Friday, December 30, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Don't aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in, and it will come naturally. 
- David Frost
Thursday, December 29, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Getting to Know Guest Authors

The Write Way Café would like to thank all the authors who offered to be interviewed or shared guest posts with us in 2016. These talented authors have shared bits of their writing life with us.  Readers, in case you missed any, here is a list - and thank you for following us!

If you would like to be interviewed or write a guest post in 2017 - please contact us at

T.F. Walsh -

Cheryl Rees-Price -

J. Arlene Culiner -

Ellen Parker -

Richard Whitten Barnes -

Trinity Blacio -

Malena Crockett -

Alice Abel Kemp -

Barbara Bates -

Caroline Clemmons -

Marlow Kelly -

Joanie Macneil -

Elizabeth Meyette -

Shirley Martin -

Skye Taylor -

Jami Gray -

Augustina Van Hoven -

Alexia Adams -

Paty Jager -

Sara Vance-Tompkins -

Rena Koontz -

J. Arlene Culiner -

Mark Hunter -

Liz Crowe -

Augustina Van Hoven -

Jo Grafford -

Regan Walker -

Kristina Knight -

Nancy Brandt -

Malena Crockett -

Michelle Lord -

Eilis Flynn -

Sandi Brackeen -

Skye Taylor -

Catherine Chant -

Ingrid Hahn -

Victoria Pinder -

Charmaine Gordon -

Kristina Knight -

Caroline Clemmons -

D.K.Dailey -

Winter Austin, Becky Flade, Monica Tillery, J. Arlene Culiner, Jessica Starre, Lynn Crandall, Leslie P. Garcia, Rachel Cross, Shelley K. Wall, Kristina Knight  -
Tuesday, December 27, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special Recap for 2016

The Write Way Café would like to give a shout out to all the authors we promoted in 2016 with our Tuesday Specials.  We've been introduced to some wonderful books written by talented authors.  Congratulations to all of you!  In addition, your hosts (Lynn and HiDee) have shared their thoughts on reading and writing throughout the year.

Readers, in case you missed any, here is a list - and thank you for following us!

If you would like to be featured in 2017 - please contact us at

Peggy Bird -

Mona Risk, Christine Bush, Lyn Cote, Denise Devine, Raine Eng
ish, Shanna Hatfield, Ciara Knight, Milou Koenings, Magdalena Scott, Roxanne Rustand, Alicia Street, Kristin Wallace, Merrillee Whren, Cindy Flores Martinez, Victoria Pinder, Josie Riviera, Pat Simmons -

Sunday, December 25, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Merry Christmas

We wish you a very Merry Christmas!

- Lynn and HiDee
Friday, December 23, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe
My ideas usually come not at my desk writing but in the midst of living.
- Anais Nin
Thursday, December 22, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

You’re Not A Failure, Even if You’ve Failed by Carol Malone

The Write Way Café welcomes Carol Malone as she takes us along on her winding journey through 2016, and offers suggestions for getting a good start to 2017. The other day, I was sitting in my home office contemplating the past twelve months like most of us do at this time of year. I attempted to assess my progress physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I noted there were times of great triumph this past year as well as great sorrow and pain. Did I accomplish the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year? Did other things in life impede my progress and ultimately my success in one or many areas of my life? How could I have done better? What did I do right and how can I now celebrate that success?

Success means different things to different people. 

To a writer, success might be to have written a new story, plotted out a new story idea, or entered and placed in a contest. Success might be placing those fabulously hard-fought words “The End” on a completed manuscript. To a budding author, nothing thrills the heart or blows the mind like completing a novel. For some, it’s the crowning glory of our career.

Other career successes might mean starting and maintaining a new blog, or finding that elusive marketing brand and running full-out with it in all aspects of promotion. It might mean sending a gripping query letter and being awarded with the contracted services of an agent or having a publisher/editor ask for pages of a book or the whole manuscript. Success might mean receiving a book contract for one or more books with a publishing house.

As I look back on my year 2016, at first I didn’t see much to throw a party about.

My major goal for the year was to publish as least one book. If I counted my success by books published, I fell short. I was a failure. Though I attempted to finish editing my sequel to "Fight Card Romance: Ladies Night," I did not finish. This left me feeling downhearted. When I attempted to publish my 1905 down-home on the farm novella, I was told by a free-lance editor that the characters were not likeable and the situation not plausible. This brutal edit set me back spiritually and emotionally for months. For NaNoWriMo this year, I did write 50,000 words, but I’m nowhere near the completion of my Young Adult romance. I didn’t enjoy the success of writing 50,000 words – which in itself, is a great accomplishment. With one last gasp, I attempted to publish my Christmas short sequel for “Ladies Night,” but a horrible illness prevented me. Depressing, right? Not a very successful year if you take a superficial look at my progress.

Thanks goodness we are not a total sum of our outstanding accomplishments, and meeting the most lofty of goals doesn’t not define our souls. 

Success can’t be defined for you by someone else’s measuring stick. Though I didn’t reach my main goal for the year, I do consider myself successful. However, the world might scoff at my statement. I have learned not to care much about the world’s appraisal or assessment of accomplishments.

That being said, there were moments of pure joy and feelings of completeness that came to me this year in spite of having FAILED to reach my main goal. 

1. I finished writing Sunday Punch, the sequel to Fight Card Romance: Ladies Night in January of 2016. A feat that took two years and two months. Bravo!
2. I wrote a short story and entered it in a local writers’ Short Story contest and won Honorable Mention. Congratulations to me!
3. I also wrote a short memoir piece in August and won First Place in a Memoir contest. Fantastic!
4. I wrote ten (10) articles for Beth Barany’s Writers’ Fun Zone blog. Good for me!
5. I wrote and produced a video concerning critiquing techniques and presented this video during an online writers’ conference for the LDS Beta Readers. Wow! Way to go!
6. I did pro bono editing work for the two winners of a personal Romance Contest I held in conjunction with Beth Barany, and worked some more with one contestant for a few months to help her on her journey. Pat on the back for me! 
7. I attended the 2016 RWA mega-conference in San Diego with my husband. We took many workshops including the master class from Michael Hague. Cheers to me and my husband! 
8. I joined a group devoted to fighting and clearing our writing blocks, titled “The Artist’s Way,” in January. I have successfully worked through “The Morning” pages each day and most of the Twelve-step program. Stick with it!
9. With the help of a selfless workshop leader/editor, I was able to work through the process of shoving a personal wound to the back of my thoughts and keep it from defining me. Exaltation!
10. I mastered the 20+ movements of Tai Chi Chih and completed the advanced class. Hurrah! 
11. I took a solo vacation in March to visit family and attend a great-nephew’s wedding. Blessings to me!

A change of direction does not equal failure.

If you have been reading my articles for any length of time, you’ll note that I’m not much of a goal setter. Even though at the start of 2016 I had some pretty solid goals, what happened to me during the year set me on a different path. And that’s okay! I’m not a failure!

Perhaps as you read this article you see the goals you had set for yourself that you didn’t accomplish. Does that make you feel like a failure, or disappointed in yourself because you didn’t reach your goals? I hope you can feel successful even if you might have changed your focus and re-evaluated your goals and met disappointment with hard work in spite of the change of direction?  

Whatever your vision of success is, first of all, can you define it, and second, can you enjoy it?

I’m not going to define goal setting or the need to set meaningful goals or attainable goals. We all know the drill. There are as many ways to set goals as there are gurus who tell you that you must set goals to be happy. What I want you to remember as you begin a fresh New Year with a blank slate of days in front of you, is to discover What is your Why? Why do you want something, and why is the goal you want important to you? After all that, then it’s a matter of showing up, be present in the moment, and engaging in hard work.

No. Goal setting is not easy and we do fall off the course. Sometimes we get knocked off the course through no fault of our own.

Then change course. Accept what is. Feel the change throughout your whole body. Recognize your emotional responses to the course change. Make adjustments. Accept that any progress IS PROGRESS! Baby steps are still steps! Don’t define your change in direction as a failure! “There really is no failure until you label it a failure. It’s not how many times you fall that matters; it’s the number of times you stand back up and start again. That’s what makes the difference,” Nozomi Morgan, MBA and certified Executive Coach said this in the The Huffington Post article,

My advice for you is to set goals – if you want. Reach high, but not unreachably high. Be realistic yet flexible. Never castigate yourself for a change or for not reaching your first set goals. Take what talents you’ve been blessed with and multiply them in as many areas of your life. But be gentle with yourself. Notice in your body the tender or expansive feelings of great growth. Progress is progress. Brainstorm your “why” and “why you want your goal,” then engage.

In the comments below, please let me know if you had a change in your major goals for 2016 and how you handled the bumps, curves, detours, and freeway closures along your journey for the year.

Blessings to you for a Happy Writing and Publishing New Year!

Award-winning author, Carol Malone writes new pulp-fiction suspense kissed with romance to rocket readers into the past. When not hammering out new tales, Carol is reading, or watching the Dodgers, reruns of Castle, and the Food Network with her writer husband on the coast of California. She loves to connect with you, her readers and invites you to chat about romance and sports on her website.
Fight Card Romance: Ladies Night
Fight Card Romance: Ladies Night Christmas
Summer Holiday

Tuesday, December 20, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Dana Volney

Dana Volney

From the author of The December Deal comes another charming holiday story of finding love in the least likely places.

Silver Morgenstern had a thriving, meaningful career as a surgeon working for charity organizations in war-torn countries. Then her life changed with one flick of the wrist. Now she’s back in Wyoming, serving as an administrator at the local hospital. But shuffling paperwork is nothing compared to saving lives.

Five years ago, Fisher Tibbs founded the successful social program Combat Children’s Hunger. Giving back to kids brings a sparkle to his eye, especially after the loss of his own young daughter, but it can’t mend the very real fissure in his heart. Ready to see his child again, he’s preparing and planning a future for CCH that he won’t get to witness.

But when Fisher’s application to be removed from the heart transplant list comes across Silver’s desk, her next mission is clear: convince him life is worth the fight. But she never expects that the struggle to rescue his heart might just save her own.

Amazon       Barnes and Noble       KOBO     Google Play    iBooks

About the author:

Dana Volney lets her imagination roam free in Wyoming, where she writes romances and helps local businesses succeed with her marketing consulting company. Splitting her time between telling sexy, fast-paced suspense stories and sweet holiday romances, she likes to try new adventures in real life whenever she can (which, let’s face it, means tasting all sorts of delicious cuisines). Dana is bold, adventurous, and—by her own admission—good with plants, having kept a dwarf lemon tree alive for six months.

Facebook       Twitter: @VolneyVentures         Goodreads
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Friday, December 16, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe
There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it's like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.
- Ernest Hemingway
Thursday, December 15, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Meet Dario Vitez by Zrinka Jelic

The Write Way Café peeks over author Zrinka Jelic's shoulder as she interviews Dario Vitez, her hero in Gypsy Stone

Dario Vitez is a single man in his mid-thirties, an owner of popular restaurant Mezzaluna in Zadar, Croatia. But things weren’t always this good for him. He grew up in poverty. That didn’t matter to his high school sweet heart, Irena. However, it mattered to her parents, so much so that they made sure to send her half the world away from him. Now she is back, but danger follows her.

What is your greatest regret? 
Not taking a firm stand against Irena’s parents and get them to change their mind about marring her off to the pervert with deep pockets and no heart.

What is your motto? 
It’s not over, till I say so.

What do you have in your pockets? 
Can’t tell you without pulling stuff out, usually, my wallet, car keys, and used to be a condom (because a man never knows when will opportunity knock) but since Irena’s back, I no longer need to keep a backup.

Do you have any quirks, strange mannerisms, annoying habits, or other defining characteristics?
I tap my foot against the chair I’m sitting on when I’m thinking. Drives her insane, apparently.

What do you consider the most important event of your life so far? 
There’d be two, Irena’s return and finding out we have a teenage daughter.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? 
Building up my business from nothing. I pretty much went in blind not knowing how well would it be received by public, and who knew, they loved it.

Do you believe in the existence of soul mates and/or true love? 
Of course, I waited fourteen years for Irena. Yes, I had some short lived relationships in the meantime, but I knew I must stay single for her.

Who is the most important person in your life, and why? 
Irena and our daughter Ella, and our son we haven’t named yet, they are my family I feared I never would have.

Who is the person you despise the most, and why? 
That would have to be Irena’s husband, Fred and all his cronies. But he’s dead now, so you can’t despise a dead man.

Name three things you consider yourself to be very good at, and three things you consider yourself to be very bad at.
The things I’m good at are making love, cooking, and running a business.  Things I’m bad at, tidying my room, overprotecting my car, bantering with my brother.

For fourteen years, Dario Vitez, accumulated wealth and made a name for himself as the owner of Mezzaluna restaurant. Love is the only thing missing from his life ever since his childhood sweetheart, Irena Novak, was forced into a marriage of convenience and lives half a world away. Wondering about her for all these years, he puts his work on hold to find her.

Irena is not free from her marriage contract. Danger follows her in form of her husband, Fred Penne. Fred decided she knows too many of his secrets to live and doesn't care who else he hurts to get her.

Discovering the truth about the danger Irena is in, Dario will stop at nothing to protect her.

