I came for the soup: Welcome to the table

 

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Welcome to i came for the soup, a blog journey chronicling my growth in Faith, Art & Fiction. Be sure to read the Menu for more information. To read about how the blog began and how it got its name, click HERE.

Have you always wanted to write your own novel? This is the Year to DO IT! Follow this LINK to see how you can do so by committing to writing as little as 200 words a day!

Also, be sure to check out my Blog Novel, titled ASCENSION GRAVEYARD. New chapters are posted often and feedback is always welcome. To read along, click HERE.

If you’d like to send me a message, you can do so at: icameforthesoup@gmail.com

Enjoy the soup!

Like a Sapling through Soil: Flash Fiction & Musing

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“You’ve gone quiet,” Their words weren’t condemning, still it drew her attention with enough force to make her spine go rigid.

Forcing her nerves into a sense of calm, she shook her head. “I haven’t really gone quiet.”

“No?”

“No. I’ve been in the dark, much like a seed.” Without looking at them she could almost feel their interest peek and a smile bloom with interest.

“Explain if you can. I like seeds, so much potential there.”

This made her smile. “Like a seed I’ve been in the dark. I have a lot of things pressing on me from every side, but the pressure is only promoting change. I have much to say. The words are on the tip of my tongue but I need to allow the right moment to arrive.”

“Like a sapling through the soil,”

“Precisely! Like a sapling through the soil. Seeds planted in Fall burst forth in the Spring.”

“Spring is right around the corner you know?”

Another smile. “Yes, it is. I can feel it in my bones.”

THE BEGINNING…

A Moment for Musing

Hello there friends! If you haven’t figured it out the above story would be my conversation with creativity and my work here on I came for the soup. I’ve struggled with my blogging rhythm here, yet again and it has produced a level of anxiety.

There is so much I want to say, so many stories I want to tell, and yet only so many hours in a given day.

I want to thank all of you who have stuck with me as I build up my Author Site and prepare for Indie Publishing. If you haven’t already, please swing by http://www.candicecoates.wordpress.com, follow, share with others, and partake in reading the sample chapters of two of my novels, Warden and Nexus Gate 4037: The Animal. After reading, cast your vote for the novel you think should be published first.

Polls for voting will be available February 20th through March 25th.

I will have more information about what is going on here in the soup bowl, especially in regards to my blog novel Ascension Graveyard, coming soon.

Stay tuned!

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Click HERE for more about the Battle of the Books! The Battle is already on. Be sure to read and cast your VOTE today!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

 

Battle of the Books is Here!: Which will be Published First? You Decide!

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Go to www.candicecoates.wordpress.com for more details!

The official kickoff of the Battle of the Books, a competition between two of my novels where you the reader get to vote and decide which book will be indie published first has begun! 
WARDEN vs NEXUS GATE 

Read sample chapters of and cast your vote for the novel you think should be the first published.

Click HERE for more details!

NOVEL 1: WARDEN

 


warden-coverBook Flap: 
Ever since the bizarre death of her grandmother, Maeve Grandie has made it her sole purpose to be reliable, even if that means living a dreadfully predictable life. The only sense of adventure Maeve experiences is in her dreams. The only problem is her peculiar hereditary condition that gives her rashes on her hands and arms, turning the veins of her arms a screaming azurite blue, not only gives her weird dreams but causes her to sleepwalk as well.

But what would happen if those dreams that carry her into a bizarre land where people can cause their arms to ignite with blue flames and tear open the sky with their bare hands is not really a dream at all?

What if the dream world, Maeve finds herself suddenly trapped in, is actually a true world of wonder but one she is somehow destroying just by being there?

Senior Warden Vincent Jasper of Trident finds himself facing that very real and immeasurable danger when a young woman in the ugly pink nightgown interferes with an arrest right before disappearing through an Unzoned Door in the Universe causing the very threads of the Cluster and Realms to ripple and stretch, putting it and the lives of all who live within it in grave danger. Not only is the woman unknown but she keeps opening Doors and is somehow hiding right underneath his nose.

