Darlene Foster's Blog

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I´ve been interviewed on Don Massenzio´s blog! Drop by and say Hello.

Author Don Massenzio

Today, I’m very excited to feature Darlene Foster as she sits down for this weeks edition of a Perfect 10. Please enjoy.

If you want to check out past interviews, you can find them in the following links:

A.C. Flory, Steve Boseley, Kayla Matt, Mae Clair, Jill Sammut, Deanna Kahler, Dawn Reno Langley, John Howell, Elaine Cougler, Jan Sikes, Nancy Bell, Nick Davis, Kathleen Lopez, Susan Thatcher, Charles Yallowitz, Armand Rosamilia, Tracey Pagana, Anna Dobritt, Karen Oberlaender, Deby Fredericks, Teri Polen

Also, if you are an author and you want to be part of this feature, I still have a few slots open for 2017. You can email me at don@donmassenzio.com


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  • Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Writing energizes me. I believe tapping into your creative side is so good…

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I woke up to a pleasant surprise one day this week. A fabulous review of Amanda in Alberta – The Writing on the Stone was posted on Evie Carter´s blog site.  I felt like a child of mine had been complimented. It made my day!!

This is what she had to say.

What I liked
_____________
This was one of the best Children’s adventure books I’ve read in a while. Although geared toward younger readers, maybe seven to nine and up, it was well written and had delightful characters.
First of all the plot was tight and flowed. There was enough excitement to even keep me interested and would have been the kind of book I’d have loved as a kid.

read more of the review here: http://eviecarter.novelblogs.com/book-review-amanda-in-alberta/

I do hope this review will cause a few copies of Amanda in Alberta to show up under some Christmas trees this year!

Evie also interviewed me http://eviecarter.novelblogs.com/author-interview-with-darlene-foster/ if you wish to learn more about me and my writing.

I hope everyone is enjoying this wonderful season, staying safe and not getting overwhelmed by it.

Thanks for reading my blog!

I am a guest over at JLB Creatives today, being interviewed by the  lovely and talented Janet Beasley. She asks some unique questions that were fun to answer.

Meet Author Darlene Foster

Greetings! Glad you’re here. This week we are featuring author Darlene Foster with an author interview. We’re sure you’ll like what she has to offer the literary world. Her writing talent, creativity, and dedication to the craft shine through in every word.
Let’s say you’re thinking about going on once in a life time vacation…how exciting! What are some of the places you’d consider, and what would you do while you’re there?I love to travel and a once in a lifetime adventure for me would be a trip to Australia and New Zealand. I would so love to see Ayers Rock, the Sydney Opera House, koala bears, kangaroos and so many other amazing sites and animals only found down under. I think it would be a fabulous setting for my main character, Amanda Ross, to have an adventure.

Read more of the interview:
http://www.jlbcreatives.blogspot.ca/2014/03/meet-author-darlene-foster.html
If you could go on a once in a life time adventure, where would it be?

 

The Bess Time cover Nov7

“Have you ever wanted to go back in time? Here is your opportunity.” Bess Turner, a woman of the twenty-first century, would like to invite you to accompany her on a journey to London, England. The season is Christmas. The year is 1847. The adventure begins with a light in a window. Mesmerized, Bess hears street noises behind her. No, that cannot be; she is in her living room, looking at a miniature building on the mantel. True, but …. Meet her colourful Victorian family, stay for a cup of tea, and taste the flaming plum pudding. Hold your breath and squeeze into the dreaded corset. Swirl around the majestic Vauxhall to the Viennese Waltz. Take in the smells and sounds of the horse-drawn carriages along busy Fleet Street. Enjoy the ride; it is The Bess Time.

My review of The Bess Time

Who wouldn’t love to go back in time to visit Charles Dickens’s London at Christmastime? This is what happens to Bess Turner when she stares into the lights of the miniature Victorian street scene on her mantle. A delightful venture into time travel, the author does an excellent job of transitioning from the twenty first century to the nineteenth century with ease. The many unique characters are well developed and you will definitely fall in love with them as they become as familiar as your own friends and neighbours.  Even the charming Mr. Dickens himself makes a cameo appearance. The setting, the accents, the food, the weather, the clothing and the customs of the time come to life on the page. There are many laughs and a few tears as Beth divides her time between a modern North American Christmas and a traditional London Christmas of 1847. I didn’t want the story to end and am happy to hear there is a sequel in the works. You will need to buy two copies of The Bess Time, one for yourself and one for a friend as you won’t want to give this one away. Pour yourself a cup of tea and enjoy!

Interview with the author Yvonne Pont

How long have you been writing?

Since I was in high school, but not seriously till about 2009. Before that, I have written for my various club newsletters, letters to family and friends and minutes for meetings. I took various writing courses and joined a writers’ group. Both of which have helped tremendously to hone my craft. 

What gave you the idea for this book?

The miniature buildings and the built in curiosity and imagination to discover what goes on behind closed doors. Wouldn’t it be fun to go back in time and observe? So I did. 

What made you decide to self-publish?

I tried the traditional way, but it is not easy for an unknown author to have a publisher in today’s market take a chance on them. So I took the bull by the horns, took a deep breath and plunged head first into another world I knew nothing about. Each day brings new challenges and tests the will to continue. A relative once told me if you sit in the safety of your backyard and never venture out, life passes you by. 

I just love the characters. Did you pattern them after people you know?

Yes, a few are, and others have the names, but not the personalities of the namesakes. Observing people while in restaurants, shops, etc. is a good way to add or start on a character. 

How did you manage to get all those accents down pat? It wasn’t long and I knew who was talking without the tags, just from the accent!

I made a profile of each character and added their special dialogue. I wanted the reader to experience what Bess did and that was to listen to their different accents of that time in history. It had to be as real as possible.

I also love the cover art work. Was this your idea? How did you find an illustrator for the cover?

I told the artist exactly what I wanted, and she went from there. I also took pictures of figures and buildings in shadow to get the idea across to her. Fortunately, my good friend and artist, Connie Wicklund, did a great job. Iryna Spica of Spica Design in Victoria gave me samples for the title printing and holly emblem. I picked what I felt went best with the book and artwork.

What authors have inspired you? Who are your all time favourite authors?

Charles Dickens, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie and Jane Austen. 

Do you have a writing routine?

I try. However, life keeps getting in the way. Thank goodness, I have not experienced writer’s block, so it is not difficult to get my thoughts on paper on short notice. I always write in long hand and then transpose it to my laptop. My thoughts, my hand, the pen and paper work as one. Transferring it to the laptop is another step to further editing the piece.

Are you a plotter or a panster? (do you plot the story out before hand or write by the seat of your pants as ideas come to you?)

Yes, I have a plot. Yes, ideas come while the hand is on the paper too. Does that make me a plotster? 

Tell us a little about you including some quirks or funny habits.

I love animals, travel, gardening. I tend to relate an object such as my car, a book as human. Each has its own personality and story to tell. As far as the funny habits, you will have to ask my husband………. 

What is the name of the next book in the Christmas in Time series and when do you expect it to be completed?

“Nick Of Time” I hope to have it finished and published for fall of 2015. 

What advice would you give someone thinking of writing a book?

Go for it! However, learn your craft and join a writers’ group who will critique and give you sage advice. Editing is a must and must be done many times before the work is finished. But above all, don’t forget this is your work. Be true to it! Heed others advice, but if it is not what you want or had in mind for your story, let them write their own book.

Great advice! So happy to meet yet another Jane Austen fan too.  Thank you, Yvonne for sharing a bit about yourself and your book.

You can buy The Bess Time here or here

Visit Yvonne’s website  http://www.yvonnepont.com/ to learn more about her.

The author is giving away a copy of her book to one of the lucky readers of this blog. Just add a comment and your name will be put in the draw. Don’t forget to comment before the deadline, February 14.

I have had the pleasure of interviewing writer Diane Tibert McGyver, author of the fantasy series The Castle Keepers. Diane has also written young adult fiction.  Her books are descriptive with well-developed characters  you care about.   Read on to learn more about a writer who has worked hard for the title of published author.

Tell us something about yourself, a brief history perhaps.

I’m number ten of eleven children, so my life has always been filled with family and activity. From an early age, I became the documenter of events, the addresser of envelopes and the photographer at family gatherings. This was training for later in life when I became a writer and began submitting articles, columns and stories to editors. My first article—one about gardening—was published in 1998 by East Coast Gardener, a newspaper-like magazine published in Nova Scotia. After the magazine accepted two more articles, I had the confidence to reach for bigger goals, and soon had pieces appearing in Plant and Garden, Canadian Gardening and Saltscapes. Gardening was only one love, so when the opportunity arrived to be a genealogy columnist, I jumped at the chance. Currently, my Roots to the Past column appears in seven newspapers in Atlantic Canada. I enjoy writing nonfiction, but my writer’s heart lives in fiction.

 

My blog is about following your dreams. What was your biggest dream as a young girl?

I include ‘dreamer’ in my blog title. I’ve always been a big dreamer. As a young girl, I often dreamt of travelling the world and exploring interesting places. At one time, I even considered being an archaeologist. Actually, I haven’t ruled that out completely.

 

Has that dream come to reality or are you still working on it?

In some ways, the dream has come true, but I still have plenty of places I want to visit, things I wish to explore. I’ve climbed a mountain in the Rockies, toured throughout Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland, driven across the prairies, gone deep into caves and have travelled as far south as Memphis. Dog-sledding in the north, touring castles in           Scotland, hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and visiting war graves in Italy where my father served during the Second World War are on my to-do list.

 

What inspired you to write?

I don’t know what first inspired me to write; I started when I learnt how to spell words. It might have been the same as what inspires me to write today. I love creating characters and exploring new worlds of my imagination.

 

Tell us about your most recent publication and how it came to be.

“Shadows in the Stone” is a fantasy novel, the first in a four-book series. It all began when I was 17 and wrote a book with similar characters in that world. I didn’t think it was good enough even though my brother, who didn’t like to reader, kept asking me for the next chapter. I put the book away and started another with a few of the characters I liked. Again, when it was finished, I didn’t think this was the story I wanted to tell. I set aside writing for about nine years and filled my days with work and whatever else people do in their 20s. While home caring for my first child, I dug out the finished books and read them. I extracted a few of the characters and wrote “Shadows in the Stone”. After what seemed like a decade of writing, revising and editing, it was finally ready to be published. This was the story I wanted to tell.

Did you self publish or go with a traditional publisher?

I submitted the “Shadows in the Stone” manuscript to DAW Publishing, and they rejected it. Although I had received dozens of the rejections for other manuscripts, none hurt as bad as this one. After much soul-searching, wondering if the story was good enough and wondering if I wanted to be a writer, I discovered self-publishing. Not willing to let a stranger tell me my stories would never be read by others, I published my novel myself.

 

What did you read growing up?

While growing up, I read anything that sounded interesting. A few I remember are The Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, The Sword of Shannara, Star Wars (yes, the book), Archie Comics and dozens upon dozens of westerns my older brother had bought.

 

What do you read now?  What are you currently reading?

Again, I read what’s interesting, but prefer fantasy, historical fiction (particularly local history), adventure and romance. Books I’ve enjoyed over the past few years include “The Da Vinci Code”, “MACLEAN”, “Follow the River” and “The Wizard’s Ward”. I’m currently in between books, but I’m starting “Back From Chaos” by Yvonne Hertzberger later this week.

 

What is your pet peeve?

My biggest pet peeve is linked to my genealogy research. When I read an obituary for a woman and only find her referred to as Mrs. John MacDonald (or whatever her husband’s name was), that irks me.

 

If you could have lunch with anyone (alive or dead) who would that be and why?

Sitting down for lunch and conversation with Alexander McDonald, the first of my MacDonald line to arrive in Canada, would be the best. I’d ask him where he was from because finding the right McDonald family in Scotland in 1780 is near impossible. I’d ask him why he left, what it was like fighting for the English in the War of Independence and who his son William married. Her identity is still a mystery.

Thanks so much Diane for sharing a bit about yourself I love how so many of us read the Bobbsey Twins growing up. You are living proof of how dreams can come true thorough perserverance. I am sure you will be an archaeologist one day!  To learn more about Diane and her books visit her blog http://dianetibert.com/about-diane-tibert/

Her latest book is available Smashwords Ebook Edition or Kindle Ebook Edition

 

All the rainy, cool weather was getting me down these past few weeks.  Being raised in southern Alberta, I need my sunshine. But the sun is out now and it’s warming up so I am no longer suffering from S.A.D.  My travelling friend Alison Sandiland took some great pictures of Vancouver in the sun and posted them on her blog.  When it is nice here, it is so nice!

Jericho Beach by Alison Sandilands

Visit her blog See My Travels for more wonderful pictures of this beautiful part of the world that I call home. http://www.seemytravels.com/2012/07/07/summer-has-arrived-in-vancouver/

The other thing that has made me very happy this week is my interview with Diane Tibert McGyver.  You can read the interview on her blog.  http://dianetibert.com/2012/07/06/author-interview-darlene-foster/ Be sure to add a comment.

Diane asked some great questions.  Diane is an east coast blogging friend and an author as well. I love being interviewed by other authors; it is a great compliment.

I wish everyone a Happy Weekend wherever you are!


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