October 31, 2016

A New Reality -- From a Memory to a Memoir

By Donna Schlachter

Two years ago, my father called me with an interesting proposition: write his life story, keep all the profits, and share the movie rights.

Now, right off the bat, he acknowledged that his story wasn’t unique: a boy adopted by grandparents who didn’t know his “sister” was really his mother until he was thirteen years old.

However, he felt the circumstances, the time period, and the setting would make the book unique. I thought it was high time somebody documented the events, since everybody involved was either really old or dead, and because I felt his family--my siblings--should know where we came from.

Over the next six months we met a couple of times. I recorded the time we spent discussing the book. He gave me contemporaneous documents in the form of cash books from his father’s store and letters between his birth mother and his father. I researched what I could, got in touch with the town historian when necessary, and made up the rest.

That’s right. A memoir, and I made stuff up.

Because the truth is, nobody knows everything that happened, or what was said, or even who was involved. So many times I asked my dad who was with him, and he couldn’t remember everybody.

The first edits were interesting. I’d send it to him, and he’d send it back, “I don’t think I said this” or “I don’t think it happened like that”. I’d ask, “Do you remember what did happen?” “No.” “Then my version stands.”

He finally came to terms with the fact that creative non-fiction is exactly that: creative.

We used the names of the original people, because this was going to be a family-only version. But he said he wanted the book published in the general market, so we agreed to change the names and a few other details so nobody knew for certain who was being talked about.

My dad held “his” book in his hands three weeks before he passed. He was as pleased as punch to see his name on the cover, to read his stories, his past.

And then he looked at me and said, “We need another book.”

Except this time we didn’t have two years. This time we had three weeks. 

I wish I’d asked more questions. I pray he’d be as pleased to hold this new book in his hands. Once again, we published a family-only version first. And The Physics of Love releases October 31st, 2016.

Hollywood, here we come!
Donna lives in Denver with her husband Patrick, who is her first-line editor and biggest fan. She writes historical suspense under her own name, and contemporary suspense under her alter ego of Leeann Betts, who Donna says is cute and perky and everything she isn’t. She has ghostwritten several projects, but still gets a thrill out of seeing her own name on the cover. Physics of Love, her father’s memoir-turned-novel, releases October 2016. You can follow her and Leeann on Facebook and Twitter, and on their blogs at: and . Her websites are and . Their books are available at in digital and print, and at in digital. Donna travels every chance she gets, and looks forward to making things up as she goes along.

October 28, 2016

When the Story Starts to Come Alive

By Shelly Frome

During the hiatus before the next project, I keep asking myself, what are you waiting for? I realize there are those who’ve made lists of bright ideas and simply devise an outline for the most promising notion. But that approach doesn’t excite my imagination or seem brimming with life. . 

And so, after sending off the corrected galley proofs for Murder Crosses the Pond, I’m trying to come to terms with the necessary ingredients. In the case of this last mystery, I began with Oliver, a young golden retriever, smashing through the doggie gate of a B&B, scampering up the trail to the high meadow, drawn by the squawks of wild turkeys and the curses of a stranger. I did so because I’m well acquainted with goldens and that spontaneous image seemed so full of promise. Soon enough, Emily, a tour guide emerged in my imagination finalizing her plans to shepherd three eccentric siblings to the far off moors of England. Then a few what-ifs? came to me. What if the fellow shouting was a front man for a rapacious development corporation out to turn the meadow into an upscale condo complex? What if the B&B was owned by Emily’s mom and the construction activity would ruin her way of life? And what if Emily’s mentor was head of the local Planning Commission who stands in the way of site approval and, as Emily overhears chasing after Oliver, has to be “taken care of”? 

It’s as if elements stored away in my subconscious were waiting to be released by something lively. I care about open space and once had a run-in with a large corporation threatening to turn a pristine preserve next door into a gated community. My late wife and I were taken on a private tour of Dartmoor and the west of England. And, most of all, Oliver’s spunky curiosity, like my own dogs, was bound to dig something up, some vital evidence perhaps, knock somebody down at the last minute, etc. This catalyst made the possibilities of provocative settings, folk tales, and the impossibility of Emily being in two places at once, colorful people I might meet along the way and all the rest of it begin to percolate.  

As Oliver’s imaginary antics set things in motion this time, a real life encounter on the streets of New York caused a previous effort to catch fire. It started while I was recalling James Dean’s haunts (the farm boy from Indiana before he got his big movie break). Here I was, walking the same mean streets, remembering my own days as a starving New York actor when I ran into a swarthy character in a sloppy sweatshirt who said, “I’m Johnny Diamonds and this is my territory.” Out of nowhere, a pre-teen popped up and said, “And I’m Johnny’s go-fer.” 

It wasn’t long before I gave her the name Angie, Johnny became a racketeer, and I couldn’t help wondering what a troubled Indiana farm boy named Jed, who looked a lot like James Dean, was doing here and what he was desperately seeking. In no time, I began doing research about organized crime in the Big Apple and a scenario for Murder Run began to unfold. 

What led me on, besides the fact that the provocative setting became a character and influenced everything, were the things I learned about Angie as long as I left her alone. And how, though she was at least twenty years younger than Jed, she had to look out for this fish-out- of- water and keep him from harm’s way.

Perhaps those times I was a starving actor and taught improv at the University has a lot to do with the way I work. I intuitively know if I try to second guess any of the characters they’ll freeze up on me. When I let them be, they prompt me in the most wonderful ways. 

It appears that all I have to do is trust my muse. In the famous words of Dickens’ Mister Micawber, “Something will turn up.” Or, taking a cue from West Side Story, “Something’s comin’. Around the corner or whistlin’ down the river.” And it will surely be worth the wait.        
Shelly Frome is a member of Mystery Writers of America, a professor of dramatic arts emeritus at the University of Connecticut, a former professional actor, a writer of crime novels and books on theater and film. He is also the film columnist for Southern Writers Magazine and a features writer for Gannett Media. His fiction includes Sun Dance for Andy Horn, Lilac Moon, Twilight of the Drifter, Tinseltown Riff and Murder Run.  His transatlantic mystery Murder Crosses the Pond will be released this fall. Among his works of non-fiction are The Actors Studio and texts on the art and craft of screenwriting and writing for the stage. He lives in Black Mountain, North Carolina.

October 27, 2016

Dickens, Poe and Manet Connected Forevermore

By Annette Cole Mastron, Communications Director for Southern Writers Magazine 

My husband and I used to have an annual Halloween costume party. In the 1990's the hit party game was Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon? According to to Wikipedia, the game is "based on the "six degrees of separation" concept, which posits that any two people on Earth are six or fewer acquaintance links apart. In the game, movie buffs challenge each other to find the shortest path between an arbitrary actor and prolific character actor Kevin Bacon. It rests on the assumption that anyone involved in the Hollywood film industry can be linked through their film roles to Bacon within six steps. The game requires a group of players to try to connect any such individual to Kevin Bacon as quickly as possible and in as few links as possible."

In the mid 1800's you didn't need Six degrees to connect Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe and Edward Manet. Did you know?

Charles Dickens' historical novel, was published in 1841. As fate would have it, Edgar Allan Poe reviewed the first four chapters of Dickens’ Barnaby Rudge for Graham’s Magazine, published serially. Poe predicted the end of Dickens' novel, correctly.  One of the  characters was a chatty raven named Grip.

Fast forward a year later. Dickens planned a six-month family trip to the U.S. Poe and Dickens exchanged letters prior to the trip (which you can read here). The two authors met in person. Poe also met the character he liked best, in person, Dickens pet raven. Poe scholars are in agreement. Poe’s fascination with Dickens pet raven (and his Grip character) was the inspiration for his poem The Raven.

Unlike many authors and artists, Edgar Allan Poe achieved almost instant fame during his life.  For the publication of The Raven in 1845, he was paid a whooping $9.00. Poe however doubted his talent. 

During his life he continued to struggle to make a living from his writing. In 1875 he 
made a French translation of the The RavenLe Corbeau.  The French version was illustrated by one of my favorite impressionist painters, Ă‰douard Manet. Although this version was not a commercial success, it highlights the talents of two great artists of that time. View and download high-res scans of the engravings here.  The engravings are haunting and descriptive. 

So on Halloween Monday, when the trick or treaters knock on your door, put a raven on your shoulder. Pass out the candy and see if they notice. 

You may inspire them forevermore. 

October 26, 2016


By Marilyn Baron

After releasing my 11th book with The Wild Rose Press, I realized I had set three of the books—in three different genres—The Widows’ Gallery, Killer Cruise and my latest book, Stumble Stones: A Novel—partially or completely on a cruise ship.  

Setting your book on the high seas is exotic and exciting and has limitless possibilities for adventure and romance on and off the ship. A lot of things can happen and have happened on a cruise ship. The ship can run into a devastating storm; someone can go overboard or need to be medevaced off the ship; terrorists could attack; and there can be an outbreak of a shipboard virus or a deadly fire.

No matter which genre floats your boat, or whether you’re a multi-published author or a newbie, there are things to know before you go and while onboard that can make your cruise pay dividends:
  • Choose your shore excursions wisely. Which excursion might be a good location for a book setting?
·        Go to Wine Tastings, Bingo, and Art Auctions, dine at a Specialty Restaurant, work out, and go to the Spa.  
  • Discovering all you can about your ship is the best place to start your research. Check the ship’s Web site for facts about the ship you could incorporate into your story. Sign up for a behind-the-scenes tour of the ship. These tours are fascinating and afford you all-access to areas of the ship you wouldn’t ordinarily see, like the galley, engine area, control room, laundry, and bridge, where you might get to chat with the captain or another ship’s officer. You’ll find out more fascinating facts than you’ll ever need to pepper your story. You will usually get a fact sheet or booklet following the tour with all the details. Or take your own tour of your floating hotel.
Take pictures of everything on the ship and on your excursions.
·       Take detailed notes about who you see, what you see, the time of day, where you go, how you feel, how people dress, smells, the weather, shipboard events, local food you sample, prices and local currency.
·        Be observant and eavesdrop at every opportunity.
·        In-Room Daily Activity Sheets or Newsletters contain important notices about shore excursions and descriptions of the ports you’ll be visiting, the itinerary, a message from the captain, entertainment and activities, restaurant options, shopping on board and other details you may want to include in your novel.
  • Maps of your destinations come in handy.  
  • Just the facts, ma’ must have accurate details, like what material is the balcony railing made of?
  • Listen to and record notes about the in-room messages from the captain.
  • After the cruise, ask your travel agent to send you a copy of the menus in the main dining room for future reference. Your characters have to eat. 
Bon Voyage and Best of Luck On Your Next Best Seller!

Marilyn writes humorous coming-of-middle age women’s fiction, historical romantic thrillers, suspense, and paranormal/fantasy. A public relations consultant in Atlanta, she’s a PAN member of RWA and Georgia Romance Writers (GRW), winner of the GRW 2009 Chapter Service Award and writing awards in single title, suspense romance, paranormal/fantasy, and novel with strong romantic elements. Stumble Stones is Marilyn’s 11th novel with The Wild Rose Press. AmazonEncore re-released her book, Sixth Sense, the first in her psychic mystery series, on September 15, 2015. She’s also self-published two novels and a musical and published five humorous, paranormal short stories with TWB Press, an electronic publisher of science fiction, supernatural, horror, and thriller. She’s served three years on the Roswell Reads Steering Committee, sponsored by the City of Roswell, the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System and the Roswell Library, which promotes the value of reading and literacy through the shared community-wide experience of reading and discussing a common book. She was selected as an Atlanta Author in the 2015 Atlanta Author Series and again in 2016. A Miami, Florida, native, she graduated from The University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism (Public Relations sequence) and a minor in Creative Writing. Marilyn lives in Roswell, Georgia, with her husband, and they have two daughters. To find out more about Marilyn’s books, please visit her Web site at: Social Media Links: Website Twitter  Facebook  Goodreads Amazon Author Page

October 25, 2016

Puzzles and Authors

By Susan Reichert, Editor-in-Chief for Southern Writers Magazine 

One might ask an author if they like puzzles. And if you are wondering what puzzles have to do with being an author who writes novels, short stories, and creative non-fiction you may be surprised to learn that it has a great deal to do with puzzles.

Without realizing it, author’s work puzzles. How? What puzzles pieces do writers have? Simple. One piece is deciding what they are going to write; one piece who the characters will be; another piece is what the plot will be and one is where it will take place. These are all puzzle pieces that fit into the writing of the book.

The next set of puzzle piece after the story is written involve the editing, correcting errors, proofing again making sure it is ready for the eyes of an agent/publisher. This now brings us to the next set of puzzle pieces. Find an agent/publisher.

Once we have secured the agent/publisher (traditional or self-published). This takes time to find that just right agent/publisher that fits into our puzzle. Then we need to find the puzzle pieces that determine what our part is in marketing and promoting our book. Some of the pieces of that puzzle will be Social Medias, blogs, ours and others, websites and searching for different places to put our name and the title of our book to draw more attention.

