007


Many thanks to the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for reviewing The Spirit of Sweetgrass this week. I've read lots of interesting comments about the book. Here are some of my favorites:
The Spirit of Sweetgrass is, as of this moment, #6 on for popular books. Thank you, everyone!