Caylee Anthony

Caylee Anthony

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

What's In A Name?

Hello! Today on the blog we have a guest post with the amazing Anna Levine.
What's in a name? Three tips on naming your character.

Using T.S. Eliot’s poem The Naming of Cats, here are a few tips for choosing just the right name for the character of your novel. ( )
1. “First of all, there's the name that the family use daily.”
As writers we put a lot of thought into a character’s traits, their strengths and flaws. Yet when it comes to choosing their name, it’s often based on random associations: the people we love (people we don’t!), family, friends, the name we wished we had, names that start with a certain letter, names popular at a certain period, names that alliterate or are right in front of us when we look up ponderously, hoping for inspiration.
2. “There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,/ Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames.”
Do you want a gender neutral name, or just the opposite, a name which confuses the reader? Using names to represent the character’s traits, when done subtly, can be a fun and clever device.
3. “But I tell you, a cat needs a name that's particular,/A name that's peculiar, and more dignified,”
Nicknames are a great device to help reveal the relationship between characters. What name does a parent use as an endearment? What name do siblings use to tease each other? What name do the local gossips use? All these variations reveal layers of attitude and relationship.
4. “The name that no human research can discover--/But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.”
T.S. Eliot knew that though we are given names, there is always the name deep inside of us to which we feel most connected. Find that name and you’ll discover a deeper level to your character. Readers have asked me why I chose Ima Crane, Abba Crane and Saba and Savta. I chose those names because they are the words used where I live for mother, father, grandfather and grandmother. These are the names that Alexandra knows and what connects her and her author to the back story.

Thank you for joining us today Anna! These are great tips!! Until next time Happy Writing and Reading! Later Days!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

All Eyes On Alexandra Review and Blog Tour

Hi guys! Today I am happy to share with you this amazing book by Anna Levine. We will be featuring her again on December 19th so be sure to check in. First let me tell you a little about the book.


Book summary
 In All Eyes on Alexandra, young Alexandra Crane is terrible at following her family in their flying Vee. She can’t help it that the world is so full of interesting distracting sights! When it's time for the Cranes to migrate to Israel's Hula Valley for the winter, Alexandra is excited but her family is worried. Will Alexandra stay with the group, and what happens if a dangerous situation should arise? Might Alexandra—and the rest of the flock—discover that a bad follower can sometimes make a great leader?

Based on the true story of Israel’s annual crane migration.

Print Length: 32 Pages
Genre: Children's Picture Book
Publisher: Kar-Ben Pub
ISBN-10: 1512444391
ISBN-13: 978-1512444391

All Eyes on Alexandra is available to purchase on AmazonBarnes and NobleTarget and Thrift Books.

About the Author, Anna Levine

Anna Levine is an award-winning children’s book author. Like Alexandra Crane, the character in her latest picture book, she loves to explore new worlds. Born in Canada, Anna has lived in the US and Europe.  She now lives in Israel, where she writes and teaches.

You can find Anna Levine online at --

Author website:

Twitter: @LevineAnna 

Instagram: @booksfromanna 

About the Illustrator, Chiara Pasqualotto,

Chiara Pasqualotto was born in Padua, in northern Italy, currently teaches illustration and drawing classes to children and adults, in particular in Padua during the summer at the Scuola Internazionale di Comics and in Rome. Since 2008 she's been living in Rome and working with illustration professionally: her first picture book, Mine, All Mine! was published in 2009 by Boxer Books (UK), since then she published with Oxford University Press, Giunti, Terranuova and some American publishers (Paraclete Press, Tyndale, LearningAZ, Kar-Ben Publisher).

You can find Chiara Pasqualotto online at -

And now for my review of All Eyes on Alexandra.

A cute story about a crane just trying to be herself. All Eyes On Alexandra is an excellent story with amazing characters any child will love. Read along with Alexandra on her journey and enjoy a story adults and children will treasure for a lifetime.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Long Time, No Write: What has kept me away and still writing

Hi all! It has been a while since my last blog post and I apologize for that. Life has been quite busy for me. 
I have been extremely busy with my writing, which is a good thing. I have managed to write stories for several anthologies that have been published, or will be published this year. All for charity, except for one. I will share Links at the bottom of this post. 
I have also been doing lots of author takeovers this year. I have not only had fun doing them, but also met some wonderful people along the way. (Same thing with the anthologies) I am currently planning stories for 8 more anthologies that will be out between 2019 and 2020. Add to that trying to finish up The Hunt For Amanda and time for anything else has become slim to none. 
What else am I doing in the world of books? Reading whenever possible, sharing about not only my books but the books of other author's as well, and I have started making teasers and covers for my work. It is challenging but fun making them.  I also started my readers group which has been a blast! I am also planning to participate in NaNoWriMo next month and participating in Foster An Author this year as an author instead of a blogger. (How cool is that?!?!)
I hope all is well with all of my readers and I promise to try and post more. Now back to plotting put these stories. Later Days!
Here are the book links:

Monday, July 23, 2018

All Is Assuredly Well Blog Tour

Hi guys! Today on the blog we are featuring The blog tour for the book All Is Assuredly Well.

