LOVE NOTES for Your Aging Parents

As my publisher expressed it:

Sometimes it’s hard to find the right words. This is especially true when you’re serving as a caregiver for your parents, when the ones who have cared for you now need your care in return. During National Family Caregivers Month, Cynthia Ruchti wants to help you express what’s on your heart. Download her FREE Love Notes to My Parents printable at http://www.lovenotestomyparents.com.

love notes

love notes expression

love notes better

A total of TWENTY love notes you can tuck onto your parent’s supper tray, on the nightstand, in an envelope, or put between the pages of their Bible or favorite book.

My prayer is that these simple words will bless you as you use them to bless someone you love.

Cynthia

Looking for something to read?

A friend asked me to consolidate the honors given to the books I’ve written. Others often ask her for ideas of books worth reading. Maybe these images will become an answer you can give friends and family who want to know what to read next.

Have a great week interacting with those you love. And take a little time for reading, and for introducing others to the wonder of reading!

Song of Silence

A Fragile Hope

As Waters Gone By

All My Belongings

When the Morning Glory Blooms

They Almost Always Come Home

An Endless Christmas

Ragged Hope

Tattered and Mended

Interview for ACFW’s FictionFinder

Interview with Cynthia Ruchti

Cynthia Ruchti
Writing a novel like A Fragile Hope takes a lifetime. First, you must collect memories, observations, and bits of overheard conversation. Next, mix in a “hefty investment of time training for Extreme Imagination Sports,” as Cynthia calls it.

To the impassioned observer, her fans and this interviewer, Cynthia Ruchti can’t get books out fast enough. At any given time, she’s brewing up two, three, sometimes four projects within a single year. But A Fragile Hope was a little different than her other stories. A Fragile Hope “aged, not as long as 100-year soy sauce, but about as long as balsamic vinegar.” The first few chapters simmered in a “file folder vat” for eight years, waiting for her to “discover the specific ingredients that would allow it to mature.” She adds, “I’m glad it wasn’t published when I first got the notion. The author had to mature, too.”

And mature she is, a writer of award winning fiction, nonfiction, and now a literary agent.

What does it take for a writer of Cynthia’s caliber to mature, especially when she’s so young? Do her “Qía Ancient Grains hot cereal with fresh blueberries and/or nectarine” breakfasts add to her maturity? Possibly. Or maybe, when she grows up, all she wants to be is taller.

Perhaps we can find her maturity by looking into her past.

Cynthia, as a youth, was called into the principal’s office twice. Stunning, I know. But she wasn’t a party animal. Instead, she was academically competitive. “Not against other students,” she explains. “Except for the one guy vying for my spot as valedictorian,” she was “always striving for excellence from herself.” Starting in grade school, her father was a band teacher and pastor, while her mother worked nights as a nurse. “As the oldest of five children, I planned and made meals, kept the house clean, watched over my siblings, and yet still found time to fall in love with the boy who would one day be my husband.” He was a year older, so during “my senior year in high school, the highlight of my day was checking the mailbox to see if he’d written me from college.” She must have been a hoot as a pen pal back then, especially with papers like “The Psycho-Social Aspects of Leprosy in the United States Today.”

Some aspects of her nurturing personality come naturally, which is ideal for agent work. “I would probably rank high on the ‘Identify with Other People’s Pain’ spectrum.” But she won’t take credit for her natural gifts. “God uses a big ladle to poor out what we’ll need in order to do what he’s asked us to do.” The journey came with a close devotion to God during her childhood, and deepened in her teens. In her twenties, her relationship to the Creator experienced another growth spurt. With the consistent drive toward God, “I pray people would observe in my life ‘a long obedience in the same direction,’ (one of the phrases the German philosopher, Nietzsche, got right).” Nietzsche goes on to say, “The essential thing ‘in heaven and earth’ is that there should be a long obedience in the same direction; there thereby results, and has always resulted in the long run, something which has made life worth living.”

Cynthia follows the theme and turns it into actions, showing that maturity doesn’t only come naturally. First, thirty-three years in a radio ministry, then president of ACFW for two years, an author, and now an agent. But when it comes to writing what you know, both in mind or heart, she is a lifelong student, expanding her knowledge base by “venturing bravely into new territory.” She learned her craft from the dialogue passed through microphones on the radio, and prose from instructors at writing conferences and ACFW connections, all the while trimming unnecessary words.

