Thursday, May 31, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Love Through Time with Augustina Van Hoven

AuthorThe Write Way Café welcomes Augustina Van Hoven, whose Love through Time series takes readers through time.

Have you ever wanted to time travel? Many books, movies, and television shows have been created about this concept.  It’s one of my favorite genres. Imagine being able to witness historical events or meet famous people. This is something I would love to do.

In the scientific community, there is some argument on whether time travel is possible. The hypothetical theory for it is called an Einstein-Rosen bridge, otherwise known as a wormhole. A wormhole is a shortcut through the space-time continuum. It acts like a tunnel connecting two places in three-dimensional space, the present, and the past or future, with time as the fourth-dimensional element.

In my ‘Love through Time’ series, I explore the idea that there are natural occurring wormholes in time. My heroine in A SECOND CHANCE accidentally falls through one and ends up in 1876. For the second book in the series, I did the reverse and brought two people from 1876 forward to present time.

As difficult as it would be to try to exist in the past, living in primitive conditions without all the conveniences that we are used to, it would be far more difficult for someone from the past to try to survive in the future. Imagine being born before the invention of the radio or automobiles and suddenly finding yourself in 2018? It would be terrifying. You wouldn’t have any concept of modern technology and the things we take for granted like cell phones, microwave ovens, a car, a computer, or even something as simple as indoor plumbing. Another even greater shock would be our culture. There have been so many changes in the last 150 years in our dress and the way we interact with one another, it would be like being dropped in an alien world. These are some of the problems faced by my characters in the second book in the ‘Love through Time’ series, A NEW BEGINNING.

What would you do if you found yourself over 100 years in the future?


by Augustina Van Hoven
RELEASE DATE:  JUNE 28, 2018



Augustina Van Hoven was born in The Netherlands and currently resides in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, two dogs and three cats.   She is an avid reader of romance, science fiction and fantasy.  When she’s not writing she likes to work in her garden or in the winter months crochet and knit on her knitting machines.  

@augustinavhoven     FaceBook     Pinterest




Tuesday, May 29, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Shadow's Dream by Jami Gray

JAMI GRAY


by Jami Gray
Bitter betrayals and hidden truths forge shattered dreams…

Cheveyo, the most powerful Magi in the Northwest Kyn, lives with one regret—walking away from Tala Whiteriver. When he is sent to broker an alliance with the Southwest Kyn, he recognizes his chance to rectify his mistake, but soon realizes the challenge may be more difficult than expected.


As the youngest Kyn to lead a house, Tala’s a force to be reckoned with, but her role came at a steep price. When an unprovoked attack by the Southwest alpha threatens her position and forces her to face judgment, she finds an unexpected ally in the man who once claimed her heart. 


As a series of deadly events unfolds, tensions began to rise between the Southwest houses, with Tala firmly trapped in the center. Before Tala and Cheveyo can quell the approaching storm, they must untangle a treacherous plot and expose the architects of a devil’s bargain designed to fracture the Kyn. Will Cheveyo and Tala be able to move beyond the confines of their positions and trust their hearts to forge new dreams before the impending nightmare sweeps them apart forever?


Shadow’s Dreams – Book 5 of the Kyn Kronicles
Black Opal Books        Amazon        Barnes & Noble
iBooks        Kobo

Jami Gray is the coffee addicted, music junkie, Queen Nerd of her personal Geek Squad, Alpha Mom of the Fur Minxes, and award-winning author of the Urban Fantasy series, The Kyn Kronicles, the Paranormal Romantic Suspense series, PSY-IV Teams, and her latest Romantic Suspense series, Fate’s Vultures. She writes to soothe the voices in her head.

Hunt her down at:

Facebook Author Page       Twitter        Google+
Pinterest        Newsletter        Amazon Author Page
Goodreads


Monday, May 28, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Friday, May 25, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Your imagination is your preview of life’s coming attractions. 
– Albert Einstein
Thursday, May 24, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Take Your Characters Deep... by Jami Gray

The Write Way Café welcomes Jami Gray, who offers an interesting take on character development.


For all those who have interacted with small humans in the kinder-to-third grade arena, you might be familiar with Flat Stanley (also known in some cases as Flat Lizzy). For those who haven’t had the joy of meeting this illustrious character, a quick introduction.

Flat Stanley or Lizzy is a one-dimensional paper doll who is forced to accompany adults into a variety of situations—from board meetings (oh yeah, we’ve done that one) to crashing exotic vacations. Photographic proof is required upon Flat Stanley or Lizzy’s return home, where they are presented for inspection, accompanied by ew’s and ah’s of their many exciting adventures.

