An Update on My Whereabouts – Longish, but Hopefully Beneficial for Some

In case you’re wondering where I’ve been lately, and even if you hadn’t noticed my somewhat spotty postings, I figured it was time for an update. Seems like ever since Irma smashed our garage and cars about 14 months ago, life around here has been full of what I’ll call “annoying interruptions.” I’ve seen what disaster looks like, thanks to events like Hurricane Michael’s rampage through the Florida panhandle and the truly horrific wildfires in California, so I’m smart enough to know we haven’t had anything close to a disaster here. But we have had a lot of interruptions, causing delays in everything from replanting our crushed garden to publishing my last novella, and a few of the interruptions have been health related.

Some of you know I have had a LONG history of skin cancer issues–and I have the scars to prove it, even on my face, where I’ve had four. This started when I was in my late 30’s, so I’m pretty familiar with the dangers, the treatments, and the surgeries. Most of mine have been basal cell carcinomas, the least likely to spread and the easiest to remove IF you catch them in time. (They can become very large & potentially disfiguring if you don’t.) Three months ago, I had my first (more dangerous) squamous cell cancer on my arm, which was removed successfully. At the same time, a melanoma (the most dangerous form) was found on my back, and that was successfully removed, as well.)

My most recent issue involved a sore on my ear that didn’t look at all like any other skin cancer I’d ever seen, and which I thought was an insect bite at first. After a few weeks, I realized it wasn’t healing, and had my dermatologist take a look. Turned out to be another basal cell. If it had been on my arm, it would have been an easy-peasy bit of trimming, and done. But it was located on my outer ear, in an area where there is very little skin or tissue to work with, without the risk of disfigurement. Continue reading

#BookReview – THE EMISSARY 2 – TO LOVE SOMEBODY by Marcia Meara #supernatural #angels

What a lovely way to start my week! Hope you’ll check out Deborah Jay’s super review of The Emissary 2, and will pass it along on your social media. THANKS!!! And my heartfelt thanks to Debby for her kind and inspiring words! ❤


Here’s my review of the second instalment of Marcia Meara’s delightful supernatural tale

The Emissary 2: To Love SomebodyThe Emissary 2: To Love Somebody by Marcia Meara
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Jake and Dodger return for more adventures, looking for mortals to nudge away from making those wrong choices that ruin lives. They, and Azrael, are making up the rules as they go along, which leads to complications, as does Dodger’s realisation that having died so young, there are some things he’s missed out on.
This novella follows on directly from The Emissary, and you’ll need to read that first to grasp quite what is going on. As I’ve come to expect from this author, the writing is impeccable, the dialogue superb and often marvellously witty, the characters deeply engaging, and the exploration of human nature by turn, tragic and uplifting. Jake and Dodger have much to learn, and this book takes them…

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A Dangling Modifier Is Simple To Fix If You Know How – by Derek Haines…

Chris, the Story Reading Ape, shares a very helpful blog post from Derek Haines on dangling participles and misplaced modifiers. Includes easy to understand examples, too. Check it out!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Just Publishing Advice:

You are probably asking, what is a dangling modifier?

Of all the grammatical terms, this one is my favourite. It is just plain funny.

Dangling conjures up the vision of someone hanging from a tall building by a long rope tied around one ankle and swinging uneasily from side to side.

But in a grammatical sense, it implies that certain words or phrases in a sentence are in the wrong place.

A modifier is a word or a participial phrase that is intended to modify a noun or a verb. In other words, to add a description to something or someone or an action.

However, it is very common for the modifying word or phrase to be in the wrong place, which causes confusion for a reader.

There are two main types of errors that occur that cause uncertainty about what a word or phrase is supposed to modify.

Continue reading HERE

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Author Inspiration and Last Week’s Writing Links

If you aren’t following Staci Troilo’s “Author Inspiration & Last Week’s Writing Links,” which she shares every Monday morning, you really should! Great stuff here. I save every one of these posts for future reference, and refer back to the links often. Thanks for a wonderful series of posts, Staci! 🙂

Staci Troilo

Ciao, amici! I’ve been trying to pay more attention to scene-setting in my work, so I’ve been extra conscious of imagery lately. To that end, this quote by Shira Tamir really spoke to me this week:

Anyone who thinks fallen leaves are dead
has never watched them dancing on a windy day.

It’s easy to glance at leaves on the ground and think, “Ugh. I need to rake those.” And honestly, if a character said that in a book, I’d easily relate to it. But how nice to know there are people who can look past the inconvenience to see the beauty in the world. 

I want to write that way. But I also want to live that way. And I’m wishing the same peace and awareness for all of you.

And now, last week’s writing links:

Posts by me, about my work, or at sites I contribute to:


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Amazon Reviews, an Update

Food for thought from Nicholas C. Rossis today. I’ve even quit tweeting totally generic review requests without links to my books. You know the type: “Love a Book, Leave a Review.” It’s not worth the risk. I’m just hoping enough people enjoy my books to review them all on their own initiative. Meanwhile, I’m looking for other ways to market, something I’ve been bad about to date. Check this post out to be sure you don’t run afoul of the latest rules, and remember to share, too. Thanks, and thanks to Nicholas for such a clear, concise, and informative post. 🙂

Nicholas C. Rossis

Amazon | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books Image:

I often write about Amazon reviews, as it is one of the most important aspects of marketing for many people and Amazon seems to keep changing the rules!

Now, Amy Collins of The Book Designer published an update in the form of Frequently Asked Questions. I’m sharing here the most common ones:

Can Anyone post a review on Amazon?

