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Blog by Ron – Researching Ian

Researching Ian took me down a different road than I have been following. In the past, my research has been primarily looking up facts from online and written resources. That is the normal route to be taken as an author develops his plots.

But my new book, Ian and God’s Providence, requires something more; getting firsthand stories form the very people involved in that day’s activities. This was new, but I dived into it.

Complicating Researching Ian

The primary person to be interviewed was the fact that the primary person being interviewed is a pastor, who was very busy coordinating the Hurricane Relief program that Tri-City took on.  But when I approached him with the idea of a book detailing the Sheppard family’s trial by storm.

Another complication was the need to get the information as soon as possible. This is because stories of disaster usually have only a small window of opportunity to reach the people while they are still interested.

Still another complication to Researching Ian

Each person I contacted I told not to worry about grammar, etc., as I would be editing their contributions, but to write about the events as they remembered them. This is important because it adds the personal, firsthand touch providing the reader with different views of the events.

Everyone was excited about the project and their opportunity to participate. But the complication that arose was the fact that all of them were busy. Ian impacted everyone to the point that there daily routine was now filled with additional work.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Each class registration occurs between the 25th  of a month and runs through the 24th of the following month. The new class starts on the following 1st.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Personal Interview with Pastor Jay

None were busier than Pastor Jay. He still had his daily care of the flock, but he also was the Coordinator of receiving and distributing the supplies that soon were arriving in the church parking lot. This required a great deal of time.

In addition, he was constantly receiving phone calls from pastors around the country who wanted to help. It was an amazing example of the Christian family coming to the aid of other Christians.

Researching Ian Bears Fruit

Pastor Jay finally made the time to sit down and talk with me about the research I had already done, and what he could provide. He graciously discussed all of this, plus he made other suggestions and contributions.

One of the suggestions was for me to contact everyone that was involved and get their own stories. This would provide multiple views of the same events and allow the reader to get a fuller, more personal intake of the events. I recognized the importance right away.

All of this has led to a book that is a personal, and powerful read!

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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What’s True About Revival

What’s True About Revival is my latest book that I have published. This short 88-page book is packed with information about America’s:

  • History of revival
  • Need for revival
  • Opportunity for revival

What is Revival?

Let me start by saying what is not revival.

Your church decides to invite an evangelist to come and have an old-fashioned revival meeting under a revival tent. That is not a revival, although revival could break out.

Your pastor issues an altar call with an invitation to get right with God. That is not a revival, although a revival could break out.

You read a book about revival. That is not a revival, although revival could break out.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Each class registration occurs between the 25th  of a month and runs through the 24th of the following month. The new class starts on the following 1st.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Revival Requires Commitment to God

2 Timothy 1:12 – “…for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.”

In each of the scenarios mentioned above revival could breakout because believers responded and committed themselves to God. That might turnout to be the start of revival, but it isn’t revival yet.

Revival Requires Sanctification

James 4:8 – “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”

You’ve committed yourself to God, but the Lord also wants you committed to the sanctifying, cleansing power of the Holy Spirit. You are almost there.

Revival Requires Confession

1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

I do not mean confessing to your pastor, priest, or accountability partner. I am talking about a heartfelt confession to God of your sins.

Revival Requires Turning Away from Sin

2 Chronicles 7:14 – “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

It is possible to have favorite sins. That is, a sin that is hidden from our loved ones, our friends, our pastor, and everyone else. To truly be revived you need to turn away from that sin and from whatever triggers it.

A needed Look at Ourselves

What’s True About Revival is a book that challenges us. Are we on fire for God? Do we pray for revival? Do we measure up to what I have talked about in this blog?

This book is currently in paperback and is available on Amazon, plus it is in our store at a discounted price. Check it out, and get your copy today.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron: What is a Writer’s Journal

A Writer’s Journal is a valuable tool that you can use as you pursue your writing career. But what is it and how does it work?

What is a Writer’s Journal?

There are different types of journals, but this one is designed to exclusively for writers. I will be using the Christian Writer’s Journal as the example. It is a product of T&R Independent Books of which I am the Vice President.

What’s the purpose of a Writer’s Journal?

Generally, the purpose is to provide a single record or depository of your writing ideas. In the Christian Writer’s Journal there are suggested usages, such as, cliches, details, maps/floor plans, outlines, story ideas, and Other. Chances are you will have a use that falls under Other. That’s great, because there are as many uses as their people.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Each class registration occurs between the 25th  of a month and runs through the 24th of the following month. The new class starts on the following 1st.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

A Look at the Book

The picture you see with this blog is our Christian Writer’s Journal. It looks nice on the outside, but the real beauty is inside.

We designed this book to be used by and for writers. My wife (Tess Riddle) and myself (R. Frederick Riddle) are authors and we discovered that journaling is ideal for an author. It can replace napkins, paper towels, newspaper, scrap paper, loose paper, and a host of other impromptu tools. I have probably used all the methods mentioned and more.

But I have already used mine to record possible story ideas,  creation of a writer’s tool chest for my students, ideas for blogs/posts, ideas for a newsletter if I decide to publish a newsletter, branding ideas, biographies to be used in published books, keyword research, and much more.

Why is a Writer’s Journal so valuable?

I mentioned earlier that it replaces tools such as napkins. Often, when I go out to lunch or dinner, I grab a napkin and start writing down story ideas, plots, or even scenes for my books. When done, I stick them in my pocket hopefully to be retrieved later and incorporated wherever needed. 

But the problem is that paper napkins are fragile and can be ripped, torn, or mangled. They can also be lost, especially if time lapses between when I wrote my ideas down and when I tried to retrieve them.

I don’t think any have ever made it into the laundry, but it could happen. But if I transfer that information into my journal as soon as possible then I have a resource that is easily available and in one place.

I recently had a date with a girl called Ian (e uhn). She wasn’t particularly nice dare, but she did give me a story to tell. And that story found its way into my journal and is now in my computer as a work in progress.

Another Feature of the Book

Some writers use spiral notebooks to write the ideas down. But a writer’s journal, at least the Christian Writer’s Journal, is better than a notebook. Only 6”x9” in size, the book is easy to use yet hard to lose. And with over 200 pages available it is large enough to contain a lot of information.

If you are or plan to be an author this is must for your tool chest, and you can get it right here.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron Do You Watch Your Word Usage

Do you watch your word usage?

Word usage plays an important role in writing. Consider the following:

  • Short words tend to speed up a story
  • Long words tend to slow down a story
  • Some words are more difficult to understand; use clear, concise words
  • Some words have different meanings in different contexts
  • Some words are more difficult to pronounce than others
  • Use verbs and adverbs wisely (check grammar book)
  • Don’t use long sentences unless necessary
  • Short sentences tend to speed up a story
  • Normally try to stay at or below 8 sentences in a paragraph
  • Check your spelling

More on this subject after the break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Now, back to the subject of Word Usage.

Word Usage means more than Grammar

While grammar and spelling are important factors, you should consider other things as part of word usage. For instance, keeping track of a character’s speech characteristics.

That may sound odd, but if a character first appears as one who stutters, then you need to have that character stutter throughout the book. Which means, you will need to track the character’s speech to make sure he or she always stutters at least up to the point to where the stutter is cured.

What else should you track? How about a character’s:

  • Favorite slogans
  • Difficulty pronouncing certain words
  • Use of slang
  • Overuse of words and/or phrases

These may seem minor, but getting them right can make all the difference in your writing.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

If you would like to review any of our books, contact me at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com with the subject line indicating that desire. An example of an appropriate subject line would be: ‘Seek to review [book Title].’ In the email make sure to indicate your email address, and your name, and we will send a PDF of the chosen book to you.

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Blog by Tess – Preparing Easy Recipes

Preparing Easy Recipes for your personal pleasure.

Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve needed a quick easy recipe to prepare? Maybe some company was coming over, you were invited to an event and needed to prepare something to take, or you just weren’t in the mood to mess up your kitchen while preparing the food/appetizer.

I’m going to share some of my ideas with you. Some I found on the internet and came up with my own version to prepare. Others have been handed down to me by a family member/relative. I use a large skillet to combine everything when cooking, so I don’t mess up a lot of dishes. 

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

Authors Basic Training is a basic writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Easy Recipe of Bean and Hamburger Dish.

This is the first meal I prepared for my husband before we got married. He loved it.

Needed:

  • 1 pound of browned hamburger meat, with grease, drained off.
  • 1 can of beans of your choice – I use Bush’s baked beans. (Note – use any size you want, depending on the number of people you’re cooking for.)
  • Barbecue sauce (enough for flavoring).

Directions:

  1. Combine the beans in the skillet with the prepared hamburger meat.
  2. Let simmer until thoroughly heated through, stirring often.
  3. As the mixture simmers, add the barbecue sauce, a little at a time, until you get the consistency that you want.
  4. Serve while hot.

Easy Recipe of Sausage Balls.

This is a nice appetizer to make to an event or to just snack on at home. I make them the way my mom always did.

Needed:

  • 3 cups of Bisquick.1 pound of pork sausage (regular, sage, or hot – depending on your preference. I use the regular.)
  • Up to 1 pound of grated or shredded cheddar cheese.
  • Enough water to hold the ingredients together.

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place parchment paper on a baking sheet.
  3. Mix the above ingredients together in a bowl, until well blended.
  4. Place each ball on the baking sheet.
  5. Bake for about 20 minutes.

My Own Easy Recipe for Hamburger Stew.

Needed:

  • 1 pound of hamburger meat browned and drained.
  • 2 cups of vegetables of your choice (To save time I mix frozen vegetables together: carrots, corn, green beans, and potatoes).
  • 1 can of Stewed or diced tomatoes.
  • A half of a package of an onion soup mix, to give the mixture a little flavor.
  • Extra water to cover the vegetables with.

.                                                                            

Directions:

  1. In the skillet with the browned hamburger meat, add the two cups of vegetables, the tomatoes, the onion soup mix, and enough water to cover up the vegetables so they won’t dry out while simmering.
  2. Let simmer until the vegetables are done, stirring constantly. (Note: add more water if you need to during the simmering.)

My Mom’s Easy Recipe for Goulash.

Needed: (Note: the amount of each ingredient that you use will depend on how many people you’re preparing the recipe for.)

  • 1 pound of hamburger meat prepared in a skillet until no pink shows. Drained.
  • 1 cup of macaroni.
  • 1 cup of fresh tomatoes, cut up.
  • 1 cup of homemade tomato sauce (which my mom used. I use store-bought.)
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

Directions:

  1. In the skillet with the browned hamburger meat, add the macaroni and tomatoes, and sauce.
  2. Let it simmer, stirring often. Add salt and pepper for taste. Simmer the mixture until the macaroni is cooked.  (Note: a little water may need to be added so the mixture won’t go dry.)
  3. Hint: I like adding a little garlic to my recipe for an added taste.

Next week I’ll do a blog on quick no-bake dessert recipes that you can make with just a few ingredients.

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Interviewing Your Characters

Interviewing Your Characters is based on old blog I wrote years ago, but it is as timely now as it was then.

When writing your story you get well acquainted with your characters. In fact, you become quite knowledgeable about them, especially the main characters.

Have You Ever Thought About Interviewing Your Characters?

I suggest that you should do this for two reasons and at two different times. The reasons are simple enough:

  1. To develop your story.
  2. To market your book.

The timing is also simple:

  1. As you are writing the story.
  2. After you have published the book.

Developing Your Story By Interviewing Your Characters

Later in this blog, I will share an interview I did with Noah. As you know he is a major figure in the Bible. But in my novel Perished: The World That Was he was also a major figure. So, I interviewed him.

Now that interview was part of my marketing the book, but I could have had a private interview with him to help develop the story.

How So?

Noah was a real person who God used to save his family from the Flood and to start a whole new world after the Flood. And as such he has a lot to say. And since I was writing about him, he had a lot to say about the character in my book.

Interviewing Your Characters can be Beneficial

In writing Perished, I got to know Noah pretty well. And while I didn’t sit down and do an interview, I did consult with him throughout the writing. Not by spiritualism but by reading the Bible, studying him, and asking questions like, Why did you do that?

Nor did I hear voices, but the answers did come. The more I knew about Noah, the more my imagination answered the questions through him. And this enabled me to picture Noah in different situations and facing different problems. Not only did he face them, but he solved the problems.

When you use this technique, it can help you build your primary character and the supporting cast. It helps you flesh them out and make them real to your readers.

I’ll discuss the Interview on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Marketing by Interviewing Your Characters

Marketing is a difficult part of business. We often need help. One such help in interviewing the primary characters, so I decided to sit down and have an interview with Noah.

To help you understand how this helps you I will break the interview up into segments.

When Interviewing Your Characters, Introduce Them.

In my introduction I explained who Noah was, then I turned to him.

R. Frederick Riddle: “Thank you for agreeing to this interview. It is possible that some of our readers don’t know the real you, especially with Hollywood’s rendition of you. So, could you tell us a little about yourself?”

Noah: “Of course. I am the grandson of Methuselah, who lived longer than anyone else in the Bible and in history. My father was Lamech, but I was mostly influenced by Methuselah.

“Your readers probably have heard of me in relation to the Flood. I understand that some don’t believe that I am real. But I am, and I can tell you I am nothing like Hollywood portrays. In fact, I accepted this interview so I could correct the record.”

The Reason for Interviewing the Characters

R. Frederick Riddle: “I agree. My first question is, Why did you build the Ark?”

Noah: “The simple truth is that I am a farmer by trade, a grower of grapes by profession. I was not a shipbuilder, although I knew carpentry as it was helpful in farming. So, building a ship was not on my mind. I had seen smaller ships before, but my knowledge was limited.

“Actually, I was called of God. He appeared to me and specifically called me to build the Ark. He gave me what people today would call a blueprint.”

R. Frederick Riddle: “A blueprint?”

Noah: “Yes. While I understood it in general terms, there was much I didn’t know. For example, I knew what a cubit is, but I didn’t know all the finer details of shipbuilding. That’s why I needed a Master Builder such as you described in the book. Hiram did most of the work, but I had the final approval. And I must add that it was a fantastic ship!”

R. Frederick Riddle: “Could you describe the ship for us?”

Noah: “Of course. I have heard all sorts of descriptions from circular to a cube.”

R. Frederick Riddle: “Like in the myth of the Epic of Gilgamesh?

Noah: “Yes. That was written a long time after the Flood and bares little resemblance to the actual events. The Ark was a rectangular vessel 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet tall. It had the same ratio as modern ships do, which is 6 to 1. People who say it wasn’t seaworthy simply don’t know what they are talking about.”

Encourage Your Character to Speak

R. Frederick Riddle: “Many people believe the Epic of Gilgamesh was written first.”

Noah: “That’s funny. That was written many years after the Flood. In fact, it was written after the Confusion of Tongues at Babel. It’s my personal opinion that Gilgamesh and other myths were based on faulty memories of the dispersed tribes. They weren’t concerned with accuracy, but with providing their own version of the Flood.”

Keep Your Interview of Your Characters Under Control.

R. Frederick Riddle: “There is a lot of evidence supporting your view, but let’s move on. In a recent movie you were presented in an unfavorable way. What was your relationship with your family and those who helped build the Ark? Were you as bad as depicted?”

Noah: “I had excellent relations with everyone. I loved my family and was prepared to die for them. My wife was valued, as was her wisdom. As for my sons and their wives, I could not have been more pleased.

“I was also pleased with Hiram’s crew. I required them to listen to my preaching and I really wanted them to trust God and go to safety in the Ark. But none of them ever did. It really saddened me then and I am still sad.”

R. Frederick Riddle: “That brings up another question, Did no one respond to your preaching?”

Noah: “A few did, but they all died before the Flood. In the end it was only my family and myself.”

Close Interviewing Your Characters on a Positive Note

R. Frederick Riddle: “Is there anything you wish to tell us before we leave?”

Noah: “Yes. Put God first in your life! You have the Bible which is far better than what I had. Read it and put it to work in your lives.”

R. Frederick Riddle: “Excellent advice! Thank you for your time, Noah.”

Interviewing Your Characters Should Provide Insights Into Your Story.

In the above interview I encouraged Noah to comment on current events that were relevant to his experience. The actual interview was longer and went into his getting drunk after the ship landed as well as other experiences.

Think about doing this for your own characters. By using an interview as your method of telling you can relate information from your book in an entertaining way. And you just might spark someone’s interest and create a sale.

– – – – – – –

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Should I take a Writing Course?

Should I take a writing course? That is a question you might be asking yourself. And the answer is: You should consider it if you don’t know much about writing.

Our DNA

It is said that we all have a story in us. But while that may be true, it is also true that most of us are not born with a basic knowledge of writing. On the other hand, you may have been born with a desire to write as part of your DNA.

I believe that describes me. I was born into this world with a DNA that led me first to reading books and later a desire to write books. Unfortunately, I wasn’t born with the knowledge of how to write.

Later on when I asked Jesus into my heart and was born again, He gifted me with writing talents. But they were innate. That is, I didn’t sit down right after getting saved and begin writing books. I needed to be taught.

Writing Courses do Exist

There are plenty of writing courses available for you and they come at a variety of prices. Some are good and some not so much.

Have you seen the ads for writing courses that promise you four,-five,- and six-digit incomes from writing? Some of these involve copywriting, which we are not concerned with here.

But there are writing courses available.

School of Hard Knocks

Let’s say you google ‘writing courses’ and discover that they  either promise the world or are quite costly. You throw up your hands and say, “No way! I’ll do it myself!”

Well, you just signed up for the School of Hard Knocks, which I am a proud graduate. But I don’t recommend it.

Besides, why should you re-invent the wheel? Or in this case, why re-invent writing?

That is where writing courses come in. And it is why I write this blog and why I am now offering a writing course designed for your busy time and wallet. But before I talk about our course, I want you to be aware of others that are available.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Other Writing Courses

There are some excellent courses available. And there are others I would not touch. I am sure you have seen ads on Facebook and other social media where you are promised or perhaps guaranteed that you will write a bestseller within a very short time.

Consider this:

There are thousands of newly published books every week or two. That means that if you sign up for a course today, there are already multi-thousands of books and authors already out there before you get your first lesson!

What to Look For in a Writing Course

A good writing course will teach you the basics of writing. Some of your more expensive ones will teach you advanced writing skills. But what you need are basic skills. So, what are they? These skills are:

  • How to discover your genre (and what a genre is)
  • Character building
  • Scene development
  • Time and location of your story
  • Viewpoint
  • Grammar
  • Basic Editing
  • and more

As you can see there is a lot to know about writing, but don’t let that intimidate you. A good course will teach all of that in easily digested lessons.