You may wonder why I mention these childhood world travelers. Well, because did anyone consider that maybe Stanley and Lizzy didn’t want to attend that board meeting? Maybe traversing the US Postal Service world in an envelope is not something to envy. Did anyone take into account what Stanley and Lizzy really wanted? Maybe Stanley prefers to nestle between the pages of a good story. Maybe Lizzy has no desire to visiting the ocean where the salt water plays havoc on her paper skin. I’m pretty sure no one bothered to ask these two globetrotters what exactly they wanted from their crafted life.

Which brings me to my own creatures of craft—characters.

Do you know what your characters want? What or who they desire? What drives them? Or, are you trying to force them into what you, the almighty story crafter, wants because that is what the story needs?

Characters are virtual people, and people are never, ever one-dimensional. They are more like the twenty-sided die you use for various gaming adventures.

As a writer who happens to be an avid reader, I enjoy complex and well-developed characters. When I read some of my favorite authors, such as Ilona Andrews, Nalini Singh, Seanan McGuire, and Jennifer Estep, just to name a few, there is a nascent bit of the green-eyed monster for their twenty-sided character development. Each of their characters, whether primary or secondary, are uniquely individual and if we were lucky enough to run into them in the “real world” we’d recognize them in a heartbeat.

When I create characters, I strive to accomplish the same thing. Now, there are tons of character worksheets, psychological profiles, and various other tools you can use to give your character life, but I thought I’d share with you how my journey to discovering character depth started. Hang tight to your GPS, because the wandering path of my mind on this particular question tends not to follow any known map.

Starting point:  Holy crap! I want to be  (Insert preferred author name here) when I grow up. Maybe if I ask, they’ll adopt me, and then because I’m theirs, their creative magic will spill over to me. Like a magical writing potion.

Jumps to:  How much would such a potion cost? What if it requires a sacrifice of some sort? Maybe I’d have to give up chocolate or coffee or (gasp!) both. *shudders*

Sharp left to: Maybe my character should lose someone, it would explain why their personal line of ethics keeps moving. Hmmm, what if their special someone or someones were lost in a spectacularly memorable way? *ponders options*

Quick U-turn to: Oh, wait, what kind of emotional trauma can I inflict on my characters to dress them in such gorgeously realistic personality garments?

Break the speed limit, cover a few miles: How much therapy would most UF characters have to undergo before they were considered "normal"?

Scenic Outlook stop: Remember that workshop? You know the one where they talked about character arcs?  Okay, so we need...history, motivators, personality quirks, strengths, weaknesses, lions, tigers and bears...oh my!

Back on highway: Character depth equals making your characters into real people, which is far from easy because every individual personality is made up of a myriad of decisions, behaviors, attitudes, etc.  Their history shapes their decision-making process, their biases shape the way they approach a given situation, and their actions determine the reactions of those around them. So I guess that means to give your characters depth, you have to...

Big Exit Sign Ahead:  Give them a foundation from which they get a chance to grow into a person through your story.

My Knight in Slightly Muddy Armor claims I am directly challenged. After plotting out this little tangent, I think I have to agree.  However, I'm really curious, what would you use to create depth for your characters?


Jami Gray is the coffee addicted, music junkie, Queen Nerd of her personal Geek Squad, Alpha Mom of the Fur Minxes, and award-winning author of the Urban Fantasy series, The Kyn Kronicles, the Paranormal Romantic Suspense series, PSY-IV Teams, and her latest Romantic Suspense series, Fate’s Vultures. She writes to soothe the voices in her head.

If you want to hunt her down, she can be found lurking around the following cyber locations:

Website       Facebook       Twitter
Goodreads       Google+       Amazon Author Page



Tuesday, May 22, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Consider the Sunflowers with Elma Schemenauer

Elma Schemenauer


by Elma SchemenauerInspired by a prairie Mennonite heritage

As a child I loved to hear coyotes howl on our family farm about halfway between Saskatoon and Regina, Saskatchewan. I enjoyed riding on the hay rack, taming half-wild cats in the barn, and attending our country Mennonite Church in a white dress made from my mother's wedding dress.

I especially enjoyed my Mennonite relatives' stories about the Old Country (Russia), their voyage across the ocean, and their new life in Canada.

My relatives' stories and my own experiences inspired my 1940s-era novel CONSIDER THE SUNFLOWERS. Its main characters, Tina and Frank, enter into a marriage that's troubled from the beginning. She's a transplanted Vancouverite who feels lonely with nothing but open pastures and fields around her. A few trees around the house would help. But Frank doesn't want trees. They'd make him feel trapped. He needs to be able to see the whole sky, uncluttered.

That's just one example of what Tina and Frank argue about. She wants to attend the local Mennonite Church and socialize with Mennonites. He shuns Mennonites because some of them scorn his mixed parentage, which is Russian Mennonite and Gypsy. He prefers to socialize with his Scandinavian and British friends, who "don't carry all that Russian baggage."

