Friday, November 20, 2015

Prayer, Patience, and Planning Your Word Count

Thank you, Dawn Kinzer and the Seriously Write Team for having me on their blog today. Enjoy my post," Prayer, Patience, and Planning Your Word Count."
Friday, November 20, 2015 
Do you ever struggle with comparing yourself to what other writers are accomplishing on a daily basis? Author Lynn Hobbs offers encouragement on how to deal with those often challenging word counts. ~ Dawn

Prayer, Patience, and Planning Your Word
Each author enjoys a sense of accomplishment when numbers rise on their word count. Have you ever noticed someone on social media announce an addition of one thousand or more words to their manuscript in a day? How exciting! I quickly congratulate whoever is making progress. Our situations and routines are different, though. Don’t get discouraged if you only write a few paragraphs daily. Go at your own speed. Quality outranks numbers, and numbers will grow in time.
After attending numerous workshops over the years, the consensus is still the same. They all teach to write your story while ideas flow, not stopping to edit, correct punctuation, or refrain from using the same adjective. Simply write and focus on the story. I follow several proven methods and continue learning tons of information from writers and speakers at workshops or conferences.
My steps are:
1. Pray for direction. As a Christian, I want God’s will in whatever I write as well as whatever I do.
2. Have patience with interruptions. They will happen. Stop if they are important, and address the problem. I type one more thought concerning my story before leaving it. This prevents returning, and staring at the page, lost.
3. Plan a set time and place to write daily. This applies to all age groups. I met a young woman at a conference who had two children of preschool age. She was frustrated with her word count and ready to stop all attempts at writing. Upon discussing what her typical 24 hour day involved, it was apparent she had too many tasks to complete. Writing while her children took an afternoon nap wasn’t an option. What worked for her? A simple notebook. Ideas were recorded as she spoon fed the baby three times a day. At night, after the children were in bed and as laundry sloshed in the washer and clothes spun in the dryer, she constructed sentences. It was ‘her time’ and proved to not only be relaxing for her, but a workable method to write her novel.
After completing several pages or a first chapter, I print each page and read them out loud. Often, I have omitted a word I thought I typed. Next, I ‘tighten up’ the story by removing all unnecessary words such as that, etc. Explore the find button on your Microsoft 10 word doc, enter and track down excess words to delete. How many times did you use the same word on the same page? How many times did you have someone smiling, or coughing?  Change the repetition. Is someone sad? Show action, don’t tell it. This pulls a more detailed description from you. Keep polishing in this manner, and have it critiqued. With suggested edits, stay true to your style. It is your own unique voice.
Practice what works best for you, and never give up. My favorite scripture is Philippians 4:13; “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

The true, life story of Lillie Fritsche; one of sixteen siblings, born in the depression era. Lillie’s mother passed away when she was seven years old. Follow her journey from a motherless child to an inspiring woman of faith.
 As per many reader requests, the printed version is available in a Large Print Paperback, or a handy on the go Digital Download for your Kindle device in regular print.
Book includes treasured family photos, and some of her favorite, handed-down German recipes. I hope you will enjoy this glimpse of her life narrowed down to 430 pages in the large print paperback.
Lynn Hobbs, author: Running Forward Series; a powerful faith and family saga.
#1: Sin, Secrets, and Salvation, awarded 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2013, Texas Association of Authors #2: River Town, 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2014,TAA.#3: Hidden Creek, 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2015, TAA. New release, 10/2/2015;  Lillie, A Motherless Child. (A Christian biography)
To learn more or connect with Lynn, please visit:

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

"Lillie, A Motherless Child" by author, Lynn Hobbs, featured on Venture Galleries

Thank you, Venture Galleries, for featuring my new book, "Lillie, A Motherless Child" on your website today! Readers, enjoy the first chapter!


Last One Chosen

Wednesday Sampler: Lillie, A Motherless Child by Lynn Hobbs

Lillie_A_Motherless_Cover_for_Kindle (414x640)
In our mission to connect readers, writers, and books, Venture Galleries has launched a new series featuring writing samples from some of the best authors in the marketplace today. Wednesday’s Sampler is an excerpt from Lillie, A Motherless Child, a touching portrait of a woman of faith by Lynn Hobbs.
The Story
The true, life story of author Lynn Hobbs’ mother, Lillie Fritsche; born in the Depression Era with sixteen siblings. Lillie’s own mother passed away when Lillie was seven years old. Follow her journey from a motherless child to an inspiring woman of faith.
Book includes treasured family photos, and Lillie’s favorite recipes handed –down from German relatives. Paperback book is available in Large Print. Kindle edition is in regular print. I hope readers enjoy this brief glimpse of her life narrowed down to 430 pages. I wrote it in first person and stayed true to Mother’s voice.
The Sampler
Lynn Hobbs
Lynn Hobbs
“Mama, Mama,” I screamed a projected level only a seven year old can master. Overcome by fright, my voice suddenly broke. I jumped up and down in agony. A shrill, high-pitched yell finally sailed out, “Raymond fell in the pond. He’s drowning.”
“Well, reach in there and pull him out.” She called frantically from somewhere inside the house. The windows were wide open. Curtains billowed about in the afternoon breeze.
My four year old sister, Bernice, glanced toward me and emitted a low, mournful wail that escalated to ear-piercing cries. My heart raced. Leaning forward, I could barely see the mass of curls on top of Raymond’s head. At two years old, the murky water was sucking him under. Snatching his hair, I yanked the tiny body from the pond, and shoved him onto the grass. He coughed and sputtered.
“Tee, what you make me done?” His anger spat at me.
“See, you got too close. Get back now. Come on.” He struggled while trying to raise himself from the grass. I helped him up as Bernice approached.
“Bubba,” she said half-aloud, her chin trembling.
“Is Raymond all right?” Mama hollered.
I turned and caught a quick glimpse of him. He was sopping wet and silent. He didn’t look hurt. “I got him out, he’s okay.”
“Bring him and Bernice with you and stay on the porch.” Her voice drifted to the back of the house.
Reaching for a hand from each of them, I took my little brother and sister with me. The pond was about twenty-five feet away from the left side of our home.
We walked to the front lawn, past the water well with a hand pump, and slowly made our way to the porch. The wooden house was large and painted white, and Mama had a kitchen garden behind it. We climbed the steps to the front porch and sank into the empty rocking chairs where our parents sat in the evening.
No one came to check on us. I knew Mama was cooking or cleaning.
My name is Lillie and Daddy calls me Lilla-Mae.
Raymond, Bernice, and I were the youngest of sixteen siblings. Our German family struggled as did countless others during the Great Depression years. First born was Matilda (Tilda), then Edwin (Ed), Olga, Otto, Ernst, Hattie (Jane), Amanda (May), Marie, Elsie, Rudolph (Bill), Rubin, Lorraine, Lillie, Fredrick (Freddie, died of phenomena at two months old), Bernice, and Raymond. Born in 1928, I was the oldest of the last three siblings and watched after the other two. Our older brothers and sisters were either in school, helping Daddy work in the field, doing daily household chores with Mama, or married and had moved away. Unknown to us children, the depression was in progress. This was our way of life, we were a happy family, and we were loved. If Mama had to stop and run after so many children all day, she would never get anything done. It was natural for us to look after each other.
“Let’s play nails.” Bernice pleaded after we rocked and sang and finally became bored.
“I guess so. We can stay by the porch.” I focused on Raymond and raised my voice. “You stay away from the pond.” I scolded. His little face turned slowly toward the ground, and his eyes were almost closed. I watched as the small shoulders on his thin frame shook up and down. He whimpered under his breath, and I realized I had been too hard on him. I knew why he loved the pond. Mama had all of us children stand in line each afternoon, passing a bucket of water from the pond to her kitchen garden. She would stand in front watering the vegetables. Raymond thought watering was fun. That was why he wanted to go near the pond. He wanted all of us to get in a line and pass the sloshing bucket across the lawn to each other. Someone always spilled water on his bare feet, and he’d laugh with excitement. I stopped and hugged him.
“I’m sorry I yelled.” I stammered. Water was still dripping down his face. I shoved wet hair back from his forehead.
“Okay, sister.” He patted my arm, his feelings had improved, and I was grateful.
“Raymond, wait here while we get the nails.” He flashed a wide lopsided smile, and we were once again buddies.
Retrieving the nails was not an easy task. Crawling under the porch, Bernice and I wiggled across the dirt. A strong, musty smell of damp earth hung in the air and assaulted our nostrils. Totally drenched, Raymond squatted in the sunshine, and extended one open hand under the house. He sifted dirt through his fingers and waited for us to transfer the ‘toys’ to him. Most of the nails were rusty, all were different lengths. These were our ‘people’. Retrieving them from the front of a brick, we scooted back to Raymond, and placed them in his little hand. He deposited them on the ground, and returned his out-stretched arm toward us again.
“More, bring some more.”
“Here come the rooms. Be careful with the glass.” I called out to him, and maneuvered back to the brick. Various shapes of an assortment of colored glass lay in a pile. Lifting them cautiously, I dumped all of the pieces into Raymond’s hand. Bernice scrambled out from under the house, and I bumped the top of my head as I exited.
Our older sister, Marie, had taught us how to play nails. We would draw a house in the dirt with a stick. A piece of colored glass was placed inside each drawn square to make a ‘room’. The nails were the family for our houses. Long nails were the parents, smaller nails were the children. We would name them, walk our people to each other’s houses, and talk for them as they would visit each other. We’d play for hours. Our imaginations were based on observing our own families routines, and the conversations we copied were overheard from them. We couldn’t afford real toys and enjoyed pretending.
Bernice and I sprawled on the ground and drew our houses in the dirt. We set up our play area, while Raymond ran to our two older brothers ‘cars’. They were Rubin and Rudolph’s make believe cars. The two older brothers were in school that day. Raymond eased into the deep, oblong hole each brother had dug in the ground, and sat down, placing his legs inside, also. An old piece of board was always kept inside each car. Our little brother held the car’s board up with both hands. This was the ‘steering wheel’, and he took turns ‘driving’ each car for the remainder of the afternoon, while Bernice and I played nails. The drowning episode was quickly forgotten as our laughter filled the air.
Making no attempt to stop playing, we glanced at the commotion from the road as our two older brothers walked home from school. We lived in the countryside of Fairbanks, Texas with few neighbors and had our own farm. Our brothers drifting voices became more distinguishable on their approach to our front lawn.
“Lillie, a jack rabbit chases us all the way home.” Rudolph said, frowning at the three younger siblings. Rubin’s mouth fell open, and he turned to stare at Rudolph in amazement.
“You are joking, silly Rudolph. Rubin would catch that rabbit and make a pet out of it. Isn’t that right, Rubin?”
“I sure would, Lillie. We could all play with him.” He grinned and followed Rudolph up the steps to the porch.
“Girl, you caught me joking, again.” Rudolph laughed and both boys entered the house.
Later that evening, Mama called us in to eat dinner.
Robert and Martha Fritsche were our parents. Daddy always said the blessing before we ate. I can remember the long, wooden multi-planked table where we all gathered to eat. Mama and Daddy sat at each end and long benches held a mixture of my brothers and sisters on either side. Rubin was 10 years old and Rudolph was 12. They would slide huge bowls of food down the length of the table to reach other family members. Everyone talked at the same time, and it was always cheerful. Dinner went by fast.
This particular evening, Daddy had picked a watermelon from the garden for our enjoyment after dinner. Busy cutting it open, he laughed. “Hard to believe nothing has ever slid off this table and made a mess on the floor.”
Rudolph stood and reached for a slice. “That’s because we practice so much.”
Everyone was ready with outstretched hands as Rubin and Rudolph slid one slice after another down the long table.
I ate a few bites and accidentally swallowed a watermelon seed. I gulped, and Rudolph noticed.
“Oh, your belly is going to get as big as Mama’s.” He announced.
I knew Mama was big and pregnant nearly every year and Rudolph’s warning shocked me. I looked at him wide-eyed and fear engulfed me. I burst out crying. My parents and siblings spoke in unison claiming that wouldn’t really happen. I trusted them, and finished my slice of melon.
After eating, our older brothers and sisters cleared the table and washed the dishes. Bernice and I would run out to the porch and try to beat each other to the laps of our parents as they rocked in their rocking chairs. Bernice always crawled into Daddy’s lap and I scrambled to Mama. They held us each evening, and it was such a comforting time.
When Mama tucked me into bed that night, she noticed my dirty feet.
“Lillie, go clean your feet. You can’t sleep in bed like that; you’ll get those sheets dirty.”
“Mama, I’m tired. I promise I’ll hang my feet out.”
She laughed. “”Okay, then, but you better hang them off the bed all night.”
“I will.” I solemnly told her, and I did.
I had no way of knowing then how much I’d treasure our time together. My mother would pass away within forty-eight hours.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

