Friday, May 31, 2013

Thank you to all who have supported us through our Journey!

I just wanted to say thank you to all the wonderful people who have supported us and helped us through the years! Your kindness and generosity can never be repaid but I would like to send everyone who stops by a thank you note in the mail. You can message me your mailing address to
I hope everyone has a wonderful time at the Book launch today! Join in on the fun and prizes at this link!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Our moment with Vickie Johnstone!

What has been your greatest moment as a writer?


Have you ever had a moment, even if it was a split second when someone noticed you for the unique person you are or complemented you on a job well done? Do you remember what that feels like in your heart?


Vickie Johnstone


My two greatest moments have been getting my first book published at the beginning of 2011, thanks to the discovery of Kindle KDP and Smashwords, closely followed by my first review for it, which made me cry because I couldn’t believe that someone liked it.


Kiwi in Cat City was the first book I ever finished, in 2002. Although I wrote poetry and started stories, I rarely completed the latter. I sent three chapters of Kiwi to a big publisher who rejected it, saying they were not accepting any children’s books because they had been swamped with them since the success of Harry Potter. The letter contained no feedback whatsoever on my book, so I assumed they thought it was rubbish. I now know that’s common for such letters. But, back then this crushed my confidence so much that I never submitted the book to anyone again. No one read it and it just gathered dust in my drawer. I didn’t write another novel for ten years.


Around Christmas 2011, I read about self-publishing. I dug out Kiwi, typed it up, edited it, found a cover and published it. I think this is one of the most fulfilling things I’ve ever done. I thought to myself, even if no one reads this, I will have fulfilled my dream, which was to publish a book.


I contacted about twenty of the top book reviewers on Amazon and waited. Two replied. They loved it and I was overwhelmed. No one had read Kiwi and I thought no one ever would. I then met a lot of authors in the online writing groups who were just as crazy about books as me, and since then I’ve written 10 more. At the moment, I’m working on four. Basically, the feedback I got on Kiwi and the support I received from other authors inspired me. I would never have written another book otherwise and still just have the one, gathering dust in a drawer somewhere.


The Kiwi Series has six books now and I hope to write more. The characters go on adventures in different worlds, such as the UnderPaw beneath Cat City, the Land of Giant Mice, a haunted house, Father Christmas’ home, the watery Isle of the Serpent and back in time to Ancient Egypt. I love the characters in these books and writing them is like watching a cartoon rolling in my head – I just have to do all the voices myself!


Receiving a good review is the best thing ever. I never take them for granted and treasure them. I love reading them. My favourites for the Kiwi Series are those from children. It’s wonderful to hear what they think. It almost feels like they’ve read the book with me or stepped into it, running with Kiwi and turning into a kitten to go on an adventure. Then I’m reminded of being nine again and escaping into a novel, tucked up in bed with a torch under the blanket.


Of all the reviews for Kiwi in Cat City, the one I love the most is from a girl called Emily who said, “This series just gets better and better. There is magic everywhere.”


The most magical thing for me has been publishing Kiwi in Cat City, because it fulfilled a dream I’d had since I was a kid. I don’t know if I’ll ever be a successful writer, but I do know that I’m thrilled that the books I’m writing are being read – at last. My advice to any budding author is to write away and don’t give up. Write stories that remind you of your childhood dreams.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Our moment with DeEtte Beckstead!

Tell us a story! What is one of your favorite childhood memories?


A Fishy Story


I must have been 8 or 9. My dad woke me early that summer day. It was 4 am, and we were going fishing at Strawberry Reservoir with Grandpa H. I was so sleepy, I don't remember the ninety minute drive to the lake. I'm sure I slept in the backseat all the way through the canyons. We went fishing many times each summer and I usually slept on the way.