When you write a book and it gets published you are hoping to generate revenue by selling the book. This means you need a lot of different venues where you can market and promote your book.

This part of the puzzles requires, events like book signings, finding book stores, libraries and other venues in many different cities. Hopefully you will set up speaking engagements that will put you in front of more people to expose your book to more readers. You will have to search for book clubs, perhaps associations and organizations that your book relates too. The list can get larger if you spend the time searching for venues. Remember it is important to make a list of all the places you can market, promote and sell your book. Don’t limit yourself just to your city.

Some venues are going to be free, others will have a fee. Remember, it is a business. There are places you can advertise your book for free but some places will charge you.

The more people to see your name and the title of your book, the better chances of them buying your book. So put your name in as many areas as you can.

Some authors feel as if they are a one man show. It can be daunting.
So make it fun, team up with another author or two and enjoy meeting new people.

Just as with any puzzle, you have to decide where each part of the puzzle goes and when it goes there.

It gets easier each time you do it. It takes work, determination, and perseverance along with focus, a good positive attitude and a belief in yourself and the book you’ve written.

When you see the puzzle finished it’s a beautiful picture. Just like when you hold that book, how great it feels and when you receive revenue from the sale of that book, you will feel it was worth all the work and effort you put in.

It does take a lot of effort to get your book out but think of how much joy others will receive from your writing.

October 24, 2016

Award Winning Writers Show

By Terry Brennan

Certain manuscript issues are constants in conversations with editors and publishers:
·       Avoid Point-Of-View problems;
·       Resist the urge to explain;
·       Show, don’t tell.

In conversations with other authors, show-don’t-tell still leaves many writers frustrated. You want to move the story forward. What’s wrong with having one character say to another, “You know, Joe’s house burned down.” Do we need to be at Joe’s house?

Yes, particularly if Joe is important in the novel.

So, how do we do that? How can we avoid telling the reader something? How can we show them, instead?

An editor told me once, “I love the way you make little stories to show action.” Really? I never realized it. But then I went back through my last book, The Aleppo Code, and found a number of places where the editor was right.

At one point in the book, conflicts erupt simultaneously in locations around the Middle East. An early draft had military officers telling the President about these developments in the White House Situation Room.

As soon as somebody is telling someone else about action, you have a problem.

So I created the action. I introduced, in less than three-quarters of a page:
·       Yhanni Goldsmith, an Israeli Defense Force reservist working as a waiter in Tel Aviv as a wave of rockets walked destruction down the street outside his  seaside restaurant ;
·       Petra, who was driving to her mother’s home near the Lebanese border. It was her mother’s birthday, which is why she braved the crater-lined road, until she came to a crater where her mother’s house should be;
·       Colonel Isadore Stanfill, commander of 100 Israeli tanks near Ghajar, Israel, waiting for his “Go” to race into Lebanon with orders to destroy the Hezbollah rocket batteries.

I also created a pivotal naval battle in the Persian Gulf which ran through several chapters. Not only did the battle take the life of Rear Admiral Chauncey “Chipper” Woods, whose frigate, the USS Ingraham, was shredded by an Iranian missile attack, but the battle also introduced Lieutenant Andrew Stone. Fresh out of Annapolis, newly assigned, Stone was part of an amphibious attack team dispatched from the USS Ponce to lay waste to the Iranian naval base on Larak Island. Stone didn’t survive the attack, either. Tragic, since Stone was the son of the American President.

My favorite “show-don’t-tell” character came at the end of the book – Benji Propolski, overnight security guard for the Shrine of the Book, where the Dead Sea Scrolls are kept in Jerusalem’s Israel Museum. Benji was upset because his wife, Melda, forgot to fix his lunch. So he was distracted when, making his rounds, something astounding happened to the most powerful weapon in the history world.

Other than the naval battle, these scenes were not long. Each moved the story forward. Each introduced an interesting character, found nowhere else in the book. And each occurred in the midst of the action, giving the novel more depth.

