Miracle in a Dry Season    Dangerous Passage


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The Advocate


Liz Curtis HiggsLIZ CURTIS HIGGS (Bad Girls of the Bible, Grace In Thine Eyes):
When I started driving, my mother cautioned me, “Nothing good happens after midnight,” and she was right. Alas, this Former Bad Girl ignored her wise counsel for a decade . . .

Creston MapesCRESTON MAPES (Nobody, Dark Star):
My mom's father, then my mom, always said: “Moderation is the key—in everything.”


Angela HuntANGELA HUNT (The Fine Art of Insincerity):

This one’s easy: “Read!”


John Aubrey AndersonJOHN AUBREY ANDERSON (The Cool Woman):
I could make this longer, but I can’t make it any better. My wife and I have known each other since kindergarten, but we didn’t date until we were in college. A year or so after Nan and I started dating, Momma told me, “You’d better marry that girl.” I’m in my late sixties, and I’ve known for years . . . I won’t hear wiser words on this side of eternity.

Rene GutteridgeRENE GUTTERIDGE (Possession, Listen):
The best advice my mother gave me was to work as hard as I can on what I love. It's paid off :)

Nikki AranaNIKKI ARANA (As I Have Loved You, The Fragrance of Roses):
“Marry the man who loves you the most.” I did, and you can read about what happened in my book The Winds of Sonoma.


Tamara LeighTAMARA LEIGH (Nowhere Carolina, Leaving Carolina):
I offer the following advice that my mother gave me--all good, though sometimes I still mess up. “Never forget that words have the immense power to not only encourage, but discourage, others.” (Borderline prophetic, hmm?) “When dealing with others and what you perceive to be their shortcomings, try to 'walk in their shoes'.” (Have this one down, for the most part, though sometimes in hindsight) “Try to listen more than you talk.” (I do, though I have been known to drift.)

Sharon HinckSHARON HINCK (The Restorer):
My mom always says, "Keep your chin up . . . But don't stick your neck out." She also says, "Moderation in all things... Including moderation." But her greatest advice has been lived, not told. All her life, she's been faithful in her daily prayer, Bible study, and worship life. And her modeling of that has been her best counsel to me.

Nancy MoserNANCY MOSER (An Unlikely Suitor, ):
She told me I could achieve anything I set my mind to--with hard work. She (and my father) believed in all of us kids, and lived out this advice by setting their own sights on many diverse projects. The downside to this advice is that I often took on too much, because I truly though I could do whatever needed to be done. It's taken some adjustment to learn how to say no, to let others do, and to use my time to do what I do best. Just because we can doesn't mean we should.

My Mom's Best Advice

23 Authors Share Theirs

by C.J. Darlington

"The best advice she gave me—the best advice anyone has given—was 'Don’t let anyone say you can’t do it. Don’t even tell yourself that.'"
-- Robert Liparulo

She gave you life, brought you into this world. As you grew up, chances are she also dished out some juicy nuggets of wisdom. The mothers of these 24 authors certainly did. Let's sit back and learn from them.

Brandilyn CollinsBRANDILYN COLLINS (Over the Edge, Exposure):

It wasn’t a stated piece of advice. It was one my mother lived. She’s loved me unconditionally, and through her modeling, I’ve learned how to do the same as a parent, regardless of the trials that have arisen.

Jerry JenkinsJERRY JENKINS (The Brotherhood, Riven):

“Work before you play, but don’t forget to play.”

Deborah RaneyDEBORAH RANEY (Almost Forever, Forever After):
I remember when I was the tender age of almost--18, loving my life and lamenting having to grow up. My mother looked me in the eye and said, “Debbie, don’t you ever feel afraid of getting older! Every year of my life has been better than the year before.” Her words have definitely been true for me. My forties were the most fabulous years of my life, and so far, my fifties are shaping up to be even better! I have a very wise mom who is still enjoying life to the hilt at 74.

Kristin BillerbeckKRISTIN BILLERBECK (A Billion Reasons Why, Perfectly Dateless):
This is going to sound incredibly stupid, but it's true. One night in college, I had a boyfriend who had taken my Mustang convertible out and not come home. I was so angry and my mother said, "Are you worried about the car or the boyfriend? That tells you something." Yes, I was worried about my precious car. Needless to say, it spoke volumes about my choices in life. I became a Christian shortly thereafter. :)

Karen BallKAREN BALL (What Lies Within, The Breaking Point):
To celebrate the little moments in life. Mom was a master of celebrating, be it birthdays or holidays, or just a walk on the beach, she made every moment special. She reminded me what a gift each day was, and that you should spend it with a heart of gratitude rather than one of dissatisfaction. She helped me see that life's glass isn't just half full, it's overflowing!

James Scott BellJAMES SCOTT BELL (Watch Your Back, Writing Fiction For All You're Worth):
The best advice my mother gave me was to be thankful. How right she was. Gratitude is one of the keys to a happy life.




Melanie WellsMELANIE WELLS (My Soul to Keep, When the Day of Evil Comes):
It's a long and winding road. Enjoy the journey and don't worry about what's around the bend.” My second choice for mom advice was a retort my mom made once when I was mooning over a boyfriend who I thought I was so in love with. I think I was 16 or 17. My mom's response? “Melanie, you're not in love, you're just happy. The sooner you learn the difference, the better off you'll be.” Ouch. She was right, of course.

Lorena McCourtneyLORENA MCCOURTNEY (Here Comes the Ride, My Chariot Awaits):
I think my mother's most helpful bit of advice to me was, "Just send it out again." This may not sound profound or world shaking, but it has stood me in good stead over many years of writing. My mother had done some magazine article writing, so I very early on tried writing stories and sending them out to kids' magazines. They were mostly quite unimpressed with my efforts and sent them right back. So Mom's advice was, "Just send it out again." You don't let one or two - or a dozen! - rejections make you quit. Eventually this paid off when I made my first "professional" sale while I was still in high school.

Jenny B. JonesJENNY B. JONES (Save the Date, So Over My Head):
"Put your initials in your underwear." Just kidding. It wasn't any specific thing that stands out, but that my mom was always telling me I was pretty and smart and a good person. Believe me, I'm no Ivy league beauty queen, but my mom always did everything she could to instill confidence in me and let me know I was cherished. So while I might not have totally believed her when she said I was something pretty, I believed that she believed it. And that was all that mattered. I hope all moms are telling their girls "You are the package deal."

Sibella GiorelloSIBELLA GIORELLO (The Mountains Bow Down, The Rivers Run Dry):
When I was working as a reporter, and completely enthralled with my job, my mother said, "A great job is a good thing, but it won't keep your feet warm at night."

Tricia GoyerTRICIA GOYER (Beside Still Waters, Love Finds You in Victory Heights, WA):
The best advice from my mom wasn't something she spoke often, but lived with her life. It was, "Everyone is worthy of being considered a friend." My mom is the type of person who you sit next to on the airplane and at the end of the flight you're exchanging addresses. And she will write, I promise! My mom is friendly and caring. She proved with her words and actions that people matter--all people, not only those the world considers important.

Robert LiparuloROBERT LIPARULO (Dreamhouse Kings series):
My father and mother were complete opposites as far as life advice went. My father, the CPA, said, “Play it safe. Get a degree and a corporate job. Buy a house, open an IRA, have 1.3 children.” My mother, on the other hand, always encouraged me to pursue my dreams, however impractical. The best advice she gave me—the best advice anyone has given—was “Don’t let anyone say you can’t do it. Don’t even tell yourself that. Follow your passions without giving up. Everything else—money, security, what other people think—doesn’t matter so much, as long as you’re doing what you love.”

C.J. DarlingtonC.J. Darlington is the award-winning authof of Thicker than Blood, Bound by Guilt, and Ties that Bind. She is a regular contributor to Family Fiction Digital Magazine and NovelCrossing.com. A homeschool graduate, she makes her home in Pennsylvania with her family and their menagerie of dogs, a cat, and a paint horse named Sky. Visit her online at her author website. You can also look her up at Twitter and Facebook.