Frieda’s Place

frieda with baby sa dcAs far back as I can remember, I’ve been going to Frieda’s place. Frieda is my aunt, my mother’s older sister by eight years, and Frieda has always been a part of my life.

When I was a child, many summers we travelled to Frieda’s in Kamloops, BC from our home in Charlie Lake in the northeast corner of the province. My mother at the wheel, we’d make the trek in two days, stopping to camp somewhere along the way in whatever unit we had that year, a tent (or two), a small trailer, and there were varying configurations of the family unit depending on which of my older brothers were not yet old enough to avoid family holidays like the plague. Continue reading

Exploring Place – Part V

In November of 2014, I flew to Los Cabos and spent nine days exploring the southeast corner of the Baja Peninsula researching the location for my novel House of the Blue Sea. Below is the fifth and final segment of the what I learned list:


Take time to smell the flowers! And any other aromatic items in your setting.P1040739


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Exploring Place – Part IV

In November of 2014, I flew to Los Cabos and spent nine days exploring the southeast corner of the Baja Peninsula researching the location for my novel House of the Blue Sea. Here’s part four of what I learned:


Keep a little space in your luggage for that thing you just have to take home. Is a hat, a mug, a stone or some other item key to your story or your inspiration? In my case, it was a small piece of heart-shaped coral, just a little keepsake of the Baja beach, until it turned into part of my cover art.20141113_074305 Continue reading

Exploring Place – Part III

In November of 2014, I flew to Los Cabos and spent nine days exploring the southeast corner of the Baja Peninsula researching the location for my novel House of the Blue Sea. Here’s part three of what I learned:


Check out the local architecture. You don’t have to travel very far to find people living and working in structures much different from what you’re familiar with. Take note of what buildings are constructed of, their size, shape, colours and style.20141108_160741 Continue reading

Exploring Place – Part II

In November of 2014, I flew to Los Cabos and spent nine days exploring the southeast corner of the Baja Peninsula researching the setting for my novel House of the Blue Sea.

Here’s part two of what I learned:


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Department store display in San Jose del Cabo.

Whether you’re travelling to another city, another country or another continent, pay attention to what’s different from where you live. And it doesn’t hurt to take note of things that are the same, like Yoda and reindeer.

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Exploring Place – Part I


House of the Blue Sea CoverIt’s been an exciting journey from a story idea formed in a snowy field in February of 2010 to a novel release scheduled for February of 2016. Six years … of writing, learning about writing, attending conferences on writing, talking to other writers about writing, revising writing … so yes, a lot of writing.

And, in addition to all of the above, a bit of research. Merriam-Webster defines research as “the collecting of information about a particular subject”. That about covers it and, luckily for me, in some cases this means walking beaches, watching sunrises, and drinking margaritas. Continue reading

It’s Nature, Keep an Open Mind

It’s snowing this morning. If it’s snowing where you are, you might be saying, “Yuck!” If you’re somewhere else where it isn’t snowing it might be, “Sucks being you.” My question is, “Why does snow suck?” It’s bright, it’s clean, so not really “yucky” at all. Okay, it comes with colder weather but why is that so bad? I have sweaters, many of them, and nice ones. If it didn’t get cold I wouldn’t have a chance to wear them.

snow on the hot tub
First snow on the farm.

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