Her fiction displays contemporary scenarios where faith is lived out in real life, “hemmed-in-hope. My prayer,” her heart cries, “is that readers would finish a book I’ve written with greater courage to say, ‘I can’t unravel. I’m hemmed in hope.’”

“My characters are the woman halfway across the country who writes to let me know she has her own Charlie (Song of Silence), or that she is the grown daughter whose parents never did figure out how to bond with her (All My Belongings), or that he’s ‘Max’ and doesn’t know if his marriage will survive his incarceration (As Waters Gone By) but now has hope. The people who inspire my characters are the unknowns who connect with me after reading They Almost Always Come Home or When the Morning Glory Blooms to say, ‘That’s my life. How did you know?’ It’s the person who stops me at the grocery store to say, ‘I’m the one who lost the directions to the on-ramp in my marriage’ (Josiah in A Fragile Hope).”

She writes her nonfiction in response to her characters. “Here, honey. Read this.”

God is continually surprising her. Additional takeaways that God imbedded in her stories are one instance that delights her. “Sometimes the reader who gets the most out of my story is me. It’s not uncommon for me to stop editing to let Him have access to a place in my heart I didn’t know wasn’t yet fully His.”

Without doubt, her closeness to God is her bedrock for her maturity. Her faith is also built on a heritage from a godly mother. “I watched my mother’s faith get more solid footing when she was in her mid-sixties and began to read Christian fiction. In the remaining almost twenty years of her life, I steadily grew in my appreciation for the power of story as I watched its influence on my mom. She prayed that first novel into existence. Two weeks before she died, my first Advanced Reader Copy arrived in the mail. She kept it on her bedside table until Jesus took her hand and freed her spirit from the body that was beyond worn out.”

“How could I not want to tell stories with the potential to heal, encourage, embolden, mend, strengthen, challenge, and comfort?”

Ronald Knox once said, “There is to be no standing still in our pursuit of maturity.” Cynthia Rutchi is a fantastic example to follow, and, given time, your gaze will turn away from her and point toward Christ, since she is a beautiful reflection of His holiness.

____________________________________________

Peter Leavell, a 2007 graduate of Boise State University with a degree in history, was the 2011 winner of Christian Writers Guild’s Operation First Novel contest, and 2013 Christian Retailing’s Best award for First-Time Author. Peter and his family live in Boise, Idaho. For entertainment, he reads historical books, where he finds ideas for new novels. Whenever he has a chance, he takes his wife and two homeschooled children on crazy but fun research trips. Learn more about Peter’s books, research, and family adventures at www.peterleavell.com.

You can see the interview in its entirety and learn more about Christian fiction at FictionFinder

 

Who do you know who is caring for aging parents?

Since As My Parents Age released, I’ve found myself face-to-face with so many people who read the title of the book, run their hand over its inviting cover, and say, “That’s me. That’s what I need. We’re in the thick of it right now.”1 As My Parents Age high res

Or they start ticking off the list of friends or coworkers whose lives have been dramatically affected by the needs of aging parents.

The other sentence I hear often is, “I need to buy a copy of this book for each of my children. They’ll need it as I age.”

If you haven’t been to your local bookstore or taken a look at As My Parents Age and the encouragement it offers, please let me know when you do.

And share a line or a page number of something that blessed you. I’ll be waiting. And praying.

AsMyParentsAge-VideoMeme4

A Fragile Hope GIVEAWAY ends soon!

A Fragile Hope

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to enter to win a free copy of A Fragile Hope and a metal Scripture wall hanging:

Metal Wall Hanging

Click here for all the details. Giveaway ends May 3!

Feel free to invite your friends to enter, too.

The 12 Authors of Christmas Giveaway

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What a thrill to have Restoring Christmas included in this 12-Author giveaway this week. The giveaway ends promptly at midnight on Friday night, so don’t postpone getting your entry or entries in (more details about that on the giveaway link).

I appreciate each of these authors so much and respect their work. You won’t be disappointed, even if you’re not one of the winners, as long as you look for their books at your local bookstore or online. :)

You can enter here. Have fun dreaming about these twelve titles as the giveaway nears its end. And don’t forget to consider one (or ALL) of them in your Christmas giving this year!

