Friday, November 25, 2011

Celebrate Fiction! Second Annual Catholic Arts & Letters Award

The Catholic Writers Guild, an organization founded to promote and nurture Catholic writers and their work, is gearing up for the second annual Catholic Arts and Letters Award (CALA) for Fiction.

The CALA for Fiction is awarded to authors of works of fiction in which judges find exemplary literary merit. All submissions must first be awarded the Catholic Writers Guild’s Seal of Approval, a process by which books are reviewed by a Catholic panel to certify that content does not disregard Catholic doctrine.

“The Guild’s mission is to lift up Catholic writers,” says CWG President Ann Margaret Lewis. “It hopes to encourage them and embolden them to create great art and compete in the world of ideas. This award recognizes well-written fiction that does just that.”

At last year’s CMN, the CWG awarded the first CALA for fiction in two categories. In the children’s fiction category, Regina Doman was awarded for her young adult novel, Alex O’Donnell and the 40 Cyberthieves. In adult fiction, it was awarded to Michelle Buckman for her novel, Rachel’s Contrition.

“It was a great privilege to be the recipient of the first CALA for fiction,” says Michelle Buckman, “especially given the high caliber of the other submissions. My hope is that this award is bringing attention to the availability of great Catholic novels. I encourage all writers to submit entries, and all readers to check out the growing list of Catholic fiction listed on the Catholic Writers Guild website.”

Regina Doman was equally thrilled to be awarded the CALA in the Children’s division.

"Catholic fiction for children and young adults provides entertainment that also reveals faith at work in our lives, and this award will hopefully make more people aware of all the great books available. I am grateful and honored to be the first to receive this award."

The deadline for 2011 book submissions is January 31, 2012. Details can be found at the CWG website –

Monday, November 7, 2011

Download "Through the Open Window" for Free

In honor of National Novel Writing Month, I thought I would offer my novel about a woman whose whole life changes because she decides to write a novel during November as a free download for a limited time: Through the Open Window.


It is also available for Kindle or in Paperback through

Sunday, November 6, 2011

What Every Story Should Be About

Two time Pulitzer Prize winner Gene Weingarten told Writer's Digest that a story "must be about something larger than itself - some universal truth."

All stories are about the search for the meaning of life. We all search for it. How does your story add to the search?

Friday, November 4, 2011

The Most Important Reason to Write

The November/December 2011 issue of Writer's Digest features an interview with best-selling writer James Lee Burke. He offers this reason for writing and keeping at it in the face of all the hardships and rejection:

If God gives a gift to someone, it's for a reason. It's to make the world a better place. And you never forget that lesson. . . .God doesn't make mistakes when he presents someone with a gift like that. It's there for a reason. . . There's nothing worse than remorse about not using what you have.