Saturday 26 May 2018

Guest Author J.A. Dennam of Kansas, USA.

J.A. Dennam writes impossible love stories; literary thrill rides of mystery, suspense, action and spontaneous sex that always conclude with hard-won happy endings.

Sounds like a winning combination.

The Scribbler is most fortunate to have JA as our special guest this week. Read on for an intriguing interview and an excerpt of her latest work.

J.A. DENNAM, an award winning author and RWA member, resides in a small Kansas town with her husband and children. Creativity is her strong suit and she has nurtured a career as a painter of western art and also enjoys dabbling with graphic arts.

Storytelling, however, has been a part of her life since childhood. At six years of age, insomnia forced her to endure many long, sleepless nights staring at the ceiling. After confessing her problem to her older sister, the two of them decided to tell each other stories to entice sleep; however, the inevitable snore always tore through her sister’s nose before she could utter the words Once Upon A Time. So the stories began to flow in silence, her imagination taking her to quiet, private places so enthralling, the sudden trick was to stay awake.

Those habits carried on to adulthood until the need to purge her stories demanded she put them in print. Her fascination with romance, fast cars and adventure films is what structures her novels today.


4Q: When I discovered your author page, I was most impressed with the description of your writing which I’ve copied and used above in the opening sentence. What inspires you to write your novels?

JAD: My inspiration comes from everyday people and their stories, which my imagination automatically takes to the extreme. I see possibilities in the mundane act of standing in line at the grocery store. Who does she meet? What kind of “prize” is in that box of Cracker Jacks she’s about to purchase? Will she make it out of the store before a hot detective arrests her for unwittingly exchanging specially marked bills? I’m also a huge movie buff. I guess I’m always “watching” my scenes as I’m writing them which helps with action and flow.


4Q: Tell us about your newest novel and the excerpt below.

JAD: Sexual Integrity is my first traditionally published novel. This office romance is about an entitled career woman who competes with a sexy, arrogant newcomer for the same job. I love my love-hate romances, and this one is loaded with heat, pranks, colourful side-characters, and a special room that could change one’s life forever.


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

JAD: I devoured my first romance novel at the age of twelve, which I thought was quite unique and scandalous of me. (Since joining the writing community, I have discovered that aged twelve falls in the geriatric range of beginner romance junkies.) The book was titled “Dreams of Yesterday” and was singly responsible for my teenaged disillusions about boys. As much as I liked them, none of them were “real men,” though for a long time I believed that sex between two people consisted of lots of kissing and rolling around beneath the sheets. My grandmother’s secret stash of romances only went so far, you know.


4Q: What’s next on your author’s agenda, what can your readers look forward to?

JAD: My next romantic suspense novel is in the good hands of my agent; my first historical western romance is ready to pitch at the RWA convention in July; I am deep in the editing stages of my third and final Flesh Series instalment, which I plan to self-publish this year. I am also four chapters in on my tenth full-length novel, which is quite a milestone for me. As far as other projects go, I would like to record book 1 of my Captive Series, Truth and Humility, as an audio book. I would also like to try my hand at script writing because I have a very cool western that would make a great movie and I just KNOW that Henry Cavill is looking for work. ;-)


An Excerpt from Sexual Integrity:
(copyright held by the author. Used with permission)

Sid slowly leaned forward. Brooke moved in to meet him halfway.

They shared a sensual kiss that was tentative at first and then deepened into something more. His breath smelled good, like rich Napa Valley wine. His lips were firm yet soft. The way he moved told her that he knew how to please a woman.

Despite all that, her heartbeat notably failed to pick up its pace.

The doorbell rang. Brooke wasn’t sure if it was an annoyance or a blessing. She backed out of the kiss, leaving him with an unfocused look that told her he’d enjoyed it way more than she had. “It could only be Mrs. Costa from next door,” she explained as she got to her feet and put her glasses back on. “She always comes over when her computer acts up. I’ll tell her to hold off for now.”

Sid appeared in no hurry to leave his spot on the floor. He drew a knee up, but not before Brooke saw the suspicious bulge in his Bermuda shorts.

