“This here place? Worse than the backside of Hades.” ~ Hank Varney
First let me say, this here trip to Slagton weren’t my idea. This place is chock full of bad company done helped itself to a double dose of bad medicine.
Slagton needs cleanin’, accordin’ to Miss Clem, and I know the crew to do it. I’m one of ’em. Hank Varney’s the name. Miss Clem and me, along with the two Sidewinders from Santa Fe—we’ll get the sharp-toothed vermin cleared out.
Now, some people say I’m lucky, but I don’t know if’n it’ll do me any good, what with the army of trouble me an’ the crew are facin’. If’n we don’t live through it, well, there goes Deadwood. Maybe even the whole of the Black Hills.
We’ll all be down the privy hole then, lookin’ up at the Backside of Hades.
“A Fantastic new series you will Love’”by Enchanted
“I wasn’t sure what to expect from a visit to the past world of the Deadwood Violet Parker lives in. I am amazed at how real it feels!. Will definitely read more!!!,” by LisaReadsALot
Other Books in The Series:
There was a lot to love about the book. The characters are deep and interesting. The authors do a great job of giving the story an authentic wild west feel. The pacing was good and kept me turning the page_ Markus Matthews
I guess I’m hooked on Ann Charles books, especially her Deadwood series. They’re quick reads, about 300 pgs but with murder mystery, romance, paranormal situations and comedy, interesting eccentric characters… they’ve got it all _ Polly Picklez
Like Paranormal, Western, Mysteries or a mix containing all of them, you’ll like this book. Western comes first with 2 guys riding into old Deadwood circa early mining days. Supernatural strikes next with a nasty critter. Mystery unfolds as the expected person is missing. You will like this book as read alone, but you will love it if you read the series in order! Start with “Life at the Coffin Joint”, written by 2 of my favorite authors _ Morgue Rabbit
Sweet, touching and funny all the way through. I loved every moment! _ Black Hills Belle
About The Duo!
Ann Charles is a USA Today Best-Selling author who writes spicy, award-winning mysteries full of
Junction Mystery Series, Dig Site Mystery Series, Deadwood Undertaker Series (with her husband, Sam Lucky), and AC Silly Circus Mystery Series. Her Deadwood Mystery Series has won multiple national awards, including the Daphne du Maurier for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. Ann has a B.A. in English with an emphasis on creative writing from the University of Washington and is a member of Sisters in Crime and Western Writers of America.
Sam Lucky likes to build things—from Jeep engines to Old West buildings to fun stories. When he is not writing, feeding his kids, attempting to seduce his wife, or attending the goldurn cats, he is planning food-based book signing/road trips with his wife and working on one of his many home-improvement projects.
As writers/authors, we want our books to become well known, best sellers, and even made into movies. It is a dream that most of us will never accomplish and that’s okay. I feel that my stories are my legacy into the future, where they will be read by future generations and enjoyed. That is true fame to my way of thinking.
Best seller lists are a false statistic anyway – it is the retail orders volume that put such books on the various lists not their imaginative plots or narratives, but perceived sales. Most celebrities will have ‘best sellers’ because the general public want to read about them – for good or bad. Thus the bookstores will order more to accommodate the promotional machine afforded such tomes.
So my message to you is don’t be disheartened, and certainly don’t think ‘success’ can only be measured with these false statistics or lists created by the media. If you have sales and reviews, receive congratulations, and comments on your stories that is true fame.
If you look at the following list, you will see more modern books have made record sales thus proving the promotional circus works. The book industry is now global and this contributes to these sales figures.