HUGE #giveaway Dec 5-9: Win books by @Katherine_Reay @cynthiaruchti @Melissa_Tagg @KaraIsaac http://bit.ly/2fxDbEH #restoringchristmas

Click to Tweet

Enter the 12 Authors of Christmas #Giveaway Dec 5-9! Win a #chrisfic book bundle and a #Visa cash card. http://bit.ly/2fxDbEH

Tweet: Enter the 12 Authors of Christmas #Giveaway Dec 5-9! Win a #chrisfic book bundle and a #Visa cash card. http://bit.ly/2fxDbEH

Have a great Christmas…and spend part of your holiday reading!

Cynthia

NOTE: Commenting here doesn’t qualify as an entry. Please click on this link and enter there.

Song of Silence Prize Package

1-restoring-christmas-final-coverSong of Silence by Cynthia RuchtiHow am I spending my time while waiting for the book Restoring Christmas to release on October 18th?

I’m offering a music-themed prize package celebrating April’s novel–Song of Silence. Included are a music tote bag, a pop-up piano greeting card, and a charming children’s book and accompanying narration CD called A House Full of Music. Great Christmas gift ideas.

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See details of how you can enter–starting on Saturday, October 15 through the 22nd, 2016–by clicking the Rafflecopter link below.

Cleaning out my gift box while I’m anticipating the release of Restoring Christmas. Celebrate with me?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Are you hungering for More To Life?

I’ve been blessed to have had several articles and have been featured in the mtlMore To Life magazine, including in this Fall 2016 issue:

The whole magazine is full of encouragement and uplifting articles. Please consider subscribing if you haven’t already. Or consider giving the More To Life magazine as a gift to a teacher, friend, mom, mother-in-law, daughter, niece… I think you get the idea. :)

Special rate to SUBSCRIBE TO MTL MAGAZINE- today’s most exciting Magazine for Christian Women! Get 5 Issues of MTL Magazine for Special Introductory Price $14.95 (regularly $25.95). This discount is available through a limited number of places. You are specially invited to get the discount by use the code later in this post.

http://www.mtlbookstore.com/product.asp?sku=2283_mtlsub2016

ENTER CODE: “Hemmed in Hope” to receive this special rate.

And let me know what you thought of my “When Winter Winds Blow” article.

 

Would you like a FREE copy of RESTORING CHRISTMAS?

WAS THAT A SNOWFLAKE I SAW?

No. A falling leaf from the maple tree in our backyard. But…crisp maple leaves congregating on the lawn and the annual convention of Canadian geese on the pond are always harbingers of the season-of-cold (I’m hesitant to use the season’s real name, but it starts with a w) on its heels.

October will hurry to get here. It often brings the first snowfall here in Wisconsin. But my October will be especially warm and toasty this year because…

It marks the release of a new Christmas novel—

Think of a Midwest version of Chip and Joanna Gaines from HGTV’s “Fixer Upper” working to restore a fieldstone farmhouse for a homeowner who doesn’t want to change anything. Oh, but things do change!

Would you like a FREE COPY of RESTORING CHRISTMAS? Here’s how…

You can join the Restoring Christmas Launch Team by clicking on the link below to sign up. Make sure to select the “Join Cynthia’s Book Launch Team” option. You’ll receive a digital copy now and a hardcover copy when the book releases. You’ll also become part of a private interactive community of people like you who want to help spread the word about a story that will warm hearts and show the clear connection between Christmas and restoration.

JOIN THE TEAM By Clicking HERE by September 16, 2016!

We have lots of fun activities and ideas planned. Nothing stressful. But you can be part of making this book launch a meaningful way to help others recapture the joy of Christmas.

I can’t wait to get started. How about you?

Hemmed in Hope, no matter the season,
Cynthia

SONG OF SILENCE contest winners!

I’m pleased to announce the winners from my recent Song of Silence music-themed prize pack and $150 giveaway and blog tour. Thanks to everyone who entered!
 
Congratulations to the winners: Stefanie Gladden, who won the $150 Visa cash card, and Connie Scruggs, who won the music-themed prize pack.
Song
My publicists from Litfuse Publicity Group will be in touch via email with details on how to claim your prize. You can also email your mailing address to info {at} litfusegroup {dot} com. Congrats!
I hope you enjoy the book, Song of Silence. If you do, please consider writing a review, telling a friend, telling your local library or local retailer, or all of the above! Thank you, readers!