When she opened the door, a shockwave of alarm washed through her. Ethan stood there leaning against the doorframe in jeans, a black T-shirt, and an intense focus on the welcome mat. All she could do was stare in abject surprise at a man who couldn’t possibly have sought out her address.

Words escaped her. The silence stretched as he too seemed to wonder what the hell he was doing there. Finally, he looked up. His eyes darted past her and over to the man at her coffee table. Slowly, their blue-gray depths changed into something turbulent.

Her hand slipped from the knob as he stepped over the threshold. He stood so close she could feel his body heat. His voice was rough, barely above a whisper. “We need to talk.”

Now her heart was beating fast enough to power a small locomotive. Dazed and confused, she stepped back and turned to find Sid standing right behind her. “ you mind if we do this another time?”

The man stepped closer, caressed her back in an intimate way. “Isn’t this the guy you were arguing with the other day?”

“And we’ve done a lot of that since then, haven’t we, Brooke?” Ethan chimed in, sounding dangerous. “Well...not all of it was—”

“Ethan, shut up,” Brooke snapped.

A quick look confirmed that Sid was following along just fine. As he nodded at his adversary, the pulse at his freckled temple began to thrum. “I get it.” He turned to Brooke. “Are you sure you want me to leave?”

She took one of his hands and gave it an apologetic squeeze. “Yes, I’m sure. Another time would be better, when I’m all here.”

Sid hesitated a moment and then pursed his lips as he began to leave. When Ethan moved aside to give him clear access to the doorway, Sid stopped, leaned over, and deposited a tender kiss on her temple.

“I’m only a phone call away,” he said, his voice laden with meaning.

She closed the door behind him, swimming in mixed emotions. Why the hell had she just done that? And why the hell was Ethan Wolf standing in her living room? Brooke cleared the uncertainty from her throat. “I don’t want our problems inside my home,” she said.

When she turned to confront him, he was taking a good long pull from the open bottle of cabernet. Her anger rose to a fever pitch as she realized he’d just swallowed about twenty bucks worth of wine in one shot, no doubt to make a point. She moved toward him and was about to tell him to leave when he set the bottle down on the coffee table, turned, and immediately drew her into his arms.

Suddenly she was fully involved in a scorching kiss that completely rendered her senseless. It was not tender or sweet, but rough and demanding. All of her irritation melted away along with her reasons for not wanting him here. She’d been geared up to welcome Sid’s touch. Surely that’s why her body was thrumming with a need so strong, she clung to Ethan as if he were the only thing keeping her upright.

“You drive me insane,” he hissed against her mouth, closing his eyes against the inner struggle she understood all too well.

Brooke dropped her head in a desperate attempt to find sanity. This wasn’t possible. How could he turn her insides into molten lava like that when the mere sight of him pissed her off so badly? When she backed away, he let go of her waist and did the same. A moment of silence followed. “You said you wanted to talk,” she said finally.

Ethan turned his back and jammed a hand through his hair. “Give me a second.”

“Why should I?”

“Look.” When he faced her again, aggravation laced his words. “I don’t want to be here either. In fact I’m still trying to figure out why I’m not in Fort Myers.”

“Because you’d rather harass me, apparently.”

“Because no matter how hard I try with you, I can’t get my bearings—which scares the hell out of me. We’ve been taking one step forward and two steps back since the start of this competition, and for what? Because we hate each other?”

“Yes!” she threw out in a desperate attempt to believe it.

His brow smoothed out with a look of wonder. “Really? Why, Brooke? What makes you want to skin me alive and me want to shake the living shit out of you?”

(Copyright is held by the author. Used with permission)


Thank you JA for being our guest and sharing part of your story.


For you readers that want to know more about JA and her books, check out the following links.

You can find all novels by J.A. Dennam on her website,

Other links:

Saturday 19 May 2018

Guest Author Janice Spina of New Hampshire.


The Scribbler is pleased to have Janice Spina returning to share her thoughts in a 4Q Interview. We have been fortunate to have Janice visit before and share an excerpt from How Far is Heaven.