Can Jasper and his team along with the rest of Trident, apprehend this villainous threat clad in garish pink flannel and ruffles? Or will they find out that she is not the threat at all but the weapon of someone else, all before their side of the universe collapses?

nexus-gate-4037-the-animal-coverNOVEL 2: NEXUS GATE 4037: THE ANIMAL

 

Book Flap: Most important rules of time surveillance; never disrupt your host timeline and never step into the future. Decorated Surveillance Specialist Vivian Leona of 6037 has broken both.

Losing her husband, John Joseph Spruce, in the Nexus of time past, Vivian mistakenly pulls the wrong man into the future, a man recorded by history as having died on that very day in 1837. The consequences for keeping him alive in the future could prove far worse than Vivian bargains for, especially in the American South’s New Golden Age, 4037, where any overt emotion or cause of such, like racism, is seen as a deadly contingent—‘conditions’ cured only by euthanasia.

Slave foreman and bounty hunter ‘Tucker’ John Josephus Spruce of 1837 is called ‘The Animal’ by those he hunts, and a ‘necessary evil’ by those who enlist his skills, but are his ‘talents’ enough to keep him alive when he steps into a deadly snare set twenty-two hundred years in the future where he is now pawn and prey?

Will Tucker John’s instincts lead him towards retribution for his abduction, or will they make Vivian his only ally while setting him on an unexpected hunt for the one not only out for his blood, but the very woman’s he’s purposed to destroy?

RULES FOR THE READER:

  • Read teaser chapters of both books. (NEXUS GATE  and WARDEN)
  • Follow the link at the end of the Chapter Teaser back to the Voting Polls here and cast your vote for which story YOU think should be indie Published first
  • Leave your constructive criticism for both stories
  • Follow www.candicecoates.wordpress.com!

See you at the battle!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

The Pull of the Rain: A Free Flow Write #Romance #Writing

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“I don’t know how to win you.” He said, the lines in his brow straining against the pull of the rain. The eyes that looked back at him were equally intense, equally determined.

But why? Why was this such a struggle? Didn’t she understand? He pulled his hand down his face, callouses brushing against evening whiskers that had begun to sprout beneath the brutality of the day. Dampness, not only from the rain but from the sweat of his exertion made his shirt cling to his chest, arms, and back.

He needed to quit this, he needed to quit her, he needed-

“Didn’t you hear the bell?”  A voice cut through the patter of rain against wet earth. A finger of lightning traced the sky and pointed towards the house a little ways off. It was as if the finger of God was telling him, “Go home, Jesse. That is enough.”

Jesse ground his teeth, walking toward the edge of the fence. He met the woman’s gaze as she shielded her eyes against the falling rain with the kitchen towel she held above her head.

Why is she out here? 

She asked again, “Didn’t you hear the bell? I rang it several times.”

“I heard it.” His voice was clipped. She paused, as was her way as of late, and traced his face as if it were a page of a novel she was reading. She was reading him.

“Alright then,” she finally said. Her hands dropped down, pulling the kitchen towel from over her head. She twisted it between her hands before glancing once over his shoulder and then back at the house.

She had only gotten a few steps before Jesse forced himself out of the corral. He took hold of her arm and turned her around to face him, another generic apology ready upon his lips.

“Hannah,” He said her name but paused, the expression on her face striking him to silence. Even beneath the wetness of the falling rain he could tell there were tears upon her face.

He had never given a care for her tears, never given a care for her. He didn’t know how to win her either. He didn’t know how to bring peace from an unwanted union, or love from two lonely hearts made stone. Nothing he had tried to do had done any good with Hannah, the same way nothing he had been trying to do with the blasted horse was working either.

He felt defeated, he could tell that Hannah did as well, the dip at the corners of her mouth said so. He touched the side of her mouth with his fingertip and felt a jolt of electricity that was not unlike the lightning.

Before he could make heads or tails of why he had touched her mouth with his hand, he touched her lips with his, something he had not done since the day they said “I do,” and even that was short lived and almost painful.

But it wasn’t so with this kiss, not with how the rain blanketed them, not with how Hannah’s unsure hands found their way up his chest, or how his arms found their way around her curved waist.

It was peace. It wasn’t winning, it wasn’t losing. It was just the sweetest surrender; giving into the wanting and being met with the same determination.

THE END

*Originally published April 9, 2015.

