Thursday, March 24, 2016

Lisa Lickel's New Installment in the Love Is . . .Series!


From the time boys became more than “tag” targets I was never without someone of the opposite sex to hang out with, call on the phone, escort me to dances or movies, even when Mom was the chauffeur. I was a drama queen flirt, histrionic friend, and disingenuous church group groupie. I’d love to say it changed in an instant when as a middle teen the Holy Spirit provided the answer to that infinite question of whether Christ was for real. Decades later, I am still working out who I am on many levels. That story won’t get the final edit until it’s over.

In between, I went to college and joined not one, but two Christian groups, fell in love with the music, studying anything and everything, and the boy with the wispy blond mustache and high-water pants from one of the faith groups who prayed with me for John Denver’s soul. Seriously. We won’t know for a while if poor John received the benefit of our intervention. When the mustached boy didn’t run screaming after meeting my family for the first time when we got snowed in and ate turkey three days in a row, and his dad laughed in good humor when I dropped and broke dishes on the way from the table to the sink the first time I met his folks, I knew things would work out fine.

Two grown up children and an odd assortment of grands—girls, boys, and kitties—later, life is full circle as our oldest son heeded the call to seminary and now serves as area director for the many branches of the campus faith organization his dad and I attended. Son number two followed in his father’s footsteps, attempting to encourage a better world through public education. “Love is not proud” is not an easy description to avoid when it comes to introducing family.

Love has shown me all the attention I need has always surrounded me, filled me, poured out of me in ways I don’t have to control or manipulate, or understand. The Lord of life is in charge. My job is to leave behind a story that boasts only of God’s great mercy and grace exemplified in what He has done for me.

Check out Lisa’s contribution to Prism Book Group’s new Love Is series…



Everything About You
“Love is not proud…” 1 Corinthians: 13:4

She needs a movie set miracle, he needs cash...can a farmer morph into a movie star in five days? 

If Shelly has her way, Danny will become America’s next heartthrob and she’ll get her own promotions company. He’s already gorgeous, a little naive, and needs to work on that accent. To Danny, Shelly is on the pompous side, but holds the key to his real dreams...if he can figure out all the rules, say the right things for the daily vlog session, keep his heart strings in place, dodge Shelly’s vicious former boyfriend and the movie star diva. 


Shelly’s about to lose a lot more than her heart if she can’t get a handle on her wounded pride and learn who to trust.



Thursday, March 10, 2016

Another Winner in the Love Is Series!


Julie B. Cosgrove has added her efforts to the fabulous Love Is . . . Series! She's an incredible writer and I know you won't want to miss her novella. It's based on I Corinthians 13:4-8.


                              Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 
Sibling Love
by 
Julie B. Cosgrove

I guess most sisters bicker as they grow up. We have a tendency to be a tad jealous of each other. “How come she gets to…” and later, “Why do all my boyfriends notice her?” Even later, “Why doesn’t my husband treat me like hers treats her?” or “”Why are her kids so well-behaved?”
My sister and I are six years apart so by the time I entered my teens she was married. I felt a deep loss and for a long time I felt the odd person out. She and my brother’s wife were closer in age, so they bonded. They always huddled at family events. I felt the pangs of exclusion like the wimpy little kid slumped on the sideline bench whose muscles would never fill out his uniform.
Until my husband died suddenly in the shower getting ready for work. Though five hours away, my sister dropped her life and rushed to my aid. She boarded her animals at the vets, packed a bag and drove to my door. I honestly cannot tell you how long she stayed with me. Certainly until after the funeral five days later. Having lost her husband a year previously, she guided my numbed mind and aching heart through the planning, the visitations and the arrangements as I sniveled for days on in overwhelmed by it all.
When I sold the house and moved to a one bedroom apartment, all I could afford at the time, she returned. We spent hours rubbing masking tape onto the floors mapping out where furniture would go and plotting what I could bring and what I should leave behind for the estate sale. She then monitored the estate sale like an award winning  car salesman, raking in the bucks so I could afford the moving company.
My brother, an attorney, drove in to handle all the legal affairs pro bono without blinking an eye. All I had to do was show up at the courthouse and swear my husband to be deceased—by far my highest hurdle. Declaring him legally dead before a magistrate made it real, too real. My brother stood by my side as my knees quaked. His even-toned professionalism became my boulder. I watched, wide-eyed and tear-blinked as he handed off paper after paper to the court clerk. Documents all identified by letters and numbers which I never understood. 
Growing up, my brother seemed a phantom. Eleven years older than me, he was a teenager locked in his world by the time I could toddle. Then came the college years away. When I was in third grade, he walked down the aisle. After that, he moved away, had a child of his own and built a life. Eventually I did the same. For decades we acknowledged each other like shadows at family gatherings. But that day at the courthouse, he became flesh and bone to me.

God purposes good from tragedy. My husband’s passing brought me closer to my siblings and showed me what family-bound love is all about. Five years later, we are able to communicate at a deeper level, share our feelings openly, and be there for each other through this roller-coaster called life. Now, that’s true love— a love akin to no other on earth..

Twin sisters, Erin and Ellen, covet each other’s lives and husbands. Their festered envy has not only kept them at arm’s length for almost two decades, it has placed both on a precipice of divorce— something they’d never admit to each other.Yet after two weeks together with their spouses, as they sort through their mother’s belongings following her funeral, they discover the flaws in their sibling’s “grass-greener” lives. But will that revelation help each sister appreciate her own husband and lifestyle as truly according to God’s plan? Or is it too late for a change of heart?







Julie B Cosgrove is a novelist, but she also writes devotionals and inspirations articles for several publications and websites on a regular basis. In college she won the American Bible Society’s Religion Major of the Year award and went on to study in seminary until the birth of her son, who was in and out of the hospital most of his childhood. However, she never lost the itch to write. After a hiatus of thirty years, she once again picked up the pen and became a freelance writer. She was awarded one of the  50 Great Writersr You Should Read for 2015 by the nationally syndicated radio The Authors Show and her novels awarded her Best Religious Fiction 2016 by the Texas Association of Authors.
 She has four novels, Focused, Hush in the Storm, Legitimated Lies and Freed to Forgive and six non-fiction works published. She is under contract for two more romance novellas, Navy Blues and Hill Country Homecoming,  and a three-book cozy mysteries series called the Bunco Biddies for 2016-2017. The first, Dumpster Dicing, releases June 3, 2106.
When she isn’t writing, Julie is a part-time church secretary, active in her own church, especially in missionary outreach, and mentoring new writers in the craft. A professional speaker, she leads women’s retreats, Bible studies and writer workshops.
Julie is a widow who lives in Fort Worth, Texas with her two spoiled-rotten and lovable house cats whom she dubs her ”beastie boys.” She enjoys clean, romantic suspense and mysteries in print and on film, especially British ones. She is an avid word puzzle player and loves to spend time floating in the Guadalupe River at her maternal family’s cabin in the Texas Hill Country.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Nancy Shew Bolton Releases her Love Is . . . Novella!

Here's Prism's next installment with it's new Love Is . . . Series!


Ah, love! Such a topic!

For me, I had a close, loving family growing up, but we hit some rough times when my siblings and I were all teenagers in the 1960’s, and the closeness often became strained and rocky, especially with our Dad who felt pretty overwhelmed with his outspoken, stubborn children. How I longed for the uncomplicated days when we were smaller!

 I’d always gotten along well with boys, and often preferred their company. But due to a childhood trauma, as I grew older, I was wary of any romantic relationships, and figured I’d never marry since the whole dating process appeared pretty scary to me. Though I perceived interest from various boys during high school, I kept a friendly distance, protecting myself from the titanic hurts I watched my siblings suffer as they navigated through their dating years.

Then, in my junior year, when I was seventeen, I became re-acquainted with a boy who’d once lived next door to us years back, and who I’d hardly seen in recent years. He had soulful, dark blue eyes, and a marvelous, quirky sense of humor which captivated me. He didn’t show any of the annoying romantic attention that always made me wary, and I delighted in humorous bantering with him, and sharing comic observations about everything. He was such fun to talk to.

Somehow, he snuck through my giant defenses, and I found myself fascinated at the thought of getting to know him as more than a friend. Though I resisted it once I realized he was becoming romantic toward me, it grew more difficult to push away the strong feelings I had for him. To his credit, he waited and maintained our friendship while the attraction deepened. When I finally opened the door to my heart, he rushed in and though we’ve had our rough times, now five sons and 40 plus years later, he still makes me laugh and is my other half.

We also shared our spiritual journey toward new birth in Christ in our twenties, and God has been a huge part of our ongoing relationship. I am well and truly blessed with love, and children and we even have two grandchildren now. We’ve never had a regular sort of life, but I’m comfortable being rather an oddball, and so is my husband, who first taught me to embrace my eccentricities, and enjoy them, just as he’s always enjoyed his and mine.  God makes all kinds of quirky folks, and I’m so happy to share my life with my husband John, though honestly sometimes he drives me nuts!!! I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Check out Nancy’s contribution to Prism Book Group’s new Love Is series…



A Work in Progress
“Love is kind…” 1 Corinthians: 13:4

There’s something cooking outside the kitchen…. 

They’ve worked together for two years, but that’s all they have in common. Like oil and water, they just don’t mix. Julie thinks he’s a shallow flirt, Mark thinks she’s a cold fish. Despite their mutual dislike, they’ve carved out a civil work relationship at the restaurant. But after each of their inner worlds suffer a jolt; the careful, polite kitchen routine becomes a stew of conflicting emotions. Things are about to get interesting