Friday, October 24, 2014


I was so surprised to discover that Varg, the mysterious wolf, would end up being the most loved side character in The Light Who Shines. It's quite a feat for a character with absolutely no dialogue. But, when I first published, the comments came pouring in.
  • Varg can come live at our house.
  • Can't wait to find out more about the wolf Varg!
  • Varg is awesome - always showing up when needed.
  • Varg needs to be explained more and I would like to order 2 more wolves for my two grandsons!
  • I of course LOVE Varg.
  • There is something about Varg . . . Who/what is he really?
It goes on and on . . . I wasn't lying when I said he was popular! This really made me question, "Why does everyone love Varg so much?" It certainly isn't his witty discourse. But what Varg misses in conversational skill he makes up for in personality.
He makes his first appearance from the shadows when Blue's life is in imminent danger and he saves the day. This heroism is repeated time and again throughout the story. His number one job is to protect Blue and he does so with a single minded devotion.
Wouldn't we all love having someone in our lives who has our back no matter what?

And Varg is no dummy; let's just say that. He seems to follow discussion and understand direction as though he's on the same level of intellect as we are. He emits growls when the villain is mentioned in casual conversation; he executes on complex instruction; and, he clearly has all the advanced senses a wolf has. This is a wolf who is on top of things.

Who wouldn't love to be able to communicate with their animal companion?

But something is up with Varg. Things aren't quite normal. He seems to have magic powers that I won't elucidate for fear of giving the plot away. But that is the crux of the matter. I think the number one reason everyone loves Varg so much is they can't quite figure him out. How does he do his magic tricks? What is he? Where did he come from? Why did he appear?

So I have to ask, does mystery inspire us more than answers?

Varg has become such a loved character in this story that I felt it necessary to include him with the main character Blue when planning the redesign of the cover. But before I did, I asked my Varg fans what he should look like. They said:
  • Ferocious and Fangy
  • Intelligent
  • Fluffy and Cuddly
That description may be most telling of all. Everyone sees him as a dangerous and perfectly loveable brainy animal. What a dichotomy!
On the cover you see Varg walking next to Blue and that is exactly the way the story goes. Varg and Blue go everywhere together. I used to think my girlish fantasies of walking around my neighborhood with a big vicious pet animal next to me was unique. Now, I highly doubt that. Perhaps we all want someone who will comfort us with their presence and keep us safe.

When I started writing Varg into the story, I doubted him. I wondered if it was self-indulgent to include my girlish fantasy. But now, when I imagine the story without him, it seems a dim shell compared to its current vibrancy.
Varg adds intrigue, danger, and fun, and somehow he catches our heart.

In case you are wondering where I came up with his name, Varg is Norse for wolf and wolves play a part in ancient Norse mythology.

Amazon Link: The Light Who Shines



GHOULISHLY GOOD GIVEAWAY! (and eyeball lollipops)

You may not know this, but Halloween is my favorite holiday. It isn't expensive, it involves copious amounts of chocolate, and people dress up funny. Plus, I have fond memories of getting caught drunk on Halloween by my parents, at a way too young age. (Don't try that at home kids.) Anyway, what's not to love?

Then there are those horrid one-liner jokes . . .
  • What do you call a ghost with a broken leg? A hoblin goblin of course!
  • What does a skeleton order at a restaurant? Spare ribs, rare.

To prevent me from turning your brain into a spongy mush, without further ado, I'd like to share a Ghoulishly Good Giveaway.

12 authors are giving away two prizes each. One prize is a supernatural / paranormal read and the other is a Halloween themed gift. That means there will be 24 winners! I picked a half-dozen gourmet eyeball lollipops as my gift. I soooo want them myself, but I guess I'll give them to a winner. Aren't you just itching to suck on an eyeball?

My prizes are Global. The rest are US, Canada, and UK

Scroll through the pictures at the top of the Rafflecopter to scope out the goods.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Rafflecopter ends at Midnight on Halloween.

Happy Best Holiday Ever!


Sunday, October 19, 2014


Ohhh, my dear Bibliophiles, have I got a treat for you. I present you with a book that opens SIX WAYS! It can be read SIX WAYS too! Yes, it is true. And there is more. Ohh, so much more . . .

I read the article on this book and saw a link to Erik Kwakkel's blog. I clicked on it and struck gold. GOLD my friends. Erik is a book historian and his blog covers ancient books, naturally.

He has posts on the biggest books in the world, books with feet, books with ivory carvings, books made of fish skin, books with ancient bookmarks, and hand drawn initial capital letters at the beginning of chapters. If I have not sucked you in by now, you probably don't belong on my feed. That is all I can say.