First let's start with author bios:

Brief Bios for Blog Tour
Professor M. C. Gore holds the doctorate in education from the University of Arkansas.  She taught first grade through graduate school for 36 years in New Mexico, Missouri, and Texas.    She was a professional horse wrangler and wilderness guide and continues to play clarinet in two community bands.  She is Professor Emeritus from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas where she held two distinguished professorships. Her books for teachers and parents are shelved in over a thousand libraries throughout the world.  She is retired and lives in Hot Springs Village, Arkansas.

Maestro Phillip Wilson was a public-school band director, music teacher, composer, and arranger for 28 years.  His primary instrument is the trumpet, and he is also a campaƱero (bell ringer). Although he is over 80, he continues to serve as Music Director and Cantor at his church.   He is a life-long resident of New Mexico and was born in Santa Fe. Although his genotype is Dutch and Scotch-Irish, his soul is Hispanic.  He was Professor Gore’s music teacher and band director, and although the loving biological father of seven musical children, he is a soul-father of the hundreds of students he has taught.

Artist Angie F. M. Trotter holds a BA in Religion and Fine Art. Her pen and ink illustrations are a fusion of icons, illuminated manuscripts, stained glass window design, and her spiritual life. She is also a chronic migraine suffer and her art helps calm her symptoms. Her mother was a folk artist; her father was an architect and fine artist, so she has been surrounded by art her whole life. Her work has been compared to the masters of the Golden Age of British book illustration.  She lives in Arkansas.

Professor Gore has told us her advice on writing workshops  Check out this amazing post.

Attending Writers’ Workshops: Getting Your Money’s Worth
Caveat: I’m not going to talk about the advantages of meeting and pitching to editors and agents at high-dollar conferences far away.  I’m not going to talk about the importance of networking.  You can find many wonderful articles about those online.  And those are important to read about, so read about them.
I’m going to focus on WHAT YOU CAN LEARN at workshops.  I’m interested in what you can learn because, dammit, I’m a teacher, so learning is my stock in trade. (And yes, I’m a veteran writer with my nonfiction books shelved on over a thousand libraries around the world and my new picture book that’s won a Kirkus star, which is a huge deal.) 
 So I’m going to write about what you can learn at workshops such as one I gave for free at our county library last month; the ones our veteran members offer for free or $5 to visitors at our writers’ club; our low-cost regional writer’s conferences; our inexpensive state writers’ conference; or our state SCWBI conference and workshops that are low-cost to SCWBI members (although  you can meet and pitch to editors at either the state or SCWBI).
Most writers can’t afford the cost of traveling to major conferences.  Airfare, hotels, taxis, $25 hotel bleu cheese with tomato jam hamburgers, and the high registration fees of first-rate conferences (the best from $1000 - $5000 to attend) are simply out of most people’s reach. 
But if you look around your region, you’re going to find opportunities to attend writers’ workshops and small conferences.  You may think you don’t need to put out the minimal amount of time, effort, and money to go, but you do.
I’ve taken hundreds of college students to conferences and workshops over twenty years, and I always said, “If you learn one thing, ONE THING, at this workshop that you can put to use tomorrow, then you’ve spent your time and money wisely.”  And that’s the take-home if you don’t want to read the rest of this post.
So what are some ONE THINGS (sic) you can learn at workshops?
First, you might learn something that you already know.
What? Learn something that you already know?  Yep.  That’s what I said.
First, you may have known something about writing but forgotten it.  You smack your forehead.  “How could I have forgotten that?  What-an-idiot! (Spoken like Hermione about Ron.) Now I need to go back and re-write that last chapter.”
Second, hearing someone else’s take on what you already know can give you a new perspective.  For example, I know that I needed to know my protagonist’s back story, but I attended a workshop where I learned a new technique to understand her better by putting her into a chair across from me and asking her questions like, “Tweed, what’s the thing you’ve done that you’re most ashamed of?” 
Third, simply hearing a writer you respect tell you something you already know increases your confidence as a writer.   “Hey! I knew that!  I’m on the right track! I’m a writer, alright!”
Second, you might learn something that you know that you don’t know.
I know that conflict is central to plot, so I chose not to attend a workshop session on Find Your Conflict, Find Your Story.   I knew my conflict:  Jake, the 18-year-old son of the biggest rancher in the state, falls in love with Tim, the new hired hand, who’s been dating Melanie for two years.

