Monday, February 13, 2017

Guest Post with Tim Shoemaker

Photo Content from Tim Shoemaker
Happily married for more than thirty years to Cheryl, the love of my life.
Dad to three grown sons and two daughter-in-laws
Elder Chairman in my church and high school small group leader
Full time speaker and author since 2004
Living in the greater Chicago area
Grateful for God’s incredible grace and mercy to me in countless ways

To be a man of integrity, who loves God and others with all my heart.
To be an extraordinary husband to Cheryl, the wife of my youth.
To love my sons, daughters-in-law, grandkids and extended family with everything in me.
To impact kids and youth in ways that cause them to become true men and women of God.
To help parents teach their kids about God and the principles He’s given us to live by.
To help couples experience the richness that comes from a marriage guided by God.
To help men see what a Christian man should be in all the various facets of life.


If I’m having a good time while I write, I believe it shows on the page—and the readers will enjoy the writing that much more. How do I keep the writing process enjoyable? One way is by working in a great atmosphere—a place I really like to be.

My Office—I’ve got a great home office—full of quirky fun things. A huge alligator skull. A full-size replica skeleton. Scuba gear and “treasures” I’ve found diving. Books that I loved reading when I was growing up. I even have a gigantic moose head over my desk. I keep Christmas lights strung on the antlers all year around. When I’m working on a novel—the lights go on!

Fast Food Restaurants—I love working at fast food places. There is energy there! I buy a soft drink and keep filling it up as I work. Caffeine. Sugar. Yeah, that’s fun.

Outdoors—A good chunk of the year I can write outdoors. I love that! I have an old ’53 Ford pickup truck that I drive when I’m going out to write. When I’m driving the pickup, I’m already having fun—which sets me up perfectly for a great time writing.

If I want the story to feel real, I need to go to the location where the story is set. So when I worked on the Code of Silence series I was all over the town of Rolling Meadows. And up in the town of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, too. I wanted to find a place in town where Cooper, Gordy, and Hiro could get shakes—so I sampled the shakes of every place in town that sold them. Tough job, right?

Sometimes going to a location IS tough. I’m working on a novel now that’s set in the Florida Everglades. So I took a trip there … and can tell you it’s a really creepy place. It was a place of predator and prey—and I was the prey! I wanted to see the alligators—up close. I also wanted to go in at night to see how their eyes glowed. I wanted to feel a bit of that fear so that my writing would be more real. I got way more than I bargained for … which is really going to make the story powerful! Thankfully I came back with both hands—which will make it a whole lot easier to type the story.

I can’t tell you how many times I look for inspiration when I’m writing. I want the story to be bigger, more powerful, and more creative than my ability. So I pray. Yeah, I ask the Creator (who is pretty creative, I’ve noticed) to give me the creativity to write well. He always does. Even though I don’t write about the supernatural, I get supernatural help on my stories!

I love writing … but that isn’t the only reason I work so hard on stories. I love people—especially kids. I want to be there for that kid who doesn’t have friends—and introduce him to some friends that he can enjoy every time he opens my book. I want to give kids a healthy escape from the rough situation they’re in. I want to encourage kids to take the high road … to become young men and women of character. I want to warn them of traps that can hurt them or cripple them for life. I’ve worked with youth as a volunteer for well over twenty years … and I’ve seen so many who are scarred or hurting or broken. In my own small way, I believe I can help by giving them great stories that inspire.

Telling the Truth Could Get Them Killed. Remaining Silent Could Be Worse.When Cooper, Hiro, and Gordy witness a robbery that leaves a man in a coma, they find themselves tangled in a web of mystery and deceit that threatens their lives. After being seen by the criminals---who may also be cops---Cooper makes everyone promise never to reveal what they have seen. Telling the truth could kill them. But remaining silent means an innocent man takes the fall and a friend never receives justice. Is there ever a time to lie? And what happens when the truth is dangerous? The three friends, trapped in a code of silence, must face the consequences of choosing right or wrong when both options have their price.
You can purchase Code of Silence at the following Retailers:

Praise for the CODE OF SILENCE Series

Some will find Shoemaker’s covering of every angle too exhaustive, but it is just this meticulousness that makes this novel stand apart. Rarely are kids in thrillers portrayed this realistically: sick with worry, horrified by injury, and smart but not preternaturally so. Mentions of multiple characters’ Christianity feel shoehorned in, but that doesn’t take away from this deliberate, plausible, and gritty whodunit.' ―Daniel Kraus, Booklist Review 


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