When we arrived at the boat launch, my dad mounted our small motor on the back of the rented boat. We loaded our tackle boxes (I had my own), and the cooler with our lunch. We put on our life jackets over our coats. Even though it was summer, it was quite chilly at that time of morning. Later, when the sun had warmed the mountain air, we would take off our coats and hope we didn't get sunburned! I sat near the stern by Dad, and Grandpa sat in the bow. I loved to go fishing with them, even if I didn't like getting up so early!

I had baited my own hook for some time so I didn't need to wait for someone to do it for me. Dad started the motor and we left the dock. I dropped my baited line over the side of the wooden boat.  As soon as it disappeared below the water, I felt a tug on my line. I looked at my dad in surprise.

“It's just the water. Leave your line in.” Dad told me as he guided the boat out in the lake.

When we got close to our favorite spot near a cove, I still felt the tugging.

“Keep it in the water. You couldn't have a fish already.” Grandpa said. Neither he nor Dad thought a fish would have taken the bait that fast.

I didn't want to, but I left my line in the water, constantly feeling the irregular tugging through my favorite red fishing pole. When we stopped a few minutes later and dropped anchor, the tugging continued.

Finally, after a few more minutes I told my dad I could still feel it. Dad shrugged and said I could reel it in if I wanted to, but I didn't have a fish. I began reeling it in. As the hook end came near the boat, Dad and Grandpa looked over and saw.....

Yes, a fish! The pan-size rainbow trout had been on my line since we were sitting at the dock! Dad grabbed the net and scooped up the fish. Both Dad and Grandpa were surprised, but I knew from the start it was a fish on my line!

And that was the only fish we caught that entire day!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Kai's Journey Book Re Launch!

                                                           Kai's Journey on Amazon

There have been several book covers for our first book, Kai's Journey but this latest one I think will be the best by far. Not only is it a new cover on the outside but it has also been professionally edited by MasterKoda Select Publishing house as well! We are so excited and can't wait for the big reveal and the party that will be happening on May 31st! Its on facebook so you can come in your jammies if you wish. There will be prizes and lots of fun had by all, virtual drinks, food and tasty treats for all! The prizes are real but the rest you kind of have to use your imagination with.
This has definately been a labor of love. We have put our blood sweat and tears into this project. Paper cuts count you know, lol Its been a long journey but one I would do again in a heart beat. Are we as fast as some at getting books out there? No. the reason being I wanted to make all my mistakes with the first one and do it right from then on out. Here is the link where the party will be and when the book becomes available on Amazon I will post that as well. I hope everyone has a great time and hope to see you there!

                                                Kai's Journey Book Re Launch

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Our interview With Dianne Gardner!

                                                                Deception Peak
Dianne Lynn Gardner
Young Adult Fantasy-Adventure Fiction
Dianne Gardner is both an author and illustrator living in the Pacific Northwest, USA.

It is with great pleasure that we take a moment and introduce to you a wonderful lady, artist and author Dianne Gardner!

What is the ideal recipe for a good novel
Like anything else, love! Get into the story. Live it! Let it become part of you.
 You’ve been contacted by the Association of Libraries from the Alien Planet of Zaolia. They want to know the five most important novels in all of Earth’s history. Which five novels do you give them?
 The Chronicles of Narnia
For Whom the Bell Tolls
All Quiet on the Western Front
Don Quixote
 What was the turning point in your life when you decided to start writing?
 I felt I had painting all the paintings I needed to paint. My studio was full and my work wasn’t selling. I had always wanted to write fantasy stories for kids, the kinds of books that I loved reading. So I decided to switch gears and start writing.
 What is or are the genres of your book or books?

I call them family friend adventure fantasy

 What made you decide to write in your particular genre?
It’s what I love reading.
 When you write do you take notes, organize your characters and plot, or you write freely as you go?
I’m an organizer, John Truby Anatomy of Story kind of person.
 Where does your inspiration come from?