In a word, they “showed”.
A Pulitzer Prize is one of the many awards Terry Brennan accumulated during his 22-year newspaper career. The Pottstown (PA) Mercury won a Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing for a two-year series of editorials published while Brennan was the newspaper’s Editor. Starting out as a sportswriter in Philadelphia, Brennan became an Editor and Publisher for newspapers in Pennsylvania, Illinois, and New York and in 1988 moved to the corporate staff of Ingersoll Publications (400 newspapers in the U.S., Ireland and England) as Executive Editor of all U.S. newspaper titles. In 1996 Brennan transitioned into the nonprofit sector, spending 12 years as VP Operations for The Bowery Mission and six years as Chief Administrative Officer for Care for the Homeless, NYC nonprofits that serve homeless people. Terry and his wife, Andrea, live in the New York City area. Terry’s first novel series, THE JERUSALEM PROPHECIES, was released by Kregel Publications: The Sacred Cipher in July of 2009, The Brotherhood Conspiracy in June of 2013 and The Aleppo Code in October, 2015. The Aleppo Code won the Carol Award as the best Suspense/Thriller of 2015. Website – Facebook –

October 21, 2016


By Diane A. McNeil

Recently, I signed up for classes on grant writing because of my affiliation with a local foundation.  The only reason I agreed to do so was because if you attended all weekly sessions, you received individualized assistance in preparing your grant.

There was no intent on my part to participate. I selfishly only wanted the freebies that went with attendance.  It was a rather large group, so there was lots of space in which to hide as a wall flower, or so I thought.  I did take notice, though, that the two moderators were older, no-nonsense, whip-wielding women who could teach military generals a thing or two.

One of our first assignments was to read our mission statement out loud, whether or not we felt like it.  After all 40 were read, then began the unexpected, intensely painful chipping away of everything that was not essential to “the” mission, on which we had spent hours perfecting.

The moderators told us to get rid of any “ands” in our statement.  But, but, but, ours was a good “and”; we needed it.  They said, you are either one thing or another, you can’t be both.  A real mission statement needs no and.  We had to decide on which side of that “and” we really belonged.  Then, we were told that a good mission statement should only contain about ten words – ours was 38!  After much grinding of teeth and even tears (really), we slashed ours down to 11 words – we weren’t budging on that last one. 

What we discovered was we had moved so far from our original mission, the calling we knew was from God.  We, ourselves, were no longer sure who we were.  We had ceased to be effective.

Immediately, I translated this to my writing.  What was my mission 20 years ago when I received that unmistakable call from God?   Is my mission something entirely different today?  When I write, do even I recognize the author?  Worse yet, does God recognize the author? 

I challenge you to run away, spend face-to-face time with God in prayer and write your own mission statement.  Has it changed as you have progressed as a writer?  Truthfully, are you still that child-like, trusting, tablet-and-pencil-in-hand-child you once were?  Or, are you sophisticated and pursuing the big names and the key spots?  Maybe all is well, but it still can’t hurt.  Take on another writing assignment – your mission statement.  Be honest enough to see who God sees behind that computer.  Remember, it can be no more than 10 words (okay, maybe 1 or 2 more), and you can have no ands.  Tears are okay – better to shed them here on earth than when standing before HIM. 
Diane A. McNeil was born and raised in a small, Delta town in Mississippi, the daughter of average, hard-working, common people. McNeil never aspired to write until one Sunday morning in 1995 when the Lord “undeniably” spoke to her about Ruth.  McNeil responded, “I don’t understand, but I am not giving up until I do.” Ten years later McNeil published her first book, Ruth 3,000 Years of Sleeping Prophecy Awakened, a 10-year journey that travelled through Jewish homes, Hebrew classes, Synagogues, Jewish weddings, bar mitzvahs, bat mitzvahs, funerals, circumcision ceremonies and much more, all of which unfurled the prophetic, ancient megilot (scroll) of Ruth. McNeil said, “I had to live it.” In 2007, McNeil published the companion workbook by the same title. In 2011, McNeil published Jewish Game Changers which details her many Jewish “ah-ha” moments. McNeil is currently President of Unknown Child Foundation, Inc., organized to educate about the 1.5 million children who perished in the Holocaust, and created for the purpose of constructing a Holocaust Memorial Park to be located on the old Elvis Presley horse ranch in Horn Lake, MS. Social Media Links:

October 20, 2016

The Greatest Fiction Known to Man

By Doyne Phillips, Managing Editor for Southern Writers Magazine

Those of you that are Social Media savvy can instantly spot a post that is from a tormented soul telling the world how everything in their life is rainbows and roses. How they love their perfect spouse and family and all is well with the world. Their post are so sugary sweet that it is apparent they are trying to convince the world and themselves they are living the life of perfection. I know such individuals and thought of them while watching a new television program called Designated Survivor. It reminded me of these fantastic fiction writers when one of the characters made the statement,

“Sometimes it is easier to lie to the world than to be truthful with yourself.”

