Saturday 25 June 2022

The Story Behind the Story with Bruce W. Bishop of Halifax, NS, Canada.


Atlantic Canadian Authors are the coolest!

Today we have Bruce Bishop of Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada as our guest. It is Bruce’s first visit to the Scribbler and we hope it won’t be his last.

Today you can read his Story Behind the Story and I know you will be impressed.

Let’s give a big welcome to Bruce.




Bruce W. Bishop is a globetrotting journalist and guidebook author from Atlantic Canada who decided to explore the world of fiction when travel was halted in 2020.  According to many readers’ reviews on Amazon, Kobo, and Goodreads, his novels to date are in the page-turning, “can’t put them down” category. He wrote Unconventional Daughters and Uncommon Sons back-to-back, and both are interlinked but could be read as standalone family dramas. He’s currently adapting both works of fiction to suit the demand for streaming, serialized television.

Title:  Unconventional Daughters


When a budding journalist marries her stepfather in 1922, she must compete with her unhinged mother for his love and to secure a safe future for herself and their son.

This situation is one of several dilemmas facing the women of a family separated by the Atlantic Ocean and a world of secrets and deception. Can Eva Carroll, a young feminist and budding journalist, have a happy marriage to her mother’s second husband while placating the conventions of the day?

The Great War is over. Everyone is optimistic. Eva is the daughter of one of three sisters who have already been leading unconventional lives. Although born in Boston, she now lives with her mother, Elisabet, stepfather, and Swedish grandparents in the small Canadian coastal town of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia.

Somewhat naive, Eva falls in love with her stepfather, Seamus, only six years her senior. Elisabet surprisingly condones the relationship. But she imposes a condition — her daughter and her second husband must marry after she divorces him.

Eva’s two aunts living in Sweden decide to return to Canada to rejoin their sister. One aunt, obsessed with social status, has bought her title of ‘countess’, while the other has a quiet loving relationship with her female housemate. When the siblings get together, their family background in Sweden is laid bare as they learn the truth about their parents and a brother they had never known.

Eva finds herself caught in the midst of rivalries among the three sisters, and a growing mental health issue concerning one of them. Her marriage and familial relationships are threatened. Now her future faces unexpected personal turmoil.



The Story Behind the Story:

When I was a teenager about to go to university, my mother gave me four letters that were given to her from a neighbor long before I was born. The calligraphy in the letters was attractive, and each one started with, “Dear Mama”. They were written by a young lady from my hometown in Nova Scotia when she was on her honeymoon in Europe in 1927, visiting Vienna, the Swiss Alps, and Edinburgh. Based on the content of the letters, it was clear the bride was from a local wealthy family who had emigrated to Nova Scotia from Denmark in the late 1800s.

The letters could simply be viewed as a charming account of a European honeymoon during the Roaring Twenties and could have remained forgotten in this writer’s desk drawer.

There was an implicit, apologetic tone in the letters from the daughter to her mother, however. I remembered that my own mother had told me that the bride had married her stepfather after he and her mother divorced, and the three of them ending up living together afterwards.

My mind raced while I started imagining a storyline about this unusual family. I did some research in the local archives and found a box of ephemera about the family, collected by one of the daughters of a Danish sea captain and his wife. It was a bizarre mix of newspaper clippings (mostly in Danish) and old photographs, but it allowed me to characterize the leading players in what would become my debut novel, Unconventional Daughters.



Author Website:



A question before you go, Bruce.

What is your favorite part of writing and the part you enjoy the least?


Bruce: My favorite part of writing is when dialogue comes from somewhere in the universe and seemingly not from me. That is always both gratifying and surprising, as if the character did actually live on this earth! My least favorite part is rewriting and revising because it’s like being in a continual game of second-guessing oneself.



Thank you, Bruce, for sharing  your SBTS. Wishing you continued success with your writing.

Thank you to all you special visitors and readers.

Saturday 11 June 2022

The Story Behind the Story with Author Eden Monroe of Moncton, Canada.


The Scribbler is pleased to bring a new author to our pages.

Eden Monroe is an East Coast Author who has a great list of novels sure to delight the most discerning reader.

I encourage you to visit her website (the URL is below) and see for yourself.

Let’s find out more about Eden and her newest creation.