25 Best-Selling Books of All-Time
#1 – Don Quixote (500 million copies sold) #2 – A Tale of Two Cities (200 million copies sold) #3 – The Lord of the Rings (150 million copies sold) #4 – The Little Prince (142 million copies sold) #5 – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (107 million copies sold) #6 – And Then There Were None (100 million copies sold) #7 – The Dream of the Red Chamber (100 million copies sold) #8 – The Hobbit (100 million copies sold) #9 – She: A History of Adventure (100 million copies sold) #10 – The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (85 million copies sold) #11 – The Da Vinci Code (80 million copies sold) #12 – Think and Grow Rich (70 million copies sold) #13 – Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (65 million copies sold) #14 – The Catcher in the Rye (65 million copies sold) #15 – The Alchemist (65 million copies sold) #16 – Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (60 million copies sold) #17 – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (55 million copies sold) #18 – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (55 million copies sold) #19 – Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (55 million copies sold) #20 – Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (50 million copies sold) #21 – One Hundred Years of Solitude (50 million copies sold) #22 – Lolita (50 million copies sold) #23 – Anne of Green Gables (50 million copies sold) #24 – Charlotte’s Web (50 million copies sold) #25 – Black Beauty (50 million copies sold)
Be happy with your ‘success’ no matter what shape it takes. After all, you wrote and published a book (or books) and that is worth celebrating for its own worth. Many people dream of doing it and never do. Chasing a pipe dream makes us disillusioned and that is not good – pat yourself on the back for what you have achieved. It is remarkable.
As a poet and a writer, which format do you enjoy writing the most?
Poetry has always been my favourite format. Playing with words in a creative way helps me choose words to express abstract ideas. Because words have nuances and “halos” its important to make clear connections between the words and the feelings behind them. For me, the process of writing, whether poetry or prose involves feelings. For this reason, my Roget’s Thesaurus is a very useful reference book.
If others can relate to what I’m saying or are inspired by my words, I know the meaning has come through. Its comforting to know that someone else feels as I do. Poetry reveals parts of me that might otherwise remain hidden and that gives me courage to reveal my inner self and I can then be true to my values and integrity. When I feel connected to others and to nature, poetry reveals beauty. For me, its essential to be amazed.
Why is metaphor important to you?
Some people are literal minded and think in black and white whereas others colour their worlds with metaphor. This tool of the imagination affects how I see and respond to the world and how I interact with others. Metaphor can bring clarity in communication between people with opposite viewpoints because it expresses a relationship between things and ideas. For example, when my husband and I have difficulty finding common ground, we are able to access mutual understanding in a way that we cannot otherwise. Metaphor offers a big picture perspective. Colourful language creates mental imagery that boosts insight into feelings. Because perspective is so important to me, looking through the lens of metaphor provides a powerful source of soul wisdom for sharing my world.
Was the transition from poetry to fiction writing difficult?
The transition was not difficult but was freeing. A few years ago, when I attended a life writing class to find material for poetry, I wasn’t very confident in my ability to write prose. When I began telling stories about my family history and my childhood, the switch to prose opened a new world to me. I realized I had a unique story and I could share it with others.
How do you choose which format to write in, once an idea forms?
Prose lends itself to the concrete and poetry to the nebulous. I use poetic language in my prose as it creates imagery and is often a way to express difficult situations or emotions, whether my own or someone else’s experience. For me, the two formats are intertwined. I love the threads connecting all aspects of my being: physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. One of the big differences between writing poetry on demand using a prompt and writing prose from a prompt is that poetry come from inspiration. Prose doesn’t necessarily do that and when it comes from my imagination, is becomes fiction.
What inspired you to write a memoir fiction novel?
One of the effects of the constant moving experienced by children who do not have long lasting connection to people and community influenced my access to memory. I took the events that I did remember and built stories around them to make sense of them and find meaning in my life. I had written lot of short pieces and the best format seemed to be a novel-in-short-stories in which I created individual stories based on real experience. Each of the stories could stand alone, but the reading of them in sequence enhanced the whole story as a novel would.
Where did the ideas come from for your children’s books?
