Thursday, December 29, 2005

Life Sound Track

I’m a music person. I’m probably one of those people who will have a soundtrack about my life. Music is a part of my life. A song can take me back in time. As a Christmas present to myself. I bought seven CDs.

The soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever – Yes I was Travolta fan and loved the music and the movie. This music took me back to the disco era. I so wanted to do disco, but unfortunately I was too young to go to any clubs. LOL

GUY – If you knew me in the Navy 1989, this group was my group. I Like was my theme song. I started my morning off playing this cassette. It was before CDs became popular. I played this cassette to death.

GUY along with New Edition and Backstreet are coming to St. Louis in January. Yes girlfriend has a ticket and yes I will be screaming my head off for Johnny Gill. I’m a huge JG fan.

KEM – This man is too smooth. I think I’m a new fan.

Marah Carey – Always a fan, I love the new CD, good dance music and slow stuff.

Mary Mary – You know I have to get my gospel music on. This is a good CD too.

Charlie Wilson – Yes I was a Gap Band fan, take me back to when I was 13 attended my second concert ever. My first was the Jackson 5. (What a way to start off concerts) I love Charlie’s voice. He even remade a Guy song.

TLC greatest Hits – These were my girls in the 90s. I got my party on to plenty of their music. I had too much fun in the 90s. This is a fun CD.

Yes I’m enjoying the music, wondering which new song will be added to my soundtrack.

Do you have a soundtrack?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


Bonefire! Conference

February 3-4, 2006

Then I said, "I will not make mention of Him, nor speak anymore in His name. "But His word was in my heart like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back, And I could not. Jeremiah 20:9 NKJV

Whether God calls you to write or not, you have a God-given vision for your life! When God gives you something, it stays with you morning, noon, and night until you do what He says to do, the way He says to do it. It becomes like fire shut up in your bones. It becomes so hot that you have to write it down. It becomes such a powerful force that you can barely move or think.



American Christian Fiction Writers Launches Book Club

From airport newsstands to Newsweek, Christian fiction continues to grow in popularity, resonating with readers looking for both faith and fiction. The growth of the genre has birthed many new writers, as evidenced by American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), an organization started in 2000. Now boasting almost 1000 members, ACFW reaches out to readers as well as writers with their new ACFW Book Club. Beginning January 2006, the Book Club will offer fans of Christian fiction the opportunity to chat with ACFW authors and discuss monthly reading selections. Readers will also be eligible for monthly free book drawings.

The titles chosen to kick off the club include:

* Black Sands by Colleen Coble. Trouble in paradise. A Hawaiian romantic suspense.
* Leave it to Claire by Tracey Bateman. Single mom tries to fix her family. Chick lit fun!
* Outriders by Kathryn Mackel. A new ark. An ancient enemy. Fantasy adventure.
* Pink by Marilynn Griffith. Four fashion designers collaborate on a million dollar wedding dress. Will they find God in the seams? Multicultural tale.

Information on the Book Club will be posted on the ACFW Website, and on, a book discussion e-mail group designed to keep members informed and allow them to discuss the books throughout the month. Book Club chats will be held on the ACFW Website in the chat room at 7:00 p.m. CST on the first Monday of the month following the month the book is read. Membership is free and open to the public. To join the announcement and discussion e-mail group, send a blank e-mail to

For more information about the ACFW Book Club, please visit:

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Blog Tour 2006

Are you looking for a place to promote your book? I’d be happy to feature you on my blog.

I would like to feature one author each week. So that’s four slots for the month. I will feature an interview and a chapter excerpt.


Christian Literature Only (fiction and nonfiction)
1 chapter excerpt of your book/include a short blurb (no graphic or sexual content)
Picture of you and book (jpgs)
Two copies of your book. (One for me of course and one for a lucky blog reader)

If this sounds like something you would like to do contact me at

I’ll send you the date of your tour and address to send books.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Food For Thought

"I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today,
life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow."

"I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way
he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and
tangled Christmas tree lights."

"I've learned that making a "living" is not the same thing as "making
a life."

