Writing

Launch Party

Kaitlin from Copperfield’s Books in Healdsburg

It was ninety-seven degrees June 8, 2014, when we gathered at CRUX Winery to send In the Shadow of Lies: A Mystery Novel out into the world.

Friends and family mingled and sweltered. Thank goodness for Heidi’s watermelon water!

 


Thank you for coming. I had a wonderful time!

Writing

What I Learned About Using Lyrics While Writing “In the Shadow of Lies”

Sometimes, a song enters my mind and becomes the soundtrack for the scene I’m writing, particularly if the scene includes Oliver, who shares my love of music. Early in the book, he sits in the dark listening to Billie Holiday sing “Gloomy Sunday.” If the reader knows the song, she knows something significant about Oliver and may begin to wonder what has caused him to seek comfort in that song.

Writing

My Writing Process Blog Tour

Fellow She Writes Press author Tory McCagg invited me to join the My Writing Process Blog Tour.

First, I would like to tell you a little about her, then I will answer the four questions about my process, and then I will introduce you to the three wonderful writers who will continue the blog tour next week.

World War II

Ghostly Funeral Procession

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt established Columbus Day as a national holiday in 1934. In 1942, with an eye to a planned invasion of Italy, and to the upcoming elections (for which FDR needed the Italian vote), the government chose Columbus Day to announce that Italian Americans would no longer be considered enemies of the United States.

Dogs, World War II

Always Faithful

Always Faithful, A Memoir of the Marine Dogs of WWII, by Captain William W. Putney tells the story of the dogs that fought in Guam and the other Pacific Islands. The dogs were used for scouting, attacks, carrying messages, detecting mines, and guarding. The dogs scouted in front of more than 550 patrols on the island of Guam. Not one patrol was ambushed, but 25 dogs died in service. As Captain Putney writes in his book:

“The sacrifices of these dogs were recognized by everyone of us that served in the 2nd and 3rd War Dog Platoons. They died; we lived.”

World War II

Remember Pearl Harbor

Seventy-three years ago, Americans sat by the radio horrified by Japan’s sneak attack on the Pacific Fleet in Honolulu. They wanted to know more than the radio could tell them. Were their loved ones safe, what would the Japanese do next, would the United States be drawn into the war against the Germans and the Russians, Japan’s allies. After hearing about Pearl Harbor, Winston Churchill said “he went to bed and slept the sleep of the saved and thankful.

Dogs

Xylitol: Sweet and Deadly to Dogs

I’ve been worried recently about the number of people who don’t know that the artificial sweetener xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs and that it is being used in more and more products.

This is Andy licking the bowl after I made cookies. (I do sterilize the bowl afterwards.) He and Lily come and wait in the kitchen as soon as they hear me getting the mixer out. They don’t really get much sugar in the licking, but they get tons of enjoyment! However, if I had used xylitol in the dough, they would be in danger of having seizures and even liver failure.

Writing

Welcome

In How to Grow a Novel, Sol Stein asks the writer to give thought to what the reader is experiencing in each scene of a novel. He characterizes the attention the writer gives to the reader’s experience as courtesy. He says that you must reward your audience, the reader.