Suspenseful, romantic and awash in Gypsy magic and Slavic folklore, "Gypsy Stone" captures the enchantment of the Adriatic coast and the power of love, family and friendship.

Find me on: Amazon  Facebook   Twitter
Visit my  Blog

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Josie Riviera

Josie Riviera

Noelle Wentworth doesn’t mind getting away from St. Augustine to fill in at her ailing aunt’s candle shop. A few weeks in Snowing Rock will help her get past the humiliating memory lapse that ruined an important piano concert—and, ultimately, her marriage to her overbearing duet partner.

She’s mentally rehearsing for her comeback performance when the bus she’s riding in slides off an icy mountain road. And one deep, calming voice emerges from the confusion to slow her racing heart—right before his ruggedly handsome face kicks it back into allegro.

Gabe Waters is usually prepared for anything—as a professional stuntman, his life depends on it—but nothing prepared him for Noelle, the unattainable high school crush whose bravery saved him from more than just a bully’s flying fist. There’s no hint she recognizes him, but Gabe knows that face, those eyes…and he sees something that wasn’t there before. Distrust and apprehension.

Their unexpected attraction kindles something as warm and sweet as a holiday candle. But the weight of their pasts could turn the promise of love to ashes.

Amazon      Universal buy link on Apple, Nook and Kobo

Candleglow and Mistletoe Video

Josie Riviera is a USA TODAY Bestselling Author of contemporary, inspirational, and historical sweet romances that read like Hallmark movies. She lives in the Charlotte, NC, area with her wonderfully supportive husband.They share their home with an adorable Shih Tzu who constantly needs grooming and an old house forever needing renovations. 

Sign up for her blog and subscribe to her newsletter for a free ebook:

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Follow her on twitter: @josieriviera


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Friday, December 9, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe
Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about. Be willing to be split open.
- Natalie Goldberg
Thursday, December 8, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

What Do You Do? by Paty Jager

The Write Way Café welcomes Paty Jager, who researches characters by asking real people: What do you do?

Thank you for having me at the Write Way Café!

The best part of writing for me is research. I don’t mean researching history.  Though I am an American History buff and love to dig up unique things about an area where I set a story.

The research I love to do is one that comes from my time as a freelance human interest reporter. While I’m an introvert and prefer to hide in a corner or the back of a room when in a group, I love one-on-one time with people and asking them questions about their occupations.

That’s what I’ve had to do several times when giving a character an occupation or ethnic background that I’m not familiar with.

The most recent was preparing to write a book about an amateur sleuth who was half Native American. This is a contemporary story and I wanted to discover how a person growing up in the 21st century with this background would feel. I happened to run into an author who had lived a life similar to what I wanted to use. We conversed at a conference and she emailed me with her feelings and thoughts on growing up not a full blood American Indian and not Caucasian. After discussing it with her, I realized it was an emotional ride. One I didn’t think I could fully write. Knowing this, I still made my character half Native American and half white but had her brought up ignoring her American Indian heritage at the request of her White mother and stepfather. This way I could have her discover her roots with an inquisitive and hesitant heart, much like I could see myself doing.

I wanted this character, Shandra Higheagle, to be an artist. I decided as a nod to her heritage she would be a potter. But I wanted to make her a unique potter. Discussing this with my artist brother, he put me in contact with a potter who digs and purifies the clay he uses in his work.  I spent an informational and fun afternoon with “Olaf”. He told me how he finds good clay soil and the tedious process of cleaning the clay. To use this type of clay, helped to show my character’s love of the earth and her art. The steps Olaf showed and explained to me, gave me a greater appreciation for all that he, and my fictional character, go through to prepare and make an artistic piece. He showed me kilns he’d made and purchased ones as well as the different ways to fire pottery and ways to change glazing effects during the firing process. I came away from my time with Olaf more versed in clay, pottery, and the dedication an artist puts into a piece of pottery.

An interview I did six years ago was one of my most fun interviews. I came up with the idea of a story about a bareback bronc rider. Since four-time National Bareback Champion Bobby Mote lived only twenty minutes from me, I called him up and asked if I could interview him to understand what my character would be like and how he would live and go about his occupation. I was thrilled when he agreed and we set up a time for me to go to his house. I was greeted by Bobby, his kids, and his wife, Kate. He was very forthcoming about his workout routine, his family routine, and his rodeo schedule. I learned what goes through a bronc-rider’s mind as he climbs onto a horse, how they treat their body like any other athlete and was given a family’s view of the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas. Kate told me what it was like to travel with and watch her husband compete and what it was like dealing with kids on the road. While my character isn’t married, I gave him a married traveling partner. Not only did I get realistic and firsthand knowledge of a rodeo participant, I was able to draw out emotions and thoughts that I could use in my character.

I use interviewing people whenever I come up with an idea for a book and I don’t have the knowledge or am unable to discover the personal information I want to make my character ring true.

These are only a few of the interviews I’ve done over the years to makes sure my characters behave as they should in their occupations.

You can get the first book of the Shandra Higheagle Mystery series, Double Duplicity, free at all ebook venues.

I re-released Bridled Heart, this month. It’s the contemporary western romance I wrote after interviewing Bobby Mote. It’s available until December 10th  for $0.99.

Bridled Heart
Contemporary western romance

ER nurse, Gina Montgomery, uses a self-imposed vow of celibacy to keep from getting too close to anyone. Music saved her from an abusive past. But that same solace compromises her solitary life when her piano playing draws the attention of a handsome bareback rider.

Holt Reynolds let his sister down when she needed him most. Seeing similarities between his sister and Gina, he can’t get visions of the woman or her poignant music out of his mind. He vows to find a way to free her of her past and prays it doesn’t resurface and destroy their chance at happiness.

Buy Links:  Amazon     Kobo    Universal Link

Paty Jager is an award-winning author of 25+ novels and over a dozen novellas and short stories of murder mystery, western romance, and action adventure. She has garnered a RomCon Reader’s Choice Award for Contemporary Western Romance, and an EPPIE Award for Best Contemporary Romance and a RONE Mystery Award. All her work has Western or Native American elements in them along with hints of humor and engaging characters. She and her husband raise alfalfa hay in rural eastern Oregon. Riding horses and battling rattlesnakes, she not only writes the western lifestyle, she lives it.

Blog / Website /  Facebook / Paty's Posse / Goodreads / Twitter / Pinterest

Tuesday, December 6, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special with Becky Lower: Love's in the Cards

Becky Lower

Penny Beedle’s outlook on Christmas, as her favorite holiday, was destroyed by a messy breakup years earlier and a botched wedding last year—both on Christmas Eve. But since she and her sister now own a greeting card store, and the holidays are their crazy selling season, she has to put on a happy face.

Del Madison has loved Penny since kindergarten. Commissioned by a big greeting card company for a line of Christmas and Valentine’s cards, he has to emerge from behind his alter ego and unveil himself to the public. He chooses Penny Beedle’s shop for the big reveal. If he plays his cards right, he just might gain Penny as part of his life.


Amazon best-selling author Becky Lower has traveled the country looking for great settings for her novels. She loves to write about two people finding each other and falling in love, amid the backdrop of a great setting, be it on a covered wagon headed west or in present day small town America. Historical and contemporary romances are her specialty. Becky is a PAN member of RWA and is a member of the Historic and Contemporary RWA chapters. She has a degree in English and Journalism from Bowling Green State University, and lives in an eclectic college town in Ohio with her puppy-mill rescue dog, Mary. She loves to hear from her readers at Visit her website at

Friday, December 2, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe
I always read. You know how sharks have to keep swimming or they die? I’m like that. If I stop reading, I die.
- Patrick Rothfuss

Thursday, December 1, 2016 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Captured by Christmas

December Special: Captured by Christmas
by Lynn Crandall and Lainee Cole

Release date: December 5, 2016 

It’s Christmas, and the season of holly, Christmas trees, and goodwill is drifting on air in merry holiday wishes. Romantic suspense and paranormal author Lynn Crandall and contemporary author Lainee Cole present in their own way two stories of love in Captured by Christmas. However it finds you—under a Christmas tree or drifted in snow in a backwoods cabin—the spirit of the season will wrap you in love.

In Snowbound, Lynn Crandall lets readers check in on favorite Fierce Hearts series were-lynx characters Kennedy Mitchell and Asher Monroe as they uncover the identity of the creature scaring the humans in Octavia, a small rural community in northern Michigan. Plans for an intimate getaway and family-style holiday are crumbling as the snow piles higher and Kennedy and Asher find themselves snowbound with a killer outside their door.

In The Mistletoe Effect, Christmas is second-grade teacher Tess McCall’s least favorite holiday, but she’s doing her best not to let it show. Learning he’s a father to seven-year-old Holly makes Alex Randle anxious about the upcoming holidays. When Tess’s class starts reading to shelter dogs, Holly and the antics of shelter dog Mistletoe lead them all to rediscover the magic of Christmas.