Tina and Frank's relationship deteriorates as the story progresses. He resents the fact that she neglects her daily chores to paint pictures. She begrudges the time he spends with his Norwegian bachelor buddies. When she tries to convert him to her Christian faith, he says she should accept him as he is, not try to change him.

The birth of Tina and Frank's son draws them closer together. Then the infant's death drives them apart again. Frank, mourning his lost son and discouraged about his marriage, escapes to work in a copper mine in Montana. In his absence Tina rediscovers feelings for a former Vancouver boyfriend. Is there any hope for Tina and Frank's marriage? You'll need to read CONSIDER THE SUNFLOWERS to find out!

It's 299 pages, $19.95 paperback, publisher Borealis Press of Ottawa, ISBN 978-0-88887-575-4. Ask for it in a bookstore or library. Or order online from Amazon, or Chapters Indigo, or Borealis Press,

About Elma:  Springtime on the prairie was the topic of one of the first pieces of writing Elma (Martens) Schemenauer did as a child. Writing has been her passion ever since. She's the author of 77 books including YESTERCANADA: HISTORICAL TALES OF MYSTERY AND ADVENTURE and the 1940s-era Mennonite novel CONSIDER THE SUNFLOWERS. Elma was born in Saskatchewan. She taught there and in Montana and Nova Scotia. Then she spent many years working as an author and editor in Toronto. She now lives with her husband on a sagebrush-dot\ted hillside in Kamloops, British Columbia.


Website      Facebook       Twitter       Blog

Amazon      Goodreads (YesterCanada)      Goodreads (Consider the Sunflowers)

AuthorsDen      Library Thing




Friday, May 18, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe
The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn. 
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Thursday, May 17, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Getting to Know HL Carpenter

The Write Way Café welcomes HL Carpenter, a mother-daughter duo sharing the joys of writing together. 

Hello, HiDee! Many thanks to you and Lynn for sharing your blog space with us! We're happy to be here.

When did you first have the thought you'd like to write a book?
     As far as deciding to write a book, the process was more a gradual development than a single defining moment. We liken the evolution to a discussion we had with a friend who decided to sell real estate. She had thought, she said, that the occupation was an easy way to make a living and well suited to her personality. Then she discovered the work was hard, much harder than she'd believed. (Don't you hate when that happens?) But she was right that selling real estate was well suited to her personality, so she persevered and eventually built a healthy book of business. For us, the road to writing fiction novels followed a similar route.

What was your path to getting The Ghost in The Gardens written and published? What type of research did you do?
     We researched rare plants, botanical gardens, botany, horticulture, gardening, poison, and the language of flowers, and we enjoyed every minute that we spent learning obscure facts and reams of trivia that never showed up in the final draft, and that we'll likely never need to know.
     Despite the fun of research, writing The Ghost in The Gardens was less a walk in the park than a trek along a mountain-goat-narrow, winding, treacherous path between snow and ice-capped mountains in the middle of a blizzard. Then again, so is every book when we are knee-deep in the work.

Where did the idea for The Ghost in The Gardens come from?
     From an article about a small botanical garden and a woman who spent her entire working career cataloging the plants in that single garden. Her dedication was inspiring, and we were awed by the variety of plant life in such a small area and how difficult finding a particular plant is.

Why did you pick botanical gardens as the setting for The Ghost in The Gardens?
     We are nature lovers, so setting The Ghost in The Gardens outdoors was a natural expression of the environment we're partial to. In addition to observing the wildlife in Carpenter Country, where we live and work, we also like to visit botanical gardens and parks and learn about plants and flowers.

Are your main characters completely imaginary or do they have some basis in real people? Do they reflect aspects of yourself?

     While writing, we don’t intentionally mimic our behavior or that of family and friends. Nonetheless, because we try to make our characters believable and relatable, to some extent our book-people contain bits of us and also some aspects of the people we know or have known. Chrys, the hero of The Ghost in The Gardens, might share a few traits with us…but we're not telling which ones!

Did you face any blocks while writing The Ghost in The Gardens, and if so, how did you handle them? If not, what's your secret?
     Now that the work is done, we don't recall any special bumps in that trek along the mountain-goat-narrow, winding, treacherous path between snow and ice-capped mountains in the middle of a blizzard. :)
     That’s the beauty of writing together. If one of us has a block or can’t figure out what a character should do next, she yells, “Help!” and the person without the block continues the story. When she’s finished adding her part, the character is heading off in a new direction and the block is gone.

What surprises have you encountered while writing The Ghost in The Gardens and after?
     We're always surprised by how much we wish we could continue the story, and by the multitude of other story ideas that each story generates. For example, we wrote a short story that's included as a bonus at the end of The Ghost in The Gardens. The story is called The Adventures of Flower Girl and was inspired by a book written by one of the characters in The Ghost in The Gardens. Such fun!

What did you learn? For instance, what did you learn about yourself, your process, the writing world; about ghosts, botanical gardens, and rare orchids?
     We re-learned a lesson we've learned with prior books, and that is how little is actually known about the world in which we live. The amount of knowledge accumulated over human existence is amazing. The amount of knowledge as yet undiscovered is astounding. Whole worlds of which we are unaware surround us.

Tell us about your writing space and how or why it works for you.
     Our writing studios are light and airy. Our desks face windows, so when we glance up from our computers we have a view of Carpenter Country, a magical place that, like our stories, is unreal but not untrue.
     At this time of year, the view takes wing, as Carpenter Country is busy with birds. Bluebirds nest in a nearby birdhouse. Flocks of worm-hunting robins, a pair of grosbeaks headed to more northerly climes, gray catbirds, indigo buntings, cardinals, wrens, sparrows, doves, blue jays, crows, hawks, house finches, and mockingbirds visit our burbling fountain for a drink and a bath. The other day, a hen turkey strutted across the grass. All the color, singing, arguing, splashing, and flitting add joy to our work day.

What are some of your favorite books and why?
     Specific titles elude us, though a recent good read was The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn. In terms of genre, we read suspense, fantasy, mystery, and historical fiction. All we require is a great story set in an interesting location with amazing characters. That's not too much to ask, right? :)

What are you working on now?
     We are in a bit of a writing lull as we begin introducing The Ghost in The Gardens to the world.
     In terms of writing work-in-process, we're nearly done with the first draft of a themed collection of short stories and we're in the revision stage of a collection of contemporary satire. We have a futuristic novella ready for re-release, and a couple of completed cozies for adult readers that we’re thinking of publishing as a series, along with novellas featuring the same characters. Oh, and we have an idea for a non-fiction book for writers.

Would you like to try your hand at writing a different genre? Which one and why?
     We currently write in multiple fiction genres, including allegory, mystery, satire, and fantasy. We've also done nonfiction articles and newsletters. Noir fiction might be interesting, though all that darkness could be tough to write.

If you were not a writer, what would your dream job be?
     Queen of the world, complete with magic wand for bopping bad folks upside the head.

What aspect of writing gives you the most trouble?
     Letting go. Every story has a time when The End truly means The End. And yet…well, we could make this one improvement. And wouldn't this word sound better than the word we used? And did we wrap up ALL the loose ends? Wait! Did we forget the hero was wearing glasses? Perhaps we should add a comma to this sentence…

Who is your favorite hero/heroine?
     If you're asking about fictional folk, in our work or that of other authors, we don't have a specific individual. We do prefer (and prefer to write about) strong, practical, intelligent heroes who tackle whatever is thrown at them with grace and wit.

Thanks again for the opportunity! We've enjoyed spending time with you in The Write Way Café!


Coming June 17, 2018 - The Ghost in the Gardens


Until the first spooky visit, ten year old Chrysantha Howe doesn't think about ghosts. She thinks about plants.

All.   The.   Time.

She has her future planned out, and that future includes plants. Chrys is going to be a plant scientist like her uncle and her favorite teacher, and she's determined to find the very rare Coralroot orchid.

The ghost is not in the plan.

But when her teacher disappears and the police suspect her uncle was involved, Chrys has to figure out what the ghost is trying to tell her—before it's too late.
Pre-order links:

Amazon     Mirror World (ebook)    Mirror World (paperback print)


Mother/daughter author duo HL Carpenter write family-friendly fiction from their studios in Carpenter Country, a magical place that, like their stories, is unreal but not untrue. When they’re not writing, they enjoy exploring the Land of What-If and practicing the fine art of Curiosity. Visit HLCarpenter.com to enjoy gift reads and excerpts and to find out what’s happening in Carpenter Country.

Stay connected on Pinterest, Linkedin, Google+, Twitter and their Amazon Author Page.


Tuesday, May 15, 2018 | By: Lynn

Read a Book. Write a Review. Support Authors. @lynncrandallwriter


You’ve just finished reading a book that grabbed your attention and took you somewhere, in some time, through the experiences of the characters to a satisfying end. You text your reader friends, sisters, brothers, and cousins, telling them what a great book you just finished reading. Stop right there. Before you search for another book by that author or pick up a book from your book pile, post a brief review.

Reviews make a difference in an author’s life. If a reader writes a complimentary review, the author’s day gets better. After all, writers write for readers. When they’ve given a reader a good experience, they love knowing about it. They love their characters, and if a reader relates to them, a writer feels fulfilled. When you write and post a review for any book, you have done something meaningful, and that’s a very good thing to put out in the world.

Let’s say that book you read wasn’t so great for you, and you want to give other readers a head’s up. Well, remember that everyone has different tastes in books. I say remember that because you may have an impulse to trash it online, but you don’t have to. Authors acquire thick skins, and though uncomplimentary reviews are less exciting, we all respect readers differing tastes. We don’t expect everyone to love all our stories. But an uncomplimentary review written with grace and respect is much appreciated. There are ways to review a book that doesn’t make your top-ten list without using degrading words. I know. I’m an author but I also read. I post reviews because I know how much they mean to authors. If in my opinion the book is not well written, I’m inclined not to write a review. I personally don’t need to tell the world about what I feel is a 1-star book. I understand other readers feel differently. I just suggest you remember someone worked hard on the book.

I also understand some people are uncomfortable writing anything. Let me make some suggestions for writing a review to take some of the scary out of it.

1. Try to start with a title to your review. That line can help direct your thoughts. Ex. Hang On for a Wild Ride. This tells readers you probably liked the book. Then writing the text of the review, simply tell readers why you liked it, what it did to make it worth reading. Ex. In this fast-paced paranormal romance, Lynn Crandall grabbed my attention from the beginning and kept me on the edge of my chair with hair-raising and heartbreaking action. The characters had depth, and the ending didn’t disappoint.

Or write something very short. Title: Epic Series. Text: Man I loved this book.

2. Remember, book reviews are not book reports. If you want to add details about the story line and the characters, feel free, but you don’t have to. And try not to spoil the ending for those who haven’t read the book.

3. Also remember that the author wrote the book they wanted to write. The question is not did he or she write the book you wanted to read. So ask yourself, did the author write a good book and did it accomplish its story goals? Period. If the answer is yes, what about it worked for you and what didn’t?

4. Another thing to be aware of is that a review is not a reader’s opportunity to show off his or her genius. I’m not meaning to come across cryptic. But, this kind of approach happens all the time and I feel it’s misguided. The review should be about the book, not how superior you are for seeing what is so wrong with it. Use your brilliance to write your own stories, not announce to the world your awesomeness.


If and when you take a few moments in your busy life to write and post a book review, I thank you from all of my heart. I understand it takes a bit of nerve to have an opinion and share it with world. For the work you pan or praise, it can mean the difference between a well-deserved author getting attention for a job well done, or remaining in obscurity.

Review by LAS Reviews for Unstoppable, Book 5 in my Fierce Hearts series: Author Lynn Crandall has a wonderful way with words and description. She makes the scenes and characters come to life in her books, and this one was no exception. Find on Amazon and other retailers.


Friday, May 11, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Reflect upon your present blessings – of which every man has many – not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.
 – Charles Dickens
Thursday, May 10, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Meet Geza Tatrallyay

The Write Way Café welcomes Geza Tatrallyay, an author with plenty of varied experiences and a love of research to draw on when writing his books.

When did you first have the thought you'd like to write a book? 

     I have been writing poetry since my teens, and still do (I now have two poetry collections, CELLO’s TEARS and SIGHS AND MURMURS published and a third one, EXTINCTION, on the way). Then in my early thirties, I wrote down the story of my family’s escape from Hungary, just so my children and other family members would have it (the memoir, FOR THE CHILDREN, was finally published in 2015). When we were living in Vienna, I started thinking about writing a novel that would be a takeoff on Graham Greene’s THE THIRD MAN, and the wonderful movie made from it. I finally tackled the subject in 2009, and TWISTED REASONS was the eventual product, after much polishing. As I was writing, the characters took on a life of their own, and it became imperative to turn it into a trilogy.

What was your path to getting these books written and published? What type of research did you do?

     I submitted TWISTED REASONS to many publishers, and finally, in 2014, it was a wonderful authors’ collective, Deux Voiliers Publishing, that agreed to publish the book. Ian Shaw, the head of the group just “got” the book and what I was trying to do. What‘s great with DVP is that all the benefits of being published flow to the author – the publisher is a not-for-profit cooperative, and authors do all the work of bringing the book out. And besides, their mission is to launch other authors, so they urge you to go on to mid-sized bonafide publishers for subsequent books.
     I have to digress to say that while I was seeking publication for TWISTED REASONS, I quickly wrote another thriller, ARCTIC MELTDOWN, that I self-published in 2011, electronically, through Smashwords, simply to see what that all entailed. I am now thinking of reworking that book and having Black Opal Books, the publisher that took on the remainder of the Twisted trilogy, publish it.
     In any case, after TWISTED REASONS, I went on to write TWSITED TRAFFICK, the second book in the trilogy, which was picked up by Black Opal Books, a good mid-sized publisher of mysteries and thrillers. They will also be bringing out TWISTED FATES, the third book in June of this year, as well as another independent international political thriller I wrote while living in Bordeaux, THE RAINBOW VINTNER. That will probably come out later this year or early next year.
     A lot of research went into these books. First, on the disastrous Soviet program to build an atomic bomb. The more I got into it, the more I was shocked by the utter disregard for human life and the environment that the Soviets displayed in this pursuit, and I think that comes through in the novels. Secondly, I did a lot of research on the relationship of some of the criminal gangs operating out of Russia to the so-called state and the oligarchs. The arms and human trafficking and other nefarious activities of these gangs are sanctioned by the state and it is Putin and his cronies who rake off some of the profits. The research on this world – especially the human trafficking – was emotionally difficult, but I felt I needed to incorporate much of it into the novels if for no other reason than to expose these activities.

Where did the idea for your stories come from?
     As I mentioned, the original idea was to do a modern-day takeoff on THE THIRD MAN story. And since we were living in Vienna at the time, and the International Atomic Energy Agency was there, the story evolved naturally from there. But as I delved into the research, the series developed into an exposé of the “merchants of evil” as I call them, and their links to the current rogue Russian régime. Since many of these gangs deal not just in arms but also other illicit trading, human trafficking was the next big topic to try and write about. Hence TWISTED TRAFFICK.

Why did you pick the setting you did?
     Vienna is one of my favorite cities, and we were living there at the time, so it was natural that I would write a novel set there. The city still has much of the post-war and Cold War aura of intrigue to it – it is still very much an entrepôt of spying and trading. The other settings – Hungary, Russia, Georgia, Montenegro, Greece, St. Pierre et Miquelon, the US – were natural choices based on the flow of the story.

Are your main characters completely imaginary or do they have some basis in real people? Do they reflect aspects of yourself?
     Some of the characters are takeoffs on actual people. Certainly, Greg’s background has some of my, and my family’s, story woven into it. Omi is a composite of my mother and grandmother, Kálmán of my father and the husband of an aunt.

Did you face any blocks while writing the books, and if so, how did you handle them? If not, what's your secret?
     I can’t really relate to writer’s block. For me, the story creates itself in many respects. The characters take a life of their own and run with it. If I can’t immediately solve an issue that has come up, I sleep on it, and usually during the night a wonderful solution turns up … Or else, during a long walk …

What have been surprises you've encountered while writing the books and after?
     Certainly, one surprise was the degree to which the story “wrote itself”. I did do an outline of each of the books, but there were developments, twists and turns, that emerged along the way. As I mentioned above, some of the research I delved into brought surprises and much learning.

What did you learn? For instance, what did you learn about yourself, your process, the writing world; about nuclear materials, arms trafficking, and human trafficking?
     I learned a lot about Russia and the Russian role in arms and human trafficking. Also, as I mentioned, about the utter disregard for human life and the environment in the Soviet nuclear program. For one, they used prisoners from the gulags to do the dirty work – for example, they would send them into a nuclear reactor after an accident to manually dismantle radioactive rods. After four or five days the prisoners would be so weak and close to death that they couldn’t work any more – they would just take them out and shoot them. Another piece of learning was regarding the extent to which Mayak and the surrounding area – and the other secret atomic sites – are still contaminated to this day. And the horrors of human trafficking.

Tell us about your writing space and how or why it works for you.
     I write wherever I can. All I need is my laptop. In short, I don’t really need or have a defined writing space.

What are some of your favorite books and why?
     Graham Greene’s little book, THE THIRD MAN, obviously because of the inspiration it gave for TWISTED REASONS. The Stieg Larsson Millenium trilogy, because in some ways it freed me to write the Twisted trilogy as I wanted to. On another note, Julian Barnes’s THE NOISE OF TIME – an amazing story about the Russian composer, Schostakovich, during Stalinist times.

What are you working on now? 
     I have just completed a third memoir, THE FENCERS, the story of a Romanian-Hungarian fencer who approached me at the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, where I represented Canada, to help him defect to Canada. It is a wonderful story, really fun and personal for me to write, and I am now seeking a publisher for it. I am also working on a third collection of poetry, EXTINCTION. In addition, I have been doing research on a non-fiction book about the contribution of Hungarian conductors – like George Szell, Antal Dorati, Fritz Rainer, George Solti, Eugene Ormandy, and others – to classical music in America. These men came here, immigrants like me, and revolutionized orchestras in all the great cities in the US, making them world-class. This story needs to be told. I have also been trying to plot my next thriller, likely to be set in San Francisco, but it is early days.

Would you like to try your hand at writing a different genre?  Which one and why?
     As I mentioned up top, I have had two collections of poetry published, with a third one on the way, and two memoirs, also with a third one looking for a publisher. I love to try my hand at different genres, and will no doubt write a historical novel sometime. One thing I enjoy is doing research and the learning I get from that – I love to pass this on to my readers by working the results into the novel.

If you were not a writer, what would your dream job be?
     I don’t see writing as a job – for me it is a passion! It neither has the drudgery of a job, nor does it provide me with a stable income I could live on.

What aspect of writing gives you the most trouble?
     Rewriting. Polishing. I am the type of writer who, once he/she gets the story down, likes to do maybe one rewrite and then go with it. It is my wife who keeps reminding me that that is simply not enough. One has to polish a manuscript to perfection – that is what I find hard to do.


All my books are available on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Also, most bookstores can order them. There are buy links on my website: www.gezatatrallyay.com


About Geza:  
     Born in Budapest, Hungary, Geza escaped with his family in 1956 during the Hungarian Revolution, immigrating to Canada the same year. He grew up in Toronto, attending the University of Toronto Schools, where he was School Captain. He graduated from Harvard University with a BA in Human Ecology in 1972 (after taking a break in his studies to work as a host in the Ontario Pavilion at Expo70 in Osaka, Japan). Geza was selected as a Rhodes Scholar from Ontario, attending Oxford University and graduating with a BA/MA in Human Sciences in 1974; he completed his studies with a MSc in Economics from London School of Economics and Politics in 1975. Geza represented Canada as an epée fencer in the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal.
     Geza’s professional experience has included stints in government, international organizations, finance and environmental entrepreneurship. Since 2004, he has been semi-retired, managing a few investments mainly in the clean energy sector and devoting himself to his family and his writing. Geza is a citizen of Canada and Hungary, a green card holder with an American wife, a daughter living in San Francisco and a son in Nairobi, and currently divides his time between Barnard, Vermont, and San Francisco.

Find Geza here:  Website     Twitter     Facebook     Linked In





Tuesday, May 8, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Lynn Hammond

Lynn Hammond


Loving Lies Series, Book One

Eighteen-year-old Jamison Jenkins finally graduates high school. Jamison is ready to move on and forget about her ex-boyfriend, Ben, who cheated on her with an older woman. To celebrate her new life, she decides to join her friends for a weekend camping trip before heading off to college.

That’s where she meets John Love, a personal trainer. John is muscular, sexy, and every woman’s dream. It makes it impossible to walk away and forget about him. But when Jamison finds out John’s mother was involved in breaking her and Ben up. Can she let go of the past and take a chance on the future?


Amazon Kindle     Amazon Paperback

Nook Book


Lynn Hammond works fulltime as a LPN but writes at night. She lives in Rock Hill, South Carolina. She is an RWA member. She loves to make children’s tutu in her spare time. Every night before bed she takes time to read. She loves romance, paranormal romance, and erotica. She is a proud mother of three beautiful girls, two beautiful grandbabies, two boxer pups, two lizards, four ducks, and loves spending time with her husband riding in her father’s old corvette. She is a new author writing New Adult romance and would love to hear from readers. You can contact her at lynnhammondauthor@gmail.com. To find out more, please visit her facebook page or LynnHammondauthor.wordpress.com.

Alaskan Love Voyage  also available on Amazon
Risky Lies-Loving Lies Book 1 available on Amazon
Bloom-Loving Lies Book 2 available on books2read and Amazon


Friday, May 4, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. 
– Arthur Ashe
Thursday, May 3, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Why Murder Mysteries Make Us Hungry by Saralyn Richard

The Write Way Café welcomes Saralyn Richard, author of The One Percent, offers a mouthwatering recipe to feed the hunger mysteries create. 


Did you know reading murder mysteries burns a lot of calories? It’s true. Research studies conducted while readers were reading mysteries showed the nail-biting, edge-of-the-seat sitting, and heart-pounding scenes burned way more calories than those burned by reading books in any other category. Well, at least we think so.

That gives mystery writers poetic license to include scenes filled with mouth-watering gastronomic delights, right? 

Murder in the One Percent revolves around a weekend birthday celebration at a country mansion in Pennsylvania’s horse country. The gathering includes lots and lots of delectable food and drink—enough to make the reader salivate. The menus are fit for royalty, and the wine pairings impress even the savviest connoisseur. 

Here’s a recipe for one of the entrees served at the party. The osso buco fills the house with the aromas of garlic and spices. The meat just melts in our mouths, and the taste is decadent—or maybe that’s not a good word to use since someone turns up dead.

Anyway, here’s the recipe for all the gourmands among you. Happy eating, and happy reading, too.



OSSO BUCO

Ingredients
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 dry bay leaf
2 whole cloves garlic
Cheesecloth
Kitchen twine, for bouquet garni and tying the veal shanks
3 whole veal shanks (about 1 pound per shank), trimmed
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
All-purpose flour, for dredging
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 small onion, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
1 small carrot, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
1 stalk celery, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups chicken stock
3 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon lemon zest

Directions
Place the rosemary, thyme, bay leaf and cloves into cheesecloth and secure with twine. This will be your bouquet garni.

For the veal shanks, pat dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. Veal shanks will brown better when they are dry. Secure the meat to the bone with the kitchen twine. Season each shank with salt and freshly ground pepper. Dredge the shanks in flour, shaking off excess.

In a large Dutch oven pot, heat vegetable oil until smoking. Add tied veal shanks to the hot pan and brown all sides, about 3 minutes per side. Remove browned shanks and reserve.

In the same pot, add the onion, carrot and celery. Season with salt at this point to help draw out the moisture from the vegetables. Saute until soft and translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the tomato paste and mix well. Return browned shanks to the pan and add the white wine and reduce liquid by half, about 5 minutes. Add the bouquet garni and 2 cups of the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer for about 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is falling off the bone. 

Check every 15 minutes, turning shanks and adding more chicken stock as necessary. The level of cooking liquid should always be about 3/4 the way up the shank.

Carefully remove the cooked shanks from the pot and place in decorative serving platter. Cut off the kitchen twine and discard.

Remove and discard bouquet garni from the pot.

Pour all the juices and sauce from the pot over the shanks. Garnish with chopped parsley and lemon zest.


Someone comes to the party with murder in his heart and poison in his pocket.

When old friends gather for a weekend retreat at a country mansion, no one anticipates how their lives will be changed—or that one of them will turn up dead. Remote and serene, the Campbells’ horse farm is the perfect setting for a lavish party. The guests, members of the country’s elite wealthiest one percent, several of them politically connected as well, indulge in delights befitting their station—gourmet food, fine wines, Cuban cigars—but greed, lust, and jealousy insinuate themselves into the party.

Playboy and former Secretary of the Treasury, Preston Phillips, brings his new trophy wife to the party, unaware that his first love, the woman he jilted at the altar years ago, will be there, enchanting him once more with her timeless beauty. A snowstorm, an accident, and an illicit rendezvous later, the dynamics crackle with tension.

When Detective Oliver Parrott is charged with solving the untimely killing of one of America’s leading financial wizards, he realizes this will be the case to make—or break—his career.

Murder in the One Percent offers relatable characters, memorable moments, surprising twists, and humorous insights. Dive into the world of the one percent, and you’ll come up intrigued and thoroughly entertained.

Barnes & Noble           Amazon Kindle           Amazon paperback        Black Opal Books


     About Saralyn:  Mystery and children’s book author, Saralyn Richard, has been a teacher who wrote on the side. Now she is a writer who teaches on the side. Some of her poems and essays have won awards and contests from the time she was in high school. Her children’s picture book, Naughty Nana, has reached thousands of children in five countries.
     Murder in the One Percent, published by Black Opal Books, pulls back the curtain on how the privileged and powerful rich live, love, and hate. Set on a gentleman’s farm in Pennsylvania and in the tony areas of New York, the book shows what happens when someone comes to a party with murder in his heart and poison in his pocket.
     When she is not writing, Saralyn likes going to movies and concerts, traveling, and walking on the beach with her husband and two dogs. She is an avid reader and is working on her second mystery.

Website     Facebook       Twitter       Goodreads



Tuesday, May 1, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: God Father's Day by Lynda Rees

Lynda Rees




Justin has it all—a profitable career and a superficial affair with a wealthy heiress. Her father wants him to marry her and take over his dynasty. Justin’s dad’s illness sheds light on a dangerous history haunting him at his lovely lakeside village. Revaluating who he is and what he wants from life, Justin loses his heart to a different type woman, Becky; who brings her own set of complications and risks. A shady past endangers their lives and futures.




KINDLE     KOBO     B&N Nook     Apple iBooks          


     Lynda Rees is a storyteller and dreamer whose dreams come true.  She lives on a farm in Kentucky with her incredible husband and herd of critters watching her children and grandchildren breath—fascinating. Born in the splendid Appalachian Mountains the daughter of a coal miner and part Cherokee Indian, Lynda grew up in northern Kentucky when the Mob reigned supreme in Newport and the city prospered as a gambling, prostitution and sin mecca. She’s fascinated with how history affects today’s lives and it works its way into her written pages. After a corporate career in marketing and global transportation, this free-spirited adventurer with workaholic tendencies followed her passion for writing.
     Gold Lust Conspiracy, her award-winning historical romance, launched September, 2017 by Sweetwater Publishing Company along with Parsley, Sage, Rose, Mary and Wine, the first of The Bloodline Series of romantic suspense set in Kentucky horse country. Books 1-5 launched before 2018 with others scheduled in the spring. Stay tuned.
     Lynda’s first children’s book, Freckle Face & Blondie, is co-authored with her granddaughter Harley Nelson and was released early in 2018. Enjoy her stories. She hopes you become life-long friends.

To learn more about Lynda's work follow her by clicking here: