Short Stories By T.M. Gaouette

I will be sharing some of my short stories here on the site. Each will be followed by a short commentary. I wrote these a while ago and hope to eventually publish a book of my favorites. It may take a while, but in the mean time, I hope you enjoy.

The first one is titled Anna.

Can Innocence, Purity, and God Prevail in a Highly Sexualized Era?

Sexy is in. Sex is prevalent. It’s in school, on the television, in the movie theaters, in books. Hot, half-naked boys and girls are everywhere, flaunting and flirting and getting it on.

Romance is attractive and sex is inevitable. At least, it seems that way to me. Look at teen fashion, and celebrities who wear practically nothing in an attempt to stay in the spotlight or grow within their industry.

Our innocent little girl celebs are resorting to sexualizing themselves so they don’t disappear behind the next young aspiring starlet that Disney picks up.

So how in the world can purity and innocence prevail in a highly sexual world where we’ve reached the point of no return?

Society has become so edgy and risqué, that nothings been left to the imagination. The physical body has been put on display for the world to ogle at. And morality is almost non-existent. Am I generalizing? Unjustly resorting to cynicism? Maybe…just a little. But one look at shows like Jersey Shore, Teen Mom, and Toddlers in Tiaras, and you can see what young teens are watching and assuming as real life.

And we are losing God along the way.

When it comes to fiction, teen girls want to read about finding passion in the arms of a young, handsome boy. That’s cool. Not basking and growing in the amazing love of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Who wants to read about teens who look beyond sex, when they can read about girls begging vampires for it, or college grads contracting themselves into bondage with sexual abusers? That’s more exciting, enticing, tempting.

Where’s the excitement in reading about Christian teens who don’t care about sex?  Teens who put sex where it belongs -in their future marriage- and deal with real issues that matter, like becoming better, kinder, stronger, hard working, honest people. Who wants to read about that? Who?

You?

Whether you do or not, I will continue to write about it, because God has placed that desire in my heart. It’s not the trend, it’s not sexy, but it gives me joy. For those of you who are interested, I pray you enjoy the stories I write to glorify Him.

Whether therefore you eat, or drink, or whatsoever you do, do all to the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)

Bless my words, Lord. So that I always glorify You in everything that I write.

I Can Do All Things Through Christ

Adversity is part of every life, whether in the past, the present, or in the future. The extent is subjective, and so is the response. I’ve written extensively on this subject on Project Inspired, because I’m an advocate for overcoming adversity, and doing so with the best help ever: the love of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let’s not forget that Jesus died for all our sins. What an amazing gift. What an extraordinary sacrifice.  It’s one that’s hard to fathom for those who don’t come to know God. But if you believe in Him, then your faith helps you recognize this truth.

I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. (Philippians 4:12-13)

The Destiny of Sunshine Ranch introduces young foster children who’ve experienced a lot of adversity. One has dealt with loss, one with abuse, one with neglect, and then there’s Benedict. Benny is the character that most epitomizes the truth that anything can be achieved with the strength of God. Of course Benedict doesn’t have the faith. And so he struggles to find a place where he can feel complete.

I wrote this story for teens who feel lost in the darkness of depression. I wrote it for those who have an ache within them that refuses to dissipate. I wrote it for those boys and girls who are looking for relief. Because the answer is in God and His desire to free us all of our pain. I pray it reveals this truth.

I also wrote it for those teens who’ve already found their strength in God. The novel is a celebration for them, and a reminder. I pray it brings joy.

I’m not a preacher, and I don’t want to preach. But I do want to share with as many people as possible, the truth. Our Lord Jesus Christ is here for all of us. There is no pain, there is no struggle, there is no hurt that is bigger than Him. Let Him in and He will carry you through your struggles, and He will guide you to the light. But you have to have faith, a real faith, in Him and His amazing love for you. You can do all things through Christ, because He is your strength.

My desire is to share this truth in my novel, The Destiny of Sunshine Ranch.

I will keep pushing on Lord, because I know you have a plan for me.

Do you have a story to share about overcoming adversity with the strength of Christ?

My Cures for Defeating Writers Block

It’s a writer’s nightmare!

Writer’s block can be devastating for a fiction writer who doesn’t know how to fill the void.

But there are ways in which you can take advantage of writer’s block, at least until you’re ready to resume your manuscript.