To contribute to Customer Reviews, you must have spent at least $50 on using a valid credit or debit card in the past 12 months. Promotional discounts don’t qualify towards the $50 minimum.

May I ask people to write a review of my book?

Book authors and publishers may provide free or discounted copies of their books to readers, as long as the author or publisher does not require a review in exchange or attempt to influence the review. Also, you are allowed to discount your…

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Book Review: Atonement in Bloom

Teagan Geneviene is a guest on D. Wallace Peach’s Myths of the Mirror blog, sharing news about her latest book, Atonement in Bloom and some great writing/outlining tips, too. Add to that Diana’s lovely review of the book, and you have an awful lot of good stuff in one super post! Check it out! (And then pass it along so others can enjoy.) THANKS! Good job, Diana and Teagan! I really enjoyed this one a lot! 🙂 ❤

Myths of the Mirror

I’ve been aboard Teagan’s tour bus for a few days and just hopped off for some biscuits and gravy in Atonement, Tennessee. While I’m at it, I’ll attempt a little magic for Teagan and share my review of Atonement in Bloom.

But, oh, not so fast. First I had to delve into Teagan’s amazing technicolor pantser brain and find out how she does it! Here is my question:

I know that you’re a pantser, Teagan, and I assure you that this is foreign territory for us dedicated outliners. Your stories are full of magic – people, objects, places, lore – and they all converge on the small town of Atonement in a zany adventure with eight plot threads whirling around at once. How do you keep this literary cyclone straight and make sure that it arrives at “the end” in one piece? I’d love to learn about the method to…

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To Everyone Who Helped Me Get the Word Out About The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody

My heartfelt thanks to all the wonderful writers and bloggers who helped me let the world know that TE2 was out! This includes all 20 bloggers who helped with my cover reveal, the 8 who shared my release news, and every single one of you who checked out each post and shared it on your own social media sites. I’m very, very grateful to each of you!

This was the first time I’ve ever done anything in the way of promotion for a new release, other than sharing the news on my own blog and FB pages, and it was a learning experience, for sure. One thing I learned is that smaller is not necessarily a bad thing, and I will be keeping that in mind when I’m ready to release Wake-Robin Ridge 4: The Light. I’ll also be planning that release at a time when I’m not booked quite so heavily for local engagements, so that I won’t be overwhelmed by the amount of work on my plate. It’s thanks to the generosity of each of you that I’ll have some experience to draw on when it’s Rabbit’s turn to be featured.

For now, I’d like to take a moment to say a special thanks to each person who invited me to guest post on their blogs for the release of TE2. I chose the first 8 people who volunteered, but I greatly appreciate the offers from everyone else, as well, and plan to check with you next time, in case you are still interested.

If you aren’t already following these blogs, I encourage you to do so, or at least stop by for a  visit now and then. You’ll find something special about each one, so it will definitely be worth your while.

Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord
Cathy Ryan at Between the Lines
Marjorie Mallon
Deborah Jay
Staci Troilo
Mae Clair
Harmony Kent
Hugh Roberts

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. This online community of writers and bloggers is the most generous and supportive group of people I’ve ever met! You ALL rock! 🙂 ❤

The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody is Now Available on Amazon

Today, I’m visiting with Hugh Roberts at Hugh’s Views & News, for the final stop on my mini blog tour for The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody, and I hope you’ll stop by to check out this final excerpt. Please be sure to say hello while you’re there, and remember to share with the Immediate World. My heartfelt thanks to Hugh for his generous support in helping me get the word out about my 2nd novella in this series! It’s greatly appreciated! 🙂

Hugh's Views & News

So happy to be visiting your blog today, Hugh. Thank you very much for inviting me to share my latest release, The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody, with you and your followers.

You’re the last stop on my mini blog tour, and I’ve saved one of my favourite moments in the book for you. I don’t know if your love of music extends to Christmas songs and carols, but mine does, especially in the context of the scene from which I’ve stolen this moment. Jake and Dodger have been through a lot of adventures by this point in their story, and for anyone who joins them on their journey, it should be clear why this little Christmas celebration is so special.

To Love Somebody is the Middle Child of my Emissary trilogy, and for me, it was just as much fun to hang out with Jake, Dodger, and Azrael…

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Smorgasbord Halloween Fancy Dress Party with fabulous guests (ghosts, demons and stand-ins!)

You are invited to attend a Halloween Party! Hostess Sally Cronin welcomes you with food and drink, and a most excellent array of costumed guests. On my way out, so I won’t have time to play her game until later, but you can surely give it a go. I bet you’ll see folks you recognize enjoying the fun, food, and music. Check it out! You’ll be glad you did! 🙂 (And thanks, Sally, for throwing such a fun and festive event!) ❤

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Thank you for dropping in to the party and I hope that you are going to enjoy the food, music and company. There are some wonderful guests who have shared their photos in various forms of dress..(and undress) and in some cases they have shared ghostly images from the past, and for some a total transformation into another being!

An example of that is the massive transition I had to make from my normal witchy visage… to this stunning creature above. The alchemist Dr. Cronin spent many hours perfecting the transformation and the only downside is that I don’t get to keep the body. He actually prepared two images to choose from but I felt that this one was better not shared in public. I don’t know whose body it is but I bet they are missing it!

Oops.. there I went and shared it anyway….never mind as the clock…

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Visiting #HarmonyKentOnline Today

This morning, I have the pleasure of visiting with Harmony Kent, and sharing another excerpt from The Emissary 2: To Love Somebody. This is the next to last stop on my mini-tour, and I hope you ‘ll swing by to say hello, and pass the link along on your favorite social media hangouts. Thanks so much!