"I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance."

"I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's
mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw some things back."

"I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I
usually make the right decision."

"I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one."

"I've learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone.

"People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back."

"I've learned that I still have a lot to learn."

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will
forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them

~~Maya Angelou

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Death Penalty

An eye for an eye. I use to think this way until I watched a movie called Somersby. It changed my opinion about the death penalty.

I was hoping Arnold would give Tookie clemency. Mainly because as a society we say we want those in jail to turn their lives around. To be sorry for their actions and try to be a better person. I think in this situation it happen. I don’t think he should be excused from what he did, but he should have lived the rest of his life in prison.

You go to jail for killing someone. How is killing them making it right?

Maybe one day my opinion will change again, but for now I think we really should rethink the death penalty. Do we need it? Why have it if we’re going to continue asking for clemency. Send the people to jail and be done with it.

Ok I’m off of my soap box.

Rest In Peace

Richard Pryor

Yes I was a fan of Richard Pryor. He was the first comedian I ever saw do a concert. He cracked me up. Yes he had some vugar bits, but the man was funny. I was sadden to hear he died. He open doors for many other comedians and its good to know he’ll go down in history because of that.

Pat Morita

I was also sadden to hear of the death of Mr. Miyagi. In the 80's everybody was a fan of the Karate Kid movies. We all thought if we did the wax on wax off we could kick some butt.

My sympathy to their family, friends and fans. They will be truly missed.

Friday, December 09, 2005

BOOK WINNER - Made Of Honor

I would like to thank those who stopped by the blog for Marilynn’s tour. I would like send a special thank you to the ladies who left a comment.

I put your names in a hat and the winner is …….Claudia

Claudia send me your mailing address and I’ll send you a copy of Marilynn new book. You’re going to enjoy it.

Would you like to be a guest on my blog?
Contact me at

Friday, December 02, 2005

EXCERPT: Made Of Honor



I'm turning into a Chia pet.

With legs.

Little children are starting to toss dandelions when they see me. The brides of Leverhill, Illinois have taught the kiddies well. One little darling from church, a cutie with zigzag parts and snaggle teeth, wants to grow up and take my job-big flower girl. The little girl nailed it, especially about the big part, but we're not going there. Not today, with my formerly fat best friend looking like Twiggy goes bridal, while I gasp for breath in a dress fit for a train wreck. My only consolation is not having to worry about Tracey aiming a floral missile (known to some as a bouquet) at my head later on.

She wouldn't do me like that, would she? Nah. At least that's what I tell myself, but then I thought this wedding wouldn't happen either. Still, this bride is one of my closest friends and my roommate for the past three years. Tracey Cox, well, Tracey Blackman now, has picked enough baby's breath out of my teeth to know better.

Just in case though, a pint of Chunky Monkey and a pedicure appointment await me after this reception. Who knows? Tracey just might snap and throw long. Marriage does things to people. One day they're normal and the next they're inviting total strangers to wear ugly dresses in their weddings and then after the ceremony, said brides proceed to cut off all communication with members of the wedding party except for goofy Christmas photos of the newlyweds cradling an ugly dog, signed "from all of us." And don't let them actually get pregnant. Have you ever seen an entire album of birth photos? Not cute.

Do I sound bitter?

I'm not. I have friends. Sistahs even. And trying to keep up with them, keep my job and stay right with God occupies most of my time. Like now. I need to find Rochelle, my other best friend (yes, I have two) and founder of the Sassy Sistahood email list. If I don't catch up to her soon, she might make a fool of herself.

Or me.

Though my girlfriend is a paragon of virtue most days, weddings turn Rochelle into a gelatinous pool of desperation. Remember the birth photo album I mentioned? It's worse. Okay, so nothing's worse than that, but it's bad. Even the sight of me, voluptuous black woman tangled in tulips after a bouquet toss, is easier on the eyes.

