Happy Thanksgiving!

Photo by Bill Barber
Happy Thanksgiving from my house to yours! It's shaping up to be a glorious Fall here in the pacific Northwest.  I'm happy that my husband is spending thanksgiving home with me, instead of in Iraq with the US Army. I'm also thankful for those who are still over there, defending our freedom. What are you most thankful for today?


A Pleasing Proposal

Photo by quattrostagioni

I've been busy these past few weeks, working on proposals to send out to agents and a handful of publishers. As those of you who have gone through this process well know, every agent has a different list of things they want you to include in your proposal, as well as New and Exciting ideas as to formatting. Some want a three-page double-spaced synopsis, some allow only one page, strictly single-spaced, while still other allow a vague “2-4 pages” without bothering to specify spacing at all.

I understand why. It's part of a process to separate out the authors who are willing to go the extra mile from those who aren't. And bit by bit, it's building me a toolbox full of everything a publisher might want to know about my manuscript. I have a bio, a query letter, a cover letter, a write up of “comparable titles,” a market analysis, synopses of every size, back cover copies, tag lines and one-sentence “blurbs”...and the list goes on.

It's hard work, but it's satisfying to know that as time goes on I'm learning more about the business of publishing. And it really is a business, one in which, (like every other business), you must excel to succeed.

So how about you? Have you ever written a fiction proposal? What's the hardest part of proposal writing for you?


Short Answers to Good Questions: Why did peopel live so long before the flood?

Photo by Justin Vidamo

We read in the Bible of people living 900 years or more before the flood. After the flood, the average lifespan slowly decreased, from 450, to 250, and at last to 80. Why?

First of all, it wasn't because of God's words in Genesis 6:3; “his days shall be 120 years.” That verse was actually speaking of the allowance of time God had given man in which to repent before the flood came to destroy them. But if it wasn't that, what was it?

Some people have suggested it was a change in diet. Before the flood, meat eating was not allowed. However vegetarians today live no longer than other folks, so we know that can't be true.

What about environmental changes? Some hypothesize that the pre-flood world could have been very different in terms of atmospheric pressure and oxygen levels, but neither of these is likely to have been the culprit. Noah stepped off the ark at 600 years old, and yet the post-flood environment had no negative effect on the rest of his life. In fact, he lived to become the third oldest person in human history!

The most likely cause for shorter life-spans after the flood is genetics. Shem only lived to be 600 (we don't know how long Ham and Japheth lived), despite having been born in the same environment as Noah, and whatever it was that caused his “early” aging was passed down to his descendants, none of whom lived longer than he did.

Lamech, Noah's father, only lived to be 777, which was quite young. He could have well passed down the genetic marker for premature aging to his grandsons, and with the bottleneck of the flood, there would have been no infusion of fresh DNA in the post-flood bloodline to prevent all of Noah's decedents from being affected. One little mutation, and we lost 300 years. The dispersion at the Tower of Babel provided yet another bottleneck, paring down the pool of genetic information available to each people group—and mutations multiplied, and with them, apparently, came yet another drop in the average lifespan.
I know, I know. That wasn't really a short answer. But I tried!
To learn more, see:


Short Answers to Good Questions: What Role did Nimrod Play in the Tower of Babel?

Photo by Noffsinger
If you've read Alexander Hislop's book The Two Babylons, you'll have heard that Nimrod was the driving force behind the Tower of Babel. According to Hislop's account (which is partially based on Josephus, a more reputable source by far), Nimrod's goal at Babel was to set himself up as a god, or failing that, as a world leader. Some people he convinced into following him in his rebellion, some he forced, and some resisted and were killed by him.

There's only one problem with Hislop's theory: Nimrod is conspicuously absent from the Bible's account of the Tower of Babel. In fact, the wording seems to suggest something altogether different.

Genesis 11 (emphasis mine)

Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. 2 And as people migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. 4 Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” 5 And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of man had built. 6 And the Lord said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another's speech.” 8 So the Lord dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. 9 Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth. And from there the Lord dispersed them over the face of all the earth.

The Biblical account seems to point to a rebellion in which nearly every human on earth participated, a united front of arrogance toward God. No Nimrod tricking, coercing, threatening. Just humankind swollen with pride in his own accomplishments.