Long walks in the woods, on the beach, in the prairie, grasslands, mountains…

 Do you write about your personal life experiences in your stories?
Sure do, but they’re disguised.
 What is your favorite scene in your story?
I love the scene when Ian meets Vilfred for the first time. Here Ian was expecting to meet a hero, a hunter, a brave and strong chief of his tribe, someone very much like who he thought his father was. And then he sees Vilfred in that little yurt, the fire glowing, the pet wolf snug on the sheepskin, the broken man wrapped in leather bindings because his body is so crippled he couldn’t move. Yet Ian is taken aback with respect for Vilfred simply because of the man’s wisdom and kindness. He steps out of the yurt wondering how it is best fitting to leave a king. It’s one of my favorite scenes in the whole series.
Thank you, Dianne, for being such an awesome guest! Would you mind sharing a bit about yourself and links to your books?
She's been a painter all her life having started at the age of 12 under her mother's supervision. Her first private art lesson was with a sculptress in California. Excelling in art in school and on to college, her portfolio includes portraits, inspirational works, and plein air landscapes. She was the portrait painter for the Washington Renaissance Fantasy Fair for several years painting 20 minute oil paintings during the fair. She has just recently started illustrating books, beginning this endeavor with a 9' triptych of Stenhjaert the Dragon, the antagonist in Ian's Realm

Dianne is an active member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, and the National League of American Pen Women. Besides the Ian's Realm Saga (Deception Peak, The Dragon Shield, and Rubies and Robbers which will be released in 2013) she boasts authorship to four short stories titled A Tale of the Four Wizards Series which interweaves with the Saga. She writes for middle grade and young adults targeting boys and adventure loving girls, but adults are some of her most zealous fans of all Her writing definitely falls under the 'family friendly' category!

Ian's Realm Trilogy
Deception Peak
The Dragon Shield
Rubies and Robbers

Cassandra's Castle To be released
The Diary of a Conjurer To be released

Short Stories

A tale of the Four Wizards

Sunday, May 5, 2013

‘Angels for Aubry’ host benefit for Glenn family May 11 - |

‘Angels for Aubry’ host benefit for Glenn family May 11 - | News, Sports, Jobs, Community info - Times Republican

‘Angels for Aubry’ host benefit for Glenn family May 11

Aubry Glenn battling cancer

May 5, 2013
By MIKE DONAHEY - Staff Writer ( , Times-Republican
Aubry Glenn's dream is to run again and enter ninth grade with her friends.
Glenn, 14, is currently putting all of her energy into a battle against cancer at University of Iowa Hospitals in Iowa City.
She was diagnosed with cancer of the spine earlier this year, and is in her seventh week of battling the insidious disease.

Article Photos

And while a team of medical professionals are working diligently on her behalf, family and friends of the eighth-grade middle school student have pitched in as well.
Called "Angels for Aubry" the group have organized a benefit at 4 p.m. on May 11 at Miller Middle School to help the Glenn family defray significant medical expenses.
Tiffany Eibs, Kathy Luethje, Crystal Prusha, Amber Robbins and Bill and Heather Simmons, among others, will be working that day while hosting a bake sale, silent auction and other activities.

Fact Box

If You Go ...
WHAT: Benefit for Aubry Glenn, 14, of Marshalltown
WHEN: 4 p.m., May 11
WHERE: Miller Middle School, 125 S. 11th St., Marshalltown

"We'll auction a whole hog, other items, and have T-shirts and sweatshirts for sale at $10 and $20 respectively," said Prusha.
Aubry's brother, mixed martial arts fighter Rick Glenn of Milwaukee, will be on hand, and will contribute autographed memorabilia for the auction
The group is sponsoring a meal, too, with a $5 requested donation.
Aubry's fight is the second major medical challenge to confront the Marshalltown family.
Aubry's father, Frank, is recovering from open heart surgery.
"Aubry is hoping she is well enough to travel to Marshalltown on May 11," said Paulette Glenn, Aubry's grandmother, who stays with Aubry. "Because the cancer is so close to her spine, surgery is not an option. So Aubry has radiation treatments five days a week at, which are hard on her."
If those treatments are successful, Aubry will be allowed to return home, but must partake in extensive chemotherapy treatments.