Come

December 10, 2012

by: Staci Stallings

I’ve found a song you just HAVE to hear.  I want you to go and listen (several times if need be).  We will be discussing this song and another over the next couple of weeks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLxdxw4Gj6g

 

For now, just watch.  Listen.  THIS is what I’ve been trying to tell you.

Next time, we’ll talk.

*~*

Cowboy New

Get Staci’s “Cowboy” on Kindle for only 99Cents

through Dec. 15.

Click Here!

Makes a GREAT gift for the

Christian Reader on your list!


The Next Big Thing

December 5, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

This is so fun!

In a few seconds I’m going to share with you my Next Big Thing, but first thanks to Gail Pallotta, who’s one of my writer friends on the ‘Net for tagging me in the Next Big Thing blog hop!  This is the Next Big Thing blog hop in which you get to hop back and forth through the posts to find new and exciting authors and books.  Some authors will share upcoming books, some will share already released books, others will give you a peek into their current work in progress!  So hop around and enjoy all of the excitement!

Now, I’m here now to answer…

10 Questions about My Next Big Thing

And then stick around at the end for a great opportunity and more fantastic blogs!

Hope you have fun…

What is the working title of your next book?

My next big thing will be coming out in February.  It’s called “Eternity.”

Freddie Prinze Jr. as Aaron Foster

Where did the idea come from for the book?

Many years ago I was on a message board for a show that was very popular at the time but the series was ending. There was one actor I just LOVED on the show.  He had an emotional depth that for a young man was astounding.  Then one night I went to a movie and there was a guy in the movie that just captivated me.  Back on the message board, I was expounding on how fantastic these two guys were, and someone said, “Someone should make a movie with the two of them in it.”

Well, I had already written 7 full-length novels to that point, and I WAS inspired.  30 days later, “Eternity” was finished.

What genre does your book fall under?

Contemporary Inspirational Fiction (great story, great message, not overtly Christian)

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Well, THAT’S easy!  The lead role of Aaron Foster is played by Freddie Prinze Jr. 

Rider Strong as Drew Easton

Aaron’s best friend, Drew Easton is played by Rider Strong.

And Mena Suvari is Harmony Jordan.

Mena Suvari as Harmony Jordan

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

He set her up with his best friend, then fell in love with her. Now what?

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

It will be published through Spirit Light Books as all of mine are.


How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

30 days.  Fastest one I ever wrote, and you will probably read it that fast as well.  It kind of grabs hold of you and won’t let go!
What is unique about this book?

This is the love triangle that will rip your heart out and stomp on it… in a good way.  You’ve got Aaron, the nice above-average, completely clueless guy.  You’ve got Harmony, the love-struck girl next door who Aaron sees as his best friend in the world but nothing more than that.  And then you’ve got Drew who you will absolutely fall in love with and then hate everyone else for what’s about to happen.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

They say that nice guys finish last, but what happens when you’ve got TWO nice guys, and only one can win the girl’s heart?


Do you have anything to keep us entertained while we wait?

I certainly do…

You have ONE DAY LEFT to get

COWBOY for FREE on KINDLE–Click here!

“Christian fiction at it’s best!”
Don’t miss out!
Click here!

Then visit the next five outstanding blogs in the Next Big Thing blog hop!

Mary Campagna Findley

Sharon Srock

Naty Matos

Precarious Yates

Edie Mahoney Melson

Enjoy!


Chunking Down

December 4, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

This lesson is a great one for the holidays because let’s face it, we have overcrowded lives already, and then you add this HUGE amount of baking, buying, wrapping, decorating, packing, driving/flying, celebrating, and then cleaning up on top of it.  It can get to be WAY too much.

The essence of this lesson is very simple:  Don’t try to do a whole task, especially an overwhelming one, all at once.

Chunk it down.

What does that mean?

It means instead of trying to do ALL of the Christmas cards in one sitting, do 10 of them and then go do something else.  Rotating through 3 or 4 different tasks, for me, makes things go faster and I don’t get as frazzled.

I do this with my books.  Obviously you can’t write or edit a 400-page book in one sitting.  So I chunk it down.  I set a goal of say five written pages or 10 edited pages.  When that amount is done, I then have the option of doing a few more or going to do something else.

