Monday, June 28, 2010

Wagging Tales – by Floyd the Dog – Book Review

Wagging Tales written by Floyd the Dog and illustrated by Jacqueline Fahey Weichman is the second book of Floyd’s Tales.
In this book, I watched Floyd mature into a skilled liaison between quarreling packs to prevent a Pack War and to convince his Pack and the Aristocrats to forgive an old misunderstanding. I applauded as Floyd helped them all learn to live together in Peace and Harmony.
Floyd’s compassion and resourcefulness is obvious as he continues to guide his friends through just about every imaginable problem life throws at them. His help and encouragement empowers them.
We could all use a Floyd in our lives.
All of Floyd’s books are available at Floyd the Dog's website.

Book Review - Puppy Dog Tales by Floyd the Dog

The first book of Floyd’s Tales, Puppy Dog Tales is a charming book that your children or the child in you will love. It’s about a dog that must make it on his own by learning how to get along with humans, other dogs and animals, and how to overcome adversity. As he grows from puppy to adult he learns good manners, how to help others, how to make friends, how to adapt, and the skills to make himself useful. The Pack teaches him the history of dogs, the geography of their territory, the principles of good behavior, how to defend himself, healthy living and eating, and the Laws of the Pack.
The Laws of the Pack would be good laws for all of us to learn.
1. Obey the Top Dog
2. Respect the senior dogs
3. Put the Pack first
4. Never fight
5. Never steal
6. Work hard
7. Protect the weak
8. Educate the young
It ends in a celebration of his acceptance into the pack as an adult dog in good standing.
Puppy Dog Tales is delightfully illustrated by Karen Johnson.
You can get this book and Floyd’s other books at Floyd's website.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Cozy Mysteries AKA Cozies

Yesterday, I was looking on line for mystery book reviews and I stumbled upon the sub-genre of Cozy Mysteries. Naturally, I had to research the term. I was delighted to learn my mysteries fall under that category. Now I know how to market them.

For those of you who, like me, were big fans of Jessica Fletcher in “Murder She Wrote”, you may find it interesting to note the series is now being referred to as a Cozy Mystery series.

With no graphic violence, profanity, or sex, I thought I was just writing murder mysteries that were safe for children to read. Cozy mysteries usually take place in a small town with people who know their neighbors and just about everyone else. The main characters are likable. The crime, or murder, generally takes place behind the scenes, shielding the reader from the blood and guts. The case is usually solved by an amateur detective, as the main character, or one of the main characters. The plot is fast paced with lots of twists and turns.

How exciting and fun to discover there is a fan base for Cozy Mysteries! I hope my Sleuth & Scribe series will appeal to some of those fans.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Sheila Deeth is a very versatile and talented author of Christian books, drabbles, prose, and poetry. Her books are available on Amazon and on Lulu.

Sheila Deeth grew up in the UK and has a Bachelors and Masters in mathematics from Cambridge University, England. She moved to the States with her husband and three sons in 1996 and now lives near Portland, Oregon, where she enjoys reading, writing, drawing, telling stories, and wishing she still had a dog to walk with. Her books draw on her experiences as an English American, She also describes herself as a Catholic Protestant, a mathematician that can't add up, and a writer that can't spell.

Some of her books are listed below. If you have any questions for Sheila, please post them in comments.

Also be sure to check out her interview with me, today.

Do you think your birthplace influences your writing?

Some friends say they hear my English accent when they read what I’ve written, so I guess maybe my birthplace has some influence. I suspect it also affects the way I see things and people; perhaps moving to a different culture makes me look and listen more closely, so hopefully it makes me a better observer.

Do you have a book in progress?

I can’t seem to restrict my reading or my writing to one book at once. I’m editing my e-book for Gypsy Shadow, working on book 3 of my Hemlock series while reworking books 1 and 2, and I’ve just started on Joshua’s Journeys, the next of my children’s Bible story books.

When and why did you begin writing?

One day my elementary school principal put a huge tape recorder in front of me. She said, if I wouldn’t learn to write, she’d just have to record my stories. I decided the pencil was less scary than the microphone.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

On-line friends told me “You’re a writer if you write.” Before that, writing was just something I liked doing.

What inspired you to write your first book?

When my husband and I both lost our jobs, I decided to try doing what I’d always wanted for a while. I think I was hoping to make money at it – a fairly forlorn hope.

Is there a message in your Christian series that you want readers to grasp?

I want people to read the Bible for themselves and find out what’s really there. Faith and popular interpretation don’t always have to agree, just like faith and science don’t have to disagree. And asking questions is always okay.

