Ancestry DNA Experience

photo by Emma Jolly

A few weeks ago, I received the results of my Ancestry DNA test. The experience of using the test and sending it in was pretty straightforward. Prepare to spit a lot if you’re going to do one; the amount of saliva required was more than I expected and it took awhile for me to collect… Continue reading Ancestry DNA Experience

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Categorized as Genealogy

On Writer’s Block

I’ll let you in on a secret: I haven’t written a word in two months. This is a highly unusual state of affairs for me. Even when the words aren’t flowing easily, and there have been lots of times when they haven’t, there are words most days, or at least most weeks. Only deliberate vacations,… Continue reading On Writer’s Block

Mastering Writing Craft?

I was skimming through a bunch of blog posts recently, and came across one that said an unnamed “famous” writer had mastered his craft and no longer needed editorial help. I’ve since lost track of where I read it, but the sentence stood out to me, making me want to yell various things at my… Continue reading Mastering Writing Craft?

Three Things on a Friday Afternoon

This topic came up in a random conversation the other day, and I thought it was a fun one to put on the blog, mostly because I’d really love to hear your own answers to this: what are three things most people probably don’t know about you? I found it hard to come up with… Continue reading Three Things on a Friday Afternoon

Catching up on Links

Today is one of those rare days when I’m taking an hour to catch up on reading all the cool links I’ve clicked through to and left sitting open on my browser until I have so many windows open my computer is struggling to breathe. Among them is stuff that might be of interest to… Continue reading Catching up on Links

Women's Fiction: Your Favourite Quiet Reads

I write what are typically called “quiet books”, women’s fiction with character-driven stories about relationships and the choices we make and human emotions and all that good stuff. Not surprisingly, those are also the kinds of books I love to read. Thanks to (the perfect) thank you gift I received in the form of a… Continue reading Women's Fiction: Your Favourite Quiet Reads

SiWC 2015

As anyone reading this likely already knows, I have just wrapped up a full year of work that culminated, as it always does, in the gathering of hundreds of writers at the Surrey International Writers’ Conference. It’s always bittersweet for me when the conference is over. It’s wonderful to experience the conference through the eyes… Continue reading SiWC 2015

Scotland Photos

A few people have been asking me to see photos of my trip to Scotland in May. I flew to Edinburgh, and from there worked my way up to Elgin, where I met up with my parents, who were touring around, too, to spend several days touring all the family history areas of the country… Continue reading Scotland Photos

Stopping to Listen

I’m not writing today. I’m tempted. I have a story that’s been talking to me for a couple of weeks now, asserting itself with scene ideas when I’m trying to sleep, keeping my mind occupied when I’m running errands or working out or doing any of the thousand things we do in a day that… Continue reading Stopping to Listen

Query Tips From My Inbox

I don’t claim to be an expert on query letters, and I’m not a literary agent. But in my day job as a conference coordinator, I get a LOT of inquiries from people who are interested in being part of our conference. Most of these are perfectly reasonable emails, but by around this time every… Continue reading Query Tips From My Inbox