Monthly Archives: June 2013

… if ye don’t like it, just switch it off… Life’s far too short to bother with daftness… #TBSU…

…the miracle of the instantaneous communication world I’m now plugged into is that this ol’ Jurassic can hardly go to the washroom minus the Blackberry without feeling bereft… the immediacy of the 24/7 cable news channels tell me what’s going on, sometimes even before it goes on… keep me away from the laptop for any extended period …(…read ‘a very short passage of time’...)…  and withdrawal symptoms set in… I LUV being attached to all the periphery that comes with the Internet … I’m twinned with my Twitter… gorged with my Goodreads… facetious with my Facebook... licentious with my LinkedIn, and as ye can see, constantly blethering with my Blogging... in a WURD, enjoying… however, I’ve noted recently a wee wave of discontent in certain corners of the WEB... here, a murmur of ennui at receiving Re-Tweets that the Re-Tweetee didn’t Re-quire… there, a quibble of querulousness at viewing Facebook timeline content that didn’t sit well with the Facebook-ee’s opinions… a sprinkling of sarcasm from self-appointed literary-merit magistrates regarding blog posts which also riled their personally-held sensitivities… and, simpleton that I am, Mabel, I ask myself WHY?... why do these groaners bother?… I’ve yet to find any person on the internet with enough clout to change the ENTIRE world in one shot (with the possible exception of Lord Justin Beiber)… my personal Deity-Of-All-Things-Funny, Master Comedian, Billy Connolly regularly  had criticism hurled his way about some of the coarser (and very funny) material in his acts on television… his response is magnificent… ‘…if ye don’t like it, just move yer thumb, and switch it off…’)… at the last count, there are something like a gazillion trillion users on the WEB, there must be SUMTHIN’ they can like… Life’s far too short to be bothering with daftness… and by the way, if we all agreed with everything everybody else said, wouldn’t it be SUCH a boring existence… now, let’s all kiss and make up… see yeez later…

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… terrific post as usual from a Master Writer … grab his freebies before the day runs out …

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Liebster Duce is as Liebster Duce Does

…Master Howell has lived up to my ultra-high expectations of his response to the Leibster Award nomination (he HAS done this before, ye’ll note)… apart from getting my tenure in the Middle East incorrect at 33 years (it’s 25 years in Asia, 10 years in the Middle East ) and ‘TBSU’ stands for ‘THE BLOG SCRATCHERS UNION’, but I s’pose his interpretation of ‘Backscratchers’ fits the bill just as readily… HOWEVER, he DID spell both my names properly, so he will be allowed to go to the ball after all… enjoy his post …:)))


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…intrepid, that’s what they are… intrepid… Guest Bloggers on here… up steps Author Melodie Campbell…#TBSU…

… old Agatha Christie’s got a lot to answer for… read Melodie :

Blame it on Agatha!


 By Melodie Campbell

 Okay, I admit it.  Along with coffee, dark chocolate, and foreign men named Raoul, I have an addiction.

 I’m a sucker for the “You won’t guess the ending” Whodunit.

 I blame Agatha Christie for this addiction.  She is also to blame for a lot of eleven-year-old sleepless nights, as well as my father’s near heart attack in 1970 when I announced at the dinner table “I know thirteen ways to poison people and not get caught.”

 Christie was indeed the Queen of Plot.  After an appetizer of Nancy Drew, I whipped through Poirot, Marple, and Tommy and Tuppence in less than two years. Then I moved on to Sayers, Allingham, Marsh and any traditional mysteries I could get my hands on.

 Why?  It’s the chess game.  The sheer bliss of pitting my mind against the author’s to see if I can guess the killer before the story’s detective.

 To this day, I relish a book that plays fair, leaves me the clues, and stumps me at the end.

 So it’s no surprise that my second published book, co-written with good friend Cynthia St-Pierre, is a traditional whodunit.

Happy Birthday, A PURSE TO DIE FOR! 

Yes, it’s been one year since our publisher launched this fun whodunit, and that little book has travelled through the Amazon best-seller lists faster and higher than we dared anticipate. 

 It appears we are not alone in loving that killer surprise ending.

 My favorite line from the 61 reviews posted thus far?

 “You’ll be certain you know the killer. Twice. But you’ll be wrong.”

 THAT is what we set out to do.  THAT is the kind of book that makes me smile and gives me chills.

Like a classic “You won’t guess the ending” whodunit?  See if you can guess the killer in A PURSE TO DIE FOR.

Melodie Campbell

Melodie Campbell

 In the UK

In Germany …

In the US

Melodie Campbell is an award-winning author of 40 short stories and 5 novels, including A Purse to Die For, co-written with Cynthia St-Pierre.  Melodie has won 6 awards for fiction, and is the Executive Director of Crime Writers of Canada.

You can follow Melodie at and

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CLIMBING THE MOUNTAIN … because its there!

Onward and Upward… my quill-scraping, promo-bashing buddy, Jay Squires puts his best pitch forward …:))

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… and the next Guest Blogger, right in here, please … Eric J. Gates… #TBSU…

So , here we go, my great AUTHOR pal, ERIC J. GATES has the floor …

Leaving Shadows

Full Disclosure












Cull book 1











The NSA has let me down again!

Some of you may know I worked in computer security for many a year before turning my hand to the fabrication of fanciful fiction (Sorry about that. I read a book on Alliteration last week – The Absolute Alliteration Almanac for Aspiring Authors, available on Amazon, amazingly enough). Anyway, using my skills, I have been providing gainful employment to the spooks worldwide over the past few years, as I seed various blog posts, web articles and emails with tasty titbits (sorry). What, you cry! Have you been plotting the overthrow of our cherished way of life? No, hang-on a minute! I’m far more subtle than that.

What I’ve been doing is using the National Security Agency’s Prism interface in popular software (PIPS for short), as well as the FBI’s Carnivore system, and of course that old standby, Echelon II, to infiltrate the closely guarded confines (sorry) of Jeff Bezos’ In–tray.


Jeff Bezos. Mr Amazon, to you.

What have I been up to? Well, as any fellow scribbler knows, contacting the Big A with suggestions for improvement is like being an itinerant dragon-slayer in the 21st Century (sorry Wikidribble). I tried sending my well-thought-out improvements to sundry emails hidden within KDP’s support pages, to no avail. So, in a fit of rational reasoning (sorry) that won’t repeat (sorry, again), I hit upon my Master Plan.

In essence, I’d let my fingers do the stalking!

But all my efforts were in vain! Some Snowden bloke has focused all their resources on tracking him down, and they are ignoring me. It’s so frustrating. Here I am, with ideas galore, ways of improving Amazon’s author interface (sorry), yet I am not to be heard by Mr Bezos’ backups (sorry), or anyone that resembles them.

So I say to Big A, until the Snowden thing is sorted and we can all go back to being spied upon by the NSA, GCHQ, FBI, CIA and B&N, could you provide a virtual suggestions box so writers can help you improve the service you provide?

Not asking much, am I?

By the way, just in case the repeated mentions of intelligence and law enforcement services HAVE temporarily tempted (sorry) the said services to Seumas’ blog, I’ve just published my latest suspense thriller, ‘Leaving Shadows’, on Big A. It starts with the kidnapping of the Head of MI6 – that’ll get their attention! Please take note!

Sorry about apologising constantly; we Brits tend to do that. Sorry.

From Eric J. Gatesauthor of thrillers2012 , FULL DISCLOSURE,  The CULL and Leaving Shadows available AMAZON (paper & e-book) and bookstores worldwide.
check out to read extracts and discover the inside secretsfollow me on Twitter: @eThrillerWriter  and on my Blog


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An insightful article by author Paula Courtney on why she went from traditional to self-publishing…

… great piece.. well worthy of a re-blog ! :)))

Thomas Rydder

Polly CourtneyClick on Paula’s photo to read it…:)

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… whatever ye do, don’t mess with my sausages… #TBSU…

… there are those who swear their unfaltering allegiance to Bacon… No, Mabel, not the actor Laddie, Kevin… nor the Filosofer Chappie, Sir Francis… we’re talking the edible sort that gets slapped on to sandwiches… or sometimes diced up and served in exotic dishes like Spaghetti Carbonara... I’m a sausages man, myself, always have been, always will be… BUT, like most Caledonian epicureans, I’m a bit picky about my bangers… none of yer daft wee finger-thin excuses fills the bill (or the stomach)… yer foreign furters also don’t hit the spot… in Scotland we have the WURLD’s best SQUARE SLICED SAUSAGES… if yeez haven’t tried them yet, yeez haven’t LIVED... normal, big, fat links-sausages are also acceptable fare, especially if just a tad over-fried, gives them that wee crunchy texture… where am I going with this?… well, ye see, once upon a time I saw some sausages being made in a factory that I shall not name, (to protect the guilty)… the nice people on the production line explained in detail what was going on, and more importantly, what was going IN to the stuff … they were stuffing what they called EXTENDERS into the meat … in layman’s language, that’s,  ‘any old edible garbage that acts as a filler’… I could see my whole eating life whizz past in front of me in a nano-second… I almost had a wee attack of the vapours, but managed to get out of there with my sensibilities intact… further enquiries were made AT ONCE… I’m pleased to report that NOT ALL sausage manufacturers use EXTENDERS... the lesson’s clear, EXTENDERS are NOT GOOD THINGS… now carry that idea into yer quill-scraping, Lads and Lassies of  Blog Land… when ye think it’s good practice to throw EXTENDERS into yer masterpieces to get yer WURDCOUNT up… it will be found out… in  most cases it will degrade yer WURK… resist the temptation… ‘Get Thee Behind Me Extenders’… pure WURK is like pure SAUSAGES… ye can’t beat it… oh, heck… Matron heard me shouting… here she comes with that bluudy syringe… see yeez later …

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great read , from a great writer .. 🙂

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… half the lies ye read about are not true … #TBSU…

… I s’pose not too many of yeez are familiar with the name Carlo Collodi, right?… me too, ’til I read it this morning (ain’t Google great?)… it’s the pen-name for a wonderful Italian fellow writer called Carlo Lorenzini... still not ringing any bells ?… he created in 1883 the character of Pinocchio... he of the elongating, extendable proboscis … the snout alarm for fibbers… the facial klaxon proclaiming the benders of the Truth… the ultimate truth-serum-substitute… the Pinocchio effect could usefully be transposed to the new era of the eBook… specifically at an oft-abused element of it… REVIEWS... my take on doing reviews is clearly stated in previous blogposts… I try to punch out about one review per week from my kindle back-log as part of my ‘giving-back’… I gladly tag the reviews with a four-star or five-star rating, BUT ONLY IF I FEEL THE BOOKS TRULY MERIT THAT... failing that, I DO NOT POST THE REVIEW AT ALL… that does not put me into the realm of my puppet pal, Master P. , … I prefer to deliver my opinion on the lesser-tabbed directly to the author(ess) in question… BUT, we’re all growed-up people here (ain’t we, Mabel?)… rumblings and mutterings and mumblings proliferate about ‘doctored’ reviews… the kind that Grannies and Great-Uncles, and coerced ‘friends’ throw on to the Amazon review pages with the ‘this could’ve been a ten-star, but I can only give five-stars’ … and ‘the best book in a thousand years’... ye know the kinda stuff… I appreciate fully when I get the friendly reviews, of course, but I’ve come to acknowledge that the minor ratings also have a place in the ‘credibility’ stakes… not everybody is gonna like my work… let the chips fall as they may, and soldier on … REVIEWS? I LUV ‘EM… BUT ONLY IF THEY’RE HONEST... unlike the newspapers, where as we all know, half the lies are not true… see yeez later…

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