If you missed it, click here.


Janice is an award-winning author with 20 books ranging from PS-Grade to 18+. She has 11 young children’s books, five middle-grade/preteen/YA books and three novels and a short story collection. Her children’s books are written in rhyme with life lessons. Janice writes under J.E. Spina for her novels. She is a copy editor, blogger, avid reader and reviewer and supporter of her fellow authors.

She has been writing poetry since the age of nine years old. She has always wanted to be an author but didn’t realize her dream until after she retired from an administrative secretarial position in a school system in Massachusetts. She published her first book in 2013 and hasn’t stopped since. When her books started to win awards in 2016 she became more confident and realized that this is what she wanted to continue to do.

She lives in New Hampshire with her husband, John, who is her illustrator and cover creator. Together they plan to continue to create more books for all ages.

Janice loves to hear from readers and welcomes reviews of her books. Her logo is Jemsbooks – books for all ages! Her motto is Reading Gives You Wings to Fly! Soar with Jemsbooks! Her goal is to encourage children of all ages to read.

When she isn’t writing she enjoys crocheting, walking to stay fit, going out to the movies and dinner with her husband and spending time with her grandchildren.


4Q: You have 11 children’s books and 5 mid-grade to your credit. What is it that draws you to writing for this age group which must be difficult?

JS: What draws me to writing books for children and middle-graders is the fact that they make me feel young again. These books are fun to write and bring me back to my childhood. I guess I am a child at heart. It also helps to have five grandchildren who inspire me to write.

4Q: Tell us about your latest work as well as your partner that does the illustrations for you.

JS: When I received requests from a few readers for a series for girls I decided to write one to keep my readers happy. A month ago I began working on the new series which is a spin-off of my Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series Book 5. The two girls who appeared in book 5 will have their own mysteries and adventures in this series. I hope to write the first two books this year.

Now about my other half, I call him the silent partner. John doesn’t want to be in the limelight or take credit for anything. He is a talented illustrator and cover creator besides being a wonderful husband. He has a doctorate in Educational Administration. He was retired from being a Supervising Principal in a K-8 Grammar School in Massachusetts for seven years when I asked him if he would be my illustrator. He already could draw and paint so I figured illustrating should be a piece of cake for him. He was reluctant to take on this new venture but after convincing him that we would save money if he did, he agreed.

It was a learning curve at first for both of us with all the rules and regulations to complete before publishing. He has successfully completed illustrations for 11 children’s books, 5 MG books and covers for all 20 of my books. He is currently working on my first fairy tale which we hope to publish over the summer.

We work well together and seldom argue. He knows who is the boss. Ha! I do have final say about covers but not always on the illustrations. After all, he is the artist here. I’m only the author.

4Q: Please share a childhood anecdote of memory.

JS: I had a happy childhood but nothing exciting to talk about. Some of my happiest times were when my father brought my brother and me to the beach to pick periwinkles. I always loved the ocean, eating all kinds of seafood, the briny smell in the air, the joy of finding my first periwinkles and seeing all the little creatures each time I turned over another rock. It was even more special because I got to spend time with my dad.

4Q: What’s next on your agenda?

JS: I always have another idea going around in my head. Two books sit in the wings that need edits – a YA fantasy series book 1 and a historical novel. There is the early beginnings of a romantic mystery awaiting my attention. I also plan to write book 6 of Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series once I complete books 1 & 2 of the girls’ series.

There is no end to the books I plan to write from all the ideas that keep coming along. When I write all I need is a title and off I go.

Thank you, Allan, for extending this invitation to be a guest today. I had a lovely time sharing a little about myself and my books.


Thank you, Janice, for being our featured guest this week.

For you readers that want to know more about Janice and where to buy her novels, please follow these links:

Saturday 12 May 2018

Guest Partners Judy Savoie & Gilbert Babin. Author & Musician

The Scribbler is running a series of creative people that happen to be partners with other creative people. The third part of this series includes one former guest to the Scribbler, poet and author Judy Savoie (previous visit) and her musician partner Gilbert Babin. They have agreed to a 4Q Interview.