I also know that a story needs continuing conflict to keep the reader’s attention, but I knew that I didn’t know how to increase conflict in my story.  Therefore, when I saw a workshop titled Five Ways to Increase Conflict in Your Story, I knew I needed to go to that session. 

I learned that conflicts didn’t have to be earth-shattering to be conflicts.  Conflict is simply a barrier to a character getting what he wants.  I’d never known that.  As soon as I learned that, I was able to think up multiple small conflicts that enhanced my main conflict:

Jake wants to get Tim alone to see if the attraction might be mutual, so he invites Tim to go fishing for the weekend.  Jake’s dad thinks that’s a fine idea and decides to join them.   That’s conflict. 

Tim is interested in Jake, but Tim knows he’s got halitosis from an abscessed tooth, and no money to go to the dentist, so he avoids letting Jake get physically close. Jake feels rejected when Tim stands up and walks off every time Jake joins him on the bunkhouse swing. That’s conflict. 
I went to a session to learn what I knew I didn’t know how to do, and in minutes I learned what I needed to know.
Third, you might learn something that you don’t know that you don’t know. 
The world is full of things that we don’t know that we don’t know.  In fact, we don’t know that we don’t know the majority of things to know in the world.
Beginning writers tell readers everything.  They don’t know that they don’t know to show us instead of tell us.  They write:
John had a bad temper.  He was angry at his wife because she burned the toast.  She was afraid of him because he had hit her on many occasions. She was afraid to leave him because she had low self esteem because he’d convinced her that she was stupid.
Somebody shoot me, please!
But even we veteran writers don’t always know what we don’t know. 
For example, I attended a workshop about writing screenplays at a conference because I had walked out of a session where the presenter didn’t have her shit together.  Nice lady, probably a good writer, but she was disorganized and wasting my time. 
I was never going to write a screenplay, but I had nowhere else to go at the small conference.  The screenplay session had been running ten minutes when I arrived, and within two minutes, I was cussing myself that I had missed those ten minutes.
I learned from the screenplay writers that dialogue is action.
I didn’t know that dialog is action.  And I didn’t know that I didn’t know it. 
I thought action was movement, and dialogue was talking.  Well, I learned from that screenplay workshop that dialogue is action.  Action moves a story forward, and since good dialogue moves the story forward, it’s action.
Ergo, three reasons to go to a workshop are: 1) to learn what you already know; 2) to learn what you know that you don’t know;  and 3) to learn what you don’t know that you don’t know.
Getting the Most for Your Money at a Conference
This is the easiest to tell you, but the hardest thing for you to do.  Get up and walk out of a session.
If you attend a session and the presenter isn’t prepared, get up and walk out.
If you attend a session and you realize it’s not at all what you thought it was going to be about, get up and walk out.
If you attend a session, you’re a veteran writer, and it’s for beginning writers, get up and walk out. 
Don’t worry about hurting the presenter’s feelings.  His feelings are not your problem. Your time is limited.  Your money is limited.  You need to spend both wisely.  Go try another presenter’s session.  You might find out that another presenter will teach you something that you didn’t know that you didn’t know. 

Andast but not least, my review of All Is Assuredly Well.

This book was a very cute book to read. It was fun and entertaining. I would definitely recommend it to any of my friends who have children.
The characters are so amazingly written that I was able to lose myself in the story. I lived the happy ending too .If you can get your hands on this book, I suggest you do so. You're going to love it!!!

Until next time... Later Days and Happy Reading!!!

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Inspirational Women In History

In honor of International Women's Day I am going to share with you some of my favorite women throughout history who have inspired me in many ways. These women have done some pretty amazing things in their lives, whether it be something they accomplished, or even surviving a traumatic experience in their lives.

Marie Curie (1867-!934)

Marie Curie was famously known as "Madame Curie". She was a Polish-French physicist and chemist. Marie Curie was the first person to ever receive two Nobel Prizes.

Amelia Earhart (!897-1937)

Amelia Earhart was the first ever female to fly solo across the Atlantic in 1932 and became the very first woman pilot in 1935 for flying solo from Hawaii to California.

Florence Nightingale (1820-1910)

Florence Nightingale nursed wounded soldiers during the Crimean War. She was also known as "The lady with the lamp".

Diana, Princess of Wales (1961-1997)

Diana, also known as, "the people's princess" devoted her life to charity work.  She led a Nobel Peace Prize- winning campaign to ban landmines.

