Free IPad Apps for Writers

If you are a writer, pastor, business person or blogger this post will help you find the best apps to use on your new Ipad. Using your Ipad everyday is the easy part but finding the apps that are free and the most productive is a trial and error process. You usually download the app, try it out, see if it fits your needs, and if not, delete it. But I have found the best way to download the right app is to follow those who have already tried the apps out and given me the update on their trial basis. This post will help you sort through millions of apps and find the right ones just for you. Even though we all differ a bit (lol) writers have a tendency to use the same basic set of tools.

Each of the apps will be chosen from Itunes and each will be exclusively for the Ipad.

WordPress The first app I would load on my Ipad as a blogger is the WordPress app. You can easily edit or create a new blog wherever you may be with your Ipad. However, I feel it has some limitations that need to be addressed but regardless it is a powerful tool that allows for posting, editing, and checking stats.

Dropbox If you are going to be writing and picking up your manuscript on multiple computers then Dropbox is a great storage tank for your files.  Save your files into Dropbox and pick them up where you left off on another computer.

Wikipanion We all need a research tool and Wikipanion is a great online encyclopedia to have at your fingertips; you can access Wikipedia whenever you are on your Ipad.

Ghostwriter This is my favorite note taker with various tools, such as, appointment/action items sheet, different writing instruments and choices of backgrounds. You can write notes, draw pictures or paste a photograph and then save to Dropbox or Evernote

Evernote This is hands down one of the most useful filing systems for your Ipad notes, sermons, files or receipts. You can label each file, store your papers, and retrieve on any electronic device that has Evernote installed on it. You can’t organize without this one.

Wunderlist This app enables the user to creat a to-do list on a colorful background, ave according to due date but lacks an export button.

SmartOffice2 For those who still use the Microsoft Suite including Word, then you can transform your Word documents and actually edit them inside SmartOffice 2. It will bring documents up from Google Docs and Dropbox, a great plus. (Since I received my copy of Smart Office 2 it is no longer free on Itunes and the price is $9.99)

Logos Bible This app allows you to read commentary side by side the biblical text. You can highlight a text, do a word search and download additional study guides, many of them are free.

Comment: What apps do you find useful as a blogger, pastor or writer?

Copyright by Jim Laudell.  Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.

A Moral Fence

“To death do us part” needs a security fence. Men and woman who fail in their marriage usually disregard the moral fence chosen to be placed around the marriage. For marriage to be good there must be a moral fence of protection keeping the husband and wife within the blessed boundary of the marriage covenant. This is not as much confinement as it is protection. Our joy is protected. Our security is protected. Our health is protected. Our finances are protected. Our future is protected.

Do you know what a moral failure looks like? While eating dinner with a “fallen brother” he confessed, “I can’t sing, I can’t pray, I have a hard time looking my wife in the eyes, and you always wonder what it would have been if it had never happened.” Even if you get your marriage back it takes long time to build trust and the memory doesn’t fade away quickly.

Moral fences, after my wife and I have celebrated 35 years of marriage, include:

Social media checkups My wife checks my Facebook, Blog, texts on my phone, and emails. Some may think this is overkill or too much control but I see it as protection; a fence to keep me from wandering off base.

Communication We sit down frequently and talk about what is on our mind, whether with a cup of coffee in the morning or an evening dinner but we communicate about our day and its activities.

The Holy Spirit Of all the accountability given to man there is none like the power of the Holy Spirit to keep you on a check and balances system. This inward prodding of the Holy Spirit is invaluable for those who choose to keep morally correct.

Accountability Finding a men’s group or a pastor to talk to has been a vital part of the “moral fence.” Having men who understand the frustrations and turn ons can help move you past the temptation and on to victory.

Common Sense Keeping your distance and not being left alone with the opposite sex is just common sense. Not complimenting someone’s physical appearance and inappropriate touching is a fast train out-of-town.

Staying close Date your wife and tell her you love her every day. Kiss her when she leaves the house. Compliment her in public and let others know of your affection for her.

Pray Together What a great way to shore up the line of protection by praying one for the other. Love and marriage is worth protecting and prayer includes the creator of marriage into the picture. Through prayer Jesus will build a fence around your marriage.

Comment: I am sure there are other ways to protect your marriage – what do you suggest?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.

Conquering Frustrations

I just took a break from writing the blog for about a week for two good reasons; I wanted to regroup and refocus on the how and why plus, the greater reason, my wife and I took off and celebrated our 35 wedding anniversary. We had a wonderful and much-needed time of relaxation. Thanks for waiting around for the next blog.

Two weeks ago a police officer mentioned to me that with the heat wave there was also a wave of domestic dispute cases. This increase of arguments, fights and disagreements led to a 911 call and the police officer had the gruelling task of separating (oftentimes) family members apart. A young mother confessed yesterday of her frustrations in recent weeks and an employee of a large firm told about the intense calls her office was receiving concerning their dwindling income.

Frustrations come from three defined levels:

A misunderstanding of the facts surrounding the situation. Not having enough information and merely gathering of superstitious feelings and assumptions can lead to inner frustrations that burst into exterior actions. Gather all the facts by finding a person concerned with your issue. Don’t be caught up in the “feel good” huddle of “back patters” who simply feel sympathetic. An emotional uplift and support from your friends is necessary but you need someone who is able to understand your frustrations and assist you in gathering the facts. Find a pastor, counselor or financial consultant.

