Friday, November 28, 2014


Friday Fun
 Help me welcome Award Winning Author Darby Kaye (aka Darby Karchut) today, with a new novel a bit different from her earlier novels.
Oh, boy! Look at that eye!
Urban Fantasy for Adults
Synopsis: "On the run across America from a vengeful shape-shifter, Bannerman "Bann" Boru has only one thing on his mind: keeping himself and his young son, Cor, alive.

At any cost.

Until he meets Shay Doyle, healer and member of a secret group of immortal Celtic warriors, the Tuatha de Danaan, living in modern-day Colorado. When Cor is injured, Bannerman is forced to accept her help. He quickly realizes that the golden-haired healer is shield-maiden tough and can hold her own on the field of battle with the big boys. And Shay soon discovers that there is more to Bann than meets the eye.

Learn more about Darby Kaye and The Stag Lord
Here is the Netgalley link:


Barnes & Noble:
tag-lord-darby-kaye/1119401216?ean=9781939392411&itm=1&usri=9781939392411&cm_mmc=AFFILIATES-_-Linkshare-_-GwEz7vxblVU-_-10:1&r=1, 1

Darby's website:
Darby was also kind enough to write a guest post for us. Here's what she has to say about turning out so many books a year.
 I’ve always approached my writing as a profession. And, like any profession, it has its deadlines and commitments. Commitments to my publishing team as well as commitments to my readers.
Some of these helpful hints listed below I have gleaned from other authors, while others, I have discovered on my own. Each writer should use what works for him or her. Writing is an individual process – it doesn’t matter how you get to the end of your book, just keep writing.
  • Write five days a week and try to hit 1,000 words a day. 20 weeks = 100,000 words = an adult novel.
  • Or write five days a week and try to hit 500 words a day.  20 weeks = 50,000 words = a middle grade novel
  • Write every day. As many words as you can. 
  • Write badly. You can always fix stuff later.
  • Read the last two chapters you wrote to get you warmed up, then start writing
  • Write whenever you have a 15 minute block of time
  • Stop each day in the middle of a scene that you are excited about – that will give you momentum when you come back to it tomorrow. I think it was Hemingway who did this.
  • If you have do research, just tag that spot, and keep writing your quota for the day. Do the research later, unless you absolutely need it to move the story forward
  • Write the big scenes first, then fill in around them.
  • Or write the ending first, then the beginning, then fill in the middle.
I hope some of these are helpful. I would be curious to hear other writers’ suggestions.

So would I because I write so sloooowww.
Here are my thoughts on THE STAG LORD.
By Darby Kaye
Have you ever known a family that loved one another so much they’d do almost anything for the others, even to the point of death? Have you ever read a book with characters that made you want to be a member of their family because you knew no matter what was happening in your life, they had your back, no matter the cost?   
If you’d like to meet a family like the above, then Award Winning Author Darby Kaye’s debut novel for adults, THE STAG LORD, is exactly what you need. Ms. Kaye, who also writes MG and YA novels under the name of Darby Karchut, has entered a new world with her writing in a big way, with a novel that will touch your heart and leave you wanting more. Bannerman Boru, AKA Bann, and his eight-year-old son, Cor, want to get away from the horror of his wife’s death and the betrayal of his people. Fate seems to have other plans for Bann when he meets Shay Doyle, a healer and Fey. Bann is also Fey, and they are soon in a battle to save Cor’s life.
One of the things I really like about THE STAG LORD is the family ties. Shay has a slew of cousins and relatives that all pull together to help the boy and man they’ve just met. The author adds a romance between Shay and Bann that helps to gentle the violence in the story.  Max, the dog, who plays an important role, is one of my favorite characters. What I love most in this novel is the father, son relationship between Bann and Cor. He’s not a perfect father. He makes mistakes and admits he does, but his son is Bann’s top priority.
I cried. I laughed. I held my breath. Darby Kaye did a beautiful job with descriptions of the monsters, the land, and also the grisly scenes.  The sequel is due out in December, 2015. What? We have to wait a whole year?
Happy Reading! Have a great weekend.


