Saturday 18 November 2017

Returning Guest Author Jason Lawson of New Brunswick

Jason Lawson knows how to tell a story. With numerous published works to his credit, he has agreed to be the Scribbler’s guest this week and participate in a 4Q Session. This is his second visit to the Scribbler. He shared an amusing short story in February, 2014 and if you missed it, please go here. And find an excerpt below from one of his favorite stories.
Discover more about Jason at 



4Q: The latest news is your just published novel - Visions. This is a sequel to your first published novel – The Vision. Tells us about them.

JL: I didn’t really plan to write a sequel to my novel, ‘the vision’, I had no problem leaving Henry in limbo, for me it was the end. However, the story really didn’t end there. For one thing, I sold the movie rights to the book. I then spent the better part of the next year turning the novel into  a screenplay. During that time, I began receiving a lot of emails and messages from readers asking me to please write a sequel. The problem was, I couldn’t until the screenwriting was done. Once the screenwriting was completed, I took some time to figure out where I wanted to the story to go, then I wrote it.  ‘visions’ picks up where ‘the vision’ left off. Henry is still in a coma, living in an ancient world, but he’s beginning to heal and hear voices from reality. 
4Q: This is your eighth novel Jason. Congratulations of course, but which one is your favorite and why?

JL: For some reason, I’m still enamoured with ‘Frack Off’ and ‘Recession Proof’. I guess it comes with the joy of making people laugh. Also, writing humorous fiction is more challenging than anything else I’ve tried. It’s difficult to keep the laughs rolling for an entire novel, so when it works out, I’m very pleased.

4Q: Pleased share a childhood anecdote or memory with us.

JL: It actually fits in with the last question. I remember as a kid, visiting the neighbors and watching a comedian on TV with them. The performer was quite vulgar and I remember the lady of the house saying, “If you need to swear to make people laugh, then you’re really not funny.” That sentence is always in the back of my mind when I’m working on something humorous. Sure, a well-placed curse is always comical, but if what you’re writing needs vulgarity to work, then it’s really not funny or well thought out.
(cartoon  credited to crabby road)

4Q: Are you still doing any screenwriting and what’s next for JL?

JL: I never stop writing, I think it’s an addiction. I just finished my first ‘based-on-a-true-story’ novel, which I hope will be out in early 2018. I’m working on several development proposals for television stations, and am waiting on news regarding a screenplay that I wrote in 2015. It may go into production in the New Year, but we haven’t received confirmation yet. All fingers are crossed.

This year I also signed with a new publisher, Wolfpack Publishing, which are based in the United States. They’ve been great to work with, and have taken ALL my older titles, so they haven’t all been re-released yet. But they will all be available again real soon.

Thanks for asking such great questions!
An Excerpt from Frack Off.
(Copyright is held by the author. Used with permission)

  Frack Off is one of my favorite novels. It is a humorous fiction about a crooked politician who gets blackmailed by an irate landowner to stop the controversial practice of Fracking from happening. In this scene, the politician, Dan Clark, is about to leave on a hunting trip with the Premier, and is chatting with his assistant, Martin.                    

  "So, how do I look, Martin?" Dan asked as he strode into the campaign office dressed in camouflage from head to toe.
  "Wow sir, I almost didn't recognize you."
  "That's good. Or at least I think. Do you really think this is going to fool a moose?" Dan wondered if he looked down at his clothes.
  "I think the idea is for you to blend in with the scenery sir."
  "Right. It's just too bad someone hasn't invented an outfit that resembles a chrome pole and some chairs. Imagine the fun I could have at the strip club."
  "That reminds me sir." Martin started with a look of concern on his face. "I've had no less than six complaints already from constituents who saw you there the other night."
  "Hmm. Anonymous ones no doubt."
  "Yes sir. No one left a name."
  "So who cares? If no one's brave enough to say who they are, they're certainly not going to appear on camera to talk about it. What's that old saying? Let him who is free of sins cast the first ballot?"
  "I believe that's stone
, sir."
  "Yeah. Whatever. Nothing to worry about. Every one of the dancers said they were going to vote for me. And there were eight of them. Minus the six complaints and I'm still ahead by two votes."
  "Oh God," Martin exhaled. "By the way sir, the premier's office called and said he'd be picking you up here shortly."
  "Perfect. I'm all packed. Ready to beat around the bush. Put the moose in the noose. We should be sitting by the campfire discussing my promotion to deputy premier before the day's out."
  "Just be careful
, sir. I'll take care of things here while you're gone."
  "Be sure to let the media know that I'm rubbing elbows with the premier on a moospedition will you? That will do wonders for my profile."
  "It won't if I call it a moospedition
, sir."
  "Right. I know you'll come up with the proper description. And thanks for being here so early to see me off. Why in the name of god do we have to leave at this ungodly hour? Couldn't we have an afternoon excursion?"
  "I think it's because the moose are more active around dawn
, sir."
  "I thought that was roosters."
  "You see. It's like. Oh never mind
, sir. It would take me too long to explain it."
  "No problem. It's time to go anyways." Dan remarked as he pointed out the window to a massive SUV that was pulling up. "That's the premier's hunting truck."
  "What a gas guzzler." Martin said with disgust.
  "It sure is. Vehicles like that are great for the economy
, Martin. They cost a fortune and use up a lot fuel. That creates tax revenue. I thought a political science major like yourself would know that."
  "Except that the taxpayers paid for that vehicle and the gas that goes in it."
  "Details. Details. Wish me luck
, Martin." Dan said, exited the office and walked towards the bloated vehicle.
  "You there!" A well-dressed man on the sidewalk stuck out his hand. "Dan Clark. I just wanted to say keep up the good work and I've convinced my entire staff to vote for you."
  "Thank you
, sir." Dan shook his hand. "What a great way to start the day. An early endorsement from an early riser."
  "Why are you dressed in camouflage? Going to spy on the opposition?" he said with a snicker.
  "No sir. But that's a good idea. Actually I'm on my way out of town to bag a moose."
  "What!? Why you traitor! You told me if I voted for you, you were going to make all forms of hunting illegal. Don't you remember me?"
  "Sure I do." Dan stared at him hard. "But it's still pretty dark out. And I'm not wearing my glasses."
  "You didn't have any the day you came to my office."
  "Or contacts."
  "I'm Wally Sparks, head of the animal shelter and president of Friends of Wildlife. You said if I donated to your campaign you'd make all forms of hunting illegal!"
  "I am sir, I am. I'm working on it as we speak."
  "You just said you were going to bag a moose!"
  "Tag a moose
, Willy. Tag a moose. We're going to monitor these mammals and find out what route they're taking when they go south for the winter. If we can figure out what roads they're crossing on their migration to the southern states, we might be able to put in some animal crosswalks. Do you have any idea how many moose-related fatalities are reported each year?"
  "What? That's insane?"
  "Oh no
, Walter. Car accidents are very serious. That's why we're driving this over-sized SUV. If a moose should jump in front of us, we're going to make sure we come out on top. So to speak. Thanks again for your contribution and don't worry sir. A vote for Dan is a vote for the moose, bears, and any other animal that you like. Leave a list with my assistant Martin. Good day to you." Dan smiled as he jumped into the SUV. "Floor it, Mr. Premier."

For you readers looking for Jason’s books or more information on this clever storyteller, please check out these links. 

Thank you so much Jason for being our guest this week.


And a special thank you to our visitors and readers. Please tell us your thoughts below in the comment section. We’d love to hear from you.

Saturday 11 November 2017

Guest Author Ivan 'Doc' Holiday of Florida

"I haven't seen everything as a bouncer, but I've seen enough!" - quote by our guest, Ivan 'Doc' Holiday.

This is the Doc's second visit to the Scribbler. He participated in a 4Q Session in February, 2016 and you can read it here

He is accepted worldwide as a leading authority in the field of nightclub & bar security today. At 59 years old, Doc has worked over 150 nightclubs & bars in both Canada and the US, a career spanning 35 years. Doc is the REAL Roadhouse. The author of four books pertaining to nightclub and bar security, he travels worldwide, offering his expertise as the ‘Best Damn Cooler in the Business’ to establishments with bouncer problems and serious security issues. His new book 'Roadhouse Legacy' is Ivan's first fiction novel.

An excerpt from his novel - Roadhouse Legacy. (copyright is held by the author. Used with permission)

Back at the house, Katherine sat at the kitchen table with a pen and a few sheets of writing paper.  Her letter was short but hard to write. She didn't want to sound desperate or foolish. She was writing a letter to a man she had never met. Who was this Wade Garrett that her dad was staking his whole life's savings on, along with hers and Casey’s?  Katherine fought the fiends of doubt and fear that taunted her as she wrote. Her pen moved across the white paper as the light from the desk lamp flickered and followed her every stroke.  Katherine sighed with relief as she finally signed her name at the bottom of the page. There would be no redraft or grammar check. She wanted to mail it quickly before the feeling of doubtfulness forced her to abandon all hope. Katherine sealed the envelope and stared at the name and address written on the front.

Mr. Wade Garrett

C/O The Double Deuce

1998 Young Street

Jasper, Missouri


She hoped that her dad was right. Katherine didn't believe in asking God for a miracle, but at this moment she could use all the help she could get. Katherine felt almost like a schoolgirl pressing the letter to her lips for good-luck. Sent with a hope and a prayer, she hoped that her Dad was right and said a prayer that this Wade Garrett would come.
Ivan's novel is available as an eBook here 
Paperback available in December.
Thanks for sharing a portion of your novel Ivan. Good luck with your book.
A SPECIAL THANKS TO YOU THE VISITOR - Please share your thoughts in the comment box at the bottom.
Hey there Book Worms, the latest Drake Alexander action/adventure novel is ready as an eBook. Wall of War can be found on or for $2.99.


Deep in the wilderness of the Peruvian Andes lies a monument hidden for centuries. Who were the builders? Why was it abandoned? What secrets does it reveal?
In 1953, an amateur rock climber makes a startling discovery. Overwhelmed by the choices he must make, the mountaineer completes his ascent deciding he will document his findings and present them to his superiors as soon as possible. It will take another fifty years before anyone reads what he wrote.
In 2004 news of the strange revelation reaches Drake Alexander. He will become involved whether he likes it or not. People very dear to him are plunged into a nightmare of avarice, impairment and death. Using all his skills as an ex-soldier, with accomplices he can trust, can he save his tormented friends from the raiders that thirst for the secret that lies within the mountains?
Available at Kindle    Go HERE

Saturday 4 November 2017

Guest Author Sally Cronin of the UK.

Have you ever met a person that goes out of their way to be nice?

That’s Sally Cronin and we are so happy to have her as our guest this week on the Scribbler. She was willing to participate in a 4Q and share an excerpt from her work with us.

Thank you very much for your invitation to be interviewed Allan, and for the great questions. Delighted to be featured here with so many of my favourite authors.


I have been a storyteller most of my life (my mother called them fibs!). Poetry, song lyrics and short stories were left behind when work and life intruded, but that all changed in 1996. My first book Size Matters was a health and weight loss book based on my own experiences of losing 70kilo. I have written another ten books since then on health and also fiction including three collections of short stories. I am an indie author and proud to be one. My greatest pleasure comes from those readers who enjoy my take on health, characters and twisted endings… and of course come back for more. 

Please see Sally’s links below.

4Q: Before we talk about writing, it is without question that you are one of the most generous authors I’ve met online when it comes to promoting other artists and writers. Is there a reason for that?
SC:  Thank you for the compliment Allan, and there is an important reason behind my commitment to sharing the work of others. When I was first starting out twenty years ago as a writer, it was a very different story when it came to marketing Indie books. Without the Internet it was a question of sending letter after letter to the media both local and national, and it was very difficult to get any kind of response. I was very lucky to get the press coverage that I did; but I look back at that time as being very stressful and disheartening. 

The world of publishing has changed considerably, particularly in the last decade. The opportunities to publish books are varied and improving all the time. However, this has resulted in millions of titles hitting the online book shelves each year.  In many ways this is fantastic, but it has created exactly the same problem for authors as I faced twenty years ago; getting books in front of potential readers.

The numbers are overwhelming, but I firmly believe that instead of trying to make a difference to everyone, you start by making a difference to a few.  At the moment I promote around 25 authors a week in various promotional posts, sharing them on my blog and with social media followers. I have spent the last four years building those platforms to an effective level to promote my own books, and it makes sense to me to use them to give other authors a boost at the same time. 

The community of online bloggers and authors is without a doubt a very generous one; their reciprocation on their platforms is very much appreciated.  Without massive budgets for advertising and promotion, it is probably the most effective form of marketing for the majority of authors.


4Q: You have many publications to your credit but which one is your favorite and why?

SC: Probably my favourite book is Just an Odd Job Girl since it is mainly auto-biographical as far as the main events are concerned. It took me a while to find a career that I really enjoyed which was the hospitality industry.  I began work at the age of fourteen at weekends and during school holidays along the seafront in Portsmouth and then moved from job to job as need and circumstances dictated.
Thankfully I was never out of work, as I believed in doing whatever I needed, to bring home a weekly wage packet, including temping at certain times.  Apart from jobs that lasted a number of years , I have also worked in a funeral parlour, brokered bull semen, washed dishes in a Chinese restaurant, typed 100 cheques a day for an insurance company (some of which 40 years ago were several times my annual salary) and spent a snowy February lambing.

Writing the book brought back so many memories of those days, and the response from those who have read it, and found it entertaining, is the icing on the cake.


4Q: Please share a childhood memory or anecdote.

SC: We travelled a great deal when I was a child as my father was a Royal Naval officer and was stationed in Sri Lanka (then Ceylon), Malta and South Africa. My first memories would be from about the age of three when we were living in Ceylon. I had two elder sisters who were ten and eleven years older than I was. I had an amah (nanny) during the day, but when my sisters arrived back from school, I would be handed over to them. I am sure at thirteen and fourteen they were thrilled to have me trailing behind them, but they were very good to me. Everything that they did, I would do too; including swimming behind them in the sea in my rubber ring.
Both were excellent swimmers and divers. One afternoon there was a school swimming and diving competition and we went as a family to watch the two girls compete. My eldest sister climbed the ladder to the high board and walked to the end, executing an excellent dive into the sea. She came to the surface expecting applause from the audience; instead there was absolute silence followed by a universal gasp from the spectators. 

Not to be outdone, I had wandered away from my parents and climbed the ladder to the diving board, tottering to the end where I had last seen my sister.  Noticing her far below me in the water, I decided to follow suit and jumped.  I surfaced completely unaware of the horror that I had inflicted on the crowd, my sisters and parents, and exclaimed "Again"

My life to be honest has been a little like that at times!  Either by accident or design, and I have to say I have loved every minute of it.


4Q: This is a double question for you Sally. What inspires your stories and what are you working on?

SC: I have given this question a great deal of thought over the years and I have come to the conclusion that it is life which inspires me. It is so complex; filled with such vivid experiences, good and bad, that you do not have to look far for inspiration. As I mentioned in the previous question, I was very lucky to have travelled as a child, and in adulthood I have spent more of my life abroad than I have in the UK. Such a rich tapestry of different cultures, peoples and experiences that have made such an impact on me.
Probably the most significant element of this life we lead, is the people that we meet and their stories that we absorb. Most of my characters are drawn from this reservoir of people I have met; had relationships with, or even met in passing through airports or on a train. I find people fascinating and that is magic for a writer.