But wasn't Nimrod King of Babel? Yes, Nimrod is mentioned as King in chapter 10, before the Babel account, but the Hebrew Bible was not written in strict chronological order. The same genealogy mentions that the people spread “each with their own language,” so it is obviously referring to a point in time after dispersion at Babel. Nimrod must have become King of Babel after the confusion, and from the legends that abound, he likely set himself up as a god near the end of his life. But not before the fall at the Tower of Babel.

For a full refutation of Hislop's book, see:  The Babylon Connection? by Ralph Woodrow

For more information on the historic facts behind the Tower of Babel I highly recommend this book: Tower of Babel by Bodie Hodge


It's a boy!

Thanks to the arrival of this little guy, I'll be taking a two-week vacation from blogging.

See you on the 29th of October! The next question we'll be addressing in our series will be What role did Nimrod play in the Tower of Babel?
Until then!


Short Answers to Good Questions: Will there be another Ice Age?

Will we ever have another Ice Age?

  Photo by ansilta grizas
Will the earth ever get cooler than it is right now? Yes, most likely. The earth's temperature is still affected by sun cycles, volcanic activity and the like. But we won't have another Ice Age. The term ice age implies the presence of extensive ice sheets in the northern and southern hemispheres, a phenomenon triggered by the warm oceans that resulted from the global flood of Noah's day. Since God promised in Gen. 9:8-17 that he would never again send a global flood upon the earth, we can be certain that there will never be another Ice Age.


Short Answers to Good Questions: How would a warm ocean cause an Ice Age?

Photo by Infomastern
During the 150 days of the flood, Pangaea split. This involved violent volcanic and seismic activity, and huge amounts of lava being dumped into the oceans, which warmed the earth's oceans. Warm oceans produce increased levels of precipitation, which creates a thick cloud cover and results in cool land masses. The temperature difference between the ocean and land masses would have made for intense weather patterns, super-storms that raged for weeks across half a continent. The nearly non-stop precipitation (plus high amounts of volcanic ash in the atmosphere), would bring about the Ice Age, slowly at first, and then snowballing towards the end. Then the frozen land masses of the Ice Age would in turn cool the oceans. At that point the oceans were likely cooler than they are today, with ice caps creeping far southward, and the level of precipitation for most of the globe would drop to drought level. In addition to the drought, it would be a time of intense wind and dust storms, and large amounts of "dirty snow" would be heaped up in moving drifts by the wind. (Which accounts for the mammoth buried with buttercups in his stomach, and the loess deposits covering huge areas of the northern latitudes.) This period is called the “glacial maximum.” After a pause, the glaciers, now exposed to the sun without proper cloud cover, would melt in a catastrophically short period, perhaps less than a hundred years.

Want to learn more?
The Snowbliz, by Michael Oard
What Started the Ice Age? By Dr. Larry Vardiman
A Dark and Stormy World By Dr. Larry Vardiman


Short Answers to Good Questions: Dinosaurs

Source: InfoMofo, CC BY-SA 2.0, via flickr

How do you know dinosaurs survived the flood, and what made them go extinct?

The Bible tells us that at least two of every animal "in whose nostrils was the breath of life" (Genesis 7:22), was saved in the Ark. Therefore, we can be certain that there were dinosaurs on the Ark, and that they survived the flood.

What happened to them afterwards? Well, the same thing that happened to the saber-toothed tiger, the Dodo and the passenger pigeon. Climate, natural disasters or predators (perhaps all three), conspired to wipe them off the face of the earth. The Ice Age, following immediately after the flood, must have been hard on them, as well as all the volcanic activity happening at that time.

Why doesn't the Bible mention dinosaurs?

It would be something of a wonder if the Bible did, since the word “dinosaur” wasn't invented until 1841, over a thousand years after the last books of the Bible were written. What the Bible does mention is something called a “dragon.” And the further back you go in history, the more accounts of “dragons” you find, and often in quite prosaic situations. Old accounts of dragons mention them eating cattle and stealing sheep, not eating dwarves and stealing gold.

Not only does the Bible mention dragons, but God's description of the large "behemoth" in Job 40:15-24 sounds a lot like a large sauropod.

There are reports from all around the world of dinosaurs existing side by side with humans after the flood. Interested? You can find a few of them here.

How did the dinosaurs fit on the Ark?

A very good question, with a very simple answer. Noah would have taken young dinosaurs on the ark, not huge full-grown ones. A newly hatched Sauropod weighted only 11lbs., and was not much bigger than a large goose—the ones Noah brought were certainly bigger than that, but still very small compared with an adult.


Short Answers to Good Questions: Weren't the Pyramids Built Before the Flood?

In the third century B.C., Ptolomy II commissioned a priest named Manetho to compile a history of Egypt. Manetho did so. Then, in 1904, Eduard Meyer created the Sothic cycle in 1904 to give Egypt a unified calendar that aligns Egyptian regnal years with modern historians’ B.C. Dates.1 And these two sources, Manetho's history and Meyer's Sothic cycle, are the foundations of traditional dates for Egyptian history—traditional dates which contradict the time line found in the Biblical genealogies. For instance, if you take all of the Pharaohs mentioned by Manetho, and stack their rules together, you have the Pyramids being constructed well before the flood, and Egypt, as a nation, predating the 2242 B.C. date of the Tower of Babel.

But should the Pharaoh's rules be stacked one on top of another? Carbon dating2 and many Egyptologists say no. Professor J. H. Breasted, author of History of Egypt, called Manetho’s history “a late, careless and uncritical compilation, which can be proven wrong from the contemporary monuments in the vast majority of cases, where such documents have survived.”3 In fact, if other sources are compared with Manetho's history, as David Down when he compiled his revised chronology, not only do we find that Egypt was founded not long after the tower of Babel, but we also find evidence of the Hebrew slaves in Egypt, of Joseph's famine, and many other Biblical references.

So does (Manetho's) Egyptian chronology contradict the Bible? No, not unless you “stack” the pharaohs, and disregard nearly every other source.

If you are an Egyptologist yourself, I expect you will find this brief layman's explanation unsatisfactorily vague. For more information, try:

Or, if you are a layman looking for a more detailed explanation, you can find one here.

1D. Mackey, “Fall of the Sothic Theory: Egyptian Chronology Revisited,” TJ 17 no. 3 (2003): 70–73, available at  www.answersingenesis.org/tj/v17/i3/sothic_theory.asp.

2Radiocarbon dating of artifacts from Egypt’s Pre-dynastic period and First Dynasty, Reported September 4th 2013 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society, by Michael Dee and colleagues.

3D. Mackey, “Sothic Star Dating.”


Short Answers to Good Questions: Where did the different people groups come from?

If the eight people that came off the Ark were a middle brown color, where did all the variations of skin and eye color, face shape and eye shape come from?
Photo by Ciao Ho

After Babel, the human race dispersed across the globe in small groups isolated by language. Without constant intermarriage between the tribes, the genetic information each group carried determining eye color and skin color became more distinct, more concentrated, as time went on. To speed the process, certain characteristics were singled out through various selection pressures (environmental, sexual, etc.). For instance, those with darker skins who lived in cloudy, cool environments, were more susceptible to vitamin D deficiencies, and died off, leaving the lighter skinned genes to dominate that people group. Lighter skinned people are more apt to develop skin cancer, and died off in hot tropical areas. Natural selection combined with environmental factors to discriminate between the fit and the fittest for each climate.

For more information see:
Adam + Eve = All Skin Tones?
Darwin and Racism
The New Answers Book, Ken Ham, et all. Chapter 17


Short Answers to Good Questions: Was Pre-Historic Man More Intelligent than We Are?

Why do you believe that pre-historic men were more intelligent than the average modern man?

If you believe the Bible, you know that all humans came from one specially created pair: Adam and Eve. And it is logical to conclude that Adam and Eve, in the day of their creation, were genetically (that is, mentally and physically), perfect. But did the fall destroy that perfection? Obviously the cellular countdown to old age and ultimate death began at that moment,1 but other than that, was their genetic code altered? I would argue not. The genes for the human race were so perfect that after 1600 years of degeneration, six humans had enough information in their DNA to repopulate the earth and form the diversity of “races” we see today.

So why do most people believe pre-historic man was an idiot? First, because they assume we worked our way up from apes, which are clearly less intelligent than we are. Second, because we tend to assume that anyone with less technology than we have must not be as smart as we are, an idea that falls apart immediately upon inspection. Our technology is the result of the combined knowledge of thousands of men across the centuries, as preserved by the humble printing press. It is not the fruit of our individual intellectual prowess. Could you build a computer from scratch? Does using one make you any smarter?

Since the time of the flood, we have lost genetic information, a lot of it. No six people living today could populate a planet with their genes--or at least not a planet full of healthy people. And it only makes sense that our intelligence has declined along with everything else.

Want to read more?

'Human Intelligence Peaked Thousands of Years Ago' The Independent
Savages and ancestors: A historian looks at the idea of human evolution before Darwin
Neanderthal Man Was An Innovator
New Evidence Debunks 'Stupid' Neanderthal Myth

1Salk Institute. "What makes us age? Ticking of cellular clock promotes seismic changes in chromatin landscape associated with aging." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 October 2010.


Short Answers to Good Questions: What Did North America Look Like During the Ice Age?

What Did North America Look Like During the Ice Age?

Glaciated areas looked, well, glaciated—hard barren plains of packed ice and snow, bordered by tundra. The rest of North America was greener, wetter, a little cooler; probably more inviting looking than it is today, unless a mega storm was ripping through your neighborhood, or a nearby volcano saw fit to erupt. The abundant rainfall was caused by condensation contributed by a warm ocean paired with cooler landmasses. This went as the temperature of the ocean dropped, until it became cooler than it is today, and the rainfall ceased. For a few short years the earth must have seemed to have fallen asleep; little rain, only wind1 which as the drought increased began piling up snow and dirt into giant shifting hills, like an apocalyptic Hollywood dust bowl. These deposits of “loess” can be found all over the world, and North America was no exception. Ancient “sand dunes” from this period cover most of the Great Plains.2 To add to the environmental disaster, the ice caps began to melt, flooding rivers and creating immense bogs. Mass extinction of “mega fauna” became the order of the day. In America we lost 70% of all mammals that weighed over 100lbs3; horses, camels, any lingering dinosaurs, giant beavers and sloths, and, of course, the woolly mammoths. It was the worst of times. Some calculate that it took the earth about 200 years4 to find her balance, and become the lovable planet we know today.
Learn more about the Ice Age here.

1 Oard Ice Age Caused By the Genesis Flood, pp. 109-119
2Muhs, D.R. and V.T. Holliday, Evidence of active dune sand on the Great Plains in the 19th century from accounts of early explorers, Quaternary Research 43:198–208, 1995.

3Martin, P.S., and R.G. Klein (Eds.), Quaternary extinctions: A prehistoric revolution, University of Arizona Press, Tuscon, AZ, 1984.
Stone, R., Mammoth: The resurrection of an Ice Age giant, Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, MA, pp. 94–143, 2001.
Agenbroad, L.D. and L. Nelson, Mammoths: Ice Age giants, Lerner Publications Company, Minneapolis, MN, pp. 87–99, 2002.

4Oard, Frozen in Time, Chapter 10 Catastrophic Melting


New Blog Series: Short Answers to Good Questions

Photo by Helga Weber

New Blog Series: Short Answers to Good Questions

In the course of writing my novel about prehistoric man, I've asked for feedback from people with a wide variety backgrounds, and every time someone who isn't familiar with Biblical Creation reads my manuscript, they come back with questions, lots of question. How could a warm sea cause an Ice Age? How did all the different races come to be? Why does the age of the earth matter to you?
Now these questions have been answered time and time again by folks with a lot more knowledge than I have, but I thought that it might be useful to write up “in a nutshell” answers to these questions, along with links to more in-depth explanations. So every Thursday I'll be answering a different question. It won't be an exhaustive discussion of the topic, but it will give you an idea of what I believe and why.

Do you have any questions you'd like answered? Contact me, and I'll make sure your question is on the list!