 

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Which Novel Will I Publish First? You Decide: #BattleoftheBooks #IndiePublishing #Author

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The countdown is on! Only 6 days until the Battle of the Books begins, where you, my readers, get to decide which of these two books will be the first to be Indie Published.

If you haven’t already, follow my Author Page at www.candicecoates.wordpress.com and catch the teaser chapters for each book Warden and Nexus Gate 4037: The Animal. You can read the book flap descriptions of each book by clicking HERE!

Polls for reading the teaser chapters and voting will open at 12 am, MONDAY, FEBRUARY 20th, and will close at 11:59 pm EST SATURDAY, MARCH 25th.

HERE’S ANOTHER WAY YOU CAN HELP: 

  • Would you like to be a host for my promotion tour on your blog from FEBRUARY 26th thru MARCH 24th? Contact me at: candicecoateswrites@gmail.com

Be sure to check back in later this week here or at www.candicecoates.wordpress.come for teaser sections, tantalizing tidbits to wet your appetite for the chapters to come.

Spread the word with others. See you at the battle!

~Dream. Image. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Weaver’s Threads: A Short Story

This was originally published March 12th, 2014

“Don’t press too hard or you’ll break them.  Remember, Illa, the threads are fragile. You must,”

“Handle them with care.” Illa finished the rebuke as it slid like honey from her mentor’s lips.

Vero gently pinched the young girl’s cheeks and winked at her. “If you know this, Illa than why must I always remind you?” She sighed, her query more rhetorical than anything. She sighed because she knew Illa would answer her anyway.

Illa’s head rolled on her shoulder’s. Her expression full of drama and dissatisfaction. “I don’t want to do this,” she said. “I am not meant to be a weaver.”

Vero did not respond. Instead, she kept her back to Illa and continued pulling the threads of her own work. Illa spoke on. “I should be out there, doing something else, something more meaningful. This is useless.” She plucked one of the threads with her finger. The taught line made a twanging sound that caused Vero’s shoulders to kiss her ears.

As if gliding on air, Vero was back at Illa’s side, her hands spread as if trying to calm the workings of Illa’s weaving. When the resonating finally died down completely, she took Illa’s hands in hers and squeezed with a terrible force. Her obsidian eyes suddenly seemed darker than usual.

“Never do that again! Am I understood?”  Illa nodded, her mouth suddenly agape. She had never seen Vero so wroth.

Vero turned her loose and sighed again, this time from absolute exhaustion.  Illa had been her apprentice for months now and still, she failed to understand.  Fate was not a web easily woven. Paths of life were dictated long before birth, and Illa toyed with them as if they were nothing more than threads from a seamstress’ spool.

No, what they were weaving was far more important than perishable silks. Illa was called to weave threads of life, she was the only one chosen in her generation. Why didn’t she understand how important it was, how important she was. If she got one thread wrong if she muddled the pattern even a little…

Vero’s head began to pound. Her eyes danced around her weaver’s room, gently skirting around the crystalline threads of lives she had woven. She had taken such great care with each and when she was finished the breath and essence of each web was blown upon the child who would live out that path with words of blessing and purpose. The sureness of her fingers meant fortune or misfortune for each person who received from her calling.

Illa was to take her place but Illa did not understand.

“I am sorry,” Illa’s voice, shaken and low, pulled Vero from the depths of her thoughts.

Vero made herself to look upon the young girl with tenderness in her eyes. She couldn’t allow her to see neither anger or fear. Both would derail what little balance for the task that Illa possessed. She said, “Be sorry not for me. May fate has already been blessed upon me and here I stand. But you,  be sorry for those whose fates rest in your hands if you dare to toy with them as if they are guitar strings and not matters of life and death.” Vero turned away from her and sat down at her loom again.

Illa turned back toward the web. Her brow had drawn together and it was as if Vero could sense it for when Illa went to strum the threads again as if they were chords, Vero’s voice rang about her once more. “And lest I forget to tell you, the very web you toy with today is your very own. It is with that that you shall be blessed.”

Illa stayed back her hand for only a moment before responding. “You have said this before as well, Vero, and none of the webs have been mine before. They have all gone to chattel, dogs and the like.” Her voice was laden with bitterness.

