Over Sharing & Recommended Reading

I used to call it verbal vomiting. I would walk away from a conversation and realize that I just told a complete stranger my life story in an effort to make them feel better. Are you’re eyeball’s bugging out? They should be.                         But my point was never about how bad I had it or to say ..look what I’ve been through… it was about the amazing grace of GOD, my story was meant as backstory to the story of how Great GOD is  when even an individual such as myself …says ..Yes..And that if he could have mercy on me, someone no one wanted, who knew their value in this world was not counted as much. But yet the creator of the heaven’s and earth thought me valuable enough to whisper my name. Which by the way means “valued of the Lord”. Then my friend there is an answer for you too. I think it is so cool that God know’s what we need before we take our first breath and I am proof of that…and my name Iola was GOD’s way of making sure someday I would realize that He had always considered me of great value to Him.

So over sharing seems to be a terrible habit I can’t seem to break and here I go again….. I’ve been in a writing rut….not liking the word’s I write and getting stuck in what am I doing this for anyway? and …besides there are already a million great stories out there and who needs the stress and aggravation anyway? Well apparently I do 🙂

I read several great pieces and a few not so great …of advice and have decided to take myself out of the pressure cooker of trying to get published or self publishing, which is a cooker in itself and get back to why I love to write..and if I publish great, but if not that is fine too.

I often think of my Gram who was a great creator. Her health was not very good for a great part of her life but that did not stop her from making amazing blankets, quilts, crochet afghans, toys, clothes, and a zillon other types of projects. She was making beautiful stockings to give my children the day before she passed away.  And she was not doing it for the dollar she did it because she enjoyed it and what she created brought great joy to me and others. I want my joy back. The joy that comes from creating without expectation.


Reading Recommended:

Read Ecclesiastes, [the Bible] This small book of the bible gives you great perspective…Genesis One is beautiful …Psalms 1-4 and reading through Mark

Joel Osteen’s New book I Am is good…a little heavy in the getting more bigger better department..but if you can balance that with the beauty of the Bible it really is an encouraging read..remember balance…

Monica Leonelle ebook for writers “The 8 minute writing habit” is worth the price  and offers good advice.

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert ..is good but has some curse words and can feel a bit new agey…but it was worth reading for me ..because it was one of those books I needed to read …right time kind of situations.

Goodnight Mr.Wodehouse by Minnesota writer Faith Sullivan was an enjoyable read..it felt nostalgic and reminiscent, which I enjoyed and was in the mood for such a read.

So, I read this little e book called The 8 minute writing habit: by Monica Leonelle……and… I read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book  Big Magic and I read a lot of Bible scripture…I recommend all three.  Monica’s little book was encouraging and so I gave her challenge a try and it did help ..that along with a couple key pieces of wisdom from Big Magic….I will take care of the writing and not expect it to take of me…In the Bible the scriptures tell me there is nothing new under the sun and that it is enough to enjoy what I am doing. I believe GOD with lead me in the way I should go.

I will leave you with a poem that I am going to free write..and see where it goes.

My Road~~

A reckless wind blew through my soul

I heard it whisper,

This way go…

along a twisting  winding road,

Leading me where I never thought to go

Sometimes covered with ice and snow

I met my love along the way,

Traveling together

We chose a vagabond life,

We had each other,

Together we were stronger,

But before I was ready he had to leave me alone.

To finish the journey on my own

Blistering heat burned my eyes

relieved by the tears I cried

A Gentle breeze cooled my brow and whispered keep going you don’t have far now.

I’m still traveling the narrow road

wondering if the next bend will lead me home.

by: iola

What do you think?


It doesn’t have to be great to create…Write on!   Right on!





I re-designed the cover for Mattie’s Legacy paperback…I love it !!

mattie's legacy cover paperback

Remember starting September 16th-27th, you can enter to win a free copy of Mattie’s Legacy at Goodreads.com . I will be giving away two books with the original cover design away. The 27th of September would have been my 29th wedding anniversary and I thought this would be a great way to remember my husband Dennis who loved every word of this story and was more excited about my writing than I was.

Everyone needs someone to believe in them and I was his and he was mine.

Happy Anniversary Sweetheart !

~Reviews are coming in for Mattie’s Legacy~

Here are a few reviews


Mattie’s Legacy

(click above title to order)

Mattie's Legacy

Warning… when starting this book make sure you don’t have anywhere you need to be or anything you need to do because you won’t want to stop reading until you’ve finished it all!! Trust me on this! It is such a wonderful novel, and I love how Iola Reneau writes… it all felt so believable and authentic, intimate, like a close friend was telling me this really amazing, beautiful, emotional story that I didn’t want to stop listening to. Loved the message throughout, and how Mattie is able to connect with faith even when tested (over and over). Liked many of the secondary characters as well, and this is a great character-driven novel that I can see fans of Christian fiction eagerly gobbling down. Suitable for all ages. (5 stars) Laura Clarke—Goodreads; Shelfari; Barnes & Noble; Indie Book Reviewers

“I couldn’t put it down and I can’t stop thinking about the characters.” Margaret P. in Colorado.

Excellent plot and story…some writing issues. The good part was that Mattie’s Legacy by Iola Reneau is an excellent novel that captured my attention from the beginning and never once let it go. Each scene was riveting, imaginative, and well crafted. I loved Mattie and watching her go through her life journey, and genuinely felt an emotional connection to her and her struggles. The descriptions were good and kept to a minimum. The pacing was solid and the characters were fully-fleshed out…All in all a wonderful story with a great Christian message that kept me eagerly glued to my kindle. The only problem that I found was the many instances of grammar and punctuation errors that could have been cleaned up with a good editing/proofreading job. The formatting was off in several places as well. This may not really bother some people, but it does me. However even with that said, I really did enjoy this book and would read more from this author.  She has a natural gift for crafting a well-thought out story and developing positive, memorable characters that I won’t soon forget. (4 stars) Karen Matthews—Goodreads; Shelfari; Barnes & Noble; Indie Book Reviewers

Reviews like these are amazing and a great encouragement. If you have read Mattie’s Legacy and enjoyed it, would you add a quick review on Amazon? Thank You!!

Announcing Surprise Give Away!!

Count Down Begins on July 26 and Ends July 27 

For two days you and everyone you know can receive a free ebook copy of my new novel Mattie’s Legacy

Click title to go to Amazon

for your free ebook


Mattie’s Legacy

Mattie's Legacy



Do You Like To Read?

I would like to recruit five beta readers for my historical fiction “Mattie’s Legacy”.  I will be gifting the chosen readers with a prize package as a thank you. All that is required to qualify for the prize package is to read the book and answer a few questions. And I will also include each readers name in the book as an acknowledgement and thank you.

Are you interested ?

Please email me at iola_reneau@yahoo.com

~~In My Little Corner of the World and Flash Fiction~~

A lot has been happening!

Travel, family, a college graduation, more family….and of course writing, and getting ready for more traveling.

I am preparing Mattie’s Legacy for eBook publication and the project should be completed by the end of July.

In September I will be attending the ACFW writer’s conference in Dallas. Are there any of my writing friends out there going to be attending?

And now for your reading pleasure (I hope, I hope, I hope)

*******FLASH FICTION*******

~~~The Day After~~~

I looked at the clock.

Same time no matter what happens or how late I get to sleep. I never sleep in. I am like clockwork. Predictable.

The burning ache in my elbows and wrists slow me down as I throw the blanket aside. As the crushing blow of reality rushes through me crashing into my thoughts, reminding me of all I have lost.

It makes the arthritic burning seem like a splinter of a nuisance.

Thank God for coffee makers’ with preset timers. I am grateful for the promise of hot coffee in August. How can anyone be so cold when it is a hundred degrees outside? I wonder, as my feet touch the cold tile floor.

 I reach for the coffee pot as I stare out the kitchen window not seeing only remembering what use to be is no more. The world has changed for me. I look down at the lightness of the pot in my hand, empty, turn on the faucet, and look back out the window. I see for the first time since summer began that my once lush green lawn is littered with brown dead spots. When was the last time I turned on the sprinklers? I can’t remember.

I wipe the tears away that spontaneously slide down my face, and smile as I hear your voice say,

“your leaking again”

 Anger mingles with bone crushing grief as the unwanted memory of you taking your last breath refuses to be ignored.

 I push the start button.