Archive | February 2019

Caramel Sauce

Quick and easy!

In Dianes Kitchen


Who knew you can make this easy Caramel Sauce just by boiling water? I have wanted to try this method for years but I never thought it would work. Let me be the first to tell you……it really does work!


Ingredients – Yes that’s it but don’t open it!


Remove the label.


Fill a deep pot with enough water to

cover the can by at least 1”. If it gets

lower than 1” you will have to add

more water. I simmered mine with a

lid and didn’t need to add any more

water. Bring the water to a simmer

and simmer for three hours. Keep on eye

on it and adjust the temperature as

needed to keep it at a simmer.

Do NOT open the can.

 It will remain sealed the

entire simmering time.


Remove the pan from the heat.

Carefully remove the can from the water.

Let the can cool and then…

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This entry was posted on February 28, 2019. 2 Comments

Is The Free Hemingway App The Right Editor For You? – by Derek Haines…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Just Publishing Advice:

Can you improve your writing with the Hemingway app?

Clearly named after Ernest Hemingway, the Hemingway editor is a popular free writing tool.

Compared to other grammar and spelling checkers and writing software it is a simpler alternative.

There is a desktop version available for Mac and PC, which is quite cheap. But most users prefer the online free version writing editor.

Like all free writing tools, there are some compromises. So how well does the Hemingway app stack up?

Continue reading HERE

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Dead Verbs Don’t Move! (Revised).

Writing your first novel-Things you should know

imagesWhen you’re writing a novel, you want to use concrete, everyday verbs. Examples of these are jump, smile, run, look, show, and eat. You can picture the actions in your head and there is no ambiguity.

He ran down the street and jumped over the fence.

Replace weak or dead verbs with concrete verbs as often as possible. I say as often as possible, because there will be rare occasions when the weak or dead verbs are necessary.

Weak verbs usually end in ‘ate’ or ‘ize’. You know the ones. Some examples are finalize, incorporate, anticipate, categorize. They leave a vague sense of action without spelling it out. As a reader you have to reach for it, and these verbs can really way down your sentence.

The bookkeeper utilized her expertise to manipulate the numbers.

Dead verbs don’t evoke movement or images. They stop the action. They allow us…

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Welcome to “THE BUTTON” Blog Tour! @DLFinnAuthor #4WillsPub #RWISA #RRBC  

Rhani DChae

Today, I am thrilled to host fantastic author, D.L. Finn. After visiting a couple of the other stops on this tour, I have decided that this book is a must read! Hopefully, you will agree.

D.L. is offering some fun giveaways on her tour. If you leave a comment at any of The Button tour stops, you might win one!
The Button Tour Giveaway:
2- “The Button” Kindle Format
$5 Amazon Gift Card
1-“The Button” Signed Paperback and Book Marker

* * *

Poetry has become an essential part of my life. I’ve found a place to express my hidden emotions. Some of my poetry no one will ever read, it’s more venting and healing than anything else. The rest I share on my blog or newsletter, and I’ll be releasing my first poetry book, “Just Her Poetry Seasons of a Soul” March 22nd.

While I’m writing a book, I…

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This entry was posted on February 28, 2019. 3 Comments

Editing Your Draft – Crutch Words

Author Don Massenzio

I am currently hard at work editing my 90K+ collection of short stories that will be published soon. As I go through this work and apply some of the things that I’ve learned editing other authors’ works, I found that I have some crutch words.

In public speaking, crutch words are things like ‘um’ or using the word ‘so’ to start sentences when there is a pause needed to collect your thoughts.

It’s a bit different in writing. In writing, crutch words can pop out at you during the editing process. This is partly true because enhancements to Microsoft Word’s grammar check actually point them out with nasty brown underlines (appropriate color).

The important thing to remember is, if you overuse a particular word or phrase, your reader will notice it and will start to get annoyed by the frequent repetition.

My Crutch Words

My worst crutch words that I…

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Please Welcome Lisa Gammon Olson


Please welcome Lisa Gammon Olson to my blog. Hello Lisa! I’m happy to host you today. Shall we begin? 

Please introduce yourself to those reading this blog post.

First and foremost, I am the mom to three amazing young men; Grant, Kyle & Jay.(They’ve brought two lovely daughters into my life- Anna & Keli!) I live with my husband Bruce in Coon Valley, Wisconsin. As a children’s book author and elementary school secretary (the best job EVER) I get to write for the audience that I spend a lot of time with. How perfect is THAT? I believe the most important thing we can ever teach our children is “How to be Kind.” Any kindness we do, no matter how small, has the power to change someone’s life. I am a member of the SCBWI, a book reviewer for the New York Journal of Books, a member of 12×12 Writers Forum, and an Eifrig Publishing Author.

Has writing always been part of your life and when did you “know” that it was time to start writing your first book?

Literally, in Kindergarten! I learned to read with Dick & Jane Books when I was five and I thought “That’s what I will do when I grow up….I will write about Dick and Jane having lots and lots of adventures!” I’ve always known I would be a writer. (I love the Dick and Jane books!)

How difficult was it writing your first book?

Being 57 years old, the difficulty “back in the day” wasn’t necessarily the story…it was physically typing out the manuscript on our heavy old typewriter. When you made a mistake, you had to white it out with “liquid paper” and wait for it to dry and retype over it. When sending your manuscript to a publisher, it was protocol to have fewer than 3 typos per page so many many pages got ripped up and retyped. Sometimes you could get 2 pages typed ALL day and you’d look down at the end of the day to see dozens upon dozens of wadded up sheets of paper under the chair!

Have you ever wanted to give up and what stopped you?

Rejection letters from a publisher can cut a writer to the core and after receiving a goodly amount, I DID question my writing ability and I’d put it aside for a month or so. But storytelling is part of my soul and giving it up was never an option.

Who is the most supportive of you and your dream to be a writer?

My mom, Gayle Gammon; she read everything I ever wrote and was instrumental in my becoming a writer. She was my biggest motivator. She passed before my first book went to print and I regret not getting to see the pride shining through her eyes as she read it.

Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

I am constantly amazed at the tenacity of the human spirit and how people have coped during really tough times in our past. I work in an elementary school as the secretary and I want our kids to know “there is always something positive you can do to impact others in every situation.”

What is the best advice given to you (book or otherwise), and by whom?

My grandmother once told me “Everyone has a story to tell” and we need to always be respectful of everyone because we don’t know the burdens they carry in their heart.

What is your target audience and what aspect of your writing do you feel targets that audience?

I feel most connected to the 6-12 year old reader. They are like the proverbial sponge, soaking up everything around them. My American Her Story Series feature a snapshot in American History as seen through the eyes of one young girl. As a child, it’s easy to get sucked up into the enormity of life and not think you could ever possibly make a difference…In my first book, Dust Flowers…set in the midst of the Dust Bowl…Molly can do nothing about the weather but she CAN grow one tiny flower and bring a smile to her mother’s face. That’s what I like all my books to say. What you do DOES make a
difference. YOU ARE IMPORTANT!!!

Did the cover evolve the same way, or did you work with someone to make it come together for you?

I let my illustrators design the covers…they have the artistic eye AND it’s their story as much as it is mine.

What are you working on now? Can we get a peek, an excerpt?

I have my first chapter book for “Tweens” coming out later this year called Fig Newton Summer! A light -hearted look at puberty & growing up in Northern Wisconsin in the 70’s. (Yes, I DO resonate with this character!) 😉

I am also neck-deep into the 4th American HerStory Book, Remembering Green , which also takes place in Northern Wisconsin…Early 1900’s and the forced attendance of Indigenous children at residential schools whose primary objective was to assimilate native youth into Euro-American culture. Remembering Green features an Ojibwe heroine named Wenonah and her struggles to keep her native identity. I LOVE this girl already!

Any last words before we wrap things up?

Growing up in northern Wisconsin has instilled in me the wonder of nature… sparkling lakes, endless forests and trails littered with pine needles and possibilities. Our mission is to preserve our planet and populate it with human beings who are Respectful, Responsible and Kind. What an awesome combination!

I am promoting my newest book “And the Trees Began to Move” which will be released on Earth Day! (April 22, 2019) “The Spirit of the Pond, a vain and selfish entity, wants to preserve his beauty by denying the Ancient Tree Spirits his life-giving water in a time of drought. He discovers that in trying to save himself, he will lose everything he holds dear. In the circle of life, we are all dependent upon the kindness of others!”

I am still always promoting my American Her Story Series as well since the 1st three books were released within 2 years and I am still trying to get them “Out there”. 🙂



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Amazon Author Page     Newsletter


This entry was posted on February 26, 2019. 5 Comments

A HUGE Honor Today

I still can’t wrap my head around this honor.

When Angels Fly

So happy, now I’m crying to be so honored by such a world wide literary organization. Happy Tears. This organization has writers from 105 countries united in Christ, many are Nobel Prize nominees, and United Nations literary chair holders.


Dear Authors,
The Ambassador De Literature award maintains qualitative literary ethics, it’s given with a dual purpose as below.

* To give focus on global talent

* To make sure all national micro talents are applauded and merged with the macro United world of literature

We have so far awarded, and identified talents in 28 nations. The people have been chosen with an unbiased approach attempting to cover all nations by Motivational Strips.  We have honoured from small countries to big nations like from Bhutan to US.  Our search for national talents of every countries continues and we will make sure that Motivational Strips will leave no stones unturned in finding national…

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This entry was posted on February 24, 2019. 2 Comments

Magazine Editors on Twitter: 20 to Know + Tips to Connect – by Carol Tice…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Make a Living, Writing:

Magazine editors can seem so unapproachable. Am I right? You send them a query, and nothing.

But there’s one place where many editors seem to be easier to connect with: Twitter.

As someone who once got $6,000 of assignments from a tweet, I’ve always been a fan of trying editors on this platform.

If you call an editor, you know it’s going straight to voicemail, every time. Right?

On the other hand, asking a quick question on Twitter can be a useful workaround. Some magazine editors love Twitter, and turn out to be fairly approachable on there.

Interested to learn more? Let me give you my favorite question to tweet to an editor. I’ve also got a list of interesting magazine editors (online and traditional print) you might want to follow on Twitter:

Continue reading HERE

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The Repeats

K.M. Allan

If you’ve ever edited a manuscript, you’ll know that it takes many drafts and lots of re-writing to shape said manuscript into a readable book. Amongst those drafts should be a pass that includes finding a word that is repeated so much that you could turn it into a drinking game.

I call these instances The Repeats; a list of words that I know my writing-self likes to cram into sentences, but my editor-self knows shouldn’t be there.

My personal Repeats list includes…

  • Though
  • Realize/Realized
  • Took
  • Stood
  • Surprise/Surprised
  • Doubt

These are the words that flow during a first draft and then survive the rest of the drafts because they’re so ingrained in my writing voice that I don’t even notice them.

When looking at these words amongst others, it’s easy to think that they’ve been used sparingly, but with a Repeats draft added during the revision process, it’s plain…

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