Archive for the ‘Guest Blog’ Category


where the bodies are


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Today I am pleased to present a guest to the blog.


Joan De La Haye


Fellow author Joan De La Haye joins us to in a blog interview. Pull up a chair and your favourite cup of tea, glass of wine, or whatever, and let’s join Joan for a few questions.


Joan has written Burning, Requiem In E Sharp, and Shadows.






  1. Is there an author or book that inspired you to write, whether to become a writer or just to write a specific story?


      That’s a tough question. I grew up in a household full of books. Both my parents were avid readers and I grew up with a love for books and stories. My Grandmother once said that I was writing stories before I could even walk properly. Writing was something that I always wanted to do. When I was about 12 or 13 I wrote a fairytale and forced everybody in my class to read it. But I couldn’t really tell you who or what really inspired me to be an author, I think it was just every book on the shelf that I read and loved that made me want to be able to take others on those sorts of journeys as well.



  1. burning-cover-1What is your last story and what made you want to write it? What was the inspiration, the drive that started the idea for it?


      My last story is called Burning. It’s about a witch who takes drastic and dangerous steps to improve her love life with deadly consequences. It started off as my failed attempt at writing something romantic and erotic, because everybody kept telling me that I should. So I did and failed. Burning ended up being anything but romantic. My publisher did however come up with the label ‘erotic horror’ for it, so I guess I at least did succeed in writing the erotic bit, just not the romantic bit.




  1. It is the age old debate: scene setters vs. seat writers. What is your writing process like? Do you outline extensively, carefully mapping out your story ahead, or do you just go with the flow writing as it comes to you?


         I don’t map my stories out at all. I start off with a basic idea of how the story starts and where it might end up. But it just builds from there. It’s almost like watching a movie in my mind which, unfortunately, sometimes hits the pause button while my brain and the characters argue about where the story is going to go.



  1. We all know names hold a certain amount of power to give us all a pre-judged idea of what a person is like. You want to hate someone just for having the same name as a despised ex, a strong sounding name makes you think they must be strong, and a name like Poindexter, well you get the idea. How important are your character names to you? What resource would you recommend for someone having trouble finding names?


      It all depends. Sometimes people will ask me to name a character after them. Sometimes I name a character after an ex-boyfriend, like in Burning (although he did ask me to do that). Sometimes I’ll name a character, especially a character that’s going to die really badly, after someone I really, really don’t like. And then there are times when I’m at a complete loss and I have to consult a baby name book which also gives you the meanings of the names which comes in handy when trying to figure out if a name will suit a specific character or not.



  1. Each writer has their favourite type of scene, the kind of scene that just flows naturally for them. Is there a certain type of scene you find hard to write?


      Sex scenes! I find getting the balance in them just right is a little difficult. You don’t want it to be just a boring blow by blow sort of thing and you also don’t want it to end up being overly flowery, romanticised twaddle that won’t turn anybody on and will only result in uncomfortable giggling.



Requiem Cover


6.    If you could give only one piece of writing advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?


      Just focus on writing that first word, then the first sentence and the next sentence. Before you know it you’ll have the first paragraph and then the first page. Writing is sometimes like walking, you just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Also read extensively in all genres.




  1. What is your best do or don’t marketing tip?


      Don’t spam. The thing that will stop me from ever buying an author’s book is if they friend me on Facebook with the sole purpose of messaging me to tell me to buy their book or getting me to like their author page. If you haven’t bothered to interact with me on any other level there isn’t a snowballs chance in hell that I’m going to rush out and buy your book because you begged me to do so on Facebook or twitter.



  1. What is your pet peeve when it comes to writing? It could be about any part from the writing process to publication, marketing, fans, etc.


      It’s the self-entitlement that I’m seeing amongst some newbie and aspiring writers that gets to me. The fact that they think other published authors owe them something confuses me. If you want to get published write a good story and submit it and keep submitting it. You have to pay your dues like the rest of us. You don’t just private message a published author and say ‘Hey! I want to be a writer, so you have to help me.’ We don’t have to do anything of the sort. There are plenty of books and online resources available for newbie writers; they really don’t need to demand it from other writers who have deadlines to meet and books to write. And what really gets to me is how rude some of them are when demanding it. One so-called aspiring writer even went so far as to try and get my home phone number so they could harass me at home. That kind of attitude boggles my mind.



  1. Reviews can drive writers to distraction; looking for them, yearning to get them, and scared of getting them. At the same time it takes a certain kind of reader to put themselves out there and actually post a review. How do you go about encouraging your readers to rate your books or stories and post reviews? How do you respond when you get a negative review?


      I must admit I’m rather bad at getting people to review my books. I try to every now and then put a little note up on twitter or Facebook to ask that if they read the book and enjoyed it, that a review would be greatly appreciated but I don’t hound people for reviews, which is probably why I don’t have that many reviews on Amazon.


      As to how I deal with a bad review … well … I think it depends on just how bad the review is and whether it’s constructive and fair or not. If it’s a fair review I process what the reviewer said and implement it in my future works. And by process I mean glug a glass of red wine and eat a slab of chocolate. But if it’s just a particularly nasty one where you can see that the reviewer wasn’t actually interested in writing a fair review or if it just wasn’t the sort of book, no matter how well it was written, that they would enjoy there’s not all that much I can do about it. Those sort of reviews you have to just shrug off, hard as that may be, because those tend to be more about the reviewer than about the book.



  1. And finally, the question every author’s fan wants to now: What are you working on now? What is your next published project going to be?


      I’m busy working on a full length novel called Fury which is due for publication in June 2016 by Fox Spirit books. I’ve also got a couple short stories coming out in anthologies. The first of which is European Monsters due out in November.


Thank you Joan for joining us.Shadows cover




You can follow Joan and her writing here:

Website: http://joandelahaye.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoanDeLaHaye

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Joan-De-La-Haye/e/B002CJBAWY



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 Michael John Sullivan The Sock Kids Meet Lincoln - CoverGuest blogger Robyn Gaudet, 8 years old (ok, less than two weeks to 9 years old!) shares with us her review on:


The Sock Kids Meet Lincoln by Michael John Sullivan and Susan Petrone



 I read a book called The Sock Kids.  The sock kids are sock people and why I like it is because it is so FUNNY I just wanted to read all the books over and over!

A little sock named Stretch met Lincoln.  Lincoln put Stretch onto his feet and Stretch met a black sock named Meade.  They became good friends then Stretch went home.

My favorite part about the story is when Stretch got whirled from the bath tub and got into 1863 and that’s when he met Lincoln.


The Sock Kids Meet Lincoln can be bought on Amazon and The Sock Kids can be found hanging out here on WordPress.com.

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Exhausted by Sidney Gaudet (9 yrs old)


Exhausted is like the color gray.

Like a hungry wolf that spend the whole night looking for food,

Or the soot you cleaned out of the fireplace.

It is like the clouds on a rainy day that woke me from my slumber,

Like the huge rock I tried to bring home.

Exhausted is like a heavy fish on the end of your fishing rod,

Like the smoke that comes from the chimney that you tried to clear all day.

Exhausted is like the cement you got stuck in before it dried and you have been using all your might to get out of,

Like grey eyed people’s eyes after a long day.

Exhausted poem by Sidney Gaudet

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Book review by Robyn Gaudet (age 8)Gilles Tino Too Many Books
Too Many Books by Gilles Tibo
(Illustrations by Bruno St-Aubin)

He tries to clean his cat. And then he tries to tie his shoes, but he got books and he did that and tied everything into a bow.

He went to the library with his neighbour which is his girlfriend because he loves her.

He got his books from the library and read one of the books and he loved it because he laughed!

My favourite part was the end when he laughed with the mouse in the book, and the mouse is out of the book now.

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Midnight Secrets

Midnight Secrets by Wendy Ely

Join author Wendy Ely today in discussing her new book Midnight Secrets


Go for a swim in the waves of passion and romance with a book by Wendy Ely

Jesse’s Brother and Confession available at


Coming soon: New Year’s Resolution, Midnight Secrets,

and Cross the Line!

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In October I hosted my friend Pat Bertram on my blog to help her promote her new book Daughter Am I.

I had a great deal of fun doing it.  Starting with January 2010, I would like to make hosting a guest blogger a regular monthly feature on my blog.  Since I actually have a blog with both BlogSpot and WordPress, this really means hosting two bloggers a month – one on each blog.

If you would like to be a guest blogger on either one in January just drop me a note.  First come, first served.

You can blog to promote your book, your blog, your website, or your author’s page.  You can blog about writing techniques, trials and tribulations of coming up with and crafting stories, or the writing life in general.  Pretty much anything writing related goes.  All posts and comments on both blogs are pre-moderated to keep the blogs clean and friendly.

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 Daughter Am I Blog Tour 2009 – With Guest Pat Bertram

(What Kind Of) Writer Am I

.Pat Bertram



I am thrilled to be featuring my first ever guest blogger, Pat Bertram, author of three novels published with Second Wind Publishing LLC.




This is an especially exciting event for me for a few reasons; one being that Halloween is only a few days away and I love Halloween.  Okay, so blogging isn’t exactly the stuff witches, ghosts, goblins, and all manner of things that say “boo” are made of.  Well, unless your guest blogger happens to be the likes of Stephen King, Dean Koontz, or Jeremy Shipp, that is.  But blogging is fun and so is dressing up in a tacky costume and frightening little kids before bribing them with handfuls of candy so they hopefully won’t t-p my house a few years down the road.  I’m not all that scary myself, but the assortment of screaming rocks, cackling witches, gravestones, and various dead creatures decorating my house are.


 Daughter Am I cover

At first glance Pat’s new book Daughter Am I may not seem the stuff of Halloween.  But when a young woman (Mary Stuart) finds herself on the move investigating her great-grandfather’s deadly secret with the help a group of former gangsters, and a killer on the trail anxious to dig up that same secret, things certainly could get a bit dicey.  A little murder, a little mystery … what more could you ask for in a book to read around Halloween?


Another reason this is exciting for me is that my first guest blogger happens to be Pat Bertram, who also happens to be my first online writing friend and mentor.  Pat has been an unending source of wisdom, support, and encouragement for me and many other writers who have met her.  And, best of all, she hasn’t complained about any of my silly questions.  Not to me anyway.


I hope you’ll enjoy Pat’s blog post as much as I did.  And don’t hesitate to visit Second Wind Publishing where you’ll find Pat Bertram’s newest novel Daughter Am I available both in print and ebook format.



Pat Bertram

Pat Bertram


National Novel Writing Month is coming up in November, and I am half in awe and half befuddled by those who enter. The writing of a novel takes me a year, and some of the research I’ve done has taken longer than that. But then, I am not an intuitive writer. I have to drag each word out of hiding and find its place in the puzzle that is a novel. I suppose two types could write 50,000 words in a month — the intuitive writers who spew out words, and the logical writers who have the whole thing outlined before they begin. Me? I fall somewhere in the middle. I so hate tossing aside my hard work that I habitually rework my writing as I write. (Though I have rewritten one of my novels four times, and deleted 25,000 words from another.)

I write slowly. Although Daughter Am I came easily to me, I still only wrote an average of 300 words a day. Not that the number of words matters to me, it doesn’t. The only reason I mention it is to let new writers know there are all kinds of writers. Some let the words gush out and try to type fast enough to catch them all. Some, like me, have to pull each word, kicking and screaming, into the world. Some have a compulsion to write; others make a conscious choice. How you write, how often, how many words you write per day are all unimportant, unless, of course, you are a writer under contract. But if you are a writer under contract, you would be writing, not reading this blog.

In the end, the only thing that counts is the finished story. The story doesn’t care how long it took you to write it. It doesn’t care if you wrote it in a month or in a decade. It doesn’t care if you bled words onto the paper or created it slowly, one puzzle piece at a time. A finished story exists complete and entire of itself, separate from the author and the author’s work habits.

Sometimes we wonder how our favorite authors write, but mostly we devour (or savor) their works, wanting only to immerse ourselves in the story. If it moves us to tears, makes us laugh or shiver, that’s what we care about, not how long it took for the author to create the effect. Being writers, of course, we might go back later and see how it was done, but at the time, all we are interested in is the story.

So, here’s the truth. You can call yourself a writer or not. You can write 50,000 words in a month or not. You can write every day or not. The only thing that counts is the story.

That’s what we are all aiming for.


Pat Bertram is a native of Colorado and a lifelong resident. When the traditional publishers stopped publishing her favorite type of book — character and story driven novels that can’t easily be slotted into a genre — she decided to write her own. Daughter Am I is Bertram’s third novel to be published by Second Wind Publishing, LLC. Also available are More Deaths Than One and A Spark of Heavenly Fire.

Bookmark (What Kind Of) Writer Am I - With Guest Pat Bertram by L.V. Gaudet

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