Monday, November 24, 2014


Monday Musings
Now I know some of you are having so much snow you probably don't want to hear about any more wet stuff, but in our area we're in a five year drought. Our combined lakes are at roughly 20 percent capacity. We're limited to how much water we're allowed to use a month, and if we don't get rain soon, I don't know what the city will do.
Yesterday, the most beautiful rain fell. I mean lots and lots of rain. Enough to flood some of the streets and leave puddles in my driveway. I just stood at the window and watched the rain come down. I don't know the final total, but it was between three and four inches I think. Could be wrong.
I haven't been down to our stock pond to see how much it has now, but my son said earlier yesterday it was half full and the rain was still pouring down. Tomorrow, I hope to check it. The ponds been dry for nearly five years. No more fish or turtles, dragonflies or tadpoles. Hopefully, we'll see those again. Just a few more rains like yesterday.
I took this picture through the window which was really wet, but if you look closely to the right you'll see three little birds lined up on a tree branch. They were on the side away from the direction of the rain. Another bird clung to the window screen to keep dry.
After the Rain.
Birds, rain, a beautiful sunset. A good weekend.
Happy Reading!

Friday, November 21, 2014


Ahoy, Mateys,
Friday Fun is almost over, but Saturday can be fun too, as well as Sunday, especially if you have new books to read. Ths is Black Friday a week early. For the weekend, many of MUSEITUP PUBLISHING'S Books are at a discount, with bundles and also individual titles.
Take a look at their site.
A PIRATE, A BLOCKADE RUNNER AND A CAT, my MG/Tween paranormal eBook, is available for .99 at
Sail up the Carolina coast with Erik, Star, and Storm as they help Pirate Bonnet and Blockade Runner James (both ghosts) find rest.
Have a great weekend.
Happy Reading!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Tumbleweed Christmas and Stocking Stuffers

Welcome Wednesday.
I used to not want to think about Christmas until after Thanksgiving. Now, though, the cold weather and the snow and all the talking about Christmas on TV got me to thinking about Christmas too. Tumbleweed Christmas trees in particular. Did you know that the city of Chandler, Arizona, puts up a big tumbleweed tree every year.
I hope this works. It shows the tree being put together.
They also have a parade and a lot of other stuff.
Sounds like lots of fun.
If I lived closer I'd take a look.
I also have a Tumbleweed Christmas, an early reader that would be a great fit for wee ones' stockings. Come to think of it, what better gifts to put in everyone's stockings than books. Wouldn't you like to find a stocking of books in your house on Christmas morning?
I would.
The cat in the corner doesn't fit in the stocking, but she was curious about what I was doing.
Happy Reading

Monday, November 17, 2014



by Medeia Sharif

Vendor links will be updated on Medeia’s site.

Middle Grade Historical and Fantasy, Featherweight Press, November 2014

Lily, a learning
disabled girl, attempts to unravel the mystery of her abducted mother using
supernatural clues from an ancient stranger, even when it means posing a danger
to herself.

Learning-disabled Lily desires
to prove herself, although her mind freezes when presented with big problems -
such as her mother's abduction. With a French father and Egyptian mother, Lily
worries that her mother hid her ethnicity from her French in-laws. However,
there's something deeper going on. Lily finds a way into an attic that's
normally locked and encounters a mysterious, moonlit Egyptian night world.
There she finds Khadijah, an ancient stranger who guides her to finding clues
about her mother's whereabouts. Lily becomes a sleuth in both the real world
and magical desert, endangering herself as she gets closer to the kidnapper.

The book takes place in 1976. Every host for this book blast
is going to post one fun fact for that year. For some of you, this will bring
back memories. For younger blog readers, you'll learn something new.

[A number one song in the fall was Wild Cherry's Play that Funky Music.]

Find Medeia – Multi-published
YA and MG Author

Blog   |   Twitter   |   Goodreads   |   Instagram   |   Amazon

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, November 14, 2014


Friday Fun
Yes, I'm late posting about honoring veterans, but my scanner was contrary and I couldn't scan the picture I wanted. No matter. We should honor our veterans every day because they put their lives on the line for us every day. This is a photo of my older brother who was in WWII. I also have cousins and uncles that served and my grand-son-in law is serving now overseas, and I'm honoring them all.
Arwood Henry Stowe
Wasn't he good looking!
My latest book for MG/Tween readers is now available for pre-order at many stores, listed below. The E-Book's release date is January 6, 2015. Now, it's only $2.99.
Sometimes a boy just needs a safe place to hide, like in a doghouse.
MuseItUp Publishing
Coming to Amazon soon
And, if you haven't picked up a copy of my MG/Tween novel Star of the Team
4RV Publishing
The paperback is available at:
Have a Great Weekend.
Happy Reading

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Title:  Climbing for Roots
Author: Alan Noble
Religion/Spiritual Growth/Christian Life
Publisher:  Axiom

Climbing for Roots will explain fully the sin that so completely corrupted creation, and the plan of God for our salvation. We learn that Jesus is not only our Savior, but is also the Lord of our lives. What does that mean? That obedience will never earn us God’s love but it will always produce blessing. We learn that our salvation is secure, but we must strive for obedience because we are created to do good works.


