Thursday, July 29, 2010

And the man said..."Peaches!"

Do you believe in signs from the Lord as affirmation of something you're doing, especially in your writing life? Or anything else in life? When my husband and I lived in CA, before the arrival of the first of our three children, he had to make a decision as to whether to take a position as a sixth grade teacher in a Christian academy in Riverside. It seemed everywhere we turned were "signs" - things with the words "Riverside" suddenly appeared right and left, people mentioned the word, etc. It was uncanny. Coincidence, or is there really such a thing? Fluke? The signs were undeniably there, and both my husband and I saw them.

I'll confess to not being a particular "believer" in such things as signs from the Almighty...until the following happened. I must preface this post by saying that my core character in my first series, Sam Lewis, loves peaches any way they come. It's a running character trait throughout the series. Not a big deal but undeniably part of his character. And here's what happened...

One day at lunch, I got into the elevator of my office building with two gentlemen. As soon as one of the men said something, I looked at him and said, "If I closed my eyes, I'd think I was in this elevator with Nicolas Cage." As you may know, Nicolas Cage is an actor with a rather distinctive voice. The man laughed and said, "I hear it all the time." He even laughed like the actor. When we stepped off the elevator, I asked him to please humor me and say something to my friends - yes, it was that uncanny. The man was very accommodating. He walked over to the two ladies, planted his feet apart, literally threw his arms wide, and said, "Peaches!" I think my friends could have scraped me off the floor. Of all the words, phrases, or anything the man could have said, he said something that had personal meaning to me and my writing, and my core character. Okay, maybe I'm grasping at straws here. But if you'll indulge me one more moment...

That same building has a store catering to visitors there for conventions across the street. I had just finished the fourth book of this series entitled Daydreams. I rarely go in, but they advertised Ryder Cup merchandise at 75% off, and I thought I could pick up something for my husband. What I found instead were cooking bowls, pots, etc. with labels like Soup, Utensils and Popcorn. They also had an oversized cup with a handle that read... Daydreams. Say what? I will bring it to the ACFW if you want evidence. Last example: my son, Matthew, is high-functioning autistic. I knew I eventually wanted to give Sam and his wife a son like my Matthew. I also knew the book series would eventually take my characters to England. Guess what the name of the advocacy group for parents with autistic children in England is called? Peach. Again, coincidence? It makes you think, doesn't it? There are other such "signs" but I don't want to bore you with overkill examples (and might have already done so).

I'd be very interested to hear your comments. If you think I'm a viable candidate for the looney bin or need serious psychological evaluation, please feel free to share. I'm developing a thick skin in this writing game. But I love the Lord and want to share the stories and characters I believe He's laid on my heart. Bring it on. Let me hear your comments!


  1. I really enjoyed reading your post. My advice to you is: Keep writing!!!

  2. Loved your post, Joann! And yes, I do believe in signs -- guardedly, that is. For I know even the "tempter" can appear as an "angel of light" -- so we are cautioned to beware. Hey, I want to know more about you. Do you have a website?? You aren't listed among the contributors of HI that I can detect. . . Blessings! :-)

  3. Hi Millie, and thanks! I am having my website designed as we speak, My first book in the series, "Awakening" (with Sam Lewis and Lexa Clarke) should be coming out later this Fall from new Christian romance publisher, Torn Veil Books. Torn Veil just put out their first releases and are updating their website as well. My e-mail is if you'd like to contact me directly. And I've noticed I'm not listed as a regular contributor. I'm supposed to post on the 30th of each month (this is my third month), but it posted on the 29th instead. Oh well... Thanks so much for your interest! I really appreciate it, Millie!

  4. Millie, some of that sounds like bits of encouragement from the Lord.

    I believe the Lord guides us and wants us to seek his wisdom just like we would with our earthly fathers. Since my dad is 80 and worries too much, I am so glad I can ask the Lord for wisdom.

    Thanks for sharing and good luck with your series!