School of Hard Knocks

The question is not what course to take if new to writing, but what course you will take. If you decide that you can’t afford to take a writing course or you have a strong do-it-yourself attitude, then you will take the School of Hard Knocks.

But before you decide on that plan of action, let’s take a look at the true cost.

  • Frustration – It is an extremely frustrating school.
  • Time – Failure is your primary teacher and consumes time and energy.
  • Wrong Tools – Wrong tools and wrong lessons learned.
  • No guarantee – No guarantee you will ever graduate.

Authors Basic Training Course

The killer for most people is the cost for these courses. I have seen courses that cost upwards of $1,000, $1,500, or more. I couldn’t afford them which is why I ended up in the School of Hard Knocks.

Earlier I said I would tell you about our writing course. We at T&R Independent Books started the Christian Authors Business Institute which offers the Authors Basic Training Course.

This six-month course covers all the items mentioned above and more. Each lesson comes with a brief video presentation plus a PDF lesson. All to be downloaded at your leisure and studied at your pace. Plus, these lessons come packed with additional tools that you can download and put in your digital library.

Writing Course Description

I am personally excited about this class. Registration for the next class has already begun and I will provide a link. But let me describe the class first.

One of the things I believe strongly is in a close relationship between student and teacher. Although we are not in a physical classroom, our digital classroom includes:

  • a brief video for every lesson
  • scheduled live Zoom meetings (two)
  • up to three student requested private Zoom meetings which will be private.
  • Downloadable PDFs for your digital library

Registration for Writing Course

If you are interested in a writing career and would like a no-nonsense approach that will provide you a level playing field where you will have the opportunity to succeed, then click on the ‘I want to Learn More’ link below.

I Want to Learn More

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Do I Need Multiple Streams of Income?

Do I need multiple streams of income?

Several years ago I learned about the concept of multiple streams of income and decided to try it out. But before I tell my story, let’s define something.

What Does Multiple Streams of Income mean?

In short, it means that you have more than one source for deriving income. For example, you could work more than one job. That is certainly multiple streams of income. But it is not recommended as it can wear you out.

But, at the very least, it gives you an understanding of the term.

My First Attempt at Multiple Streams of Income

One of the many blogs I followed pointed to Amazon’s affiliate marketing program. What you did was simple enough.

First, you set up a business account with them, get a code, put the code on your website, and wait for the sales to take place. Well, not quite. Actually the process was relatively simple, but you also had to pick authors you liked.

Then you needed to put those authors and their books on your own website. Once that was done, you then added the necessary code.

But lack of people visiting my website eventually caused Amazon to shut down the affiliate. It was a dud.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

A Different Approach to Multiple Streams of Income

Times change, and so do I. I am still interested in multiple streams of income because it makes sense. But how to go about it has changed, at least in my mind.

Instead of affiliate marketing, my approach now is to generate multiple streams of income from multiple products. Nowadays, I and my wife both write books.

That means that there are two streams of income, mine and hers. We have similar interests and styles, but we are also different and offer customers different types of reading experience.

A New Stream

This year we are offering a totally new idea for our business. I have experimented in the past with what I called an academy, but it never came to fruition. But this year we have launched Christian Authors Business Institute which has Christian Authors Basic Training focusing on teaching the basics of writing.

This is a six-month course in the basics of writing. It is a good fit for me since I have been on the other end of writing courses. I actually took a course for a short time but when I got temporarily laid off my job, I had to drop the course. I was never able to get back in, but instead attended the School of Hard Knocks (not recommended).

Now I have 22 years’ experience as a professional writer that I can pass on to others. It is an exciting venture that each month offers the opportunity for new, struggling, or even experienced writers to attend a class that starts the following month.

A Third Multiple Stream of Income

One of the bloggers that I follow mentioned a marketing trend called Low-Content books. It didn’t sound very interesting at first blush. But I investigated and discovered a something that is new and yet very old.

The term Low-Content refers to such things as journals, notebooks, diaries, and the like. One reason I had not heard of it before was because KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) didn’t offer it.

But now they do!

So, if you visit our website, you will discover a new department called, ‘Journals & More’. It is something that is:

  • Needed
  • Easy to produce
  • Practical

I have already placed one product online and have additional ones ready and still others in my mind to be produced. And it fits within our motto, We have Books and more.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – My Author’s Journey Revealed

My Author’s Journey

For many of you my author’s journey is a mystery. It dawned on me that I am writing to people who may have never heard of me other than through by blogs and perhaps through my books. So, it is time I properly introduce myself.

My Birth and Early Childhood

I was born in Pontiac, Michigan, but grew up in what is known today as Rochester Hills, MI.  My love for reading books began when I was in the fourth grade.

My Education

My education includes two years at Oakland Community College (Auburn Hills, MI), a B.R.E. degree from Midwestern Baptist College (Pontiac, MI), and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Louisiana Baptist University (Shreveport, LA).

I worked in the secretarial field for several years until 2004.

Then a Major Turn in My Author’s Journey

In 2008 my husband and I moved to Port Charlotte, FL to take care of my mom 24/7. She had Alzheimer’s. We were her caregivers until she died in 2013. That is a story in itself that I may someday share. But it was shortly afterward that a major event took place in my life.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

Authors Basic Training is a basic writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

The Start of My Author’s Journey

While my birth, childhood, and education all contributed to where I am now, I want to focus on the author’s journey itself.

In 2014 my husband and I founded T&R Independent Books, of which I am the President, and he is the Vice-President. At the time, he was the only one writing books, plus he knew a great deal about websites, editing, and publishing.

But in 2014 he didn’t know a secret I had. This secret was a desire to become an author myself. When I told him, he was surprised but he also immediately supported my desire. Later that same month he had a heart attack which put both our writing careers on temporary hold.

Another Delay to My Author’s Journey

I started writing my first fiction book in 2017 but had to put it on hold when I was told in 2018 that I had cancer.  I received chemo and radiation treatments, which left me weak. Once the cancer was in remission and I gained my strength back, I started working on my book again.

In 2019, my cancer came back.  Again, I survived the chemo and radiation, gained my strength back, and continued writing my book. I was bound and determined that nothing would keep me from getting that first book published.   

My Author’s Journey Gets Started

I finished writing the book (Haney Place Secrets), and published it in 2020. It was my first attempt, and we were both proud of it. But it didn’t catch on due to several factors, including the pandemic. So, I turned my attention toward nonfiction, but I didn’t forget fiction.

Then we had a brilliant idea!

A Change of Title

My husband liked my novel and wasn’t ready to give up on it. He suggested earlier this year (2022) that I take the mystery and turn it into a murder mystery. The idea sparked my imagination and with a few pointers from him the change took place.

I pulled Haney Place Secrets off the market and rewrote it with a new Title “Keys to Murder” which I published in June. I also wrote and published my first devotional book in June (“Chatting with Tess – Walking with God”). It has been a busy year.

I am now an Author!

With two books written I can now make that statement. Plus, I am currently working on Devotional Book number 2, which I hope to publish by the end of August this year. I also have two other books I’m working on.

Influences on My Author’s Journey

From the age of 13 and on, I’ve been involved in various church ministries. They include but are not limited to singing in the choir, special music, bus ministry, Sunday school, janitorial work, working in the kitchen, and being a prayer warrior. And I love reading God’s Word.

I also enjoy music, reading books, cooking, and spending time with my husband. I’ve also traveled to 46 out of the 50 states, plus traveled to Canada many times.

All of this contributes to my author’s journey. Hopefully, you now know a little more about me.

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Need a Publisher?

Do you need a Publisher?

Previously, I dealt with the question about needing an agent and I also discussed publishers. Today’s blog dives a little deeper, but may contain similar information.

Concerning Whether You Need a Publisher

How does one seek a publisher? First, you must decide what kind of publisher you need. See my blog on Need an Agent which also covers a Self-Publisher, Traditional Publishing, and the Indie Publisher

This is actually a critical decision. Unfortunately there is a lot of mudslinging going on. Not to mention confusion. In my blogs I have written on the different types of publishing.

But before you make that decision you will want to search the internet and discover who and what these publishers are. Even more important, is to decide the overall direction you want to go.

Which Type of Publisher Do You Want?

In future chapters I examine each type of publisher closer, but here it is important that you know what you need.

Here are just a few things to examine:

  • How long are you willing to wait for your book to be published?
  • Can you afford $800 or more upfront?
  • Are you a new author?

There are other considerations as well. But these three will give you immediate indications as to what you need. For example, traditional publishers often have timelines that result in books being printed as much as two years down the road after signing the contract. On the other hand, self-publishers want you to pay for the privilege which often involves $800 or more.

And if you are a new author there are some publishers who will not consider you simply because you’re new. These are generally found in your larger traditional printing houses.

Then there are the publishers who are like self-publishers but have a minimum order requirement. For instance, I knew of one author who had to buy $5000 worth of copies at a time, which required that he maintain a storage area. Here you have the cost of the books plus storage costs. In his case he stored them at work, but not everyone has that opportunity.

Tip #1: Examine what your needs, perceived and known, are before searching for a publisher.

My First Novel

When I wrote my first novel, I didn’t know about costs, time, or submission requirements. So I began looking for a publisher while in the dark.

Fortunately, I had access to the internet and began learning fast. It didn’t take me long to figure out that traditional publishing was not for me. While they are free and pay royalties, they were too restrictive.

For example, as mentioned in a previous blog, the traditional publishers often required an agent (I didn’t have one) plus prospects for publishing soon were unreasonable (up to two years after signing).

I eventually signed with a self-publishing firm. It cost me about $400 upfront plus the cost of marketing tools which they sold. This was back in 2003, so costs have risen greatly since then.

Among other things this demonstrates that we all have a responsibility to find the right publisher for ourselves. Everybody has an opinion, but you are the one who has to live with your decision.

Read my chapters on the different types. Weigh the facts and decide which one best works for you.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

Authors Basic Training is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Registration for classes is open now.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

HANDLING REJECTION FROM A PUBLISHER

This is primarily addressed to those who plan to use a traditional publisher. Self-publishing companies rarely reject a manuscript, Indie Publishers never reject a manuscript because the Indie Publisher is you.

As a disclaimer I have never received a rejection slip because I have never used traditional publishers.

That said, I can say this with authority: Never let rejection slips stop you!

Use them as you would any tool. Learn from them. Why was the manuscript rejected? Did it come with any suggestions as to how you can improve? If so, you should consider them (but don’t violate your own standards).

Another thing to remember is that editors have their own ideas as to what makes successful writing. They are not THE authority.

Tip#2: Use rejection slips as learning tools to help you become a better writer. Don’t take it personally.

Since I have never had a book rejected, although I was rejected by an agent, I have no practical example to share with you. But the more meaningful example is one’s reaction to any roadblock, which is all that a rejection slip amounts to in one’s career.

That said check out your response to other roadblocks. If your response works in those cases, maybe it will with rejection.

But better is this: As I said in the Tip: Use rejection slips as learning tools to help you become a better writer and don’t take it personally.

My suggestion is to stay away from the Traditional Publishers and the preceding is only one reason. But if you must use Traditional Publishers, then please pay close attention when listening to them. They each have their own preferences and not following them will bring on a rejection quickly.

You have a responsibility to yourself. That is why I emphasize treating rejection as a tool. Instead of being discouraged, see it as something that will only make you a better writer!

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

For more information on him or his books visit his Amazon Authors Page. He is also co-founder and Vice President of T&R Independent Books where his books are featured. To reply to any blog you have the option of commenting on a blog and/or sending an email to marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. You may also be interested in his Facebook page at RFrederickRiddlesWorld.

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Blog by Tess – HOW DO WE USE OUR MOUTHS?

How do we use our mouths or communicate with other people in our daily lives? Are the words we use kind and loving, or do we talk ugly to others?

If we’re honest about it, there are times we’re not always careful about how we say something and what we said. How many times have we opened our mouths and said something that we shouldn’t have said?

I know I have, many times.  I’ve walked away from situations and thought to myself why did I use that tone of voice? It was wrong for me to do that.

We’ve all been there. It’s so easy to react badly to someone, without thinking, when they say or do something that we don’t like.

The words we use in our daily lives can either build a person up or tear them down, depending on what comes out of our mouths.

WHY DO WE USE OUR MOUTHS IN A BAD WAY?

That’s a good question. I have an answer for that.  Here are some reasons why people say things in a bad way.

  • They get angry when someone says or does something that sets them off.
  • Some people love to argue with others.
  • Shame, belittle, and embarrass someone.
  • Swear so they can let off some steam.
  • Elevate self because they think they’re better than others. They want others to think they’re smarter than them.  
  •  Like to make fun of others who have a speech/health issue, or another problem.
  • Love calling certain people names.
  • They offend others by the way they express their political or other views.
  • Pointing out the negative after someone has said something positive (the person accomplished a goal, got a promotion, etc.).
  • Some people are jealous of others.
  •  People love to gossip and tell little white lies about someone.
  • Sometimes people will do it to make someone like them.
  • Some do it just to get attention. They want to feel like they’re in control/in charge of a situation.

There are other ways the mouth can be used in the wrong way. I’ve only mentioned a few ways.

We need to stop and consider the fact that words can have power, depending on how they are used. How we speak or react to others will reflect who we are. We do not want other people to get the wrong impression of us. 

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

Authors Basic Training is a basic writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

CONTROLLING OUR MOUTHS

What are some ways we can control our mouths?

  • Think before speaking. Before we speak, we need to ask ourselves these questions. What I’m about to say is, will it hurt the person or give them encouragement?  Will the words I say tear them down or build them up? Sometimes it’s better if we keep our mouths closed and just listen to people talk.
  • Don’t interrupt someone when they’re speaking, just because we feel that we need have the last say. No, we don’t always have to have the last say in a conversation.
  • Be careful about who we hang around with. Sometimes people will bring up political, religious, or other issues that can trigger our emotions, causing us to react in a bad way. When they do, we need to gracefully walk away from that person, so we won’t react.
  • Resist the urge to listen to those who gossip and speak badly of others.  Walk away from it.
  • We need to spend less time with people who are always negative. It can rub off onto us.  
  •  We need to surround ourselves with people who use positive uplifting words.
  • Find ways to praise someone and speak words of kindness to them. For example, if they have a need in their life, let them know (and mean it sincerely) that you’ll pray for them. Then do it. People like to hear that we’re praying for them. That will be an encouragement to them.

WE NEED TO PRAY AND ASK FOR GOD’S HELP

One last thing is this. As Christians, the most important thing is this. In our daily lives, we need to pray and ask God to help us have a good witness to those around us. That means asking for God’s help in what we’ll say to someone and how we’ll say it. It means using our mouths in a positive way that will glorify God.  It’s through prayer that the Holy Spirit will help and guide us in how our daily conversation should be with others.   

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Need an Agent?

Do you need an agent?

When I first began writing the need of having an agent quickly became a question that needed an answer. My first response was ‘Of course’. But, as you will see, my answer changed.

Since my answer was ‘Of course’, I proceeded to look for an agent. At first, I didn’t know what I was looking for in an agent or why I needed one. Thus, began my education.

But there was one thing I knew. I had the internet available and could research the subject. I began digging.

First Things First

One of the first things I needed to know was what genre I was writing. It turned out to be historical fiction. From that little bit of knowledge I now knew that if I was to get an agent, he or she must work in the historical fiction arena.

The next step was to learn what do agents do on behalf of the writer.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Searching for an Agent

Searching through the internet I learned there are three things they do.

  1. Find and submit to them the author’s manuscript.
  2. Negotiate contracts.
  3. Distribute money (royalties, etc.)

Sounds relatively easy, doesn’t it? But I soon discovered some interesting facts:

  1. Finding an agent in my genre is time consuming
  2. It requires knowing what you need
  3. Not every agent is accepting new clients
  4. My book needed to pass their approval
  5. Seeking a publisher in more productive
  6. Being a publisher is better yet!

Publishers May Require an Agent

In addition, I discovered that a growing number of publishers ‘require’ you to have an agent! They won’t look at your manuscript unless there is an agent!

It was shortly after I discovered this that I decided to go self-publishing. It was a major move; virtually a first step toward independence. Later I would take another step away from Self-Publishing and toward Indie Publishing that would change my life!

Note: some people use self-publishing and indie publishing interchangeably, but there are differences.

Self-Publishing

My going with a Self-Publisher quickly dispelled some of the misinformation I had acquired. For example, having an agent wasn’t required. You could have one, but you didn’t to have one.

In my case I thought it wise to continue looking for an agent. But this proved hard and boring. I eventually found an agent I liked, and I submitted my book to her only to get a rejection letter stating that she didn’t work in my particular genre. Bummer! By the way, my genre was still historical fiction which was her genre, but it was also Bible based historical fiction, and that is probably what she was referring to.

Indie Publishing

A lot of similarities between self-publishing and indie publishing, but one major difference is that indie publishers don’t charge fees because the author is the publisher. Of course, that means that the author assumes all responsibility for writing, editing, proofing, publishing, and marketing. But the author also reaps greater financial rewards!

Truths Learned About Agents

The truths I learned here were:

  1. It can take months to find the right agent
  2. That agent may not want you
  3. Agents are not required for self-publishing or indie publishing.

So I went with a self-publisher and learned that although there is more freedom than in traditional publisher, the self-publisher still had control of all the tools and most of the profits. Plus, you had to pay them upfront!

One advantage of the self-publisher/indie publisher is that they will help you market your book. They may provide you marketing tools for a small fee. But another truth is that no matter what publisher you have you will do most of the marketing.

This all leads to a question:

Can you benefit from an agent?

The answer is yes. They have the expertise and the experience to get things done. So, there is value in getting an agent.

However, I opted out.  Instantly I became Author, Publisher, and Marketer! Which means that I had the added responsibility that agents normally handle, which is quite a chore.

What Should I Look For In An Agent?

Ultimately you make that call. Discover your genre or genres, learn their characteristics, and search for agents in that genre. No matter what, I think you should consider it. But you should explore the world of agents. You might find one you like.

And remember that going alone, especially Independent, requires you to do the work of an agent!

That said, I believe that going Indie is the best way to go. Yes, you work hard but the rewards are greater also! As an Indie you have a lot of responsibilities, but you also have greater possibilities. As an Indie you can hire companies to help you with certain aspects of your business.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge from God and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – What are Writers Resources?

What are writers resources? That is our question of the day. But another question also pops up. Why should I use resources? So, you have a what and a why. Let me answer the why first.

Why Should I Use Writers Resources?

Our ancestors didn’t have much in the way of resources available to them. If they were Christians they had God, but the average Christian did not have the Word of God at hand. So, they didn’t really have readily available resources.

But times have changed! We now have at least one Bible in our possession. Likely, more than one. Plus, we have dictionaries, grammar books, and so much more.

With so much available why wouldn’t we make use of them?

But as Christians, we are expected to do our best at whatever we do.

What are these Resources?

Generally speaking, there are writing resources, publishing resources, and marketing resources. We are only looking at writing resources today.

Brief List of Writing Resources

  • Books on writing
  • Grammar books
  • Dictionaries
  • Maps
  • History books
  • Bible
  • Bible commentaries
  • How to books
  • and more

You may have noticed Bible and Bible commentaries. These would be needed if you are writing Bible-based fiction and/or nonfiction.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Tip #1 – There is no excuse for not having information that you need. We live in the age of the internet. You can search for just about anything on it. But be careful. The internet is rife with false and misleading information. While it can be a rich source of material, you have to be careful.

I have found it helpful to stick with proven sources. Sometimes I venture out to new sources, but I also check their content against the proven sources and against my own knowledge.

Tip #2 – Bookmark your favorite resources. Chances are you will need them in the future. This is a small feature on the Internet, but bookmarks or favorites are extremely valuable for someone who does a lot of research, especially if on multiple subjects.

The resource list referred to earlier is just a brief list of basic resources. When you are writing you should have near you any resources that you may need. A lot depends on the genre you are working in, but having resources available is a good practice.

What Writers Resources do You Recommend?

You may not use these all the time, but I recommend having available a dictionary, a book on grammar, and  perhaps a book on writing even our very own Guide to Writing which we periodically update and is available in our store.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Facing Your Obstacles

Facing your obstacles is a tricky business. In today’s blog I am going to give you some ideas on how to face and overcome obstacles to your writing career. But a warning right up front: this is not a one-size-fits-all approach, although it is.

Did I just contradict myself? No. This approach only works for Christians; those people who have invited Jesus Christ into their hearts and have been born-again. I don’t care what your denomination is, if you are a born-again believer in Jesus Christ as your Savior, then this is for you.

Facing Your Obstacles Involves Submitting to Christ

As a Christian author you have what all born-again believers in Christ have, namely an omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent God. He cares for you and watches every move, every decision you make. And He already knows what those will be. Moreover, He loves you and has a plan for you for today.

Wow! What a powerful, wonderful God we have!

He has Promised Us Wisdom

Unfortunately, we often neglect the simple act of faith to ask for wisdom. Instead, we try to do things by ourselves, including trying to face our obstacles. Until we finally realize that we can’t do it myself. Once we realize that then we turn to Him. It would be so much better if we turned to Him at the beginning of the obstacles.

Facing Your Obstacles Requires Faith

When we turn to Christ and trust Him for all our needs, including those pesky obstacles, He graciously steps in and provides us the ability to use certain tools. But first we need to trust Him.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Tools for Facing Your Obstacles

Here is a small list of tools. Feel free to add to them.

  1. Pray to God seeking wisdom
  2. Identify the problem
  3. Rewrite the passage
  4. Form a picture in your mind of the scene
  5. Change the routine you normally follow
  6. Set the book aside for awhile and work on something else
  7. Don’t Quit

These are just 7 ideas. Please notice I put Pray first. That should be our first tool, then let God lead you to which tool you use next. Probably the second tool would be Identify the problem, but after that it can be in any order and include tools I have not listed.

Simplicity

You might think this approach is simplistic. You are right!

But that is one of the great things about our Christian faith: it is simple. Man-made religion is complicated requiring you to jump through hoops. But Christianity is simple. It all begins and ends with Jesus Christ.

I have lost count of how many times I have asked God for help whether at home or at work and He has answered in marvelous ways. Unfortunately, I have not always started out asking but He waited until I was frustrated or facing an unknown obstacle and then asked Him.

It would have been better if I had asked Him at the first when I came up against the obstacles, but thank God He waited for me to wake up and realize I needed Him!

Face your obstacles by first laying them out before God and then trusting His leading. It will save time and effort, and bring solutions faster and better than on your own.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – First Step as an Author

R. Frederick Riddle image

Taking the First Step means what? Let’s take a moment to answer that.

The First Step

You know someone like my wife or myself that are authors. And the thought has occurred to you that “I would like to do that.”

But you don’t.

Then you read a book, smile, and think, I’d like to write a book like that.

But you don’t.

Life continues on and one day you think, I wish I’d written a book.

But you didn’t.

What’s wrong with the above. It’s simple. You didn’t take the first step.

What is the First Step?

My wife, Tess Riddle, has recently written two books. One is a nonfiction titled Chatting with Tess: Walking with God and has been published. It is now available at Amazon.com and our site T&R Independent Bookstore. The other book is a novel and titled, Keys to Murder. It is in the process of getting published.

But Tess hasn’t always been an author. These are her first.

Tess Riddle went to college not to be a writer, but to seek skills she could use on the job. But the Entrance Exam showed she had writing skills. Plus, her English professors encouraged her to write. But I can truthfully say that I don’t recall her ever saying she wanted to be a writer until 2014 when we founded T&R Independent Books.

The desire had been there since her college days, but she had never taken that first step.

Again, What is the First Step?

Essentially the first step is making a commitment. Thinking about writing a book doesn’t get a book written, but if you commit yourself to something there is a better chance of it happening.

Think of a baby. They aren’t born walking. They have no commitment of themselves to walk. In their case, the mother and father want to see them walk, so they make a commitment. Then they encourage the baby to walk, assist the baby to practice and learn, and put them in positions where that first step will take place.

The baby doesn’t start off thinking I want to walk. Somewhere along the way the parents’ dream becomes their dream and purpose.

Writing is similar.

My wife was told she had the tools to write, but she didn’t really believe. The burdens of life got in the way. But she still had the tools and as time went on the concept of a story.

One day I learned of her secret desire to write. And I encouraged her. Did I know how well she could write? No. As her husband I loved her and believed in her, so I encouraged her.

But it wasn’t until she purposed in her heart to write the book that she really took that first step

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

My Story was Different

That first step is critical, but there are other steps to take.

As a teenager and later as a young man, I knew I wanted to be a writer. And I was committed to becoming an author. But I didn’t know how to take my imagination and put it in an understandable story on paper.

Though I thought I was committed, I wasn’t really.

I signed up for a writing course and was progressing. But then one day I got laid off from job and I had to drop out. Later, I returned to work but never got back into the writing course.

It is More than saying I Will Do It

Tess (aka Teresa) had to do more than think about writing. She had to do more than come up with a plot. She had to do more than say, I’m going to write.

The truth is that all of us have things we want to do. But we don’t take that first step. She could have given up when we moved down here to sunny Florida to take care of her mother. Yes, she was delayed, but the secret burned within her.

She could have given up when I suffered a heart attack shortly after she declared her desire to write. Even though I encouraged her, she could see difficulties at least for the short term. She had a husband to care for. But the dream still burned within.

Over the years, she’s struggled to get that first book on paper. But life kept getting in the way.  But finally one day, she committed herself to writing a book. She made a commitment to herself and to God that she would write. Making a commitment to God is very difficult to do, but also very motivating.

Commitment is the Key

On the other hand, my first step didn’t occur until I was 60 years old. And it came about through my Bible devotions when God showed me that there were stories I could write based on the Bible. That discovery changed my life and I committed myself to do it.

Commitment to do something takes you only so far. Part of commitment is to actually start writing. As for Tess, with life constantly demanding her attention, it was difficult and frustrating. Add to that the advice coming at her from me and others.

But the day came when she started writing. Not to please me nor others. And I don’t believe it was to please herself. The day came when she believed that God wanted her to write. That was a major step.

We both believed that God wanted us to write and we believed Him. That is part of the first step, but it wasn’t it yet.

Then What is the First Step

I’ve already mentioned the obstacles she faced. But here is where she finally made the first step. She sought God’s will, kept writing, and overcame the obstacles. In retrospect, the fact that she wrote a first draft of the book was the first step.

It is relatively easy to write the first few chapters but persevering and finishing the book takes a lot of faith, grit, and pushing on. She faced a constant battle that threatened to stop her, but she continued on and finally was able to deliver to me the first draft. Not only the first draft of a nonfiction book, but also the first draft of her novel. This put her miles ahead of my first step which resulted in a single book being published.

In my case, I had to overcome the roadblocks that had stopped me so many times in the past. It wasn’t until I did that and continued to the end that I truly committed myself.

That was when we took our first steps. I took my first step of commitment in 2003, but Tess took her first step in 2022.

What I’m trying to say, is that when that baby took his or her first step it wasn’t really the first step. But when that baby began walking ever so wobbly, falling, and getting back up that was the first step. And then the baby starts adding things like running.

As a writer you will face obstacles. If you stop because of them, you haven’t really taken that first step. But when you persevere and complete that first rough draft, you’ve proven to yourself you can do it.

Sure, there is a lot of work before the first draft becomes a published work. But now your confidence starts growing and you can take the second, third, fourth, and more steps! Now she was ready to get the help she needed to become a published author. And that is when I could really help her through. Now we are both authors and have learned the value of commitment. Writing is something we need to do on a regular basis. There are many steps an author has to take, but the first one is commitment. A commitment to yourself, but more importantly a commitment to God.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – Creating Characters for Your Book

When you’re writing a fictional book, there are some things to consider when creating characters.

THE NUMBER OF MAIN CHARACTERS  

How many main characters will you have in your book? You don’t want to have too many main characters, but at the same time, you’ll want enough characters to make a story line. In my Rita Honeycutt series, I’ve chosen to have five main characters. Two of the main characters are from one family: a brother and sister. The other three are from another family: Twin brothers and a sister.

NAMING THE CHARACTERS

I have a rule when using a name of a character. I don’t use the first and last names of people whom I know.  For my mom’s side of the family, I have family tree records dating back to the eighteen hundreds that I can select names from. I’ve also kept an old copy of a telephone book around to look through when needing to come up with character names.   There are different sources you can use to come up with names.  

You can even make up last names for a character, even if the name ends up being a funny one.  In a fiction book, the name doesn’t even have to exist in the real world.      

More on the other side of this break

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER ABOUT EACH CHARACTER

Now that you have the first and last name of each character, here is a list of questions to ask yourself as you develop each character and write out a bio page on each one.

  • What color is their eyes?
  • What is the color of their hair?
  • What is the height?
  • What is the age?
  • When is their birthday?  Be careful here in working with birth dates.   
  • What is the build of each character (tall and muscular; tall and skinny, etc.)?
  • What grade are they in, or are they in college?
  • What school do they attend?
  • Do they still live at home with their parents?
  • If in high school or college, do they have a part-time job?
  • What kind of part-time job do they have (if they have one)?
  • Are they out in the adult world with their own career?
  • What type of personality do they have (easy to get along with, love picking on a sibling, etc.)?
  • What are their likes?
  • What are their dislikes?
  • What foods do they like?
  • Do they have a church they attend? If so, where?

There are probably other questions I haven’t brought up that you’ll run into as you write each book.

INFORMATION ABOUT THE PARENTS

If the main characters still live at home, you’ll need to write a bio page on each parent. Here is some information you’ll need to consider about each parent.

  • Are both parents still living? If so, you need to create a bio page for each one.
  • Where and what type of job does the dad have?
  • Does the mother work outside the home? If so, what does she do and where does she work?
  • What physical description does each parent have (height, the color of hair, the color of eyes, etc.)?
  • What type of personality does each parent have?
  • What are their likes?
  • What are their dislikes?  
  • What are some things they won’t tolerate from their children or other people?
  • Do the parents attend church? If so, where?

Again, there may be questions that you’ll think of, as you write the book.

OTHER CHARACTERS

As you write your book, you’ll need to come up with a name and a bio sheet for each character that you add to your book. Uses the same questions that I’ve listed above to describe your character.  Also ask yourself, what part will the character play in the book? In other words, what role will they play?   Are they a good character, or a bad character?

In my closing thoughts, I’ll add this. It is important to keep good records on the bio sheets that you use for each character. For example, in book number three of that series you’re writing, you’ll want to make sure that the proper age and grade they’re in is appropriate. It wouldn’t do to write book number three and have them remain the same age and in the same grade of school.

Also, you need to ask yourself if they’ve learned a new skill since the last book you wrote. Have they changed part-time jobs? Are they attending college now?    This and other questions will need to be answered in each book that you write.

Keeping an updated bio sheet on each character will help you to keep the characters accurate in each book you write.  

That’s all for now.

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – Designing The Layout of Fictional Town

In today’s blog, I am sharing what I have learned about designing the layout of fictional town.

Choosing a Name for the Fictional Town

The first thing you must do in writing a fiction book is, pick out the name of the town in which the characters will live.  That’s easier said than done. When I wrote my first book, I had a hard time coming up with the name of a town that didn’t already exist. It seemed like every name I made up was already being used somewhere in the world as the name of a town, company, or special organization. It was like trying to pull teeth coming up with a name.  I finally settled on a name that I felt comfortable with, to use in my books.

The Size of the Town

Do you want your characters to live in a town (small, medium, large) or in a city? That would depend on what the population of the town will be.  Different sources have their own definition about what the size of a town or city is. Since none seemed to agree with each other, I opted to use a small town. 

The Roads and Side Streets

When I came up with the names of the roads and streets that I wanted to use I took a sheet of paper and drew out where I wanted each to be located. One road goes through the main part of town, running north and south.  Main street runs east and west. There’s a road at the south end of town that runs east and west. Another road is at the north end of turn that runs east and west. There are small streets that lead into subdivisions where people live.

The town has a cemetery. I named that road, yes you guessed it, Cemetery Road.   No imagination there.  

In the northwest section of town there’s a road that leads to a recreational area. I even show a set of railroad tracks and a depot on the town map that I drew.  

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Law Enforcement and Necessary Buildings of the Town

Whether you use a police department or a sheriff’s office on depends on where the jurisdiction for each department lies. The Terryville Police jurisdiction were not limited to the downtown.  In designing the town I choose to have Terryville’s boundaries extend outside of downtown proper and included the Haney Place Mansion, the Railroad Depot, and other properties.

As for the police station, I’ve added the jail and courthouse next to it.

Other Town Businesses/Establishments

There are certain businesses that a town needs to function. For the town in my books, I’ve added a fire station, town hall, a Baptist church, bank, drug store, a medical building which houses doctors, dentists, lab for blood work, etc., funeral home, a few eateries, newspaper office, a main grocery store, hardware store, gas station with an auto repair shop, bowling alley, attorney offices, junior high and high school, sporting goods store, and a few other places.

I added subdivisions where people live. You can’t have a town without the people.

The Park

A recreational area around the town is needed in my books. The main characters will often be spending some time there. It has all kinds of activities: swimming, boating, canoeing, fishing, camping, lodging, hiking trails, etc.  

Different Town/Different Settings

When Rita Honeycutt and her family go to another town on vacation, I’ll have to draw a map showing streets and other information.  I’ll do that as I get into writing that book.

Conclusion

I use the map I’ve drawn everything on to help me remember what business is where.

It takes a lot of time and effort to design a town where your main characters live, but I’ve found that it’s worth the effort.  

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – I Am Who?

R. Frederick Riddle image

I am who? Have you ever taken a good look at yourself?

We all have to ask ourselves that question at some point in our lives. When you stop and consider who you are you quickly learn there isn’t just one example.

Consider.

I am a blogger.

I am not saying that I am a good blogger or a bad one. But I write a blog that you are reading right now. In my blog I occasionally comment on world events, but mostly I talk about writing. Through my blog I pass on knowledge about writing.

I Research.

I research information for my blogs. But I really do a lot of researching for my books. And that includes both novels and nonfiction. Research is a necessary part of writing, so I spend hours and days researching.

I love history

I love history. It is no accident that my writings, fiction and nonfiction, are all historical in nature.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

I am an Author

I write novels, blogs, and inspirational books. I love writing and can’t imagine doing anything else with the same passion. It is in my blood.

A Misplaced Michigander

I was born, raised, and actually lived most of my life in Michigan. Now I live in Florida. But at heart I am still a Michigander. I follow the Detroit Lions, the Detroit Tigers, the Detroit Pistons, and even the Detroit Red Wings. Sure, I follow teams here in Florida, but not like I do in Michigan.

I am a husband.

I love my wife. We will be celebrating 41 years of marriage in September. And I wouldn’t trade with anyone else!

I am a Vietnam Veteran

And I am proud of it! I served 4 years in the good ole United States Navy. Serving in the Armed Forces is both a duty and a privilege. In my case, I was a Radioman and I served in the First Fleet and the Seventh Fleet.

A Resident of Port Charlotte, Florida

While it is true that I still have Michigan blood, I have learned to love Florida. Especially during the months of December through April. It is one of only a handful of states having no winter. O, Floridians may argue the point, but with temperatures that never get below 20 degrees, they don’t have a case.

I am a Brother, an Uncle, and a  Great Uncle

All of them live in the northern state of Louisiana. They would probably argue that it is a southern state, but they are definitely north of Port Charlotte, Florida.

I am a Senior Citizen

I worked hard to get to this age, and I am proud to be a Senior Citizen. I am old enough to be President of the United States and young enough to know that I forget to much to be a good one.

But Most of All I am a Christian!

I love Jesus Christ who came to earth, took my sins upon Himself, took my place on the cross, and died for me. He is my joy and my life.

Who are You?

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – Healthy tips for when it is hot outside

R. Frederick Riddle image

Healthy Tips is all about the fact that we’re coming upon the time of the year when it will be too hot for us to be outside during certain times of the day. Therefore, I’ve put together some thoughts on the subject. Here are some things we can do to stay healthy on a hot day.

What are the Hottest Hours

The hottest part of the day is usually between 10:00 A.M. and 3:00 P.M. Thus, I’ve found that it’s easier to go for a walk, go grocery shopping, or do another activity during the morning hours.  Many times, without thinking, I’ve gone grocery shopping in the middle of the day. It’s hard to push a cart around outside when it’s hot, especially if you’ve just finished eating a meal before shopping. Ergo, shop in the morning.

Healthy Tips #1: Don’t Shop After Eating a Meal

That’s another point. We shouldn’t go shopping right after we’ve eaten a full meal. Because any activity on a full stomach when it’s hot can add stress to your heart, and make it work that much harder. So, we don’t want to do that to our hearts.

In fact, my husband and I have also found that, when going for a walk, the evening time is the best time to go, when it’s cooler outside. So, it is best not to shop after eating.

Healthy Tips #2: Drink Plenty of Water

 It’s also important to drink plenty of water. Therefore, my doctors recommend that I drink eight eight-ounce glasses of liquid every day.

By the way, it doesn’t have to be all water. In 2018, when I had cancer and was starting chemo, my cancer doctor stressed the importance of keeping my body hydrated. Therefore, she gave me a book that included a section showing foods and beverages I could substitute for water. Also, she stressed that at least fifty percent (50%) of my intake should be water.

I’m going to share with you, some of the beverages/foods from the lists that were in the book.    

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books believes that authors need to stay informed. Therefore, we bring you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Thus, enabling authors to relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Healthy Tips #3 In Lieu of Water Drink or Eat:

  • Green tea
  • Decaffeinated coffee       
  • Milk
  • Ice Cream
  • Yogurt
  • Soup
  • Smoothies

Water-soluble vegetables:

  • Lettuce
  • Celery
  • Radishes
  • Cucumber
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Green Bell Peppers
  • Cabbage
  • Okra
  • Cauliflower
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli

Water-soluble fruits:

  • Watermelon
  • Strawberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Peaches
  • Blackberries
  • Oranges
  • Pineapple
  • Apples
  • Blueberries

Additional Healthy Tips

There are other reasons for keeping our bodies hydrated. Such as, it helps us have healthy hair, skin, and nail; plus, it helps in controlling our body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure.  

If you must be out in the sun, please make sure you wear a hat, sunglasses, and loose light color clothing. In addition, use plenty of sweat-resistant sunscreens.

Take care of your heart when it’s the hottest part of the day. If you don’t, you could end up in the hospital with a heat stroke or a heart attack.

That’s all for today. Have a wonderful week. 

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – Is Writing a Christian Service?

R. Frederick Riddle image

Is writing a Christian service? That is a very good question. However, that is a question you can should ask about any job that exists and should be asked by every Christian.

Any Job can be Christian Service

There are exemptions to the idea of a job being a Christian service. For example, a bartender sells and serves alcoholic beverages, which is not Christian. Neither is prostitution. So, here are some principles to apply:

  • It cannot be Christian service if it is contrary to Biblical teaching.
  • A particular job may be fine, however, if it uses deception then it is not Christian service.

The true test of service, any kind of service, is as follows: Does it

  • Agree with Biblical facts
  • Honor God
  • Inspire people to read the Bible
  • Encourage people to worship God
  • Enable others to serve
  • Inspire people to live godly lives

These are just a few tests, but can you think of others? And, once you’ve completed that list, consider whether the question really goes to motive and behavior more than the nature of the job.

The Bible teaches us:

  • Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers, but in singleness of heart, fearing God. (Col. 3:22)
  • And let ours also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful. (Titus 3:14)
  • She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. (Prov. 31:27)

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today, especially, about writing. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

How Does This Apply for Writing?

This calls for some self-examination on your part. Look inward and examine your thoughts and motives. These will reveal a lot. However, right here is a good place to practice Psalm 139:23-24

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

You have motive, however, is it a commitment to the Lord? Is it to earn a living? That is good motive, but it doesn’t sound like a commitment to the Lord.

Is it because you like and, perhaps, are good at writing? Again, that is good. But is that enough to be Christian service?

What is Christian Service?

To me, Christian service is doing something that furthers the Gospel in some fashion, which leaves a large opening to be filled. Below I list some examples of furthering the Gospel, but it is important to remember this is not an exhaustive list. Read these and think about other examples you can add.

What are Some Examples?

Examples of furthering the Gospel are:

  • Soulwinning
  • Handing out tracts
  • Helping people
  • Inspirational novels
  • Inspirational true stories
  • Devotionals
  • Teaching Books

And the list goes on. For example, Tess, my wife, is working on a devotional while I am working on a doctrinal book for laymen and for non-Christians which would come under Teaching Books.

Christian Service can also be a Motive

I am thinking about someone who is a lawn caretaker, miner, logger, and others. The work may not lend itself directly to serving, but a motive like fund raising for a local church, going on a church mission’s trip, or simply helping other Christians out. These are but examples and you can probably come up with others.

The point here is that giving can cover a lot of activity that indirectly supports our desire to tell others about Christ.

Conclusion

The answer therefore is Yes, writing can be a Christian service. And add to that this idea: we need more Christian writers than ever before! We live in a time where anti-christian behavior, even persecution, is increasing. Christians need to know more about their God and how to live, and non-Christians need to learn and act upon the fact that they need Jesus Christ!

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – Why Editing of a Book is Necessary Part Two

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

This is part 2 of Why Editing of a Book is Necessary. Just as writing a book is time-consuming, so is editing.  I’m not one who likes to edit books, but the task must be done. Let’s continue the discussion.

What About Editing I Talked About Last Blog

  • Editing the first chapter of a book.
  • Editing Grammar.
  • Examples of Homophones.
  • Self-Check Grammar. (Exception to the rule when using a Bible program.)

In today’s blog, I’ll talk more about editing.

When editing chapter face pages

When my husband and I are writing each chapter of our books the preface that we follow is that the face page of each chapter (also known as chapter’s first page)) is always on the odd page.  The last page of the chapter ends on the even page.

Adding more pages

This is a tough one to follow. I sometimes find it frustrating when I must add more pages to a book because a publishing company wants a certain number of pages before they’ll publish the book.

We use KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) and they require seventy-nine pages for the print book if you want a spine (also called a ‘gutter’).  This is different that eBooks, but a print book needs a spine if you want people to find your book.

Sometimes you need to go in and add more pages by simply adding more content to each chapter.

For example, in the latest devotional book I’ve been working on, I was short a few pages. I went back and added more content and extra KJV Bible verses. Now my book has a total of eighty + pages.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.c

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

A second editing

My husband is in the process of doing the second editing of my book. He put it on KDP to make sure that it matches up with the criteria that KDP wants.

When he’s done editing, he’ll turn the book over to me so I can do another editing of the book. I’ll want to make sure I haven’t left anything out.

Editing the cover of the book

I love the picture that I chose for the book cover, but don’t like the white lettering background. I’m going to change the lettering to a brighter color, one that will grab peoples’ eyes when they take that first glance at my book.

I’m hoping to see my book in the publisher’s hand by the end of next week, but we’ll see what happens. I want the book published yesterday, but when writing a book, we don’t always get what we want.

 God expects us to put our best effort forward, whether it’s in writing a book, serving Him, or whatever. As a writer, we should always strive to do the best work that we can.    

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – The Love of Reading

R. Frederick Riddle image

Recently I wrote about The Love of Writing and mentioned the love of reading. I thought today I would expand on that a little.

I Love to Read

As I mentioned in that blog, ever since I was a child, I have loved reading books. It was as a child that I read the masterpiece War & Peace. When I finished the book (it is a large book) my father questioned me about it. After all, it was a classic and I was just a child. I don’t know how old I was, but I don’t think I was twelve yet.

In any case, he asked me several questions about the book touching on Napoleon’s invasion of Russia, the disastrous retreat, and the triumph of Russia. To all of these I answered, then he read or possibly reread the story and checked my answers against the book.

Obviously, I didn’t know or understand much about sex nor about the deep intrigues, but I did remember and understood the invasion, the battles, and the retreat on the larger screen, so to speak. He not only told my doctor, who didn’t believe him, but proved it to him. (I was under heavy medication back then and the doctor probably thought I was ‘slow’).

But that shouldn’t have been a surprise to either of them! Ever since Kindergarten I had developed a love affair with books. I don’t remember a lot about my childhood, but I know I loved to read. And I was particular about what I read.

I Had a Great Imagination

Along with my love for reading came a strong imagination. I don’t know what other children did, but I would read a book or watch a movie and imagine myself as the hero. Always the hero, never the villain.

This imagination is often common in children, but as they grow up the imagination gets stilted usually by well-meaning parents. And when the child reaches adulthood much of his or her ability to imagine is gone.

But some of us persevere and it can lead to a writer’s career. In my case, it did. As a teenager I began putting my imaginative tales on paper. They weren’t very good from any standpoint. But they did show that I was developing a desire to write.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

The Love of Reading Can Lead to the Love of Writing

Reading should be encouraged in children. It is a necessary part of life. If you want to excel in school, you have to read. If you want to excel in any trade, you have to read.

But more than that. Reading opens the world to you. When I got saved and began reading the Bible, I discovered what was for me a whole new world. I already loved history, and now I was reading about the history of mankind from God’s point of view.

I fell in love with the King James Bible first for its unmatched language, and later for its accuracy. This blog is not about the superiority of the KJV but studying the history of the Bible persuaded me of it. That plus the realization that you can’t say the Bible is the absolute Word of God and, at the same time, claim any version will do. If it is the absolute Word of God, then there can only be one version because there are differences between them. So, you must choose.

Perhaps I will write a blog on that someday and I definitely will write a book on the subject. But the point here is that I fell in love with the KJV, which in turn led me to a writing career where I write Bible-based novels, and now I write Bible-based nonfiction.

The Love of Reading Helps in Research

If you have followed me for any time at all you know that I am a fan of doing your diligent research. And if you don’t have a love of reading you will discover that research can be truly boring.

Why?

Because it requires a lot of reading. By ‘lot’ I mean a great deal of reading. Writing fiction requires a great deal of reading, especially of the lay of the land, the products manufactured and sold in the area, the people, clothing, and the list goes on. Reading is essential to getting your story right!

Do You Love Reading?

I suppose it is possible to be a successful author and not love reading, but I believe I have discovered that reading other writers, especially in the same genre, enlivens my imagination. And once enlivened, I can then imagine new stories.

. VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess – Why Editing of a Book is Necessary

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

Just as writing a book is time-consuming, so is editing a book.  I’m not one who likes to edit books, but the task must be done.

Why is editing a book so important?

The first draft I do on a book is not usually my best. It’s usually off the cuff. I find that each time I edit a particular chapter, the better I can structure my sentences and paragraphs in a way that will keep my readers interested in the book.

Editing the First Chapter

That first chapter is important. We want to catch the interest of the reader within the first couple of pages of the first chapter. When I’m looking for books to read (library or at a bookstore. etc.) I often put the book I picked up back on the shelf because the writer didn’t catch my interest in the first few pages.

Editing Grammar

We must make sure that our grammar and spelling errors are cleaned up.  The English language has words (Homophones) that sound alike but are different in meaning or spelling.

Examples of Homophones

AcceptExcept  IEye ThereTheirThey’re
AffectEffect  MerryMarry ToTooTwo
AloudAllowed  PearPair Read Red
AreOutHour SeeSea Sell Cell
BearBare  SonSun    
BreakBrake  WeatherWhether    
BuyBybye WhichWitch    
CapitalCapitol  PrinciplePrincipal    
FlowerFlour  WonOne    
HereHear  WrightRight    

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Self-Check Grammar

It’s important to self-check all grammar and spelling in the book we’re writing. Sometimes the program we’re using will skip over words or sentences.

Exception of Rule

Now the exception to the rule is this:  If you’re using a Bible program (King James Version, for example) to cut and paste verses into your document, you don’t need to edit it. In the case of the KJV you want to retain the language and the spelling for accuracy. 

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron – The Love of Writing

R. Frederick Riddle image

Several years ago, I wrote about my love of writing. It seemed to me that it was time to return to that topic since that blog no longer exists. Perhaps you are contemplating writing a book.

Well, if that is the case, you might want to first examine your mindset. Do you love to read, or do you consider it just a job? It is my opinion that to become a successful author you first must have a love of writing. Let’s take a look at my journey and see if it resonates with you.

I Love to Read

Ever since I was a child, I have loved reading books. It was as a child that I read the masterpiece War & Peace. This was a large book that told the story of Napoleon’s invasion of Russia. His decision to invade Russia was probably based on two observations. The first was that England, his enemy, was distracted by a war with the United States. It was a case of the mouse against the mighty cat, but he wasn’t concerned about who would win, although he may have leaned toward America. The important thing was England would not be a threat while she was engaged against America.

The second observation was erroneous. He imagined that Russia would not be a problem. He had the mightiest army in the world; an army extremely loyal to him. Russia didn’t stand a chance! Well, if you know history, it turned out to be a disastrous invasion leading to defeat there and ultimately at Waterloo.

I Love to Write

Fast on the heals of reading came an unquenchable imagination. When reading, I would imagine myself in the scenes I was reading. My writing started out as playacting; my pretending to be the hero I was reading about. By the time I was a teenager, I was attempting to put my imagination on paper. However, I was untrained. Fortunately, I was unsuccessful. But it did teach me that I needed to learn more about writing.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

The Love of Reading and Writing

The desire to write stems from my love of reading but desire didn’t grant me the skills I needed. That came from study, hard work, and repeated failures. While a young man I tried to write a book, but every time I would try, I would hit the proverbial wall. I would get about five chapters into the story and suddenly I was stopped. It didn’t help that when taking a writing course, I got laid off and was unable to continue taking it. But I did learn that I really enjoyed writing and had some skill. This knowledge kept me going in the years ahead.

So began years of attending what I call the school of hard knocks. It was rough, but my love of writing kept me going which brings me to another point.

Love of Writing can Sustain Your Drive

 The love of writing sustaining your drive? Yes. And it is an important consideration. I used the words can sustain for a purpose. By itself the love of writing is a great motivator.  But it is limited. Constant frustration coupled with a lack of knowledge can undermine and ultimately defeat you. So, you need something more which I will get to in a moment.

Still, the love of writing is a powerful force that will strengthen your writing career for years. But while it kept me going, I was not moving forward. I couldn’t overcome the ‘wall’ nor was my technical career improving significantly. I needed something positive.

 The Love of God

That something positive came when I asked Jesus Christ into my heart on May 9, 1973 at the age of 30. That is the day that a fundamental change occurred in my heart. Now I had a love for God plus the love of God. It changed my life! But more than that, it changed my writing! Now my writing took on a distinctive Christian influence that continues to this day.

You ask did I start writing books that got published?

No, in fact, my stories continued to hit roadblocks. It took another 30 years before my first book was published. But the love of God coupled with a love for writing did sustain me and I began seeing improvements. Different people have different motives for writing, but looking back I realize that God wants me to write books, fiction and nonfiction, that are Christian and God honoring. And that is what I set about doing.

The Love of God’s Word

I realize that you the reader may not be a Christian, but this is the story of my life. But the moment I got saved I fell in love with the Bible, God’s Word. Coupled with a love for history, my whole focus turned in a positive direction.

Another transformative day arrived. It is my practice to have devotions in the morning (now it is with my wife). On this morning I was reading the Book of Genesis when God showed me that I could write novels based on the Bible. It proved a career changing direction.

Realizing that the Bible deals with facts and is historical in nature, I am now free to write novels and nonfiction books based on the Bible. Just like you can write historical novels based on secular history, I am able to write about historical people and events reported on in the Bible. It resulted not only in getting my first book published, but in my writing an entire series consisting of six books, all based on men and women in the Bible. That series by the way is The World That Was and is available on Amazon and at our bookstore. Now, I am also writing nonfiction books dealing with the Bible .

Love Letter

I still remember that morning devotion to this day. I was studying the Book of Genesis in chapter six which reports on Noah and the Flood. And it suddenly struck me. The Bible is essentially a history book relating historical facts. In this case, it was relating the facts pertaining to the Flood and Noah building the ark. It was as Sergeant Friday of the TV series Dragnet used to say, ‘just the facts’. But it provided room for me to write the rest of the story that enabled a reviewer to say that I “brought the Bible alive”. Ever since, that has been a goal; namely to bring the Bible alive to my readers!

That first book was Refuge: The Genesis Chronicles was published and was soon followed by Adam’s Chronicles. Then I combined those two books, added a ton of information and published Perished: The World That Was. As mentioned above five more books followed. Since then I have written other books and now I am writing a new series based on the life of Moses, plus another novel based on the life of Daniel. All of this has happened in part because of my love for writing!

Love of Writing Asserts Itself

With frustration gone, I now have a calling upon my life and stories to tell! I believe that as Christians we should be motivated by a love for God in whatever we do. And all writers should be motivated by a love for writing. It is why we write.

To be sure, God’s love toward me that led to my salvation was and is the dominant factor in my writing. But the love of writing that He gave me in childhood still plays an important role in my life and career.

Do You Have a Love of Writing?

As you undoubtedly have seen, I believe that having a love for writing is an important role to play in any author’s career. Yes, there is more needed, but you need to have an underlying drive, which will carry you forward. It will play a major role in overcoming obstacles and improving your writing.

. VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron Updating

R. Frederick Riddle image

Today I am taking a look at updating, which was originally titled republishing. What is updating? Why is it important? How can you do it?

I have retitled this to Updating because of the following.

Dave Chesson of Kindlepreneur published an article on Republishing and I learned I was using the wrong title. I am not to proud to be corrected. So, my article is now Updating. I have shared a link to his article.

What is Updating?

Seems rather obvious, but I don’t want to be misunderstood. In this blog I am talking about taking a previously published book, and updating it under the same title with the same ISBN, and with the same publisher. Generally speaking, you can use the same title and same ISBN if you have not made extensive changes, but when you completely rewrite your book then you may have to republish it as a new book.

But I want you to understand that what I am talking about is very important to you as an author and as a marketer.

Why is Updating Important?

Updating comes into play after you have published your book. But let’s say that you now discover an error, possibly a major error, or maybe you have found a stronger, more powerful cover. Or you want to add material. These are just some of the reasons you might want to update.

What about Traditional or Self Publishers?

Neither traditional or self publishers offer free updating after you’ve published. Some may offer a limited ability to update. For example, they may offer it one or two times. But nothing like what I am talking about.

Can Indie-Publishers Offer it for Free?

Yes!

Since I only know of one publisher who works with Indie Publishers, I will talk about KDP. It is my understanding that that some Self Publishers may offer this service, but KDP is the only one I have experience with.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

So, KDP Updates Books?

Technically, you are using KDP to update your books. It is more of a printing platform, in my opinion. Some people identify KDP as a Self-Publisher, but they don’t really fit that description. However, to be fair, Amazon identifies themselves as self-publishers. But look at these differences, they do not:

  • Charge an upfront price
  • Offer packages
  • Limit updating after a book has been published

There are other differences such as the amount of control you have, the royalties you can achieve, and more. But here we are focusing on one thing: updating.

My first books were with AuthorHouse and later with American Star. AuthorHouse is owned by Author Solutions, which also owns Xlibris, iUniverse, and Trafford. These offer packages which nowadays can by thousands of dollars.

How Does KDP allow it?

It is simply one of the free services they offer. Please note the word “free”. Assuming you are making no major changes where you add a great deal of new content, you will not be charged.

Note: you cannot change the title, subtitle, or ISBN once it is published. To that requires republishing it virtually as a new book. There are other restrictions regarding the paper and color. But if you want to edit, update material, or change cover, or change price, you can as often as you want for free!

How is Updating an Advantage for me?

I have already mentioned a few. Here they are:

  • Correct an error
  • Change the cover
  • Add content (within reason)
  • Change price

This gives you control that in my opinion surpasses any offering by any other publisher. The above reasons help you in keeping your book fresh, and as a marketing tool.

. VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Being a Volunteer

My blog this week is about being a volunteer. It is a part of our Christian DNA.

Project Ukraine

My husband and I attend Tri-City Baptist Church here in Port Charlotte. About two weeks ago our pastor announced that a Baptist church in a nearby town would be doing a project called Project Ukraine. This project would involve putting together 100,000 booklets that contained the Gospel of John and the Book of Romans, in the Ukrainian language and it would take three days to complete the project.

The Volunteer Turnout

When we arrived at the church on Tuesday of last week, we noticed that the parking lot was full of cars. After finding a parking space, we headed to a certain area to walk inside and a surprise awaited us.

We were shocked at what we saw when we walked inside because the fellowship hall was full of people. And they were sitting at different tables working on the project. Even the church foyer and Sunday school classrooms were filled with volunteers from different churches and working together.

When a volunteer worker from the church we were at took my husband and me to a room where space was available for us to work, we kept looking around at all the people who had turned out. And we spotted many people from our own church scattered about working and fellowshipping.

It was such a joy that we ended up staying longer than we had planned and it was hard finding a stopping spot so we could leave. Neither one of us complained.

Doing the volunteer work brought joy to my heart.

  1. We got to meet some of the people from other churches.
  2. We met some Ukrainians and were able to work on the project with them. They knew English, so we were able to talk some to them as we worked.
  3. We had an opportunity to sample some Ukrainian food. We even sampled some Ukrainian candy that had been put out in a dish.

The most important of all was the fact that we had an opportunity to put booklets together that would be shipped to many Ukrainians, that told them about JESUS.

Just a note in passing, but when I took a break to go sample some food, I also had an opportunity to hand out a couple of my business cards for T & R Independent Books. I carry some on me everywhere I go.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Back to volunteering

Last Wednesday night at church, our pastor stood up and announced that the project was complete, all except for shipping out all the boxes that held the 100,000 booklets. He also told us that other projects might come up in the future, that we can volunteer to help with.   

A Teenage Volunteer

Over the years when living in Michigan, from the time I was a teenager, II volunteered in helping different churches and organizations put care packages together to send out to our military troops around the world (Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines). They showed their appreciation for what we did for them, by sending ‘Thank you’ notes to us.

You Can Volunteer

We can all be volunteers in helping other churches or organizations accomplish what they need to accomplish, even if it’s only for one day per month for only a few hours. They’re often short-handed and will be appreciative of any help they can get.

An Inspiring Story

An article in the Broadcaster, a magazine by Christian Radio Network, tells the story of a born-again believer and a deacon in his church in Kyiv, Ukraine. It tells of this man and an impossible journey made possible by God. And then he started a volunteer work in America. CRI itself is a ministry you might want to check out.

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Be Kind to One Another

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

My blog is titled be kind to one another and it’s something that we seem to be seeing less and less of in our world. All people want to do is mistreat each other and tear each other down with their mouths. That just isn’t right.

God Loves Us.

God loves us and wants us to love one another as He loves us. He wants us to be kind to one another. He talks about it a lot, especially in the New Testament.

Examples of Showing Kindness.

Here are several ways we can show our kindness to others:

  • People often just want someone to talk to who will just listen and not say anything.
  • Learn to be a good, sincere, and patient listener.
  • There are many people who go unnoticed as they go about their daily tasks: doctors, nurses, military personnel, nursing home workers, hospital staff, restaurant personnel, truck drivers, grocery store workers, farmers, police officers, fireman, teachers, lineman who work on gas lines and electrical lines.
  • There are many others I haven’t even mentioned.   Many of them rarely ever get thanked for their service to the community. We need to say ‘Thank you’ to these people more often and let them know that we appreciate them and the hard work they do.
  • We need to learn how to be a happy person and not be a complainer. People don’t want to hang around someone who complains all the time. They would much rather hang out with happy people. I don’t blame them. I feel the same way.
  • There’s one that no one wants to mention, but I’m going to mention it anyways. We need to learn that there are times when we need to mind our own business and learn how to keep our mouths shut.  If people want advice from us, they will ask for it.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Be Kind to One Another by not Judging.

There are times we shouldn’t open our mouth and judge someone. They might be going through circumstances that we know nothing about. Maybe they’re handicapped, stutter, or have another problem.

Instead of judging them or making fun of them, pray for them. Ask God to help them in their circumstance. If the person doesn’t want to be helped, there’s not much we can do about that.

Be Kind to One Another By Thinking Before Speaking.

There are also times when someone will say something hurtful to us, or about us. When they do that, we always seem to open our mouths without thinking, and tell the person off.  Shame on us when we do that. We need to be careful about what we say to other people, and how we say it.

Yeah, I know. It’s hard to do.  In today’s world it isn’t wise to spout off to people. Too many times, a person has gotten killed because they spouted off to someone at the wrong time and in the wrong place.

Be Kind to One Another by Being Helpful.

When we’re in a grocery store and we see someone struggling to reach something off a shelf we should offer to pull the item off the shelf for them. They’ll be appreciative of the help.

Be Kind to One Another by Caring.

One last thing, we can let people know that we love them and care about them, especially our family or loved ones.  Sometimes all the person will need is a hug. We can always hug the person from the side, which is safer. 

There are many other ways we can show kindness to others, but I wanted to list just a few of the ways.

Have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron A Case for Self-Editing

R. Frederick Riddle image

I am going to make a case for self-editing your manuscripts. But I am going to start with a negative.

You Should Not Self-Edit Because

  • likely to self-consciously read it as it was meant not as written
  • You are married to the story and reluctant to change it
  • It is the job of professional editors to edit
  • Professional editors are trained to spot errors

You can see that the main reason for not self-editing is that you as the author will have a blind eye to errors unless you truly focus on finding them. A professional has the training and experience to do this, but you probably don’t have it.

This is a major problem and the primary reason for not editing your own manuscript.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Self-Editing is Important

Whether you hire an editor or not does not excuse you from doing editing. Is that a contradiction? No. A good writer edits his or her own work religiously!

Some writers go to great lengths to do a good editing job. Nothing wrong with that and if you are able, then do it.

But there is a good chance that you will end up doing your own at least until you are established. A good principle to live by is that self-editing is important to your future success.

That principle applies even if you use a professional. If you are going to hire someone, you want to present a manuscript that is as ready for publishing as you can make it. Then the editor gets her hands on it and takes it to the next level.

A Helpful Tool

As a matter of principle, I recommend that you choose which tools you use. The purpose of this blog and all my blogs is to acquaint you with principles and tools. You are your own boss.

One author I know, her name is Kim, uses what she calls a Map Out. At least that is the name I remember. When I first heard this term recently, I didn’t know what it meant. But she explained it, and so I can say that I use that tool although it is my own version.

As a matter of practice, I create documents that outline the story or the characters or the research or all of the above. Previously I didn’t use this tool, but I now see value in it, so I am in the process of establishing my own Map Out.

Examine your own practice and it is likely that you use a very simple form of the Map Out. You have the choice of keeping as it is or creating an entirely new one. It is helpful tool.

How Often Should I Edit?

That’s easy. As often as you can!

Some authors wait until the book is done before editing. Some want to edit as they write, some at the conclusion of a chapter, and so forth. The point is to have a plan in place that features frequent edits.

I tend to edit after every chapter, but sometimes I will edit at the conclusion of a scene. It varies.

And remember there are different types of edits. You could, for example, do a spell check, a grammar check, story flow, and other types. The types of edits may depend on whether you are writing fiction or nonfiction. Genre can also impact what types of edits to use.

Another tool is Research

If you have read my blogs in the past, then you know that I encourage you to do your diligent research. Some writing projects require a lot of research, some not so much. But even the most basic novel needs some research to establish credibility for the story.

Self-Editing is Rewarding

Bet you didn’t expect that comment!

Yes, self-editing is hard work, especially if you are acting in place of a professional editor. But I have found that self-editing helps me better understand my own work. It helps me spot errors and inconsistencies. In addition, it helps me define the story, the character, and the event.

Self-editing has led me to completely rewrite entire scenes. And when that makes my manuscript better, I have a sense of accomplishment.

Self-Editing May Be Necessary

The truth is that the average writer doesn’t have the wherewithal to hire a professional editor. Professionals can be expensive. So, even though you know you should hire a professional, you can’t afford one. That puts you behind the proverbial eight ball.

In such cases, you will need to double down on the editing. But I have some good news for you.

Self-Editing Does Not Require Perfection

Right about now professional editors are up in arms and shouting at me, “You’re wrong!”

Let me explain.

I love reading books. I have been reading since my childhood. One of the first books I read as a child was War and Peace. I read it and explained it to my father. He then read it and saw my comprehension was very good. But that’s another story, let’s move on to my contention self-editing need not be perfect.

Over the years I have read many books, including master pieces, such as War and Peace. And I confidently can state that I have never read a book that didn’t contain any errors!

Don’t believe me. I challenge you to read some of the greats, but with a critical eye. You will find minor errors and sometimes major ones, but they are there. How can I be sure? Aside from my own reading there is the fact that all authors are humans. And since we are not perfect the likelihood of our works being imperfect are extremely high.

The errors may be as simple as misspelling words, bad grammar, or more serious. They may be the author’s errors or printing errors. The point is that even a professional can and does miss things. To be honest, they generally do an excellent job, but they are not perfect.

What Does it Mean to Me?

It provides you a goal. Basically, your goal is to eliminate as many errors as possible. That is hard work, plus you have the disadvantage of being the author. You are literally forced to divorce yourself from your authorship of the book and focus on it as an independent editor.

I Have More Good News

An Indie author has an advantage over the traditional and so-called self-publisher. Some people use self-publish and Indie publish interchangeably, but they are different. One difference I explain here.

Once you publish your book with a self-publisher, such as AuthorHouse, it is done. They may allow you to edit afterwards, but it is limited. An Indie publisher can edit the manuscript, change the cover, and other things like price, etc. as often as they want. And at no extra cost!

I know, because I have done it and I still do it.

I would recommend to you that you reread your own book every once in a while to see if there are errors or maybe changes you want to make. Then make them.

About the Author

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Watch Out for Time Wasters Part 2

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

Last week we covered time wasters. This week we talk about more time wasters that keep us from getting things done. Here they are.

Spending too much Time at the Grocery Store.

I’ve found a way to cut some of the wait time in half.  Often, I’ll go to the Walmart (not the neighborhood one) by myself, around 7:30 in the morning. There are not too many people shop at that time of the morning, plus, I’m able to get a parking spot close by the main door. It only takes me ten minutes to get there from my residence.

If I know I’m going to the store early the next morning, I make out my shopping list the night before, putting certain things in a particular order. For example, I know that the paper products, deli section, and dairy products are at the back of the store. I list my paper products first, that I need. Next, I write out anything I need from the dairy section or deli.

Then I list what I need aisle by aisle, working my way toward the front of the store. I usually lists the bakery products I need last.

As I pass the cheeses and meats area, I place the items I need in my basket before going down the next aisle.

Listing the items I need, in order, saves me a lot of time. I’m usually home and have everything put away by 9:30 at the latest.  Then, I can move on with my day and get some serious ‘to do’ things accomplished.

Searching for Something We’ve Misplaced.

We’ve all done that one; wasting time looking for a certain item.

We need to make a habit of putting the item back in a particular place when we finish using it, whether it be in a purse, a pocket, a jar, a drawer, etc.; then, when we need the item, we know exactly where it is.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Procrastination

There are many tasks to be broken up into smaller parts to do.  Which part do you dislike? Which part is keeping you from starting or completing the project?

We don’t mean to do it, but we often procrastinate or ‘kill time’ as the saying goes. There are just some tasks we dread doing, but they must be done. We just can’t seem to get to them. Maybe they’re too complex, or too boring to tackle.

Take that first step and start the project. You don’t have to spend a lot of time on the project. The important thing is to get the project started. Work on it a little each day. Eventually, if you keep at it, the project will be completed.

If the task seems like it will be more than you can handle, it doesn’t hurt to ask around, and see if there’s someone who would be willing to help you with some of it. If they say ‘yes’, then delegate some of the work to them.

More than one set of hands often makes the load seem lighter.

Ask God to help you not to be a time waster.

There are many other time wasters, but I just wanted to touch on a few.

Life will be a lot easier for us, once we learn how to handle the time wasters. We’ll be able to get those things done that we need to get done.

If we become proficient with our use of time, others will notice. By being a good example to others, perhaps we can help them make better uses of their time.

That’s all for this week.

About the Author

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron Do You Need a Coach?

R. Frederick Riddle image

Do you need a coach?

You are the final authority on that question but let me provide you with a few reasons you may need a coach. Here is a partial list: You are

  • new to writing
  • hitting a wall
  • Unsatisfied with the book
  • thinking about quitting
  • dejected because your book has been rejected
  • in need of direction
  • not seeing your books sell
  • frustrated
  • are aware of what’s wrong with the manuscript but you don’t know how to fix it.
  • experiencing other reasons

I have written over 12 books over a 19-year period. Do I need a coach? You might be surprised at my answer.

The answer is yes.

Why?

There are a number of reasons, but the primary reason is that when left to myself I get very critical. I have a lot of knowledge regarding writing, editing, and publishing, but not all of it is good or agreeable.

That produces anxiety which in turn causes temerity, hesitation. I determined several years ago that I needed help. I didn’t like the way my career was going nor did I know how to change it. Thus began a repeated prayer, Dear Lord, I need a mentor. A short prayer but a correct prayer.

Earlier this year I came in contact with another author who is also a coach. We connected and he started coaching me. Someday, perhaps soon, I will go in to the many ways he has coached me, but right now I just want you to see that though I had written over 12 books I still needed a coach.

Coach Assets

Does he know more than I do about writing? Perhaps, but that is not necessary.

Does he know more than I do about editing? Perhaps, but that is not necessary.

Does he know more than I do about marketing? Perhaps, but you get the picture.

When you watch a football game or a basketball game or any sport, your eyes are focused on the athlete. But if it is a professional sport then you can bet there is a coach involved. Is he more talented than the athlete? Most coaches of professional sports that I have seen are out of shape.

But his skill set is to draw the best out of the person he is coaching. And that is what a coach is for a writer.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Christian Coach

So, it can be argued that we all need coaches. Speaking as a Christian, I recommend that if you are a Christian, you should have a Christian mentor. Please note, I did not say Baptist, Presbyterian, Methodist, or any other denomination. It helps if you and your coach are of the same denomination. But the primary thing I am emphasizing is that your coach be as committed to Christ as you are at a minimum.

That can be difficult to learn, but if the two of you are talking to one another, then you should determine the fit rather quickly. I knew nothing of my coach’s denominational connection or his spiritual maturity. But as we talked about writing, I learned a great deal about his spiritual maturity simply by talking to him. I have since learned we are not the same denomination, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is that he loves the Lord Jesus, is committed to serving Him, and operates within biblical boundaries.

Coach’s Advice

Another facet about an author is the advice he or she provides. I have greatly benefited from his advice. In case you are wondering who he is, his name is Tom Blubaugh and Christian Authors Community is the writers club he founded.

I will write more about the organization in the future.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron Why Did the Sanhedrin Hate Jesus?

R. Frederick Riddle image

Why did the Sanhedrin hate Jesus? I will cover four reasons which I briefly examined in my newest book, What’s True About Easter?

  • His teachings threatened their position.

“But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, and love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.” Matthew 23:5-7

These were proud, arrogant men who enjoyed being honored and looked up to. Jesus exposed them. They had a very important role in Israel and were responsible for teaching the people the Word of God.

But they should have recognized Him by His life, His birthplace, His healing of the blind and raising the dead. But they willfully denied Him.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

  • They added traditions as equal to the Law.

In Mark 7:6-8, Jesus said, “Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.

“Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

“For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.”

  • Wielding unjust authority, teaching lies.

Jesus couldn’t abide what they were doing, and He took pains to identify their sins. They knew the Bible and that He spoke the truth and should have repented. But they didn’t.

In Matthew 23:13, Jesus said, “But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.”

  • Jesus constantly exposed them.

An example of this is in John 7:7, “The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.”

He was referring to the priesthood’s hatred of Him. The Gospels are rife with reasons, such as His condemnations, His so-called breaking the Law of Moses, and more.

These were four reasons, but there is at least one more. The fact is that they hated Jesus. That is why they arrested Him under cover of darkness, held an illegal trial, and demanded His death. These are covered in my book, but here I want to point out how much they hated Him.

Another truth discussed in the book is hematohidrosis or sweating blood. Jesus was under intense pressure. Though sinless Himself he was taking our sins and placing them upon Himself. And that separated Him from the Father. Though we don’t know the particulars we can make an educated guess that throughout eternity Father and Son were bonded together, but our sins broke that bond, and He was enclosed in darkness, separated from the Father.

That was an exceeding great pressure. He didn’t dread the cross, He dreaded the result of our filthy sins being placed upon Him and separating Him from the Father’s love and fellowship. And that pressure caused the bleeding.

As we enter the Easter season, it is important to remember that He not only died for us on the cross, but He suffered all the pain and suffering meant for you and me. He was and is the perfect Lamb of God. And we have the privilege of being the recipients of His love.

It is my prayer that all who know Jesus Christ as Savior will be fully blessed as we worship Him. If you do not know Him, then it is my prayer that you will realize how much He loved you and because of that love He paid the full price for your redemption. Simply ask Him into your heart and find a church that preaches the gospel of Jesus Christ (namely, His virgin birth, sinless life, His sacrificial death, resurrection, and salvation by His grace).

. VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Watch Out for Big Time Wasters!

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

My title is Watch out for Time Wasters, which follows up on last week’s topic about time usage. Then I talked about making use of our time. Today I am exploring things that not only waste our time but hurt our product. Time wasters kill productivity!

This week I want to talk about the time wasters that keep us from getting things done. Here are a few that I’ve run into.

One time waster is being interrupted with a phone call or by someone who shows up at the door unexpectedly.

Being interrupted by a phone call or by someone who shows up at your door unexpectedly. Because interruptions are unexpected, they usually need to be handled on the spot. Your decision will depend on what you are in the middle of at that moment, what you have going on that day, and the length and importance of the interruption.

If a friend, relative, or someone else shows up at your door on short notice, don’t be rude to them. If you can, invite them inside for a few minutes. Be honest with them in explaining that you’re in the middle of a project that must be completed, and can only spend a few minutes with them.  If the person is reasonable, they’ll understand your situation.

The same goes for a phone call. You might say to the person, “It’s good hearing from you. I’m busy at this moment, trying to get something done. Can I call you back, say at six o’clock? I’ll be able to talk to you then without any interruptions.”

Most people will agree to the call back. DO remember TO Call them back at the time you said you would.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Waiting.

How many times have we waited in a long line or waited at a doctor or dentist office, waiting for them to call our name?  How many times have we waited for a meeting to start, but it didn’t get started on time, for one reason or another?

We can all think of situations where we felt like our time was being wasted because we had to wait. It’s unavoidable but is one of the biggest time wasters that we must put up with.

I’ve found that carrying a small pocket size notebook or index cards and a pen on me comes in handy.  When waiting for my name to be called, or waiting for a

meeting to start, I’ve made out a shopping list, written short notes, worked on a ‘to do’ list for the next day, written down some ideas for a chapter I want to put in a book, or made a brief phone call.

If I think I might have a long wait, I’ll have a puzzle book with me to work on, or have a book or magazine on hand that I can read while waiting.

Nowadays, many people will spend time on their phone while waiting for something to happen.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron A Look at Indie-Publishing

R. Frederick Riddle image

Today I am taking a look at Indie-Publishing. There are three types of publishing: Traditional, Self, and Indie. Let’s take a quick look at the first two.

Traditional Publishing is a term referring to the way we used to get published. Nowadays, it is represented by the big publishing houses, although it is possible that smaller publishing houses are traditional as well.

A brief understanding of Traditional Publishing is as follows: (modern version) The author writes a book, finds an agent who submits the manuscript to one of the big publishers. It used to be that an author could send an unsolicited manuscript to the publisher, who would read it, then either reject or approve. If approved, the publisher would publish the book.

Moreover, in days gone by the publisher would control the marketing. As far as the author was concerned, he or she had little control over the publishing or the marketing. And nowadays the average author gets only a small royalty. And the author does some of the marketing, such as book signings. A recent change, primarily in the 21st century, Traditional publishing houses are requiring that the author have an agent.

Self-Publishing came along and opened the door for the author. This was how I got into writing. My first three books were all self-publishing. One attractive difference between that and Traditional publishing was that I now had a semblance of control. But the publisher still had ultimate control and still got the biggest share of the royalties. And the author does most of the marketing.

As with the traditional houses, self-publishers are moving towards requiring an agent. This doesn’t appear to be large scale, but it looks like the day is coming.

Indie-Publishing is relatively new. You might call it the baby of the family. This is real self-publishing. When we come back from the break, we’ll take a closer look.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

What follows is a brief look at the advantages of Indie-Publishing.

Advantages: (same as self publishing)

  1. Virtually able to have book published. Rare that a manuscript is rejected.
  2. Author owns the ISBN, unless received free ISBN from KDP or similar.
  3. Royalty paid.

Advantages in addition to above:

  1. No signed contract. (Terms of Service usually act as contract).
  2. Published within days
  3. Growing number of publishing formats
  4. Kindle Direct Platform (KDP)
  5. Others
  6. Select either 35% or 70% royalty
  7. Control throughout the process
  8. Minimum requirements by platform
  9. Ability to retire a book
  10. Ability to edit and republish a book
  11. Ability to not only set prices but to change prices
  12. FREE (KDP, for example, gets paid through selling the book).
  13. No agent required.

Disadvantages:

  1. You don’t have an editor telling you what to do.
  2. You don’t have to wait months to be approved and/or published.
  3. You make all the marketing decisions (inc. hiring marketers).
  4. You handle all the editing and proofing

Some of the disadvantages listed are actually advantages. While being my own editor is hard work, it is also part of having control. Indie Publishing is all about control and greater profits. You control close to 100% of everything regarding your precious book.

In 2014 Teresa and I formed our own publishing company: TR-Independent Books. Although getting up and running was time consuming, we have not regretted it. Since that time, I have purchased the rights to and republished Perished: the World That Was plus others. As publisher, I have republished another book under a new title; and I am publishing new books.

And it is not costing me $400 (back in 2003) or $800 (now) to publish a book. Yes, there are costs associated with doing it yourself, but the cost is much less.

As an Indie-Publisher I also handled the marketing. I can turn it over to a professional (which I may do in the future), but whichever way I go the ultimate source of authority lies with my wife and I. One of the things I may do in the future is publish a catalog. This would help to develop and expand local marketing.

I would recommend to anyone that they seriously consider being an Indie-Publisher. Yes, it will require more work, but it also gives you control throughout the process. And that is important.

Try this simple quiz:

  • Do I control the editing services? Yes
  • Do I control review time of a Proof before returning it for correction or publication? Yes
  • Can I pull the book, edit it, and republish after I have already published it and do it for free? Yes
  • How much help do I get marketing the book? Various free tools
  • What do the marketing tools cost? Some are free.

These and other questions need to be answered. And I think you’ll be pleased with the answers. Perhaps the biggest advantage that Indie Publishing has, other than control, is the cost. You can publish an entire book free of charge or you can pay a little. Again, you have control!

Here are some facts to consider:

An Indie Publishing company is the author who now has virtual control over every aspect of publishing. That includes the cover, the back cover, any pictures within the book, and, to some extent, the text itself. Basically, the author has the power.

(note: If you use a publishing venue, such as KDP, they may have minimum requirements that you must meet. Even so, you decide which venue to use and you are the one agreeing to the requirements.)

Self-publishers generally don’t do marketing. But they do provide tools at a cost that you can use. This may include such things as banners, magazine ads, newspaper ads, and more. All for a price.

But Indie Publishing is different! You, the author, become your own agent, publisher, and marketer. This means you have greater flexibility in choosing who prints your book. You control virtually all aspects of the printing process.

In addition, you control the marketing. Let me point out that you have greater responsibility as well as power. But when you become your own publisher, doors of opportunity open allowing you to use the same tools you have been paying the self-publishers to use. You not only do the work, you make the decisions!

Happy Indie Publishing!

. VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Where Did the Time Go?

Have you ever, at the end of the day, thrown up your hands and said out loud, “Where did the time go? It happened again. I didn’t get everything done that I needed to accomplish today.”

We’ve all been there and done that.

Even though there are twenty-four hours in each day, it seems that there is never enough time to get our ‘to do’ list for that day done. Time has a way of running our lives for various reasons.

Many people are content to “go with the flow” and accept whatever may arrive.

Many of us have goals we would like to reach, even if we are sometimes afraid to admit our goals because of lack of confidence or fear of disappointment.

Don’t be afraid to set goals. Thinking clearly about the goals we want to reach is an essential step toward taking control of our time and life.

Here’s a question that we all need to ask ourselves. Are we a ‘morning person’ or an ‘evening person’?

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Many people tend to be a ‘morning person’. They are most productive during the morning hours, say between 6:00 A.M. and noon, but sluggish as the day wears on.

The ‘evening person’ is usually sluggish in the early hours of the day, but starts picking up steam by the afternoon, or will work or keep busy late into the evening.

Some people might be a ‘night owl’. They’re up all night because they have a factory job, warehouse job, they’re a police officer, or they work in the medical field, etc. Or, they might have more energy during the night-time hours. I know a few retirees who seem to accomplish tasks better during the night-time hours, rather than during day-time hours.  

Regardless of what time of day our ‘high level of energy’ is, there are some ways we can better organize ourselves, so we can accomplish what we need get one during that twenty-four-hour period.

Before going to bed, write out a list of the things that needs to be accomplish the next day.  Schedule the high-priority items during your high-productivity times so you will get the most from your best hours.

When preparing a list, there will be things that you need to take into consideration.

There are daily job and family responsibilities to take care of, such as preparing meals, doing the laundry, and shopping for groceries. A daily list helps you set priorities and ensures that the top priority items will get done. It also helps you complete other items as well.  

There will be days that you will have a doctor’s or another appointment that you need to go to.

Also take into consideration the fact that there will be some tasks or projects you do may need be long term, especially if you’re writing a book, working on a house project, etc. Set aside some time each day to work on these, even if you can only spend a few hours on that task.

The important thing is, that you spent some time on that project.

My final thought is, ask God to help you accomplish what you need to get done that day.

Next week, I’ll cover some ‘time wasters’ that can keep us from our tasks. I’ll talk about how each one can be handled.

 Until then, have a wonderful week.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron More on How I Wrote Perished

Perished:The World That Was

I wrote previously on the subject of How I Wrote Perished. In that blog I covered how I was inspired and about Research. Today I take a deeper dive into how that book came to fruition.

I had the facts, and I was able to recreate the world prior to the Flood based on those facts. Plus, I talked referred to grammar and editing. Since grammar really comes under editing, I want to spend some time on Self-Editing versus a Professional Editor.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Professional Editing

There is little doubt that if you can afford it, having your book professionally edited is the best way to go. The problem is that few authors can afford professional editors. Here are some reasons why you would not use a professional editor:

Cost. This is the biggest reason. This is the professional editor’s business and he or she is not likely to give away their skills. Again, if you can afford one, then go ahead and look for editors that give good value for the buck.

Restrictions.

Some editors, not all, insist that you abide by their rules and decisions. For instance, publishers, including self-publishers have editing departments. These involve a fee and, in my experience, require adherence to their decisions. I ran into this in my first book, and since I didn’t want them to say I couldn’t use the King James Bible or some other feature of my book, I chose to self-edit.

While the arguments against self-editing are valid, they are not absolute. It simply means you will have to work harder. It comes down to choice.

How hard is it?

I found it extremely hard. One of the arguments against self-editing is that the author is married to the work. The author is the author. Rather basic, but that means you may overlook errors.

For example, you may have used the word ‘there’ instead of ‘their’. Both are legitimate words, but have totally different meanings. You as the author will have the tendency to supply the correct word though the wrong word is used. We don’t like to admit that, but it is a blindness that we have to our own work.

That was a simplistic example, but it is one I have made more times that I care to admit.

How do you correct that?

The only way I know how to correct that is to really focus on the reading. Errors like the one above are not found by grammar checkers. It requires reading and understanding the context. So, I have to take my time and read the text slowly.

Another aid is the use of beta readers. They will spot your errors a lot easier than you and they are less expensive. Remember, when using Beta Readers or any other aide that this is your book. If you are an Indie Author, then you are taking responsibility for all aspects of writing of the book. It is your book and you have the final say.

But the key here is hard work. You are taking on a serious responsibility and that means focus, focus, and focus. And it will likely take multiple edits.

When I started out editing my own books, I soon learned how fallible I am. Whether I used readers or my own efforts, I still made mistakes. This taught me the value of multiple edits. And I might add, different types of edits.

Different Types?

Yes. I have reviewed my work looking for grammar mistakes. I have also reviewed my work looking for spelling errors. I make extensive use of Microsoft Word’s Spelling & Grammar checker. But when using such tools, it is always wise to remember the context. You don’t want your character to sound like an English professor unless the character is an English professor.

I want my characters to sound normal. So, I allow and purposely put in wrong grammar in a character’s spoken word (surrounded by “”) and their thoughts (which I use italics to indicate).

Are my books perfect? Doubtful. But neither are other authors. I have read masterpieces and I have always found errors. Few and far between, but there are errors.

Your goal is not perfection, but a book that is as error free as you can make it.

I have mentioned being an Indie Author. I will discuss this in greater detail in a future blog, but I am a fan of Indie Author, or more accurately, Indie Businessperson. There are pros and cons on the subject, but for me the pros outweigh any of the cons.

So, briefly, there are traditional authors, self-publishing authors, and Indie authors. A traditional author follows the traditional route: write the book, get an agent, and get a traditional publisher. This is still the choice of some authors, but there are some major obstacles which I won’t cover here.

Self-Publishing is a misnomer. The name attracted me, and my first book was self-published. But it is really more of a vanity press than anything else. It cost me $400 for the package and now the cost is double or more. It is, in my opinion, better than traditional publishing, but you the author still don’t have control.

The Indie Publisher is in control of the writing, editing, proofing, publishing, and marketing of the book. As the publisher you could hire out the marketing aspect if you want. The key is that you are the boss, and you are responsible.

The choice is yours. We publish a Guide to Writing which covers the basics in writing, publishing, and marketing. The link takes you to the bookstore.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess Research and Preparation

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

Today, I would like to talk about the research and preparation I had to do before writing the first page of my book.

I already knew that I wanted to write a mystery book that was fictional.  I already had an idea of how the story would go.

Back in the day, in the neighborhood that I grew up in, there was a certain house that always looked creepy to my friends and I. Rumors were always going around that if you visited the family who lived there, don’t let them take you down into the basement. We were always careful when we went to that house on Halloween night. One time, when the people weren’t home, a couple of the neighborhood boys went inside and had a look around. Back then, people didn’t lock their doors.

That’s where I got the idea about writing a mystery about an old house from.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Next, I had to come up with a fictional name for the town in which the mystery would take place. That was hard. It seemed like every name I thought of, and checked out on the internet, existed somewhere in the world.

I had a hard time coming up with a name, but finally decided on one that already existed. Since the book would be fictional, I decided I wouldn’t mention a state that the town was located in. That seemed to work out well for me.  

Once I came up with a town name, I had other questions that needed answered. What kind of business places would the town have that I wanted to include in a story? Would the town have a recreational area/park where people could go camping, fishing, swimming, go boating, canoeing, etc.?

I had to draw out a map with street names, and decide which business or place would go on each street.  I also had to decide where the elementary school, junior high school, and high school would be located.

Would the town have a police department or sheriff’s department? How many people would work there? What would be the pecking order be? I also had to come up with names of officers and what their position in the department would be.

I had to decide how the layout of the police station/sheriff department would be inside. Where would the jail and courthouse be located?

Once I got all of that decided, I had to do more research on coming up with names for my characters. I decided that two families would be the main characters in my book. The first family consisting of a dad, a mother, twin sons, and a daughter. The second family would consist of a dad, a mother, a son, and a daughter.

In choosing first and last names for the characters in my book, I had to be careful that I didn’t use the names of actual people that I knew, or had known. I didn’t want them or a family member coming to me and asking why I had used their or a family member’s name in the book.  

 Because I was writing a fiction book, I could make up names of people. 

I also came up with names for the people who had owned the old house that my story would be about. There would also be three troublemakers who were in town.  I had to come up with names for them

I also had to give names to the people who own different businesses around town.

I’d make up a name for other characters, as they were added to my story.

Once I had the names of my characters I needed, I started writing out an outline of how the story would go in each chapter.

 Once I got a basic outline of each chapter written out, I had to set up the format for my document (margins, font, writing style, etc.) before I could start writing the book on the computer.

There are many other decisions to make when writing a book, but I covered most of the basic research you need to do when writing a fiction mystery book. 

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/Tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron: How I Wrote Perished

R. Frederick Riddle image

How I Wrote Perished is not just about my writing, but I have included ideas that you might emulate. It all started with inspiration.

INSPIRATION

My history prior to the writing of Perished: The World That Was takes you all the way back to my childhood. Looking back, I have always had a lively imagination. As a child I would daydream of heroic stories in which I played the hero. These were typical childhood fantasies, but I guess I never grew up. It is a fact that to this day my imagination works overtime.

As a teen, I realized I wanted to write stories and as a young adult I actually signed up for a writing course which I eventually dropped for lack of money. But I had the bug and never quite quit writing.

I also loved reading books, so I read a lot of books. I occasionally tried to write a novel but even if I got to the point of developing a plot and working on a novel it eventually ended. I would hit the proverbial wall which I didn’t know how to get around. So, the novel was stopped and eventually ended in the trash. This was not necessarily a bad thing since these attempts can best be described as terrible.

At the age of 30, I received Christ as my Savior. In an instant I went from a man destined for Hell and became a child of God. Some people mistakenly say that all are children of God, but what they really should say is that all are created by God. When I received Christ, my destiny was changed and I became a child of God, a member of the family of God.

But asking Christ to save me didn’t just change my eternal welfare. The Bible teaches that many other things took place then as well. I already had the desire to write, but I believe that God also changed my approach to writing and gifted me. But I was unaware of that. At the time I still couldn’t put together an entire story. I would get so far and then hit that wall. But God was working on me.

From that time onward God worked in my life changing me. My worldview was brought into agreement with the Bible. As I studied the Bible, I began growing spiritually. I not only attended church but began having daily devotions.

But in 2000 everything changed!

Up to that time, I had written poetry (it won my wife) and computer programs (amateur) that helped my employer. None of these completely satisfied, but they kept my fires burning. I even dabbled in the hobby of building a model train with a village that became the center of another novel. But it also came to an end.

Then on one day in the year 2000, I was doing my morning devotions. My habit was to read a chapter a day until I’ve read the Bible through. It usually took a couple of years, then I started over. (I still try reading a chapter a day, but now my wife and I do devotions together, which has taken first place.) On this particular day, I was reading the Book of Genesis about Noah and the Ark. And the inspiration hit!

I thought, This only covers the basics! There’s a story untold and I can tell it.

From that moment of inspiration, I knew what I wanted to write. But there was something else. I took this in prayer to the Lord and I was given a certainty about writing that I had never experienced before. I could never prove it, but I now knew it was God’s calling on my life.

As a side note, let me say that such a realization changes your life and your approach to whatever you were called to do. Other changes will take time, but the call to write was instantaneous!

Soon, I was busy writing my first book, Refuge: The Genesis Chronicles (no longer available). The book was published by AuthorHouse, and it was good enough that the president of a Christian university read it, complimented me, and encouraged me to continue writing. Such commendation was better than a published review because it undergirded my belief that God had both called and equipped me to write.

And it changed my life!

I not only continued writing but I eventually wrote the novel Perished which became the foundation for the series The World That Was which includes Perished, World of Noah and the Ark, World of Shem, World of Abraham, World of Jacob, and World of Joseph.

More on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a free video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos is Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

I didn’t just start writing as soon as I was inspired. Instead, I began what some authors might consider a dirty word: Research.

But it is necessary for both the non-fiction and fiction writer. For a novel to connect with the reader it needs to have actual facts. I use two methods of relating the facts:

To tell pertinent facts before and after the story (such as seen in the World of Noah and the Ark). To include facts within the story (a practice I use in all my novels).

But how did I get the facts?

There are a number of ways.

Read the Bible accounts (assuming your book is based on the Bible). Read history books. Do a deep internet search. Use logic based on historical facts.

If you are writing about the Bible, it is obvious that you need to spend a great deal of time in the Bible. In the case of Perished, I not only spent time in the Book of Genesis, but I used other books in the Old Testament and New Testament that related to the subject. That requires a great deal of time and effort.

The second item mentioned was reading history books. Not cover to cover but selecting those portions dealing with the subject. Depending on how many books you research this could take some time.

