Top Posts for 2014

I was pretty curious to see what the best posts were for my blog. I wondered if there was a theme or a common thread through them. Turns out, what the reader wants is not always predictable.

10. Coming in first is this post on the Active voice for authors. It has a series of links that I think readers appreciated.

9. This one was for bloggers and cautions about staring at those mesmerizing blog stats. I fell into that trap early on and it was a hard habit to break. As well, there are a group of links from other sites on the same subject.

8. This one is for authors again. Its on plotting with tips and links from other sites.

7. This one was a total surprise hit. A must read list if you’re getting a puppy. It was an instant hit with readers.

6. More tips for authors, this time on editing. I had very little idea on how to do this right, so I researched those authors who do know and added their links to the post. Readers loved the links.

5. Of Mushy Peas and Olives was an instant hit that kept getting attention. It’s a funny anecdote of my Mother-in-Law who, to this day, doesn’t find the story that funny at all.

4. My two dogs are the subject of quite a few posts. The Amazing Abilities of Akitas made me laugh when I wrote it and was a big hit with readers.

3. I do not like change. When I rambled on about it on the blog, then added some animal pictures, people loved it.

2. If you need a review, Reading Page by Paige is still reviewing books online. My post about her blog became a great hit with readers.

1. The number one read post on my blog was The importance of Tags: For Bloggers and once again, I relied on the great wisdom of someone else for this concept, Sourcerer, an amazing blog I highly recommend. Here’s his original post.

That’s it, the top ten posts of the year. A huge thanks to everyone for reading and to the bloggers and indie authors who have made having this blog such a positive experience.


If We Were Having Coffee – 11-22-2014

A great new feature at Trent’s World!

Trent's World (the Blog)

Morning Coffee

Hello and welcome.  Grab yourself a cup of strong French Roast.  I have tea if the coffee is a little much for you.  From the picture you should be able to guess that I’m at home in new Hampshire.

Thinking of that picture, do you see that stack of electronics behind the coffee cup?  This week I’ve been spend huge amounts of time playing that collection of Old School Analog Circuitry known as a minimoog Voyager.  For some reason the need to create music is returning with a vengeance and this time the outlet is mostly old fashioned (read 1960s/1970s style) analog synthesis.  I’ve also been practicing my piano.  Wow, do I need the practice!  I’ve gotten very rusty.

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Top 10 posts for October

Here are the top 10 posts for October according to you!

10. Five books I re-read over and over was a hit with readers. They shared what they re-read and it was a great way to get ideas for books!

9. Two books got released on the same week and are absolutely awesome. Check them out here.

8. 5 Reasons I want to come back as my dogs was a hit with everyone.

7. I asked for input on a very difficult subject here.

6. This one was my return-home post and everyone loved it!

5. I was in awe at the colours in this one.

4. Ah…the cute factor made everyone love this post. I can completely understand why. Puppies and kittens…soooo adorable.

3. Everyone loved the teeny, tiny announcement that I was leaving…maybe that’s a hint? Hee hee.

2. You thought Pay-It-Forward Fridays was a great idea and told me so with likes and comments.

1. The very top of the pile belongs to Posts I loved this week. This one in particular was a huge hit.

That’s the top 10 according to you! Thank you so much for reading and for those wonderful comments!

And, as a big thanks for reading, here are some cuties! 6-corgi-puppies-sleep-their-way-into-your-heart-1-18001-1345930337-12_bigsleeping_6_days_old_kitten_by_elvira1990-d68py53tumblr_komwlvcDJ41qzwtoyo1_400


Thank you so much for reading!


I just read this wonderfully honest post by Crystin Goodwin and it really hit me, I spend more time working on my blog than I do on my WIP. Hm…

There’s a good possibility that the reason I’m not working on my book is not that my blog takes up my time. I could find more time for my WIP but I’m procrastinating because it’s editing and to quote a friend, my first draft is ‘eye searing’ bad. Reading it is actually painful.

But Crystin’s post brings up a great question, how do you balance writing on your book vs. writing on your blog? Should we post every day? Should we only post when we have high-quality posts? Should we write first and then blog?

I’d love to hear what works for you.


Toil and Trouble Tuesday: Fridge disaster

When my husband decided to clean the fridge, I foresaw doom. Not that I’m clairvoyant or anything, I just know the man. Cough, Jeep incident, cough.

I tried to stop him but he gets a little stubborn about certain things. Next thing I knew, every item from the fridge was on the granite counter and he was scrubbing at one of the shelves. Hubby wasn’t satisfied with the level of cleanliness he had attained, so he pulled the glass shelf from its plastic cover.

Turns out, glass and granite do not like each other. As in, do not drop a glass shelf on a granite counter. Granite wins every time.

With a soft crack, the glass shelf broke into about a million pieces that, thanks to our open-concept house, scattered everywhere, the kitchen, the dining room, living room and hallway.


First things first, I got our two doggies and their vulnerable paws into my office away from the dangerous glass. Then, while my hubby ran through his entire repertoire of British curse words, I closed the door and planned murder.

Cleaning glass is not fun. It doesn’t clean up easily or well. Hours later, there were still pieces hiding in the grout between tiles, in the cracks by the wall, under furniture. Everywhere. Out came the wet vac, then hubby mopped, then I crawled on my hands and knees looking for any leftover, little shards that would hurt doggie paws.

But, when you’re a writer…revenge is sweet. I told him he’d make a post on the blog. 😀

Coffee and writing

Coffee and writing go hand in hand. I certainly love a hot cup when I start typing away.

Turns out, I’m not alone. This post rounded up a group of famous quotes about this exact point from famous writers. Everyone from Albert Camus to Louisa May Alcott is in there. A big thank you to Writers Write for that great post!


How about you? Do you reach for a cup when you sit to write? It’s early morning here, so I’m hoping you have a nice full one. I certainly do. 🙂

Top ten posts for June!

These are the top ten posts in June according to you!

10. Coming in last is my post announcing changes to Olivia’s Choice page.

9. This one got a lot of attention. It’s about getting editing help from a pro who also happens to be a really, really kind person. Check it out if you’re looking for help.

8. A grumpy me and a bunch of cat pictures, readers loved this one on change. Have I mentioned I don’t like change?

7. This Tuesday Teaser got a whole bunch of attention. I actually really like Sandra Brown. I have a couple of her books to read next. YUM!

6. This one was posted a while ago but interest in it has flared up now. It makes sense. If you blog, you need to know about tags. They’re really important.

5. This is what happens when you know someone called Winter Bayne. She’s an incredible writer who’s also insanely busy. Yet, she does this. I’m still in awe.

4. This one was a major hit with readers. I think it has to do with the cutie at the end. And no, we didn’t accept his offer.

3. My mother-in-law is a very unique individual. And so is her way of obtaining pizza. Readers thought it was hilarious.

2. This one was a surprise for me. I had no idea how much readers would connect with this idea.

1. This one is the all time favourite.

A big thank you to you for reading my little blog and sharing your likes and dislikes with me. You made June a wonderful month!

Info dumps

I too have had trouble with the dreaded ‘info-dump’. I knew better than to start a story with the entire character back story but I couldn’t see how to get it in there. Then, I spotted a dialogue and thought, perfect!


My dialogue went something like this:

Anna: “Hi, Roberta. How are you?”

Roberta: “Hi, Anna. I’m better thanks. I’m almost over my cold, though it certainly wasn’t as bad as the pneumonia I had when you were in love with Henry but he back stabbed you by going out with Louisa and you heard about it through your best friend Veronica by accident. How are you?”

It was a disaster.

So, how does a pro do it? Well, I got a link or two for you. 😀

Janice Hardy does such a good job of explaining it here, I couldn’t resist putting a link. She’s a pro and she explains it so much better than I ever could. Here is another post on what an info dump is and how to avoid them. And finally, this one on how to weave information into the story naturally.

A big thanks to her for those awesome posts!!

Don’t take your writing too seriously

I may be wrong but I think writers are pretty hard self-critics. I think that’s how we get that dreaded ‘Writer’s Block’. I’m not a psychologist or therapist but I read this great post by BELLA MAHAYA CARTER on ‘Why writing isn’t selfish navel-gazing’ and thought she might be onto something. Maybe we need to stop taking our writing so seriously.

Ms. Carter teaches and her students put down their writing. As she says,

The only thing “off” about my student that night was her judgments of herself, and of her writing. I see this a lot. I’ve threatened to put a jar on the coffee table in my living room into which my students must toss a quarter for every apology, excuse, or self-deprecating remark made prior to reading what they’ve written.”

I read her post (a really good one) and wondered, do I take my writing too seriously? There are times when the fun, the magic of writing is simply gone.

Writers, resist the temptation to judge yourself and your work. Think of your writing as sandbox time. Dig. Play. Get dirty. Make friends. Explore the shapes of things. See what you can build. But don’t take yourself too seriously. The more important your writing feels, the better it serves you to think of it as a game. A diversion. Something you do for yourself first. Enjoy it.”

I think, following her advice, I’ll try to enjoy my writing more. Maybe add a silly curl to my hero’s hair or give the heroine the hiccups…during a kiss. Ha! Something that will lighten my mood and make sure that I remember to have fun with writing.

After all, if I want serious, I’ve got my Day Job.




Great posts

Just read two posts that are riveting. Amazingly written and just too good to pass. They’re both from I Am Not The Batman.

The first is a discussion on what Ariel would look like–realistically. What a hoot! If we were to follow legend, Ariel would look more like a turtle-like monster than the Disney version we’ve seen. I loved this post because, to me, Ariel always seemed unrealistically Barbie-like and I feared what that would do to the self-image of the little girls watching. Check out the post here.

The second is an absolutely hilarious analysis of Voldermort. I loved every word in this one because there are flaws that screamed out as I read and watched the movies about this supposed-villain who doesn’t want to change the world or even get glory but rather wants to harm an eleven year old. Absolutely brilliantly written. Loved it. Check it out here.

This is definitely a blog I’ll be following. It’s too good to pass.