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A Remarkable Providence and Amazing Support from Friends and Family

On Saturday, November 29th, I had my first book signing at Just Dust Publisher’s Christmas Party in McMinnville, Oregon. I was blown away by the support of my family and friends who came out to buy a book and support me.

Even more amazing was my discovering of an amazing providence of God behind the scenes, and how one of my dearest friends played a big role in the birth of Just Dust Publisher, and, in a round about way, the publication of I Remember Fishing with Dad.

Here is that story.

I pulled into the office of Just Dust Publishers (JDP) a little after noon on the 29th.

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Shelley Houston, the owner of JDP gave me a big hug and we took a picture together. Here we are with our books. (Shelley is also an author, and in this picture she is holding her novel Julia).

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Walking into the office I was totally surprised to see my cousin, David Day already there. He is chiropractor, and lives with his family in Portland. It meant a lot that he would make the trip!

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Another big surprise was that Dayle Gage, an old friend from Stanwood High School who was in the same class as my sister April, and her two daughters stopped by. It was so fun to catch up with Dayle, and so sweet of her to show her support in this way.

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Some of Jenny and my best friends from college, Mike and Mellissa Mellison, and most of their kids came by. Mike and I share a love for books, and I his support of me in my first published book meant a lot to me. Mike is also a gifted writer and I’m hopeful that some of his great work will find its way into print too.

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Mike and Melissa had served alongside of us in Indianapolis for a couple of years before he got a job as pastor in Albany, OR, and so it was fun for Jackie and Judah to catch up with their old friends Geneva, David, and Jonathan.

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A friend of my mom and dad, Cindy Ellis also made the trek from the Portland area. It was fun to meet her. She has a real love for the story and the memories of salmon fishing because she also spent time on Camano fishing with her dad.

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We had spent the week with Jenny’s mom and dad, Ron and Grace, her brother Rob and his wife Corrinne and their kids, and her sister Randy and their kids. So it was super sweet for them to drive to McMinnville to support me. (Jenny’s aunt and uncle, Sharon and Rex also came but I failed to get a picture of them.)

Here is Rob and his family (minus Caleb).

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My niece Shelby modeling the book.

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And my my father and mother in law, Ron and Grace, finding a quiet corner.

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Here is my sister in law, Tina, laughing with old friends.

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And here are Tina and Grace hobnobbing with some of the Just Dust Publisher team, who threw a great party.

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It was a lot of fun to sign books and share my story with family and friends.

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But MOST AMAZING was what I discovered earlier in the day about a behind-the-scenes story that involves one of my best friends, Kyle Liedtke, and his role in the birth of Just Dust Publisher.

I was reading the back of Shelley Houston’s novel, Julia, and noticed that she had thanked Kyle Liedtke of Media Talk Communications. I asked Shelley what that was about, and she told me the following story.

Years ago she had gone to a conference for writers in Bend, OR. She has attended a seminar taught by Kyle on how to market your book. Shelley said that Kyle didn’t spend any time on marketing, and focused his seminar on having a message you want to communicate. Shelley said that Kyle’s talk had really challenged her in a deep way, and that, at the end of the seminar when Kyle said that since he hadn’t spent time on marketing he would give each attendee a free 30 minute phone consultation, she had decided to take him up on it.

The following phone conversation with Kyle had a big impact on Shelley and from it, she said, she wrote her novel Julia and launched Just Dust Publishers.

And as I heard Shelley’s story I was blown away about how God, in his sovereign providence, used one of my best friends so many years ago to impact Shelley and through Shelley to be involved in the publishing of my story, I Remember Fishing with Dad.

(Below is a picture from my ordination as a Presbyterian pastor in Seattle in 1997. From left to right is Mike Mellison, Kyle Liedtke, myself, and Scott Miller, dear college friends)

 

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Four Book Signings…Can You Join Me At One?

I have four book signings of I Remember Fishing with Dad after Thanksgiving and before Christmas. If you live in the Salem, OR, Redmond, WA, Stanwood WA, and Indianapolis, IN areas it would be fun if you could stop by. I’d love to see you and share my book with you.

Saturday, November 28th, 12:00-4:00pm at Just Dust Publishers ofice, McMinnville, OR

The first book signing is at first Christmas Open House held at the the office of Just Dust Publishers (JDP),  1055 NE Irvine St, McMinnville, OR. JDP authors will be there with their books to sign and to sell. JDP will hold a drawing for fun gifts and a grand prize worth $600–A two night stay at our vacation rental for up to 6 people in the heart of McMinnville!! (Must attend open house, although no need to be present for actual drawing to win.)  All are welcome to come for Christmas cookies and to ask questions about writing/publishing. No need to RSVP, however, those who do will have a gift waiting under the tree! To register go to http://www.JustDustPublisher.com.