When we trust Jesus for salvation, we become members of a new family—the family of God, also known as the church. Imagine! God is now our Father. As members of this incredible family, certain changes take place within us. We get learn about worship and praise, and have a relationship with Him. Climbing for Roots will teach us about ourselves as new creations, about this church, and about Jesus, the Son of God! We learn about the two ordinances or rites Jesus has given His church that will help us to remember who we are as Christians—baptism, and communion. As a member of God’s church, we learn that we are to serve each other in unity. We must consider others more important than ourselves. We learn that we need to persevere together, so that when Jesus returns, He will find us doing what He has left us here to do—serving Him by serving others.


Purchase at:




Barnes and Noble:

Alan R. Noble is a born-again Christian, schooled in the Word since childhood. He was fortunate to sit under capable preaching and teaching throughout his life. His passion for the spiritual welfare of young people grew out of his years of work experience, and his understanding of the Scriptures. He realizes that young Christians need instruction in the meat as well as the milk of the Word (Hebrews 5:12-14).

Mr. Noble was educated at William Paterson University, a liberal arts institute in Northern New Jersey, and received a B.A. in education, with a certificate to teach elementary school. Later, he received an M.A. in Communication Arts, and a certificate in supervision. He worked as an educator for 31 years.

After his retirement from public education Mr. Noble enjoyed teaching in Christian Schools in New Jersey and Texas.

These days find Alan and his wife Kathie enjoying their travels between Kansas City and northern New Jersey as they visit their daughters’ families that include six beautiful grandchildren.

Pump Up Your Book and Alan are teaming up to give away a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:

  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive the prize.
  • This giveaway begins November 3 and ends on November 28, 2014.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on December 1, 2014.
  • Winner has 72 hours to reply.

Good luck everyone!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Climbing for Roots Book Blitz Schedule
November 3
November 4
November 5
November 6
November 7
November 10
November 11
November 12
November 13
November 14
November 17
November 18
November 19
November 20
November 21
November 24
November 25
November 26
November 28


Monday, November 10, 2014


Monday Musings
Tomorrow is Veterans Day
Thank you to all the brave men and women who have served America through the years.
God Bless!
Today I'd like to introduce you to Author Paul D Smith. Welcome, Paul. Tell us about your debut novel for young readers.
The creature hiding in the barn can’t exist. Fifteen-year-old Jason Hewes knows it’s impossible. A live dinosaur would be more believable; at least dinosaurs once roamed the land which is now the Hewes Montana farm. But this beast from legend? Quite impossible—although it doesn’t seem to be going away just because it shouldn’t exist.
Jason is about to reevaluate what is or isn’t possible. His discovery is very real, leathery wings and all. Nor is his new friend alone. Others of his kind are awakening from a centuries-long slumber. Realizing how traumatic contact between mythological beast and modern life could be, Jason and his impossible new ally devise a plan to integrate the newly awakened creatures into society through teenage interaction. What could possibly go wrong?
As the sound of giant wings becomes a common occurrence on the Hewes family farmstead, a malignant force senses his old enemies are flying again. Determined to end an eons-long war forever, this being turns his attention to a small rural Montana town, a family farm, and Jason Hewes.

The cover sure makes me want to learn more about these creatures.
Here's a short excerpt:
Jason sprinted into the house and grabbed the largest kitchen knife he could find. Then he took a second in his other hand. Then he put a meat mallet in his back pocket. And then, for some reason, he grabbed a carrot peeler, just for good measure. He ran back to the front of the house and burst out of the screen door into the yard as he shone the flashlight ahead of him and mumbled, “Stupid, stupid, stupid” all the way to the barn.

But in the short run to the old barn, the rain stopped. It was enough of a dramatic contrast that it made Jason pause in mid-run. He looked curiously into the sky and saw the clouds dissipating as stars became visible again. Had Jason been in any other state but sheer terror, he would have asked himself questions about the phenomenon, out loud, and probably made fun of weather forecasters again. But all he could do was keep going to the barn.

Arriving at the barn’s large doors, Jason swallowed hard, insulted his own common sense one more time, and then slowly pulled them open.