I often do this around the house too.  Instead of saying, “I’m going to clean the kitchen” when it is an absolute mess.  I say, “I’m going to put 25 things into the dishwasher.”  Often by the time I get to 25, there are only a few things left, and I can finish it with no trouble.  If there are a lot of things left, I do something else for a few minutes and then do 25 more things.”

This one lesson has kept me from going crazy because I don’t look at the overwhelmingness of what I’m doing–I do what I CAN do and come back later to do another little chunk.

So what do you have that is overwhelming?  Maybe it’s cleaning out a closet.  Do one shelf at a time instead of all of it.

Maybe it’s a school project, chunk it down in to smaller pieces and do one or two small pieces.  As you do a few smaller pieces, the whole thing will stop looking so overwhelming until the point when you just say, “I’m going to finish this” or to the point that finishing it looks doable.

Good luck chunking things down!  And I hope your holidays are happy and filled with peace and joy!

*~*

Look what’s on Free Kindle Today and Tomorrow…

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Today Thinking

November 29, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

So how do you stay in Today Thinking?  If power is found in today thinking, how does that look in a life?

I’ll give you an example:  Me!

I have a lot going on.  A lot of times I think of myself as lazy, but the truth is probably more that I have so much going on, I stay behind most of the time and often think, “If I could have just gotten that done last week…”

For a long time I drove myself absolutely NUTS with lists and timelines and schedules.  All that did was make me a stressed out mess.

Worse, I wasn’t any farther ahead than I ever was before.

With today/this minute thinking, God has shown me how to maximize what I’m doing and minimize my stress.

So what does this look like?

Let’s say I start my day with the following list of things that really need to be done:

Apply for Credit for husband’s company so we can buy materials for the next job
Decide who will get which articles for free day campaign (25 articles)
Write 100 tweets for free day
Write blog for Spirit Light for Monday
Get books ready for book signing
Edit next book
Finish For Real in print
Get oil in van
Daughter’s basketball game
Get son and take to gymnasics
Pay bills
(Yes, that really was my list last week)

First I would look at this and ask which is critical–must be done in 24 hours or we don’t eat or someone has to sleep at school.  Those are put at the top and when it’s time to do that, I quit whatever else I’m doing.

Next, what is most pressing in say next 72 hours?  That would be paying bills and oil in the van (so it doesn’t leave me on the side of the road and kids have to sleep at school).  Is there anything I can do while I wait for the van?  Yes. I can edit the next book if I bring my laptop.

So I go and wait and edit while I’m there.  When the van is done, editing more will have to wait because it’s not critical or most pressing.

Back home, I look through the list… most pressing pay bills.  So that’s next.

Next is Needs to be Done within 5 days.  That would be the blog and applying for credit.

Finally is needs to be done within 2-3 weeks.  I do SOME on that, whittling it down so in a week or two when it moves up to critical, I don’t have the WHOLE thing to worry about, just some.

Now, one thing that really tripped me up before was that in the middle of something, the phone would ring and it would be my mom or my best friend.  Before I would get frustrated, but now I consider these my Godly Scheduled assignments.  That means God Assignments take precedence 99% of the time.  Only if something is SUPER-CRITICAL do I ask to call them back.  Otherwise, I take the call knowing I’m on God’s time, not mine.

The beauty of this is that I don’t worry about the other ten things when I’m doing one.  I’m doing them in most critical order, so the things that HAVE to be done will be.

I’ve also added into this one other thing.  Every morning now at 10 a.m. I take a break to eat a power bar and drink some good-for-me stuff.  I go in, sit, and watch HGTV and during commercials, I clean.  I can get the living room, kids’ bath, son’s room, and dining room picked up and the kitchen dishes running.  And I don’t feel like I’m being punished with cleaning.
Now my system of today/right now thinking might not work for you, but if it sounds like it might, try it.  If it doesn’t, feel free to try something else.

The point is to learn to stay focuses on one task for a time, then another task for a time without feeling like everything has to be done now and you’re so overwhelmed you just want to quit.  Don’t quit.  Do one thing right now!

*~*

A Work in Progress

on Amazon Kindle

on BN Nook


The Power of Today

November 26, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

One of the biggest issues people face is not facing issues.  And one of their most readily available ways of distracting themselves is not thinking in terms of TODAY.