From NB to PEI to NS, Gilbert and Judy discover and indulge in the everyday richness of landscapes. Inspired by beaches, sunsets, wharfs, lighthouses, local people, and events, the couple capture the beauty of their rustic travels into a tapestry of poetry, music and photography.


 Undeniably a unique journey in time and nature - a soothing experience cultivated solely by the scopes of their imagination and creativity.

Judy is the author of two books. ‘Serendipity’ (2015) is a collection of poetry, prose and song lyrics. It expresses a love of music, photography and nature - all elements nurtured by life spent near the beauty of the ocean. The second book ‘All About Hats’ (2016) contains lighthearted, interesting stories, poetry and historical facts on the influential role of hats affecting all world cultures for countless centuries. It is based on research and collaborating personal experience with a life-long passion for hats.
Both books are available on at: http:\\ and http:\\, contacting her on her Facebook writer page at http\\facebook@judysavoiewriter, in person, or at related events.

Gilbert Babin is an Acadian singer-songwriter and instrumentalist. His songs, usually inspired by local events and places, contain a subtle Acadian poetry that can easily go unnoticed to the inattentive ear. He strives for musical simplicity and prefers creating songs that can be performed with only guitar and voice. His repertoire, consisting of 40 original and close to 100 traditional French songs, makes him very suitable for francophone cultural events and wild Acadian kitchen parties.

Q4: First question is for you Judy. Please tell us how your writing is going and what has taken place since your last visit.

JS: After my last book (Simply About Hats) was completed and our last visit in 2016, my momentum slowed down to almost a halt for about a year. It was a demanding challenge to write two books within a year apart.

The ice storm of January 2017 prompted me to turn to the pen for comfort during a complete blackout. The office I worked at closed early in the afternoon due to an unexpected major storm rapidly picking up intensity. My partner was working out of town at the time. I was totally unprepared for a treacherous two hour nerve-racking drive alone in my car from work in the city to our house in a rural community that normally would be a half hour drive. My car was very low in gas, with gas stations being shut down throughout the province due to power outages. As I plowed my way into the driveway, I felt such relief to finally be home safely. Within minutes, my car was encased in a solid sheet of ice and snow. As I got into the house, my heart sunk again, realizing I was without electricity, heat, light, or food (no time to shop), and my cell phone had become uncharged quickly as my car charger was not working properly. It turned dark very early, and I had absolutely no sense of time, no means of communication, and my only source of light was a small LED flashlight. Although the experience was frightening and foreign, my barely legible handwritten notes from a night of insomnia, turned out to be one of my best and favourite pieces, entitled "Ice King Serenade". I continued writing more frequently after that.

I was also motivated when I found many miscellaneous notes and journals of our day trips together, abandoned poems and ideas. I merged old and new pieces together to create an 85-page manuscript - poems were transformed into songs, journal entries into poetry, prose or lyrics, and a number of them deleted. It now has around 50 pages after many revisions. It will be a continuum of 'Serendipity' - another collage of poetry, prose and song, and photography. The prominent theme is nature, time and morality. The progression of my writing style is evident.


Last summer, I began to organize over 50,000 photos on my laptop into categories to simplify finding images for my next book, cd cover designs and other projects I have on the go. It is a lengthy ongoing work in progress.

Q4: How long have you been playing guitar and singing Gilbert. Has music always been a big part of your life?

GB: I started playing guitar at the age of 14. Supposedly, I told my family that I was going to my room and not coming until I knew how to play. Not sure how long I stayed in my room but did come out with an understanding of music. Months later someone pointed out that, my guitar was tuned wrong and I had to relearn how to play. I am entirely self-taught and learned through experimentation and observation. Music has been quite a journey and yes it has become a big part of my life. On the social side, most of my friends are musicians and on the spiritual side I still connect to higher levels through my instrument.