He saw nothing…mostly because it was night, and he hadn’t bothered flicking on the light switch yet. Jason always wondered why the previous owners had run power out to the red wooden structure. But he decided not to complain about it that night, and he groped along the wall until he found the switch and flicked the lights on.

And there it was.

Judging by its size, he could tell this was what had impacted the earth and had caused the tremor that he’d felt back at the house. It was over thirty feet long and resembled—Jason couldn’t believe he was thinking this—a dinosaur.

It had a long neck attached to a muscular body and narrowed to a very long tail. Its body was covered in scales that were colored shades of brown and gray. Spines ran along the length of its neck and the length of its tail as well, and each of its four legs ended in a three-toed foot, with each toe ending in a long, curved claw. Its head was oddly shaped; a large curved plate extended back from the creature’s eyes on either side, arcing upward into two points and vaguely resembling a plowshare. It had a short snout tapering off to a rounded tip, with two nostrils on the top just short of the tip.

But what made Jason realize that this was no dinosaur were the massive wings sprouting from either side of the creature. The wings were batlike, and Jason estimated the wingspan was close to sixty feet. Wings like those were not vestigial, like those of an ostrich or emu; this creature was made for flight. He noticed the membrane of one wing seemed damaged, burned away to form a hole with seared edges. He followed the lines of the wings back to the body and could see the creature’s chest expanding and contracting slowly and rhythmically. It was breathing; it was alive. Unconscious but alive.

Jason finally took notice of his own body; his breathing was shallow and rapid. He whispered to himself, “Get a grip, Hewes. You’ve played enough fantasy games to know what this is, as unbelievable as it seems. This is a dragon.”

Amazon (to purchase)




The author was kind enough to answer a few questions for me. Enjoy.

Hi, Paul. Welcome to my blog. Please tell us about yourself and how you became a writer.

I was writing some fan fiction for years on a couple of different web sites and built up quite a following. I wrote three different stories in serial fashion. My last fan fiction was a superhero piece. I posted a chapter per week for three and a half years before the story was over. THAT was intense. So when it was all over, I decided that I wanted to write something that was A) completely original and B) I could read to my two boys. So Jason and the Draconauts came out of that.

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Hmm. I think when I was really little I wanted to be an archaeologist, and then a herpetologist. In high school, I studied different computer technologies. Which led me to concluded I didn’t want to work with computers, so I went into psychology and human services in college.

Twitter your newest release in 140 characters or less.

Dragons interact with teenagers in the 21st century to solve the mystery of how the dragons came back. #goreadit!

How did you come up with the idea for your book and were there any glitches along the way?

I loved dragons as a kid and wanted to write something involving them, but in modern times. The movie Reign of Fire intrigued me for just this reason, but unfortunately the movie was awful. That was inspiration for the overall idea. I really wanted to use TSR/Wizards of the Coast society of dragons, and even wrote them asking for permission. I was met with a categorical NO. So I had to design my own dragon species and culture for the book.

You’re shipwrecked on a deserted island. What character from a book other than yours would you want to be stranded there with you? Why?

Aragorn from Lord of the Rings to help me survive. And if I could pick another, Superman to…you know…fly me out of there.

If we peeked inside your closet, what would we see?

Clothing hung with no real organization

Tell us your favorites:

Movie The Avengers

Actor Tom Hanks

Book The Hobbit

Singer or Group Michael W. Smith

Coffee or Tea

Decaf Chai Tea with Cinnabon Creamer

Spring, Summer, Fall, or Winter?

Spring OR Fall. I like the transitional seasons

If you could have super powers what would you wish for?

You ask this question to a comic book geek. It is VERY hard to answer. I would have to say flight or super speed.

If you could choose to live in another time, would you prefer the past or the future?

I would like to live back in the 90’s when I was young, but only if I could have the wisdom and knowledge I have now.

What is something about you that no one knows?

I hate it when people smell me. It makes me freak out!

Are you working on any new books now? Tell us about them.

I am working on the sequel to Jason and the Draconauts. It is titled Jason and the Draconauts: The Council of Ancients. I can’t tell you much because of spoilers

Where can your fans learn more about you?





About the Author:

Paul Smith lives in upstate New York with his wife and two sons, where he works with emotionally disturbed and mentally ill children. He earned a master’s degree in social sciences from Binghamton University in 1999.

A lifelong love of science fiction, fantasy, and superhero stories influences Paul’s writing. His most recent work was a popular weekly online series that generated over 20,000 views. Jason and the Draconauts is his first novel.

Thank you for visiting with us today, Paul.

Thursday, November 6, 2014


Welcome. Today, I'd like to share my thoughts on QUEST OF THE HART, the first book in Author Mary Waibel's A Princess of Valendria YA series. Enjoy.
QUEST OF THE HART: A Princess of Valendria Novel Book 1

By Mary Waibel

Sometimes, young girls dream of being a princess, meeting a handsome prince, and living happily ever after. That’s what happens in fairy tales, right? But what if the handsome prince has a twin sister who is determined to rule the kingdom, rather than her brother who was born a few minutes earlier than she was, and will stop at nothing, even murder to achieve her goal?

In QUEST OF THE HART, by Author Mary Waibel, the reader meets Princess Kaylee, Princess of Palindore, soon to be Princess of Breniera, once she and Prince Devlin are married. His twin, Arabella, has other ideas for the prince and his bride-to-be. So Princess Arabella puts a spell on Devlin that will guarantee she’s the heir to the throne. To complete the deal, she must have blood from Kaylee. Not as easy to get as Arabella thought.

The author introduces us to a cast of delightful and/or evil characters as Kaylee sets forth on a quest to save her prince. Told from different point-of-view characters we meet Navon, a hart that Kaylee can talk to and a dragon that will touch your heart. Will Kaylee succeed in her mission, or will Arabella succeed and be the future Queen of Breniera? Pick up a copy of QUEST OF THE HART to find out. It is a great story of love, friendship, and faithfulness.
Museitup Publishing

This is a lovely story, especially for readers that enjoy fairy tales like I do. Now, I must read the other books in the series.

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


This is the First Wednesday of the Month. You know what that means. Right.
The Insecure Writer’s Support GroupPurpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time. Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post.

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Our Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Alex J. Cavanaugh started the IWSG.

co-hosts for the November 5 posting of the IWSG will be LG Keltner, Donna Hole, Lisa Buie-Collard and SL Hennessy!

My post today is Face Your Fears.
The idea came to me last month when I had a table at the local library's annual Craft Show.
My table where I hoped to sell some books was on the second floor. The library is a beautiful building that once was home to one of the early settlers of the town. When he passed on, he left the home to the city with the stipulation that they make it a library. They did and it is quite fascinating.
Anyhow, back to my story. To reach the second floor I either had to climb the curved narrow stairs or ride the elevator. I hate small places like elevators, closets, and submarines, (that's another story) so I opted to use the stairs. That was okay, but then I decided I was silly to be afraid of an elevator, especially with all the books I had to take upstairs. So I swallowed a huge breath of air and stepped into the elevator with my books. I got to the top without fainting.
This reminded me of writing. Do you have fears when writing a story, whether a new one or one you've been working on for years?
Do you have fears when you send your baby off, to an agent or publisher? The baby you've pampered and loved for months, even years? Will they love it? Will they hate it? 
Do you have fears when they send you a contract to publish your book? What if no one reads it? What if they hate it? What if they give you horrible reviews?
Do you have fears when your precious story is published? Will it be ranked number ten jillion on Amazon?
Stop. Think. You wrote a story. How many people are always "going to" write a story, but never do. You sent your story off. Some people write, but stash their work in a box and never send it anywhere. You got a contract. Yay. You wouldn't have if you'd kept your story to yourself. And don't worry about your rankings. You've accomplished your goal. Many people never do.

So smile, say "I did it," and enjoy knowing that you faced your fears and overcame them. 
Also, today I have a special treat for you, dear readers. I want to share my review of my friend and crit partner's latest middle grade novel THE LUMPY DUCKLING: Another Weaver Tale. (I did not crit this story.) Here's Kai Strand's great tale.
THE LUMPY DUCKLING: Another Weaver Tale (Review)
By Kai Strand
Friendship is an important part of our lives. Why do we like one person and another person not so much? What do we look for in a friend? Their physical appearance? Their sense of humor? Their intelligence? Can we be friends with someone if we have nothing in common?
In Award Winning Author Kai Strand’s latest MG novel, THE LUMPY DUCKLING: Another Weaver Tale, Eloise Talemaker, AKA Wheezy, worries about her friendship with her best friend, Lawrence Nightingale, AKA Lumpy, since they seem to have nothing in common.  She knows what she likes about him but is amazed that he finds beauty in her freckles and wild red hair.  Then one day, Wheezy meets a gnome-elf named Unwanted (one of my favorite characters from the other Weaver Tale stories), who grants her one wish and you know the old saying “be careful what you wish for.” Well, Wheezy soon regrets what she wished for and blames herself for…. That’s all I’m saying because I don’t want to give anything away.
Author Kai Strand’s characters make you either love them or hope they get what they deserve. Yes, there are the kids that tease and ignore the unpopular kids like Wheezy and Lumpy.  Then there’s Lumpy. I have to say he’s my favorite character, but I won’t say why so you can see for yourself.
THE LUMPY DUCKLING: Another Weaver Tale is a story of friendship and looking inside a person for the beauty that’s there, rather than an outward beauty. It is a story of beginning teen love and promise. The stories the characters tell throughout the novel are fun and tell a lot about that character. And the letters between Wheezy and Lumpy will touch your heart. This novel would make a delightful story for school libraries and classrooms where the students could discuss what makes a good friend.
Amazon and other places where fine books are sold.
Last, but not Least it's WRITER'S REBELCREED  time. Thanks to Sheri Larsen for this.