Using my emergency x-ray vision (activated by squinting so hard I almost fused my contacts to my eyeballs) I glimpsed a pink satin horror similar to my own, but a set of three-inch shoulder pads blocked my view. Who would wear a power suit to a wedding-my boss. There she was, looking just as angry as when I'd left her at work last night. I ducked before she saw me, recovering from my shock that she'd even shown up. The bride, who left our office to start her own graphic design firm six months ago, insisted on inviting Naomi, her-former and my-current employer and Renee, my assistant, who was probably somewhere taking pictures of me for blackmail. She'd be giggling in my ear about this dress for the next month. At least.

My future torture aside, I was proud of Naomi for actually leaving the office (I think she secretly lives there). For her to show up at her own funeral would be the height of etiquette. Some people just don't grasp interaction, you know? And having "interacted" with Naomi daily for the past six years, I could do without her today. Besides, I needed to find Sassy Sistah #1 before she melted down and kissed somebody.

With that thought as fuel, I forced my Baker dyeables (those satin shoes that can be dyed to match your gown? I know. Prom flashbacks.) across the sprinkle of autumn leaves on the ground. Rochelle tiptoed up beside me, fanning her face, despite the growing chill. Man Mania was in full swing.

"Did you see Ryan's brother?" She said breathlessly. "From the looks of things, Tracey should have picked him."

From the reality of things. Anyone seemed a better choice. I mentally squashed the nagging doubt about my friend's hour-old marriage. Thoughts like that were getting me nowhere. It was done. God would have to take it from here. Me worrying myself to an ulcer before I got back to work on Monday was definitely a waste of resources.

I shook my head at Rochelle and considered reaching out and shaking hers. This time she was really in the zone. I spoke right into her ear, hoping it would jar her brain. "I wasn't really paying attention to the brother of the groom." Or any other man around here. What would be the point? The last guy I dated had just married my best friend.

Rochelle made a clucking sound. "You should have been paying attention. His brother is foine." She rolled her neck for effect, but didn't quite pull it off. I just stared. She'd been watching too much UPN again.

"Come on." I tugged at her arm and started back across the smattering of red-gold leaves, away from Mr. Foine. She'd hate me later if I didn't. If a brothah showed up tomorrow in response to Rochelle's flirting, she would run for her life while dictating a restraining order into her recorder.

Usually, her wedding trance would have been long since broken. But this was Tracey's wedding. And whether Rochelle and I were willing to admit it or not, we'd both thought that if anyone got married, it'd be one of the two of us, not the cute, fat, geek of the group. Not that Tracey was fat anymore. The plump-but-cute girl role was currently being played by moi. My midsection pressed against the strangling fabric of my dress as if in agreement.

Rochelle made a shrill sound, almost like a whistle. The weary-in-well-doing sigh. The sound she makes when she just can't take anymore. Not a good sign. Her pink leather t-strap shoes, designed by her own hand and much prettier than my castoffs from last year's spring formal, peeked from underneath her frock, several sizes smaller than my own. Our skirts skimmed the lawn every few steps. This was downright antebellum. If I didn't know better, I'd think a plantation was going to pop out of the ground any minute.

Rochelle's words cut through my thoughts. "I can't help feeling romantic on days like this. Lately, I even wonder if-"

"If what?" My body stiffened. I'd heard this speech before. All my die-hard single friends give this little talk before becoming wife wannabes. Tracey's little rant three months ago was still fresh in my mind. Rochelle? Despite her wedding breakdowns, I never thought I'd hear it from her. Well, not until Jericho graduated from high school anyway. That boy kept us all busy.

"I'm just talking," she said, moving faster. "It's nothing, really."

More like a big something, but I decided to leave it. This day had enough mess going without adding to it. "I hope the punch is good."

Rochelle nodded, gathering her skirt to gain a little speed. Good punch could cover a multitude of sins. Even Tracey marrying Ryan. (Okay, he's not so bad. He's rich, handsome and loves her to pieces. But there's just something creepy about the guy. I don't know. Forget I said anything).

While I pondered the groom's strangeness, Rochelle grabbed my wrist, digging her natural length nails into my flesh. Without looking at her, I knew it was already too late. And we'd almost made it to punchdom.

Tracey would not, could not throw that bouquet at me.

But she did.

A few inches ahead, a group of women floated onto the green in front of us, like a cloud of cotton candy. The bride broke through, holding her weapon of choice, peach hybrid roses from the Leverhill Botanical Gardens.

"Run!" Rochelle screamed with the concern of a fire marshal at a brewing blaze.

Obeying her command was my first mistake. The stop-drop-and-roll technique is always best to achieve my goals: avoiding head trauma, keeping the contacts in and keeping the dress covering my backside.

As previously stated, I deviated from this method.

When nothing tagged the back of my head (seriously, they stopped aiming for my hands two summers ago) I did a dumb thing and turned around. The bouquet slapped against my forehead like a Jackie Chan sound effect. I tripped on my skirt trying to escape (she'd already nailed me, of course, but it was instinct). My dress ballooned around my waist like a giant boat made of Bubble Yum.

Then . . . the pain burned beneath my eye. What was that? I dropped to one knee, jerking the whole pink mess of me back into place, while peeking through my fingers. Something I mistook for tears trickled into my mouth. Blood.

I wobbled to my feet. "What in the world?" I'd been hit with a lot of flowers, a few small shrubs even, but no one had ever drawn blood. This was past wrong.

Rochelle hovered over me, panting and picking greenery from between my braids. Satisfied with her job on that, she peeled back my fingers and surveyed the scratch under my eye. "The thorns. Tracey forgot to have them removed. It was the only thing on her list . . . Sorry."

I took my hand off my eye. Rochelle's tone let me know that she hadn't been in on this but she had been aware of the possibility. Not for the first time, the Sassy Sistahs had made me mad. Tracey approached slowly, waving like she always does after doing something crazy. I felt my anger wash away at the sight of her silly grin. Still, this was a bit much. "Thorns? You've got to be kidding."

"Wish I was." Rochelle dabbed my face with a napkin from her clutch. No doubt there was a first aid kit, needle and thread, makeup bag and two shades of pantyhose crammed in that tiny thing. How she'd even managed to hold on to it while trying to drag me to safety was beyond me, but I'd long given up on trying to figure out Chelle's superwoman capabilities. She just has skills like that. I'm lucky to keep my shoes on. (Although I did manage to keep my contacts in. A new accomplishment).

Just before Tracey reached us, someone from the groom's family intercepted and wheeled her away. The beginning of the end. She was no longer my roommate, my best friend. She was someone's wife. We walked past Tracey, giving us the "be right there" signals.

Rochelle smiled. I sulked. "Knowing Tracey, she probably thought it was more Christ-like to leave the thorns on." Mock disgust sounded in my voice. I was trying to be mad and couldn't.

"Hush you," Rochelle said, using our code phrase for when one started in on another of the three. It was the standard defense, but right now I felt like pushing past it.

Tracey joined us and slipped an arm around-well, almost around-my waist. "Got you, didn't I? Sorry about your eye though."

"You'd better be glad I love y'all," I whispered as people packed in around us. Pain seared my scalp where Rochelle had raked a stem through my hair.

"Maybe if you'd helped with the wedding errands, you could have taken care of those thorns." Rochelle said, reaching back in her purse for her dabbing cloth.

Ouch. That hurt way more than my eye. The truth always does. I pushed away Rochelle's hand, preferring to blink my own way back to health. In a minute, there'd be no skin left on the right side of my face. That girl was dangerous with a Kleenex.

Tracey started to say something, but was called away . . . again. I took a deep breath, watching her walk to behind the punch table with her mother-in-law. Where was the groom? Why was I the one getting jealous instead of him? Like I said, he's a little weird. This whole deal was. But there was no use trying to explain that to Rochelle. She wasn't trying to hear it. So I did what I always do-tried to explain it anyway.

"Look, Rochelle, I already regret not helping out with the wedding. But I just wasn't sure about this. When I dated Ryan-"

She tried the neck thing again, with success this time. "Dated? Is that what you call it? That mess was so boring he just stopped calling and came back to the singles group. So he wasn't for you. No reason he can't be the one for Tracey." In a deft motion, she grabbed a napkin from the table next to us, wadded it quickly and removed several layers of my epidermis. "There's just one last spot . . ."

She reached out again, but I shook my head, thinking I should have thrown in some cookies with the Ben and Jerry's waiting for me at home. Somehow we wandered into the punch line. We both relaxed allowing the tide of people to pull us forward. Only when a gruesome Pepto-pink cake with what looked like the watermelon gel I brushed my teeth with for filling came into view was I totally appalled. I definitely should have helped with the wedding plans. The gold-colored punch in the bowl beside the cake monster looked good though.

It would have to be.

From MADE OF HONOR, by Marilynn Griffith, Steeple Hill

ISBN 0373785542, January 2006, Copyright © 2006 by Harlequin Enterprises Limited. ® and tm are trademarks of the publisher. This edition published by arrangement with Harlequin Books S.A.

BLOG TOUR - Marilynn Griffith

Welcome to our first blog tour. Our special guest this week is someone I’m proud to call a friend. We met online and our friendship blossom. She always knows when to send me a pick me up email. We talk on the phone for hours never minding we’re in different states.

When she told me her book sold, I probably shouted more than her. I sat up all night reading it, yes its that good. I’m excited the fiction world is getting a chance to know what I’ve know for years, Mary can WRITE.

This is an author you’ll be adding to your I need to get list.

It is my honor to introduce you to my kindred spirit friend, Marilynn Griffith, debut author of Made Of Honor. A Christian Chick Lit book which will make an excellent Christmas present.

Shades Of Romance Magazine: Please give the readers a brief bio on you the person and the writer.

Marilynn Griffith: Well, let's see... I'm mom to a tribe of kids, wife to a very handsome deacon and blessed to be friends with some wonderful writers, like you, LaShaunda. I love to read, write, speak and all things communication related. I'm the person at the family gatherings who is always either telling a story or listening to one! Before realizing I was a writer life was a bit confusing. I tried everything from secretary to math tutor (that actually worked out pretty well). These days it's family, friends and church activities when I'm not writing. I like blogging though. That's fun.

SORMAG: Tell us about your current book?

Dana Rose pledges to say "I won't" the next time she's asked to be in a wedding. Her weak will has turned her closet into cemetery for satin gowns from periwinkle to Pepto pink. After ten stints as bridesmaid, Dana thinks she's seen it all. Then she's fired, forced to turn her hobby into a business and faced with her prodigal brother, back-stabbing sis and Mr. Practically Perfect, the ex who not only married someone else, but opened the business of her dreams—across the street. There's that Maid of Honor thing too… And this time she can't say no. Will wedding #11 show Dana what's she's really made of?

SORMAG: What inspired this story?

I used to own a seasonal bath and body business. Steeple Hill rejected my first manuscript but they liked my voice. They asked my agent about me doing a chick lit. I didn't know what that was exactly, but the prospect of writing in first person sounded interesting, so I tried it and loved it. I also have had a lot of wonderful single friends over the years.

SORMAG: What would you like your readers to take away from your book?

I'd love for readers of MADE OF HONOR to come away from the book knowing that they are fearfully and wonderfully made and that God delights in them and loves them in an intimate way, despite whatever mess riddles their pasts. Christ stands waiting to embrace them as His bride.

SORMAG: How do you balance writing with your "every day life?"

I don't. LOL Really. I've long since given God that job. He called me to be a wife and mother and a writer. Sometimes (like a deadline week) that doesn't always look like I think it should, but God graced me with the family I was supposed to have. I try to keep the Word first place and keep the lines of communication open so that when things get off balance (too much work, not enough work) we can talk about it. When I try to stop writing to be Super Mom, my kids are like,"Go write something. You're cranky!"

SORMAG: How can readers learn more about your books and get in contact with you?

I can be contacted at or through comments at my website .

I'm offering an autograph copy of Made Of Honor to a lucky reader. Post a comment, question and your name will be put in a drawing. Winner will be announced Friday.

Marilynn is on tour all month. Check out the rest of the tour -