Big Words- but write what you know

Do you ever come across a word that you’ve never heard before? One that sounds imppressive but you aren’t sure of the meaning? Here’s one — ultracrepidarianism. I heard it used on a Ted Talk and just had to look it up. It means ‘the habit of giving advice outside of one’s knowledge or competence.’ Great word, eh? (that ‘eh’ tells you I’m Canadian)

The challenge would be- how to use it? Can you imagine a situation where you might slip it into a casual conversation? For one thing, just pronouncing it means it won’t slip in anywhere.  However, my challenge this week is to use it without stumbling over my tongue. 

This is one thing about writing that I always expound on (but not ad nauseum, of course). Write what you know. That’s my rule and I think a good one. I have a background in business, law, hard work. When I read a book about business and find something silly in it, it means I have to stop reading and put the book down . Don’t speculate about what it might be like to be a business owner, a physician, a cop, a worker in a laundromat. Find out, check  your facts, ask someone with knowledge to help you out. That way you can form your story with confidence. Happy reading!

Putting the Garden to bed

I’ve finished putting my garden to bed. It involved digging out all the tomato plants, the cucumbers and squash plants and throwing them in the compost bin. Next was the pruning, all the shrubs and bushes, the pear tree which refuses to give us any fruit.

Then we started to dig–the Dahlias will rot in our soil if I don’t dig them out.

I dig them up, use the hose to wash the dirt off, and stack them on the patio out of the rain to dry before packing them into tote boxes covered in shredded newspaper. This picture shows about 75 clumps of bulbs. They certainly expand in numbers and I usually cut the bigger bunches into pieces when replanting in the spring. I’m no expert. I know many people take them all apart, pick the best bulbs and dump the rest, but this works for me.

When I first planted dahlias, it was because roses don’t survive here. I refused to dig the dahlias up, way too much work. But as the crop failed due to rot through the winter, I decided it was worthwhile. The dahlias bloom from July to October, certainly worth my while to plan each year. 🙂

What do you do with your garden in the fall?

The Last War series is still on sale, Book One and Two at 99 cents each,

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Begin The Last War series for 99 cents

Start this Romantic Suspense/Sci Fi Series for .99!

The Last War Series — Romantic Suspense in a Science Fiction World…   

What readers are saying about the Last War:

“Major Dante seeks justice for Beth in the tough world of Khandarken. Loved this book and couldn’t stop reading. Ready for more in this superb story.”

“This…was a humdinger! I could not put it down and continued to read it from beginning to the end in one setting; late night! The story is well written, and the world is finely described.”

“There are plots within plots, subterfuge and battles, treachery and loyalty; all leading to an exciting story line that makes you want to read the next book in the series.”

The Last War: Book One, Khandarken Rising: Major Dante Regiment seeks justice for Beth, even if he has to provide it himselfThe Last War: Book One, Khandarken Rising: Major Dante Regiment seeks justice for Beth, even if he has to provide it himself $0.99 For a limited time!

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“I could not put this down. This is full of mystery, romance, obsession. I can’t wait for the second book.

The Emperor has been defeated. New countries have arisen from the ashes of the old Empire. The citizens swear they will never need to fight again after that long and painful war.
Bethlehem Farmer is doing her best to help her brother Abram hold things together in south Khandarken after their father died in the battles. She is looking after the dispossessed, keeping the farm productive and the talc mine working in the hills behind their land. But when Abram takes a trip with Uncle Jade into the northern territory and disappears without a trace, she’s left on her own. Suddenly things are not what they seem and no one can be trusted.
Major Dante Regiment is sent by his father, the General of Khandarken, to find out what the situation is at Farmer Holdings. What he sees shakes him to the core and fuels his grim determination to protect Bethlehem at all cost, even with his life.

Ms Grayson has created a fascinating new world with a lot of the same old problems. Sci fi and fantasy rolled into one with a sure hand and enormous imagination.

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From the mud and danger of the open road to the welcoming arms of the Sanctuary, from attacks by the dispossessed army to the storms of the open sea, Son of the Emperor takes us on a wild ride into danger and on to the dream of freedom.

The Emperor is defeated but already unrest is growing in the north of Khandarken.
After Julianne Adjudicator’s father disappears, she seeks to escape the clutches of her vicious stepmother Zanata, and flees to the Sanctuary. This is the safest place for a woman in a hostile world of unrest and roving dispossessed. But when Julianne seeks asylum, it soon becomes clear all is not as it first appeared.
Then Abe Farmer arrives at the Sanctuary seeking medical help. Abe isn’t interested in taking a young woman with them, as he and his injured bodyguard struggle to return to the Southern Territory. Yet when he discovers her fate if she stays, he finds he has no choice.
But the journey becomes more dangerous as they encounter the army of the New Emperor. Caught in the middle of a firefight, they flee toward the Catastrophic Ocean. Can Abe keep her safe till they reach home?

The Last War series is a stunning portrayal of a new world created from fire and consumed at the edges …- sci fi and fantasy at its best…

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The Last War series is one of a kind. The personal relationships are intriguing… The names are cool, the plot gets thicker with each page, and I loved the author’s style. I was sad to be finished and impressed by the world that Grayson was able to create. The descriptions were so real and the well-developed characters and sensuous love scenes make this a page turner.
Emperor Carlton has been backed into a corner, with his visions of expansion collapsing all around him. The skirmishes he’s launched have had limited success. But he has a new plan to overthrow everything Khandarken has cobbled together since the end of the Last War, and he knows just the man to make it happen. Chief Constable Cownden Lanser is a private man with a close connection to the Old Empire that he doesn’t divulge to anyone. Although he’s dedicated to his position in Khandarken, things are not what they seem in the rank and file of the police. And it’s his job to fix it. Selanna Nettles is a sookie, trained in Legitamia, who works with the disposessed and injured workers in the Western Territory near her family. When she meets Lanser, her life takes a startling turn once he hires her to accompany him to a set of high-level meetings in Gilsigg. In Legitamia, these three meet up and the result is explsive. Not just for each of them but for the future of Khandarken. When the Emperor makes Conden an offer, can he refuse? Espcially as it is everything he’s secretly dreamed of.

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Damian Stuke was an enforcer for a gamer, but now he is in training as an undercover agent for the Khandarken military. Then he encounters a fascinating woman with a hidden agenda. But when he discovers what she is hiding, his protective instincts kick into high gear.
Fanny Master is from the elite in Khandarken, and when both her parents are murdered, she is forced to run for her life, or be the next victim of her hunter. Amid the chaos of the International Head Ball Games and as Emperor Carlton ramps up his plans for invasion, her attacker makes another attempt on her life. Will Damian save her from her unknown enemy, or is he still working for the other side?

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Shandro, Prince of the Penrhy tribe of Jiran, disagrees with his father, Sovereign Pollack, on nearly every issue that arises between them. But his goal is to uphold the family values in spite of Pollack’s conniving moves as he deals with the hotbed of competing nations surrounding them.
Then Shandro is sent on a mission across the mountains into Khandarken to bring back Princess Chinata, a bride for Emperor Carlton’s Advisor. In exchange, Jiran and the Penrhy tribe are given a peace agreement, protection against invasion by the Emperor’s troops. This seems a good trade, as Carlton is hovering on their borders with his need for more land. However, not far into the journey, it becomes apparent someone is not adhering to the terms of the peace accord.
Near the tribal border, Shandro and his troops have come under direct attack from unknown forces. He digs deeper into Chinata’s background to find strong ties to the New Empire. Is it too dangerous to bring Princess Chinata into Jiran? Or as her escort, does Shandro become her defender against the Emperor’s troops?

Banderos, The Last War: Book Six: Loyal Hawker has been drawn into the Banderos family feud and he must protect Angel any way he can from her brother’s ruthless ambitions $1.99 For a limited time! 

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Loyal Hawker, an undercover agent for the Khandarken military, has never met anyone quite like the woman he encounters on his trip to the south. He’s approached by Angel, only daughter among the many sons of Gerwal Banderos, a well-known strongman who seized much of the unclaimed territory north of Adar Silva at the end of the Last War. Angel declares her father wants to meet with him on a matter of urgency. While suspicious of her intentions as she leads him across extensive territory toward the Banderos compound, Loyal can’t deny his attraction to her. With Emperor Carlton invading in an attempt to reclaim his Empire, danger hovers over the Banderos land, and the brothers show they’re not as united as they first appear. During the ensuing chaos, when the compound is besieged, Loyal must work in the midst of deceit and betrayal to protect what is left of Angel’s heritage. Can he survive long enough to find out who’s targeting Angel and save her from her treacherous brothers?

Belated Birthday Celebration!

I met my sisters for lunch this week. They ambushed me with a wonderful homemade birthday cake and presents. (My birthday is in July)

Blooming sunflowers from their gardens.

Many lovely hand stitched cloth bags to hold whatever I need.

I teased them– asking if this was last year’s birthday celebration or next year’s? The answer– last year’s. If it was for next year, they would have waited a few more months.

How blessed am I, to have such siblings.