Anne Frank (1929-1945)

Anne Frank made history when her diary was published containing the accounts of her time during the Holocaust where she was in hiding. The book has become of the most read books in the world.

Emily Bronte (1818-1848)

Emily Bronte is a mysterious figure in history because of her reclusive nature. She made history writing under the name Ellis Bell, along with her sisters Charlotte and Anne who also used pen names. Her only novel, Wuthering Heights, was published in 1947 by Thomas Cautley Newbey. The book received mixed reviews at first, but has gone on to become a literary classic.

Jane Austen (1775-1817)

Jane Austen has published several novels including, Pride and Prejudice. She had a natural ear for speech and dialogue. Her books were fashionable among opinion makers, but rarely ever reviewed.  The have become classics among readers all over the world.

Eva Gore-Booth (1870-1926)

Eva Gore-Booth was a an Irish poet, dramatist, committed suffragist, social worker, and labour activist. Her political work was responsible for the close link for women's rights in industry and the struggle for women's right to vote.

Hope ya'll enjoyed this post and Happy International Women's Day to all the ladies out there.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Writing Workshop Part 3

Hi ya'll and welcome to part three of the writing workshop series of posts. I've shared what I've learned from Eliot Parker and Kirk Judd. Today we will be talking about the things we learned from Carter Taylor Seaton.
It was an honor to meet Miss Seaton, since I had read one of her books for my book discussion group. She is a very sweet lady who had a lot of valuable information to share.
Carter Taylor Seaton is the author of Hippie Homesteaders, The Rebel In The Red Jeep, and Father's Troubles.Her books are historical and what she had to share are some tips for doing research.

Tips for researching from carter Taylor Seaton:


You need to do your research to prove to people what you are writing is true.

If they are still living, go to the person you are writing about. Talk to the people you are writing about or the family of that person. Get the perspective of different family members.

Read about the history of the time period you are writing about.

Be open-ended with what you're asking.

When researchng make sure to put down in your notes where you found the information.

For Non-Fiction writing:

Where do you find what you want to know?

Primary Resources - give you and your writing credence.

Who to interview?
Subject of a biography, ancestors, colleagues, friends, family, employees, enemies

Act like a reporter - get the facts

Get other points of view

Old scrapbooks, personal diaries, photo albums, etc.
Public records

Newspapers of the time, historical documents, state archives, County courthouse, etc.

For fiction:

Provide authenticity - details of real places, culture, dress, etc.

Games played, current events


Use your memory, talk to people you know

Just remember you can get caught up in research.Research is easy, writing is hard. Just do it!!!

Research websites you can check out:

Google - The mother of all search engines

Hope you all enjoyed this information and any all of you writers can find it helpful. Until next time. Later Days and Happy Writing!!!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Chrysalis Book Review

Hi all! Today on the blog I am going to be reviewing a book I was given the chance to receive an ARC of. Chrysalis is the newest book by the wonderfully talented author, Angie Martin. This is one book I would recommend to anyone who loves paranormal books. And without making you wait any longer, here's my review:

Chrysalis by Angie martin

This book was AMAZING!!!! I couldn't stop reading once I started. Chrysalis is full of twists and surprises you won't see coming. Angie Martin has a hit with this book.
The story follows Sheriff Peter Holbrook as he tries to save himself and his town from what's hiding in "The Gray". I spent the first part of this book trying to figure out what was happening to the people of Nowhere, but when I finally realized what was invading this small town I was even more intrigued by the story.
This is one book lovers of paranormal will not want to miss out on. I could read it again and again and again...

Hope ya'll get a chance to read this book. You won't be disappointed. Later Days!!!