  • Writer’s write, and even when the dreaded writer’s block sets in, you need to write. There doesn’t have to be a reason behind the words and you don’t have to stick to writing fiction. In fact, you can just write about how you’re feeling. Write about writer’s block. Why? This exercise will give you a reason to write. It also provides you with an outlet to communicate your emotions. Lastly, it’ll give you material for future projects.
  • Are you in the midst of a fiction novel and you just can’t move forward? Then jump to the good part. You know the part. It’s the scene that you play over and over in your head. It’s the reason why you’re writing the story. By jumping to the good part, you’re stimulating your outlook, and you’re making the story exciting again.
  • If you just can’t write, and no scene inspires you, then read. Reading is the next best thing to writing. Read back on your own work. Oftentimes, when you read your own work, you become inspired to write more. Or better still, you can use the opportunity to proofread and revise chapters.
  • In the event that reading your own work of fiction only depresses you, then read the work of your favorite author. This is often a great motivator because it reminds you of why you became a writer in the first place. It’s also a lesson in writing. When you read the work of your favorite authors, you’re often inspired by their writing and your desire to write like them -or in some cases, better than them- grows.
  • Do you have another fictional story in mind? Start writing it. The idea of having two manuscripts in the works may seem overwhelming, but it’s actually less stressful. It allows you to chop and change from one story to another when the mood strikes you. Your writer’s block is on one story, so just take a break from it. And rather than do nothing, work on the other story. Go back and forth as it suits you. Returning to a story after a period away often provides a fresh perspective.Read motivational stories from writers, such as Stephen King’s, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft. This memoir recalls King’s successes and failures, in addition to tips and advice on writing. Reading inspirational stories by successful writers motivates you to keep writing, because you’re reminded that even the most successful authors were lost for words.

Writer’s block doesn’t have to feel like a moment of failure. But you shouldn’t waste it on non-writing projects. Doing so will only cause guilt. Whatever method you choose to defeat your writer’s block, stay focused and disciplined. Think of writer’s block as an opportunity to take a break from your current project and work on another story or maybe catch up on some reading. Whatever you decide, take advantage of writer’s block, use it wisely, and it could be just what you need to make your story of fiction a success.

Best and blessings to you all.

Image Credit http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

A Day in the Life of a Catholic Novelist

“I am grateful for my life, my blessings, husband and children, my home, and my writing.” I continue my daily mantra instinctively but faithfully. Except my words lack the enthusiasm insisted by Tony Robbins. “I’m grateful for finding my passion, although my time is restricted. My life’s full with every second consumed by one being or another seeking my attention. I’m grateful for it all until insanity kicks in.” I suck in a much needed breath and glance at my two little homeschoolers working diligently at the dining room table, my third sits playing with the spice rack. A sudden gush of happiness washes through me, cleansing all remnants of sarcasm and discouragement that taint my mood.

I’ll survive the drudge of today, with its typical formation. I’ll follow yesterday’s steps, same as the day before. I’m not alone. I prepare a snack, send out the dog, clean the kitchen, and change a diaper. My only interruption is to grab a scrap of paper, napkin, piece of gum wrap, anything obtainable for me to safely transfer a soon-to-be renowned phrase or idea from thought.

Finally, I’m onto my beloved chore, staring at my impending bestseller while my boy plays by my feet. The older two are in bed and my time has come. I read prewritten words in an attempt to transform my mind into one of a novelist’s. Distraction comes soon, however, when I feel little hands grabbing at me. I try to type faster, frantic to finish a thought. What was it, again? It’s too late. I’m no longer a writer. I’m a mountain that must be scaled. Little grunts indicate the magnitude of his mission and it’s too endearing to ignore.

I surrender to his command and drag him onto my lap, hoping he’ll be entertained by the words appearing before us. I regain my literary composure, but soon my sleek lines of literary genius are tainted by an intrusive ‘g,’ followed by a roguish ‘p.’ The meddlesome letters continue appearing, accompanied by impish giggles, and my only response is a desperate, ‘no sweetie,’ ‘don’t touch,’ while maintaining as much patience as my deteriorating mood allows.

It’s too tempting for those tiny fingers, however, and again I’m compelled to surrender, save my potential masterpiece and spin away from the screen, causing a squeal of delight. I lift him into the air and he looks down at me, eyes wide with the anticipation of my next move. Who knows what that will be? Even with routine comes uncertainty, but in the sparkling eyes of my child is a promise of something extraordinary, and for that I am always grateful.