Thursday, October 10, 2019

Yes, That Really Happened! By Patti Jo Moore

As writers, we know that story ideas are everywhere. People-watching can often send our minds into overdrive, and we start playing the “what if” game in our thoughts. What if that man patiently accompanying his wife in the grocery store is actually a spy?

We can also use incidents in our own lives to add an interesting twist in our stories. Has something unbelievable happened to you? Maybe something so crazy that later you find yourself thinking, I can’t believe I did that! Or Did that really happen?

Since I recently returned from attending the American Christian Fiction Writers’ conference in San Antonio, Texas, I’ve been reflecting on what I learned, the friends I saw, and yes—even some zany things that happened. 😉 It occurred to me a few days ago that some of these happenings might find their way into my future stories.

Because I’m not a seasoned traveler, I was a bit nervous as I prepared to board my flight at the Atlanta airport. *Side note: For those of you who’ve never been in my hometown airport, it gets CRAZY!* As I headed along the jetway to board the plane, I glanced behind me to see if I was the last passenger. The line ahead suddenly stopped, sending me plowing into the woman ahead of me. Cringing, I profusely apologized, preparing to be met with a glare. Instead, the woman laughed and joked about not having her brake lights on! I had no idea who she was, but I liked her right away. 😊 A few hours later, I was leaving the registration table at the writers’ conference when a woman approached me, smiling as she introduced herself. She was the same woman I’d bumped into, and also a Hallmark author whose books and movies I love! I gushed like a crazy fangirl, but she was so sweet and since then we’ve visited and emailed. I have a new friend!

When I checked into the hotel, the kind employee smiled and handed me a bookmark with a Bible verse on it, along with my room key. As I stepped away from the counter to join a friend, I glanced down at my room number. Room 666. Seriously? At a Christian conference? For a minute I thought it must be a joke. ☹ The woman who’d helped me was now busy with another guest, so I went to a different desk clerk. When he saw my room number, he shook his head and exclaimed, “I told her not to give anyone this room!” He completely understood my reason for wanting a different room, and happily assigned me to a new room on a different floor. 😊

I could go on and on…but you get the idea. Those clumsy moments we might have, or something that we can later laugh about can all become part of our stories. Even something that might seem unbelievable to others—yet really happened to us—can all find their way onto the pages of our stories. If you’re too embarrassed to admit an incident really happened, no worries. You’re a writer, so folks will just think you made it up. 😉

A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance. Proverbs 15:13

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After being deceived by her beau the previous year, library worker Sadie Perkins feels she’s meant to remain single and serve as a missionary to orphans in Africa. Her plan is to return home to Riverview after a year, and open an orphanage in a lovely house she’s admired since childhood. She didn’t plan on losing her heart to someone who intends to demolish the house.Widower Shaun O’Leary of Savannah yearns to make his father proud, and hopes to accomplish that by overseeing a hotel project in the town of Riverview. But first he must have a house demolished before hotel construction can begin. After meeting lovely Sadie Perkins in Riverview, he’s puzzled why she seems upset when he mentions his plans. He’s also saddened that she’s leaving for Africa soon, because he’s fallen in love with her. As Sadie prepares to board a ship, she finally has peace and realizes what she should do, yet still feels sad that the house she loves is to be demolished. When Shaun suddenly has an idea to save the house Sadie loves, he rushes to the Savannah port to tell her, but the ship has sailed. When things seem hopeless, can dreams still come true?

Patti Jo Moore is a former kindergarten teacher who now writes full-time. Her “Sweet, Southern Stories” feature characters who face realistic struggles and challenging situations but always have a happily-ever-after ending.

Patti Jo loves Jesus, her family, cats, and coffee. When not writing, she loves spending time with her family—especially her precious grandbaby. She enjoys connecting with readers and can be found on Facebook at Author Patti Jo Moore. You can also visit her blog at

She has three contemporary stories and one historical, all with Forget-Me-Not Romances

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