New Book!


Lillie, A Motherless Child is now available on Click the title to go directly and view a free sample from Kindle!

It is available in a Large Print Paperback or a handy on the go Digital Download for your Kindle device.

I know many of you have been patiently waiting on this publication, and I appreciate all the encouragement in helping me to tell this story of my mom. For those of you who are not familiar with my latest project, it is the true life story of my mother, Lillie Fritsche. One of sixteen siblings, born in the depression era. Lillie's mother passed away when she was seven years old. Follow her journey from a motherless child to an inspiring woman of faith.

Book includes treasured family photos, and some of her favorite, handed-down German recipes. I hope you will enjoy this glimpse of her life narrowed down to 430 pages.


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Daily Dialogue

American Christian Fiction Writers approved and published my new post on 5-11-2015 on their website. Enjoy Daily Dialogue, my example of the old rule to 'show not tell' for writers.

Daily Dialogue

By Lynn Hobbs
Conversations written with emotion are excellent page turners. When the reader is offered an in-depth look into two characters particular situation, I recommend having both characters point of view to consider, instead of skimming over the conflict as in many cookie-cutter novels.
Dialogue can hold your attention as you learn both sides of the issue.
John squinted as sweat beaded across his forehead. Jerking the letter from the mailbox, his eyes focused on the county logo displayed as the return address.
I just got off work. Why are they mailing me something?
He ripped the letter open and glanced at the pink form.
Downsizing? The word echoed in his mind. Adrenalin raced, and John drew his fist back violently hitting the metal mailbox.
Louis watched his neighbor hit the mailbox and shook his head.
What a hot-head…
He strolled toward the row of shrubbery separating their property.
“Hey buddy, you okay?”
“Yeah. Lost my job… lousy way to find out, though. Read about it in a letter.” John balled the letter up and pitched it back inside the mailbox.
“Well, you county road and bridge employees have had it made for a long time.” Louis huffed and placed his hands on his hips.
“What? How can you say that?”
“It takes three men each carrying a shovel to walk behind a truck and fill a pot-hole. Seen it too many times.” Louis emitted a loud belly laugh.
John cringed and stared wide-eyed at Louis.
“Am I hearing you right?” John gasped and marched to the shrubbery. “We do more than fill pot-holes in all types of weather, and you work sitting at a desk in comfort. I am appalled at your opinion, and shocked by your attitude.”
“Attitude? What attitude? I just can’t believe my taxpaying money is wasted on men lolly-gagging around on the job. I’m glad the county is cutting back on employees.”
“Louis, I wouldn’t be so quick to judge. You don’t understand.”
“Oh, I understand alright. I have eyes.” Louis sauntered back to his house.
John stood with his mouth open. Speechless, he glared as anger gnawed at his insides.
Who would have thought Louis felt so strongly against county workers? And I thought I knew him well. What else does he feel strongly about? I haven’t a clue. John left the row of shrubbery and silently returned to his own home.
That is one example of two points of view on an issue in dialogue. The extremely different opinion by one character makes it a more interesting read, especially when the other character is not expecting it. Stating that Johns’ neighbor Louis was glad John no longer worked for the county road and bridge department would not keep the readers attention.
It goes back to the old rule of show, don’t tell.
Another idea is to have a character tune out what the second character is saying while the first one is deciding what to say or how to explain something.
Whatever you do with dialogue, make it believable.
Lynn HobbsLynn Hobbs is the author of the Running Forward Series; a powerful faith and family saga from Desert Coyote Productions.
Book #1: Sin, Secrets, and Salvation, awarded 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2013, Texas Association of Authors.
Book #2: River Town, 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2014, TAA.
Book #3: Hidden Creek, 1st place, Religious Fiction 2015, TAA.
You can find Lynn on her website at
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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Correct Order

My new submission to the American Christian Fiction Writers blog was approved and published on Feb.25, 2015. Besides a learning experience, it has fond memories I shared. I am blessed to be both caregiver and caretaker to my Mom, in addition to the blessings I receive in writing.  Enjoy!

Correct Order

By Lynn Hobbs
Usually, I write and edit one book or one short story at a time before beginning another. Like some authors, I have a lot of interruptions. In trying to allow for a smooth transition to ‘jump back to where I left off’ in whatever I am writing, I list ideas I want to consider before I stop. Hours later I return, correct order is determined of ideas I kept, and I write totally immersed in the novel.
As a disciplined writer, this is my routine. It works well for me, and I encourage you to be comfortable with whatever routine works for you. Similar to drinking coffee, some want it iced, some like it black, others enjoy a creamy concoction in their brew. It’s all coffee, whatever you prefer.
I did experiment recently, and got out of my comfort zone in writing. Yes, it taught me more than I ever imagined, and it was for the best in this particular situation.
As a writer who creates lists with priorities, I started lining out my next Christian fiction series, what I wanted to convey, etc.
Yet, each day, I was pulled to write another novel, a biography about my 87 year old mother. Being her caretaker, I am with her daily; she is my next door neighbor. I often hear her stories that are truly unique, heart-warming, and inspiring. Naturally, I prayed for direction.
At first, I scribbled notes to myself of what I wanted to include in her book, while writing the first book of my new series. Later, I had Mom write the year of what particular event happened, and suggested she list what meant the most to her from everything she had experienced.
Scanning through her list, my gut feeling kicked in, and I knew my prayer was answered. Mom’s book was my new priority. I gave it my full attention and discovered how difficult it was to write due to the true, emotional scenes.
After I wrote over twelve chapters, Mom would remember something else that belonged in a past time frame. I’d back track, including 600 to 800 additional words in the correct chapter, and it flowed well. Weeks turned into months as she and I would stop for doctor appointments, maintenance, grocery shopping, etc. Her biography continued as I worked on the perfect book cover. More stories were recalled that I absolutely had to include. I back tracked again. They were not only special, but each had a meaning behind them. They inspire.
I am almost finished writing this book. Of course, I have used all the tips and instructions I was taught from attending many writing workshops.
I learned yet another lesson, which proved valuable in creating an older character for my other fiction novels. Correct order is not how we remember. Our memory comes in spurts with laughter, or somber reflections of wisdom. Now, I am more prepared to ‘jump back’ into writing my new Christian fiction series. Thank you, Mom.
Lynn HobbsLynn Hobbs is the author of the Running Forward Series; a powerful faith and family saga from Desert Coyote Productions.
Book #1: Sin, Secrets, and Salvation, awarded 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2013, Texas Association of Authors.
Book #2: River Town, 1st place, Religious Fiction, 2014, TAA.
Book #3: Hidden Creek, 1st place, Religious Fiction 2015, TAA.
You can find Lynn on her website at
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