View this email in your browser
Personal News
A Time to Embrace

Back in June, you followed my travels to two family weddings. Within weeks, I returned to Florida for a family reunion and a week to celebrate my mom's 90th birthday.

Due to her fragile health, a different family drove to her home each day for a visit, while the rest of us spent time on the beach. Little first cousins met each other for the first time. Little second cousins met each other for the first time.

As the matriarch residing over three generations-Wow! I qualify as a matriarch--I had time to reflect over family legacy. My sons and their wives are raising their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. And it shows. I can say the same for my brother (now the patriarch) and his children and grandchildren. Altogether, I experienced the joy of watching ten young cousins get to know each other!

The eleven-year-old Floridian, played hostess to her girl cousins with flawless grace. The thirteen-year-old took the two-year-old dynamo and played ball with him for hours. The nine-year-old mother hen only wanted to let go of her newborn cousin when she was on the beach. The "Littles," ranging in age from three to six played together like they'd been best friends all of their lives. I never witnessed a squabble!

Their hardworking parents soaked up sun and sea and relaxed. I'd been afraid that I wouldn't be able to pry the cell phone from one workaholic's hand. She sat on the balcony one evening gazing at the ocean and sighed, "This is the best vacation ever. Let's come back next year." I'll cherish her words forever!

In our family we don't always stop to smell the roses, but we do stop and lift our faces to the ocean breeze. Isn't that the key to life and loving? Taking time to be with our loved ones?
I'm resolving right now to make sure I don't wait for a week at the beach before seeking quality time with my family. Even a fifteen-minute phone call every week just to say "I love you" is precious.
Writing News
How Fast Do Publishing Houses Work?

Have you ever watched the ad where a sloth is participating in a game of Win, Lose, or Draw? At the end of a minute, he has drawn one short line. I can't remember exactly what the ad was selling (insurance?), but that's about the speed of the traditional publishing industry.

So, why don't I self-publish?
Because as slow as they are, I believe publishing houses can do a better job creating the finished product of my books then I can.

Before the pandemic, I might have likened the publishing business to the Army--hurry up and wait. They ask to see your work. You're quick to comply. Then you wait. Six weeks, six months...

But over the past year, like many other corporations, publishing almost came to a standstill. With already thin profit margins, they are extra cautious in their investments.

The best hopes for me?
My agent has sent out submissions containing my first two books, proof that I won't be a one-book-and-done author. Publishing houses like that!
Divine Appointments

A Week Filled With Blessings
You realize I couldn't limit myself to one divine appointment, right?
Here are three. I think I'll save the rest for blog posts this year!
1. We took two days to drive from Indiana to Florida. For three hours on day one, torrential rains battered us. Traffic was slow, and the husband and I grew cranky. What a relief when the hotel came into view!

As we checked in, a man stood behind us, dripping puddles onto the lobby's tiled floor. He explained, "I just spent eight hours on my motorcycle driving through that tropical storm."
His wife joined us, perfectly dry.
With a wry grin, he added, "She drove the truck."
He grinned! And Jack and I had been sniping at each other in our comfortable, dry car.

Thank you, God, for showing me someone who knows how to be gracious!

2.  I walked on the beach every morning before anyone else woke up. But one morning, I had an unexpected companion. A dolphin, swimming close to shore, kept pace with me. He'd pass by, wait for me to catch up and pass him, then he'd start the cycle again. Two of God's creations, curious about each other, enjoying a short journey together!

3. On the long drive home, we stopped at a convenience store for breakfast (giving ourselves permission to indulge in junk food this one time!). As I searched for a bottle of forbidden Mountain Dew, I could hear a wracking cough from somewhere around the corner of the next aisle.

A lady appeared, face burrowed into her sleeve. She lifted her head and apologized once she could catch her breath. "I'm so sorry. It's not covid, I promise. As soon as I crossed the state line into Georgia, I started coughing. I'm allergic to something around here."

I'll often do the same thing with certain air-conditioning in Florida, and I told her so.

She responded with gratitude. I hadn't scowled at her cough. With mask mandates recently lifted, people weren't always kind.
We ended up enjoying a pleasant conversation for several minutes, strangers encouraging each other as they traveled through life. Maybe that's what Paul the Apostle did on all of his journeys, build up people wherever he went.

Linda Sammaritan is an agented author who writes middle grade historical novels. Click here to see her published short stories.
That's it for Volume 3 Number 3 of Linda's Latest.
Writing Conference Season is coming up, and I'll be concentrating on building my platform. An author is supposed to have an audience, and mine is growing.
Copyright © 2021 Linda Sammaritan, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp