Thursday, August 30, 2007

Writing Black, Reading Christian

This week I've been at the Shades of Romance Online Writer's Conference. Yesterday I served on a panel titled: Writing for the Lord. We had a great discussion. During our panel a debate that pops up at least once a year through the loop surfaced. Why don't Christian Book Enthusiasts not read Christian Books written by African-Americans? We need to have a frank discussion about this topic, then put it to bed. The best comment will receive a free copy of my ebook: Dee's Book Reviewing Fast Facts: 20 Tips to turning this hobby into a Cheap Read and some Pocket Change.

Monday, August 27, 2007

The Masters Artist Relocation 07

The Master's Artist recently moved to a new server, and not everyone has caught up to us. While you can still reach the site by visiting, our address at Typepad is now: To get the word out, we'd like to ask for a little help from our friends:

(1) If you've linked to our site from your own site, could you double-check to make sure your links point to the new location?

(2) If you have a blog, could you post a brief notice online letting people know that the Master's Artist has moved?

We are grateful for the community that has built up around the Master's Artist over the years, and want to make sure people know where to find us. Thanks for the help!

You can still catch me on Monday mornings.

Where is Dee?

Dee_2Where am I today? I am The Master's Artist talking about Tradition vs. Traditionalism.
I am Shades of Romance at the Online Writer's Conference giving a workshop for Beginning Writers. And I'm here wondering what kind of writing you did this weekend? Send me an excerpt.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Do You Write Outside of Your Denomination?

One of my pet peeves when reviewing an inspirational title is denominational legalese. Mind you I have edited a few local pastor's books with that slant. But their books weren't built for a national audience, but for their congregation, which makes it okay. But when you have written a book for a national platform shouldn't the book be universal? And if the answer is yes, then what topics in our spiritual canon could we use? Which ones we should not?

Countdown: 2 days before SORMAG Workshop

The Last Inspired Teen Beach Read

The Last Inspired Beach read for Young Adults, my recommendation is Melody Carlson's Notes from a Spinning Planet.

The Notes from a Spinning Planet series follows the adventures of 19-year-old Maddie Chase as she travels around the world with her Aunt Sid, a reporter. Excitement and adventure abound as Maddie learns about the world, different cultures, and herself. In her first trip to Papua New Guinea,

After her life-changing journey to Ireland, twenty-year-old Maddie Chase feels ready for whatever she and her Aunt Sid will find on their trip to Papua New Guinea. But when she sets foot on the beautiful South Pacific island, she can't help but wonder if it's really the paradise she thought it would be.

As Maddie delves deeper into the culture and history of the land—and develops relationships with nationals who are eager to share their lives—she finds a tangled past that could help to explain the current health crisis. Will Maddie be able to see past the darkness to offer light to these gracious island people?

Join Maddie on her latest international adventure as she learns that maybe it is possible for one person to change someone's world. Read an excerpt

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Weeks Excuse

Sad news in the Atlanta Journal & Constitution today.
Juanita Bynum, a preacher whose fiery and frank sermons about women's empowerment have won her a national following, was attacked by her husband[Bishop Thomas Weeks III ] in the parking lot of an Atlanta hotel early Wednesday morning, police said.
-Evangelist Bynum attacked by husband in parking lot. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Published on: 08/22/07
I'm still trying to process the Michael Vick Mess, Billy Graham's health's worsening and now this disappointment. Let me be clear I'm not a follower of Bynum, but I hate domestic violence. I am a domestic violence survivor. I pray for them both.

Want to stay updated about Juanita Bynum's Domestic Violence Mission?
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Tyler Talk

Christian Fiction Blog has quite a few Tyler Perry fans. I though it would be easy for you, if I speedlinked some of our most read TP entries, in one place. Enjoy.

Monday, August 20, 2007

4 Things Bookish Social Networks Do Blessed Well for The Master’s Artists

Shelfari2Recently have you been invited to join a bookish social network: Shelfari, Library Thing, Good Reads, listal, Shelfcentered?

I have, and, girlfriend, it took me every bit of right now to figure out what to do with them all. My hope was to try them all out and write an article about my picks and tips to help you for a writer’s magazine, but instead I discovered something else. These online book nooks(OBs)can serve a special purpose for The Master’s Artist, too.

Want to know what they are? Click here.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Review: Guilty of Love

Summary: Cheney Reynolds’ condemnation has imprisoned her heart and her faith. She only believes in what she can control, because she can’t forgive herself for having an abortion when she was a teenager. When she befriends her womanizing neighbor she opens up to love again. Will she have a happy ending this time or lose her faith forever?

Parke “PJ” Jamieson VI is as arrogant as his namesake. He is a descendant of African kings, which in his eyes, has given him license to be a ladies’ man. But when he befriends his unattractive neighbor Cheney, he finds himself falling in love for the first time.

Read the full review in the September edition of Romantic Times Magazine on newstands now.(Urban Christian, August, 300pp., $14.95)

Friday, August 17, 2007

Are You Going on a Shelfari?

Ok. Who han't signed up for a shelfari account? Someone sent me an invitation and boy...I can't write for adding books to my online shelf. Before I complete my shelf I want to know from you. What do you plan to do with this information? How is shelfari going to help you as a writer and reader? By Monday I will have some ideas to share until then tell me what you plan to do with it. My Shelfari account is here.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Book Proposals 101 Chat Tonight

Book Proposals 101: Writing a Proposal That Can Land You A Deal

with Stacy Hawkins Adams

Join Stacy and Terry Whalin as they discuss How to write a proposal that can land you a deal.

Guest Speaker:
Terry Whalin has written more than 60 non-fiction books published in more than 50 magazines. For 5 years he's been an acquisitions editor at a book publisher and now he's a literary agent with Whalin Literary Agency.

To help people pursue their own dreams of a published book, Terry has written Book Proposals that $ell, 21 Secrets To Speed Your Success.

* * *

Stacy has been a life-long writer whose passion includes penning fiction and nonfiction.

She wrote articles and columns as a newspaper reporter for 13 years before becoming a full-time novelist, professional speaker and freelance writer.

Her stories have appeared in secular and faith-based publications, including AARP's Bulletin, Heart & Soul, Gospel Today and The Crisis magazines, USA Today, Florida Today and The Richmond Times-Dispatch newspapers and on

Her debut novel, Speak To My Heart, was voted 2004 Best New Multicultural Christian Fiction and Stacy was named 2004 Best New Multicultural Christian Fiction Author by Shades of Romance Magazine. Black Expressions Book Club dubbed her a "literary rising star."

Stacy publishes a well-regarded, nationally distributed e-newsletter called Life Untapped™ that features prominent fiction and non-fiction authors and other writing news each month. As a trained speaker, she shares messages with corporate, college, civic and faith-based audiences designed to help them discover and pursue their life's purpose.

Stacy's third contemporary Christian fiction novel, Watercolored Pearls, will be released in October. See for press kit or to request a galley. Email for media interviews.

To learn more about Stacy, visit
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Telecast ID: 12895

In advance of the Talkcast show: Visit, sign up, pick a PIN, and optionally dowload the TalkShoe Live Software. Registration is FREE. At the time of the show or up up to 15 minutes early, use the link above to find the show. Click the purple Talk bubble that says, "Listen, text or talk live". Sign in if it prompts you to and then click the Talk bubble again. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Beginner's Writers Workshop

Ever read a book or seen a movie and thought to yourself: I think I can do that. But you don't know where to start? Then meet me online on August 27 at SORMAG Online Writer's Conference. I will be hosting a beginner's writing workshop. Registration deadline is August 18.

Monday, August 13, 2007

5 Surefire Ways to Write with God's Favor

Dee_2Ever wondered if what you've written was what God wanted you to write? Imagine that you wrote a great story with its sole purpose to glorify God. Readers would read it, then pass it onto their friends and family. They would pass it onto others. Everyone becomes more illuminated every time they read it. Everyone will learn or be reminded that God is magnanimous. Sounds good. Huh? Want to know what it takes? Click here to get started.

Friday, August 10, 2007

About Dee

Me, Dee

I am the Gospel Diva Mama of her seven-year-old daughter, Selah Skye. I am also an editor and book critic, and she is a publicist to gospel recording artists and actors living in the Atlanta area. She hosted two reading event series in The A, and coordinated the Christian Fiction Workshop Panels for the 2007 RT Book Club Convention in Houston, TX. She's written articles for Spirit Led Woman, Gospel Today, and Precious Times Magazines. I'm penning a novel about you and the blinged-out skeleton in your closet.

Other Places to Find Me:
Christian Fiction Blog
My Stories

Email: vidae at writing dot com

MySpace Deegospel


Stay tuned for my past mag articles

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Bloglight: Agent, Chip MacGregor

You want to publish a book, but don't know where to start? Literary agent, Chip MacGregor is cool enough to answer your questions on his blog.
He represents some of the best Christian Writers on the planet, and I personally know he is passionate about this industry. Moreover he's funny, quite bright, and is very honest. You want people to honestly tell you if your idea sucks rocks. Yet, be encouraging enough to guide you. :)

Some bloglights from Thinking about Collaborative Writing...

If you're asked to ghostwrite something, ask for a reason. I've been at this for years, and I've yet to hear a reasonable explanation why a writer should not be credited. So if you're asked to ghost something, ask them why. It's been proven that listing a collaborative author doesn't hurt book sales. Look at any celebrity or sports star who authors a book, and the collaborator is always listed. Why the change when it comes to pastors, politicians, and speakers? Let's face it, there's only one basic reason for requesting the collaborative writer's name not be on the book or title page: To stroke the author's ego. (Success and money aren't enough -- they also need to pretend they wrote a book.) And to that I can only say "rot." (Another true tale: I once worked with a woman who had a huge TV ministry. She would always ask for a collaborative writer, tell them they'd get credit, then try to back out of that commitment at the last moment. Apparently she couldn't live with the idea of her followers thinking she would stoop so low as to let someone help her write coherent sentences. There's a lesson: if you're going to get credit, get the commitment in writing.)

Monday, August 06, 2007

Open Book Awards Open for Voting

Filename: j0404425.wmf Keywords: awards, beards, businesses ... File Size: 25 KB
Congrats to my buds and business partners, who were nominated for the 2007 AALAS Open Book Awards:

Click here to vote.

Simple Because

Head over to The Master's Artist Community Blog today. I'm spotlighting Darlene McCoy's wonderful song, "Simply Because," and talking about how Christ's resurrection changed me. I wonder how it has changed you? Come talk to me. Here.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

How to Make Time for the Authentic You?

Filename: j0430526.jpg Keywords: arms extended, arms open, arms outstretched ... File Size: 59 KB
Friday, Selah and I baked cupcakes for our girlscout troop's surprise party. Today she had her first garage sale. Tomorrow she is attending a girlfriend's birthday party, while I hang out with my best friend, who had a birthday last week. Next week we have meet the teacher, a doctor's appointment, two editing client appointments and Women of Faith Conference. This afternoon I wondered when will I have time for me?

There is a me that loves to create things. Paintings, music(tenor sax,) stories. I love to spend time listening to my girlscout troop. Young girls with free imagination are quite creative. They remind me of who I was before I let bills, past disappointments, and my own self-defeated attitude keep me from living free. My faith--or lack thereof-- also keep me from living authentic.

My daughter needs an authentic parent more than a kiddy chaffeur. Don't you agree?

And I want to be free again.

So this is what I'm doing.
  • Reducing my commitments
  • Turning my phone off during my peak writing hours.
  • Increasing my creative time.
  • Saying "no" to the next request asked of me. (unless it's God of course.)
  • Blogging about things that matter or should matter.
  • Pray more
  • Sleep more
  • Allow my daughter free time(her day doesn't have to be so scheduled)
What would yo do? How do you make time to live the authentic you?

Friday, August 03, 2007

2007 Quill Awards Nominees

The Quill Awards nominees are now up. This year I decided to list some books that interest me and may interest you:
  1. The Collaborator of Bethlehem, Matt Beynon Rees.(Soho Press) Mystery/Suspense Nominee.
I'm interested in this novel, because it explores becase of this quote Rees said during an NPR Interview.
Mr. REES: I began the novel here because it seemed to me to be a great way of focusing on the problems of the Christian population here in Bethlehem. And I wanted to have the novel begin in a place where there was real violence - not just the violence of a murder in a murder mystery, but real violence that would give the political context for everything that's to come later in the novel.
First line excerpt...
Omar Yussef, a teacher of history to the unhappy children of Dehaisha refugee camp, shuffled stiffly up the meandering road, past the gray, stone homes built in the time of the Turks on the edge of Beit Jala.

2. Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference?, Phillip Yancey,(Zondervan) Religion Spirituality.

The title alone begs for my attention. I need to increase my prayer life and decrease my writing life. I've been making some careless mistakes lately.

There are other books I want to read. Selah has the first Fancy Nancy book. So I have to get the 2nd. What about you? Which nonimee do you want to win? Are you voting[in September?]

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Philly Writers Unite

This summer Writersview had a discussion about writing workshops which to attend, is to worth it, and all that jazz. I wrote an article here about my picks for writers.

Today I received notice of a conference my galpals, Stacy Hawkins Adams and Pam Perry will be a part of.

Greater Philadelphia Christian Writer's Conference [GPCW] conference, held at Philadelphia Biblical University August 9-11, is open to interested published and not-yet-published writers, and includes 42 workshops, eight continuing session programs, general sessions, worship times and all-important one-on-one meetings between conferees, established writers, editors, publishers and agents.Radio personality Dr. Dan(Moody Publishers) and Rick Marshall(Faithworks), to name a few will be hosting workshops.

"If a writer longs for their words to make a difference in the lives of readers, if it a desire to be encouraged and equipped to write about a God who is real, who is reachable and who changes lives, this is the conference for you," says [Marlene]Bangnull, founder.

For more information on the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Conference, visit the website at, call 610-626-6833 or email Marlene at to receive an 8-page brochure with full details and a registration form.

If you go, I would love for you to come back here and guest blog about it.Stacy, do you know anything about podcasting? :)

Is anyone going to a conference in the next few months(ACFW, Magnolia& Lace)? Let us know.
I will be hosting a beginning writer's workshop at SORMAG's online writer's workshop this month. Stay tuned for more info.


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Unpretty Christians Bad Idea

My twin brother, David and I both grew up on the back pew of churches running up and down the back roads of Okefonokee Swamp. We've seen exorcisms, feet washing, pulpit pimps, six layer chocolate cake, choir stand romances, and ginormous, but gorgeous First Lady hats. However, we both disagree if we saw Christ chilling in any of those churches. We were lusty, moody highschool teenagers seeking some direction and a first kiss, preferably the latter. Me with a tall, badboy preacher's son and him with the girls on the youth usher board at Pleasant Hill Baptist. :)

He found what he was looking for; I found something else: that Christ, the real Christ had a little bad boy in him and whole lot of grace. Finding him those churches weren't as hard as I thought once I knew where to look.

See. He's not found in easy answers, or perfect, pious people or storybook endings and definitely not my PK crush.He was never lost. We were, especially on stormy nights traveling down red clayed church roads.

Today David and I are unpretty Christians. We depend on each other like a roadmap. I hope you have a friend or sibling that can do that for you.

This month Fiction if Rather Sortakes is please to spotlight a story about Griffin Smith, a highschool graduate taking a road trip to his new college home. He brings alone his best friend, Cole, his father, and Rhonda-his dads young fiancee. I can smell bad idea from a mile away. No wonder the story is titled, Bad Idea: A Novel With CoyotesBad Idea .

Here's a snippet

(Todd & Jedd Hafer,NavPress/Think Books, October, $12.99.)

An excerpt...

“We should totally drive!” Rhonda said, wagging a limp french fry for

I clenched my teeth. I hate it when adults try to talk like teenagers. Rhonda
does it all the time. Her efforts are particularly grating to me because she
does, in fact, employ the teen vernacular, but always, always at least
one season too late.

Thus, my father’s 28-year-old fiancĂ©e didn’t say “Congratulations!” when I was
inducted into Quill & Scroll (the National Honor Society for high school
journalists) early in my senior year. She said, “Big ups to you, G!” And when I
was named Honorable Mention All-Area in track and field (small-school division),
she didn’t say “Way to go!” She said, “Big respect, G-Man! You got the mad
wheels, homey!”

If she says, “I’m feelin’ you, dawg,” during one more of our Dad-initiated
dinnertime theological discussions, I’m going to puke on her shoes.

Fortunately for Rhonda, and all of the people at the Big Bear Diner on the
night the road trip was conceived, I didn’t barf when she said, “We should
totally drive!” I raised my eyes to the ceiling and said, “I don’t think we
should totally drive. I don’t even think we should partially drive.”

I looked across the booth to my dad to accept the disapproving glare I knew he
would be offering. I smiled at him. It was my infuriating, smug smile. I
practice it in the bathroom mirror. It’s so irritating that when I see my
reflection doing it, I want to punch myself in the face.

My dad didn’t hit me. That wasn’t his style. He just nibbled his bottom lip for
a while before saying calmly, “I think we should give the idea due consideration
rather than reject it out of hand.”

“Okay,” I said, sipping my bitter iced tea, “let’s hear why we should cram
ourselves into a car and drive for, what, three or four days to Southern
California, stomping on each other’s raw nerves all along the way and probably
breaking down somewhere near the Kansas-Colorado border. Or maybe getting in a

Rhonda looked at my dad, giving him her Wounded Face, all droopy eyes and
puckered chin and poofed-out lower lip. You know the look.

He looked at her, then at me. “Griffin, please . . .”


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