I'm still writing five to six days a week. When I don't write, I feel lost.
I believe in my abilities, but am not reaching them, I think.
Haven't had time to write something new. Trying to finish the old.
I'm really finding my current revisions beautiful. They're making my story much stronger, I hope.
Still need to work on marketing. I just want to write.
I'm trying to encourage other writers in whatever way they need.
Still having fun reviewing books for other writers and hosting them on my blog.
What have you been up to lately?
Happy Reading and Writing.


Monday, November 3, 2014


Monday Musings
Did everyone remember to fall back in the fall? I like this one, but not the spring ahead one. An extra hour of sleep is always welcome. And speaking of welcome, please welcome Award Winning Author Donna McDine to my blog today. Donna and I have been cyber friends for quite awhile. She has a very informative newsletter every month. She writes delightful stories for young readers. And I'm honored that she's visiting with us today. Here's Donna to tell us about her latest book.
The Inspiration Behind A Sandy Grave by Donna McDine

Story ideas come to me in different ways… my imagination, daily life, news articles, and movies. Yes, I carry a small notebook and pen with me at all times for those wonderful times of eavesdropping and jotting down dialogue. Especially when it comes to little ones and teenagers. What better way to stay authentic to writing for children than from their own words?
Beyond the enjoyment of a beach vacation I never gave much thought to marine life. Sure we’ve gone on the typical whale or dolphin watching tours and were always delighted to see these creatures come up out of the ocean. But I never truly paid attention to what some humans do to marine life, until the day I read a news article about a dead whale that washed up on shore of a California beach. What fascinated me about this article was the police needed to guard the whale, until the local marine biology institute could arrive to determine what the whale died from. The reasoning for guarding astounded me. Apparently, poachers would take the opportunity to steal the whale’s teeth to sell for artists to create scrimshaw on the teeth and then sell for a profit.
This particular article pumped up my creative writing juices and before I knew it, I was researching marine biology, Endangered Species Act, and the Mammal Protection Act.  Then came the creation of the fictional storyline and characters. Once I knew how I wanted the characters to be instrumental in propelling the story along with my research, the two blended into a beach adventure with a learning aspect without preaching to the reader. Hence, A Sandy Grave was born. The title was created from points in the article and research.
Through my writing and research of topics I find interesting, I often learn something along the way too. Making school and library visits more engaging with youngsters. Inspiration is everywhere, as long as we keep our eyes and ears tuned into our daily life. You will be certainly surprised what you can learn along the way.
Thank you for hosting me today. I enjoyed showing a glimpse behind the scenes of A Sandy Grave.
Beverly, I invite your visitors to stop by my blog and learn about the exciting opportunity to enter at a chance to win a Fire HD 6 Table - 6" HD Display, Wi-Fi, Front and Rear Cameras, 8 GB – details…

It's been my pleasure, Donna. What a fascinating story behind the story. The things some people do for money is amazing. Thanks for sharing your story with us. I bet students find your work interesting and are eager to learn more. The cover is just perfect too.  And I'm going to enter your giveaway.

Bio: Multi award-winning children’s author, Donna McDine’s creative side laid dormant for many years until her desire to write sparked in 2007. With four early reader children’s picture books to her credit, A Sandy Grave (January 2014), Powder Monkey (May 2013), Hockey Agony (January 2013) and The Golden Pathway (August 2010) and a fifth book in the publishing pipeline with Guardian Angel Publishing her adventures continue as she ignites the curiosity of children through reading. She writes and moms from her home in the historical hamlet Tappan, NY. McDine is a member of the SCBWI, New York State Reading Association and Family Reading Partnership.
Thanks again, Donna, for visiting with us.
Happy Reading