Cluttered surroundings. Being disorganized and disheveled can lead to a lack of security pushing you into frustrations. Have a garage sale, give some stuff away to Goodwill, or pack your clutter in boxes and put it in a shed or the garage but move it from your sight. You will be surprised the reduction of clutter will bring to the reduction of stress.

Uncontrollable circumstances. This level seems to be the most stressful and frustrating of all. Having situations come up in your life you can do nothing about, they whirl around you in the form of car trouble, family problems, financial woes, health concerns and more. We all face them. This frustration spirals out of control because of the pressure around us. Find a quiet place, note all the things you are thankful for, let the tears flow and cry out of God for His intervention. One mother went to the basement in her home and cried out to God for her daughter only to watch amazed as her daughter came home the next day asking forgiveness as she hugged her mother. Miracles still happen and God still answers prayer.

Intrinsic lifestyle. Withdrawn is painful. Living alone in the sea of people can be frustrating. Reach out to a church, a support group or an old friend and find the joy of living, laughing and loving. A diet from people can be damaging to your health. Reach out and be involved. Frustrations fade in a group of friends. “Joy cometh in the morning.”


Comment Below: How do you handle your frustrations?

Copyright by Jim Laudell.  Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.

Four Things I Pray for my Children

When it comes to praying for my children and grandchildren I have expressed no greater passion. It comes natural for a grandparent to pray for their grandchildren and a parent to pray for their children but I have felt that I needed to be more defined in my requests. More than “Bless them, Lord.” I needed to pray a definite and detailed request for God to actually move into their home and personal life and be the third person of their marriage and the unseen guest at every meal.  I wanted to pray, believe and record the results but “Bless them, Lord” didn’t cover all the bases.

Here are the four things I pray for my children and grandchildren.

Protection They must be kept from the invisible influences of evil that can pull at their tender hearts and minds – they must be protected. Swaying compromises and unbalanced convictions can turn their life in another direction – they must be protected. Crime, accidents, disease and trouble must be kept away – they must be protected. Wrong friends, temptations and a fading spiritual life can ruin them – they must be protected. I pray for their protection.

Preservation Life has a way of dragging you down, dragging you around and dragging you away – I pray for their preservation. Stability, closeness, and family ties are important – I pray for their preservation. Marriage, love and togetherness are valuable – I pray for their preservation. Faithfulness, committment and bonding are needed – I pray for their preservation.

Provision I don’t pray for riches but I do pray for their needs to be met. I don’t pray for wealth but I do pray they will live debt free.I don’t pray they will build bigger barns but I do pray they will be abundantly blessed. Every need to be supplied, every care to be placed in the hands of God, and every day to be filled with thanksgiving for His faithfulness.

Presence When praying for my children and grandchildren I pray most passionately about the manifest presence of God in their home and daily life. I firmly believe when God is present not much else can survive. I pray for the living room, bedrooms and kitchen is filled with the presence of God. Their heart, mind and soul is filled with the presence of God. Their home, church and school is filled with he presence of God. I pray for the presence of God to be living, active and working in their daily life.

Prayer is essential and not a routine , especially when it comes to praying for our children and grandchildren, let us pray.

Comment Below:What do you pray for your children?

Copyright by Jim Laudell.  Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.

Previewing the Galley Proof

The Galley Proof may be the most important part of the publishing experience. Many will say “you can’t judge a book by its cover” but you can judge a book by its interior. The proof must be exactly the way you want the interior of your book to look once published.

The Galley Proof is the last opportunity to examine the interior of the manuscript before the “sign off” sheet before the manuscript goes to print. Before you sign the “sign off” sheet here are a few things you need to check.

Make sure the manuscript is the last manuscript you sent to the check in coordinator Small changes may have been made at the last-minute and it is important to make sure those last-minute changes made it to the interior designer.

Check for detail and for overall design  It is easy to fall in love with the design and the feeling of accomplishment that small details go unnoticed. Designers are not editors. Read the text for clarity, flow, bold face and italics typing, column headers and footnote calibration. The details of each are important to give your book a professional feeling.

Make sure the blank pages are correct Title pages need to always start on the odd page, (1,3,5.7, etc.) Behind each section heading a blank page may need to be added so the chapter title begins on the odd page. A good design team is able to add blank pages to make the flow and feel of the manuscript better rather than cramped together.

Check proper spacing There should be enough space between paragraphs, illustrations and sketches or photos (if used) to provide a comfortable feeling to the interior design. Crowding the text makes for an uncomfortable read.

Easy text font The font can change the mood of the book, the font must express the tone of the manuscript and be comfortable reading for the reader.

Read and reread No doubt you are ready to have a published book in your hand but like a pregnant woman waiting for a baby you can go on a walk but usually the baby comes when the baby is ready. Read and reread the text. It is better to spend time reading and rereading than it is swallow your pride later when a mistake has been made.

Don’t announce the publication of your book You will celebrate – don’t celebrate too early.Wait till the publisher has announced a print date before you post a sale, book signing or announcement of availability. The printing may still be out 4 to 6 weeks. Patience is a virtue and one that is difficult to attain at this point in the publishing process. Take your time but be quick to meet any deadlines. Don’t linger or delay but work calmly through the process.

Now, go get another cup of coffee and preview your Galley Proof.

Comment Below:What stage of your manuscript are you at today?

Copyright by Jim Laudell.  Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.