My 96-year-old mother is a great storyteller and she relishes family tales about her children. “Not My Daddy” was created from one of her stories about watching for my father as soldiers in identical uniforms got off a bus. “Naughty Alice” is also a story from my childhood. The delightful child in this story is my own Inner Child who wanted to help her Grammie tailor a new coat. The third book “Grandma’s Big, Big Backyard” was created to record the experience of my own grandchildren playing in the backyard.
How important is connection with other writers for you?
Being part of a community of writers allows me to share my writing experience and ideas with others. I enjoy encouraging other writers with positive feedback and constructive criticism. Because writing is a solitary activity, having a community of others who understand the challenges of the writing life is essential. Everyone who writes has something to share with the world and we all need connection to be our best.
Do you have a writing space – describe it.
We recently purchased a ground floor condo with two bedrooms and a study and I was excited to make the study my own. My first priority was to purchase a new desk, repurposed a credenza for storage and utilized an antique china cabinet to display my books and special keepsakes. I love the light that pours in through the frosted glass French doors. I’ve put up all my favourite pictures and made the space my own.
What message do you wish to convey to your readers?
The stories we tell ourselves shape our lives and what we believe about the world. As poet Edith Sodergran once said, “…poetry is a way to me.” All of my writing has been the way to me. I’ve spent my whole writing life searching for this person who is me and I want my readers to know that writing is a wonderful way to discover who you really are.
Where can readers find you and your work?
Please look for books by Kathie Sutherland on Amazon.ca or visit my Facebook page Kathie Sutherland Author. All of my books are available from me directly. Contact me at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. My publisher Dream Write Publishing from Sherwood Park, Alberta also sells my books. https://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/ Many of my books are part of the local author library collections at Strathcona County and Fort Saskatchewan Public Libraries.
Kathie Sutherland is a mature, observant student of life who is retired and lives in Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta with her husband of 42 years. She has two fiercely independent adult daughters, and two adult grandchildren. A Canadian by birth, she celebrates differences in culture, outlook and lifestyle, and appreciates the benefits of living in other parts of Canada and beyond. Her love affair with language is lifelong, and her unique narrative voice infuses all her writing with authenticity.
Over the past 30 years Kathie Sutherland has written poetry, personal essay, fairy tale, a true events autobiographical novel and three children’s books. Her love of words and their “halos” fanned the flame of her desire to understand the profound and lasting effects of her childhood in a constantly moving Canadian military family through personal journaling, continued learning and reflection. She believes that loss and loneliness can be transformed into love and connection by writing short life stories rich in life wisdom. Recently, she has given voice to her playful side in her based-on-real-events children’s books.
Kathie Sutherland is involved in two local writing groups and fully enjoys encouraging others in their writing projects. She also leads a reminiscence group at a local seniors lodge, helps others write legacy letters at the end of life, as well as being active in a local church community. She enjoys aquafit, pastel painting and travel to interesting places.
After the frantic word count goal of November, for those of us who participated in National Novel Writing Month, December is a strangely quiet month. No longer are we racing home after work to write those elusive 1667 words for the day’s total, and hoping to exceed them. We miss the rush, the excitement, even the panic. Initially, we feel relief, then goalless and at odds with ourselves. Now, we are floating in an undisciplined mode, unable to feel comfortable – that impetuous has gone.
We all know a goal is a good thing to have. It aids our making a deadline for publisher demands, editing and revising or any self imposed goal, whether for our writing or something else. So, what is the answer? Well, we have options:
1. Continue with our NaNo project and complete the novel.
2. Leave the project to ‘rest’ or percolate until the ending, plot arc, story line etc. solidifies in your mind (if it hasn’t already.)
3. Edit and revise what you have written. We all know it will need this at some point.
4. Begin another project, or return to another unfinished one.
5. Take a break from writing. Delve into the season’s festivities.
No matter which course you take, do what is best for you. Struggling to complete a writing project, when the holidays are approaching and you have other commitments, is not the way to go. Your project will be there waiting for you.