The third thing mentioned was do a deep internet search. By deep internet search, I simply mean using search engines, such as Google, to search out the subject and find relevant resources.

But a word of caution.

While the internet is a rich source of information there is also false information. For example, there are sites that are anti-Bible. Some sites are self-proclaimed, but there are others who are more subtle. So, you must be discerning. Find reliable resources such as Answers in Genesis and Institute for Creation Research. There are others but these are extremely reliable.

But it is the fourth item, I want to spend some time on. While the Bible is true and accurate, it only relates information that God wanted us to know. The whole purpose of the Bible is to show us our sin and need for a Savior and that Christ is that Savior. So, it only relates the historical facts needed to convict us of our need for salvation and spiritual growth.

When writing Perished, I ran into a big obstacle. While the Bible gives us a lot of facts about the world existing before the Flood, it doesn’t break it down for us. Added to this is the lack of secular history, especially anything reliable. A good example of unreliable secular history is the history of Egypt. If you want to spend a day or so struggling to put it all together, try understanding Egyptian history in the light of world history. Very difficult.

So, I was faced with a big unknown. I knew that the people from Adam to Noah were very intelligent and built cities, but I had no historical proof. That gap has been filled by man with evolution, which is strictly theoretical, unproven, and contrary to the Bible.

So how did I resolve this issue?

Let me give you a challenge. Find a history book that you think is reliable and start reading from known history beginning with Nimrod and other world leaders. Study the civilization that existed. Take a look at the:

Government, Arts, Industry, Warfare, and more.

I think you’d agree it was a very developed society. Now take a look at the preceding civilization. Evolution teaches eons of time, yet there is no real evidence that conclusively shows evolution. Instead, there is evidence of a worldwide cataclysm, which we know as the Flood. We arrive at a question: How did mankind go from a caveman society to a sophisticated society? Or, Biblically speaking, how did the world recover from the worldwide Flood which destroyed everything to a sophisticated society?

We are speaking of a 300-to-500-year time span. How is that possible? Well, logic tells us that it is impossible for that degree of sophistication to develop in such a short time from virtually nothing. BUT if Noah brought the knowledge over the Flood to the new world, then everything falls into place!

And that opens up a window into the past!

It occurred to me that if I look closely at the first 300-500 years after the Flood, I have a window into what the previous civilization was like. While scientists never seem to consider such a fact, the movie industry easily adopted it. The movies I have watched, anyway, have shown a society that was quite sophisticated. Not because the industry believed the Bible, but because they had to use what they knew.

When studying the ancient past prior to the Flood, we have a window that shows us what that world was like before it was destroyed. And, thereby, I was able to construct that world within the pages of Perished.

Which is what research is all about. Most of the time, research isn’t so complicated. But it is needed! When someone buys a novel, they want to be entertained, but they also want the world it takes place in to be accurate and true.

When I wrote Dead Eye Will, which took place during and after the War of 1812 and was centered on the brother of an ancestor, I had to do a lot of research. Since most of the story took place in Ohio, Michigan, and portions of Canada, I had quite a lot of research. But once again it involved three items – history, deep internet research, and logic.

Is it worth it?

By far most readers have rated my books 4 and 5 stars. One of the reasons was the inclusion of facts which brought the story alive. I include such things as the clothing worn, the preparation of food, the food itself, and much more. All of which helps enliven the story. The reader was able to enter the world and almost participate in it. And that is what any author wants!

Research is just one aspect of writing, but yes, it is worth it. If you are in the ministry as a pastor, Sunday School teacher, or similar ministry, then you already know how to research. And you probably know that you learn more about the subject than you can ever relate. I learned that as a Sunday School teacher and that has helped me as a writer.

I have covered inspiration and research. But writing also includes learning the rules of grammar, editing, and so much more. These are topics I plan to cover in future blogs. But here are a few hints.

If you self-edit your book, then that requires multiple edits. You have to overcome the fact that you know what you wrote or intended to write, and your brain will tend to gloss over errors. That means intensifying your reading! Please, don’t think it must be perfect. No book, other than the Bible, has ever attained that level. Every writer is a human, and we make mistakes. And if you do make mistakes, I can show you how to easily correct them.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email. And if you like my blog, why not subscribe? The button is in the sidebar on the right. Type in your email, click on Subscribe, and you’re done.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron: Writing Bible-Based Novels

R. Frederick Riddle image

Those of you who follow me are aware I write Bible-based novels . Perhaps you are interested in doing the same.

Writing Bible-based novels is how I became an author. I had struggled for years trying to write a novel. Usually they were secular in nature, but one thing they all had in common was that I would get so far into the story and then writer’s block. I was stopped and eventually set the story aside.

But in the year 2000 I was reading the Bible account of Noah and the Flood. And suddenly God opened my eyes. The Biblical account didn’t give a lot of detail. Instead, God provided just enough detail to acquaint the reader with the fact that man had become corrupted and He was going to destroy the world and begin again with Noah. To know our sinfulness and our need for a Savior, these facts were more than enough.

But I saw the possibility of a novel that would still bring that truth out and yet entertain. Thus began my writing career.

Writing a novel based on the Bible can be very successful or it can be very risky. All sorts of people have their own ideas about the Bible. You are not going to please everyone. But if the follow some simple guidelines you should be able to appeal to a fairly large audience. With that in mind here are a few guidelines.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

So, what are the guidelines?

  • Always assume the Bible is correct

You can really get messed up if you accept the popular myth that modern science knows better. Modern science can shed light upon the Bible but it can never contradict the Bible.

  • Do Your Diligent Research

This is a must.

The best method I have found is to use the Bible as a filter or better yet as a spotlight. Whenever you find a new ‘fact’ shine the Bible spotlight upon it. This will keep you from going astray. And look for little known facts. For example, in my series The World That Perished I studied the clothing, foods, industries, and weapons used in that era. Research should be paramount.

  • Work the Biblical Text into the Story

In other words, sometimes you take a direct quote of one or more verses and make them part of the story. If you use the KJV Bible, you will want your characters to use KJV language. I mixed the Old English and modern English together so that the characters could speak using both interchangeably.

  • Use Bible Characters

This is unavoidable but is also good. If your reader is familiar with the Bible, then there will be a common connection between your novel and the Bible.

  • If you can avoid conflicting characters do so

But you may run into more than one character with the same name. This creates a difficulty especially for readers who skip (I had a reviewer who skipped and thereby claimed I was inconsistent with my characters).

  • Use only one Bible version

You can use other versions to increase your own understanding, but only use one in the book. Otherwise, you run the risk of confusing your reader. I use only KJV, because I believe it is the only accurate version. However, the choice is yours.

  • Don’t Be Preachy

That doesn’t mean not including the gospel nor does it mean not having sermons or other Christian statements. It means not being overbearing. It means the gospel, sermons, etc, should all fit within your story seamlessly!

As of this date, I have only had one reviewer pan one of my novels. I referred to him above. He skipped his way through the book, which is a major no/no for reviewers. Generally, I have received four-and-five star reviews. Why? Because I followed the above rules. And I made a conscious effort to pull the reader into the story.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. The website is still a work in progress, but you can save our website address or make use of our RSS feed: https://www.trbookservices.com/blog/feed/.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Tess: Why I became a Writer

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

I want to share with you a few reasons why I became a writer.

First reason for becoming an author.

I started reading books when I was in fourth grade because of the teacher I had. She loved reading books, and would read a portion of a book to us each day, after we had lunch. Her love for books rubbed off onto me. I started buying Nancy Drew books, Hardy Boys books, etc. to read.  

 In 9th grade, I took a “Book Reading” class.  The teacher of that class had a love for books. He had each of us pick books we wanted to read.  As we finished reading each of our books, we had to write a book report, plus do a little research on the author. That’s when I became interested in reading books that had something to do with history.

After the break, I will discuss this further.

We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com.

Check us out and get your career moving. Now back to the article.

I also had other teachers in 9th grade that loved to read, and who passed that love on to me. My English teacher had us read books and write a report on the book and the author.   In World History class, the teacher had us read “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”.  In English Lit and American Lit both, there was a lot of reading involved.

In the 12th grade, in American Government class, we were required to read the constitution and memorize it.     

It was good that I had developed a love for reading. Otherwise, I would have been in trouble. In certain classes in junior high and high school both, reading books counted as ¼ of our semester grade.

The second reason:

When I took my college entrance exam in high school, there was a portion of the exam that included writing. We were given a few subjects to choose from to write about. Once we picked a subject, we had so much time in which to write a story based on that subject.  When the results from my college entrance exam came back, a school counselor sat down with me and went over the results. He said, “Teresa, in the writing area, you scored in the top ten percent of the nation. I really think you need to consider writing as a profession.”

I dismissed the idea and didn’t think about it anymore. I had my heart set on going to college and taking classes in the business/secretarial field.  Well, during my two years of college, I was required to take a few English classes: “Foundation of Communication One”, “Business Communications”, and “Business Letter Writing”. A lot of writing, plus creativity were in those classes.  I just couldn’t seem to get away from taking classes that involved learning how to think for myself when it came to writing.  

This third reason is really the main reason I started writing books. 

Several people I knew, and some I didn’t know very well, started complaining that more Christian writers were needed to write books.  It was getting harder to find good clean books to read that didn’t have swear words or dirty scenes in them.  It was also starting to get harder to find devotional books for women that used the King James Version Bible verses.

God started dealing with me about writing fiction books that didn’t have swearing or dirty scenes in them. After I wrote my first book and got it published, I started writing my second book. After doing research and started in on it, God spoke to me about putting that book aside and start writing Christian Devotional books for women.

That is what I am doing at present, writing a Christian Devotional book for women that contains KJV Bible scripture.  I hope to have that book published before Easter.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Get new posts by email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

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Blog by Ron: New Blog

R. Frederick Riddle image

If you have been following my blog, you may readily see that in some ways this is a new blog. At the same time, it is an old blog that conveys to you information you can use as a Christian author.

If you are new then I hope you like this blog enough to follow me. And please use the the comments to let me know about yourself and your views.

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Blog by Ron: A Writer’s Job

R. Frederick Riddle image

What is a writer’s job? Before answering that, we need to see what it isn’t, or what constitutes bad writing.

Several years ago, I spoke at a meeting in a local library. The librarian knew I was an author and invited me to speak at one of the library sponsored meetings. The subject was a review of a book by a famous author (name intentionally withheld).

I didn’t know the author or her books, but I agreed to do the review. That was a major mistake, and as a warning I suggest you always know the who, what, where, and how, before you say ‘yes’.

I took a copy of the book with me and began reading it. It didn’t take long for me to discover that the book was filled with foul language and filthy sex. It was a struggle to read and very offensive. Finally, I went to the librarian and expressed my desire not to review the book.

I don’t remember our conversation word for word, but in the end, I decided to honor my commitment. That was one of the most difficult reviews I have ever done. It was a terrible book which I would never recommend.

But the plot was strong and could have easily stood on its own without the language and sex. The author had a good imagination, but somehow felt it necessary to include graphic sex and language, which made it a terrible book.

But it was a best seller!

How could I condemn a best seller as a bad book? And if my views were correct (they were), how come it was a best seller?

I will answer the second question first. It is simple: Sex sells! As does filthy language.

As for the first question, I said bad things about the book because they were true. Remember that it is not sex, violence, and swearing that makes a great book, but plot, believable story line, and strong characters.

Back to the meeting. In my review I condemned the book’s excess. One attendee, obviously a fan of the writer, objected. She claimed to know personally the author who she claimed was a great person. Which may be true, but I didn’t attack the author, only the book.

Like I said I never said a word against the author. I condemned the writing. And there is a difference between them. But the attendee then attacked me. There were others in the room who were split between us. Some agreed with me, others didn’t.

Was I wrong? No.

Since that meeting I have talked about writers not using profane language or excessive graphics. I also wrote in the blog about it. A reader responded by saying that I was imposing my religion on the readers.

That was not true. Long before I asked Jesus into my heart to save me, I knew that such writing was wrong. There was even a time I enjoyed that kind of literature, but I knew it was wrong.

Now I am a Christian and have the Bible as my guide. But whether a writer is a Christian or not is not the issue. Great writing uses the imagination of the reader.

After the break, I will discuss this further.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Some people might object to my statement that great writing uses the imagination of the reader, and point to the author’s sales as proof.

But sales don’t make a great writer, either.

Pornographic books about in our world and they sell. That only proves the depraved nature of mankind. Many people enjoy that sort of thing. But pornography in any format is not a great thing.

Neither is excessive violence. I use violence in my books along with sex. But I leave the imagination up to the reader. Putting swearing, graphic sex and violence in a book doesn’t make it more realistic. Contrary to the idea that all men and women swear, have illicit affairs, and are violent, there are many people out there who try to live their life and maintain a good reputation. Some of them are Christians, but there are many non-Christians who try to live moral lives.

A writer’s job is to stimulate the reader’s imagination, not replace it!

The reader’s imagination is important. It is one of the tools we writers have at our disposal. One of our goals is to stir that imagination to the point where the reader identifies with one or more characters and gets involved in the plot to the extent he or she can picture it.

You’ve heard the term, ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’, but the reverse is true also, ‘a thousand words paints a picture’. A painter: that is what I see a writer as. We are painting with words.

So, how should a writer paint?

Put another way, how do you the author show passionate characters and/or events without crossing the line?

Believe it or not, there was a time when authors solved this dilemma. In the case of language, they simply used symbols, such as, #$@&%*! And these are called grawlixes. Odd word, but I looked it up and that’s what they are called.

There are a lot of reasons and uses for grawlixes from extreme curses to any swear word at all. It is up to the author. While in today’s world the use of grawlixes is hardly used, I think Christian authors should use them. Sometimes, you want your character to respond emotionally. For instance, a man smashes his finger with a hammer. That suggests a strong word, maybe a curse. Then use a grawlixes and let the reader’s imagination fill in the word.

In the case of violence, you can write a violent scene without all the blood and guts. For example, in my novel Perished: The World That Was, the following scene took place:

Akkub turned and saw Meremoth rushing at him. He blocked the initial strike although staggered by it. Meremoth used a two-handed grip to force Akkub back. Suddenly Akkub lost his footing and Meremoth’s sword came slicing downward unblocked.

Everything seemed to stop as the General looked at his severed hand still gripping the sword.

Here we have a sword fight that results in one man losing his hand. The amount of detail provided is not too graphic, but it is enough to stimulate the reader’s imagination. And different readers have different levels of imagination, so each reader may picture the fight differently. In any case, the scene is full of action yet not too graphic.

The violence was visible, the result was obvious, but it didn’t get into the gross appearance of the hand.

In the case of sex, my usual approach is to focus on the events leading up to the act and to the events leading away from the event. Again, I let the reader’s imagination fill in the gaps.

In truth, the reader’s imagination is a valuable tool available to every writer willing to make use of it.

It is a tool that needs to be sharpened. You do that by using it. Moreover, you experiment and see what works. As deeply as I believe in what I am saying I have had people who reviewed my rough drafts tell me that I needed to back off in this or that scene. So, you need people you trust to review your rough draft before you submit it for publishing.

My final thought on this is what is your ultimate goal? We all want are books to sell. That is a given. But what is your ultimate goal?

Is it to simply get rich? Then you’ll probably reject everything I’ve said.

Is it to simply write? Then you may or may not care about this blog or about sales.

Is it to write your very best book? Then I contend you want your writing to be above reproach. Fame and sales would be nice, but you want to be able to say to yourself, I did my best. And that brings a deep sense of satisfaction!

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministy, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

I promised that I would keep you informed about the website. Well, it is not completed, but the blog has now transitioned to it. And my wife is beginning her own blog!

My RSS is rfrederickriddleblog.

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Blog by Tess: Struggle Writing

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

My struggle writing began in 2014, I was sitting in McDonald’s with my husband. Told him I felt that the Lord was telling me that I needed to start writing books.  He supported me in it.

I went home and started gathering information for writing a book:

  • what type of story would I write?
  • where would it take place?
  • layout of the town’s businesses and streets.
  • what is the size of the town’s police department?
  • What is the pecking order?
  • names and description of each character in my book
  • the list goes on.

After the break, I will discuss this further.

We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com.

Check us out and get your career moving. Now back to the article.

After a few interruptions, I finally got around to start writing my book in 2017.  But then came another interruption.

One day a knock came at our door. It was the landlord’s agent who told us that we had 30 days to move out of our Condo. The owner wanted to sell it!

We started packing, but in the midst of it, we ended up evacuating to Lakeland, because hurricane Irma was headed our way. After a few days there, we came back to Port Charlotte and continued packing boxes for our move.

Finding a place to live was a struggle. Everywhere we tried to find a place, they had a long waiting list.  We finally ended up in a hotel for 3 days before moving into a camper loaned to us by a church member. Praise the Lord!

We lived there for several weeks before we were able to move into our current apartment. 

When we moved in on Oct 27, 2017, and got settled, I started writing again.  In January of 2018 I was diagnosed with cancer and had to undergo radiation and chemo for several weeks, plus some surgery. That did me in, to the point I could hardly do anything, let alone write.  It took me weeks to get my strength back.  But they had gotten all the cancer!

When I got much of my strength back, I started working on the book again. In 2019, I was again diagnosed with round two of cancer.  Again, I underwent chemo and radiation.  It was 2021 before I could continue to work on my book. I was determined that I was going to finish that book and get it published.

I finished and published it in 2020! It was a wonderful feeling knowing that I had finally published my first book.

I started writing book number two, another fiction. Late in 2021, God started dealing with me about writing some Christian Devotional books for women. I put the fiction book aside and started doing research for a devotional book. At present I am in the process of finishing the book so it can turn it over to my proofreader.  I would like to be able to publish the book by the end of the month. 

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/tessriddle.

RSS feed is tessriddle/feed.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

I promised that I would keep you informed about the website. Well, it is not completed, but the blog has now transitioned to it. And my wife is beginning her own blog!

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Blog by Ron: Follow Me Issues

R. Frederick Riddle image

I am working on getting the blog to allow you to Follow me and/or Subscribe to my blog. I am having some technical issues which is one reason for this blog.

However, it is also an opportunity to tell you that the new website is progressing and should be “LIVE” no later than April 1st. My goal is much sooner!

If you see icons for following and for social media, then I have met another goal.

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Blog by Ron: Christian Viewpoint

R. Frederick Riddle image

I thought it would be a good idea to discuss Christian Viewpoint. I have touched on this subject in years past, but Christian Viewpoint is a very important factor for Christian authors.

Now, right up front, I want to admit that there are possibly Christian authors who don’t write from a Christian viewpoint. That’s extremely hard to do, because once you have gotten saved, the Biblical truths begin to infuse your thinking and how you react to the world. But it is possible.

But if you are one such individual who has acknowledged that you’re a sinner and need Christ as your Savior and have sincerely asked Him into your heart, then I believe you are a Christian.

And as a Christian this blog is something you should read.

As a Christian we are to belong to a church. It is interesting to look around at the churches and God always seems to provide people within the local church who can serve within that church. This is not an accident. He knows what He is doing.

The typical local church consists of:

  • Pastor
  • Associate Pastor
  • Deacons
  • Treasurer
  • Choir
  • Song Leader
  • Ushers
  • Janitors
  • Instrumentalists

Most of you know these, but what about:

  • Kitchen workers
  • Nursery workers
  • Office workers
  • People who can care for the property
  • People who can do carpentry
  • People who can paint

And the list could go on. Some of these gifts we easily recognize as gifts, such as preaching. But there are many gifts, such as writing, that are not on that level (edifying gifts). Instead, they are serving gifts.

I believe that writing is a service gift. God calls men and women to serve Him in a variety of ways. He gives us talents and gifts to serve the church. Not only serve the local church, but to serve the Christian community. One such gift is Prophecy.

Prophecy?

Yes. We tend to think of prophecy as the gift of foretelling future events. But that is only part of it. Prophecy is also forthtelling; that is, it is the ability to communicate the gospel. Basically, that is what a preacher, evangelist, or missionary is doing. They forthtell the gospel. And that is an edifying gift.

This is usually done orally. But writing things down and communicating the Biblical truths also come under this title. And that is where Christian writers, whether in a ministerial position or not, come in. And that is also a serving gift.

And then there is another gift: the gift of Knowledge.

Knowledge?

Yep. Where prophecy is forthtelling, knowledge is clarifying, understanding and being able to communicate that understanding to others. This is what we as authors do even when writing fiction. Whether fiction or nonfiction we have an opportunity to communicate Biblical truths.

The concept therefore is of Christians writing as a Service! Authorship covers many genres and categories within each genre. The concept of writing can be reduced to writing from a Christian viewpoint.

After the break, I will discuss this further.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

What do I mean by Christian viewpoint?

Basically, this involves the tenor of your writing. In my case I write novels that are based on Bible stories. There are such books out there that are based on Jewish or Christian views. Obviously, mine is Christian. My books may or may not be based on the Bible, but all will be characterized by a Christ-centered theme. By that I mean that the reader will come across scripture pertaining to salvation. It will be a theme that runs through the entire story.

I believe God calls each of us to some ministry. A few are called to be pastors, evangelists, and missionaries, but most are not. So, does that mean we just sit around doing nothing? No, the church would die without workers; or to put it better, servants.

Now my books do nothing to help the local church work better. Although, I am now getting into writing nonfiction books that can help a Christian in their day to day lives and in their service to the church.

Why do I write with a Christian viewpoint?

The reasons are twofold. First, the Bible stories are true events, not children’s stories. They are about real people and real events. The stories are meant for people of all ages. And they are written to instruct not entertain!

God is not in the entertainment business. Each of His stories is meant to teach or drive home a point. A good example is the story of Noah and the Ark. This has been widely viewed as a story for children. However, the story has very little entertainment value as written. But it is highly instructive and teaches us about God’s love and provision.

My job is to take that story and weave in material that transforms it from its instructive nature to an exciting action-based novel that awakens the imagination of the reader without losing the instructive side. Judging by my readers’ comments, I have been successful.

Secondly, my job is to put God on display. The Bible already does this with great effect. So, it is not as difficult as it seems except in those situations where the Bible is silent within the story, but comments on it later on. As an author, I can lift those comments from the future Bible sections and insert them into the story itself. I do this with actual quotes or an imaginative conversation that is true to Biblical context.

But it is not just to put God on display. It is also to enable my readers to see and feel His love and power. I can think of no greater compliment than to learn that my novel has so impressed someone that he/she desires to read the Bible!

So, in general, my Christian viewpoint is to relate Biblical stories that emphasize God’s love and power in an entertaining manner that both uplifts and convicts.

Your Christian viewpoint might be a little different. It doesn’t have to be Bible stories for example.

The point of this blog is to show you that as a Christian author you have an important place. We live in a world where non-Christian books abound. We are a true minority. But we are on the winning side and know the truth.

God has given you the gift. Don’t just use it for your own gratification. We’ve all seen entertainers, especially singers, who started out in church and later went big in the world. I am not saying that it is wrong to sing professionally, but I think it is better when the singer uses the gift given by God to glorify God. And if you are a Christian and have received the gift of writing, then it seems to me that it should benefit the church, especially your church.

How?

Writing books that can be used by the church. That is somewhat obvious. Here’s another one: providing money to support the church beyond your tithes. Helping other Christians by using your money and your voice on their behalf.

My wife and I love to write. And the idea of making money appeals to us. But both of us want our writing to accomplish whatever God’s will is concerning our success and how we use that success for Him. That is exciting!

Whatever genre you write in can be used for God. It doesn’t matter if God is mentioned or not, but the worldview can still be such as to point to God. The thing is, God has gifted you with a precious gift that He wants you to use according to His will. Find out what that will is and submit to it.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

I promised that I would keep you informed about the website. Well, it is not completed, but the blog has now transitioned to it. And my wife is beginning her own blog!

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Meet Tess

Teresa (Tess) Riddle

Hi, I’m Tess Riddle.

Welcome to my first blog. I am excited about being a part of a Christian writer’s group and launching this new blog.

I want to share a little about myself. I was born and raised in Michigan. From the time I was a teenager, I have wanted to write. When I took my College Entrance Exam, I scored in the top 10% of the nation in writing.

After the break, I will discuss this further.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

But after I got to college, my college counselors told me that I should consider writing books. Over the years other people have told me the same thing. But I didn’t.

Instead, I opted for the secretarial field which led to a career as a clerk and later secretary. It wasn’t until I was 69 years old that I wrote my first book, Haney Place Secrets, which has been published and is available on our website.

At present, I’m working on a couple of devotional books which I plan on finishing and publishing this year.

With this blog I plan to share my journey with you along with tidbits from my books. It is going to be exciting, and I look forward to sharing it with you.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/tessriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

We promised that we would keep followers of RFrederickRiddleBlog informed about the new website. Well, it is not completed, but the blog has now transitioned to it. Both Tess and R Frederick have their own blog! See you there.

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Welcome to New Blog Site

R. Frederick Riddle image

ALERT – THE OLD BLOG SITE WILL BE CLOSED DOWN SOON

If you have not moved to our new site at https://www.trbookservices.com/blog/ then now is the time.

It was a pleasure using the old site, but now I am at trbookservices, which by the way is still a WordPress site, so you should not see major changes. The only changes I anticipate is improving content and possibly the addition of my wife Tess Riddle. I haven’t figured out all the details yet, but I am excited.

I would be delighted if everyone who currently follows me will follow me right to my new home.

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Web: Build a New Website

R. Frederick Riddle

As you may know, I have decided to build a new website from scratch. I also chose not to migrate the old site from its domain to the new domain. Migration is supposed to be easy, but I knew that if I did that, I would still have a lot of updating to do since I am making major changes.

One of the deciding factors was that I have previously built websites. In fact, this one is my third, perhaps fourth, build. So I felt more comfortable.

As of yesterday, I could say that the new site is now up and running. Is there work yet to be done? You bet! But getting the Google Ads and Listings up and running, along with Google Merchant Center has been a blessing. And, while I have gotten a lot done, there are still jobs, mostly small, awaiting me.

But I am ahead of schedule. After the break I will tell you more.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Now that the Google Ads and Listings are up, and the Google Merchant Center is active, I can now start fine tuning the overall site. This is actually exciting because I thought it would take longer than this. I praise God because I certainly wasn’t blazing any trails!

One more thing. I promised to keep you updated on this transition to a new domain. Starting with this blog I have now officially moved my blog to trbookservices.com. For the present I will first post it on this site, and then on my old domain, rfrederickriddleblog.com. But come April the old site will most likely disappear from site.

Now I have some other news not associated with the site. You may remember that I have joined Christian Authors Community. Well, I will soon be submitting my books to be advertised in the Christian Book Club. I will let you know more about that in the future.

Finally, my interest is still in helping others become writers. To further this along I have recreated Services, where I will be providing to you helps and at least one referral. Today, I want to focus on helps.

Instead of a sub-menu under Services, the Services page has:

  • How To
  • It’s Your Business
  • Ministry Services
  • Professional Help

These are still in the development stages, although It’s Your Business takes you to some older videos I did. Still valid, but a different website and our services have changed. I plan on updating these in the near future, but they are informative now. And Free!

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a change and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.

One thing I promise to do: I will continue to keep you informed and when the new website is ready, I will provide you with a link so that you can check it out. More importantly, following me. I haven’t checked it out yet, but if able I may manually add each one of you as a follower of the new blog site. If that is not allowed, I will strongly encourage you to follow me.

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First Steps in Blogging

R. Frederick Riddle

I have now begun my first steps in blogging on a new site. Having purchased a new domain from Siteground.com, I am now in the process of adding tools including plugins to the website.

For the time being, I will continue blogging on two platforms which are RFrederickRiddleBlog.com and TRBookServices.com. When I finally complete the rebuilding of my site, I hope to have a seamless transition from WordPress hosting to Siteground hosting. And a better, smoother experience for all visitors.

After the break I will tell you more.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post or podcast to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a video service to help authors learn how to set up their business. We provide free video training where you learn why you, as an author, are already a businessman or businesswoman. You also learn basics for structuring your business. Along with these videos are Learning to Write with the basics you need.

To discover how we can help you be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond with a free copy of our Guide to Writing.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Thus, I will publish new blogs just as always, but I will publish older blogs on the new site plus all new blogs that occur right here. In this way, I will be able to build a sturdy blog archive. In addition, I will be dividing the blogs categorically. There will be categories like blogging, church, government, and writing. This will help me keep track my blogs more efficiently.

Meanwhile, I will also be adding products to the website and eventually offering additional products and product specials. Last year, I added WooCommerce to the website and I will have it on the new website as well. All of this means that I will have more flexibility in what I offer and the price I offer my products at. It is all very exciting.

Today’s blog is somewhat small, but don’t worry. I will be able to write more content shortly.

One thing I promise to do: I will continue to keep you informed and when the new website is ready, I will provide you with a link so that you can check it out. More importantly, following me. I haven’t checked it out yet, but if able I may manually add each one of you as a follower of the new blog site. If that is not allowed, I will strongly encourage you to follow me.

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Blog by Ron: Why I Blog

R. Frederick Riddle

Today I want to explore the reasons why I blog. Primarily I will be looking at this subject from the author’s perspective. By the way, I want to thank those of you who have welcomed me to WordPress. It’s an exciting place to be.

Now, Why do I blog?

To answer that I must first provide some history. I didn’t start blogging until after my first novel, Refuge: The Genesis Chronicles, was published in 2003. The reason was simple: To get my name out there. If you want to sell books you need to get known and blogging is a logical marketing step.

At the time I maintained my website with AT&T. Actually, it was Yahoo & AT&T. This partnership of two giants provided a WordPress blogging platform. Although I didn’t know it at the time I was starting out with probably the best blogging platform in existence.

A newbie at blogging I didn’t know what to blog about, let alone how to blog. I decided to blog about anything that came to mind. That certainly provided me with a lot of material, but experience has since taught me that such a wide subject matter hurts rather than helps your blogging reputation.

I continued to use AT&T Yahoo Business Plan for my blogging until 2009 when AT&T and Yahoo decided to have their own separate plans. I cancelled my plan with them and moved to AT&T Small Business Solutions. This however was primarily my email account. My blogging now shifted to Godaddy.com where I created a brand new website called RFrederickRiddle (my website RFRiddle remained with AT&T Small Business Solutions). There I created a strong multi-page website and a blog.

This blog was not as strong as WordPress, but it did meet my needs. By this time I had realized that I needed to narrow my subject material. But I still was operating without any real guidance or goals. The result was that I would write for awhile about politics and then later write on Writing. Still later I might write on some other subject. This proved hurtful and discouraging.

Another twist occurred around 2011 or shortly afterward as Godaddy no longer allowed website users to have a blog directly attached to their website (my old blog was blog.rfrederickriddle). Instead, they now allow you to import an existing blog.

So I moved to Goodreads where I was originating my blog for a few years. Goodreads is an outstanding site where you can interact with other authors. But I have been disappointed in their blogging tools. Too restrictive and not very powerful. That said, it was still a valuable piece of internet real estate.

So I moved to WordPress and immediately imported my new blog into Goodreads. This proved to be a very wise move. Another move I made was to focus on Writing. This expanded in 2014 to publishing and marketing due to our founding of T&R Independent Books. I stayed with WordPress until this year and am now moving to Siteground.com. However, I will still have WordPress hosting by Siteground. So, if you see any differences, you hopefully will see improvements.

There, you have a brief (well, as brief as I could make it) history of my blogging efforts. I entered into blogging not knowing much and with no direction, but I have learned a few things along the way.

One of the things that always attracts me is the availability of Free and Premium plans. Many platforms offer this and you would be wise to check it out.

By the way, WordPress comes in two formats: .com and .org. Again personal experience and preferences would determine which you go with. In addition, there are quite a few WP hosting sites available, such as Siteground.com, Bluehost.com, and others.

This is actually individual choice. I see blogging as a marketing tool that can truly enhance your authoring experience. See the rest of this blog for more details.

All of this is part of blogging. Of course, I know there is Facebook and Twitter, but I am not eliminating them as marketing strategies. They have there place, including a relationship with my blog.

When I write a post, I publish it and I promote it on both Facebook and Twitter. I will also promote my blog in our newsletter, T&R’s Writers World.

Blogging, therefore, is more than a record of your thoughts and actions. It is an opportunity to influence people. As an author I have the opportunity to help others who may be new writers or even long-time writers.

Which brings me to the following question: Do you blog?

If not, why not?

You don’t have anything to say? I disagree. You are an author. You can write about your own journey, about your books, about the genre you are in, and a host of other related subjects. Or you can talk about other subjects that, while not directly related to your books, enhance your reputation.

There is one more reason for blogging: it lets people get to know you.

That sounds scary, but it isn’t. If you remain true to your voice (writing style) and blog with valuable information, people will get to know and trust you. That can only be good for you!

You may argue that you don’t want to market books, just write. Unfortunately that is not true any more. If you write books, you are a marketer. The question is are you a good one or a bad one?

Give blogging a try. Choose a topic that you are knowledgeable about and blog about it. And then be patient. You won’t be a blogging success immediately (although it does happen), but if you stick with it there will be long term benefits.

There are numerous blogging platforms. Investigate. Try one and if disappointed you can move on. Finding the right one for you may take time.

Rons blog 1

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Blog by Ron – What to do About Writers Resources?

Writers Resources. That is a question that I have recently been dealing with. It all began when I decided to use my knowledge of writing to build a Basic Training Course for writers. As I began developing the course, I realized that it would be one huge course if I prepared a lesson on each resource.

What to do about writers resources?

So, I decided to provide resources, aka tools, to my students as downloadable PDFs. I prepare these tools and then post them on the student’s page. But then I had another question:

What are these Writers Resources?

The word resources is rather broad, so I needed a narrower definition to work with. I have already used the word, so I will tell you again. It is tools.

Writing tools, to be exact.

Tools that will enable people to write effectively. But that was still somewhat broad.

So, I redefined it again, and arrived at: specific tools.

What are These Specific Tools?

Glad you asked. And I will get more specific on the other side of this break.

T&R Independent Books brings you this blog post to keep you informed on the issues of today. Authors need to stay informed so that they can relate to their readers facts as well as entertain them with their imagination.

It’s Your Business is a Basic Writing Course that explains and guides you into becoming an author. Powered by video along with PDFs and Coaching you learn the basics of writing. Sign up is Coming Soon and Class will start shortly afterward. Watch for the headline ‘Authors Basic Training Open for Registration now’.

To discover how you can be the writer you want to be, write to us at marketing@tr-indbkstore.com. We will respond.

Check us out and get your career moving.

Now back to the article.

Building a Library of Writing Resources

If you have never built a writing resources library, now is the time to do it. It is true there are professionals out there that can do much of the work needed for you to succeed. But I am a believer in learning how to do things even if I hire someone later to do them.

With that said, Let’s Build That Library.

A Resources Library is in my opinion a necessity. So, without further ado, let’s look at these resources or tools. You should have in your library (physical or digital):

  • Customs and Manners of historical times and places.
  • Dictionary.
  • Grammar book.
  • Grammarly.com (or something akin to it).
  • History books (if you write historical fiction).
  • Word processing program.
  • A Writing program, such as Microsoft Word.

These are just some of the resources you need. And if you plan to establish yourself as a business, then you need:

  • Information regarding setting up a business.
  • Programs or books on writing basics.
  • and more.

Some of these tools are easy to get hold of and relatively cheap until you add them all up. Building a library can get expensive. The good news is that there are places you can get that information relatively free.

For Example, Writing Resources are Available from this Blog.

I use blogs and social media provide information to readers like you. While I also have a Writers Basic Training Course, I believe in providing as much information as possible to people at no cost.

Which brings me to a tip: Build a Digital Library.

A physical library is important to have, but in this day and age a digital library is virtually a must.

How Do I Build a Digital Library of Writing Resources?

You begin by following bloggers like me who are willing to provide information free. Will you always need all the information that a blogger provides. No, but I was once told that if you go to a meeting and get one nugget of value from it, then that meeting was worth your time and expense.

Much of what I learned over the years about writing came from information I gleaned from bloggers, marketers, and others. I slowly built up my own digital library and I added then and still add material now to that library. It will help you immensely.

What Writers Resources Should I Start with?

The answer to that depends to some degree on what genre you are writing. That said, I think it is essential that you have a word processing program with strong editing features, such as Microsoft Word or a program like it.

(One side note: Never allow editing software or a human editor to dictate your writing. Consider the advice, then you make the decision. It is your book, and they are merely tools to help you, not control your literary genius.)

Another tool not mentioned above is called a Beta Reader, which I will discuss in the future.

VISIT MY AUTHOR’S PAGE TODAY: amazon.com/author/rfrederickriddle.

Don’t forget to comment below. We are always interested in your opinions. And to make sure you get our blogs, simply check the box that says, Notify me of new posts via email.

Company information:

T&R Independent Bookstore is a division of T&R Independent Books founded in 2014 by R. Frederick and Tess Riddle. TR Ministry, aka Ministry Services, is both a charge and an exciting outreach to the Christian Community.