Vero continued to weave. “We never know which web is actually ours, Illa, until the time for blessing comes. For that reason, you must respect each web and treat it as if it were your very own, for the tangles you weave today may very well be the snares that catch you tomorrow.”

She said nothing more. Illa stared at her once more before turning around and this time touching the threads with the care she needed to.

She finally understood.

THE END

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Third’s a Charm, Right?: Revisiting Ascension Graveyard & Blog Theme Change #Writer #Novel #Revisions

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Third’s a charm, right? Right! I suppose that is true if this is indeed the third time that I have sat down to write AND finish my blog novel, ASCENSION GRAVEYARD.

Part of me, however, feels like this is the FOURTH time and that I left my third attempt somewhere to die a slow death in 2016…these things happen, I’m cool with that.

I suppose that I would have wallowed in frustration over each unfinished reboot if it weren’t for the fact that other creative happenings weren’t successfully occupying my time. It’s not at all that I have been just trying to fill failed space with projects that would massage my ego, but truly I’ve been working on building up my dreams.

To everything there is a time and a season…” ~Ecclesiastes 3:1

As I announced earlier this year, I have officially launched my Author Site, and I am gearing up to do a ‘Battle of the Books’ Monday, February 20th, 2017. The battle is a match between the first two novels that I completed during my summer sessions of NaNoWriMo. More information about that will be coming soon.

Ascension Graveyard is my third attempt at summer NaNo and has been like a very needy child for going on four years! As I’ve said before, I encourage myself about the time it is taking to complete this novel with the knowledge that it took Stephen King forty years or so to properly write Under the Dome. He began in the early 70’s and didn’t have her on the bookshelves until 2009.

Some aspiring writers may cringe at that length of time but here are two encouraging things I want you to take away from this:

  1. Anything worth having is worth the work and wait: Our lives and experiences influence the work that we produce. Stephen King started with an idea, but time and influence gave greater life and vision to the work…which also led to a T.V series…which leads to take away number 2.
  2. To everything there is a time and a season (Ecclesiastes 3:1): Some ideas are born in the moments of today but will only be ready for life years from now. The time in between is all about the preparation. Like a fine wine or cheese or a really great stew, long hours, or in the case of some pieces of fiction, long years are what’s required. (I wrote a faith post about waiting. You can find it here.)

Ascension Graveyard has taken me a long while and many moments of frustration, but I feel like the time to really get from the starting line to the end is upon us. I know that I must ‘kill many of my darlings’ during this third or fourth attempt but I am ready.

As a reminder, chapters will begin going up again starting in March 2017.

This leads me to my change in blog theme. Really, I find changing or finding the ‘right’ theme to be much like mall shopping for clothing. It is exhausting, somewhat disappointing, often times hit-or-miss, but when you need new clothes you just have the bite the bullet and step into the fitting room.

I’ve changed my theme after a year because, for one, I felt like I needed the change AND because of the simple function of having my PAGES visible in the body of the text and NOT somewhere floating around after the adds, share buttons, likes, etc.

This theme has the next pages of my post right there after the final period on the previous page. Easy-peasy. I want this process to not only be a fun and easy adventure for myself but a more user-friendly experience for my readers.

As I’ve said before, my writing can only improve with your constructive criticism. So, read along with me, turn those lovely pages, and leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Also, don’t forget to stay tuned for the Battle of the Books! Your votes will determine which novel will be published and promoted first! You can stay connected and on top of updates by following my Author Site.

Thanks for tuning in!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

A Reason to Rejoice: A Word of Faith

rejoice-alwaysI’m sure that whether you are a Christian or not, you have heard that the shortest verse in the bible is John 11:35,”Jesus wept.” While this is true on one hand, there is a verse that rivals it for the two-word title and that is a passage found in I Thessalonians 5:16.

“Rejoice always.” ~I Thessalonians 5:16

While the two verses seem to have a world between then in meaning, I want to encourage you of how they both give us a reason to rejoice and empower us to do so in the Lord God Yeshua Jesus.

In John 11, we find Yeshua Jesus at the tomb of His beloved friend, Lazarus who has passed away, and Yeshua Jesus, fully understanding the grief of those around Him wept along with them. He being, fully God, and fully Man took on the role of complete friend and shared in the sufferings of those around Him even though He knew what He was capable of doing as the God of all creation.

Even with His infinite power, He allowed Himself to weep. Sometimes when we face hardships in life, we often feel guilty for being overcome by emotions. I don’t know about you, but there have been many occasions where I’ve had to remind myself that crying because of a situation does not mean I don’t have faith concerning the situation.

Just as my Savior wept in His sovereignty, you and I have the blessing of weeping in our salvation and hope.

When we face our ‘Lazarus’ situations, moments where life seems completely unfair and that which we were believing God for seems to have died, we may find it difficult to rejoice in anything at all. You may even be thinking that the Lord’s prompting for us to rejoice is somewhat unfair.

But again, just as Yeshua Jesus gives us peace of mind when we weep He also gives us the reason to rejoice.

These two verses, similar in their length, bless us with some key truths about the character of the God we serve and hope in:

  1. John 11:35 assures us that Yeshua Jesus understands our sufferings even as we share in His.
  2. I Thessalonians 5:16 reminds us that there is always a reason for hope.

The same way that Yeshua Jesus knew what He could do at Lazarus’ tomb, He is able and willing to do at the ‘tombs’ in our lives. In this we can rejoice! The call to rejoice is a call to take firm hold of our faith.

WE CAN REJOICE BECAUSE:

  • We are Rejoicing in Him: Philippians 4:4  Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.” We rejoice in Who He is. We rejoice that He is soveriegn over every situation in our lives.
  • We are rejoicing in Hope: Romans 12:12  rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer…”
  • We know our Hope does not dissappoint: Romans 5:5  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”
  • We know Christ in us IS our HOPE: Colossians 1:27To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
  • Becuase He is in us we are overcomers: 1 John 4:4 “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
  • We overcome because Christ in us has overcome the world and its troubles: John 14:27-29; 16:33 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I. “And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe… …These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.
  • He has counted us WORTHY to share in His sufferings and be persecuted on His behalf: I Peter 4:13″but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.” Acts 5:40-42And they agreed with him, and when they had called for the apostles and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.  So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.”

SO WHY DO WE REJOICE ALWAYS?

We rejoice because even though our lives may face sufferings and tribulations we know that in Him we have hope and our hope does not dissappoint, that He has counted us WORTHY to carry a cross to the glory and honor of His Name! He, Christ in us has blessed us to overcome every situation and to bring us out gloriously because He loves and cares for us.

So let us not be troubled but truly rest and rejoice in the peace He has given us, the same peace He gave us right before He was betrayed and led to the cross in our place!

No matter what you are facing, though you may feel the need to weep, do so, but always rejoice. He is with you and you will overcome! And HE IS ALWAYS A REASON TO REJOICE!

ADDITIONAL ENCOURAGMENT:

~Poiema, Poetry in Motion

Five Chapters in & Counting: Disius 9 365-Day Novel Progress Report

Curious about my progress with my 365-day Novel? Find out how things here, and be sure to FOLLOW my Author Site! ~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

candice coates

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Woohoo! Although I am still two days behind on my words-for-the-day withDisius 9, the story is growing splendidly. I have to say that this writing prompt and adventure is nothing like any that I have done before. The feeling and creative growth that I am experiencing have much to do with this.

These characters, this random daily word prompting is really amazing to me. If you are a writer you are familiar with how your story tells you where to go as you give it life. It shows you the ebbs and flows and yet leaves you the wide reach of freedom to dress and undress the story as you like.

For me, with this story, I fell less like it’s telling me how to write it and more like it’s showing me. Unlike other stories that I have written, I am writing Disius 9 out of what I am…

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The First Day: A Poem

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It is time I familiarize myself with you again

The sound of your whisper

The scent of your skin

The savor of your closeness when we are lost within

An embrace that gives life meaning

Intertwined and woven like branches above

A canopy of safety echoing the songs of doves

It’s the one thing my heart and soul are dreaming of

The Earth on the first day of Spring

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Steps & Leaps: A Quote on Faith #Quote #Inspiration #Encouragement #Faith

 

faith-in-stepsNo matter how big or small the step you take toward accomplishing your dream, celebrate the courage that you displayed in the step that you took and the ones that are sure to follow. Each stone you put forth is one more to add to the foundation of your future. Be grateful for your progress and keep moving forward!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!