Friday, March 21, 2014


The what, why and how of my writing life

Thanks to Western Romance author, Mary M. Forbes, and Romance Author, Lorraine Paton, for inviting me on the Blog Hop. Answering the questions prompted me to review what I write and why, a useful activity for all writers to revisit from time to time. You can find my answers below and their answers and more information about their books on their blogs.

1) What am I working on right now?

My current writing project is the second book in the Caleb Cove Mysteries. Katya Binks Came Home From Away. This first draft is created within a “Challenge Group” consisting of two other writers from ARWA. We swap up to 25 pages per week and Skype to give each other feedback. The process includes brainstorming opportunities. My projected release date is June 2014. At the same time I am collecting the what if's and maybe's for the third book tentatively called, You Can Never Go Home Jeffery Brown.

2) How does my work differ from others in its genre?

The biggest difference is possibly the setting. The first three Caleb Cove Mysteries are in or near a fictional island community off the east coast of Nova Scotia. The south shore of NS is rich with history from the saga of the Bluenose to the colorful stories of rum runners. Overall my stories are more contemporary than a cozy, less sexy than a romantic suspense and less technical than a police procedural. The Caleb Cove books deal with identity. Who are we? And what happens when our names, our professions, our personal histories are challenged?

3) Why do I write what I do?

Mysteries have always fascinated, entertained and amused me. I’m drawn to creating complicated back stories that lead to mysteries and uncovering the story behind the story. I blame it on Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys and wishing as a child that I was not the daughter of a small town Presbyterian minister. My reading history included writers like Mary Stewart, Agatha Christie and later Anne Perry. On TV I like Bones or Castle. The bottom line: I enjoy books with puzzles, relationships and satisfactory endings. So, that’s what I write.

4) How does my writing process work?

First, there’s a trigger. Maybe it’s a news event, a scene out a bus window or a story someone tells me. Next I write a premise and collect the maybes and the what-ifs. My brain roars with ideas, some of which are actually useful. The ideas might sound crazy or impossible or mundane. It doesn't matter. At this stage, everything that pops into my head is recorded. Later I review, compile and create a skeleton for the story. I flesh out the skeleton as I go, using either scene cards or a rough first draft. It’s a loose plan. What I’m going to write is suggested, not written in stone, and changes as I layer my way through the book. Finally, I do a line edit, listen to it in Natural Soft Reader and present the (hopefully) final copy to my Beta Readers.


On Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Calgary author, Suzanne Stengl

Suzanne Stengl writes cozy mysteries, and heartwarming romance. She is a member of the Alberta Romance Writers' Association and the Calgary Association of RWA. Suzanne is active in the writing community and gives willing of her time and expertise to help other writers. When she needs a break from her keyboard, she swims lengths at the Y, skis at Sunshine Village and hikes in the Rockies. She’s also a pretty good line dancer . . . and a very poor euchre player.

Suzanne's novella, Angel Wings is a sweet romance with a twist, and and her most recent novel, On the Way to a Wedding, is a charmer with a 5 star rating.

Ryder O'Callaghan finds Toria Whitney on the side of a forest road with a totaled car, a sprained ankle, and a wedding dress. Both Ryder and Toria are scheduled to be married in three weeks--but not to each other. 

On Friday, March 28, 2014

Author Dee Van Dyk

Dee Van Dyk is a professional writer living and writing in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She is the author of three non-fiction books (Conspiracy Theories, Hurricane Katrina Survival Stories,and Hurricane Hell) published through Altitude Publishing. 
Her first fiction novel (Sin Eater, A YA Paranormal) is due out on bookshelves in April 2014.
Her work has appeared in many North American magazines and publications, including PROFIT, Canadian Living, Homemaker’s, Write Magazine, Alberta Venture, FiftyPlus, Mocha Sofa, Campus Starter, WestJet Inflight Magazine, Jetsgo Inflight Magazine, West Word, Beltline Outlook, Madame, Home Cooking, Food for Thought, Student Counsellor, Canadian Writer’ s Journal, Avenue, Moving To,, CanLearn and Visitor’s Choice.

On Friday, March 28, 2014


E.C.Bell (also known as Eileen Bell) has had short fiction published in magazines and several anthologies, including the double Aurora Award winning “Women of the Apocalypse” and the Aurora winning “Bourbon and Eggnog.” Her first novel, "Seeing the Light", (Tyche Books) will be out in November, 2014. 

When she’s not writing, she’s in Edmonton, Alberta, living a fine life in her round house (that is in a perpetual state of renovation) with her husband, her two dogs and her goldfish. 

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you are a busy girl and have loads of ideas floating around. I enjoyed Sidney Harris Came Home Dead very much. You do a great job of tying up loose ends. I can't wait for the next one.