This is one of those situations which you can only say, “Bless their hearts.”

In our current political atmosphere this phrase could also ring true. Having witnessed on a daily basis the workings of the government hand in hand with the political reasoning for each and every move I was shocked at the truth verses the media reporting at the end of the day. We at home are many times told what the media or powers at be want us to know or think. Unfortunately in both cases many times we do believe what we are presented with. This tells me this is the greatest example of fiction known to man. So what can we as writers learn from this?

The first thing I always notice is they tell their story without any obligation to the truth. They are totally committed to what they are presenting without any regard to the truth. No problem because after all this is fiction, right? With fiction the truth really doesn’t matter. You can go anywhere you like with it.

The second thing I see is they stay on focus and every post; every comment and every word are taking you in the direction they want you to go. It’s all said with the final result in mind. The final result being whatever it is they want you to believe. They stay on course with every word.

The third thing that really seems to free them up to write what they want is they feel no accountability toward anyone or anything. To write without accountability to any person or thing is an unbelievable freedom. No concerns, no worries, no problems! Wow what freedom!

So take some time to look over some of these social post and media promos and if you are privy to the truth of the matter you can see the creativeness and skill of these fiction writers living among us. 

We all have something there we can learn from and move forward with our fiction writing skills. And remember this is fiction, enjoy the freedom and write!

October 19, 2016

How I write 250-500 Words a Day

By Grace Brooks

Writing for me is a lonely occupation, and a solitary existence. It occupies a lot of my time, and leaves me with no social life.

Friends have asked me why I don’t go out with them more; they tell me I don’t know the first thing about having fun. I tell them I have fun my way.

When I answer I will be working at my writing at the time the social or whatever they want me to go to, is taking place, they look at me, roll their eyes and say, “Oh, yeah. Sure.”

So, how do I do it? How do I put up with the loneliness of writing?

Writing is not easy work. Writing is for the perfectionist. I want that word exact word that expresses perfectly what I’m saying. I don’t want messy writing with sentence fragments, too long sentences, and a story with a plot that moves forward instead of jumping back and forward.

The best way to write, I find, is to sit down and write. Don’t worry about how the story looks at first. I use handwriting just to get the words down on paper.

After I think I’ve finished the story, I go back and edit. Yes, edit. I find I cut a lot of scenes, then add more words, so the story is not shortened any. This will be done later if the story needs shortening...

Revise. Write. Revise. I ask a friend to read through the manuscript and give me feedback as how to improve on it.

Finally. My story is finished. It’s perfectly formatted; spelling has been checked, etc. Editors and publishing houses will be eager to grab up the manuscript and turn it into a book.

It works this way, sometimes. I’ve had one story published by an educational publishing house. All the rest of my books are self-published.

I write best in the early morning. I can be up at 1 or 2 am at my computer, working away.

Writing isn’t for the lazy person or the faint hearted. It’s a calling for me, a drive I cannot suppress. I must write.

It’s nice to see my books in print. My story has been told, a legacy to the world.

I write because it’s a must for me. I write because I have a lot inside me to say. It has to be brought out for the world to share.

That is why and how I write.

Christian author, Grace Brooks enables authors of all ages to experience the reality of the spiritual conflict as forces of good and evil clash. Open the pages of her books. As the conflict unfolds Grace Brooks leads readers, as she leads the Asquinn twins, Martin and Martha, and her many characters to learn that evil is real. They also learn that God has called Christians to be steadfast and unmovable in their faith as they earnestly contend for the faith. Grace Brooks was born in Kirkland Lake, Ontario, Canada. At age eighteen she went west to Manitoba. Her first job was in a native sanitarium in Ninette, Manitoba. Grace currently lives in northern Manitoba along with husband, Dennis, and pet Papillion. Grace’s publishing credits are A Dog for Keeps, written under the pen name Lynette Tamar Mark, The Asquinn Twins Come to forest Lake, The Asquinn Twins Where the Trail Forks, The Asquinn Twins no Greener pastures and The Asquinn Twins: Sihon, all under the name Heather Radford. She is currently working on Book five of the series. Grace is also an ongoing contributor to The Baptists for Liberty magazine. She’s published in a SENIORS magazine for Manitoba. I can be reached at: Website: and at: