Archive for November, 2019

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I loved the world I grew up in. It wasn’t perfect, but there were anchors when needed: American values and Christian values. A child was held to those values. They were safety nets for anyone who knew herself to be an American or a Christian. Today, those safety nets could vanish right before our eyes, exchanged for an hypocrisy that defies belief.

TODAY in our beloved USA:

Hate is called love by twisting the meanings of both

Killing another human being is called a “right.”

Without shame, lies are spread as truth.

Science and human biology are explicitly denied.

Whiners massage and manipulate the ‘mob’ and somehow win over those who are afraid to stand on courage.

Every other country seems to be labeled as more important than America.

“A free lunch” is a political goal, no matter the cost to those who’ll be forced to pay for it.

Out of jealousy and selfishness, our duly elected, and very successful President, is being dragged through a counterfeit impeachment.

Churches are being warned by law to “get in line” with new policy, even if it’s against church teaching.

Christianity, which is totally against Socialism, is framed as undesirable.

What was formerly evil is being touted as good. What is good is being touted as evil.

WHAT CAN WE DO?

Number One: PAY ATTENTION.

Don’t get pulled into the double-speak rhetoric by listening to fools who promise you anything free. NOTHING is free. If you want to eat, be prepared to WORK.

Every political office, big or small, makes a difference.  Vote to express American and Christian values.

American values were dearly paid for with the lives of many, and are expressed in The United States Constitution.  Read them again for yourselves and for your children.

Christian values were dearly paid for by the God who created each of us. It is important to remember the seven deadly sins: lust, greed, gluttony, envy, anger, pride, and sloth. Most other sins begin with one or two of the seven deadly sins. And once we let one of these sins take over our lives, the other six are only too happy to creep into our lives as well.

Try to concentrate on the seven virtues; the four cardinal virtues and the three theological virtues. Human beings achieve the four cardinal virtues, prudence, justice, fortitude and temperance, through intellect and free will, gifts from God. When human beings freely choose to act morally, the three theological virtues serve as the foundation and source of the cardinal virtues; faith, hope, and charity or love.

So, if you have begun to say good bye to the American world we loved–DON’T!

But keeping it begins with us. Each one of us has a role to play. And we need to begin TODAY.  Every wonderfully courageous American is being called. There’s no need to say goodbye.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

KAYE PARK HINCKLEY receives national recognition through the NEW YORK CITY BIG BOOK AWARD®!​

The NEW YORK CITY BIG BOOK AWARD recognized THE GHOSTS OF FAITHFUL BY KAYE PARK HINCKLEY in the category of RELIGION FICTION as the 2019 WINNER.

The competition is judged by experts from different aspects of the book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book cover designers and professional copywriters. Selected award Winners and Distinguished Favorites are based on overall excellence.​

THE GHOSTS OF FAITHFUL by KAYE PARK HINCKLEY is sometimes deadly serious, and sometimes laugh-out-loud funny. The layered novel exposes a a family’s clash with betrayal, forgiveness, mercy–and actual ghosts. Izzy Collier runs the Food Bank in a town called Faithful, on the banks of the Suwannee River, and is the least amicable of two daughters in a frustrating family; all, keeping secrets of betrayal. Her parents are at odds with both daughters, and with each other. Her sister, always Izzy’s competition, is an unstable former beauty queen, the wife of a philanderer, and the mother of four. Their ninety-four year-old grandmother believes her dead husband’s ghost has returned, accompanied by a little girl—just as Izzy’s husband, a defense lawyer, is being mysteriously forced by his boss to effect the acquittal of a teenager accused of the murder of a child. Now, Izzy starts to see her deceased grandfather and the little girl, too. Are the ghosts after revenge, justice, or something greater?​​

Once again, in 2019, the New York City Big Book Award achieved worldwide participation.  Entries remained impressive, book submissions streamed in from Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America.  Cities across the globe such as Bangkok, Cape Town, London, Los Angeles, Nagaski and New York were amongst the entries.  Winners were recognized globally from Australia, Cambodia, Canada, England and the United States of America.​

We are proud to announce the diversity of Winners and Distinguished Favorites in the annual New York City Big Book Award.  Included are New York Times bestseller author Lev Grossman’s “The Magicians,” a graphic novel, to the independent publisher Fig Tree Book’s “A River Could be a Tree,” a memoir by Angela Himsel.  Categories featured a wide variety of subjects.  “Ephphatha,” a nonfiction account of a deaf boy’s rise to Ivy League basketball; to “The Adventures of Jules Khan,” a fiction about Muslim superheros were a New York City Big Book Award Winner and Distinguished Favorite respectively.  Excellent books exist globally, regardless of where the author resides or the culture.  

“We are happy to highlight these books, recognize their excellence, and share their achievements.” said awards sponsor Gabrielle Olczak.

Before I wrote fiction, for nearly twenty years of my life I ran an advertising agency pushing all sorts of products, from-geographical areas wanting more business, to car dealers, to political movements. I had to know the product and analyze who needed it in order to advertise it.

Now, I’m a writer of fiction and want to sell my books, but even with my experience in marketing for other people, it is hard to do. I’m so grateful to my small Catholic publishers, so happy to have some books in print. But there’s much more to it than just the satisfaction of holding a book in one’s hand.

Unless your piece of writing is a secret diary, the very point in creating it is to have somebody read it, and hopefully be affected by it. To get an audience, you must market your book. If you’re a Catholic fiction writer, to whom do you market?

If your audience is strictly Catholic, my humble opinion is that there are two different Catholic fiction audiences: One is concerned only with ‘all things Catholic,’ and the other, with sort of an elevated intellectualism. Neither market compliments the other because neither wants to truly understand the other. Market One will not accept reading about the up-close and personal particulars of sin. Market Two sometimes gives sin “a break” in that it doesn’t clarify, but only intellectualizes Catholicism.

Both markets are valid. People will read what they want to read. And there are good Catholic fiction authors for both.

But shouldn’t we address a third, larger market? An audience ‘in-between’ black and white Catholicism and intellectualized Catholicism? I believe that audience is out there, and I believe we can access it.

There are some best-selling authors who write from what we call “a catholic world view—Catholic with a small ‘c,’ meaning universal. And some of those authors are not even Catholic. So what does this say to a Catholic writer of fiction?

In advertising, if you have a product to sell, you discover the need for it and look for the most universal market for that need. The easiest product to market is one that appeals to a particular need in everyone. Bottled water, for example, is universal. Everyone needs water. As far as marketing Catholic fiction—the universal need is God. Everyone needs God, whether they actually use the word God, or not. Or whether they even believe in God, or not.

Our Catholic faith basically tells us that we are all created by God, in his image, to live on earth, and eventually return to Him. Of course, many do not share our beliefs. However, every human being, religious or not, innately knows that he/she has some specific things in common. These are intangible things, such as individual memories, particular imaginings, and the choices we make, which come from our free will.

As human beings, in one way or another, all of us love, and will sometimes suffer for that love—whether or not we see ourselves on a personal road to Calvary. And every person realizes that he/she can choose how he reacts to love or suffering in relationships and everyday problems. When we look for the need in the larger, ‘in-between’ market for Catholic fiction, we will surely see these common attributes as human striving, and that, in very human terms, is a theme for a story that is trying to shine out God’s presence in a sinful world.

Except then, we come upon an even bigger problem. If we want to be published by a publishing house with the means to market, we will soon realize that today’s environment leans toward political correctness–and writers of Catholic fiction are often not politically correct. In order to overcome this, we must strive to be as good as the best writers we know. We cannot expect a big publishing house to produce something less than the best. Naturally, like any other business, they are after a profit.

Sadly, Christians are not held in high esteem today. There is much hatred toward us because we challenge certain behaviors that are the opposite of our beliefs about what is sinful. And there are voices on our opposite side who are no longer fearful about putting out fiction without regard to any moral standard. Many publishing houses tend toward these voices as trendy, and profitable.

But this, too, can be utilized in our fiction, despite today’s disappointing upheaval in our church. In our Catholic belief, no matter a person’s behavior, he/she is still madly loved by God. This does not mean that we go along with wrong behavior in our writing. Instead, we must be fearless, too, and point higher, to God’s infinite love. Maybe this is done through a loving character set against one filled with hate, or maybe in an overall theme of conflict between a character and himself, between what he is pulled toward; good or evil. Our characters should be human beings just like we are, each with a significant life story, of sorrows, struggles and joys, as we have. And each shown as related to us, our brothers and sisters, created by the same Father. We only have to look around us to see them, to see their common needs, and then write about them in beautiful and empathetic ways. The individual ways in which we do that depends on our own experiences and our interests. But we all shine  on a flawed humanity the steady light of God’s love, just as it was in the beginning, is now, and always will be. Catholic writers, this battle has already been won for us, we only need to step out in courage using the talent God has given us. I pray that each of us will do that.