There is a whole series of these on You Tube. This one had me rolling with laughter.

Eric Wilson is one of my favorite authors and this fall he is releasing the first book in a new series called The Jerusalem’s Undead Trilogy. Here’s the blurb for Field of Blood from Thomas Nelson’s website:

The suicide of Judas Iscariot in 30 A.D. left his blood seeping into the soil of the Field of Blood, in Aramaic the Akeldama. When this same field is disturbed by work crews outside Jerusalem in 1989, a clan of supernatural Collectors is released from the ancient burial chambers. Infused with Judas’s enmity, they seek to corrupt and destroy.

Gina Lazarescu has always felt like she didn’t quite belong. But a bizarre accident with a delivery van leaves her questioning if the differences aren’t more significant than she realized. When a man she met as a young girl in Romania reappears with a fantastic tale of immortality, Gina must decide whether to believe or to ignore what she’s seeing.

Regardless of what she decides, she’s headed for an unavoidable collision with the Akeldama.

This series is bound to be considered controversial since Eric is merging vampire lore with Christian themes. I am really excited about these books and I know Eric will handle the material well. I’m glad he is willing to go where other Christian writers won’t so that he can illuminate the Gospel message in a fresh and powerful way. Check out the video below and let me know what you think. Are you interested in a story from a Christian writer about the undead?

My little girl turns 1 in two days and I can’t believe it! She is growing up so fast and I just want to savor every moment. Awhile back I stumbled across a song by Stephen Curtis Chapman that really portrays the feelings us Dads go through as we watch our little girls grow up. It’s a tear jerker for sure, but also a beautiful song that reminds us to cherish every moment we have with them. Man, when did I become such a softy? Grab a tissue and enjoy:

I recently finalized my plans to attend Ted Dekker’s The Gathering in June in Nashville. Ted is an amazing writer and truly one of my favorite novelists. His books have been a huge influence on my decision to pursue writing. The Gathering is basically a one-day conference for his fans, but it’s a little more than that.

Ted’s going to be talking a lot about what it takes to get published, his thoughts on the Christian Fiction market, and answering questions about his books. Apparently there will be some big wig publishing folks there answering questions as well. There’s also going to be a panel of some other writers (I know Eric Wilson will be there…another one of my favorites. He is releasing a brand new trilogy this fall featuring vampires, which is really unheard of in the Christian Fiction world). Ted’s book, House, has been made into a film and it was scheduled to release in theaters last fall. For some reason it was held up and is now scheduled to open this fall. I’m really excited because at The Gathering they are showing a sneak preview of the movie! Currently it is rated R because of the violence and the intensity, so I’m real interested to see what that’s all about. All the participants will receive an advanced copy of his upcoming book, Sinner, as well.

This is a great opportunity for me and something I hope will give me some more inspiration and insight into being a novelist. I’m still very passionate about wanting to write, but I have really struggled with finding the time and motivation. I have really wanted to give up a few times, but something always happens to encourage me to keep going. Just last week Randy Singer emailed me to thank me for a review and to encourage me in my writing. I’ve never emailed him before so I was really blown away that he contacted me and took the time to give me some helpful advice. I’m also so thankful for Angie and how supportive she is. I was really hoping she could go to The Gathering with me, but we just couldn’t work that out. She’s been super great about encouraging me to go anyway. She is so understanding and so good to me. I am blessed!

After the trip I will try to give a little report here on what it was like. Hopefully I will have some cool pictures of me and Ted to share and some exciting Dekker news about his future books. Maybe I can even write about the movie. Stay tuned!

You may or may not know that I currently run my own book review website (www.BookshelfReview.com). I’m thrilled to announce that some of my reviews will now also be featured regularly at The Christian Manifesto. This is a great site that focuses on Christian entertainment and news in our culture. Check it out!

I entered another short story for the FaithWriters.com Weekly Writing Challenge last week. I didn’t place this time around, but I thought I would share it anyway. My little girl is only 10 months old, but already I am amazed and a bit overwhelmed by how quickly it all seems to happen. I just want to freeze time even though I know I can’t. All parents go through these emotions and that’s where the idea for this story came from. For the challenge I had to illustrate the meaning of the phrase, “Every dark cloud has a silver lining”. Let me know what you think.

Three Steps
By Jake Chism

I watch through the viewfinder as she takes her first three steps. It’s an incredible feeling to know that my wife and I are both able to be here at this exact monumental moment. The tape is rolling and memories are being captured, yet my heart is breaking. Don’t get me wrong. Nothing thrills my soul more than to see my little girl discovering something new. What tears me up inside is the realization that my little girl isn’t quite as little as she was three steps ago. Slow and steady she is moving forward and I just can’t let her go.

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All too soon the big day is here. Kindergarten here we come. She is dressed to kill with her pigtails and bows and a lunchbox to boot. I’ve taken the day off to drive her myself and there is no where I would rather be. She’s my little charmer and no doubt she’ll do fine. As she hugs me goodbye I hold on a tad too long. If only I could freeze time and forever be in this moment. I hold back a sob as I release her and force myself to watch her go. She charges forward with a confidence I’ve never known. Three steps later she turns and smiles.

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The place is packed and it’s almost too much. My wife practically had to drag me here when it was all said and done. It has all happened so fast and I can’t believe this day is here. Excitement and hope fill the air, but all I can do is breathe deep and try not to let it get to me. One by one they cross the stage and accept the diploma they have all worked so hard for. Her name is next and I feel weak in my knees. Three steps across the stage and she is now moving on to a new chapter in her life. I’ve given her every reason to stay home a bit longer, but she is going away to the school she has set her sights on. As much as it kills me, I have to let her go.

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We stand arm in arm three steps from the altar. My heart is pounding through my chest and I’m sure the whole room can hear. She has never looked so radiant and the look on his face proves it. I know he loves her. He swore to me he did. But no one could ever love her like I do. She’s still my baby. The minister coughs and I realize it’s for me. I quickly manage to stutter out, “Her mother and I.” She smiles at me in tears and kisses me on the cheek. She moves forward toward her chosen and my hand won’t let go. I try and I try, but I cannot release. Suddenly, a voice whispers, “It’s time to let go.” With a sniffle and a smile I finally do. It’s time to let her go.

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On the other side of the glass she is beaming with joy. It’s been a long struggle but you wouldn’t know it from her smile. Never have I seen her happier or more alive. My little princess is holding her own little girl in her arms. Just three steps away.

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