The Truth Chronicles: Book Review

I recently purchased the The Truth Chronicles, a youth fiction series by authors Tim Chaffey (of AiG), and Joe Westbrook. I've been curious about the books ever since they came out, but never quite curious enough to buy them, since I had the mistaken impression (derived from the books' covers), that they were Manga comic books. I'm more than happy that I finally took the plunge, for lo and behold, they were not only NOT comic books, but they were also enjoyable to read. For someone like me, a sci-fi fan as well as a lover of ancient history and science, these books were perfect for light Sunday afternoon reads, even as an adult.


Jaz, J.T., Izzy and Micky, (two of those names belong to girls. Can you guess which? It took me a few chapters,) are four brilliant teens living in Silicon Valley CA., who create a time machine. Not only a time machine, but a hovering time machine fueled by solar power. Their first trip through time takes them back 4500 years into the past in hopes of viewing the Pyramids, but instead they find themselves in the pre-flood world, chased by man-eating dinosaurs—something that everyone but J.T., a Biblical Creationist, finds confusing and even disconcerting.

Throughout the series the teens dodge dinosaurs, tigers, landslides, blizzards and mishaps of every description in an action-packed ride through time, all while working through classic apologetics. Why does evil exist? Where did the races come from? Why do the stars look old? Who makes right and wrong? Where does logic come from, and why does it work?

I've passed the books on to my son, who has been clamoring to read them ever since they came in the mail, and there are two people in line to read them once he's done.

I would love to see this series collected into a single book someday, and I hope the authors continue on with the series!



What is Post-Apocalyptic Biblical Fiction, Anyway?

  I write post-apocalyptic biblical fiction. What is that? Let me explain.
  You know the flood story from Genesis 6-9. Around four thousand years ago a world-wide flood destroyed everything "in whose nostrils was the breath of life," except those who were saved on the Ark. During the flood Pangaea was formed and then destroyed, and when the flood waters receded we were left with the continents we see today. It's a story you've been familiar with since childhood, but have you ever considered what those few short chapters in Genesis imply?

    Four thousand years ago there were no trees, no rivers or valleys, only a seething mass of brackish water thick with the debris of a ruined planet, under a dark sky poisoned with sulfurous ash. The earth's crust had split open in a hundred places, and the landmasses of the ancient world, and with them, an entire civilization, disappeared beneath layer after layer of sediment laid down by the raging water.

   It was an apocalypse greater than any that will ever appear on a Hollywood screen, and after the apocalypse, a dark age.

   Time passed, one hundred, two hundred years, and the descendants of the survivors began to multiply. They lived in a harsh world, shaken by the storms of the early Ice Age, and punctuated by volcanic eruptions that darkened the sky for weeks on end, But they were a strong people, a young people, still unaware that their lifespans had been shortened, and together they built the earth's first one-world government. Nothing was impossible for them, no ambition too high or dream too unattainable. Civilization rose from the wilderness, commerce and science flourished--for a little while. And then they too fell victims to pride, as their fathers' had, and ruin came upon them.

   Their budding civilization fell, and mankind scattered, leaderless, across the globe. Their children became savages, cave-men, living in holes in the rocks, eking out a miserable existence in the tightening grip of the Ice Age. Men watched as their grand-children and great-grandchildren withered and died of old age, while they lived on, untouched, as it seemed, by age.

   And time moved on. The Ice Age, fueled by the warm oceans of the post-apocalyptic world, ground to a halt as the oceans cooled, and the continental ice sheets melted, submersing coastal settlements. The weather became more moderate, volcanic eruptions intermittent, and civilization rose again.

   We are the descendants of the survivors, living on a post-apocalyptic planet. The world we live in is comparatively peaceful, wouldn't you agree? But I write about the hard days, the old days, the days of Nimrod when our ancestors dreamed they could conquer the earth, together. And that's what I call post-apocalyptic biblical fiction.


A Blog is Born

Welcome to my blog!

Here I'll be posting randomness--interesting randomness, (I hope!) which makes all the difference. Two things I'm passionate about are Young Earth Creation science, and Ancient man, and I'll be posting on both those subjects, along with writing tips.