What do you find the hardest part of writing?

That moment when you let someone read something you’ve written and realize you’re letting them see into your inmost thoughts…

Did you learn anything from writing your books and what was it?

I learned something from the first novel I wrote. I’d just completed a scene and it felt wrong, so I took the dog out for a walk. The neighbors might have thought I was crazy, talking to someone who wasn’t there as we wandered round the green, but perhaps they just believed I was talking to the dog. By the time I got back, my character had completely redesigned the scene. I learned to listen to the “voices in my head,” and to wait for them when they’re not talking.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Don’t be afraid to throw things (and scenes) away (see previous question.) Writing is a bit like talking – you don’t always manage to say it right the first time. But it’s worth trying again.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

You mean I have readers? If I have, the first thing I’d say to them is thank you, and the second is please look out for more of my books. If you’re reading my Christian books then I’d remind you to keep reading the Bible too and keep asking questions. I suspect God loves two-year-olds who say “Why?” just as much as any other parents do, especially if they stick around to hear His answers.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Fellow Author, Sheila Deeth will be interviewing me on her blog

On Thursday, June 17, 2010, I have the honor of interviewing Sheila Deeth on this blog and she, in turn, will be interviewing me on hers. Please visit Sheila's blog here.

Should be great fun. We hope you will visit us both. See you Thursday.

Announcing my interview with Author, Sheila Deeth, June 17

I am so excited that Sheila Deeth has agreed to let me interview her about her Christian book series. Please be sure to check back on Thursday to read her fascinating answers about how she got started writing and her advice to new writers.

Sheila Deeth grew up in the UK and has a Bachelors and Masters in mathematics from Cambridge University, England. She moved to the States with her family in 1996 and lives in Beaverton, Oregon, where she enjoys reading, writing, drawing, telling stories and meeting her neighbors' dogs on the green.

Sheila's self-published books are available from Lulu, and her work has appeared in the online magazines Nights and Weekends, Poetic Monthly, the Shine Journal, and Joyful Online. Three of her short stories are appearing in print in Mythica Publishing’s Maybe Tomorrow anthology, Second Wind Publishing’s Murder in the Wind, and in VoiceCatcher 4.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The 5th of July with Flickertail & Paint

Paint the horse called Flickertail the llama. “Did you do anything special yesterday?”
“No, just hung around here relaxing. The humans had a cookout and Mary made me a special treat of apples, raisins, and oats. They had something called bratwurst. Smelled awful.”
“Sounds awful. Not much of a selling point.”
“I know. You’d think they’d call it bratbest or at least bratgood.”
“Maybe it has something to do with that truth in advertising law.”
“Yeah, maybe. Anything exciting happen there yesterday?”
“Some kid thought it would be funny to throw a lit firecracker down the old abandoned well. I was grateful that he didn’t think of my stall. Speaking of that, Norma said that I’ve been gone so much that some deer has been checking out the digs. She thinks it might want to move in.”
“Don’t worry. Norma wouldn’t let it do that.”
“I’m not so sure. Norma and Donald have been complaining about the price of gas. They might just decide to rent out my stall for gas money.”
“Well, if it gets too bad, they can always ride you into town or have you pull some kind of contraption that they can ride in. They couldn’t do that with a deer.”
“Never thought of that. I’d better start reminding them of how indispensable I am.”
“Yeah, I’m not worried about that as long as they keep making stuff with my wool. I’ll start to worry though if I start hearing them discuss llama meat.”

Monday, June 7, 2010

Jeff’s and Katy’s Secret

Flickertail & Paint, Barnyard Sleuths

The floating log didn’t protect Jeff from the debris battering his weakening body. As he was about to lose his grip, it lodged against temporarily stationary debris. Jeff pulled his body onto the shore. Looking for shelter, he found a teddy bear. He curled up against it and fell asleep.
Jeff awakened to the sound of crying. He followed the sound and dropped the bear by the girl’s feet. “Fuzzy!” Katy hugged Jeff. For the next few days, Jeff and Katy shared food and warmth. Rescuers found them snuggled together, asleep. “Is this your dog?” Katy winked at Jeff. “Yes.”

Saturday, June 5, 2010

New manuscript sent to publisher

Just sent off the manuscript to the first book of my 5 book series along with a prayer. If they accept it, I will send them the second book. This is my murder/mystery series, 'Sleuth & Scribe' and a departure from the other two published books. The more books I have published, the better chance I have of one selling the other.

I have also sent the publisher the contact information for possible local book signing locations for Flickertail & Paint. Hoping to get a couple of bites there. :)