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Saturday, December 5th, 3:00-5:00pm, at the Snow Goose Bookstore, Stanwood, WA

The second book signing event will take place at the historic Snow Goose Books and Frame Shop in Stanwood, WA, 8716 271st St NW. Dad and I will be together at this signing.

The Snow Goose Bookstore in Stanwood’s historic East End has been a community icon for more than 30 years, sharing great reads with booklovers of all ages. For those same 30 years, Let’s Frame It also operated on Main Street, offering custom framing and art to our community.

Over the years I have displayed some of my paintings at Lets Frame It. Recently Snow Goose these two Stanwood landmarks into the new Snow Goose Books and Frames. They’re still the familiar old-fashioned bookshop, staffed by friendly readers, proud to offer you an eclectic, hand-picked selection of new books, great cards, and unique and thoughtful gift items. And now their frame shop brings a wonderful new dimension to our commitment to service, with custom frames, mounting and laminating to preserve your treasured art and keepsakes. I’m excited to partner with these anchor tenants in Stanwood, and to encourage people to shop and support local institutions.

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Monday, December 7th, 6:00-7:30pm at McDonalds Books, Redmond, WA

The third book signing event is at McDonalds Books, 6979 Gilman St, from 6:00-7:30pm, within walking distance of our apartment.

I’m hoping to do a book reading at 6:30pm if any kids are there.

McDonald’s Book Exchange has been in business for over 38 years making them the longest independently owned used bookstore not only in Redmond, but in the entire east side. Providing a fair and friendly exchange for our community and loyal customers has been their passion for over thirty years, and I’m excited to be sharing my book at this east side landmark.

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Friday, December 11th, 2:00-5:00 at the Harrison Center for the Arts, Indianapolis, IN

My fourth book signing is at the Harrison Center for the Arts, where dad and I painted many of the watercolors that illustrate my book. Since its inception, the Harrison Center for the Arts has sought to be a catalyst for renewal in Indianapolis. Their mission has always been bigger than art for art’s sake. Today, they are fostering the creation of new art, building a community among artists and emerging art patrons, creating new partnerships, and providing a forum for public conversations between artists and the community. In short, they’re using art to change the world. We’re using “cultural development” to change the community in which we live and work.

You can learn more about this dynamic cultural organization at their web site: http://www.harrisoncenter.org.

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Here is one of my favorite Harrison Center for the Arts photos. It was taken shortly before we left Indy. One evening our family climbed unto the roof of the Harrison Center for the Arts Facility, which is also the home of the church I pastored in Indianapolis, Redeemer Presbyterian. There on the roof we watched the sunset and said our goodbyes.

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Finally, I’m trying to get my friend Paul Baumgarten, who took all the photographs for this book, join me at this signing. I haven’t heard back from him, introverted man he is. If you live in the Indy and know Paul, lean on him a little bit for me would you :).

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And if you can’t join me for any of these book signing events, you can have you can join me digitally. If you buy my book online I will sign it and you’ll have your signed copy! Here’s a link to do that.

Completely Overwhelmed and Humbled by the Support

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I completely overwhelmed and humbled by the support of my friends, my parent’s friends, and even some people we don’t know at all (yet), who helped me achieve my goal of selling 100 copies of my children’s book “I Remember Fishing with Dad.”

I needed to sell at least 100 books by November 15th so I would have enough cash flow to buy 200 copies for re-sale. But a deeper motivation for me is that I’m trying to be a support to my dad and mom through this financially lean time in their life. Dad and I are splitting whatever we make from the book 50/50.

I sent out the post asking for help via Facebook on Thursday, October 29th. By 5:00pm on Monday, November 2nd, 100 books had been sold. I am overwhelmed that so many friends from decades past, and friends who I’ve just made, bought a book. And some bought 3 or 4, and one even 10 books.

All I can say is that I am deeply humbled and very thankful to have so many friends help me as I try to help my dad and mom. Thanks from the bottom of my heart.

If you’re interested in purchasing a copy of my book, you can do so on my web site: http://www.sunnyshorestudio.wordpress.com.

if you’re interested in hearing more about the story behind this book check this video out.