Simmer Starters – July 10, 2015

Last week it completely slipped my mind to do my Simmer Starters!  And today I almost forgot again!  Ack.  So here are the most interesting links from the last couple of weeks, a little late in the day.  Enjoy!

Since there are a lot, I’ve divided them by my two most common topics.

Faith & Christian Living

Does God Love Everyone? – A Calvinist Struggle (Jordan Tong) – I appreciated this thoughtful look at a subject I got some discussion on from my last blog post.

What a Bikini Taught Me About Modesty (Phylicia Masonheimer) – “Modesty – the covering – was given to man and woman to protect them from the shame of nakedness. God was preserving the beauty of their bodies from a sinful world. Suddenly I realized that my bikini was not advertising my God-given value, but advertising the beauty of my body to a world that would never appreciate it the way God intended.”

Controversy or Complacency (Tim Challies) – Heh, this goes right along with my Sensitivity post!  Words for both the brash (controversial) and the sensitive (complacent) among us.  “The complacent Christian is the one who is afraid to speak up even when the situation is serious and in dire need of attention. He is the one who cowers before men and who would rather not speak at all than risk offending another person or risk taking sides. He would allow his Christian brothers and sisters to face spiritual risk instead of speaking up in defense of the truth.”

Sunday Thoughts: Training (Abby Jones) – “It says in Hebrews that our affliction is God’s disciplining and training for us. It is how God molds us and makes us into his children. This world, in some ways, is our boot camp, our basic training, and God uses trials and and sufferings to get us in shape.  Yet for some reason we always complain that our ‘training’ isn’t easy. Why oh why am I suffering?? We moan and complain when the Bible makes it very clear that God is perfecting us. You see that? Perfecting!  I don’t know about you, but that seems like something that would require a lot of work. Perfection isn’t easy.”

Fiction & Writing

Author Interview: Robert Mullin (Wendy Van Camp) – An interesting interview with one of my author friends, Robert Mullin, who wrote an epic sci-fi/fantasy I really enjoyed, Bid the Gods Arise (which I’d definitely recommend to adults! – and perhaps some mature teens as well).

Rock Your First Chapter, No Excuses (WritinGeekery) – As the title suggests, a guide to making your first chapter rock.  It suggests going back AFTER you finish the book to revise your first chapter, which I thought was really smart.  I can get so bogged down trying to make the first chapter perfect that I don’t move forward.

Brandon Sanderson’s 3 Laws of Magic – On this page you’ll find links to three articles with the bestselling author’s magic-writing rules.  I haven’t finished reading them all yet, but what I’ve read is really good.

The 3 Golden Rules of Writing a Young Adult Novel (Robert Wood) – While I didn’t agree with everything in it, as a YA author I found this a helpful article.  “So why do young adults – occupying a hotly debated age range of around thirteen to around twenty – need this genre so badly? It’s because adolescence is the most uniformly difficult part of life, the point at which we begin to ask the big questions and find answers we don’t like. YA fiction is an important part of this process.”

Feed the Right Wolf: ‘Tomorrowland’ and the Allure of Fatalism (Austin Gunderson at SpecFaith) – Despite plot holes I enjoyed this movie a lot, and this thoughtful review pegs exactly why.

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