The Silence calms my mind,
Restores my strength,
Uplifts my soul,
And builds my confidence.
Preparing me to face
Life’s triumphs and battles

Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Author Update – #Reviews – Colleen M. Chesebro, Sally Harris and Sandra J. Jackson

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the second of the week’s updates with reviews for authors on the shelves of the Cafe and Bookstore.

The first author with a recent review is Colleen M. Chesebro for The Heart Stone Chronicles: The Swamp Fairy

About the book

Fourteen-year-old Abigale Forester, recently orphaned and a ward of the State of Illinois moves from Chicago to Florida to live with her aunt, her last living relative. Magnolia Forester becomes her legal guardian, and together they claim an ancient inheritance; land that belonged to Abby’s mother’s family for generations.

Holding onto the only piece of her mother Abby has left, a calcite pendant and her mother’s most sacred possession, she discovers the truth of her legacy. The pendant is more significant than she could possibly imagine. Forged from a giant mystical heart-shaped stone found on the very swamp land Abby now owns, it holds the power of her…

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The Sun is Setting on Summer

It always seems (to me anyway) that as the end of summer approaches, not enough has been accomplished.

If you live where there are four seasons, you will understand this. Summer is so fleeting, while the other three months seem to drag on, summer is truly over in a blink. We tend to pack in as much (or try to) as we can during those three months of hot and (relatively dry) weather. When it ends, I can’t help but wonder, did I do what I wanted? Did I accomplish what I planned on doing on my vacation time?

This year, my vacations were spent at home (staycations). The first was a week at the end of July, the second the first week of August, and my last week starts on Sept 2. Unfortunately, my husband was not able to take any time off apart from the Friday at the end of my second week of vacation. However, he is taking the Thursday and Friday next week, and we have planned a little get away and will be going Treetop Trekking. More on that when we get back.

Kayaking on Charleston Lake

Kayaking with a friend on the St. Lawrence

Boating on Charleston Lake

Anyway, it is only when I look at my pictures do I realize that, yes, I did accomplish quite a bit. Sure I may not have gone kayaking every week (I managed three times and I am hoping for at least one more paddle before the water gets too cold.) I did get out in the boat (albeit only twice but again, there are plenty of nice days ahead). I golfed with my son (only once). I toured the new cidery and bakery close to home. And spent a day with my husband and adult children in a picturesque town where we dined and window shopped. (I saw plenty of things that I need to go back for, good thing it’s not too far from home.)

April 2019

My biggest accomplishment by far was the garden I created/built where an old barn used to be. I started the project back in April. I had always wanted this garden and tried about 20 years ago (you know, when I was younger, had more energy, and my body didn’t ache as much as it does now). But back then, I didn’t have the vision. And after allowing the weeds and the rocks to deter me, I gave up. Now that I am in my early fifties, I decided to create what I had always dreamed. I am paying for it now with overused muscles, tendonitis, etc. There is still much work to do, but I think I got the hard work done.

May 2019

I spent a good amount of time visiting greenhouses, purchasing plants, dirt, & mulch. I also had a number of family and friends give me some plants, for which I am grateful.

June 2019

July 2019

August 2019

At one particular greenhouse, I showed an employee some of the pictures of the garden I was creating to which she said “You must be retired.” I chuckled and said, “Nope, I work full-time.”

There was also a lot achieved in the writing world as well. I attended a few book signings (more to come in the next several weeks). My newest book was released in June. Two of my books are now available on Audible and one of my books has book-inspired merchandise now. The only thing I have not completed are the edits on the final book of my trilogy, but I am close to finishing with only about nine or ten chapters to go. Thing is, as I sit here and type this, I have an ice-pack to rest my right wrist on as either tendonitis is flaring up (again) or perhaps a touch of carpal tunnel (not sure which but I am betting more on the tendonitis as it travels up into my shoulder at times.

So, while in my head I think I didn’t get all I wanted done, I only need to look at the many photos I took, recording my summer, to realize that I packed those short three months with as much as possible. And while there may only be three weeks left in the season, that still leaves many possibilities. Besides, I love autumn. Cozy times are ahead!

Author Interview – Tony Lewis

My interview guest this week is Author Tony Lewis.

I hope you enjoy Tony’s short and witty answers to the interview questions. Some of them may even make you laugh out loud. I know I did, especially to the answer for question 14.

Thanks, Tony, for participating in Author Interviews.

About Writing/Books/Being an Author

1. Do you remember the first book you read that had an impact on you – in what way and what was the name of that book?

When I read Les Miserables for the first time I wept. I won’t give spoilers but it’s very emotional.

2. When did you first realize you wanted to write?

I can’t remember exactly, but it’s a long time ago. I always wrote long, rambling stories for English homework so that’s a good starting point, I suppose.

3. Who is/are your favourite author(s)?

Terry Pratchett, James White, Terry Goodkind, Lillian Jackson Braun, Stephen King, Thomas Mann, and loads of horror writers.

4. What is your favourite thing about writing? What is your least favourite thing about writing?

I love the entire process. There’s nothing I dislike about it.

5. Where do your ideas come from?

Ah, the favourite author question. Anywhere and everywhere

6. I’ve often found that creative people have more than one talent, what is yours?

I’m not a bad singer and can grow rather a nice beard.

7. If you could jump inside a book for one day (as an observer) what book would it be?

Hospital Station by James White. It’s set aboard a vast, intergalactic hospital where beings of all types come for treatment.

8. When you create characters, are they completely made up or do they resemble or remind you of people you know?

My characters are made up, but I will see aspects of their personality in people I know. I suppose I subconsciously incorporate them in.

9. Have you ever created a character “out of thin air” only to run into someone in real life that reminds you of that character either in personality or their features?

Yes. One of work colleagues is a werewolf.

10. How do you come up with titles for your books?

A play on words will strike me as funny, and if a story fits it, I’ll use it.

11. What are you working on now and can you tell us about it?

Further books in the Skullenia series. I love the characters so much.

12. Have you won any awards for your writing/books and if so what?

I got an A+ for a story I wrote about being shipwrecked. I was eleven.

A Little More Personal

13. What is one thing you haven’t done but would like to do?

Marry Darcy Bussel, but I think she already is. Oh, so am I. Forgot about that.

14. Can you tell us about an embarrassing/funny moment?

I was at the cinema. I needed the loo and when I got up my jeans had slid down. I mooned the entire audience. Ironically, we were watching Beauty and the Beast.

15. Have you ever experienced something weird you could not explain?
The continuing success of Ed Sheeran.

16. Are you superstitious? Do you have any rituals for good luck?

No, I’m not superstitious, touch wood.

17. What is the strangest thing you have ever eaten?

A Fisherman’s Friend. He was livid.

18. Do you have a favourite vacation spot? Where?

No. I’m not much of a traveller and I have a terrible sense of direction. I need a map to get to bed.

19. Can you tell us about one of your favourite childhood memories?

Christmas was always brilliant

20. What makes you happy?

Lots of things, but the thought of the eventual demise of the human race because we’ve peaked as a species allowing the planet to wipe the slate clean and start again always makes me smile. And kittens.

21. If you aren’t writing (or doing anything associated with writing), what are you doing?

Thinking about writing, listening to music, saying inappropriate things to people.

Tony’s Links
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Tony-Lewis-Author-of-the-Skullenia-Novels-428838123880115
Twitter: @skullenia

Discover new worlds – KaLiCon style – intro

I can’t wait to read these ‘chats’.

SEELKs fire & ice

Hello and welcome!

As I make the final preparations for my trip to RTC in a few days, my thoughts turn to KaLiCon in October. I will be returning, as ‘bossy’ PA to Mary Ann (M. A. Abraham) I look forward to it, planning a few surprises for the Elven Games v2.0 😉



Andi Lawrencovna came up with this great idea and a few of the authors signing at KaLiCon 2019 joined her to make anthology, where each share a short story, giving the readers a chance to get to know their writing styles and the worlds they created. It will release August 1 and will be available FREE until the event starts. How awesome is that?

I invited their heroes, heroines for a chat and starting August 1, 2019 I will have them posted here for you to enjoy, one each day, give you a little…

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Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – New book on the Shelves – The Escape Series Book 2 – Catching Butterflies: Search for Home by Sandra J. Jackson

Thank you, Sally, for posting about my newest release. It is very much appreciated!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Delighted to share the news of the latest release by Sandra J. Jackson.. available to pre-order for June 11th. The Escape Series Book 2 – Catching Butterflies: Search for Home

About the book

April and Beth have escaped, and their captor is dead. Freedom is in their grasp – if only they knew where they were.

With some memories returning, April and Beth struggle to find answers to their questions. What they know is that they’ve been vaccinated against a strange virus. But what happened to their family, and to the rest of the world?

As they head out, they stumble onto the compound where their nightmare began, but the empty building only brings more mystery into their lives. Soon, they encounter others wandering on the numerous trails throughout the woods. For April, finding her family is priority one; for Beth, it’s sticking to the trails.

How can April…

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