Exciting Blessings and Beautiful Distractions

Posted by on Jan 17, 2015 in Blog, Book Thoughts, Spritual Thoughts | 0 comments

It has been an exciting January so far! My wife and I were blessed with the birth of our 4th child, Ashton Benaiah Nitz born on January 6th. What an amazing blessing! It is incredible to me how I can forget just how tiny and helpless a little baby is until I hold one in my arms again. My little two-year old looks like a giant compared to her newborn brother. With this little blessing comes such responsibility! This tiny helpless life needs constant attention, love, nourishment, and care. He needs it day and night. The little guy has made it hard for me to focus on my weekly writing goals. There are many reasons for that: added stress, exciting events, schedules turned upside down, sleepless nights and a very cute baby to distract my attention. Sad to say, I have slipped behind where I planned to be in my writing last week and this week. I know it is understandable considering the circumstances, but still I do not want to make a habit of it. Somehow I need to find the time to get my daily writing and research time in. If you have any advice or suggestions about that please comment and let me know! I am not a slave to my goals, but at the same time I realize just how important they are to keep me focused and moving forward. I have also missed a few of my daily devotions. I can tell that the entire trajectory of my day changes when I do that. Things are harder to handle and my mind is not in the right place. I need to keep in mind my own advice from my previous post 10 Things I Learned After Writing My First Book! 1 Peter 2:2 is a very appropriate reminder as well: Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation. Just like my little Ashton constantly needs pure milk to grow, I need regular doses of Bible truth to grow and mature and face each day with the strength and perspective that only God can give. Thanks to God I am forgiven and my future is perfect. That truth changes every daily experience into an incredible blessing from a gracious God. That truth makes each moment an opportunity to serve that Savior-God with my life, whether it is caring for a baby or writing a book. As always, please keep me, my family and my writing in your...

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New Year…New Book Project!

Posted by on Jan 5, 2015 in Blog, Book Thoughts | 0 comments

After publishing my first novel I Was There When the Giant Fell this past November I was already itching to get started on my next I Was There book which will take another barely mentioned, little known character in the Bible and imagine his life story and what it would be like to witness another epic moment in salvation history. This time I am fast-forwarding a few hundred years. Israel is divided into two kingdoms. God sends his prophet, Jonah, to go and proclaim God’s message to Israel’s hated enemy the Assyrians in the city of Nineveh warning them to repent. Jonah knows God’s grace. He knows God wants to spare them, and it is the last thing he wants to happen. Despite God’s mandate, Jonah defies God and heads in the opposite direction. He boards a ship bound for Tarshish and the stage is set for one of the most famous moments in the Bible: Jonah swallowed by the great fish. What would it be like to be one of the sailors who encounter Jonah on his fateful journey? How would it feel to be in a raging storm sent by God himself to stop you in your tracks? What if you were a citizen of Nineveh and a strange messenger arrived proclaiming doom on your city?  I want to explore these questions and more as I embark on this next project I Was There When Jonah Sank. My research is already in full swing, and I am still collecting more sources. I am fascinated by the Phoenicians, their sailing advancements and trade. I am digging into what it would be like to be a sailor on the Mediterranean in that time period and what it might have been like to be a commoner or a king in the city of Nineveh when Jonah arrived. The book will deal with many issues including long-distance relationships, young love, desperate loneliness, idolatry, humanistic pride, stubbornness, addiction and despair. Above all, it will focus on the incredible persistence of God’s astounding grace for sinful people. I plan to weave in a fair share of love, adventure, storms and dangers at sea. My characters will be interesting people whose struggles and lives are not so far removed from ours today. The rough draft is already in progress and my goal is to have a finished, mostly edited draft by the end of August, 2015 and a completed and published book at or before the end of the year! Again, I ask for your prayers as I start out on this fresh new writing...

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10 Things I Learned After Writing My First Book

Posted by on Nov 17, 2014 in Blog, Book Thoughts | 0 comments

  After 3 years of researching, writing, rewriting, rereading and yawning while staring at a computer screen in the early hours of the morning, my book is finally all done and published! There is no way to even describe how it feels to hold that finished book in my hands. What an amazing thing to know that people I will never meet will read it and be affected by it. It is extremely exciting and humbling! I thought I should share 10 things I have learned on this first journey into authorship, so here goes… 1. Begin work with devotion and prayer. The days that I just jumped in and started writing were the days I accomplished the least. Seriously. My typical writing time started at 4:30 AM or on days when I wasn’t at my day job it was the hour or two when my wife and kids were napping. Time was almost always limited and sometimes I would really get in the groove and my fingers were flying on the keys, and I would look at the clock and have to tear myself away from the computer because time was up.  How easy it was to forget to pray before I started writing. How often I was tempted to skip my devotion time. Sometimes I did that for the sake of more time and without fail those were the days I got nothing done, the days I got most irritated, the days that became more about me and less about God and others. Asking God to bless my work was and is an essential, daily need. It helps me focus. It gives perspective. That is not just important for writing, but important for all the tasks, stresses, ups and downs of each day. When I have taken the time to focus on my God and the salvation that is mine because of him, then I am ready to meet the day. When I read and meditate on his powerful promises everything falls into the proper perspective. That does not mean that life goes on like a song as long as I do a devotion, but it does mean that I am better prepared for the twists and turns that the day holds, because I know God holds my day and my eternal future in his loving hands. 2. Get into the characters. Those imaginary people almost had to become part of my life. They were my friends. I laughed and cried with them and felt what they were feeling. Kind of odd…but it really does happen. I found that the more real those characters feel to me, the better and more well-rounded those characters will be in the story. 3. Enjoy it…even when it is tough. Writing is fun for me. Most days I would lose track of time researching, writing and creating. I thoroughly enjoy doing it–most of the time. Of course, there were days when I did not want to touch my computer, think about my characters or even write one sentence. Yes, sometimes that meant I just needed to take a day off of it. Other times I would force myself to go to work. I would intentionally tell myself that I was enjoying it, and after a little while I was! The mind is powerful and if you willfully choose to enjoy something, it can become enjoyable. Sometimes that meant skipping a section I was stuck on, realizing that I would return to it another time. Other times that meant powering through and getting something on the page, knowing that I would probably...

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Almost there!

Posted by on Oct 30, 2014 in Blog, Book Thoughts | 0 comments

Well, here I am at the end of October and the book is not quite available yet. There were a few revisions that needed to be made after I recieved the proof copy and discovered a full page of italicized text that should not have been italicized. This must have happened when the interior of the book was being formatted. No big deal, but it does push my actual release date into early November.  Another proof copy is on its way at this very moment and once I take a look at that I will be free to take the next step in making the book fully available. Watch for another update and a link to purchase the book in just a few days!! Thanks!...

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First Copy of My Book!

Posted by on Oct 27, 2014 in Blog, Book Thoughts | 2 comments

It is finally here!! Here it is! It feels awesome to actually hold my book in my hand for the first time! As I was paging through it I did find a couple minor things that need to be changed before I can make it available, and so those changes are now being made. It is awesome to be one big step closer. I will be sure to let you know when it is available online and where to find it!! Thank you for all the prayers and support throughout this process,...

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So Close!

Posted by on Oct 18, 2014 in Blog, Book Thoughts | 0 comments

Just had to give an update on my book progress! I am working hard to get the final product out by the end of this month. Very soon it will be available for ordering online and ready to ship as soon as someone places an order. Soon after that it will be available in a digital form for Kindle as well. Right now I am having the interior design formatted and finished. The cover art is getting a few final tweaks to make it ready for publication. The manuscript is fully edited and I have had several people read it through and give me some final comments and advice, which I really appreciated. Everyone who has read it so far, has given me a ton of positive feedback on it. I cannot wait to have the first copy in my hands and I hope you all enjoy the final product! Stay tuned for more updates! God Bless!...

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