Friday, January 26, 2018

First Line Friday Prompt - Fiction Cafe Writer's Group

To save his own life, he would have to kill. That was something he had never thought he would have to do. He wasn't even sure he could pull it off.
 If he didn't do this, they would kill him, and then kill them as well. He had been ordered to take out the people he cared for more than anything. His own family.
Brent Sinclair took a deep breath, staring at his children. Gabe was only seven years old, Jacey five. They hadn't even lived their lives, how could he possibly cut them so short?
His gaze moved to his wife. Myra was at the stove making lunch for her family. What was he going to do? He couldn't hurt them, for any reason.
He would have to find a way to protect them from this threat. The only way he could do that was to tell Myra what was going on. He really didn't want to tell her about the trouble he was in.
He had been involved in some things he wasn't proud of. How did anyone tell the people they loved something like that? No, he would have to let that secret die with him.
"Brent?" Myra looked at him.
He swallowed hard, looking at her. She was such a sweet person. She didn't deserve to be murdered for what he had done. None of them did.
"What?" He smiled at her.
"Are you okay?" She handed him a plate.
"I'm fine." Brent took a bite of food.
"Daddy, can we play baseball later?" Gabe asked him.
"Sure buddy." He ruffled his sons hair. "Eat first, okay."
"Okay." The boy took a bite of his sandwich.
"What about me, Daddy?" Jacey scratched her nose.
"You too, Princess." Brent smiled at her.
This was killing him inside. He wanted to take them and hide some place safe. Unfortunately he knew they wouldn't be safe anywhere on the planet. Dimitri Kendrick would always find them.
The man had connections all over the world.
No one ever got away from him, or his goons.
That meant he had no choice but to do what he was told. He would prefer to do it himself, rather than have Dimitri do it. It would be a lot less painful if he did it.
He knew that Dimitri would torture them first. That was his favorite thing to do to the families of the people who betrayed him. He refused to let that happen to his wife and babies.
“Brent, is something wrong?” Myra asked him. “You seem a bit distracted today.”
“Just tired, I guess.” He lied.
He never lied to her, at least when they were face to face. It hadn't been easy to do. They had always been open and honest with one another.
He couldn't believe the things he had kept from her. Telling her would only destroy her. It would destroy all the trust between them. He couldn't hurt her like that.
He watched his children talking rapidly, laughing at each other. They had always meant everything to him. How could he have been such a fool? What he had done was going to get them killed. No father should do something like that to his children.
They were so happy at that exact moment. He had to make all that change in the blink of an eye. After tonight they would no longer feel happiness, or any other emotion. It was an unfair and cruel fate for someone so young.
He looked at his phone on the table. He really didn't want to answer it. He took a deep breath, looking at the number on the caller id.
“I need to get this.” He stood up. “It's work.”
Brent walked out onto the back porch, closing the door behind him. He waited until he was sure no one could hear him before answering it.
“Hello.” He swallowed hard again.
“Brent.” Dimitri's voice came on the line. “I changed my mind. I don't want you to kill your family while they sleep. I want you to do it NOW!”

Friday, January 19, 2018

Playlist For The Hunt For Amanda

Hi guys and welcome to the blog. Today I am going to be sharing a blog post prompt from a group I'm in on Facebook called, "Blogging For Novelists". It's a really fun group to be in. The prompt is to make a playlist for your book. I think it's fun to make playlists for the books I write, so without further ado... here is the playlist for The Hunt For Amanda. Enjoy!

Blown Away - Carrie Underwood
Stingy - Jordan Knight (featuring Donnie Wahlberg)
Flying Without Wings - Westlife
Bad Medicine - Bon Jovi
Cowboy Casanova - Carrie Underwood
I Love You This Much - Jimmy Wayne
Forever And For Always - Shania Twain
What A Girl Wants - Christina Aguilera
On The Side Of Angels - Leann Rimes
Nothin' To Lose - Josh Gracin
I Cross My Heart - George Strait
Good Girl - Carrie Underwood
What Hurts The Most - Rascal Flatts
If I Die Young - The Band Perry
Angels - Jessica Simpson
Take My Breath Away - Jessica Simpson
Life Goes On - Leann Rimes
Party For Two - Shania Twain & Mark MaGrath
She's Not Just A Pretty Face - Shania Twain
Redneck Woman - Gretchen Wilson

And there you have it. Most authors choose the songs for their playlists according to things that happen in the story, or that relate to particular characters. I chose these songs by using a different method. The MC in my book named Tammy Perdue is named after and based on my best friend who passed away in 2012. These songs are some of her favorites. Blown Away was her most favorite. I hope ya'll enjoy my playlist. THFA is with the betas and going through some changes. Hopefully it will be published later this year.
Until next time... Keep Writing!!
Later days!!!

My favorite books

  • Rebels At The Gate
  • The Father Factor
  • Jacob's Girls
  • James Patterson's Books
  • A Seperate Peace
  • The Pearl
  • A Christmas Carol
  • The Hunt For Hawke's Daughter
  • Charlotte's Web
  • A Child Called "IT"
  • Sugar Baby

My Favorite Authors

  • Janie King Crouch
  • Elizabeth Heiter
  • Lynn Rush
  • Kelly Hashway
  • Langston Hughes
  • John Knowles
  • John Stienbeck
  • Charles Dickens
  • Max Lucado
  • James Patterson
  • Jean Barrett
  • Karen Young

My Favorite Movies

  • Kickin It Old Skool
  • Meet The Robinsons
  • My Girl
  • 30 Days of Night
  • Free Willy
  • Beauty and the Beast