Hague woman uses Internet resources
to share her faith
Dateline: The StarPhoenix, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Saturday, April 13, 2002
by Darlene Polachic for The StarPhoenix
When Ruth Marlene Friesen discovered the Internet, she realized it was a whole new way to share her
Friesen became acquainted with the world-wide web while looking for avenues to publish Ruthe's
Secret Roses, an inspirational novel she had written.
The novel was a work-in-progress for many years. "I got the idea when I was 12," she says.
As an adult, Friesen worked in Saskatoon and Ontario become returning to Hague in 1983 to care for
her ailing parents. All the while, she was writing and polishing her novel, and searching for an
At one point, she made a detour from her goal to compile a history of the Friesen family, A Godly
Inheritance, based on her grandmother's journals and diaries, which were written in Gothic
German script used by Germans in Russia and Ukraine.
"I wrote that book because I wanted Grandma's descendants to know about the godly life she lived.
Her whole life was a testimony of faith in God."
Friesen self-published the 300-page family book, "running off the pages on an old Gestetner behind
the furnace." She has become the unofficial clan historian and is constantly updating the text and
producing new copies [ed. of the genealogy sections] on demand.
Self-publishing the history book gave her the idea for self-publishing Ruthe's Secret Roses,
a story which is set in Saskatoon and area and clearly enounciates Friesen's faith perspective.
About that time she discovered the Internet.
"As I learned my way around it, searching for an avenue to publish my novel, I discovered there were
a number of interesting ways by which I could share my faith with people," Friesen says. "The first
thing I learned when I signed up for Internet service was that I could get free Web space.
"Initially, I just put up some pages to let people know I was available for editing, word processing
and Gothic German translating, but then I had an idea for an on-line Journal. I called it 'Journal
of God's Provision' and recorded my progress and how God was supplying toward my ultimate dream of
publishing my novel. My tag-line read: Journal of God's provisions for a woman starting an Internet
business on a shoestring too short to wrap around a finger."
It soon became evident her Web site needed "more than just personal chatter" so Friesen started an
e-zine, or an e-mail newsletter, with the idea of helping people start an on-line affiliate business
as she had.
"Before long, I had 100 subscribers, and in corresponding with them, I made friends with some. They
saw me as someone who gave good advice. That put me in a mentoring role. When people get to know you
as a penpal, they trust you and open up to the point where you can tell them what God is doing in
your life and how He can do the same thing in theirs."
She says: "Some Web sites by Christian people are so heavy-duty and up-front with their faith it's
almost like an overpowering perfume. I find just behaving in a cheerful and polite manner, but being
unafraid to mention when God provides for me in surprising way, has gained me a reputation in my
circle of contacts."
Following [ed. In preparation for] the publication of her book, Friesen changed her Journal-Digest
to RoseBouquet, which she calls an inspirational e-zine for her reader fans. RoseBouquet contains a
number of features including Refreshing Dew, an article in each issue; and Rose Close-ups, the
profile of a friend, often a character from her book.
Friesen's actual book publishing odyssey began with offering free downloads of Ruthe's Secret
Roses as an e-book to those who would send feedback that she could use in testimonial
advertising or reviews. But when she discovered what a strong impact the book was having on its
readers, it confirmed her belief that the book had a specific destiny and deserved wider
distribution. That led to offering it as a print-on-demand book through BookLocker.com
Today, Friesen has her own Web domain: www.Ruthes-SecretRoses.com. Her tag line reads: "When you
meet Ruthe and her Friend - You've got Friends!"
"Near the bottom of every page I have a small invitation to meet my best Friend. If they click on
that, I guide them, in my own style, to receive Christ."
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Roses available in softcover! Purchase it at
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