We all know people who are stuck in the past.  What he should have said.  What she should have done or not done.  Wish I could go back to… when the kids were little, before the kids, before the house, before college… etc.  These people think in terms of “yesterday,” pining for a life that can never be again.

An equally destructive thought pattern is “tomorrow thinking.”  I’ll start the diet on Monday.  Next week when I get the bills paid… When we get the house paid off… When the kids get out of school… When the kids go back to school… When I get a new job…. When we retire…

I know.  You have no idea what I’m talking about, right?

The problem with both of these thought patterns is they rob you of the power of today.

You don’t have tomorrow to work with (and you might never have tomorrow to work with).  You cannot fix nor change the past.

What you have to work with is today.

Does that jar you?  Does it scare you to think in terms of today?  Is tomorrow much more hopeful or yesterday much safer?

Well, it’s time to break out of thinking that way because those are merely excuses that will keep you from making today all it needs to be.

People ask me a lot of times how I get so much done.  With a husband, three kids, two schools, two businesses, a house, teaching Sunday School, volunteering, writing the blogs, marketing the books, publishing new books, writing more new ones, etc.–how do I not go completely insane?

I honestly think my secret is maximizing today.  I do make lists of things that need to be done, but I don’t let that overwhelm me.  I focus on right here, right now and do as much as I can in any given moment.

I’m not looking back and wishing it was yesterday or five years ago (though there certainly are things I could do that with).  Nor do I look ahead much into what I want to do or be in the future.  I’m too busy doing and being right now.

So for today, look at your thought patterns.  Do you spend a lot of time not right here and now?  Do you daydream about tomorrow, or fret about (or pine for) yesterday?

Today I challenge you to harness the power of today.  Doing so can change your life!

*~*

White Knight

“Expect the Unexpected!”

Buy it today on Kindle

or

Nook!


Happy Thanksgiving!

November 22, 2012

 

From me and mine

To you and yours!

Happy Thanksgiving!

May God’s blessings be with you always!

Staci Stallings


Questions that Make You Go Hmmm… #7

November 19, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

We are, by nature, an outcome driven people.  To win the game, we will spend hours practicing.  To have a comfortable retirement, we will work and save for 65 years.  To be successful, we will go to school, then to college, then get a job and work endless hours.

Outcome is what drives us.  We want to see results.  If the prize is big enough, we will drive ourselves half crazy to get it.

So it’s no wonder that many people’s prayer life is results oriented.  We don’t pray to get closer to God, we pray to get things from God.  We pray like this:

“God, if you will just let me get that car… or that job… or that husband… or these bills paid….”

Whatever is our immediate concern is what gets prayer.  And there is always a “result” we are seeking.

Here’s the problem with that.  It doesn’t work.

I’m sorry to have to be the one to tell you that, but it doesn’t.  You don’t pray for the result to get the thing so that you can relax, be at peace, and be happy.  You are happy, at peace, and relaxed and the blessings show up.

So our final question is this:

Are your prayers too results oriented?

This is a hard one because it’s both how we’ve been taught and how we’re conditioned.  It’s not bad to have some of your prayers be results oriented.  I mean, if Grandma is sick, you should pray for her to get well again.  God wants you to take your problems to Him.  However, if that’s all you ever do, you’re misreading the kind of relationship God wants to have with you.

Do you spend time in prayer, for example, simply “being” in the presence of God?  Listening for His voice to tell you that He loves you?  Or do you rush through memorized prayers followed by a list of “how You could make my life better if You really cared” prayers and then get on with life?

If so, maybe it’s time to rethink the role of prayer in your life.

One of my favorite prayers growing up has this line:  Thy will be done today…

THY WILL.  Not mine.  Not what I want, what You want.  I want what You want, God.  Do you?  Do you really?

Or are you a little afraid of what He might put into your life if you give Him that much leeway?

If you find that your prayers are too results oriented, I challenge you today to take one minute and just BE with God.  Just sit, and listen.  See what comes up.  Then do it again tomorrow and the next day and the next.  As you do this, I believe you will start to see peace return and hope spring anew in your heart.

Want what God wants, give Him all of everything in your life.  Otherwise, you will be so focused on getting what you want that you may miss completely the blessings He has in store for you.
*~*

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