Eden Monroe loves giving voice to the endless parade of interesting characters that introduce themselves in her imagination. She writes about real life, real issues and struggles, and triumphing against all odds. A proud east coast Canadian, she enjoys a variety of outdoor activities, and a good book.



Working Title: Dangerous Getaway

Synopsis: Birch Shadow is a sumptuous mountain getaway, an idyllic cottage with way too many secrets to keep, like its owner, business tycoon and philanthropist, Shaw Garland. No one knows his dark side like the guests who visit Birch Shadow, including Rhone Alexander who sought the spectacular retreat for some much-needed R&R following the end of a difficult marriage. Worse waited.

Grace Upton is an up and coming interior decorator unwittingly drawn into the treacherous Birch Shadow game.

Will anyone survive Birch Shadow long enough to make their dangerous getaway?


The Story Behind the Story: It’s always about the what if’s … innocent, trusting people drawn in, in this case by a madman masquerading as a benevolent pillar of society. Set the stage, then wait for the fallout. I’m always entertained by what the characters have to tell me. And then I choose another beautiful area of New Brunswick for my setting, this time Elgin in Albert County.




A question for you Eden:


Besides writing novels, what else are you involved in?


Eden: I still do newspaper work. I also write plays, short stories and greeting cards for a US-based company.




Thank you, Eden, for being our guest this week. Wishing you continued success on your writing journey.  

Dangerous Getaway is a novel I definitely want to read.


Thank you to all you special visitors and readers.

We do it all for you! (do you know where that tag line comes from?)

Saturday 4 June 2022

The Story Behind the Story: Linda Barrett, Save the Sinner


Let’s welcome Linda back to the Scribbler.

She has been a guest previously with an interview and if you missed it, please go HERE.

She has kindly agreed to share the Story Behind the Story.


It’s all yours, Linda……



I've been a closet writer for most of my adult life, but I shared my work with very few people over the years. I’ve always loved to read and am interested in many diverse topics. I am fascinated by different cultures—their unique spiritual perspectives, religious practices, beliefs, customs, and how much they have to teach us.

In 2019, I somehow knew I needed to share what I had written, so I published my first book, Release Me, a book of poetry. Next, I expanded my themes, characters, and ideas into short stories for my second book, Save the Sinner. Now, I am going even further and writing my first novel, Soul Collector, based on my short story of the same title and published in Save the Sinner.

And this year, I was so surprised, humbled, and honored to have won the Bronze Award for the 2022 Feathered Quill Book Awards Program, in the Short Story/Anthology category, for this book.

As an emerging author, trying to reach as many readers as possible is challenging. Having been selected for this award has given me a great deal of encouragement and validates my efforts.

About the Book: Save the Sinner is my unique mix of poetry and short stories. Throughout the book, I delve into the soul’s journey toward peace and examine how we, as humans, react to pain, grief, love, longing, and despair. Even though my characters range from two friends lunching at their favorite café, to a soul-stealing gypsy, passionate vampires, and beings from other worlds and other dimensions, they are all searching for purpose and struggling with their own internal darkness. Some even battle forces beyond the veil.

I also chose to include illustrations in this book, as with my first book, to further bring my visions to life. For this, I commissioned works by a talented young artist, Giana Bisceglia.


The Story Behind the Story: “Save the Sinner,” the poem that gave the book its title, could be seen as controversial, but is from my own perspective and experiences, and I have been passionate about its theme for years. It is not focused on any religious, or non-religious beliefs or customs. This viewpoint is mine and mine alone.

This poem was inspired by my own observations of the casting out of a soul who was desperately searching for peace and love from his religious family. Making personal sacrifices, he lived a life of dedication to his strong beliefs.


Over time, he realized that what he believed in and dedicated his life to was only a façade. Once he saw the face of the true Sinner, within his own internal struggle and despair, he could no longer hold on. His faith and sacrifices were broken and wasted.


To me, the most powerful words in this poem are: “The Sinner held for validation / An example for the righteous / Escape for the pious / Judgement given without consequence.”


This soul was cast out, ostracized, and branded a ‘Sinner’ for learning their truth. Their sacrifice for faith was no longer validated. Promises were shattered. A soul was broken.


I think this speaks to those who search for answers but are held in judgement by others. Throughout my life, I have personally witnessed and experienced the hypocrisy of casting a religious judgment on someone. I have seen and heard spiritual leaders from diverse cultures around the world create and speak a façade of truth, love, and family while living a very different life. I have seen them walk away from a true searcher. Conversely, I have also seen kind and gentle souls of truth wanting to help others find theirs.


This poem was written to give this Sinner’s soul a voice.


The cover image of this book created itself in my mind as I wrote this poem. The meaning and symbology I will leave for you to decide.



I began my journey as an intimidated writer. I felt that writing my first book, Release Me, was dipping my big toe into the vast ocean of writers. Then with my second book, Save the Sinner, was putting my foot in the giant ocean. Now with my first novel I’ve jumped into the ocean completely.

When I write, I don't just tell a story. I have an emotional attachment to most of my stories and poems. They become personal to me. I am there with each character, becoming them, to learn who they really are. 

In the short story, “The Forest,” I became Crow, sitting in his mahogany chair and stroking Shadow’s feathers as she sat upon his shoulder, while he gazed out upon his now dead forest. I felt his never-ending pain of love and loss for his Genevieve.

With “Going Insane,” I felt Victoria’s fear of losing control of her life, of no one able to help her, and her desperation to hang on to her life. How she must have felt at that final moment.

The poem “The Final Battle” allowed me to become the underdog warrior as he fought the more powerful dark force. I felt his heart race in fear then felt the liquid motion of his stallion in battle.

Writing “Dissect the Insanity” helped me through my own heartache of lost dreams. 

At the end of these stories and poems, I still tear up. Every time. I wrote the words but still feel the emotion.


So far, the short story I'm basing my novel on, “Soul Collector,” has been my readers’ favorite, even though it was not my own original favorite. But as I work with the characters, developing their backstories and motivations, I have grown to love them and want to tell their story. I want readers to understand who my protagonist—Breena—is, for instance, and see the pain she has gone through. I've also introduced new characters and added many twists and turns. Readers will learn about Jack and Billy and what makes chocolate-chip cookies so special. I've also enjoyed doing extensive research for this. There are gypsies, witchdoctors, nightmares, magic, a beautifully beaded candy-apple-red skirt, and death.


Projected Release Date: 2023.



Social Media:



A question for you, Linda.


Do you hear from your readers? What do they say? 


Here are a few of the comments I’ve received about Save the Sinner:

“There is so much more to tell. I need to know what happens to Jack. And poor Billy. Maybe his ramblings reach the right person, so many past victims someone else must feel it.” [about “Soul Collector”]

“Your writing is raw and honest.”

“…The poems and stories in this book. Very imaginative.

“I can't do anything but love a book that asks questions like, ‘Is every sin holy? Or medicated quietly?’ The meaning spilling out of lines like those, and they are on every page, is manifold…”

I especially appreciated the following two reviews because they included both poems and short stories.

“. . . .‘Going insane’ was a recollection of the failure of the medical profession to help a struggling soul find peace of mind. ‘Nikolai’ is a dark poem wrapped around a mythical being known as a vampire. Several twists, turns and re-directs. I was impressed with the writer’s ability to approach difficult and sometimes comical subject matter, with calm, entrancing insight. Shape shifting and gender identities were fluid. This book I have left lying on my desk for several weeks so as to pick it up, read and re-read a selection.”

“I don't even know where to begin. Love the poetry and a few of them I felt so deeply it was as if they were written for my soul...With Dissect the Insanity it is as if I hold my breath the entire time and then with the last line such a deep sigh escapes me. Just Wow. Now for the short stories...Soul Collector I can so see made into a movie. There is So much more to tell, I need to know what happens to Jack. And poor Billy, maybe his ramblings reach the right person, so many past victims someone else must feel it...The Forest. The intensity of the power of love and loss. The depth of despair but yet the promise of hope. Crow's pain is so honest that you ache with him. I think it's the first time in a long time that Snow made me smile and feel lighthearted, like there was hope for the future...Your writing is raw and honest, it makes you Feel and not just Read the words. I will wait (im)patiently for more!"

Thank you, Allan, for giving me this opportunity to share my thoughts with you and your readers.

It’s my pleasure to have you as a guest this week, Linda. Wishing you continued success with your writing. Thanks for sharing TSBTS.

And a special thank you to our visitors and readers. Feel free to leave a comment.