Singing however, was not a journey, it’s more like a necessary evil. My father and family always said I couldn’t sing and made fun of my singing so I only sang when I was alone. It was only in my mid-thirties that I started singing in front of people. I was writing a lot of songs, and the only way to get them heard was to sing them. Although I didn’t have a good voice, people would listen attentively to my lyrics which encouraged me to continue. My voice has improved since then.

Q4: You write many songs also Judy and collaborate with Gilbert. How does song writing (if it does) differ from your usual writing habits?

JS: I’ve come a long way in writing song lyrics since I started over five years ago. It has really evolved naturally but I still have much more to learn. My writing habits, whether it is poetry, prose, or music, are acquired through trial and error, constantly changing, yet flowing progressively in a way.

Initially, I separated writing poetry/prose from song writing. In both cases, the ideas or thoughts were put down, even if only a few words. In song writing, I get drawn to guitar instrumentals that Gilbert composes, and if it has a title, I instinctively know it must have words. The biggest challenge in song writing is that in music, there are beats and rhythmic patterns, as well the rhymes, which are slightly more complex to prepare than in poetry. That is the part I enjoy. I've also translated a few of his French songs into English. More recently, several of my older mediocre poems were converted into beautiful songs fitting perfectly like a puzzle. Using my cell phone, I have saved and recorded well over 500 spontaneous, one-of-a-kind short instrumental clips created in the middle of the night which I can listen to carefully whenever I want to.

Whether existing poem or new lyrics, the words are revised. When the lyrics flow well, I am eager for feedback. If it is solid, we try to record a fresh new instrumental track for me to practice on, followed by recording voice with lyrics as a draft.

I still write lyrics to Gilbert's creations, but not as frequently as at the beginning. Although I have written over 25 songs in five years, not all are ready for recording, and a few are incomplete.

Q4: You recently put together a CD of original Acadian songs Gilbert. Tell us about the songs and the recording process.



GB: I was not planning to make a cd at all. The dentist had removed one of my teeth and I thought that it had improved my voice. I was scheduled to get an implant the next day, so I decided to record a few songs in my home studio while the missing tooth made my voice better.

I just sat down and quickly laid the guitar tracks for 12 French folk songs. I then did the voice tracks for all songs. I then mixed the tracks into songs and burned a mp3 versions of the songs to a cd. I got the dental surgery done and held ice on my face for a few days. Judy and I started playing the CD in the car and were surprised at the quality of the recording. Sounded as good as most other musicians CDs. The more we listened to the songs, the more we liked them.

I called the sound engineer who had worked on my first instrumental CD to see if he could remix and master the tracks. Mastering is an important part of the CD creation process and it usually is best to let professionals do it. Unfortunately, I was working out of town and I just could not find any suitable time to meet with the sound engineer. I really wanted to see how the CD would sound like if mastered. Therefore, I decided to learn how to mix and master a CD. I did not expect that part to be so hard but it took me almost 2 months to learn the techniques required to produce a good quality audio cd. After many failed attempts, and making every possible mistake imaginable, I managed to create a master CD that sounds good on many devices.
A professional studio might do a bit better, but not enough to justify the investment at this point.

Luckily, that night before the dental surgery, I had recorded 12 songs without a single mistake. Out of these 12, I was able to master eleven, which is enough for a CD.

Q4: We are going to cheat this week and slip in a fifth question that you can both answer. What’s in the immediate future for both of you?

JS: My manuscript for the third book is nearing completion and will soon be ready for editing and publishing.

We've considered having a small show with an ensemble of our own original music, and once our books and CDs are complete, perhaps another book/cd launch will be planned. 

I also hope to design more of Gilbert's cd covers and inserts. Who knows - maybe our creative versatility will ultimately be the foundation for future careers, to help others, and at the same time to have fun!

GB: My next project is a CD of Acadian Songs.

Thank you both for sharing your thoughts. Links for “the partners” are listed below.

You can follow Judy's facebook writer page, which has samples of several songs, photo slideshows and her writing endeavours at:

Gilbert's music can be listened to and found at:
or on facebook in English or French musician pages at: http\\facebook@GilbertBabinmusician (English), http\\facebook@GilbertBabinmusicien (French)

Friday 4 May 2018

Guest Author Ana Rubio-Serrano of Spain

Ana Rubio-Serrano is our featured guest this week. We are extremely pleased to have her share her thoughts with a 4Q Interview.

Over 20 publications in different languages do
credit to Ana Rubio-Serrano as an international author. She is specialized in behavioral ethics. She has written various non-fiction books. Most famously, "The Nazis and Evil. The Annihilation of the Human Being." Ana has also written several articles on humanities, coaching in values and translated historical, cultural and educational books.

A storyteller by birth, an author by heart, Ana adapts writing style to different audiences and genres. Creative and versatile, she authentically connects with the thoughts and feelings of others. Her goal is to make meaningful work that inspires and motivates others to grow. Her motto: “It’s Time for Storytelling by Changing Minds, Shaping Brains.”

Ana is a Doctor Staff Member at the University of Barcelona and served as a visiting Professor at the Faculty of Theology of Catalonia, and at the University of Barcelona.

4Q. I was immediately captivated by the cover and subject matter of your book – The Nazis and Evil - subtitled, The Annihilation of the Human Being. Needless to say, this book moved to the top of my reading list. Please tell our readers about it.


ARS: The book is about the Nazi Totalitarianism: how ordinary people became faceless murderers and murderers by choice. The writing seeks to forge a closer view of the Nazis who went on a journey into Darkness by making Evil an acceptable commodity. It is not focused on atrocities, but on the cause and know-how.

The fact-based shows as Nazism opened the door wide to global terrorism. It designed a legal murderous global state where no one was safe, not even the German people themselves. The enemy was anyone to think freely for themselves, in a manner contrary to rules dictated to the Nazis. Aryans were merely “manufactured individuals”, clones designed for violence.

The reader will discover the socialization of crime promoted by law through violence turned into a culture in the regime.

This is a current book that reflects on the past and offers us questions on the present.

4Q: There were many compelling reviews on amazon about your book. What made you want to write it?

ARS: While working on my dissertation about Nazism and Holocaust, I realized that the Second World War was not just another war against an enemy, but a plan of extermination of the whole human being. Then, I started doing research: how Nazism worked, why, its goals…

Twenty years later, Steven Spielberg reflected on his movie, “Schindler’s List” saying: “I feel so blessed I had the opportunity to tell this story.” Looking back, I am also proud of having written this book.

It has not been easy at all. When one discovers the hidden purpose beyond the atrocities and the fine line between being ordinary people and becoming murderers, frankly, this has all come as a bit of a shock. The faith in the humanity is going through a crisis.

On my way, I met some survivors who taught me a valuable lesson: “The human being always deserves another opportunity. Every human being is responsible for the other.” They did give me a precious gift.


4Q: Please share a childhood anecdote or fond memory.

ARS: Memories clear visible come to me. It seems like only yesterday. “My brother and I’s favorite day is Friday. It’s 5:30 p.m., we sit down on the floor and are wide-eyed with amazement. In front of us, our granny, Anne. It’s time for storytelling!

And yes, of course, we have a favorite tale, “The three little pigs.” When the big bad wolf blows the houses, so do we all together. We blow, get up and run one after the other. Then, laughs and my brother and I sit down again cross-legged.

Sitting in her rocking chair, our granny Anne looks in suspense at us and… there they were, the four characters of the tale show their faces. The wolf and the three little pigs turned into marionettes. How exciting it was!

Our granny Anne was a gifted dressmaker and a brilliant storyteller. We had a great time. She knew how to amaze us!


4Q: What can we expect from Ana Rubio-Serrano the author in the future?


ARS: Well, I have different projects. I will continue writing non-fiction books, and I have a challenge that gives me a thrill: a short story for teenagers and a novel. I’m not still sure what will come first.

Other non-fiction books about ethics and values will come. Although, I feel that my writing about Nazism and Holocaust is not over. A lot of readers ask me for more books on that subject.


Thank you, Ana, for being our guest this week and your insightful answers.

For those wishing to discover more about Ana and her writing, check out these links.