Friday, December 19, 2014

The Great Craftie Christmas Caper

Hey!! Want a little fun? The Craftie Ladies of Romance are offering a chance for some lucky reader to win 25 books by LI authors. Visit the blog Craftie Ladies of Romance on December 19th, match the Christmas tree to the author. A winner will be announced the next day.

My hint for you for my tree is
"Wicker Wonderland"

Now go have some fun!

Craftie Ladies of Romance Blog

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Time Star

When you want to snuggle down with a cozy book, you often want to 

a) have the book reflect your mood
b) be riveted and not have it drag on
c) sigh with satisfaction when you reach the end
d) have your imagination take you away, even after the book has ended.

Do any of those fit the bill for your reading habits?

I think they do, and I have the perfect book for you. It's not too long, and can carry your imagination to distant lands and times. It has a satisfying ending and won't drag on. It's got an exciting new cover and is ready for you.

I hope you'll check it out!

Available at Amazon here: The Time Star

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Cyber Monday? Are you participating?

Do you shop on Cyber Monday? Look down at this banner:

Shop Amazon - Save $30 on the all-new Fire HD 7

Does it interest you? Are you Canadian? Less Canadians shopped over the border this year. Less Americans shopped on Black Friday, also. I actually shopped there two weeks ago, but found fewer sales. I did get some unique things not available in Canada, but for the most part, I shopped at home. 

Are you interested in shopping in smaller shops to support independent businesses? Consider this one:


Sussex Beard Oil

Do you shop at small businesses, especially if they are on-line? Here is an interesting article of both small businesses and the benefits of paying cash, which helps with rising credit card costs:

Tidewater cash mob from another small, independent bookstore.  

Tidewater Books

So what are your thoughts?

Sunday, November 23, 2014


I did it!!

The story isn't quite finished, but I have pushed through and finished early! 23 days to write 50,077!
Now, please leave a comment and tell me what you think about my work this month? Could you do it?

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Back home and the end in sight

I managed to get a few hundred words done late Thursday and early Friday, and I have been working at it on and off today.
I'm proud to say the end is in sight. I've just tipped over 48,000 words.
With any luck, the next post will have my winner's badge.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Our last full day at the distraction spa

We return home tomorrow. I'm sad.
But hey, it's been a good distraction. I have tipped over the 42,000 words (!!) and though I'm not close to the end of the story, I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
No writing tomorrow, due to traveling, but back home, I should be able to finish this sucker off.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


I  promised I would write a blog each day to give my progress. 
I screwed up. I forgot yesterday. 
Instead, I went out, completed some Spanish lessons and hiked to a huge waterfall,

and exercising and swimming.

 Yeah, yeah, I know I said that I would be writing the next great novel, but I am pleased to report that right now, Wednesday, I have inched over 41,000 words!!

Monday, November 17, 2014

It's hard to write when there are so many outlet shops calling to me.

I have settled into a routine on this vacation. We get up and after breakfast, study a little Spanish and then hit the weight room, then a swim. Today, because it was snowing, we had to go to outdoor hot tub. Interesting sensation of snow on the head while the rest was immersed in hot water.
But the outlet shops called my name, and I answered back.
Only 817 words written today. 
But a ton of bargains found!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Channeling my awkward side to get back in the saddle.

I only managed to get 684 words done this morning, before heading out to church and a scenic train ride.
But I was fortunate. Most of the scene today, (one I skipped over several unwritten ones to get to) had been drafted on paper a while ago. 
In this scene, my hero recounts a double dose of humiliation that he received in high school. 
So I just channeled my awkward teen years and let it go. 
1467 words done, for a total of over 38,000!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

On the run

Got  up and wrote 1000 words and then worked out and took a swim. Then I hit the outlet stores. Can you smell the plastic melting?

Friday, November 14, 2014

Writing? Just as soon as I'm done shopping, I promise

When I started NaNoWriMo, I knew I would be away from home for a short shopping trip, but figured I should be able to get a few words written, right?
Yeah? When? On the road? Standing in the checkout line?
Now, I am fortunate to be able to read and write in a moving car, and hey, I can even read a book while jogging on a treadmill, but...confession time...
I didn't do a thing.
So, in the words of the great procrastinator who didn't get around to penning his name, "I'll do it tomorrow."
See you then.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

And the male safely lured with food.

Okay, as I sat down this morning, I realized that the dogs next door were barking more than necessary. And that flash of black in my peripheral vision wasn't my retina problem. A further investigation reveals that one dog was lose, and one was wrapped in her chain and around my grapevines. I grabbed a few MilkBone dog treats and managed to get the upset and skiddish female safely unwrapped and tied up, and the male easily lured with food. (Oh, doesn't that sound familiar)
After they were secured again, I sat down to write.
The female was off her chain.
She wasn't as interested in food as she was in a good time. (Another familar scene)
But I'm old and wily and got her.
I sat down to write again. I got 2174 words!
But the laundry needed to be taken in and I needed a break.
Outside I went.
And discovered the male off his chain again. 
The pair of Houdinis were good. Very good. But they are silly pups and I am a smart human. 
Yup. Food again. 
I may be down half a box of MilkBone, but I am happy to say I finished writing for the day. And I am over 35000 words!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

All things considered OR Even though my latest scene sucks

I saw my husband off to work this morning and immediately sat down to write until 10 am. But when the scene I was supposed to be creating seemed to be dribbling forth from my brain, I needed to stop and fill out a scene template I had created many years ago.
But, as I said, all things considered, I wrote 2174 words today. 
It's crazy how you know exactly where you want to go, but getting there requires so much difficulty, you wonder if it's even possible to reach your goal. Like that old adage,
"When you're up to your neck in alligators, it's easy to forget that your objective was to drain the swamp."
Still, I'm up to over 32,000 words and still smiling.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

We will remember them.

I have taken most of the day off to commemorate Remembrance Day. One hundred years ago this year, World War One started and my husband and I have always attended the service together. To Canadians, it's fresh on the heels of losing three soldiers in the last month. One to an accident, and two to acts of terrorism. We honoured them. We also honoured the three slain Mounties who lost their lives in the line of duty this past summer.
The day was lovely and unseasonably warm. At the cenotaph, we had a female bugler and there was a police dog on parade. It was different, but nice.
I did get a bit of writing done today, as I must stay in the story. My total word count is 30,338, adding 2,137 words since yesterday.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Despite being Monday...

I did not sleep well last night. My right leg ached, and I was sure I'd left the electric fireplace lit and got up to check on it. It was fine. I must have been dreaming. 
But despite those crazy nights that can plague middle-aged women, I managed to write a lot today. I am nearly the 30,000 word mark. And I know my lofty goal of finishing this week is out the window (What on earth was I thinking!) I am pleased with my progress.
Today's word count? 3021.
Total word count? 29182.
Not a bad Monday.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Day 8. What's that thing about 'paved with good intentions'?

It's Day 8 and nearly 2 pm and I have only been able to pen 691 words. You know what they say about good intentions.
I have good excuses, though. In my last post, I told you that my website, was undergoing some changes. Well, I needed to write down the list of those changes. I did it this morning, complete with links. 
But my husband needed to fix the broken first checking on line. Then by asking me to help. We'd run into a snag which took away an hour of my writing time. My good intentions were fading fast.
I am now realizing that my goal of completing NaNoWriMo by the 13th may not come to fruition. It was a lofty goal, writing over 5,000 words each day this coming week. 
But wasn't this part of the promise to blog each day about my experience? To show you the way life deals with writers? And how we adapt?
And does it really matter that I finish 16 days early?
Isn't it really more important to write what you can, when you can?
By picking away this afternoon, I have tripped over the 25,000 word mark. I am halfway there!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Day 7. Um, just a couple of things...

First up, my website is undergoing a few changes. I will be giving it a face lift, but right now it's going to be down until I get a few widgetty things tidied up. So this venue will be my announcements to the world!

Secondly, my book, Deadly Trust, is on special right now.

Romantic Times - 4 Stars


by Barbara Phinney
Genre: Romantic Suspense, Inspirational

Barbara Phinney pens another winner! Deadly Trust is a delightful blend of checkered pasts, trust issues and suspense. Though Anna struggles to find her independence, her faith is never shaken and her honesty makes up for the mistakes she makes. Meanwhile, Brent's inner demons are tragic, yet his willingness to help Anna proves that he has more compassion than he gives himself credit for. The plot is quick-paced and the pages seem to fly by as Anna and Brent attempt to figure out who killed Anna's husband. The author does an excellent job blending faith into a contemporary storyline while also keeping readers on their toes.

When Anna LaBonte's husband is murdered, all of the evidence points to her. However, despite their troubled marriage Anna would never harm her husband, but how can she convince the police of that? Enter Brent Stirling, Anna's mysterious neighbor who's jagged scars are more than skin deep. Brent doesn't know why but he's compelled to help his pretty, demure neighbor clear her name. As they delve deeper into the case, their feelings for one another grow just as the evidence against Anna piles up. Between Brent's troubled past and Anna's secrets, is their faith and trust strong enough to take their relationship to the next level?

Reviewed By: Spencer A. Freeman 

And thirdly, and the whole point to this blog post, my NaNoWriMo is coming along nicely. I'm up over 21,000 words with over 4K done today. I'm still not finished today because I'm going to try something daring. I want to finish this book by next Thursday. 30,000 words in 6 days.
That will be feat associated with things like, say, putting a man on the moon, discovering cold fusion, finding a cure for the common cold...
Stay tuned.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

"From Turtle to Snail" or "My mother told me there would be days like this"

It's Day 5 of National Novel Writing Month. I started with a church meeting that went over its allotted time. I had two stops to make before going home, then I needed to get the car into the shop to install its winter tires. I walked back the mile and called it my exercise for the day.
When I got home, I needed to eat lunch, start a slow cooker supper, put away groceries and take out the garbage. It was already 1:30 and I hadn't even written a word yet.
My husband came home with a contractor who will be repairing a wall that had had some water damage. He disappeared, then reappeared. Still not a single word written.
If I am lucky, I will write a thousand words today. Right now I am up to 850 words. My advice is if you're in the same boat, just keep going. Do your best. And sometimes things turn out nicely.
My mother told me there would be days like this.
Speaking of mothers, my brother sent me this photo this morning of our family taken circa 1965. It's off topic, but I want to share it with you.

Guess which one I am.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Day 4. Jackrabbit to turtle

I'm not as sure as yesterday where I want to go with this scene, so I am only just plodding along. The phone rang a lot, too, but it was all just friends who had important questions that needed answering. I'm not doing as well today. My jackrabbit start is slowing to turtle.
Just keep plugging away. 
Oh, by the way, I screwed up yesterday's count. I got the end amount correct, but I wrote way more than 2K words. That was the last amount recorded by NaMoWriMo website. I'm having trouble updating my count today, so that must mean everyone else is doing the same. 
Today, my end word count is 13,027. 2615 words today. Not bad.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Well, a power outage....

A power outage hit at 11:20. It lasted 5 hours. Immediately I jumped onto the laptop and continued working. So as a result, I wrote 2096 words. 
Sounds good, doesn't it?
Well, yes and no. It was getting cold in the house and I had a big ad for my book, Hard Target. I needed to tweet it and facebook it and I couldn't do a thing. Fed up and tired of writing, I pried open my husband's eyes (he was napping) and told him we're going into town to hit the wifi.
Presto! The lights came on!
I'm proud to say I am up to 10412 words. Not bad for a miserable day.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Day Two of Nano: Oh, look, a chocolate bar left over from Hallowe'en.

I had a good night's sleep last night. With the time changing to standard time, I took advantage of that and....
Nope, didn't write. I slept. 
I had a pretty good sleep, too, and this morning, before church, I read some emails and reread yesterday's work.
Late last night, before I quit, I had recorded a few more words, but decided to count it as today's goal because, as I mentioned before, I have this life that gets in the way of writing. 
My husband and I visited his parents after church. When we got home, I made up some pesto croutons for our supper salad.
Only after that, armed with green tea, did I sit and write. I need to exercise because I am a lazy slob otherwise, and ate a chocolate bar while I wrote.
Hey, there should be a chocolate bar on the NaNoWriMo crest.

Anyway, I am ready to quit because it's obvious I am starting to waste time, so I will record my word count. 
Total words: 5119
Words today: 2020
Now to run off that chocolate bar.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Day One of NaNoWRiMo

I got up at 7:15, started to write at 7:45. An hour into it and I have only 700 words. (It took a few too minutes to find the right manuscript template.)
And I am stopping too many times to check stupid stuff like Twitter and Facebook and how many followers Jian Gohmeshi, or however you spell his name, has lost in the last few hours. I really need to get moving. It's like exercising, those first few minutes of warm up are killers.

Off to get coffee.

By the time my stomach said it was breakfast, I had written 1350 words.
Now, don't worry, I won't be giving this much minutia everyday, but I will give you a peek into the life of a writer getting her first draft down.

So, it's now 12:30 and I have hit my stride. I know where the next scene is going and am starting to get a feel for the characters. I am not the kind of writer who knows her characters before she writes about them. Just a general feel, but as I write, their personalities begin to blossom. My neighbour dropped by to borrow something after breakfast. She's dressed and has been to the market, while I am shuffling around in a housecoat.

I need to get out of my pajamas for more than one reason. I have a meeting at 2 p.m.. I may not get back to this manuscript later today, so I am recording my new word count. 3099.

Friday, October 31, 2014

National Novel Writing Month

November might be Movember to some of you with facial hair, but to me, this year, it's National Novel Writing Month.
Take a look at NaNoWrMo.

Yup, we have our own crest. All I can say is that thank God coffee is on it!
Anyway, I've signed up and tomorrow, I start my novel. I have a very scattered, badly written synopsis done, and some character arcs, my faithful, Goal, Motivation and Conflict charts, plus Chris Vogler's The Writer's Journey,

and I will soldier forward first thing in the morning. My goal is 50,000 words. I'm going to chronicle my progress.

Good or bad.

So bookmark me and check back daily to see how (or if) I am writing today. And comment with encouragement or mockery. Your choice.

Not everyone likes Christmas books.

I may receive a small commission for some of the links below. For years, I didn't want to read Christmas books, nor did I want to w...