I'm not going to torture you any longer. Here is the link to his blog. Go forth and devour. Don't miss the GORGEOUS library.

I normally don't like to blog this close together, but really, how could I not share this? Thanks to my author friend Lesley Donaldson for sharing the six way book with me which drew me into Erik's blog.


Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Light Who Shines on Audio (WOOT! HAPPY DANCE!)

So, I submitted The Light Who Shines to ACX, which is a company that acts like a market for authors to find Audible approved narrators for their book. Getting it on audio has been one of my goals for this year.

Then, ACX gave The Light Who Shines a special "stipend" which they only give to books they feel will do really well. (Oh yeah!) It is essentially a bonus that goes from ACX directly to the narrator to try to attract the best talent. Not only did I find a great narrator (Elizabeth Klett), but the offer is now signed, sealed, and delivered!

So The Light Who Shines should be in audio by Christmas! WOOT! WOOT! Doing the Happy Dance!

P.S. Elizabeth did the Prologue in her audition, and I got chills. Serious chills, up and down my arms. It was exquisite. The drama was restrained, but the tension in her voice was breath-taking. My Mom got the chills too. And my sister who is a harsh audio book critic (she listens to audio day-in and day-out) 100% approves of Elizabeth's narration as well. So this is going to be really good. I am so excited.

Ohh, P.P.S. The Elizabeth does a fantastic Irish accent for the Prologue too. (Happy Dance!)


Tuesday, October 7, 2014


Please check out her awesome blog post here:

You are a genius. I’m so amazed that you have discerned major portions of my personal life philosophy from a few subtle passages in The Light Who Shines.

Normally, I try not to comment on blog posts about my work. But, in this case I couldn’t help myself. The topic is important.

I believe in a collective pot of community. Sometimes we feed into it, sometimes we take from it. 

This is a bit like managing a collective budget. Clearly we (the US) are in a hole now, but we are less in the hole than we were 6 years ago. Why? Because more people are putting in the pot, then are taking out. So we are gaining on our debts.

We can look at this pot collectively, or we can look at our individual pots. When I was a young single parent I didn’t pay much into the pot (taxes) and I received some from the pot (child care credits, education assistance, etc.). But now I’m a very successful corporate employee and on my way to becoming a successful writer, so I’m paying into the pot a lot more than I take out. I’ve more than paid back my “loan” so to speak. However, that isn’t quite enough, as I know that eventually I’ll be retired, and need to take from the pot again. So I’m still “paying it forward,” as you say.

In the end, I’ll pay in more than I take out. Hey, that isn’t fair! But frankly, I don’t care. Some people have the capacity and opportunity to be successful financially and pay more into the pot than they take out, and some people don’t. I’m glad I’m one of the people who can. It is important that we all do what we can.

Of course this happens socially as well. We have a collective pot of “Good Will” and the size of that collective pot, more than anything, determines the general happiness of our society. I try to forgive people and give people grace, knowing that one day I’ll need to be forgiven and I’ll want grace. I have in the past, and I’m sure I will again. Jack Tanner understands this truth.

Now, let’s look at Blue. She has had a raw deal. Her parents were killed by Dark Vampires, many of the Norms hate her simply because she is Gifted, and she deals with breedism (a form of discrimination and prejudice) every day. Yet, she still gives to society by fighting for interbreed peace, often risking her life. She helps even those who hate her. She is paying it forward in hopes of a better future for all. Blue’s deal gets more and more raw as the book continues and as bad as her deal is at the end of the book, her deal is even worse in the future books. But, every day, she holds her spine straight and says, “I’m going to make this world better, if it kills me.” And it almost does.

This fighting for what is right is why people have called her a “True Heroine” you can look up to. But, I’d just like to point out that Blue is modeled after the good that I see in every day people who trudge to work, take care of their kids, pay their taxes, and volunteer in their community. That is why people respond to her so well. She is our heart. She is the best of all of us common folks struggling to add to the community pot of good will. Some of us common folks have the opportunity to be a celebrated hero and some of us don’t. I mean, if we know how to swim and we saw a kid drowning, which of us would not jump in to save them? This heart is in all of us. Reading The Light Who Shines reminds us of those people and reminds us that we are those people.

So when you read The Light Who shines and your heart shines with joy at Blue's purity of spirit, strength of will, and determination, it is because you are recognizing in her what we all strive to be. I hope everyone reading this will take a moment to pat yourself on the back. Kudos to us all for doing what is right, even when it is hard, and especially when it is mundane everyday life. We are making a richer pot of Good Will for all to enjoy.