My latest project is a follow up to Tales from the Garden which was set in our home in Madrid. This second book is set in a number of gardens here in Ireland and features some of the characters from the first set of short stories. Including the fairy Queen Filigree and her court who have escaped from Spain, finding sanctuary in The Storyteller's garden.

I have a number of wonderful illustrations by the very talented artist Donata Zawadzka and I am really enjoying the process.
 Tales from the Garden is also my first translated book into Spanish and that will be released later this year.

An Excerpt from Chapter Five of Just an Odd Job Girl
(Copyright is held by the author and is used with permission)

I lived in a naval town and it was inevitable that socially I would meet and go out with young naval officers. I was at a party one Saturday, when I was introduced to this very tall, good-looking guy. I was now nineteen and felt I looked stunning, in a new outfit that I had just bought. This included a false half-wig on a black velvet band. It was ash blonde, and if you pulled the band far enough forward it hid the true colour of your hair. It hung seductively down my back and swung with a very satisfying swish when I walked or danced. Combined with a short black velvet dress and knee-high black boots, I was ready to rock and roll.

He was a wonderful dancer. He threw me around the floor to the Rolling Stones and Rod Stewart and held me close when slow music was playing. He was gorgeous and I could see all my girlfriends looking on in envy as I strutted my stuff. This was living! My fertile imagination went into overtime. I had just got to the bit where I stunned my parents by taking this Adonis home to meet them when my favourite Rolling Stones song blared out from the speakers. Brown Sugar. If ever there was a song to dance to this was it. I was flying, and it took several minutes for it to register that not only my partner but also several people around us had stopped dancing. Assuming that they were so stunned by my gyrations and flexible interpretations of the music that they had stopped to watch, I carried on playing up to my audience.

There were a number of poles supporting the roof of the dance floor. One was quite close by, and I avoided hitting it as I twirled on the spangled floor. Out of the corner of my eye, I caught a glimpse of something hanging halfway up the pole, but I was busy and didn’t take much notice of it. By now about two dozen people were watching the performance and I was too intent on keeping them entertained. I whirled faster, got closer to the pole, and only then realised that the object hanging limply from a hook was my ash-blonde hairpiece.

I stood there, with my own hair pinned on top of my head covered by a stocking that held it firmly in place. I looked over at my Adonis to find a look of horrified fascination on his face. I grabbed the hair and dashed for the stairs, and the ladies.

I was wearing a little shoulder bag and had no coat, so a speedy retreat was possible. I ripped the stocking and pins from my own hair and legged it out the door and into a taxi home. I have never been so mortified in my life. Today I would have laughed it off and carried on, but at nineteen it was the end of my world and the stunning future I had envisioned for myself with Mr. Fantastic. I hadn’t even got his name, but thankfully he hadn’t got mine either.

Two days later, still squirming from my ordeal, I attended my interview for acceptance into the Queen Alexandra Nursing Service. It was held over in Gosport, at the naval hospital, and along with twenty other hopefuls, I undertook a day of testing and medical examinations.

Eye tests, weight, blood pressure, heart and lungs all checked out. This was conducted by a very severe looking nursing sister and then we were passed on to a doctor for a full medical.

At nineteen, I was not sure what this entailed, and was rather concerned to be asked to remove all my clothing and don a backless hospital gown.

Holding this gown in place with one hand behind my back, I was led, nervously, into the examining room. A head was bent over some notes and I was escorted behind a screen and told to hop up on the examining couch. The nurse loosened the ties behind the neck of the gown and stood at the head of the couch. The curtains parted and the doctor entered. Now I know what a rabbit feels like, paralysed in the glare of the headlights. There before me in a white coat with stethoscope at the ready was my Adonis.

Thank you very much Allan for being such a great host. 

It's a pleasure to have you as our guest this week Sally. I'm reading your excellent short stories from the "What's in a Name" collection and am truly enjoying it. Good luck with all your future endeavors.


For you readers that would like to know more about this talented author, please visit Sally’s links.




And thanks to you the visitor. 

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